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Change Begins with Choice (thanks J.Rohn) June 20, 2017

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going”    -Jim Rohn

I read an article by Jim Rohn about making changes and how to go about it, even when it is difficult. The fact that it is easy to ignore  and take the easy path so it is true that we must make the decision, the choice first…..

In  recent medical WAKEUP I found I had developed heart failure and Atrial Fibrillation (A Fib) . The initial treatment focused on losing, flushing fluid from the body…a secondary benefit of that was a loss of weight. This benefit showed itself when I began exercising and walking. A drop of 50 then 70 and now over 100 pounds has reduced the strain on my body, knees and legs allowing me to workout more frequently.

The cardio workouts are strengthening my heart and lungs and the weightlifting is strengthening the body and spirit…I love walking and running BUT pushing weights is a BLAST.  As I lost a lot of fluid weight and it is still gone- now I workout and lose the Fat and Gristle and continue to drop the weight, move towards a target body-weight and body shape for my 80 inch body .  Time to decide on where to settle but for now somewhere in the 245-250 lb neighborhood is the target.

Looking at the article by Mr.Rohn- I need to make the decision everyday to workout and eat properly. This will help develop the HABIT to allow for success in the process and later maintaining the target fitness level.

Will use this and other Rohn ideas and writings for setting and achieving goals and success.

 

http://www.success.com/article/rohn-change-begins-with-choice?utm_source=Maropost&utm_campaign=5%20Money%20Principles%20You%20Need%20to%20Know&utm_term=Jim%20Rohn&utm_medium=Email&mpweb=574-3714673-742241295

 
@martyroddy
 

ASPARAGUS- Joyful little tasty surprises from the ground June 6, 2017

It is the heart of Farmers Market season, and in Virginia the good as gold crop in the early season is always asparagus. The delicious sprouts clean out of the for,early cold ground to feed us with delicious, tender goodness. Thy have a short season but it is so delicious. 

Growing asparagus is also rewarding if you have the patience to wait for them to grow, season and develop over a 2 year prep period.

The following is one of many recipes I use to enjoy these tasty surprises.
INGREDIENTS
2 cups chickpeas soaked 6 hours, cooked over medium heat for 1 1-2

Fresh thyme  and freshly ground pepper

1 pound asparagus, tough ends removed

 3 tablespoons extra virgin- cocunut oil

2 cloves garlic, minced ( or more to taste)

Juice and zest 1 lemon

1/2 cup raw almonds, chopped
DIRECTIONS
Soak and cook beans , can add onions garlic, pepper when cooking.

 Blanch asparagus in pot ,for 1 minute,rinse under cold water.transfer to ice.

 Drain beans , shake off excess water. Make sur  asparagus is dry

Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Swirl in oil, then add garlic and beans and season.

 Cook, stirring frequently, until garlic is softened, 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Transfer beans to a plate with a slotted spoon. Let skillet cool slightly, then whisk lemon juice into oil in skillet; season with salt and pepper. (Add more oil if dressing is too tart.) Add asparagus; toss to coat with dressing.

Combine almonds and lemon zest in a small bowl. Transfer asparagus to a platter, top with beans, and drizzle remaining dressing in skillet over top. Sprinkle with almond-zest mixture and serve.

 

HEART FAILURE – OK Now Whats for Dinner? May 30, 2017

The diagnosis of heart failure is/was shocking but additional information and research revealed that :

  • it is not a death sentence
  • it can be lived with and
  • it can be overcome with diet and exercise

Now when I arrived at the hospital I could not walk 20 meters without being out of breath, the diagnosis was actually a relief before it was a shock.  I now knew why I felt so bad. AND the medical team made it clear that I  could overcome and even thrive.

A lifestyle change that includes adjustments in diet and an increase in exercise. The diet will be a lifestyle change “forever” not just temporarily reducing calories and  weight for now. It has been fun, learning some new foods and recipes.

There are 2 authors/physicians and cardiac experts that i have read about before and have read A LOT about recently.  Drs. Dean Ornish and John McDougall have been proponents of very low fat, plant-based/plant focused diets.

Dr.Ornish published a great book, EAT MORE, WEIGH LESS  and it is loaded with great recipes as well as tremendous common sense information with evidence that such a diet improves and even heals heart damage.

Dr.McDougall has 2 “cornerstone books” , MCDOUGALL PROGRAM FOR MAXIMUM WEIGHT LOSS and THE STARCH SOLUTION. Both focus on plant-based, low/no fat diet choices much like Dr.Ornish.

Where to find these guys?  search the web or go to:

  1. http://www.ornish.com
  2. http://www.drmcdougall.com

BUT WHAT CAN WE EAT?

  • Beans- dried or canned (choose salt-free) – loaded with fiber and protein
  • Garlic – eat, add to foods and take as supplement
  • Spinach and Dark,leafy greens
  • nuts and seeds – good fats and loaded with minerals and protein (almonds,walnuts, brazils, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds
  • salmon- great omega fats as well as protein
  • soy protein- organic tofu, tempeh, miso , edamame beans
  • whole grains
  • fresh fruits and vegetables

A future post may include information on specific nutrients required for heart failure patients( magnesium, potassium, good fats).

 

 

@martyroddy

 

 

 

What  a Heart Failure ? May 26, 2017

Now that I am dealing with, treating this diagnosis and was surprised by it when I went to the hospital in March. Initially I was relieved to hear a diagnosis and a couple of doctors and nurses tell me that it can be overcome.   

They gave me that hope without any deep information nor explanations. Eventually a few folks from Social work, social service offices brought information about Heart Failure. It include a cursory description of what it was and a little bit how it gets started. The information also had suggestions for living with it and treating it.

  • Heart failure is a chronic, progressive condition in which the heart muscle is unable to pump enough blood  to meet the body’s needs for blood and oxygen.      
  • the heart can’t keep up with its workload.      
  • The heart is a muscle that pumps blood to the other organs of the body, but “Heart Failure” doesn’t mean the heart has stopped working. It means it can’t pump properly

Certain behaviors can lead to heart failure:

  • Eating foods that are high in salt, fat, and cholesterol 
  •  getting enough physical activity. 
  • Being overweight

I found a few videos with some basic info.

– this first one was interesting as I started my journey with symptoms of bronchitis and ended up in the Emergency room. Unable to breathe with A FIB AND heart failure.

-The following has a few useful tips for dealing with and living with heart failure.

@martyroddy

 

Some Secondary Goals as I Return to Fitness and Health. May 21, 2017

I realized the other day that I need to expand my set of goals and objectives for my current fitness journey. The obvious and most pressing is strengthening the heart and lungs, the entire cardio-pulmonary system, as a result of my heart failure diagnosis. As that is going forward I need to expand the focus to  total body program .

I need to :

  1. increase knee flexibility and suppleness
  2. add some speed and even “jump”
  3. total body flexibility ( exercises and maybe Yoga)

The following videos address some of my personal concerns with my knees as I start over and get BACK in shape. I find that my knees have been stiff and occasionally sore. As I continue to exercise I will do these moves to help the knees…which will help me continue. I have also joined a gym @Snapfitness and I have used the bike and rower ( @Concept2 ) for knee relieving cardio. Some workouts I combine cardio tools for increased burn and reduced stress on knees.

In the long “run” my body will improve and knees will feel great as I maintain a steady weight loss and fitness program . Lower body weight will stress the knees much less , and since i have already dropped 100+ pounds the knees feel pretty good.

VIDEO: A few exercises to help keep the knees healthy and flexible

VIDEO: Specific exercise for the knees

 

Now I will address the 2nd and 3rd item in more depth later but here are  few related links.

SPEED….

http://pin.it/dnVAW6Y

and

http://pin.it/HdRdjdJ

FLEXIBILITY…

http://pin.it/t2qikKx

and

http://pin.it/4URU54z

More to come- add any questions or suggestions- always love to learn and grow.

 

@martyroddy

 

Heart Failure, Exercise and Improvement May 16, 2017

Now that I have heart failure and am dealing with it , I will write about it as I work to,overcome and live a long happy, healthy life.

I have been living with the diagnosis for 2 months now and my exercise has helped my head and my heart and even my fat butt…. keep the blood pumping and clean as I exercise and ear right….diagnosis of no more failure….just a healthy 54 year old heart.
The following video discusses some basics for the use of exercise to improve life after the diagnosis.

Fun info on overcoming the challenge and training for Ironman…or life…..QUOTE: You can get off the couch and live the life you want…even with heart disease.

@martyroddy

 

Make this a Training Log or Keep Writing About Workouts or ?? April 16, 2017

I continue to walk and do the workouts on my journey back to health and then fitness. I have comfortable crossed the half mile distance and should be beyond a mile soon. Some basic goals for the immediate future :

  • Adding distance
  • Increasing speed
  • Improving flexibility and softness/ suppleness in my joints( knees)
  • Adding strength throughout entire body

The first is a simple proposition…keep walking and everyday go a little bit longer. The biggest challenge I face with this (many of us face it) is repeating the daily mileage without hurting legs and knees that have already been stressed and damaged on the gridiron and basketball court.

This concern is being addressed with the 3rd and 4th bullets in this list. Increased flexibility and improved suppleness will allow me to move “over ” the ground rather than on and through the ground with the related pounding. Strength will also improve the ability of my muscles to “catch and release”each footstrike with negligible pounding.

When I start working on speed I will pick a few workout routes or section of routes to time and then later to ” time trial”. A section that took me 10 minutes might have an ultimate goal of 6 minutes 30 seconds but intermediate goals of 9 and 7 minutes. Successfully increasing speed will ultimately rely on common sense and patience….not always strengths of mine .

I hav been joking with a high school friend about getting ready for a Fall half marathon …when I wrote that to her on Facebook I had just walked a half mile for th first time since my heart diagnosis.

I am still looking into creating some sort or running/ walking / fitness club or group for folks recovering from or living with some sort of heart health diagnosis. 

martysmarch@yahoo.com for information or interest in the club.

@martyroddy