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Grand Life

Living lavishly, healthy and successfully


Category: Body
  • Morning weight: 181.8 lbs. 
  • Sleep: 6.5
  • Calories: 2136    Carbs: 57
  • Workout: Cardio 45mins.

Starting January 1. We have a rematch of Carbs vs Calories. This time we must increase our calories over 2000 per day. I’ve added a bunch of different foods that are high in calories and low in carbs. Our new goal is to hit under 170 lbs. in 60 days. That is pretty aggressive since we have under 50 days to do that.

We are adding a new stat to measure- Sleep!


Smile Often!

Morning weight: 182.8 lbs. 

Daily feeling score: 8.1

Calories: 1844    Carbs: 50


Workout: None.

It took 63 days to reach the 10 pound mark. This was with lots of starts and stops. Too many undisciplined days of binging on desserts. The next 10 lbs. will limit those. The path to losing weight is momentum. I will continue dropping weight by watching carbs. I have a challenge finding foods with low carbs and high calories. My caloric intake is very low too. I still need to prove that low carbs and high calories will still equal weight loss.


Smile Often!

Morning weight: 184.0 lbs. 

Daily feeling score: 7.1

Calories: 2245    Carbs: 117

Workout: None.


Been a bit of a disaster. The increase in carbs has also increased calories. The slight weight gain may be attributed to either higher carbs or calories? Popcorn has so many of both. We will revisit The Great Experiment because I am looking for the perfect food for assuaging the snacking urge.

The snack topic is important. What can I eat for snacks? Foods that help with the desire to snack include: celery, sugar-free jello, Atkin’s shakes, very small amounts of nuts, dried seaweed and cheese.  I will keep adding to the list.

Smile often!

Day 60: Carbs vs. Calories – The Great Experiment

Morning weight: 183.2 lbs. 

Daily feeling score: 7.4

Calories: 2138    Carbs: 130

Workout: None.


Ladies and gentlemen we have hit the 60 day mark! That is it has been 60 days since we started this hypothesis of dropping weight by paying attention to our carbs and eating as many calories as we want. I have dropped from 192.8 lbs. to 193.2 lbs. Darned, by now, I would have liked to have seen a loss of at least 10 lbs. But the good news is that I didn’t starve myself or kill myself on cardio. I’ve taken this nice and easy. I’ve also sprinkled in quite a few nights of adult beverages, had sweets and not adhered to the no more than 12 carbs every 2 hours rule. I probably could have dropped quicker, but I wasn’t trying to inconvenience myself.

Today is time to experiment with what a bunch of carbs from popcorn will do. I purposely bought the popcorn that has no sugar carbs. I ate at least six servings-about 130 carbs (OUCH!).  Tomorrow let’s see what the scale says?!

What about how I’m feeling? Feeling OKarewewinning… about a 7.4. A little down today but probably because of my side thoughts of my career. Remember, I’m your average person working in the corporate world.

Smile Often!



Business trips, days-boxingstaythecourseoff, Thanksgiving and relatives in town. All excuses to eat more carbs than I want! Big excuses, but I’m still proving that I can lose weight and consume copious amounts of calories. I’m not killing myself with cardio. I’m not starving myself with too few calories. I’m eating right and dropping the weight.

The good news is….my focus and concentration is about average. This means that dropping this weight isn’t impacting my ability to focus and do good work.

I know the rate of weight loss hasn’t been as high as we’ve expected. I blame it on proving that we can achieve a decent weight loss and still have a good time.

I think we can shift gears now. I will drop the weight faster and start answering more questions about weight loss.

Questions like

How does sleep impact our weight loss?

What does net carbs mean to us?

Fiber carbs or sugar carbs, does it matter?

Does eating a whole bag of popcorn affect my blood sugar?

Do diet drinks affect my weight loss?

Why not bread?

… and more!


Smile Often!

Morning weight: 188.4 lbs. 

Daily feeling score: 7.4

Calories: 1616    Carbs: 47

Workout: Legs, Hanging abs 30 mins.

beltbuckleThe “why?” of most things I do is my motivation. I have lots of “whys”. That’s not a problem. My belt is a why…Yes that is correct. I know that I’m making progress based on my belt. When I started about 10 days ago my belt was going from the second to the last eyelet from the end, to where it is now comfortable. It was about to go to the very last eyelet. After that it would have been buy another larger belt. This progress might not seem like a lot –believe me – it is! These small wins are what make this Carb vs. Calorie fight so fun. The little jab I make in the fight is setting my body up to make further progress. I’m losing the weight the right way. Not starving myself, taking unnatural herbs or giving myself enemas to purge myself. I’m eating all the meat and cheese probably that I want. Keeping the carbs under control is how I win!

This morning I had a Starbuck’s double shot espresso light. It had only 5 carbs, but it was all sugar carbs. Later in the morning I was very hungry. The sugar balance is important. The more sugar you have the more cravings you’ll have. It’s a true example of delayed gratification. Carbs = sugar = blood sugar spikes = weight gain. Easy math!


Smile Often!

More antioxidants than strawberries, kiwis and tomatoes

Concentration of the the Day: We knew that strawberries, kiwis and tomatoes were very good sources of antioxidants.. but move over guys, there’s a new sheriff in town… Raspberries! More than 50% more antioxidant activity than strawberries, 3x more than kiwis and yes… 10x more than tomatoes!

* Red Raspberries almost have exclusive rights to ellagitannins (anti-oxidants) which are very good for combating free radicals.
* If you go to the health food store and purchase ellagic acid (a dietary supplement) then you are buying what comes from red raspberries.

* The anthocyanins give some antimicrobial properties to the red raspberry. This includes the ability to prevent certain bacteria and fungi IN the body– the ones that can cause vaginal infections and irritable bowel syndrome.

* The Juicing factor of red raspberries is around a 9.  NOTE: Watermelon is a 10 on the juicing scale because of the amount of juice you can get from it. A banana would be a 1 because you would not want to juice it.

* Research suggests (conducted on animals) that raspberries may have cancer protective properties. The raspberries work to inhibit tumor formation in various parts of the body, including the colon.

* Raspberries contain manganese, vitamin C, riboflavin, folate, niacin and potassium. They have good fiber.

* If you’re a diabetic or hypoglycemic raspberries could help because they have minimal impact on blood sugars!

* Frozen raspberries have from a limited to no reduction in antioxidant activity. However, the vitamin C effect may be reduced by half.

* There is a 36% reduction in risk of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) by eating at least three or more servings of fruit per day. This is the primary cause of vision loss in older adults. This according to information contained in the  Archives of Ophthalmology.

Enjoy this delicious delicate fruit.  How easy is it to add a few to your salad, cereal, yogurt? How about just eat them by themselves?

Apricots-taste like a cross between a plum and a peach

Apricots-taste like a cross between a plum and a peach

Concentration of the Day: Apricots- These smooth, round fruits have a taste in between a plum and a peach. Good for the eyes because they’re loaded with Vitamin A. They do have beta-carotene, vitamin C and tryptophan.

*On a scale of 1-10 they juice around a 7. Watermelon would be a juice factor of 10.

*Eat them dried if you can. But remember… dried apricots contain sulfites. This extends the shelf life. If you suffer from asthma then USE CAUTION… AND FIND… Organic. FDA regulations prohibit the use of preservatives in organically grown or produced food.

*Apricots contain phytochemicals called carotenoids. One of the carotenoids is lycopene which is a major antioxidant. Antioxidants, as you may recall, help minimize free radical damage. Free radical damage is what causes some cancers.

*Apricots also have potassium, magnesium, calcium and a little iron.

*The beta-carotene in apricots makes them an important food for the heart. Beta-carotene helps limit LDL cholesterol from oxidation, which may help prevent heart disease.

Kumquats-Eat them skin and all!

Fun to eat! Good for you. Loaded with nutrition.

This little oval fruit that looks like a mini orange should be eaten rind and all. It has limonene which is an Anti-cancer phytonutrient. This in the lab has been shown to prevent the spread of cancer….But wait there’s more..

They aid in digestion by “stimulating” digestive enzymes. Try eating a couple right before a big dinner.

Kumquats are helpful in lowering levels of harmful LDL cholesterol.
They contain vitamins A and C, iron, calcium and fiber.
Try them in your salads, include them in your afternoon snack. Make sure your kids have them in their lunches. They’re unique and “fun” to eat!

The is just a quick addendum to the Chronic Knot in the Shoulder blades issue.  The long, aggravating, dull pain that happens when a tight muscle forms between the spine and shoulder blade. The exact muscle is either the trapezius or rhomboids.

Sometimes this can be so painful and tight that it pulls the ribs upwards making you feel as if you can’t breath in deep without feeling it. Most of the time it’s just slightly painful but very annoying.

If you missed it read part 1. There is definitely a solution. 

I wanted to add this post because I want to save you lots of time and money. I don’t want you going on this futile journey of searching for relief for your muscle knot. This is the experience I’ve had and maybe it will help you avoid advice, that while well-meaning, is innocuous.

Remember, I’ve seen lots of different people that have told me many different ways to get rid of the knot and believe me, I have tried many of their remedies and techniques with minimal results and definitely without success.

Many Massage therapists have claimed that stretching the chest muscles will miraculously help get rid of the the knot located on my upper back. “It will help relieve the pressure from the back.” Not in my case.

The entire science of “Trigger points” and rubbing them out as prescribed in the book, The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook (which I bought), and other books like this do not work either.  Myofascial trigger points (small contraction knots) are real…I think…I’ve never seen one but a lot of people “get” them and they can be rubbed out. This might work for some things such as headaches, joint issues, stress or soreness but not for your knot.

Keeping your head up and not slouching had no effect either. I had a friend of mine tell me everytime I seemed to pull up on my shoulders. I would get the signal and then let them down and relax them. This went on for weeks with no benefit. I would also “sit up straight” at my desk and when watching TV, or having a meal.

Self-adjusting or “Popping” your back might feel good and relieve the pain slightly but doesn’t do anything for the knot. I always thought… If I can just pop my back the right way, then my back would fall in place and the knot would be gone. Nope not that either.

Chiropractors couldn’t do anything. They x-rayed me and professionally “adjusted” me with no success. They all said they could help me. Their specialty was “sports” injuries and put me through “heck” with everything they tried. There was a chiropractor that put little “shock pads” all around my back. This would send little electrical currents to all the muscles that the pad was on. This was interesting but didn’t do anything. I think it even made it worse. Oh yea…One even used a technique where she would push my feet together and then out  for 100 times to do energy work. How was that supposed to help my knot? Maybe a placebo affect that she thought I would fall for?

Accupuncture did not work either. I told people that I just want to “dig a knife” in that knot. It would throb with pain because of the tightness. Well why not stick needles in it? So I did. This did nothing–especially when they wanted to stick them in my ankles. NO WAY!

Warm rags, heating pads, Icy Hot, Ice etc…”It’s a muscle tear, rub it out” …I’ve used all of these. They might feel good, but do not work.

Advil, Tylenol or Aspirin Therpy all are ineffective. Don’t kill your liver doing this.

There’s even those that say it’s a heart problem… Now this is an extreme diagnosis that is just wrong.

Try my advice and technique and be done with it.  SOLUTION.

Again don’t kill yourself. Have a painfree day, and rest of your life (at least from that darned knot!)

Smile Often!