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My not so crazy diet


A few have asked me about my diet and how I stay so damned skinny slim and make it look easy while still maintaining my energy levels.  Of course my first response is IT IS EASY…if you are active, making it so that there is no real need for dieting in the first place.  However, I realize for many it is not that easy to understand HOW they should be eating regardless of activity level.  In the United States, the land of fast food and prosperity, we as a society don’t want to eat right. (At first one could say we forgot how, but that is a bunch of bull.  We learn it in school, see it on TV, read it in advertisements, etc.  So the main reason is simply because we don’t want to, or because we feel it is not easy.  It is easier to get fat and sue fast food companies for our own stupidity.) Ahem, OK I will get off of the soap box.

Disclaimers: First, I am not claiming that eating the way I do will work for everyone.  We are all slightly different, and you may need to tweak my diet to fit your lifestyle and activity level.  Second, genetics do play a small part and I am naturally thin to begin with.  However, I think this type of diet would be a good starting point for almost anyone.  Third, I am not a physician or trainer and  do not claim to know what I am talking about. (my wife is nodding her head)  So please take anything I say and analyze it for your own usage, and BE SMART.  You may also want to consult your real doctors prior to doing anything.

Let’s get rid of some unhealthy thinking in most dieters minds right away, before moving forward.  One is starvation, another is weight loss supplements or energy drinks simulating a high metabolism, and yet a third is eliminating a food group, thus making our diet less rounded.  While all of these  may appear to work, in the short term, they do not work for any length of time and in some cases result in terrible long term health problems.  These three notions should be gone from our minds so we can look at a healthy reality.

Before you switch to any diet you should really have a clear picture of what your current diet is like.  I recommend that you closely track your diet for a week or two before doing anything new.  I use a FREE program called Cron-O-Meter to track my calories and nutrition.  There are many more out there, but I prefer this one.  After you have a good benchmark of your current habits you can make changes in an educated manner.

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No carbs on long runs


After I completed my last training plan in January I started my new plan in February after recovering from the 50 mile ultra.  However, I included something extra that was not included in my past training plans.  That’s right.  Lately I have stopped taking in carbs before and during long runs, including sports drinks with carbs. (I am sticking to water and electrolytes.) Many of you may think this is crazy, and I know some are astonished by it,  but hear me out.

I read in an article at McMillan Running that stated there is a benefit to endurance on long runs if we training the body to optimize usage of carbs and fat burned while on the run.  Most of us have become accustomed to fueling on our long training runs, so this should not be done as a crash but should be done slowly.  On each long run intake less and less carbs before and during until you are able to eliminate them. (This is for training run times between 2 and 3 hours, and not competition. I always carry a gel with me just in case I run into trouble while on the run.)

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Track and maintain nutrition for endurance


Lately I have read a few blog posts and talked to some friends who are having either nutrition or diet questions.  So I have decided to write a quick post to share what I have learned over the past year and a half.  This past year and a half I have been working out regularly and have also taken up long distance running as a hobby.  Normally I do not have too much difficulty with my weight as long as I eat regularly, but when I train heavily it does makes it hard to maintain. (Many people have trouble losing weight, I have trouble gaining weight or keeping it up because I am so active.)  I need to keep close tabs of my caloric intake as well as making sure that I have a balance diet in the process.

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Peanut butter…naturally!

Like most people I know, I love peanut butter.  It is a daily part of my diet, as I usually eat two peanut butter sandwiches every single day as a snack between breakfast and lunch.  Things I love about it include zero cholesterol, a good amount of protein, and a healthy amount of fats.  However, there has always been one thing that really bothered me about eating it.  All peanut butter on the market seemed to contain hydrogenated oils of some kind.

Hydrogenated oils are not natural in any way, and can be very bad for you.  It is a shame that it was included in all of the peanut butter products I could find, and is almost enough to deter me from eating it.  And most of them use FULLY hydrogenated.  Until now!

I just realized that most major brands of peanut butter now offer a “Natural” version.  THIS IS AWESOME! ! !  And unlike most natural and green things, it is only 20 cents more than the normal stuff.


The brand I tend to eat, for no particular reason, is Jif. (Maybe because choosy moms choose it.) In any way, the reason is not important because I found that most major brands also offer it so no matter what brand you are used to it is now possible to eat a bit healthier.

Something I find truly amazing is the ingredients.  THERE ARE ONLY 5!

More info on Jif Natural or view More info on normal Jif.

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Sweating too much?


After my 19 mile run yesterday my wife and son took to the streets to do some running of their own.  My son is not really crazy about it, but at his age he is not crazy about anything but video games so I don’t put too much stock into it.  He did keep up pretty well though, and seemed to enjoy it afterwards.  My wife who has been running for the past year is starting to consider doing the 1/2 marathon at Miami in the end of January 2010 when she finishes her semester at school.  I am excited for her and think she will do great!

Over the past 4 long runs I have noticed a significant fade in strength after I reach 2 hours. (Or 12 to 13 miles.)  While I have drastically improved my performance on runs less than that amount, it was very disappointing I didn’t seem to be able to push past the two hour mark without a noticeable drop in speed and performance.

It all came to a head two weeks ago when at the end of an 18 mile run I noticed that my hands were pretty swollen. This led me to start doing some research and asking around if others had this type of trouble also.  I found that a few could remember clearly that they experienced this, and also had remedies or references that shed some light on the situation.