The Nagging Spouse Mistress

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Well, it appears I’m being cheated on.

Troy’s Mail Order Nagging Mistress showed up a couple weeks ago and I’ll be damned if she isn’t getting him to work even harder ….

showing off his new schwag

 

It’s one thing to harangue your husband that he needs more cardio and it’s another to have this oh-so-credible device do it. “Sorry honey,” he says. “I gotta go for a walk or I’ll break my standing streak.” (??)

But I’m not complaining! The single biggest thing the nagging mistress is doing is making him move. Because it ALL counts now. ūüėĀ When I posed the “Now, cleaning the garage counts as exercise…” logic, he looked at me, one eyebrow arched, and hit the stationary bike. Oh well. I tried.

Funny thing is, the more he moves throughout the day, the more energy he has. Sometimes, he’s almost jittery with it. It’s one of those counter-intuitive things, like how sleep begets sleep and eating fat burns fat and how more choice means more dissatisfaction. Like that.

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The Power of Aligned Goals

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Regardless of how you feel about the Patriots, there is no denying that they have dogged fans. In our family, we all get Patriots jerseys as Christmas “presents” almost every year. (One of these years, I’m going to buy Troy¬†an anthology of poetry or ballroom dancing lessons as his “present”)img_9089

When¬†I wear one of my many¬†Patriots jerseys, I realize just how many sleeper Patriots fans there are in San Diego. People randomly fist bump me just for the shirt I’m wearing. I don’t have the heart to tell them that¬†I’m not exactly the comrade they think I am. :-/

So when Troy wore one of his Patriots hats, to his Fitwall class, it wasn’t surprising that someone high-fived him for it. But it wasn’t just someone, it was one of the people helping turn his keg into a six-pack. And when she heard what the stakes were, HE¬†gained a comrade.

1-the-power-of-aligned-goalsJen, (The Instructor) like all die-hard Patriots fans, wants her team to go to Super Bowl. Troy (The Sweaty Guy), wants to go to Super Bowl, preferably to see his team play. And I (The Nagging Spouse), want Troy to go to Super Bowl because that means he’s in the best shape of his life.¬†And I’d prefer to see the Patriots, since I have the jersey and all. ūüėČ

Now… if Jen does her part… and Troy does his part… and the Patriots do their part, everyone will be happy.¬†Especially me.

 

“Injury” in the Six-Pack for Super Bowl Saga

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The story¬†begins with our hero, embarking with vigor on his course, full of gusto and invincibility. Then he must endure a powerful setback, you know, to heighten the drama.ūüėČ

I hadn’t really considered Troy’s Six-Pack for Super Bowl Challenge a story and therefore did not anticipate the requisite setbacks that must come with good drama. Until today…

I walked into the kitchen to see Troy hopping on one foot in extreme pain while¬†simultaneously¬†holding his profusely bleeding finger over the kitchen drain. Of course, my first thought was concern. I may be a nagging spouse, but I’m not a monster. My second thought, I’m ashamed to say, was how impressed I was at his quick reflexes. All that blood would have been a job to clean (for the uninjured spouse).

I have “nagged” him on multiple occasions about the power of my Wusthof knives. They just sound dangerous. Each time, he, like a truly nagged husband, had looked at me with a look of “duh” on his face.

So as his finger dripped power-dripped blood into the sink, I felt an “I told you so moment” come on but, of course, refrained. Again, not a monster.

“What happened?” I said.

“This damned diet!” he yelled.

To which I said nothing because… ????

“Who in their right mind would eat raw cabbage of their own free will?!”

Again, silence on my part with a look like this ūü§Ē (mental note: must stop thinking in emojis)

“Now look!” He held his finger up, hangrily. “This would have never happened.”

Again… ūü§Ē But I’ve lived with Troy for over 15 years. I know when not to call him on faulty logic.

So, like the loving wife I am, I pulled out the bacitracin and 3 bandaids, which I used to gob the bleeding and encase the sliced finger tip.

“I just hope this doesn’t affect my workout,” he said, wiggling his finger and examining my first-aid prowess hack job.

Now, I know you’re likely worried about this preemptive injury in the saga of the Six Pack for Super Bowl but never fear, my Wusthof didn’t mortally wound¬†him and the cabbage wasn’t as bad as he was SURE it was going to be. I think he’ll be ok. #prayforTroy

in-pain

Strangely enough, I didn’t think to document the actual drama so I searched the internet high and low for a decent reenactment of it.

Day 19 of 90 Day Challenge – Progress Report

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Troy is still in the game!

Tom Brady’s performance on Sunday helped. But more than the tease of Super Bowl, the pressure¬†joy of seeing everyone follow and comment on his progress has been keeping him motivated.

And Troy is inspiring people too! We’re getting calls and texts from friends to¬†report that they went for their first run (shout out, you-know-who), or made a spinach omelette or started a whole food plan or just tried apple cider vinegar for the heck of it. Guys! This is so cool! I am giddy about it! This is my giddy face.

 

Yeah, I know.

So the progress…

Troy personally feels that his biggest accomplishment thus far¬†is coming home from a Fitwall class and victoriously proclaiming,¬†“Finished the class and didn’t even feel like I was going to puke! Progress!”¬†Fist bump, high five, nagging supportive spouse kiss. You rock, babe!

One of the hardest things about weight loss is well, it’s hard. And it takes more time than any exercising dieter thinks it should. “Don’t look at the scale!” the professionals scold. But how, when you’re working your butt off, do you not peek at the scale, in the hopes of seeing¬†pounds flying off. Or not flying off.

Troy “peeked”. So far, he’s¬†lost 5 pounds.

But he’s lost¬†2 inches off his waist.¬†And various other inch-fractions off his body, except his chest and legs. They’ve grown. (How much, you ask? Well, I don’t know. Because, in my single-minded measuring, I didn’t think about the fact he would PUT ON muscle. What a noob.)¬†

He’s also up to 4 pull-ups at a time. Only 4 pull-ups, you say? Try it.

It can’t be that hard, I said.¬†Then I did a single, sorry pull-up, fish-kicking the whole way. (Head hung low)¬†

 

 

Troy’s first pull-up.

So we’re truckin! He’s enjoying tolerating a diet high in veggies and protein without anything processed. It’s not for the sophisticated palette, but he’s a trooper.

He’s also in the Fitwall 6 week challenge so that’s, well, challenging. Walking, running, bike riding, garage gym sessions, he’s doing a bit of everything. Overall, he’s spending his days in motion.

Random share:

The other day, I had¬†a fussy baby in one arm and a pestering toddler underfoot. The phone was ringing and I had just knocked over the box of granola. Frustration isn’t the right word.

Through this, Troy is nowhere to be found. Typical, I think. I bet he’s hiding somewhere playing solitaire on his phone. Finally, he walks out of the bathroom with a skip in his step.

“Where have you been?!” I snap. Rhetorical question, obv.

“Weight loss program!” he chirps.

And despite myself, I have to laugh. So crass! But he cracks me up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apple Cider Vinegar – Good For A Gag

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Just watching, I can feel the gag coming on. Have you ever puckered when you think about someone slurping on a lemon? (See?) I can feel the goose bumps and the subsequent total-body shiver. It’s all so visceral; it could be my experience as much as his. Well, not really, because… ūüėĚ

I enjoy this morning ritual of Troy shooting apple cider vinegar for a few¬†reasons. Firstly, I know its good for him and, being the extension of myself we’ve previously discussed, I feel healthier¬†when¬†he does something good for himself. It’s an interesting paradox.

And secondly, because this man can be a machine! I mean, really? There are lots of ways to get apple cider vinegar into your gut but Troy chooses the most direct way. Straight. Down. The. Hatch. Well done, sir. Well done.

Also, it’s kinda funny.

So, why the torture? It’s not the cinnamon challenge, after all.

By now, you’ve heard that apple cider vinegar is good for you. It’s a supposed panacea for everything from warts to diabetes. I’ll spare you the list because it’s extensive…


The main reason Troy is taking it is for¬†the “gut flora”. With a name like “gut flora”, you’re likely already impressed. Sometimes I say it just for fun.

At birth, our digestive systems had the most magical, delicate cocktail of bacteria. Charming, right? Antibiotics, poor lifestyle choices, and a gazillion other delicious things created a microbial imbalance and this imbalance is to blame for, well, a lot. So we use probiotics to go about setting it right again. Proper gut flora staves off junk food¬†cravings and aids in detoxification. It balances pH and hormone levels. It cures acne and dandruff. No joke. (PS Troy doesn’t have acne or dandruff but if he did… ACV!) Probiotics! Yogurt for the faint of heart, Kombucha for the dabblers and apple cider vinegar for the dedicated.

The Internet is full of helpful dissertations on Apple Cider Vinegar and why it’s the single thing you should have on a desert island so I won’t turn this into a lecture. But get right with your gut flora and your body is more likely to get right with you.

Hence the morning shot of agony. (Maybe I enjoy this just a little too muchūüėā. Nah.)

My homemade Kombucha wouldn’t be so bad now, eh?

“You’ll like this,” she said. (Troy’s First Butt-Kicking workout)

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I got the mental play-by-play from Troy in the car right after.

1st minute – It’s only a 40 minute work out, I can do this.

4th minute – I’m the only dude here besides the two instructors, and they’re ripped!

7th minute – Holy crap, this is tough. And there’s still 33 minutes to go!

10th minute – (self talk) Can’t – show – weakness. You can do this Troy.

13th minute – (more self talk) There’s no way I’m finishing. Get ready to hang your head low in front of all this fit ladies.

15th minute – I think I am going to puke.

16th – 38th minute – Nauseated, sweaty blur interrupted by the occasional break to bring the heart rate from the verge of explosion back down to max rate.

39th minute – Oh thank you Jesus, I can do stretches and drink the coconut water like the best of them.

Instructors – “Good job Troy” (LIARS!!) “See you next week.”

Troy – “Thanks” (But I doubt it)

#hardestworkoutever

 

Post workout face. Mr. ūüĆ쬆“You’ll like this,” she said.

A Six-Pack in 90 Days – THE GAME PLAN

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1! 2! 3! GO!

As Troy is fond of reminding¬†me, he already has a six-pack. It’s just lovingly protected by a thick layer of hard-earned beer belly. Enact: Operation Beer Belly.

game-plan1GAME DAY PLAN –¬†1800-2200 calories a day of…

High fat РBut good fat, the kind that burns fat. Avocados, coconut oil, butter; they make everything so much yummier!

Low carb РThat not only means no sugar, minimal fruit but no gluten. That means ZERO pasta, pizza, or french bread for this fun-loving Italian boy (and therefore withdrawals).

No Dairy – Since cheese is the milk-and-honey of my life, I can’t imagine this. Kudos to you, Troy.

High protein –¬†Meat, nuts, eggs, more eggs and you guessed it…. eggs.giphy

High Veggies – With cruel emphasis on extra good stuff like swiss chard, kale and butternut squash. Troy’s favorites. (Heeheehee) Sorry not sorry.

Splurge day – Following Tim Ferriss‘s school of thought on this one. (Troy’s a fan) In the Four Hour Body, Ferriss purports that a splurge is not only good for psyche, it prevents your metabolic rate from dropping. Other sources show leptin levels drop with calorie restriction. I know this because… well… because Troy researched¬†it to back up his position.¬†So for 24 hours each week, Troy plans to¬†PIG¬†out. The theory goes like this…

Troy’s Body: “I’m¬†soooo hungry! Wasting away! Must preserve¬†fat to save¬†body from certain destruction.”

Troy: “Sorry about that. Here’s some ravioli/cheeseburger/ burrito/meatball sub/philly cheesesteak. See? ¬†No need to worry. Now… there you go… let go of the love handle. Nice and easy.”

While The Nagging Spouse naysayed this element of the plan because it seemed counter-productive, I knew I was facing certain anarchy if Troy couldn’t drink wine and eat Taco-flavored Doritos (and then more wine) every now and then.¬†Also, Troy is the hangriest person I know, so 6 out of 7 days¬†will be no joyride for either of us.¬†Alas, the seventh day.

kickoff-clipart-kickoffTHE KICKOFF – We are starting with a baseline. With some basic¬†blood work and tests of strength and endurance, we’ll know the work he has cut out for him(us). I’ll keep you posted.

 

football-clip-art-freeEXECUTION

5 x 10 pushups every day

Walk 10,000 steps every day

As many pull-ups as he can do at a time

Strength Training 3-5 times a week with friend/personal trainer

Basic nagging from the spouse to ride bikes, swim with kids, house repair, soccer with daughter, etc, etc. It all counts, people!

THE EXTRA POINT –¬†Just because Troy overdoes EVERYTHING, he has a few add-ons:

Apple Cider Vinegar – I believe in gut flora but¬†since I can’t seem to convert him to my homemade Kombucha, he has opted to shoot Apple Cider Vinegar. (How insulting, right?) Shooting Apple Cider Vinegar is a form of self-inflicted torture. But I’m going to film it so we can enjoy his “un-enjoyment”¬†it together. ūüėĀ

Vitamins РThis part of the plan was mostly Troy. He chose supplements from The Grain Brain. They are basics like vitamin D, DHA, Turmeric, Resveratrol, Alpha Lipoid Acid and a probiotic. No silver bullets. Sorry Troy. #NoShortcutsToHealth

TOUCHDOWN!touchdown-2

Troy’s Goals ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†

Six-Pack Abs

To run a 5k in under 30 minutes

More cardio stamina

50 pushups (in a single set)

10 pull-ups (in a single set)

The Nagging Spouse’s Goals¬†

A fit husband who has…

Tons of energy

A healthy cholesterol level

Normal blood pressure

Functioning liver (despite years of pickling)

Six-Pack Abs and chiseled torso (See how I listed this last to imply selflessness?)

42! 63! 91! HIKE!