Joe Cross surprised me with a mean green toast

My family and I went to visit my parents in Arizona for a mini vacation. Several months ago I told them about my juicing journey. Upon arriving I was kind of surprised to see Joe Cross in the kitchen. Well, not him personally. But there he was smiling on the side of the fridge. Toasting a Mean Green in my direction!
My parents watched Fat, sick and Nearly Dead and then, as they saw me losing weight, they started juicing too. They started with a Ninja and then switched over to this... "Look!" we have the same juicer that Joe uses!

Their excitement for a better life and improved health is awesome! Glad I could inspire even those close to me to take control of their overall health too!

For the ladies...

Often women don't like "competing" against men in weight loss contests due to "men being able to lose weight faster;" so the argument goes.

I recently posted on my RebootSupport Facebook page;
"The one thing that we all have to remember... each of us are on a similar path but each path has unique characteristics that make it our own."

The weight loss contest I joined on HealthyLoser has a "Women's only Transformation Contest!"
Healthy Loser’s Newest Women's Weight Loss Contest pays $1,000 and is capped at 75 participants!

Are you a woman? Do you want to compete against only women and really see and show what you can do?
You can start your transformation today, tomorrow or anytime! Weigh ins for the next Transformation Contest are open from now until 75 are weighed in. Once 75 are, another round is opened.

"The team at Healthy Loser wants to give women an exclusive chance to compete in a weight loss contest for women designed to evaluate the whole contest experience. Not only will female contestants be judged on their weight loss success but they will also be evaluated on their "before and after pictures" and written essay explaining their strategy and experience.

Contestants will have 91 days to complete their transformation using any method or strategy. At the close of the contest,the board of directors at Healthy Loser will make a decision based on the following factors:

1. Weight lost.
2. Before and after pictures transformations.
3. Essay explaining the entire experience of the Women's Transformation Contest.

"The contestant who has made the biggest transformation overall wins the $1000 cash prize!!"

There you go ladies... do you have what it takes to transform yourself more so than 74 others while improving your overall health? If so... $1,000 could be yours! Click here to see all the details on HealthyLoser's Women's Transformation Contest.

Good luck to all who enter!

If you do want to compete against anyone, male or female, you can enter the $5,000 Challenge! Capped at 300 participants, the highest percentage of weight lost wins the top prize of $5,000! Up for grabs is over $12,000 in cash, to be awarded per round.

From HealthyLoser regarding the $5,000 Challenge; "All participants who lose at least 15% of their Body Weight will win Cash."

I personally lost 26.76%!

There you go... go get it! And... Good luck to everyone at losing weight and improving your overall health!

Gaining by Losing

I have gained so much by losing! Overall improved health was my desire, I was tired of being fat, slow and unhealthy. For months almost every day would start the same way, with me looking in the mirror, not happy with what was looking back at me. That body, what happened? What did I do? What did I allow to happen? How... ? Why... ? When... ? And why does every article of clothing have to feel like a giant tarp. At only 5' 10", 252 pounds was mainly fat, not muscle.

On January 12th, 2013 I started my first of several weight loss contests that commenced that month. My desire was to get my life back! I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and thought if Phil and Joe could lose, so could I. And if a "juice" can make Phil feel full, I, this "fat man" could feel full too!

That decision, that moment in time, just 167 days ago, ended up being the first step on a journey that continues today. My desire is to get to 166 pounds and to make myself, fit, internally and externally. The contests I entered were mostly 3 months long. I knew I wanted to push hard and lose all that I could. I wanted my life back. And I knew that I had fat cells to burn.

14,428,800 seconds ago, I could not have imagined I'd be where I am today. Since starting, life has surely thrown a few twists, including around the 15th of April when a lump appeared that scared me. I thought for sure it was cancerous. That was a daunting and scary moment, as I was shocked to find it! I had been consuming juices, vegetables, no red meat, no dairy, no meat at all... 90 to 95% fruits and vegetables, and knew I was getting nutrients. To find a lump, even after I had been told by my Doctor that my arteries are clear, my bill of health "as healthy as a horse," continually checked out. Even being told; "you're the healthiest patient I have coming in here." If that was the case, why the lump? I was initially told it would be two weeks before I could get in. Two weeks... I stopped working out. I continued juicing, but I just stopped. I didn't want to take a chance of making things worse. So, I went from doing Insanity 2 to 4 times a day, to nothing. It was a hard decision  as I knew I wanted to hit 166. But, I also want to be healthy and be here with my family as long as I can.

Fast forward... after my appointment the specialist and my Doctor came to the conclusion that all is well. That nothing is "cancerous" and that the lump may just go away, or I will just have to live with it. The issue is, it is painful. The quality of life impact of having it really is discouraging. I have attempted a few workouts since April 15th, but as I do the cardio, the workouts, or even if my little ones bump into my chest, the pain is horrid and it stops me in my tracks! I'm not sure what I am going to do yet. The doctor says I can have it surgically removed, or I can leave it and see if it goes away. For now, I am waiting as my quality of life is being hurt... in time I will have to make a choice. Surgery never sounds appealing and it might cause more harm than good. At least I know that nutritionally I am doing well.

It has been roughly 240,480 minutes since I started juicing. I love the improved health it brings. I'm now very active with my family. I spend a lot of time with them, and it is nice to be physically active, not just sitting and watching them play. With the economy being the way it has been over the last 2 to 3 years, my wife and I decided it was (and is) best for me to be the stay-at-home-dad for now. This wasn't the plan, but it is working for us. With juicing changing my life, I've found energy, health, the physical ability to play, run and be with my family again. The freedom I've found is wonderful! This blog started as a personal journey, almost a diary, documenting my progress and keeping me accountable. Now, it helps me pay it forward and help others who desire to lose weight, are losing weight and hopefully help those who want to maintain their overall health and weight do so too. I started a support page on Facebook... it is called RebootSupport ( ) I did this to help out others, and as a way to connect. As losing weight and maintaining it is a journey that can be daunting, maybe even scary... Swing by and say, "Hi!" Also, you can search for the term "Yield" on this blog and any posts that have it will come up and will show you several juice recipes that I made and keep making. I'm not a doctor, and I can only share my own experiences. As always. before you start a weight loss or diet program, you should see yours. I did. Joe Cross did. It just makes sense to make sure you are "okay."

I blogged about the things I did to add motivation to my weight loss. Having all of these help push me forward towards my overall goal... the 166 was and is a tangible number to shoot for, but my real goal was and is overall health. When I went in for an ultrasound of my arteries I was pleased to hear the techs say; "WoW! Look at this! That is what healthy arteries look like!" Knowing that my cholesterol levels (both good and bad) are spot on and that my blood (lab) results are on the up and up, makes not only myself, but also my wife happy. Knowing that internally, I'm healthy... is a huge incentive to keep juicing!

Today marks roughly 4,008 hours since I started juicing. I know for sure that I am healthier now, than I probably ever have been... speaking from the inside out. I know that I have pounds to lose, fat to still burn and muscle to strengthen.

I also know that my life has not been the same. My outlook on life, the way I view food, vegetables, fruits and exercise as a whole is so different than it was six months ago. While losing weight, I blogged and Facebooked about my progress, a lot. People asked questions, which got me searching and learning a lot more. I didn't know what I was doing at first, besides "juicing." Besides being inspired by the documentary, I figured I was pioneering a new lifestyle for myself. And in fact, I was, and am. As each person is unique. Later, about two months into juicing, I found the rebootwithjoe website, completed a profile and then found a community of people trying juicing. They have plans, ideas, support from fellow juicers and even nutritionist that can answer people's questions. After completing my profile, they asked me if they could feature my story, I was surprised, but said, sure... this story is still being shared on Facebook... to date, over 2,800 people have "liked" it and it has been shared over 800 times! You can see the story on their site by clicking here too.

Each person has to decide what is best for them. For me, getting high quality, amazing nutrients has helped me lose 70+ pounds and has helped me improve my overall health. Which is the opposite of what direction my health was going when I was looking for the "biggest bang for my buck" as I used to want to get the most, the biggest meal, the tastiest flavor and I didn't care what it was made out of. I didn't take my health into consideration and I got fat and was unhealthy because of it.

No one else can eat, workout or breathe for me... I have to do these things for myself. I want to consume highly nutritious calories and to maximize my overall health."

weight loss cost

When I hear or read that people say; "You rocked your transformation!" It is cool to be reminded of it. When someone mentions it, it is like, yes! That was successful. And not a "prideful" I'm better than you type of yes. But yes... victory! I finally beat this and am in control. I believe that maintaining the new found life is going to be key. So many people tell me, be careful that you don't gain it all back. I've taken those words to heart and have learned ways that I am implementing to prevent doing just that.

I would like to help people maintain any and all weight loss and better health that they accomplished. Healthy eating, juicing (for those that want to keep juicing) and even a salad, 3 to 5 times a day can help accomplish this. If calories are limited and if someone takes a proactive step to working out, along with minimizing (moderation is what people say (not always do, but that is what they say)) their intake of heavier foods that take longer to digest and process, they can not only be thinner but also healthier.

The truth is, anyone can "look" healthy on the outside and have terrible or unhealthy organs on the inside. Juicing has helped me to detox my system, to flush out my body and to clean out my arteries. I know this and I know that I not only "look" healthy on the outside, but I am healthy on the inside. I'm looking at my overall health, not just the outward appearance. It is sad (to me) when I see thin, young, healthy looking smokers standing outside Sprouts or anywhere. I think, NO! What are you doing? Ugh... but, I can't and don't control them. I just am shocked when I see it. As I think, this is 2013. There is so much information out in the world, why would they smoke? Likewise, I wish restaurants would offer whole wheat pastas, breads, etc... without charging extra. I wish the "white flour" and the "bleached enriched" flour wasn't on the menus, or at least it was only an option, not the standard. Just as we know smoking is bad, so is bleached white flour that has to be enriched. It blows my mind when people do things that only can hurt or damage their bodies, things that I believe should be common knowledge. However, not all things are that common. People have the right to make their own choices. Sadly, the U.S. is so focused on business and making money and then healing, or rather 'treating' the illnesses caused by what is consumed. That overall health is neglected.

I saw something the other day that said not only is America one of the fattest countries it is also one of the most nutritionally deprived. There is a lot of truth in this, if one really thinks about it. There is little to no nutrition in soda, soft drinks, most pastas, breads, prepackaged, processed meals, etc... most of these items have damaged or stripped nutrients, vitamins and proteins in them and the consumer is left a product that is truly less desirable and nutritious than the original product was. However, companies and flavor scientist have learned that people vote with their tongue and their quick, thoughts. So, they focused on flavor and on swift pieces of information. The average U.S. consumer sees "low calorie" and "Made from real..." and that is enough for them. Well, a low calorie diet doesn't mean it is nutritious. And when something says it is "made from real..." and then only has 1, 3, 5 or 10% of the "real" item in it, it doesn't make it healthy for them. But, people buy what they "think" or what they are told is healthy for them. It is easier to feel like you've done your research by reading a quick blurb or being told what is healthy than actually educating oneself and learning what truly is healthy.

Taking care of one's health can look more expensive up front. The average person says they can't afford to eat healthy. However, when they go to the Dr. and a prescription is prescribed they all of a sudden have to make a choice. Bite the bullet and pay for their meds at full price or their co-pay amount or decide they can't afford it and not get them. It is generally cheaper in the long run to avoid hospitals and prescriptions entirely. Yes, for some, there is no way around this. I understand that. However, diabetes, obesity and some other health issues that plague U.S. citizens are not "inherited" traits but are generally a direct result of one's overall choices. Obviously every situation and every person has a unique story or reason why their health is the way it is. And their isn't a catch all thing to aim the finger at. I recognize that a healthy eater with a thyroid problem may have issues losing weight, more so than others doing the same thing. There will almost always be the exception to just about anything one brings up. Being that there are two sides to every argument. The truth is though, overall most people with diabetes, heart problems, clogged arteries, bad cholesterol numbers, etc... can all be healed or improved upon by simply eating healthier, getting high quality nutritious calories, nutrients and minimize their overall calorie intake.

The standard american diet is anything but a diet. It typically is so full of nutritionally deprived food that society has no choice but to be nutritionally deprived if the bulk of our options at restaurants, grocery stores, concession stands, activities, and social events are cheap, low quality and nutritionally stripped. Until the "options" on the menu are healthier, the U.S. consumer is really set up by default to fail and to be unhealthy overall. Other countries limit and even prohibit ingredients that have been proven to be bad. In the U.S. corporations and businesses rule nearly everything. If there is a quick buck to be made, a corporation makes an effort to magnify that. And for those that want to eat healthy, they will be charged more for doing so. When items like a whole wheat bun or other healthy option are asked for they generally are charged more for it. However, when you take something off an item, like no meat in a chicken salad, they won't (or don't) knock $2.00 off the price of the salad. No, you still are charged full price. Even though their inventory stays up, they still have product on the shelf. I guess to be fair, one could order the item(s) they don't want to be "on the side" and then just never consume them. This however is wasteful and wrong too. Then the argument comes up. Do I pay for items I won't receive? Do I just order it as is (or with the items on the side) and then toss em' out, that way someone else isn't getting the 'bad' food that they are charging me for? Do I just find something else to order? When it comes down to it, the food is either going to be thrown out or it is going to be made for you or someone else. The restaurant is going to either make a profit one time, or multiple times off the same item. One time if the (in this case the chicken) is ordered and brought out or multiple times if vegans and vegetarians say "no meat" and are charged full price for the entree. Either way, the restaurant is going to make a profit on just having the item on the menu. This is the same with buying processed foods at the store or getting items from a specialty market. Many corporations know that people want to be healthy, so they charge more for trying to do so. Sadly, marketing slogans and methods disguise truth and people still are being sold unhealthy items, or less healthier items with the assumption that they are getting something healthy.

I've looked at the transformation as the first step into a healthier me and hopefully a longer and happier life. I believe that anyone can do this. I implemented a few weight loss contests into my journey as a way to add inspiration and motivation. If I was was inspired to push myself harder and I had more to shoot for, than I would stay focused. The more items that I had to focus on and the more accountability that was on my shoulders only pushed me even harder. With that said, I signed up for a part of the $8,000 potential that HealthyLoser offers and for a few slices of the $16,000+ that HealthyWage offers, along with three other contests. The HealthyWage offers $150 for anyone that loses 10% of their body weight and that can be lifted to $300.00. They give you six (6) months to lose it in. For me, that was a given. I weighed 252 pounds and I wanted to lose more than 25.2 pounds for sure! And they gave me six months. I knew I'd do that. HealthyLoser pays out money to "all" contestants who lose 15% or more. Their contest is a three (3) month contest and with $8,000+ up for grabs, I figure I'd implement their contest as added motivation as well. With those two cash payouts as incentives, along with the smaller competitions that I joined, I turned on the workouts and started to crush calories as well. HealthyLoser and HealthyWage both have contests running regularly. The advantage of HealthyLoser is that a participant can start anytime. They are given the same amount of time to finish and only 300 people are allowed in each round. Once a round is full, it closes and another is started. Your 12 week period starts and ends per your own time frame (12 weeks after you start). You don't need to wait to start to lose weight. Just sign up per their instructions and start losing weight. Lose at least 15% and you make money for accomplishing your goal. Both HealthyWage and HealthyLoser has a fee, but it is minimal compared to the payouts for successfully completing them.

I believe that anyone can lose weight if they limit their calories and increase their water intake. Adding any kind of physical motion, can aid this as well. Burning calories and or limiting calories that are consumed can create a calorie deficit. Once calories are reduced, mathematically one will lose weight. No one can workout or eat healthy for another. This has to be done. With motivation and support, people can add more inspiration to their weight loss and their goal to have better overall health. Swing by my facebook page for this and more. I'm a fan of helping others help themselves!

This person lost weight, I believe that anyone else can too.

Omega and Breville Juicer

I've been a little AWOL since June 5th. Life has been busy, and fun too! With summer here the kids have taken up 90% of my wife's and my time.  Which is wonderful, as we obviously had them, so it is good that we spend the time with them too.  With that said, did you know that has coupons? Well, if you didn't, now you do! On top of that, they appear to be unique to your amazon history. So, if you click on the link above, or this one. You'll see what amazon recommends or has, the coupons look to be based upon your history with them. Feel free to bookmark or save the link, that way you can always see the most recent coupons. For me, I'm currently torn between my next purchase. And that is deciding on which juicer I will get. I want to supplement my Breville with an Omega. Not to get rid of the Breville, but to add another tool to my juicing arsenal. I'm hoping that one of the coupons displayed will be for a juicer or other item I've been researching. Like that camera my wife wants. For now, I'm watching for a deal on the juicer.

I've been using my Breville Juicer (the one you see on the right side of this blog) since I started juicing over 150 days ago! I even did a blog post about how I like it over anything I've seen or read about Omegas. However, as time has continued on, my needs have evolved. I still love my Breville, and will keep it, but I want something more. Something that will juice delicate fruits, and greens very well, without a lot of wasted juice. And, if it isn't too much to ask, a fast clean up too. With that said, I've been reading a lot about the Omega VRT 400S HD online and seeing the pros and cons of this type of juicer. Recently I read that the Omega 8004 is a great choice, as the pulp is dry and clean up is easy. Well, the hardest part about the Breville, in my opinion, is the filter and the spout. Everything else comes clean pretty fast, if you hit it right after juicing. If the Omega comes clean easy, that might out weigh the advantage the Bveville has, with its 3" chute. I'm highly considering getting a second juicer as a supplement to the Breville so that I can get the most out of my fruits and leafy greens, while still keeping the efficiency of the Breville when it comes to juicing hard items, carrots, apples, even cucumbers, without having to slice them super small to fit in the Omega.

I mentioned this on the RebootSupport page on Facebook. When I went into Sprouts the other day I was surprised when an employee told another employee; This is him! 84lbs in 84 days! What followed was an unexpected hand shake along with a big smile and then a pretty lengthy conversation. I don't want to talk to much while I am there, as I know they are being paid to work, not talk with me. It was cool to be called out like that though. Especially so unexpected and with such energy.

The question came up about what I did in addition to juicing and of course I brought up the HealthyLoser website and the HealthyWage website. I mean, to have my own desire and motivation to lose weight be backed by over $16,300 in potential payout, just because I looked outside the box. Bring it! Healthy Loser pays out over $8,000 while if one signs up for all of the HealthyWage options, they could potentially walk away with over $11,300 between the $10,000 Team Challenge, the $300 10% challenge and the $1,000 BMI challenge.

To me, signing up for each of these was a given. Just as crucial as breathing. As I knew I was going to be losing weight. So... why not just sign up and do it. And then make a few dollars to supply money to go towards my new wardrobe, the family, any bills, etc... whatever I wanted or needed the money for. I was already committed to losing weight. If you have at least 10% of your body weight to lose, checking out each of the links above makes sense... and you could walk away with a nice pocket of cash.

I don't shop at Sprouts as much as I used to early on, as now I do most of my shopping at red tomatoes farmers market, as they have amazing prices on quality fruits and vegetables! I do however shop at Sprouts when I only need a few items, as red tomatoes is about 30 minutes away from our city. When I go there, I normally buy a lot of items.

Well, it is time to put the little ones down for the evening. I'll try to post more frequently. Hope all is going well. I've now been juicing for 150+ days! I love it! And couldn't imagine my life without a juice. A homemade juice that is nutrient rich and stellar (imo)!

I'm still going towards my goal of reaching 166 pounds. I've decided to start an insane ab workout to help drop those last 10 to 15 pounds... the pounds we all appear to have issues burning. I'm currently juicing about 90% of all that I consume.

Flu Virus

Hey guys! I'm alive! I truly believe had I been 90+ years old and in poor health, I would not have made it through the weekend! I lost 14 pounds between Sunday at 5pm ish and Monday at 6:30 am... all via hugging the porcelain bowl and a little flu virus. Ugh! I don't know what strand got a hold of me, but it kicked my butt. Between the headaches, the pain, the aches, the time in the bathroom, I was useless. My sweet wife bought Pedialyte to help replace the electrolytes, nutrients and some of the calories lost. I'm so glad she did, as my body needed it.

With that said, I'm just getting a chance to read some of the posts this morning. My facebook notifications say I have 39 unseen items. I wanted to touch base via the blog as well. I'll get to those notices on the reboot support page right after I post this. If you don't know, here is the link to it; Feel free to swing by and say hi.

Monday afternoon the family and I took some much needed family time and spent the afternoon and Tuesday at Disneyland where we met up with some friends.

After hugging the porcelain bowl for over 12 hours the last thing I wanted was any form of liquid, juice, etc... so on Monday I didn't have a juice. The first time in 145 days! I had a juice in the fridge, but I just couldn't bring myself to down any liquid, not after the 12 hours. Instead I made a refried bean burrito with a whole wheat tortilla. I had to get a solid substance in my stomach. I ate it half at a time and made sure I could keep it down. It was nice to finally do so.

Back on juicing! I made an awesome juice this morning. Kale and pink lady apples. Then I added about a pound of carrots and enjoyed that too. For a treat I made a grape juice. I've decided that as I'm still juicing and lovin' life, I'll make sure that the nutrients are the most important thing I get. Calories are a must... yes. But for sure, nutrients.

Today I made breakfast for my wife, and the two little ones. Of course, the boy wanted pancakes, the girl and wife, waffles. And me, a juice. So... I took care of them first and then cleaned up. And then got to making my juices for the day. Just in time for the boy to say he was hungry again. haha

The life of a proud papa, husband, father, cook, family chief, kitchen cleaner, go to person for just about everything, is busy busy busy... :) Not complaining though. Just busy. As I can only imagine that we all are.

I'm staying clear of most processed foods. The whole wheat tortilla has I believe 4, maybe 6 ingredients. Pretty cool. At 145 days of juicing 90 to 95% and then going through the flu bug, I'm contemplating how much percentage I'll be doing from here on out. Thinking about 70 to 80%. Still testing the waters. This may change. I know that now, after completing his fast, Joe eats real food and then does a reboot from time to time. I was inspired by his and Phil's results, but my juicing and their's has not been a verbatim path. No two people's will be, as we all have different elements that make us unique. But... all of us has similarities too, which makes having support while doing this, so very helpful and ideal. :)

A reboot is both a physical and a mental thing. Find your inspiration that got you started and add to it. As you reflect on it often, you hopefully will be able to draw strength from it and make yourself stronger. Yes. It is true, every person is different. And each of us have a unique road.

Each time I found temptations to be strong, I tried to down water, or have a juice. I initially tried to avoid being around temptations, but that isn't practical, especially since I'm the main meal preparer around here. Food preparation and cooking is mostly my job. I love unique flavors and exotic tastes and so does most of my family, so hiding from those things would be very difficult.

I used reverse psychology on myself.
Instead of hiding from the food, the scents and all that goes along with meals, I made a juice. Had the juice on the side and took large whiffs in and just smelled everything as I cooked. If we went to Downtown Disney, a restaurant or anywhere else with immense food scents, I'd embrace all the food smells. It was torture. And I was miserable... at first.

Then, I made a game of it. I told myself that the parts of me that truly ENJOY food are my senses. My taste buds, my nose, my eyes, etc... My waistline doesn't. My waistline hates how much my eyes, nose, ears, and taste buds LOVE LOVE LOVE food... as they just can't get enough of it. So... yes, I took on an attack. I launched an attack and said; "Feel free to smell and bring in everything via my senses but don't consume them." It sucked. It really did. I learned to "savor" all the senses as I just opened my mouth and breathed in deep. Doing so slowly and just enjoyed. I would do so, and happily tell myself, I'm enjoying all the characteristics of food without gaining or swallowing the calories. Yes... that sounds a bit odd. But it worked. And an important lesson is, do what works for you. No one else can lose the weight for you. No one else can put it on for you. Doing what works, works. Don't be embarrassed by it. As no one else will harvest the results that you have the potential to harvest.

Part of my motivation was signing up for weight loss contests to keep me motivated. This helped me when the desire to quit came upon me.

The end results:
I'm getting $300 from HealthyWage for successfully losing 10% of my body weight and I lost 26.76% while participating in the HealthyLoser $5,000 challenge! The two cool things about HealthyLoser are that "All participants who lose at least 15% of their Body Weight will win Cash." They award at least $8,000 to each group and each group is limited to 300 people. Also, you start when you want to. You don't have to wait until a designated starting day. This allowed me to start the same day I found them and not have to wait to engage my newly found inspiration! Which means, I was losing weight on my time!