This has been an awful week.  No, I’m not devastated that Donald Trump won the election even though he didn’t have my vote.  Words matter.  No, for real, words matter.  It’s not okay that millions of people are acting like the things he has said do not matter.  It’s not okay that his rhetoric is reverberating in all kinds of places.  It’s not okay that my 5 year old asked my father why Hilary Clinton kills babies when he picked her up from school on Tuesday, mere moments before I picked her up to take her to vote with me.  It’s not okay that she looked at me with fear as she asked me why Hilary Clinton kills babies as I asked her if she’d like to vote with me.  Much worse has been done and said in the halls of my school this week.  It’s not okay that people are acting like words do not matter.

America, we have some huge walls to climb and it starts with seeing the person across from us.  Words matter and I realize now how important it is to continue to be thoughtful in all discussion.  I pledge to do better with my words when I disagree.  Will you join me?

Although this week was tough, I climbed a huge personal wall.  Last June I made huge life style changes after reading Abel James’ book, The Wild Diet.   Over the summer and into early fall I steadily lost about 15 lbs and the numbers behind my blood work rapidly improved.  I continued and went from a size 38 paint waist to a comfortable 35 and I might even try a 34 on the next time I shop.  But for the last month, I haven’t been able to break below the 250 lbs mark.  It has been frustrating and almost a rerun of the frequent yo-yo diets in the past.

Except this time is different.  About a month ago, I was just able to button some size 35 waist pants that I had in my closet for 10 years.  Even though I haven’t been losing weight, each week those pants have fit just a little better.  Enough so that 2 weeks ago I started wearing them to work and they feel great!  But why hasn’t the weight come off?

I started listening to Abel James‘s podcast.  He has had multiple guests that have discussed diets quite different than the wild diet.  Some even thrive on carbs, albeit complex carbs.  As I’ve been stuck I realized I need to do something different.  3 weeks ago I started grilling a piece of meat on the weekends to add to my greens for lunch.  I’m trying to add 4-6 oz of meat to replace 2 servings of nuts, seeds, cottage cheese or oils with my lunch.  I feel more full with added fat during lunch, but I’ve noticed my cravings are different in the afternoon with the added protein.  Plus, I can always add a serving of one of the above fatty snacks in the afternoon if needed.

3 weeks ago I recently came off a week with my first cold of the year.  I had skipped workouts for sleep and although I had maintained my usual; starting the week a bit over 250 and trimming down to 250 by Friday, I thought for sure I would have lost workout gains.  To my surprise, not only did I continue strength gains the next week, but I felt awesome and the gains accelerated.  With the added protein I decided to try upping my carb intake the evening of my weight lifting workouts.  It has been fabulous!  Today I broke through the wall of 250 lbs and reached down to 246.4 lbs!  I have now lost about 22 lbs since the middle of June about 5 months ago.

Tonight I celebrate climbing that wall with a second supper of pork necks grilled in bacon over a plate of leaves.  Yeah, my wife is right, it’s a bit weird, but my body is craving protein this week after a couple extra runs in an attempt to train for a Thanksgiving weekend 5k.  This time is different.  Even when I was stuck, I could feel my body still changing.  I can’t wait for this Holiday season as my body isn’t craving what it has in the past.  I’m leaving behind this wall and hopefully will jump over the next wall faster.

I must end this post with a disclosure.  I am employed by the school district of West Des Moines community schools as a teacher.  The thoughts above are my own personal thoughts and in no way reflect my employer nor attempt to represent my employer.