If I have to search for this stupid hotel one more time…

For some reason I have a mental block when it comes to the hotel we always stay at in Niagara Falls. It is the Days Inn by the Falls but I fail to recall the name. I guess their marketing just doesn’t work on me..
http://www.daysbythefalls.com/

That should make it easier.

Niagara. Niagara Falls. Vacation. Holiday. Casino. Clifton Hill. That stupid hotel I can never remember.

Temporary Blog Hiatus – I have moved for a while

I am currently involved in the P90X program. It’s 3 months and I am updating every day so in order to prevent the gaping hole in the blog I invite you all to check out my progress:

http://p90x.iamcanadian.org
Also check out the workout itself: http://www.p90x.com

See you in September if I don’t have a chance to post here as well. It’s hard enough keeping up with thekayfamily.com blog and this one. 3 would be too much.

Simon

The daily buzz

The saga of the antivirus provider continues, we have meetings and are very close to picking a winner. Not only that, but we are also very close to getting Tim Card support at the hospital which will be excellent at last! The photo contest rages on, I have included my submissions below for the past 5 weeks and so far I have won 3 times! In reality, I think Nicole should have won this week, her picture was far superior to mine.

Mum and Dad have apparently finished the dealings with the house and will officially be Yorkies again soon. This is a major surprise to me, and I am sure still a major surprise to my mother who was convinced that Dad would never return to York.
My back has been particularly sore of late, mostly due to the fact that both Nicole and I were sick since last Friday after coaching at the Burlington competition. Damn those little swine children. All the coughing and going on has left me very tender and sore in some very odd places. I also have not been to the gym for the last few days, for the same reason however I need to get back with a vengeance today because…
Biggest Loser 3 started this week! We have 11 players again this time around, and even Bob has decided to join in. The competition is going to be stiff, the summer is a really easy time to get in shape and so I expect some big numbers from the players. It is only 3 months this time around so the monthly prize is $80 and the final winner gets $200. Not bad at all for losing a few pounds.
Of course that means I have to focus and get back to work. It seems that it was not that hard to get the first 40lbs off but since then I have drifted a little and had a very hard time getting any more off. I am not going to pretend that it is a physical thing, I am far more sophisticated in my evaluation than that. I know that it is simply the “extras” in my diet that are blocking my progress. It is a fact that the more weight you lose, the better you feel but also the more you think you can relax your ways. Not true, in fact, the more you lose, the more you need to stay focused in order not to defeat yourself with complacency.
So it is back to the salads and the smoothie for breakfast. I think I will reduce my weights a little in the gym and add some more cardio since this is the time of year for running. I am not sure how much more I really need to prove in the gym, I am still the strongest in the gym regardless of age and as intoxicating as that may be, it is how I hurt myself in the first place. So I will work on my heart and relax on the 65,000 lbs workouts for now.
We are coming to the end of the year at gym too, last night I had 4 kids off for no apparent reason other than they seem not to care once competitions are done. So pretty soon we will have 2 extra evenings to go to the gym and study for our Nutritionist certification. Another reason I need to lose some weight, I mean who is going to listen to a fat nutritionist??

Photo Contest Update – My pics so far










Some Things I Am Chewing On

American Idol blew it again. Having the other kid win when it was patently obvious that Adam Lambert was the greatest star they have ever had on Idol (and yes, I think he will outsell Kelly Clarkson) was a real kick in the teeth for the viewing public. The only person who I think will have a bigger career is Carrie Underwood and that is only due to the irrationally large audience that Country music enjoys in the USA. I said to Nicole last night that Adam Lambert has the chops to go on tour with Queen as a Freddie Mercury replacement he is that good.

Liverpool came up a day late and a dollar short for the Premier League title this year and after a magnificent season I can honestly say that next year we should be back on top. It is about time, it will be 20 years since our last title. Hopefully the lessons of dropping points at home to weak teams will sting long enough to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

What happened to McLaren and Lewis Hamilton? Maybe the Pussycat Doll has been too much of a distraction to the team in the off season but they are an embarrassment to themselves this year. The silver lining of course is that Jenson Button may in fact give British Motorsport the second consecutive F1 Championship win by a British Driver. I don’t know that it has ever happened before but I am keeping my fingers crossed as much for a Hamilton resurgence as a Button Championship. The other grey cloud is the imposition of the 40 million pound cap on expenses. The top 4 teams spend roughly 5 times that each year. Are we seeing F1 getting turned into an open class cart race? Let’s hope not. If Ferrari and others pull out given the cap it will ruin the sport. Interestingly the papers report the cap as an “optional” cap. Hmmm…

My back has been very bad of late, however Mother seems to be recovering well from her surgery. I have had some radiating pain down my left leg, the “other” leg which is disturbing. This all is a constant reminder of my episode 8 years ago which I would prefer not to repeat. However if I do eventually have to go back under the knife I think I will be opting for the same fusion that mum had. If I had the choice all those years ago and of course the benefit of hindsight I would have had that done the first time around. i was up at 530 this morning out for a walk around the block to get the pain to stop. Hopefully I will be able to manage the pain and whatever the issue is in the coming weeks. I am still pretty mobile, but the pain has been unusual and unpredictable which I don’t like. However, I have not taken any of my medication yet, I am actually going to see my doctor today to get refills and tonight I will take an anti inflammatory. Hopefully that will help me get back on track. The problem is that it is affecting my workouts which in turn affects my weight.

Why don’t I just get the weight thing out of the way now? I have been roughly the same for about 2 months now and it is starting to get on my nerves. In fact, I am within about 5-10 lbs of my prize winning weight on Dec 31st. That was 5 months ago!!! You know what they say, if you want to change something in your life you are going to have to change something in your life!! Enough said. I tried to be in shape and at an acceptable weight for competitions this year and I think I just made it. This time next year however I would like to be down another 30lbs or so.

We tried cat yodelling last night, to no avail. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxLG2wtE7TM

As for competitions, my kids are running hot and cold. Sunday is their final competition and since it is our home competition I hope that they will finally put it all together and get themselves the rewards I know they deserve. Of course it is a very sad time of year knowing that at least 2 of my girls will be leaving me this year. 5 more weeks and it will be goodbye to both Jessica and Brigitte both of whom I have known for quite a few years now. Always a very tough time for me.

We have migrated our TV from ACI since the Evil Overlords at Rogers took over our cute little cable company. We now enjoy Bell satellite TV and as of today, no internet. I wonder just how long we could go at home without internet. I think Nicole would lose her mind quite honestly! So I now have to go to the slightly lesser of two evils and get Sympatico from Bell. At least we will save a little cash both on a slightly lower service speed and a bundle bonus. I had better do that Friday or Nicole may actually become unhinged without the internet especially since she is in a course this week without a computer.

Work seems fine, busy of course and I finally got a few cents increase on my cheque for the first time in at least 4 years. About time!!!!

It is the time of year to get stuck into the house and car again. I have rust holes to fill, broken pieces to fix, and a massive restructuiring of our storage areas to do including the garage. In addition, I am going to try my hand at growing stuff this summer. I am going to try tomatoes, onions and romaine lettuce at least since we seem to eat them the most. Keep checking back to see the progress of the plants. This weekend will be the big planting I hope. I did the lawn 3 days ago and it hasn’t rained since… Maybe it’s me?

Chicago 2009 – Needs to be fixed!!!

This is all I could find for the Chicago trip. Sad, really really sad. Anyway, I will fill in more details and as usual you can check out the pictures on flickr.

Day 1
Had an uneventful drive to the Buffalo airport. However, since it is now April27 my recollection may be a little hazy. I remember we stayed in our Niagara falls hotel the night before. It was pretty snowy as I remember and we didn’t go to the casino that night I don’t think. That was because it was a Thursday night after coaching and we drive to Niagara at 9pm, getting there at about 11. We were up early and it took 45 minutes from the hotel to the airport. Got some coffee on the concourse and waited for the plane. The flight was fine I think, we had pretty good seats, I think we were 22 in line or something. The flight was only a coupe of hours and we landed in Chicago in cool near freezing weather. The airport was quite nice although you had to walk through some weird areas to get to the Orange line train to take you to “The Loop” where basically everything is. We got off the El, or elevated train downtown and since we were starving we went into the first breakfast place we found. BIG MISTAKE!! Don’t make the error of going there it was awful. I am going to find the name if it kills me… I’ll be back.

Found it, only took me 2 hours of searching but the culprit of the worst breakfast in Chicago, and maybe even the whole of North America (likely tied with Cora’s in Newmarket) is Petros Restaurant (160 N La Salle St, Chicago, IL, United States). What a brutal place. The toilets are in the basement, it’s like entering a scene from Saw (the movie) going down there but that is not anywhere as shocking as the taste of the food. Not only that, a guy came and sat down at the table across from us and ordered an egg white omlette only to be brought a regular one. He told the waitress that he had ordered an egg white omlette and she had the audacity to tell him that he didn’t. Of course, being Canadians we told him that we had heard him order the egg whites and that he was absolutely right. He told the waitress to take the omlette away and get what he ordered. Needless to say, if you are thinking of having food at Petros, DON’T!!!!

Day 2 – original post

Got up fairly early and went of breakfast. For $26 each it was OK I guess, I did have gruyere cheese on my potato which I suppose you wouldn’t get most places. Nicole had oatmeal crème brulee which was pretty darn good. We are finally getting some data on our phones, I had to reboot mine and it started working. So now we can go shopping and go to different stores with texting keeping us in sync. We have to get Nicole some Uggs since she had boots that hurt her feet yesterday. I can only guess they will go in the garbage when we get home. But who knows…
We are going to the 900 store mall this morning and back for a workout around lunchtime. After that maybe the aquarium or planetarium and back here for more working out later. Food is definitely off the list. We had Chicago deep dish pizza, so we are officially up to speed with the food scene here.

Quarterly update 2009

Sometimes the feeling takes you and you just need to go with it. It has been a while since I was here so I thought I would document the recent past just to try and bridge the gap. The big item on the horizon today is the Biggest Loser Competition at work that I have been running. This is the second installment of the competition and today was supposed to be the finale however with people away at the RUG conference, we have moved the date to Wednesday. How am I doing?? Badly! My first outing for BL1 was a success however I have found it increasingly difficult and have only managed a few pounds off for the 4 months of BLII. I have also had a hard tie getting to WW on a Wednesday, partly because I don’t want to show a gain and partly because I have been pretending there is another reason besides not wanting to show a gain! Anyway, I really need to get back on track since my goal of being 250 for Birchmount competition left me about 5lbs short and my goal of 245 for Orangeville which is this weekend seems so so far away. Also, in order to win the BLII outright, I probably need to be sub 250… I did win month 3 but that was more because nobody else really did well. So I just need to get the weight program back to the top of the personal priority list instead of being lazy with my goals and motivation. It is increasingly difficult however when Dr Alex is still reluctant to put me back on the gel.
So here is a review, and having looked back at the site just now I realize that it has been a long time, almost back to last year when I wrote something current.
January
5. BL2 starts
12. Dr Alex
20-22 late nights at Branson
23 Big SSHA outage – 8 hours of no internet for the users – SHOCK HORROR!!
27-28 Off
February
20 My Birthday trip to Chicago. I am sure I have something written for this.. Look for the post after this.
25. ROAM box to Teranet
March
3 Switched Branson to SSHA for internet
7 Got Sattelite TV
12 Nicole to Erie
14 Liverpool beat Man U 4-1 to solidify their title challenge
16 Dr Alex
19 March Madness 09 started – I came 3rd
20 Bone density test – results came back OK probably due to my weight training all these years
21 Liverpool beat Aston Villa 5-0
24 Dr Esmail follow up. My hand is as good as it is going to get – Still numb
28 Australian Grand Prix weekend
30 Dr Sierra appt 2
April
2 Fiz Bday
4 Went and stayed downtown at the Intercontinental Yorkville for Nicole’s birthday treat and partied at some pool hall with Sonia and Darren. Went out for dinner at a place in Yorkville, very sheeshee. Next day we went for breakfast at an amazing little diner – quite a find!
4 Liverpool beat Fulham 1-0
5 Malaysian Grand Prix
6 Nicole “official” birthday
7 Mock Meet for Gymnastics
11 Liverpool beat Blackburn 4-1
10-13 Easter Weekend
17 Birchmount Competition – Not great but not bad either. Great coaches room again!
18 Liverpool tied 4-4 with Arsenal – that may have been the 2 points we needed at the end of the season!
25 Nicole to Niagara falls with Sonia and Mo for the night.
25 Liverpool beat Hull 4-1 an unconvincing display
26 Bahrain Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton still not producing last years form but came 4th this time out.
27 Today – I resurrect the site to begin the process of documenting life again.

Off to find and post the Chicago writeup. You can also find the pictures at http://www.flickr.com/perfik

The last 3 months

If you have a big enough WHY, you can endure almost any HOW.

So I have once again failed to update even in order to document my spectacular weightloss. I recently got both my 25lb chip and my 10% keyring from Weight Watchers. I am now set to bargain with my leader in order to set a lifetime goal. I don’t think even with my positive thinking I am ever going to be what WW would consider “normal” weight. For my height I think they want me to be 160-180lbs. I think my skeleton weighs 180lbs!
Anyway, I am going to replace the calendar on my cube cabinet this morning so here is a rundown of what actually happened since September.

August 25 – Returned to Weight Watchers weighing a portly 290lbs
Sept 4 went to Branson
Sept 5 George from Purchasing retired
Sept 10 Alarm guy from ADT came to reset the password
Sept 11 Dr Esmial follow up regarding my numb hand (still relatively nimb, strength getting better)
Sept 22-23 Hilton Airport for Wireless Healthcare Summit – Bored my face off
Sept 29 Dr Alex
Oct 3 Copied the Foundation database for Jane
Oct 9 Gave a virus presentation (twice) for customer service week
Oct 12 went to Hastings for Thanksgiving – Usual crowd.
Oct 17 – 21 VEGAS BABY, VEGAS!!
Oct 26 – Nov 2 Off work sick with flu / bronchitis
Nov 4 US Election – Obama won, who knew?
Nov 8 Gymnastics Staff Meeting
Nov 25 Mike and Isabel 25th Wedding Anniversary
Nov 29 Hastings for Christmas at the Golf Course for dinner. We missed the gift giving but it was nice to see everyone anyway. Michael grew about a foot since last year, seriously he must be on horse hormones or something that is crazy!
Dec 1 Alex
Dec 2 Mike and Isabel to stay while Mike goes in for 2nd heart thing.
Dec 8 Isabel leaves and Mike gets out of hospital.

It’s now Dec 9 and this morning we woke up to about 5″ of snow which took me 25 min to shovel before we could leave for work. I still like snow, although now it is starting to affect my sleeping in.
I am planning to take off dec 22-24 so that we can get the floors done in the house with our wedding gift money. Last week I got a massive bargain on a TV from Tigerdirect. I got about $150 off the lowest price you could find anywhere because there were only 3 left. So now we have a TV on top of the fireplace which is where I always imagined we would have it. I need to deal with the wiring.
I weighed in last week at 260.8, which means that this week I should be back into the 250’s AND should have lost more than 30lbs!!! I didn’t get my 10% last year, so by all accounts I must be doing better so far. However I won’t feel like that until I break that 252lb mark I hit for the wedding last year.
I have my final weigh in for the Fat B*stard pool at work where people guessed what weight I would be on Dec 31st. They all put in $2 and the winner takes all. I ste my goal at 252 which means I would actually have to be around 248 to hit that at work. We also have the Biggest Loser final weigh in with the 4 of us battling for a grand prize of $40. I think even though I have not lost the most in any of the 4 months of the competition that I may still take the title. That happens on Dec 29th.
Wish me luck!

It’s mayhem out there!

First snow of the year and people are in a blind panic. It never ceases to amaze me at this time of year how incomprehensibly incompetent people are behind the wheel. It’s like they moved here from Arizona and have never seen snow before. Anyway, it’s a landmark event in any year, the first big snowfall, and while it is only going to be about 10cm still it was enough that I had to shovel the driveway this morning. I was well aware as I was shovelling that it was quite pleasant, not too chilly and a much preferred activity to cutting the grass. Of course, as the winter progresses and I have to shovel in -25 degree weather I will curse the very ground I walk on but for the time being it was quite an enjoyable activity.
I was at Weight Watchers last night and my weight was down to 263.8 which is 26.8lbs down and only 2.2lbs off my 10% goal which, by the way, I did not reach last year. Also, last year I lost almost 25lbs but not quite which means that this year’s 25lb medallion that I got last week signifies a higher level of success than last time. HOWEVER, and it is a big however, last year my weight went up by 12lbs after I joined and so that additional weight was not reflected in my loss statistics. This time I have lost every week for 12 weeks (something I did manage last time) but without the painful and embarrassing start!

Weight Watchers 25lb medal

Weight Watchers 25lb medal

Red things Blue things

I have been concentrating on other things and if there is one thing that I have learned over the years it is that I tend to lean towards exclusion when I work rather than inclusion. This simply means that if I am concentrating at going to the gym and watching my diet, that this blog and a myriad of other real life events go lacking. I do have good new to report however and that is that since I joined WW again I have lost a total of 20lbs! That also means that I am half way to my goal of being 250lbs by 2009!
My focus is akin to the focus test I give to our kids at gym where you give them 30 seconds to look at everything red in the room and then once they close their eyes you ask them to name all the things in the room that are blue. Try it on someone you know, its a fun way to make them feel stupid!
So it is weigh in night tonight and yes, I am going to fill another entry with boring stuff about my workouts and weight! i was 270.6 last week and am hoping this week to be slightly down. Slightly because last week was Steve B’s wedding and Thanksgiving, both events which would usually spell disaster for the prudent eater. So as long as I am not up, my streak will stay alive and my hope of beating my 14 weeks in a row of loss last year will be intact.
So how have I done it? Well, i have given up wheat again, eating lots of fruit and veg and having a smoothie for breakfast. Also I have recorded several personal best weights at the gym, being able to bench 315, shoulder press 300 on the Hammer machine and also row 300 on the Hammer back machine. I can shoulder press about 270 on the smith machine but my shoulders are in constant pain. Actually, having said that, they don’t feel that bad today! 🙂
I am also doing some long walks, on saturday while Nicole is personal training I go to the basement and walk for over an hour and try to do that at least one other time during the week. I have not run in a while and I think maybe tonight I will see how my lap times are now that my weight is down a bit.
I do need to be a little more consistent with my cardio but it is very hard when I am so tired after my weights. At the least I should be able to do 20 minutes after weights each day.
So I will keep soldiering on, and hope that tornight I can rescue a loss and that this week while we are going to be in Vegas that I can keep my eye on the prize!