Sunday, November 15, 2009

so, at 188.60lbs and 13lbs from goal, my next goal seems to reasonably be to be more flexible physically and within my relationships and work [or marketplace, as i like to call it]... .

Saturday, October 31, 2009

down to 190lbs and the challenges have changed radically
sublimating--my wife's travel schedule along with butter lover's microwave popcorn & late nights...

an 8-week biggest loser's contest at work resulted in:
week #1 resukt of 0.8lb weight gain
wee #2 result of 6.0lb weight loss--15.0lbs to goal

the difference between week #1 & #2
upped the protein {Now Brand Rice Protein powder at breakfast & frozen edamame at lunch], dropped the carbs after 6pm
not more than 1cup of complex carbs per day & always before 6pm

really rooting for The D-Meister to take the biggest loser contest by storm--gently spirit the guy, huge deserving!

Saturday, July 18, 2009


now is the time to begin running and prayerfully blast the way to the goal--19lbs to go...then maintenance...
i have much to learn.

Heaven help...

Friday, May 22, 2009

what i've learned about weight loss:
on 3/07/08 i decided that i had had enough!

My Mom & Dad had been married 61 yrs--yes to each other...i know, amazing right?! Never a harsh word, never apart. They have never struggled with weight.

i being a good boy always cleaned my plate and never via the house pet.

since ~1987, i have struggled with weight, ballooning to 255lbs on a so called "husky" frame, at least that is what it was called in the 60s.

i had called a friend to ask him to work out with me and we agreed on a venue, Theodore Berry International Friendship Park, Cincinnati OH, 7:00 AM,

We started walking ~15 minutes M-F for ~ two weeks using my Marmot Precip for warmth, wicking and wind resistance. Week three and four we upped it to 30-minutes M-F. Week four i invested in some new Brooks Addiction 7 running shoes in silver and yellow :-) [Brooks GTS4 pair was shot], though i was walking, i wanted as much protection and insulation from possible injury as i could find [i had back surgery in 1980—weight is not my friend] and visited the #1 running shop in the county Bob Ronker’s Running Spot—they Rock! Fit, Service, Selection Great Staff--No wonder they earned the "#1 Specialty Running Store in the USA!" recognition.

As time went on we had challenges, challenge1 travel, weather...for travel we agreed to work out independently for weather we chose an indoor circuit comprised of downtown Cincinnati buildings linked by a network of linoleum tubes one story above street level that included steps, escalators and multiple surfaces, doorways, varied temperatures and some gradual ramps.

As my workout partners business began to experience greater and greater success, we would face challenge 2, having to workout independently more and more often, throughout weeks five through 12. We had upped our mileage and time to three and a half to four miles depending upon the day, maintaining our five day schedule, Monday through Friday.

Wk12 was a character builder, i had to decide, "why was i was working out?! Was it the comradery, was it vanity? Was it social, my workout partner is a gifted fine artist turned entrepreneur." i pressed on and prayed on...

Wk13 began a renewed discipline, walking four miles and adding bridges:

Purple People Bridge

Taylor Southgate Bridge

John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge the bridge which appears much like the Brooklyn Bridge, but predates it. Walking it from the Kentucky Side towards Cincinnati provides a commanding view of the Crown Jewel, should you ask me--the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.

At Wk13 i also adopted my Dad’s weight program, “…push back from the table son…”

i drank water before, during and after meals, taking in nearly a gallon each day and for variety sake, a teaspoon of PUR pomegranate juice, Tropicana not from concentrate and i added 2-3 evening walks at a local park with my upstairs neighbors a nice, shaded hilly four mile course they mapped out using the 50 Million Pound Challenge pedometer. Orange Juice and each morning a cup of oatmeal most often with frozen organic berries—usually Driscoll’s blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, counting four or five berries per serving. i also discovered NOW Whey protein powder, flaxseed and local honey from a beekeeper about a mile away.

Wk20 was traumatic, i finally realized my workout partner would not return. Health problems and workload—i pressed and prayed on both for him and for me.


Through week 20 i was averaging a pound each week in weight loss and then stuck for two weeks at 235lbs

Challenge4 SMOG! Cincinnati had the topography of a bowl and barring a good storm, the air does not clear—i had to find a gym, i don’t mind rain and wet feet, i don’t mind cold—i do have Asthma and need my lungs for the next 75-years. i joined Mercy Healthplex and running in their warm water pool for up to an hour each smoggy day and working the plan given to me by my trainer two to three days per week. The Pilates reformer classes would be key to achieving a goal of a 40 inch waist on my way to a 38 inch waste, goals i had set for my 50th birthday—achieved ahead of schedule…had to reset my goal.

Challenge5 Jobloss, 10/2008, brought the loss of one amazing career and challenge #

i would limp along with my gym membership and cut my Pilates reformer classes back to once each week, down from three time each week continue to walk two to three evenings with my neighbors upstairs.

Today, at 202lbs i continue to set new goals, next up, 175lbs and a 30-inch waist.

With cholesterol and bp within normal limits, supplemented with hypertensive meds, and a statin to address my cholesterol i am called skinny and told i look like a different person, all i did was pray and …press on…
What i have been graced to learn about career searching:
1. Forgivenance is key, sometimes you must forgive yourself.
2. Prayerful study of The Book of James for Divine Wisdom [ This is about Godly Wisdom, which is free, as long as you ask and don't doubt!], especially during this time. I know the path you are one--quite well...please be encouraged. God is concerned and knows how you feel.

3. Recommended reading daily and/or weekly;
a. The Business Section of The Cincinnati Enquirer [ ]. The CEO profiles are often insightful.
b. The Cincinnati Business Courier [ ] online is updated daily, print is available on Friday afternoons with quarterly publications, too.

The objective here is to find CEOs and other high level contacts whose story resonates within you spirit, prior to researching their company and contacting them, via email and/or phone.

4. Lastly, tools within the Excel spreadsheet are various resources, I would like to draw special attention to the "Aggregators" or job boards for job boards, essentially one stop shops for jobs from direct employers, agencies and other job boards—please see the attached spreadsheet—This is about controlling what you can control, which is utilizing tools to actively search. [let me know you want to see the spreadsheet and i will email it to you...]

You will more likely than not, find your next career through a friend…do not lose Hope…
Please be sure to let me know that you received this and any questions you may have?

* I highly recommend that you register on to reconnect with persons you respect whom you may have lost contact with over the years. Please list everyone you know and search for them on linkedIN, once you have completed your profile [on linkedIN] and also do a "vanity search" using first name, last name and any term that distinguishes the person, like yul butler healing center cincinnati.

You will likely find your next career like I did, from a job referral--from a friend or family member--be strong and courageous and don't lose heart!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

i never thought i'd see the day i was free o'back...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

"Your election to this high office has inspired people as few other events in recent times have done"
--Former South African President Nelson Mandela remarks upon the inauguration of Barack Hussein Obama, 44th President of These United States 20 January in the year of Our Lord 2009

Monday, January 19, 2009

"You can't depend on the train from Washington, it's 100 years overdue..."
--Gil Scott Heron

UPDATE: Barack and Joe ride into Washington--the late great Gil must be smiling... .

summer 1975, a 16 year old kid--i was with my parents for a visit to my Great Aunt Authalia Head and precious Uncle Head--their farm [at Gould, Arkansas] a family visit made roughly every two years. i remember awakening, beneath countless quilts, to the smell of fresh bacon...i also awakened to a nose bleed that would not cease.

Uncle Head offered his African American physician--Aunt Authalia wanted to show off her European American physician and his brand new office.

we left to have my nose bleed evaluated and treated. as we approached a new building with a paved parking lot in Star City Arkansas [nearly 20 miles due east of Gould], my Great Aunt directed my Dad to the 2nd parking lot. a lot faced without the glass and what i would come to know was a plush waiting room. we entered through a solid metal door, what appeared to be a factory entrance, by comparison [free of glass on the door or punctuating the block walls]. i assumed that the glassed waiting area where i saw tables, carpet and televisions was perhaps another practice or a laundromat.

after being treated with a vitamin k shot and an ice pack--i left the treatment area ahead of my parents and noticed two doors, one to the left which i opened--there were the televisions, carpet, plush chairs, "...NO NO!!", exclaimed the nurse, " use the other door..." the door to the right, the door i entered to reach the treatment area. this brand new medical practice had segregated [unlabeled, should you discount the plush accommodations, versus the metal folding chairs, solid brick walls--absence of windows and carpet in the black waiting room]. the reception area had a wall with a side pass-through allowing white patients to have a physician visit free of any encounter or eye-view of black patients.

to think that 112 years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863, announcing, "that all persons held as slaves" within the rebellious areas "are, and henceforward shall be free." and 21 years after the Supreme Court Ruling of Brown versus The Board of Education of Topeka, Segregation was alive and well.

to see the cusp [between a wicked past and a hopeful working future] of an African American; a Black Man assuming the role of President "of These United States of America" evokes emotion and initiates healing beyond expression
Church helps holistically
Vineyard's new Healing Center assists families through the Lord
By Karen Vance • Enquirer contributor • August 8, 2008
• • Print • Email • Type: A A • Click-2-Listen

"Small things done with great love will change the world."
That phrase is etched in the side of the building at the Vineyard Community Churchin Springdale.
But there are few things this church of 6,000 weekend worshipers does in a small way.
Its newest initiative, the Healing Center, is no exception. The church combined its MercyWorks assistance ministry with life growth and other educational classes and a prayer ministry.
"We were looking to combine the three ministries into one effort and take a more holistic approach to each person, each family and their circumstance," said Dave Workman, senior pastor. "We spent a lot of time creating an environment that is warm and dignified for people."
The result is a remodeled warehouse - purchased in May 2007 for $3.1 million - that appears more like an upscale college student union than a social service agency. Lounge areas, a coffee bar and food and clothing distribution storefronts are part of the facility that will serve as many as 2,000 families each month - about 6,000 individuals.
It's also a functioning environment with private cubicles for consultation, some with windows into a child care room equipped with toys and activity tables.
"Everything here is about relationships and getting to know people, making a connection and serving their real needs and the roots of what's put them into a situation," said Judy Gillens, the executive director of the center.
Gillens stresses that the center isn't a food bank or a clothing thrift shop. But it does distribute those items to its visitors when they're needed.
"We're able to help people in a well-rounded fashion. It's about connecting people with the Lord and helping them see that potential in themselves through the Lord," Gillens said.
The church's latest capital campaign of $12.6 million also included remodeling another 30,000 square feet of the warehouse to host a Student Union for the church's youth. The church also portioned funds to drill water wells in rural Nigeria.
Service to others has been a part of the Vineyard since it began on Christmas Eve in 1985 with 20 people in a living room . They decided to buy groceries and deliver them to some subsidized housing units in Hamilton.
"There's a point when a church reaches critical mass, and you're able to do things on a larger scale. It does help to be this size," Workman said.
Now the Healing Center has 500 volunteers signed up for regular positions - child care, job counselors, skills teachers and prayer team members.
As it continues to expand, they expect between 700 and 900 volunteers. Every volunteer goes through training for the center and the position they will fill.
But size also presents a challenge.
"You consider the number of people you can authentically pastor - I say it's about 10 to 12. So to combat that, we get people into smaller groups and smaller contexts where people can be real and honest and authentic."
But the level of anonymity that comes from being at a church of thousands allows seekers a place to explore without pressure.
The church calculates that 48 percent of the regular attendees are involved in a monthly service role, and more serve through occasional programs.
Yul Butler, 49, of Westwood is among that 48 percent. He is team leader for the jobs program at the Healing Center and works with individuals who are in a job transition.
It was the existing jobs ministry at then MercyWorks that drew Butler to the church. He was inspired by his uncle, a pastor in Detroit, who worked with chronically unemployed or underemployed.
"When I found out about this job ministry, I felt like, 'I'm home,' " he said. "I prayed to find a ministry where I could help people find a career or a calling that set their souls on fire that would excite them to go to work the next day. Life is too short to be in a job you can't stand."
Workman expects that sense of purpose and spiritual guidance to translate into everything volunteers will do at the Center.
"It had to be more than a social service agency; it had to be that there is a sense of the kingdom of heaven. It needed that supernatural aspect of the kingdom of God at work."
E-mail From:
Look who is serving you
Meet Yul Butler
What made you decide to volunteer in the Healing Center?
I started volunteering about four years ago in MercyWorks. I had been praying for a jobs ministry since 2002 and had asked church pastors to bring this ministry to their church. I then found the job coaching ministry here at VCC, and it is all that I had prayed for. I didn't have to become a church member to serve. All I had to do is serve. I enjoy working in the jobs ministry because I not only help people find employment but get to have conversations about things such as showing forgiveness in the work place and building trust in God.
What is the most exciting thing about volunteering in the Healing Center?
It is seeing God do what only God can do. People come in and ask how much do you get paid for working in the jobs ministry. I humorously say there is no amount of money that I could get paid for this.
What's your favorite book?
What's your favorite movie?
A Rhapsody in August depicts the fiftieth anniversary of the bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In one part of the movie, the grandmother and her friend bow to each other and sit in silence together. When asked why they do this, she responds "Sometimes people are silent when they speak." God can be like that. It's up to him to use words immediately or later.