Optimize Your Life!

This blog was formerly Fighting, and Beating, Multiple Sclerosis, but as I fought on against MS I realized the real fight is multidimensional. It encompasses a multitude of factors affecting the optimization of life in general - not just for those with MS.

I hope to provide inspiration & information so you can Optimize Your Life - no matter what battle you face!

"You will not hear me cry because I do not sing the blues"

This is a clip from one round of a “giant set” I did during my Friday night workout.

Brought to you with as much grit as this skinny assed, 53 year old MSer can muster.

Fueled by Lynyrd Skynyrd, white rice, green tea, and colostrum.

Gimme back my bullets!!!!

"You will not hear me cry because I do not sing the blues!"

Part of my Friday night workout - a giant set of deadlifts, one arm shoulder press, and chins.

"Gimme back my bullets!

(not sure if YouTube will take this down so posted it directly ^^^^)

(Source: youtube.com)

Make every tomorrow your bitch!

Make every tomorrow your bitch!

A whole new outlook!

I think that all of the autoimmune (“AI”) diseases stem from the same or similar situations in our bodies and just manifest themselves differently depending on whether a person has MS, RA, or any of the other conditions on the long list of AI diseases.

I am a big believer that most of the problems start in our digestive tracts, and that “leaky gut” is a precipitating factor that allows relatively large molecules and proteins to enter the bloodstream where they are seen as invaders by the T-cells setting off the autoimmune response.

For the last 3 1/2 years, I basically followed Dr. Terry Wahls’ diet and have eaten an AI Paleo diet that excludes foods that contain proteins that could trigger an autoimmune response, or foods (and substances) that could contribute to causing a leaky gut.

The last year, however, I’ve made a concerted effort to also try to heal my leaky gut. This has taken the form of taking regular extra-virgin coconut oil (Nutriva brand) gelatin/collagen (Great Lakes brand), and bovine colostrum (Percoba brand). I added these in a sequential order, taking the coconut oil first and waiting to see how I felt, then adding in the gelatin, and then the colostrum. I should add that I was very hesitant to try the bovine colostrum because in the past (pre-Wahls diet) I was very lactose intolerant and because I had read that milk proteins - primarily casein - caused an autoimmune response.

I felt better after each addition, but the most recognizable improvement came after I added the colostrum.

The change in my situation has been pretty drastic! Before I started this gut healing protocol, I would feel almost immediate negative symptoms after eating anything with sugar in it, certain proteins (like red meat), having coffee, and, especially, having alcohol. When I look back on this, I have to conclude that the rapidity by which these things caused symptoms indicated that something was probably entering my system through a leaky gut.

Recently, however, I was at my niece’s wedding and ate prime rib, had a very sugary gluten-free cupcake, and drank some tequila - all without feeling any deleterious effects (other than the effects of the alcohol, ha ha!). I was pretty shocked!

Since then, I’ve had a grass fed steak, grass fed hamburgers on gluten-free buns (with some very spicy horseradish!), some gluten-free sugary treats, gluten-free beer, more tequila, and a number of other things that had been on my “avoid at all costs” list.

To most people this would not be an Earth shattering change, but for me it was huge!

To top it off, my recovery from my workouts has never been better and I’m staying constant in weight while dropping body fat %. Maybe I’m getting more nutrients from my food; maybe the colostrum is aiding in my recovery.

I’m not sure, but it is definitely giving me a whole new outlook!

Usually works for me !

Usually works for me !

(via evolutionofafitgeek)

The Governator!Still in #beastmode.

The Governator!

Still in #beastmode.

(Source: fitnessfanaticmotivation)

notjustlikethat asked: Thanks for the follow back! I'm looking forward to seeing you on my dash. At one point we thought I had MS, though it's been ruled out now, but in the meantime I did a LOT of research and it's an condition that is still on my mind a lot. I think once your awareness is elevated you see things differently. Of course, that doesn't mean I know what it's like to fight your battle. But you are an inspiration none-the-less. (oh, and you like rotties ;) )

Thanks for making the connection, and I look forward to your posts as well!

Sorry to hear about the MS concern but glad it didn’t go further. Keeping the focus on health and well being even without a diagnosis is the surest way to avoid one. (Wish I had that perspective 10 years earlier - haha.)

Have had a number of rotties in the family over the years, including my wife & my “first child”. A great breed!

So yesterday was one of those weird Saturdays. 

It was a day where I spent most of it waiting to do something.

Looking back, I see it was just a result of the previous 24 hours.

Friday was a relatively stressful day - self imposed and poorly managed stress - but stressful nonetheless.  

I have some work deadlines pending & was trying to focus on them.  There were also computer issues that our IT department was having trouble rectifying and which required me to keep diverting my attention to. On top of that, I had 3 interns in for most of the day and had to field their “do you have a second” questions throughout the day. 

In the grand scheme of things, not earth shattering. But maybe because of my inner Type A-ness and realizing I hadn’t accomplished what I wanted, I was feeling stressed.

I probably should have hit the gym on the way home. But feeling a little “overtrained” (which probably was just the f—-ing stress) i opted to skip the gym and go for a light run with my dog. 

I just run around a park with some soccer fields and a fitness course, so I don’t know any distances - but it wasn’t much. And I felt very fatigued doing it! I’m not a runner so hard to judge whether that was “normal,” I just figured because I hadn’t eaten much that day (f—-ing stress again) I needed some fuel. So I cut my losses & headed home.

I ate dinner but got even more fatigued. And I started feeling numbness in my hand and arm. 

I’m thinking “shit, I hope this isn’t the start of some MS crap.” 

I tell myself “I am NOT letting this snowball. I know what I need - vitamin d, b, and a good night’s sleep.”

My wife was at girls night & I was her DD. I was fighting hard to stay awake to pick her up. By the time I did it was after 1:30 am.

I fall asleep fast but my friggin circadian clock wakes  me up at 5:30! 

I have nothing planned so figure I’ll fall back to sleep. Guess again Jim. I don’t know if it was my cortisol raging or what, but more sleep was not an option!

I drag myself out of bed at around 8 thinking I’ll do something and then take a nap. But once up, I was less than useless. 

I ended up watching premier league soccer most of the day and then, about 3:30, falling into one of those deep, I-feel-nauseous-when-I-wake up sleeps!

The nap was only about 40 minutes, but it took me 45 mins to get out of bed! Haha

That’s where the story turns around.

I go to the gym. 

As you can see from the picture, I’m basically the only one there. I’m also still in a semi-comatosed state, but I crank up the tunes on my head phones & dive in.

Great workout; stress relieved; good night’s sleep; ready to get some shit accomplished today!!

It’s all good now!

So yesterday was one of those weird Saturdays.

It was a day where I spent most of it waiting to do something.

Looking back, I see it was just a result of the previous 24 hours.

Friday was a relatively stressful day - self imposed and poorly managed stress - but stressful nonetheless.

I have some work deadlines pending & was trying to focus on them. There were also computer issues that our IT department was having trouble rectifying and which required me to keep diverting my attention to. On top of that, I had 3 interns in for most of the day and had to field their “do you have a second” questions throughout the day.

In the grand scheme of things, not earth shattering. But maybe because of my inner Type A-ness and realizing I hadn’t accomplished what I wanted, I was feeling stressed.

I probably should have hit the gym on the way home. But feeling a little “overtrained” (which probably was just the f—-ing stress) i opted to skip the gym and go for a light run with my dog.

I just run around a park with some soccer fields and a fitness course, so I don’t know any distances - but it wasn’t much. And I felt very fatigued doing it! I’m not a runner so hard to judge whether that was “normal,” I just figured because I hadn’t eaten much that day (f—-ing stress again) I needed some fuel. So I cut my losses & headed home.

I ate dinner but got even more fatigued. And I started feeling numbness in my hand and arm.

I’m thinking “shit, I hope this isn’t the start of some MS crap.”

I tell myself “I am NOT letting this snowball. I know what I need - vitamin d, b, and a good night’s sleep.”

My wife was at girls night & I was her DD. I was fighting hard to stay awake to pick her up. By the time I did it was after 1:30 am.

I fall asleep fast but my friggin circadian clock wakes me up at 5:30!

I have nothing planned so figure I’ll fall back to sleep. Guess again Jim. I don’t know if it was my cortisol raging or what, but more sleep was not an option!

I drag myself out of bed at around 8 thinking I’ll do something and then take a nap. But once up, I was less than useless.

I ended up watching premier league soccer most of the day and then, about 3:30, falling into one of those deep, I-feel-nauseous-when-I-wake up sleeps!

The nap was only about 40 minutes, but it took me 45 mins to get out of bed! Haha

That’s where the story turns around.

I go to the gym.

As you can see from the picture, I’m basically the only one there. I’m also still in a semi-comatosed state, but I crank up the tunes on my head phones & dive in.

Great workout; stress relieved; good night’s sleep; ready to get some shit accomplished today!!

It’s all good now!

Our dog staring at our son’s picture, who is away at college.

Guess dogs get empty nest syndrome too! Haha

Our dog staring at our son’s picture, who is away at college.

Guess dogs get empty nest syndrome too! Haha

Our daughter said one of her goals for her semester in Ireland is to step out of her comfort zone. 

Within a week of being there, looks like she’s accomplishing that goal!

Our daughter said one of her goals for her semester in Ireland is to step out of her comfort zone.

Within a week of being there, looks like she’s accomplishing that goal!