Bruce Painter: Community Testimony
Danny Skypes w/Bruce!
I am 56 years old, married to my best friend for 34 years, a father of five wonderful children (3 girls and 2 boys), and 8 grandkids! For over thirty years I have been a tradesman who installs flooring and does other small remodeling and handyman projects. Through the years, I always joked around with people that I could eat whatever I wanted because I burnt it off at my physical job. I would also joke that I didnít have to work out at a gym because I got all the exercise I needed at work. Well, after I turned fifty that started to change. I think my metabolism slowed down and I began to slow down. My testimony is not a dramatic weight loss story but a health and non-scale testimony.
I wouldn’t have a testimony without including a little bit of my wife Janice’s testimony. Someday hopefully she will give her own. We have always been a fairly, healthy family as Janice was a stay at home mom raising five children. We ate a lot of meats, fruits, and vegetables, fresh whole grain bread and we hardly ever drank pop (soda). Janice baked a lot of bread and typical desserts. She was a master at baking delicious sugary pies, cookies, and other desserts. A lot of extended family and friends would join us on holidays to enjoy her fare!
Around January of 2011, Janice was determined to get rid of her unwanted extra weight. So, after some prayer and personal research, she decided to drastically cut sugar and high fructose corn syrup out of her diet. Just by doing that she lost about 30 pounds in about a year and a half but had plateaued. She had been receiving for years a newsletter for Christian wives and mothers, called “Above Rubies” written by Nancy Campbell. Of course, she happens to be Pearl and Serene’s mom! In the October 2012, newsletter she read a few paragraphs about the first book the girls published and decided to check it out. After applying the principles of THM she lost another 30 pounds! I was watching her success and the vitality she was enjoying. She has always been beautiful to me, but she was getting even more downright fetching! During this time, she was eating on plan separately from me, but was introducing THM meals and desserts to me, some openly and some covertly!
Back to me. From age 50 to 54 I went from about 175 pounds (where I had been for years) to 188 pounds. I thought, “No big deal, I will work it off someday.” Up until this time and during it I ate pretty, typical things that almost everybody does. I usually ate Raisin Bran with a sliced banana for breakfast with plenty of sugar, along, with a couple large mugs of coffee with flavored creamers with more sugar! I would often drink Powerade or Gatorade at work. I would also buy the yummy varieties of trail mixes at the big home improvement stores where I picked up my supplies and snack on them all day! Most of these trail mixes had sugar chocolate chips or other candy and cookie type pieces in them. All the things mentioned above I thought were relatively healthy! Then, to reward myself, I would usually buy a half gallon or more of ice cream every week, to eat after supper when I would watch TV!
Throughout most of my life, I seemed to be pretty, healthy, but during this period, I was starting to, feel sluggish, easily winded, getting good sized love handles, and a jiggly belly! On top of that, I was starting to feel a lot of aches and pains. During this time, I had developed plantar fasciitis on the bottom of my feet. This required special stretching exercises and shoe inserts to manage the pain. In addition to that, I had started getting severe joint pain in my fingers, hands, arms, and shoulders. It got to the point that it was too painful for me to push down on the flooring I was installing with hands palm down. I had to make a fist and push down with my knuckles because it hurt too much to bend my fingers back. Also, I was constantly tossing and turning in bed at night because of the muscle and joint pain in my shoulders and arms. Another thing I started to experience was occasional blurred vision and dizziness during which I would often have to lean against something and wait to get my focus. Looking back at it now I am pretty sure I was either a pre-type II diabetic or an undiagnosed one. Then at the beginning of 2017, I developed a severe case of tendonitis and had to take some muscle relaxing and pain killing drugs for about a week. One interesting thing to note is that I would talk to people about these ailments and almost everyone would chalk this up with just getting old! I was starting to doubt this and started thinking maybe there is something I am missing.
At this point, I was getting sick and tired of feeling sick and tired! I had heard Janice talking about this THM stuff for a while now and was pretty, impressed with her long, term success. So, at the beginning of June 2017 I finally said to her, “OK, I give up! Whatever you are doing, food-wise, I am ready to jump in. Right here, right now!”
I quit sugar immediately and she fixed me my first S meal as a Trim Healthy Dad the next morning. She started teaching me how to alternate my fuels from meal to meal the THM way and we haven’t looked back since!
Janice is delighted that we are eating the same foods now, so she doesn’t have to cook or bake twice anymore! We adjusted things a little for me because I can handle more crossovers because of my work. I lost about 17 pounds in about a month, never starving and eating more variety of foods than ever before! More importantly, I felt so much better! My energy level increased notably! In fact, because of this, I started doing strength building exercises.
Around that time, I had an epiphany. I was thinking of professional or any truly committed athletes in general and the thought came to me, Athletes do not play the game to stay fit, they stay fit so they can play the game! My thinking had been all wrong. Because I have a job that depends on my ability to do physical labor, it is all the more important that I stay healthy and strong! I didn’t own any exercise equipment, so I just started doing push-ups. I started with just ten but that grew daily! I eventually bought a modest weight lifting bench and set it up in our small utility basement. (Our house was built around 1870.) Through that first summer, I was getting stronger and feeling better and better every day! BTW, immediately after I got on plan I ordered the audio version of the Trim Healthy Mama Plan book and devoured it over and over again while I was working. Plus, I do listen to every PODdy! Then, one day that summer, I realized that my fingers, arms, and shoulders werenít hurting anymore! Then it dawned on me that my feet werenít hurting anymore either, so I took out my shoe inserts. I havenít needed them since!
This really got my attention, so I started studying through audio books and YouTube videos about the biochemistry behind the success of this plan and I was blown away! When I learned what sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, and excess glucose in our system does to our liver and hormonal system I was even more amazed how spot on this THM plan is! I found out that pain comes from inflammation, and a lot of the inflammation is caused by the damage we have been doing to our livers! The good news is that the liver is one of the most renewable organs in the body if we start treating it right! I believe God made it this way because the liver is so important!
I now work out about five times a week for about thirty minutes. I will lift weights one day, do ab and other floor exercises the next, and the third day let my muscles rest, then repeat. During my ab exercises, I do three reps of push-ups totaling 220!
My life has changed so much that it is so easy to share my story with others. Because I meet a lot of people in their homes in the course of my work, I have shared this plan often when the topic of health and nutrition comes up. I have had many ladies go online and check out the THM Facebook and website while weíre still talking! Some have ordered the books before the end of the day! Janice and I have been encouraging people in our church toward healthy living so much that the Pastor eventually let me do a couple classes on health and nutrition and now is talking of expanding it to a longer course! That would be awesome!
I was pretty shocked to hear Serene, Pearl, and Danny share some of my testimonies on the PODdy, calling me the THM Evangelist! LOL!
I make my own breakfasts. My S breakfast is usually 3 eggs over easy (or an omelet with cheese and fuel pull veggies), 4 or 5 pieces of bacon, some low-carb bread Janice bakes, toasted with sugar-free peanut butter and jelly on it. Then I will have a small hand full strawberries or a half of an avocado. Remember, I am burning a lot of calories every day!
My E breakfast is usually 1 cup of oatmeal, a couple teaspoons of stevia-based sweetener, a pinch of ground cloves, and a heaping teaspoon of cinnamon mixed together. Then I add either diced apple chunks or a handful of fresh blueberries, add water and heat it in the microwave for three minutes. When cooked I add a generous amount of low-fat cottage cheese on top, sprinkle a little more stevia and cinnamon on top, and start my gastronomical jubilee!
I also have a couple large mugs of coffee every morning with my homemade flavored creamer. I make a several-day supply of coffee creamer in a small, pint-sized glass bottle with a rubber lid. I fill the bottle near to the top with low-fat half and half to make it safe with S or E meals. Then I add a few drops of pure vanilla extract (you can use any flavoring you want) and about 5 squirts of liquid stevia and stir. Each cup of coffee gets a little creamer, some THM protein powder, and coconut oil. How delicious!
My wife packs my lunch with a variety of S and E fuels which I mix and match as crossovers during the day. (because I can) She loads my lunch box up in case I work late. That way I can eat a 5:00 meal if I get home really late, like 9:00 pm or later. Usually, we have an S-meal at supper time since we usually eat late because of my work. Therefore, I try to avoid any high carb snacks too close to supper time.
Some of my favorite Supper meals are the Cheese Burger Pie (p.149 THM Cookbook), Taste of Home Casserole (p.144 TH Table), Mother Englandís Trimmy Bisque (p.190 TH Table), Chicken Alfredo Spaghetti with Zucchini Noodles (home recipe), Wild Rice Soup (home recipe), and any of my wifeís homemade on-plan pizzas! Almost all our evening meals include a large salad heaped with fuel pull greens and veggies usually topped with olive oil, salt & pepper, and nutritional yeast! Yummmm! You know, you gotta learn to love whatís good for you!
Disclaimer: My wife taught me how to do all this to give her a little break in the kitchen every morning!
Of course, my wife makes on-plan desserts too! I love them all and really love the chocolate and peanut butter bars! (I know Iím blessed!) Desserts: Magic Salted Caramel Cupcakes (p. 379, Trim Healthy Table); Trimtastic Chocolate Zucchini Cake (p. 296, THM Cookbook); Key Lime Pie (p.326, THM Cookbook)
I could share much more and will through the THM social media. I am truly thankful to God for bringing us this knowledge and using THM to help people like me!