From Buddha to Adonis (body type) – the 60 Day Challenge

It’s scary to look at some pictures from just a few years ago. It’s so easy to just let life happen and all of a sudden you have sleep apnea. I’ve been telling myself, I need to get back down to 170lbs for the past… since 7 years maybe? Well this post is more of a motivation for myself than anything.

Life Time Fitness has this 60-day-challenge where you get some access to other classes, and “virtual coaches” and diet recipes that help you get to either a goal weight or overall “whole body transformation”. You can actually win some loot. Now there is an associated cost, but it helps drive incentive to perpetual physical activity. 

I feel like I want to join and be on my way to a healthy BMI, but then I start to make excuses… I already don’t have the time to dedicate 100% to working out, going to the fitness classes (which is true, the times are not compatible with current life), I will not have any use for the recipe’s that they offer, and why should I use a virtual coach, how would that help?

Well… as I tell my patients, you have to make the time. There is always time to do something. You may not want to do it, but there is always a way to find it or make it. For instance, instead of working out now, I am sitting here writing this blog (which by the way, I commend anyone who does this regularly because it is hard to do well). As I made the excuses in my head, I realized, how can I expect my patients to take anything I say seriously if I can’t do it myself. 

My current BMI is 26.4 (near my all time high). I do have a family history of vascular dementia, stroke, heart attack and diabetes. So why the heck would I not take my health seriously, and take my own advice. Now As I write this, I have already started to implement some Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes (TLC). On my professional Facebook Page, I have been trying to track my physical activity via PolarBeat. I like tracking my heart rate during exercise as it give me a better idea of the calorie use. I also sport a FitBit (mainly due to the benefit we get from our health insurance). You do NOT need these tech gadgets to be healthy, but I like gadgets.

I frequently ask my patient to use myFitnessPal to track calories and activity to help them stay focused on their goal weight loss. They have Apps you can use for both Android and iOS. I think you can actually watch my MyFitnessPal Diary here.

So back to this 60-day challenge. I’ve tried sticking with P90x in the past but can’t get beyond day 30. Working out about 90 minutes a day takes a helluva time away from the day. Personal trainers are expensive. You know what though, not good excuses. Even if it’s just 40, or even 30, or even 20 minutes a day, it’s better than nothing. Finding ways to multitask works best. Unless you are superhuman and get up at 4 am to workout like some people I know, great ways to get physical activity in is to be active when you choose to be sedentary. Sounds obvious, but I mean instead of sitting down for 1-2 hrs watching NetFlix or a basketball game, get on a stationary bike or a treadmill (if you have one) and watch the Netflix. If you don’t have one, there are ways to get creative to do something. Now YouTube has a lot of great workout channels/videos with exercises. If you want to spend the money, there is the BeachBody On Demand, which gives you access to most of the BeachBody Material via the Android/iOS apps or via the website.

To keep myself motivated and accountable, and maybe to help motivate others that know me (or even the ones that don’t), I decided to publicly journal my strive for fitness. I’d love to have that six pack, but I think I would love even more is to not die of a heart attack prematurely or succumb to diabetes. As far as I know, I have been lucky so far with my biometric screens. Also, it would be nice not to have sleep apnea.

My current Plan to stay accountable:

GOAL: Weight loss down to 170lbs


  • must work out at least 20-40 min in a day, 5-6 days a week, and will provide proof. Will likely update blog weekly. maybe daily? To be seen.
  • must log food/calorie intake daily (will be using myFitnessPal), as above, may update only weekly.
  • will post weekly weigh-in weight.
  • no Fast foods.

how long am I going to last…

[dare i post a before picture here?]


Feel free to comment with any thoughts.


The Morning Struggle (with sleepy children)

For some reason, every morning seems to be a struggle in this household (specifically “school days”). Without fail, I find myself in a perpetual battle with my little clones. It’s like a video game. Level 1 is the Wake Up battle. When I enter their room and start the wake-up ritual, I am usually rebuffed with:

I’m too tired… I hate baba… baba hates me… I don’t want to go to school… bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

It’s almost scripted. 

I know I am not the only one who faces this opposition. The Holderness Family on youtube made a very exact/funny music video that depicts the struggle well:

You would think that a 6-year-old should be able to get up, go to the bathroom, and brush their teeth without assistance (since I’ve seen her do it before), or am I expecting too much? Then the ever monotonous “put on your pants… put ON your pants… PUT ON YOUR PANTS… ok when I come back you better have your pants on!” The response usually is “you have to heeeelp meeeee. I cant do it myseeeeelf… WAAAAH!” I know I know, they are just throwing a fit and trying to make the sap-of-dad succumb to their will, but when you are in a time crunch, there is no time to putz around.

Some days they like to do the exact opposite. VBear was actually out of bed. Teeth brushed, and bladder emptied. All she had to do was put on her pants. I give them to her, and tell her I will be back after I take the dog out. I come back and of course, she’s ready… to make me late for work. For some reason instead of putting her pants on, she was sitting with just the undies on. It was comical and infuriating at the same time. She was just sitting there still staring at her pants. She wasn’t laughing or giggling. Maybe she thought it would be funny. Maybe she needed to take her shirt off and socks off before putting the pants on. Till this day I never did get an explanation. 

Now if this was a video game, Level 2 is getting out the door. You have to get not just one but 2 unruly hooligans to get their shoes on. This may seem to be an easy task, but for some reason they can make it very arduous and exasperating. De-Ja-Vu. I hear the words “I can’t do it by myself, You have to help meeee!” mixed in with the occasional cry. Now Jette and Viv both can put their own shoes on. I’ve seen them do it. To expedite departure, I end up helping. 

The odd thing is ViviEtte always give me the wrong foot no matter what shoe I grab. It’s almost like they really think the curved insole belongs on the outside (but I don’t think they are even looking when I am helping.) Maybe they are just f’ing with me.

With one child, I still encountered these shenanigans, but with two the variable of the sibling c0nlfict must be factored in:


My beautiful girls in all their glory.

Now once I get them in the car, get to the daycare, we reach the final level. The drop-off. It’s a hit or miss if Jette will happily sit down to eat breakfast, or if she will be like an alien


face hugger, and cling on for dear life. Now if she chooses the latter, it’s another 5 minutes of prying her off. Don’t get me wrong I love my penguins. If I didn’t have to get to work, this would be less of an issue. It would still be an issue because these antics would drive anyone insane. That’s a whole other topic. I commend anyone to everyone that is a primary stay at home parent. It’s a thankless job that requires patience and mental fortitude. Every time I go through this I think to myself, I need to give my mom a hug for not only raising me and my brother but also watching my Penguins.

After beating the final level, you think you’ve won, but now its time to play another game… the one called work.  It’s like an MMORPG. Then it restarts all over at 645am the next day.

I commend anyone to everyone that is a primary stay at home parent. It’s a thankless job that requires patience and mental fortitude. Every time I go through this I think to myself, I need to give my mom a hug for not only raising me and my brother but also watching my Penguins.

Introducing Penguin Friends: Vivi’s New Youtube channel

Vivi and Juliette love watching youtube, specifically this channel where this lady plays with toys or reveals what toy is hidden in random cups of goo.

I asked Vivi if she wanted to make videos of this as well. Well she said yes. She has always been a ham for the lime light:-) I also figure it’s a way to catalog her antics.

Here’s the intro:

ViviBear Milestone: Potty in the toilet (by herself), and Juliette is a poo machine (fun fact)

Chamber Pot

First off, what is potty? I never liked that term. I remember in preschool people used the term “potty”. I was like, wtf is that? I always knew it as going to the bathroom (in english at least). Then in 2nd grade, this one blonde chic Paige Patacky (sp) kept saying “I need to go potty”. I just let it go, and never used the term, well until ViviBear came along.

Maybe kids associate better with the term “Potty” rater than “Urinate/defecate” or “go to the bathroom”. Maybe it’s just me. Of course I figure the term derives from the good ol’chamber pot. Well according to Wikipedia, that is where it is from. It took me all these years to actually google that.

On that note, I am happy to say that today 10/9/2013 ViviBear stated “I NEED TO PEE PEE”, ran to the bathroom. As I followed her as per routine, she stuck her hand out and commanded “STOP! I do.” She proceeded to take pants and diaper off, then climbed onto the toilet. Drained that bladder. took a piece of TP and wiped. Flushed. Then proceeded to climb on the sink to wash her hands. Obviously she will need some more help in the meantime, but not bad I’d say. I wouldn’t really say she is potty trained, but this is a first for me to see her do all those steps independently.

Penguin Poop Seat
Penguins Pot Topper

Many people have differing opinions regarding potty training, i.e. when the appropriate age to start is, and how to go about doing the training. As in an earlier post: Initially we are not really potty training, more just saving diapers

Grandma really started things with having ViviBear piddle in the sink or while holding her over a toilet when she was an infant around 5-6 months old. We also would use this penguin toilet cover that would sing. We got it as a baby shower gift, but of course I added it to our registry since it is a penguin.

Bombs in the Baby Bjorn
We also have this great Baby Bjorn mini potty, that she really got into using. It was always easier to figure when she would need to poo vs pee. Over the past year, I thnk she may have had only one or two poop diapers. You go Vivi. You will love this post when you are in highschool:-)
Once around 1.5-2 years old and we were more serious about trying to potty train, and MommyMD purchased these toilet steps (Little Looster’s Looster Booster from to make it easier for ViviBear to use the toilet
Little Looster's Looster Booster,
Little Looster’s Looster Booster,

We also use a different topper now (a baby bjorn. for some reason MommyMD didnt like the penguins one). ViviBear actually can climb up and situate her on a regular toilet seat without falling in, and proceed with dropping #1 or #2.

Now climbing up the sink to wash her hands is cool and all, but this scares me. She has become more resourceful and daring. She is dragging her kiddie chairs and placing them next to a counter to climb up to the kitchen sink or dining table. Obviously this reinforces the fact that she needs to be in eyes view at all times. Who know what she is going to get into. Hmmm… now this is getting me to get more paranoid and think of the potential dangers. ack.

So back to “pottying.” I was fully expecting the “regression” to occur with the introduction of Juliette, but Vivienne has been doing an amazing job as the “Big Sis.” She is very gentle with Juliette, and is always concerned when she is crying. It’s rather cute. Speaking of Juliette, holy crap. rather, just CRAP. she poops a lot. I forgot how much a little baby can poop. She eats, she poops. Maybe falls asleep, but when you change her, she has a FIT. Then the only way to calm her down is shoving a boobie in her mouth (or a bottle). Then you repeat the process, because she will inevitably poop again. Props to MommyMD for taking this like a champ. I am trying to help out, but I know I could be changing a few more diapers. At least I am changing ViviBear’s diapers.

Enough of this ADD-style blogging. My Paternity leave ends tonight. Off to bed I go. ViviBear and Julietter, please sleep well tonight.

The Aftermath: @ home

10/5/13, 300am


35 hrs in: Juliette is crying her head off. As people tell me when you have two kids you play man2man vs done defense.
I figured I would be managing ViviBear. Stay out of MommyMd‘s way and let her do the mommy infant thing. Sleep outside ViviBear’s room so I don’t have to wait up every hour… Wait. I probably could be helping mommy some how.

This newborn thing is throwing me off. Had not needed to clean a poppy diaper in many months now. ViviBear usually plops in the toilet (for the past year plus). On top of that, what’s with the crying when I change your diaper doode…

Now I can’t sleep and I am writing this. I think I got poop on my thumb…

Realization. If I had a boob shoved in my mouth, is stop crying too.


After waking up (me that is) once or twice, I am amazed ViviBear slept through most of the night. Props to MommyMD that has to be the one that wakes up and shoves her udder into those chompers. No doubt, despite all the tiredness/sleeplessness… this is nothing compared to what the mother of bears had to do before/during/now and later. I still hold the right to wine/moan and search for pitty points.

on another note, since the pushing is over, am I still obligated to find a “Push Gift?”

With a cup of coffee in hand, it is time to take the ViviBear along to run errands. Need hand sanitizer, new formula and… Blanking.

Just got done with my morning errands after forgetting multiple times why I was there and what I was buying and it being distracted with buying other things I was not supposed to buy

what I was supposed to buy and also what I ended up buying

Can you tell which side is the stuff I am supposed to by versus the stuff I stuff into the cart along the way?

I mean I need more pumpkins. I’ve always had a penchant for pumpkins (not as much as penguins). Something about finding a perfectly round pumpkin. Anyway there is another larger one not pictured.

Not sure how but this trip cost 85$ at Kroger.

mmmmm apple sauce packets
mmmmmm donuts

As baby Juliette Slumbers, MommyMD gets to eat sashimi for the first time in 9 months.

Long deserved sashimi intake

Now it is time to sanitize the bottles. MommyMD had them stored away for a while. I think they were boiled prior to being stored, but why not

time to disinfect
Bottle stew

This reminds me of the beer bottle sensitization step. Still have that bag-full to soup up. Now there is a large rack of baby bottles being dried, and of course ViviBear wants to use them.  We were afraid this would happen but so far she has taken it well that she “is no longer a baby and is a big girl now.”

I do remember growing up that whenever my brother got a gift for his birthday I would always be a little sad as well, since I didn’t get anything. This is definitely going to be an issue with ViviBear (and probably Juliette).

I don’t know how feasible it is to always buy them each something when the time comes, like the “gift” Juliette got Vivi on her home coming:-)



Grandparents finally got the TdAP and Flu Shot, and were able to come meet the new Granddaughter Juliette


Still very tired. Not a whole lot going on really.

It was nice that Grandparents were able to get the TdAP and Flu shot. Being born in October heading right into Flu Season, MommyMD was very adamant about any visitors being UTD on shots. Nothing sucks like a <2month old with a fever. Auto Admit/Lumbar Puncture. Here’s to hoping we have an uneventful winter.

Juliette Day One: journey home

Just after 24hrs, health status excellent. We are on our way home.


“my first car ride”

Fits in the Graco carseat. Snug as a bug.

back home

Made it back to the house

My pal Stella told me that when they had a second child, they offset the jealousy factor when they came home by saying new baby sister brought a present. So this big box has a gift from Juliette Meimei to ViviBear.


Meeting combo for the first time

Vivi and Combo Meet Juliette
ViviBear rocks her Juliette Meimei

Vivienne already is taking on the big sis roll well. She is protective and caring:-) Combo is trying to get a glimpse, but ViviBear puts down the law.



800p: Alas, our family is whole, at home, safe and sound. I am surrounded estrogen. Well Combo was spayed, but you get the point. Thank you everyone for all the well wishes!

Welcome Juliette!

“welcome baby Juliette!”


hello world 

on 10/3/13

Weighing in @ 7 lbs 12.3oz
Noggin size 13.5″ head circ
measuring   Length 20 3/4″ (corrected)
@ 431pm

May I present to you for the very first time:

Juliette Shinhui Tsai



See the whole play-by-play unfold here

Another day another penguin, but not just any penguin

Why hello blog, it has been a long time indeed.

baby penguin day!

SO today is a special day, it is the day I start to grow a few more grey hairs. The day that Vivienne becomes as BIG SISTER!!! It will be (ideally) Juliette Shinhui Tsai’s birthday. We anticipate seeing her sometime today. I will continue to update this blog (probably not in real time).

So the first thing I do when I woke up at 530am was try to figure out: what do I wear on this special occassion? The first time around with ViviBear, I was too preoccupied with the thought “holy crap, I will be a dad!” I wanted to make sure I had something suitable for the day, and this is what I came up with—>

Combo has no idea what is coming
Combo has no idea what is coming

 Poor Combo has no idea what she has instore for her. First time she met ViviBear she didnt really know what to do with her.

Now she will have two bears to runaway from.


What’s in a name?

We decided a couple months ago to name the next penguin Juliette. After toiling with many different names, we wanted to choose a name that was elegant, and that reminded us of someone that we would be happy to relate with. I can only hope our Juliette will be as smart and successful:-)

MommyMD and I actually had a hard time agreeing with a name. I still think Penelope Gwen would have worked well, or rather I wanted to name #1 Penelope and then #2 Gwen. If I was ever mad at them both, I could yell out PENGWEN COME HERE! Alas, no.

As for the Chinese name, we gave this honor to the grandparents to decide. The name would have to follow the “Generation name” which ViviBear kicked things off with “Shin”, “欣”. Not the “appropriate” romanization but. meh.

For Juliette,  my parents came up with Shin-Hui (欣慧) which means “happy wisdom”. I do hope this means she is smart.


710am: Just checked in. Apparently a busy day for preggo people. All the parking for expectant mothers was taken. Still no signs of a Juliette.

729am: in the lovely room.

the bed

I am trying very hard not to post updates on Facebook, hence I am back to my blog. Reason is MommyMD really does not want to announce to the world we are out of the home since that is inviting strangers to come raid our house. Luckily vivibear combobear and nanny are holding down the fort.
I figured random people do not tend to read my blog these days so I think I am safe to update here for now.

734a: patient hides in bed

No photos!

750a: still no baby

805a: 4cm!… Just 4…

BIG SIS: sleepy bear

Looks like vivibear is still asleep. She’s been excited for her baby sister. I wonder if she even knows what that is. Well find out soon:)

900a: Pitocin started

The squeeze juice

1048a: popping the balloon!!!!

I am not allowed to take a photo of this… so here is a reenactment



is it lunch time yet?

1138a: L4-L5, here we go. guess she is not going natural

104p: lunch was good. MommyMD had a popsicle. I had a Pizza:-)

252p: 6-7cm. Alrighty bets on the delivery hour. I am going to bet Juliette pops out yelling and screaming at 7pm.

305p: It has been a productive day. Went over some labs from work, as well as refill requests and signed off on documents. Updated some websites for the HOA, Practice Website, and of course this one. Catch up on emails. (all while MommyMD is going through her Epidural). Was I supposed to be the one holding her hand vs the nurses? She took it like a champ anyway:) Had to redo the epidural unfortunately since it seemed once side didn’t want to take.

looks reactive to me.


3:39p: normal sinus, no ST changes, normal r-wave. hmm no r-waves, is this lead I or II? where are the rest of the leads? How am I supposed to determine the axis without other leads?

wait… it’s not an EKG




Here is an image of the heating thingy BEFORE it is occupied by it’s future transient tenant.


350p: fully dilated!! Apparently the floor is full of preggos that are in the midst of delivering. Oo lady next door for a s crowning. MommyMD needs to labor down otherwise I may have to resort to my extensive OBGYN training from residency!!!

ready for the bloody mess

416p: Omg they are pulling out the blue blood smegma floor catchers. I think it is inevitable. It seems so nonchalant in this room. Ooo doc is here. I think it is happening. This is it. Updates later.

424p: A scalp!!!!!

A lot of hair
Nuchal Chord but she is OK!

weighing in at 7 lbs 12.3oz
arriving at 10/3/13, 430p
measuring 13.5″ head circ
with a span of 20 3/4″ Length (corrected)

May I present to you for the very first time:

Juliette Shinhui Tsai



“do I look fat?”
“where is my womb!?”
“hello world!”

 “time for your checkup”

600p: Finally I get to hold her

daddy finally gets to hold you


904p: Vivienne comes to visit and meet Juliette

“Hi Juliette meimei”





Gummi Bears to Peanuts: The next step

What does a gummi bear and Peanut have in common?

What came first. The peanut or the baby?
What came first. The peanut or the baby?

They both appear to have been in the womb of my BabyMama MommyMD. With much hesitancy (not from my standpoint), I am proud to announce that MommyMD finally ate one peanut too many! It seems one has lodged inside her womb.

10 Week US
Ultrasound almost 10 weeks


It’s scary to think that it was about over 2 years ago when this process first started with the ViviBear.

ViviBear 2010

I first found out about the Peanut when I came back from my brother’s bachelor party in Las Vegas in early Feb. For those that know me, tt has been difficult to keep it on the DL. Of course it did let slip to one or two people.

I remember when I first found out the ViviBear journey was underway, which  was an exciting and frightening. I… was going to be a dad! Again, I get to repeat those those feelings of excitement and apprehension, but I am already a dad. now… I will be a dad with a 2.5 year old and a newborn, going through the crying and poop diapers again. I must say I miss the neonate/baby days where they are so tiny that they cant crawl yet. All they do is lay there. Then start to roll around. Then start to crawl… It’s exciting to see each developmental milestone met. Then I think about how ViviBear can be such a bear at times… I will have two of them crawling on me, yelling, crying at me and wanting to play… as exhausting as I know it will be, it is putting a smile on my face as I type this.

Now the next question is whether ViviBear will have a baby brother or baby sister.

Hear we go… updates to come:)

Farewell Pierre: A fallen goldfish, friend, and family member

In my dreams of having an indoor pond, I started out with goldfish in a large bowl. Not just a fish bowl, but one of this water garden bowls. I started out with two that got rather large in a course of a year, but they met their untimely death by an ill fated water change. You really should not change more than 25% of the water at a time. It was either that, or the fact that was spraying Seven (insecticide) outside prior to doing a water change. After giving up on the indoor pond, I tried yet again with the mini-pond/gold fish. My replacement fish, Pebble and Pierre lived and thrived.

At this time I did have an outdoor Koi pond as well, but with the colder weather, I needed to over winter them indoors, so I built that large indoor pond in the basement. I figured it was time to consolidate ponds, so I plunked the fancy Ryukin gold fish (Pebble and Pierre) into the large koi pond. Little did I know that this was not advised. Prior to starting my new career, I had a bit more time on my hand and tended to the fish more often (fed them). Actually I think it was because my mother was here that the fish were fed more often. I started to notice Pierre was floating weird (still alive). His posterior would be constantly floating up. I figured his air bladder had to be damaged some how (no signs of trauma though). This went on a few weeks, then one day I noticed he had most of his fins bitten off: tail, dorsal, lateral what have you. Not sure what to do, euthanize or try to heal/save (hanks to ChunJaegirl for the link to Kevorkian-ing fish). I went on Dr. Google and found that #1. do not put koi with fancy gold fish. #2. feed the fish.

I think one problem was my first koi (Fat Boy) may be getting a bit large for the pond. Supposedly they get more aggressive if they are much larger than the others. I decided to try to save the poor fish, as I could not bare ending his existence (I assume my fish are males). I separated him and used my pond salt tonic to try to help heal him. He seemed to do well the first 3 days, but he did not seem like he was eating. I did notice the pond water overall was evaporating/getting low, so I started to add more (of course airing it out overnight). Unfortunately I may have added too much at a time to the isolation tank, as Pierre (instead of floating) was non-mobile at the bottom… he had passed.

Now Pierre (named because he looked like he had a mustache, so of course I correlate that with a french name) was laid to rest in the flower bed near the outdoor pond. He will probably be dug up next time MommyMD gardens, or if the coyotes or even combo decide to dig him up.

Alas, farewell my fancy fish friend.


Background image was adapted from the creation found on this site: