Hello my name is Michael V. Moore, and I won’t be talking about fitness today.
I’m an American who happens to be Black. I support the Black Lives Matter movement AND I support honest hard-working police officers that make our communities safer.
Does supporting Black Lives Matter mean that I’m a 6’ 3” black terrorist who’s plotting to take over the United States government?
Does supporting cops mean that I think the cops that took the lives of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, John Crawford, Tamir Rice, Walter Scott, & Freddie Gray were just doing their job and deserve no jail time because they have a hard job?
Why do you feel that you have to be on one side or the other?
Due to what’s been going on these past weeks and years in America, I wanted to take the time to talk about what’s been in my mind.
I feel like I’m watching America’s dark ugly history of hatred repeat itself. It sickens me to my core. I know I’m all about traveling fitness, but I feel it would be irresponsible if I didn’t talk about these massive issues in our country.
One of the main reasons for the issues is that people are afraid of addressing it. Several folks, who read the second sentence, got put off as soon as I put the word “Black” in it. It terrifies folks when that world pops up in sentences.
It signifies even more emotions when the phrase Black Lives Matter comes into play. One of the instant responses to the slogan has been “All Lives Matter”. Automatically people who are afraid of having a constructive dialogue found a way to contradict that message.
I think any decent human being understands that All Lives Matter! I don’t think my life is no more privileged then the next. I think in this world no life deserves to be treated unfairly and unjustly. I’m VERY aware of the Syrian Civil War crisis going on.
How come I don’t hear that slogan for those refugees? Aren’t they a part of the “ALL” part?
I could go on and on the Syrian topic (ESPECIALLY people’s ignorance on Muslims) but my point in this post is to allow you to see that there are more than just two choices.
There are some messed up things going on in this world and country. If you don’t fully understand the frustrations, than maybe it’s time you looked through the viewpoint of someone else’s eyes. Let me stroll you through my American experience as a black man who grew up in the suburbs.
Black or White and Something In-Between
I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio but raised in Northern Virginia. In Cincinnati, most of my family lived in predominately black neighborhoods. My cousins who were like brothers to me went to 97% black schools.
Meanwhile in Virginia, I lived in a predominately white neighborhood, with a mixture of minorities. As a child, I had no idea just how diverse the minority population was. It turns out that I had good friends that were Filipino, Korean, Chinese, Turkish, Pakistani, Mexican, Ecuadorean, African (actual from Africa), etc. My innocent eyes never saw color or race as a youngster so I played with everyone.
As the years went on, it became interesting to go visit my cousins in Cincinnati. I started realizing that when they came to Virginia they sometimes were shell shocked because they were not use to seeing black folks as the minority. Additionally, they said my brother and I talked funny when compared to the other Cincinnati kids. Jokingly, our Cincinnati friends and family would say we sounded “white” because we talked very properly.
When at school in Virginia, it became obvious to me over time that I was different. Normally, white students made up 80% of my classes while minority students made up 20%.
If you’ve never been the in the minority at school, you’re probably not aware that you than become a minority within the minority. You would be lucky if you would find two other students with the same racial background as you.
I started feeling disconnected. I made friends with anyone but a lot of the times; my classmates truly didn’t get my struggles. They did not know how the world treated me on a daily basis.
They didn’t understand when I heard something that just didn’t feel right. It became hard to relate to a lot of the white majority classmates issues because I didn’t think they were as significant as the issues I experienced everyday. Nobody really cared about my issues, but I always helped out with their concerns.
Growing up as the minority made it hard to go to Cincinnati and identify with blacks that were use to being the majority. I could not relate to a lot of the issues that my cousins and their black friends were having.
I had a serious identity crisis. I couldn’t fully identify with most of my white classmates in my advanced classes; AND I was not black enough for my black friends & family living in the hood. I became stuck in this no man’s land.
College & Working Years
In 1999, I decided to go to Temple University. Temple was a school in which every race got a good representation. Most outsiders at the time assumed Temple was a historically black college due to the large number of black students you saw on campus. The reality at that time was black students made up 35-40% of the campus. That statistic made me feel good to be at such a diverse campus.
As an electrical engineer undergraduate, I saw the number of minority faces start to dwindle as the years moved on. It’s the nature of pursuing math and science degrees. White males overwhelmingly dominate engineering professions in America.
After graduating, my 9 to 5 hours became just like my childhood school hours. I was always one of a few black males at my company. Socially, it didn’t bother me because I was use to it as a child.
In my life, all I have ever cared about was what was true in your heart. All I ever asked is that you treat others like you want to be treated. No matter what racial background you have, treat others with respect and you were (and are) good with me!
My Daily Reality
I‘ve experienced my fair share of prejudices and racism in the work place. It’s sad because a lot of my work colleagues were in complete denial that it exists. I can see why it’s hard for my white colleagues to not see it when it happens. If you had not grown up being the minority, you don’t know the signs of it because you didn’t have to live it on a daily basis.
Outside of the work place I’ve seen people try to lump me into the negative stereotypical black man. I lost count the hundreds of times car doors locked as soon as I walked by. The clutches of purses as I walk by.
The uneasy feeling of me walking in a mall, parking lot or public area whenever there’s a white woman in front of me. Me always going out of my way to make sure I pass her so she doesn’t feel threatened by the black guy behind her. The times I’ve been pulled over by cops seeking to find just something I could be arrested for.
But I don’t want to keep talking about me, because as a black man living in America, I know it happens. I’m not here to convince my personal case. I want to focus on the larger issues.
Stop Ignoring The Problem
Not seeing and just ignoring systematic police racial profiling is what really hits me hard. It’s sad that there had to be video proof of Philando Castille being murdered for a black woman’s story to be believed. The fact that an American told you what happened was not good enough.
This US citizen had to create a live Facebook stream of her beloved dying to actually get the public to believe.
Really really badly.
If you’re a human with feelings and that didn’t sadden you, I don’t understand why not?
When Paris was under attack by a terrorist act, I saw Americans use their Facebook page with France flag color signs to signify their unity.
When I’ve been seeing these unnecessary black American deaths on the news, I don’t see the same unity. I feel that it’s treated as if it’s a TV advertisement for bird food. A person without a bird ignores the commercial because it’s not something they need in their life. Majority of folks don’t have birds so that commercial will be ignored over and over again.
This is a SERIOUS American problem that can’t be ignored anymore!
When Dallas cops were protecting Americans freedom to peacefully protest, did they deserve to be gunned down by ONE lunatic?
It really angered me when the media was feeding lies that the lunatic was a member of Black Lives Matter. Instead of getting actually facts, it was pinned on a peaceful movement.
That’s why you have to really do your research!
Knowing the facts would make you aware of the reality of these issues. If you don’t live in it, you must do your research.
You can’t let the news dedicate your world! You can’t let Fox News tell you how to feel. You can’t just watch CNN to tell you how to feel.
You can’t just go with whatever a Republican says because you’re a Republican.
You can’t agree with everything a Democrat says just because you’re a Democrat.
I hate that it’s an either/or society!
You don’t have to be Team Edward or Team Jacob.
An Autobot or Decepticon.
This is the real world. If you’re an American you’re fortunate enough to have options. You can actually think for yourself! I really wish people would actually talk to one another.
If I didn’t share my background with you, would you assume I hate all white people just because Black Lives Matter?
Who forced that false impression into your mind?
Would you believe me if I told I’ve been pulled over 10 times due to driving while black?
Would you believe me even though I don’t have a video of each instance?
Does that mean I’m against cops?
Stop making everything in the world based on two decisions. Don’t be scared to self-educate and get to the truth. That’s the only way problems are going to be solved if we start acknowledging the problem to begin with.
I just pray by the time this article is released not another senseless act of violence takes place.
In today’s post, I want to help you overcome that nagging voice inside your head. You know the one……….
NO you don’t….
Get out of here…
It’s my TURN!!!…
I won’t let you…
This is so much better!
There’s been a change in plans people! I’m here to interrupt your normally blah blah positive MicVinny blog to tell you the truth.
You see..I’ve been watching Mike closely every day since 2016 kicked off. I know all his dirty secrets.
He’s not as wise as you think he is. He’s just a little weak man that thinks he can get rid of people like myself!
Every month he has several ups and downs. And when that boy is down, that’s when I come in to steal his positivity!
You see I’m the beast Mike’s been trying to run from for all his life. You can say I’m his out of shape alternate ego.
I’m like Gollum to Mike’s Smeagol.
Call me Bubba The Beast.
Our Early Life Together
You see I first arrived in Mike’s life back in the eighties.
Back then Mike was nothing but a lazy coach potato and life was good. It was easy to gain access to sugary treats, processed nuggets and other fried snack foods! It brings tears to my eyes when thinking about those glory years.
I made sure we stayed our butts glued to the couch. There were no long bike rides in the park or daily interactions with the other neighborhood kids. The lazier we were, the more power I had in Mike’s life.
I was Mike’s best friend. All the kid needed was me plus a supersize bag of chips and a TV. What a perfect partnership. From elementary through middle school, we were BFFs.
Once high school stated, Mike tried to join the high school’s football team. Did that coach potato think he could actually be athletic?
How dare he!
I ended up having the last laugh. Mike got a dose of reality two weeks into practice. My years of sabotaging his body paid off because he injured both his knees. I put that idiot in so much pain that he never attempted another team sport while in high school.
Life got even better once that magically new invention called “the Internet” made it’s way into our house in the form of AOL. That led to late night video game and online chat room sessions. Mike had no need to venture out of the house! All his needs were meet. If only I could take care of that annoying thing called school, then I would have had all the power!
Enter College Years
Eventually Mike decided to be all smart and go to college. I didn’t know how to handle it. He was going to be exposed to stuff outside of his comfort zone, which meant he was going to go away from me.
In less than one semester he started to abandon his dependence on me. He started watching less TV and actually socialized.
Every now and then I got him to binge on some good old-fashioned sweets but it seemed he discovered this awful place called ”the gym”.
He flirted with the gym in his late high school years, but something lit a spark in him. I’m not sure if it was his track star roommate, or his sport loving college friends.
SOMETHING made Mike want to start working out more often.
That’s when I realized my life was in jeopardy!
You Can’t Abandon Me!
19 years together and he wanted to change the game! I was always there for him and now he was abandoning me. All those years of feeling overweight, who was there for him?
Me that’s who! I was always there to help him get over it by making sure he knew about the latest flavor of Doritos.
It was ME who was there when he was heart broken and told him to put that cheese on those fries!
We could have been living the dream while living in Philadelphia for college. Every corner had a sandwich shop. How dare we not binge on cheesesteaks, buffalo wings and pretzels every day!
To stay in greater shape this guy walked everywhere in that city. His two feet helped him burn tons of calories outside of the gym. He even got a job lifting heavy boxes so he could burn extra calories.
What the…Who was this guy??!!
I remember seeing his 185-pound 6’ 3” frame in the mirror and being disgusted. This wasn’t part of the plan. Mike was changing the pain by being so thin and in shape. That’s when I packed my bags, and walked out of his life.
Guess Who’s Back!
Sometime in 2008, Mike got a new job. That job required him to travel often. What Mike didn’t realize was that I was secretly getting him back under my control.
You see the genius thought he knew everything there was about getting into shape. He had been reading the best fitness articles for almost a full decade. He thought he would know how to handle his new environment.
I remember during the first weeks of his new job, he was talking nutrition to some colleagues. They gave him a look like “what do you know?”
He was flabbergasted.
It wasn’t until that night that he did a double take in the mirror. That’s when our eyes made contact again!
That’s when I was back baby!
Those years of hiding were over. I was able to get him from that 185-pound frame back into a 250 lb. behemoth.
I finally figured out what to do. All I had to do was make Mike think he was becoming muscular.
What an idiot! He didn’t notice the love handles I had strategically placed.
Oh it felt good to be back!
I wasn’t going anywhere this time. For years he kept talking all this healthy eating mumbo jumbo. With all that talk, here I was back and bigger than ever.
Release The Beast
But like in the early 2000’s, Mike decided to try to get rid of me again. It took some years, but that goodie two shoes put me back in the closet by the time he got married.
Your head is pounding like you had too much to drink.
Your tummy aches and feels like you are about to give birth to a set of triplets.
Your world is nothing but a jumble mess.
How did you get to this stage?
You slowly get out of your bed and head to the bathroom. As you turn on the lights you get a glimpse of yourself in the mirror.
“Oh yeah, now it’s coming to me”
The fog starts to clear and you now remember what you did the night before. The shame is almost as bad as the feeling you would get if you cheated on someone.
Well you kind of did cheat on someone…. You cheated on YOURSELF!
Last night you just didn’t stray from your diet plan; you went on an all out EPIC binge!
This moment in the mirror is the key moment that will decide if you will continue down your distractive path or get back on the road to glory town. This post is all about what you should do the morning after an eating binge.
Been There Done That!
We’ve all been there at some point in our lives. Whether that moment is during a once in a lifetime celebration or on a weeklong exotic vacation. While having fun we let our guards down and embrace the jubilations of the moment.
Please know that there’s a difference between having fun versus turning fun into a full outright shameful binge. A binge occurs when you go above and beyond in excess. Whether that’s more beers after you reached your limit or by eating your third helpings of dessert because you’re at a buffet.
One of the first things you need to do is figure out what exactly triggered that response in your body.
Was it your vacation mindset?
Did you give into peer pressure?
What exactly was that FINAL thing that pushed you over the edge?
The sooner you can figure this out, the better you will be when involved in this type of situation in the future. Having accurate data about this will do wonders for your self-esteem and progress.
Once you identified the trigger, now remember what your responses to those triggers were.
Did you try to go toe to toe with your buddies?
Did you tell yourself that “I’m on vacation and ANYTHING goes while on vacation?”
Did you simply eat something so wonderful, that you told yourself that you must have another?
Whatever happened…. happened. You can’t go back in time to change it. (Unless you have The Flash stashed somewhere in your home.)
Document Your Binges
What you can do is create yourself an eating behavior journal by using whatever note app you want to use (Evernote, Google Docs, etc.).
I wanted to see how I would respond towards eating pizza while at a restaurant. It was the first time I let myself eat a cheat meal in over two and a half weeks.
In addition to the pizza, I had myself an alcoholic drink cocktail. I then ordered a dessert from the menu. The dessert wasn’t good, but I continued to eat it anyway.
The next day, I had a planned cookout in which my only meal of the day was going to be at the cookout. During the cookout, I ate bratwurst, chicken legs, potato salad, chips, corn, beans, cake and punch.
That same night I snacked on frozen fruit and drank ginger ale for my ailing stomach.
The next day, I didn’t feel like cooking because I was feeling sick. Not only was I bloated, but also I had a sore throat and felt like a cold was coming on. I personally think it was from allergies for being outside all day during the cook out.
I also purchased some cupcakes on the way to get my takeout like a B-O-S-S!
I completely devoured them after my main take out course.
On the fourth day was my realization that I had just been on an eating binge.
What I Think Triggered The Binge
I had planned all my meals for 2.5 weeks straight. The first day I did not plan what I was going to eat was when the binging started. It was not the pizza particularly, but just me not stopping once I became full.
I let the sugar trick me into wanting more than I actually did. The satisfactions I typically get from eating foods were lost with these binge foods.
The BBQ was not the direct cause of me going overboard. That was a planned cheat. It was the situations before and after the BBQ that really caused the binge.
Knowing that my body was getting sick, I let my old bad habits take over. Those bad behaviors only want processed junk foods, so that’s what my body craved.
Accept What Happened and Move On!
On the morning I got myself over the binge, I wrote all my behaviors down. I acknowledge what I did and I moved on.
As simple as that, you just got to move on!
It’s ok to not be perfect. Look at that binge as a teaching moment. Next time you’re in that situation you’re going to be able to identify how to get out of it sooner, because you’ve done your homework.
If you keep finding yourself in that situation, keep writing it down. If you end up with a novel of information, and nowhere near your dreams, you KNOW EXACTLY what to do but are just refusing to listen to yourself scream out!
Stop blaming others, and start accepting your own faults! You have it in writing! Now it’s just a matter of DOING what it takes instead of AVOIDING the obvious!
What do you think about my binge advice? Leave a comment below.