The (Second) Biggest Loser!

Posted in Uncategorized on January 30, 2011 by Jeremy Hofer

I hinted in my last post a few months ago that some big changes were coming… and then I failed to share with you what was going on.  It’s kinda like the show that ends a season with a cliff hanger and then gets canceled over the summer…  I’m sorry.

The BIG change has been to me… I’m not as big as I was when I posted last because I’m a contestant in Shoreline Church’s The Biggest Loser competition!

When the contest started on December 1st, I was the heaviest person in the contest at 296.5 pounds!   There are 9 participants, and we were split up into 3 teams… I am on the Green team lead by Brian and Tara Buonassissi with Jessica and Cathie.  The Yellow team was lead by Pastor Eric and Darlene Partin with Adrian, Karen and Melissa.  The Red team was lead by Pastor Sam and Monica Blowes with Andy, Judy and Heather.

The first week was pretty insane… 16.5 pounds!  After that, the losses were much more reasonable… 2, 3, 4 pounds.  The week of Christmas, I was happy I lost 2.5 pounds instead of gaining like most people do.  Even attending Christmas parts and a New Years Eve party, I kept losing.

The toughest week was when I went to WV to visit with friends and family… I ate out, had a couple beers, even ate some cheese sticks from Sam’s in Buckhannon… but I didn’t take off from working out. I made sure to get a hotel that had a fitness center, and got up early and ran on the treadmill before driving.  I also ran outside the WVU Coliseum in 25 degree weather while in Morgantown.  I only missed 1 workout while I was gone, and managed to lose 1 pound.

During the last month, we had a weekly challenge in addition to our other workouts.  The first week was a cooking challenge: we had 20 minutes to prepare a healthy meal that would be judged on presentation, taste, nutritional vale, and ease of prep.  We lost to the Yellow team by a very slim margin…

The second challenge involved running stadium stairs… I was out of town that weekend and didn’t have to go through that torture.

The third challenge was even more brutal: we shuffled, skipped, and jogged “suicide runs”.  Cones were laid out at 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 50, 75, and 120 yards.  We started doing shuffles to the first cone and back, 2nd, and so on to the 25-yard cone.  Then came skips to each of the cones and back… all the way to the 120.  Last was jogging to each cone and back… and then a lap around the track.  Everything I just described to you was 1 set… and we did that set 3 times.  Oh, and there was a twist… for the first set we carried a backpack containing bags of sand with the amount of weight we’d lost up to that point.  So, for the first set, I carried 36 pounds!!!  after the first set, we could take 1 bag (10 lbs) out of the backpack.  Adrian and I got to remove 2 bags since we’d lost so much more than the rest.  After the second set we could lose the backpack completely.  This was one of the hardest hours of my life, but I finished… and I didn’t finish last!   Once again, the Green team finished just behind the Yellow team.

The last challenge was yesterday: complete a 10k race!  Since the beginning of the month, I had been running the Couch to 10k program to prepare.  Unfortunately, it’s a 12-week program, and I had 4 weeks.  I started on week 3 and figured I would just run the program the day of the race, then walk the rest (or run as much as I could).  On Thursday this week, I had an idea… what if I just ran intervals the whole way?  I had an app on the iPhone that would help me with that, so I set myself up to run for a minute and thirty seconds, then walk for 3 minutes.  I figured if I could keep a pace of 4 mph, I would finish in about an hour and a half.  I did better than I thought: I finished in an hour and 21 minutes, with a pace of 4.5 mph!  I had Melissa (another Biggest Loser contestant) in front of me most of the way…  If she hadn’t been there, I would have probably had a much slower time.  I really wanted to beat her to the finish, but when I passed her with about 2-3 miles left I couldn’t stay ahead of… I finished about 100 yard behind her.

The competition was split into 2 parts… For the first 2 months we worked with a trainer 3 days a week, and there were prizes for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place finishers in that time.  We did our last weigh-in on Wednesday, and had to wait until today to find out the results.  Today, the Green team finally prevailed: We lost more as a group than either of the other 2 groups, finally beating the Yellow team.  Adrian finished in 1st place with a crazy 19% lost.  Jessica finished 3rd, and I finished second with 15% lost!

Here’s a rundown of my number to this point: Started at 296.5, finished part 1 today at 252.  I lost 44.5 in 2 months, and I lost 8.5 the last week!  I killed it that last week, working out every day… even twice on Tuesday before the weigh-in.

As for the rest of the competition, I’m shooting to end at 200…. 33% lost sounds like a winning number to me!

Coming soon: more details on the workout regiment I’ve been on, the bigger impact of the competition, and more about this weekend!

Reflections and Resolutions

Posted in Random Thoughts on November 13, 2010 by Jeremy Hofer

Birthdays have often been a time for me to reflect on the past and think about the future, and this year has I’ve had much to think about. Just last night, I was feeling kinda bummed and lonely… and as I write this, there are over 60 posts on my Facebook wall wishing me a Happy Birthday… Thanks everyone!

This past year has seen change and growth in my life.  In June I passed the tests to become an Apple Certified Macintosh Technician… and in May I bought a Macbook… which I love!  The company I work for is growing despite the economy, and I think this next year be even better as we continue to grow.

Shoreline Church is growing… and I’m really looking forward to the music we are planning for the Christmas season this year.  If all goes according to plan, I’ll get to put together a small group for an ac cappella song or 2!!!

Just this week I realized that I’ve been referring to Destin as home lately.  I think the thought of “when Mom and Dad come home for Christmas…” really drove it home for me, since they’re coming to Destin for the holidays.  I moved here 5 years ago this past week… and I think it’s sinking in that I’ll probably be here a while… and I’m OK with that.

Speaking of Mom and Dad coming to visit… they’re not coming to see me, my sister, or my brother in law… they’re coming to see Sara!
Here we go Steelers!  HERE WE GO!!!

My niece Sara was born on March 21st this year.  I’m soooo thankful that I live so close and can be there while she is growing up!!!

Isn’t she the cutest baby you’ve ever seen?

Amanda, Randy, and I made the teddy bear in the pictures when she was a week old at Build A Bear.  As you can see, Sara’s grown quite a bit over the past few months.

As for the coming year, I see some big things on the horizon… but I can’t really talk about everything yet so you’ll just have to wait.  I DO, however, plan to resume regular updates to the blog… so rest assured that you won’t be left out when these exciting developments unfurl.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!

Random Thoughts, Powered by Windows 7!

Posted in Family stuff, Random Thoughts, Shoreline Church stuff, Singing stuff, Tech stuff on July 30, 2009 by Jeremy Hofer

It’s time for another of my nearly famous lists of Random Thoughts, powered by Windows 7!

  1. Yesterday I loaded Windows 7 on my laptop.  I had to mess around with the drivers, but it’s actually running pretty well.  In fact, I’m writing this blog post on the laptop.
  2. I imagine that at this point you’re wondering “what’s up with all this talk about Windows 7?”, and I’m glad you asked.  Microsoft will be releasing a new version of Windows in October called Windows 7.  Despite having the least creative name ever devised, this version of Windows is actually pretty good.  Unlike Vista, it’s actually as fast or even faster than XP.  Sure, Microsoft has once again moved things around for no good reason… but this might actually be worth upgrading to.
  3. Internet Explorer 8 is TERRIBLE!!!  I saw yet another computer today that it made rendered nearly unusable.  Thank you Microsoft for pushing this “upgrade” out as a critical update!  Do yourself a favor… install and use Firefox instead of IE. It’s faster, and much less likely to fall victim to spyware/malware that install itself on your computer just by browsing a website.
  4. I’m leading the worship music at Shoreline Church this Sunday!  We have a special “remix” planned that you won’t want to miss!
  5. NFL training camps start this week.  The season can’t come soon enough!  Here we go Steelers, HERE WE GO!!!
  6. I also can’t wait to see what will happen with WVU football this year without Pat White… Let’s GOOOOOOOOOOO MOUNTAINEERS!!!
  7. I hate moving.  Despite my hatred of moving, I will be moving over the next couple weeks.  My new roommate Josh recently purchased a house in Destin, and I’m moving in so that Amanda and Randy can have a place to themselves… at least until March…
  8. A  couple weeks ago I went to the BUG Conference on behalf of Shoreline Church to learn about ways to use social media (blogs, Facebook, etc) to “get the word out” for the church, small groups, businesses, etc.  I would be happy to share what I learned with you… just ask!
  9. While at BUG, I learned that it is important to have good titles to your blog posts in order to create interest.  I think I am pretty good at this.
  10. I also learned that another important quality of good blogging is posting consistently.  At this, I fail.
  11. Check out the new 5-star rating system at the end of this post.  Here’s your chance to let me know how I’m doing without taking the effort to type out a comment.  Is a post worthy of 11 stars, or is it an epic fail… you decide!  And remember, you vote counts… even if there’s a hanging chad…

Do you want to know a secret…

Posted in Family stuff on July 27, 2009 by Jeremy Hofer

I’ll admit, it’s not really much of a secret at this point… I’m gonna be an Uncle!!!  My sister Amanda and her husband Randy announced today she is pregnant and due in March.  I’m really excited for them… to say that Amanda is excited is a bit of an understatement.

There is, however, a reason I mentioned that this was a secret.

When I got home from my mini-vacation on the weekend of the 4th, I was not greeted with “did you have a good time?”, or “how was the drive?”…  it was “I’m pregnant, and we’re not telling anyone until I go to the doctor.  We’re telling you because you live here.  The appointment is in a couple weeks.”

Let me tell you, it was a long “couple weeks”.  There were so many times that I had to bite my tongue or choose my words carefully.  The day of the appointment came… and went.  It turned out to be nothing more than filling out paperwork… and we had to wait another week to let the word out.

Finally, Amanda and Randy went in for an ultrasound this morning.  After leaving the doctor’s office the news started to spread.  It felt good to finally be able to share the great news that we’d all been holding in for three weeks!

I really like this picture they took right after they found out.

Randy kept the memory card with this picture hidden in his wallet for the last few weeks, afraid that if it was on his laptop, someone might accidentally see it.

Now we only have to wait another 7 1/2 months or so for the baby to get here…

Random Thoughts… Vacation Edition!

Posted in Florida Stuff, Funny stuff, Random Thoughts, Relationship stuff, Tech stuff, Vacation stuff on July 4, 2009 by Jeremy Hofer

I’ve got a little down time, so I thought I’d bust out the laptop and do some blogging.  Time for some random thoughts… vacation edition.

  1. I’m in Sebring, FL staying in a couple condos with 6 friend from college: Chris and Amy Long, Jeff and Allason James, and Craig and Allison Guido.
  2. I don’t play golf, so I’m hanging out in the condo with Amy and Allison… and the blog.
  3. Yesterday we went to Gatorama! It was pretty cool, we saw bunches of gators, crocs, and even a few raccoons, panthers, turtles, skunks, and peacocks.  I even held a 2 year old gator.
  4. This trip is the first time I used a GPS.  It was pretty nice… if a little strange trusting it to take me the best route.
  5. Another trip, and more time with people that are married and have kids.  BTW, I am still taking applications.
  6. We’ve played Texas Hold-Em the past 2 nights… last night I was in second place when we got tired of playing.
  7. It’s funny how much Facebook has changed communication.  Not only would this vacation not have happened without Facebook, but we’re talking with and updating our other friends while we’re here.
  8. Its always a good idea to call your bank/credit card companies before you go on a trip.  After arriving here on Thursday I discovered that I could not use my debit card.  I tried calling the bank that evening, but they evidently were closed.  I called the next morning and discovered that the bank had blocked all card activity in this area due to a recent large amount of fraudulent activity.
  9. Interstate highways in the south are boring.
  10. North-west Florida is a long way from Central Florida.
  11. This vacation will be over too soon.

More Random Thoughts

Posted in Random Thoughts, Relationship stuff, Shoreline Church stuff, Singing stuff on May 31, 2009 by Jeremy Hofer

What do you do when your fans want more content, but your out of ideas?  Make up a list of Random Thoughts!

  1. Today I went to church, attended one service, and went home.  It felt wierd, but I kinda liked it.  Don’t get me wrong… I love serving at church… but it was nice to just go to church for a change.
  2. Speaking of church, we had a guest Speaker today: Chris Hill.  He gave a great message today about God’s timing… reminding us that sometimes makes us wait for things so that we can grow from the experience.  Check it out here later this week.
  3. Since I’m already talking about church…  My favorite complement that I have received recently (I really don’t mean to sound conceited)  came from Judy.  She didn’t mention how good I sounded, or my spiffy new wardrobe… (Trust me, I really don;t mean to sound conceited… really)  She noticed that I am worshiping God when I am leading worship.  This is something I’ve been working on… and I hope that my worship helps others worship to.
  4. Went to a picnic/baptism today with the church.  Had a great time, grilled some food, watched people get baptized.  Fun was had by all.
  5. I’m starting to think that maybe I whould have called this “Random Shoreline Church Thoughts”…
  6. GO PENGUINS!!!
  7. GO MAGIC!!!
  8. Last night I visited my friend Jim while he was working, and he  recommended a beer to me (Sierra Nevada Bigfoot “Brandywine Style” Ale) that would “blow my face off”.  He was right… in a bad way.  It’s flavor was too strong much for me.  There are 4 bottles left, and they’re yours if you pick them up.
  9. I recently started playing through Half-Life 2 again.  I bought the game a few years ago when it came out, and beat it shortly after.  It’s still fun.
  10. Part of my job at work is managing the cybercafe.  Business in there has been slow for the last year of so, and I had gotten pretty discouraged about it.  Recently, business has been a little better and our regulars are excited about a couple new games.  That excitement is rubbing off on me… with summer coming  I’m optimistic that things are going to get better soon.
  11. My friend Leah asked me if I had received any applications yet… the answer is no.  Not that I seriously expected to get any response from that blog post… but you never know…

Is your refrigerator running?

Posted in Funny stuff, Work stuff on May 23, 2009 by Jeremy Hofer

I had to show a great deal restraint the other day at work.   I called a customer to let her know that her computer was ready and got her voicemail.  Her outgoing message went something like this… “This is Kim’s cell phone.  Please leave me a message and I’ll call you back.”  Pretty standard message… most people wouldn’t think anything of it… but I my mind started thinking of clever responses.  It took all my self-control to NOT respond with:

” Hi Kim’s cell phone.  Would you please let Kim know that Jeremy at CRC called and that her computer is fixed and ready to go?”

This reminded me of some silly answering machine messages I had back in college:

“Hi, this is Chris and Jeremy’s refrigerator.  The answering machine is broken, but if you’ll slowly give me your name, number and message, I’ll write it down and stick it to myself with one of these magnets.”  That one lasted a few weeks until some wise-guy took “slowly” to the extreme and left a 2 minute message.

I think my favorite was one we made with a pocket tape recorder that had speed control.  Chris, Matt and I rewrote “Witchdoctor” by the Chipmunks into an answering machine message and sang it into the recorder on slow, then played it back fast… it sounded pretty darn good too…

Even Jimmy Fallon and Keifer Southerland are getting in on the fun… Check out Jimmy’s new voicemail greeting. (sorry about the ads…silly AOL page wouldn’t let me embed the video…)

Please share your funny voicemail stories… leave a comment below!