Menno P.

Menno P.


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Back home in the Netherlands I learned through the large community of Indonesians about their spicy kitchen. As a young sailor I travelled around Asia and was in immediately in love with the variety of Chinese, Malay and Thai food. My first Vietnamese cooking was done from 'The Red Lantern' cookbook written by Vietnamese boat refugees that found a new home in Australia and I hope one day to visit their restaurant in Sidney.

In 2013 I had a one day cooking class in Hoi An, Vietnam.
A wonderful experience that increased my love for their food even more.
Having just completed the Kenzai Body 1 I experienced some difficulties adapting my favourite Vietnamese dishes to the diet. Therefore it was easy to sign up for this skill course and learn how to include more Vietnamese balance in my diet!


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The start of a life change! 
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When my friend Joy introduced me to Kenzai it just took me 1 day to think about it before I signed up for Kenzai Body. Thanks Joy!
Keeping my weight is what I already call my struggle of life for many years. I have had good results in the past but after 1 or 2 years the drive had gone down and the weight up again.

From day 1 in the Kenzai Body program I was happy with the diet: it makes me choose what to eat and guides me in the healthy quantities I should have. When family, friends and colleagues ask me what I am not allowed to eat I tell them about all the good stuff I do eat. I simply forgot about the alcohol, chocolate and cheese I am not supposed to eat.

But in the next Kenzai (Body?) program I will take I will have to prove that I can do the program of exercises as well. The fracture in the vertebrae that stopped me from doing them in Kenzai Body 1 should have healed and with the last session of physical therapy today I already started doing more bicycle riding and hiking. Will need to find out what the trainers suggest but I feel I should just redo Kenzai Body again.

The last few weeks the daily lessons were tough for me as they were so much about how to exercise and what it would do to your body. I hope to experience that change in my muscles soon.
Honestly: I was jealous when I looked at the weekly pictures of my teammates! What an amazing results I have seen and read about.
Congrats team! I have enjoyed this journey together with you.
Scott and Lindsay, thanks for your support!

Two pictures of a some great people I met in InterNations Sao Paulo and with whom I had my last 'Kenzai Body Lunch' on a beautiful island in the south of Sao Paulo state, away from phone or internet network for 2 days!


The diet does not really bother me: it has become a lifestyle and I feel no desire for sweets or alcohol. But have to admit that for the first time I took the chocolate cookie at my after lunch coffee. But it was not even half an inch square.
Last Friday I met a group of new friends for Happy Hour in a Sao Paulo Bar. Left 3 hours later after only drinking sparkling water.

On Friday evening I leave for a 2 day hiking trip in a National Park on an island in the south of Sao Paulo state.
Not sure if I will have internet connection and be able to read about the finals of our Kenzai tour on Saturday!
With only doing the diet I am jealous about the results I see from all of you! 😒
Hope I will catch up when I do my next Kenzai program.


More Plans ...

Since the question on Sunday I also looked closer to a planning after day 90 of our Kenzai Body as Liz posted.
As I am recovering from my back injury I guess my best option is to stick to the diet and start the exercises from day one again with cycling or running instead of skipping rope (my physical therapist was not in favour of that). He now makes me do a lot of exercises that are very much like the workouts with the bands in Kenzai.

If I go to programs I only get the option to take a membership without seeing details of the other programs. So I logged out and explored Kenzai.com to find out that the earliest date new programs start is January 8th next year which means more that a month to find our own way.

Will I still be able to see all workout and lessons of our program and re-start on my own after our Kenzai Body finishes? Some of our team have done earlier programs so I am happy learn from you.
And Scott or Lindsay what is your advise?


One of the reasons I started Kenzai is that the belt in my jeans did not have any more holes to fit comfortable.

Just now I was dressing up for a culture afternoon/night out with new Brazilian friends and when I pulled the same belt comfortably tight wearing a new pair of jeans it appears I have 3 holes spare!

That means 3 inches gone from my waist in less than 90 days with basically just the diet!
Thank you Kenzai! What a motivator!


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If I remember well I already mentioned my low energy levels earlier. Guess it has all to do with my limited amount of exercises. But as I have been doing 5 to 10 kilometre walks I felt save to sign up for a 7 km hike in the countryside that I made yesterday with a group of Brazilians and Expatriates about 2.5 hours drive from Sao Paulo.

The hike was a steep climb following a mountain stream through the forest, passing by seven different waterfalls and continued after that to the top of the hill. I believe the total ascent was about 500 metres. On the last part I had to let the group go ahead off me as I felt the energy drain away from me despite the water and fruits I consumed. After a short rest at the top (laying down and not able to enjoy the views) we went down with more beautiful views of the valley but I was struggling and arrived at the restaurant 20 minutes behind the group completely exhausted for a late lunch. But so satisfied that I did make it on my own!

Don't believe I have ever been so tired in my life. Took me 20 minutes before I was able to get up and take some food from the buffet but could not eat. My stomach could not handle it. It appeared that the small (¼ cup) of home made banana ice cream with chocolate sauce started my recovery with lots of water and 2 banana's on the way back to Sao Paulo.

P.S.:
The biggest satisfaction came from the fact that I felt no back pains and only slight muscle aches this morning while I write this.


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When I read the question this morning it was easy for me to answer: the diet was the easiest. From day one I felt it would fit me well as I had so many choices and only the quantities to control. That brings me directly to the 3r and last indulgence.

Today I was at the Interlagos racecourse in Sao Paulo watching the Brazilian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
As expected between mostly beer drinking spectators in the full sunshine (28C).
Sticking to water was no problem and I also brought my fruits and egg white. Lunch was an issue as they only sold packed sandwiches and burgers with lot's of cheese and/or bacon and to be honest: they looked horrible to me!
So was happy to take a wooden stick with grilled beef and ... a cone of French Fries.
The fries were good, crispy and dry but sooooo salty! Guess this time the salt was not to bad with al the sweating.
So for me this indulgence came at the right timing like the 2nd one when I was cooking a dinner with my kids.
Now I am ready for 3 more weeks of staying tight with the diet before going into a new Kenzai program that will fit my situation.

The second part of today's question I already answered in my previous post 2 days ago: not being able to exercise due to back injury. But that is fading away and I have increased my indoor cycling to 30 minute workouts.


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The last 2-3 weeks have not been easy for me. The diet was not a problem but the recovery of my back injury (since day 3 of the program) was slow and frustrating. Reading lessons about what the body is doing as a result of all the exercises I was not allowed to do was not particularly motivating.

Yesterday I had my first day without pain even after a 20 minutes indoor bike ride.
So when I was out for dinner and drinks last night with the same 2 colleagues that accompanied me on the Rio trip I celebrated my little victory in joining them with one shot off Jaegermeister!

When the physiotherapist told me this morning that I could slowly increase the indoor cycling intensity and increase my waking as longs I don't feel pain I knew for sure the climb out of the valley will be a steady one!
With renewed motivation I enjoyed tonight's home made veggie pasta with salmon even better!


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On Friday I drove to Rio for a weekend with 2 colleagues. Never really thought about going to the famous beach but with a hotel just 30 meters away from it you can’t and don’t want to avoid it.

This morning I did my ‘pre-breakfast’ walk barefooted on the Copacabana waterline. Dreaming about coming back one day with a ‘Kenzai Body’.

Thank you Kenzai for motivating me through the diet to stay away from chocolate and alcohol. Visiting places for lunch, dinner and drinks with colleagues that consume alcohol doesn’t bother me! Just drinking sparkling water with lemon and them saying I am still the same ‘sociable’ person.


It actually started with the indulgence last week. Great to cook and eat a meal like in my previous post but after that it was hard to get back to the Kenzai diet and finding the consistency of eating at the frequency required.
It was a weekend of meeting family and friends before returning to Brazil on Monday evening.

That weekend was also when I found out that if I clicked on the pictures of my Kenzai Body team members I could see your initial and last photo's. True, I was impressed with the changes I saw with some of you but at the same time it was depressing to compare my own progress doing Kenzai Body without exercises because of my vertebral fracture.
Bravo to all of you for the progress you are making! I am jaleous. :-(

Took a glass of Chivas whiskey after take off from London and a strong (back)painkiller which at least it made me sleep almost the whole flight to Sao Paulo. They had to wake me up to fasten seatbelt and put the chair in the upright position before landing. Have to admit that a flatbed business class seat helps on a 11 hour flight.

On Thursday I visited the orthopaedic specialist who concluded that the remaining pain I have most likely comes from a wrong back attitude as it disappears when I go for a walk. He made an appointment for me at a physiotherapist specialised in orthopaedic rehabilitation that I will see on Tuesday morning.
I hope that will be the start of the climb out of the valley!
With him I will/can discuss what parts of the Kenzai workouts I can start working on.

On Thursday evening I had what I hope was the last side step of my diet: a glass of champagne during a home cooked dinner by a colleague to celebrate my return to Sao Paulo and the departure of 2 others. The host was very nice by cooking chicken and vegetables only for me next to the Italian pasta she made for the others!


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For many years I have been in favor of Vietnamese food and even more after eating it in the streets of Hanoi or Ho Chin Min City.

Actually I always consider it healthy but after cooking a Vietnamese dinner for my kids and their partners yesterday I got second thoughts. In Kenzai terms there is to much sugar and salt added.

So the timing of the indulgence was perfect for me to eat my favorite homemade dishes: fresh vegetable rolls, fish curry with rice noodles and veggies, green papaya salad and chicken curry.


Kenzai Lunch during hike
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Do l need an endulgement when I can eat this on a Dutch countryside hike?


A 'real Dutchman' could answer this week's question by saying: I paid for it so I want to get all of it!
That is when I am happy not being 'real Dutch'.

The real motivation is the feeling that I am on the right path and don't want to loose what I have achieved so far.
Already I was in favour of veggies and good protein meats/fish. Kenzai added to that a renewed interest in so many fruits that are available these days. By being prepared and having fruits available all the time my longing for chocolate/chocolate bars has disappeared.

Furthermore I love to eat bread, most diets ban bread and that was always a struggle for me coming from a country where I grew up with bread for breakfast and lunch. Now I can still enjoy a piece of fresh full grain bread as the carbs in some of my meals.

Hope my teammates will have similar motivations to get us all through the 2nd half of Kenzai Body!


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Although I am not doing Kenzai workouts I am back to the habit of walking a 4.3 km round in the city before breakfast every day. This afternoon I also did my favourite City - Beach - City hike from my downtown apartment to the local beach resort and back. I love the beach all year round like in this afternoon's autumn sun!

Was quite happy about the 13.3 kilometres in 2:25 hrs and no problems with my back!
Good way to digest the lunch and think about a healthy dinner. :-)


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Looking at the Shoarma-chicken, mixed salad sandwich not many people believe me when I say I am on a diet. But it is 170 grams of carbs (bread), 230 grams of mixed veggies and 150 grams of chicken protein.


End of Week 4

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