So Les has the picture of the plate in his truck as a reminder, and set out on the road. In the days ahead, he would keep me posted on the new, organic and colorful foods, he was trying. His attitude was awesome! He would post pictures of beautiful dark-green salads prepared with the new organic olive oil and balsamic vinegar he now keeps in the truck.
He would text me to let me know how much he was enjoying his new choices – he called me to tell me how much he loved his new chickpea snacks (from The Good Bean – who have now seen this blog and reached out to generously send some product to Les – thank you for their generosity) and his Suja green juices (as I sat there saying to myself, ‘Hallelujah!’ – and full of pride – this man’s organs are like, ‘um, who took over Les’s body??? This is GREAT!’)…
A few days after we met, a few interesting things happened. First, he posted a picture on Facebook of what he thought was a healthy choice – something that resembled a chicken wrap or some ilk that he bought at a truck stop. I asked him what was in it, and he said, “A whole wheat tortilla and grilled chicken!” We went back and forth a bit. I had to giggle a little. Surely there would be learning moments for both of us along the way. I said, “What else is in there? Is that some kind of (processed) cheese I am seeing? That chicken – do you REALLY think it’s straight up ‘grilled chicken’?” Of course, my questioning wasn’t to reprimand at all – merely to point out that we need to be a bit more scrutinizing of products we purchase from the shelf of a truck stop, or for that matter, from a menu at a restaurant (often these types of things have more sodium, sugar, and other processed things in there, so we want to handle with care when we’re aiming for a healthy lifestyle).
Les helped explain to me that he went into the truck stop, and looked and looked, and this was the item he thought was the healthiest of everything he saw! He wasn’t sure what to do, and since he hadn’t been home to Minnesota to go shopping and do trip prep since our meeting, he needed something a a bit more substantial than the salads he has been eating. Fair enough. I needed some visuals of these truck stops, so that I could understand this better! He proceeded to send me 10 powerful images to help me see the types of so-called foods truckers can find at a typical truck stop…
After my initial shock, I concluded 2 things:
1) I MUST find Les a nutrient-dense meal-replacement alternative that he can keep in the truck at all times – especially for times like this when there is nothing else to be found.
2) No question why so many truck drivers are eating unhealthfully! Not only is the education not readily available, but what’s easy for them to access is a mockery of the word ‘food’! What they have easy access to is an abomination of chemicals, bad fat/grease, preservatives, sodium, and – NOTHING green – other than mold. (Les mentioned on his own that even the fruit in the cups sometimes provided tasted like it had been around for a while, and it was hard to eat it; I am familiar with that type of fruit having attempted it in a few US airports, only to toss most of it in the trash).
Coincidentally, the day after all of this, I was in my local Whole Foods Market, and there was a company doing a product promotion – Amazing Grass.
I had recently purchased one of their SuperFood
products (Raw Reserve
) to add to my own morning smoothies, and I had a question for them. It turned out that the CEO of the company, Brandon, was standing there, and as a health coach and clean eating enthusiast, I introduced myself and mentioned I was interested in learning more about their business. We planned to connect at some point. At the time, I wasn’t thinking of anything more than wanting to interview and write about the company, but as the next day rolled around, the wheels in my head started spinning…
So I reached out with a proposal, and within a few days and a good conversation, Amazing Grass
was on board to sponsor Les’s journey, and would help supply him with delicious, 100% organic, non-GMO, vegan, Superfood-rich/nutrient-dense
meal replacement shakes with plant-based protein (Amazing Meal
), Green Superfood Energy bars
, and their Green Superfood
supplements that he could add… TO HIS WATER! If you recall from the last blog installment,
we wanted to find a more nutritionally valuable replacement for Les’s Lemon Crystal Light. And here it was – Amazing Grass Green Superfood even has a Lemon-Lime flavor, but their’s is filled with anti-oxidants, ton’s of vitamins and minerals, probiotics and enzymes for helping in absorption of nutrients, and sweetened with raw stevia, a natural sweetener that is on our clean list!
The day after speaking with the great team at Amazing Grass, Les arrived home to Minnesota with a box waiting for him – it had one of everything Amazing Grass makes. The goal – lets see what he enjoys and then supply him with those flavors!
Hey – Les is a MAJOR Vikings and NFL fan. Now he can really feel like one of the players – he has his own sponsor. Thank you to the great team at Amazing Grass for your commitment to LessLes: A Trucker’s Journey to Health! Now he will always have a nutrient-dense option on hand when he has no other option on the road! And if you are a truck driver reading this – soon Les will also have limited samples to share on the road so that some of you can try it and share your thoughts with us too!
Another thing happened that week – speaking of the NFL. Les texted me midday – in fact it was the day after I met Brandon from Amazing Grass – and told me he was on hold with our favorite SiriusXM NFL Radio
show, Moving the Chains
with Jim Miller
and Pat Kirwan.
I happened to be at my desk listening when he got on the air. Today Les would create accountability (for both of us),
because when he got on air, after chatting about his Vikings
upcoming season and Christian Ponder
for a few minutes, he told Jim and Pat, and anyone listening in the NFL Radio audience, about the journey he was on, about his coach (who they know as Ali from Cali
), and about his goal to lose 75-80 pounds by the time he sees them and all of the Sirius Football Heads at the Senior Bowl on January 24th, 2015.
This thing is ON!
In the next blog we will look at the baselines Les set when he visited the doctor. Stay tuned!!!