Episode 23: 4th of July Special 2020 – Holiday Fun Facts, Alcohol, Caffeine, Chewing Gum, Sleep, AM Workouts & More

Happy 4th of July! In Episode 23, we’re sharing some history of the holiday with some fun facts about Independence Day. Then, we get into health and fitness talk about quitting alcohol, cutting back on caffeine, improving sleep, chewing gum, morning workouts, workout music, books, healthy recipes, and much more! It’s a holiday extravaganza celebrated with pomp, illuminations, and wise choices!

Episode Timestamps

  • http://www.Wise-Eats.com/Episode23 for the show notes, YouTube video, and more! (0:00)
  • Welcome to my backyard podcast studio and a special 4th of July edition of Wise Eats! (0:30)
  • 10 Fun Facts about Independence Day (1:00)
  • We didn’t declare Independence on the 4th of July & (1:00)
  • When 4th of July became a national holiday (1:15)
  • The very first Independence Day celebration (1:30)
  • The bald eagle becomes our national bird (1:40)
  • Three U.S. presidents have died on July 4th (1:50)
  • U.S. population 1776 vs 2019 (2:15)
  • Fireworks talk! Tradition, statistics (2:30)
  • 15,000 fireworks displays around the 4th of July and how much they cost (3:00)
  • Food and beer statistics (3:15)
  • More beer is sold around 4th of July than any other time of year (3:45)
  • Alcohol became tradition in 1778 during the American Revolutionary War (4:15)
  • Why I will not be celebrating 4th of July without booze (4:30)
  • Quick Bites! Quick fitness/nutrition talk (4:30)
  • I’ve been booze-free for six months! Why? What I drink instead (4:45)
  • Limiting myself to one caffeine drink per day! And our favorite coffee (6:10)
  • Too much caffeine in my life! Coffee, tea, Legion Pulse (6:30)
  • Improving sleep quality (7:30)
  • Early morning workouts are a game changer! (8:00)
  • Doing two workouts a day (9:00)
  • My current workout regimen: MAPS Split (9:30)
  • My favorite workout songs right now: Blinding Lights by The Weeknd & Glow by Kanye West & Drake (10:15)
  • Bruce LeRoy The Last Dragon! Who’s the MASTER? (10:30)
  • What songs get YOU fired up during a workout? Let me know in the comments or e-mail me! (10:45)
  • Books I’m reading: The Compound Effect & The Millionaire Next Door (11:10)
  • Switching to Pur Xylitol chewing gum (12:00)
  • My history of smoking cigarettes, quitting, and picking up chewing gum (12:00)
  • Dr. Rhonda Patrick shout out (12:40)
  • Recipe of the Week: The All-American Burger Bowl (13:30)
  • Mrs. Wise Eats joins the show! (14:00)
  • A healthy cheeseburger recipe! Wise-Eats.com/BurgerBowl (14:20)
  • The Following Announcement YouTube Show premieres July 25th. TFAShow.com (15:00)
  • Burger Bowl YouTube Video coming soon! TFA Season 8, Episode 3 August 8, 2020 (15:00)
  • Check out the articles section of WesFitness.com for my articles on fitness, nutrition, current events, and more! (15:30)
  • Wise-Eats.com/Episode23 for show notes, YouTube video, pictures, transcript, and more! (16:30)
  • Tune into YouTube for our full firework/shoulder press video. A YouTube exclusive! You’re not going to want to miss it.

Recipes Mentioned in This Episode:

Articles/Brands/Products Mentioned in This Episode:

Movie Clips

Website Design Thank You: DoeringDesign.com

Logo Design Thank You’s: @this_show, MGSignsDesign.com

Editing Animations Thank You: Darin Roberts aka Misteredit1 on YouTube

The Wise Eats Podcast is written, filmed, edited, and produced by Wesley Wise, and shared by YOU. Your support is greatly appreciated!

Submit questions, comments, feedback to WiseEatsPodcast@gmail.com or to @weswisefitness on Instagram. Thanks for watching, listening, reviewing, liking, subscribing, and sharing. Be good to yourself, be good to others, and make wise choices!


What’s up wise guys and gals? Welcome to a special 4th of July edition of Wise Eats. It’s a beautiful time of year, the sun in shining, and you will not find me inside the house on a day like this, so let’s bring the party outside!

I hope everyone is doing well right now and, if you’re not, 4th of July is the perfect time to celebrate life and freedom and turn our attention toward gratitude and to help kick that off today I wanted to share some history and 10 fun facts about the 4th of July holiday, so we’re going to dive right into them.

  1. We didn’t actually declare independence from Great Britain on the 4th of July. The official vote took place on July 2nd, 1776. The Declaration was published in papers two days later on July 4. And it took another 100 years before the day was deemed a federal holiday in 1870 (Hocking.edu).
  2. The very first Independence Day celebration took place in Philadelphia on July 8, 1776 (ACEI Global).
  3. Originally, Benjamin Franklin proposed the turkey as our national bird but was overruled by John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, who recommended the bald eagle (ACEI Global).
  4. Three US presidents have died on July 4 — John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Monroe. In a bizarre twist of fate, Adams and Jefferson both died on July 4, 1826, the fiftieth anniversary of the country they helped found (Business Insider).
  5. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that there were only about 2.5 million people living in America in 1776 when the Declaration of Independence was signed. That number has grown to an estimated 358 million as of July 1, 2019 (Census.gov). 
  6. Fireworks are an American tradition that date back to 1777 when John Adams, the original signer of the Declaration of Independence, wanted the day to be celebrated with celebrated with pomp, parade, shows, and “Illuminations.” According to the American Pyrotechnics Association, Americans spend more than $1 billion on fireworks each year. About 10% of firework displays are set off professionally (Hocking.edu).
  7. During the holiday, there are an estimated 15,000 fireworks displays, at least there WERE before COVID. Although pricing varies, most small towns spend anywhere from $8000–$15,000 for a fireworks display, with larger cities going into the millions (Mental Floss).
  8. If you’re planning to take part, make sure you’re careful! Fireworks were involved with an estimated 10,000 injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms in 2019 (CPSC.gov).
  9. Now, ya can’t do 4th of July without talking about food and beer! According to the National Sausage and Hot Dog Council, Americans will enjoy 150 million hot dogs over the 4th of July holiday and 7 billion total during the summer season from Memorial Day to Labor Day (Hocking.edu). In 2019, the National Retail Federation predicted Americans would spend around $6.7 billion on food to celebrate the Fourth of July, averaging about $73 per person (Mental Floss).
  10. And then there’s the booze. According to the Beer Institute, “more beer is sold on and around the Fourth of July holiday than during any other time throughout the year.” Generally, Americans will spend around $1 billion on beer for their Fourth celebrations, and more than $560 million on wine (Mental Floss). On the second anniversary of Independence Day in 1778, American troops were fighting the American Revolutionary War. During this time, George Washington ordered a double ration of rum for American soldiers to celebrate the holiday with. If you’re celebrating the holiday with a tasty beverage, you’re in good company! (Hocking.edu).

I, on the other hand, will not be having any alcohol on the 4th of July, as you’ll learn in this episode’s edition of quick bites.

Quick Bites

Still Alcohol Free

Unlike many Americans, I will not be celebrating this year’s 4th of July with alcohol. For over 20 years, I’ve consumed plenty enough alcohol for several lifetimes, so I’m ready for a new chapter in life. My last drink was on January 11, 2020. I didn’t plan for it to be my last day of drinking, it just naturally happened. I didn’t hit a wall where I said to myself, “drinking is a problem” and needed to quit. I simply reduced the amount of alcohol I consumed over time. In 2009, I was drinking nearly every single day or at least multiple times per week. Gradually, I reduced it to only a couple days per week, then only on weekends, then every other weekend, then once a month, and so on. Finally, after having alcohol in my life for 24 years, I’ve decided that maybe I’m done permanently. So far, I’m fully enjoying life without it and rarely have a desire. When I do need to be social, I make up an ice cold beverage of either ice water and Zevia. Just fill my Yeti mug up with some ice and whatever non-alcoholic beverage I want, and so far, it’s done the trick! I know if I can go from using alcohol as my crutch, my escape mechanism, my outlet to let loose and have some fun, to now loving life without having it at all, I know anyone can! Obviously, if you plan to drink this holiday, I more than understand, just sharing my experience and letting folks know why I’m doing what I’m doing.

Limiting Use of Caffeine

As if going without booze wasn’t enough, I’m limiting use of caffeine to one cup per day. I’ve known for years that my use of caffeine has gotten a little out of hand, as it does with many of us. In addition to my 2-3 Starbucks instant coffees per day, I also have green tea, black tea, and even some days, pre-workout Pulse from Legion Athletics. That’s an insane amount of caffeine for one day.

Caffeine my favorite pre-workout supplement. It is well known to enhance and prolong exercise performance through its stimulating effect on the central nervous system. It has been shown to reduce feelings of fatigue, lower perceived exertion, and even lower levels of perceived pain. Caffeine also improves mental acuity and sharpness, helps maintain laser-like focus, and even improves some technical skills both during and after strenuous activity. And, if that isn’t enough, it’s also believed to enhance the body’s ability to use its own fat as fuel, which can effectively increase the time to exhaustion in endurance events. 

That said, overconsumption of caffeine can be detrimental, and lowering my tolerance is something I’ve wanted to do for quite some time. So, after a couple days of withdrawal symptoms (increased lethargy and irritability), I quickly became accustomed to one caffeine drink per day and have adjusted to my new life. Instead of turning to caffeine so often, I drink decaf coffee and caffeine-free teas throughout the day. Overall, it was not too difficult and has improved my sleep, which is wonderful.

Improving Sleep

During these times of higher stress and uncertainty, I’ve been focusing more on my sleep by decreasing caffeine and getting to bed earlier. We’re having dinner earlier around 6pm and getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night, which is amazing for performance.

Early Morning Workouts

Improving sleep quality has allowed me to incorporate morning lifting sessions. I have always been a lunchtime/late afternoon exerciser. By focusing on sleep, I can get up early 5-6am and immediately get my lift session in. I wake up, slam some water, get a coffee going, journal, maybe some Legion Athletics Forge (helps with prevention of muscle breakdown during fasted exercise), then hit it. Depending on what time I get up, I don’t always have time to get my full workout in but will get my hardest sets out of the way then maybe finish later in the day. I don’t always do fasted workouts in the morning, but if I can and am rested, I definitely do!

My Current Workout Program

MAPS Split by Mind Pump. 6 days per week of lifting, lots of volume. Lifting weights up to two hours each day, which is more than most humans need. Generally 30-60 minutes is plenty, I just love doing the extra. 

My Favorite Workout Songs Right Now

I’m a huge fan of music so wanted to share the top songs on my workout playlist right now: Blinding Lights by The Weeknd & Glow by Kanye West/Drake. Probably outdated already but I’m always behind on the latest hits for some reason. The Glow song reminds me of one of my favorite childhood movies: The Last Dragon with Bruce LeRoy and the glow (WHO’S THE MASTER?!).

What songs get YOU the most fired up during your workout? Leave a comment on the YouTube video and I’ll give you a shout out in a future episode.

Books I’m Reading Right Now

Just finished the Compound Effect. Hear a lot of good things about it. Personally, there was nothing earth shattering in there for me, but it’s a quick and easy read and it has helped a lot of people so I recommend it. Now, I’m reading the Millionaire Next Door. I’m a finance guy so really interested in building wealth and being smart with money. Dave Ramsey and wealth-building.

Quitting Chewing Gum

Finally, the last quick bite is chewing gum. Ever since I quit smoking back in 2008, I picked up chewing gum, and it’s one of the weak points of my diet. Double Mint, Extra, whatever, I’d basically chew any gum I could get my hands on, and they are loaded with chemicals and artificial sweeteners. Recently, based on the recommendations of Rhonda Patrick on the Joe Rogan Experience, I switched to Spree gum, which is a xylitol-based chewing gum that supposedly even helps with cavities! The flavor fades fast, but I love that I’m putting less toxins in my body through chewing gum and possibly helping my teeth in the process.

Hopefully, those quick tips offer some insight on how I’m trying to live my best life and help you start making some wise choices also. Now, let’s get to the ROTW.

Recipe of the Week

What’s 4th of July without an All-American Cheeseburger? But this burger is a little different than you might expect. I converted the American cheeseburger into a salad. YES, I DID. Don’t hate. It is absolutely delicious and won’t give you the stomach ache that a traditional cheeseburger will.

We start with some fresh greens like chopped spinach or kale, add some cooked grass-fed beef, then load it with all the spices and fixings we want. Onion, pickle, organic ketchup, mustard, avocado mayo. Then, instead of a white bread bun, we go with some white jasmine rice. I promise you, it’s delicious and will cure your cheeseburger craving!

This is a recipe we just got done shooting a YouTube video for. Season 8 of The Following drops on July 25th, and the Burger Bowl will drop on YouTube on Episode 3, August 8th. You’ll have to wait until then for the video, but the recipe is available now as an exclusive to my listeners at Wise-Eats.com/BurgerBowl. The podcast is the only place I’m sharing this recipe for now – the rest of America will have to wait until early August to see the YouTube video.

Articles Section of Wise Eats

I recently updated the articles section of WesFitness.com. There, you’ll find a list of all the articles I’ve written in regards to current events, weight loss, building muscle. The most recent ones are regarding COVID-19, meditation, broccoli sprouts, and several different fitness assessments you can do at home. Make sure you check those out and much more at WesFitness.com!

That’s gonna do it for Episode 23 of Wise Eats. Thanks for watching, listening, and checking out the website. Have a great day, a fantastic holiday, God bless America, and make wise choices!

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