Getting Free Meat and Lard from the Safeway Butcher

I talked to all the “butchers” in my neighborhood and finally found one who will give me the pork and beef fat they cut off. Turns out the only butcher that cuts actual meat apart is Safeway. The other places are what I call “meat retailers,” they just buy pre-cut meat from the real butchers and sell it out of their refrigerated display racks.

Now this stuff is solid gold, but no one knows it, so butchers usually throw it out. I think butchers are thrilled to see someone care about it so they’ve always given it to me free. Of course I always go in with the attitude that I am happy to pay for it, and gratitude when they don’t charge me. (The “meat retailers” can order it in for 3$ a pound. Forget it!)

This is the beef fat I got from one visit yesterday, it’s over 8 pounds and will render into about a half gallon of lard. Technically it’s called “tallow” if made from beef fat, but it’s very similar. I use this for cooking to replace butter or cooking oil and my wife makes soap out of it. Rendering lard/tallow instructions here.

beef fat on the scale

As an added bonus, butchers can’t possibly get all the meat bits off the fat, so I always end up with a bunch of meat that i carefully separate from the fat. Here is all the meat left over from a much smaller batch of fat I picked up last week. I can usually salvage enough meat for one meal for two adults with a little left over.

free meat cut from beef fat

RSI / Tendonitis Home Remedies that Have Actually Worked

wrist brace

Someone I know suffered from RSI for 10 years in both of his arms. The last 5 of those years he was working 80+ hours a week programming and building his startup company.

He tried every conceivable specialist, therapy, product and device, spending in total over $30,000 during those dark years. Throughout that period he dealt with constant pain, numbness and tingling, in addition to inflammation in his elbows, wrists, shoulders, and upper back.

It would take many pages to list everything he tried, but the following methods are what actually worked for him and moved him towards being 99% pain free and typing happily all day now.

He did NOT want to undergo surgery or cortisone injections and in the end he succeeded in avoiding these high risk “solutions” to his problem.

Supplements for RSI

My friend took a capsule of each of these these daily on an empty stomach, depending on his level of pain. He still takes them occasionally for when he doesn’t sleep well or has intense work days that cause some RSI pain to return.

It’s quite interesting to read the reviews on the Amazon listings above. My friend was not the only one to have excellent results as a result of taking these supplements, many others had similar experiences.

Risks of taking supplements are extremely low but be sure to read carefully and understand warning labels.

Ergonomics for RSI

ergonomic workstation for rsi tendonitis

My friend has made the following ergonomic equipment a part of his daily life. Since he spends so much time at the computer as a programmer, he needs equipment that will put the minimum amount of strain possible on his body.

He reports that he’s tried many keyboard/mouse combos and hasn’t found anything close to as good.

Food for RSI

Ginger tea appears to halt inflammation. You can use a small cube of ginger steeped in hot water, there’s no need to buy ginger tea in tea bags. I like my ginger tea with lemon or the herb lemon balm.

Health / Body

  • Massage therapy helps a bit, but it’s very expensive. If your healthcare covers a few sessions, why not. My friend only takes ~2 massages per year now, he used to have them one or two times per week.
  • Cold / hot arm baths can reduce inflammation. Fill two plastic tubs with hot water and ice water, and submerge your arms for 30 seconds at a time in each tub, finishing with the cold water.
  • Doing gentle stretches held for 30+ seconds each helps.
  • Good, deep sleep was the #1 most surprising and effective “therapy”. He started using ohropax wax earplugs and an eye mask, as well as the “f.lux” software on his PC to get a full 8 hours or more of sleep. This helps more than any supplement or massage therapy session.

Books for RSI

mind-body-prescription

The Mindbody Prescription

My friend read this book to the very end and did all the exercises. Within 10 days he no longer felt pain in his arms and was well enough to cancel his weekly massage therapies. To this day  he is feeling fantastic. After good sleep, this was the second most surprising thing about curing RSI.

The guy who started google docs fixed his RSI using the same techniques.

Credits

The above advice was originally sent in a private email conversation between my friend, myself and my brother. It was published here with permission. My friend is still going strong after curing his RSI, he writes about music and art at submetallic.com. 

“wrist brace” photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/liewcf/