Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Wednesday Weigh-In 20120530

Hot steamy weather is making me sweat and is putting a big dent in my appetite.

Waist = 37.5"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Towel Day

Author Douglas Adams died unexpectedly on May 11, 2001 at age 49.  Adams was the creator of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," the work he is perhaps best known for, and in which we learn that the Ultimate Answer to Life, the Universe and Everything is 42.

Fans organized a wake called "Towel Day" to take place two weeks later, May 25, 2001.  It was such a success (as if a wake could be a success) that it has been held annually on May 25.

This year, Towel Day falls on 5/25/12, which is numerically auspicious.  You see, 5 + 25 + 12 = 42.

Here are some links so that you can learn more about Towel Day.

http://strugglingwriter.wordpress.com/2010/05/25/happy-towel-day-2010/

http://TowelDay.org

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Wednesday Weigh-In 20120525

I ate lots of ice cream over the weekend and on Monday. And yet I came out weighing a bit lower. I think it's because the dog is better trained on the leash, so I'm able to take longer walks at a faster pace.

Waist = 37.25"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Wednesday Weigh-In 20120516

CTrides week is coming to an end here in Connecticut. I had planned to cut back on my 5-day-per-week commute by bicycling one day and then telecommuting another day. But the weather was rainy and humid on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, so I didn't bike then.

Today, our daughter had a big doctor's appointment that I had to drive her to. So I planned to telecommute afterwards. However, my wife was committed to having Chinese food tonight, and the only restaurant she likes is the one near my work place. So yes, I could've worked from home, but then one of us would essentially drive to work and back just for Chinese food. So I decided to drive to work today.

So that leaves just tomorrow. We'll be having lunch delivered to work, so I won't need to bring my lunch or go out for it. That's a good arrangement for a bike commute. I must remember to bring home my bike and gear tonight!

Waist = 37.25"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Dream: Dog Obedience Vote on the Postcard

I'm at the polling place to vote on the town referendum.  I have the postcard that was mailed to me.  The vote concerns whether there should be a law that all dogs get formal obedience training.  I begin writing on the postcard.  For this vote, I write out my detailed opinion on the matter.  But I'm having trouble concentrating.  A few other people are asking me about my vote.  I tell them, "I'm writing it out now.  You can watch me and find out."

So they're standing in front of me, looking down at what I'm writing.  I'm trying to write that the law shouldn't go into effect and that, instead, if a dog's behavior leads to injury or damage, the owner's fine should be substantial.

I'm having trouble keeping my thoughts straight.  Not only is it hard to concentrate when people are watching me write, it's also very noisy.  Finally I get up, saying, "I can't concentrate.  I'm going to find a quiet place to sit and write."

I wander around the room .  Apparently it's a school cafeteria.  There are places to sit, but it's still noisy and crowded.  I leave the room and wander the halls looking for a classroom.  As I'm approaching an exit, I see solid, dark, wooden, double-doors on my left.  A sign on the left door reads, "THIS CLOSET MUST OPEN TO HALLWAY".

It doesn't sound promising, but I open the right-hand door, which reveals another door.  I have some foreboding that I might get locked in the room.  So I carefully prop the first door open with my foot while I open the inner door.  This reveals a very large, industrial-looking room.  There is no furniture -- just a few large overhead fume hoods that suspend from the ceiling.  I guess this is where they have shop class.

Although it's not what I was looking for in terms of a place to think and write, I decide to enter.  I check that the first door behind me is unlocked and that, if it closes behind me, I will be able to reopen it.  Then I do the same with the inner door.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Dangers of Sitting; Benefits of Standing

"Sitting for long periods of time — when you don't stand up, don't move at all — tends to cause changes physiologically within your muscles," says Reynolds. "You stop breaking up fat in your bloodstream, you start getting accumulations of fat ... in your liver, your heart and your brain. You get sleepy. You gain weight. You basically are much less healthy than if you're moving."

Reynolds recommends standing for two minutes every 20 minutes while desk-bound — even if you can't move around your office. "That sounds so simple," she tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "But that actually has profound consequences. If you can stand up every 20 minutes — even if you do nothing else — you change how your body responds physiologically."

Studies have shown that frequent standing breaks significantly decrease your chances of getting diabetes, she says. "If you can also walk around your office, you get even more benefits. You will lose weight, you lessen your chance of heart disease, and you will improve your brain. But if you can do nothing else, stand up!"
- Gretchen Reynolds, Interview with NPR



Edited on 2013-05-02 to remove a link to a related blog post from InsuranceQuotes that discusses the health dangers of inactivity.

Wednesday Weigh-In 20120509

My walking partner is on vacation. So while I can walk farther in less time than usual, it seems to take longer because of boredom. I'm having a problem resisting ice cream. My wife buys it occassionally, and if I know it's in the freezer, I can't seem to stop myself from getting some. Amazingly, my weight, fat and waist numbers aren't much higher than last week.

Waist = 37.5"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Veganism -- A Sanctioned Eating Disorder

As the father of a teenage girl, I try to be informed and stay alert to signs of an eating disorder, especially now that our daughter has become Vegan.  She used to love bacon, lamb, London Broil and liver pate not too long ago.  And goat cheese.

Then the "fish incident" raised a red flag that something was wrong.  She started to negotiate ever smaller portions of fish, her least-favorite animal-based food.  Just before formally announcing her vegan diet, she'd typically feed half to the cats and dog and re-arrange the rest.  Her last plate of fish -- the fish incident -- caused a genuine fit of crying about the pain of the fish.

That's when I blocked peta.org from the computer.

But it wasn't until my daughter described the ever dwindling diet of her school friend KG that it occurred to me that veganism is used to disguise an eating disorder.

KG was a vegan before our daughter; she probably convinced our daughter to convert to this way of eating.  Recently, she announced her new way of even healthier eating: vegan, low-fat, without grains and legumes.  It sounded as though the girl decided to adopt the Paleo diet and yet remain vegan.

The idea that veganism is an eating disorder is certainly not new.  Do an Internet search and find many discussions on the topic.  Here's a good one for example.  Veganism can be one of many manifestations of Orthorexia, an eating disorder where the individual refuses to eat foods perceived to be unhealthy.

I am somewhat comforted that our daughter follows the vegan lifestyle, not just the diet.  She will not buy any products made from animals or that were tested on animals.  For example, she refused to use a set of paints and paint brushes that I bought her before she went vegan.  Instead she talked my wife into buying a second "vegan" set.  It drives me crazy, but I'm still comforted to know that this compulsion is not focused solely on diet.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Wednesday Weigh-In 20120502

With the weather being wet, my walks have become shorter and less frequent. The effect is some heaviness in my legs, and an increase in appetite, especially for carbs. This is how a downward spiral begins....

Waist = 37.5"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

About What We Carry

's latest post "Writing is good for the soul" includes a list of 10 items that she always carries with her.  I've been thinking lately of all that I carry, so it caught my attention.

Here's a list of nine items I always carry, plus a few additional items for outings that I know will involve waiting, such as taking our daughter to karate lessons or visiting the DMV:
  • Wallet with ID, credit cards, library card, health insurance card, plus several passwords for favorite websites.  Sometimes it has some cash in it, as well.
  • Keys
  • Coins
  • Handkerchief
  • Dental flosser / pick
  • USB Memory Stick
  • Swiss Army Knife
  • Lo Carb snack bar
  • Water
  • Not Always: A Book
  • Not Always: Memo pad & pencil
  • Not Always: Camera
I don't use a purse so I rely on my pockets or I hang things on my belt or belt loops with carabiners.  The less I carry, the better.  A jacket comes in very handy until it becomes a burden in summer.

The reason I'm thinking of things I carry is because I'm wondering if I really want to buy an Android Tablet, or even a Nook.  I like the idea that I might be able to write or at least read while waiting around.

But I hate the idea of carrying something delicate like that around.  I suspect that it would become a burden and that I'd leave it home often.  I think I'd need a way to stow it in a shoulder harness, which is how I carry my camera now.

Incidentally, if you really looked closely at my list, you might have thought, "Silly guy, he forgot to list his cell phone."  No, I did not forget.  I don't have a cell phone!

What do you always carry?  Do you ever wish you carried less?