Tag Archives: weight loss

Friday Linkage 6/14/2019

What the actual shit?  This is the Secretary of State of the United States of America telling the public that the solution to climate change is to move to different places. Oh, and the travel time for goods shipped between continents might be slashed because of the lack of sea ice.  I am sure everyone is going to be comforted knowing that their 65” television from China is getting here a little faster as they roast in a climate hellscape.

On to the links…

Report: Global Emissions At 7-Year High—Well, fuck.

EPA’s 3 Dirty Tricks to Undermine Regulation (and Why They Probably Won’t Work)—  We live in an alternate reality now where dirty is clean, good is bad, and facts are fake.

U.S. Renewable Power Capacity Surpasses Coal For The First Time—Buried in all the grim news are some glimmers of hope.

Here’s Proof That Electric Cars Are Displacing Gasoline—Demand destruction is a bitch.  Once that demand is gone it is not coming back and fossil fuel companies are starting to come to that realization.  These are millions of gallons of gasoline demand just…poof…gone from the market:

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Australia Missing Out on Huge Cuts in Emissions through Energy Efficiency Failure—Basically, if we just were more efficient with the energy that we already produce we could make major headway toward reducing emissions.  Using less energy to begin with is the first step in a net zero emission future.

Climate Change Is the Symptom. Consumer Culture Is the Disease.—Our modern society is just a joke.  We have become nothing more than money lungs bent on consumption of crap.

US Offshore Wind Race Heats Up, Now Connecticut In The Mix—To get to a zero net emission future offshore wind has to be part of the renewable energy portfolio.

Follow The Money: Global Investors Flee Coal Power Like A Hot Potato—Get used to the term stranded assets.  It essentially means assets that have no value because there is no buyer in the marketplace.  You may have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in a coal mine only to find that its value is zero  because there is no other party willing to invest.  What the market giveth the market can taketh away.

Renewlogy Turns Low-Grade Plastic into Usable Fuels—We have a plastic waste problem on this planet.  I do not know if turning plastic waste into a liquid fuel is the right idea, but it is better than anything that we are doing right now.

ALDI Ranks First Out of 20 Retailers for Reducing Single-Use Plastic—This is kind of like winning an ugliest dog contest.  Yes, you are a winner.  However, it is for being an ugly dog.

Processed Foods are a Much Bigger Health Problem than we Thought—Maybe that hokey diet advice about not eating ingredients you cannot pronounce was not that hokey after all.  Maybe there is no reason for PopTarts to exist.

Are McMansions Making People Any Happier?—A bigger house will not make you happier.  A grill with twelve burners and a Bluetooth meat thermometer will not make you happier.  As a matter of fact most stuff will not make you any happier beyond the initial sugar rush of the initial purchase.  Get off the hedonistic treadmill.

Climate Change I Have Known—Climate change is real and its impacts on our lives are noticeable.

Your Coffee-Buying Habit Could Hamper Your Retirement—It is important to think about personal finance in terms that people can understand.  Retirement for most people is something so far away that we fail to understand just how powerful actions taken today can be in setting us up for future success.

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Friday Linkage 11/3/2017

Could Washington D.C. be a bigger shit show right now?  Just when you think that American democracy has hit a new low, Donald J. Trump and his sycophants come out with some new affront to decency.  At what point do people look around and tally up the damage done—Russia, cronyism, nepotism, money laundering, and the list goes on for sure?  Is it 2018 yet?

On to the links…

This One Quote Shows What Angry White Guys Mean when They Talk About Government Overreach—Nothing says America like making a truck belch thick plumes of diesel smoke.  Oh wait, nothing says ‘Merica quite like the practice of rolling coal.  My bad.  The sooner that politicians stop pandering to this segment of society the sooner we can move on to a more advanced phase of our development as a country.

The Trump Administration Is Teeming With Climate-Change Deniers—It is like Donald Trump sat down with his chief of staff and asked, “Can you find me the biggest sack of sorry ass climate deniers to staff my administration with because…fake news.  Sad.  Isn’t Ivanka amazing?”

Scott Pruitt Is Using the Bible as His Guide for Reorganizing EPA’s Science Boards—If you thought it could not get worse, it usually does with the Trump administration.  I always wonder why these guys manage to peel out the parts of the Bible that they like without actually having to follow all of its prescriptions like, say, not eating shrimp.  Just consider this list of things “banned” in Leviticus.

Scandals Pile up for Interior Secretary—Sam Clovis did not even get to assume his post, so maybe we can now focus on the organizational dumpster fire that is Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke.  We’ve got campaign finance chicanery, disaster relief scandals, plane scandals, and a whole bag full of other crap.

Global Solar Market Demand Expected To Reach 100 Gigawatts In 2017—What does 100 GW mean?  It would be a 30% increase over what was installed in 2016.  This makes solar the fastest growing form of energy in the world.

US Wind Energy Pipeline Nears 30 Gigawatts—This is not 30 GW worldwide, but 30 GW just in the United States.  Suck it coal.

Trump Admin. Desperate To Keep Coal Power Plant Alive With Taxpayer Dollars—It is not and it never was about the free market.  Trump’s obsession with coal goes back to his need for adoration and coal barons are always ready to give Trump the love because he is their last hope.  The market does not love them.  The utilities do not love them.  Trump does love him some coal.

Italy To Phase Out Coal By 2025—Another one bites the dust.

Electric Buses are Coming, and They’re Going to Help Fix 4 Big Urban Problems—If I had to put my money behind the electrification of transportation in America I would start with buses and garbage trucks.  There are few vehicles I see that could benefit from the advantages of an electric drivetrains and getting black smoke billowing diesel engines out of our cities would be a good thing.

Vikings Razed the Forests. Can Iceland Regrow Them?—The moral of this story is that it is hard to undo damage.  Especially when that damage occurred over a thousand years ago and your country happens to be a volcanic hot zone.  It does not mean, however, that you do not try.

If You Care About Cleantech, You Have To Change Your Diet—There are few more impactful things you can do in terms of greenhouse gas emissions than changing your diet to one that does not feature meat or other animal products.

Why You Shouldn’t Exercise to Lose Weight, Explained with 60+ Studies—You are what you eat.  Literally.  It does however make sense for you to exercise to be healthy.  There is nothing more liberating than following an exercise regimen to reach a goal that is not weight specific.  The scale is no longer your enemy.  It’s just another diagnostic tool.

Tangential Goals

I have struggled with my weight since childhood. Periods of “normal” weight usually coincided with times in my life when I was very physically active, as in two-a-day swimming practices. Since leaving business school more than seven years ago I have found that physical activity and weight loss have been very difficult.

I have set weight loss goals, done all the recommended dieting, and struggled to even lose a few pounds. It is disheartening.

This year I wanted to do something different. I decided to ignore the number on the scale for all intents and purposes. I might weigh myself from time to time, but it was not going to be the single piece of information that determined success or failure. Instead, this year I chose to set a goal of riding my bike 2,000 miles with a stretch goal of 2,500 miles. The total stands at 1,505 miles before today’s ride

The reward for getting to my goal? A brand new Chris King external bearing bottom bracket. Granted, it’s going to replace an already fried FSA external bearing bottom bracket that I am trying to nurse through the next 500 or so miles. The clicking is starting to drive me mad, but I do not want to lose a week of riding time to get the bike in the shop. If I get to 2,500 miles I might replace the no name head set with a Chris King model as well. Sure, it’s “bike bling,” but there are no finer components for your bicycle.

The upside of this goal has been a fairly amazing weight loss. Before the end of winter I weight over 220 pounds. Just yesterday I weighed in at 196 pounds. Granted, some of it is because I have cut back on my beer consumption but some of it is due to riding my bike thirty miles or more four and five days a week. As I stay focused on getting to my mileage goal the pounds seem to melt off. Maybe I will get to my goal of sub-190 pounds before the end of the summer and sub-180 pounds before the start of 2015’s ski season.

198

I got done with my lunch ride today—not a good idea when it is 98 degrees, humid, no appreciable wind, and full sun—and stepped on the scale.  The number staring back at me was 198.0 pounds.

I almost fell off the scale, but took a step back and reset the scale.  It read 198.0 the second time so I took it as fact.  It is the first time in over a decade that a 1 has been the first number in my weight.

About a year ago I weight a little over 223 pounds and a picture of me with my daughter made me get serious about losing weight.  I did not want to be a middle aged fat dad watching my daughter and son run around.

I also did not want to lose the weight cheaply with fad diets or starvation or pills.  I chose to modify my eating and concentrate on working out.  A lot of working out.  Between the treadmill, rowing machine, and bike I am working out an average of six days per week with those workouts averaging slightly more than an hour per session.

It feels like a real victory.  I know weight should not be the determining factor in one’s fitness program and it is not for me anymore, but I like breaking through barriers.

Halfway Home

A while back I gave up on using my weight as a measure of my progress toward fitness goals.  It was fickle and capricious.  If I backslid a little bit I felt bad about it, etc.

One of the goals I set for myself in the new fitness regime was 1,000,000 meters on the rowing machine.  Today’s workout put me over 500,000 meters, so I am over halfway home:

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Looking back on where I was when I started rowing this winter the change is amazing.  I started rowing about 6,000 meters a workout.  Now, it’s 15,000 meters.  My split times were anywhere from 2:15 to 2:20 per 500 meters.  Now I am consistently below 2:09 for the entire workout.

The rowing machine is such a great workout because it really does torture the entire body—in a good way.  My back feels so much stronger now that I cannot wait to get out on the water stand up paddling soon.  I should fly!

I know the numbers on the scale should not be the ultimate decider of success, but when I stepped on the scale it read 201.0 pounds.  I feel so close to seeing a 1 as the first number that I can almost taste it. 

Weigh-in Wednesday 2/29/2012

At least I got an extra day in February.

Two weeks and I feel like I have gained some momentum on losing weight.  I do not know if it is the addition of rowing to my workouts, changing some aspects of my diet, or just breaking through a plateau but the past couple of weeks have felt different.

In March, my goal is to really accelerate the past couple of weeks and drive toward my goal.  Is it aggressive?  Hell yes.  Is it possible?  I have no clue.  However, for the first time since I was a competitive swimmer in high school I feel in-shape and in control.  Right now losing a little weight might just be icing on the cake.  So to speak.

Last Week: 208.4 lbs

This Week: 205.8 lbs

To Lose: 15.8 lbs

Weigh-in Wednesday 2/8/2012

Calories are the devil.  Whether they come in the form of fat or sugars or little diabolical gnomes calories are evil.  Need proof?  In a recent study, participants were all given an extra 1,000 calories per day for eight weeks across a variety of diet types (e.g. low carb, high protein).  The result?  Everyone gained about the same amount of weight.  The moral of the story?  Diet is not a magic bullet unless a corresponding reduction of calories is included.

I have made a conscious decision the last couple of weeks to watch calories.  The first victim was my late evening snacking.  An hour or so before bed I would find myself mindlessly munching on a bowl of chips or something similar.  Next, I started attacking my work snacking.  It is so easy to just eat a few things here or there.  Pretty soon you are talking about real weight gain.

Consider that in the U.S. we eat, on average, 300 more calories per day than the equivalent American did in 1985.  Not so much?  Over the course of a year, all things being equal, this totals 31 pounds.  WTF?  31 pounds?  Conversely, if you can reduce your caloric intake by 300 calories per day, assuming you were static in terms of weight loss or gain, you could lose 31 pounds per year.  It does not seem like much or even seem possible in either direction, but it speaks to the difference that small changes can make to lifestyle.  Here’s to 300 calories.  Oh wait, that’s about what’s in my beer.  Uh oh…

Last Week: 207.2

This Week: 208.8 lbs

To Lose: 18.8 lbs