Thursday, June 30, 2011
I've discovered I hate shopping, but I love spending money.
Shopping can take a long time. No one wants to wait for sales or in long lines. Parking at your store of choice when said sales are in existence is a pain, and above everything else, I'm not good at having something in mind ahead of time of what I really want. I seem to think it's more exciting to go someplace not knowing what you will be carrying out with you when you leave. Plus, I can't stand on my feet for very long without being enticed by some sort of merchandise, so if there is a lull in my 'shopping' I find myself very tired and I just want to go home.
Spending money can be done anywhere, at any time. There is technically no limit to how much you can spend or what you can spend it on, provided it fits in your credit limit. You can spend money in stores, at restaurants, gas stations, coffee shops, online from your own house, and pretty much anywhere in between. I feel rich buying things. Let this be lesson number one: you need not be rich to feel rich, you merely have to act rich. Do I walk into a mall or even a Wal-mart, Sears, Target, or Nordstroms with the faintest idea of what I want to walk out with? Nope. Do I feel excited at the possiblity of coming out owning something new? Um, yes.
The problem lies in the feeling you get after you've bought the things and sit down later to think how much better off you are because of your purchase. Do those shoes make you any better? Contribute to your life in any way that will last more than a few mere hours on Friday night? Does that Whiskey River Barbecue Chicken Burger from Red Robin seem worth the $12 dollar you spent for it (provided you tipped)? Maybe...ok, not at all. But that campfire sauce....
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
4 years ago the iPhone had it all. 4 years later I'm wondering why does Apple still call it 'innovation'? iOS 5?? That's called Android 2010.
Sunday, June 26, 2011
6. I saw this other guy doing it, so it's a good exercise for me. This is a timeless classic among gym members. That one guy who was doing some sort of bent over barbell row looked good doing it and so now I'm going to too. The problem lies in not understanding if the guy you observed was doing it right, with good form. Additionally, depending on your goals vs. his goals, you may not want to do that exercise...it may waste of time.
5. Age is a state of mind, therefore it doesn't matter how old you are, just do the following exercises. Wrong. Just wrong. Age is huge. Can consistent daily workouts over the course of a lifetime slow regression of movements? Yes. Does that mean that a 22 year old and a 75 year old are one and the same in the weight room even if the 75 year old has worked out every day of his life? No. I hate watching trainers put old men and women through routines that they put a 21 year old basketball player through earlier that day. Did you forget to take notes during Motor Development?
4. The longer I stay in the gym, the better my results. I suppose there could be a kernel of truth in that statement but, for the most part, its false. A workout by yourself on average will last around 30-45 minutes, depending on your training. Spending an hour, or an hour and a half even in the gym doesn't necessarily guarantee you any boosted results. Odds are you are spending that time observing the plasma screen TV's provided by your gym, or looking through the latest Men's Health magazine, or even just talking to a guy you know (Lord forbid you find yourself talking to a girl in the gym, fellas....cliche much?) Keeping it short but to the point may actually be more beneficial than an extra 30 minutes in the gym, with only 10 of those minutes actually spent doing anything useful.
3. I'm a girl, and if I lift weights I'll bulk up. Um, no. Girls often time believe that they will gain weight (albeit muscle weight) if they so much as pick up a weight. This is simply not true. Some guys have a hard time putting on weight with hours of weight lifting and supplements to spare. You, ladies, have very little - if anything - to worry about because you lack testosterone, and without that, you aren't likely to actually build bulky muscles. That's not to say you won't build lean muscle, but you have no need to fear of suddenly gaining 10lbs of muscle from using anything other than the treadmill.
2. Lower intensity burns more fat, so if I want to lose weight I should work out at low intensity. I don't think this one will ever go away. The problem lies in the small amount of truth hidden in this misconception. Lower intensity workout for an hour will hypothetically burn 500 calories, lets say 400 of which come from fat. However, that same time at the gym, working at a higher intensity will, hypothetically again, burn 850 calories, 250 of which came from fat. So yes, lower intensity burns more fat (400>250) but higher intensity burned more calories (850>500) which has a much greater influence on weight loss.
1. I workout every day for an hour, so I need sports drinks like Gatorade to help fuel me. I think the companies that make these products should be forced to put labels on their bottles that specifically state the needs for such drinks. These drinks (especially the new Gatorade G series) are not for everyone. Athletes, people who spend hours in the gym every day and play sports that require endurance, as well as quick bursts, will need to replenish their fuel stores (primarily carbs) but those of us who go the gym from 5-6 every day to jump on a treadmill or lift weights in front of a mirror need not to think ourselves - or our results - dependent on these drinks. They may actually do more to hinder your goals than to achieve them.
Saturday, June 25, 2011
I love that episode of 'The Office' where Pam has to inform Michael Scott that 5k doesn't mean 5,000 miles, but 5 kilometers. It may just as well represent 5,000 miles because as small of a race as 3.1 miles actually is, it has been difficult for me to do.
I've never ran for sport, or for fun as some put it. I run when I need to when I play soccer, or basketball, or football, but running for the sake of running hasn't ever seemed appealing to me. I'm more into HIIT workouts, or free weights. I won't be 22 forever though. I don't want to look back and ask myself, "I wonder if I could have done a 5k, or a half marathon, or a full marathon..?..guess I'll never know." I want to be able to say, "I did it."
Baby steps, people. 5k is a good starting point. 3.1 miles at the snail pace of about 8.5 minutes per mile would equal about 26 minutes, right? That isn't a good time, but it's a time and I'm not really about the speed as much as I am about consistency as well as the experience.
There are two 5k's coming up in July and I plan on doing both of them. The downside is, as of now, I have no idea what the course is and so I feel that even if I can run 3.1 miles comfortably by the day of the race, I may be annoyed to find that the course has some serious hills. I simply do not run up hills for fun. We draw the line at hills.
Now, if I can just find a way to make running more enjoyable. Ideas?
Friday, June 24, 2011
Firstly, I know you all are looking for the answers to the questions, "Why were pajama pants invented? Who sleeps in pants?" I haven't the slightest on either of these. It seems to me someone now rich, but before very poor, suddenly had the idea that there needed to be a scrub-like pant invented that could have any number of abstract prints put upon its stitches: Jalepenos with flames, Santa Clause, snowflakes, donuts, Homer Simpson, jolly rogers, and every single alcoholic beverage known to man.
I imagine the dialogue of this inventor with his friend, days before said invention:
I: "Imagine a pant that no one would wear, except before bed and right when they wake up, that was able to define you through cartoon flames, and alcoholic beverages that only high school kids drink!"
F: "Yes, I can see it now, a pant that is fundamentally designed to not match or look good, or even remotely go with any shoe possibly designed."
I: "Precisely, Watson. Pants that will forever change sleep-overs, slumber parties, birthday parties, and Wal-Mart shopping forever!"
Unfortunately, for the entire race of humans on the earth today, the plan didn't work, the public adopted the pajama-pant-just-got-out-of-bed-and-now-I'm-at-Denny's-and-I-don't-have-the-decency-to-put-on-real-clothes style, and a new "I-don't-give-a-hoot" age was born. Instead, we are now a nation that is satisfied with getting out of bed, putting on fake clothes, and locking the door behind us. Couple that with a past rant on the Boot Epidemic and you have just descbribed Idaho, Oregon, Washington, most of Utah, and every Wal-Mart parking lot in existence.
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Col. Tomko: I'll tell you what, with that M1A1 Abrams(tank) we got across the street, if Halladay keeps on pitching well, we can fix that with one round pretty quickly.
Cards broadcaster Dan McLaughlin: - awkward laugh - I'm sure you could. I don't know if we should say that, but you just did.
I have to think we've officially lost it. Maybe Led Zeppelin's lead singer Robert Plant's question to the fans during a live performance of Stairway to Heaven needs to be echoed worldwide once again. "Does anyone remember laughter?"
I recently entered a scavenger hunt the campus was putting on for a few cool prizes. I don't usually get involved in things like this, but when the prizes include possible iPad's, Bikes, and decent jewelry (I have a wife), I really must take advantage of the opportunities.
The scavenger hunt is open to anyone with a phone new enough and smart enough to read QR codes. QR codes are the relatively new way of doing bar codes. QR codes are square, and, well, I'll show you one. This is a QR code for the android market I believe, scan at your own risk. The beauty of these codes is that your phone can read them and then the code tells your phone to do something (usually along the lines of giving you a discount to a certain store, or taking you directly to their website).
This scavenger hunt began by giving you the first QR code and then giving you a hint to find the next business in town that would have the next QR code, as well as a mobile coupon type thing for that business. It was pretty fun, didn't take long, and now I am entered to win an iPad, probably along with 700 other people.
But I got $1.00 off ice cream coupons to spare!
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
People, let me first just say that cell phone companies are about as close to lawyers and insurance salesman as they come. They're corrupt, they take what they can and give nothing back. At least, nothing they don't have to. And with terms like 4G and LTE, they don't have to give much.
The first thing that sold me on my current phone (HTC Inspire 4G) was the 4G part. I had heard of 2G, experienced 3G, and now that 4G was out, it only seemed logical to make it part of my next phone. The second part of my phone that seemed to scream "latest and greatest" was the company AT&T toted 4G coverage in my area, meaning I didn't have to be in SLC, Portland, Seattle, or Las Vegas to get my 4G speeds. And the last thing was the screen size. 4.3 inch screen just made all other phones look a bit redundant.
It was only after I walked out of the store, new phone and service in hand, that I realized a couple mistakes I made assuming that I was truly getting the latest and greatest. First thing I wish I would have known is: the term 4G is simply marketing vapor. There is no clear or specific ruling for what 4G (or 3G or 2G for that matter) actually are supposed to give you as the customer. They may say that 4G is 10x as fast as 3G, but when 3G didn't mean squat to begin with, you really aren't going to be that much better off with 4G. With that being said, the next thing I should have known is the fact that my phone's 4G capability was inhibited by AT&T before I even bought it. Did you catch that? Even if 4G actually meant anything, my phone, though capable, was crippled by AT&T to ensure my phone couldn't reach designed data speed. Why? Simple: They don't have to. Why give me, the customer, what I paid for when it doesn't mean anything anyway and could potentially slow down their servers?
So why did they do it? Well, I think its a bit just natural progression mixed with a domino effect. Naturally any new tweaks they do to 3G can then be manipulated and they can call it 4G, and once one company gets 4G on their phone labels, all must follow suit. You wouldn't walk into AT&T and buy a 3G phone when Sprint is waving a banner around saying they have 4G. Then again, I would hope you wouldn't buy 4G from Sprint at all. They are audacious enough to charge an extra $10 on top of your data per month just for the 4G. Sound fair? Extra $10 for nothing?
As for LTE networks, I imagine as time goes on the guidelines will have to be more clear as to what these terms LTE, and 4G really mean. This article I linked below seems to imply things will be headed that way. But even if they suddenly come out with concrete speeds your phone must be able to maintain to be considered 4G, don't expect that to fix everything. Make sure you ask if your phone is not only capable, but also not handicapped in an effort to keep you from 'bogging down' the servers. They owe it to you. If they say they're 4G, and your phone is a 4G phone, I would like to think they should be giving you full capability, after they decide what the heck it means.
The article put out today by Phonescoop is great, the headline alone cracks me up. I imagine someone coming across it and saying to themselves, "Wait, so 4G never meant anything?" Exactly. Congrats T-mobile for supposedly being the nations largest 'nothing' network.
A few months ago, the back speakers went out, and so now only the front ones work. The boom in the back is still bumpin, but I feel sorry for the people who sit in my back seat. They hear "boom..boom boom" while us in the front get more of the whole picture. Yesterday, however, the front speakers went out. So now all anyone hears is "boom...boom boom". Life sucks.
It's quite commical actually to turn the volume up and just drive around with nothing but subs booming and try to guess the song. It's next to impossible, but occassionally I actually get one.
The scary part about it is when I drive over pot-holes or railroad tracks. The sudden jolt of the car sometimes must put a wire back in place because suddenly I hear music, loud music. Imagine driving down the street with subs audible. No other sound, however, makes its ways into your ear canal. Then, suddenly, Chiddy Bang is yelling in your ear that he 'once was a kid' and that he once had a dream. Meanwhile, I'm looking around like crazy trying to locate my phone that I was unaware could play a ringtone so loud...after my initial semi-scream of startledness. Then of course I calm down and thank God for the speaker fix. Only to find that the next pot-hole tweaks the speakers again, and I'm left without music until some abnormality in the road decides to scare me.
The car is old, 170k miles on the bad boy, should I drop money to fix the speakers, or just let it go?
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Most 'diets' in societies terms are geared toward getting people to count calories, or count fat, carbs, sugars, which I think is OK, but not very fun and, to be honest, a little disheartening. After all, it's great to be aware of what you're eating. But do you know what it means if you're intake of carbs is 300 per day? You probably only know two things: what the diet says is the 'OK' range, and what is above that. The truth is, in my opinion, its simpler than this, and counting can be frustrating and make you feel limited in food choices.
Being healthy does mean some limits on certain foods, no doubt about it. But did any of you catch the CNN.com story on the "twinkie diet?" The facts are in people. The choices in selection of your food, in essence, is not as important to your goal of weight loss as the amount of calories your portion sizes and food gives you.
I'm not advocating Twinkies, Kit Kat bars, Reese's, or Swedish Fish, but the study proved one thing: calories trump where they come from any day of the week. Regardless if your calories are coming from fats, proteins, or alcohol (yes, alcohol has calories...lots), cutting back on portion sizes is a huge help to weight loss. Challenge #1: Don't have seconds. Just don't. Allow yourself one plate, one bowl, one serving, and call it good.
I suppose within the next few days I'll add another post on activity levels. For now, try eating less per meal, and 500 calories is 500 calories no matter where it came from. In closing, don't feel bad counting calories one day to see where, on average, you sit calorie wise, this is good information, but don't get caught up counting every day, every item, every bite. Who likes doing that? It's like guilt in a spoon.
You know what else has me thinking about the color blue? It's June, and this is the first week we have 6 consecutive days with no rain in the forecast. I'm OK with rain, honest, but when it's guaranteed to be icy, 6ft snow, and -20 degrees for vast majority of the year I think we deserve at least June, July, August and September to be at least sunny.
But there's a lot to be proud of and happy about. I've got myself up to the big 13 on Twitter, which has become a nice place for me to rant, and drop my little bombs of nutrition wisdom. Also, did I mention that this year: LA got swept, Lebron lost in the finals, Dirk Nowitzki has a ring, Canada lost to Boston in the Stanley Cup finals, and I found Umpqua ice cream 20 minutes from my house? Not that I'll ever eat it, but Oregon south county represent!!
Saturday, June 18, 2011
I recently took a trip to the Cayman Islands, and the voluminous ship known as the Carnival Inspiration also took port in Cozumel, Mexico. It seemed natural to walk off the ship in a new place that I had never seen, never even been within 2000 miles of before that moment. I never lost any sleep thinking that these places hadn't existed years before simply because I had never been there. To put it a little simpler, I've never been to China, but I believe it exists, its there, across the Pacific. Where else could our toys come from? Where would we get lead painted fire engines, for ages 3+?
I had heard of friends of family who had gone to Cozumel themselves in years past, celebrating anniversaries, summer vacation, and all sorts of other cruise-worthy celebrations. I suppose now, looking back and pondering on the amazing faith my young mind had in the existence of a place I had never seen, that this assurance from others who had been there helped my faith increase.
Now I come to a troubling matter, one that has puzzled me since about Sophomore year in high school. Keep in mind my geographical location is west coast USA. Anything further east than Utah is considered 'east coast' and I...well, my people don't go there.
Has anyone ever been to Delaware? Any of you seen a Delaware license plate on a Geo Metro? Remember when Deleware.... ...Ratified the Constitution, first? ... yeah, me neither.
I've heard all about Delaware since 1st grade, heck, am I not correct by saying its known as being the first state to ratify the constitution and therefore becoming the 'first state' of this increasingly chaotic nation? (I hope it is, because that was bubble 'A' on a multiple choice test in high school, and I marked it with a certain confidence). I've never seen any proof of its existence, nor heard from any trusted source of its reality other than a rather suspicious looking Wikipedia page. Sports teams from Delaware? Nope. Aforementioned license plates? Never graced me with their presence. I'm tempted to believe its a hoax. For what, however, I'm still unsure.
Friday, June 17, 2011
Growing up, I watched several western movies, and you better believe that the clinking of spurs, the heel-like sound of cowboy boots on hardwood saloon floors raised my heart-rate every time. The difference here between cowboy boots and spurs and today's seemingly 'boots for all occasions and weather' is that cowboy boots - at least in the old days - served a purpose.
I've never ridden a horse (Ok, once when I was about 5 I was on a horse, but if I counted that then I can also say my first kiss was when I was 2 hours old) but I do believe that spurs are there in an effort to control the speed of the horse. You want to go faster, or begin moving at all, dig in with them spurs (or shoot your gun). And the boot itself, do I even need to justify for the cowboys why they needed leather high top boots? They're effing cowboys.
Nowadays I'm a little baffled by the styles of boots making there way into the closets of naive girls everywhere. What's with the pirate boots? The cowboy boots with no spurs, a mini skirt, and obviously no purpose? Are those boots, that also have a stiletto heel that TSA would not allow you to take on a plane, comfortable to walk in? No, I didn't think so. I could tell from your half steps you take that make you look like Godzilla with...well, boots.
What's even worse is that no one is forcing this on anyone. It's not like you live in the wild west, with dust, bugs, snakes, or horse stirrups. Instead, you live in the world of flip flops, Toms, Nike, Adidas, Vans, Reebok, Etnies, Emerica, DC, and you still manage to believe that fur, platform/pump boots to be the shoe of choice in this 80 degree weather? At some point you have to realize that this habit will interfere with your tan line...
It's been several months and about 3 weeks ago I logged back in. I logged back in after hearing repeatedly on ESPN and SportsCenter type shows about athletes who 'tweeted this' or 'tweeted earlier about so and so' and thought to myself, "What? Athletes find a use for this? I couldn't make heads or tails out of it." It doesn't help that now I have a phone smarter than me, a phone with twitter capabilities beyond my dreams.
Now I find myself addicted. Addicted to what I'm not sure. Maybe its the fact that I can have countless articles to read on things that I'm actually interested in by going to one place instead of searching, or maybe its because I have a few friends on Twitter that I actually know from real life. Remember real life? It could also be that now I don't have to go to CNN.com to get facts, I just have to look at the Twitter trends... right? I mean, c'mon, Twitter gets the word out fast. Rumors everywhere rejoice at this relatively new technology. Why, just the other week, while the NBA finals were on, word got out that supposedly Rashard Lewis was using some his own talents in South Beach on Lebron's girlfriend. Within 30 minutes the whole Twitter nation was eating it up. CNN had nothing on this story.
So, I suppose I'm hooked now, never to go back to the way things were. But its not all my fault that I look at Twitter followers as level ups in those old school video games, is it? I got me 9 followers...level 9.