When this lifelong non-athlete got too winded from walking up the stairs a few years ago, he decided to start doing something about it. Exercising just for the hell of it, or for some long term health benefits didn’t seem to be motivating enough. I instead directed that towards the one thing that I thought may work, attempting to run a 10K. I thought a short term but doable goal would motivate me better than anything, and I was right. But a 10K soon became a half, and now I’m on may way to starting to run my first full marathon. While that has been good, one thing that has been concerning me is my perpetual muscle tightness. I’ve talked it over with my PT several times and had some late night sessions with Doctor Google trying to figure it out, but it has been persistent. I had hoped it was a lifestyle thing, and after the last week I think I’ve figured out that indeed it is, but not what I was originally expecting.
Tom Hussey is a photographer whose work has started popping up in viral Facebook and Twitter messages. Particularly his “Reflections” series is quite riveting. What would a photograph look like if you had the present-day elderly and the lost to time young adult version of the same person? You can get a glimpse of it at FStoppers.com. Imagine yourself looking forward in time into the elderly you, or looking back into the younger you from a few decades ago. Projecting yourself into the images leaves you with a most surreal emotional impression. For the biohacker in me, it also got me reconsidering yet one additional technique I used to engage in but no longer do.
With July underway I wanted to belatedly post what the first of many monthly updates. During the actual experiment phase these sorts of updates will allow me to look at large scale changes during a diet phase. By looking at the month as a whole it is possible to see much longer term trends than what one can see for simple daily or weekly stats, which will also be a bigger part of the experiment. You can see graphs of the various elements and their discussions below the fold:
The closest thing to an addiction that I have is soda, now diet soda. We were allowed to drink soda all the time as a kid. That contributed a lot to me being a chubby kid growing up. There were other factors too of course. None of my other siblings graduated into “husky” sizes, but perhaps I just drank more of it and was more sedentary as a computer geek than they were. As I grew up that graduated into being hooked on diet soda. Like all programmers, I turn soda into code. My poison of choice has always been the least revolting diet soda, until the Zero products came along…
I’d love to say that this holiday weekend I’m going to be sticking to my guns and attempting to eat completely healthy throughout. I’d be lying of course. This weekend is going to be full of lots of standard American fare: beer, hot dogs, pizza, ice cream, potato chips, et cetera. I’ll be mixing in a lot of hiking, but no running, which should offset some of it. I’ll be hiking with my health bars and “Paleo Pacs”. However Sunday is probably going to be more of a detox day than anything else. Should I avoid the crap food in the first place? Yes. Next year I will have no choice otherwise I’ll skew my results. However for this year, I’ll stick to my unhealthy habits.
As I explore the various diets that I’m getting ready to sample, the two I hear the most about being too preachy are the Paleo and the Vegan diet. I have heard some over the top comments from each, but nothing I would call completely outlandish or batshit crazy. That is until I see stories about a site supposedly setup to “shame” ex-vegans. After confirming that this wasn’t some Onion story or overblown story I have to say I’m beyond appalled.
My dad had asked for a Jawbone Up for Father’s Day. I had been going back and forth on which tracker to buy between the Jawbone Up, the Fitbit Flex and the Basis B1. Since the B1 is still out of stock and my dad got the Up, I figured I’d dive in and try the Flex. I was curious how accurate it would be at tracking steps/distances and calories. By far the thing I was most looking forward to was giving indication of how well I was sleeping. While overall I’m finding the data, and the corresponding Fitbit website, useful and interesting it isn’t all that I’m looking for in a personal tracker.
In my news feed yesterday was this editorial piece by Ann Brenoff titled Who Wants To Be 100 Anyway? The irony of the question juxtaposed with my blog’s mantra, “Biohacking internet blogger trying to figure out secret to healthy life into his 100’s” wasn’t lost on me. Sure, it’s a rhetorical question, which she answered in the negative. I can see why she would say that from her point of view, and she’s entitled to her opinion. I just vehemently disagree with her.
Today was the last day of the week of diet experiments. As planned I finished up the week with a nice, easy Mediterranean diet. By far the most liberal of the diets I have planned is the Mediterranean diet. Having part of my ethnic heritage hailing from that part of the world also makes this diet very easy for me. Almost any of the traditional foods I’d eat, with some tweaking for whole grain over traditional versions of some foods, fit the mold. As a lover of wine, the prescription of 1-2 glasses a night, assuming that works for you, is also a nice plus up. While I enjoyed the food, over-eating on this diet seems easier than on other diets.
The day of Paleo was overall quite easy to hit, in terms of what I had planned to eat. I had a small divergence at lunch but the big problem was the temptations. The number of my foods that are grain or dairy based is astounding!