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Aug. 25th, 2018

sad merlin

Late last year, Lynette and I made the decision that we were going to pull our kids from their school and switch to homeschooling. It was something we spent a lot of time thinking about before we actually did it, and honestly were pretty terrified.

And here's where I talk about where this journey has led.Collapse )

Jul. 11th, 2018

sad merlin

This is mostly just scar tissue and a tiny line at this point.
Behind here is another incision photo. It's not gross, really.Collapse )

Jul. 3rd, 2018

sad merlin

Behind this cut is a photo of an incision. There is no commentary.Collapse )

Mar. 21st, 2018

sad merlin

Yeah I know, this show ended like 20 years ago.

But it's on Netflix and I had only ever seen something a bit less than half the episodes, so I thought I'd go back and rewatch it. Now, I didn't really LIKE DS9 back when it was on the air, though I didn't hate it. It lacked a bit of the charm that TNG had, but at least they didn't go off the rails like Voyager did at first. (Digression: I hear Voyager got better but I couldn't get past the premise. I *loathe* the Lost in Space premise in general, I didn't really like most of the characters and the characters I did like got almost completely rewritten in the first couple of episodes.)

So let me sum up my review:

It wasn't as bad as I remember it, nor was it as good as the people who loved it tell me.

More detailed reviewCollapse )

Dec. 16th, 2017

sad merlin

Quick review: On par with Return of the Jedi for me, will watch again. Yay Star Wars!

The non-spoilery part:

It's only been a day, and it was a long film. There's still a lot to digest. I suspect that some of the flaws I didn't notice right away will come back and bug me a little. But that said, right now at this very moment, it's on par with Return of the Jedi for me. It's not perfect, but oh MAN did I love it. It was 2:33 and I didn't wonder why it wasn't over yet. I was completely into it, drawn in. I found certain scenes very predictable but I was satisfied because I think they were the Right Way to do it. I'm disappointed by a couple of storytelling choices but not in a big way. There's some unusual humor choices for Star Wars and I still need another viewing or two (at least) to decide what I think. They didn't feel like they undercut dramatic moments like they did in Ragnarok, but they DID evoke a bit of awareness that this is a movie, not a story. But really they were no worse than the "humor" in Jar Jar or the battle droids in the prequels, and the pseudo slapstick of R2D2 and C3PO in the originals.

Arr, there be spoilers ahead, mateyCollapse )

May. 2nd, 2017

sad merlin

It's been a long time since I've updated this tag!

I more or less took six months off; last October I kind of crashed hard and found myself unable to make myself do anything. It took MONTHS to struggle through that and it wasn't until the end of Marsh this year that I started finding enough willpower to force myself to do things again. This wasn't really just about exercise, either, it was general life stuff too. Lots of things kind of fell to the side for me.

I gained 25 pounds in that time (ugh, that's a horrible rate of gain) and by spring I was feeling pretty wretched about myself. I've since lost 10 of it back, maybe (it's weird, my weight is fluctuating a lot more than it has in the past) and feeling somewhat better. My cardio was terrible for the first couple of weeks, and it was a struggle just to run a mile.

I'm still not back to where I was, but at least I can run 2.5 miles in a go again, and with a walk break I can do 4-5, but I haven't gotten in a full 5K with no break yet.

I've also added a gym routine, which is not super stressful; it's designed to make sure I don't lose muscle weight. I'd noticed that my pecs, in particular, were not as strong as they used to be, and decided I needed to reverse that trend. Back last fall, I had always intended on throwing some weight training in anyway, and that was next on the docket when everything fell apart.

So here's my current routine:

Sun Run to gym (1 mile), do full routine, walk home. The run is really just a nice cardio warmup for the gym.
Mon Rest day (it's my regular day in the office, so hard to get anything in this day anyway).
Tue Medium run (40-50 minutes)
Wed Run to gym, do full routine
Thu Short run (30ish minutes)
Fri Optional: Run or walk to gym, do abbreviated routine
Sat Long run (60+ minutes)

Things keep getting in the way so I don't quite get to keep my schedule perfectly, but as long as I'm close I don't feel too bad. For example I had to turn Saturday's run into a walk, and Sunday we had busy plans so I didn't make it to the gym (but I did make myself do some body weight exercises so at least I didn't do nothing).

It's warming up, too, so now I'm going to have to deal with my *ideal* running time (around 3pm) often being too hot for an outdoor run. :(

My gym workout is generally 2 sets of 12 reps of the following exercises. I'm doing only machines because I'm kind of terrified that one oops on free weights and the disc in my back explodes. (Ok that's exaggerating but seriously I can hurt myself pretty bad if I fuck up)

  • Chest press

  • Incline chest press

  • Machine Fly

  • Rear Deltoid Fly

  • Hip adductor

  • Hip abductor

  • Bicep curls

  • Row

  • Leg press

  • Torso rotation (I often skip this as I only do it when my back is feeling good)

It generally takes right around 30 minutes to get through that routine.

I'd started out adding some cardio on the lateral elliptical trainer but decided that the lateral motion wasn't worth the extra time in the gym, and I'm already running plenty. Plus with the run down and sometimes run/sometimes walk back, that's already an hour out of my day and I usually want to get back to work.

Apr. 25th, 2017

sad merlin

I bent Dreamwidth to my will; it's now a usable, modern-ish site for me.

In the last 2 weeks, only one person is posting on LJ but not Dreamwidth, so there's very little reason to stick with LiveJournal at all. So I guess I'm going to stop checking here.

I won't delete the account, and will probably continue to crosspost, but in general, expect to see me at http://merlinofchaos.dreamwidth.org now.

Apr. 20th, 2017

sad merlin

While I was away on vacation, I realized it was kind of buggy for responsive. But the base theme I was using IS responsive, so mostly it was a matter of a few more tweaks.

If anybody wants it, let me know.

Apr. 13th, 2017

sad merlin

I seem to have customize a Dreamwidth theme that I don't hate, so yay there's that. Now it's readable and I'm more likely to actually read it.

Apr. 6th, 2017

sad merlin

A couple, maybe a few years ago now, LiveJournal made some really good UX updates to their friends/reading page and made the whole thing much more readable and usable.

DreamWidth is like the old LiveJournal. Poorly sized, poorly spaced, not well designed. There's a bajillion themes, but I don't have the patience to sift through them to find a diamond in the rough; I basically hate every one I've tried so far, and have had to settle for which one is least annoying.

If anyone knows of a theme that closely replicates the existing LiveJournal reading UI I'd love to see it.

But without that, I find reading LJ unpleasant; it's a bit like going back to cars without power steering, power breaks and air conditioning after being used to modern cars. Sure, I can drive it, but I don't really WANT to.

Apr. 5th, 2017

sad merlin

I may well start reading my DreamWidth friends list, or I may abandon the whole thing altogether and stick with FB/Twitter/G+. It's unclear. I can only really mentally support so many platforms, and platforms that have low usage will get lost. We'll see.

I'm not sure where I'll be posting Weight Loss blogging now, if I get back to it. I wasn't planning on it this cycle but we'll see.
sad merlin

Right around half of my active friends list has just abandoned LJ with the latest changes. I'm a bit sad because LJ finally got a decent looking reader environment and was beginning to catch up with other systems in terms of usability. But that TOS is pretty heinous.

Jan. 12th, 2017

sad merlin

I tweeted this and then started to get deeper ideas. All based on a mild pun. Go figure. So here's a haphazard, done really fast write up of what came to me. It's only part of an idea, really.
Snip snipCollapse )

I don't have enough knowledge of Japanese culture to pull this off, so not going to put this into my mental file of Stories I Should Write but it's fun to think about.

Jan. 5th, 2017

sad merlin

For some reason, a lot of shows I've watched lately have involved Time Travel, and some of it heavily. Usually, time travel is handled so sloppily that I have to just not think too hard about it, because the writers rarely care about consistency. But one I've watched might be making an effort--Timeless. I'm not SURE yet; they've shown some really bad writing techniques pretty early on (one of my least favorite: characters being deliberately vague not because they're keeping secrets, but because the alternative is revealing things too early for the story) so I'm not sure I trust them. But then again, every time I go over every thing they've done, they might actually be remaining consistent in their time travel.

And then I watched Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, which is also consistent, but within a very small matrix. And it's a completely different kind of consistent, running with different rules. But that's okay, because the rules its using are obvious and it remains consistent within them.

And that got me thinking; what rule sets are there? And I've largely broken it down into three rule sets and then two variations that affect each rule set. I started thinking about things I've seen over the years that involve time travel: Continuum, Back to the Future, Terminator, Star Trek, Twelve Monkeys, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure...just to name a few.

First, I'll talk about the variations because they're universal, and the variations are about how the universe treats changes in the timestream and whether or not some unseen force reacts in opposition. I call one the "quiet lake" theory of time travel, or alternately the "butterfly" theory of time travel. In this one, time is a lake and if you throw a stone in the lake, waves of energy ripple out from the stone, eventually subsiding. The more stones you throw, the more violent it gets. The idea being that time is relatively fragile. Small changes can turn into big changes. i.e, the butterfly flapping its wings and affecting things elsewhere. In this theory, time is extremely malleable and even small, seemingly inconsequential things can have huge, possibly catastrophic effects. An example here is Back to the Future -- small actions ended up having major consequences on the timeline.

The other theory is the "river" theory of time; here, time is a river. If you throw a stone in the river, nothing really happens; the current of time is very powerful and simply keeps going. You have to do something large and build a dam to change time. In this theory, something keeps time on its course, and major changes are more difficult to do. Depending on the needs of the story, the river can be more or less powerful. Little changes to the timestream are corrected by having someone or something else do the actions necessary to lead to the same or at least similar result. In this theory, major changes are very difficult to do, though minor changes will likely still happen. The Feng Shui RPG operates this way, and the time travel in The Flash sometimes operates this way, though it's not a particularly powerful river.

Theory #1: The Closed Loop

In the Closed Loop theory, time is not linear but it is fixed and predictive. Which is to say, if someone travels back into the past from the future, they're not actually changing the timeline; instead, the non-linear nature of time predicted this would happen; if you go back in time and talk to your younger self, you'll always have had that conversation. There will never be a version of reality where you didn't. Dirk Gently's took this route, as did Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, and Babylon 5 used this one, I think.

This one can be very satisfying, because it's easy to write consistently. However, it can be difficult to explain why this consistency happens; sometimes, having foreknowledge of what's going to happen and trying to prevent it should cause actions that will do it. Sometimes making this happen will really feel or look like Deus Ex Machina. And sometimes, well, it IS, because the characters in a closed loop will learn that they cannot change anything, eventually.

It also requires limiting the availability of time travel. It must be rare and difficult to control for whatever reason, if for no other purpose than preventing people from changing the worst things about their own futures. Another issue is that introduction of items and information needs to be handled carefully. For example, someone who carries an item or information from the future to the past could inadvertently carry that same item back into the past, meaning that particular item has no actual origin or ending. This violates causality. Note that The Terminator kind of did this: in T2, we learn that Skynet was actually created from a leftover chip from the original Terminator. This violates causality, though Terminator was actually an Open Loop where this is more acceptable.

The lake/river variants of time travel don't really affect this one, since time is fixed, just not linear.

Theory #2: The Open Loop

In this theory, time is linear. If you go back in time and change something, then everything following that is changed, including the one who changed it. Sometimes these changes are immediate; sometimes it takes time for these changes to propagate. Back To The Future, for example, was (mostly) the Closed Loop, though it didn't do this completely consistently. For example, when Marty accidentally caused his mom not to fall in love with his dad, he started being erased from existence. This part is fine, as we assume the propagation of this effect takes some time (heh) to happen.

But where it failed on consistency is when he returned to a different future than he left, he should have (eventually) only remembered the new future, not the old one. But he was surprised that his family was now wealthy, well off and happy, whereas he only remembered the oppressed, unhappy family that he left. Ahh, consistency.

In the Closed Loop, you can make catastrophic changes to the timestream, and in theory create a paradox that will simply destroy the universe. Don't do that. The lake/river theory of time travel controls how fragile things really are. Back to the Future was a lake; if it had been a river, then Marty may have actually returned to the future to find Biff was his dad (ugh) instead of George, for example. In that version, attempts to change time would have been met with opposition from time itself, and the major events wouldn't have changed, though minor details might have.

Theory #3: Branching timelines

In the third theory, time is actually immutable, and instead travelling in time creates new branches of time which is now fully independent from the original.

In this theory, there is a single 'master' timeline, and in this timeline time travel doesn't (apparently) work and never will and never has. That's the timeline we (theoretically) live in. In that timeline, if someone travels through time, they disappear, never to return, thought dead. Possibly this happens a lot, and then eventually people give up trying to travel through time, because you can't.

However, what actually happened is that Time Traveler Jane went back in time, and in so doing immediately created a new time branch, which is subtly (or majorly) changed. Jane then returns to her original time -- she only remembers the master timeline, so any changes are new to her. But the people she returned to only remember the branched timeline. To those people, Jane had always traveled in time.

The more time travel happens, the more branches are created. In theory, it is impossible to return to an old branch.

When writing this one, the original perspective is often not the master timeline, but some branch where time travel has already happened, but the original time traveler (possibly a variant of the protagonist(s)) has already moved off into other branches and so can't be interacted with, except perhaps in the past.

This one is tricky to keep track of, especially since if you have several POV characters, if they don't travel as a group, they can all change. A person the audience has been tracking might suddenly be a new character because of changes in history.

Timeless and Continuum both used this theory. Timeless avoids the duplication of people problem by hand-waving and saying that you can't visit somewhere you've already been; Continuum does no such thing and in fact duplicated characters pretty regularly. By the time it was over, Continuum had rewritten reality several times; not entirely consistently, but reasonably satisfyingly.

This one can be made even more complicated if the time device can actually move to a different branch; at that point you also get what is effectively multi-dimensional travel as well as time travel.

When writing this one, there are some interesting artifacts: you don't actually have to worry about what someone (unknown) will do in the past, because that will affect some other timeline. The history of the timeline you're in at that moment is actually set. Of course, the characters may not actually realize this, thus leading to time wars. But as an author, you can ignore time travel that happens and doesn't concern your plot, because it goes off and happens elsewhere.

You also get an interesting recursion issue. Let's say Jane time travels 3 times, at points A, B and C, to some arbitrary point in the past. At time Travel C, she travels back before A and B. When the timeline branches, in the new branch, time travels A and B happen again now using new versions of Jane from the new timeline, each causing new branches...this can lead to theoretically infinite recursion. My "solution" for this is that if you return to the point in time where you left, you merge with/replace the new timeline version of you that would have been there. Otherwise you end up with endless universal echoes.

Or maybe the infinite echoes happen and the universe doesn't care. It's infinite, after all.

But let's go more complicated; let's say that time changes Jane made were significant enough that she no longer does time travel A, B or C. When she returns, the version of herself that didn't do time travel C is probably somewhere else. There are two possibilities, and I've seen them both happen in literature: in one version, she still replaces herself, which means she ends up somewhere unexpected (wherever the original version of her was at that point), and in the other version, she appears where she would expect but now there's another version of her, who didn't travel in time, running around.

Interesting conundrums.

So there's all that. There isn't, ultimately, a point to this, other than I've been thinking about this a lot and wanted to get this down.
sad merlin

I said I'd write this right after I saw it, but I've been sitting on it. Sorry about that.

Non-spoilery part:

In general, I rate the movie 3 of 5 stars. I think I'm going to largely agree with some of the non Star Wars fan critics, that if you take the "Star Wars" out of the equation, it isn't that great of a movie on its own. I think some of the things that could have been really good about the movie suffered from what looks like pretty extensive rewrites, which makes it feel like some threads got left hanging; cut mostly but not completely. And other threads got extended.

I think too much effort was spent on fan service. Not that I didn't love it, but every scene that includes someone recognizable that doesn't add anything to the actual story diminishes the movie itself, even while providing a shriek of delight. Some of them were exceptionally well integrated. Others not so much.

I think the attempt at CGI was brilliant and ground breaking and utterly not as successful as it could have been, but I'm able to forgive that. However, for some people the CGI threw them right out of the experience. I understand that, but I don't think they could have done better with today's technology. On the other hand, the things they did in that movie may well improve things such that in a few years, we'll be seeing that kind of thing quite regularly, and it will be good enough to work for most.

Criticisms aside, I don't want to diminish their accomplishments. I loved the main cast, I loved Chirrut, I loved Jyn, I loved Cassian. I think Jyn's story was a good one; I think Chirrut and Baze had an excellent story. I think other characters should've had either more or less.

I think there are three major areas that they failed at that would've made this an exceptional movie. Talking about them will be spoilers, so don't proceed beyond the cut if you don't wish to be spoiled.
And now, spoilersCollapse )

Aug. 17th, 2016

sad merlin

July 15, 2015 -- 13 months ago, I posted my milestone chart. I think about the milestones a lot, they're part of my motivation. So I'm reposting the table with 2 very slight edits.



308 0 Starting weight. Ugh.
300 -8 Where I was the last time I started one of these.
290 -18 Where I was when I started Weight Watchers, 2005
285 -23 Where I was on Jul 15, 2015 when I posted this chart.
276 -32 25% of goal
270 -38 Approximate weight on my wedding day.
263 -45 The amount of weight I lost on WW, my best attempt so far (though I did well on low carb, too)
260 -48 Approximate weight when I started low carb, 1998
245 -63 Approximate weight when I fell off weight watchers, 2006
244 -64 50% of goal
242 -66 Where I am Aug 17, 2016.
230 -78 Approximate weight when I moved to CA, 1996
225 -83 Approximate weight when I fell off low-carb, 1998
220 -88 Approximate weight when I moved to NYC
212 -96 75% of goal
180 -128 Goal weight

It feels good to know that I have more milestones behind me than I have ahead of me. Though it also makes me impatient to get to the next milestone, which is quite some ways away. 2 months at least, and that's if I maintain solid discipline. I usually go in spurts and then lose focus for a bit and have to find it again.

Aug. 16th, 2016

sad merlin

It didn't work the day it was released it I tried it again and it let me log in.

It makes LJ almost competitive with Facebook except that most of my friends have already abandoned it.

Aug. 4th, 2016

sad merlin

For much of the first year of this, I tried to post regularly on Wednesdays. Near the end of the year that kind of fell off; right now those posts would be a lot of "keep on keepin' on". But every now and then I'll have something interesting to post.

So first the minutiae: I'm off running for a bit to let my calf heal up. I tested it out this week and it's feeling pretty good, but since I'm going on vacation for a week starting Saturday, I'm not going to bother going on just one run and then going on a vacation that will include a lot of walking. I was doing some regular alt exercises, but that fell off this week due to soreness in my shoulders and some work stress. I'll get back to it after vacation.

The important part of this post, though, is that this morning's weigh-in was 245.8 -- and 245 was a key milestone on my chart and one that has me very excited. There are two milestones that converge here:

1) When I fell off weight watchers, I was right around 245. (Sadly the original data is gone so I don't know PRECISELY where I was, but it was within a couple pounds of it). That's a big deal, because I'm in a mode right now where I'm going well and I hope to sail right past this milestone over the next couple of months.

2) 244 is the halfway point to my original goal of 180. Now, I've revised my goal to 210 based on body fat percentages, but those numbers aren't reliable; so really it's 210 and then see how I feel and how I look about whether I need to continue. But still, that revision was recent; for a year I was seeing 244 as halfway.

For me, halfway points have always been super important. When I'm running, the halfway point means that all I have to do is repeat what I just did, and mentally, that's big. I've already done it once, so I should be able to do it again, right? The same is true when I'm building something.

The next major milestone is at 230 -- that's the weight I was at when I moved to California.

Jul. 17th, 2016

sad merlin

One interesting thing about this whole journey has been watching the data I've compiled from my scale, which measures weight and automatically uploads it (really, this is a fantastic thing, even if sometimes it makes mistakes as it tries to auto detect WHO it's weighing) but also attempts to measure body fat percentage.

Now, I know these electrical body fat percentage things are pretty inaccurate, so I don't put a lot of stock into it. But knowing this, it IS a data point and it's an interesting one: With the exception of a period where it went crazy and started giving obviously out of whack numbers for a couple of months (it had my body fat percentage dropping unreasonably -- and Lynette's too) it's actually been telling me pretty consistently for several months that I have around 180 pounds of lean mass, and while I've been on this diet, I haven't lost any lean mass (nor have I gained any).

So someone of relatively average weight at my height would be expected to have more like 145 pounds of lean mass. And I do know that I run on the muscular side. So despite knowing that the measurements are not truly accurate, it doesn't seem that far off. It's probably running a little high, but for the sake of argument, let's go with that number.

If that's true, the next thing to know is that for a male of my age, 17% body fat is considered a good, healthy number for someone who is fit and active.

180 * 1.17 is 210.6 -- meaning if that number holds up, and I retain all of my existing (theoretical) lean mass, my target weight should be 210 pounds.

That's something to think about and continue to evaluate as I get down there.

Unrelated to this, but possibly why I posted on a weekend: I got my first sub-250 weigh in today.
Tags: ,

Jul. 14th, 2016

sad merlin

I've been loathe to post a 'regular' update, but I just want to put a quick one out there because I am pleased. For the last few months it has been a bit frustrating because I'd basically plateaued. The main reason for the plateau was getting sloppy with my caloric intake. At first I had stopped logging when I ate something that was simply impossible to even guess at very well, such as eating out or any number of reasons for being sloppy. Then I kind of stopped logging dinner at all. Then lunches and if I wasn't logging that there wasn't much point in logging breakfast.

And since I wasn't logging, I slowly paid less attention to what I was actually eating. Looking back, I'd guess I ended up around 2700 calories a day. Which at my current weight and exercise level, appears to be a pretty good maintenance level -- both according to a pretty good set of BMR calculators and the fact that I stayed pretty static the whole time.

But I don't want this to be the end point. I've tried a few times to get back into the logging habit, but I keep going "oh what the hell" at dinner/snack time and then doing something to go way over and then being frustrated later. But I've kept trying.

This week I finally found the discipline to stop. Which isn't to say I've totally stopped; I've actually had ice cream nearly every day this week, but they've been small portions and I've carefully kept enough calories available for it so I can have my indulgence.

So I'm shooting for 2,000 calories a day. If I'm maintaining at 2700, then that should lose me about a pound and a half a week. That's a lower pace than I'd been on, but I think 2,000 calories can be fairly comfortable.

But I'm remembering the extra hunger I tended to feel right before lunch, and the 3pm snack time. Right now I'm filling those with a piece of fruit. Envy apples are in season right now, that'd been a great, reasonable snack to fill that gap.

Anyway, I've kept on track since Sunday and it's starting to get easier again, which is how I remember it going the first time. I generally have to break through that really hard 2-3 first days and then I feel better about it.

So hopefully over the next few weeks I'll stay good and I'll start to see results on the scale again.

Jul. 9th, 2016

sad merlin

First update: My food discipline is crap right now. Despite working out pretty regularly I'm actually a bit up from my last post. I need to find discipline but I've not yet managed it. That said, I've run quite a lot (until this week) and so I'm keeping the exercise going.

According to Walkmeter, I did my first Couch 2 5K run on July 12 of last year. I know I did a couple with at least 2 other apps before I realized Walkmeter (an app I had already been USING) had a 5K program built in (and one that was way better than apps that cost money).

So I'm going to say July 9 is probably really darn close to the 1 year anniversary. Close enough. So let's say a year.

So one year ago, I started a process that included running 7 one minute intervals with 90 seconds of walking in between and ended 10 theoretical weeks later by running a continuous 5K. It was more than 10 weeks for me because of a knee injury and a tonsillectomy, but if you've been reading my blog you already know I did eventually complete that.

Today I just finished a run that started with a .75 mile warmup walk, then 4 miles of continuous running, another quarter mile rest walk, a kind of agonizing 1 mile follow up run, and then another third of a mile walking (basically until I got home). I haven't quite managed a full 10K of running in one session yet, but if I keep on the trend I'm on, I'll be able to get there sooner or later. I'm not really concerned with when, honestly if I just keep up what I'm doing right now I'm getting plenty of good work.

While running, mostly I've just put my iPhone music on shuffle, but today I decided to try and focus on music that fills me with energy as a way to help me get through the "I don't wannas" I inevitably start getting in the last couple of miles. The theory being that I can stop thinking about how much I have left to do and try to zone out and listen to the music and get me through it. I'm not sure it really works, but whatever, it's energizing music nonetheless.

Also, I'm kind of old. Everything on here is very much from my generation.

Manic Monday Bangles
Greensleeves Blackmore's Night
Blister In The Sun Violent Femmes
Godzilla Blue Oyster Cult
Rasputin Boiled In Lead
Tubthumping Chumbawamba
Alegria Cirque Du Soleil Alegria
Beautiful World Colin Hay
Istanbul (Not Constantinople) They Might Be Giants
Shout Tears For Fears
Rio Duran Duran
Invisible Touch Genesis Invisible Touch
Doctorin' The Tardis Timelords
Birdhouse In Your Soul They Might Be Giants
Under Pressure David Bowie & Queen
Main Title-The Ice Planet Hoth John Williams
Lola The Kinks
Lightning Crashes Live
Kyrie Mr. Mister
Rock You Like A Hurricane Scorpions
All for you Sister Hazel
Storybook Love Mark Knopfler
Never Gonna Give You UpRick Astley YES THIS IS A RICK RUN
True Faith-94 New Order
Bury My Lovely October Project

I think the Beautiful World doesn't quite work, it's a bit too mellow. And while Storybook Love is mellow it inspires me a lot so will probably stay. And yeah, my taste in music is probably a bit weird. It's also leaving out some obvious stuff for no reason other than this was enough to ensure it covered my runs with a little extra.

I've tried to make sure no artist gets more than 1 track, except for TMBG because their songs are very short so they get two.

May. 25th, 2016

sad merlin

So tomorrow, according to MyFitnessPal, is the 365 day mark.

One year. I guess that means it’s time to look back and contemplate how it’s gone. I haven’t updated in awhile, but I haven’t gone off the plan entirely. But I haven’t been on the plan entirely until recently again.

One year. It’s certainly been a year of ups and downs on this plan. Highlights after the cut!
Read more...Collapse )
So yeah. It’s been a year on this plan. The first half of the year was an amazing success, the second half year was not much of a success but I maintained. Maintaining is important. Keeping up with it and hoping I can get back to actually losing.

If the second year is equally successful, then by next summer I could be down into a range that I’d be fairly comfortable with. Wouldn’t that be something?
Tags: ,

Mar. 16th, 2016

sad merlin

Things have been extra stressful at work for the last few weeks, as there was a departmental reorg, I got a lot more responsibility and a WHOLE lot of uncertainty that I've been dealing with. The anxiety has been building up, bit by bit, and it's been wearing at me.

As a result I've been awful. On the plus side, the weight remains stable. I actually thought it'd be going up, but I weighed in at 257 this morning, so there's that. I really have to not use this as an excuse, but so far that's not working. Regroup, refocus. Somehow.

At least be happy it's stable and in the worst case, maintain that.
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Feb. 24th, 2016

sad merlin

At least I assume it's progress again.

The scale bounced up and down, hovering around 260 for the first half of the week. But on Sunday it dipped down to 258 and didn't come back up. This morning it said 256 and some change. And indeed, the pants feel a bit looser again so I think this one is for real. That said, it's been difficult to keep good food discipline. In part, this is because I feel like with the extra exercise, I should get some latitude. In theory, 1800 calories per day should mean I lose ~1.5 lb per week. When I run I add about 1600 calories per week in exercise, so I should be able to eat another 250 or so every day and still lose that weight. And I think that's right, but the first week I was going over that too. This week I've hewn to it better, I think.

The running is going well; I have some mild soreness in my right hip again, that showed up after I did my 5K again, and it's lingering but mild. I'm going to give it awhile because it doesn't seem to worsen when I run but also, well, lingers. But it's not really getting in the way and it is a very mild pain. (Maybe the back pain has changed what I consider serious?) But if it doesn't really hamper my ability to walk or run, I don't think I'm worried about it unless it worsens.

I've said I want to find something to exercise in off-days but nothing has stuck. I briefly tried pushups but then I took the break; I ought to try that again, but I need to make sure I don't do it half-heartedly when I do.

Charlotte has now gone out three times for runs with me. She likes running outdoors WAY better than the treadmill, and her stamina is up enough that while it's a slow run for me, I still get a pretty good run out of it. Yesterday this wasn't quite true; she got a stitch right away and it wasn't a great run for me. Enough so that after we got back, I went and added another mile at my normal speed just to feel like I'd done something. It got me a lot of steps, though, and while it wasn't a great run I still got 2 miles of very slow running which is more active than just walking.

My waist is still bigger than it was when I suspended the plan in December, and I'm hopeful that will come back to where it was over the course of the next couple of weeks.

So anyway, scale has me back below the 50 pound mark again! Progress is good, and if I can have a good, productive spring maybe I can get down into the 240s in a month or two!

Feb. 17th, 2016

sad merlin

This week's been really really good for running. On Sunday I went out with my 8 year old daughter, and we ran together. She liked it so much, she said she wants to do it again; so I'm hoping we'll make that a regular thing.

My distance isn't want it was before I went on break, so I've been working on getting my stamina back up and today I got back up to doing a 5K. I have some soreness that I hope doesn't turn into anything, but for now I think it's just cranky muscles. Also, when I run outdoors, it's very important I don't forget the inhaler. Partly due to air quality, and partly because the terrain around here is fairly hilly and it's really easy to push myself too hard on the hill and once I pass a certain point, my lungs complain the rest of the trip. I don't really have that problem on the treadmill because of the steady pace, but outdoors I have to keep a close eye on that.

I've been less successful at curtailing my eating. Not completely unsuccessful, but work is extra stressful right now, and that's actually good for the running (I've gone on at least one run JUST to work off some stress) but really bad for the eating. When I'm cranky and grumpy I quickly go "screw it" and eat badly, because it feels good.

So as a result, the scale is steady, though it feels like the belt is a smidge looser. I guess I'll take that. In the end, my hope is that the physical activity is what makes this go long term, so I'm more focused on keeping that up anyway. I'll take it and keep working.

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