Blog

The Oldest Artwork in Human History — Learn Something Interesting

Near the Ardeche River (pronounced “arr-desh”) in southern France, less than 0.5 kilometers away, 3 explorers set out a few days before Christmas in 1994. While seeking drafts of air emanating from the ground which would point to the presence of caves, these explorers found a subtle airflow which was blockaded by rocks. The explorers […]

The Oldest Artwork in Human History — Learn Something Interesting

Genkijima Update – One Year Later

So you know how some bloggers get all excited about a new weight loss strategy and then a while later you stop hearing about it?

Yeah, I’ve seen that.

I’ve DONE that.

Many times, actually.

NOT TODAY!

This map now has stars all the way up to the house. I’ve lost 86 pounds so far. I have roughly 20-30 to go. I’ve gone from a 50 BMI down to a 29. I want to get to 25 or maybe a little lower. I have so much more energy and can do so many things I couldn’t before and my blood pressure has gone from borderline high, to the low end of the scale. My heart age has gone from 50 to my true age if not lower.

I feel good every day. Even though I’m not to goal yet, I’m still so much better of than I was. A year ago, I was not doing so well. 254 pounds is way too heavy for a fine boned female who’s only 5’3″. I’m not even talking aesthetics or any kind of self worth issue, I’m just talking health. I could feel the strain in my body. My heart would pound with even minor exertion. I was easily overheated. I had to rest constantly when doing active things.

The only reason why I haven’t failed at more diets up until this point is because I haven’t tried more diets. I’ve been really, really bad about losing weight. Everything from excuse making to lack of motivation to deluding myself about how bad the problem really was – I’ve done all that. As I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve been heavy ever since I was a kid. Plus I’m female and have thyroid issues and PCOS and a sedentary job and I’m over 40 – all reasons why I should have a really hard time losing weight.

Okay, so this is where I sell you some magic powder or supplement or weight loss program…

…only I won’t.

But I will tell you how I did it!

Here are the things that have helped me the most.

Learn what portions should be. I used measuring cups and a cheap scale to train myself what I should actually be eating because my concept of what a portion should be was way, WAY off.

Time to adapt. Eventually, the body gets used to smaller quantities and different foods. With consistent effort, eventually these healthy foods begin to be DELICIOUS and you start craving veggies more than junk food.

There is no such thing as magic. That is, no magic pills, no magic supplements, no magic shakes or diets or programs. Weight loss takes work and time and consistency but it’s very doable. The thing is, once I accepted that there was no magic pill/quick fix, it became easier to settle down and do the work.

Learn what works for you. Everybody has something that works for them. For me, it was learning what foods made me hungrier than they should, and avoiding those. I personally used a high protein, moderate carb, relatively low fat plan and tried to avoid refined sugar and carbs as much as practical. I ate a lot of lean chicken and veggies and cooked a lot from scratch. I still have a sweet tooth so Stevia was my best friend.

Research and learn. I did a lot of studying, partly because I needed the information and partly because I was curious. I have read about various issues of diet, exercise, muscle building and fat loss from a number of perspectives. Doing that helps because you will learn more about the nuts and bolts about why things work.

Eat less, move more, and track what you do. This is critical for me. I have to know what I’m putting in my body and how much movement I’m getting so I don’t underestimate my intake, and overestimate what I’m burning off. Keeping up with this means I will know for a fact that I’m still doing what it takes to lose weight.

DON’T GIVE UP. If your efforts aren’t succeeding, change something. Maybe Keto isn’t for you. Maybe you’d do better on Paleo. Or maybe you would do better on a balanced diet with portion control. Maybe Intermittent Fasting works well for you. We all need different things. If a diet is too hard, maybe something needs to change so it can be adhered to more easily.

MOVE! Exercise doesn’t have to be a laugh a minute but it shouldn’t be torture. There are so many ways to move your body. It’s important for building muscle, general health, and maintaining balance and flexibility that the weight loss benefits are almost a bonus.

Remember that you DESERVE to be healthy.

I know I’ve barely scratched the surface here – there is so much more to this topic, but these are the main principles that have kept me going, more than a year after my last New Year Resolution.

Here are the three most useful sites – they all have a ton of information and tools for you and all are free.

NerdFitness – a great site for nerds who want to be healthy. Awesome articles and programs about all aspects of fitness and weight loss, including a community and a cool RPG like goal system.

MyFitnessPal – a calorie tracker (with an app if you want one), community and forum with lots of good health related information. It’s basically fitness social media with a distinct lack of drama. I use it to track my calories, nutrition and exercise, and the community keeps me accountable.

Art of Manliness – a great archive of articles and podcasts with all kinds of interesting information, quite a bit of it fitness elated. Well worth a read by people of any gender, it is a treasure trove of old fashioned skills as well.

By looking at my map you can see that the house is well into the Island of Genkijima, the land of vigorous good health. That was by design. When making the map, I realized that losing weight would help me to feel better, long before I even got near my goal weight. It’s turned out to be true. I noticed some pretty big difference after the first 20 pounds or so.

I still get excited whenever I get to put a new sticker up!

(Side note about the header image: It’s a screenshot of one of the ranches I’ve built in Horse Isle 3, a giant multiplayer open world game. )

The Translation and Cultural Meaning Behind the Traditional Cantonese Chinese Lunar New Year Greeting — Learn Something Interesting

The Cantonese phrase “gung hay fat choy” which is said during the Chinese Lunar New Year does not translate to “Happy New Year” as is commonly believed, rather it translates to “wishing you to be prosperous in the coming year” and is in reference primarily to finance as this is viewed as one of the most, if […]

The Translation and Cultural Meaning Behind the Traditional Cantonese Chinese Lunar New Year Greeting — Learn Something Interesting

Meet Nick Smith, 2020-21 research MD — Chronicles from Concordia

Dr. Nick Smith is the ESA-sponsored medical doctor spending 12 months at Concordia research station in Antarctica for the 2020-21 season. He facilitates a number of experiments on the effects of isolation, light deprivation, and extreme temperatures on the human body and mind. Monday 19 th October Arrived! Credits: ESA/IPEV/PNRA–S. ThoolenHello everyone, and welcome to…

Meet Nick Smith, 2020-21 research MD — Chronicles from Concordia

Marathon to the Moon — Chronicles from Concordia

https://open.spotify.com/embed/track/2zYzyRzz6pRmhPzyfMEC8s?si=-Vms7qAISBaIF5ucKwEjTA

Dr. Stijn Thoolen is the ESA-sponsored medical doctor spending 12 months at Concordia research station in Antarctica. He facilitates a number of experiments on the effects of isolation, light deprivation, and extreme temperatures on the human body and mind. Find this blog post in the original Dutch below. Concordia, November 29, 2020Sunlight: 24 hoursWindchill temperature:…

Marathon to the Moon — Chronicles from Concordia

The Future Technology of Carbon Nanotubes — Learn Something Interesting

The atomic structure of carbon, more specifically naturally occurring diamond, is neatly stacked in a cuboid shape. Carbon nanotubes use carbon but instead stack their atoms in a hexagonal shape. The result is a material which weighs virtually nothing, yet is stronger than any material known upon Earth, including poly-paraphenylene terephthalamide, more commonly referred to […]

The Future Technology of Carbon Nanotubes — Learn Something Interesting

Horse Isle 3 – Ocean Creatures!

There has been another big update on Horse Isle 3: Infinite Wilds. They have brought ocean life to the vast oceans and seas, and there are also now elephants wandering the Savannah biomes! They swim around, and you can get pretty close to them.

Imagine my delight when I found THREE blue whales hanging around my ranch atoll. Of course I kayaked out to meet them. They dove, surfaced, flapped their flukes, and a couple of times opened their mouths at me.

Here is a full list of what has been introduced and where:

+ Blue Whales, Giant Squids (Rare) – Deep Oceans
+ Great Whites, Sword Fish – Temperate oceans.
+ Dolphins, Dugongs, Mola Molas (Rare), Sea Turtles, Hammerheads, and Manta Rays – Warmer oceans.

There is another very special ocean creature that was added January 2021. A sea horse! It carries you through the water at walking speed. You need to use the Diving Bell first, and then activate using the % key. Once mounted, you can climb by using the jump button (Spacebar) and dive by using the crouch button (C). It’s great for exploring underwater! It also costs 25,000 Essence but it’s so worth it.

Brief note on Sea Sponges:

These little guys are really hard to find, but if you’re looking for them, here is where they can be found! They are in Alpine Water, in the deep areas where you find undersea mountains. They look like little round blobs. I found mine at the base of a rock. It’s kind of dark down there and I highly recommend you use a Seahorse so you can travel around and dive more easily.

Here are some pictures I’ve captured! I’ll add more as I find them.

Elephant
Baby Elephant
Blue Whale
Great White Shark with whale in background
Leaping Dolphin
Whale encounter
Hammerhead Shark
Swordfish
Dugong

Interested in joining? 

Click  HERE or go to the HI3 site and put in my user ID, 1023. 

 Whenever you buy your first subscription, you’ll be rewarded with 10 Esroh Essence (good for more energy) and 1000 gold dust to help you along!

Two worlds — Chronicles from Concordia

https://open.spotify.com/embed/track/7DFNE7NO0raLIUbgzY2rzm?si=Md5NQxMwTSmRcMQBfKoQYw

Dr. Stijn Thoolen is the ESA-sponsored medical doctor spending 12 months at Concordia research station in Antarctica. He facilitates a number of experiments on the effects of isolation, light deprivation, and extreme temperatures on the human body and mind. Find this blog post in the original Dutch below. Concordia, October 4, 2020Sunlight: about 14 hours…

Two worlds — Chronicles from Concordia

The First Musician to Routinely Break Their Instrument on Stage — Learn Something Interesting

19th century Hungarian composer Franz Liszt created the modern concept of the single musician concert as prior to this, a single musician (e.g. pianist, violinist, flautist etc.) had never played an entire concert by themselves. Liszt often broke his pianos on stage due to his vigorous style of play, making him the first musician to […]

The First Musician to Routinely Break Their Instrument on Stage — Learn Something Interesting