Type 1 fun, type 2 fun

October 18, 2017

Yesterday I listened to an interview of an astronaut who spent nearly a year on board the space station. I was surprised at something he said. When asked if he had fun he replied: It was a type 2 fun. He then explained: A type 1 fun is like the fun you have on a roller coaster ride. A type 2 fun is one where it’s not fun when you’re doing it, but once it’s over, then you realize how awesome and amazing it was.

Each evening I take a cold shower. It’s a type 2 fun – not fun when I’m taking the shower, but once it’s over I feel fantastic.

Too many people with hidden agendas

October 7, 2017

I have tried many diets. I have tried many exercise routines. I have tried many physical therapy approaches. All were either ineffective or damaging. For example, one diet rocketed my cholesterol level. One exercise routine caused a forearm injury that took me two years to recover from. One physical therapy approach hurt my shoulders and it took weeks to recover from.

I’ve come to realize that:

(1) There are a lot of people on the Internet with hidden agendas. Their agendas aren’t altruistic, to selflessly help people. Instead, their agendas are purely selfish: get more views, so that they can get more sponsors, so that they can make more money.

(2) There are lots of people on the Internet who sound smart, sincere, and expert, but in reality, they are completely unqualified and give really bad advice.

(3) There are very few people on the Internet who have no hidden agenda, who give good, helpful, quality advice, and aren’t out to make a buck off everyone.

I am going to avoid many of the sites that I used to visit.

Always be a beginner

October 7, 2017

In the beginner’s mind, there are many possibilities. In the expert’s mind, there are few.

— Shunru Suzuki (Zen master)

……………………….

I remind myself to always be a beginner, no matter how many years I’ve been working in an area.

A thousand pound bear can run 50 yards in 3 seconds

October 7, 2017

Last week I was on vacation in Alaska. I learned this:

Never run from a bear: A bear can run 50 yards in 3 seconds, or up to 40 mph, faster than a race horse for short distances, and faster than any human, uphill or downhill.

Do actors memorize their lines anymore?

September 15, 2017

Yesterday I saw Phantom of the Opera at the Boston Opera House. I had a great seat – in the second row. Plus, I had binoculars. Looking through the binoculars I could see the actors close up. One thing I noticed, which surprised me, is that every actor had a wire stealthily running into their ear. I wonder what that wire is for? Is someone telling them what to say?

Do actors memorize their lines anymore? Or, do actors simply repeat what they hear through the wire?

By the way, it was a great show.

The key to health, fitness, and intelligence

September 4, 2017

Over the last 10 years I’ve learned that:

  • Eating one super-healthy meal didn’t give me super health
  • Doing one intense workout didn’t turn me into superman
  • Reading one book that forced me to stretch my mind didn’t turn me into an Einstein.

That said, I’ve discovered that:

  • Eating 10,000 super-healthy meals has given me lots of energy, health, and well-being
  • Doing 1,000 intense workouts has given me strength, endurance, and fitness
  • Reading 500 mind-stretching books has expanded my mental capabilities.

I’ve learned that consistency over the long haul is the key to health, fitness, and intelligence.

We overestimate how hard we are working

August 21, 2017

You think that you are exercising really hard, or working really hard at your job. But, in all likelihood, you are probably not working all that hard. And, no matter how hard you’re working, there are people out there that are working harder, a lot harder.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.
– Richard P. Feyman

Stan Efferding on what it means to do a hard leg workout:

Anyone who has ever said that you don’t have to get sore to succeed, has never succeeded. If you’ve never limped out to the parking lot and had to hold onto something to step off the curb, you don’t train hard. If you’ve never driven home and couldn’t bend your legs to get out of the car, you don’t train hard. If you’ve never walked down the stairs sideway, both feet touching every step while holding onto the railing, you don’t train hard. And if your entire body has never seized up – your abs, quads, and hamstrings – waking you up in the middle of the night, screaming in pain, you don’t train hard. And that should tell you everything you need to know about competitive weightlifting. You could look under every rock for the “secret”, but the answer is inside of you already. Are you willing to work that hard, are you willing to suffer that much, are you willing to sacrifice that much? The answer to that question is where you’ll find your next personal best.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTquzDmeAbc

The best exercise and the best diet

August 17, 2017

Question: What is the best exercise?

Answer: The one you’ll do. That is, the one containing movements that you enjoy doing and can sustain doing over the months and years.

Question: What is the best diet?

Answer: The one you’ll do. That is, the one containing foods that you enjoy eating and can sustain doing over the months and years.

Movement is the holy grail of health

August 13, 2017

Sitting is a disease. Movement is the holy grail of health.

Blood flow is the life force that heals our body and removes the waste. No juice cleanse or apple cider vinegar or lemon water will compensate for inactivity. You don’t need 50 different food items, from 12 different countries, or a rare plant or berry from some remote island or jungle. That’s just another example of our desire to find things that do the work for us, passively. Thinking that we can just eat a superfood and that will make up for inactivity, when we know that regular exercise and maintaining a healthy bodyfat level is the real key to long term health.

I take a brisk 10 minute walk after each meal. Research suggests this improves digestion and reduces blood sugars, much better than a single 30 minute walk daily. Science is telling us that consistency is more important than intensity, and frequency is more important than quantity. Getting up an walking around very hour is better than exercising once at the end of the day.

— Stan Efferding

This is an excellent video by Stan Efferding: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqjPuhlfO5w&list=PL8JNg3nrHrLTyntHlHg9ng2RchpWGM5zs&index=21

Sleep more

August 9, 2017

I heard a few days ago that LeBron James slept 12 hours per day during the NBA playoffs.

I remember in grad school my advisor slept 10 hours per day.

Last week I heard a doctor talk about sleep flushing away plaque in the brain, which is essential for preventing Alzheimer’s.

Recently I increased my sleep from 8 hours per night to 8 ½ hours per night. That has been very helpful. I think that I will increase to 9 hours per night (or more).