GoPro Magnet Tether DIY

For those unfamiliar, the GoPro is a small no-frills camera with a built in wide-angle lens that’s designed for action videos. I bought one for motorsport (driving) applications but also for under water and general use.

GoPro Hero 4 with magnet tether on car BMW e30

Several vendors sell suction cup mounts for the camera including GoPro itself. I completely trusted that mount until recently when I removed it after driving in the hot sun and found the mount had very little suction left. It hadn’t failed completely but I decided that a tether might be a good idea.

The problem with tethers is that both ends need to be secured and on a car there just aren’t that many protrusions. A long tether could be used but then the camera could fall and swing around or even hit the ground before running out of slack.

My solution is to use a magnet.

I bought my magnet at Home Depot for $9.00 but Amazon sells several slightly weaker magnets for much less. If you’re really concerned about holding power then you’ll want to order a Neodymium magnet with a counter sunk hole and attach your own hook. You’ll get more holding strength but it will cost a lot more.

Here’s a few observations and tips:

  1. The magnet sticks better to surfaces with high iron and steel content. Works great on my 1989 BMW e30 but may not work as well on a newer car that has less steel.
  2. Use a piece of duct tape with the sticky-side on the magnet to protect the car’s surface.
  3. If you find it difficult to remove the magnet without sliding it sideways then add 3-5 inches of extra duct tape folded over on itself as a strap placed under the magnet and use that to get some leverage when removing the magnet.
  4. Place the magnet as far away and above the camera as possible. If the camera does come loose you want the travel distance to be as short as possible. Always use the shortest tether possible.

Super Magnets 65 lb Magnet

image-2

Super Magnets 65 lb Magnet with ring

GoPro Hero 4 with magnet tether

GoPro Hero 4 with magnet tether on car BMW e30

Of course if you are budget conscious you can skip this whole expense and simply use a shoelace tied in an oval a piece of masking tape.

 

Fine-tune Your Productivity With The Right Desktop Wallpaper and Concentrate

What if you could sharpen your focus or boost your creativity just by changing your desktop wallpaper?

Maybe you can: A 2009 study conducted at the University of British Columbia 1 suggests that colors in the environment improve cognitive functions: red increases focus on linear, detail oriented tasks like clerical work while blue encourages creativity and exploration. Researcher’s suppose that the effect of color on our mood is due to learned associations, such as the peaceful calm of clear blue skies and the red warnings of stop lights.

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There is no evidence that color impairs functions in any way – there’s zero downside to using color to affect your state of mind. Thankfully you don’t have to redecorate your office to benefit from the effect – though that can certainly help. Since the computer screen is the single-most dominant feature in the average office environment just changing your desktop wallpaper is all the splash of color you might need.

However, if you’re serious about optimizing your productivity then choosing the proverbial red or blue pill isn’t good enough: you want both.

My set up has a “no distractions” neutral or black wallpaper and then I use the Mac app Concentrate 2 to change the display background depending on how I want to tweak my focus. Concentrate does this handily and can use images either in the “Desktops” image folder or anywhere else on your Mac.

But Concentrate (go grab version 1.0 which is free to use at the time of this writing) can do much more than swap wallpapers: it can block certain websites and restrict certain applications to insulate you from time thieves and productivity assassins. It can also launch apps, run scripts and of course set the mood with the wallpaper of your choice — all to automatically set up a work environment tailored to you.

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To wrap things up I want to direct you to a great artist if you’re looking for wallpapers. I heartily recommend Louie Mantia for wallpapers and he has some nice Lego-inspired walls in blue and red that will work perfectly for color-optimizing your workspace.

 

Tips For Getting More From Evernote

I’m a big Evernote fan and I’ve been using it since 2009. I love it because it syncs across all my devices. And I’m a control freak and I love it because it doesn’t force my notes and content into a structure that doesn’t suit me. I can build whatever methods, hacks or structure works best.

Here’s three things from my system that I think will help you get more from Evernote too.


Add Emoticons To Note Titles

I think Evernote works best when notes have accurate names and are grouped into logical collections. Obviously. But I have a few notes that get more traffic than all the others. I make those notes first class with a unique emoticon in the note title:

Evernote notes with Emoji in the note title
This is easy to do on your iOS device by enabling a special keyboard and then entering emojis just as you would any other text. To enable the emoji keyboard on iOS:

  1. Open Settings.app and navigate to General – Keyboard – Keyboards.
  2. Tap “Add New Keyboard”.
  3. Scroll down, find and select “Emoji”
  4. Back in Evernote edit a note’s title and tap on the key with a globe on it to switch keyboards.
  5. Find and enter the character you want then switch back to the regular keyboard by tapping the globe button.

Entering emoji in Evernote note titles

This can also be done through the Mac desktop client too but it’s complicated. You will need to find and use CharacterPalette.app to access the emoji character set (it’s buried in /System/Library/Input Methods). Also, you cannot enter emoji directly into the subject line via the desktop client so you need to place the character elsewhere such as the body of your note, then copy and paste it into the title.

Avoid the aggravation and just use the iOS client and the emoji keyboard.

character palette.app

Have an Inbox

Evernote remembers one default notebook and all your new notes go there. Chances are this notebook is already being used for other notes and every time you create one you’re cluttering up your own system. Make a notebook called “Inbox” and set it as the default. Anything in there needs to be filed somewhere else.

Set the default folder via the Evernote preferences.
Evernote preferences default folder

Tag Differently

Unless you’re extremely OCD and already have a filing system for your socks you probably don’t use tagging. And that’s because tagging, generally, sucks – it’s a buried feature for “power users”. The more tags you have the less useful it becomes. It’s high maintenance.

And it’s unnecessary. Evernote has very good search features and notebooks eliminate much of the need for tags. So don’t tag your notes it’s a waste of time. Instead, give each note name a 3 or 4 character prefix that clearly categorizes it and then limit those categories to 6 or less. Here are the prefixes I use:

  • REFR – Material that is static like how-to’s, personal info., household measurements.
  • PLAN – Or call it PROJects. Self explanatory: these notes are live and in-progress.
  • R&D – This is a little granular but before a project becomes a project it’s R&D: a collection of information, clippings and lists. If I were researching the best neighbourhood to buy a house in I might start off with R&D before creating a plan.
  • IDEA – Totally different from R&D and PLANs, IDEAs are all about brainstorming instead of raw information gathering. These notes have a lifespan of hours to years depending on the scope of the subject. IDEAs and R&D often come together to become a PLAN.
  • NOTE – These are context specific field notes. NOTEs have a small lifespan because they always get rolled into a larger document or just go stale

I have one other prefix that I haven’t mentioned because it’s unique to my interests: it’s SELF. I use this suffix to tag personal information and self improvement notes – like fitness, diet, medical history and so on. 50% of my notes revolve around personal development so it gets top-tier placement. Go ahead and do the same with your own thing.

Now to entirely contradict what I said about tags. There is one bonified Evernote tag that I use: “archive”. When a note goes stale I might keep it around but not want it to appear in my search results. I file it in a year-dated notebook for safe keeping and tag it “archive” so I can remove it from search results by appending “-tag:archive” to the search. You can even save that search and run it at anytime.

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Go Forth…

I hope you find these tips as helpful as I do. I’m working on one more article about Evernote that should be ready in the next week or two so please check back or subscribe if you’re interested in more.

 

Every Day Carry: My GoRuck GR1 Backpack 2 Years Later

I bought my GoRuck GR1 backpack almost two years ago in February 2011.

On Saturday as I was pulling it out of my locker at the gym it occurred to me just how well made this thing is. It still looks brand new after two years of daily use for commuting and travel. Brand new except for a 1 inch rip in the outside pocket between the MOLLE straps. And then I reflected on that rip. And how this post could be titled…

How My GoRuck GR1 Saved My Life

“Saved my life” is probably dramatization and “serious injury and hospitalization” is closer to reality, humans are pretty resilient after all. Maybe I would have been fine without the GR1. But I can say that I walked away from a gnarly spill because of my backpack.

Me & Swobo Dixon

Photo: Blurry shot my wife snapped. We’ll just have to deal with it.

It was March 2011 and I was commuting 9 miles to and from work on my bike: a hybrid commuter with an single hub, fully enclosed gear mechanism. I bought it from Swobo, a local bike manufacturer. I’d been picking up a lot of nails with my tires and had at least 5 flats in the preceding month. I was probably tired, careless and handicapped by darkness the last time I’d patched the rear tube and put the wheel back on. And I definitely did not get the chain tension right.

Gallery: Evidence of various flat tires.

I had just pulled through a busy intersection at rush hour and was standing on the pedals, leaning over the front wheel and pedalling with my full weight to get up to speed. I had just cleared the intersection when the chain just came off with no warning, my feet hit the ground and my feet became a pivot point that my bike and the rest of me up and forward like throwing a lever.

I remember my hands hitting the ground (later I noticed that the palms of my gloves were ripped clear through), my head hitting the ground, then seeing sky and my bike flying over me. Then sliding along the ground with so much gravel and dirt scattering with me as if being blown by the wind.

When I stopped sliding I got up and aside from some ugly road rash I was o.k. – amazing! Thank God my travel continued in a straight line or I would have ended up in traffic and definitely would have been hit or killed. Instead I had just been slammed on my back at 20 mph, slid 4 feet and walked away from it.

GoRuck GR1 Backpack Battle Damage

My backpack would have been totally unscathed if I hadn’t stowed a glow-stick flashlight in the outer pocket which made for an irregular protrusion. The plastic that broke through the fabric was scraped off too, no match for the pavement. But all my other stuff – bike tools, iPad and portable hard drive – was fine. Scrapes and cuts not withstanding I was fine too, even went to the gym the following morning.

IMG_4050

Photo: Road rash. The stuff you can’t see runs from my tailbone to collarbone. Oh look, there’s an inner tube in the background!

I love this bag, use it every day and wear it’s battle scars with pride. I cannot praise the build quality of these bags highly enough. Check out the GoRuck GR1 at GoRuck.com

 

Low-Carb Diets and Potassium Deficiency

As an adherent to the low-carb lifestyle (and currently on a cut) I’m acutely aware that I might not getting enough potassium: potassium is required for ketogenesis as well as supporting exercise 1. Can I get enough without eating bananas or other carbs?

Potassium is primarily found in fruit and is essential to our health. The recommended daily amount for an adult male is 4,700mg but less than 2,900mg may be lead to deficiency 2.

What good is potassium?

Potassium deficiency may cause chronic health problems like muscle cramping, weakness, fatigue, arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat) and digestive issues. A deficiency may also cause high blood pressure while a major study suggests that potassium supplements may reduce systolic blood pressure by ~8 points 3. Getting the required daily amount of potassium reduces the chance of stroke and osteoporosis.

Potassium (combined with sodium, which none of us is deficient in due to it’s over-use in prepared foods) is an electrolyte required for muscle contraction – not just in muscles like the biceps but also the heart. Potassium is required to break down carbohydrates and make amino acids from proteins therefore a deficiency of potassium will negatively effect metabolism.

Potassium is essential for ketogenesis (burning fat as energy) and flushed from the body during exercise. These two facts make it especially relevant to athletes and body builders.

How much potassium do I need?

As stated above the recommended daily amount for an adult male is 4.7g. There is no established upper limit but overdosing (called “hyperkalemia”) may be fatal which is why the FDA prohibits supplements from containing more than 99mg of potassium. It would take ~47 pills to reach just the daily requirement! However if kidneys are functioning properly and adequate water is consumed there is little fear of overdosing on potassium derived by natural sources.

There are extreme diets to treat specific ailments (diets that I do not recommend under any circumstances) in which adherents eat 30 bananas (amounting to ~15g of potassium) per day without overdose. However potassium injections would cause overdose in much smaller amounts due to the nature of synthetic potassium.

Bananas by 24oranges.nl

Photo Source: 24oranges.nl on Flickr.

Because it’s impossible for me to meet the RDA on my diet I did some research into the absolute minimum requirements for potassium. I found one pertinent value:

The Estimated Minimum Requirement for an adult male on a 2000 calorie diet is 2,000mg. 4 This amount is considered break-even because the body flushes out ~2g of potassium per day.

Meeting the potassium EMR qualifies as “barely enough” and someone on a ketogenic, low-carb diet with an active lifestyle will definitely need more to break even.

What Are the Sources of Potassium?

My research initially turned up a couple lists of so-called potassium rich foods that were too edited to be relevant to low-carb diets. These tables might be useful to tailor a diet solely around potassium but less helpful when factoring multiple dietary goals like low-carb, gluten-free, diabetes, high blood pressure or low cholesterol. Here is the first list I found:

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Source: How Stuff Works

The list above has a lot of focus on grains and fruits as the best sources of potassium – which they are. But most food contains at least a little potassium so it’s important to consider everything to get an accurate baseline. I calculated my total potassium intake using the following resources:

The food listed below represents my normal diet while cutting. I may add some fat, eat chicken instead of tuna or occasionally have a fatty protein-style burger but this is my foundation:

My Potassium Intake

From the above table it’s clear that I am falling well short of the RDA for potassium though I am exceeding the EMR of 2,000mg. I need more potassium.

Supplementing

As long as I’m dieting there’s no way for me to reach the minimum potassium requirement by food alone. I’ve been taking ~300mg of Now Foods Potassium Citrate 99 mg Capsules to get my daily intake up to 2.9g which is unlikely to cause any negative side effects. I will be increasing my supplementation to ~600mg on days that I work out in order to balance potassium losses due to exercise and I think I can do this without any worries of overdose as long as I don’t deviate significantly from my diet (i.e. eat several potatoes or bananas).

If you’re also on a calorie or food restricted diet you should make your own calculations to determine if you’re meeting the baseline potassium requirement. Then adjust your diet or talk to your doctor about supplementing.

 

Short Circuiting Impulse Purchases

I can’t browse anywhere on the internet without falling in love with a new knife, wallet or watch. I can’t look up a recipe without lusting after a new toaster, sugar bowl or some tin camping cups. Photos of other people’s pocket dumps inspire me to acquire vintage leather keychains, zippo lighters (I don’t smoke) and hand made folding knives. Even worse is the stuff I feel compelled to buy and will never use: items for robustly outfitted zombie apocalypse “bug out bags” that contain everything from rain gear to emergency cigars and bourbon. Yeah, I have this disease really bad.

But the speed bump for a runaway shopping cart is simple and easy.


Make A List

A shopping list can be the best way to avoid impulse purchases. It works for groceries right? I keep a single note on my phone as an inbox for every item I want to buy. It’s not a complicated system, the latest thing (and URL for purchase) just goes at the top of the list.

Here’s how it works: Adding that bespoke guitar effects pedal (or whatever it is) that will rejuvenate my under-nourished musical project to the list makes me feel like I’ve captured both my desire and the specifics of the thing well enough that I can carry on without divulging my credit card number right this instant. It’s written down, I’ve done something with the thought and I can let it go. Anyone will familiar with G.T.D. will know this works great at freeing your mind and it works with purchases as well as to-dos.

shopping-list

The Cooling Off Period

By the time I get back to my shopping list the impulse has usually diminished enough that I’m unlikely to pull the trigger right away. For once procrastination does something good! My problem has never gotten so bad that I’ve needed to declare a mandatory “Cooling Off Period” but if you’re a serial shopper then consider it.

The great thing about the list is that I can come back to it one, two or more paychecks later and prioritize all the “wants” I’ve collected. If I have some discretionary cash at hand I can shop based on whatever is most compelling or choose to save up for a bigger thing on the list. I keep one list for the entire year – nothing gets deleted and things I do buy move to a special list for reference. It’s an interesting exercise in self-analysis to look back at all the things I wanted, so few of which hold any lasting interest for me. Good thing I didn’t buy that pocket flask I wanted two weeks ago. Yeah I don’t even drink. But there’s also things on that list that I really want and it’s great to remember those. Like yeah, I still want a leather jacket if I could just find the right one of course. Maybe I should do a web search for that again.

Here’s the philosophical crux of the argument: Good taste is discriminating. That means not buying everything you see and want and cluttering up your life.

Sticky Wants

If a cooling off period isn’t enough to abate the compulsion to shop then there’s another trick: Sticky Wants. I always have some big project that needs a LOT of money to get started, an upcoming trip or a strong desire to destroy debt. By putting that thing at the top of my list I’m reminded that anything I buy from the list puts me further away from that goal. This helps keep priorities where they should be.

Shipping and Discounts

The list helps reduce impulse and makes shopping more deliberate so I can plan better: like bundling all my Amazon or BodyBuilding.com orders into one so that I can save on shipping or wait until there’s a sale. No need to elaborate on this point, I think it’s easy to understand.

The shopping list isn’t only for avoiding impulse purchases and saving money on shipping: It’s a great tool for self analysis and concentrating money where it does the most good.

 

How To Take A Cold Shower And Why You Should Do It

Photo Credit: marius.zierold
Photo Credit: marius.zierold on Flickr.

The samurai called it “Misogi,” exhaustive ascetic rituals that included breath training, sleep deprivation and standing under thundering waterfalls. The goal was to purify the body, reflect on the self, to clear and focus the mind. To become the enlightened warrior.

There’s a dozen health benefits to taking a cold shower but in the spirit of full disclosure my motivation runs shallower than improving my circulation or detoxing: I take cold showers because it’s bad ass. Cold showers make you strong and most people just can’t do it. That was impetus enough for me to try it and though I’ve been taking cold showers for two weeks now I’m already a convert.

There is no going back.


If you’re still taking hot showers then I know how it is: you turn on the shower and let it warm up for a couple minutes. Before getting in you test the water because you don’t want it to be too hot. You soap up, rinse off then spend a few minutes contemplating life and your day before resigning yourself to getting out.

Grudgingly.

If this is your morning shower then it probably seems like things are only going to get less comfy from here. And sure there’s a time for comfy but unless you’re sick, sore or stressed out then your daily shower is not that time. Actually, if you’re any of those things then a cold shower is exactly what you need! A cold shower is practical, efficient, to the point. It makes you stronger, feel better and makes you happier. Here’s how to train yourself to take cold showers:

  1. Turn the water on, set to cold. Some people will tell you to start warm and decrease the temperature slowly each time you shower, then start a little colder each day. Yes, that method will eventually result in taking a cold shower but you’re going to miss out on the heart-pounding exhilaration that you only experience fully the first couple times you take a cold shower. It doesn’t have to be ice cold, just cold.
  2. Feet first. Your feet will adjust to the temperature fastest so get them under the spray and work your lower body under the water as quickly as you can. By the time the water is splashing your stomach you’ll be looking for a distraction so…
  3. Hands second. Get your hands and arms wet, then splash water over your torso. By now your legs and front should be thoroughly wet.
  4. Head under! You’re going to be be breathing heavily and involuntarily so be careful not to inhale any water through your nose or mouth. You’re going to feel alright, like hey I can do this, but you’ve forgotten part of your body…
  5. Back last. Millions of nerve fibres are routed through your spine so getting your back wet is the hardest part. You’re going to feel a lot of sensations, almost an electrical charge crackling up and down your back. Get this wet last then finish washing and scrubbing. Good job, you’ve taken a cold shower.

If you take a cold shower every day you should notice the water “getting warmer” within a week. After a month of this it should be a solid habit and you’ll feel smug whenever someone talks about taking a hot shower after the gym or whatever. There’s lots of biological benefits to taking a cold shower. But you’ll notice the psychological upside the most.

  • Wake Up: The freezing water is going to get your heart pounding, lungs pumping and eyes open. This is the cure for sleepy mornings. A change in body temperature is a signal to your brain that you are changing states – in this case changing from a state of low energy to high.
  • Better Mood: Just like meditating, but quicker. Your brain and body will release a lot of chemicals, you’ll get a high from the rush of adrenaline and increased blood flow and you will feel better after your cold shower. Cold showers have been known to alleviate depression and it’s not just a placebo effect.

Occasionally the topic will come up in conversation and you’ll know it’s not the right time to tell everyone in attendance that hot showers are for weaklings – and you’re not going to be a weakling. Pearls before swine and so forth. In those cases it’s best to pretend like you’re nature boy and talk about all the health benefits of cold showers. If you search for information on the health benefits of cold showers you’ll find nothing but glowing praise from health practitioners who cite various Swiss and German studies dating back to the early 1900s. I tried to find and read these studies for myself but couldn’t so take everything that follows with a pinch of skepticism.

  • Testosterone: “Increased hormone production”. Your whole endocrine system, adrenals and thyroid benefit from a cold shower but check this out: a hot bath 3x a week is so effective at killing the sperm in a man’s testicles that it can result in impotence. Taking cold showers, and avoiding hot ones, can help you conceive. And if you want to be a more motivated person then you need functioning glands producing lots of hormones.
  • Cleansing Breath: To combat the stress and shock your body goes through something called vasoconstriction. Your blood vessels constrict pushing blood out of your muscles and extremities and into your core. You breathe more deeply during this state in order to oxygenate your system. You’ll feel better, more energetic and awake. As an added bonus this improves circulation and helps your muscles recover from exercise more quickly.
  • Skin and Hair: Hot water dries out your skin and hair. Cold water has a detoxifying effect and causes your skin’s pores and hair’s cuticles to squeeze shut keeping dirt and oil from collecting.

There’s at least half-a-dozen other physiological benefits that I’m skipping right over from increased metabolism to assisting the lymphatic system but the point is you could be healthier, fitter and tougher if you just substitute your hot shower for a cold one. Give it a try, I’m sure you’ll love it.

 

You come with your mind in a million places and leave with your mind as one and your body in a million pieces.

I really felt this after leaving the gym this morning.

 

Goodbye Posterous

I’ve been using and recommending Posterous for two years but on April 30th, 2013 Posterous is shutting down. I’m going to miss it.


Autoposting to multiple sites. Posting via web or email. Lots of clean and easily customizable templates. It was so attractive to me because I’m busy with my career, busy with my young family, busy with my hobbies and damn just too busy to divert any time to site management. Posterous seemed liked a good fit and heck, Leo Laporte was always talking them up on MacBreak Weekly so I figured they were here to stay.

The demise of Posterous puts a spotlight social media’s myriad problems: They’re great for collecting our content, status updates, photos and essentially journaling our lives. They’re great for aggregating our content with other content easily and without third-party programs like RSS readers. But they eventually go away and if they don’t take our content with them entirely when they die then trap it inside a backup file we have to manually pry our stuff out of and sculpt and hammer back into something we can use again. And that’s saying nothing of the supposed real benefit of social media which is all the lost connections with the other users.

I’m disappointed that Twitter couldn’t figure out what to do with Posterous. But I’ve realized that if I value something then I should control it even if that will cost me more money and time in the long run.

Goodbye Posterous. Yours was a cautionary tale.

 

Diet & Exercise: Putting It All Together For 2013

Over the last 3 years I’ve been on a health and fitness journey that has changed who am I am in every way. I’ve read lots of books and articles and tried a half dozen diets and exercise routines both conventional and experimental. I’ve learned a lot about fitness and nutrition but greater than that I’ve learned about myself.

In 2013 I will turn 40 years old. Though my weight is at a 3 year high water mark of 194 lb. I don’t look like I did the last time I weighed this much but the fact remains: I am overweight. There are excuses, such as a shoulder injury that kept me out of the gym for 6 months, but the blame is squarely on me. This seems like a good time to make a plan.


Short Term Goals (1 Year)

Diet: Return to the low-carb diet I know and love. In the past I’ve proclaimed that this is not a lifestyle diet but now I know what it can and should be just that. The metrics to hit are:

  • reduce body fat while maintaining or slightly increasing muscle
  • lower overall cholestorol count and avoid going on statins

I’m going to slightly modify the ketogenic (low carb) diet that I’ve done in the past to target my cholestorol count more effectiviely. So the point form diet looks like this:

  • fish oils 3x daily
  • multi-vitamins 1x daily
  • caffeine daily (for a couple months I’ll be taking a fat burner)
  • green drink 3x daily
  • grapefruit 1x daily
  • oatmeal 1x on training days only
  • no more than 70g fat daily
  • no more than 80g carbohyrdrate daily (not including fibre)
  • minimum 30g fibre daily
  • minimum 120g protein daily
  • eating clean with at least 3 portions of dark greens per day
  • track everything (LoseIt)

My initiation to this diet was through The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman. That book really introduced me to food restrictions and paved the way for better diets. Tim’s “slow carb” diet differs from my new diest in a few key areas:

  • food restrictions (no simple starches, no sweets) but otherwise “all you can eat”
  • cheat day once a week, again “all you can eat”
  • beans and other complex carbs are on the menu

I’ve done this diet but saw only modest weight loss that was accounted for by calorie restrictions and not due to any magic formula. This, with other experiences has led me to come to a few conclusions:

  • on a high-carb (normal) diet I can gain weight even while restricting calories
  • there is no way to cheat nature: weight loss = calories in – calories out
  • somehow, carbs break the above rule
  • cheat days are zero progress days
  • cheat days make other days seem dismal

The model for my current diet comes from two sources:

Both books outline what is essentially a ketogenic (low carb) diet that has been around in Western society for decades, maybe even hundreds of years. The diet advocated in these two sources is essentially the same with the following deltas:

  • Mark breaks down the diet into 3 allotments of macronutrients based on lean body mass
  • Mark allows a “low fat high carb” meal once a week
  • Mark prescribes calorie restriction for weight loss, even on the “carb up” day
  • Dr. Gundry puts a finer point on the inclusion of greens in the diet
  • Dr. Gundry does not put emphasis on calorie restriction

My plan is to combine the best of these two diets and make it my lifestyle. I will probably allow myself a cheat meal (not a whole day) once I hit my target weight / body fat %. That meal will probably be a sushi dinner once a week.

Exercise: My doctor wants me to get 45 minutes of cardio per day to lower my cholestorol. I don’t want to do this, at least not until I try to deal with it through diet. I am not a fan of excessive cardio and it bores me. However, while cutting calories I will be in the gym for 45 minutes a day and if I have time left over after my weight routine then I’ll hop on the rowing machine, stationary bike or grab a jump rope for whatever time remains.

Long Term Goals (10 Years)

Maybe I’m deluding myself, but a man needs a dream:

  • I want to be able to carry my daughter no matter her age
  • avoid all chronic conditions, require no medications
  • maintain 11% or less body fat
  • build 1-2 lb. muscle per year