Fasting for Dummies – I’m the Dummy


Getting old sucks. Trigger warning. Getting old and fat is even worse. Struggling with weight is my thing. I can get lean-ish and then hit the holidays and put on double digit pounds. The weight is trending down right now and a lot of that is due to the concept of intermittent fasting. The information coming out is looking good.

When you dig through the data, it starts to get pretty exciting. It decreases breast cancer risk and recurrence by as much as 36%, improves sleep, has positive effects on markers of systemic inflammation, and regulates blood glucose levels and other aging biomarkers. Furthermore, Dr. Longo’s clinical trials have demonstrated efficacy for type 2 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and cancer patients.

The plan is to eat during a specific window of time, but found myself grabbing a snack or three outside the window. Accountability, I figured “there’s an iOS app for that,” and sure enough there was. Zero by The Kevin Rose.

What is the app? Well, it’s a pretty timer. A timer that tells you when you can have Zero food. Thus the simple name. There’s also some videos spewing science. You can watch those if you’d like, but the main part is the timer and its notifications. Wait, one other important thing, the data tracking. Very important.

The easy way to start is with the default plan, the 13 hour timer. Don’t eat for 13 hours, eat clean the other hours. Oh, and don’t eat after sunset lest you go from Mogwai to Gremlin.

Lawyer talk, don’t do this without talking to a doctor. Seems prudent to say this as getting sued would be a terrible way to spend my time.

via Introducing “Zero,” a new app to help you fast – Medium

Owning Polaroids Older Than Me – Younger Too


Yeah, I have too many oddly shaped cameras. Some pop up, some pop out, some do a combo of the two, some are older than I am, and some still need to be birthed. The one I’m longing for right now shoots them digitally and prints them out on the spot. Yeah, they’ve had something similar for a while now, but look at those photos! They finally have the appropriate frame around them. Yeah, I know it’s fake, but nostalgia can feel very real if you pretend hard enough.

The Pop is just like its predecessors in that it’s not just an instant camera — it’s also a digital camera, meaning you can shoot in either format or both at the same time. What’s refreshing about the specs of the Pop, though, is that this time around the internals actually seem decent on paper.

via The Polaroid Pop prints 3-inch photos and has a 20-megapixel sensor – The Verge

Trapped With Luke Cage



Finished Luke Cage tonight. The first 3/4 of the season was really great. Felt trapped to watch all episodes as the last few episodes dragged themselves out. Wasn’t terrible, but wasn’t good enough for four stars. You keep Cottonmouth around the whole season and I’m adding a star or two. Gotta love ‘ole Remy Danton.

Edit: One more thing… The artists they got to play the stage in Harlem’s Paradise through the season easily get ★★★★★.

via Marvel’s Luke Cage | Netflix

Little Red Keyboard 🎶

I already own that beautiful typewriter. I’d love to own the matching wireless keyboard.

From Lofree’s website:

Lofree is the only mechanical keyboard which comes with your familiar Apple Magic keyboard layout.

I like when my office mates can hear me typing away on a beautiful mechanical keyboard. Let’s just go ahead and buy this.

Goals vs Systems

In theory, I’m a goal setter. 1000 miles running in one year, for example. I went from couch potato to three worn out pairs of shoes. Oh, there’s plenty more goals where that came from too.

I read an interesting post recently and realized I might have been focused on the wrong part of my goal setting. What if it’s less about the goal and more about the system or process of reaching that goal.

Running 1000 miles, for example, didn’t happen because I focused on running 1000 miles. It happened because I had to run about three miles per day. Each day when I got home from work, I pounded out either three, six, or nine miles. Depending on how many days off I took between runs. That was doable and fun.

The difference between goals and systems:

  • If you’re a coach, your goal is to win a championship. Your system is what your team does at practice each day.

  • If you’re a writer, your goal is to write a book. Your system is the writing schedule that you follow each week.

  • If you’re a runner, your goal is to run a marathon. Your system is your training schedule for the month.

  • If you’re an entrepreneur, your goal is to build a million dollar business. Your system is your sales and marketing process.

The question James Clear asks on the post is really great.

If you completely ignored your goals and focused only on your system, would you still get results?

Sure, setting the metrics (goal setting) to build your system is good. But, are you robbing yourself the joy of the journey by focusing on the goals instead of the process? Could be. Are you a bit more aimless because the goal is huge and you’ve never worked out the system to reach it? Let’s fix that.

You Have 168 Hours This Week

Guess what? You only have 168 hours to do everything you need to do this week. No you can’t barter for more hours. You can’t negotiate for more hours. You can’t pretend you have more hours than you actually have.

Every bit of time you spend doing one thing, you’re taking it away from somewhere else. Working late? Time away from family. Answering those emails at midnight? Taking time away from sleep.

99u asked the question, “Where is all your time going?

Jackie Bavaro, Product Manager at Asana, recently shared her insights on how to master one’s time. She outlined a simple way to assess how we’re spending our time. Make two pie charts: one showing how you want to spend your time and another showing how you’re actually spending your time. Open a spreadsheet, and list out your weekly activities until they total 168 hours (the total time allocated to you each week).

Create 3 columns:
1. Activity — Now list the following items under this heading: Sleep, Physical Fitness, Eating/Cooking/Groceries, Work/Career, Watching TV/Internet Surfing/Video Games, Miscellaneous (Errands, House Cleaning, etc.), Family/Friends, Self-Care (Shower, Getting Ready, Daily Routine, etc.), Quiet Time (Reflection, Meditation, Journaling, etc.), Education and Commuting. Feel free to add any other categories not mentioned.
2. # of Hours — Here, list the total estimated hours your spend per week doing each of the corresponding activities.
3. % of time — Each cell should contain a calculation of the # of hours spent on specific activity, divided by the total weekly expenditure of hours, expressed as a percentage.

Begin listing how your time is currently spent each week. Your Total Weekly Expenditure should equal 168 hours and 100% of your allocated time. Now turn this data into a labelled pie chart so that you can visualize your week.

Downtime, You Need It

I took a long break over the holidays. A much longer break than I normally take, but it was needed. After a year of nearly non-stop cranking, it was time to sit back and relax. My family bought an RV and we made our way from freezing cold Oklahoma to sunny and warm Florida.

We stopped frequently at state parks, it was at these forests and rivers I realized I’d not slowed down much over the past several months. I had needed to slow down, to enjoy the fresh air, to sit and think thoughts other than work thoughts.

I recently read an article by Ferris Jabr on Scientific American, and this stood out:

Americans and their brains are preoccupied with work much of the time. Throughout history people have intuited that such puritanical devotion to perpetual busyness does not in fact translate to greater productivity and is not particularly healthy. What if the brain requires substantial downtime to remain industrious and generate its most innovative ideas? “Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets,” essayist Tim Kreider wrote in The New York Times. “The space and quiet that idleness provides is a necessary condition for standing back from life and seeing it whole, for making unexpected connections and waiting for the wild summer lightning strikes of inspiration—it is, paradoxically, necessary to getting any work done.”

This year, make time to not do anything. Take a retreat to not catch up. Rest, relax, and enjoy God’s great creation. Breathe in and breathe out, be healed, and then come home rested and ready to get real work done. I’m living that out right now and hope you will too.

Email “If – Then” Actions

Tim Ferris in Four Hour Work Week on email:

Email communication should be streamlined to prevent needless back-and-forth. Thus, an email with “Can you meet at 4:00 pm?” would become “Can you meet at 4:00 pm? If not, please advise three other times that work for you.”

Get into the habit of considering what “if … then” actions can be proposed in any e-mail where you ask a question.