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Everything posted by james452

  1. Breakfast, always eggs. Usually a veggie omelette with butter. Sometimes I'll have bacon. Sometimes sweet potato. As for the weirdest stuff I've put in a smoothie, boiled sweet potato and raw eggs. It's actually pretty delicious.
  2. Where abouts does this 10-15 rule come from? If you have a good article/book on it, then I'd gladly read it to find out more.
  3. I wish I had my own home gym. The price isn't the issue, it's that my girlfriend and I currently rent and there isn't anywhere we can safely set it up (unless we want huge holes in the floor or for our equipment to rust outside in the rain). Awesome to see you got the power rack. Have you purchased anything else for your home gym? The way I see it, the two most important things to buy that are high quality are the squat rack (which will stop you from dying), and a barbell. Save money for those, spend less on the other things (unless you plan on dropping your weights, then get bumper plates)
  4. My girlfriend falls in love with me every time I make this, plus I use this whenever I have guests over. It's basically my signature dish so I'll happily share it with everyone. Ingredients: 1 large cauliflower (green parts/stem removed) 1 large leek 1 can (240mL) of coconut cream (get 100% coconut if you can) 1 large onion 2 tbsp of stock (chicken or veggie stock works good, can be liquid or powder) Method Dice up the onion and leek. Roughly chop the cauliflower or rip it into individual pieces. In a large pot, "fry" up the onion and leek in an oil of your choice. Stir the onion and leek until it's translucent (looks kind of clear). Add in cauliflower and mix it in with the other ingredients. Add in stock (I use Vegeta branded stock which is really delicious) Pour in enough water until the ingredients are 80% covered (too much water makes it too thin/watery) Bring to boil, and simmer for 20 minutes or until cauliflower is soft. Take off heat. Blend ingredients using a hand blender (or a blender if you'd like) After blending, mix in the coconut cream. There are two ways you can mess this up, not using enough stock, or by adding too much water. Ideally the soup should feel thick and creamy. If you get this, then you have the best soup ever made. Optional: Mix some sweet potato in if you wanted to bump up the calories for this. My girlfriend adds butter into her soup to bump up the fat.
  5. Just started with the A Song of Ice and Fire series and yes, I love it. I think that having watched 7 seasons of the show, that reading it now is great as it's basically a catch up of the last 7 years (with storylines that diverge and completely different to the TV show so I get extra stories). My biggest surprise is how engaging the writing is. Despite knowing everything that is going to happen, I keep finding myself wanting to read more. I feel like this is the first book I've read where each chapter is from the viewpoint of a different character and it is such an interesting writing style. 60% of the way through Book 1 and will be heading straight into book 2 after that. Concurrently reading Marvel Comics through their Marvel Unlimited app. Reading from 2015 to the current comics available.
  6. One rule I learnt when it comes to money is to make spending decisions based on the money you already have. Just because your friend might get a new better paying job, doesn't mean they will. You wouldn't want to get the new apartment, then find out they didn't get the job, and all of a sudden you are stuck paying all this extra money on rent. Another thing to do is consider what your financial priorities are. If it's to live in a nice apartment, then do it, but you have to sacrifice spending money in other areas (such as buying expensive furniture or eating out every day).
  7. First thing I want to say, I like your savings goal, owning a restaurant would be awesome and I wish you the best of luck towards that. I guess the best way to do this is to figure out how much you actually spend each month/year, then that will tell you how much you can set aside for those savings goals. An easy way to figure this out is to use an "Allocation System" and to track your spending. This is actually harder than you think because you need to remember the irregular expenses (such as paying for car insurance once a year or receiving a larger gas bill in winter). It will take a few months of tracking to figure out how much you spend, and after that it will become easier. The question I then have to ask is, How much do you want to achieve those 3 goals? If those goals are really important to you, then I believe you'll do anything it takes to achieve them. As you are doing a college degree, I recommend using the YNAB app/site to set goals and track expenses. As a student, you get 12 months free (which is what I signed up for). Alternatively people say Mint is a good site/app to use (it isn't available in Australia so I haven't tried it out). If you don't want to figure this all out yourself/try an app, then I suggest booking an appointment with a financial adviser. Go to that appointment with your set of goals and they can help set up a system to help you achieve those goals.
  8. Sounds like you're doing a lot of things very well. Whilst you're still a student, take advantage of the free/discounted options available. I love that you can use your college gym for free. Technically I'm still at university doing my PhD, so I'm still a student, except I get paid to do it. One thing I started doing this year was tracking my finances properly, and I played around with a few apps. Go ahead and try out YNAB (you need a budget). Best thing about being a student, is you get 12 months free. And they have many many Youtube videos to teach you what you need to know for budgeting/saving/financing/how to use credit cards/etc. I found using that app to be way more effective than any other budget attempt. My savings goal used to just be "Save $10,000 in 12 months". Now it's, "Put aside $100 a month to pay for my car insurance in July". and "Save $500 to buy a new bike". and "Set aside $400 every month to pay for groceries". So now instead of having 1 vague savings goal, I have about 20 smaller goals for specific things.
  9. Awesome epic quest. I'll be subscribing to this forum so I can get updates on how these quests go. One quest that stuck out to me, "Build business website by November 1st 2017". What type of business are you planning on setting up?
  10. How lucky for you that I do a PhD in Maths, and I teach Maths to uni students (so I basically had to reply to your thread). Best way to learn maths is by doing. This means solving lots of problems so you can figure out what parts you don't understand, and also get quicker at solving problems. A good resource for that is Wolfram Alpha Problem Generator Another great resource for notes and worked examples is Paul's Online Notes. Think of that site as the text version of Khan Academy. Important: One thing I see that my students do wrong, is that they spend too much of their time watching lectures and copying down worked examples. To get good at maths, you need to use trial and error. When you get a problem, try to solve it using any method. If it doesn't work, try another method. And so on. This is why I like the Problem Generator from Wolfram Alpha. You do one problem, if you get it wrong, learn what you did wrong, then do another problem. The method I see my students use is, look at the problem, stare at it for 20 minutes, look at the solutions, write the answer out (by pretending you didn't look at the solutions), then move on to another problem having learnt nothing. Hopefully that made sense to you and please keep me posted on how your maths is going.
  11. Very nice. I was going to suggest you pick the one task that annoys you the most but it looks like you did that yourself. (also please use more Gremlins pictures ) My partner and I are renting so we are quite limited in what we can do to our place. One thing we did recently is sell/throw out/donate a lot of crap sitting around the house. Our house look too cluttered and that creates a lot of stress for me. Having a lot of that gone and seeing empty space just brings peace to me. Our current project to work on is preparing for summer here in Australia. We're scouting some cheap second hand outdoor furniture so we can sit and eat outside on sunny days. Even looking at getting a little spit roast bbq. We're even considering starting a little veggie garden (mostly to grow tomatoes because we eat a lot of tomato salad).
  12. I've done 2 runs on it so it's good Went for a 16km hike near the bay the other day. Proper trail + hills + echidnas and a not friendly tiger snake (we had to make a big detour because of it). I've been off work the last week. I've been spending time at the beach with friends. I've also spent a lot of time planning my 2017 goals in detail by following the free worksheets from Live your Legend. I'll be working on building one habit a month that will help me reach each of my goals for the year. My biggest goal is to get my weight below 90kgs and keep it there. I definitely have enough fat to lose to get to that weight. Realistically I could possibly get to the 80-85kg range, but I won't know until I get below 90kgs. At that point, I'll get a body fat scan done, plus I'll look at where my running is to determine how much lower I should go. I decided to put a big financial risk on reaching the above goal. Putting money on the line seems to help people achieve their goals so I'll be doing it as well. I have 23 weeks to lose the 10kgs necessary, so nice and slow weight loss. It's about 0.5kg a week. Every week I don't reach that goal, I have to give away $100 to charity. I'm using StickK for it. If anyone wants to be my referee for it (you just make sure I send you a picture of my current weight to make sure that I don't lie), then let me know.
  13. Update Foot pain. Ouch. Started working on calf and ankle mobility which I think is helping. However there was enough foot pain to cut my run short. Physio did some stuff to it, I might wait until next Wednesday before trying my next run. No running = sad. However I am on a great streak with my step goal. Currently at 21 days so I'm still getting plenty of walking in. I think I might replace my running with swimming until I feel it's okay to start running again. The biggest lesson from this is my run technique was not as great as I thought it was, but I think I know how I can improve it. Weight has...gone up a bit which is unfortunate. It's not obvious where that came from. Hence I pulled out my old simple meal plan. I think I was buying lunch too many times and not cooking enough. This plan should be fine for now. Meanwhile currently writing a paper that I may be able to publish in the next 2 months. It is coming along really well. I'm writing what I can, however I will have to stop when it comes to reporting about my simulations, because I need to make graphs for it, that I can then describe. One of my goals at the start of the year was to publish a paper as part of my PhD. That won't happen this year, but is likely to happen soon
  14. The good I've reached my steps goal 15 days in a row. My record is 16 so I have a good chance of beating this. Recently I beat my record for most steps in a week and in a month (which took me 5 months to beat). This is one thing I like about Garmin watches, the statistics and records. It certainly encourages me to walk more so I can set a new record. The bad I've been getting a million blood noses this week. I generally get them when the weather gets warmer, but not this frequently. I had one during my workout yesterday so I had to stop it there. I am avoiding my run today as the physical stress on my body, plus the fact it will raise my body temperature could cause another blood nose. Thankfully I have this nasal oil spray that my doctor prescribed so we'll see how it goes. I may do my run tomorrow instead and do my gym workout on Sunday.
  15. Steps = Tiring? I've noticed recently that after reaching my step goals (currently around 11,500 per day), that my body feels pretty tired, like reaching my steps counted as a decent workout for me. That's cool, it must mean I'm pushing my body and it's improving everyday. It was just peculiar because I only expected this to happen on either high step days (15,000+), or days I did a run, or lifting days, in which case I'd be tired from the vigorous exercise instead. The big plus is it makes my body tired so getting to sleep is easier. When I wake up, my body feels great even if my feet were super sore last night from all the walking, after sleep they feel great.
  16. I'm liking your 100 mile goal for the month, good luck with that 20 mile run on December 26th. Do you happen to have a Strava or Garmin Connect profile? I'd be interested in following you so I can see how your runs go.
  17. Time for an update Fitness Started back on stronglifts on Saturday. Light weights so the workout was quick Running is going along nicely. I think after 2 weeks, I'll add a 4th run in which will just be a simple, easy, fun 20 minute run. My gym closes for 2 weeks starting on the 22nd. It's part of their annual shutdown, one of the perks of going to a uni gym. My girlfriend and I will have to be creative in deciding on alternative workouts. Foods It's definitely been going a lot better since seeing a therapist about eating habits and depression. I've mostly made good choices. Weight is sitting in the 97kg range. This is good. Next goal is for it to be in the 96kg range. The danger is now that we're in the Christmas season, there'll be a lot more "not good" food just sitting around. I should be fine with it this time around. PhD Started to write my first paper. Results feel close, like I need to fix a couple of things and then it should be perfect. Reading My weekend was full of a lot of activities, hence I was only able to do a little bit of reading each day.
  18. Long answer: Go watch this video and read "Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance". Short answer: Our body contains about 2,000 calories of glycogen, and 10,000-40,000 calories of fat. It makes sense, especially for long endurance athletes to rely on your fat stores for energy instead of your glycogen. This definitely applies to marathoners/ultramarathoners. It may or may not apply for elite athletes. They need all the energy so they can maintain a high power output. If your diet is low carb/keto, then it is easier to access your fat stores for training because your body is used to using fat for energy. For a carby diet, then it's a lot harder, which might explain why you struggle with your fasted training runs. My runs are mostly in the morning. I find having a coffee and some water before my run to be really helpful. I'm experimenting with having bulletproof coffees to see if it affects my run, however I think it's the coffee that affects it more than the fat in the coffee. Anyway I've been attempting to put my body into keto the last few months. The issues are my regular enough binge eating that has been messing with it. I'm working through those issues with a therapist, plus my girlfriend is helping with it. My super long term goal is to become an ultramarathoner (100km, 100 mile runs). That will take a few years, and I figured it's best to try out keto now to see how it goes.
  19. My main quest for last month's challenge was to start running again. I went back to the Couch to 5k program and started from scratch. Now I'm at the end of Week 4 of the program (I missed a week of running due to a minor back injury) and I'm glad that I started running again. Quest 1: MOAR RUNNING! Finish week 6 of Couch to 5k, then move into a 10k training program Run 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) Reach step goal everyday (10,000+ steps) Quest 2: ALL THE FAT Stick to a keto based diet 90% of the time. Exceptions are family meals on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day where I can eat whatever. Quest 3: Less sleep more work Awake by 7am Mon-Fri In bed by 10pm Mon-Fri Do not leave the office before 6pm Mon-Thurs Quest 4: Read ALL the books Finish reading "Feeling Good" Read "Sherlock #1" manga in Japanese 30 minutes of reading everyday Explanation for quest 1 Running, I loved it and it's been my favourite fitness activity, hence I want this to become the focus of my training. I think I'll get back to stronglifts so I get more quad work done and I'll do that 3 times a week. As my running gets better, then I'll transition to a 5 times running and stronglifts twice a week type of program. Right now I've been on a 3 run 3/4 lifting schedule. As for my step goals, I broke my PB for most steps in a month in November (360,000). I broke that by reaching my step goal for 26/30 days. If I keep that consistency, I'll easily break it as my step goal automatically increases when I reach my goal. Plus the running makes it easier now. Explanation for quest 2 This is also for running. It seems that a high fat low carb diet is really good for runners. If I eventually want to move into ultramarathons, then it's basically a requirement to be keto if I want to optimise performance. The side goal is weight loss. Down about 3kgs in the last month. I've started seeing a psychologist to work on eating habits. Explanation for quest 3 I'm more productive in the mornings, so the aim is to always be up early. It also means I can fit my run in the morning which is what I prefer. As for work, I have my 12 month PhD review coming up soon, so I need to put in some extra effort. The office is closed for 2 weeks over Christmas, so I'm putting the effort in now so I don't need to come in during that break. Explanation for quest 4 I do lots of reading now. Mostly Marvel comics. I'm putting a slight pause on that so I can read more books. "Feeling Good" is a self help/cognitive behaviour therapy book that I'm about 20% of the way through. As for Sherlock, my girlfriend bought me 3 of the manga written in Japanese so I can practice my japanese reading. Each manga is one episode of the Sherlock series with Benedict Cumberbatch, which I have seen so I'm excited to read the manga.
  20. Whoo did 5 sets of 4 pullups yesterday. It makes me happy that I can do them at my heaviest body weight ever. This makes me more excited about losing some weight, because think of how many I can do when I lose 10kgs (Being below 90kgs is my first weight goal). Also did about 4x10 second holds on the rings as part of the NF rings training. These hurt. I'm going to keep at these before I move to assisted ring dips. The goal is 30 second holds.
  21. Had a good time away. The Grampians were designed for hiking, hiking, and more hiking. One hike was 80% full of rocks that we had to walk over to reach a beautiful view that was ruined by crazy strong winds (I don't like being on the edge on the top of a mountain 600m up). Another hike was easier and led us to a beautiful waterfall. In classic Australian fashion, we ate a meal of kangaroo, emu and crocodile. Yumyum. First thing I did when I got back was go for a run. Couch to 5k, week 1 day 2. As much as I'd love to do a lot of sprint work, my weight is a bit too high so I don't want to risk damaging my calves again because of too much pressure from running.
  22. I realise I won't be achieving my running goals this week, which is okay because my girlfriend and I are going away this weekend for our anniversary. We're staying in a mountain range and we already have quite a few hikes planned. Hence the running quests this week are replaced with hiking quests. As for my waking up early quest, it's been working well. I set my alarm to 7:30, then 7:15 the next day and 7am after that. I find I'm waking up just before my alarm so that's working well. I'm now going to adjust it back by 5 minutes every morning. I would like to be up by 6am most days. Being up at 5am would be even better because that gives me the opportunity to either fit in a morning workout or spend time on side projects or both. My 10% of not paleo this week came in the form of dinner yesterday. It was my mother's birthday so we got chicken and chips (from the place with the best chips in the world), plus birthday cake. Thankfully it was a small piece, my girlfriend even offered her piece to me which I rejected. This weekend should be good for diet. My girlfriend does keto so that makes things easier.
  23. This morning has started off well. Got up out of bed at around 7:27am. Yesterday was a bad binge so I decided to do some intermittent fasting today to compensate. Hence my lunch will be a big one. The main reason for my getting up early quest is I turn up to work later than I'd like, which is okay because I'm doing a PhD so I decided when and where I want to work. However I find I am most productive in the mornings, especially when I get to work really early at 7am. Plus the easiest way for me to add running to my training is to get it done in the morning, so I have the evening free for other fun activities like reading comic books or playing videogames. Started to use the pomodoro technique again. This is mostly to ensure that I spend those 30 minutes everyday on my blog, japanese study and other activities that don't get enough time.
  24. As the title suggests, this 4 week challenge is focused on changing my body from that of a warrior into a ranger. For context, I have spent the last 7 months doing a mostly strength program. Prior to that I was doing Crossfit for 3 years with a bit of focus on running. I stopped Crossfit earlier this year, signed up for the gym at uni, started doing Stronglifts, then went to 5/3/1 training. Throughout that time, I have missed the joys of running, swimming and cycling. After seeing photos pop up in my feed of people who ran in the Melbourne Marathon, I have decided that I want to start doing that again. I always knew that running would be my lifelong activity, and that strength training would just help improve my speed and endurance. Hence now it's time for me to get back into it by taking it easy. Currently I lift weights at the gym 4 times a week. I'm looking at transitioning towards 3 days of running/swimming with 2-3 days of lifting. For now, I'll stick with 4 lifting days, and I'll add two running/swimming days. The reason I mention both running and swimming, is mostly to do with weight. I've put on 10kgs since I last ran, which I was already at a bit of a high weight for running. Hence I'm worried about injuring my calves because of the extra weight (which is a common occurrence for me). Therefore replacing some swimming with running will help with that. Plus I kind of want to enter a 1km ocean swim in January so I need to be consistent with it. Diet Stick to paleo 90% of the time. If I can't eat paleo, try to make the meal as high protein/fat as possible and minimise carbs. No chocolate/sugary treats. This counts as the paleo quest but I need to be specific with this as I can easily eat too much chocolate. Fitness Run/swim twice a week. Level Up Your Life Wake up before 7:30am everyday. Spend 30 minutes a day on developing my blog. These quests are new things I want to incorporate. Below are a list of some of the habits I already do, so I didn't want to list them as part of my challenge quests. 30+ minutes of Japanese study a day 5/3/1 training 4 times a week at the gym Drink lots of water
  25. Well done on your progress so far (any progress no matter how small is progress). Seeing as you're an IT person, have you read about Mike/Dilnad He joined up a year ago with the academy and as a result has gone through some amazing changes.
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