Friday, December 31, 2010

Is weight loss in your new year's resolution?

We're coming to the end of the eating extravaganza that is December. In our household we have 2 birthdays as well as Christmas and New Years as excuses to over-indulge. This year we had a landmark birthday, 2 xmas suppers and we have plans for both Dec 31 and Jan 1. We should be making resolutions to lose weight in starting in January, especially as we look forward to our late winter holiday, but we aren't.

I'm going to be rifting off several posts by Yoni Freedhoff the first being the fallacy that one gains 3 to 5 kgs over Christmas. Most people only gain 1kg but that's a hard 1kg to lose again. It adds up so if it's not the New Years resolution, what to do? Lifestyle change is always the answer!

My SO and I have always approached weight maintenance differently. Him by decreasing calories from fat and me by exercising. He does a lot of lip service to aerobic exercise and I do the same for food choices. I do exercise because I really enjoy it and I can eat what I want. We both lost around 7 kg between 1998 and 1999 and have kept it off. Reading the most up-to-date research, it seems that his is the more effective method. Not gaining weight is much easier than having to take it off. For us this means label reading and portion measurement until we get the idea of what a serving size is...and it's always much smaller than anticipated. We also always drink diet pop - carbonated chemical soup may as well be calorie-free since it's already nutrition free.

For me, it all goes sideways when I fall into the magical idea of weight set-points. That's the idea that it doesn't matter what I eat, I won't gain weight. Uh huh. Last time I tried that I gained 3 kilos from eating pub food after golf. Apparently some people use the idea of a societal weight set point as an excuse for their weight. Actually the idea of a lifestyle set point which makes a lot more sense. It's why we quickly loose some weight after holidays as we return to our normal eating habits.

So what about those resolutions? Mine is to continue to educate myself about nutrition and health and choose my food wisely. Happily after all this time, my tastes have changed and I can eat half a mini blizzard without the other half calling me from the freezer. I'm hoping to get SO to get the idea of hard aerobics out of his exercise routine and do the same - no more bootcamp for us but more ab exercises all around! We're getting more subject to injuries that take a long time to heal.

Have a great 2011 because, you know, the world ends in 2012. Kind of like Y2K only Y2K12. No pressure.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The unawesomeness of all in one devices

I used to have a PDA and no cell phone, I just don't phone a lot. My Sony Clie UX50 was a whopping $1200 and did everything but made phone calls. I was pretty happy with it - it's still my alarm clock.

Tech doesn't stand still though and slowly I couldn't rip MP3s into small enough files and Palm all but disappeared. Eventually I upgraded to a windows mobile phone then another. Along the way I found I really like swype but not a physical keyboard. I don't like a screen full of icons, even if I have no intentions of leaving the sandbox, I usually do. I like having a removable battery and an external SD card is a quick way to transfer media from one device to another.

I have a Samsung GT i9000M  thru Bell Mobility. Better known as the Galaxy Vibrant. I updated to Froyo, my device crashed and burned and is now at the repair shop. This is not a rant about Bell or Samsung. Enough devices failed that the update was pulled, repairs are being made and, hopefully, the problem is being resolved.

Nope this is about how much I plain rely on my device and I have to say I'm surprised. My SO was out of town last week. We usually text. Not this time, we had to  - gasp -  phone! Not that easy to catch someone when they are going out with a dog every 30 minutes. I twitter (much better than I blog). Sometimes I see stuff that I take a picture of and post. Or even take a picture to show SO later. No camera with me. I like to listen to tunes at work. No new tunes. My grocery list is on my device. Now it's back to pen and paper and it's hard to keep a pen. I pay for groceries with a credit card (for points) then pay back the card as soon as I leave the store because I loose those bills right away. Using debit card instead. Standing in line or waiting somewhere so I could play a game...if I had my Vibrant. I even saw a book that would be perfect for reading in snippets What the Dog Saw . Happily not yet available in Canada on Kindle. But I'm in the middle of a couple of books on my device - sigh.

Should I consider changing devices when mine comes back fixed? It was good until the update so I think it will be good again when repaired. And there's just nothing else out there right now that's better. Even the Nexus S doesn't meet up with my Vibrant.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

How a WP7 device came to our house

I am the primary geek at our house. I had an Omnia 2 that I really liked. I fiddled and modified until it was just the way I wanted but it didn't have the direct access programs like android does so after I saw my S-I-L's device, and checking that there were Android apps for the stuff I like to do, I decided to upgrade to the Galaxy S, reset the Omnia 2 and give it to my SO. He's not a geek but I'm around so I thought it would work out well.

Not so much. The screen was not sensitive enough except when he didn't want it to work at all. This meant tapping H-A-R-D on the screen for texting yet doing butt calls even though the screen was supposed to be locked. Frustrating. He wasn't interested in having several screens with themes for applications and really didn't like the on-screen keyboard. I had a credit so I asked him if he wanted to go shopping for a phone. He said he would trust me to get him something.

First it would have to have a roomy keyboard. I looked at a Torch, and LG Optimus Quantum. The torch keyboard has very small keys with ridges around them to center the thumb on the key. The LG just has larger keys and just felt like it would be better for someone with bigger fingertips. The Torch had a series of small icon to touch and the LG had big squares. So I brought home the LG. With an upgrade credit and by trading in the O2. I ended up paying $6 and have 14 days to exchange it at any Futureshop.

It was a hit. In 2 seconds he had sent a couple of texts and was on line at his favorite website. Setting up email was a snap. We sat around and took pictures of each other with the LG, SGS and iPhone4 in the room (mine were the best because I was using retrocamera but his flash was a nice feature)

This would not be the phone for me. I fiddled with it for a couple of minutes and put it down. But for people new to the smart phones I think it could be a good choice. It has solid construction. WP7 Marketplace has a reasonable range of apps for those doing social media or playing games and the Internet Explorer is responsive. Like the old Palm PDAs, there is no multi-tasking but you can use it as a DAP while using programs and when you return to an app, it's where you left off unless you close it. Most importantly, it's easy to use.