Sunday, July 8, 2012

Go To A Shooting Range

Before this excursion, I had never shot a gun in my life. That is, unless you count the BB gun that my brother got when he was thirteen. By the time that I got to shoot that gun, the barrel was bent and a BB ricocheted off of the garage that I had a target propped against and hit me in my shoulder. As a kid, I spent a lot of time home alone.  My worst fear was to have somebody attempt to break into the house while I was home. I would have imaginary knife fights while jumping off of the couch. When somebody eventually broke into our house, I wasn't home. These events led up to more scared alone time until I moved into a safer neighborhood with my mom. At the time, I was an awkwardly large kid that was afraid to put my feet on the ground when the lights were out because I didn't want to 1. step on a mouse or 2. have a mouse run over my foot. Although there were mice in the house, this never happened. Despite all of fear that I experienced when I was home alone, I've never considered a gun as a solution to help me feel more secure. I did grow up with a gun in the house, though. I don't think there were ever bullets to accompany it. Its purpose wasn't for protection, its role was more of a reminder of the harm that could come from them. This particular gun was the gun that my aunt used to commit suicide before I was born. Let me be clear; I will probably never have a gun in my house, but I'm not against there use by others. On the flip side, I doubt that I will ever be a gun advocate. I simply feel impartial on the topic. When my future brother-in-law, Nate asked me if I wanted to join him at a shooting rage a couple of days before his wedding, I was excited. As a gift to me for performing his wedding ceremony, he told me that he would also pay for me. I was even more excited.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Childish Letters From An Adult

One day, when I was looking for an empty folder that I could store one of the many recipes that I had been printing off for the Food Blog, I came across a folder that had some printouts of some things that I had written back in 1999. They were some crazy letters that were inspired by a series of 'Nut' books. In these books, a guy wrote a bunch of crazy letters to business that were funny to read. What was even better was the responses from these companies that had to treat them seriously. I thought that these were really funny and it inspired me to write a few letters of my own. I also addressed all of these letters from Dirk Williams. My thought was that not only was this a funny name, it was also a way that I could easily identify a response for one of these letters when it came in the mail. My first letter is as follows:

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Left Handed Week

            Did you know that the word “sinister” originally meant left-handed? After centuries of negative association with left-handedness, it came to be associated with evil. Most people are familiar with the term ambidextrous, two right hands, but few have heard of ambisinistrous. This means two left hands, or clumsy or unskilled on both sides. I came across this word with my word of the day app, and it really stuck with me. I have always been fascinated with the fact that my dad writes with his right hand and draws with his left. It made me wonder how long it would take somebody to truly become dual-handed

Monday, June 18, 2012

Biggest Loser Finale

It is official; I am the Biggest Loser. In two months time, I've lost 25.5 pounds (or 9.91%). As I've said many times, this was the second time that I participated in a Biggest Loser competition. The biggest difference between the two (besides me winning the $400 pot this time) is that this time around, I focused completely on my diet. For as long as I can remember, my weight has fluctuated back and forth. It has been directly associated with how motivated I've been with dieting or working out. Losing weight has never been difficult for me, (although gaining it is still easier) it has always been keeping it off that was the difficult part for me.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

10 Health Questions From A Cyclist

Adam: What do you do (Professionally)?
Paul Mostowyj: I work in insurance. Yuk! How boring is that? Does anyone actually dream as a kid of getting in to the insurance industry? I know I never did, but I must say as a claims manager I do enjoy my role and I don't get up in the morning and dread going to work.
Adam: What is one thing that you think that everybody should do for their health?
PM: Simply be active! If you have the option between moving and not moving, then MOVE! Instead of watching TV with the kids, take them to the park. Instead of driving to see family and friends, bike. Don't drive to your local shop, walk. Make it fun, go for a walk on the beach with a loved one, discover the hidden world of Geocaching, go dancing with your friends, plays sports and the list goes on and on. By being active you are keeping the body moving and exercising naturally.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

10 Health Questions With A Doctor

Adam:  What do you do (Professionally)?

Chris Hogrefe: I split my time between practicing Emergency Medicine and Primary Care Sports Medicine in an academic, University setting.  I have the privilege of caring for some of the most ill people in our state on one day, and then caring for a wide-variety of athletes ranging from Division I athletes to 70 year-old Ironman participants to middle school kickball extraordinaires.  Sprinkle in a little healthcare information technology and one has loosely described my professional responsibilities.

Adam:   Are health-related New Year’s resolutions a good stepping stone or just Holiday Remorse?

CH: I actually do not think that New Year’s resolutions constitute “Holiday Remorse”.  A large number of people formulate health-related resolutions (specifically weight loss topping the list), which could certainly be construed as a reflex after binging on homemade cookies, turkey, etc. over the holidays.  But, if you focus on the frequently cited weight loss resolution, the fact of the matter is that obesity is a rapidly growing problem in the United States (Please excuse the pun.).  If you polled Americans on July 1st for a Mid-New Year’s Resolution, contextually withdrawn from the calorie-laden holiday season, I surmise that weight loss or health-related resolutions would still top the list.  The start of a new year is simply a prime opportunity to wipe the slate clean and tackle the biggest issues in our lives that warrant improvement (Again, pardon the pun.).  Perhaps the most difficult issues to fix, and implement on a long-term basis, involve our health.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Biggest Loser Week 3

Week 3 is when things got serious. This is when I started juicing. And upped my total loss to 18 pounds. That puts my total percentage to 6.74%. I have found that juicing seems to be a polarizing activity. There are those that tell me not to do it because it isn't safe. There are those that tell me that it is cheating for the Biggest Loser Competition. And then there are those that commend me for doing something so challenging.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

10 Questions From A Fit Person

Adam: What do you do (Professionally)
Rae Kane: Pipefitter

Adam: Are health-related New Year’s resolutions a good stepping stone or just Holiday Remorse?
RK: It's good to have goals but why wait till the new year to make them? I never have.

Adam: What is one thing that you think that everybody should do for their health?
RK: Your body is like a swimming pool, if you've never taken care of one you might not know what that means. But basically you have to balance your acidity with your alkalinity. So if you're too acidic you get sick. Alkaline comes mostly from green vegetables. Sugar and meats make you acidic. A miracle cure for just about everything (including cancer, because cancer is a fungus) is sodium bicarb (baking soda) ironically they use that in swimming pools too.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Biggest Loser Week 2

My weight is now down 3.74%. Leading up to this time, I had been letting myself go. By that, I mean that I was ignoring portioning and eating my favorite meat dishes. I would wake up with headaches and my body hurt. I felt pretty miserable and it made it easier to start dieting. As I saw last week as a buffer week, this week came easier than I expected.  There was no point during my first two weeks of dieting that I got tempted to eat meat. I guess that I’ve found my solace in cheese. On Tuesday, we went out to eat. Initially I felt limited to where I could go, as there had to be a good vegetarian option. Then I realized

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

10 Health Questions From A Vegan

1.) What do you do (Professionally)?
I am a clerk in a very busy Emergency Room
2.) Are health-related New Year’s resolutions a good stepping stone or just Holiday Remorse?

I think they can be a great stepping stone, especially with diet changes, since most of us have probably overindulged in ways we're not proud of during the holidays.  However, veganism is not a fad diet, entered into solely to lose weight.  You can begin a vegan diet for that reason but I don't think you'll be able to stick to it, as a true lifestyle change, without having a deeper philosophical, ethical and/or health-related conception of it over the long haul, however you might personally define that.  The beginning of a new year though, when most of us in the northern U.S. are a bit more hermetic or introspective, and have some time on our hands, would be an excellent time to begin.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Biggest Loser Week 1

During my first week of the biggest loser 2012, I lost 2.37% which is a better start to the competition than last time (which I ultimately lost 32 pounds). I wish that I could be happier with that. But quite frankly, I decided to play the game a little more this time around. Let’s just say that before my initial weigh in, I may have been super hydrated.  Some people would say that this is like wearing ankle weights and is cheating. I must respectfully disagree. Putting on ankle weights is adding artificial weight. The difference is between artificial and superficial. The water weight is superficial but still legitimate because I had to actually imbibe the liquid.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Sleep Outside For A Week (Winter Edition)

During the summer, I thought that sleeping in the cold would be easier because you can always add more layers to warm up. Do you know what they call such thinking? Stupidity. There is a reason why people only camp outside during warm weather.  It didn’t occur to me until I had already done both that the biggest difference is the gap in body temperature to the weather outside. In the hottest places in the world, it may be slightly higher than 100 degrees outside during the overnight hours. This is only a few degrees higher than a person’s body temperature. The entire week that I slept in January, it was around 27 degrees, or roughly 70 degrees lower than a person’s body temperature.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Biggest Loser Competition, An Introduction


At my work, April 1st brings the second bi-annual biggest loser competition. Last time, I placed second losing 32 pounds and 12.6% of my total body weight. This coincided with my month of vegetarianism, where I progressively got more strict with my diet. This was something that I already had planned for the blog and I extended out to two month for the sake of the competition. For the first week, I maintained a pescatarian diet (fish but no other meat), the second week I was a normal vegetarian, the third week a vegan, then I juiced for the rest of the time. But, as it turns out, I kept putting off writing about it and I gained back a lot of the weight that I had lost. I had already decided to do this again when there was the announcement for another biggest loser competition. This time,

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Do A Polar Plunge

For over one hundred years, Americans have been participating in Polar (or Arctic) Plunges to raise money for charities or organizations or because they are just nuts. As soon as I added this onto my list, I started to look for some in my area; I found two. The first was for the Special Olympics in the early spring. The second was for the Hawkeye Wrestling Club (HWC) in the middle of January. You could make a case for both that they were crazy or stupid. As I try with all of my bucket list activities, I want to take the most extreme road as possible. So the HWC was getting my money. Like me, they take everything to the extreme.

Monday, January 16, 2012

30 Days Of Thanks: Marie's Response

Thank you. thanks you for your letter. I got to read the blog post before the real thing arrived, and it was very touching to see the handwritten thing, along with cards and all.
I remember fondly my time with you and your family, nearly 18 years ago....it was indeed an adventure, where i found myself in what could literally have been the bizarro version of the life i had just left in France. Huge house to tiny one, a small estranged family to a large caring one. It was an extremely enriching experience, and even if didnt get into politics, language skills became indeed my competitive advantage for a long time.
I’m glad you kept good memories, such as rpg gaming and movies from me. These two items are important elements in our generation’s culture and it flatters me to think I played some role in shaping the person you became today.
I’m happy you lead a fulfilling life, and hope that one day, our paths cross again.
In the meanwhile, you can definitely count me as a regular reader of yours!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

10 Questions With an Internet PR Girl

Adam: What is Your name and what do you do (Professionally)
Jennifer Nixon. My title is Online PR and Social Media strategist… but I figure that sound far too pretentious for a girl who blogs about burlesque dancing, vajazzle’s and getting drunk at the office Christmas party in her spare time, so let’s just say “Online PR girl”. To put it simply I make websites get noticed.

Adam: How many hours a day do you spend online?
On an average week day, if I’m not going out or doing anything special, I spend up to seven hours staring at the screen in work… then it can be anything up to 3 hours of a night – especially if I’m behind on blogging! (God, that makes me sound like a total geek doesn’t it?)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Internet Fads

It may come as a surprise to most of you that, despite my blog, I don't have internet at home. I am able to access the internet with my phone, but that limits what I can do. For no real reason, I have been slow to adapt or accept many things technological. I really don’t understand why this is the case. When I was a teenager, every bedroom in my house had a computer. As well as in the computer room. And in the kitchen. This was before AOL had become the internet provider for most of the country and before the web had become commonplace. Instead, my dad ran a local bulletin board where people would call our computer directly and play trivia games or talk on message boards.
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