Thursday, October 13, 2011

End of the Primal Challenge - Results

So it has been just over thirty days since I began my Primal Blueprint Fitness Challenge, and let me say it wasn't easy. I definitely cheated on multiple occasions, unable to resist ice cream, beer, cookies what have you. But today I had a conclusive body composition test done, and the results are in.

Body Weight at the beginning of the challenge: 132.8 LBS
                                at the end of the challenge: 134.4 LBS

Body Fat % at the beginning of the challenge: 13.49%
                             at the end of the challenge:  9.2%

According to the results of these two tests alone, I increased my body weight by 1.6 lbs and decreased by body fat by 4.3%.

Reflection to come later this evening....after a big ice cream cone :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cross-Training Swim Workout

I've decided to post the workout that we did in my intermediate swimming class today. It's a cross-training oriented workout that I found to be very invigorating. I think that emphasizing cross-training is extremely important for all-around health and fitness. 

-200 Swim (Choice of Freestyle, Breast, Back, Fly)
Warmup -200 Kick
-200 Pull

Cross-Train    -15 Push ups    
      (x3)   -50 Crunches

First Set   -6x100  with 20 seconds rest between sets
Descending 1-3, 4-6

Cross-Train   -1 Lap of Lunges around Pool
     (x2) -1 Minute Plank Position

Second Set -8x50 with 30 seconds rest between sets
1st 25 under water, 2nd 25 easy freestyle

Cross Train - 20 Squat Jumps
    (x3) 20 Leg lifts (lying on back)

Although this is not an all-inclusive workout it does a pretty good job of using all of your main muscle groups.

Let me know what you think.

- I've enabled comments from non-members, a login is no longer required to post - 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

The Ethics of Technology

I think that Daniel Pinchbeck said it best when he said that at times our lives seem controlled by 'little glowing screens'. Everywhere I look on campus I see people checking their phones, texting (often times while walking...into things) checking e-mail, twitter, facebook, google+ and whatever else the newest social networking fad may be. We had an interesting lecture in my Ethics course today. A lecture that I think is very relevant to society and my generation in particular. The topic was technology, and was spurred when the recent death of Steve Jobs (of Apple) arose in conversation. Thanks to our new found technology, we are constantly bombarded with new information, communication, and entertainment. Many of my generation feel as if they must  have their 'smartphones' with them at all times, equating going without a phone nearly to going without clothing. It has be come almost unimaginable to go a day without checking your Facebook or Twitter...I mean, you might miss something! Right?
The questions that come up when addressing this new technology are many: Are we any better for it? Are people using this technology to learn, to further themselves as intellectual beings, or simply for distraction? Will be continue to empty our pocketbooks for that new piece of mobile technology in fear of becoming obsolete?
We have all heard the praises of the mobile communications revolution, and most of us (myself included) appreciate the ability to communicate more easily with people on a day to day basis. Ideas can now be spread faster than ever before, and that is truly amazing to consider. This technology we possess is very powerful, and as such we must respect it and not abuse it. This is where I feel ethics come into play.
I have noticed on a personal level that I spend more and more time checking things on my phone, my laptop, texting, e-mailing etc. - If I am spending time doing that, I am taking time away from other things I could be doing. Most importantly (and tragically) I am taking my awareness out of my present surroundings and focusing on a 'little flashing screen'. I no longer own a television, and as such I have taken up reading to a much greater extent than I have before. But I also can't deny that I spend more time on the computer (and the internet) than I feel is truly healthy.
When we become accustomed to having new information in front of us at every moment, it's hard to break away and simply exist. To read. Write. Meditate.
We cannot put this blame on Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak or any of the other innovators of technology. They create the technology, it is the end user that must responsibly use it.

In writing this post I simply want to make others think about this topic. How much time do you spend on your cell phone, laptop, or watching television? It might surprise you.

In my quest to simplify life I am going to strive to spend less of my time engaged with these little screens, and spend more time with the people I love, and the simplicity of just living life.

Thoughts, questions, rants? Feel free to comment.