Assessment

Since this isn’t the first time I’ve set out to make a big lifestyle change, I think I can call this force of habit by now. Still, I always reason to myself that it’s good to write up a post like this to have a point of reference, the idea being that I want to one day be able to look back at this and find it hard to believe that my life used to be like it is now.

0 to 26, in 5 Minutes

When I was a kid, I was your normal kid. As things started getting unstable at home throughout the years, a lot of my dietary choices were left in the hands of my dad, who always defaulted to fast food. So I got “husky”. As I grew older, those bad diet habits got worse, as did my weight – I topped out at around 265 lbs in my sophomore year of high school. Up until that point in my life I’d always been comfortable in my own body. Physically, I still was. Mentally, I was over it. I started waking up before the sun on a daily basis and going on long morning runs. Once I started working and managed to afford my own gym membership, I found that I actually do like spending prolonged periods of time working out. By the time I hit 21, I was down near 200 lbs – not all the way there, but not too bad either. Compared to my old photos from high school, I looked like a completely different person.
Then at 23, things started taking a turn for the worse. Things in the personal life and with work all started crashing around me. Now, I’ve gotten accustomed to things being pretty bad in life – I’ve been struggling with a personal depression dating back since 2005. But that was the beginning of an entirely new downward spiral in life. At 25, I finally found myself bouncing back from everything. I started trying to get myself to care again. As motivation, I forced myself to part with my hair that I’m so very fond of, and told myself that I’d only grow it out once I hit goal weight. Instead of getting motivated, it opened the door for me to turn into someone else. As the problems piled on, I lost sight of myself. I let myself go, and really packed on the on the pounds.

Now

Presently, I find myself halfway through 26. One hand, it feels pretty lame that earlier in life I’d planned to have taken care of this by 21 permanently. Still, rather than dwell in the past, it’s time to look to the future. Now, the weight problem extends beyond image and self-esteem. For me, it’s a contradiction of the perceptions I have of my actualized self. In other words, I’m not me. I’m not living a life that’s in line with who I really see myself as. I’m not as young and stout as I used to be. Age is going to start rearing its ugly head at me if I’m not ready for it. In a sense, I kind of feel like it already has. So now, it’s important for me to finally get this over with. Because I need to do damage control on what I’ve put my body through up until now and take care of myself for the long run, and because I need to really start living my life like its supposed to be. What it’s like now is pretty much the complete opposite of that.
Right now, I’m up near 230 lbs. I’m not entirely sure, since I haven’t been to the gym in about 3 weeks – I’ll be sure to take care of that soon.
I alternate between three sets of pants, since they’re the only things that fir me in my closet and I don’t want to waste money on clothes that aren’t going to fit me in the near future. I’m running low on shirts that fit appropriately as well. My dress style is boring and limited because of this.
I feel uncomfortable in my body at all times. I have a hard time with prolonged sitting in chairs, probably due to a combination of “office ass” and my body screaming at me to get up and move around. This isn’t the fattest I’ve ever been, but it’s been the most I’ve ever been so constantly aware of it. I’m highly attuned to all the problems that are resulting from it, like terrible posture. I’ve got a lot of goals in life, and they’re not going to happen feeling like this.
I’m a heavy user of marijuana and cigarettes. Though my usage over the past year has spiked alarmingly since I’ve been using them as emotional crutches throughout my hardships and in combination with my therapy sessions, I’m really starting to feel the adverse affects. Furthermore, I feel like I’ve reached a point where they’re just no longer useful to me. They’ve been as “helpful” as they can possibly be, and it’s time for them to go. At this point, they’re nothing but a barrier between me and my actualized self.
Now that I’m not so young anymore, I’m also highly aware of the dangers of failing to do anything about this. There’s a history of diabetes in my family. Much as it scares me to admit it, I wouldn’t be surprised to find I’m pre or near diabetic. Since I don’t have the luxury of health insurance, my only viable course of action at this point in time is to take charge of the things I can control, which is admittedly quite a lot.

In Memoriam: Steven Paul “Steve” Jobs

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It’s been five days since Steve Jobs passed away. Even now, five days later, it’s still difficult to wrap my mind around the idea that he’s gone forever. The world has lost a living legend and an amazing modern renaissance man. Jobs’ contributions to modern society, be they Pixar animation studios or the iconic iPhone, have changed the course of human culture and technological development in previously unimaginable ways. He was to us what DaVinci was to the world in the 1500’s. Like so many others, I mourn the loss of one of history’s most talented visionaries and leaders.

Now, I would love to continue to extol the virtues of Steve Jobs, but that would be misleading on my part. The truth of the matter is that my opinion of Steve Jobs has not always been the most favorable. See, for the longest time, I was a strong opponent to Apple products. Not out of allegiance to the Microsoft brand, but out of my love for technology as a whole.

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Boom.

Though I am primarily a Windows user, the Mac OS has been a large part of my computing experience as a whole. I first taught myself to use a computer using outdated Macintoshes in my elementary school’s computer lab, and later on using my Uncle’s Macintosh LCIII. Every time I used a Macintosh, I enjoyed it. As a child, it was intuitive and user friendly.

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However, I also had been given a Packard Bell D160 Multimedia PC by father as a Christmas present in 1995, and grew to love the Windows operating system. Though in hindsight it wasn’t that great, at the time the immersive Packard Bell navigator software that booted with Windows was impressive. It simulated an actual living environment, each room with a specific function – living room for media, office for documents, etc. The games that were available (The Journeyman Project comes to mind) offered me a way more impressive computer experience at home than the ones at school did.

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In the years since then, Steve Jobs returned to Apple and revived the company with the iMac. At the time, I was enrolled at Lewis Middle School, whose school slogan was “Leading in Technology”. They lived up to it: every classroom and every computer lab was stocked with both the color all in one iMacs with the hockey puck mouse, or with the latest variants of the classic Macintosh line. I once again grew to love the Mac experience. Though I hate to admit it, I loved playing the shit out of Nanosaur at any chance I could get.

Still, Macs came at a premium, and my Dad governed the computer purchases. He was a fan of the more practical Windows platform, so that’s what I got at home. I remember wanting to eventually get a Mac to do graphic design work on when I was in high school. Unfortunately, by then, the revolution started by the iMac sparked the elitism of the Mac brand: if you own a Mac, you’re better than everyone else. As a computer enthusiast who had grown up with an enjoyable Windows experience, I stuck with Microsoft. I understood the power of each platform, but didn’t agree that one necessarily had to be better than the other. Since they were both good, I felt I needed to stick with the one I’d grown up with and was subject to very harsh criticism.

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In the years between high school and the present, that resistance to Apple became an absolute disdain for it. I loathed the arrogance of the Justin Long Mac vs. PC commercials. Steve Jobs was perpetuating that elitist attitude I couldn’t stand. This became even worse when my best friend Chris switched from PC to a Mac. At every chance he could get, he would interject how my computer is pathetic because it runs on Windows. Any performance hiccup was interpreted as a plea for a gospel on the superiority of the Mac. Or, in layman’s terms, he became very fucking annoying.

Now, as much as I had grown to resent Apple, I was still a techie, and I still liked my gadgets. I’ve purchased many iPods over the years. When I was a teenager and finally had the option to upgrade from my Nokia 6682 to a smartphone running a real OS, my only viable options for a good 3G phone were the iPhone 3G and the Blackberry Bold. Android was only barely starting to gain traction, and AT&T went many years without carrying Android devices in favor of its exclusivity with Apple for the iPhone. Though I’d always wanted to get a Blackberry throughout my time in high school, I found myself going with the iPhone simply because it’s unique touch screen allowed the best mobile browsing experience possible. So it was with heavy heart in December of 2008 that I “sold out” and became an iPhone user.

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Even with iPod and iPhone in hand, I still continued to resent Apple solely because of my resentment of Steve Jobs. I’ve jailbroken every iPhone I have because I don’t agree with the limitations Apple has set on the device. They sell you something they will allow it to do for you, not something that can do everything it can for you. I was outraged at the 30% Apple started charging for in-app purchases, forcing competitors to rely on webapps to circumvent the unnecessary fee, thereby making iBooks a more attractive option with simple in-app purchasing. I was pissed when Steve had his Apple townhall and called Google’s “Do No Evil” mantra “bullshit”. I was furious when Steve set his crosshairs on Adobe (yeah, the company that makes the software that most professional Mac users use a Mac for) and Flash. Even worse was when the iPhone Developer ToS were updated to render the flash-to-iPhone compiler Adobe was planning on including in the upcoming CS update unusable.

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Google is bullshit and Adobe is lazy, says the Goblin King!

So, Steve did shit that pissed me off because I like Apple, but I also like everyone else that Apple has been absolutely shitty to. This led me to say (and by say, I mean “post online”) very many ugly things about Steve. God, I couldn’t stand the guy. I admired him for his achievements and business acumen, but hated his totalitarian approach.

A few months ago, I decided that I was going to invest in the Mac platf
orm. As an iPhone and iPad owner, I want to explore the integration that iCloud will offer across it’s devices. I remember that it was only two days after I first had this thought that Steve resigned as CEO. I remember laughing to myself that it was as if by simply having that thought in my head, Steve had won. I was interested in finally giving in on the one front I staunchly refused to give in on, the PC computing experience, and so his work was done. He stepped down in victory.

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Once he resigned, I found myself missing having him in charge. Without Steve at the helm of Apple, there was no reason to really resist Apple. My love-hate thing with Steve only worked when he was still in charge and ready to do something more. So in the time that I would normally read the latest on Steve Jobs, I started reading about Steve Jobs. I then started to realize the true extent of his genius and innovation, and the importance of his contributions. I also have come to realize that the very things that I hated about him were the things that I admire the most about him. He was innovative and decisive. He had great standards of excellence and amazing insight. And most of all, when it came to something he had made up his mind on, he just didn’t give a fuck. His word was final.

So, I’ll say it. I miss you, Steve. Furthermore, I’m glad to have shared time on earth with you. I can say that I lived during the era that Steve Jobs revolutionized the world. I don’t regret that I spent so much time hating you – you were kind of a real prick. However, the fact that you had the balls to do all the things that set me off was always something I secretly admired. Now that you’re gone, I only wish you were still around to keep doing what you did for another 20 years.

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Rest in Peace, Friend.

Review: Dir en grey–“Dum Spiro Spero”

Dum Spiro Spero

Pretty Wicked Cover, Gotta Say…

So, this is the first review I’ve written since the old LiveJournal days. Bear with me, I don’t quite have a format nailed down.

ABOUT:

This is the eighth studio album by Japanese Rock (well, technically Japanese Metal as of around 2007) outfit Dir en grey. I’ve been a fan of these guys since 2000, back when they were a major name in the Japanese Visual Kei (read: Japanese version of Glam Rock) scene. For over a decade, I’ve seen this band reinvent both themselves and their musical style with a frequency that would make Madonna jealous. I managed to get ahold of a leaked copy (along with the rest of the internet) of their latest offering, officially dropping on 08/03/2011. I could go on, but this is a review, not a biography, so without further ado…

WHERE IT EXCELS:

If you like Metal and experimental/progressive music, this will definitely hit the sweet spot. The album sails through a drop-tuned turbulent sea on some interesting rhythm patterns and timing changes. Any given song will switch moods on you like a heroin junky going through withdrawals, said mood selection being limited to darker, darker, and darkerer (yeah, that’s grammatically incorrect, but with these guys there’s never an absolute “darkest”.) Long time fans have grown used to Kyo’s use of various screams in place of singing. Not here; a pleasantly surprising amount of the vocals are sung, and man, are they CLEAN. Fans of the screaming and growling won’t walk away disappointed – there’s plenty of them to go around, they just don’t take up the whole album.

WHERE IT FALLS SHORT:

Ever since I discovered this band, I’ve always felt their rhythm section to be their strongest asset. Not to insinuate that Kyo’s vocals and Kaoru & Die’s guitarwork is anything to scoff at (quite the contrary, actually), but Shinya’s drumming, Toshiya’s basslines, and Shinya’s drumming (see what I did there?) are easily the best parts of any of their songs. Sadly, their production team isn’t on the same page as I am. While not terrible, the mixing on the album could do more to really give the drums and bass the prominence they deserve. Focus, as is the unfortunate norm for a lot of rock genres, is on the guitars. They’re good, but come on, let’s acknowledge the other guys too.

TRACK BY TRACK: (In 3 sentences or less)

1) Kyoukotsu no Nari [狂骨の鳴り – “The Cry from Lunatic Bone”]: Less than two minutes of ambient noise. Sets the mood, sure, but I’m far more used to strong opening numbers. They used this approach on the previous album, but Uroboros’s “Sa Bir” succeeded far better at this thank Kyoukotsu does.
2) The Blossoming Beelzebub: Kind of a disappointment for a track with a length over seven minutes. It’s not bad, but there’s no cohesion or clear progression. The best part is the end of the track, which sports a flurry of drums and slap bass that nicely transitions into one of the best tracks on the album
3) Different Sense: This one beautiful beast of a song, blending elements from every phase of their musical career. The contrast between heavy verses and the melodic chorus dares you to try and not to like it. Oh, and it has a solo – remember when those used to happen regularly in Dir en grey’s songs?
4) Amon: Don’t know why this song got a special release with some photobook of sorts. The bass and drums do the most interesting stuff, but even then they’re forgettable. It’s kind of a bland dirge, to be honest.
5) “Yokusou Ni Dreambox” Aruiwa Seijuku No Rinen To Tsumetai Ame [「欲巣にDREAMBOX」あるいは成熟の理念と冷たい雨 – ” ‘Nesting Within the Dreambox’ Cold Rain and the Philosophy of the Mature”): Another dirge, but this one has some semblance of cohesion, along with a schizophrenic personality. The vocals are interesting, and are at their best during the chorus. I dig it.
6) Juuyoku [獣慾 – “Animal Lust”]: Drums go bang, bass goes boom, guitars go everywhere, and vocals go “rawr”. The title fits the song appropriately. You’ll fire this up when you want melodic noise, but you’ll be heard pressed to remember what the song sounds like in your head simply by looking at the title.
7) Shitataru Mourou [滴る朦朧 – “Trickling Ambiguity”]: Love the intro drums – very reminiscent of the Deftones’s “Digital Bath”. Love the way the guitars convey a sense of frantic despair. One of my favorite tracks on the album.
8) Lotus: There’s been some touchups, namely to the vocals and bass, from the previously released single version. Strong chorus, and a great overall mood. Loved it before, love it again.
9) Diabolos: Another let down due to the long length and lack of progression. It goes through a wide range of phases, but they’re not really pieced together in any particular way. It ain’t no “Vinushka”.
10) Akatsuki [暁 – Dawn]: This is a pretty crisp track. Popping bass, banging drums, and interesting guitars. Enjoyable, but alas, not exactly memorable.
11) Decayed Crow: Lots of screaming and persistent instrumentation. Sadly, at this point, it all starts to sound the same.
12) Hageshisa to, Kono Mune no Naka de Karamitsuita Shakunetsu no Yami [激しさと、この胸の中で絡み付いた灼熱の闇 – “And Violence, Tangled in the Burning Darkness of my Heart”]: Another previously released track, in retrospect set the foundation for the musical direction from this album. Like the other singles on the album, it’s had some upgrades done.
13) Vanitas [Emptiness]: THE BALLAD! As much as Dir en grey does melodic dissonance well, they’ve got a real talent for ballads. Though not their best, it’s different from their previous ones and still very good. A nice breath of fresh air for something that sounds distinctly different from the rest of the tracks on the album.
14) Ruten no Tou [流転の塔 – “Tower of Vicissitudes”]: Manages to pull off the feeling that things are coming to a close, but aside from that, I can’t really describe it without saying things I’ve already said about other songs on the album.
-BONUS TRACKS-
15) Rasetsukoku [羅刹国 – “Kingdom of Demons”]: Unlike previous remakes of old songs, this one is VERY faithful to the original version. Even the lyrics sound unchanged. A much appreciated metal rendition of a high energy rock track.
16) Amon (Symphonic Version): I like that it uses symphonic instruments to supplement the original rock instruments instead of replacing them entirely. I don’t like that the original version of this song was pretty lacking. I’m tempted to delete and replace the original “Amon” with this one.
Dum Spiro Spero Review

CONCLUSION:

If you’ve read interviews and reviews, you know that this is a highly experimental and unusual album for the band. True music lovers will appreciate it for those qualities, but won’t exactly be blown away by them. Lovers of the band will find a way to convince themselves this fresh offering from the band is the new best thing ever even though they’re won’t truly grasp the meaning behind the music. Dir en grey’s previous efforts have proven successful because they’re not afraid to get weird, unconventional, and experimental and fuse that with more accessible rock/metal songs. This album is 75 minutes of nothing but those very qualities and comes off as a professionally executed metal jam session between the five of them.
Bottom line? This is an album put together for themselves, not the fans, and they don’t give a fuck: it’s up to you whether to take it or leave it, and that’s both it’s strongest quality and greatest weakness.

Smoking (as in “,Quitting”)

It’s bad for you. Common sense, right? Hard to believe that I’ve had this habit for almost 10 years now. The irony about this is that I used to be so vehemently opposed to smoking as child, to the point where I would insert toothpicks in the center of all of my Mom’s cigarettes in a vain effort to dissuade her from the habit. I first started smoking back in my high school days when I found out about the existence of Djarum clove cigarettes. I stuck with those delightful cylindrical flavor bombs until recently, when Obama signed a bill that rendered the sale of all flavored cigarettes (save menthol, of course) illegal. At the time, I figured that I would be force to drop the habit, since I never cared for the taste of normal cigarettes. Then, Chris introduced me to the menthol cigarette. It wasn’t nearly as good as my beloved cloves, but it wasn’t too terrible and it got the job done.

In part of my redefinition of my life, I had determined that I can’t continue with this habit. It’s both extremely detrimental to my health, and counterproductive to all of my goals. I downloaded the Livestrong quitting coach app for the iPhone a while back. However, I didn’t write or post about it, as doing so would legitimize a commitment to seeing it through. Now, it’s a must.

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The app is not only very well designed and responsive, but also extensively featured considering it has a pretty streamlined and simple focus. It’s got a nice customizable motivational home screen, detailed tracking, and taking a page from Xbox Live, ACHIEVEMENTS! That’s right: quitting smoking is now like a game. A very fucking stressful and challenging game.

So, without further ado, my customized quitting plan:

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<p>I’d say wish me luck, but I’ve got unshakable determination on my side.

Towards a Thinner Tomorrow: An Update

First, some math:

239 lbs – current weight
160 lbs – goal weight
79 lbs – difference between current & goal weight
39.5 – number of weeks it’ll take to lose the difference at a rate of 2 lbs per week
9.8  – number of months it’ll take to lose the difference at a rate of 2 lbs per week
 
I’ve clearly got my work cut out for me. Since my last update, I haven’t been doing as much as I can. That said, I have been easing myself into both dieting and incorporating physical activity into my days. I think I’ve finally hit the point where my body is retrained and resilient enough to engage in physical activity on a routine basis without having something as simple as running a mile result in extreme soreness the next day. I’ve also been cooking healthy foods instead of relying on buying food. I haven’t quite nailed down what my exact tracking methods are going to be, but I have been experimenting. So, here’s my report for 04/05/2011:

What I ate:

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What I Did

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My bike ride to the gym

 

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What I did at the gym. Twice.

 

<
p align=”left”>So tonight, about 924 calories were burned. My basal metabolic rate (calories burned by merely being a living person) is currently 2079 calories per day. So…guess that means I did really well today, huh? Smile

Towards a Thinner Tomorrow: Measurement Monday

STARTING POINT


Stats
Height 5’ 10”
Goal Weight 160
Day # 1
Date: 03/21/2011
Measurements
Neck 17.5
Upper Arm (Left) 13
Upper Arm (Right) 13.25
Chest 45.5
Diaphragm 45.5
Waist 44
Abdomen 46.5
Hips 44
Upper Thigh (Left) 25.5
Upper Thigh (Right) 25.5
Calf (Left) 16.75
Calf (Right) 16.75
 
Total Inches 353.75
Total Inches Lost
Weight 242 lbs.
Weight Lost to Date
BMI 34.72
Change in BMI
Goal Distance 82 lbs.
 

PHOTOGRAPHS

(Edited for content: the point is to show off my disgusting gut, not my junk)


 
IMG_0845          IMG_0855
Front                                                         Back

IMG_0848          IMG_0850

Right Angled                                                Right     

IMG_0852          IMG_0854

Left Angled                                                 Left       

 

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The only haircut I’m allowed to have

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The jawline and hairstyle I look forward to having again

Towards a Thinner Tomorrow: Back on Track

It’s funny how time manages to fly by. While it seems like my last entry on this blog was fairly recent, the timestamps on the posts show me that it’s been almost a month since I updated. This most recent week I’ve been out of commission recovering from an intense workout I had with my friend Andy on 03/10. Now that I can do basic things such as getting out of bed and using the toilet without having my entire upper body screaming at me in pain, I feel it’s time to really stoke the fire on this. I’ve got more than enough tools to get the job done (as outlined in a previous post). I’ve admittedly haven’t done much to further my progress on this matter. Sure, there’s been some bike rides and trips to the gym, but I haven’t been focused and dedicated at all.

On my most recent trip to the gym, I weighed in. The number was higher than I anticipated. I’m at 242 lbs., dangerously close to the old 250+ range from back in my high school days. One of my goals with blogging about this is to weed through the different apps available for the iOS platform in order to find the ones that work for me, and maybe help anyone out there who stumbles upon this blog in getting on board with a positive lifestyle change. One of them is one of the most popular apps available on the app store, LoseIt. I’ve explored the app, and like it as a weight tracking tool and calorie budget manager. It has exercise logging capabilities, which I haven’t fully explored and will have to delve into in depth in a full-on app review somewhere down the line. I put in my current weight and goal weight, and the app has generated a daily calorie budget which calculates me hitting goal weight by the end of this year. This is something I’m very much looking forward to bringing to fruition.
 

photo 1 photo 2

 

 

<
p>That about covers things for now. Tomorrow, I’m taking starting measurements and photos. In the mean time, I’m going to do some reading on workout routines and start formulating plans. Here we go!

Towards a Thinner Tomorrow: Gearing Up

The last time I meant to set out and achieve physical fitness, I wrote one big snapshot of a post at the time. Since I’m doing it incrementally, this post is going to focus on the tools I have at my disposal. Since then, I’ve added to my arsenal of workout equipment and tools, and since I’m going to be using them regularly, I figured I should write about them in depth.

 

 Photo Feb 26, 1 14 05 AM

Then : Now

Iron Gym Pull-up Bar

This was an awesome gift from my friend Justin, and I hate to admit its use has been minimal. One of my big goals is to build big arms: I constantly wish that I had biceps that were as impressive as my calf muscles. Out of all of the pieces of equipment I own, this is the one I dread the most. I have relatively no upper body strength, since I never work out my arms and always do cardio at the gym. My calves are in great shape considering how they are constantly support my corpulence when I move anywhere, but I don’t have any normal activity that targets my arms. Factor in that a pull-up is lifting your body mass (which I have a lot of) using your arm strength (which I have little of), and it’s easy to see why I’m not too crazy at the prospect of having to use this thing. I recently acquired a set of the ab-strabs to go with it, so now suspended abdominal work can be done in conjunction with the pull-up and tricep dips you can use this thing for right out the box.

Gold’s Gym Resistance Tube Set & Jump Rope

I bought this a few months ago as a supplement to the arm strength building I never got around to. It came with an instructional work-out DVD that I’ve never done, and will finally be getting to very soon. Long tubes, short tubes, a hook to anchor into a door frame, and a small circular band which I’ve yet how to properly use. I look forward to being able to say that they’re not enough one day.

Exercise Ball

This thing is so useful, both as a workout tool and a chair to use for “active sitting”, which I do at the office. The blue one I originally bought I found to be too big to use for working out, so I bought a smaller one that I’ve yet to give a go for push-ups and crunches. It came with a resistance band and a DVD, which just like the resistance tube one, I have yet to go through. I think that’ll be another thing I get to at the beginning of next week.

Perfect Push-Up

Another piece of equipment I picked up back in the day and hardly used. Since one of my main goals is arm strength, it’s going to be put into the active rotation too.

Ab Roller Wheel

I got this when a friend was staying with me and left it behind. I’ve attempted to use it a few times, and to be frank, it fucks my shit up. Therefore, I really like it and will be using it a lot in the coming days.

Gold’s Gym 8lb Medicine Ball

Got this as a gift from my uncle. Nifty, but I feel that the ways in which I use it aren’t really maximizing it’s potential. I need to do some more reading on how to properly integrate it into a workout.

iPod Nano & iPod Nano Exercise Arm Band

This has been a very useful piece of equipment, as I pretty much need music to maintain interest in physical activity when I engage in it. I bought this with the iPod nano itself for exercising purposes, since I’ve always had an aversion to risk sweat damaging my iPhone and have used my iPod on my runs & workouts instead. However, this may see a decline in use since I recently purchased…

iPhone 4 & Marware Sportshell for iPhone 4

I splurged on this since about three weeks prior I invested in an Uncommon case for my iPhone with custom art. However, I’ve come to realize that there are a variety of apps for the iPhone that make it an extremely valuable workout tool (which means I’ll also be writing reviews of the different apps I use). I was sold on it when I read the product description, and saw that it’s essentially a hardshell case that clips onto an armband, meaning that it’s kept away from the body while secured in place, thus eliminating the risk of sweating all over it and making it quick and easy to clip onto the armband, versus having to squeeze it into a holding pocket like I have to do with my iPod nano.

Sportline Heart Rate Monitor

I plan on regularly engaging on the activity that allowed me to ditch a load of my excess weight back in the old days: running. Thing is, I’m not a runner. My endurance is crap and it’s not exactly my favorite thing to do. As such, I want to maximize the efficiency I get out of doing it, and there’s no better way to ensure that than by having a watch and a matching chest strap that constantly monitors my heart rate and tells me when I need to push a little harder to get into my target zones. I also see myself using this at the gym, since the heart rate monitoring functions built into equipment such as cross trainers and treadmills have proven to be less than reliable.

40 lb Vinyl Dumbell Set

I forgot to include these in the new photo, but they exist. Did I mention building arm strength & muscle is a big goal for me now? These should serve as a nice interim until I can afford a nice metal weight set and a weight bench.

Gym Membership

24 Hour Fitness. I like having constant access to a gym, and the closest one is little over a mile away, easily accessible by foot and by bike (which I plan to buy in the near future). I go there for cardio on cross trainers, but will also be using it for access to heavy weights, along with the classes. I recently went to my first one since Chris has fallen in love with spin class. Also, my local one has a pool, and learning to swim is something I really want to do as well. No, I can’t swim; stay afloat and not drown, yes. Actively move through water with speed and direction? Not at all.

IN CONCLUSION

<
p align=”left”>I’ve been an expert procrastinator, one of those people that buys workout equipment and never uses it. With all the goodies I have, there’s no reason for me to stay fat, is there? Nope!