Finally Rooted My Phone

I finally found some time to root my phone. I’ve written about the frustration with bloatware in the past. The reason why I held out so long is because I was anticipating the Android Gingerbread upgrade. But the longer I waited, the longer it is apparent that T-Mobile/Samsung/Google wasn’t issuing the upgrade for my phone. Rooting sometimes interferes with OS upgrades… OS wise, I’m happy with my current version of Android anyway.

Anyway, it was pretty simple with SuperOneClick. No issues so far. I also got Titanium Backup and “froze” the offending bloatware. Again, so far so good. If the phone continues to  run without any hiccups, I’m going to uninstall all of the bloatware, not just freeze it. At least they are no longer running in the background and causing app default prompts anymore. I’m also going to keep an eye on performance and battery life. I’m sure there will be some improvement on both fronts.

Dolce Diet Living Lean Review Part 1

I’ve been meaning to do a write  up for a while. I had the book for over a month.

I’m going to separate the review in 2 parts. The first is a review of the food and recipes. The second is a review of the exercise program(s). I haven’t started or even looked at the exercise part yet.

I think it’s important to note my goals, where I am, etc. as the book is primarily noticed in the MMA community/niche. I do no fight training. I’m just a guy who used to be athletic, but fell off (especially the last 5 or so years). I had been yo-yo’ing weight loss the last 2 years, relying primarily on cardio (jogging) and calorie restriction. Ultimately meeting a yearly demise during each winter.

This year I put things together perfectly. I restricted calories a little (set to lose 1.5 pounds a week), and did cardio regularly. The biggest difference this year is that I ate a million times healthier than I had in previous years. Including sticking to and further evolving my healthy living checklist, with help from my smoothie/juice breakfasts. This winter, instead of getting lazy, I’ve joined a gym and will focus on strength training and tone down the cardio (and also bring my weight loss/calorie intake to maintenance). I’ve been feeling great and it hasn’t been hard or a grind in any way.

Where Dolce Diet / Living Lean came in is when I felt at a loss for healthy food recipes, ideas, and alternatives. I should note that I was already seeing great success with my plan and goal progress before the book arrived. I bought the book primarily for the food/recipes.

Good:

  • It uses healthy “whole” foods.
  • The recipes are relatively easy to follow.
  • There is a good variety of foods/ingredients.
  • The recipes taste good, and I have been sticking to them. My wife likes them too. A huge help is having a partner in healthy eating and lifestyle.
  • The recipes are filling, and I have noticed that I don’t have hunger cravings at all when sticking to the whole foods he advocates.
  • Overall it has built and is strengthening a discipline of both eating whole and cooking and preparing my own (and household too) meals. And I’ve started to improvise and search for more recipes now that I have a solid “base” to work off from.

Not so good:

  • Recipe’s vary wildly with serving sizes. Some can feed 6 people, others just 1.  But after a few times around I’ve halved or doubled recipes accordingly.
  • Recipes lack some details e.g. “can of diced tomatoes” (what size can??) and type of bread rather than simply “bread”
  • The pantry list isn’t complete as some recipes call for items not on the list. It would be nice to have a “some recipes include” list to be more prepared.
  • There aren’t many recipes total (see actual count and breakdown below). I fear getting tired of some.

Overall I think the book is worth it. It’s definitely gotten me excited to cook. And cook with whole ingredients and uber healthily. Previously, I very rarely cooked anything (if you don’t count peanut butter and jelly and grilled cheese). The foods taste good, which means there is no sacrificing. When I was still jogging a lot, I really feel the foods gave me more usable energy. I was far less sluggish when running after introducing the foods into my diet. Also I’ve learned some things too, like cooking with grape seed, peanut, and coconut oils instead of olive oil because of their high smoke points.

Part II will come later as I am still in my first week of getting re-acclimated to weight lifting after years and years of not lifting. I need a few very light introduction weeks before I start lifting seriously. Judging by how sore I am right now, I think it’s a smart decision.

11/19/11:  As promised, here are some counts to the contents of the book:

  • The book is 163 pages, not including a couple pages of testimonials at the end.
  • The first 32 pages go into Dolce’s background, experiences, and the entire diet’s methodology.
  • There are 5 pages outlining a sample meal plan.
  • 3 pages of the diet basics and pantry lists.
  • 28 pages of recipes and snack ideas.
  • The remaining pages are devoted to workout principals, sample workout plans (lifting and cardio), and exercise movements.

As I mentioned earlier, I will detail the workout portion in another review. I haven’t started his workout plan yet, rather I’m sticking to my own for now.

As far as the diet part goes, here’s a breakdown:

  • There are 34 food recipes (not counting snack ideas and condiment recipes).
    • 5 breakfast
    • 11 lunch
    • 14 dinner
    • 2 snack
    • 2 juice
  • 6 condiment recipes (e.g. fresh berry syrup used on pancakes and french toast)
  • 5 snack ideas that I’m not including in recipes (e.g. toast smeared with avocado)

First 30 day challenge ends in a tap out

Well that one didn’t last long at all. I started my first 30 day challenge last week. And it only lasted 4 days. I wanted to do a stream of consciousness writing every night for 30 days. I may go back to the drawing board though and try to salvage it for another try (another month). I tried 30 minutes each. That may have been too long for each night. Maybe 15 minutes is enough??? I had to fight to get myself to do the last one, then threw in the towel the next day. To be honest I didn’t know what would come out of it. I did get to write down a lot of what was floating in my head (2 hours worth). There are some things I want to get done because of the writing. So maybe it was valuable in some way… Anyway my next 30 day challenge will be something easier/faster so I can get some momentum going with this concept.

30 Day Challenges

I got this idea from Matt Cutts of Google. Committing to something different for 30 days each month (or every other month or whatever). I was thinking about doing this for quite a while.

During Lent this year, I gave up junk food, which I narrowed down to the 4 c’s (cake, candy, chips, cookies). That was sort of a 30 day challenge of itself (40+ days actually). I only messed up once completely accidentally and mindlessly during Church coffee hour. I picked up a brownie and took a bite, then realized it and threw the rest away. Besides being the annoying one who turns down cake at birthday parties, it was relatively easy for me. I don’t eat much of it to begin with.

The 30 day challenge doesn’t need to be a sacrifice however. Rather motivation to try new things.

So the new month begins and so does my first 30 day challenge. This is something I put off for over a year and a half. It is stream-of-consciousness writing. The one recommendation I’m going to ignore is to do it in writing. Rather, I’m going to type them keep them in a Google Docs folder. I’m going to isolate myself from distractions first and commit a half hour to each.

Lets see how this goes…

Need to Switch Gears, 10k may have to wait

Following my last post, I ran an even newer personal best going 5.75 miles in 51 minutes. Again, this was the furthest I ever ran. Plus it was my fastest pace ever (8:52) for 3+ miles. Good, good, good.

I should also note that it was a very mild day. Low to mid 50s. No humidity. Perfect.

My last run wasn’t as good though. I only made it 5.5 miles in the same 51 minutes. Still not shabby, but… The sole reason it was slower (and what’s been haunting me the last 2 years also) is that I can’t figure out how to dress for the cold weather. It was low 40s. Too cold for just a long sleeve shirt (I think). I had a windbreaker jacket and pants (both supposedly breathable). But I sweat so much, that after 15-20 minutes, I started to feel the heat. And as it turned out, I gassed a little at the end of the run. Mind you when I first stepped out of the house, I was a little chilly.

That brings me to a decision to not fret over it. My outdoor running days are over for this season. I’m taking my cardio into the gym full time from now through the winter. I don’t want to spend money on more clothes. And I don’t have the patience to trial and error this thing out. Also, add in some chapped lips and uuumm errrr let me just hint uhhhh {minor case of what happened to Andy from the Office in the running episode} makes my decision easier and final. Aaaaand it’ll break me into a routine of going to the gym, which I wanted to do more during the winter month anyway. I CANNOT SLIP OFF TRACK THIS WINTER!

I know I could have made 10k (6.25 miles) this year, but it’ll have to wait until Spring.