Saturday, 31 January 2009
Friday, 30 January 2009
At Woolies Foods about two weeks ago I noticed that they've changed the packaging of their long-life milk. Instead of the common 1-litre Tetrapak box, they've changed to a plastic milk bottle-like container. In doing this they've scored another regular customer... for their long-life milk at least.
What do I have against Tetrapak containers? They're are difficult to recycle; in fact, I don't know that they can be recycled because of their multiple layers, which are fused? in any event there's no recycling symbol on them. As for these plastic bottles... they go straight into my plastics tub. Easy. The power of environmental consumerism.
Talking about milk... do you remember those glass milk bottles and the battery-powered milk trucks that used to deliver milk early every mornings. I probably last saw one in the early-80s. I used to go with my great aunt (grandmother's sister) to the local milk shop. She would get a "chain" of those blue, round, plastic coupons - they had a hole through the middle. She would leave the appropriate number out for the milkman, with the empty bottles from the day. He would replace the empties with bottles of fresh milk.
Perhaps we'll go back to glass bottles at some stage? You can take your bottles back to the shop when you do your groceries. They could then give you a return coupon against your next purchase of fresh milk - like getting your deposit back on glass colddrink bottles in the old days. It's would be like taking your material shopping bags with you to the store. After a while you don't think about it, you just do it.
Wednesday, 28 January 2009
No, no. There's nothing wrong with me (that I know of!). ECGs are commonly requested by organisers of staged ultra marathons. And as I'm running the RAW Namibia event in 3-weeks, it's time to visit my doctor. No ECG, no run.
As far as I can ascertain, this whole multi-day ultra marathon ECG thing is to ensure there are no abnormalities lurking, which could be triggered by days of running in hot conditions (races generally don't like people to keel over at their events).
I just think it is funny that I've had so many; and all for races.
Sunday, 25 January 2009
Back to the track thing... Alex sms'd the track session on Thursday and I'm going to be doing it at lunchtime on Monday. Alex and Sarah claim the session to be "good fun". It is 20 x 200m repeats with 30-seconds rest (standing still).
Remember to warm up and cool down with easy jogging of 800m to 1km. Enjoy.
POST SCRIPT: I received a sweet email from a good friend this morning. In it he says, "You do realise I have been running track again because of your most intriguing blogs? I am actually going to try and run 1500m on the track this coming week." That's the spirit! Go, go, go.
I do hope some other readers are at least thinking about trying the track thing. It really is fun.
Thursday, 15 January 2009
If you'd like to give it a try...
Warm-up by jogging easy around the track twice. Then do 4 x 100m strides, running at a good pace and focusing on stretching out your legs. Then the fun starts...
The session involves 600m, 1:30 rest, then 400m. That's one set. Do four setswith 2:30 rest between sets. But, there's a catch. The third set... instead of a rest between the 600m and 400m, erase the rest and run 1000m straight. The last set will have the 1:30 rest between 600m and 400m. Nasty - but you feel good for it afterwards, not during.
The one really nice thing about track is that even if you're not as fast as the others, like me, you still just do your own thing according to your watch (it does help to have a watch that takes splits). You see the other people on the track and if they're in a rest session and you're running, they shout words of encouragement, which is really sweet.
The guys were talking tonight about a wicked session that includes wicked repeats (more on this when we do it). Arthur and the others were relating tales of suffering rather gleefully. Mmmm... I can see track is going to be an adventure. I look forward to getting my revenge when I can rope them into attending a local orienteering event. Hahahaha
Tuesday, 13 January 2009
Friday, 9 January 2009
Sure, there are a few exceptions, like my books. And also had some other odds that lived in a drawer and were kept because they couldn't really be gotten rid of (where? to whom?). Well, most were stolen (very little financial value) when my home was broken into in November - and I didn't completely mind because they were unnecessary luggage that I should have / could have passed on years ago. The thieves cleansed clutter I didn't need.
The theft aside, I've always enjoyed a good environment cleanse; the satisfaction of getting rid of stuff I don't need is energising. I remember doing major clean-outs before starting to study for exams and these days I can't resist the urge to declutter before writing major articles or any other thought-consuming tasks.
I was recently introduced to Tim Ferriss' blog - www.fourhourworkweek.com. And through Tim's blog I've just discovered Leo Babauta (www.zenhabits.net; "The Power of Less"; he went from 1 reader to being one of the Technorati Top-100 blogs in the world in less than 12 months) and Merlin Mann (www.43folders.com; "Inbox Zero" concept).
Leo is fabulous and a number of the entries in his posting summaring The Essential Zen Habits of 2008 are inspiring. There's no esoteric weirdness; just common sense.
The remaining months of last year were tough for me; I reached my limit where I was juggling too much stuff - and it broke me. Learning from this, I've been cleansing committments and responsibilities to whittle my activities and surroundings down to things I want and need to do. Work in progress.
Leo has some great comments on The Four Laws of Simplicity and How to Apply Them to Life and 21 Easy Hacks to Simplify Your Life. In dealing with physical things in your home, read Zen mind: How to declutter for inspiration.
Life is simple; we clutter it with unnecessaries. You're guaranteed to find at least two points in there that you should be implementing.
My key word for this month is "Simplify"; and it should establish a good base for the rest of the year.
Thursday, 8 January 2009
Saturday, 3 January 2009
The one thing about New Year... it is almost like completing a project or the last episode in a tv series season. It is good to get to the end of something, even though you know another season of the series awaits.
We tend to live too much in the past (memories, good times, hording sentimental items) and the future (always planning for weeks, months and years ahead) and not enough in the present. New Year helps to cut part of a tie with the past; to clean the slate and start again.
That's good because it focuses you a bit more on being positive, full of expectation for the months ahead and open to [creating] opportunities now and in the future.