Cover Up Track 1 – Paranoid

As some of you may know, I’m working on a collection of cover versions that have some personal meanings to me, recording them in my own style and (where applicable) having guest musicians to participate. The first track is the famous Black Sabbath tune, Paranoid. Why Paranoid? Well, I’ll let you into a little secret about what memory this song evokes.

Way back when I was in my first band, the lead guitarist left and the honors passed down to me, and one of the songs we played at the time was Paranoid by Black Sabbath. Well, during once practice a few mates (who were also musicians) popped in and when it came to the solo (which I hadn’t learnt) I fudged some out of key shambles and was met with some rather obvious sniggers and open laughter and this made me do one simple thing. Vow never to play a guitar solo in front of anyone until I could actually do a decent job. So, with that image still in my head, it seemed only fitting that the first track I work on was Paranoid. All that’s left is to get some vocals added and we’re good to go on this one. :)

I Love Technology!

Anyone who knows me knows I love gadgets, technology and all things geeky. But what’s not to love?

For example, I’m sat at the top of the Welsh countryside, after riding my mountain bike up here, tracking my exercise with an iPhone and Endomondo, while monitoring my heart rate with a Bluetooth Polar heart rate monitor so I can see how my exercise is progressing.

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2014 Training Update

For anyone who’s followed my blog and the posts on here will know, I set myself some goals at the beginning of 2014, one of which was to cycle 1000 miles this year. This may not seem like a lot to many, but for me it’s a pretty good goal as my spare time is limited and the weather in the UK is generally petty rubbish to say the least. So getting out on the bike can sometimes prove to be awkward.

Well, the beginning of the year started pretty poorly, with minimal training for the first third (only 22 miles in January and nothing then until April) – not a good start by anyone’s standards.  So this has meant my goal has become somewhat harder with a considerably shorter time frame to achieve it in.

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Is Our Weight Genetically Predetermined?

Weighing Scales
Looking back over the last 2 years of regular exercise and a heavily modified diet, it’s occured to me that my weight fluctutation or maintenance has pretty much consistently been in the same region, give or take a couple of pounds for the entire time. Is this something that is down to me fluctuating with my calorie / exercise numbers or is there something more to it?

I’m pretty consistent when it comes to my general calorie intake, and after the last couple of years I’ve become accustomed to the amount of calories in most of the food that I eat and as such don’t always monitor or track it with my nutrition apps. However, in the last 2 years, since my initial weight loss, I’ve settled around the 172lb mark and haven’t really gone any higher than 175lb or lower than 168lb. At either of those extremes, I’ve still pretty quickly returned to my mid-point without any real effort. So this has led me to do a little research on the topic and have found a few articles that point at various medical tests & theories that suggest that we all have a ‘normal‘ weight that our bodies seem to gravitate towards providing we lead a normal lifestyle – Eating silly amounts of calories and/or sitting on your ass all day long!

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Great Article on Dried Fruits

Dried Fruits Apricots and Cranberries
If you substitute sweets for dried fruit, or enjoy it as a ‘healthy’ snack, this article over at My Fitness Pal may open your eyes to the benefits and the pitfalls of dried fruit. Obviously, with everythig in life it’s all about moderation. A little bit of what you fancy won’t do any harm, but overindulge and.. well!

Dried fruits can make a convenient snack or a quick way to add sweetness to a salad. But if you’ve ever wondered if dried fruits have the same nutritional benefits as fresh, the truth is: not quite.

Studies suggest dried fruits may be a good source of important nutrients, such as fiber, vitamins A, C, and K, magnesium, potassium, and calcium, and they may improve diet quality. But before you fill your grocery cart with dehydrated dates, here are some things to keep in mind:

Read the full article here – The Truth About Dried Fruit (My Fitness Pal)