Monthly Archives: September 2013


I have been thinking about doing some high-intensity training, but I am a little afraid of CrossFit and others like them.  I would like to find something appropriate to my fitness/endurance level, and I want to make sure I’m doing it right and not hurting myself.

This article is quite insightful, explains what a “MetCon” is, and then goes on to explain how a 20-minute high-intensity workout might be counterproductive and how to choose an appropriate level.

The Case for the Short Metcon  by Robb Wolf


This is a great article about the stages of change

Context and the Stages of Change by Emily Deans, posted on Evolutionary Psychiatry

It’s written from a Paleo perspective, but it’s useful for anyone who wants to guide others through a difficult life change. It explains why some people aren’t ready to listen, no matter how compelling the argument or evidence.

1. Precontemplation (a.k.a. Denial) Set a good example. Prompt them to consider something but don’t try to convince them, yet.
2. Contemplation – Person is not sure, and may be more open to convincing.
3. Preparation – Actively looking for support, resources, and pointers to how to get started.
4. Action – They’re actually doing it
5. Maintenance – avoid relapsing, turn short-term coping into long-term life skills.

Metademocracy: Governance is not a game. Yet.

I’ve read about this thing called Holocracy which has really got me thinking about governance systems.  Holocracy is a method for governing a company or organization by having small interconnected groups that share responsibility for decision-making and finding consensus.

I think eventually someone will figure out a way for this to be applied to states/nations/etc.  I think that communication technologies will be an important part of the solution, or at least important to enable it to scale up.  But, right now I believe that government on a state or national level gets too polarized and then becomes paralyzed.  Perhaps this is because we’re more concerned with blocking stuff we don’t agree with, than with finding consensus and moving forward on things we do agree about.

So I found myself thinking, instead of having everyone join parties of like-minded people so we can battle other parties and try to get our way, what if we could use our high-speed communications and various social networks to have debates and discussions on a smaller scale, determine where actionable consensus exists, and then notify our leaders of what the will of the people really, actually is.  If a leader doesn’t do what most of the people say they want, the social networks should point it out and remind people around the next voting time that this leader thinks he knows better than the collective.  The leaders would either respect the will of the collective or get voted out.

Then I thought, what if we could turn this into a game, or at least a simulation of some kind.

See, at first the “collective” would be small but the challenge would be to try and reach a diverse set of people, get consensus where possible, and then publish that out in a way that others can express support even if they weren’t part of the collective.  Where consensus exists, a small collective can have a big impact by phoning their leaders and getting them to respond to the collective.  And it has to cut across all the parties and not just apply to folks who are used to agreeing.  Members of the collective have to believe in the consensus and be willing to take the fight to their own leaders, even within their own parties, to make them understand when the will of the people is clear.

When the collective grows larger, people would not need to spend as much time in activist-mode.  Ideally people could simply comment and click their way to an actionable consensus, and take turns delivering the message to government and its leaders.  Once it reaches a certain saturation level, leaders will start to put questions to the collective proactively rather than waiting for the collective to call or publish findings.

In the game or simulation version of this, we would assume that not everyone would follow through and vote according to the will of the collective.  But enough people would support the will of the collective because they feel like part of the process and have a sense of ownership and belonging even if they don’t agree with the rest of the collective on some certain points.

I need some smart friends to help me explore this idea a bit.  (Looking at you, Bryant and Jeff)  Ping me if you’re interested in some conversation over coffee or whatever.

Plan for September: eat MORE and exercise LESS

My plan for this month is to eat MORE and exercise LESS. Yes, I know that sounds backwards, but here is my thinking.

1. I have had great results with Paleo but I have been playing fast and loose, and having stuff I shouldn’t be having a bit too often. I can have bread, but I’ve decided I don’t want to have it every day. So I’m taking this month to re-focus on core Paleo. Also, there’s some “extra” stuff I’m doing that is sort of OK but not really important to basic paleo. For example, intermittent fasting, and carb re-feeds. It doesn’t hurt, but it would benefit me more to get my basic, core paleo skills back on track. Here is my resource for that: and Whole30.

2. I lowered my calorie budget a LOT and I think that it allowed me to lose some weight, but it’s brought me closer to “starvation mode” than I like. Mark’s response to someone’s letter brought this home for me. So I’m raising my budget closer to what Lose It suggests for my size. Key reading here: and…/

3. I have been doing heavy lifting with a small amount of cardio. But I have been neglecting the #1 primal workout: walking. So for September I will try to get as much walking per day as possible and not go for my normal lifting/cardio schedule. Key reading material: Month 1 of and “2. Move around a lot at a slow pace.”…/

4. SLEEP is crucial and I have been staying up late and rising early, too often. So I will commit to going to bed on time and trying to get 8 hrs of quality sleep during September. I know it’s important, I just need to do it. I should stop eating around 8 or 9 and get to bed between 10 and 11.

Depending on how it goes in September I will probably want to move on to Month 2 of where I add back in some lifting and may even take up meditation for stress reduction. Hmm.