Sunday, November 28, 2010

Christmas Lights 2010

This post is a little late. I put up my Christmas lights on time as always, October 31. It was an excellent afternoon to put up the lights and I had some help from Derek.

This year I basically maxed out my outdoor 15-amp circuit. I have about 35 strings of lights on one outlet. So to upgrade next year I'll have to begin adding LED lights (80% more efficient) and eliminating standard lights.

The indoor decorations came a week later. Evelyn was slightly less helpful than Derek, but full of Christmas cheer.

My improvements this year were:
  • white and red trim around more of the roof line
  • some extra red and multi lights on the trees
  • lights around the railing of our back deck (not pictured)

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Cholesterol Results

So my cholesterol results are in. Here they are:

At first glance you will notice the significant jump in total cholesterol. It is due largely to increased LDL. Should I be worried? I'm not.
  1. LDL isn't as simple as being the "bad cholesterol." There are two main types of LDL, and one of the types is thought of as neutral while the other is considered a sign of heart disease. Those following the paleo diet have increased LDL but it is mainly the neutral version. I'm confident my LDL health has improved, even though the number is way higher. I may have my LDL tested directly (standard testing only calculates LDL, doesn't measure) and analyzed for type.
  2. My VLDL and Triglycerides are rock bottom.
  3. My TOTAL/HDL and LDL/HDL ratios are better than "optimal." Several studies have shown these ratios are much more important than HDL and LDL numbers individually.
  4. My HDL improved by 13%. This is amazing considering that my weekly exercise was dramatically lower than all previous tests. Exercise is shown to increase HDL levels considerably, and the paleo diet more than made up for that.
So I'm pretty sure I've been genetically blessed with excellent cholesterol, at least at this point in my life. However, look at my trends over the last 5 years. HDL was flat. LDL, VLDL, and triglycerides were all increasing at a steady and scary rate. Aging?

Anyone would say that 3 out of the 4 standard categories have improved significantly. The debate is over LDL. More on that later.

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

RBD Tour Season 6

Derek, Ben and I continued our tradition of traveling to an away big ten game. This year we enjoyed a Michigan win at Purdue. It was a very ugly game, but nice to see a win after two losses in a row. Our traveling record is now 4-2.
We conveniently stayed overnight in West Lafayette at my friend's parents and started tailgating at 8:00 am. Our task this year was to consume large quantities of eggs and bacon. Sadly, we only downed 24 eggs and 3 lbs of bacon (2/3 of picture below).

Ross-Ade stadium was NOT at capacity and of the people that were there at least 50% were Michigan fans.
The rain was tolerable and the game's result was worth it. Go BLUE!

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Monday, November 08, 2010

Diet at 6 months

Due to higher priorities, I decided to stop my detailed diet tracking at the end of this week. I've reached the 6 month mark and have been diligent in my tracking. My spreadsheet is well past 3,000 rows. I'll publish all the data soon enough and you statisticians can crunch some numbers for me.

I'll get my 6 month blood work done this week to close the loop on this phase.

Here has been one of my favorite "Paleo" meals: MEATZA (pizza with a ground beef crust). Email me for the recipe.

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Thursday, November 04, 2010

Curtain Day

Erin searched high and low for the perfect curtains to go in our family room. She couldn't find them. So she used her designer intuition and picked out the fabric she wanted and came up with a design.
She then used her persuasive powers to convince her sister and mom to help her make it. Little did they know it was an 8 hour job!
As usual, Evelyn "helped" all day.
In the end the curtains look awesome.
Great job team!
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