Archive for March, 2012

I just saw a friend of a friend’s post on Facebook about his astrological sign. I always chuckle at stuff like that. I was an astrologer for a long time. I enjoyed it for most of those years. One thing I do not enjoy is lies and deception. That’s exactly what I believe the astrological community has begun to engage in. I’m not talking about their belief in it. You can believe in something I don’t think is real and as long as you truly believe it I’m not going to say you are liar, misguided maybe but not a liar- I think there is a difference. But astrologers are using the zodiac in a way that it no longer exists.

Precession is a word used to describe the change in the orientation of the rotation of a rotating body. Axial precession, the kind we are referring to when we discuss astronomy, is the movement of the rotational axis of an astronomical body, whereby the axis slowly traces out a cone. In the case of Earth, this type of precession is also known as the precession of the equinoxes. Earth goes through one of these cycles about every 26,000 years, during which the positions of stars as measured in the equatorial coordinate system will slowly change. Over this cycle, Earth’s north axial pole moves from where it is now, within 1° of Polaris, in a circle around the ecliptic pole, with an angular radius of about 23.5 degrees. The shift is 1 degree in 72 years. Hipparchus is the earliest known astronomer to recognize and assess the precession of the equinoxes at almost 1º per century, so it’s not like the current crop of astrologers doesn’t know.

The effect this ends up having is that the millions of people who buy or read astrological products are being told about a sign which is actually not their own. The sun moves about a degree per day. The current number is off about 24 degrees. So unless you were born at the very tail end of your sign, you belong to the sign that precedes it. If you were born the first week of September you are not a Virgo, you are a Leo. If you were born December 10th you are not a Sagittarius, you are a Scorpio. How much money have astrologers made selling people the wrong goods? Yet, they keep just plowing along. Vedic astrologers take this change into account, but most Western astrologers don’t. The newspapers you are reading sure don’t. Lots of astrologers employed by magazines and newspapers giving a lot of false information. If you are going to bother believing in something shouldn’t you trouble yourself to get it right? Or have we all just gotten to the point we don’t give a damn and just want to collect our money?


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Navel gazing

Well, it’s been a while but here I am. Still kicking. I don’t know what I had planned for this blog when I started. A menagerie of things I was interested in writing about, perhaps? I just didn’t want it to go the navel gazing route. But alas, the best laid plans of mice and all…. here we are. Last year I noticed my back was hurting more and more, in fact it seemed all my aches and pains were growing. I was only 34, darn it I shouldn’t feel this sore and tired. So I joined a gym. I started weightlifting. Yeah, I know, wild right? No, I have never been one of those people who just loved fitness. I mean I wasn’t one of those people who drove around the parking lot six times to find the closest spot, but I was no athlete either. So after a year and 80 pounds lost what have I learned?

    1. If you are female you will not get bulky by lifting heavy weights. Slap your trainer next time you hear this (I’m kidding; no I don’t advocate trainer abuse!) You just won’t. It’s not in your body to do so. You would need way larger amounts of testosterone.
    2. You have to eat. If you have been on a 1200 calorie semi-starvation diet do not go into the gym expecting to put on a lick of muscle. Even if your end goal is to lose weight you must eat.
    3. The best things to eat come with no labels. Grass fed meats, vegetables, organic when possible dairy are all good choices but try to avoid the stuff that comes in boxes and plastic bags that make up a large portion of the standard American diet. If its label reads like a chemistry project that’s a good clue it should be avoided.
    4. Don’t bend an ear to every Tom, Dick, and Harry who gives you advice. There’s a lot of good advice out there but you have to tailor it to you. If it works for you do it, if not drop it no matter how popular it is.
    5. Weight training is good for fat people. It doesn’t have to be anything like powerlifting, just the standard gym machines are ok to start with. Why? Because for one you can sit on stuff. Let’s be honest. The really overweight among us have a hard time doing basic tasks sometimes. It’s intimidating. You’ll still sweat, you’ll still burn calories, you’ll still lose weight but you can do it without having to embarrass yourself in aerobics class or feel like you can’t do anything but nap the rest of the day. Don’t let anyone tell you you can’t lose weight by lifting weight you can, too.
    6. Fat really isn’t all that bad for you. The studies on saturated fat show the negative views people have of it just don’t hold up. In practice, a diet with fat in it is just more filling. It’s the sugar you need to watch out for. The more of it you eat the more you will want.
    7. Pick one little habit to change. Do it for 30 days. Pick something else, and do it for 30 days. If you can’t picture yourself doing it for 30 days pick something simpler.
    8. Find something you are passionate about. Doing agility with your dog, weightlifting, swimming, it really doesn’t matter but if it’s something you really enjoy you are more likely to do it every day. If you don’t know what that may be just try something. I had no idea I would like lifting. It’s not something I had any experience with. I started doing it because building muscle will make you burn more calories just as you are. It raises your base metabolism. But I found out I liked it. So just get out there.
    9. Don’t focus on numbers. Just make improvements from day to day. Strong is better than skinny, healthy is better than thin. Eat well, get some activity and try not to stress out. I know easier said than done, but there it is.

So, I’m going to leave it there because it looks unfinished. It should be. I haven’t learned all there is to learn.

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