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Wed, 08 Jun 2005

Uncyclopedia - 22:14
So I found out about this Uncyclopedia from a BoingBoing post mentioning what Cory thought was a great Zork parody some user had put into the Uncyclopedia. The Uncyclopedia is (wait for it) a Wikipedia parody (geez I bet you never saw that coming), and I have to say there is some incredibly funny content on there already. Whoever said the Internet does not have a sense of humour needs to read this.

From the front page news item right now suggesting "Canada and California have announced plans to merge. The new country will be called Caca." to the pages on such topics as Australia and New Z'land (hey where is lca2006 again?), or other fun such as Linux or Star Trek. This has had me giggling for hours.

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Using exercise to reduce stress - 21:43
After reading Mikal's post about being stressed I wandered into his office and suggested he take up cycling as that is what I use to reduce stress. I was not kidding, it really works. He has since updated the post asking if anyone has suggestions on how to reduce stress.

Cycling may not be the solution for Mikal, however I would very strongly recommend taking up a regular exercise program in order to reduce stress, increase happiness and a whole bunch of other positive things. There is a fairly large amount of evidence around the place to support the notion of exercise as being one of the best methods with which to reduce stress.

Both the documents I link to above make many good points. You actually have to make time to exercise in your life, there is no way to find time for it in our increasingly busy lives, you actually have to restructure and fit regular exercise in, a form of lifestyle adjustment. From the second of those links

Regular exercise not only strengthens physical health; it can help you handle stress by...
  • relaxing tense muscles
  • helping you sleep better
  • releasing endorphins, adrenaline, serotonin and dopamines -- chemicals that give you a sense of well-being
What activities best treat stress?

The main thing is to find things you like and commit to doing them regularly.

  • For many, repeating the same motion for a period of time has a relaxing effect similar to meditation. Rhythmic exercises that can provide this effect include swimming laps, walking, running and cycling.
  • Some people enjoy exercises that focus on breathing and fluid movement, such as yoga and tai chi.
  • Others prefer exercising in pairs, for instance, by playing tennis or dancing the tango.

All of this is definitely true, the endorphin release or whatever from regular intensive exercise really is like some sort of feel good drug, I openly admit I am a cycling addict, and to some extent an outdoor exercise addict. The point of finding something you enjoy is also important, if you do not marginally enjoy it you will be less likely to do it. I for example abhor exercising indoors and can not think of much worse than doing exercise in a gym. This is fine as I can exercise outdoors so easily year round in Canberra.

If you do not have a huge amount of spare time and can handle the activity I would suggest running is an excellent form of regular exercise. For the amount of time spent on the activity you get a huge fitness benefit (definitely superior to cycling in fitness per unit time) and it falls into the whole intensive exercise with repetitive/meditative qualities class of activities. Again it doe snot quite suit me when compared to cycling, and running is a far more injury prone activity also, but as the above, and I also, suggests finding exercise you really enjoy doing is the important thing here.

Another good thing about exercise in the case of families is, if your kids see you out there exercising as a regular part of daily life, it will be more heavily a part of their psyche as they grow up that it is perfectly normal to exercise a lot, and thus they are more likely to do so also, and thus be healthier happier adults, less stressed and less a part of the disturbing child obesity statistics.

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Freeride crossing t-shirt - 21:26
Okay, so I know I have a habit of salivating over cool t-shirts from time to time (such as some of those pointed out by preshrunk), also I often lament the fact there is no similar readily available source of cool/unusual/cute/amusing cycling jerseys. So although this is not quite filling the need, it is combining the t-shirt and cycling ethos remarkably well.

This t-shirt I call freeride crossing from the UK company Puzle is truly one of the coolest t-shirts I have ever seen. I originally saw it linked on Singletrackworld last year and it stuck in my mind. Of course a few things stop me buying one, a) I have too many t-shirts to go around spending money on them and b) UKP 17 is kind of an excessive amount of money to spend on a t-shirt.

The last few times I half heartedly tried to track this t-shirt down by looking around the Singletrackworld web site I was unsuccessful, this time I used the magic of google and found it on the second hit with a search for " t-shirt".

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