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2017 September 6

Wilder Ranch

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 11:27
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Yesterday, my son and I took a bike ride through Wilder Ranch State Park and UCSC.  We had a fun, though somewhat warm ride.  The weather was unseasonably hot over Labor Day weekend, hitting an all-time high for Santa Cruz of 108°F.  We were promised cooler weather on Tuesday, but the temperature was well over 80°F at noon.  We waited until 1:30, when the temperature finally dropped below 80°F before leaving the house.

We headed out on the paved bike path to Wilder Ranch, up Engelman’s Loop  and Long Meadow Trail to the Chinquapin Trailhead, then across Empire Grade to UCSC property, down past the Painted Barrels (there are actually two sets of barrels—Google doesn’t map the more northerly set, which were just after we entered the woods again from Marshall Field).  On the way down from campus, we stopped at the overlook above Pogonip Park and at the UCSC farm stand, where I bought some apples, cauliflower, and flowers.  The farm stand seems to have less produce this year than in previous years—I don’t know whether this is because the farm is producing fewer varieties or that they have better marketing outlets elsewhere.

Because we were doing the ride mid-week, we saw only a few other bike riders—maybe 5 or 6 on the paved path out to Wilder Ranch, one couple on the trails in the park, a pack of middle schoolers with adult guides on the UCSC trails, and a few bike commuters on the UCSC roads.  I suspect that the Wilder Ranch trails are more populated on weekends.

A map of our route. It was 13 miles (21 km) with 1178 feet (360m) of climbing.

I used Google Maps to make a route map of the route we took, which was harder than I expected.  At first I just dragged around intermediate points using Google directions, but Google kept throwing out the route.  Then my son pointed out that I could use the “+” button in directions to grow the route incrementally, though that required  couple of tries to work also, as there is a small limit on the number of points you can add, so I had to be very choosy about which points I added.

The weather was really a bit too warm for strenuous exercise, but we had cloud cover for much of the ride, so it wasn’t as bad as it could have been (certainly not as bad as last weekend would have been).  Today might have been a better choice, as the hot weather seems to have ended and we’re back to more normal temperature swings.

Neither of us have mountain bikes—my son rides a commuter bike with narrow road tires, and I have my Vanguard long-wheelbase recumbent.  The loose gravel, deep dust, and ruts of the trails in Wilder Ranch were a little difficult for us to handle, though mountain-bike enthusiasts would have found them tame.  I had to get off and walk my bike on a few steep hills, because I fell below my minimum balance speed and couldn’t start again on the loose gravel.  I only fell once—trying to get out of a rut on a steep uphill and falling below minimum balance speed.

It would have been good to do more bike riding this summer with my son—he’s headed back to UCSB in just over 2 weeks, and we’re making a trip to Boulder to see my Dad next week, so I doubt that we’ll have time to schedule another bike ride.

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2017 August 1

Twenty-fourth weight progress report

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 21:53
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This post is yet another weight progress report, continuing the previous one, part of a long series since I started in January 2015.

The last couple of months have been a disaster for my weight-loss prospects. Not only have I not gotten back into my target range, but I’ve been putting on weight rapidly.

The long-term trend is not encouraging—I’ll be back at my max weight in three years.

Part of the problem was a trip to San Francisco at the beginning of July, where I ate out for three meals a day, and part has been the rather meager exercise I’ve been getting (averaging only 2.6 miles of bicycling a day for the past 2 months). It probably also doesn’t help that we nearly always have snacks around the house.

Sometime in the next week I’ll get my cholesterol checked (I’ve not checked the level since changing to rosuvastatin), as the reduced exercise may have let the cholesterol drift upward along with my weight.

2017 May 31

Twenty-third weight progress report

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 09:19
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This post is yet another weight progress report, continuing the previous one, this being the 22nd since I started in January 2015.

I had a gradual rebound after my concerted effort to lose weight, and I’ve not been able to get back to where I was when I declared my diet a success.

My weight is leveling off, around 163 pounds, but not really dropping as I’d like.

My goal for Spring quarter was to get my weight back down to 158 lbs, another 5-pound loss, which is not possible in the remaining 2 weeks, as I have not even been able to hold steady at a my mid-March weight, much less lose.

My exercise for May 2017 was about 5.35 miles a day of bicycling, but exercise does not have much effect on weight (except at the extremes of no exercise and endurance racing).

2017 April 30

Twenty-second weight progress report

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 14:20
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This post is yet another weight progress report, continuing the previous one, this being the 22nd since I started in January 2015.

Although I had a few days in my target range in the middle of March, my weight spiked after that and has not come back down.

 

The longer-term trend is a bit disheartening, because it suggests that even if I'm fairly diligent about my current diet, I'm likely to be back where I started within four years.

The longer-term trend is a bit disheartening, because it suggests that even if I’m fairly diligent about my current diet, I’m likely to be back where I started within four years.

The weight spike at the beginning of April was the result of my trip to Ashland for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  I ate too much and exercised too little on the trip.  I don’t think that this is what people have in mind when they say that “travel is broadening.”

My goal for Spring quarter is still to get my weight back down to 158 lbs, another 6-pound loss, which seems a bit unlikely in the remaining 6 weeks, as I have not even been able to hold steady at a my mid-March weight, much less lose.

My exercise for March and April 2017 was about 4.58 miles a day of bicycling, with a slightly higher pace going up hill than I usually use, though probably not enough difference to constitute more exercise, just somewhat faster exercise.

2017 March 1

Twenty-first weight progress report

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 09:01
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This post is yet another weight progress report, continuing the previous one, this being the 21st since I started in January 2015.  I did not report at the end of January 2017, in part because I was embarrassed about not having dropped the excess holiday weight during the month, despite fairly strict adherence to my raw-fruit-and-vegetable-lunch diet. February has been a bit better:

I still want to lose another 4–5 pounds to get myself back into the middle of my self-imposed target range.

I still want to lose another 4–5 pounds to get myself back into the middle of my self-imposed target range.

 

I did drop back into my target range for a few days at the end of February, in part due to a bad cold that reduced my appetite for a week or more.

I did drop back into my target range for a few days at the end of February, in part due to a bad cold that reduced my appetite for a week or more.

My goal for this quarter was to get my weight back down to 158 lbs, another 4-pound loss, which seems a bit unlikely in the remaining month, as my rate of loss has been only about a pound a month, not a pound a week (as it was when I started the diet in January 2015).

I can’t report precisely on my exercise for the past month, as my bike computer’s battery failed yesterday, and I lost the mileage information when I replaced the battery.  I have been bicycling to campus 5 days a week though, plus occasional weekend errands, so I’ve probably been averaging about 35 miles a week (5 miles a day).

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