Posts Tagged ‘exercise’

Exercise effectively* (The Financial Athlete #28)

July 23, 2008

The gym is full of people doing ineffective exercise routines:

1. The middle aged man who desperately tries to lose his pot belly by doing hundreds of crunches a day does not realize crunches will only strengthen his abdominal muscles and do little or nothing to burn the fat that hides them. Meanwhile, another man beside him spends minimal time on direct ab work but has ripped abs because he concentrates on full body exercises such as pull ups, dead lifts, and lunges.

2. The young woman riding 40 minutes on the stationary bike at a leisurely pace while tuned into the TV burns less fat than her healthy friend who breaks a sweat as she maintains a mind/muscle connection in her 20 minute interval training workout on the stationary bike next to her.

3. The college kid who spends half an hour on the bench press and hardly any weight training for his back muscles only bothers to look at his chest in the mirror. In time, he will also notice a rolling in of the shoulders due to an imbalanced body structure.

4. The muscle man who consistently works out two hours a day, a good portion of that time resting in between weight lifting sets which isolate a single muscle. Another muscle man completes a comparable workout in half the time because his routine centers on multiple-joint exercises and supersets. (An example of a superset is triceps extensions followed by bicep curls.)

To save time in my workout I choose effective and efficient ways of exercise. The same holds true for the exercise of due diligence with investing. To begin with, an investment opportunity must meet my initial criteria before I dig deeper into research. This filters out unwanted assets quickly. If the investment opportunity meets my initial criteria, then I implement a system of Pros and Cons based on Michael Porter’s SWOT analysis.

SWOT is an acronym for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Strengths and Weaknesses are internal factors such as Working Capital and Debt/Equity Ratio. Opportunities and Threats are external factors such as product market trends and competition.

A SWOT analysis forces us to see the whole picture. See the whole picture, and eliminate the tendency to become over-bullish or over-bearish. Due diligence is incomplete without exploring all four facets (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats). Incomplete due diligence is nearly as bad as no due diligence, because it leads to false conclusions.

*People with heart problems and some other physical ailments should not increase the intensity of exercise with sprints, interval training, fully body exercises, and supersets. Consultant your doctor before doing this.

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Bye-bye allergies

June 2, 2008

Here’s how I got rid of 90% of my allergic reactions to grass, pollen, and dust mites without taking allergy pills. Of course, there’s a catch…nothing less than a change of lifestyle! This has to be done virtually everyday because it’s not a cure. Once off the regimen, the allergy symptoms reappear.

1. Drink about a gallon of spring water per day. (I buy WholeFoods’ 365).

2. Sweat profusely from running, or hot yoga, or sauna. Sweat to release toxins.

3. Lift weights for muscle toning, or hike up a hill/mountain, or walk a few miles or swim. (Do exercise only to the level your doctor would recommend.)

4. Eliminate from your diet all or most ‘fake foods’ (processed foods). Eat more fruits and vegetables, preferably organic.

5. Manage stress. I take a capsule of 50 mg of B-Vitamins when stress is elevated.

6. And here’s the real kicker…Load up on antioxidants from a variety of food sources.

a) Breakfast: freshly squeezed orange juice and a minimum of 72% dark chocolate to go along with main meal usually something with protein like eggs.
b) Snacks throughout the day: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and especially GOJI berries.
c) 2-3 cups of organic green tea or yerba mate or rooibos tea from BULK and quality spring water per day including lunch.
d) A glass of red wine with dinner. If you don’t drink alcoholic beverages, then substitute a pill of grape seed extract. The point is to try to include antioxidants with every meal.

It takes discipline to do this, but habits form in about 28 days. It took me about 3 months to see dramatic results. This is the first springtime in my life I can remember without suffering from allergies.

If you try this, please report back on your results.

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