As I’ve mentioned in the past I’m current on Duromine which is an appetite suppressant however the problem that I found with the latest drug test is that it gives off false positives to amphetamines because the active ingredient in Duromine is phentermine (the predecessor to Duromine was fen-phen which was made up of fenfluramine/phentermine where as Duromine is made up of phentermine/topiramate which doesn’t damage heart valves that the original one did). The active ingredient is similar to amphetamine thus gives off a false positive during a drug test even though the ingredient doesn’t have any of the euphoric or hyper stimulant effects of amphetamines. For me the amount I take is 15mg which is the lowest dose possible and I’ve been watching out for symptoms with no negative side effects – I can go to sleep without any problems, wake up no problem, no jitteriness etc. Maybe my high tolerance to caffeine has flat lined me to any possible stimulant effect that it might have had on a normal person along with the fact that I’m a pretty big guy too. Anyway, hopefully that’ll get all sorted out and I can hit the ground running next week because I really want to get earning some money because the amount I’d get on the emergency benefit as a seasonal worker is rather, well, crappy but that being said I’ve got some opportunities line up in other areas with one being with my old work place and another being through a recruitment company although I have to admit I lean towards going back to my old job since it is a role that I’m already trained to do and familiar with it.
Another thing I’ve started to do is go for a power walk each night where I walk down to the end of the the street my street connects to and back which is around 5.8km – not as a ‘counter balance’ to what I ate during the day but rather as something that gets those ‘happy hormones’ firing. These ‘happy hormones work as a great way of curbing appetite and cravings plus I also feel a lot more alert after having a good power walk – a clear mind so that I can focus on updating my blog etc.
It is funny how I used to be a dyed in the wool advocate for Diet Coca Cola but part of being better financially I have actually stated moving over to Pepsi Max and holy crap I knew Pepsi was cheaper but never as cheap as it has been today at Countdown – $1 for a 1.5L bottle from the Pepsi range with the usual price being $2.50 for a 2L vs. $3.99 for a 2.25L. Part of this bargain hunting and rebooting to a better financial future I’ve setup a long term savings accounts where you get interest bonuses if you don’t do a withdrawal with the added incentive of ‘more than one withdrawal attracts a $5 transaction fee’ which serves as a good incentive not to touch the money unless I really, really, really need it.
Anyway, tonight I’m going to go for another power walk. These days what I do is have my main meal at lunch time and at dinner I have a light snack like a meal replacement drink (Up and Go low sugar) or a breakfast biscuit. It is actually working out better having my ‘main meal’ earlier especially when it comes to work as well – metabolism works fastest during the day so best to keep the night meals as light as possible. Regarding my next weigh in, I’m going to weigh myself in probably around 4 or 5 December to see how things are progressing but I’m pretty confident based on how my clothes are fitting better (and fitting into clothes I couldn’t fit into before) that I am gradually getting towards my ideal weight. My big long term goal is 85-90kg which would be about right for a person with a height of 188cm.
As great as my success has been with weight loss I’m really wanting to tone up at the same time and that is where physical activity comes into play and so far I’m feeling pretty good. I’ve got my name out there for jobs with more sociable hours and better pay because long term I’d like to be able to get a gym membership where I can work out and use the equipment such as free weights, treadmill and stepper to tone up parts of my body along with the weight loss but that is more of a long term goal. Tomorrow I’ve got work which will be a pretty active job so I’ll see how that goes but I’d like to go for a power walk after I come home most nights to keep that metabolism ticking over so maybe the goal is exercise Monday, Tuesday then on Thursday, Friday and Sunday with a rest day on Wednesday and Saturday. Anyway, tomorrow is my first day of work so hopefully all will go well.
I had modest expectations after 5 weeks – 6-8kg and I’d be as pleased as punch but I’ve lost 17kg at my latest weigh in. With the health check up all giving the thumbs up the doctor gave me another 2 months worth of Duromine which will tide me over until the beginning of January. If things keep up the way they do (which they most likely will considering that the job I have over the Christmas break is an active job) I’ll get back to the weight I was before working as a manager at a fast food place which is still more than when I came back from Australia but it’ll be a lot better than where I was just 7 years ago. Hopefully by the time I get back to the job I am at now next year I would have gotten back to being close to where I want to be so that the last few kilos is a matter of just wearing it off gradually . The final weight I’m aiming for 90-95kg which will give me a 35inch waist, a comfortable/loose XL shirt which will be great given that I have a tonne of clothes I haven’t been able to wear for ages that I will then be able to get back into again.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus has really grown on me even with the launch of the Pixel 2 and arrival of Nokia Android phones to New Zealand (exclusively through Spark). The Pixel 2 is a rebranded HTC U11 (HTC is now owned by Google) with the 3.5mm headjack removed which has caused some controversy on the Android subreddit. The return of Nokia to New Zealand will be interesting given that Nokia still has a lot of good will associated with the brand not to mention the fact that the Nokia Android experience is as close to vanilla as possible not to mention security updates delivered on time and Android upgrades delivered within a reasonable space of time.
Regarding Pixel 2, it is great that Google has bought out HTC and shown a seriousness regarding hardware that their Motorola purchase that they never did. Although I kind of wished I held off for the Pixel 2 to arrive in New Zealand, I have a feeling that with Nokia being delivered via Spark I doubt 2 Degrees or Vodafone are willing to team up with Google and deliver the Pixel 2 to New Zealand.
The other part of moving to Android also included moving my email to the G-Suite of applications but this time I created a new domain (which avoids having a long domain name) and also keeps it separate from websites domain name. I’ve since set it up and the email experience has been great. As noted in my previous post, I generally speaking prefer to use email clients such as the Mail application that comes with macOS but I’ve been finding myself drawn to using the web based interface instead as it isn’t plagued with the incompatibilities between Google’s mail system and the IMAP implementation that Apple tries to use (god knows why they just don’t embrace the documented REST based API that Google provides to developers which the GMail application itself makes use of).
Regarding the phone itself – I’ll be writing up a review probably this Monday or Tuesday along with maybe the Google Wifi setup. All I can say is that Samsung has really lifted their game since the last time I used them which was way back in the old S3 days. The biggest thing I love is the fact that they killed off that god awful Kies and although it does require manual drag and drop of music it doesn’t suffer from the lag driven bugginess that Kies had – play music with iTunes but sync music using Samsung Switch which is very much like how the Windows Phone Connector for Mac used to work. I’ll leave those interesting details for the review in 4-5 days time.
Regarding the diet, with the help that my doctor has given me I have been able to curb my appetite where although I look at something and think it would be tasty, I don’t have the ravenous hunger which normally comes by the end of the day after otherwise having a great day of sticking to my diet – the ravenous hunger takes over and all I want to do is eat something because I’m so damn hungry but if I ignore the hunger then I can’t get to sleep etc. but on a good side once the initial weight loss kicks in then hopefully in three months there will be sufficient results that’ll allow me to continue down the path now that some momentum has started. I’m keeping a diary with a starting weight and I’ll get weighed each month to keep tracking of progress and with the weather improving I’m hoping to do some walking after work as a good wind down to the day.
I’m clearing out the old at home and starting with a fresh slate; going to sort out all the cupboards, getting a plastic storage containers to put the extra clothes I have which don’t fit in my tall boy. Everything is going great with my Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus and the Chromecast is working wonderfully, being able to cast what ever video I like from my desktop computer to my television screen. The icing on the cake being that the wifi network is super reliable with the mesh arrangement where I’m averaging 800Mbps connection in each of the rooms.
Starting a seasonal job over the christmas break which will be great and then I’ll be back doing my normal job at the end of February next year which will hopefully translate into earning more than $25,000 so I’ll be able to claim back on the independent earner tax credit (around $500 or so).
I got some help with the dieting from my local doctor – after trying to do it myself I realised that it was a process of 2 steps forward and 5 steps back so with some help I’ll get back on track again. They’ve prescribed me with an appetite suppressant and so far it is working well – my appetite has flat lined and no longer have the ravenous cravings at the end of a ‘good day’ of sticking to a diet. My doctor noted that it isn’t a permanent long term solution can take forever which I understand – it is one of those situations that once you get some momentum behind oneself that it becomes a virtuous cycle of positive outcomes re-enforce further positive outcomes with also feed into a positive state of mind (rinse and repeat).