Dan John: Wandering Weights, Issue # 296

Wandering Weights
Our Epic Journey Through All Things Heavy, Issue # 296

How is everyone doing?
I got a text yesterday from my nephew.
He has Covid…and a bad case of it.
Last year, his dad died (my brother), he “won” a huge national case and then was attacked by the man in the White House, had his wedding delayed three times…and now, he has the virus.
I feel for him. I also feel for some of my friends who are on the front lines of this virus who post on the book of faces every few days PLEADING for people to be responsible.
We have an interesting thing in Utah: often, if it doesn’t impact “me,” it doesn’t count. When I first came here, in 1977, I was talking with some classmates about the Vietnam War. One said:

“I didn’t know anyone who went, so I don’t really know anything about it.”
I’ve had neighbors and family members ignore the pandemic because…well, and I quote: “I don’t know anybody who has it.”
Well, I do.
How are you doing?
I hope you are doing well. I took my car in the other day to do my annual registration, the state of Utah LOVES to tax each and every possible thing imaginable, and my buddy, Michael, told me something interesting since I last got my oil changed:
I have only driven 500 miles since March 10.
It reminds me of The Proclaimers:
But I would walk 500 miles
And I would walk 500 more
Just to be the man walks a thousand miles
To fall down at your door
What I am doing is daily podcasts, videos, writing, training, and quality nutrition. I’m trying to NOT be the problem. As I always say, any idiot can find problems, I want people who solve problems.
And, right now, all I can really do is not be the problem.
This week on danjohnuniversity.com:
Episode 51 of the podcast is here,
Dan made a workshop for Easy Strength for Fat Loss for us as well. We hope you enjoy it.
We’ve also been doing more short clips as well. Here are a few that we posted this week:
Two Great Quotes
Eastern Block Insights
What I wanted to be when I was young
Have a great week!
The deeper we get into things, the foggier things get. It’s NOT the antioxidants. Okay, we knew that…but what is it about wine that seems to help? I am taking the advice about drinking wine daily, but “why” it helps just seems to stay out of reach.


The red wine used in the In Vino Veritas study had more antioxidants than the white—almost ten times as many polyphenols, and six times as much resveratrol. So the fact that red and white wines were equally effective in this case argues against the antioxidant theory, as did a large study in the Journal of the American Medical Association earlier this year that said resveratrol isn’t helping people.
“There may be some synergy between the low dose of ethyl alcohol in wine and exercise which is protective against cardiovascular disease,” Táborský said in his presentation, leaving other causal speculation to the rest of us. Táborský is also an automobile enthusiast and owner of a three-year old Weimaraner, according to his professional website.
He concluded with the caveat that despite the fact that only about a third of the world’s population drinks alcohol, alcohol use results in 3.3 million deaths every year. Lovely as it would be to say that drinking a moderate amount of wine is categorically a good idea, the study is just another drop in the conflicting wine research well. Thinking about health in terms of isolated dietary elements is, you know, a limited proposition, so this can’t be an endorsement of anything other than exercise. If vineyard jogging becomes a thing, then it becomes a thing. I am not endorsing vineyard jogging or suggesting that anyone start a vineyard jogging group.
On a final dry note, the European Society of Cardiology reported that the participants in the study were required to return the corks from the wine bottles to confirm that they indeed drank the wine and did not sell it.

End quote
This article, at first glance, made me think that this would be another low carb article. I was wrong. I think this article is a nice piece for all kinds of discussions about education and the issues with “thinking.”


There are two things in this article that stood out to me; the first is the issue with binary thinking:
With every new study that tells us more about the complexities of human nutrition and stymies efforts to fit nutrients into simple good-bad binaries, the easier it should be to direct our concerns productively. This study is another incremental addition to an ever-expanding body of knowledge, the point of which is that we should worry less about the harmful effects of single nutrients and more about the harms done by producing food. At this point, the clearest drawbacks to consuming animal products are not nutritional but environmental, with animal agriculture contributing to antibiotic resistance, deforestation, and climate change. While there is room for debate over the ideal amounts of saturated fat in human blood, the need to move toward an environmentally sustainable food system is unambiguous.

End quote
But this point was worth a minute of thought, too:

As a young child I missed a question on a psychological test: “What comes in a bottle?”
The answer was supposed to be milk. I said beer.
Milk almost always came in cartons and plastic jugs, so I was right. But this isn’t about rehashing old grudges. I barely even think about it anymore! The point is that the test was a relic of a time before me, when milk did come in bottles. It arrived on doorsteps each morning, by the hand of some vanishing man. And just as such a world was alien to me as a kid, the current generation of small children might miss a similar question: “Where does milk come from?”
Many would likely answer almonds or beans or oats.

End quote
Forty years ago? Time flies (as do we).

In The Chicago Sun-Times, critic Roger Ebert wrote, “Airplane! is sophomoric, obvious, predictable, corny, and quite often very funny. And the reason it’s funny is frequently because it’s sophomoric, obvious, corny, etc.” And even the relatively august New York Times saw the slapstick light, with critic Janet Maslin weighing in: “As a remedy for the bloated self-importance of too many other current efforts, it’s just what the doctor ordered.” She omitted whether that doctor was, in fact, Leslie Nielsen’s Dr. Rumack or whether he’d ordered the steak or the fish.
Airplane! would earn back its modest $3.5 million budget in its first five days in wide release. And as the summer of 1980 went on, it snowballed into a word-of-mouth hit, eventually pulling in $83 million domestically and ultimately becoming the fourth-highest grossing movie of the year behind only The Empire Strikes Back, 9 to 5, and the Richard Pryor-Gene Wilder ex-con caper Stir Crazy. It also became the unlikeliest of awards contenders. Not with the Oscars, maybe. But the Writers Guild of America would give Abrahams and the Zucker brothers its Best Adapted Comedy honor. Why adapted? Well, the ZAZ boys had lifted so much from Zero Hour! (down to the exclamation point in its title!) that even the most original movie of the year couldn’t lay claim to complete originality.

End quote
This might be a chicken/egg debate, but does exercise improve the issues of aging or does the hormone in this article improve the issues of aging? This might be the future…like gut biome…and it demands that we radically rethink the miracle of the body.


“If you exercise regularly, then it stimulates your bone to make more osteocalcin, and that will have these beneficial effects on muscle and brain,” he says. “From epidemiological studies, we know that people who are very active tend to have less of a cognitive decline with age than sedentary people. With time, maybe people will be more aware of this connection, and think of their bone health as being just as important as other aspects of staying healthy.”
Ongoing research in this area also suggests that exercising more during the teenage years and early adulthood can continue to have a protective effect on bone and other aspects of health much later in life.
“I think this could reinforce the message that it’s important for people to be active during adolescence and early adult years,” Ferron says. “This means they reach a higher peak bone mass, which will protect them from age-related problems linked to osteocalcin decline.”

End quote
Read this article. I was amazed…and glad my daughters always went to bed early. Why? This is stunning: In Defense of Absurdly Early Bedtimes

Not convinced yet? There’s also an interesting link between bedtime, sleep duration, and metabolic health. Research has found that compared with other children, those who sleep less and go to sleep later are more likely to be obese. For instance, one study found that 5-year-olds who went to bed after 9 p.m. were 50 percent more likely to be obese and gain weight over time compared with those who went to bed before 9 p.m. In fact, kids with late bedtimes are more likely to be overweight even when they get the same amount of sleep as kids who go to bed earlier. No one knows why bedtime is linked with obesity risk, but changes to the hormones leptin and ghrelin, which regulate appetite and hunger, may play a role.

End quote
That’s a lot of good information for this week’s WW. I just reread a few of these articles and putting this together took a lot longer than usual because I keep wanting to go back and lecture on these articles. I will cease wormholing.
I hope you enjoy our weekly visits. Until next time, keep on lifting and learning.


For your quick access link, here’s Dan’s full OTP page, including all of his articles, books, lectures and videos, all in one place.

The Sword in the Stone, Part 149

“We dream of this,” explained Archimedes, “when we perch on a tree in the winds of winter, or sleep in its hollow in the rains of spring.”
Sometimes nowadays you can see a cinema film of a flower, for instance, in which one exposure has been taken every hour. In it you see the petals expand and throb open or shut for day or night, until the whole story is over and the seeds have been thrown out upon the wind. There was woodland now in front of the Wart, and in it an oak sapling grew, flourished and shed its leaves into nakedness, all I the time during which you could slowly count three. A whole year had passed in that time, with all its human joys and sorrows.
“This,” said Athene, or at any rate it is what she seemed to be saying, in the most glorious of voices, “is called the Dream of the Trees.”
People don’t think of trees as alive. We never see them moving unless the wind disturbs them, and then it is not their movement but the wind’s. The Wart saw now that trees are living, and do move. He saw all that forest, like seaweed on the ocean’s floor, how the branches rose and groped about and waved, how they panted forth their leaves like breathing (and indeed they were breathing) and, what is still more extraordinary, how they talked.
If you should be at a cinema when the talking apparatus breaks down, you may have the experience of hearing it start again too slowly. Then you will hear the words which would be real words at a proper speed now droning out unintelligibly in long roars and sighs, which give no meaning to the human brain. The same thing happens with a gramophone whose disc is not revolving fast.
So it is with humans. We cannot hear the trees talking, except as a vague noise of roaring and hushing which we attribute to the wind in the leaves, because they talk too slowly for us. These noises are really the syllables and vowels of the trees.
“You may speak for yourselves,” said Athene.

End quote
Each week, as I retype White, I am reminded of the old trick that writers from Franklin to Hemingway have recommended: retyping great writing. As I worked today, I realized that White is not afraid to take his time explaining the situation. He walks us through the scene and situation and gives us a few ideas from the more modern era to understand the setting.
Some people, it seems at least from the internet posts, can’t handle this:
Too long, didn’t read.
And that is a pity. The lack of intellectual patience aside…well, I can’t just put that aside, but I will be kind…I pity someone who lives just wanting to know the point. “Buy low, sell high” is the point, so why isn’t everyone financially secure? “Less calories, more work” is the point, so why during my visits to Las Vegas and Disneyland, do I feel like I am in the movie Wall-E? (Not the robot, but the people)
I guess that my point: there’s more to everything than the point.

DanWandering Weights is published each Wednesday by On Target Publications


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