[AKN #77] How To Win The Day? Recharge Your Fratteries
LAUGH: A Stupid Dad Joke Which Will Make You Chuckle, LOVE: Wow Your Company’s Slack Channel With These Three Dope Science Articles
I’ve been loving getting back into a solid little healthy routine to start the New Year.
I’m hitting the gym 4 times a week and I’m laser focused on mastering the teeny tiny weights.
Like I’m that guy screaming as I hit my 20th repetition of a 12-pound tricep extension, slamming the weight on the ground, and whisper shouting “that’s how we do it baby” to myself.
But it all hasn’t been as glorious as my dominance of the Fisher Price dumbbell stack.
There’ve definitely been some bumps in the road as I get back into it.
Like eating healthy means you have more dishes and sometimes I don’t get to the dishes fast enough…
Boy let me tell you, hell hath no fury like a protein shaker bottle you didn't wash for a couple days.
It literally smells worse than New Jersey. Which is scientifically astounding.
Another thing that sucks is I am wearing a mask at my gym where I’m already required to have 3 vaccination shots.
Exercising has basically become waterboarding myself with my own sweat.
Wearing the mask was tough to get used to at first, but after a while you come to love gasping for air during high rep front squats. Each desperate breath reminds me of my commitment to safety.
People talk a lot of shit about the mask mandate, but it’s one of the best things to ever happen to me.
Like now I can rip a fart in the middle of the gym. No issues. What’s that smell? Maybe you should wash that cloth mask you’ve been using every day since March 2020, Derek.
Additionally, the mask mandate empowered me to take out all my unresolved personal conflict on strangers.
Who needs therapy when you can endlessly accost a stranger about how they need a better fitting mask?
I’m on the opposite side of the street yelling at someone to get their mask on.
Walking up to people in Whole Foods asking them to cover their nose.
And whenever I see someone and I think “hmm is that a real N95 mask?”, I pepper spray them on the spot. If it gets in their mouth or nose, you know its a fake.
I stand triumphantly over their squealing corpse saying “didn’t you read the Apple News article from two days ago about how much more effective N95 masks are, you uneducated swine?”
A lot of people say I’m going a bit overboard, but all I do is point to the scoreboard.
Like I don’t mean to brag here, but California’s case rate is only up 199% in the last 14 days.
Imagine where we would be without my vigilance.
It truly is amazing what we can accomplish when we all come together.
On to the newsletter!
LIVE: How To Win The Day? Recharge Your Fratteries
When I was in college, I would routinely set and oversleep a 6a alarm.
Often times, I would find myself snoozing it for 2 hours in 15 minute chunks. A habit which burned the first 5 seconds of the stock Apple alarm clock into my brainstem…
Eventually, I would rise at 8a filled with shame about how I didn’t follow through with my wake up plan and I would chalk it up as “not being disciplined.”
I was weak. Thats why I couldn’t wake up.
It had nothing to do with drinking last night, eating late night garbage food, and going to sleep at 2a.
It was a moral failure.
Of course, now I realize how stupid that thought process was.
My problem wasn’t a lack of discipline in waking up, but rather a lack of discipline in:
Cutting off caffeine consumption
My old paradigm of thinking treated all of these as separate domains which don’t affect the other. I thought I was the human embodiment of the Energizer Bunny. I would just keep going and going as long as I woke up.
But the biggest lesson from my late 20s/ early 30s is understanding that all physical health items affect one another.
In fact, a better mental model to hold about yourself and your capacity to have energy to do the things you need to do throughout the day is to think of yourself like…well, how an actual battery works.
No one faults the battery for being undisciplined, they fault themselves for not plugging it into the outlet. This is how you should view yourself.
There is a finite amount of energy you can expend in a day and the total amount is directly related to how well you recharged your fratteries the night before.
For example, over the last two weeks, I slept for 8 hours every night, did not consume alcohol, ate clean food, and exercised on a regular schedule.
I feel great. I have no issues waking up in the morning to do my routine.
When I’m full of physical energy, neither writing nor workout nor work feels like a chore.
I have the capacity to fit all of it in. It’s really lovely.
Now obviously, doing all physical health tasks perfectly every single day isn't a realistic standard. Like I’m not swearing off alcohol. That would be like Michael Jordan swearing off basketballs.
But it’s important to realize how in control you are of your energy level throughout the day because energy is the fundamental currency you spend to do all of the things you want to do.
As they cover in The Power Of Full Engagement, in order to bring your entire self to whatever it is you want to do, you have to be physically healthy.
When you are physically healthy, you are primed to perform at your peak level.
You are mentally sharp and physically ready to put some sweat equity into a workout.
AND you are also primed to be your best moral self.
You are more respectful, engaged, and kind.
Your best self comes out when you are well rested and healthy.
So if you’re struggling to hit a New Years Resolution of some kind, may I recommend that you start by going to sleep and getting 8 hours?
Because chances are it’s not your lack of discipline which has set you off course, you are just fucking tired.
So go to bed.
Recharge your fratteries and get ready to start again tomorrow.
LAUGH: A Stupid Dad Joke Which Will Make You Chuckle
Every now and again, a joke is SO dumb that it transcends my capacity to hate on it and it becomes funny.
This is one of those jokes.
LOVE: Wow Your Company’s Slack Channel With These Three Dope Science Articles
I know I usually only give ONE thing that I loved this week, but guess what?
I am a strong, independent man with an infinite capacity to LOVE.
Ergo, vis-a-vis, concordantly, this week I come bearing three gifts.
They are all science articles which I thought were awesome. So come with me on a little exploration of recent scientific studies.
1. Risk Of Long COVID Decreases Significantly When You Are Vaccinated
A lot of people ask me how I think about the risks of Long COVID.
To be honest with you, I don’t.
Nothing I have seen or read concerns me in the long (!) term for my particular use case (early 30s, healthy, triple vaccinated). As far as I can tell, the danger porn around Long COVID is mostly a byproduct of anecdotes from people with neurotic personalities who post viral (!) Twitter threads.
Largely speaking, I find anecdotes very useful for identifying early trends and understanding the nuance of a situation. But when you have two years of data on a particular phenomenon, I don’t think it’s best practice to determine your own health and safety protocols from anecdotes.
So when you look at the cumulative data published, I’m not swayed to fret about Long COVID for my use case. But I respect that people have different risk tolerances, pre-existing conditions, etc than I do. I also reserve the right to change my mind in the future about this if new data presents itself. (Feel free to send things my way!)
However, some good news for people who are not swayed by my thought process above:
A recent study shows that vaccines reduce the risk of long COVID back to your pre-pandemic risk of waking up feeling shitty.
So there is now real data that should help alleviate a concern about the deleterious effects of Long COVID.
As always, get vaccinated.
Michael Edelstein @epi_michaelOur latest #LongCovid pre-print shows a 50-80% reduction in 7/10 most commonly reported symptoms 4-11 months following #sarscov2 infection in vaccinated adults vs those not- just in case you needed another reason to get the #vaccine https://t.co/ARtW36NFjA @Dr2NisreenAlwan https://t.co/9Ye8bSr6Zp
2. Loss Of Smell Due To COVID-19 Has A Genetic Correlation
This study was a cool use of 23andMe data.
Basically they had a bunch of people who reported loss of smell as a symptom do 23andMe and they found a genetically specific correlation to those who lose their sense of smell and those who don’t.
From the paper abstract:
Using online surveys, we collected data regarding COVID-19-related loss of smell or taste from 69,841 individuals. We performed a multi-ancestry genome-wide association study and identified a genome-wide significant locus in the vicinity of the UGT2A1 and UGT2A2 genes. Both genes are expressed in the olfactory epithelium and play a role in metabolizing odorants. These findings provide a genetic link to the biological mechanisms underlying COVID-19-related loss of smell or taste
3. Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) Causes Most — If Not All — Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
I love dropping a new science term I just learned as if you should know what it is. It screams “I am the expert! I am smart!” Which brings us to me citing Epstein-Barr Virus as if I knew what that was 12 days ago.
This study suggests that EBV may be one of the primary causes of MS. If this is true, that could be huge. Like the implications of this would be that you could potentially create a vaccine for EBV and that may prevent most cases of MS! In fact, Moderna has started a trial for EBV!
The world of biology is going to be crazy the next 50 years.
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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed are strictly my own. Who else’s would they be?