Archive for March, 2010

The Luxurious Race Lifestyle

I am trying to reduce the amount I race this year.  The main reason for the reduction is that I don’t want racing to feel like the norm.  I want to build up the excitement and develop focus for the quest.

I don’t want a race to feel like a training event.  And, I don’t want to over-train by way of racing too much.

Another aspect of trying not to race (this statement must sound ridiculous to anyone not in the “know” of the endurance sports scene) is avoiding race fees.  Thankfully, this isn’t my main reason for not racing.

This weekend I spectated consumerism, at a running race.

It looked so funny, from the other side.  The side that hasn’t prepared a taper.  The side that hasn’t put time into studying the course maps and elevation profiles, the competition, and all the pre-race registration instructions.

I showed up to the race site an hour before the start, to see people rushing around, wishing they showed up 15 minutes earlier.  The ubiquitous port-a-potty line.  Dudes warming up.  Nervous chatter.  All the normal stuff.

It’s funny that people are paying for this experience.  Paying to be placed into an over-crowded area.  Paying for the registration overhead.  Paying for the porta-potties.  Paying to have park permit fees and/or roads closed.  Paying for sports drinks, along the course.  Paying to have the distanced timed.  The race shirt!!! Paying for a medal of completion.  Paying for race insurance.  (All of these things are usually included as part of the race fees.)  All of this to exercise, like a prima donna.

To me, a prima donna lifestyle in general is a life of luxury.

It justifies my race reductions more.  Not because I am a counter culture disruptor, but in hopes that I savor the luxury more.

I should note that instead of helping to reduce fees (by volunteering), I did the opposite by living off the fat of the land of all the vendors. . . so, I maintain my room for self-improvement.

Comments (2) »

Quantitative Interest Returns

Today, I learned about Benford’s law from Jacob.  If you read either of those links, you can see that if you apply Benford’s law to an exponential function you can find the probability distribution of the exponential function.  As Jacob’s post mentions, compounding interest is an exponential function.

After I compared time and interest rate dependencies in the exponential function, I started wondering more about relative interest return rates.  I believe applying Benford’s law now closes that loop.

The bar plot is the probability distribution of Benford’s law, and the line plot is the cumulative probability distribution of it.  Then, you can apply this to principal in a loan, fraction of a desired capital investment goal, and so forth.

Say you take out a loan, and pay 20% down.  The loan is free from 48% of the total interest compounding.  In other words, the loan is growing at 52% of the total loan potential, as a function of the lending interest rate.

It’s something to think about, and it’s also a tool to use if you apply time to calculations, like if you start to default on payments/investments.

Leave a comment »

Howdeeeeeeee Ho!!

Yesterday, I ate a large amount of green sauerkraut (St. Patrick’s Day) and a smoothie with beets in it.  The resultant was a green material that leached red.

It was great!

Leave a comment »

Media Minimalist

Mass media:

a medium of communication (as newspapers, radio, or television) that is designed to reach the mass of the people —usually used in plura

In February, I reflected on what media is to me, and what I want to use it for.  I think most people use media as entertainment and social currency.

It’s not that I dislike or even hate media.

I just find that time and life energy are a finite source.  I’m not trying to cut myself off from the world.  I don’t look down on others for a media fascination.  If that’s what you like, cool.

But, I find media to be a life energy drain, for me.

There are downsides to being a minimalist.  I’ll get information (more) second-hand, subject to another layer of bias and filtering.  I’m ok with that, though.

I don’t really know what I mean by declaring that I’m a media minimalist.  Ideally, I want to use the least amount of media to create the maximum positive impact on my life.

I think this is why I hardly watch television in my adult life.  I also think this is why I stopped keeping up with the news about five years ago.  And, it’s the reason for my craving of non-conventional blogs.

For me, being a media minimalist is deciding to budget my influence, which is very similar to financial and caloric budgeting.

Comments (2) »