(VIDEO) Banned by Food Babe: The Lady Doth Protest Too Much, Methinks

There’s so many bullshit con artists out there now that you have to be really careful ad question everything nowadays. Since learning of the “Food Babe” and her tactics, I appreciate anyone who can call her out oh her hypocrisy.

Check out this blog post doing just that.

Bad Science Debunked

“Thanks for calling out the troll. I’ll make sure to get him”
–Vani Hari, when asked why she’s selling products containing the dyes Yellow 5 and Blue 1

I, Mark Alsip, am the troll referred to in Vani Hari’s quote (above). We had an interesting encounter yesterday on Periscope.  After being encouraged to ask questions, I very politely and respectfully queried Hari on three products she’s selling. I wanted to know why certain of her wares contain nearly a dozen different chemicals she’s specifically called out as “toxic”.

If you’re already aware of Vani’s tactics, you probably won’t be surprised I was banned instantly.  However, for those in the Food Babe Army (or the media) who don’t believe that Hari censors all dissenting comment and immediately bans those who point out her gaffes, presented below are video, screen captures, links to Food Babe’s product labels (with ingredient lists), and more…

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DDP Yoga: Round two.

I had the best of intentions and the worst of implementations when I first started doing DDP Yoga.

Through bad timing and excuses on my part, a routine schedule that should have taken me three weeks ended up taking a month or more. While I was still active outdoors during the late summer and fall, this routine fell by the wayside under the “I’ll get to it later” category. After a sedimentary winter and warning signs of weight starting to creep up, it was time to get going on something again.

So here I am, relatively back at square one. It’s been a week since I started and I’m doing my best at keeping up a schedule for it. Heck, my last workout was at 11 pm just so I could say I did one that day! If I can stick to a three times a week schedule (like I should have done in the first place), I should be on track.

Another difference this time is I signed up for their support page at TeamDDPYoga.com, which has the claim of “The best damn support group in the world!”. When I first signed up for the page I got several welcome messages, one of them even from DDP himself, and later on the infamous Arthur Boorman! While the response has been impressive, it’s also been incredibly overwhelming, almost to the point of information overload. It’s like having the knowledge of the planet at your fingertips, but not knowing what questions to ask. Eventually I’ll get there, as my eating habits could still use a lot of work, or at least focusing in the right direction.

But for now, establishing the workout routine is more important.

Reset. Refocus. Restart.

Fall

Well, the last few months have been somewhat of a write-off for a scheduled exercise regime. The good news is that although I remained active, it was nothing on a routine basis. The summer had me out hiking and Geocaching as well as out camping with the family. As the season progressed into fall, I was still out hiking and Geocaching. Now with winter settled in, my outings have dropped to negligible. The weather hasn’t been bad, but in my part of the country it’s snowed, melted, and then froze; then snowed melted and froze again. Walking anywhere became treacherous let alone trying to go for a run or hike. I thought about getting a membership at a local gym, but we were house hunting over a wide area at the time so “local” was relative, depending on what part of the city (or cities in our case) we may end up.

At the start of November my wife was laid off so my free space was taken up with a 4 year old at home who’s up at the crack of dawn taking over the TV… or at least that’s been my excuse, and I fully admit that I’ve used it as an excuse. I have those DDP Yoga DVD’s still staring me in the face as a blatant reminder that I need to be the parent and take the time I need. Half an hour away from the TV isn’t going to kill him. His toy minefield is another story and does make it a little more difficult to navigate though.

I’m surprised I survived the holiday season without a new onset diabetes. The problem with working as a nurse is often the nursing station is a sugar buffet due to the generosity of patient’s families (fruit and veggie platters everyone, PLEASE!). Healthy eating goes right out the door with enough temptation that would make the good Lord buckle.

The bad part about all of this time is that I really haven’t lost any weigh (according to the scale). The good news is that I also haven’t gained any weight! I actually find myself able to get back into clothes that I haven’t worn in years! I now wear a size 40 jeans properly; which means that it actually fits across my navel, instead of me squeezing into the jeans by fastening it up underneath my roll and letting it flop over the top of the jeans!

I’ve also been able to fit back into my Paintball pants, which I  haven’t worn in at least 7 years or more. Consequently, it gave me inspiration to perhaps get back into the game, which has turned into a full-blown explosion of my passion for the sport. Paintball was my physical and mental release, as well as my main social outlet for many years. It’s a connection I lost when I quit. I’m back in with my wife’s full encouragement.

So while things have been okay, they still could be a lot better. It’s now been over a year since I stopped eating from fast food outlets and I’ve managed to maintain that, however I still struggle to maintain an adequate eating program in other areas. I’ve been giving into temptations and treats more than I should be and it’s simply me not exercising my own will power. I should be somewhere in the advanced level of the DDP yoga by now instead of looking at starting from scratch again. The program is supposed to have a support structure built into that that I think I need to look at optimizing. I know what I need to do. I just need to get off my backside and start dong it!

This pause in the plans does NOT mean that I’ve failed! I don’t believe you’ve truly failed until you quit, and I’m nowhere near that point! This is a hiccup and I understand that they happen. While progress has been negligible, I haven’t slipped back. As I say, take the little victories. I recognize the need for me to get back on my game and step it up. I need to set some new goals and find something to shoot for. I’m still 20 to 25 pounds from my goal weight, and I’ll probably still adjust that goal when I get to it. But first, let’s achieve that one.

Also, I need my damn TV back…

start again

New Texas A&M Study: Geocaching Improves Physical and Mental Health

Now, this is old news to me, as someone who’s lived what the study was studying. But, it’s great to have an actual “study” backing up what those of us who participate, already know.

http://blog.geocaching.com/2013/11/new-texas-am-study-geocaching-improves-physical-and-mental-health/

1,000 Geocachers volunteered to be part of the first ever major study of geocaching and its effect on health. The 14-month Texas A&M study called Geocaching for Exercise and Activity Research(GEAR) launched in January of 2013. The first set of results from the study were presented on November 5 at the annual meeting of the American Public Health Association in Boston.

Each of the participants were given devices to track their movement and a logbook to record their level of geocaching intensity. The first results showed the effects of regular geocaching. Researcher Whitney says, “The GEAR study has identified an association between geocaching and improved health.”

Another researcher, Garney, goes on to say, “GEAR participants who report geocaching once a week or more are more likely to meet national guidelines for physical activity and are more likely to report good or very good health status compared to those who geocache less frequently.” In addition, research showed that geocachers reported fewer days of poor physical and mental health compared to state level data.

Follow Geocaching on Instagram for more epic and inspirational geocaching pics http://instagram.com/gogeocaching

These findings are still preliminary, but nevertheless we’re excited about them. The study concludes in early 2014 and final data will be analyzed and presented later that year.

Any other Geocachers have the same experience? Please share yours!

Youth Community Food Forest Illegally Destroyed by Business Owner

Makes you wonder what the hell is wrong with some people.

radicle beets

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The Purple Thistle Food Forest, a 2-year-old youth collective permaculture garden in East Vancouver, has been illegally destroyed by neighbouring building owner David Hollands. The food forest is predominantly located on city land, with a small section on Hollands property. In the fall, Hollands demanded that the young gardeners evict his property by November 1st. The gardeners complied, removing approximately a dozen trees from along the wall of his building, and followed up by sending him a confirmation email and also asking that he respect the rest of the food forest, located on city property, and allow it to grow in peace.

Last week Purple Thistle gardeners visited the site and found the entire food forest destroyed, with irrigation chopped up, all the plants removed, and trees uprooted and left in buckets. All this without notification. They know this to be the actions of Hollands, as several weeks prior they intercepted a…

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WALC Raptor Loop

A blog about our outdoor and Geocaching adventures that the wife writes.

cache hownds adventures

With the new section of highway 97 done, a few new WALC (walking around Lake Country) trails have emerged. And what does any good geocacher do…..going hiking to place new caches of course 🙂

The trail was a pretty easy 3km hike. Liams favorite part……going through the tunnel under the highway. We walked on a variety of nice man made trails, dirt bike/quad trails, and some deer trails. Looking at the map I thought this hike was going to be pretty long, but we managed, and Liam did awesome! However with placing 11 caches along the trail it did take use just over two and a half hours. The end of the hike was getting a little hurried as it was getting dusk very quickly. We made it back to the car close to 4:30….just in time, any longer and we would have had to break out the flashlights.

A…

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Ellison Park Geocaching

A quick note: I actually started this quite a while ago, and am just now getting around to finishing it. One of those projects that got pushed back and forgotten about, until now. Figure now is as good as a time as any to finish it!

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During the second weekend in June, we camped out at Ellison Provincial Park near Vernon, BC.

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This trip served a dual purpose as chance to try out the tent trailer we bought at the end of last season (my wife called it the “maiden voyage”, and I preferred to think of it as a “shakedown cruise”) and a chance to make a home-base for the weekend and try to find the roughly dozen or so Geocaches within the park boundaries. Friday was the day to find a spot and get setup while Jeanne was at work. Ellison Park has just over 70 camp sites (and two Yurt’s for rental), but 50 of them are reservable, meaning 20 were first-come first-served if they weren’t already occupied. And since when is leaving chair considered claiming a campsite? If I’ve got my trailer with me, I think that overrides your chair. When did this become a rule???. Anyway… When I got there just after noon, there was abut six spots still available. I found one to my liking (or easiest to back into) and got the trailer set up. Mission accomplished. Good thing too! By the time I left, there were only three sites that I could see still available. Now for a trip back home to get Jeanne and Liam once she was off of work. So no Geocaching Friday, but that’s what Saturday was for!

Twisted

Twisted

After breakfast on Saturday, we headed out for the most logical location for caches, which was along the hiking trail. The park has a hiking trail that loops around and is just over 2km in length. The trail entrance is near the Information Kiosk in the park. The first Geocache wasn’t far off from the start. This however, is where it pays to check the ratings of the cache before just following the pointer on the GPS! Where I figured it would be up on the hillside, turned out to be at the base of the hill. I figured this out while standing at the cliff edge and the GPS telling me to travel 10m over the edge. Crap. Well we could go down an find it, or keep going and come back later since it’s not far from the trail head. I saw a gentlemen come along the trail below with four other kids, thinking perhaps they were just on a hike until I heard one of the kids say “maybe it’s a micro”. Nope, fellow Geocachers. We opted to carry on and try again later. The next cache was a relatively easy find, and found a geocoin located is this cache that was listed as being in the previous cache! Good idea moving it newbs, but gotta learn how to log them! The next cache we weren’t so lucky with. The trail twists and bends, and the GPS gives you a direction in a straight line to your chosen coordinates. So while we thought we were going on the right past, turns out not so much. Such is the hazard of trails never before traveled. We could have got to the cache if we were willing to do a little bushwhacking, but dragging Liam and Jeanne through the terrain didn’t sound like a great idea at the time. Must be a trail we missed. Geocaching rule: the most direct route to the cache usually isn’t the easiest route. Carry on, and try again another time. The final cache took us to the top of a ridge and cliff face that would have taken the Looney Tunes expression  “Watch out for that last step! It’s a loo loo!” to a whole new meaning! Fortunately the cache wasn’t located anywhere near the edge, and a quick find using the cache’s name “Cone you see me?” as part of the hint. the next issue was where to go from here? The trail generally had some markers and a singular direction, but the trail along the edge of the cliff went in two directions. I checked out the one direction that would have taken us in the direction of another cache. However after discovering that this short section of trail had a drop off at the end of it that screamed “almost sudden death” (almost, because the fall would have taken a few seconds!), the other way seemed much more logical. This proved to be the better choice is it looped back to the campsite.

Getting the "log" out.

Getting the “log” out.

Before the dip...

Before the dip…

 

We stopped back at our campsite for a quick food break for us and the kid before carrying on to a few more caches down by the beach.

Darth Wimpy

Darth Wimpy

After refueling, we made our way down the winding trail to the beach area. There was a cache not to far away on a hillside in between the two coves that make up the beach areas. We decided to skip this one, and make our way to the one cache the furthest north on the beach, then work our way back to this one. Liam decided that he wanted to go into the water… naked. We decided that taking off his shoes and socks and wading out into his shorts would be good enough. Of course Liam being Liam, the height of the water on his legs got further and further up. We walked along the beach with Liam wading behind us, and we came to the point of a large bush that took up the beach space. We had to go around, but Liam could wade through the water around the bush. We ere half way around and heard a sploosh, then a “WAAAAAAAAAH”. Crap. Should have let him wade naked. Fortunately Jeanne had a towel in the backpack (for the camera) so we had something to dry off Liam as the clouds and some raindrops rolled in. We were close enough to the cache that I was able to grab it, then help dry off someone and wring out his clothes. With a towel wrapped around his waist, Jeanne’s dark hoody around him, one of this precious sticks and a droopy expression, I dubbed him “Darth Wimpy” (see photo). Although Jeanne and I would have liked to have got that other cache, Liam’s new wardrobe dictated otherwise. We went up another trail from the beach that we saw in the campground. Although not as steep as the first trail, this one went to a higher elevation and had more switchbacks in it. In the end it may have been longer than the first trail, but at least we now know which one to use! I had coordinates on a couple of other caches in this direction but both looked like they involved a little bush walking. Not a good idea at that time, but easy enough to get too. Back to the campsite to feed grumpy and give him a needed rest. Jeanne and Liam took a break, and Jeanne said I could go after some of the ones we missed. Not one to miss an opportunity to get a few more smileys, off I went!

1233954_10151638409012765_562591473_nThe first one we missed was easy, and I backtracked to the campground to try the other two on the hillside we didn’t get on the way back from the beach. I found a better route to the one called “Belay Station” (This area is known for it’s rappelling and rock climbing.) that offered a beautiful view of one of the coves. Despite the coordinates being off and leading me to some sketchy terrain that didn’t match the rating or hint (and a drop off that would have ended in a “sploosh” instead of a “splat”), the find was easy enough to make, and picked up a Travel Bug to move along. A little bit of bushwhacking was required to get the next cache named “Lichen Moss and Ferns”. Glad I was wearing my jeans at the time! I figured I’d try looking for the next cache without using the hint. I got to where the cache was supposed to be by the coordinates, which was smack on top of a rocky hillside. Hmm… Well lets try looking around. This spot looks like it could be hiding something. Let’s see what under this ro… <then something moved> SNAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAKE!!! Considering that I’m in an area known for rattlesnakes, I dropped the rock. Taking a moment to collect myself, my “maleness” kicked in; meaning my curiosity overrode any sense of danger I had at that moment. “I know it’s a snake” I though, “but I wonder what kind of snake?” Carefully lifting up the rock, I was greeted by a small tan body twisted around, and two pairs of legs. Oops. Okay, since this was the only obvious spot and I don’t see it, lets check the hint, Hint said “hidden 14m NW of coordinates”. Well crap. Turns out the old cache site was “muggled” so the Geocachers who found it, moved it to a new location for the Cache owner. Following the new direction made it an easy find. I took a new set of coordinates and pictures of the cache site for the cache owner so they could find it again themselves. Time to return to home base!

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Another later trip to the beach at the far end of the campground for a swim and a couple more geocaches to finish they day. In total, around 8km hiked that day. A bit long winded, but this is what a day of Geocaching adventures is like for us, and why we love it as much as we do. Funny how most of our trips all revolve around Geocaching now!