Bulls, bears, and pigs.

No Snacks, no sweets, no seconds. Except on Days that start with S. Too simple for you? Simple is why it works. Look here for questions, introductions, support, success stories.

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reinhard
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Bulls, bears, and pigs.

Post by reinhard » Fri Apr 22, 2005 4:29 pm

I'm reading an interesting book on investing called "Fooled by Randomness."

http://www.amazon.com/o/ASIN/158799190X ... aysyste-20

The author is tad obnoxious and I'm glad I don't know him in person, but he writes convincingly, and one of his lessons is good not only in itself as a financial lesson, but also, I think, reapplied to our favorite subject in this forum, diet.

He takes a hypothetical exceptional investor who makes (say) 15% a year on average. Sometimes he makes more, sometimes less. In any given year, he's 97% likely to have made money (I forget the exact numbers, but it's something like that). But if you drill down the granularity, to say, a month, he's only 67% likely to have made money. It's even less at the weekly level, and at the daily level, it's only a tad over 50%. It's the same overall success, just measured at different intervals.

Why is this an important or interesting observation?

Because human psychology is such that losses hurt more than gains give pleasure. If the investor checks his investments only once a year, he almost never feels losses. If he checks them every day or more, then he feels hundreds of losses. Not only is this unpleasant, but it's likely to drive him to make stupid, irrational decisions. People tend to feel loss/gain in binary terms: it's not so much the magnitude of either as the direction. A little loss hurts almost as much as a big one.

What does this have to do with diet? Consider stepping on a scale. Even if your diet is going very well, if you measure daily, you are going to see a lot of measurements that make you unhappy. Weight doesn't fluctuate like a stock, but it does fluctuate, however virtuously you're adhering to your diet. Even if your self-esteem is such that you don't mind being unhappy, consider this: as with stocks, such unhappiness isn't conducive to rational decision making. You're that much more likely to overreact or despair and fall off the wagon. Measuring once a week is better. Once a month is better still. Do what you can, keeping this important psychological/statistical truth in mind.

Reinhard

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gratefuldeb67
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Pigs! LOL...

Post by gratefuldeb67 » Sat Apr 23, 2005 1:47 am

Recovering Pigs thank you very much! :D
Snort! That's funny! LOL... Good analogy Reinhard! Good message.
Let's invest in ourselves for long term gains (I mean losses!) :)
Oh those google ads are really turning up a load of bs diets!
I hope no one here commits diet mutiny...
I just looked at the one for "Diets 4 Idiots", out of curiosity...
I think they really are hoping for idiots there, because only an idiot would buy that load of "cra,,,,ckers"...
:lol:
Funny though, that's how I found NoS!
A google ad!
So glad too!
Diet sanity will prevail!
Love,
8) Deb

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sandie
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Post by sandie » Sat Apr 23, 2005 1:32 pm

Me TOOOO, thats how I found you guys, I was searching out a carb chart and WW and waaaay over on the side panel was No S's, took a look and glad I did.
BTW I just got back from Bulgaria, no temptations there, normally I would run to the scale and check my weight, I'm not going to, I believe my "stock" will rise if I don't check my weight daily, thanks for this great site!
Sandie

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reinhard
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Post by reinhard » Sat Apr 23, 2005 7:34 pm

Welcome, Sandie. Sorry to make you jump ship to this new board so soon after you joined the last one.

Writing adwords ads was fun, you've got all these constraints, it's almost like haiku. Glad they were sufficiently enticing for you both (I'll be even more glad if nos works for you long term!). It's interesting and useful for me to hear these "how did you get here?" stories... maybe I'll start a new discussion on that.

"Bulgaria, land of no temptations, a dieter's paradise" -- could be an interesting tack to take for the tourist bureau. (Just kidding, lurking Bulgarians, be not offended)

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gratefuldeb67
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Post by gratefuldeb67 » Sun Apr 24, 2005 1:57 am

Yeah, I think the national food is "Bulgar" so that seems pretty lame... LOL..

Well I just Ss'd my S off for the week, at the Seder tonight..
And for a side order we had the traditional "Disfunctional Family Reading of the Haggadah"...
An additional question could have easily been added to the four existing ones, eg: why do we eat unleavened bread, etc.., namely "Why on this night do we have a nervous breakdown?"
But that's just my family...
I'm pretty full... My mom made Goose, and Flanken... Sheesh, talk about heavy food!
Then for dessert we had three different flavors of macaroons, and chocolate haagen daz, plus fresh fruit...
Wow that pineapple tasted really sour after the white chocolate covered macaroons! LOL...

I am staying clear of the scale for quite a spell I tell you :)
But as of this morning, I have maintained my loss, since around mid January, of about 8 or 9 pounds, and that's *with* PMS water weight still hanging around!
Woo hoo!
Okay. Love to all!
Send much love to your special kids Sandie! You are doing a very important job on this earth :)
Peace,
Deb

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croc_hunter_penny
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g'day

Post by croc_hunter_penny » Sun Apr 24, 2005 2:57 pm

hey i havent been posting much :oops: and i probably wont be much after about a month from now cause im going to america to work at a summer camp! i'll be the boating specialist there this year so should be fun. and i know i'll get a ton of exercise there but the food isnt the greatest.

its good tho, we have a salad bar for dinner, and we get decent meals but i did notice last year that there was a lot of sugar in everything.. i could taste the sugar in the bread! :shock:

and then there always the little temptations like "should i have Raisin Bran or pancakes for breakfast?" or "do i really need this dessert?" i did pretty good with the desserts last year so that should be fine. not to mention that we have a dessert for lunch and dinner.... :?

hmm anyway just letting u know that i will most likely be a regular poster until camp time because of lack of internet access :wink:

btw.. smileys are awesome :D :D :D :D 8)
~penny

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mayo
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Re: Bulls, bears, and pigs.

Post by mayo » Sun Apr 24, 2005 11:58 pm

Hey, all! Digging the shiny new board, Reinhard. :D

I'll admit the whole scale thing has always seemed weird to me--much like not admitting your age, or wanting a smaller *number* on a size tag even though the dress is the same actual size in inches. Weird.

I mean, unless you're also monitoring your lean muscle mass and your food intake/output levels, your weight doesn't mean much--much like "fat-free" doesn't mean much when those cookies are packed with calories and saturated fats. Scales aren't very good as a precise measure of dieting progress. They work much better as a measure of general fitness, but you can pretty much gauge that by looking in the mirror naked.

That side, I step on the scale every time I hit the bathroom, which can be a few times a day, mostly, I think, because I'm like a kid that way--measuring stuff is fun! But generally, I give myself a +/-3 pounds latitude for water and waste or think of my weight as a range. Like, when I said I was 120, I really thought of myself as 118-123. Right now, I'm 114-119, so it looks like I'm losing as I'd hoped. Go, me!

I think might just be one of those people who don't feel loss/gain in binary terms. :shock: It's strange hearing that "most" people think that way. Maybe I'm the weird one?

mayo

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reinhard
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Post by reinhard » Mon Apr 25, 2005 12:10 pm

You are too rational, Mayo! Actually I don't have much of a problem with scales either, but that's mostly because I'm where I want to be. You're right that taken with a grain of salt and in conjunction with other metrics, scales can be useful. The problem is most people don't do either, and I'm not sure they can be convinced to. Minimizing the measuring is probably the most effective thing they'll realistically do.

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reinhard
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Re: g'day

Post by reinhard » Mon Apr 25, 2005 12:16 pm

croc_hunter_penny wrote:hey i havent been posting much :oops: and i probably wont be much after about a month from now cause im going to america to work at a summer camp! i'll be the boating specialist there this year so should be fun. and i know i'll get a ton of exercise there but the food isnt the greatest.
Have fun, Penny. Remember Sandie's Bulgarian principle of dieting: no temptations has an upside. A good thing about camp (besides the whole outdoor/movement bit) is that meals are pretty structured. Snacking, usually the toughest S, will be easier to avoid.

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croc_hunter_penny
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true

Post by croc_hunter_penny » Sat Apr 30, 2005 2:24 pm

yeah true i suppose the lack of snacking will be a good thing, and desserts are easily avoidable. camp should be good :D

also about the scales thing. i have found that my weight is about the same but my measurements are going down a fair bit. i havent weighed myself in over a month and i dont find a need to..
lol i havent noticed much difference in my clothing but thats cause i like wearing baggy pants and tshirts anyway so its hard to tell :P
~penny

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Post by Aquapixie » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:24 am

bump

clarinetgal
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Post by clarinetgal » Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:48 am

That's a great analogy, and so true! That's something I really struggle with. I weigh myself way too often.

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Post by resident0063 » Fri Feb 19, 2010 10:51 am

A little off subject but the author of the book is a bit of a fad diet fanatic. He subscribes to the paleo diet/low carb diet of Arthur Devany a fellow economics professor. Good book and I suggest the Black Swan as well. Really it all boils down to how much we don't know except for diet which is simply eat less move more.

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MerryKat
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Post by MerryKat » Mon Feb 22, 2010 2:08 pm

This is so true to my weight loss.

Take 2009 as an example. Most months I was a bit fed up because I had lost such a little amount. I had two months where I gained which made me panic and rush back to No S with a vengance.

But you know what those little monthly amounts add up and by the end of the year I had lost 4kg (8.82lb).

We can get so tied up on the small things we forget the bigger picture.
Hugs from Sunny South Africa
Vanilla No S with no Sugar due to Health issues - 11 yrs No S - September 2016 (some good, some bad (my own doing) but always the right thing for me!)

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Post by KareBear » Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:22 pm

I am so glad I came across this entry. As someone who is trying to go 21 days without weighing, this made so much sense. I weighed myself yesterday. And even though I told myself that the number I saw did not matter, I still spent the rest of the day trying to get that number out of my head and trying not to judge myself.

Thanks for the wonderful information. I am, more than ever, determined to only weigh every 21 days.
Karen

Start/Current/Goal
160/ 160 /135

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