Thursday, November 5, 2009

This and That

1) Yesterday during sixth period, it was Open House, meaning mothers come in to observe in classes. Guess when I found out it was Open House? Yesterday, after fourth period. Surprise.

Now, I have no problem with anyone observing my class, anytime. I'm not going to change my lesson plan, or anything like that. However, knowing in advance, I would be sure to dress less casually--best foot forward and all that. Fortunately, I was rather nattily attired yesterday, but that's not the point.

Further, I am proactive in asking my co-teachers on Friday about any special events or anything that might effect my classes in the coming week. But not a word. As consolation, Mr Lee assured me that the mothers who sat in my class (7 or 8) were very satisfied.

2) Interesting article in today's NYT about why it's so hard to lose weight despite regular exercise (and yes, I watch my calories, too):
The Denver researchers were especially interested in how the athletes’ bodies would apportion and use calories. It has been well documented that regular endurance training increases the ability of the body to use fat as a fuel during exercise. They wondered, though, if the athletes — or any of the other subjects — would burn extra fat calories after exercising, a phenomenon that some exercisers (and even more diet and fitness books) call “afterburn.” ...
To their surprise, the researchers found that none of the groups, including the athletes, experienced “afterburn.” They did not use additional body fat on the day when they exercised. In fact, most of the subjects burned slightly less fat over the 24-hour study period when they exercised than when they did not.

Still, you can design your workout to maximize the amount of body fat you burn. I had this conversation with the fitness guy at my gym last week, when he told me to slow down on the stationary bike--I do 2 min. really hard (above 40 km/h), then slow down a bit for 3 min. (between 34 and 36 km/h), over a period of 25 min. Then I do 5 and 5 in similar fashion on the elliptical trainer for 25 min.

I pointed out to him that to drop this fat (or "pa-duh"), I need a heart rate of at least 125. Which is what I get (the machines have pulse monitors). It's true I get red in the face, but I can still talk while working, I don't get dizzy or feel excessively weak, and I sweat up a storm. The article has this to say:
“If you work out at an easy intensity, you will burn a higher percentage of fat calories” than if you work out a higher intensity, Carey says, so you should draw down some of the padding you’ve accumulated on the hips or elsewhere — if you don’t replace all of the calories afterward. To help those hoping to reduce their body fat, he published formulas in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research last month that detailed the heart rates at which a person could maximize fat burning. “Heart rates of between 105 and 134” beats per minute, Carey said, represent the fat-burning zone. “It’s probably best to work out near the top of that zone,” he says, “so that you burn more calories over all” than at the extremely leisurely lower end.

I may print this off and take it to him. His English is poor, but he is motivated to improve, and armed with a dictionary, I think he can get through it. My Achilles' Heel remains the chicken hof--Korean fried chicken is awesome! A new hof opened in my building where the seafood place was, and I'm sure I'll be able to give you a review soon.

3) Of all the fruit trees you can grow, Seoulites seem to choose the 감 gam, persimmon, above all others. I pass a dozen persimmon trees growing in people's small yards each day, and this is the time of year when they get ripe. They must be bletted before consumption, so don't go picking them as you pass by and crunching down. Here are a few photos:


Anonymous said...

I like my persimmons best in the form of Sujeonggwa. Dried persimmons are pretty good, too, but sometimes they are known to induce constipation.

As for the unbletted small yard persimmons, the ubiquitous magpies of Seoul seem to be the greatest fans of these.

조안나 said...

Yes, why is it that Koreans picked the least tasty fruit to be their fruit tree of choice. There are plenty of trees that would grow in this climate, but no, they had to pick the 감...