My “overloading” experiment is over now it’s Friday, and the results are interesting, if not particularly clear-cut. Every day this week I’d intended to:

  • write some FOSS code
  • do 20 minutes practise each of French and (“Mandarin”) Chinese
  • stick 100% to the “Four Hour Body” diet outlined by Tim Ferriss

… as you may recall (or as we call it in the 21st Century, “Google”) or read in my previous post. Of those three, I only managed to stick to the #4HB diet every day; coding after a day staring at Ant build files and finding 40 undisturbed minutes everyday proved too difficult. (I do find it interesting that the only weekly-goal I actually achieved was a modification of existing behaviour rather than a new habit — we all gotta eat. Perhaps that’s the key?). The other goals weren’t an unmitigated disaster, mind you: I did a couple of sessions of French (with Anki) that I wouldn’t have done otherwise, and revisited my 43 Things Android app workspace, although didn’t add any new functionality.

Despite this, I felt brilliantly productive in everything else I touched. I put a particularly long session into work on Thursday and was positively bouncing off the walls with excitement when I got my development workflow running just right. A bunch of names for the geeks: Gerrit & Git, Ivy, Ant and Jenkins — precommit CI builds, code-review gatekeeping, static analysis and code-coverage. Really, all that’s missing is a highly-visible status screen, a promotion of builds workflow and automated deployment to dev, test, regression, staging and finaly production. “Continuous delivery”, baby!! Our bedroom is looking good, thanks to Dee, and I’ve installed XBMC on the little media centre in the wall AND built a MythTV server out in the lab.

I monitored my weight every morning at the same time this week too, and noticed zero change. Our scales measure weight and attempts to guesstimate body-composition using electrical resistance — not accurate, but accurate enough for monitoring if you’re consistent — and neither my weight or body-fat content changed any more than can be attributed to “noise”. Today my body-weight is just slightly up from Monday’s figure, unsurprising after the quantity of food I devoured for yesterday’s “1 day-off gluttony” (as recommended by the Four Hour Body, no cheating). Considering the quality of yesterday’s diet — pancakes, bacon, maple-syrup, a Dairy Bell icecream, 6 chicken nuggets, Doritos, a glass of champagne three of rum — I would also expect my weight to creep up for a few days this week (but hopefully plummet after that). We’ll see.

So this week I’m going to slightly shift my overloading goals:

  • add the missing database methods to 43 Thing app
  • take Lucy for a 30 minute walk in the morning, and play with AnkiDroid
  • stick 100% to the “Four Hour Body” diet outlined by Tim Ferriss
  • no cheeky white coffees (I had 3 last week), and drink 3L water every day