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Everything posted by ectogemia

  1. Well, it depends upon what your goals are. If you're shooting for big strength gains, a gym membership will be necessary to have access to things like a squat rack, barbells, lots of weight, etc. If there's a Planet Fitness around you, it's only $10/mo. If you're going for muscle growth (hypertrophy is the googleable word here in case you want to look into it more), you may be able to get by with dumbbells and a chin-up bar. You'd be missing some basic equipment to do certain lifts, but a set of dumbbells and a chin-up bar will still go a long way as long as you've got enough weight to make the dumbbells pretty heavy. If you're going for general functional fitness, body weight stuff will get you there. Something like yoga would be a good endurance, strength, and flexibility hybrid exercise for you in that case. If you've got fat to lose, daily long walks of 45 minutes+ in addition to two HIIT/Tabata-style sprints per week will trim you down very quickly. Keep in mind that the more cardio you do, the fewer resources there will be to fuel muscle growth from lifting. So for my goal at the moment, which is pure strength gains, I'm doing 0 cardio to maximize my rate of fast-twitch muscle growth. If your goal is to lose fat and gain muscle, you'll gain muscle at a lower rate if you're walking+sprinting as well. Just something to think about.
  2. I love it when life gives you some much needed perspective once in a while. Well, dude, if it helps at all, I took 4 months off because my stress fractured ulna took its sweet fucking time to heal. I lost 33 lbs during my time off, but I've put on about 14-15 lbs. in the past 4 weeks. So it comes back, and fast! If you need time to heal, take it. Best not to risk permanent injury. Live to lift another day.
  3. I'll get back to you on this later, but yes, there are lots of contradictory studies in nutrition, and in every scientific discipline as well. The easiest way to resolve these conflicts a priori is to apply the sort of "central dogma" of each discipline. Geology has plate tectonics. Chemistry has atomic theory. Physics has quantum theory (though this is constantly being revised), mechanics has relativity, etc. In the life sciences, the central dogma is evolution. If two studies contradict one another, then the one which makes evolutionary sense is the one which should probably be subscribed to more readily. Of course, this doesn't always lead to the correct conclusion, but usually if you're wrong, it's because your evolutionary reasoning was wrong or because the particular aspect of evolutionary theory you used to draw your conclusion is wrong. Because evolution is a fact and it is the guiding principle of the development of human physiology and, by extension, nutritional requirements, interpreting nutritional studies in light of evolution should be common practice. In the biology labs I've worked in, evolution has always been a factor in the discussion of our results. My wife worked in nutrition science during undergrad, and evolution was never spoken of. That is the key flaw in the study of nutrition. As it is now, there's a lot of epidemiological studies going on in nutrition to find vague associations and correlations which tend not to be very trustworthy because the data generated relies so heavily on the study design and human memory and classifying the whole of foods available to humans into just a few study categories. A lot of nutritional studies set themselves up for failure in this way. Some don't. So the tl;dr is this quote which showed up in basically every biology class I've ever taken (and then stopped showing up in my medical classes... hmmmm...): "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution" - Theodosius Dobzhansky edit: So how do you interpret nutritional studies in light of human evolution? This isn't always entirely accurate, but basically, if a caveman had access to it, you should eat it, and you should do so in a quantity which made sense for cavemen to eat it in. Studies of modern-day hunter-gatherers can be useful, too, to learn about how "natural" populations eat. Trying to replicate that in a reasonable way has been extremely successful for a lot of people, myself included. But this is a really loaded concept, and it's not always as simple as comparing yourself to a caveman, because a caveman you ain't. There's a lot of genetic variation across the human population, so your nutritional needs and foods you tolerate best may be a little different than the next guy's. To find the palette of foods best suited for your palate and your health, it takes a lot of self-experimentation. Here's a pretty decent primer which outlines some of the concepts I'm talking about, but don't take it all for absolute truth.
  4. Haha, I love this study. Synopsis: - High cheese consumption is related to low heart attack risk - Cooking with lots of butter is unrelated to heart attack risk (found in fulltext, not in abstract) - Eating butter on bread was shown to lead to a 34% higher heart attack risk compared to controls Not sure I agree with the first sentence of the abstract, though Dairy makes up a good 800-1000 Calories of my intake on off-days (mostly cheese) and just as much on my workout days (mostly butter). Good to know my arteries are enjoying it as much as my taste buds. So pump your bodies full of cheese to speed along those gains AND clear those arteries! The CLA in grass-fed dairy has been shown many times to reverse atherosclerosis. edit: and because one study is never sufficient evidence for anything, here's a review of studies stating that "...the majority of observational studies have failed to find an association between the intake of dairy products and increased risk of CVD, coronary heart disease, and stroke... edit edit: I am eating a hunk of raw swiss right now, and this shit is so cash.
  5. Yep. Here's a list of all you need for a legally binding contract. If I remember one thing from some business law class I took (and I really do only remember one thing...) it's this. And it's important because it can save both you AND the dev in legal fees. One of the devs I'm working with now spent $$$ on a formal work-for-hire contract, aaaand that wasn't exactly necessary. The advantage of having a more formal, lawyer-reviewed contract, though, is that there's almost 0 chance of a misunderstanding or a lawsuit arising about contract validity or terms. Like Joe said, it's all a matter of trust, really. If you're working with good people, maybe you don't need to shell out $$$$$$$$$$$ for a lawyer to draft a contract.
  6. Thanks, dude! Facebook me dat link to your remix so I don't forget to give you feedback on it. I'm busy for the rest of the night
  7. Hey, guys. What'd I miss? Here's a remastered version of my Cold Man + Enker's Theme SNES metal remix. Enjoy!
  8. Experiment. Don't confine your thought process to "this is a dubstep track" or "this is an orchestral track" unless that's specifically what you want to write. That is, unless you WANT to become a specialist or if you WANT to perfect a particular style on its own. Writing music in general is what is important. Just let it flow naturally as you write. Easier said than done, but it's what I try to do, and I'm still improving using that approach.

  9. that was awesome!!!! good work, dude :D it's like you went to school for this stuff or something.

  10. Get into a contract with them ASAP to lock in terms for compensation, deadlines, etc. to make the whole process more organized and definitive, ESPECIALLY if it's a fairly large project with multiple, full-length tracks involved. Plus, you'll look and sound professional as fuck. Meteo's tips are solid, especially the Youtube one. I've asked everyone who has ever worked with me for reference material because a dev trying to describe the desired music to you with words is begging for the essence of what they want to be lost in translation. There's nothing more frustrating than spending hours writing something only to get feedback that the style isn't what the dev wanted.
  11. I'm working on 3 VGM OSTs right now. I got one gig because of networking through a personal friend whose brother is an indie game developer, and it's a pretty small gig. The next rung up the ladder is for Approaching Infinity. I got this job sort of "accidentally on purpose." I'm a huge fan of roguelikes, and after playing through FTL and loving the shit out of Ben Prunty's soundtrack for it and seeing that zircon is writing an OST for Dungeonmans (another roguelike), I wondered if I could get a piece of the roguelike pie. So I googled something along the lines of "upcoming roguelikes" or "roguelike 2013" and started emailing the devs of ones that I thought were developing a promising-looking game. I stumbled upon one dev's blog who had JUST made a post about wanting a composer for his game. So I responded with a bunch of links to my tunes. He replied, asking me to write a sample track, so I did, and he liked it, and now I'm getting $$$$$$$$$$ to write the whole OST. For my last and most involved game, I got the gig indirectly through having released a remix album through GameChops. I know that Dj CutMAn (or however he capitalizes it) is pretty well-connected among indie game devs and in the convention scene, so releasing an album through his label would get my music heard by at least some game devs. And it did. And they liked it. And now I'm co-composing the soundtrack for Bacon Man (check out our MAGBooth!) along with Kyle Landry and Braxton Burks. I've had several other paid gigs for non-game music commissions as well, and the two secrets to my modest success are to network and get to know as many people as possible in the gaming scene -- not just other composers, but devs, artists, programmers, etc. They'll hook you up with work. Also, they're cool people. Secret #2 is to be able to write in many, many different styles and to do so routinely. Every dev or potential employer who has asked for samples of my music has noted that they like how all of my tunes sound different from one another. That immediately establishes confidence that you will be able to meet their various stylistic needs. Flexibility is crazy important when you're writing in a genre as nebulous as VGM. Chilling on indie game dev forums and getting to know people there certainly couldn't hurt, either. Although a lot of composers post their music on those forums, NOT a lot of composers spend time actively posting in topics related to anything but their own music. Again, NETWORK. Set yourself apart from the grayscale of composers and make your personality known. Go to conventions and make your FACE known, as well. In fact, that's how I got my very first VGM composing gig, by talking to a dev at MAGFest about writing music for his game. Another random idea is to volunteer to write music for Ludum Dare or other indie game jams to get a foot in the door with various teams of developers. You won't make any money, but you'll be doing a huge favor for game devs who you'll get to know personally, and they won't forget that when it comes time for them to develop a game they'll actually sell. The practice doesn't hurt, either, if you've never had to work with a team which requires you to quickly respond/rewrite based on critiques. And no matter how good of a composer you are, if your production isn't reasonably polished and skilled, you're going to struggle to come across as professional enough to write for a game.
  12. This isn't exactly an answer to your question, but sit-ups -- in my opinion -- are sort of a lie. They don't do anything that heavy lifting requiring core strength doesn't do. Almost nothing strengthens the core like requiring it to support, say, your 5-rep-max while squatting or doing deadlifts. The abdominal muscles are muscles of support, not really muscles intended to move loads from point A to point B. So if you treat them as such, they tend to grow better as a result. Exercises which require lots of core stability tend to grow the abs best, and I believe weighted exercises which require lots of core stability grow them best. Unweighted exercises, such as yoga, pilates, parkour, and planks/leg lifts, are solid ways to work on your abs because they make the abs function as intended. In my own experience, though, my abs have grown faster from squats and deadlifts. 3 workouts per week is what I do, and I've gotten awesome results from it without any symptoms of overtraining. My intensity is pretty high, though. I only do maybe 8-12 sets total at each workout which totals up to around 50 minutes apiece, but I'm working at an intensity where I take at least 3 minutes of rest between each set, and I NEED every second of those 3 minutes, sometimes more. 3 sets of 5 of everything (with warmup sets) does the trick for me.
  13. At least someone got in a good set of barbell rows. edit: In other news, I'm back in the gym after several months of injury time. And I'm up 10 lbs in 23 days, and my lifts are coming back way faster than expected! I'm pretty stoked about that momentum. Maybe I'll actually be at 175 for MAG like I was hoping...
  14. I've got them underneath my monitors now, and they do their job nicely :D

  15. SliceX works pretty well. Open it up, hit F1, and check out all the possibilities. It does a whole lot more than just slicing up audio.
  16. Just keep it up! You'll only get post-workout soreness for a couple of weeks.
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