What I’m Lovin’: May 2011

It’s been a while since I’ve posted one of these. Just a few of the things I’m really into right now.

  • MyFitnessPal – A few weeks ago, Sunny downloaded this app for her phone. A friend of hers told her about this calorie counter called “MyFitnessPal”. Basically, you enter in your food selections for each day and tabulate your caloric intake. Pretty simple. But the app also keeps score of your cardio and strength training as well, thereby tracking your weight loss. At first, I scoffed at the idea of having to type in each meal and keep up with everything. (I know; I’m lazy.) But I gave it a try and now, 6 weeks later, I’m hooked. I’ve never counted calories; I’ve really never even watched what I’ve eaten. So I have 30 years of bad eating habits to undo. But I’m now more aware of what I’m eating; I’m exercising more than I have in years; and, best of all, I’ve dropped 20 lbs. If you’re looking for some motivation to lose a little weight and get in better shape, give MyFitnessPal a shot. I know I’m starting to sound like an infomercial, but I really don’t think you’ll regret it.
  • The Daily – Yet another app, but it’s become an essential source of news for me. I had a free one-month trial a few months ago and I instantly fell in love with it. I’ve tried several tablet-based news apps, and The Daily is hands down my favorite. Great pics, quality journalism, seamless video content…The Daily has it all. It’s a bit pricey ($39.99 for a one year subscription), but I don’t mind paying it for daily content like this. Check it out.
  • "Helplessness Blues" by Fleet Foxes

    Fleet Foxes’ Helplessness Blues – So far, 2011 has been a bit “meh” in terms of music releases. You had Iron&Wine back in February and that’s about it. Until a few weeks ago when Fleet Foxes finally released their much anticipated second full-length album Helplessness Blues. Fleet Foxes is a thinking man’s band, poetry set to mood rock. The core sound remains intact: lush, soaring vocals over a bed of pastoral rhythm guitar and string melodies. But don’t let the sound fool you — this is a more mature, tumultuous, plaintively reflective record, birthed by a similarly meandering and trying recording process. The disillusionment is palpable on the title track: “And I don’t, I don’t know who to believe / I’ll get back to you someday soon you will see.” This line from album opener “Montezuma” could’ve been ripped directly from the pages of Ecclesiastes: “In dearth or in excess / both the slave and the empress / will return to the dirt I guess, naked as when they came.” Some bands handle success quite well; others are reluctant to come to terms with their newfound fame. You get the impression Fleet Foxes are resolutely in the latter. Yet, the result is a complex throwback to the vintage sounds of Van Morrison and Simon & Garfunkel. One of my favorites of 2011 so far.

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4 Responses to What I’m Lovin’: May 2011

  1. Jane Reneau says:

    Wow – that is really great about the MyFitnessPal thing! I just started using MyNetDiary, which is the same idea, and it has worked for me too. I’ve been writing about it on my own blog, so would you mind if I linked to this post? I’d like for any interested readers to see your success story. 🙂

  2. greg says:

    I’m going to have to check out the fitness pal app. one of my goals for the summer is to be less of me by summer’s end (and beyond). thanks for the tip.

    I’m really digging the new Fleet Foxes as well. I never had their first one, but am going to try to get it shortly (it’s $5 at amazon in may).

    some other favorites of mine this year are new ones from The Decemberists, Elbow, The Civil Wars and Okkervil River. I think The Civil Wars may be my favorite so far.

    • Jason says:

      I’ve been listening to The Civil Wars and The Decemberists, too. They’re both really solid. I think top to bottom, I like The Decemberist album better.

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