Have you ever thought of starting your own amateur radio podcast? Do you enjoy helping and Elmering others? PARP or The Practical Amateur Radio Podcast would like to hire you…Yes YOU!
OK, so hiring is not the right word…let’s better label it as recruit. I’ve been producing PARP since 2008. To date I’ve produced over 60 audio episodes ranging from how to get your license to discussing what makes a great first radio. Yes, PARP has been geared towards the new or beginner amateur.
As I stated, I’ve been producing PARP since 2008. However, from time to time other life commitments have prevented me from releasing audio episodes on a frequent basis. I’m not ready to give up on PARP as I believe many, many hams benefit from the audio content. I have just reached a point where I could use some supplemental assistance and this is where you come in.
Each edition of PARP will reach thousands of your fellow amateurs. If you have a specific subject you would like to discuss, share and Elmer to a large audience of hams, then PARP can give you this opportunity.
If you are interested in this opportunity to Elmer through the Practical Amateur Radio Podcast, then please contact me.
I hope you’ll join me in focusing our attention, thoughts and prayers to our heroes who lost their lives 12 years ago and also to those who lost their lives 12 months ago today. In addition, we should also honor all who have given their lives to defend freedom around the world. We must never forget those who died on September 11th and we must never forget that freedom is not free.
May God continue to bless this great nation…and may freedom ring around the world.
Based on the amount of emails I’ve received with both questions and encouragement, I know many have been inspired by my blog updates on my own progress to better health. Since my amateur radio blog is picked up by a few different blog sites I don’t want to post material which is off-topic to amateur radio. If you are interested in learning more about my quest for better health through diet and exercise, please follow my personal blog. You can subscribe to the RSS feed via this link.
Now I return you to your normal amateur radio blog content already in progress.
The 2013 edition of the Colorado QSO party is complete and in the books. Perhaps, with exception to Field Day…the COQP is my favorite on-air radio sport opportunity. I truly enjoy representing the Centennial State and Denver County in this annual event.
The event is a full 16 hours from 1200 UTC (6 AM local) to 0400 UTC (10 PM local). In past years I’ve honestly not bothered with setting an alarm in order to get up with the chickens and get on the air. However, this year…well, my wife and I had just arrived back in the US from two weeks in Europe less than 36 hours before the start of the contest. Needless to say, I was still on London time and I was awake at 4 AM.
With coffee in hand, I switched on the computer and radio (my trusty Yaesu FT-950) and began spinning the dial promptly at 6 AM. Band conditions at this time of the day and in Colorado just weren’t compatible with my contesting efforts. Having been up due to jet lag for a few hours, I decided a nice morning walk was in order. After all, I still needed to get in my 10,000 steps. It was a beautiful morning in the mile high city and I used the time to walk along the DTC and admire the beautiful rocky mountains.
Energized after the walk, shower and breakfast. With even more coffee I headed back down to the basement ham shack and resumed my efforts of calling CQ Colorado QSO Party. Ahhh, 20m was as awake as I was and we were well underway to putting Q’s into the logbook.
My somewhat loose goals for the 2013 COQP was A. Have fun and B. attempt to make more contacts than the previous year. By the way, this number for 2012 COQP was 281. The end result for my 2013 efforts would most certainly meet the “Have Fun” goal (after all, this is important) and would unfortunately fall short of breaking last year numbers.
As you can tell from the screen grab from N1MM logger, I missed my Q goal by 23 Q’s.
So what was different about 2012? I decided for the 2013 COQP that I would work phone only versus in 2012 I operated mixed mode to include PSK and RTTY. But I also believe last year I wasn’t jet-lagged and I was able to give a solid effort in the final hours of the contest. Unfortunately, this year I was physically out of gas around 7 PM.
Overall I felt band conditions were just as good (or as good as I could remember them to be in 2012). Below is a map showing the 258 Q’s I worked during the 2013 COQP. By the way, I created the map using K2DSL free service.
I truly look forward to next year and I hope to work you.
As mentioned in my previous blog posting, I’ve taken a serious approach to my health. Much of what I accomplished in losing over 30 pounds was just done by following the Atkins diet and casual exercise. Much of this exercise has been in the form of walking as my wife and I are trying to get in better shape for our trip to Europe. In previous years, we didn’t prepare ourselves in advance for all the walking we end up doing. We suffer for the first week as a result. I believe this year will be different.
My goal of reaching 200 pounds prior to 15 August was in an effort to verify that diet and exercise will help improve my cholesterol levels. I will have a checkup next week and my ultimate goal of those results is just to verify that the needles are moving in the right directions. I know I have more work to do…but I am looking for proof that what I’ve accomplished in the past four months is the right thing.
Part of vacation is enjoying life and I don’t plan to follow the Atkins plan while in Europe. If you are familiar with Atkins or the Low Carb diet, you know that carbs are avoided like the plague. The national dish of Belgium is Belgian Frietjes or Belgian Fries. These are the best fried potatoes (can’t refer to them as French) that I have ever tasted and I’ve enjoyed more than my share of fries. In addition to the Belgian fries, I’ll also enjoy a few Belgian Waffles and many other delicacies which I just can’t get here in the US. I figure many of the carbs I consume while on vacation will be offset with the tremendous amount of walking we do.
Anyway…..10,000 Steps for Health is how I plan to tackle the next phase of my goal. I’ve heard people talk about losing weight just simply making sure they walk 10,000 steps daily. But just how many steps does an average person….or more importantly, how many steps do I take on an average day? A friend of mine has had incredible success with this this program and uses a little device called a Fitbit. A Fitbit is a small electronic gadget (fancy pedometer) which is worn to track the number of steps you take, the number of floors you’ve climbed, distance in miles or kilometers and calories burned. You basically wear this little device and sync the data to a free Fitbit account where you can view your results.
What I found by just wearing the device each day was without even trying I was averaging about ~6000 steps each day. So by adding an additional daily walk to my schedule (and taking the stairs more at work) has proven successful at pushing me over the 10K mark each day.
For now, my focus remains on the final 4.5 pounds which I plan to lose by 15 August, then enjoying a fantastic vacation with my wife. Once I return home and return to work, I will begin working on the next phase of my plan to reach 180 pounds by Christmas. At this point, I really don’t plan to go any lower than 180 pounds. I’m 6 foot tall and at 180 pounds, this places my BMI in the normal weight range. But of course, I’ll consult with my doctor and most importantly perform another blood test to check my overall cholesterol numbers.
Until next time…
P.S. I realize this blog post has nothing to do with amateur radio. However, my getting in better shape, getting healthy and staying healthy will most certainly allow me to continue to enjoy the hobby for many years to come. Plus I just want to share this info with others who might be interested in shedding a few extra pounds. 73 de KD0BIK