10 Things to Know About London

Visiting London for the first time? Here are 10 things to keep in mind!


1) ALWAYS stand on the right side of the escalator, allow people to walk on the left.

2) London Bridge is a tube station, the actual bridge is called Tower Bridge!

3) The weather can change at any given second. You’ll feel warm, cold, get wet all within one one hour. So don’t grumble about it.

4) If you see sun… you’re  here

5) Tubes (London Underground) are not as bad as people make out. They could be worse.

6) The Queen does NOT reside at Buckingham Palace.

7) Monmouth Coffee Company – best coffee in London. Period.

8) London is expensive….very expensive. Get over it!

9) Avoid Leicester Square and Oxford Street. Unless you like walking in the crowd.

10) People are the best thing about London.

Follow this thread on Quora for detailed info What little-known facts should a traveler to London know?

The books on running… I’ve read so far

Here are some of the books on running I’ve read.

1) Born to Run by Christopher McDougall – The best book ever written about running. Period.

2) Racing Weight by Matt Fitzgerald – I lost almost 10 kilo’s just by reading the book (pun intended). If you’re serious about your diet and want to train/eat like a pro.. then this book is the one!

3) A Race Like No Other – Running the New York City Marathon? then this is the must read. Liz Robbins runs 26.2 miles through the streets of New York without hitting the wall. If you don’t plan on running the New York City Marathon than this book will make you run one.

4) Runners Rule Book – A good humorous read. Mark Remy makes you laugh.. on the run!

5) Survival of the Fittest Mike Stroud gives an in depth understanding of  why and how our body perform in given conditions. More facination are his explorations to Antartica and running marathons around the world and gruelling cross-country endurance races.

6) The Runners Field Manual by Mark Remy – Not as fun as Runners Rule Book

Reading next Once A Runner and My Life on the Run

Tim Hortons in London sucks!

My cousin in Canada tipped me about Tim Hortons in London. Apparently I am addicted to Timmy’s (French Vanilla ..anyone??)

It’s in Piccadilly Circus – SPAR, Haymarket. Tim Hortons made a deal with the SPAR convenience store chain in the UK and Ireland, resulting in Tim Hortons coffee and doughnuts being sold at small self service counters in 50 SPAR stores as of April 30, 2007. (Wikipedia)

It’s just a small vending machine and the coffee is no where..close to what you get in Canada. Infact it Sucks…Oh and no timbits! :-(

2010 – Top 20 Running Songs

This seems to be an annual update, list of my top running songs. (See my 2009 list)

Here’s my current 2010 Top 20 25 Running Songs, again in no particular order. I’ll be updating the list as the year goes on. Links are to song videos.

1) Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen

2) Running on Empty – Jackson Browne

3) Lose Yourself – Eminem

4) Gonna Fly Now – Bill Conti (Rocky Theme Song)

5) Aint No Stopping Us Now – Mcfadden and Whitehead

6) Till I Collapse – Eminem

7) No Apologies – Eminem

8) Empire State of Mind – Jay- Z feat Alicia Keys

9) Not Afraid – Eminem

10) Stronger – Kayne West

11) Run This Town – Rihanna, Jay-Z, Kayne West

12) Break Your Heart – Taio Cruz

13) Cinderella Man – Eminem (This is looking more and more like a Eminem list!)

14) Dynamite – Taio Cruz

15) Pump It – Black Eyed Peas

16) Orinico Flow (Remix) – Enya

17) It’s My Life – Bon Jovi

18) Harder to Breathe – Maroon 5

19) Shine – Shannon Noll

20) Numb – Linkin Park

I’ve added 5 more tracks, some extra motivation!

21) Eye of the Tiger – Survivor (bringing tiger back!)

22) The Cup of Life – Ricky Martin

23) 8 Mile Road – Eminem

24) Going On – Gnarls Barkley

25) Beat It – Michael Jackson

Bonus track : An mp3 of this adidas ad :)

Happy Running!

Sound, Camera, Action!

So couple of weeks back I did a Two-Day Intensive Filmmaking (weekend course) at Met Film School.  From the world of web to the world of filmmaking. A great learning experience.

Here’s a scene I directed & edited on day 2. It’s adapted from Erin Brockovich, though I changed the script a bit. You can see the original scene in this trailer. It took me over 2 hours just to direct this 3 min scene and another couple of hours to edit (using Final Cut Pro)!

Not bad for a first timer, eh?

2010 London Running Events

This is how my 2010 running calendar looks like. As usual most of my runs are in London. There are few more events which I’ll add once my attendance is confirmed. No Half Marathons this year, unlike my 2009 running calendar. Though I would love to do Royal Parks but I have to give it a miss!

Date Race Event Distance (Start) Place
Sat, 27 Mar Richmond Riverside Run 10K Richmond
Wed, 14 Apr BHF Jog 10K Hyde Park
Wed, 05 May Tower of London 10K Tower of London
Mon, 31st May Bupa London 10K 10K Green Park
Sun, 06 June Canary Wharf Jog 10K Canary Wharf
Sun, 20 June London to Brighton Bike 50 Miles (approx) Clapham Junction
Aug London Triathlon 750m Swim / 20km Bike / 5km Run ExCeL Centre

The day I Sky Dive’d

Couple of months back I Skydive’d from North London Parachute Centre (NLPC).. its nowhere near London. It’s in Cambridge. My first ever.. as you could figure out from the video.

We did from 13,000, Ft. As you can see from the video… a bit scared but wanna do it again.. someday. Free Fall is where all the fun is!

Here’s the video.

UK to Beijing by Bicycle….Anyone?

If you run Adwords / PPC Campaigns then you probably keep an eye on the text ads you see during your web journey.

Here’s the one I found when I was doing research before I bought my cycle. (Btw I bought Ridgeback Cyclone which is a beauty!)

The adtext is so compelling I had to click. I m sure they must have an amazing CTR but not many conversions!


I saw the ad in Gmail where I had saved some info about some cycles.

My Fault!!

Couple of weeks back I went to Sen’s gig at The Cavendish Arms in Stockwell (Finding that place is like a treasure hunt!).

Apparently Sen would not be doing any more gig before his album is out, as ordered by his record label.

Here’s Senadee performing “My Fault” at The Cavendish Arms. Brilliant song- dedicated to me. Enjoy!

Also check out his site Senadee.com.

Update: Here’s Sena’s official My Fault Video

10 things about losing weight !


Every year millions of people try to lose weight, and most fail. We are constantly bombarded with advice about dieting and the latest slimming fads. But what really works? In BBC  programme, medical journalist Michael Mosley investigated latest scientific breakthroughs in slimming, uncovering ten of the simplest ways to shed those pounds.

For those who missed the programme here are the  10 Things you need to know about losing weight:


1) Don’t Skip Meals
When we skip meals our brain responds/craves for high calorie food to compensate. This is caused by the hormone Ghrelin. Ghrelin is the hunger hormone. It’s made in the stomach, and it tells the brain when it’s time to eat. Ghrelin doesn’t cause obesity, but scientists think taming it might help us get our scales back in balance.
Grhelin accelerates appetite, while leptin decreases appetite.


2) Use Smaller Plates
Change your plate size from 12 inches to 10 inches and you’re likely to eat up-to 22% less food. If you increase your portions by using large plates or bowls you’ll tend to eat much more.


3) Count your Calories
If you choose low calorie meal instead of high calorie you can reduce your calorie intake by half.
for e.g – Black Coffee (10 cal) over Cappuccino (100 cal)
Toasted Bread (125 cal) over Pastry (270 cal)
2 Apples a day (120 cal) over bar of Chocolate (300 cal)
Thin Crust Cheese & Tomato Pizza (850 cal) over Deep Pan Pepperoni ( 1400 cal)
Bloody Marie (125 cal) over Pina Colada ( 280 cal)
A series of small changes in your diet can make a massive difference to your waist line.

4) Don’t Blame your Metabolism – Count your calories even of healthy food
Metabolic rate is simply the rate at which your body burns calorie by simply being alive.

Even if you eat healthy food but in large quantities then you’ll pile on calories
If you’re overweight you’ve eaten more than your body needs and the excess is stored as fat.


5) Protein Staves Off Hunger Pangs
Certain foods keep you feeling fuller for longer.
Protein rich food helps you do that – fish, eggs, beans, lean ham,… But do keep counting your calories.

Protein triggers the PYY hormone, one of a number of hormones that stimulate or suppress hunger, is released by the gut as you eat. It tells the part of the brain that controls appetite when you are full.



6) Soup Keeps you Feeling Fuller for Longer


7) The Wider the choice the more you eat
Variety triggers our instinct to try everything that leads to overeating.
We are likely to eat 30% more at buffets.


8) Low Fat Dairy helps you excrete more fat
Low fat dairy (Skimmed milk, low fat cheese and yogurt & Co may help you absorb less fat from your food.


9) Exercise Goes on Buring Fat even while you sleep
A great news for exercise lovers – not only you loose fat while exercising, you also loose fat afterwards, even while we are sleeping.

The Afterburn effect – A lot of fat is burned after you’ve exercised not while you exercise.
Our body uses different fuels to give use energy – Carbohydrates & Fats. When we exercise our body uses our Carbohydrate, because they are easy for our body to burn. Our body would take another 22 hrs to replace that used carb. So in the mean time it our body is forced to burn fat to keep you going – walking talking & even sleeping.

So don’t worry how much fat you’ve burned during your exercise, its the after burn that matters (you’ll burn much more fat later on)


10) Keep Moving (Be Active) And Loose Weight
You don’t need to join gym to burn extra calories. Small changes in your daily routine (taking stairs, getting off one stop earlier, walking during lunch & so..) significantly increases the number of calories you burn. Be active – but don’t eat more just because you’re doing some exercise, keep same diet.


Update: Read the New York Times article on wearable high-tech devices that monitor fitness.