Sunday, November 12, 2006

Newtons Laws of Losing Weight

Yeah ... its time for me to (mis) quote the most abused laws again
(1) Any person who remains at rest in a desk job, shall remain at rest unless acted upon an external irrestible force.
e.g. The trousers getting too tight, OR lack of attention from the opposite sex
(2) The accelaration to get things going is directly proportional to the force applied, i.e. either by your over bulging tummy (or jelly belly) on your pants OR the number of attractive species of the opposite sex around you
(3) This is the toughest one, To each and every action you do to lose weight, there is an unequal (usually far greater) and opposite reaction.
As in hunger pangs and binge drinking/eating
Yes as you can figure out from the above posts, I am facing the battle of the bulge, and in my case (unfortunately) the force applied is the one of my trousers.
Women have continued to keep ignoring me, which they have kept doing irrespective of my weight or waist (ive been the fattest and thinnest guys in my class, though in different years)
And to lay to rest these weighty issues i started playing squash with a colleague of mine.
Mind you, i suck big time at raquet sports (just as badly as in track and field events, and other sports) but still i thought, i have never played squash before so why not try it out, apparently it burns more calories per hour than other sports (definitely more than carrom or poker which were the games i was playing earlier)
So i started playing in the squash courts which are in a building hosting the back office in a somewhat shady area of london.
Now was when i realised the Newtons third law of losing weight.
This game involves runnign and hitting a really soft ball against a wall and this kind of involves physical effort which my body hasnt been used to. Thus start all the pains and aches, and then i am so goddamn tired in the night (after work then play) and i end up drinking a couple of beers after the game, neutralising any positive benefit the game had to my physique (or the lack of it)
More over, being beaten hollow does a lot of good for your self esteem as well, though for a person like me being beaten at sport hardly matters, infact its good i remember when i won, like
i last beat my close friend abhishek burman for a table tennis match on 2nd april 1997. Well dont count it as a mean achievement, since in 1998 january he ended up as Mumbai junior college tournament semifinalist.
Its a totally different thing that he had his left hand in plaster cast then, and a much inferior (practically dead) racquet.
Anyways the problem with squash (compared to tennis table tennis and badminton, i.e. other racquet sports at which i suck, i.e. ORSAWIS) is that the ball is extremely soft and thus doesnt bounce a lot. Thus the coefficient of restitution is much less than 1. (e<<1)>
In addition, with the side and the back walls which can be hit upon, the whole problem becomes 3 dimensional compared to tennis or badminton or table tennis (ORSAWIS) . As any one who has solved a system of equations will tell you a 3 dimensional problem brings in much more complexity than just one additional equation compared to a 2 dimensional problem
The third problem is, in ORSAWIS the opponent is on the other side of the net, hence you can see where the opponent is going, here he may be on your side, ahead of you (where you cant see his face or where his eyes are pointing) or he might be behind you (where you cant see your opponent at all) and this makes the whole system further more complicated.
The decisions systems in ORSAWIS is if he runs to left hit the ball to his right (i.e. our left)
Now it took me some time to realise, here my left is same as his left (and it doesnt even change if the opponent is left handed) , and if i cant see where my opponent is running towards, how do i hit the ball away from him???
And just like any physics problem (or like chemical engineering differential equations, which by the way was my undergraduate major) there are serious boundary conditions. Not only the ball bounces back off the side walls, unlike ORSAWIS where you can run out of the court (or away from the table) here this boundary conditions cannot be messed with. Real life is not like road runner or tom and jerry cartoons that you can run through walls.
Unfortunately i learnt it the hard way (ouch!!!)
Since all my attention was only on the ball (like Arjun of Mahabharata focussed on the eye of the bird) I didnt notice the wall obstructing my running and follow through after the shot, and bumping into a wall isnt really pleasant.
Well now as i nurse my aches and pains after playing squash and have digested my beers (and burped as well) I am sitting down and refiguring it out how to beat the hell out of my opponent.
I have already written down the system of equations, adjusting for the coefficient of restitution of the ball, (Hence angle of incidence is not equal to angle of reflection) the boundary conditions in the three dimensional space, with rigid boundary conditions. Also I have put in a probabilistic term to account for me not being able to see my opponent at all times.
I guess by now you might have realised why do i suck at sports and am good in physics.
Anyways all i am hoping for is to lose with a little more respect, actually score a point every now and then. And also lose some weight in the whole process.
And as for the opposite reactions, I plan to soothe my pain by drinking whisky on the rocks instead of beer to keep the weight in check.
Come on all my readers (yes including the non-existant ones) wish me luck against the battle of the bulge.
I hope now i can atleast lose with some respect


Achal said...

best of luck! :d

nirav said...

thanks a lot achal. I need all the luck possible

Abhishek said...

did not know that a lower coefficient of restitution makes the angle of reflection <> angle of incidence... if that is true thanks for the education... if it is not true maybe you can now conclude that you aren't good at physics either. Just kiddin'

Rahul said...

women, squash, and new Newton's laws of losing weight...good read...

nirav said...

@ Abhishek, do some times revise high school physics, (not just books on finance and FSA)
But thanks for reading my blog

@ Rahul, thanks a lot, and do keep reading my blog.
Hope i can keep other posts as entertaining as well