Monday, October 13, 2014

Film Fra Sør, my view

This post is an ongoing post which will be updated during "Film Fra Sør" film festival (9th - 19th of October). I'm going to write some lines about each movies I've seen during the festival.

  • Wild Tales (9/10)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3011894/
    One of the most extra-ordinary movies I had seen. The film is consist of 4 different short movies and is a definite MUST-SEE one :-)
  • Dukhtar (Daughter) (7/10)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3175888/
    The story of a road trip of a mother and daughter in Pakistan. A mother who can not give up her only daughter for a arranged marriage to an old hostile tribe leader. The marriage is arranged to set peace between the tribes and stop the long ongoing bloodshed. The story touches a lot of nowadays hot topics in Pakistan, from women rights to inter-tribes clashes.
  • The Old Man (7/10)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2182115/
    A film based on "Ernest Hemingway" book of "The old man & the sea", but for an old man in Kazakhstan and in the harsh environments of the steppes. The story of symbols dancing in nature and a man's will to survive. 
  • Han Gong-ju (8/10)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3265462/
    The word drama does not say it all ... A very well made film, with a very heavy topic ... 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

a sad day :-(

Today is a sad day :-( a card crashed into a group of 5 cyclists, one dead, four injured :-( a very sad day :-( The driver was drunk and ran off from the scene ...


http://www.aftenposten.no/nyheter/iriks/Syklist-pakjort-og-drept---sjaforen-stakk-fra-ulykkesstedet-7740719.html

Friday, July 18, 2014

Cycling is like meditation

Cycling is like meditation - Mohammad Tajeran
I truly believe in this quote from Mohammd Tajeran, Iranian globe trotter / cyclist / humanitarian activist. He has cycled enough (thousands of kilometers) to be the right source to state such thing. I have barely cycled 1000 km up to now and what I can say is that I truly believe in this ... It's another version of what Grant Petersen says in his book Just Ride that most of his great ideas come to him on his short rides and it takes at least 20 minutes for a brilliant idea / solution to pop up :-D

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Joining the 30's club, 4th decade of my life :)

Around 6 - 9 months ago I started freaking out about getting 30 years old. It was only a number showing my age, but leaving the 20's club and joining the 30's club did not look that easy. Since 18, I have had a feeling that time flies and joining the 30's club seemed way too tough !!! I just wanted to stay forever 29 :-P 
Well I needed to settle things down with myself and find out what do I really want from this life?!?! I guess this sounds very familiar to those who have passed age of 30. I think it's a syndrome called 30 years old crisis :-D Well I started by getting things the way I've always wanted them to be, but still this "What do I really want" question kept coming back to me in different aspects (job, studying again something different, personal life, etc) ... Finally it landed on my life-time overweight problem. Yes, I have achieved quite some stuffs in my life and been successful to some extent, of course not as much as my wildest dreams were, but who has?

me, during Christmas 2014

I told myself, I have achieved success in different fields, but never ever had full control over my body. I don't even know how it feels to be in control of it. I've always been over-weighted which thanks to my body structure did not show out that much (it did, but not that bad). There were times (2012) that I had been even up to 37 kg over-weighted (117 kg). Well I had 6 months to do something about it ... So I started something called 3085 as a personal goal. It simply meant, by age of 30 I would weight 85 kg. You might wonder what was my current weight? 107 kg !!!
January 2014


So it all started after Christmas 2014 and I started working out. The boxing club right beside where I live, seemed to be the perfect place to start. I started joining the group exercises, trained with them 4 times a week over a month and I could already see the changes in my body. I was swimming and playing football at work as well. After about a month, I was feeling much better running around and being active and that's when the disaster (what I called it at that time, and maybe life changing event) happened in the football training. I injured my knee while heading the ball and this injury was not a simple one. My cruciate ligament got torn and I couldn't even take a step. The active Shahab had to lay on the sofa and play Fifa all day now :-P That's when I reached the Fifa 1st division after a week and then I asked myself what about 3085 ??? I had already been to my doctor and heard that cycling was the best activity for my knee as soon as I can bend my knee. I started with daily 100 push ups and sit ups (several sets to get to 100) which did not put any load on my knee and jumped behind my stationary bike at home as soon as I could bend my knee. After about a month I was training in gym, swimming and things seemed to be on the right path, when I twisted my knee for the 2nd time :-( Same story once again with the first night after twisting to be the worst nights of my life when I woke up with every single move I made during the sleep, although being on painkillers. However once again after about a week I was cycling once again. Cycling seemed fun, I could cycle over and hour for warm up and never feel tiered. I did my weight lifting trainings as well to strengthen my muscles around my injured knee.
February 2014, after knee injury

Around that time I started that it's time to start a diet and maybe a personal trainer. I was thinking if I want to reach my 3085 goal, I MUST start now. So I Googled & Googled and Atkins seemed like the right choice. A low carb diet with their products which helped a lot during the last 2 months that I've been on it. Think of being on a diet and eating 2 chocolate bars every day full of Protein, Fiber and a small portion of sugar :-) 

With diet and training, I started loosing weight and looking more and more shaped. The weather got better, so I took my old bike and started cycling around setting distance goals for myself. I started with a nearby lake which to round it I had to cycle 25 km. Well for someone that had been training on stationary bike for last 2 months, that was piece of cake. So I said, hell yeah I am gonna cycle to the next nearby city.  That was 50 km. Well I won't say cycling continuously for 5.5 hours and burning over 2000 calories were piece of cake, but I did it. The day I decided to do that, of cycling accessories, I only had an old bike and it was raining. I started biking with normal spring clothes but I got all wet after 20 minutes biking. I made it to a bicycle shop nearby, bought everything I needed, not the bike though, only clothes and continued. Nothing should stop me this time I told myself. I cycled all the way and I don't forget the last 20 minutes when it was almost dark and downhill and I almost lost feeling on my fingers due to cold wind (yes, I didn't know why cyclists had gloves, I know now :D ). Well I had no energy to cycle back so I took the train back. If you ask me if it was hard, I would say sure it was, I couldn't feel my muscles that much after the trip, but it felt great. I was so high that I decided this is what I wanted to do. On top of all cycling made me feel much better and forget all those things I had on my mind.
First long cycling trip, lake challenge, 25 km
2nd long cycling trip, 50 km
2nd long cycling trip, 50 km
Training like never before indoors
Mid-May, it was time to go on a holiday when a friend showed up with a suggestion to take a one week trip to Spain. WoW, that was nice, but what about my training plans I thought? Well time to Google again and YES, they rent out bicycles in Spain. During my one week in Spain I cycled 250 km around, on both mountain and race bike. 120 km of it was on one single day from Altea to Alicante and back :) It sounded even crazy to me (& trust me I'm a conventional crazy typo), but my body was ready to meet all those challenges I had in my mind. Cycling in Spain with the right temprature and wandering around in the cities / villages after reaching the destination was one of the best experiences I've had in my life. That's when I thought, people say YOLO when they eat at McDonald and justify it that way, but have they tried what I'm doing, cause I would say this is definitely better :-) The feeling of reaching your destination after hard work and wandering in those tiny streets and observing the stream of life. From hanging wet clothes in the street, to biking, walking, kissing on the street and etc. Another part of my YOLO experiece was to of course eat the Spanish Tapas, Paellla and their wonderful wines :-) Well it was not on my diet plan, but come on I had cycled 120 km :P This great feeling and the way my body reacted to cycling by becoming very much fit guided me to know myself better and led me to an answer to my "what do I really want" question. At least one of the things I want to become is a semi-pro cyclist. I enjoy it, I have fun while riding and it just feels perfect :-) Before I forget I did cut short my 4 years old long hair in Spain as well, it was just way too hot to stand it and that made a lot of friends happy when I went back home :-P
Mountain bike in Spain, 60 km trip
Rented race bike, on 120 km trip to Alicante
There is a reason cyclists cover their mouth & it's for not getting cricket in their mouth (Learned the hard way), on 120 km trip to Alicante
120 km challenge ??? What challenge, it's already met :-) 
Tapas ladies in Spain are artists, she drew me this with my Tapas as soon as she heard my story :-)
New Me, after haircut :-)
Cycling with short hair was much more fun under sun :-D
After making it back home, not on the weight (95 kg), but in the look I had almost reached my 3085 goal :-) I looked so fit that no one could believed it. Almost everyone was shocked, both by the look and the haircut of course, telling me I look like a total different person. Couple of people I knew for a while started introducing themselves as they did not recognize me :-D A lot of my friends have told me they are proud of me and that felt very good. I was also proud of myself as before joining the 30's club I did manage one last thing I had never done in my life and it was being in control of my body.

I feel I have achieved a lot during all these years (studying, migration, independence, job, etc) & right now I'm specially proud of myself for my latest achievement, my body. It was hard and painful. It took courage, consistency & hard work, but it was worth it. This text can not reflect my passion toward my goal as the last thing to do in my 20'es and even more can NOT reflect the pain and disappointments in my defeats and problems on the way. However if you learn from your defeats and are flexible enough, you would get there :-) Last but not least I should not forget to thank every single person (friend / family / trainer) that supported me and encouraged me by reminding me about my progress. Hearing that you guys were proud of me gave me the greatest boost on my way to where I'm standing now. I'm proud of all of you cause your attitudes toward me was one of the greatest helps on my journey which is not finished of course :-)
Last selfie in my 20's, taken at 23:59 before my birthday
Today, no I'm cheating, I am actually lazy enough to write this text 2 days after my birthday, I turned 30 :) I am not confused anymore. I know myself better than before and at least I do have a new hobby and a wild dream to take part in Tour de France in future & even maybe win it, WoW, Sky is the limit :-D I'm still 92 kg and I have a fit body :) My life-time goal for my weight is to be between 80 - 85 kg and that's something I would like to slowly reach ...
Still have a long way to go with my body to get totally fit, but no rush :-)
Entering the 4th decade of my life I have learned quite a bit which could summarize in these quotes :
4th decade of my life has just started, I've got a lot of adventures coming :-D
YOLO, don't f* it up
Never give up, meet the challenges, it feels great even if you loose at least you've tried
Patience is a deed, things takes their time, they always do ...
Never say never, The world changes, you change, everything around us change and you might just one day love what you disliked before ...
In the time of darkest defeat, victory may be nearest (William McKinley), I do believe in that, if you've any doubt read my story again
What goes around, comes around :-)
It's not always about you, don't take things personal ...


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Signing off, officially new Shahab :-)


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Turkey :-(

Feeling terrible to see the news from Turkey :-( It's just sad to see how priceless workers life is for government officials and owners :-(

:-(


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

New Facebook movement from Iran, Stealthy Freedoms of Iranian Women

Since the early days of Iranian revolution and the new restrictions which was imposed on women clothing by the government, the Iranian women has never given up. Unlike Iranian men, the brave Iranian women never gave up in front of radical religious authorities which were afraid of their freedom. Recently Iranian women has started a new movement publishing their photos without Hijab on Facebook (click to see the page) :) This is a part of the 30 years old battle of Iranian women against forced Hijab ... This is a report from Yahoo UK on this matter

Funny thing is that on the other hand in some countries in Europe where freedom is supposed to be respected, some women can not wear Hijab at work. I have lived more than 20 years of my life in Iran under restrictions from a conservative government. What I've learned is that never press minorities for their believes. So although I don't believe in Hijab, I think it is wrong to ban people from harmless actions like covering their hair because of their believes.

Officially Shahab

Monday, February 3, 2014

Perfect shot from Beijing

Anyone who has visited Beijing (specially the old town) knows Beijing is like a fort. It feels like a military spirit has covered the whole city. You could think yeah right, this is typical communist countries, however in other grand Chinese cities you do not see such thing and actually see the police in charge. However in Beijing it looks like the red army rules ...
This said, it doesn't mean one would not enjoy the ancient cultural spirit which could be found overall in Beijing. It for sure is one of the best cities I've visited and for last but not least where I tasted one of the best foods, the Beijing duck :-)

This photo which I saw on the news, really stunned me for a minute and had to post it on my blog here and write about it. I don't know the photographer, but I should admire her / him to the highest regards. Perfect shot, showing the military spirit of Beijing and even shadows are reflecting typical Chinese faces ...

Source: TIME

Source : TIME magazine website