Sep 252012

So, you have ripped an audiobook from CD and imported it into iTunes, but it’s showing up as an album in amongst your music – how do you move it into the books section?

The problem with having them amongst your music is that your iPod doesn’t necessarily remember where in the track you were – this means that you end up listening to the first part of the file again if you take a break from the book. Luckily, the solution is simple.

  1. Open iTunes and, in the music section, highlight all the files which make up your book.
  2. Right-click (ctrl-click on Mac) one of the highlighted files and choose ‘Get Info’
  3. Choose ‘Yes’ when it asks if you want to get information for multiple items
  4. In the ‘Info’ tab, choose an appropriate genre – maybe ‘Audiobook’, or ‘Nonfiction’
  5. Click the ‘Options’ tab and make these changes:
    • Media kind: Audiobook
    • Remember position: Yes
    • Skip when shuffling: Yes
    • Gapless album: Yes
  6. Click ‘OK’ and wait for iTunes to process all the files

Your book will now show up under the Books section of iTunes – Sync your iPod and everything should be as you want it.

Sep 042012

When I was a teenager, I was slim and sporty – I was a keen member of my local swimming club and swam at Scottish Schools level, I ran cross country and track at lunchtimes and evenings, I played squash for a while and competed in a few biathalons. When I was 18, I went to university and bought a flat right round the corner from “Scotland‘s Fish and Chip Shop of the Year 1989, 1990, 1993″.

After going undercover as a fattie for nearly 20 years, I’ve decided it is time to remove my disguise.

I’ve tried dieting before, but I’ve never stuck with them for very long. This time it’s been different, I signed up with myFitnessPal and downloaded the mobile application for my phone. During the sign-up process, you give various information about yourself; your age, sex, weight, height etc. and it gives you recommendations of what your ideal weight is, and how many calories you should be eating in order to lose the excess. The mobile application lets you track everything you are eating and drinking so you always know whether you are on target or not. If you are eating prepackaged food, you can scan the barcode and all the nutritional information is automatically recorded for you – I haven’t found many items which are not in their database.

I’ve only been on the diet for 6 weeks, but I have found it really easy to stay within my calorie target each day and have seen great results.

Before I started watching the calories, an average day would have consisted of:


  • Bacon roll with back pudding and brown sauce (at the weekend I might have a fry up)
  • Small bottle of fresh orange (gotta be healthy!)


  • Fish and chips or Lasagne or whatever was on in the canteen
  • Bottle of diet coke


  • Macaroni cheese or Pizza or some other microwave meal
  • Bottle of diet coke


  • Chocolate bar or crisps or biscuits

It’s no wonder I was overweight.

My diet now is much better, and I don’t feel hungry as I have with other diets. I also don’t feel guilty about anything I am eating because I know how many calories it has and can ‘budget’.


  • Small bowl of All Bran or Bran Flakes with Skimmed Milk


  • Salad or Soup
  • Bottle of sparkling water


  • Low calorie microwave meal / Steamed chicken & vegetables
  • Bottle of sparkling water


  • Fresh fruit or Cereal with skimmed milk

6 weeks ago, I weighed 95kg (209lbs), this morning I was 87.6kg (193lbs) so that’s 8kg(18.5lbs) lost so far. This tracker should show any progress which I have made since making this post.

Created by MyFitnessPal – Nutrition Facts For Foods

 Even though this is not a huge amout of weight lost so far, I have noticed huge changes to how I look and feel.

The first thing I noticed was that my face, neck and arms were slimmer. I didn’t initially see any difference in my waist size, but it is now comfortably 2 inches smaller than it was and I have bought new trousers as the 0ld ones were just too loose.

It’s not just my size which has changed. When I tried jogging recently, I found I could only run for a few minutes before my calves cramped up – I actually tore the muscle due to this – I wasn’t tired or particularly out of breath when this happened, I just couldn’t run longer than a few minutes. Even if I walked briskly, I found my legs getting tight and sore. Now I have none of these problems and I am enjoying walking 40 minutes or so fairly briskly to get home from work each night and have no pain in my legs. I used to get regular headaches too, but since changing my diet I have had none – I can only assume that they were caused by the foods I was eating, or a lack of water (I am now drinking much more water).

So, if you are a bit overweight, or unfit, give MyFitnessPal a try for a few weeks – dieting isn’t as difficult as everyone makes out and I have had real results in only a few weeks. Let me know in the comments how much you like the new you!



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