Archive for January, 2016

4 Lessons from the “Wild”



I'm reading a book called "Wild" by Cheryl Strayed about a woman who decided to hike along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) by herself. Her route would take her over a thousand miles and she had never backpacked in her life. What could go wrong?

As you can imagine, lots of stuff does go wrong. I won't tell you everything that happened, you will have to read the book. Or you could watch the movie starring Reese Witherspoon.

Thought I would share a couple of lessons that you can apply to your life that I got out of the book.

1. "Who's tougher than you?"

Along the trail, Cheryl developed a personal mantra to keep herself motivated and putting one foot in front of the other. She would say out loud, "Who's tougher than you? and then answer herself "No one!"

I thought that was a really awesome way to keep yourself motivated. She said even though she knew it was not true it still made her feel better and helped her push on.

What is a personal mantra you can develop to keep yourself going?

2. "You're doing great"

She meets a fellow hiker along the way who really buoys her spirits. He lets her know how amazing she is doing so far and to keep up the good work.

This one works both ways. First, you need people like that in your life. Someone who will lift you up and encourage you when you want to give up and give in. Second, you can be that person for someone else! If you notice someone who is giving it their all, struggling, and just trying to get by give them a word of encouragement. You never know how much it will mean to them.

3. "A mosquito, my libido"

At one point she is extremely bored, hurting, and needing something to take her mind off of things so she begins to sign Nirvana lyrics to herself over and over. She recites poetry. She does everything to take her mind somewhere else.

Your mind is an amazing thing. If you focus on the pain and tedium of a workout, it only seems to grow. But if you can take yourself elsewhere through music, laughter, literature, etc... you will be amazed at how much further you can go.

4. "If they can do it so can I"

She would see other hikers along the way and tell herself if they could do it, so can they. This is one I have used in my life several times. Most recently with taking jiu-jitsu. I thought I was the oldest one in there, until I met a guys who is 6 years older and doing great. If he can do it, so can I.

Saturday morning I woke up feeling like I had just been through 2 day football practice, it was 20 degrees, I was tired, didn't feel like going. But if Cheryl Strayed can hike over a thousand miles by herself, I can get through a 90 minute class. I went and had a great time.

When you go looking for inspiration, it turns out it is all around you.

“I’m here to get abs.”



This kid walked into his first day of our Adventures in Fitness Kid's Camp, looked around, and said "I'm here to get abs."


He didn't even crack a smile! He was dead serious. And then his brother flexed one of his biceps at me and said, "Well I'm here to get MUSCLES."


One of the greatest entries into a class I have ever seen. It was glorious.


But, hey isn't that why most of us are working out? We want to tone up, drop some weight, and see those ab muscles.


The problem is we just went through the holidays, then January was just crazy trying to get back into a routine, and we still have that bloated I Must Have Washed These Jeans I Don't Remember Them Being This Tight feeling.


I've been working on something I and super excited about and it is going to be a game changer. We will be running our first ever 28 Day Transformation Challenge!


The start date for the challenge is February 8, 2016. This will show you EXACTLY what you need to do to drop 2 pants sizes, lose that holiday bloat, and get your energy back... all in 28 short days!


It’s literally a BLUEPRINT for that in just 4-weeks, you'll be able to completely transform your body.


No Magic Pills or Endless Hours on the Treadmill - Just Efficient Workouts, a Simple Eating Plan, and the Results You Deserve.


If You Are Ready to:

-SHED those extra HOLIDAY POUNDS -KICK-START your Metabolism -Get Rid of Cravings -INCREASE YOUR ENERGY -SLEEP BETTER at night -and COMMIT to yourself for 28 Days….

Then NOW is the time to take action. Click HERE NOW to Learn More.


We have some special prizes I will tell you about later that are pretty amazing. Join the challenge today, it is going to be awesome!

How did I let this happen?


Oh yeah, that's how

Oh yeah, that's how

You know what has been life changing for me?


Grocery pickup at Walmart.


It is awesome and means that I get to take a longer nap on Sunday. For me, that is worth it's weight in gold.


Ah, if 18 year old Me could see how I'm living it up now!


Around Christmas we got a $20 off coupon for this lovely service. It's like being handed a $20.


We would order groceries, forget to use the coupon, and would just say "Oh, we will just use it next time." Rinse and repeat.


Until finally my wife got serious this weekend and put a giant note to USE COUPON on the grocery list. Here technique worked! Ordered my groceries, typed in my fancy coupon code, and.... nothing.


The coupon had expired one day before. I felt like such an idiot.


Why did I wait so long?


I don't want you to end up asking the same question about your health. If you know you need to do something, DO IT TODAY.


You know you need to get more active, do 5 minutes of exercise today.


You know you need to lose weight, do one thing today that will start that process (start reading food labels, 1 day without sodas, keep a food journal, etc...)


Apply that to whatever you know you should do in life. Write a letter thanking someone for helping you, tell your mom you love her, take that trip you've always wanted to go on. Be an action taker!


Time has a way of running out on you if you're not careful. What are you going to do today that your future self will thank you for?

How do people go to work after this???

Awesome place to train

Awesome place to train

On Monday I started taking jiu-jitsu again. It’s definitely out of my comfort zone, since it has been so long and I didn’t know anyone that would be in the class.


I had all these excuses built up in my head for why I shouldn’t go.


-It’s too hard.


-I won’t be any good at it.


-The people in the class will be so much better at it than me.


-I’ve got too much work to do.


-Too many old injuries to risk it.


-My feet are too pale.


Then it all hit me at once. These are the exact reason why people don’t come to boot camp! Except for maybe that last one.


That was a huge motivator for me to start back. How could I expect other people to overcome those objections and not be willing to do it myself?


I detest a hypocrite. This was a great opportunity to put myself in the shoes of someone who is new to our classes.


Here is a full report of my first day back: How do people go back to work after this?


The class was at 11:00am and by 12:15pm I felt like I needed a chiropractor, massage therapist, an IV, and some crutches.


I would like to formally apologize to my current clients if you feel like this. Feeling your pain.


Everyone was really accepting, helpful, and friendly. Plus, I didn’t do as bad as I thought I would.


If you are on the fence about trying something new, I would encourage you to step out and give it a try. You will find that most of those things you’ve been telling yourself are lies.


PS-any time you want to come try out boot camp, feel free to come as our guest. Any class time or location is open for you to try out.

Adventure Hiking Classes Are Back!

Another benefit of hiking. Selfies.

Another benefit of hiking. Selfies.

I've always wanted to do a back by popular demand announcement. So back by popular demand it is our:


Adventure Hiking Classes!


We did these awhile back and everyone had a blast.


The very first hike will be on Saturday January 23th at 9am.


What to expect:


-Gain strength and endurance


-Learn the basics of hiking


-See the most beautiful locations in north Alabama


-Sweat, smiles, and laughter


-Improved mood


Hiking is an excellent way to get an effective, low impact workout in. It is also great for your mood and attitude to get out and explore nature.


This class is open to women, men, and children who can handle the hiking. If mom and/or dad join, children can come free.


There will be 6 different hikes (1 every week) over the 6 week period. Each hike will be different and will last anywhere from 90 minutes to 3 hours hours per hike.


This is going to be an awesome class, sign up today!


Adventure Hiking sign up link

You need to hear this (tough love)



I thought I might need to balance out Wednesdays feel good post with something that could be construed as a little harsher, but something you need to hear.


-You are the reason you are overweight

-You are the reason you don't exercise

-You are the reason you aren't more successful

-You are ______(insert other unsavory things)


Why do you need to hear that? Because of this quote I heard from the book "The 10X Rule" by Grant Cardone I was listening to on Audible the other day.


"If you're the problem, you're also the solution."


I think that is awesome! That gives me control, not some outside force that I can do nothing about.


When bad things happen or you find yourself in a bad way in life, ask yourself "What can I do to make sure this never happens again?"


For me, it is an almost daily question. What can I do to make certain that I never get overweight again? The solution for me is doing something every day to improve or maintain my health. Every. Single. Day.


Do the things it takes to improve, don't think about the things you have no control over, and keep at it.


You are the solution.

Don’t pop that!

Just don't

Just don't

Picture yourself happily driving down the road, letting your mind wander, and thinking about all the many things going on in your life.


That's when it happens. Bang!


You hit a curb REALLY hard. When you get out to inspect your car, you find out you popped a tire.


So then you go around and pop every single tire!


Why would you do that? Because you screwed up! Since you messed up, forget the whole thing.


That sounds like something a crazy person would do right?


But we all have done pretty much the same thing.


Have you ever been doing really good on a nutrition or exercise program, have a slip up, and then just go NUTS on a binge? Go completely sedentary, and just give up?


"Well I already blew it with the pizza on Friday, might as well get a keg of maple syrup and call it a life."


Don't blow it all based on one slip up! It is only January. You are going to go through slumps, you will hit plates, and you will feel like a failure at some point or another this year. It will happen and that's ok.


Build some cheat meals into your plan, practice portion control, just go for a walk, show up at an exercise class, eat a little healthier every day, stop expecting perfection from yourself. Do one little thing to get you back in the groove.


The main thing is to stop beating yourself up about food. Stop beating yourself up because you missed a week of working out.


Start thinking big picture. A week of "bad" eating and a week off from working out will not ruin your results. Just like working out and eating right for one week will not get you results.


You will be fine, you just need to get back on track. You do that by staying positive, not by berating yourself and getting down on yourself.

Do you have an exercise personality?

The man was born with an exercise personality. And a deep, orange tan.

The man was born with an exercise personality. And a deep, orange tan.

If you're reading this, I'm assuming your health is a priority. You may have even made exercise a habit already. But is exercise a part of your personality? I saw this quote the other day:


"It takes 21 days to form a habit, but it takes 6 months to make that habit a part of your personality." -Brian Tracy.


I had never heard that and found it really interesting. Too may people look at exercise as just a necessary evil that is just another part of their day they just have to get through. It doesn't have to be like that!


A study named the top reasons people kept going for a group of long term exercisers (people who on average had been working out for 13 years):



-Feelings of well-being

-Pep and energy

-Enjoyment of the exercise

-Making exercise a priority

-Sleeping better

-Feeling alert

-Being relaxed

-Weight management



Those make just about everybody's list. So how do you make exercise part of your personality?


You have to start with exercise that is fun and interesting to you. Not your friend or what someone else thinks is fun. I have friends that think running 31 miles in the mountains is a fun afternoon. Being airlifted off of Monte Sano is not my thing, so I do other activities. Some things you just can't force.


Next, find a way to exercise among other people. Preferably people you like, but watching someone you don't care for fail miserably at burpees can be good for you too (that's a little excerpt out of my upcoming book Chicken Soup and Burpees For the Soul). Exercising with a partner or in a group will keep you motivated, accountable, interested, and committed.

Find a time that works for you. The two best times are either first thing in the morning or right after work before you go home. An object at rest stays at rest, I believe that is the Hippocratic Oath of Archimedes Pythagorean Theorem. Or something like that, school wasn't my strong point. Either get up and get it rolling or get off work and keep busy until your workout. The couch has magical Star Wars tractor beamesque powers, so stay away. Life is all about momentum, so once you got it stick with it.


Once you fid that time that works, make that YOUR time. For everyone else in the world that hour does not exist to them. You have 23 hours in the day to give to others, just take one for you.


And one last thing, reward yourself! It's ok to pat yourself on the back. I love me some me, so I don't need people to tell me I did a good job because I tell myself that all the time (you can read more of that here---> Yes I can if you're into that kind of thing). Celebrate the small victories in life, not everyone has them.


Your goal is to not only make exercise a habit, but also a part of your personality. Because that leads to long term success.

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