Happy Monday everyone!
I thought we could start the week off with something motivational, after all, it is Monday…
Over the past few months I have been dipping into work and books by a gent called Brendon Burchard, he must be one of the most profound writers of motivational work that I have ever come across. (Plus we share the same name so he must be a good guy!) One of the key areas Brendon discusses is setting goals and writing a 'Personal Manifesto' and how doing so can help get things heading in the right direction. We all know that one of the best ways to have a successful work day is to create a TO-DO list. When new companies are formed they decide what their mission statement should be to set their direction; yet when many of us start our days and head into a new month/ year we fumble through without a plan for ourselves.
Here is an excerpt from one of Brendon’s book for you to start your day with. ‘Let us use the morning to remind ourselves what we are after and write any specific goals for the day, dedicating time in that first golden hour to planning out our schedule. That precious first hour must not be squandered, for our evening’s dreams can easily be forgotten in the daylight.’
We have all had those moments in bed at night where we plan to do something new or challenge ourselves the next day, we’ve had the motivation to finally quit smoking or get control of our eating habits. Yet once we wake and step into our routine we forget to act. Let’s make that change from today, let's write some goals down on paper and set our lives in the direction we deserve, let's refine those goals each day and set our lives on a positive course.
Have an awesome Monday guys; don’t forget to Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
Success is a term that we can all get caught up with - the pursuit of which can make our minds wander, become creative, innovative and possibly even destructive. It is the pursuit of success that has resulted in many of the things that we take for granted these days. When I speak to people about their life goals they often refer to, 'being a success’ or ‘becoming successful'; but we are all unique, and success mean different things to different people. With that said, what is success to you?
To me, right now, being successful is being happy and enjoying life, connecting with people from different parts of the world, being able to share with each other to thrive. If you’d asked me my thoughts 10 years ago I would have said being successful is being a great golfer on the PGA Tour; and if you had asked me 4 years ago I would have said that being successful means having a lot money. There is no right or wrong answer because success is based on your value system. And your value system is normally driven by our circumstance.
My perception of success has changed a lot over the last 10 years, but I feel more at peace now than I ever have. Call me a hippie, or new age hippie, but there is nothing more glorious than when people come together with no other agenda than just to enjoy each other's company. I’ll give you a couple of examples of what I mean; I find Flash Mobs truly awesome and the song Happy by Pharrel sparked Happy videos around the world had me inspired. People were coming together, forgetting their circumstance and just being happy. To me that is humanity at it's finest; there is no greed, lust for power or arrogance it is just people sharing something special. We are the ones that can define the next generation, so lets have a positive impact. (See video down below for an example of what I mean.)
My food for thought this Friday is to embrace life and just be the best you can be each day - don't get caught up in worrying about being a success. Just be you!
To put this into practice just take 5 minutes out of your whole day, these 5 minutes can be broken up into 10-20 second interactions, and you can set the pace; but in those moments try to engage in a positive way with someone who you have never met, or you don’t know too well. Get talking to them, ask them an open question or two, start with 'How, Who, When, What, Where'… Let the conversation flow. If you get no response then move on, but just know that for each effort you make you could be the one person that brightens someone’s day and restores his or her faith in the world.
I have written about doing that before and there is a reason I am again, it helps to create a positive energy and we need as much of that as we can in this fast paced world. I'd be interested to hear from you about your interactions.
You never know what great things lie around the corner and whom you can meet, so explore with good purpose, reach out to others and most of all stay strong and keep moving. ;-)
Have a great weekend guys!
Hey guys! Happy Friday!
I woke up this morning, looked through my calendar to realise that 2 whole years ago today was when I started my health and fitness journey. Though it has been 2 years, the 10 stone (64 KG) weight loss has been a great result but I'd like to stress that at no point has it been a chore. Since the start I have never awoken feeling like I can't be bothered, to train or look after myself. The reason I say this is because after about 4 days of eating and living healthy my focus of 'losing a few pounds' changed; I became more focused on becoming strongest version of myself that is possible. When I say that people often associate that with physical fitness and forget about the mental side, but we'll get to that later...
Alas the journey continues and I am writing this today to say a huge THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to YOU! Yes that's right by reading this you are showing support to me and it means a hell of a lot! Sharing my journey with people over the last 2 years has given me the chance to meet so many different people from so many different walks of life and I am truly grateful for that. If I had stayed the way I was it is very likely that I would have had a heart attack by now, so each day for me is another chance to get stronger!
My sister has been a huge pillar of support, she was the one who introduced me to juice cleanses to kick-start my health. This picture below was taken 2 years ago today! The result of months of conversations about my bad habits and how the simple nectar from fruits and vegetables could save my life. Thank you Lauren!
My parents have always encouraged and supported me and when I said that I was going to turn things around naturally they were right behind me. They have provided me the chance to refocus my life, which I am very thankful for.
To my new family - the friends, everyone following this blog, my YouTube channel, the Twitterers, Facebookers and Instagramers. You have showed me support and love over the last year and I thank you for your time. Time is the most valuable gift that you can give someone and I'm happy that you have given me yours by interacting, commenting and being a part of this small tribe that is forming. Together we can create positive energy, something that needs to keep growing and spreading through this world today.
To the new friends at Virgin Active and ZUU HQ and to all the members that show up each ZUU session at the gym I say thank you. Im grateful to share such an epic journey with you and I can't wait for the next session! For those reading this not knowing what Zuu is then click here - Nathan Helberg has devoted his life to creating a culture and a legacy that will live on, inspire and help people for years to come.
Jason Vale with his juice cleanses was the starting point and I'll always be thankful for the kickstart into wellness. I still drink one to two juices a day which gives my body the fuel needed to push forward in this life.
I can't say enough about the BeachBody products either, Insanity and P90X have been a huge help in getting me off the couch and into exercise, they are what made me strong enough to stand in front of a camera and tell my story in my transformation video. With the right routine and a commitment to it you can achieve great things for your mind. Fitness isn't just about looking better, it is about strengthening your resolve, pushing your mind and proving to yourself in every workout that you can achieve something even though it may be tough. It is a true reflection of life; you can take the easy road when the pain comes or you can fight, push and grind through the tough times to emerge stronger mentally and physically on the other side.
I'm truly happy that I can sit here today and share something positive with you, something that can inspire you to be the strongest version of yourself. I thank you again for clicking this link and reading my blog, I thank you for sharing my story with friends and for caring enough to give me your time. Today I am grateful!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving lovely people!
Have you ever looked at how a child plays? Or how they squat down and crawl along the floor? Have you ever noticed how a child thinks? They have no fear, everything seems so simple for them; they have the ability to move in just about any direction and think freely. So why do we lose touch with those abilities as we grow up?
I think that at some point we realise the level of responsibility needed to be an adult, we then over complicate things and lose touch with our adventurous side; I am a firm believer in trying to stay young through movement. Yet in the world today the majority of us confine ourselves mentally and physically into jobs and ways of life that go against our very nature; the whole time our inner child screams at us: ‘let me out to play!’
I sometimes find that my inner child is the reason I become agitated when I am inactive for too long. I then think to myself; what other species on this planet puts themselves into a situation where being sedentary in office jobs, racing through emails or driving ‘forwards’ in the pursuit of money are more important than living life? I remember when I was at my heaviest at 22 stone I was always angry and annoyed with one thing or another. I had lost touch with how to live, I had no channel other than food to absorb the stresses of my work life. I was in a state of heightened stress because my inner child was trying to be honest with me, it was trying to tell me to break free and move!
Our natural reaction to lack of movement and high pressure jobs is to ‘stress out’; back when we were hunter gatherers our stress triggered a fight or flight response. We would use the adrenalin to aid us. These days we are hardly likely to fight for our life in a day job, but our bodies can’t distinguish between stress from work and stress from a wild animal coming to eat us. The stress just builds up and we often have to suppress it - you could fight your boss, but you might find that your job wouldn't be there for you in the morning. So it is a vicious cycle that we can get stuck in; all the while the stress is like an inner child beating on our souls to escape and enjoy living again.
How do we deal with stress then? Some choose to join a gym, some choose to go out and have a few drinks and ‘blow off some steam.’ Some may turn to other drugs or develop habits and hobbies that help to quiet that inner child and soothe the soul. But what is the best solution? Since getting fitter myself (see video) I'm focused on being strong physically and I feel fitness training is the most under utilised way to deal with the ever changing world that we live in. If you can finish reading this post with some key points today then I'd like them to be:
We need to give ourselves the best chance to strive in this world, as we have established; life is tough, there is no point in training easy, eating poorly and sitting back when we need to be ready for what life throws at us. There is a billion dollar industry that has been created by lack of movement with fitness and activity trackers becoming the new fad. Don't get me wrong they are cool and can show some awesome statistics, but ironically what this industry is telling us is that we have forgotten that we are designed to move. If we mean't to be active we would just be blobs of flesh with brains.
We have become accustomed to having stimulants like coffee and prescription drugs to get us going in the morning, suppress our stress levels, balance our blood pressure, keep our cholesterol in check and stave off the headaches. Instead of listening to our inner child we have created industries upon industries to help us become more accustomed to being unnatural. I think back to when I was growing up; I didn't need a coffee in the morning, I didn't need drugs to ‘help’ me function. All I needed was to be woken up and given the chance to move and play. If we unleash our inner child, maintain that spirit of youth then we will change the way we feel, we can be more creative and live a more fulfilling life.
I have had the privilege over the last few weeks to work with some fitness professionals who have made it their life work to go back to ‘the old school’, to go back to where moving was the most important thing we could do to stay alive. Yet even in a fitness environment we have learned to limit our movements across different planes and have a rigid way of moving. We need to break free! Let’s move in all three planes and remember that our heart is the most important muscle in the body! The longer we put stresses on it without listening to our inner child then the more we will suffer in the long run.
Here are three movements that you can treat as a tri-set to get you moving like a kid again;
Bear Crawls – forward and back – 4 metres.
Body weight squats - rep them out for the allotted time.
Side to side jumps - rep them out for the allotted time.
30 seconds for each move back to back - 15 second break - repeat 5 times.
It doesn't matter how fast you are, how deep your range of movement is at first, don’t overcomplicate them, and just do them. 5 minutes a day could help to save your life!
There is always a huge debate about evolution and how we came to be, yet we are witnessing it with our very own eyes. Cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity, mobility issues, osteoporosis, diabetes and depression can all be linked to lack of movement and yet we contemplate what pills to swallow to ease the suffering.
This could be our devolution! We need action! We have forgotten to move because we have lost touch with our roots. We are becoming SOFT as a race!
My advice to all is to move, to train your heart by staying as strong as you can. Let’s not forget that the saying, ‘survival of the fittest’ also applies to the human race.
Stay strong and keep moving lovely people!
Brendan is the owner and head trainer at Raw Motion Fitness.