The Outdoors are Calling

Do you find yourself spending an inordinate amount of time inside? Are you so wrapped up within the confines of your hectic lifestyle? Have you have deprived yourself of the freedom found though the act of “stopping to smell the roses”?

the great outdoorsWithout even realizing it, we can become prisoners stuck in our busy, daily routines. Many have sentenced themselves to spend the majority of their days and nights inside. They are inside their automobiles, inside the place of employment, inside their vehicle again, inside an entertainment hot spot, inside a restaurant, back inside their car yet again, and inside their house. I don’t think that anyone is immune from being caught up in the craziness and complexity that would appear to be a natural part of life these days. There is a sense that being busy in and of itself, brings some sort of sense of accomplishment. I believe that our minds, our bodies, and our spirits long for something much different. We naturally desire to be released from this societal captivity. While racing around just to complete a long list of tasks may be appealing to some, I believe most people wish they could be released from the complexity of lives spent inside “jail cells” of their own creating. “Today’s complexity demands greater simplicity.” ( L. Tom Perry)

I have a simple solution which is applicable to all.

Stop and get outside!

I don’t think I need to remind you of what you’ll find waiting there. Remember the fresh air and sunshine or gentle breeze blowing through your hair? Recall the extraordinary sights, sounds, and smells of the great outdoors. Some may agree, yes indeed, happiness is being outside. Others may contend that becoming one with nature is the key to a longer life. I would offer to you that creating opportunities to spend more time outdoors with family and friends, or just by oneself, greatly enriches the quality of our lives.

Think back to the days of your youth. Did you ever want to be trapped inside? If you were anything like me, the answer is a resounding “No!” If recess or playground time were considered a class, it was my favorite as a kid. I think back with great fondness on long days of playing anywhere, biking everywhere, and never wanting to go home. Well, except to eat my mom’s delicious cooking, of course. Sure, I also enjoyed engaging in outdoor sports.

For some of you, the connection to the great outdoors may have been found in fishing. For others, it may have been simply been going barefoot in the lush grass. How about strolling in the sand on the beach near the lake or ocean? Remember how peaceful you were and how awesome that felt. Still others may recall the fun of swimming in those bodies of water. Perhaps it may have been a backyard pool that transformed you into a fish. I’m certain that many of you spent fun-filled times camping. Far removed from the city, there was so much to discover. Looking up into the night skies at the stars comes into my mind. My eyes were opened to the stark contrast which the woods or country offered compared to the city life.

We cannot exactly bring back our youthful experiences. However, we need to build some new outdoor memories. I know that if we spend just a little bit more time outside today our minds will be more clear. I believe that we will all feel so much better if we attempt to find something outdoors that we can do on this day, regardless of our age or current physical condition.

If you agree with my advice, yet feel that you are being held back, let me help you to discover an activity in which you can participate today. Let me help to break those chains which bind you to that sedentary, indoor lifestyle that has inflicted many in the world. Getting physically fit does not require all your time to be spent indoors in a gym. Let’s get moving outdoors!

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3 Common Traits of Those That Reach Their Goals



Had you resolved that this time you were finally going to reach your desired fitness goals? Yet, once again, disappointment is staring you squarely in the face. Have you cheerfully started along your chosen way only to be rudely derailed somewhere along the line more times than you care to remember? If you are wondering whether or not it is worth caring about any longer, remember this: “Your journey has molded you for your greater good. And it was exactly what it needed to be. Don’t think that you’ve lost time. It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the now. And now is right on time!”-Asha Lyon

I know that you have become increasingly tired of this never-ending game of one-step-forward-two-steps-back. I am well aware of the dangers that exist to the body and the mind from this common “yo-yo” effect. The most important journeys we embark upon in life are filled with highs and lows. These tasks are monumental for certain. Utter agony may accompany those unfulfilled goals, while pure joy may be one’s companion when a life altering task is completed. But that is the real challenge, isn’t it? To finish what we start.

I have come to recognize three unique qualities possessed by those who are victorious in this back and forth battle. These common characteristics can help each of you to develop the protection against future foes. You may be acquainted with their names: Endurance, Hope, and Patience. Endurance bravely accepts the fact that there are difficulties now and will continue to be challenges on your chosen path. Endurance courageously captains your ship through the rough waters full of frustrating moments, which typically leave you questioning and even second guessing your plan. Endurance boldly defies what logic dictates. Of course, it is easier to give up than to get up. The strong, trustworthy hand of endurance is always extended to you to lift and then gently nudge you forward after you’ve been repeatedly beat up and knocked down. Its invitation is one of a life-long commitment. Short-term goals are wonderfully motivating, however an appropriate long-term perspective is an absolute requirement. When you sign on with Endurance, you have inked a long-term contract full of special guaranteed bonuses.

Because of Hope you can rest assured that your signature on the dotted line is sufficient. Yes, hope allows you to believe in things which you have not yet seen. This is possible because Hope has actually seen the new you. Hope doesn’t even glance at your past attempts or mistakes, but rather only peers into your bright and certain future. Hope is so much more than mere wishing. Hope will ensure that you never say, “I can’t.”

Benjamin Franklin said, “He that can have Patience, can have what he will.” When you join forces with Patience your partnership is solidified. Your success is, well, only a matter of time. Therein lies the irony for Patience does not operate on an exact timetable. It is different for everyone. Let me tell you that Patience is not just waiting around for something good and lasting to finally happen in your life. Patience builds a quiet confidence in yourself. Patience permits you to be imperfect. Patience allows you to wholeheartedly trust the process. “If today you are a little better than yesterday, then that’s enough.” – David A. Bednar. Patience is honoring the commitment you made to yourself by embracing Endurance and Hope. “Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.” – A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh.

Wherever you are going, may you always be helped along your journey. You have endured much. You can endure whatever life will throw at you. You have been prepared for success. Believe in the infinite power of hope. Be patient in all things and at all times and you will begin to turn the tide in your favor. That fundamental question remains to be answered by each of you: Shall I falter or shall I finish? Practicing these three qualities will enable you to bounce forward from any setback. They will enable you to finish what you have started. Of this truth, I can give you my promise.
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Bad Workout Today?

Have you ever mumbled to yourself, “I had a bad workout today?”

Bad workout?

Bad workout?

I would hope that you have never uttered those destructive words. However, I know better. The chances are pretty good that most of you have said something quite similar from time to time. Having been in small gyms and large fitness centers for years, I have unfortunately heard this comment all too frequently. From the seasoned workout individual, to the gym rat, to the newbie bursting with enthusiasm, to the weekend workout warrior, from the young and from the not so young, from male to female, everyone thinks it and most verbalize it.

Typically, this is how an exchange will take place. I have just finished training one of my students. I eagerly greet someone new who awaits both my instructive and challenging training style. Among other things, I will inquire as to the particulars of this person’s most recent exercise efforts. Invariably, I hear “I feel as if I did not have a good workout.”

My desire today is to share a few thoughts on this concept of an alleged bad workout that just might give you reason to change your tune.

First and foremost, I must pose the question, “Did you hurt yourself?” If the answer is, “No!” then we are off to a great start. Simply put, if you have sustained some type of injury during the course of exercising then I would concede that there is clear evidence that a less than desirable workout took place. You are now on the dreaded disabled list for a while and nothing could be worse. You, however, said that no such travesty occurred. Therefore, I need more information. Tell me why you had a workout you’d soon wish to forget. Here are some typical responses: “My session just wasn’t as good as my previous one.” “I just didn’t have much time and I didn’t feel as if I accomplished anything.” “I was struggling with energy and couldn’t do a full workout.” “I have been exercising with my friend and she seems to do more than I am able to attempt.” The responses could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. If you are indeed guilty of uttering something comparable to these statements, I say that you are undermining your work when you have a mindset that could even produce such a response.

Please permit me to explain. Allow me to make this very clear. No one singular workout will now nor ever make or break your efforts to achieve your fitness goals. Comparing workouts is absolutely pointless, because it very much misses the point! An accumulation of all your good work will certainly prove to be fruitful. Your patience and diligence and amazing commitment will pay off. You can feel the positive effects of your accomplishments in the gym setting spill over into all other areas of your life. Do you have bad days? Well, sure. We all do in some way. But remember, each day is a precious gift and there are always blessings to be found if we just look around us. So, none of us is particularly immune from obstacles that prevent that “perfect workout” from occurring every time we train. Yes, we all deal with distractions such as work related issues, strained relationships, stress in its many forms, fatigue, and seemingly not sufficient time in the day to fit in an appropriate exercise session. Individually or packaged all together, these realities of life can rise up and punch us in the gut and leave us complaining, “I had a bad workout!”

I am here to tell you that in all likelihood you did not have a bad workout! You survived it, and emerged unscathed. You did not hurt yourself. However long and grueling it was, you did it. Quality always trumps quantity in regards to exercise! I ask you, “Did you give your very best effort today?” If you can tell me that you did so, then you will begin to understand that there can be no such thing as a bad workout. Given all that you drag with you to the gym, your current day’s experiences as well as previous day’s garbage heaped upon this one, if you give your all, you’ve done all you should ever expect. There is no such thing as a perfect workout, other than a completed one. Ten minutes, twenty, half an hour, or a full hour, it really does not matter. If you find yourself distracted, if you are running low on energy, if you have a million other things to do and as many other places you’d rather be, don’t be discouraged. Simply modify what you do! You are the only one who really knows if you put forth your very best.

So, go forward with confidence and hold your head high. Give your best effort in all that you do today. You are in the midst of something special, even magnificent. If you just can’t see a pathway to the optimism which I have, please reach out to me. I’ll even let you tell me about your mythical bad workout. If you are not sure exactly how you can overcome some of life’s pitfalls and still produce consistently good workouts, fear not. I can help.

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