Answer: The way that best suits your specific goals and body type.
The question is asked all the time and our answer always resorts back to this. No two bodies are the same. Just because your friend is a CrossFit fanatic, or your cousin smashes the heavy weights, it does not mean that is the type of training you should be doing.
First step: Set goals
What are you specifically seeking to accomplish through your exercise regiment? Build muscle? Strength? Endurance? Improve flexibility?
These are all questions you should answer before starting any sort of program. Having a clear intention and focus as to what you are wanting to achieve is required for long term success. Please understand though, there are many approaches to exercise and not just any single one is the "best."
Summer is right around the corner and I'm sure you've heard the words "bikini season" or "shredding season" in abundance from your fitness friends. With the amount of information out there, I know it can be confusing, and often difficult to understand which method or program works best for you. This will be the first of 3 blogs that will help you dial in what is best for you and your journey.
Calories in VS. Calories Out
Whether you are seeking to gain or lose weight, it all comes down to the amount of calories you are consuming per day. Yes, macronutrients, protein, fats, carbohydrates, fiber, minerals, vitamins, and water all play a role but we will touch on this at another time.
Life isn’t always sunshine, big smiles, and happy living. It is a constant roller coaster of peaks and valleys as we move through stages and circumstance that come with aging. Some things we can avoid, others, come with the territory. Regardless, everyday we are presented obstacles, questions of doubt, and problems that must be solved in order for us to “level up.”
I speak so frequently of my personal hardships and times of doubt, but have never broken down exactly what I do during these times of transition, questioning, and problem solving. No, I am not on fire 365 days of the year. I too have days, weeks, and even months of living in a rut. Whether it be short term, a few months, or years worth of time, these are the 5 things that I feel make the biggest difference when you are in a “rut.”
5. “This too shall pass.” As with all things, whatever you are going through, whatever heartbreak or headache, it too shall pass. Literally say this phrase to yourself… take a few deep breaths in and say, “This too shall pass.” Believe it. Believe it because tough times don’t last, tough people do. The first step in getting out of a rut is having faith that the pain is only temporary and is setting you up for much more in the future. Everything that happens to you is because of you, it’s all part of the plan, the good and the bad. Keep the faith.
Move already. Yep. Just pack your shit and go.
Ever since I was a kid I remember having dreams of living all over the world. I have yet to live in another country, but, I have had the pleasure of living short and long term stays in Arizona, Utah, Oregon, Hawaii, and of course Montana. I’m creeping up on 25 years old and it feels like yesterday that I loaded up my 2003 Pontiac Grand Am, AKA… “ The Silver Bullet,” at the ripe age of 19 headed south to pursue a life’s goal of wrestling for a Division I university. The journey that follows the tears I shed as I left Great Falls for Tempe, Arizona six years ago is one that by fate, destiny, or whatever mojo you want to call it, brought me back to the same place I was so young and eager to get to after what feels like a lifetime ago.
Once my dream of being a National Champion could not come true due to a series of back surgeries, I spent the next five years finding myself and my purpose. Let me give you a timeline of places that I have lived and what business venture I attempted during this time, bear with me…
“If you’re not willing to give up everything, then you’ve already lost.”
I stare down at my leg as I try to attempt to read the permanent black ink needled into my skin. I was 18, fresh out of high school and on my way to my dream life down in Tempe, Arizona wrestling for the Arizona State University Sun Devils. Life was as good as it ever was.
Finally, after a life spent abiding by this quote, it was time for the next level. It was time to leave everything behind to transform into the man and athlete I am capable of becoming. Little did I know, this quote would have nothing to do with wrestling. Little did I know, this quote would resonate time and time again as I journey on my path of arriving here, now.
I deliver today’s message from a space of vulnerability that hasn’t always come easy for me to express. Society, even my personal audience who follows me, pressures men to behave, feel, sense, and show emotion that meet specific criteria as what it means to be a man. I have always felt like I have had a soft and sensitive heart but it was my environment that has hardened the edges often making it hard to let such love flow. From a young age I have been taught to “be tough” and “suck it up.” Crying is for girls. Emotions, yeah those are too. And don’t even think about expressing your insecurities openly to anyone, men don’t do that.
This paradigm has contributed to major issues in men regarding self awareness. If we as men have grown up our entire lives in shame of our thoughts and emotions that make us vulnerable, how are we supposed to know how to express ourselves? If we have been told, and never taught, how are we as men going to be understanding of how to listen to our emotions, sit with them, and let go of the ideals creating such behaviors?
Generation after generation the cycle continues. Sports and other competitive activities promote macho masculinity and further the problem. The only way to parent a boy is to make them be tough, I mean, who wants a sissy little boy? That’s the problem. I’m a sissy little boy.
Do you feel tight in your chest? Always anxious? Often stressed to the point where your mood is greatly affected?
The big question is, why?
Now, I am no doctor. Sure, I took a few college level human biology courses and have self educated over the last five years in the realm of personal care, exercise, nutrition, and healthy living, but I am by no means qualified to tell you on a molecular level what the hell is going on. What I am qualified to share is my thoughts as to why I believe you are experiencing this as well as offer my solution to the problem.
Anxiety, depression, mood swings, stress, I have experienced it all. I’m no stranger to the low level vibrations that seduce us into a dark holes of suppression, victimization, and hopelessness. In my young life, I have had the privilege of winning as well as getting the holy shit kicked out of me. I’ve overcame and conquered, as well as stumbled and miserably failed. The ying and yang of life, it’s absolutely required if you seek the path of your personal legend.
Over the years, I have felt the tightness in my chest many of you may also be experiencing. Instead of doing what a western medicine doctor would do and suggest pills that numb your life experience, I am here to offer a different perspective on the problem and solution. No fucking pill will ever solve this tightness, stop seeking band aid quick fixes for gushing wounds. It’s time to get to the root of the problem.
The problem is, you’re holding your breath.
Follow to unfollow, fake likes, inflated numbers, photoshop glamorama, dick pics, and thirsty women.
In one sentence it seems as if all of social media can be defined. As social platforms are no longer just extensions of our lives, we move into a world blanketed by misinterpretation, illusionary depictions of reality, and a false sense of self worth urged by the desire to be liked and admired.
Yes, I too am part of such phenomenon. I often find myself tempting the seduction social provides in order to pump my ego full of complete nonsense. The game of social is one to be played like a first person video game… you’re in the game, you’re progressing, but at anytime you can turn the console off and return to normal life.
No, I am not stating that social media is bad, the devil, or should not be utilized or consumed at scale. The reality of a social media free world is non-existent, so instead of bashing such networks, I want to discuss a few topics that cause quite the concern within these applications.
For starters, I will admit to my own social media character flaws.
It’s absolutely okay to have an “off week.” It’s okay to not feel your best, perform your best, and live your best. In fact, I’m having one of those weeks myself. I have found myself on edge this week, reacting instead of responding, talking instead of listening, manifesting disappointment, and not having the fire desire within to get my ass up and go to the gym. I feel just a little, off.
Yes, even me, the dude who seems to have at all together, still endures stress, frustration, and disappointment. I’m not perfect, and neither are you. That’s just it though, you don’t have to be perfect. What you have to be is, aware. Aware when you feel a little off, recognizing your behaviors and understanding why you are attracting such people and situations. You must become conscious as to why you do what you do to attract the reality you are living.
You WILL have off days. Hell, maybe even off weeks or months. Life is a constant roller coaster with peaks and valleys. You must learn how to harness the lessons in the valleys to excel to new peaks. As this week has offered major opportunity to look within, I have learned a few things…
We made it, damn.
30 blogs in 30 days. All original content. Some more valuable than others. Nonetheless, the goal has been achieved and I can’t help but release a little sigh of relief. Relief, because I have reached a milestone moment where I can take it all in for a minute to reflect, appreciate, analyze, then prepare my mind for the next commitment.
29 blogs in 29 days but I have been saving this one for last. I have a small announcement that I have refrained from sharing on social media, until now.