Category Archives: Life

I hate the sound of my voice

Hopefully you guys don’t

Ciao

SK

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Taking chances

Tomorrow I’m really going to put myself out there on a level that I have actually never done before.  Josh Shipp is one of the biggest rock starts in the speaking business in the youth market.  I’ve been getting his newsletter for years.  The only job he’s ever had is the only job I’ve ever wanted…being a professional speaker.

One of the business models that speakers utilize is creating training for other speakers to learn how to do what they have done.  His version of this is called Youth Speaker University.  I’ve known a few that have gone through it and it is a remarkable program, but it’s not cheap.

There’s a scholarship available this year for his program and all I have to do is create a video and put it out there for not only Josh, but the rest of the universe, to consume.  Now I have the utmost confidence in my ability to deliver a speech, I love being on the platform in front of 10 or hundreds of people, I love the process of writing and creating a well thought out message…I’ve just never bothered to put it on YouTube.

The scholarship applications says:

We are looking for someone with heart, legitimate talent and a sincerity to help others.

I can promise that I have two of those three…the talent part of the equation will be judged by the masses.

You never know what you can do until you try to do something.  Job changes with different schedules have gotten me away from Toastmasters, so my chops are totally out of practice.  There is a chance this could be an absolute hot mess.  There is also a very high probability that I won’t win the contest.  There is no way that I lose in this process though.  I get to write, rehearse, and deliver something that I really believe in.  I get to share it with people I love and from there who knows who’ll see it. I get to have a serious professional watch three minutes of me living out my dream.  There’s no way this ends up badly.

Taking chances is almost always scary.  The devil you know is better, than the one you don’t.  I’m going to step out a little bit and see what happens.  See you guys tomorrow.

Ciao

SK

Step away from the scale

We love the scale…or do we hate the scale?  When was the last time you got on the lb pedestal and measured your degree of chubby to skinny ratio?  Is it a digital scale?  Do you cheat on your analog scale and manipulate the calibration (I know I’m not the only one that’s done that)?  They in your bathrooms and kitchens and bedrooms.  They are a standard appliance in the home…but why?

I seriously doubt that any of us are horribly surprised when we step on a scale unless you’re competing on the Biggest Loser.

Let’s also add to the fact that there no surprises the fact that all pounds are not created equal

It is crazy cold here in the classic city this week and I’ve worn jeans to work every day.  Yesterday I wore my fat jeans. As sure as I am that you have a scale, I’m also positive you have fat jeans.  Whether they are an emergency back up pair or they are your daily wearers because you’ve split your seat in your other britches, I bought these jeans from a thrift store about a year ago because I had gone out to dinner and the jeans I wore did not survive dessert.  They were baggy and a nice cut and served their purpose well.  Yesterday…they swallowed me.

Today I put my skinny jeans on.  The same jeans that didn’t survive the Applebee’s adventure that stimulated buying the fat jeans.  I’m also fairly certain that you have some skinny jeans in your closet somewhere.  You can aaaaaalllllllllllmoooooooooossssssssssstttttttttttt button them, but after you suck it all in, it just doesn’t work well.  They aren’t quite cool enough to be hipster skinny jeans, but you love them and you want to one day slide your donk back in them.  My skinny jeans are now loose.

There is so much I’ve learned since the original fast.  I’ve always heard that the scale is not your only indicator…I just didn’t believe it.  I was chasing that same 10 pounds I’ve gained and lost for the past 5 years (and really it is about 10 pounds I keep losing and 20 pounds I keep gaining).  I’m just living now.  I’m trying to make better choices and be more active.  So go step on the scale…yep waiting…write down the number and then go get on a treadmill or eat a salad or make some juice or lift a weight.  Keep doing it a few weeks and months and then before you get back on the scale go pull out those skinny jeans and see how far you’ve come.

Ciao

SK

41 Things…

My birthday is this week and I will be 41 years old.  So in honor of a birthday that gets little to no run in the list of important ones (no one really has a blow out 41st bday bash), I thought I’d share 41 things I’ve learned over my 41 years.

  1. Everyone wants to be loved, but very few of us are really good at loving someone…it really takes work to do it well
  2. Parenting is the hardest, most frustrating, and challenging thing I’ve ever done; but it also is the one thing that the reward is guaranteed to be greater than that challenge, frustration, and difficulty
  3. Eyeball the people you love the most and you’ll see not only who you love but who you’ve become
  4. All great relationships grow in conflict not in peace.  This is not to say fight all the time to get better, but it is when you have disagreement and compromise that you truly grow closer
  5. The highs are never as high as the lows are low (especially if you’re a sports fan lol)
  6. Start saving money and being healthy today…they both get harder the older you get
  7. Smoking sucks, don’t shorten you life with nicotine
  8. We all have way too much stuff…throw some out before you put away your Christmas presents
  9. Naps are underrated
  10. When you die…people will miss you…A LOT
  11. If you know who you are and what you want in life and can accept people for who they are and what they want…you win
  12. You need people in your life that love you enough to meet you where you are but love you so much they don’t leave you there
  13. Read stuff…a lot of stuff…it’ll make you a better person
  14. Peek a boo is always funny…you grow up and it becomes hide and seek and then you get old and it becomes surprise parties and then you become a grandparent and it is peek a boo…but it is still funny
  15. Most referees and officials aren’t very good at all levels.  You just have to play against and through their incompetence
  16. You need to learn to drive a stick shift…invaluable life tool
  17. The two most important things I learned in school were typing and word problems…life is all about the keyboard and problem solving
  18. Try different stuff, you never know when something will change your life
  19. The greatest commandment is to Love…if God says it is the most important we should listen, he did make the moon and the stars
  20. You have two choices in life…you can either make the movie or be part of it
  21. I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor and I prefer happy
  22. Not everyone is kissing compatible
  23. You never know when it’ll be the last time, so make sure to enjoy the ride
  24. Handwritten letters and cards to people…they’ll love it
  25. Caffeine is the devil (so is commercial TV for that matter)
  26. Blue ink is better than black
  27. God wants you to be the real you with him.  He knows what you did last night, stop trying to leave it out of your prayers
  28. Moms are amazing
  29. If you just show up to work every day and put in a good effort, you’re way-way ahead of the game
  30. Bucket lists are cool but I would say, just do stuff when the opportunity arises
  31. If you celebrate your bday for a week it makes it better
  32. Benadryl is the most powerful drug in the universe
  33. Your hair will grow back or you can always cut your hair.  Change up your look from time to time.
  34. Pedicures are amazing
  35. Every once in a while move the furniture and take a different route to work, I love routine but there are other ways to look at the world.
  36. Keep all your skinny clothes and throw away your fat clothes, don’t give yourself a backup plan for your waistline
  37. Alex Rodriguez is seriously the worst dude ever
  38. You can break your worst, most destructive habit
  39. Apologies are for the offender, not the offended.  Forgiveness what you need but not what you want when you have been done wrong
  40. Haters hate, that’s what they do…Wasting your time worrying about them just makes them stronger
  41. A year from now you’ll be a year older…you have control on whether that model is an upgrade or not

Ciao

SK

Excuses, excuses, excuses

This is the part of a blog where the writer tells you all the reasons he hasn’t been writing.

Fill in the blank _______________________________________________________________ is why I haven’t been blogging.

More than anything else, I just haven’t taken the time and sat down and wrote.  Writing is like running for me.  I love to do them both, but I have to schedule time for both activities and sometimes I just get lazy and stop.  Luckily I always come back because I love them both so.  Usually It takes a little bit of motivation for me to get on board and come back and today is no different.

Now for those of you interested in juice stuff, I have been actually writing down recipes and I will be creating a separate section on the blog for juicing and juice fast type things.  I’m not going to commit to when I’ll get it up, but hopefully before my next fast (January 5 if any of you want to start planning now).

This fitness journey for me really start with Carlos Whitaker and his #fitbyfourth initiative he started back in the summer.  That got me moving, fasting got some weight off and changed habits, and I’ve just kept at it.  Well ‘Los is back at it again with #fitbyfirst coming at us right now.  31 days to get a jump-start on a healthier me.  I’ve really done well watching what I eat, exercising, and continuing to lose weight, but everyone likes a little motivation from time to time.  One of the keys to the Journey with ‘Los is to journal.  I have terrible handwriting, so one again I’ll be bringing my journal here to share with you guys.

The first couple of days are easy…Take a before picture, make a video to yourself from yourself, and do the fitness test.  All items are complete and I’m ready to get after it.  2015 will be my year to get back into the under 200 lb club.  I also have plans for a half marathon and wait for it…muscles!!!!  I also have a pile of personal and financial things that I have been working on and improving that will continue to move forward for me.

So I’m back…again…don’t hate me because I’m wishy-washy, just love me because…well…just because I need love darnit.

 

Ciao

 

SK

So now what…

As awesome as it was to do the 10 day fast, it had to come to an end.  Which means going back to the world of French Fries and cheese dip and fried everything.  Wow this is intimidating.  There is an entire world of bad choices out there advertising, attracting, and dangling my favorite foods in my face.  Being fat is a whole lot more fun than being healthy.  Being fat doesn’t require me doing any preparation or thinking about anything.  All I have to do is decide and then consume and then repeat.  I also have the challenge that involves my taste buds and the fact that I don’t have any experience eating healthy ever.

The first weekend, post fast, was a pretty normal weekend.  There was a basketball tournament, baseball workout, baseball scrimmage, Xbox, fantasy football draft, running around, and general time-consuming chaos for three days.  There were plenty of opportunities to fall off the wagon and snack or cheat or generally go back to being that guy.

I still have to plan

  • It was such a key when on the fast, actually having my juices ready to go and easily accessible made the fast a success.  I believe that it is even more important going forward.  Now that I have the ability to eat Big Mac’s whenever I want I need to plan and schedule out my juices and meals accordingly.

Buying produce is harder than I thought

  • I sat in Publix trying to buy juicing items and I realized that I do not have a clue what Kale actually looks like.  I was overwhelmed by the colors and options and how little I actually know about fruits and veggies.

I have to stay ahead of the meals

  • When I was in the fast I just waited until I was hungry to have one.  This plan with eating “normally” doesn’t really work for me.  I need to start with some kind of breakfast and plan out my meals, snacks, and juices.  I want to build a healthy eating style rather than one meal and two juices being all I consume during a day.

When eating out, ALWAYS GET A TO GO BOX WHEN THEY BRING YOUR MEAL

  • Restaurant portions are gigantic.  I did very good ordering my meals but I realized very quickly that even eating slowly and trying to be mindful I eat too much if it is on my plate.  I can make all the correct choices I want but if I consume everything I see, I’m not really making the progress I want.

This entire journey is such a process.  The good thing from the weekend was that I succeeded in not totally blowing my diet out of the water.  Now I’m back to the routine at work and will have a better chance to set some new eating routines.

 

Ciao

 

SK

G was right

I was a band nerd in high school (technically I was a band nerd in college as well).  Our band director in high school was also one of the most influential men in my life growing up.  I was friends with both of his sons, spent countless hours at his home, and I was even lucky enough to speak on his behalf the day they named the fine arts building at the school in his honor.  His middle initial was G so that was one of the numerous nicknames we had for him.

G was notorious for his sayings that band people got used to hearing over our four years in his classes.  Some were funny, some were prophetic, and some I still don’t understand to this day.  One of his constants over the years was:

Plan your work and work your plan

Simple enough right?

We could apply this simple concept to countless applications in life from your finances to raising kids.  What I didn’t realize was that it might be the most critical component to completing a juice fast.

We decided from day one that we would make three days worth of juices at a time.  Simple enough?  What I didn’t realize is that this opened up one of my greatest revelations of juicing and healthy living:

You have to make being healthy as easy and convenient as it is to be unhealthy

(Boy I’m on it today)

Eating healthy, by definition, requires a lot more work than being obese.  There are very few fast food options that aren’t a complete nutritional train wreck.  But by definition they are FAST.  Microwave meals are FAST.  Eating junk food is FAST.  Preparing a fresh green salad or selecting some lean meats for dinner and properly preparing them is not only not fast but it can be expensive.

There is no way I could have done this if I had to make the juices during the day as things went along I wouldn’t have made it out of the first day.  I also traveled with a cooler in the car constantly.  I had to have juice and water with me at all times.  As I have been going through this, my hunger patterns have totally changed and I never wanted to get caught in a situation where I didn’t have my chosen tools for battle.

Keep your eyes peeled, I’m going to give a how we did the fast tutorial and then try to put together a group for a fast later in the year.  Who knows where this is going or when it will end…regardless it is going to be a fun ride.

Thanks G!

 

Ciao

 

SK

Day 7

I made it a week…like seriously it has been a week since I had solid foods; absolutely amazing.

Today is also the beginning of our last “new” batch of juices and apparently our juice master has gone into the lab and created a fresh bath of juices.  The weekend juices were super yummy, but he’s been using actual recipes and this time he’s straight winging it.  They were ok, but it was clear that these were “guesses” on what went well together (stay tuned at the end of the fast I’ll break down the recipes and what I thought).

Day 7 was pretty normal altogether.  I’m starting to miss actually eating.  It is not that I don’t like the juicing, but I don’t think I’m ready for an extension past 10 days though.  I am very excited to have a juicer of my own to start supplementing my post fast eating with my own juice concoctions.

Starting anything sucks.  Whether it is a new job or a new diet or a new pair of shoes, there is always some trepidation in it for me.  As much as starting sucks, I believe I am even worse at finishing things.  It has been a chronic issue since my childhood.  I start with great intentions on working out, or writing, or losing weight, or reading more and then I get bored or apathetic or busy or something and all that positive mojo goes right out of the window.  At this point of the fast I’ve accomplished way more than I truthfully thought I would.  There’s absolutely no way I’m not going to finish this process.

I’m going to lay off from the journal the final few days and simply give you guys the results on Friday.  I’ve got a lot of things in my head though that I would like to explore with the blog in the near future.  I’m really excited to be a little more healthy, a little less beefy, and ultimately a lot more inspired.  All of this from juice?  The Lord does work in mysterious ways.

 

Ciao

 

SK

Looking back-Part 1

It is Saturday morning and rather than talking about day 4, which was basically just like day 3, I figured I’d look back on this process and journey and what I’ve learned about myself and food.

I’ve had a running joke the last few years that I only eat 12 things.  That really isn’t that far from the truth.  My family grew up lower middle class.  My parents were never married and I was raised primarily by my grandparents and my Aunt.  We had welfare food and from an early age I remember just not like very much because most of it tasted like sand.  I was a skinny kid and it was always a challenge when I was somewhere that wasn’t home, to find things to eat.  As a teenager I started to like and consume in mass quantities fast food and easy food, because it was easy and it actually tasted good to me.  I had a therapist once talk about how I learned the majority of my relationship skills as a child and they would be tough to “unlearn”.  I guess my bad relationship with food started there too.

Over the years my palate has improved but my eating habits really have not.  Lots of starch, lots of carbs, and lots of sugar…then you sprinkle in a pile of caffeine on top of it and you have a molotov cocktail of fat and sloppy at age 40.  I’ve always said I didn’t really like the gym and I don’t stick to running plans unless there is a race.  I think some of the problem might be that I was trying to fly a jet plan with 87 octane fuel.

EATING IS FUN

People love to sit around the table with friends and family and eat.  It is an event.  People buy houses because of the cool kitchen or the way you can entertain your friends and family.  People have date night at restaurants and have family events with cookouts and pot luck dinners.  People grab hot dogs and pizza at ballparks because it is a habit and its part of what makes it fun.  And it should be fun, but I think that some of the convenience and fun of eating has slanted my personal relationship with food.

I’m far from an anatomy and physiology scholar or a biologist, but I have learned a little over the past few weeks about how the body works.  The reality is that I have done a terrible job of taking care of myself.  It shows on the scale, it shows in my complexion, and it shows in my energy level.  Now I’m not saying that I’ve done it all wrong my whole life, because for the most part I’m a pretty happy dude.  Maybe, just maybe, I’ve been off in my food relationship as well.

I’ve got a pile of relationship theories that I have used to help advise friends over the years (and yes Doctors make the worse patients).  One of the things I’ve always believed is that, just like in sales, you must negotiate from a position of strength rather than a position of weakness.  Successful relationships are a win-win for both parties.  You give and you take but both parties have something to gain from the interaction.  The relationship I’ve had with food has not been from a position of strength.  I have eaten convenient, easy, processed meals that make me happy but really aren’t giving my body what it craves.  I truly think that because that is what I ate, it is what I’ve continued to eat.  I think that I’ve taught my body, over the years, that when I’m hungry to eat some junk.

I guess I didn’t realize I had this much to say.  So I guess I will break this thing up into parts so people can actually digest it.

 

Ciao

 

SK

Day 3

Things are going just swimmingly here in Fast-ville.

There really isn’t anything major to report.  I think I’ve gotten through all the hunger issues and generally feel like I’m in the routine of things.  I timed my workout perfectly today, I had just enough gas in the tank to finish the workout without feeling hungry or stretched.

My big discovery from day 3 is my mental clarity.  There were times during the day that I felt as though my brain was going at a faster speed than the rest of the world and I was able to process things faster and more clearly.  It was pretty cool.

Day 4 will be interesting as we cut from 8 juices a day back to 6 and we will be changing our flavors and varieties.  The weekend should be fun and I’ll be full of info on Monday.

 

Ciao

 

SK