Discipline and The New You!

I was talking with a client this more, and something that I said to them really struck me. It was the idea of dialing in your discipline. Meaning that one:

Discipline begins again every single day, what this really comes down to, is knowing why we are being disciplined for in the first place. Makes sense? And so for my client, they have this vision of themselves of who they want to be.

And they want to reach that goal, that space and time in their lives. For themselves, not because they want to be like anyone else. But because they want to be happy, healthy, whole and complete for no one else but them.

I can’t begin to tell you how revolutionary this, because then they can reach a place where they stop comparing themselves to others. Stop looking and obsessing over the numbers on the scale, because they aren’t defined by that anyone or anything else.

But again, this takes discipline, the discipline to not spend so much time scrolling through social media. Choosing to be discipled in waking up early, appreciating the gift of a new day.

The discipline of choosing the right foods, drinking enough water. The disciple to say no to food and other things in life that will only hinder you. This all starts with a choice that isn’t merely cognitive, but it is a choice that has to resonate within our full nature. It has to change ever part of you.

This can true for you as well, you just have to decide in the here and now.

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You and The Vending Machine

Wow,

Thank you for all the likes on my latest post, for all the new subscribers. I really hope to help and inspire people however I can!

Okay, that aside, I was asked to write a blog on combating the desire to go the vending machine when you are at work or in need of a quick repass, or something to get you through the day. More specially, that nagging antagonist in your mind, that tells you to cure your hunger by getting a 50 cent or dollar snack.

Now, I fail at nutrition too, a lot and sometimes I give into the temptation too. We are humans and we will make mistakes whether we like it or not. Let’s be honest about that. Much more, let us know our enemies all the more.

What I mean is, know, when your enemy sets out to attack on a daily basis. And be ready for it, better yet attack the enemy before they can attack you. I know I’m using very militant language. But when it comes to our health and nutrition, we have to be disciplined and go out on the attack.

Be it, making sure that you maybe pack healthy snacks with you, the night before. And drink plenty of water. Eat more foods that leave fuller longer, steak and higher protein foods. When you have that temptation, even finding a corner and knocking out some push ups or burpees.

Make every effort to make war against the temptation, because that mid day snack isn’t going to get you closer to your goals. Of being healthy, happier, more alive, satisfied and focused. It will get you off course faster than anything.

But.. But.. If you do get off track, please remember not to beat your self up, but dust your self off and get back on the path. Even if you do have a cheat day- that’s fine, but than start pounding the water and getting back on it. Typically, when our bodies tell us that we are hungry, and we crave the cheap and easy foods, our bodies crave nutritionist.

So apply discipline, and feet it healthy things. Learn to say no, imply windows of fasting and starve your body of its desire of processed craving. In our lives, we can leave behind legacy, one that can go on for those after us. That starts by making small changes today, in the here and now.

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My Thoughts Regarding Keto!

So,

I had a request for my thoughts on the Keto diet. Before we go any further, I’d like to state that I do not follow the Keto diet. Primarily I am focused on a higher protein/carnivore-like approach to my personal nutrition. That being said, I do like the idea behind Keto.

Primarily, when you lower the amount of sugar and carbs in your daily intake, and make healthy fats as a source of energy. Your body then how no choice to burn fat, which for many has equated to dramatic weight loss. Keto consists of Fats, protein and low carb:

Fats: Avocado, nuts, flax seed etc

Protein: lean meats, fish, chicken etc

Carbs : Veggies

There are other types of Keto, which focus on higher proteins, or dirty keto, which can  be viewed as a fast food version, but just taking off the bread (haha). In the world of diets and nutrition, something new pops up all the time. Some, I have heard take a firm stance against it, saying that it is hard to maintain and something that you can’t be on long term.

Having not been on a keto diet myself, I can only go off of what I’ve read and heard.  My girlfriend has been on the diet for a while, and it has help her with her arthritis and joint pain.

I truly do believe that it can help reduce inflammation in the body, helps with autoimmune disorders and those who suffer from seizure disorders as well. However I don’t believe that one has to be on a keto diet however to start seeing changes in their health. Once you eliminate the processed carbs, sugars and fats amazing things start to happen in your body.

That is truly universal, whatever “diet” you subscribe to.  Here is a link listing the benefits of being on the Keto diet.  Here!   Typically as Americans  most of us have been so focused on processed carbs and sugars, largely because it’s easy and tastes good. Yet, so many people are dramatically overweight, have diabetes, have digestive issues and lack of energy.

I think the American diet has been wrong for a long time, and people are quickly realizing and to maximize health and longevity. In closing, I want to say again, that I do not practice the Keto approach. Nor do I think that it is for everyone, I think that, regardless of the foods that you like, if you make the disciplined choice to eliminate processed foods, increase water and exercise, you will become healthier regardless of “diet” you choose to subscribe to.

Find what works for you! If you like fruits and greens over steak, okay! Work with it, if you see results fantastic. If you don’t change it up! But I think we have clearly seen how a Keto or low cab form of eating is changing peoples lives for the better. Everything has its time frame in life, but what will always remain true, is that eating like crap, will always make you feel like crap! And eating healthy, will only leave you feeling for energized and happy.

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Is Nutrition The New Religion?

Quite possibly…

Let me explain,  as humans when we discover something that works for us, we get really excited and filled with passion about it. We then want to evangelize about, because in our minds we believe the results that we’ve had will be the same for the next person.

We find all the ways to defend our nutritional convictions against others who might have a differing view. Its not always a simple disagreement or variants of opinion, it can be down right ugly too.

On social media, I constantly see vegans spewing fire and the more meat based community and vise versa. It’s so crazy! It’s become almost no different than a popular atheist having a heated debate with a theist.

Shouldn’t we be pumping the brakes a bit? I think so! We argue and defend our nutritional stand points, as though we are defending what one believes to be an absolute truth or fact about life or even the after life.

Stoooooop!

Nutrition is a temporary element to life, does it matter? Yes it does, what you feed your body matters. But it should in some ways be a personal path way for how you live your life and the legacy in which you want to leave behind for future generations to come.

When you come upon the last breath of your earthly life, I highly, highly doubt that the last though we have will be “My nutritional convictions was everything to me…” Nutritionally speaking, people are so damn different, some people love their fruits and greens more than I do.

Personally speaking, I believe that my body does very well, with a more meat based/carnivore approach. But I refuse to look down upon someone who chooses a more plant based diet. If that works for a person great, as long as they feel in their heart of hearts that they are thriving to their highest level, awesome!

On the other side of the spectrum though, there are people who’s bodies don’t respond well to a more fruit and greens approach. And that should be more than ok! If, as a professional, I have a client who loves a plant based approach, is not my job to shove my own conviction down their throats.

My soul objective is to work with whats good for them as a person, which is also a very complex journey to embark on. I can show people, as to why I believe that a more higher protein diet might be more beneficial in some ways. But to the degree that a person has free will, it’s up to them to decide what  is right.

Again, we aren’t arguing for a canonized authority on nutrition, the end all be all, alpha and omega of nutrition. Entire countries have sadly split over religion, and while it may very well be an extreme jump. If we are not carful, our stances on nutrition may slowly but surely do the same thing. Even more so, people choose to disassociate with others, because of a chosen nutritional stance, which is utter madness to me.

Food is vital to health, we all need to strive to be healthier, in order that we may live a full and healthy life. But it not something that we can use as a means to have social or moral superiority with.

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A Tighter Grip.

I don’t even know where to begin

All I know is that I want to get a grip on myself.

My anxiety has been so bad.

My emotions have been everywhere.

And sometimes I feel like my chest is going to implode.

I find myself crying when I am alone.

I find myself utterly sensitive to the energies around me.

One moment I am happy and the next, anger, sadness, frustration rage.

I hate this…. I hate this.

My soul is desperate for change.

I want to know what it’s like to feel stable.

I hate feeling like such a wreck.

Perhaps its only a season or moment in time.

All I want is to break free. And not be dominated by this internal, unstable and insecure war inside me.

I want to get to the bottom of this, one breath at a time, one step at a time.

 

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Cerebral Palsy. Body Image and Internal Healing.

I’m starting to see a correlation between cerebral palsy and body image, this correlation stems from being in contact with numerous people who live with cerebral palsy through social media. In this particular regard, I’m speaking about having a negative self image.

You may look at the image of me below, and not think that I am “fat” all, but when I look at myself. That is what I see.

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When I look at the sides of my stomach, I think “Ugh gross” then I start thinking or obsessing over what I eat and upping the intensity of my daily workouts. Which is not a bad thing at all. It is a problem though, when you are in the middle of your workout and you can’t stop dwelling on how disgusting you feel and look.

I posted that above photo on instagram a few weeks ago, lots of people said that I looked great, or that we all had those feelings, or even “that’s just skin!” The comments were heart warming and helped me to think more positively.. For awhile, but then I would find myself in the downward spiral of self destruction and sabotage.

My workouts have consisted of lots of burpees, probably two-four hundred every single day. Along with Kettle and Bar Bell lifting. I sweat a lot, recover well but am utterly hungry the rest of the day.  Nor am I afraid of eating my carbs, protein and Beer… My one beer after work.

The engine is constantly stoked, and I’m constantly pushing my mind and body.. But there is this area of my life, that needs change. I’m tried all the thought stopping methods, all the positive affirmations etc. And still nothing helps the crap shoot stop.

After CF today, I came home, ate and then went to wash my stinky self. There I was, looking at my body with contempt. And then I thought, “this has to stop!” Truly the only thing that gets me through life is my faith. So after redirecting my thoughts back to it, I whispered to God:

“God, you don’t want me to hate my body, I know that. Help me to see myself differently, as you do.” At that moment, something clicked on inside of me. I’m not saying that you have to do, as I do, that is something that you have to decide and work through for yourself.

What I am saying though, is that these destructive thinking has to stop, or at least be put in its rightful place. A vast majority of therapists would saying that working out is killing me, and steer me away from it as they would most addictions. But I don’t think that that is the end all be all solution.

Yes, some things might need to change, or pause. But this is less a physical issue, and more a mental, emotional and spiritual issue. And until those issues heal, nothing we change the way we long for.

So! We have to understand that this is going to be a long journey, with plenty of ups and downs and twists and turns. We have to accept where we are at. I know that this is something that will not want to be heard, you might spend lots of time in a wheel chair, and be on lots of meds. Okay, we can work with that, the fact is that we cannot give up.

There are plenty of exercises that can be done from a seated position, plenty of ways to even build stamina too. I should get on making videos regarding these topics. Yet the biggest component is learning to take care of ourselves from a place of love and not so much a “I have to” but an “I want to” there’s a huge difference.

Change your forward thinking: Think less on your image, and think more about prolonged health, mobility, strength and focus. So that we can be the strongest version of ourselves, not so much for ourselves but for others.

The internal healing is more tangible than we believe, more closer than we think. Much like any medicine though, it takes time for the benefits to show up, but rest assured. Through discipline and diligence change will come.

Blessings!

-Brandon

 

 

 

 

When Your Not So Skinny…

 

The other morning, I was laying on the couch with my niece, my nephew had just gone off to school and I was probably in an out of sleep probably more than a handful of times. When I awoke, my niece was still there beside me watching videos on her Ipad. Most of the videos were toy reviews on YouTube. But one thing that stood out to me was a cartoon we were watching.

I don’t remember the name, but a particular scene a small group of kids were in a science lab, observing two girls who drink a green concoction. Girl A, after drinking it became tone and slender like, and was able to run for a long time on a treadmill. The small group of kids then had eyes bigger than their own heads as they awed over how pretty Girl A looked.

Girl B drank the same green drink and she went from a skinny girl, to a large muscle pound person. The kids were disgusted by her appearance. I couldn’t help but feel sad after watching this. I realized that in this instance, our culture still puts so much esteem on the tone person. But has much less esteem for the bigger muscle bound person. In fact, some think it is down right ugly.

But I ask, what are we teaching the future generation? Is the standard of beauty and fitness still given to the slim and slender type? Though there is nothing wrong with it. The average women who does CrossFit today, that has a lot of muscle to her and a six pack on her is seen as manly looking. And in fact they are ridiculed and shamed by those who do not approve.

I gather that one might not find it attractive on a personal level, but to shame them and say ugly things about them is filled with stupidity. For unless you spent time with them daily, and you saw how hard they worked to get to that point, then you wouldn’t be able to say much. But you damn sure would stand in awe and applaud.

As for the fat shaming that our culture puts into practice, I say this: 1) they probably already know that they are not as healthy as they could be or want to be. So rather than ripping them down all the more, how about you try and spur them on with words of hope and encouragement? I bet much more good would be done in this way. Plus, the filth we have to say about others, is more often than not aimed out ourselves.

2) When you see a larger person in the gym, trying to better themselves. Don’t shame them or speak ill of them. They got out of bed, decided to get after it and make changes to be better and live better.

The culture at large is slowly being revamped, but we have a lot of work to yet be done. We can’t change everyone’s mind. But to those that we can, it’s a job well done.

 

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Developing Your Inner Coach.

One of the greatest gifts my father could have ever given me was the gift of working out. I can remember the first pair of green weights from GNC. He came into the living room where I was and placed a weight in my hand and taught me how to do a bicep curl, he might have even said something manly about having huge muscles. I’m not sure.

All I know is that since that time I have not stopped, it was the times that my father all but demanded that I come downstairs and work out rather than playing video games. Another memory that comes to mind is when my parents bought one of the original versions of the total gym, a machine heavily endorsed by Chuck Norris and many other top athletes in various sports.

When I first got on this machine, I’ll never forget how great and amazing it felt to develop the range of motions in my arms. Not just that, but muscle tone. From that point on, I wanted to be on that machine.   My mom, though, she would always be protective of me and not want me to get hurt by working out on my own as any good mother would.

I’ve always liked working out on my own, though. Being able to throw in my ear buds and tune out the world. Letting go of pent of emotions, feelings and thoughts. I never really understood people that liked to stand around and talk during a workout. I understand, though, that people are fundamentally different in some ways.  Maybe for the ones who like to talk during a workout, it’s a means to catch up in regards to life or perhaps it’s a form of accountability to make sure you finish what you started.

What I want to discuss, though, is developing your own inner coach or rather inner drill sergeant. I don’t know when this started exactly, but when there is a difficult WOD ahead of me (that’s Crossfit language for the workout of the day) I often sense this inner voice saying to me “Don’t give up!” Or “Almost there, don’t quit”. This inner voice is always there for me. Even when I am tired and would rather lie in bed, the voice whispers “you’re one step closer toward your goal”

By now, you might be wondering “that’s great for you, but how do I get an inner coach?” And to be honest, I’m not sure that there is some magic formula that I can give you. I believe everyone’s inner coach will sound or seem different. The first suggestion I could provide you.

  1. Find a verbal cue, what I mean is find something that triggers a sense of motivation and resolve within you. For me, it was triggered by an army commercial where a drill instructor would tell the soon to be ranger “Don’t quit!” with great conviction in his voice. Since that moment, that same drill instructors voice has not left my head. Whatever it is for you, my encouragement is that you embark on the journey of your own inner coach.
  2.  If there is one lesson that I have had to learn over and over again, it’s that you cannot depend on others to be there. You won’t always have that friend to drag you from the couch to the gym. It’s in the pivotal moment when one must decide if they’re going to keep chasing their goals despite the fact that no ones watching, despite the fact that no one is cheering for you. The question you have to ask you have to ask yourself is: Do I love myself enough to do what it takes to be the best version of you possible?  Forget about the moments of failure, forget the moments of self-loathing and forget about all the times you thought that none of this really matters. The only thing you have to is Keep moving forward.
  3. What do you do then, when you can’t sense the voice of your own inner coach? The answer is simple: Keep going, there are many many times when I have to quietly yell at myself to keep going. To give all I got no matter how long it takes me to finish the task at hand. I have no regard for records or who is the best at what, but that I finish and finish strong.

Lastly, set goals for yourself, some short term and some long term. Goals will allow you to keep going not matter what comes your way. Even if the goal is to get out of bed in the morning, start there and move to the next, like eating a healthy breakfast. Then get your ass to the gym.  Life is far to valuable and precious not to take care of yourself, so why not start today?

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