Daily Ramblings – Thinking Thursday

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Hello, all! Welcome to another Thinking Thursday, where I’ll give you an idea of what I’ve learned this week, what I’m watching and reading.

This week has been tough. I’m in week 8 of Kris Gethin’s Hardcore Trainer and have literally lost between 1 and 2 pounds daily since Monday, considering the very restricted carbohydrate intake. Today, I’m only allowed a little over 70 grams. Not much. This is the equivalent of about 10 rice cakes. I’ve started the workout routine at 245 pounds and now weigh 229 lbs, with 3 more days to go.

My body thrives in a very, low carb intake type of diet, so I’m all in. This is the last week, then I’ll take a slight breather, raising my carbs up about 50 grams per day and reducing my cardio sessions from 55 minutes twice a day to 45 minutes twice a day.

I’m heading to my sisters this upcoming weekend to go to a comedy show. I’ll have access to one of the gyms I’m a member of while there, but don’t want to be in the gym the entire time I’m at my sister’s house (that’s no fun for her). Anyway, I’ll be lifting daily and hitting my cardio, but taking it a little easy, as I’ve decided to hit this hardcore trainer for another 8 weeks starting on July 3, 2018, when I’m back home. That’s about it on the weightlifting front.

Books I’m reading:

  • The same as last week.

Movies I’ve seen:

  • Solo (not a bad movie if you’re a Star Wars fan). They really did a great job with this one. I’m not going to drop any spoilers here because it is still in the movie theater and you may not have had time to see it yet.

Netflix:

  • Still watching Hell on Wheels, The West, and The Hollow

Classes:

  • Public Policy Course
  • Learning How to Learn (week 3) I finished the Nonfiction Book writing course on Udemy and will be using the process this instructor used to write his book. I wanted to watch this to get some better ideas on how to start and put together the framework of the book, before getting too far into the writing. I’ve already knocked down quite a lot of content this year but wanted to really get a better handle at formulating the book into an order that would be readable. Subsequently, I’ll be kicking off this book project next month.
  • Mini Habits Course is in the hopper. I’ll update here when I begin doing this one.

Podcasts:

  • The Tim Ferris Show
  • The Knowledge and Mileage Podcast

I wanted to add this to my weekly list because I’m a big fan of Tim Ferris and Kris Gethin, who is currently one of the weightlifting trainers I follow on Bodybuilding.com.

Well, this is it for my week thus far. I’m headed to the gym to knock out Lower Back, Upper Abs, and Hamstrings today. Today is Day 53 of the Hardcore Trainer and I’m stoked!!

Until next time…

Dave

 

 

 

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Daily Ramblings – Wisdom Wednesday – Self-Discipline

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“The further you go in the spiritual life, the greater becomes the responsibility. And the greater the responsibilities become, the greater becomes the need for self-discipline.” —Harold Klemp The Language of Soul

When you examine your life, you find that most of your challenges and problems have arisen from a lack of self-discipline. Self-discipline is simply doing the things that need to be done, regardless of how tired or unmotivated you are. Self-discipline like many things in life evolves over time. As we evolve our expectations and goals also change.

These changes require more self-discipline than we needed previously. This process is almost like a spiral. Once we reach the very top of a spiral, our view of the world changes, we realize we can do more than we did before, and we commence pushing for the next plateau. I have always felt a shift within myself when this occurs. These shifts are like little internal nudges that push you on to do more with your life.

Over the years the gym has become my haven. I consider exercise and proper nutrition and supplementation more of a norm now than I did previously. When I’m in the gym I feel exhilarated, accomplished, and even a little special. I feel special because so many lack the discipline it takes to continuously push themselves to great heights of fitness and health.

Self-discipline is interesting because it tends to “bleed over” into other things. Those of you who have experienced this know what I’m talking about. Once you attain a certain level of self-discipline it tends to grow. You find it easier to do things you disliked in the past. You find yourself anxious to tackle the next challenge. You gain a little self-confidence in yourself because you realize that you can handle more than before because the self-discipline you have developed has demonstrated that what you need to do will be completed.

I think the key to all of this is understanding your “why”. We all do things that are good and bad for us. When you really analyze why you do what you do, you’ll see the “why” everywhere. It is easy to do things we want to accomplish when there is a big, fat “why” behind the activity. I interact with quite a few of my friends in this regard. One of these friends asked me to help him out with his fitness routine. The very first thing we discovered was his inability to stick to his routine. He was always “outthinking” himself, coming up with every excuse in the book as to why he couldn’t exercise today.

I think this is about anything we set as a goal or New Year’s resolution. We start out strong, but then realize that we just don’t have the discipline or drive to keep it going. I think this is because many are doing things or pursuing things because of what the “other guy or gal” is doing. Or perhaps they are doing something because someone outside is telling them to. Neither one of these solutions is effective.

You must set goals for yourself that really align with your “why”. What is it? Is exercise something you want in your life, for the rest of your life or are you just trying to cut some pounds only to gain them back again. Fitness is one of those things that is really an all or nothing venture. If you want to change your diet, your exercise regimen, your sleep schedule, etc., you must really want it. Your “why” must be stronger than your excuses.

This discipline follows you everywhere. If you want to learn how to do something new, you have to pay the price. You have to read the books, do the tutorials, interact with people who are already doing what you want to do and find out what they do. Self-discipline is about taking care of your responsibilities. If you want to live a long-term, quality life, you need to begin doing things that will help you continue to improve or at least sustain the health you have. Do you really want your body to degrade so much that you need to be helped out of a chair or walk around with an oxygen tank in tow?

Sadly, a lot of my relatives, who are all in their 70’s has succumbed to their age much faster than they should have. Their minds have slipped, their bodies are brittle, their eyesight and hearing are failing, and the flexibility of their youth is long gone. Today, there are folks who are at this age competing in bodybuilding competitions, marathons, even triathlons. That’s who I want to be when I’m 70. Do you?

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Ted Talk – Breaking Bad Habits

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Today’s Ted Talk is about mindfully breaking the chain of a bad habit. Bad habits are so easy to start and so hard to quit. The key to breaking the chain of a bad habit is to find what benefits you get from doing it. Really dig in and get curious about how you feel when you eat something unhealthy, drink alcohol, smoke a cigarette and so on. What triggers it? What benefit do you get from it?

This video will explain how you may be able to finally break the habit you’ve been wanting to stop but just haven’t been able to.

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Motivation Monday!

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“Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.” – Og Mandino

This week has a full menu of activity.

I’m in the last week (week 8) of Kris Gethin’s Hardcore Trainer. This week will be tough, but I’ll see it through to the end. Weight loss so far is about 11 pounds. I’ll give you the final weight next week after I finish this bad boy on Sunday.

Books I’m reading:

  • The Shariyat-Ki-Sugmad
  • The Spiritual Exercises of ECK
  • The Tiger’s Fang
  • Turn your passion into a thriving business
  • Andersonville: A story of rebel military prisons
  • The Orion Plague
  • Uncle Tom’s Cabin
  • The Science of Getting Rich

Movies and Entertainment:

  • Season 5 of Hell on Wheels
  • The West
  • The Hollow
  • Goliath Season 2

Courses I’m taking:

  • Learning how to learn (Coursera)
  • Nonfiction book writing (Udemy)
  • Public Policy (Hillsdale)

Book Review:

I just finished Kris Gethin’s Bio: The Transformer and found it to be a really interesting read. Since he’s one of the many trainers I follow for the workout, supplementation, nutrition, and overall weightlifting advice, the book was especially important to me. I really enjoyed learning about Kris’ background and where he grew up. A really great book if you’re into this kind of thing.

Well, that’s it for this week’s Monday Motivation. I hope all of you have a great week! I’m headed to the gym for weights and cardio 2 of today’s workout routine.

Until next time…

Dave

 

 

Daily Ramblings – Bonus Material – Happy Father’s Day

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To all of the Dad’s in my readership, have a great Father’s Day! I’ll be heading out to dinner with my folks this evening to have a Father’s Day dinner at one of our favorite local restaurants. As an added bonus, we’ll be taking Dad to a movie tomorrow.

I hope all of you have a terrific Father’s Day!

(The Featured Image is a picture of me and my Dad at my nephew’s High School graduation)

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Spiritual Saturday

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“The reason for spiritual enlightenment is not to escape life, but to learn how to live it richly, to enjoy it.”—Harold Klemp The Language of Soul

When many of us think of a spiritually enlightened individual we tend to think about a monk in a cathedral laboring over a manuscript or in a cave contemplating the greater things of life. Spiritual enlightenment is something that should be shared with the world. This is what this quote is about.

Spiritual enlightenment, regardless of each of our personal definitions, is about connecting with God. In Eckankar, we call this connecting with the light and sound. The light and sound are metaphors for what we hear internally and what we see. We are taught that when you gain spiritually, these gains are gifts. These gifts, in turn, should be shared with others. It’s almost like a fountain. The fountain works because it sprays its waters upward, the drops return to the pond surrounding it and the fountain uses the same water over and over.

Just like the fountain, we can look at love like water. If we get love, we share it. In turn, that love comes back around to us and the cycle continues over and over. This is simple right?

Think about this for a moment. When do you really feel good? When you serve others.

Serving others isn’t about working for them or giving them gifts. It can be as simple as saying hello or passing along a smile. It can even be the act of wishing others well in a non-personal way. It is this passing along that gives us the greatest joy.

Yeah, when you get a brand-new car or a new techno-toy it’s terrific, but the joy is fleeting. I’ve found that the giving of self to others delivers a longer-term happiness, a happiness that goes deep down to your core. It is hard to explain.

When you give your son or daughter a birthday party, the feeling you get when they are smiling and excited and happy is priceless. When I was a young boy, maybe around the age of 6 or 7, I remember being so happy on my birthday that I cried and hugged my Mom. At that moment, we were all in the family’s only car late at night to pick up my father from work. Even at a young age, I knew we didn’t make much and the gifts and the little cake my Mom made were what they could afford. I didn’t care. It was the passing of love from Mother to son that made the whole day.

It’s interesting when you think about these little moments that stick with you. They stick with you because the love that came through was true and pure and selfless. This is the same way you can feel when you realize that you are here because God loves you. You—Soul.

“Soul exists because God loves it.” – Sri Harold Klemp. This is one of our core beliefs in Eckankar. When you think about others, when you do things for others, when you serve others, you’ll discover that the feeling of love inside grows and grows. This love stays around. We call this divine love. Divine love is composed of all types of love, even romantic love. The key to understanding what divine love is is to simply understand that it is charitable. Divine love is giving, serving, sharing, selflessly without regard for reward, it simply is.

Until next time…

Dave

 

Daily Ramblings – Thinking Thursday – #1

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Thinking Thursday: An Introduction

I felt this would be a better way to serve you, my readers. Instead of solely a book review, I’ll put down the things I’ve learned, the books I’m currently reading, any documentaries I think might be worth your while, and anything else I can think of. I’ll also give an overview of the courses I have completed so you can check them out or at least make a mental note of them, should you ever become interested in learning these things too!

Books:

The Shariyat Ki Sugmad, Paul Twitchell

The Transformer, Kris Gethin

Turn your passion into a thriving business, Gundi Gabrielle

Andersonville: A story of rebel military prisons, John McElroy

The Orion Plague, David Vandyke

Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe

The Science of Getting Rich, Wallace D. Wattles

The Spiritual Exercises of ECK, Harold Klemp

Classes:

Public Policy, Hillsdale College

How to write a nonfiction book fast without writer’s block, Udemy

Learning how to Learn, Coursera

The class I recently completed was the Science of Well-being, offered by Yale University on Coursera. All of the Coursera courses are free unless you want a certificate. If you pursue a certificate, it will typically run you about 45.00 and you’ll have to complete some written assignments and do some peer review work. I really don’t want or need a certificate, so I bypass all of this to gather the knowledge. One really cool thing about these courses is all of the references links, Ted Talks, and books they recommend. This is priceless! Anyways, the course shows you how most people pursue the wrong things to find happiness. It then begins providing you with the things that truly give us happiness, peace, and contentment. The course wraps up by providing you with all of the strategies, supported by the research, that will garner wellness in your life. This course has some really surprising information. I won’t spoil this for anyone. If you want to take the course I highly recommend it. Here’s the link to find it: https://www.coursera.org/learn/the-science-of-well-being/home/welcome

Documentaries:

The Civil War, Ken Burns (Netflix currently)

The West, Ken Burns (Netflix currently)

Fun:

Hell on Wheels (Currently on Netflix)

The Hollow (Currently on Netflix)

Goliath (Currently on Amazon Prime)

Workout Routines and Other Weightlifting Knowledge:

https://www.kagedmuscle.com/

Kaged Muscle is run by CEO Kris Gethin. This website provides workout routines, supplements you’ll need, nutrition advice and a whole lot more. I am currently working through the 8-week hardcore trainer.

https://www.bodybuilding.com/

For access to every supplement on the market, access to the top trainers in the world, and also gain access to their training routines, this is the one-stop, shop for anything related to fitness.

Well, that’s it for this week folks! I hope some of this information has been helpful to you.

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Wisdom Wednesday – Love of Learning

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“Few realize that a deep love for God also implies a love for learning.”

—Harold Klemp The Language of Soul

I love to learn. I take courses, talk with people, read lots of books and articles, and engage with life. There are so many free resources online, I have a hard time understanding why more people do not take advantage of them.

What is learning? Learning to me is literally gaining knowledge about something that you can apply in your life. If you are interested in photography, there is a wealth of free information online that can help you develop your eye for the perfect picture.

The same goes for writing, playing an instrument or even learning a new language. Each requires a certain discipline to learn, but there are so many ways to learn new things via books, via blogs, via YouTube, Coursera, Udemy, or even the Khan Academy.

I love learning more about writing, bodybuilding, nutrition, exercise, history, and other non-fiction topics. I’m also a huge fan of anything that can help me be more productive and achieve my goals.

Today, take this quote to heart and think about what it means to you.

Learning is one way to continually add to your current skillset. The more skills you have the more ability you have to help others and perhaps even earn more for yourself and your loved ones.

Until next time…

Dave