Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – John F. Kennedy – Taking Action


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Today’s quote:

“Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” – John F. Kennedy

Whenever you get stuck, it is due to inaction. Why does this occur? Well, sometimes it occurs because we don’t know where to go from where we are. At other times we are crippled by fear. Sometimes we discover that we’ve lost interest in a particular goal and just stop pursuing it.

This is why I tend to set goals for 13 weeks. One, it aligns with the BestSelf Journal I use. Two, it allows me to dedicate some time toward something and make a decision after 13 weeks whether I want to continue this or move on to something else. This all boils down to “YOUR WHY”.

I am driven to exercise. Why? My Dad is currently suffering from vascular dementia. This is typical of people who smoke. Tobacco does a lot of damage over time. My Dad smoked into his sixties and his dementia was caused by two things, according to his doctor–lack of exercise and a degradation of his circulatory system caused by this lack of exercise combined with his smoking (up to two packs a day by the time he finally quit).

My Dad retired when he was 64-65. What did Dad do? He began watching the news daily for about 12-13 hours a day. Unfortunately, this caused his body to become even worse over time since his dementia kicked in about 4-5 years ago. I do not want to be where my Dad is right now. His short-term memory is gone. If my Mom asks him to go downstairs to put away groceries, by the time he is down the stairs, he can’t remember what she told him to do. This occurs throughout the day and causes her a lot of frustration.

He is also tired all of the time. He gets up around 9 am and is tired. He is falling asleep within an hour and naps throughout the afternoon. He is also a “sugarholic”. He has a full supply of Little Debby cookies, cupcakes, and other junk food in the basement. This is what he eats all night while watching TV.

This is my WHY. I do not want to become like this. I want to be healthy and have a good quality of life, for the rest of my life. Don’t get me wrong. I like the occasional sweet now and then. I enjoy a beer every once in a while. These things are ok as long as they are occasional.

My Dad’s situation is horrible. I retired early to help my Mom out with him. What is so horrible is that all of it could have been avoided, had he taken better care of himself. Vascular dementia is totally preventable with a good diet, plenty of sleep, and a regular exercise routine, regardless of age.

Well. That’s it for today folks. You now know my “why” for exercise. What is yours?

Reply here! I’d like to know what “why” drives you to the goals you have set.

Until next time…



Daily Ramblings – Workout Log – Upper Body


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Happy Saturday!

Today, I finally hit a peak on the Incline bench. I also started feeling some degradation of my form so some of my exercises will stay where they are next workout. I hope everyone is having a great Saturday! My sister is coming over to visit, so Netflix is turned on and ready.

Today’s workout:

Incline Barbell Bench Press warmup: 110×18; 130×12; 150×10

Working sets: 160×6; 180×6; 200×1 (need to back this down a bit next workout)

Barbell Curls: 65×6; 75×6; 85×6 (still strong increase)

Close Grip Bench Press: 135×6; 145×6; 155×6 (still strong increase)

Alternating Dumbbell Curl: 30×6; 35×6; 40×6 (started to feel it at 40×6, one more increase)

Triceps Pushdown: 72.5×6; 80×6; 87.5×6 (still strong increase)

Ab Circuit (All exercises are done once without rest, then the circuit starts again)

Crunch Machine 10-12 reps: 130×12; 140×12; 150×12 (still strong increase)

Ab Bench: x12; x12; x12 (same)

Hanging Leg Raise:  x12; x12; x12 (same)

I included notes on this workout so you can see how I progress and make decisions about what to do next workout. I hope this is helpful to some of you.

See you tomorrow!


Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Karen Casey – Incremental Progress


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Today’s quote:

“One part at a time, one day at a time, we can accomplish any goal we set for ourselves.” – Karen Casey

I like using weightlifting metaphors when discussing quotes like this. If you go to the gym and increase the weight you lift each time by 5-10 lbs, you can see how much weight you’ll be pushing by the end of the year. Realistically, this would be a difficult thing to do, as our bodies adjust to the increased stress and will plateau at various points.

Karen’s point is that if we just do a little bit of work towards our goals, we will achieve them. Some will take longer than others, but the results will be the same, provided you are taking the “right” actions to achieve your goals. Working out and then going home and drinking, smoking, and shoving your face full of junk food is counter-productive. You are literally working against yourself. This is just an example. I think you get the point.

I tend to set and work toward goals that are roughly 13 weeks. In 13 weeks I can read 3-4 books. In 13 weeks I can lose 13lbs or gain 13lbs. In 13 weeks I can write 91 pages. This is what incremental progression looks like and can produce as long as you carve out a little bit of time to achieve those daily goals that contribute to the weekly, quarterly and annual goals you set for yourself.

Take any goal you set. Break it down into easily accomplished tasks that will take roughly 13 weeks to accomplish and then figure out what you need to do each day to accomplish it. Here’s a quick walkthrough.

Let’s say I want to finish 3 books in 13 weeks. I figure out there are 40 chapters in all of the books I’ve identified. That’s roughly 1 chapter in each book per week. Now I take three days (Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday) and will read one book’s chapter on Saturday, another book’s chapter on Sunday, and another book’s chapter on Thursday. Easy right? After seeing how this exercise worked, is there any doubt in your mind that you would not be able to knock out all three books by the end of your 13-week goal period? No, as long as you stick to the plan, you’ll get there without any doubt.

You can do this with anything you are looking to accomplish. One piece of advice. There are some goals that will take you longer than 13 weeks obviously. In this case, you’ll have to break that goal down into smaller chunks, so that your “piece” of that goal can be accomplished in 13 weeks.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. I can help you with one of your goals if you need assistance.

Until next time…


Daily Ramblings – Workout Log


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Happy Friday!!

I just wanted to show you what elevating the weights in your workout routine looks like. This is typical for me because I tend to start light when I begin a new workout, just to get used to it. Remember this is your workout. You can do what you are comfortable with, substitute exercises for those that don’t work for you.

Leg day is always a good workout because your leg muscles are so big and suck up a lot of blood. I was literally drenched after the first warm-up exercise for squats. Here’s to leg day!!

Workouts below for your review, should you want to see how I elevate the weights as I move through a program.

Leg Day last week:

Squats warmup 95×6; 135×6

Working sets 185×6; 185×6; 185×6

Leg Press 298×6; 388×6; 478×6 (See how I used the second set here as my starting point this week)

Romanian Dead Lift 95×6; 115×6; 135×6 (See how I used the last weight as my beginning weight today)

Leg Press Calf Raise 110×9; 130×8; 135×8; 140×8; 145×8; 150×8

Today’s Workout

Squats warm-up 110×10;  160×10; 180×10

Working sets 200×6; 220×6; 240×6

Leg Press 388×6; 478×6; 568×6

Romanian Dead Lift 135×6; 155×6; 175×6

Leg Press Calf Raise 298×6; 298×6; 298×6; 298×6; 298×6; 298×6 (I stayed static on this one because I have a weak left calve muscle due to a back surgery)

I hope everyone has a great Friday!

See you tomorrow!


Daily Ramblings – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe – Applying Knowledge


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Today’s quote:

“Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.” – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

I love to learn new things, particularly things that help me pursue my goals. I enjoy learning a new workout routine, discovering a new supplement that may be helpful, or learning something about writing.

Learning these things is great, but why learn anything if I don’t use what I’ve learned. This is what Goethe is talking about. I would argue that learning is meaningless if we do not apply these things to our work.

With all of the information available to us, it is really hard sifting through what is true and what is crap. Subsequently, we have to filter what we use as a source when we learn something new. When I find some information online that could contribute to my work, I look at the source before reading it. Why would I take the word from someone just like me without any proof of their expertise?

When reading about writing, I enjoyed Stephen King’s book. He is a successful writer. He is credible. The advice he provides is worthwhile because he has demonstrated success in his field. When reading about managing my time, David Allen (author of Getting Things Done and creator of the GTD methodology) is a credible source. When reading about the character ethic, Dr. Stephen Covey, is by far the world’s expert.

Pay attention to what you use for your learning. There are a lot of posers out there. Research the person claiming their expertise. Have they been successful in their field? Are they offering advice in that field? If you want to learn about football, read a book by a professional football player. If you want to learn about investing, read books written by successful investors.

You get my point. Put some extra effort into the sources you learn from. These sources should demonstrate success in the field they are teaching about.

Thanks for reading!

Until next time…


Daily Ramblings – Workout Log – DAY OFF!!


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Happy Thursday!

Today I attended a free online writing seminar. Because it fell in the middle of the day, I took the day off in the gym today. I know, I know–you can’t believe it right?

This leads me to a discussion on taking a true REST day. Rest days are terrific because they allow your body to recover from the rigors of a weight training regimen. Weightlifting does a lot of damage to the muscles, nervous system, and so many other systems. It is purposeful so that the body grows during recovery.

I speak about this because working out can become an obsession. That’s ok, but really folks, take care of yourself. If today is too stacked with other items, take a day off. There is nothing wrong with taking some downtime to give yourself some extra time to heal.

When you take a rest day, pamper yourself. I take long showers. I read more than usual. I watch a show on Netflix. Whatever allows you to decompress–do it. It will benefit you more than you know when you get back at it in the gym.

That’s it for today.

I’ll see you tomorrow!



Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Karen Lamb – SMART Goal Setting


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Today’s Quote:

“A year from now you may wish you had started today.” – Karen Lamb

Regret. It is a bad feeling, particularly when you beat yourself up over it. Don’t. We make decisions. Sometimes they are bad. Sometimes they are good.

Learn from them. Make adjustments.

Goal Setting, pursuing goals, and all the rest is a personal preference. Start on those goals, but stick with those goals you can knock out in 90-100 days. If you have a big goal like getting a degree, that’s ok. Break this big goal down over each of these 90-day periods. Perhaps, your goal would be to get an A in your class.

Goals should cover a few areas. I like to focus on four key areas for my goals. Mental – learn something new; Physical – workout; Social – make new friends and network; Spiritual – read my Bible daily and meditate. To measure these I set specific goals that I can track. By setting a timetable, I try to set achievable goals that I can meet with effort in 13 weeks. If you haven’t heard about it, there’s a great acronym for goal setting. It’s called S M A R T.

  • Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
  • Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
  • Achievable (agreed, attainable).
  • Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
  • Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).

Bullets above are from https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/smart-goals.htm

Check this link out for more detail. Here’s an example for my Mental area.

I will read 3 non-fiction books by Feb 1, 2018, to learn more about writing novels. 

This goal is specific to learning (Mental), it is measurable (3 books is 3 books), it is achievable (reading a chapter a day), relevant to my future writing career, and time-bound (due on February 1, 2018). This is as simple as it gets. You can set these goals for any area of your life. Try this out. Start out simple. Maybe you can only pursue 1 goal for the next 13 weeks. Figure out the total amount of work you have to do and spread it out monthly, weekly, and daily. You’ll be amazed how much you can get done. You’ll also be amazed how quickly you’ll attain some of your goals with the right daily focus.

That’s it for today!

Until next time…




Daily Ramblings – Workout Log – Shoulders and Abs


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Today’s workout focused on Shoulders and Abs. As I’ve mentioned in previous postings, this new workout routine focuses on consistency and progressively heavier weights–this being the main focus. The premise is that with added strength comes more muscle, even though it may not be evident in the mirror.

Let’s talk about motivation. Motivation to work out has to come from within. You need to have a “why”. Why are you going to the gym? Are you looking to improve your body’s looks? Are you doing it for improved health? Find your true “why” and you will never miss a workout.

Obviously, this is easier said than done. Think about the various gyms out there. They make most of their profits from people who sign up and then never go. Interestingly, you will always see an upswing in attendance at the gym during the months of January – March. This is the time everyone’s New Year’s resolutions kick in. By March, these motivated lifters fizzle out and the gym’s population returns to normal. Why? Because the “why” they have internally is not strong enough to keep them going.

My “why” is simple. I want to have a good quality of life, for the rest of my life. I’m not concerned about aesthetics. I just want to feel good. This is my “why”. What is yours? If you are comfortable, reply to this posting with your “why”. I’d be interested in hearing it.

Today’s Workout:

Military Press

Warmup: 50×20; 70×15; 90×10

110×6; 130×6; 150×6

Side Lateral 25×6; 30×6; 35×6

Bent-over Rear Delt Raise 25×6; 30×6; 35×6

Circuit x3

Crunch Machine: 130×12; 140×12; 150

Hanging leg raise x15; x15; x15

AB crunch bench x15; x15; x15

As you can see, I elevated weights in all areas, except the side lateral. That will increase next workout. I also changed my ab routine. I like variety with the abs because the same exercises get boring. I’m sticking to the format, however. One weight exercise followed by two non-weighted exercises. The circuit involves doing exercises 1-3 without rest, then taking a 1-2 minute rest between circuits. By the third round, I’m pretty well wiped.

That’s it for today folks. Tomorrow is Leg Day!

See you then…


Daily Ramblings – Daily Quote – Joanne Bonomi – Goal Setting


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Today’s Quote:

“Goal Setting is the core of existence that defines life.” – Joanne Bonomi

There’s another quote that addresses this issue (author unknown). “You are either moving forward or moving backward.” Goals keep us engaged. Goals stretch our capabilities. Goals guide our days.

There are a lot of people who do not have any goals. There are others who are goal oriented. What is best? Personally, I think goal setting is a good practice. I only choose 3 things to pursue during a 13-week period. I started this practice when I picked up the BestSelf company’s journal.

I would like to pursue 4 goals the next time around because I am a firm believer in a balanced life. My articles on the mental, spiritual, physical, and social domains are part of my belief system. Subsequently, this next 13 weeks will focus on all four areas.

Mentally, I like reading to learn and be entertained. I will read at least 3 books during the next 13 weeks. Spiritually I enjoy meditation and will goal myself to meditate twice a day (morning and evening). My physical goal is to lose 11% body fat. I’m currently at 26% and would like to reduce down to 15%. Finally, I would like to pursue 100 more readers on this blog (Social). Wish me luck!!

These will be my goals starting in November, once I finish my current journal. I just received my new journal and will begin setting it up in the last week of October. I enjoy setting goals and achieving them. There is always a rush when a goal is checked off!

It is also recommended to make your goals public. They are above! To make this even more interesting (for me), I’ll begin tracking these goals and be updating my results with you on a weekly basis (Saturday when I post my weekly favorite Ted Talk).

Well, that’s it for today folks!

Until next time…


Daily Ramblings – Workout Log


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Hello, readers! Happy Tuesday!

If you do any type of research out there about fat loss, bodybuilding, and nutrition in general, you’ll discover as I have that there are so much conflicting information that it is really hard to figure out what is right. I’ll help you out. It’s all individual.

Your body will react to some supplements better than others. Your body will react to different kinds of workouts better. Your body will react to different diets better. Or your body will not react to these things. You have to get in the gym, examine your diet, get the core supplements and go from there. It really is this simple.

To lose weight you have to eat less than your body burns. To gain weight you have to eat more than it burns. Some of what is called a “caloric deficit” is caused by the exercise you do each day.

Now that I’ve said that, there are some great folks in the industry to at least try. The first person I would recommend is Dr. Jim Stoppani (www.jimstoppani.com). Another guy I would take a view of is Kris Gethin (www.kagedmuscle.com). There are others out there, but I would recommend starting with these two to begin your bodybuilding or transformation journey. They will both offer you some great advice and provide a good selection of workout routines to keep you busy.

Ok. Here’s today’s workout!

Back and Calves

T-Bar Rows:

Warm-up: 35×20; 45×12; 70×8

Working: 80×6; 90×6; 100×6

Seated Rows:  140×6; 160×6; 180×6

Close-Grip Lat Pulldown: 140×6; 160×6; 200×6

Barbell Shrug: 205×6; 255×6; 295×6

Leg Press Calve Presses: 208×6; 298×6; 348×6; 368×6;   388×6; 388×6

As you can see above, I again have more weight to add. Calves are in a holding pattern at 388lbs because my form was a little weak. I’ll stick with this for another week or so, but will be starting at 368lbs next workout as a warm-up set.

That’s it for today folks!

See you tomorrow!