Daily Ramblings – Motivation Monday – Taking Action

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“You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” – Rabindranath Tagore

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Action is the only way to achieve what you want in life. You can think about, pray about, or talk about the things you’d like to do, but action is the only way to change what you want to do into a result. I used to be a “think about” guy. I’d think, I’d think, and I’d think, but never achieved. You would think this was common sense, but it isn’t. There are all kinds of ways to avoid achieving something. Fear is big. The fear of failure has probably thwarted more people throughout history than any other reason I can think of.

The reason successful people win is that they fail more than anyone else. Each time they fail, they learn something. They gain wisdom. This is the advantage that comes to those that try. The more they try, the more they fail, the more they learn.

This week I’ll be focusing on my JavaScript course, my LPIP course from Centerpointe Research Institute, and my NLP course offered by Udemy. I’ll also continue revising and editing my book (3rd draft). Meditation and exercise will also be on my agenda for the week. Finally, my reading schedule. I’m reading two books on writing. Story Engineering, is one book I’m reading; the other is on outlining for non-fiction writing. What I am learning as I begin my writing career is the importance of pre-writing or sketching out a story, characters, world building, and the research that feeds these areas of a work. I learned the importance of outlining for any writing. It helps form more organized works and allows the author to flesh out their thoughts in an organized way.

I had a great weekend. I’m a huge advocate for video games. I continue to do my daily rituals, but my entertainment is video games and watching shows on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. On the weekends I recharge my batteries for the upcoming week. It’s great! This weekend we met with friends in Flint, Michigan at one of our favorite Thai Restaurants. The food is great, and the company was awesome. We do this monthly so we can stay in touch and enjoy some good food.

I enjoy having a balance of work and play. When I’m playing video games or watching a great show, it takes my mind off things I must do and gives the mind time to consolidate and reorganize itself. Some of my best ideas for writing or anything I am pursuing comes while I play a game or enjoy a good movie.

What do you do to relax? What do you do to recharge? What are your goals this week? What are you looking to achieve by week’s end?

I hope all of you have a great week!

Until next time…

Dave

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Daily Ramblings – Workout Routine – Shoulders

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AM:

Unilateral Cable Lateral Raises 3 x 10 (L) | 3 x 10 (R);

Dumbbell Front Raises 3 x 10;

Dumbbell Rear-Delt Flys 3 x 10;

Unilateral Cable Upright Rows 3 x 10 (L) | 3 x 10 (R);

Standing Calf Raises 3 x 20;

20-minutes Cardio Hill Program;

That’s it for today, folks!

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Workout Routine – Compound Sets

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I overslept!! Yeah; I woke up earlier than 6 am yesterday and turned off my alarm. Guess what I did? You guessed right. I forgot to reset my alarm for this morning. So instead of waking up at my usual 6 am, I woke up at 8ish. Oh, well.

I hit the gym this afternoon and knocked it out. Today I chose compound sets for my routine. Here’s today’s back, bicep, and abdominal workout:

PM:

Compound Set:

A compound set is a combination of exercises focusing on one body part. Mine today was on the back. I did 1 set of 10 for each exercise without rest and took my break for about 30 seconds after the three exercises. This is a great routine if you will use the same piece of equipment for all of your exercises.

  • Lat Pull Down
  • Behind the Neck Pull Down
  • Underhand Grip Pull Down

Neutral Grip Pull Down 3 x 10;

Bicep Preacher Curl Machine 1 x 100;

Rope Crunch 1 x 100;

20-minute Cardio Treadmill Hill Program;

That’s it for today, folks!

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Spiritual Saturday – The HU Chant

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Have you ever thought about meditation? There are many benefits to this practice, particularly the benefits of calm and focus. Another benefit is the simplicity of the act. You can close your eyes and meditate anywhere, provided you are comfortable and the place you choose is remote or away from noise.

Here are the basics:

  • Sit down or lay down on a bed or couch
  • Close your eyes
  • Focus on your breath (breathe in and breath out)

If you would like to use another technique to keep your focus you can chant silently to yourself or out loud, depending on where you are. If you chant, use the word HU. HU is an ancient name for God and pronounced like the word “hue”. Chant this word for whatever period you have available. I recommend 10 minutes for starters.

Chanting HU can help you in times of stress or trouble. Chanting HU is not religious. You can use the HU chant if you are Jewish, Christian, Muslim, or any other religion.

Try it. Many people, the world over, use the HU chant daily. I do this in the early morning, before I head to the gym. Other people I know do the HU chant during their lunch break or right before they go to bed. Start small. 10-20 minutes is all you need.

If you try this out or have questions, comment below.

Have a great Saturday folks!

Until next time…

Dave

 

 

Daily Ramblings – Funny Friday – Calvin and Hobbes

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“Reality continues to ruin my life.” – Bill Watterson, The Complete Calvin and Hobbes Collection Dictionary.com

If you have never read the comic, Calvin and Hobbes, it is a real treat. Calvin and Hobbes came on the scene in 1985 and ran until 1995. It was a great comic, and I looked forward to the paper, just to check in on their new adventures.

I hope this little quip from Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes creator, brightens your Friday.

 

Have a great Friday!

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Thankful Thursday

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To all my new followers this week—Thank you! It is always a treat to get a new follower. I hope you continue to enjoy the content here. I’ve recently posted my workout routines. This is a great diary for me to look back to. It is also a great way to get ideas on how you can start your own workouts. My philosophy about working out in the gym—GO! I don’t care if your form is perfect, your effort is maximal, or what your goals are. Just GO! This is 90% of the battle with an exercise routine—going. If you can get yourself to the gym at least 3-4 times a week, mixing in some weight work, cardio, and some stretching exercises, you’ll be fine.

I’m 55 and not interested in competing or becoming a bodybuilder. I want to move around and remain mentally sharp for the rest of my life. My Dad is my motivation. He neglected his physical activity since he retired and now is paying for it. My Mom is 75 years old and works out with weights 3 or 4 times a week. It is terrific. I use her to “shame” my young friends when they say they are too tired or too busy to workout.

I enjoy variety in my workouts. I like to keep altering what I do each day to keep up my interest level and avoid being bored. I hit all the major muscle groups during the week and goal myself to do at least 140 minutes of cardio each week. Today, I did a chest and triceps routine. I am so grateful for my health and my ability to go to the gym and push myself. I have friends who are diabetic or have an injury that prevents them from doing a lot of work in the gym.

Today, I am heading to the Chiropractor. I don’t really need one, but it is nice to do preventative maintenance on the back. I had a back surgery back in 2003 and wish I had taken better care of my spine. If you are afraid of getting your back “cracked”, do what I did and find yourself a “no-force” chiropractor. They are terrific. Mine helps me stretch out, uses various pressure points to ease inflamed nerves, and gives me guidance on what I should do with myself to ensure I aggravate nothing. One was to get new shoes. I picked up a pair a few weeks ago, and boy, what a difference. Trust me. Take care of your back now. Back surgery is no fun. It knocked me down for about 5 years, before I felt normal again.

I am grateful for my health and my ability to maintain my health in the gym and with other activities I work on during the week. I hope each of you follow my advice if you have not already begun a workout routine. It is not too late. Just start out slow and progress gradually. Always check with your health care practitioner to make sure you are ok to start a program. If you get approval, take it slow. Most gyms today offer an introduction program where you can use one of their trainers for free. These trainers will walk you through the gym to show you how to use their equipment. They are always available if you have a quick question about how to use something. Once you know how to use the equipment, start slow. Start with 3 sets of 10 reps on each machine you choose. I would recommend a basic split for your first routine. A split is how you break up the body during a workout week. You can split your routine over the days you want to go. If you will only go 3 times a week, you’ll want a routine that handles all the major muscle groups. Day 1 you could do chest, shoulders, and triceps. Day 2 you could exercise back and biceps. Day 3 you would do your legs and abs. Simple, but effective.

What are you grateful for today?

Until next time…

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Workout Routine

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AM:

Today, I mixed it up. I did 20 minutes of cardio on the treadmill, with leg and ab exercises.

Leg Press 3 x 20;

Leg Extension 3 x 20;

Seated Hamstring Curls 3 x 20;

Ab Crunches 3 x 20;

That’s it, folks! I’ll be in the gym tomorrow, bright and early.

See you at the finish line!

Dave

Daily Ramblings – Wisdom Wednesday – Living the Detached Life.

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“The root of suffering is attachment.”  – Buddha

I wanted to discuss the character trait of detachment today. Detachment is not a passive state of mind. Detachment doesn’t mean that you don’t care about achieving things or finishing projects. Detachment is a state of mind that does not rely on an idea, material item, or outside circumstances or person. Detachment allows a person to be free from desire. Following the Buddhist mindset, detachment frees us from suffering.

Think about how our reality is in constant flux. This flux means that your body, your possessions, your relationships, and even what you think you know today, will change. Anything that changes is, by definition, an illusion. Subsequently, if you attach yourself to things that will change, you are just asking for pain and suffering. David Allen, author of Getting Things Done provided one of the best explanations for this state of detachment. His statement about having a “… mind like water…” is the best explanation of a detached state. Think about that for a moment. Water does not overreact to anything. It reacts exactly enough to accommodate changes to its environment. When you throw a pebble into a pond, the pond accepts the pebble without over compensating to the entry of the pebble through the water’s surface tension. Once the pebble has passed through the water, it generates a wave that expands outward from the point of entry. This expansion is equal and consistent. Once the ripples dissipate, the water returns to its normal state. It accepts change, reacts just enough to accommodate the change, and then returns to its original state.

A mind like water can be the same as the pond. Something happens with your job, your health, a relationship, or something you depend on. It upsets you for a moment. Like the pond, you let your mind return to your state of calm. It takes time to develop this mentality, but if you realize that nothing is permanent in life and accept this premise, life smooths out. The changes come but they do not adversely affect you as much. You react like anyone does when a loss comes. You are angry, upset, sad, for a time, but that time period is much shorter than someone who has not achieved this state of mind—the detached mind. You enjoy what you have when you have it, but when it goes away, you remain grateful.

When you pursue something, enjoy achieving a goal, we can use the same mindset. You enjoy the victory for a moment but realize that it is time to pursue another goal. The pursuit provides meaning in our lives. It gives us something to work toward. It is the time during the pursuit where the growth happens. We learn a new skill; we learn a new discipline; we learn a new way of solving problems. This we can carry with us for the rest of our lives.

Attachment causes suffering. It sets us up for failure because whatever you own, including your own body will atrophy and fade away. To avoid this, remember who and what you are. You are not the body. You are not the mind. You are a soul. Notice the wording. I did not say it is your soul. That would signify that your body owns a soul. That is not true. The soul uses a body. No one owns or possesses a soul. You are soul and it has a body for its use during this lifetime. This may take a while to wrap your mind around, because using the phrase: “my soul or your soul” is so common in today’s society.

If you can accept this idea—that you are soul—your life will smooth out. You will lose your attachment to your body, your mind, your possessions, your job, your friends and relatives. You will lose your attachment to an ideology. None of these things will last. You are only “using” them while you are here. When you pass away, die, or what I call translating, you merely move to a different state of consciousness. Your body doesn’t come with you. Your possessions don’t come with you. Your relatives don’t come with you. You leave your money, your toys, and your loved ones at some point. So, enjoy these things while you have them. There’s nothing wrong with being grateful for what you have now. Detachment will relieve a great deal of pain, when these things inevitably go away. A detached state of mind knows of our fleeting existence here. It knows that nothing is permanent. It expects nothing. It accepts the blessings that are present and strives for the sake of striving, because the striving is where the experience, learning, and growth are. Whatever happens, because of this striving, is not of concern.

Well, I’ve given you a lot to think about. Try getting your mind wrapped around some points I’ve made here. You’ll find that your life will take on a new meaning and you will be ok when things you depended on go away. (They all will at some point).

Until next time…

Dave