Posted by michael stanwyck : Tuesday, Feb 21, 2012
Have you ever found yourself worrying about some little thing you wish were different about your body -- chicken legs, 5 extra pounds where they don't belong, frizzy hair that you can't control no matter what -- only to find yourself, in that moment, standing right in front of someone who really faces a physical challenge in life. A paraplegic, someone in a wheelchair, or, well, whatever...you imagine the one that really gets to you. And you catch yourself, breathe a sigh of relief and ask, "who am I to complain? That could be me. I have so much to be thankful for."
It's a huge eye opener, right? Well what if I told you that you had it all wrong?
You got in that moment that your life is good. But your life isn't good by comparison, your life is good! Believe me, until you get that, you will always find another comparison that puts you right back where you started. Your life isn't good or bad because of what isn't. You life is good because of what is.
Only you are you. There is no comparison. No one else is a more perfect you! Isn't that amazing? You are not a McNugget or an iPad. There is no factory pumping out exact replicas of you. YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE. There will never be another person like you who offers your gifts and your incredibly unique perspective to the world.
There are more amazing things in your life that you can be grateful for than you could ever list. I dare you -- try. You will find new ones every day, every hour even. And not just the big things, like a great job or a new car. The little things, like the whales you caught a glimpse of off of the coast or the tree that grows right outside of your window. Like the neighbor who always smiles and says hello or the old friend from high school who never forgets your birthday. Like hot cocoa with marshmallows or someone scratching your back when it really itches.
If you have chicken legs, 5 extra pounds or frizzy hair, your life is good. If you have no legs or are in a wheelchair, your life is good. You get to say, moment by moment, if everything is perfect exactly the way that it is. Try looking every day for what you are grateful for rather than for what is "wrong." What is "wrong" will always be there, I promise. You won't forget it if you leave off of it for a while.
I take it back. Practice gratitude for long enough and you may actually forget that there was ever anything wrong.
Tell me in comments, what are you grateful for right now?
Posted by Andy Petranek : Tuesday, Feb 21, 2012
Well if you're anything like me, you've discovered just how much sugar invades the food in your everyday life. I've found something new pretty much every day of the past week... finding little things in so many unassuming places: chicken stock, sausage, bacon, spice rubs (I got half way into my burger last night and realized that not looking at the container cost me a point), unsweetened ice tea, salad dressing, peanut butter, etc.
And this is just the tip of the iceberg... I don't eat processed foods... the sugar there is simply out of control. In fact, at the rate we're going, by 2606 the US diet will be 100% sugar... well, at least that's what it extrapolates to if you look at the graph over the past 100 years (check out Stephan Guyenet's Whole Health Source blog). In 1822 we were consuming 6.3 pounds/person/year of sugar, and in 2010, 107.7 - an 18 fold increase! Getting the sugar out of your diet can be one of the most important and empowering health decisions / commitments you make - ever! So I say, OUT with the sugar!
What foods have you found that surprised you that they contain sugar and that you've eliminated from your diet for the Whole Life Challenge?
8 min rest
4 min rest
2 min rest
Posted by Andy Petranek : Saturday, Feb 18, 2012
Adding intensity to your workouts and reducing their duration can have significant, positive effects in your results. But don't take my word for it... read How 1-Minute Intervals Can Improve Your Health. And if you really want to know for yourself, test it out. Try replacing some of your medium distance runs for a month or two with short, intense intervals. But don't forget that for athletic performance in a distance race, getting miles under your belt and time on your dogs is still important, especially if you're training for anything longer than 10k.
Skill Work (20 min):
Ring Inversions: inverted hang, skin the cat, front lever, back lever
21-15-9-15-21 rep rounds for time of:
Knees to Elbows
Jumping Lunges (2 count)
Posted by michael stanwyck : Friday, Feb 17, 2012
I've written here before about my tumultuous relationship with running. I go through phases where I love it and phases where I most definitely hate it. This Saturday, after the prelims for the Whole Life Challenge, I went home only to realize that not having participated in the prelims, I still had to get my workout in. Not being at the gym and not really being in the head-space for anything intense, I decided to make my first day of the Whole Life Challenge an active recovery day and go for a short, relaxed 10-minute run.
The moment my feet hit the pavement, something amazing happened. I felt free. I flew. There was no timer going and I was simply enjoying the afternoon, the sun, my health and my ability to use my body. I noticed something that the Whole Life Challenge awakens in me; something about the mindset that I entered when the challenge began. It's beyond competition, it's not about intensity, it has nothing to do with CrossFit. It's my life and how health and fitness fits into it. It's a simple, natural love of health. The pure enjoyment of having the physical ability to take advantage of what life has to offer. My humanity expressed through movement. That to me is worth the whole challenge. And it was day 1.
Has the Whole Life Challenge opened any new perspectives for you?
100 KB Swings for time (24/16)
Posted by Becca Borawski : Thursday, Feb 16, 2012
There are lots of things you can give for Valentine's Day - chocolates, candies, roses, dinners, champagne, jewelry...but do any of those truly celebrate your love? Do they make a difference in the quality of life you and your loved one have together?
Don't get me wrong. I love presents. Anyone who knows me knows I get giddy at the mere existence of them. But when I think about the best gift a loved one could give me, I think of one word - time. Time on this earth. I'd trade all the roses and chocolates for more time.
And while a million different things could happen in any given day, there are things we can do to increase our time. We can eat right, sleep plenty, and exercise regularly.
So, this Valentine's enjoy your chocolates, your desserts, and your wine. But think about the best gift you could possibly give your friends, family, and significant other - YOU for as long as possible.
- 3 muscle ups
- 6 burpees
- 9 push ups
- 18 squats
- 3 muscle ups
- 6 burpees
Posted by Andy Petranek : Wednesday, Feb 15, 2012
In an age of Smartphones, it seems so "old fashioned" to use a pen and a notebook to keep track of your daily habits. I say this, however, if it works, and you USE it, I don't care how old fashioned it is. I have found that since my phone is on me pretty much all the time, that I want a way to see and check-off the things that I do on a daily basis... ESPECIALLY those things that we're tracking in the Whole Life Challenge.
I'm writing this post because I'd really like to hear from all of you. I've posted before about the iPhone apps that I use... Way of Life, Waterlogged, and Evernote. But I'd really like to hear from all of you... what systems do you use? Do you have a little spiral notebook? A daily checklist? An excel spreadsheet? Do you call your personal assistant and have him/her keep track? Come on... don't be shy... we all can use some innovative or simple ideas to help us stay conscious. Yes, you might be helping your 'competition' in the Whole Life Challenge, but the spirit of the Challenge is really about us ALL moving forward together, one small step at a time. Share away...
Skill Work (20 min):
Lunge to handstand,
Donkey Kicks to Handstand,
Cartwheel to HS
Three rounds for time of:
21 Thrusters (95/65)