Friday, January 08, 2016

Training - "We are creatures of habit. We are products of our environment. We are the average of the people we associate most with."

1/8 - bench, chins, pushups, speed bag, stretch
1/7 - stretch
1/6 - deadlift, hanging knee raise, back xt, stretch
1/5 - shadowbox, stretch

 Nerd Fitness: "“Well I told myself I wanted to run more and eat better, and I was motivated for a few weeks, but then life got busy and it kind of faded away. Oops” Sound familiar?

...Motivation can get you started, and that’s great! I don’t care what gets you started or how you got here, just that you’re here. Remember, Rule #1 of the Rebellion is “We don’t care where you came from, only where you’re going.” But motivation wanes, and inspiration fades quickly when life kicks in. If you are going to succeed this year, there are three truths that you NEED to learn immediately before we move onto anything else: We are creatures of habit. We are products of our environment. We are the average of the people we associate most with. To accomplish things this year, you need to build systems that deliver success. Systems take willpower out of the picture and set you up for success by routine: Instead of always trying to remember where you put your keys, you hang a nail by your door and always hang your keys up when you walk in the door. Instead of trying to summon the willpower to cook healthy food each night, you cook five meals on Sunday to quickly reheat daily. Instead of having to remember to follow up with people a month from now, you set up google calendar reminder to do it for you, automatically. Systems don’t rely on motivation, willpower, or inspiration to operate once they’re set up. They are emotion-free. Systems make your default behavior: “I’m going to do this [awesome] thing.” Want to actually get things done? Screw motivation, manufacture discipline...

So, what’s a nerd to do? Take control and alter your environment to remove the Dark Side from the equation. Build systems that automate healthy behavior. Out of sight, out of mind. It’s tough to fall back on old habits when those old habits are literally impossible to continue doing. We call this Building Your Batcave at Nerd Fitness: Just like Bruce Wayne uses his Batcave to improve his chances of being a better Batman and protecting Gotham, you are going to build your batcave to improve your chances at being more awesome at life.

Step 1: Increase the steps between you and a bad habit you’re trying to get rid of. This is just like the above examples – make it harder to do the old habit. Changes that fight your old habits might include: Throwing out all junk food in your house. Blocking time wasting websites on your computer. Canceling your cable and Netflix (after you’ve watched Daredevil and Jessica Jones). Putting your TV in your closet. Giving the power cord to your Playstation 4 to your friend. Putting your alarm clock across the room so you have to get out of bed to turn it off. Moving your cell phone charger out of your bedroom so you can’t lie in bed and check it. Step 2: Decrease the steps between you and a good habit you’re trying to build. The fewer the steps, the greater the chance you’ll actually do it. Examples include: Only stocking your fridge with healthy food. Sleeping in your workout clothes. Packing your gym bag and leaving it in the back of your car always so you can work out before work/after work. Buy a Kindle with books loaded on it and bring it everywhere so you read more. Put the instrument you’re learning in the middle of your living room. Changing the language on Facebook to the language you’re trying to learn so you’re always practicing. Remember, screw willpower. Don’t leave it up to the whims of inspiration or motivation. Create your own success by structuring your life and building your batcave so your life is a system designed to change for the better."

How to Build a Batcave for Habit Change | Nerd Fitness: "There are probably two places you spend most of your time: Your home Your office/cubicle/lab/spaceship The objects in these environments craft your behavior far more than you realize.  Your brain is constantly taking stock of what’s around you and what you do when you see those things: If you see a vending machine, your brain might think, “I get snacks here.” If you see candy on a desk, your brain might say “I get a sugar rush here.” When you see your comfy couch and giant TV, your brain might say “I get hours of entertainment here.” If these are decisions you’ve made dozens and dozens of times, your brain has to do minimal work to make those connections. Now, compare these mindless activities with a new habit you want to build, or getting rid of a bad habit: If you want to go for a run when you get home from work you need to come home (after you’ve used up all of your willpower at work), walk past that comfy couch, Grand Theft Auto V, AND your refrigerator (FOOD! HAPPY!).  Then you have to walk into your bedroom, take off your work clothes, put on your workout clothes, lace up your shoes, and then walk past all of those amazing distractions all over again. If you want to cook a healthy meal you need to drive past Burger King, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Jack-n-the-Box, Pizza Hut, Arby’s, and Chik-Fil-A just to get to the grocery store. Then you must walk past the cookie aisle, grab vegetables and chicken, come home (while avoiding the in-home traps above) and set aside time to actually cook! If you want to stop checking Facebook, Twitter, ESPN, Gmail and other sites 25 times a day you need to try and force your brain to say “I will focus on the task at hand.”  This is essentially the equivalent of trying to type a report on a laptop while sitting in the middle of Times Square...

Here are some other of my favorite examples from a few of my friends: Derek Halpern lost 25 pounds by putting his scale in front of his Refrigerator.  Every time he went to the fridge to get a soda, he saw the scale, remembered he was trying to lose weight, and chose to drink water instead. James Clear started flossing by buying floss picks and put them in the middle of his bathroom counter, telling himself he only had to floss 1 tooth. Tyler Stanton stopped watching TV by putting his TV in his closet. If he wanted to watch a show, he had to carry the tv out of the closet, plug it in, set up the cable box, etc.  95% of the time, he’d say “Screw it, I’ll do anything else.” 

Want to run every morning? Sleep in your running clothes! Put your alarm clock across the room, with your shoes right next to it.  Make the alarm as ANNOYING as possible. Want to exercise after work?  Pack your gym bag the night before and leave it by your front door so you never forget it going to work.  Don’t give yourself the option to come home before going to work out. Play too many video games? Unplug your system.  Add ONE step between you and 14 hours of GTA V, Skyrim, or League of Legends.  Yes, video games rule, but it’s important to not forget the real life video game we’re all playing together. Tired of stuffing your face with junk food?  Get it out of your house. Throw it all away.  It’s a lot tougher to binge on crappy food when it’s 9 PM and your only options are healthy things."

Dennis Quaid, 61.  No Excuses.

How Star Wars Made Me a Better Person | Nerd Fitness: "In the book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, the #1 regret voiced by those on their deathbeds, having the ability to look back at what they had done or not done in their lives, is that they wished they’d had the courage to live lives true to themselves, as opposed to the lives others expected of them. Let that sink in for a moment. These are not philosophical or hypothetical ponderings, but rather real-life reflections from people who know they’re down to their last quarter in the arcade, so to speak. These people didn’t live the lives they wanted to live; they felt a call to adventure or a call to a path that challenged and fulfilled them, and yet refused the call because they didn’t want to ruffle any feathers or were scared of what that path might reveal. They were the Lukes who never left home. They chose the easy, safe, non-conflicting path; a life that others expected them to live, and they would give anything now for an extra life to try again and take the more adventurous route. Until we develop time machines, older folks at the end of their lives will never have the luxury of trying again, but you can certainly learn from the wisdom of their words...

Start with this: stop thinking of what others want for you, and instead start asking what you want for yourself. Regardless of where you are now, you have a choice. No matter how old you are, or far down a path you think you might be, you can always turn back or change course. Whether or not you realize it, YOU ALWAYS HAVE A CHOICE.

You might be overweight and in a job you hate and a relationship that sucks, simply because you’re worried that this is the best it’s going to get. Or that you should be thankful in this economy. Choose to take care of yourself and live the life you feel you deserve. And you deserve better. I promise you. You might think you’re too old for adventure. That you’re too out of shape to ever do the things you want to do. That you’re too far down a career path to ever change, even though it stopped being fulfilling a decade ago. Be honest with yourself. What’s the life you really want? What’s the choice you need to make? Yep, there will be consequences either way, but you always have a choice. may be years of bad habits holding you back. It may be an addiction. It may be an unfulfilling career, a failed or unhappy relationship, overdue bills, medication, or depression. Yours may be mental… physical… professional… or personal. And the faces of the Dark Side are always evolving. The Sith, the Empire, the First Order… you may have several hurdles to overcome on your adventure. This is a labyrinth, not a sprint. If Han Solo taught me anything, it’s where ever you are now, how far down a certain path you might be, you can redeem yourself and find a way to succeed, just never listen to the odds."

7 Ways to Slow Down Your Perception of Time | Mark's Daily Apple: "I’m committed to living well over living long. I’ll take a long life, but I’m more interested in compressing my morbidity—the end-of-life inability to take care of oneself and appreciate the good things this world offers. If a long life means being hooked up to life support for the last ten years, I’ll pass."

5 Ways to Instantly Become More Productive | Nerd Fitness: "Just because you CAN do eight things at once doesn’t mean you SHOULD do eight things at once. I used to pride myself on multi-tasking, and being REALLY good at it. Little did I know (or want to admit) that multi-tasking makes you suck at everything. We have a finite amount of awesome in our brain.  Every time we have to shift back and forth between tasks, we use up some of that awesome to get back on target.  Because we’re constantly changing our focus – from writing or problem solving, to email reading and gchat conversing – we never get good at the thing we really need to do. There’s a simple solution: STOP MULTI-TASKING. "

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