Thursday, May 22, 2014

The day I decided...

Laying in bed, unable to find comfort as no position brings relief.  Sleep…  you take it as it comes.  You find yourself breaking down.  You’re worn out…  You’re in pain.

But you have to get up…  

You have a life to live.

I’m not gonna sugar coat it…  Chronic Pain is Hell and the rehabilitation process is no better.

Living with that pain day in and day out takes a toll on your physical and mental health.  There are days you will wake up and not want to move… hell, there will be days when you wish you were dead.  I am here to tell you no matter the difficulty, there is always hope.


Several years ago I woke up on the floor of my apartment with the worst headache of my life.  I sat up and wiped the dried vomit from my cheek, a month’s worth of thrown-up pills were plastered to the hardwood beside me.  My stomach was in knots and my body ached.  I knew I was still alive because my back still hurt and my left leg was still atrophied. 

In the days leading up to that, I had lost hope…  my life was fucked and the pain had become too much. I was broke, friendless, and the world was closing in.  I was an athlete who had lost the ability to do the things I loved.  I was watching my body fail and falter.  In my darkest hour, I only saw one way out.

I survived.

As I stumbled around I thought of how many people like me were out there, who had lost hope, who were in pain.  In that time I did something that few people do in their lifetime…  I decided who I was and who I was going to be.    

This was do, or die.  I would reclaim my life at any cost or die trying.  I would be an example to others of what they could achieve if they push though their struggle with pain and injury.

At the time I wasn’t getting treatment for my injury; my doctors were quacks, the insurance system was broken, and my legal team was working against me.  I decided then, Instead of accepting things I could not change… that I would change the things I could not accept. 

Through hard work and perseverance within a matter of a few months I was getting the surgery I needed and put back on the road to health.  I was reclaiming my life.  It took 3 more years of therapy and pushing through the pain, but I had reclaimed my life.  I was stronger and fitter that I had ever been in my life.  I had educated myself on the human body and had become a certified trainer.  I still dealt with chronic pain, but had learned to focus on other more important things in life.  I began to work closely with the physical therapists that had helped me keep pushing for years and teaching others how to cope the same as me.

The key to living with pain is not trying to find pain relief, it is finding a reason to live…  a purpose in life.

I want you to take a moment and tell yourself “I am here for a reason.”  Tell yourself “I am the only one who can fulfill that purpose and I will not leave this life without doing so.  Nothing will stand in my way…  no pain, no adversaries, no obstacles will stop me.”

It is time to decide who you are.   

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

What's Stopping You?

When I meet people in my office for the first time, I ask them one simple question, “what has stopped you from reaching your weight loss goals?”.  Most often the response is “It just costs too much to eat healthy and pay for training”

They just lied to themselves…

It is because of a lack of self-discipline.

What if I told you that for around $50 a week, you could feed yourself (and possibly your spouse or small family) a perfectly healthy set of meals 3 times a day with some snacks, lose weight?  What if I told you it would only take 30 minutes to prepare those meals a few times each week?  Guess what, plenty of people who are busier than you ever will be do it.  Here is how.

Learn to prep meals multiple days at a time!
1: Have a meal plan.  Plan the week ahead and stick to it.  Plan to prepare your meals in advance so you aren't spending 30 minutes every night cooking.  Remember, most of the time you can prepare 2-3 days worth of meals and store them in the same time it takes you to do 1 meal.  Take the time and research diets and educate yourself on what is healthy and unhealthy.  Remember, ignorance is not a valid excuse.

Tupperware is your friend!

2: Buy healthy foods.  Stick with Lean Protein, Veggies, Fruits, Nuts & Seeds.  Depending on your goals, some starches and dairy may be acceptable.  Avoid things with added sugar and high salt.  While eating healthy food from the store is a little more expensive than going and getting a Fast Food Burger every night, the healthy food pays off in the long run. 

There are 4 servings of each side dish in this picture...
all fresh, all healthy, under $5 total.

3:  Have a designated shopping day with a list.  Stick to the list…   If your list has things like “cookies” on it, tear up the list and start again.

4: Learn to cook.  If you fail at cooking, get over it and get on the internet.  There are plenty of “how to” videos on Youtube showing you how to cook food.
Healthy Meals like this can be easily prepared for around $3
and be from Kitchen to Table in 30 minutes.

5: Learn to not make excuses.  If you falter on your diet or training regiment, it is your fault... not your boss's, not your kids, not your spouse, not the junk food manufacturer...  it is all on you.  Take some responsibility for yourself.

In the end it comes down to one thing...  don't waste time thinking about why something cannot be done.  Take control, and do what needs to be done!