Posted by: Street | February 5, 2013

Go Opposite

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One of the most basic, yet profound things that i have observed in learning and reading and witnessing successful people in various avenues of life is one thing. every single one of them has gone the opposite direction of everyone around them. i hope this is a paradigm shift for those who read this (as much as it was for me) as a way to view others, your own personal actions, and how you view this special gift we have called life. 

anyone who has done anything great has gone against the grain. has swam against the current. has taken the road less traveled. I think we all inherently know this fundamental concept of why some people end up leaving a legacy on this planet after they leave, while others have been given much and did nothing and are filled with regret. I’ve recently read about the sins of commission and the sins of omission. The sins of commission are the actions in our lives that we’ve taken that we aren’t proud of and wish we could have a “do over.” The sins of omission are the actions or risks (otherwise known as opportunities) that we should have taken that we simply passed on or were to scared to pursue. They are the dreams that we have had in our hearts, but never took them seriously enough. There are countless studies and countless accounts of people at the end of their lives, and guess what the common theme is when they reflect upon their existence on this planet? They wish they would have done more with their lives. They wish they would taken more risks. They wish they would not have lived such a monotonous existence. They wish they would have impacted more people’s lives. They wish they would have lived, loved, and chased dreams. In the words of Mark Batterson, “They would have chased more lions.”

So, if all we have to do is go opposite, let me paint a few scenarios to think about what everyone else does and let your mind think of ways to go opposite. The word “everyone” is used liberally in this exercise…..so don’t take offense sensitive sally.

1) Everyone watches TV nightly
2) everyone spends $11.50/day on unhealthy convenience food
3) Everyone goes to a standard J.O.B (just over broke)
4) everyone drinks pop
5) everyone uses profanity constantly
6) everyone spent hours on fantasy football this season
7) everyone stopped reading mind-expanding books when they completed school
8) everyone was never taught about finances
9) everyone was taught about management
10) everyone stays up too late
11) everyone is airing their dirty laundry on social media
12) everyone is complaining about their circumstances
13) everyone is overweight
14) everyone doesn’t exercise enough (5 days/week for 30 min, minimum)
15) everyone is in debt
16) everyone is unhappy at their current place of work

Choose to go opposite in at least one category and watch what happens. 

-Street

Posted by: Street | February 5, 2013

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Posted by: Street | January 20, 2013

Point Counters

ccfoods

I’m all about efficiency. if i have 30 minutes to workout, i’m doing what gives me the best bang for my buck. If i’m a person that is going to be on the road a lot, i’m driving a prius. If i’m going to try to get into the best shape of my life, i’m going to try and do it fast, not slow. now, don’t confuse any of that with a lack of effort.

Per the title of this blog post and the nature of this site in general, it should be no surprise that this topic is health related. I would argue that all things in life are health related, which is why achievement in this area of life spills over to every other area. that being said, on to the point counting. This may work for some people, and if it does, more power to you, but it is not efficient; furthermore, in most cases it doesn’t teach a lifestyle change. america is fat. You can’t argue that (can you say “poet and didn’t know it!”). America is lazy, no question. so why does counting points fail most of the time? Without even mentioning the shortcomings of the actual counting, if america is lazy, do we really expect people to take the extra time and effort to count their points? I think you know the answer to this one.

Say you are one heckuva point counter; why is it flawed?….Oh boy, where to begin…how about here:

My lovely bride has the gift of patience. I certainly do not. on the flip side, she has the misfortune of working in an “office space” environment. You ladies that are reading this will know exactly what I’m referring to as i explain this situation. My wife has a new story from nearly every day at work about the women counting their points. She listens to them as they talk about how they are skipping their meals to save up for a dinner date at leann chin’s later that night. Or better yet, how they ate and drank too much over the weekend, so now they again are skipping meals to conserve points (do you see a vicious cycle here?). to not be outdone, they eat “zero point foods” such as fruits and veggies (which are great, don’t get me wrong) but they hold off on eating lean protein sources because they are “point foods.” I’m trying really hard to not bang my head against the wall as i type this.

Re-read the above paragraph if you are a point counter, and for the love of God share this post with the fellow point counter you know. This is very flawed, and it troubles me to see others struggle with this system. I don’t do much personal training anymore, but of the hundreds of folks that I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to help, by far and away counting points was the most common method they’ve used in the past to lose weight. Was it effective? in some cases for a short time it was. But, guess what led them to search for a trainer? Again, I think you know the answer to this one.

In basic terms here is why this doesn’t work for most people.

  1. They will skip meals to indulge on other things
  2. Skimping on protein is a serious mistake
  3. Going from a big marshmallow to a small marshmallow isn’t what people are looking for.
  4. Skipping meals and not eating enough protein is a great way to lose a few pounds, much of which is going to be lean muscle mass. guess what happens to your metabolism when you lose muscle mass?
  5. Most point counters don’t exercise or strength train. don’t even get me started on this one. blog for a later date ;)

If you are looking for efficiency and eating habits for life-long results, learn about these habits here and begin incorporating one new habit per week. To make sure you aren’t being delusional with your fat loss avoid these delusional habits.
Fat loss and results can come quickly and stay for a lifetime. Just make sure you don’t kid yourself. Seek wisdom and always, always, consider the source. The best point counter that you know probably is not your best source of information.

- Street 

Posted by: Street | January 18, 2013

Are You the Butt of the Joke?

Head & Shoulders shampoo.

 

I’ve used this lame joke from time to time, but i’ll share it with you anyways. You are likely also wondering why i’d use a picture of a head and shoulders bottle as well. don’t quote me on this, but this may be an original joke!

So here’s how you set up the joke:

You: Man, he/she must use head and shoulders
Person: Why do you say that?
You: cuz he/she sure is flaky!

Wakawakawaka!

Be sure to follow that up with “and then i found $5 dollars.” Because you may end up getting crickets!!

That lame joke brings me to the point of this blog post. Being a man of your word. a more politically correct version, “being a person of your word.” lack of commitment is so prevalent today that it’s quite depressing if you dwell on it. when someone says yes to something, it’s so easy nowadays to text the person quickly with a “hey, i’m not feeling very good so I can’t make it.” or, “i got caught up at work so I won’t be able to make the workout.” or, “hey my dog just farted and it stinks so I can’t make it.” It even says in the bible: “simply let your Yes be yes and your no be no, anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

I don’t know about you, but i want to be known as a man who does what he said he was going to do. in fact, the more you simply do what you say you are going to do the more you’ll achieve in life. think about the constant state of failure one remains in when they say one thing, and then do the other. they will be referred to as flaky, a hypocrite, and your credibility is shot. my closest friends and family know that this is a value that i place very high on my list. why? because it demonstrate integrity and character of an individual. Those are the people that we should surround ourselves with because they make us better, they are more enjoyable to be around, and you can trust them.

don’t let the head and shoulders joke be at your expense.

- Street

Posted by: Street | January 2, 2013

Things that just worked for me in 2012

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First of all, this is not a pat on my back or to say that I’m an expert at making positive changes in other’s lives. All i am about to share is what drastically changed things for me in 2012 and could potentially set the sail for a new course in your life for 201

  1. I spent more hours reading books than watching TV: Input equals output. if you fill your mind with nonsense, negativity, and gossip, guess what’s coming out of you? If you fill your mind with uplifting words, education, personal development, and leadership material, guess what’s coming out of you?
  2. I gave up drinking: Outside of the formal “toast” at a wedding, I did not have a single drink in 2012. Many of you will say that i have lost my mind, but i have never felt more clear headed and more directed than I do now. I honestly did not miss it whatsoever. I missed some friends initially because our relationships revolved around alcohol and partying, but if all a relationship does is revolve around drinking and partying and a relationship dwindles because alcohol was no longer involved, it wasn’t much of a relationship in the first place. Friends should sharpen you and make you better, not the opposite.
  3. I found purpose and meaning: when you find purpose and meaning for your life, rather than just going through the motions, what other people think and say no longer has an impact on you. so often people are driven by what other people may think of them. Always, always, consider the source when worrying about what other people may think.
  4. I paid close attention to my associations: You are the average of the people you spend the most time with. We even earn like them. I’m not saying ditch your friends, what I’m saying is lift your friends up where you want to go in life. Do not, i repeat, do not let them drag you down so that you don’t make them feel insecure when they are around you.
  5. I took actionGod would not put hopes and dreams in your heart and soul if he didn’t also equip you with the tools necessary to achieve them. Oftentimes we simply sit on the fence of a good idea or a good opportunity. Fences weren’t designed to sat on, so get off. Remember, god feeds the birds every morning, but he doesn’t put the worms in the bird’s nests! You have to go after your good idea or opportunity. You have develop yourself to get better. A hope or a dream without action is about the saddest thing I have witnessed in my short time on this earth. I dare everyone to think big and dream big and then go after the hopes and dreams that god placed inside you.
 
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
 
- Street
Posted by: Street | December 21, 2011

The Law of Diminishing Intent

I can’t think of a better topic to write about as we are in the peak of our Holiday Season. This is the time of year we celebrate the birth of JC, give thanks to all that we have, and we reflect on our priorities and do our darndest to get them in proper alignment for the upcoming New Year. So what separates those who are successful with their resolutions from those that aren’t?

It’s called the LAW OF DIMINISHING INTENT

 Those that are successful act on their goals for the new year. Those that want to get healthier and more fit start working out and eating better. Those that want to help others acheive their dreams find a vehicle that allows them to do that. Those that want to earn more income take action towards ways in doing that. Those that want to re-allocate their money and find ways in which they can save or spend better do just that. Those that want to work on themselves and develop themselves personally turn off the TV and use their time more effectively, those that want to spend more time with family find ways in which they are misspending their time or discover avenues in which they can be at home more than at work, and the list of scenarios can go on and on and on. So, what’s the underlying constant in each of the scenarios listed and any other scenario you can fathom? The answer lies within taking action with the first 24-48 hours of making the decision to change.  Those that fail to take action within that time frame drastically reduce their chances of being successful with the respective change they are trying to accomplish. Quite simply, they become the definition of the Law of Diminishing Intent.

I am a huge fan of quotes because they provide so much perspective and wisdom in a short amount of words. These are a few that can become principles in which to guide you towards a brighter 2012 than 2011. I know they surely worked for me.

“I believe that wisdom, when harnessed over time, leads ordinary people in incredible directions.”
 
“Principle of direction: It is the direction, not the well intention, that determines your destination”…. Andy Andrews

“Significance is not possible unless what we do contributes to the welfare of others”

“Man’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.” -Oliver Wendell Holmes

“The most successful people are those who are good at Plan B.”  -James Yorke

“Choice, not circumstances, determine your success.”
 
As a Christian, this one cut to my very soul and challenged me to be a much better Christian and if you are also a Christian, it will challenge you also:
 
“Does the devil know the scriptures better than you?”

Happy Holidays to you all and most importantly, Merry Christmas. Enjoy the time with loved ones, the fellowship, and even all the goodies (yes, I said it!). Take a moment, on Christmas Eve, to take in the silent night and remember why we celebrate this holiday.

God Bless you all this Holiday Season,

Brandon LaRue (aka “Street”)

www.LEANandDREAM.com

When working amongst a very knowledgeable Sports Chiropractor, we oftentimes converse about some of the pieces of gym equipment and why they even exist. For most people, the machines tend to be where most people’s comfort zones are perhaps because of the Nautilus movement in the 80’s? Or was it the 70’s? Someone more experienced in age may be able to help with that one. Like most things in the last 30-40 years, exercise and strength training has evolved, so venture away from these machines and take a more functional approach to your exercise program.

What to avoid:                                                                    What to do as an alternative:

  1. The Leg Press Machine                                          1.    DB Goblet Squat

                                               

   2.   The Leg Extension Machine                                    2.    DB Split Squat

                                                

  3.    The Leg curl machine                                              3.    SB Hip Extensions

                                            

  4.    The Hip Abduction (inner/outer thigh) machine          4.    Band Walks

                                                

  5.    Torso Rotation machine                                          5.    Band/Cable Anti-Rotation Hold

                                            

  6.    Pec Deck                                                             6.    Pushups 

                                              

  7.    Abdominal Crunch Machine                                   7.    Straight Legged Sit-up

                               

  8.    Back Extension Machine                                      8.    DB Stiff Legged Deadlift

                                                     

 

Start putting your plan together now so that you can get your body functioning at its best.

 

Brandon

www.LEANandDREAM.com

Sperm carrying fat

In a world where people have never been more aware of the benefits/necessity of being healthy and physically fit, the trends of Obesity and childhood Obesity continue to rise. I believe everyone inherently knows the basic formula of how to get on the right track, but there is an inherent (dare I say genetic) failure to act in our society. We pride ourselves on working hard and becoming someone of status in our careers and income, yet we neglect the fact that without your health, vitality, energy, and the physical capacity to do stuff, none of that career and income stuff matters. I’ve seen far too many people that I have worked with that became so involved in the rat race of life, trying to keep up with the Jones, that they wound up obese, on medication, in marital dissaray, and more often than not, their kids are obese as well. I’m already seeing this occur with many of the people I know in my age bracket, as I’m sure you do as well. This is a multi-dimensional topic, from the rat race, to being worn out, to neglecting one’s health, which leads to neglecting your children’s health and your grandchildren’s health. What a massive interrelated responsibility we have to take care of ourselves and our future family! As dark as this may sound, the bright news is that it’s reversible. There is much research out there showing nutrition, exercise (in particular strength training), and supplementation aiding in reversing these “genetic switches” and ridding yourself of the “obesity gene.” 

Here is a paragraph from a book (The Man in the Mirror by Patrick Morley) I’m reading right now that seems to fit perfectly with this blog’s intended message:

“The most lasting satisfaction of life is in our relationships, so why are we trading them in for careers with companies that will drop us like hot potatoes if we miss our quota? Our standard of living must be measured more than one dimension.”

Here comes the tough questions to swallow if you are that person in the above paragraph, or if you see yourself on a similar path. 

  1. What if the way I eat and exercise affects the genes (i.e. fat sperm) I give my offspring?
  2. What if the way I eat during my pregnancy affects the health of my fetus and the future health of my child?

    Is this really what you'd want your fetus feeding on?

According to Dr. Carl Keen, who is one of the most highly cited nutritional researchers in the world, Nutrition can have a huge impact on the growth and development of children. Great nutrition for children starts in the womb. Nutrients must travel from the mother to the developing baby, and the supply (or lack) of nutrients can have a life-long impact on the health and well-being of children.

For the past 25 years, my colleagues and I at the University of California, Davis have studied the relationship between nutrition and development. Exciting new discoveries linking good nutrition to improved fetal growth and development helps result in better pregnancies and may boost child health and potentially even their intelligence. Click HERE for the entire article.

Does it really take science to reveal this phenomenon? Or, can it be as simple as being observant of this phenomenon? I challenge you to break the cycle that may exist in your family. Break the cycle of your future family. Break the cycle for your own health and fitness.

In the end, lasting relationships and leaving a lasting legacy for your family is what I believe strongly as a great philosophy in attacking life. These things can only be accomplished when one is healthy and balanced. 

Make these changes a priority in 2012, heck it’s 2011 still, do it now!

-Street

www.LEANandDREAM.com

Posted by: Street | November 18, 2011

This works, try it.

This is a 100 pound replica of fat.....multiply this by 10.

Collectively, our amazing team has been able to literally reach out and touch hundreds of lives and help improve the quality of their lives, their workouts, and ultimately their health. If you want to see a health and fitness game plan that works and has led to well over 1,000 pounds of fat loss leaving people much leaner and meaner? Check a sample day from this plan:

Wake Up: Pre-breakfast Metabolic Fuel* and Muscle Food

Breakfast:  Perfect Breakfast with all necessary Gap Fillers*

Workout Routine:

  • Fuel Up
  • Foam Roll/Stretch/Warm-Up – 15 minutes
  • Strength training – 30 minutes (6 exercises/3 sets/ 8-12 reps/60 second rest periods/superset exercises)
  • Conditioning for Fat Loss – 14 minutes (30 seconds : 90 seconds x 7 rounds) i.e. KB Swings/Squat Jumps/MB Slams/Jump Rope
  • Recovery

Pre-Lunch Fuel: Metabolic Fuel*

Lunch: Joseph’s Flax Wrap with Turkey, Hummus, spinach. Bottle of Water. Apple. Cup of Raw Veggies (Hummus for dip)

Snack: Tuna w/Sweet Relish

Dinner: Chicken Breast with quinoa mixed with Broccoli/Cauliflower/Carrots w/Fish Oil

Snack: Protein Shake w/1 scoop Natural Peanut Butter (or other nut butter)

* All terms followed with asterisk (*) are the same product and part of 1 day’s serving

There it is, a sample workout day that has worked for hundreds of people. Do this workout day 3-4 times per week and see what happens. The non-workout days, eat in a similar fashion, just add a snack in where the workout is on the workout day.

Have  a great Thanksgiving! Lose a couple before you gain a couple. Then lose a few more before you gain a couple at Christmas. Win this season. Decide to take control.  Decide to put on fat or lose it.

Street

www.streetsmartfitness.com

www.leananddream.com

Posted by: Street | November 2, 2011

The Slight Edge

I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by many wise people, from whom I’ve learned much about life, purpose, and just some great nuggets of wisdom. While some may not refer to this as a principle, I believe that it is. It is called the The Principle of the Slight Edge. The reason why I refer to it as a principle is because it applies everywhere and is always true no matter the circumstances and ultimately it will always govern an outcome.  There are many aspects of the principle of the slight edge; for me, the terms that come to mind that associate well with this principle are discipline, consistency, ambition, attitude, and responsibility to name a few. In Street’s terms, The Principle of the Slight Edge can be defined as “doing something that you don’t necessarily enjoy doing consistently enough to develop a habit that leads to long term success.” Sounds pretty universal right? Like I usually do, let’s dive a little deeper in relate this to some common issues in our world today. Let’s not kid ourselves (which is a weak one-liner for Lipitor) I’m going to talk about health, fitness, and something new…finances.

The Principle of the Slight Edge with Finances:

Issue: You say that your finances are tight, work at a job you don’t enjoy, and are stuck in a dead end position.

Slight Edge solution #1: Stop eating out for lunch everyday to save some cash (could save $2,600 annually) to free up some cash flow for “outside of the box” thinking and options with your saved $$.

Slight Edge solution #2: Quit wasting time watching your favorite sitcom at night and re-allocate that time into the best investment you can ever make! Invest in your personal development and leadership qualities by reading good books. Imagine the new outlook and wisdom one could accumulate with over 200 hours of reading in a year! This is a guaranteed life-changing slight edge solution for the dead end position at work.

The Principle of the Slight Edge with Exercise:

Issue: We’ve all used it and hear it constantly: “I don’t have time to work out.”

Slight Edge Solution: Workout 20 minutes per day. This amounts to 140 minutes per week, which equals to 121 hours per year of working out! Something as simple as running for 10 minutes in the morning and doing 5 rounds of bodyweight squats, pushups, planks, and dumbbell rows in a mini-circuit will produce major results, but the slight edge only works when this is followed consistently. We all have enough time to do this; it is a matter of choice.

The Principle of the Slight Edge with Nutrition

The issue: I used to be able to eat whatever I wanted, but now I’ve let myself go and feel like I’m too far gone to do anything about it.

Slight Edge solution #1: Stop drinking pop and replace it with a healthier, more effective version of an energy drink if you need some extra energy, or drink just plain old H2O! Being properly hydrated can do wonders for your weight management and energy levels. Assuming that one drinks two pops per day (and we’ll use Mt. Dew as an example because it seems to be the most popular) eliminating 2 pops would equate to 96 grams of sugar per day. This accumulates to 35,040 grams of sugar per year! That is equal to 77.2 lbs of sugar per year. Can you imagine the slight edge solution could have here!  

Slight edge solution #2: Take your $5 footlong (the lowest calorie sandwich I found was 480 calories) and replace it with a convenient, more cost effective meal replacment shake that is a perfectly balanced meal, and only 220 calories. Let’s do the math on that over the course of a 260 day work-year. 

480 cal – 220 cal = 260 calories saved per day X 260 days = 67,600 calories saved per year. Since it takes 3,500 calorie reduction to lose a pound, let’s do the math on what that could mean over the course of 260 days.

67,600 calories / 3,500 calories/pound = 19.31 pounds of weight loss!

And, how about the money you save in the process! $5 foot long – $3 meal replacement shake = $2 of savings X 260 days = $520!

I hope the point made in today’s post paints a clear picture of what the Slight Edge Principle is all about and how it can be universally applied to any area of your life that you’d like to lead down the path towards success. Success isn’t a stroke of luck or found in a lottery ticket, it’s a decision. Take action and have some discipline to follow through.

Stay strong,

Street

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