Keep Pedaling

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As I was on my morning bike ride, I came across this sign. I’ve seen it thousands of times during my lifetime, but today it was speaking to my heart. As I was training for my next triathlon, I was praying about getting through a current rough patch of life. Nothing serious, but aggravating none the less.

As I saw this sign God reminded me that any trouble we experience has a limited lifespan. In short, it will eventually end. Like the road project in your city that may seem like it will never end, it will eventually end. The question God asked me within my heart was this “What will you do during that portion of “Road Work”? “Complain, Doubt, Quit? Or will you keep pedaling”?

I answered that I would keep pedaling because it would eventually end, and I want to enter the “Good Section” of road right on time and not a minute behind. No matter what you are going through today, Keep Pedaling. Happy 4th everyone.

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Diet Tip #2

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I now have lost over 41 pounds since I started my diet on Dec 14th. For me the Paleo, low carb way of eating has been the best thing I have ever discovered for losing weight. I believe I am converted to the Paleo way of life. I don’t miss bread, sugar, dairy or fast food.

There are all kinds of diets you can choose from, some healthy and some crazy. I am focusing some of these tips over the next few months on little things that I am learning in my own process. That brings me to tip #2

Diet Tip #2 Deny By Serving

Last week I had my sales team over for an annual dinner we have to celebrate this past year in sales. When I do these dinners I make sure that my team, which is fairly large, has plenty of food to eat. This year I had a caterer provide us with a great BBQ meal. On top of that we had a huge selection of cheeses and fruit to snack on before the meal. All together it was a wonderful meal for everyone but a potential trap for me. You see in the past I would really go overboard with the food while trying to be the best host possible. This year I found a secret to maintaining my discipline while at the same time being a great host.

The secret I found was this; Don’t choose to deny yourself, choose to serve others. Really, as hard as that may seem possible, the more I focused on others having a good time, the less I focused on me. In fact I served ribs to people and even poured wine for some, all the while not having any for myself. The whole night I only ate a chicken breast and some green beans with a small salad. I stayed right on my program  the entire night and felt fabulous the next morning when I woke up.

The next time you have or you’re at an event that you feel might cause you to stumble, choose to be the person that is serving everyone else. It’s amazing how it gives you a different perspective on everything and the power to say no to yourself.

Have a great weekend!

Coach Don

Diet Tip #1

 

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I have now lost over 36 pounds since I started my diet on Dec 14th. I started this journey at 286 pounds and now I am approaching 249 pounds. This is the most successful I have ever been on getting a hold on being healthy and losing weight. I am learning a lot about obtaining real victory in this area of my life. It’s been a battle I have fought for years! I will be sharing some things I am learning from my experience over the next few months as I head to my goal of being 205 pounds.

Tip #1

Quit trying to start when it’s most convenient

I started my journey two weeks before Christmas on December 14th. I had everything from Christmas Parties to College Football Game Cookouts on the calendar before me. Everything told me to wait until the holidays were over but something said if you don’t start now everything from Pro Football Games to Valentine’s Day will keep you skipping until you are back to this time next year.

We choose convenience when we should choose commitment.

I would love to tell you how I got the strength to make the choice to start then but I really can’t. All I can tell you is that I made the choice and it actually gave me strength as I won the wrestling match with my own will.

Now flash forward to January 27th and I feel invincible. Bring on the Super Bowl, Valentines Day, Daytona 500 and all the other events that would wreck me. You see when I made that choice and won that first battle it gave me strength and that strength was multiplied again as I won again. Nothing makes you as strong as one victory! It leads to other victories.

Diet tip #1 is quit trying to choose when it’s most convenient. If you’re going on a cruise this week it might make the most sense to wait until you’re back home, but if you get the strength to just say no to all the bad stuff and eat leaner while you’re floating in the sea, when you get home you will have a head start to really get into it and win this battle for good.

Champions don’t wait for the battle to be convenient

I will be praying for you today!

Coach Don

 

A New Begining

This post is just to update everyone that follows this blog that I am continuing to work on changing my life in these areas.

  1. Lose Weight
  2. Finish My First Book
  3. Pursue The Destiny God Has For Me

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I started on December the 14th to focus on just one thing. To lose weight! A good friend had come into town and I didn’t even recognize him. He had lost over 60lbs. I asked him how he had did it and he shared the following with me.

The Perfect Diet

  • Eat Paleo. There are all kinds of website you can read to learn how you can eat like a “Caveman” or a “Hunter”. I recommend this one Paleo Diet if you can’t find one. Remember even as you look at this sight there is flexibility.
  • Eat a Low Calorie, Low Carb Diet.  in the beginning. For my size, I began at 6ft 285 lbs, I needed to stay at between 1300 to 1500 calories every day and keep my carbs under 30 net carbs a day.
  • Eat Organic. From organic fruits and vegetables to grass feed beef and butter, Organic is better!
  • Drink a lot of Water! I am drinking half my body weight in water everyday. Yes, I go the bathroom a lot but honestly I have been living a dehydrated life for years. This one change has made all the difference.
  • Healthy oils make up 70% of my daily calories. From Olive Oil, to nuts to Avocado. Healthy fats need to be the largest part of this lifestyle.
  • Coconut oil. While there may not be any miracle foods that can do everything, I can tell you that Coconut Oil is a close as you can get to finding one that can change your health. Just read online or listen to what Dr Oz says about it. Coconut Oil Dr. Oz
  • Reset my body by being on a ketogenic Diet. Truly burning fat while eating healthy organic food is causing my body to use my own fat to run my body. I recommend this website to learn more. Ketogenic Diet

I have lost 21 pounds in four weeks eating this way, but the most exciting thing is that I have learned that I can eat this way for the rest of my life. Sure, I will add more healthy carbs in later on. but I am loving this food. In short I do not feel deprived. No more insulin spikes and out of control hunger at night before bed. I have replaced bad carbs with things like nuts and Coconut oil. The healthy fats keep me satisfied and keep me from having the hunger cravings that sent me into another bag of chips at 10pm.

I am getting back to my weekly blog next week. I hope this has encouraged someone to make this year the year that you change something in your life. Please feel free to comment and for those that respond that want to make changes this year, I will add you to my prayer list.

Blessings,

Coach Don

Are You A Stalled Dreamer? How you can overcome the trap of unfinished goals!

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Have you ever planned out your week by setting goals to eventually see those goals stall out or get derailed? If that sounds familiar to you then you may be part of the group that I like to call Stalled Dreamers”. To be fully honest with you, I find myself in that group more often then I would like to be.

Many times It just seems that I start each month or week out with a list of clearly written goals that looks somewhat like a list of directions on how to bake a boxed cake mix. They seem simple, clear and obtainable but somewhere I find my goals end up as a half baked cake that is missing some key ingredients. On paper it should work but something gets missed or left out along the way.

The difficulty with setting and missing goals over and over again is that you can get “Goal Fatigued”. When your journal or notepad starts looking like the same list repeated over and over again with little result you can get discouraged. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think we should resign from goal setting just because we have failed or fallen short of meeting our own expectations. I just think there might be a better way of seeing our goals become reality.

To really understand what is happening to our well planned goals and why they may stall out, let’s look at the places most goal setters fail.

  1. They Set Too Many Goals. Have you ever listed everything you currently wanted to change or do in your life, to only find in the end that you made very little progress except for the list? This is common for most goal setters as they have to learn which goal or goals they should concentrate on first. They miss the power of finishing one goal and that slowly eats away at the excitement of making progress. I am really bad at this that as I find myself trying to do too many things at once. In fact I am trying to read two or three books at this very moment. If you add to that the issue that when I get bored with one goal, then I am going to bounce to another goal. The more I bounce, the less I finish.
  2. Their Goals Are Too Big. You have done it again, you have gone and set your sights on the goal of trying to climb Mt Everest once again. The last time you set this goal you spent hours researching it and even marked a date on your calendar. All that work just to wake up to the knowledge that you didn’t do it. But this time will be different! You are inspired and ready to focus one of the biggest things on your lifelong bucket list. While that is probably not you, are their goals you have set that are just a little extreme or hard? The problem that we all have in goal setting is that we want to set the goal on what inspires us the most. We do that when many times what we need to do is set simpler goals that can ultimately move us closer to those bigger goals. Everyone started working out after the movie “Rocky” came out in the Seventies, but only a few continued to live the dream of being in the shape that Rocky Balboa was in. Have the big goals in mind, but plan with smaller goals that will move you closer and closer to where you want to be. “Momentum is built by one small movement repeated over and over again”. Also “Little wins can really add up into big victories”. 
  3. Their Goals Get Interrupted. Simply put this is what derails most of my personal goal setting ventures. Life is going to happen and what we do when life happens will really determine what we will eventually do with the plan we’ve made. The car breaks down and the next thing you know you have missed a week of workouts. You get the flu and now it’s been two weeks since you worked on writing your book. Clearly you must give room for the interruptions that are unavoidable and for those that really matter, like going to your daughter’s dance recital. But there are those interruptions, like looking at facebook every ten minutes or surfing the internet, that are not always necessary. You must decide which ones count and which ones don’t. Lastly if you want to get to your goal despite the interruptions you can’t or don’t want to avoid, then you must do something! Even if you only workout at home for fifteen minutes or write for only ten minutes in your book, the action will keep you from stalling out.

Happy Goal Setting

Coach Don Newman

How to pick your battles? The real secret to setting and achieving goals!

 

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Over time I have discovered that setting and achieving goals is not a to do list, but rather a personal decision to enter into a battle. That’s right, I said battle. Most of the times those battles I am talking about are solely with myself and my own will, but there are times it involves others or outside obstacles.

Today, if you have things in your life that you want to change, you will have to decide between doing something or doing nothing. That decision alone will be your very first battle on the way to your victory.

If setting and achieving goals is like going to war or entering a battle, then the question we must all ask is “How do I choose my battles or how do I plan my attack? Here are some points to consider in helping you to decide what you should attack first. I call it the LAP Method.

LIST

List everything that you want or need to do.  Your battle plan has to begin as a list and for some people the courage to even write the list is the very first battle. Think of this list as your “Declaration of Independence” or your “Articles of War.” Research consistently proves over and over again that those who write their goals down have a much greater chance of achieving them.

ASK

Ask great questions. Every great General will ask lots of questions before they enter into a battle. Once you have declared your goals you will need to ask questions to develop your battle plan. Here are just a few questions you should ask…

  • Are your goals achievable? Simple question to ask yourself to make sure they are really achievable. No one goes to battle without first counting the cost and making sure they can win. Fighting for your marriage or life is different from trying to become the center for the Orlando Magic. Some battles you are going to engage in no matter what the outcome is.
  • Is there one goal or “Battle” you must choose first? “Sometimes it’s not about you choosing the battle simply because the battle is choosing you.” Is there a battle that you must fight first before you can engage in other campaigns? I remember when I was trying to get hired a State Trooper and the only thing blocking me was my weight. I had to lose several pounds or I was not going to get hired. That goal easily became my first battle.
  • Which goal are you most passionate about? Sometimes it is easy to pick your first battle because there is one clear objective that matters most. You might think it would be fun to travel or learn a new language, but if your heart burns for starting a ministry for homeless people then you can easily choose your first battle. You will always battle harder and longer for something that you really want and desire.
  • Are there any similarities in any of your goals? Look to see if you can group any into a common category. If you want to lose weight, start an exercise program, then you can move them all into one campaign titled “Getting Healthy”. After you have put them into groups you will need to ask yourself which group is most important? Once you know that answer then you will need to develop your battle plan.
  • Are there any “Hidden Snipers”? It could be the food in your refrigerator or the late night show you watch every night that keeps you from being able to get up early to write or train. No matter what it is, it just keeps causing you to fail. If there are any, get rid of them and eliminate them!

PLAN & PROCEED

Start with a plan and then start your plan. Once you have a list of what is most important, whether that is one single goal or a category, it’s time to think like a General. It’s time to look at the objective and make a plan of attack and then it’s time to attack. Here are three keys on how to make a plan that will move you forward.

  1. Start with the easiest objective first. If your goal is to get healthy and run a marathon then you should maybe start with just buying your running shoes. Win the border battles before you try to attack the center of the city.
  2. Measure your progress. General’s have maps to track the progress of any battle. You see them on almost every movie that involves a war. You should make your own map so that you can map your progress and see the results as they happen.
  3. Move from strength to strength. Win one city and then win the next. Break your goals into smaller goals that you can win and secure.
  4. Celebrate every step of success. It is important that you stay in the battle for what you want. Celebration is a big key to keeping yourself motivated.

If you know it’s time to go to war and start taking territory that belongs to your dreams and destiny, I encourage you to begin with your own list, your own declaration of war. Go ahead and make the choice and watch what God can do when you get fully committed to moving forward.

Blessings,

Coach Don Newman

365to: Round Two!

Photo credit: Tyler Neinhouse
Photo Credit: Tyler Neinhouse
Today I kickoff my next round of blogging. I took a little time off after I hit my 50th birthday to reflect and just focus on things that needed my attention. I am now focused on my next year-long journey, leading up to my 51st birthday in September of 2014! I’ve discovered that so much can get done in the span of a year when I live intentionally. 

This year I have four goals that I am focused on.
1. Finish my novel “The Family Tree” and begin my second book.
2. Continuing to work on getting healthy by losing weight and eating better.
3. Having a year where I purposefully focus on choosing my words wisely.
4. Reading 12 new books I haven’t read before. I will provide reviews on this blog.
5. Having set times of silence and solitude so that I can deepen my ability to reflect and hear God’s voice better.
I plan on sharing more about these five things, and what I learn as I focus on how to actually accomplish these goals over the next year. I encourage you to follow along, and tell me about your goals, dreams, and you how are accomplishing them as well!
What landmarks or milestones are you trying to live intentionally for? Tell me below!