Responsibility 199, what is it?

Responsibility 199 is a belief; I believe that to be healthy and to increase my longevity I need to weigh 199 pounds or less...
Responsibility 199 is a need; I need to reduce my weight, reduce my percentage of body fat, and the elevated threat of disease my present condition presents...
Responsibility 199 is a mission; I recognize that achieving 199 will be a challenge, perhaps the hardest I have ever undertaken...
Responsibility 199 is a commitment; I acknowledge that I must commit to action, commit to change, commit to myself and those I love to achieve this mission, to increase my longevity...
Responsibility 199 is ME.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Day 409 - Adorable Blog Award

Back to work we go. Well, right after publishing this post that is. Hope all had a great holiday weekend. We enjoyed ours here. Saturday was our daughter's high school graduation, Sunday got in a couple of miles just before we we're treated to a monsoon of a thunderstorm, and yesterday we got in 4 miles before settling in to clean our rifles while the ribs got busy in the smoker. Good times...
How was your holiday weekend?

Karen over at Waisting Time gave me a blog award last week, The Adorable Blog Award. Very kind of her to do so. Not often I get called adorable so this is a rare treat for me. Kittens are adorable, so my wife says. But I'd rather be adored than have another cat in the house to adore; we have four, that is enough.

Rules of the Award
*Thank the person who gave you this award, and link back to them in your post.
*Tell us 10 things about yourself.
*Nominate your bloggers.
*Contact these bloggers, and let them know they received this award.

Ten things about me huh, lets see here; completely random and rapid-fire here I go....
1. Tomatoes, I love Tomatoes!
2. I grilled corn in the husk yesterday, husking corn is not fun; I'd rather have grilled Tomatoes.
3. Saw the Hangover Part 2 last week, Sick, Twisted and Hilarious; glad I went.
4. It has been at least a year and likely closer to two since I have had a real hangover.
5. Stacey Dash is trending on Twitter right now, I have no idea who that is.
6. If I were 18 again, I would not be in such a hurry to grow up.
7. I am hoping the Boston Bruins beat the Vancouver Canucks in the Stanley Cup Finals.
8. Frisbee, I never found throwing a frisbee to be enjoyable.
9. Zippers or Velcro; I am old school, give me a zipper!
10. Something I never understood, How is it that Willie Wonka is so skinny?

It has been a while since I have received/passed on a blog award. Let me pass on the fun to the following...
Ewa from Trail To Wellness
Tim from Fat Boy Thin
Sarah from not An Effing Diet
Floriana from Sugarless Diet
MandaPanda from Candland To Bandland
Carrie from Family Fitness Food
Christine from Phoenix Revolution

And I could go on and on for sure as I adore all of you who blog for fun, for fitness, for sanity, for insanity. By all means check out those I have linked to here, you wont be sorry.

Have an Adorable Day!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Day 407-408: Memorial Day

A Happy Memorial Day to one and all

Today most of us will go about our days, or lives, as we do just about every day. Many will engage in a variety of holiday activities, taking advantage of the day off of work, and enjoying the day with friends & family. And we should, for that is just what those who gave the ultimate sacrifice fought & died for; that we may live free and enjoy each day as we choose.

Part of the Memorial Day holiday in the USA includes a call for "The National Moment of Remembrance" which encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day for a minute of silence to remember and honor those who have died in service to the nation.

I welcome all from all nations to join me in observing The National Moment of Remembrance with me.

Enjoy the day!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Day 406 - Graduation Day 4 Squishy

Her High School days are just hours away from coming to an end.

It won't be long and we'll pack into the field house where she will receive her diploma.

With diploma in hand she'll have a couple of months to chill with her friends before its off to college.

From there, who knows, whatever she aspires awaits her.

Congratulations Ashley!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Day 405 - Driving In Public

My wife and I carpool to work 3-4 times a week since our employers are not too far apart & in the same direction from home. We do this to hang out a few minutes more each day and sure, we also do it curb the cost of gas since it is insane.

Usually she drives when we carpool since she works a bit further from home than I do. This has allowed me a tremendous opportunity to look out the windows and take in the sights in greater detail than when I am behind the wheel. Now the sights between home & work are nothing noteworthy and nor do they change from day to day. Well with one exception, our fellow motorists who we share the road with.

It amazes me that many of our fellow motorists do not realize that we can see through the glass they are behind. It is as if they do not realize they are driving in public. Just this past week alone I witnessed the following…

A driver reading a romance novel at 30+ mph (Must have been the juicy part!)

A driver lighting up a cigarette with both hands off the wheel at 60+ mph (Driving into a telephone pole would be a faster less painful way to go!)

A driver stopped at a stop sign picking his nose, turn his head to realize I was watching him pick away, then turn his head and keep on picking (Two words; Tinted Windows!)

A passenger changing a kids diaper in the front seat, meaning the car seat was in the back seat, at a red light; light turned green before the changing was complete and off they went (Not fit to be parents!)

A dash board with a bucket of KFC wedged under the rear view mirror, the driver chewing on a drum-stick with one hand while the other hand held a biscuit and the steering wheel at 30+ mph (Fried chicken, now that’s gutsy!)

A dog in the lap of a driver at 50+ mph, the dog was a Great Dane (or maybe the driver was in the dogs lap?)

A driver trimming his finger nails at a stop sign with a knife (at least he was stopped)

A driver applying a ketchup packet to a burger at 20+ mph (ketchup on a burger, yuck!)

A police officer eating a churro while walking up to a car she had just pulled over (I love churros!)

Whatever you do today, this weekend, be safe people!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Day 404 - Leadership 199 / Trait 8 of 14: Integrity

Lived the words I've been sharing yesterday. Took initiative to make yesterday a great day and accomplished that. Early in the day I informed my son to be dressed to go to the YMCA after school, I picked him up and there we went. We decided to kick up the intensity a notch, something I could tell he wasn't sure of. Heck I was apprehensive too, but I knew I could leverage the power of my courage to get it done. In the end we endured a 60 minute session in the free weight room and then polished off the workout with 2 miles of walk/jog combo on the treadmill. Yesterday was an Oh Yeah day!

Onward we carry ourselves into a new day. With us we carry the lessons we've learned which we can revisit at will via these links...
Leadership 199 / Trait 7 of 14: Initiative
Leadership 199 / Trait 6 of 14: Enthusiasm
Leadership 199 / Trait 5 of 14: Endurance
Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness
Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

We're halfway through this series, which means we have lots of learning to do yet. Therefore, let us plunge into the power of our eighth trait…

Leadership 199 / Trait 8 of 14: Integrity

Defined: Uprightness of character and soundness of moral principles; includes the qualities of truthfulness and honesty.

Discovered: Let us start in on understanding this trait by visiting this definition backwards. Honesty, is something I will go out on a limb and proclaim that everyone acknowledges that honesty is a trait any leader must possess. No? I agree with my proclamation, I have to else I've been dishonest here; yet while I agree I will tell you now that honesty is not one of the 14 leadership traits.

What? How can that be you say? Look back up at the list above of the traits we've discussed thus far. Take a moment, I'll be right here when you scroll back down... I know, if only scrolling burned measurable calories. OK, having revisited those traits let us ask ourselves this question; Can any of those traits be successfully put into practice if we are not first honest with ourselves in choosing to lead with them?

Leadership is not something we can take on half-hearted. "Do or do not... there is no try", as Master Yoda would say. In short, if we are not honest in our endeavors, either with ourselves or with others, we will not succeed at them in the end.

Living with integrity is certainly dependent upon be honest. But integrity is not just about being honest.

Character, you don't have to know a person for very long to know whether there character is righteous or otherwise. Righteous meaning to be committed to doing what they believe to be right, right by themselves and others.  It is one thing to want what is right, another to do what is right. If our character is to do what is right, we are leading with integrity.

Morals, ah discussion/debate on morality sure can be a sticky-wicket. So lets limit our thought here to what it is about our morals that is essential to leading ourselves to success. To decide what we want to succeed at we first have to know what we want or who we want to be. Or more specifically, how do we want to live? If we can answer that question and come away with an answer gives us a clear picture of how we want to look and why, how we want to conduct yourself and why; we then know where our morals should be set to lead with integrity and succeed.

Da-Point: If we are honest, if we believe our mission to be right and are willing stand up for it's purpose; then we are leading with integrity.

When did you last take time to truly know your character, your moral code?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Day 403 - Leadership 199 / Trait 7 of 14: Initiative

I sincerely hope all are brimming with enthusiasm after yesterdays post. My engine was stoked red hot from the moment I hit the 'publish-post' button until I hit the bed last night. In between I knocked out a great day at work and got in 4.1 miles of walking cardio.

Lets get another great day off the ground with another leadership trait. Links to those we've covered thus far...
Leadership 199 / Trait 6 of 14: Enthusiasm
Leadership 199 / Trait 5 of 14: Endurance
Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness
Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Our seventh trait…

Leadership 199 / Trait 7 of 14: Initiative

Defined: Taking action in the absence of orders.

Discovered: The word that sticks out like a sore thumb in that definition is "orders". Seems a bit strong in reference to getting healthy, losing weight, as nobody is ever there truly ordering us to do what needs doing. Yet, we receive help, encouragement, validation from others for our intentions and efforts. Some of that input we seek, some comes uninvited.

The context we need to apply to the word "orders" here is this; orders are nothing more than our plan to get healthy. However we've decided to do it, e.g. weight watchers, px90, canned physician/nutritionist program, surgery, sacrificing the neighbors pet to the goddess of six-pack abs; whatever it is our plan is the orders we've chosen to follow.

While "orders" sticks out like a sore thumb, it is the word "absence" that we need to notice.

We have our plan, we have all of that input from others, we have opportunity and the means to seize it all around us. The only thing that is absent now, is our taking action. We will only seize that which we want if WE take action...
if WE take those inputs from others we depend on and take action to filter them for what will help/work for us...
if WE believe in our plan so much that we enthusiastically put it into action...
if WE respect fear, embrace courage, and dare to take action to achieve victory...
if WE take "action"; while "orders" sticks out like a sore thumb, and "absence" needs to be noticed, "action" needs to be our result.

At the start, middle, and beginning of each day, it is up to US to take action, or choose inaction. No matter how loud our plan, our inputs, our opportunities, NO MATTER how loud they scream at us to get up and take action; it is YOU/I that must take the initiative to take action to make this day a better day than yesterday. This week better than last week, month, year, etc. until we have achieved our goals. Then we can take a celebratory breath before we seek new goals to act upon.

Da-Point: Achieving what you want starts and ends with you taking action to get it.

I said this on twitter yesterday, I am sure someone else authored it but I do not know who to give credit to; "We get old too fast and get smart too late in life; use each day to feel young & grow wise"

Initiative, what are we waiting for?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Day 402 - Leadership 199 / Trait 6 of 14: Enthusiasm

Good Morning everyone. Hope Monday was a great day. If not, then you get to try again for greatness today.

Over the past couple of weeks we've been diving into the leadership traits we need to embrace to successfully lead ourselves to our goals. We've covered 5 of the 14 traits thus far. To catch up or freshen up on them, these links will help you do just that...
Leadership 199 / Trait 5 of 14: Endurance
Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness
Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

I can't wait to get on to the next one so let's not waste a moment and jump into our sixth trait…

Leadership 199 / Trait 6 of 14: Enthusiasm

Defined: The display of sincere interest and exuberance in the performance of duty.

Discovered: When starting a mission to get healthy most of us are stoked and full of enthusiasm. Sure, some start their missions less enthusiastically, under duress more likely, due to peer or family pressure, perhaps medical needs dictate lose weight now or perish. But for most, once we've mustered the courage and decided we're going to do this, we can't wait to get started and achieve our goal.

That rush of 'can-do', that desire to 'make it happen', that thirst for 'how to' knowledge; all of those highs we feel are brought upon us in that wave of enthusiasm we've embraced when we start. Some of us will recognize early on the role our enthusiasm plays in our mission and work just as hard to keep it up as they will at meal planning and getting in exercise. Others will not look that deep into what is required to be successful and likely wont notice the correlation in the fade of their results with the drop in their enthusiasm.

They key to enthusiasm, is your sincerity for what you want to achieve. Regardless whether your desire is for a need or a want, when you truly desire that something, the probability that you'll attain it increases 396 fold, or more.

Huh? That is crazy talk you say? Yes, you really do want to lose weight. You know you should do so, and you have a good reason why you want to? Great, so can I. Does that equate to sincerely desiring to doing it? Nope, it is the spark of enthusiasm, but it is not going to ignite into the fire storm needed to get this done unless we feed that spark.

Ok big boy, how do we do that you say? At least I hope that's what you said. Perhaps some of you chose to chuckle at what I've scribbled out here thus far and feel more like heckling in reply to my thoughts. If you did, bravo for you, this is your lucky day!

So many times I started an effort to lose weight, all of those times I figured I knew what I needed to do and success was just a matter of doing those things and that's it. Sound familiar? Someone who is supposed to know hands you a sheet of paper with a 1800 calorie a day diet on it, pats you on the head, and wishes you well; happened to me some fifteen years ago courtesy of a doctor who figured just because he is a doctor he had the answers I sought. Or, you buy an exercise video with a zillion exercises that will have you looking fine in no time, just so long as you do the exercises.

Ok, those failed me. What failed you? Better yet, why?

The answer for me, in large part, is that I did not sincerely want this. More specifically, I did not know that my building my enthusiasm for what I want is as important as doing the work to get it.

Sincerely defining a purpose, not just a reason, for this mission, amps up our enthusiasm.
Sincerely understanding what we need to do and how to do it, amps up our enthusiasm.
Sincerely believing in ourselves, seeing ahead to what achieving it will bring us, amps up our enthusiasm.
Sincerely acknowledging the benefits of success and the side-effects of  failure, amps up our enthusiasm. 
Sincerely celebrating accomplishments, tasting victory (not via cup cakes), amps up our enthusiasm.   

Da-Point:  Interest plus Purpose times Belief divided by Sincerity equals Enthusiasm.

Have you done the math on your mission?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Day 400-401: Hock-A-Post

 Time is so short this morning that I am going to have to hock up a quick post and put it out there. Hope it sticks and is worth your time today...

Great workout on Saturday. Hit the YMCA, mangled the weight room, tortured the elliptical. And I hit the assisted-chin/dip machine. Man that machine wore me out. Which is just why I am going back for more tonight.

School, this the final week of high school for 3 of our 4 high school'ers. This coming Saturday the Senior graduates; just less than three months and she is off to college. A year'ish from now our Junior graduates..., two from now the Sophomore..., three from now the Freshman. Five from now were are flat broke and selling plasma so we can eat off of the dollar menu.

Nachos, I can safely report that I ate no nachos this weekend. Although we do have a cat named Nacho, and I did pet him, so call me guilty!

Saw a snipet of a tv show this weekend where the menu included chocolate covered bacon, If ever I was to get married again it would be to a piece of chocolate covered bacon.

If I could read your mind, what would I be reading right now?

My wife got herself a heck of a sunburn yesterday while we were watching our son play soccer. And he lost 6-1, doesn't seem right mom goes out there, gets burned while watching his team get burned. Should be a sunburn back guarantee with the price of admission.

My stomach just growled, I am ignoring it. Probably just my heart moving stuff around for the additional fortitude I'll be moving in. Ah, growled again; better hurry up and get that fortitude!

I followed many tweets about FitBloggin'11 which took place this past weekend. Sounds like a great time, need to give that consideration for next year. That link there goes to the sites page of links to posts from those who attended and reviewed their experience. Some great reading there.

Ok, that is what I have to share today.
What about you, what can you hock-up and share with me from your weekend?

I'll resume the leadership traits tomorrow...

Have a Great Monday!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Day 399 - Happy Armed Forces Day

Happy Armed Forces Day!

To all of our men & women who wear/wore the uniform to defend our freedom & preserve our liberties, I salute you.

Quite simply, if it were not for them defending our way of life, our way of life would not exist.

A friend recently shared this with me, I found it both amusing and prideful...

Have a great weekend and if you happen to come make the acquaintance of someone in service or a veteran today, salute them for their service.

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Day 398 - Leadership 199 / Trait 5 of 14: Endurance

We're you decisive yesterday? Not just yesterday but think big picture, have you been decisive about what it is you truly want to succeed at? Speaking for myself, I have decided I will run three miles by the end of summer. And do it in 28 minutes or less. That is going to be a challenge for me, but one I have decided to achieve.

If you missed our previous posts in this series on leadership traits do not cry out in agony, do not throw things, no no no. Simply click through the links below; easiest thing you will do all day...
Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness
Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Time to tee up our fifth trait…

Leadership 199 / Trait 5 of 14: Endurance

Defined: The mental and physical stamina measured by the ability to withstand pain, fatigue, stress, and hardship.

Discovered: When we think of endurance we quickly think of a long and grueling physical challenge, e.g a marathon. A much younger version of myself would blurt out that a pub-crawl requires endurance. While fun, a pub crawl is not going to help us understand this trait. And neither is a marathon quite frankly. No one specific challenge is sufficient to understand the importance that endurance plays in our ability lead ourselves to success.

Our missions to get healthy are made up of many different challenges; challenges that will last our lifetimes. Lets look that deeper into that definition...

to withstand pain; what causes us pain in our mission? Exercise does. Or at least it ought to cause some degree of pain if we are properly breaking down muscle and burning fat in our quest to become stronger and leaner. Pain is not fun, I mean hello; it is called PAIN. Yet to succeed we have to lead ourselves to accept that pain will be there, that pain is part of the process, and that we can deal with it and overcome it's discomfort and the doubt it will try and have us believe.

to fatigue; so many aspects of getting healthy can get tiring. Sure, exercise causes fatigue; that's too obvious. What about doing the same thing day in day out? Eating the same 'healthy' meals, performing the same exercise 'routine'? Does doing the same thing cause you mental fatigue as the days become weeks and months? Oh it sure does for me. Call it fatigue, call it boredom. It wears on me, causes me to dull my focus and invite in failure. We have to lead ourselves to recognize that which cause us fatigue, and make changes necessary to maintain focus, maintain motivation to get up each day and choose success.

to stress; oh how we can put pressure on ourselves to do what we know we should. When we know we ought to exercise today, just knowing that can eat-away in the back of our minds until we do. And should we opt out, find an excuse not to do so, well multiply that eating-away by ten. Leaders know that we are our greatest stressors, and those tasks that stress us the most. Leaders also know that there if no way to relieve the stress of a challenge other than to tackle it, defeat it and remove it. You know you need to exercise today, do it now. Don't wait, get to it. Can't do it now because you are in a meeting at work reading my blog from your handheld, well good for you; now switch over to your calendar app and plan precisely what time today you can exercise and block that time off. Leaders manage stress, they are not managed by stress.

to hardship; why can't this always be easy? It is true, losing weight, getting and being healthy is not easy at times. As if the pain, fatigue and stressors weren't enough to overcome in our mission, we have a host of additional hardships confront. I could list 74 off the top of my head, but to keep this short and to the point I'll reference two. People, others around us make this harder at times. Well, they only really make this hard if we let them. They will toss a wrench on our well planned day at 4:29 p.m. when they come home and say, "can we order pizza and wings for dinner?" Or when they see what we are planning for lunch and say, "you expect me to eat that?" Ourselves, we can make this hard for us just the same as anyone else can. When you look in the mirror and see yourself, do you think to yourself, "wow, I am one gorgeous, healthy, amazing creature!" No, you don't. What do you say, something like, "ugh, I am a fat slob of a pig who needs to be skewered." Ever see youself in a negative sense and acknowledge it? If yes, you are making this harder than it needs to be. Stop looking at yourself and seeing what you are that you dislike. Start seeing yourself for who you are becoming.

Da-Point: Stamina is the bridge between succeeding today becoming victorious for a lifetime.

How heavy is the pain, fatigue, stress, and hardship in your life today?
And what are you doing to lead yourself to victory in spite of it all?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Day 397 - Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness

For those interested in our weekend at the hunting property turkey hunting, building a box blind, you can check out my post of pictures & video on my hunting blog.

If you missed our previous posts in this series on leadership traits it is easy to catch up, the quickest links on earth are right here...

Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Read, Set, Go time it is for our fourth trait

Leadership 199 / Trait 4 of 14: Decisiveness

Defined: Ability to make decisions promptly and to announce them in clear, forceful manner.

Discovered: The quality of our lives is a direct reflection of our decisions. Each day we make a gabagazillion decisions, give or take a couple. Should I eat this donut or that carrot?... Not interested in work today, should go in I just tough it out or call in sick?... I have an hours time, shall I exercise or watch rare Three Stooges episodes on YouTube?... The basement is flooding, should I open the door and go fix it or ignore it because it will dry out eventually?

Some can make a decision with near zero angst or reservation. Others need an iron-clad guarantee against risk before they are comfortable doing so. Sure some decisions are easier to make than others. Just as sure, some of the hardest decisions we make are about ourselves.

It is easy to look across the street at a 420'ish pound woman struggling to walk to her mail box and decide she needs to lose weight and lose it NOW! Nope, no delay there in seeing anothers obvious need and being decisive about the solution.

Yet that same day we climb a few stairs in our own home, or walk across the mall, to arrive gasping for a full breath before doing going on. Often our own obvious struggle do not result in the same decisiveness.

Decisiveness is seeing a need, identifying how to satisfy that need, weighing the opportunities to be gained by satisfying it against the opportunities to be lost by not doing so, and then making a decision.

Decisiveness is not looking away from a need, over analyzing options to hide fear of making a decision, making excuses or procrastinating.

Once you have made a decision it is time to act upon it. That very first action needs to be announcing your decision with all involved. Whoever it is you will rely on for support, or those who will be affected by your decision, they need to know. Progress starts with a decision, results follow when decisions are clearly and firmly shared.

Da-Point: You only achieve success when you decide to pursue it.

What endeavor awaits the decisive leader within you?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Day 391-396: Past Week Or So

Hello one & all, hope all has been well with you. Last Friday Blogger was hosed-up somehow preventing me from logging in to create a post. Then I was away this past weekend at our hunting property where we were too busy to give much thought to all things electronic. Back home I chose to stay disconnected for a couple days to start the week and just focus on a mountain of needs at home and work. So there you have my brief absence explained. All is well, I am back, and a blogging I shall go...

I'll resume the leadership traits tomorrow. Today I'll share a handful of photos of the past week or so of our fun and healthy days...

Andrew waiting for me to finish my walk around Lake Andrea, he finished a couple minutes ahead of me

Squishy at Honors Night, she received recognition for her work on the Yearbook Club and National Honors Society

A cat pictures for the feline fanatics; these two sit at the chair next to me each night at the dinner table

Mmm, grilled pork chop & tomatoes w/ caesar salad

My wonderful wife getting her walk on with me

Squishy got game, this was the final soccer game I was able to attend of her high school career. Her season is now over, next team she'll play for is in college

That's it for now. I have a bunch of photos and video too of our time at the hunting property. I'll get that loaded up to my hunting blog soon and link back here for those interested.

Hope you're having a great week! Are you?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Day 390 - Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage

Leadership traits were on my mind last night while attending Honors Night at my daughters High School. As many of these young women & men were being recognized for their efforts they had the opportunity to step up and exercise their bearing in addressing the crowded auditorium. I was very impressed with how they conducted themselves with confidence and courage in a situation, public speaking, which is a challenging opportunity for most.

If you missed our previous posts in this series on leadership traits be sure to catch up on them here...
Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing
Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Let us see what our third trait has for us…

Leadership 199 / Trait 3 of 14: Courage

Defined: The mental quality that recognizes fear of danger or criticism, but enables you to proceed in the face of it with calmness and firmness.

Discovered: To understand courage you first must understand fear. When we recognize danger, fear is our innate survival mechanism that kicks in and prompts us to flee from or confront the present danger. The use of the word danger is a bit misleading because fear does not come over us only when we are in situations that are truly dangerous to our well being. Fear is also present when we face challenges which we believe we are at risk of failing at.

For the purposes of honing our self-leadership ability into higher degrees of effectiveness let us focus on those challenges we face for bettering ourselves. Weight loss,... training for your first marathon,... the treatments and recovery that lay ahead to care for injury or disease,... going back to school to get that college degree,... employment search,... starting your own business,... and so on. These are just a few obvious challenges many of us are facing now.

What other challenges are you facing today which will require you to address your fear of failure to overcome?

Books large and small have been written on how to overcome fear. I promise that this post will not run on into book length. Therefore I must cut to the chase on what gets us over what we fear. Courage!

Courage, like fear, is innate; we have it with in us. The funny thing is fear just pops out quickly in the face of challenge. While for many the courage within us has to be poked, prodded and sometimes pulled out.

However it is that you reach inside and get courage to come forward, do it. Courage enables your inner strength, your ability to stand up for what it is you deem right and necessary. Courage applied to challenge brings discipline to the task, provides you the required calmness to control fear versus fear controlling you.

Our challenges do not come with certainty of success. To succeed we must function effectively in our mission no matter how long, how difficult it may be. Along the way set backs may occur, the difficulty of the mission may rise. Fear will attempt to take back control with such occurrences. Perseverance comes from courage, our ability to persevere will ensure we endure through to the missions successful completion.

Da-Point: Respect Fear, Embrace Courage, Achieve Victory!

Is it hard for you to bring the courage within you to bear on your challenges?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Day 389 - Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing

Did you get a charge out of Trait 1: Dependability? I know I got fired up writing it and reading your comments. Fired Up I Tell Ya!! No way I was going to have a bad Tuesday after the high I was on from writing that post. And a great Tuesday I had. Looking forward to Wednesday being just a great if not more so.  

Deep breath, clear mind, let's power ahead into our second trait…

Leadership 199 / Trait 2 of 14: Bearing

Defined: Creating a favorable impression in carriage, appearance and personal conduct at all times.

Discovered: Conduct, personal-conduct, is a noun in that sentence. Mrs. English, yes I really had an English teacher named Mrs. English, well she would not approve of this but I choose to see 'conduct' as a verb here. And if noun-abuse is not to be tolerated, then I offer another sentence...
Bearing is the manner in which you conduct yourself.

Just how do you behave in your mission to get healthy? Do you go through the motions of whatever program you are following while longingly looking forward to being done with what you are doing?

Be honest! If you answered 'Yes' to that follow-up question and that is how you conduct yourself some of most of the time, well then allow me this moment of boldness to say that your bearing is OFF.

You cannot lead effectively just going through the motions! 

Leadership with bearing is to...
  • Arrive Alert in the face of your challenges & with Desire for the results you deserve.
  • Stand Competent & Confident, that you have what it takes to succeed
  • Conduct yourself so that you Control the motion that is your life.
Da-Point: Conduct yourself against the highest of standards. Never accept that behaving in a manner less than the maximum of your ability is acceptable.

Is your bearing up to the challenges you face?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Day 388 - Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Who is it that is in charge of leading you to accomplish your mission to get healthy?

If you answered that question with a name other than your own, PLEASE do comment below. I really want to discuss how it is that someone other than yourself is on the hook for accomplishing your mission.

I am my own leader. While my actions and outcomes may affect others, and while I may depend on others for input and assistance in my tasks; at the end of each decision it is "I" who must lead myself to success, or failure, whichever I choose to deliver.

Are we clear?
I am MY own leader!
You are YOUR own leader!!

Now for the real question: Am I (are you) ready to lead?

Leadership is an innate ability which can be honed into higher degrees of effectiveness with education and experience. Note I said 'and', not 'or'. You want to lead yourself to victory, then you have to 'do' it, not just think about it. For the outcome of what you do to be successful you need to first know the success factors of leadership.

These success factors, or leadership traits as I prefer to refer to them, were taught to me nearly 30 years ago. Learning them, and living them are two different choices. To get myself from here, to my goal of 199, I am going to have to live these traits each day along the way. On any given day where I can reflect and see that I have come up short, you can bet that I can identify one of more of these traits which I did not hold true to.

Let us get busy learning these leadership traits, there are fourteen of them. Yes 14; no moaning or sighs of hot air allowed! Anything worth learning is worth learning in detail. Therefore we are going to learn all 14 of them. To increase the potential of learning and retaining them so that we can put them to practice, we are going to learn them one at a time; one per day over the next fourteen days.

Without further introduction as to my intent here, away we go…

Leadership 199 / Trait 1 of 14: Dependability

Defined: The certainty of proper performance of duty.

Discovered: Duty, a very powerful word as I see it. When we have something to do, the degree of importance which we associate it with goes up if we accept it as our duty. If we associate it as something less, then I would suggest it is a 'want' and not a 'need'. Would you agree that getting healthy and living healthy is something you need to do? Myself, I do. The it is our duty to do just that, get healthy and stay healthy.

Certainty, a word that infers an absolute. This word, I like! Absolutes are empowering, motivating, as they demand accomplishment. "For my duty this day I will certainly exercise by running 2 miles and executing my push up & sit up routine"; if you see this as your duty you would proclaimed it just as I wrote it there. However if you do not see this as your duty, you probably have proclaimed it as follows; "I need to exercise today and will do so as soon as I can."

Da-Point: Your success is dependent upon your ability to perform your duty as required.

Can you depend upon yourself to do your duty?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Day 386 - 387: Sister, Mothers & Gas

Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend and especially their Mothers Day celebrations. My wife & I got away on Saturday to continue the celebration of her birthday and start the Mothers Day festivities. We took off to our backyard play ground, Wisconsin. The Wollersheim Winery was the destination (pictured above). There we picked up a case of wine as we do each trip. We also picked up the gifts for our mothers there, ceramic wine chillers. Of course we couldn't give the moms just wine chillers without a bottle of wine in each.

On the way up there we gassed up in Milwaukee, here is the price of gas (cheap stuff) there...
 Cheapest we've seen around home it in well over a month, so we gassed up there on the way up & back.

We stayed in Pweaukee (a burb of Milwaukee) Saturday night. There we dined at Thunder Bay Grille which has been a favorite of ours for a decade. All of us who are serious about making a better life for ourselves embrace change. Change is good, change is needed if we want to see a better result from our efforts. And a different result from the recent changes in menu and style is what I believe Thunder Bay Grille will see. And not for the better. Seriously, we were disappointed. This rustic northwoods centric restaurant went modern in a bad way. It used to stand apart from its competition, now it reflects at least a dozen other places in the Milwaukee area. Oh well, we had a good decade, best of luck to them.

After dinner we went out to Champps to watch the Nascar race and NBA playoff games while knocking back a couple of beers and just hanging out. Along the way we felt the need to fill in the corners left from our dinner experience. To do that we ordered a hot pretzel from the apps menu. I was expecting a pretzel like you'd get at the ball game, but to my surprise and horror this is what we got...
 Not healthy, not one bit. But it was good I must admit. And so was our time together eating this, drinking Leinenkugel's and Spotted Cow, excellent day with my wife!

Back home on Sunday we took in a soccer game for our sophomore, they lost 0-6; way to go winning one for Mom guys. And then off to meet our Mom's for dinner at Bonefish Grill which never disappoints; lets hope they don't embrace too much change.

Dinner was in Schaumburg, IL which is a Chicago suburb. On the way there I snapped this picture of the typical gas price there...
Ugly ugly ugly that gas marquee is. Way too ugly to just end this post on such a downer note. So let me move to a final bit of positive news to share.

This past Saturday my sister walked the stage at Olivet Nazarene University with her Masters of Arts in Teaching. How cool is that!

Congrats Kim & best of luck in that your search to secure a full time teaching position will be a short one.

OK, that is how I spent my weekend, how did you spend yours?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Day 385 - Prom for Squishy

There you see Ashley taking a moment to take a picture with me last night before she heads off to a friends house and then on to Senior Prom. It has been nearly a decade since I nicknamed her "Squishy". Since then she has dared to grow up, along the way I've always called her Squishy. Once upon a time she used to look like this...

Now, in the final days of her senior year of High School, she is just a a trio of months away from moving about 4 hours south to attend college. I'm trying to convince her to go back to kindergarten instead, but she isn't having any of that. She is all about moving ahead and making something out of herself from all the options she's worked to line up. Yeah grow up she has, but not so much to out grow being called Squishy.

Have a Great Weekend!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Day 384 - Beware Of Good

What it is about May I have no idea. But one constant at work each May is that co-workers bring in candy to sell for their kids various school or social causes. Boxes like the one pictured there are all over the office here. That one sits at the end of the aisle I work in so I have to pass it a dozen or more times a day.

And pass it I do. Nothing of value there, nothing good.

Well, for sure it looks good, tastes good, even the packaging appeals to me as good. But I know better, in the end eating anything out of that box will be no-good for me.

So many things in life appear to be good, but in reality are no-good for us if used. Candy is just one example. There must be others, here are a few that come to mind...

The easy ones along the same line as candy would be ice cream, cake, pie, basically all desserts. They look amazing, smell divine, tempt us as sinful without doom; but sin is what they are waistline doom is what they get us.

Fast Food applies here. It is not that it's appearance is what looks good, but the convenience of the meal is what appeals as good to us. However convenience is not good for us in all aspects of life. Convenience in food preparation, e.g. electric blender vs. hand mixing utensil, good way to go more often than not. Convenience in food via a meal in a bag in a jiffy; not so much.

How about meal-replacement bars/protein-bars? Probably not fair to lump all into a single judgement here. First lets state that these come off as looking good to us for many reasons; they are packaged to look like they are beneficial for us, they are described as a better choice amongst alternatives, and they too are sold as a convenience item. Actually I think the 2nd of those three selling points is more true than shady; choosing most such bars over a candy bar is a better choice given just those two; usually. Instead, the lesson here is that there are many varieties of these bars out there. Some are actually almost-good for you. But when you get into the nitty-gritty of the ingredients, most are not good for you. Certainly not a good alternative to a whole food meal or snack.

Here is a good one from my lunch yesterday...
Broiled salmon with squash & green beans. Looks good smells great. You see what else is there, lower-right; that white sauce is cucumber sauce. "Cucumber" sauce! Cukes are healthy veggies right, sounds like a good sauce, it is made from cucumbers after all! But NO, cream is the base of this sauce, not-good! I ditched it and replaced it with some pico de gallo. Sauces, dressings and the like are notorious for being packaged & described as good choices, safe choices to use in your diet. Reality however is that a vast majority of them only deliver good flavor at the expense of good nutrition.

Of course, any of the above can be enjoyed in moderation. Moderation is something I am a believer in as it falls in line with my belief that we need to have fun, enjoy each day fully. If on any given day you truly feel you need to satisfy your want for some candy, have it. But beware that candy is a bad thing that looks good, so think before you indulge and determine when to stop before you start. Two Snickers, a Kit-Kat and a Three-Musketeers is well past the point of moderation; trust me I know from experience.

What examples do you have of 'good' we need to beware of?

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Day 383 - Happy BDay Cathy

This week my wife has a birthday; Happy Birthday Cathy!

I wont say how old she is, but it is a milestone birthday and it may rhyme with 'orty'. That is all I'll say, don't want to give too much away.

There you see the flowers I sent to her at work this week. Those flowers are impressive if I may say so myself. But not nearly as impressive as her well organized desk.

You can tell allot by looking at a persons workspace, lets take a closer gander at her's shall we...

Photo's on the wall board, photos of 3 of our 4 kids. No photo of me, hmmm.... there is a photo on her desk too, a cool one. It is of her & her workmates standing with the Stanley Cup which visited her work place a few weeks back; so jealous I am.

Behind the flowers is a poster of Matt Kenseth, her favorite Nascar driver. My fave is Greg Biffle, the two are team mates so all is good there.

The wall calendar on the right is a Chicago White Sox calendar. She is a Sox fan, I am a Cubs fan. Somehow, we make it work. There is a desk calendar too, a page-a-day calendar; it too appears to be a Sox calendar. I should know what it is as I gave it to her for Christmas (I know, I am cutting edge when it comes to gift giving).

Stapler, appears to be a Swingline 747 classic model, good choice. Shows a sense of faith & determination, no?

Ream of paper at the ready, she either prints allot or is ready for the coming paper-shortage of 2011.

Is your desk/workspace as organized?

Myself, I can say that mine desk is as organized if not even a bit more so organized than hers. Organization is not always a sure sign of success however. Some of the most successful folks I know are terribly disorganized overall. But somehow when it comes time to perform at what is important, they excel like few others. I envy that mysterious ability. Simply for me, success comes from a organized approach

And enough of the organization sermon; all together now... 

Happy Birthday!

Oh, flowers were not all I got my wife for her birthday, recall this post in March where she got her other present a bit early.

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Day 382 - What Would You Prefer?

Having a great week here; how about you?

As tempted as I am to not say anything about the picture there, I shall. This is one of those posts where I didn't have a corresponding picture immediately come to mind. Certainly I could have found something that goes along with the main topic below, but I'm just not in a symmetrical mood. Instead, you get a random picture today. There I am with Eeyore back in the summer of 2002; easily 310 if not 320 pounds I was then. I didn't care, i was hanging with EEYORE! Reflecting today, one of us seriously needed to consider more salads and less buffets.

Back to 2011, after four consecutive days of getting in the exercise, today will be a day of rest. Four on, one off; seems like a ratio one would adopt if serious about getting results. We'll put that to the test here and look to maintain that ratio going forward.

When comparing how I feel, how I think, how I perform when I choose to exercise consistently vs. when I choose to do my Jabba The Hut impersonation; it is easy to realize that I prefer myself when I exercise consistently.

That's me, what about you; what would you prefer...
Living without music or without T.V.?

Drinking a cup of mustard or ketchup?

Having a beautiful house and ugly car or an ugly house and beautiful car?

Running a marathon or giving a speech before a thousand people?

Exercising consistently or getting your Jabba The Hut on?

Having x-ray vision or bionic hearing?

Being the sand castle or the wave?

Being related to Charlie Sheen or Charlie Brown?

Have Fun being Healthy & Happy today!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Day 381 - Take Action to Prevent, Control, Defeat

Karen over at Waisting Time (Tweets @MeWaistingTime) did me the honor of a blog post dedication yesterday. Thank You Karen, so very kind of you!

Karen's message yesterday spread the word that May is Skin Cancer Awareness month. She does this from the heart as she herself has victoriously defeated skin cancer three times! By all means use the link above to stop by and read her story & hear her message; lots of good info, links, stats and hat pictures!

The photo above is my face, and the photo below too. A trio of scars mark my face & neck and another runs nearly a foot up the length of my abdomen. It may be seen as unfortunate to have to bear these marks. But fortunate is all I feel.

Fortunate for not taking cancer for granted and seeking a medical advice for what didn't look/feel normal
Fortunate for not believing the nonsense that what I felt/saw was nothing, it'll probably go away
Fortunate for not putting me second and all else first thus being lame and saying I don't have time for this right now

Generally I don't like to write my posts in negative tones, but at times doing so adds the proper pause needed to think and absorb about the message...

DO NOT take any aspect of your health for granted, certainly not cancer. Cancer is not taking any thing for granted, while hoping you are, as takes advantage of you in its quest to end you. Cancer has one goal, to kill you

DO NOT believe something is nothing until you have it verified that it is nothing. There is no way I know of at home to self diagnose what you feel/see as odd for whether it is cancer or not. There are definitely ways you can self diagnose whether that oddity has the potential for cancer, and you'd be wise to learn what to look for. Get it checked out by a medical professional who can diagnose and verify whether you have something, or, nothing.

DO NOT be lame, period. You are your most important asset. You are what you need to put first in life everyday. Nobody else, nothing else. Nobody can take care of you as well as you can. Take care of yourself first, and you will be able to take care of all others that depend on you.

The faces of cancer survivors are many. Some of you, like Karen & I, may be cancer survivors too. Or you may be engaged in battle with the beast today; if so my heart goes out to you in your battle.

Please do know that you can greatly minimize your risks of cancer by being cancer aware and taking action.
Please do know that you can catch cancer early and greatly minimize it's impacts by being cancer aware and taking action.
Please do know that you can beat cancer by being cancer aware and taking action.

The skinny on cancer: Action is cancer's worst enemy, Take Action to prevent, control, defeat cancer.

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Day 378-380: Reveille Weekend Success

Great News, I received the OK to return to full activity from all surgeons, doctors and even my guardian Eeyore gave his OK. Excellent, no time to waste!...

With the weekend here I got busy getting the heart rate and sweat pumping once again. So Saturday morning my wife, one son & I headed off to the YMCA. My wife got her workout on in the swimming pool as usual; a fish she is. Andrew & I hit the weights, above you see him working the lat-pulldowns which seemed like a fine machine to get started on.

Below is the rest of our routine that day...
 Assisted Pull Ups
 Calf Press
 Tricep Presses
 Leg Press
 Horizontal Chest Press
 Incline Sit Ups

It felt great to get back in the gym. There were a few other exercises we did which I forgot to take photos of, e.g.squats, flys; we got in good variety in the hour we were there.

Sore, sore was the word of the day for the rest of my weekend. Amazing how muscle-memory works, it was like I hadn't skipped much of a beat. I felt a bit awkward on some of the exercises, felt a tad weak on triceps; but otherwise I was owning the steel.

Sore or not on Sunday, it was time to get in some more. I was determine to make this my Reveille Weekend and awaken from the stagnant slumber that I had been in for too long. Sunday, cardio! My wife was not feeling good so she didn't join as as she wanted to. Andrew & I got after it at the Rollins Savannah...

Last year I put in some great efforts here and put up a streak of personal records here as well. My best time last year on this 3.6 mile loop was 54:49 minutes. We set out with the idea of getting as close to it as possible. No way was achieving that time going to happen this day; No Way! I hadn't put in any consistent cardio in April, I still haven't shed that 10 pound regain from the winter, and my sore muscles weren't feeling extraordinary effort within them.

Never Say Never!

We smashed that PR in a big way.
I came in at 52:04 minutes...
Andrew at 51:35 minutes.

I feel an Oh Yeah!

Did you feel any Oh Yeah's this weekend/recently?

Final thought: We have Never Forgot 9/11 and those murdered, maimed and devastated. The news of OBL's termination is reason for pride swell and affirmation in our determination for justice; but it is not reason to now forget. The cause continues, sadly in the throws of war. Never Forget means just that; NEVER FORGET!

Responsibility 199 - Gotta Do It!!