Another year is in the books and it seems like a good time to reflect. Last year I wrote about making an action list. I kept checking in throughout the year but then slipped off. Looking back at it now, I made two realizations. One, I had to many actions. Two, due to laziness, I left some unattended while I worked on others.
So this year, instead of 22, I made 7. That’s it. By focusing on these and not spreading myself out too thin, I will do more than I did last year. I burned a lot of energy being stuck because I was stressing out about the actions I knew wouldn’t get done. I also found that unless you are passionate about something, even if your rational mind says that it’s a good thing to accomplish, you’ll do a half assed job or nothing at all.
I’ve made some adjustments and realigned my goals. If you are planning a year of accomplishments, here are some things I found to be true-
Keep it simple. The more you complicate things the more you will have trouble moving ahead.
Make them compelling. No one wants to feel like they’re in school or working. If you aren’t compelled to do something, why do it?
Make them scalable. After they are done, look for the next level in that same vein. When you looking for gold in that vein deep in the earth, you don’t stop when you find your first big nugget. Keep going and see what else you can do.
Check in every week. Are you doing it? Are you making good progress or just going through the motions? And…
Ask yourself why you aren’t doing the work. If you aren’t compelled to do it, drop and find something that does get your motor running. Want to learn guitar but haven’t started it? Maybe you love music but not enough to learn guitar. Maybe you would be compelled by finding new bands and managing them. Find the closest thing to it that motivates you and then do that.
And when you do finish that action/project/startup, celebrate. Not a whole week but a day or two. Drink a bottle of Veuve Clicqout, smoke that $25 cigar, take a daytrip somewhere, jump on a motorcycle and ride 250 miles, skydive, shoot guns, whatever. Your mind will remember the physical reward you gave your yourself and it will be an anchor in which to attach your next project.
I’m always experimenting and finding what things work for me and what doesn’t. Last year I tried new tactics and made some realignments.
- I’ve stated that protein powders were something I used and were a viable solution for busy schedules. After doing some reading into toxicity of certain ingredients, pollutants at factories and companies throwing in ‘suspect’ chemicals in their stuff to get results for people ingesting them, I no longer take any body building products like protein powder, creatine or BCAA’s. You can get enough protein from whole food sources like free range meat, wild fish, milk, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, chicken, turkey and peanut butter.
- I’ve been training in a fasted state upon rising, limiting my coffee to two cups a day and waiting at least 4-5 hours from rising to eat my first meal. Five hours later I have my second and final meal. I’m still maintaining 14% BF through the colder months and have not lost any muscle. In fact….
- I want to lose muscle, so I’m concentrating on more running and swimming and less lifting through the next few months. I’m also not eating more than 65 grams of protein a day. Unless you’re juicing and training for a career in bodybuilding, you don’t need 200 grams of protein a day.
- I’m slowing my movements down when I do lift. 2-3 seconds on the +/- portion. A static contraction hold for 30-60 seconds at the end.
- I did the 5×5 Stronglifts this summer. No injuries and good size gains. Not good for the wardrobe so I’m tweaking the rest period to 15 seconds between sets with lower weight. I still love circuit training but I do it once a week.
- I’m a proponent of eating whole eggs. But I don’t believe eating 36 yolks a week is healthy. Cholesterol can build up in the glands over the chest, enlarging them. If you suffer from pseudogynecomastia, lay off the yolks and dairy for 3 months and see if there is a difference. If you eat red meat, bacon and butter, that’s enough. You don’t need more cholesterol sources.
Everyone should read his book or at least watch the episodes (they’re free on the site)