- Starting Strength
- HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
- Lean Gains
We as humans have a tendency to look toward the future, to what can be. To what we WANT. We wonder what it will be like to get there. Maybe it’s a beautiful body. Maybe it’s a degree. Maybe it’s a new job. Maybe it’s to finish a book. Maybe to play the guitar. Whatever it is, we fantasize about that moment when the battle is finished and we can enjoy what our hard work has wrought.
But here’s one thing about that success. We also have a tendency to think that the true challenge lies just around the next corner.
Once you’ve lost a few pounds of fat, then you can start adding muscle. Once you’ve gotten into the habit of writing, then you can start on that epic novel. Once you’ve built up the callouses, then you can learn guitar properly. Once you’ve got your internal clock sorted, then you’ll apply for more jobs.
We think of the truly hard part as being in the future, some moment where our “preparation” will have led to our being ready to smash the demons that stand in our way and achieve success. We think of what we’re facing today, right now, as a step along the way, toward that success, toward that state of being that we so desperately want.
But it’s not a step. Today is all there is. Right now is all there is. This is your great battle. There is no moment in your mission that will be more challenging than the one right in front of you. It’s all you need to deal with. What you’re thinking of, right now – that’s it. That’s your great battle.
If you’re looking to lose weight and you’re having a craving for a candy bar, this is your great battle.
If you’re looking for a job and staying up late instead of getting up early, this is your great battle.
If you’re looking for more than friendship but are having trouble telling that person how you feel, this is your great battle.
The stories of our culture revolve around grand deeds. Slaying dragons, defeating tyranny, overcoming unspeakable odds. Those are great battles too. Take your inspiration from them. They are the exact same as your great battle. It’s standing right in front of you, right now.
“Once more into the fray. Into the greatest battle you’ll ever know. We live and die on this day. We live and die on this day.”
There will never be a greater moment than the one you’re about to live. Conquer it. Your success lies in simply fighting the great battle, every single day of your life.
Trying to make improvements to your life? Trying to lose weight or accomplish a new goal?
Your brain can hurt your goals by fantasizing too much
Would you believe that fantasizing is the #1 way your brain unintentionally ruins your goals? It seems unlikely, right? The thing is, the proof is in the pudding (or in this case, the research): psychologists have found that while positive thinking about the future is broadly beneficial, too much fantasy can have disastrous results on achieving goals. Researchers tracked the progress of how people cope with four different types of challenges.
One of the most common tips offered for boosting happiness it to sweat your way to a smile. The jury is still out on the exact relationship between exercise and happiness, but the general idea is that exercising reduces the amount of cortisol, a stress hormone, in the blood and pumps up the volume of endorphins. When endorphin hormones enter the brain, they block receptors normally reserved for pain, which is why we associate them with positive feelings.
A recent study from the University of Bristol concluded that participants who exercised before work or on a lunch break were indeed calmer and less stressed than those who didn’t [source: Daily Mail]. Not only were the members of the active group in better moods, they also met deadline demands more efficiently and exhibited improved interpersonal skills. Interestingly, the active group designed its own workout routines, rather than following a prescribed regimen. Despite variations in intensity and duration, about three quarters of them felt better [source: Daily Mail]. Similarly, in 2008, the American Heart Association also published findings that just 20 to 30 minutes of walking two to three times per week can make you happier [source: USA Today].
If you’re always wondering what the heck you need to eat while you’re on a diet and you’re looking for a random generator, look no further! Swole.me is a food generator. If you register, it will log all your meals and break down the caloric values of each and every food you’ve ingested.
Here’s an intro:
- The generator throws together foods to fit your calorie and macronutriet targets. Don’t like what you got? Hit generate again or mess with the generator options.
- Foods can be moved around by clicking and dragging.
- You can customize the units and amounts by hovering over the food item.
- Click the lock next to a food or meal to prevent the generator from changing it. You can add foods, lock them, and then use the generator as an “autocomplete.”