It’s Race Week

Race at Cowboys Stadium!This Saturday I’ll be in the stadium of the Dallas Cowboys doing the Spartan Sprint. I am so excited to be able to compete in the stadium of my all time favorite sports team!! This will be the shortest distance Spartan Race I’ve ever done, but I’m betting that the obstacles and bleachers will make up for the 3 mile distance, still providing a fun and challenging course. I am a die hard Dallas Cowboys fan, and always have been. This race represents an opportunity to sweat, struggle and perform in the same arena as the Cowboys on Sundays. What a wild and awesome experience. My first ever stadium race and I hear they are a different animal. Without the necessity for long distance endurance, more explosive athletes may have a better day.  This week I’m getting prepared to race my best race, I have nutrition and training at the best they’ve been so far. I’ve been really honing in my training and improving the consistency. I know that after my races in May (posts and videos to come) that I will have to really continue to innovate, improve, and invest in my training. I want to be at a true elite level, not just paying the extra money to sign up for the elite heats, but really being at my best and competing at a level worthy of the title elite. I have a long way to go and mountains to climb on my journey to the pinnacle of my own performance. But this Saturday I’m going to enjoy how far I’ve come and the chance to Throw Up the X on the Jumbotron at JerryWorld. I’ll be capturing and creating content over the weekend to showcase this unique and exciting experience. Wish me luck!

Where Do I Stand in 2015? Two Years of Blogging

The finish line of the Spartan Super in Austin May 2014. My 2nd OCR race and first piece of 2014 Spartan Trifecta

The finish line of the Spartan Super in Austin May 2014. My 2nd OCR race and first piece of 2014 Spartan Trifecta

This post is essentially my previous list from 2013 of where I stood in all Renaissance pursuits I’m currently endeavoring towards. I’ve edited parts of the list but many are unchanged. I still remain undaunted, I know only my own actions and priorities can  make any of my goals fulfilled. Anything indicated with bold type face or an (*) indicates a revision from my previous list. I like to do this, and plan on doing it more frequently. It’s a way of self-accountability that I think is good for me to develop.

Every so often it’s good to take a step back, analyze progress (or stagnation), and make adjustments, and to publish updates on 2-year-old content!!!! Wow.

Here goes…

Learning Languages: 2015: Overall: Not that much progress outside of Spanish. Reminder to get to work and build it into my schedule!

Japanese: 2015: No real progress or time devoted to learning. 

– Read hiragana and katakana but writing needs work

-An ear for pronunciation

-Limited vocabulary

Spanish: 2015: Made some great progress, but only through personal interactions, a little sideline study and focus was observed briefly. 

-Decent pronunciation

-Kitchen Vocabulary

-Bad words

-Sounding out reading, but lack comprehension

French: 2015: No Progress made

-Conjugating regular verbs

-Ear for pronunciation/conversation

-Latent vocabulary & reading/writing from high-school.

[* ]Business(es): 2015: Basically in the same situation other than I’ve put myself in a position where starting a business is now on my daily to do list and I’m taking actions to bring it to fruition. *UPDATE: Now enrolled in Business Breakthrough Academy*

-I have some great start-up ideas swirling around.  I’m very confident in 3/10 of the ideas, and have taken action towards launch and lean launch.*

-Potential for a pop-up restaurant is high. I have a good network within the hospitality industry, and the market is prime for a great pop up.

-My dreams of film/TV production are still dreams, *but I’ve met some people who can bring them to fruition perhaps.

-Using apps and technology to automate income is similar to my start-up ideas; action has been taken towards realization: capturing ideas on paper. I’ve got one rock solid idea though, and about 8 mediocre ones.

-Developing a school would be a legacy project, and I’ve yet to build the requisite resources or fully master many teachable skills.

Health and Fitness: 2015: Definitely learned a great amount about my body and health/fitness in general

-The quest for the six-pack is ongoing. Starting to lean out and loose the last 5% body fat that it takes. (for progress shots see my Instagram)

-Personal trainer certification is a goal for the next 90 days. Studying between 4-10 hours a week.

-Healthy eating is becoming a passion. making better choices and structuring a diet based on nutritional benefit and balance is something I study between 5-10 hours a week.

-Yoga has helped me immensely since I started 4 years ago. I’m still not as flexible as I’m striving for, but quite an improvement. Always end my training sessions with yoga/stretching.

UPDATE*** Use foam rolling to recover faster, lacrosse balls for isolated muscle tension issues, and go to a specialist in acupressure and Eastern medicine techniques.

2015: So far completed 25/200 miles on a 12 person team relay, and a Battle Frog US Race.

Going hard to the finish line of a battlefrog race April 2015.

Going hard to the finish line of a battlefrog race April 2015.

Martial Arts:

-Reached a meager yellow belt in Judo at age 13, but have not practiced since.

-Starting from scratch in this field.

Music:

-Played trumpet for 2 years in junior high.

-Messed around with DJ/production software: Reason, Traktor.

Food:

-Started cooking at a young age— starting with eggs at age 8.

-Immersed in the hospitality industry my whole life up this point and presently.

-Apprenticed and worked under one of the best chefs in my city, and a crew of renowned sous-chefs, for a year and a half. The restaurant made #3 on a list of Best New Restaurants in Texas.

-Studying techniques, recipes, and ingredients from a wide variety of sources.

-Shifting focus recently to nutrient dense, and maximally healthy dishes/ingredients, while still maintaining flavor development.

-Achieved a good flow while cooking on the line, loved to improve this day in day out.

UPDATE: ** Food was my entire focus in 2014, and now has gone very far back burner. 2014 was a year of accolades and success in this area. Posts to come.

Love:

-I’ve been in love once, maybe twice.

-Quite a bit to do and accomplish in this area.

Travel:

-I have traveled internationally 3 times: United Kingdom (age 8), Mexico (age 18), and Japan (age 24). Within North America, I’ve seen a good deal of western Canada, parts of the southern United States and Texas …far from well traveled, but I’ve traveled enough to give me the “travel bug”.

-I have only lived abroad once, and that’s my current 4+year stint in Texas.

-I have traveled to Hollywood and Beverly Hills in 2015

-Took a road trip to Atlanta, Georgia in 2015

-Traveled through much of South Texas on a 200 mile relay race running with a team. 2015

Learning Wealth:

-Studying Napoleon Hill, Rhonda Byrne, Darren Hardy and others.

-Recently had the most money I’d ever had at one time.

-Make small donations monthly to 2 organizations through my job.

UPDATE**** Reading Jack Canfield’s Success Principles right now, The Entrepreneurs Solution, and enrolled Mel Abraham’s Business Breakthrough Academy and also in Brendon Burchard’s top 2% Course.

Driving:

-Driven some wonderful vehicles.

-Racing and drifting have not been attempted or learned.

-Drive often presently, so skill is improving.

Art:

-Appreciating art in all its forms more and more as I age.

-Haven’t created any art since high school art class, and that was hardly considerable.

Properties/Homes:

-Am in pursuit of my first property

Teaching/Helping/Giving Back:

-I’m acquiring more skills and knowledge in order to better teach people in the future.

-Set an example of good work ethic in jobs that I’ve had in my career, but working smarter is ongoing.

UPDATE****Volunteered at a Battle Frog race and helped many overcome the 12 foot wall obstacle.

Agriculture:

-I’ve planed 6* trees.

-I have an aloe plant

-Starting to grow Chia.

As you can see from this inventory, I’ve  still got a long way to go in almost everything. This doesn’t deter me, nor should it deter anybody who sets out to achieve anything. I’d rather take the time to assess where I am, so that I can always look back as I progress and reach benchmarks, (2015-as I just have). As opposed to saying “there’s too much work to be done” I say “here’s a way to measure my work against something. Everybody starts somewhere…

Started from the bottom…–Drake

Moving forward I’ll be writing and publishing detailed posts in each of these categories as I learn and experience new things, but also delve into what I’ve learned in the past in more detail.

Thanks for reading, and leave me any comments you have.

200 Mile Relay Race in South Texas…Why Not?

Suddenly I’m thrust into an unexpected challenge. A friend of mine contacted me on Tuesday, informing me that a teammate for the Texas Independence Relay had dropped out, would I care to take their place? I said yes with little hesitation, even though I’m arguably “out of shape” presently. I chose to accept because I need this. It is well within my capabilities, and the only thing separating me from rising to the challenge is utilizing my time now for proper preparation, and adopting a positive mind-set that accepts the challenge and believes I can accomplish it. This will be a good spark to ignite my training for the May/June Spartan Races I plan on doing.

 

This is also a really cool race: historic, and requiring strategy and advanced planning. The race goes from Gonzales, Texas to Houston.

Road Tripping To South Texas this weekend

Road Tripping To South Texas this weekend

Fortunately the team I’m a part of has everything worked out, all I have to do is prepare myself, my equipment/supplies, and show up to run. All totaled I’ll be doing 3 legs, spaced out pretty generously…totaling 16.65 miles. That will be a  new personal record for most miles in 24h, but there is a substantial break between my first and second legs. I plan on foam rolling after all my legs, with some good stretching and I should be good to go. Nutrition and hydration are also key. I plan on starting hydrating extra today (2 days out), and even more so the day before the race. I’m learning that hydration is a pre-preparation priority, and that hydration during a competition should be never from a depleted state–starting saturated with water from the prior 24h seems to have a very beneficial effect, and I find myself less thirsty, and performing better. For some performance hacks, I’ll be consuming pickle juice, coconut water, and various supplements. I plan on using: Shroom Tech Sport by Onnit Labs, it’s a great energy supplement that actually uses your bodies natural ATP production system rather than being an external energy boost, Beet Elite–a natural Nitric Oxide boosting supplement made from real beets, lastly to take before sleep ZMA–a mineral based mix of Zinc, Magnesium, and Vitamin B6–helps the body during intense training to recover (click the link to find out more about ZMA).

 

In last-minute preparation I’ve been wearing my Training Mask, often even when sedentary

Wearing this mask as much as I can stand to get my lungs working even when "resting".

Wearing this mask as much as I can stand to get my lungs working even when “resting”.

. Warming up my lungs a few days out and working my diaphragm to hopefully enable me to get more oxygen during the race. Other than that, just made my final packing and shopping lists. A deep stretching and yoga session tonight will be the last step to prepare adequately for the short time frame I’ve had.

 

Follow along on Twitter, and Instagram @multitude27 to see Behind the Scenes.

 

 

(Morning) Rituals and Routines—What Might Be the Unifying Factor in Success.

BY @multitude27

Day Break. #nofilter

First post of 2015!!!!!!

 

This post is adapted from a post I published at Medium yesterday. I’m a huge fan and follower of Tim Ferriss (follow him on Twitter and his blog to be on the cutting edge of performance and success) Through his blog and podcast Mr. Ferriss has really emphasized the morning routine of the successful and how they vary but can contain striking similarities.

 

The following words are a synopsis of where I’m at personally adopting a functioning routine into my life.

 

 

(Morning) Rituals and Routines—What Might Be the Unifying Factor in Success.

I honestly don’t practice a routine right now. But, I’m developing a system. I am the type of person that can’t have a monotonous life, and routines are monotonous, or at least that’s what I’ve been telling myself. Completely wrong. In all my studying of success nothing recurs quite as often as having a routine to spark creativity and productivity. Maybe list making, but that is often part of the routine! Chicken and egg aside, I’ve put a great deal of effort into the study of routine and routine building in my life. However, to date, I have yet to actually practice my routine(s). To overcome my fear that having a routine would add too much monotony regardless of its productivity benefits, I’ve decided to create different routines for different styles of days. Wait, hear me out—there are core tenets that form the ultimate simplicity of my routine, but I tailor other aspects and steps outside the core to jumpstart engagement in how I want to direct and create my day. How does that work? Something like this: I broke days down into primary themes and differentiate/adjust the routines accordingly.

Each day should have one major goal/tenet:

Brain Dayslearn and absorb at least one truth, skill, or lesson.

Fitness DaysFocus on health and fitness, with a major workout or mission accomplished

Creative DaysMust create one item. Whether that’s a cog to a larger creation or a finalized product.

Money DaysCreate Income/Profit. Goals and target numbers set and strived for. Financial Management and Improvement.

Love Days—purposefully free of routine…spontaneity and freedom rule. Days devoted to love, and enjoying the moment.

Macro with some good morning Dew

Macro with some good morning Dew

 

What makes each day different is the desired outcome and goal. The goal overall is to have systems in place that make each morning an enjoyable and effective way to start my day. Designing the differences in the routines is in accordance with these goals. I wouldn’t say that each day is fully set out yet, in total detail but some things have been established. Each day gets it’s own musical accompaniment to the routine based on how I’m setting the tempo for the day. For instance, fitness days are geared towards higher tempo music to induce a more intense frame of mind before training. I believe certain days don’t need music.

The inclusion of a day free of routine I felt necessary, to avoid negative self talk and criticism. I tend to gravitate towards harsh self-appraisal so this can insulate me. Go on? A day where I can be free and spontaneous built within the greater framework of a structured routine system alleviates me from pressure or need to berate my failure. After all who can be mad at a day spent in freedom, love and pursuing the enjoyment of our limited time in this plane of existence? So I broke routine? End of the world? No. Not unless I can’t look at myself in the mirror at the end of the day and say that I lived my way and no day is bad. Which is never.

The purpose of this wasn’t to long windedly explain that I’ve got a different way of routinizing life, the purpose was to share what gets results and that’s why if you’re still reading you ultimately clicked this story.

My routine system I’ve discussed is complicated, but it suits me because I’m complicated as well. That being said I do know that a high level of complication can ultimately defeat the real purpose of a routine…to simply do tasks in a manner that doesn’t require the level of conscious thought it would to independently accomplish these tasks: with the overall system leading to higher functioning as a human.

Here is the simple stuff. What have I found to work for me and common among the successful?

COMMONALITIES AMONGST DAYS:

  • • Each routine should include the sourcing/planning/preparing of the day’s first meal.
  • • Make Bed
  • • Hydration—8–20 oz. of water.
  • • Some form of affirmative thought/visualization/gratitude/meditative time
  • • A baseline minimum physical activity: Yoga/Stretch, 200 pushups, breathing exercises.

Following these activities I would tailor the following steps to the day. Creative days would involve a writing practice with various projects ongoing. Fitness days, a great training session or sessions. Money days, an evaluating my personal and company finances with increasing income and profit taking center stage. Brain days, deeply immersive study of a subject of my choosing. Love days, who knows?

Overall, I think that using these commonalities as a foundation and building off of them can prove very beneficial. The rest of your day already has a sense of purpose and accomplishment. You’ve followed a routine, and that’s a key to reaching a happy and successful life. Ask anybody. Anybody that you consider to be successful, and see if they don’t have some form of routine to become more effective.

 


 

Any thoughts or comments? What do you do that is different or similar to my set up? Am I crazy? Let me know in the comments below or Tweet me @multitude27 on the side bar.

 

Thank you,

 

Brendan

A Huge Challenge and Commitment…The Spartan Beast

I have my work cut out for me as I’ve committed to The Spartan Beast. This race will be a substantial physical and mental challenge: over 12 Miles and

IMG_1686

25+ obstacles to complete. I signed up in late June, and will be competing as part of a team, calling ourselves—Heroes United. The event is taking place December 15th/2013 in Glen Rose TX. Weather is another consideration and prospective challenge during this event. It could potentially be cold, windy, or (very unlikely) snowing and that makes certain potential obstacles even more difficult, mainly any involving water. Freezing water, coupled with cold wind sounds terrible during a grueling physical activity. But, I am not deterred, I’m determined.

 

Why did I choose to participate in such madness?

Sometimes I need to challenge myself. Who am I kidding, I ALWAYS need to be challenging myself. I’ve learned that embracing change and creating positive change are essential parts of adult life.I think you’re supposed to do a ‘sprint’, then ‘super’ then ‘beast’. But I’m diving into the deep end and fully committing to something that is arguably beyond my capabilities. Or at least it was. Training for a challenge like this has already been a great learning experience and I think my fitness has greatly improved already. My goals for this race are to first and foremost FINISH the race in good health, secondly to complete 80% of obstacles without penalty, and thirdly to enjoy the experience, while learning and improving myself. I had originally intended to finish with a high placing (top 25), but have recently decided that my main competitor is myself, and that’s the way I’m looking at it. I’d rather go at my own pace, pushing my own limits then compete with the pack mentality for a place number, and see where I stand at the end. However, with that being said I wouldn’t be opposed to a top 40 finish as a bonus to my own internal competition. One of the cool things about doing an event like this is that it will be a force multiplier for lots of my other goals; and an actual evaluation point for a 2013 goal I set at the beginning of this year. “Train and Push myself to be in the absolute best shape I’ve ever been in.” That’s how the goal on my wall reads. What better way to cross that off then finishing off the year with a challenge like the Spartan Beast. It’s also helping me achieve more specific goals (Force Multiplier)  that I have such as: have a 6 pack(then an 8 pack), and train in a dynamic & balanced way. Leading up to and doing this event are both ways of making those goals realized. So there’s a lot of aspects as to why I’m participating.

IMG_1679

I became the first to join/create this habit on lift.do ( I call this pioneering)

Fortunately, I’m tracking myself in a few different ways so that can be actually analyzed to a degree. I created a lift habit on Oct. 27th (actually pioneered this one–see photo) for Spartan Beast Training. I’ve got 17 checkins since October 27th. I used notes to record what I did for a workout too, often with details. I have 39 Checkins (but that is with a solid month and a half of not tracking anything on lift) since signing up for this on July 2nd. That’s not a lot, to some, and lots to others—I know I could have been more disciplined and trained more. Looking at the data charted over a calendar you can see some cool things. Also I’ve had my Jawbone UP band for 77 days as of today, and have recorded runs and workouts through the app as diligently as possible (didn’t have the band for about 7 days waiting for replacement to arrive…it just abruptly died one day). Longest run I tracked with the UP band was 10.44 miles at 8.9min/mile. In the last month I’ve been doing a lot of total body workouts with compound movements, and medium to heavy weight. Lots will argue against the total body workout, but I’ve found pretty effective results (in my mind) using them.

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This was exactly how long (when I checked it) until I should be warming up and stretching for the race.

Overall, I’m excited to take this on. With proper hydration, nutrition, stretching/warm up, and recovery I think I’ve got a good chance. December 15th I’ll find out.