“You have to make it a way of life, as your life may very well depend on it”, “Anything worth having takes a lot of work, and anything worth having is worth working for.”
Yes, those are quotes of mine when I had addressed to my students, as their Sensei, at the peak of not only being a Martial Artist, but in physical shape as well. Granted I was much younger, however I made training in the martial arts, at the gym, and my diet a way of life.
Some that have known me before then, and during that time may say I made it a way of life due to the cancer scare that I incurred, as well as losing weight from that experience down to 132 pounds, at 6’2″. I will confess, that surely was a motivator. I also had the benefit that one of my best friends was studying Physiology, Nutrition, and worked at local fitness center who trained and motivated me. I also was in a relationship with a woman who was just about to finish her degree in Physical Therapy to become a Physical Therapist in Sports Medicine. It was their counsel, that of my Master Sensei, and my interest and passion for research that assisted me.
However, distractions, life events, accidents, injuries, and life catches up to you and before you know it, you may find yourself overweight, living with chronic pain, and simply do not have the energy you once had, and cannot seem to gather up enough just to complete a 5 day work week, then tend to the needs of a home or family.
I am here to tell you those are more excuses than certain reality. The reality is that your mind, body and soul can accomplish more and overcome more than you may realize. The come back stories I have heard about, seen, and personally witnessed, including my very own, will demonstrate what I am seeking to convey.
Let me first say this one more time, write it down, memorize, and apply it. “You have to make it a way of life, as your life may very well depend on it” and “Anything worth having takes a lot of work, and anything worth having is worth working for.”
These are not just phrases I coined in my younger years, or younger years of management and leadership. They are what I know to be true, and I have recently said this to students in the Karate Dojo, friends, people I have counseled, and to my own children, several times.
I coined this first quote of mine to initially apply in the Martial Arts. A person does not become a “Martial Arts expert” over night. A few classes, or even a few years does not make you an expert. In fact, in karate, you are only just beginning when you are given your black belt by your Master Sensei. That is why is is called Sho-Dan (1st Degree). A student must make it a way of life. The two to three days a week in the dojo is not even enough. A student needs to train at home too. I have advised training in front of a mirror, and even video record your training, so that you can improve on your own, in addition to being at the dojo. In an art such as Karate, you have to make it a way of life, as your life, or your loved ones lives, may very well depend on it. This is true with other exercise and diet. A person needs to eat healthy, proactively manage stress, and exercise, which is proven to provide a long, energetic, and healthier life.
Lets take the second quote and allow me to expound upon it a bit. Do you know of anything of value, or worth, of substance, that does not take hard work? That degree, saving for that new home, or nice vacation? How about that beach body? How about that promotion, or raise? How about that scholarship, sports medal, award winning contest? These are just some of the things that take a lot of work, and they are indeed worth working for. There are no hand outs in life, and no one owes anyone anything for doing nothing. Your life was a gift from your Creator, it is up to you how you utilize that gift, or you waste it.
My advice is do not say you cannot do something, or unable, unless you first try, and try again. Granted there are handicaps, and disabilities that may hinder your ability, slow your progress, or you may have to find a more creative, or innovative way of doing it.
Just ask Nick Vujicic who was born without arms and legs, yet has a very successful company, and growing ministry. He has a beautiful wife and two children. This man has done more athletic, sports related, and adventures than I can even dream of. You may check out his ministry and story at lifewithoutlimbs.org
Maybe ask David Ring. David was born with Cerebral Palsy. Orphaned at age 14, he was cast about from family to family with nowhere to call home. He endured constant physical pain, humiliating public ridicule and constant discouragement. Yet in the face of these seemingly insurmountable obstacles, David emerged not victimized…but victorious. You may check out his ministry at davidring.org
How about Kris Karr, when she was a 32-year-old New Yorker just enjoying life. But then, a regular checkup at her doctor’s office resulted in a diagnosis of a rare and incurable Stage IV cancer called epithelioid hemangioendothelioma, existing in her liver and lungs. Instead of succumbing to the disease, Carr decided to challenge her diagnosis head on. She attacked her cancer with a brand new nutritional lifestyle, and turned her experience into a series of successful self-help books and documentaries. Eventually, she launched her own wellness website, which is followed by over 40,000 people. Today, Karr is celebrating a decade of “thriving with cancer,” and is now revered as one of the most prominent experts on healthy living.
Did you know that Richard Branson has dyslexia? Instead of giving up, he used the power of his personality to drive him to success. Today, Branson, known for developing Virgin Records and many of its more technologically advanced spinoffs, is the fourth richest person in the UK.
Franklin Roosevelt became partially paralyzed at 39. After vacationing in Canada, Roosevelt developed polio, which eventually left him paralyzed from the waist down for the rest of his life. Even though he couldn’t walk, he went on to lead the country as one of the most respected and memorable presidents in history.
One of my work hard and come back stories was when I was struck by a negligent driver while I was on my motorcycle and dragged 50 feet, breaking 15 bones. I nearly died on site, and later in the hospital. I was in the hospital a month, in a wheel chair for 3 months, and off work with no source of income for over 4 months. One doctor said I would never recover, two doctors said it would be at least 8 months before I walked. When I was alone in my wheelchair, in my condo, in so much pain, that it not only hurt to breath, it hurt to exist. I was at low point to where I gave up, gave it all to God and began praying out loud in Jesus name to stand, and walk, and He gave me that right there and then on my daughters birthday, almost 3 months to the date of my accident! I nursed myself back to health through prayer, faith, healthy eating, and exercise. In the first part of this year, 2020, I did our dojos traditional 1000 kicks with my son, and received another black belt the following month. I usually am eating “The Mediterranean Way” which means The Mediterranean Diet, and re-committed to exercising 5 to 6 days a week whether it’s karate, fast walking, bicycling, or weights and machines at the local gym.
Now I am not advising going against a medical professionals advice. You should always check with your family physician before any exercise program or change in diet, however when someone tells me they cannot do something, or they have a challenge, or they have a handicap; I tend to lean on some of the stories and testimonies above and my thoughts tend to initially question this someone’s validity. Is it that they truly cannot? Did their medical professional advise them not to? Or is it an excuse? Or they do not want to put in the work? Because anything worth having takes a lot of work and anything worth having is worth working for. You must make it a way of life, as your life may depend on it.
Want to feel better? Want to sleep better? Want to have the energy, stamina, and flexibility to play with your children or grandchildren? Want to live a longer life? Then do something about it! Get out of that chair. Get off the couch. And get out, and do it. Get it done, and make it a habit, to make it a way of life.
I have designed a 21 Day Challenge I call, “Back On Track from being Lack and Slack” in celebration of many states opening back up from the COVID19 Social Distancing and Stay At Home recommendations to mandates. We begin on June 1st, 2020. Below are the details:
1.) 10k Week Day Step Goal or 50k in a week
2.) The Gospel of the Book of John challenge. Read a chapter a day for 21 days for each day of the entire challenge as the book of John is only 21 chapters.
3.) 21 Day Daniel Fast which more info may be found at this link:
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
“For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” – 1 Timothy 4:8
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” – Romans 12:1
“For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church,” – Ephesians 5:29
“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” – Proverbs 17:22
“She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.” – Proverbs 31:17