The Book Worm

 

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“Why do we neglect to read the books that can change our lives? Why do we complain but remain the same? Why do so many of us curse the effect but nourish the cause? How do we explain the fact that only three percent of our entire national population possess a library card-a card that would give us access to all of the answers to success and happiness we could ever want?

Those who wish for the better life cannot permit themselves to miss the books that could have a major impact on how their lives turn out. The book they miss will not help! And the issue is not that books are too expensive! If a person concludes that the price of buying the book is too great, wait until he must pay the price for not buying it. Wait until he receives the bill for continued and prolonged ignorance.

There is very little difference between someone who cannot read and someone who will not read. The result of either is ignorance. Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary. We must not permit anything to stand between us and the book that could change our lives. A little reading each day will result in a wealth of valuable information in a very short period of time. But if we fail to set aside the time, if we fail to pick up the book, if we fail to exercise the discipline, then ignorance will quickly move in to fill the void.

Those who seek a better life must first become a better person. They must continually seek after self- mastery for the purpose of developing a balanced philosophy of life, and then live in accordance with the dictates of that philosophy. The habit of reading is a major stepping stone in the development of a sound philosophical foundation. And in myopinion it is one of the fundamentals required for the attainment of success and happiness.” Jim Rohn

I enjoy reading a good book no matter what type it is. As a child I was raised without a television set. Instead my mother took my brothers and I to the library to pick out books. It was a real treat for us, and I remember gettng lost in the aisles trying to figure which books I would pick out, and the order in which I was going to read them. On holidays my father would rent a tv for a week , and we would be allowed to visit our local video store, and pick out some Walt Disney movies for our viewing pleasure.

Boy, how time has changed a lot of things. However, I thank my Mom and Dad for installing in me the passion, and value of being able to lose yourself in a great novel or book of any sort. Below I have reviewed two books, both are fitness related. One will help your body, the other may stimulate your mind.

Chemical Pink – By Kati Arnold

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Kati Arnoldi makes her literary debut with this novel. Chemical Pink explores the dark world of competitive female bodybuilding in the 1980’s. It takes you deep within the seamy world of women’s bodybuilding and introduces the reader to the twisted fetishes associated with the sport. It is about greed, obsession, self-degradation and the consequences of going too far.

Katie Arnoldi’s portrayal leaves a deep and freshly engrained vision of the characters showing how their lives are altered by the thirst for perfection and dramatizing the effects it has on relationships.

Youthful, attractive and with a passion for bodybuilding Aurora Johnson has all the right stuff to make it in the world of bodybuilding, but her personal life is not so promising. Unwed, single and with an overbearing mother, Aurora decides to get away from it all and leaves Savannah to start a new life in California.

With zeal to build the best body possible Aurora soon finds out that her dream may not become a reality. That is, until she meets someone who is willing to offer her everything she dreamed of and more.

Charles Worthington is a well-to-do gentlemen in search of his next up-and-coming protégé. He has a vision, a dream to create the perfect female bodybuilding specimen and the money to play out this fantasy. He sees Aurora as the perfect specimen and wants to take her under his wing and shape her into a champion.

To achieve this, Aurora agrees to hand over control to Charles. Intense training starts with a strict high protein diet and drugs (muscle-enhancing) are soon introduced. However, Aurora finds herself slowly surrendering her life to Charles as he begins to dictate who she sees, where she goes, what she eats and when and how much she’ll take of the body- enhancing drugs he has prescribed for her. Aurora also begins to cater to Charles ever-growing sexual requests, each one becoming more bizarre and twisted. In return, Charles showers Aurora with gifts in the form of a house, a sports car and money. As time passes Aurora slowly loses her independence and becomes more submissive to Charles. But at the same time, her body is transforming into something she could never imagine was possible.

For Aurora the sweet smell of victory is closing in. But will her dream of attaining the perfect body cloud her judgement and push her past the boundaries of health and sanity?
Once you pick up this book there is no putting it down whether or not you enjoy the sport of bodybuilding. Kati Arnoldi does a great job of captivating her readers and keeping them spellbound throughout the entire novel. This book will fascinate you and leave you repulsed at the same time.

If you’d like to purchase this book you can do so here: http://www.amazon.ca/Chemical-Pink-Katie-Arnoldi/dp/0312878915

Gourmet Nutrition – Authors: Dr. John M Berardi, PhD & Dr. John K. Williams, PhD

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Gourmet Nutrition isn’t just a cook book, it’s a full-bodied, optimal eating manual. From it, you can feed both your mind and your body with recipes, cooking tips and nutrition strategies that will help you get into the best shape of your life.
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Nutritional infidelity is on the rise. That’s because, when it comes to preparing food in the kitchen, people are willing to abandon the old-familiar in their search for taste and variety.
Are you stuck in breakfast, Have your lunches grown stale? Dreading dinner? Or maybe you’re just tired of eating boiled chicken breast and tuna out of a can? Eating healthy doesn’t have to sacrifice taste. It certainly doesn’t have to be this way because, with a pinch of creativity and a dash of education, Gourmet Nutrition can bring you into a new world of taste experience.

Now there’s a recipe book that covers all the bases. If you’re interested in following a healthy lifestyle without having to worry about eating the same boring foods all the time, this book is for you! Dr Berardi and Dr Williams have taken all the guesswork out of cooking, and served up a book that is both informative and easy to understand.
Gourmet Nutrition isn’t any regular recipe book! Whether it’s snacks, salads, shakes, or meals this book dishes it all out in a special way.
Some of the areas covered:

How to design your kitchen so you can be better prepared when it comes to nutritional roadblocks.
• Food facts and preparation tips.
• Macronutrient profiles for each meal served up in a pie graph.
• Dr Berardi’s 7 Highly Effective habits to nutrition.
• 100 recipes covering everything a strength enthusiast/meathead would need to succeed in the kitchen.

If you’ve ever tried finding a food book that caters to strength trainers you’d be hard-pressed to find anything that comes close to what Gourmet Nutrition offers. Most books of this type are full of filler material or use lots of glossy pictures to cover up content shortcomings. This book can be used by a newbie starting out or an advanced trainer who understands how to manipulate macro-nutrient ratios. When it comes to presenting information, Dr Berardi and Dr Williams have chosen the proper method in communicating their points. Clear, concise and easy to understand, the lessons you take away from this book will help you plan your nutritional program so that the work outside of the gym gets done in an effective and efficient manner.

Why deny your taste buds any longer? Treat them to Gourmet Nutrition!

If you’re interested in buyng this book you can find it here: http://www.gourmetnutrition.com/

Are You Successful?

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There are a multitude of interesting tidbits I come across each and every day I log onto the Internet, thanks to the power of sharing through various social media platforms. This one piece I came across got me thinking about how we as human beings can easily get stuck in a rut operating inside our everyday lives which over time can distant us from becoming the person we desire to be.

Success in today’s society is often described as how much money, or personal items such as cars, homes, jewelry and clothing we own. However, if we take all these so called markers for success away, what we are left with are a person’s consistent ability to take action everyday that will often determine how much they accomplish in life.

People who are ‘happily’ married for decades, run a business for many years (while turning a profit to support themselves and their loved ones), are great role models as parents and those who enjoy their jobs and find solace in what they do will have followed at least ninety percent of the guidelines listed below.

Successful People: Read everyday / Unsuccessful People: Watch TV every day
Successful People: Compliment / Unsuccessful People: Criticize
Successful People: Embrace change / Unsuccessful People: Fear change
Successful People: Forgive others / Unsuccessful People: Hold a grudge
Successful People: Talk about ideas / Unsuccessful People: Talk about people
Successful People: Continuously learn / Unsuccessful People: Think they know it all
Successful People: Accept responsibility / Unsuccessful People: Blame others for their failure
Successful People: Have a sense of gratitude / Unsuccessful People: Have a sense of entitlement
Successful People: Set goals and develop life plans / Unsuccessful People: Just go with the flow

To me these guidelines seem like a better definition of what success should be and a standard we can aim to live by.

So, my question is, how do you match up, and what unsuccessful traits could you be doing less of and be replacing with successful ones?

Dedicated to your fitness,
Maki Riddington

50 Statements That Have Changed MPT – Part 1

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“Knowledge comes from learning. Wisdom comes from living.” – Anthony Douglas Williams

My fitness story began at the age of sixteen. I had been athletic all my life, and had dabbled with lifting weights at the age of thirteen, but it wasn’t until I ran into trouble in high school that I really turned to lifting weights. After several years, I grew up and released myself from my troubled past, however, in the process I lost my purpose. Then I realized I could make a living at getting people in better shape, and transforming their bodies. I had done it for myself, so why couldn’t I do it for others?  Over the years I grew to understand that there was more to fitness then just telling people what to do to change their bodies. There was more than a physical component to what I was providing. I could see the need to impact their mindset, and,in some way, change this aspect of their lives for the better,

In the next two-part series, I’ve compiled some of the main portions of “wisdom” that have shaped my approach to training, and my ‘philosophy of fitness’.

1. When people want to grow and improve together it becomes infectious.  And that’s why we call MPT/TFW Vancouver, a community. There’s a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.

2. There are no gold medals handed out to those who worked the hardest and fastest. The true test in bringing out the ‘warrior within’ comes from the challenge of becoming more then you are—not by beating someone else.

3. Everybody has a warrior spirit inside. The biggest tragedy is never letting it out. You may think that being a warrior is reserved for someone who does combat, or a solider who fights for their country. But, what about the brave act of showing up with your best everyday, and stepping up to face adversity? Maybe that’s what it means to bring out the warrior within.

4. Enthus – means to be filled with spirit. IASM – (“I AM SOLD MYSELF”)
“Nothing was ever achieved without enthusiasm” If you want to impact someone, learn to be enthusiastic about what you believe in. It’s like a viral infection which, once passed on will spread like wildfire.

5. You compete to be better than where you are, not to be better than someone else. “There isn’t anything noble about being superior to another person.  True nobility is in being superior to the person you once were.”

6. The world isn’t set up to be healthy. It’s like people don’t want you to succeed. We are constantly being told that we can become successful, but at the same time world will tear us down every chance it gets.

7. Surround yourself with those who are on the same mission. When you arm yourself with people who care about what you care about, the journey becomes a wonderful adventure into the unknown.

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8. MPT/TFW Vancouver, is a dojo where you come to learn about yourself, and become better physically and mentally. What you learn here brings out the best in you, so you can put your best foot forward in life. It allows you to conquer yourself and leads to greater self-discipline.

9. When it comes to fitness and nutrition, it’s not a knowledge problem. It’s an action problem. You have to figure out a way to act on the information you already possess. The difference between successful and unsuccessful people is that the latter group takes consistent action. At MPT/TFW Vancouver, we ensure you take action so we can guide you to success.

10. What it really boils down to is this—can you get people to do it!? Broccoli is good for you and many people know this, but how many people can you actually influence to eat it on a regular basis? Eating broccoli is a metaphor. You can do it, but can you get others to follow you? Doing something uncomfortable starts with yourself, and then you need to spur others into action. That’s the power of leadership.

11. Mastery is not about making things more difficult. It’s about making things easier.  Bruce Lee once said, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” What he meant by this is that mastery isn’t just knowledge but the ability to apply that knowledge. Mastery requires commitment, repetition, and deliberateness. It’s a simple and easy concept to follow in the difficult and long journey towards mastery.

12.  Your body will respond to the SELF-SELECTED challenges you give it.
Either you set and accomplish goals for your body (workout, nutrition, competitive event) or LIFE and TIME will give you negative challenges to overcome – disease, fatigue, and other physical dilemmas.

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13. When you look at food, ask yourself this question. Am I feeding my body or am I feeding my mind?  This may help you make a healthier choice.

14. Trainers and coaches can be seen as merchants of fat-loss. We rob people daily of their body fat.

15. Say “YES” more often than you say “no.” Great things never came from your comfort zone. It takes courage to say “yes,” because you know something will happen, but you can be sure that if you say “no,” nothing will happen. Be a yes person!

16. Don’t get good at something you don’t like. Don’t do it because it’s safe. Do it because you’re passionate.

17. No excuses. There’s no excuse too great that says your health is not the most important attribute in your life.

18. Life has two rules. 1.Never quit. 2. Remember rule #1

19. If you don’t stand for something you’ll fall for anything.

20. Everybody wants to feel great! They want to leave feeling great—not beat up. If we are going to take the time to drain one tank (physical) then we should be spending the same energy and time to fill up our other tank (emotional). Nobody likes leaving the gym feeling defeated.

21. Anybody can make somebody tired, but not everyone can make you a master at something. I remember my first mentor (Dr Mel C Siff) once saying, “”To me, the sign of a really excellent routine is one which places great demands on the athlete, yet produces progressive long-term improvement without soreness, injury or the athlete ever feeling thoroughly depleted. Any fool can create a program that is so demanding that it would virtually kill the toughest marine or hardiest of elite athletes, but not any fool can create a tough program that produces progress without unnecessary pain.”

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22. You can’t make others better if _you_ don’t get better. If you are not continually trying to improve some aspect of your life directly attached to what you want others to do, then how can you expect them to improve?

23. Burn fat, build muscle, feel good! If you had to sum up in an elevator what we do and what we are about this is it. Short, simple and straight to the point. If you haven’t experienced one of these then we haven’t done our jobs to the best of our ability.

24. My job is to be a great chef—to leave you hungry for more. We’ve all experienced a great meal at some point in our lifetime. It’s one that makes you want more, or has you hanging on to the taste and sensations imparted to you. That’s because the chefs who created the meals possess personal attributes that have propelled them to be the best they can be. A coach is like a chef. There is planning, years of experience, creativity, passion,attention to detail and practice that allows a coach to create an experience that will leave people wanting more.

25. Don’t get through it—get from it. Exercise isn’t a chore we HAVE to do or get through. If we view or approach fitness like this we’ll never truly succeed in accomplishing what we need. If we look at what we can get from it, then we begin to understand the value of every session in improving our life.

1% Better

 

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“Success is a few simple disciplines, practiced every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day.” —Jim Rohn

As of 2010, there had never been a British cyclist who had won a Tour De France. Then, Dave Brailsford stepped in as the newly-appointed General Manager and Performance Director for Great Britain’s national cycling team.

Brailsford took a simple approach and applied a single strategy. He believed that using the concept he referred to as, the “aggregation of marginal gains,” would help propel Great Britain into the spotlight, and change their cycling history forever.

This concept he would apply was simple, if you improve every aspect of a cyclist’s performance by 1%, then these improvements would add up to some big changes.

So Brailsford and his team started to work on changing all the different aspects of cyclist training including, the rider’s nutrition, seat ergonomics, and the weight of the tires.

But he didn’t stop there. He looked further into areas that no one else had considered such as, the type of pillow the cyclist slept on, the massage gels being using, and teaching the riders how to properly wash their hands to best avoid infections.
His goal was to position his team to win a Tour De France in the next five years. But, he got this wrong. Instead, in just _three_ years, they won the Tour De France. That same year, he coached the nation’s Olympic team to victory at the Olympic games, taking 70% of the gold medals in the cycling category.

Then, in 2013, Great Britain won the Tour De France again. Dave Brailsford had accomplished what others had failed to do, and was acknowledged by many as having one of the most successful runs in modern cycling history.

So what can we learn from the ‘Brailsford approach’, and, more importantly, how can we use it in the context of our daly lives?

Have you ever heard people (or even yourself) say, “I wish I could do this, travel there, or learn such-and-such,” but I just don’t have the time. We all live in a busy society that constantly puts the rush on our time, and we tell ourselves that any kind of meaningful change must be associated with an immediate, largely visible outcome.

Wether it’s losing weight, starting an exercise program, learning a new skill, or improving a single aspect of your life, the pressure we put on ourselves to make a big-time transformation deters us from looking at the small steps necessary to accomplish the change.

It’s easy to underestimate the importance of small-scale, daily actions and their value.
Here’s a thought for you to consider. There are 24 hours in a day which equate to 1440 minutes. If you applied just one percent (1%) of your day to improving an aspect of your life, this would work out to roughly fifteen minutes per day. Everybody has one precent, that is, a fifteen-minute break they can spare for bettering themselves.

At the start it may not feel like you’re making any substantial improvements. However, repeated over time, you’ll find that it adds up to gradual success. Remember, just because it’s not immediately notable, doesn’t make it meaningless.

You might not win a Tour De France, make millions of dollars or win any championships,0 but if you apply the 1% Concept of on a daily basis, the results are still going to impact your life.

There is power in making changes slowly over time. The sum of all your decisions, coupled with making the right ones, compounded over time on a consistent basis, leads to big wins in your performance.

So:

What could you do with fifteen minutes every day, and what could that lead to?

What would happen to your life if, every day, you improved by one percent (1%), in some important aspect of your physical or mental activity?

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#tfwvancouver