On today's podcast, I'm thrilled to interview Sarah Peck about a swim adventure that provided hundreds with drinking water, how to navigate the achievement dance, and why understanding what you're feeling could be the key to eating well. "Deciding is powerful. It is terrifying. It is beautiful. Kill something today. Cut it out. Drop it. Remove it. Make clarity in choosing, by saying No to the part you don’t want. Say Yes to the things you want to keep. Do something. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin now.”
In a special interview edition of the podcast, you'll hear about the habits Nathan Agin uses to build his business and maintain his health while he travels. Listen in and you'll learn how he uses a specific creative practice to keep ideas flowing, why commitment and flexibility make an incredibly powerful duo, how he manages his energy instead of his time, how to get started with a simple approach to meditation, and how his travels have influenced his healthy diet.
Next July, we’ll set off on the Monday after WDS from Pioneer Square in Portland, Oregon, and ride our bikes home to Corpus Christi, Texas. It’s about 2,300 miles, and we think it’ll take about a month. In addition to the ride, our goal is to raise $23,000 for charity: water, enough to build a school water project. We're not prepared, and we don't yet have a plan. That's okay. We have something even better - a story.
Sometimes I write in response to a question I've been asked. Sometimes I write to explore an idea. And sometimes I write what I need to read. Today would be the latter. If you've read any of my recent monthly reports or listened to the last few podcasts, you know I'm really struggling with food. The old habits that took me to over 200 lbs. are roaring back. The difference is that I see it coming now; it's no longer hidden. Although I haven't had the courage to officially get back on the scale, I know I'm carrying an extra 10-15 lbs. over where I've maintained for the last few years. I also know it's the stress. Several of my projects are peaking in intensity at the same time. I've subtracted all that I can, and my days are still full from 5am to 9pm. So I've decided that I need to learn to make better decisions under these conditions. If you can relate, perhaps this will be useful for you too.
In episode 5 of the podcast, we shared the story of the boy torn between a million dollars and a mere penny doubled every day for a month. It might not be obvious at first, but the penny is clearly the better option. The same is true for our habits. Want to develop a new habit or break a bad one? Start really small. Find the penny. When everything inside you wants to launch into a new life, to start off with a bang, to make tremendous progress with one swift change, resist. That rarely works. Instead, find the penny.
One month ago, I lost one of my mentors. She'd guided me for more than half my life. The finality of our last conversation replayed over and over in my mind. Thankfully, it was an encouraging one, symbolic of our relationship. I cried harder than I have in years. In the days after, I realized something even more painful: This was likely only the first. Obviously, most of my mentors are older than me. And many of them are struggling with their health. Selfishly, I want them to get better. I want to enjoy several more decades of their friendship and leadership. They've helped me through several difficult stretches, and I want to celebrate the other side of that together. I also know that I'm not alone. I know that you want those you love to be healthier, and that you want to set a good example for those who love you. More than that, I've made the journey myself. Just over three years ago, I was there too. My clothes were always too small. I had headaches every afternoon. My digestive system was a mess. Nearly every day, I took some sort of pill to feel better. I never had enough energy to do the things I wanted. Like an explorer without a map, I stumbled frequently and often found myself in uncharted territory. Through trial and error, I discovered what worked for me and my family, and eventually my friends. In the years since, I've been able to back up my experiences with scientific research and case studies. I'm confident that what I know will be "common sense" in a decade or so. There's just too much evidence to be ignored for much longer. But I'm not willing to wait.
From Winston Churchill to Thomas Jefferson and Ernest Hemingway, plenty of historical figures were fond of standing desks. Based on a slew of current research about the negative health impacts of sitting, standing desks are making a comeback. There are also simple and inexpensive options for getting started, and I thought it would be fun to share them with you since several readers are giving it a try.
We want to be a healthy example for our families. We want to live longer and feel better. We want to avoid taking pills to get through the day. But we don't know where to start. I know because I was there. A month before my 30th birthday, I felt like I was closer to 80. My joints hurt. I had constant headaches and stomach problems. I barely had enough energy to get through the day, and stress was taking its toll. On May 7, 2009, I decided that had to change. Since then, I've spent hundreds of hours researching our bodies and how modern life affects us. I've experimented with different approaches and closely tracked the results. I've assisted friends and family with making similar changes and watched their transformations as well. I know it can be better. I've lived it, and I've seen it. And I firmly believe you can have it too.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) sounds like something for astronauts. But it's designed for regular people just like me and you. (Astronauts can use it too.) In a nutshell, HIIT workouts pack a lot of benefits in a short amount of time. If you're anything like me, you struggle to find time to exercise. Between work commitments, raising kids, and other projects, personal time is often the first place we cut. Even if we know better. We've got to stop doing that. It's the worst kind of short term thinking, and it harms us and those we love.