What I've Been Thinking About...
One of the best books I read last year was titled "Lest Innocent Blood Be Shed" written by Phillip Hallie. This book tells the story of how minister Andre Trocme and his wife Magda saved over 5,000 people from Nazi persecution between 1940 and 1944 in the small French town of Le Chambon. It was written that if the Holocaust was storm, lightning, thunder, wind, and rain then Le Chambon was the rainbow.
One night, as the Trocme's were preparing to sit down and eat dinner, Nazi guards pounded on their door to arrest Andre. After taking her husband away, Magda looked at the prepared food and invited the two Nazi policemen to have dinner with her. The Trocme's believed in the preciousness of all human life and felt that even though these guards came to take away her husband they were still human and because of that, can be redeemed. This family believed that, "there was no limit to what might be possible in terms of the reclamation of persons". They might be doing evil now but they believed kindness can overcome evil and they would do everything in their power to showcase that.
This makes me think about situations in my own life where I sometimes lose patience with others behavior. Just because they are that way now doesn't mean they cannot change. They might do shady, harmful or hurtful things but if the Trocme's taught me anything, it is that you should respond to unkindness with kindness. That you can rid out evil with love and the belief that all human beings have the potential to change for the better. If Magda Trocme can feed the Nazi guards arresting your husband, then I too, can handle those that I do not see eye to eye with at the moment.
Fitness Tip of the Week
As we are a few weeks into the New Year, I have been thinking a lot about resolutions and how to make changes that last. In my opinion, it is those small changes, done consistently over time, that will produce the biggest results. So how do we implement this? I think the first thing we should do is spend a few weeks trying to understand our current problem areas. Is it diet, lack of exercise, poor sleeping habits, too much stress, all of the above?
Once identified, a plan should be put into place to eradicate these problems, one by one!
The next step would be to add in physical activity. This could be anything from taking a 10-30 minute walk per day to joining a gym or following a structured plan. Physical activity not only offers us a calorie burn or boost in muscle, but it is an incredible stress reliever, improves mood, alleviates anxiousness and helps aid in sleep quality. These are areas that I feel we can all benefit from improving!
Once that habit is established, it is time to get serious about what you are eating and put in one solid month of really making nutrition improvements. This could be food journaling, food prepping, following a diet, or talking with a nutritionist. To sum these ideas up, in January, clean it up and eliminate poor habits. February is about increasing physical activity frequency and/or duration. In March, we focus on our meals while still following the principles from January and February. In April, we put it all together and cut poor habits, train hard, and eat a healthy, nutritious diet. Then, in May, we re-evaluate and start all over!
New Podast with Coach Ben Chunko!
In this episode, I sit down with my friend, former coach and current owner of Grit Mat Club Ben Chunko. We touch on a variety of topics including coaching wrestling, being a parent, what the word Grit means, creating a culture for his club, and so much more. You don't have to be involved in wrestling to listen to this as most of our talk is trying to help others become better versions of themselves.
Over the years, Ben has always been a great example of always learning, always willing to help, and most importantly, always coaching to help kids reach their full potential. He is an asset to the local community and the sport of wrestling and I am grateful that there are guys like him out there. I hope you enjoy this conversation as much as I did!
Video link: An Interview with Coach Ben Chunko
Audio Link: Episode 183
What I've Been Listening To...
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth
In this book psychologist Angela Duckworth shows anyone striving to succeed—be it parents, students, educators, athletes, or business people—that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence she calls “grit.”
Duckworth blends insights from a wide variety of fields and it is no wonder this book became a best seller. One of my favorite concepts is one in which she discusses a potter. Each day, a potter wakes up and throws clay on the wheel. It doesn't matter if they are having a bad day, feel sick, are unmotivated, or struggling because none of their stuff is selling. The potter knows that if they want to be a pro, they must create each and every day. Through persistence, perseverance, and doggedness, they will be successful, one way or another. In essence, this is what Grit is all about!
Quote of the Week
“Enthusiasm is common. Endurance is rare.” -- Angela Duckworth
I hope you all have an awesome week!