Anything worth achieving in life requires brief moments of pain.
I'm a typical dad. When my kids get hurt, well, I don't usually care to hear about it. They either better "shake it off" or tell their mother. I don't need to hear my kids crying for 5 minutes about how they got hit in the face with a soccer ball. If their noses aren't broken, if they have all their teeth, and if they still look human, then there's no need to cry. Brush it off and keep playing!
Now this sounds heartless, I know. But, I don't want pain to keep them from achieving great things in life, whether it be playing with friends, riding a bike, or rolling around on skates.
In life, we would always have our moments of "purgatory" where we're suffering. We want to aim for something great, but then we find ourselves going through some uncomfortable moments. Anything worth achieving is also worth going through some fire for -- but remember that all fires are eventually put out.
You're tired of struggling with finances, so you decide to form your own business. Don't expect that business to take off right away. You're going to go through moments of poverty, discouragement, anger, a few fights with your spouse, and some sleepless nights. But all of this is temporary and will pass as long as you're willing to continue on.
You have a TON of weight to lose. Sorry to say, but it ain't going to be easy to lose it! You have 100 lbs to lose? What type of fire will you encounter?
But as long as you keep pushing forward, you will find yourself looking like a completely different person!
Pain is temporary, but the outcomes are worth it!
If you turn back because you experience pain, you will live to regret your choice. The pain won't kill you. Yes, it's uncomfortable. It's unpleasant. You hate it. But if you are willing to experience it, to be willing to feel the pain, then you will get what you are going after.
Don't see the fire, get a little burnt, and then run away. No, on the other side of the flames is victory! But you could only get that victory if you're willing to burn for a while. Don't get fooled by others who obtained their victories easily. Don't get fooled by others who tell you success is easy. Anything great in life comes with fire, and if you're not willing to swim in the fire, then don't expect to go any further in life than where you are now.
So, when you get hurt in life, take your dad's suggestion and just shake it off!
One time while teaching a fitness class at the gym, it was a little discouraging to see low numbers of people. I'm all about BIG NUMBERS, having a studio FILLED with loud and energized people! When I get only a few people, I get discouraged. However, I decided to give these few people the best class ever, to give them as much energy as I could put out, and to have the best time that I could have.
And guess what happened? The class enjoyed it and I felt really good putting so much energy into so few people!
One thing I had to realize is that it's not HOW MUCH you have. It's about how much you DO with WHAT you have. It's not about getting the MOST. It's about DOING the most with the little that you have.
When someone is struggling with money, that person would naturally think how to get MORE money. Well, it's not about getting more money. It's about getting the MOST from the little money that you have. It's about living the BEST life that you can with the least amount of dollars in your bank. It's about finding the little resources that you do have and making the most from it.
You see, we've been spoiled in our society. We've been conditioned to believe that more is better. We've been taught to always obtain more and more in life. Get the biggest house, obtain three cars, get a lot of money, have as much stuff as you could possibly get. I mean, the sky's the limit, isn't?
However, more isn't better. Sometimes, having more could be damaging.
One time, our ZUMBA fitness classes were pushing close to 70 participants on a regular basis! It was getting crowded and hot! Initially, I LOVED all the people! But then, I've found that such a big crowd would push away the folks I really wanted to be there: the folks who truly appreciated the work we were doing, who referred other people who appreciated our work, who were generous, who were serious about their health, who really worked hard (or who did the best they do could), and who were consistent in attending. I didn't want to have a big class full of people who just wanted to kill time, or who just wanted to goof off, or who would come one or two times and never again.
So now, we're down to an attendance of 20 to 35 (on occasions 40 individuals) and these are the folks we really want there. And these few folks I want to give the BEST experience possible.
So, don't think about how little you have. Don't look at someone else's success and get jealous. Appreciate the LITTLE that you have and get the MOST from it. One day, you'll get more when it's time. But for now, do the BEST with the LEAST.
From now on, I will appreciate the little that I have. I will be thankful for anything that I'm given. I will use the MOST with the least of my resources, and be the BEST to the few in attendance.
Being a positive person is one thing. Being an opportunist is another.
You know the old analogy of the glass of water being either half full or half empty. If you see the glass as half full, then you're said to be positive. If you see it as half empty, then you'd be negative.
Now, if you're an opportunist, you wouldn't care if the glass is half full or half empty. You see water, you're thirsty, and you drank it!
I LOVE being positive. It's so much better than being negative. However, instead of simply seeing the good in everything, I also want to see opportunities in every situation.
Don't have a job? Simply being positive means that you know you're going to get a job one day. Being an opportunist, however, means that you're going to use this time of unemployment to be productive in something else. Maybe you could start writing that future bestselling novel, or spend time with the kids instead of sending them to daycare, or learning new skills online (or even getting a degree or a certification online), or finding ways to make money using the skills that you have.
Your car is old with several mechanical issues. Being positive is that one day you'd have enough money to buy a better car. Being an opportunist means that you'd learn how to work on your own car RIGHT NOW.
You don't want to be just positive. You want to be an OPPORTUNIST. Sometimes, your positivism could die down. But you could always find ways to take advantage of whatever situation you're in.
So, think about it. You're trying to start a business but your credit score is bad, so you can't take out a loan. What can you do? Sit around hoping to get a loan one day? No! You find out what you can do NOW to get your business going, and one day you might make so much money that you wouldn't even need a loan.
You're broke and can't join a gym. What do you do, sit around hoping to get enough money to join a gym? No, you find out what you could do at HOME. Or find out if there are any fitness events in town that is either free or cheap.
You're down to ONE car between you and your spouse. Don't hope to one day get another car. Learn how to adapt! My wife and I had to adapt when we went down to one car. The biggest thing I've thought about was all the money we'd be saving in insurance, property tax, gas, and maintenance repairs by simply using ONE car instead of having two. Yes, we have a family a four: my wife, my two kids, and me.
Don't just be positive. Be an opportunist! Don't just see the good in everything, but also see opportunities in all situations.
There would always be bad people in the world. Don't just see the hidden good in everybody. Find ways to bring that good out of the bad people.
There would always be high taxes. Don't just see the positive in high taxes (which could be used for a police force or better schools), but find out how to adjust your life so that those high taxes won't be much of a burden to you.
There would always be crazy people on the roadways. Don't just change your perspective on them (ex: maybe the person is rushing to see a dying loved one), but work on yourself to be a more defensive driver so you could help reduce accidents -- especially accidents that could happen to you.
Being an opportunist is a proactive positive person. Don't just change your perspective on life. Make adjustments in your life so that no matter what is thrown at you, you would always find opportunities so you would ALWAYS come out on top.
In our ZUMBA classes, everybody would notice that we do LOTS of leg exercises. We're jumping, squatting, lunging, or doing some other funky leg work.
Before, I've realized that I put too many leg exercises in these classes. I also thought that maybe the leg work was a bit excessive -- until I realize that the biggest calorie-burners are the leg muscles!
In fact, if you really want to lose fat, you need to incorporate more leg exercises into your routine!
The bigger the muscle, the more fat it burns. Muscle needs fuel to work and it gets that fuel from fat, especially since fat covers the muscles. So, if you want to lose fat, you need to work those muscles. But what's more important is that you focus on the RIGHT muscles.
Your biceps are two small muscles in your arms. They don't require a lot of fat for fuel. This means that if you just spend time working on your biceps, you would see very little weight-loss results. You would definitely see more tone since the biceps have very little fat surrounding it. But if you want overall weight-loss, the biceps are the wrong muscles to focus on.
Core exercises such as crunches, planks, and back extensions involve small muscle groups. Yes, they burn fat but not as much OVERALL fat that you'd like.
The legs, however, make up the largest muscle group in your body. Your butt muscles are actually THE largest muscle group in the body, and when you add the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves, then you're talking about the secret weapon for overall fat burn!
Compare your biceps to your hamstring muscles. Both muscle groups do the same thing: your biceps flex the elbow and your hamstrings flex the knee. Your hamstrings are also called your leg biceps and they are made of three long muscles located behind your thighs. You only have two short muscles in your biceps. You have three LARGE muscles in your hamstrings. Which one would burn more fat? Obviously, the hamstrings.
Compare your triceps to your quadriceps. They both do the same thing: the triceps extend the elbows and your quadriceps extend the knee. Your triceps have three small muscles. Your quads have four VERY LARGE muscles. Which would would burn more fat?
Compare your forearms to your calve and shin muscles. They both do the same thing: your forearms flex or extend the wrists and your calves/shins flex or extend the ankles. Yet the calf/shin muscles are one of the most durable muscles in the body because it is supporting over 90 percent of your body!
Now add the butt into the mix and you have the perfect ingredient for weight-loss!
Squats mainly work the quads and the butt. If your squat stance is narrow with your feet under the hips, you put more work in the quads. The wider your feet, the more pressure you put in the butt.
Lunges isolate the quads and the butt more than squats, making lunges harder than squats. But lunges are also better able to shape and tone your legs since they better isolate your leg muscles than squats.
Jumps activate the hamstring muscles more so than squats and lunges. In addition to flexing the knee, the hamstrings also extend the hips -- or in other words, the hamstrings help you with explosive movements such as kicks and jumps.
Your calves work hard regardless of the exercises, but I find that they work harder when you do lunges or calf raise exercises.
Now the thing about the legs is that they are VERY strong and VERY durable. If you want serious weight-loss results, you need to go HARD on those legs.
I teach BodyPump at a gym and pack on some serious weight during the squat track. However, as big as that weight is, it didn't take long for that weight to feel light to me. And despite the big weight, I only see minimum changes in my legs. I see participants in my BodyPump classes lifting significantly LESS squat weight than I am, and I know they won't see ANY changes in their legs. Your legs are very tough and they require A LOT of work if they are going to burn serious amounts of fat.
As apart of your weight-loss fitness routine, put more focus on leg exercises. Personally, I don't like leg exercises! I'd much rather do push-ups and pull-ups. But, working the legs would keep your fat levels in check -- plus keep knee joints in good shape!
All information in this blog are for inspirational purposes only. Unless otherwise stated, all content is written and copyrighted by Aiyo A. Jones.