Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Truth & Love

A little while back, I was on the fence about teaching on Monday nights. I was talking to a friend about it and she said "You can't go wrong, you can't fail, because when you operate from a place of truthfulness and love, words like "wrong," and "fail," do not exist."

This conversation has stayed with me and I think about it now whenever I make a decision. I ask myself "Is this choice honest?" and "Do I feel it the way I should?" and I know the feeling I'm looking for. If its forced, it's not right.

The trouble some of us have or had is hearing your own voice. Understanding the difference between the "chatter," and your TRUE voice. Our "chatter," is just that... Noisy, always talking. When something or someone is noisy and chatty, some things make sense, some don't, and it's hard to tell what we should pay attention to because its never quiet. But your TRUE voice, has depth, it is timely and is heard best when you are still and focused on quieting the "chatter."

Set aside just a few moments every day to sit quietly and completely still. Your focus is on your breath. Choose a comfortable seat w good posture and where you won't be tempted to wiggle or "fidget." No phones or electronics. Breathe deeply and exhale the "chatter," box that distracts us.

Personal note:
I was horrible at this for a long time. I was quiet but thinking about random and often anxiety building thoughts. I'd often worry about things that never happened. I'd think about how I'll handle negative situations in advance so that I felt more prepared for when they did happen.
With practice, that worrying/chattery voice faded away and I have much, much less stress and anxiety.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Introducing Nick Kelly

Intro: Who Am I?

Hello,I am Nicholas Kelly a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. The first twoquestions people ask me are, do you eat healthy and why did you choose thispath. I’ve heard this so many times, but each time it takes me back to thereasons I am a Dietitian and why I love nutrition.  First, I eat the way I eat, subset of what Ido; I have always been interested in nutrition and as a high school wrestlerthe fact there is a correlation between nutrition and performance was somethingI quickly understood.  Nevertheless, despitemy early interest, my career path did not come until one faithful day January2006. I should explain, I attended Bowling Green State University (BGSU) to getmy degree in Computer Technology; however, the year I arrived they eliminatedthe major (thanks for telling me). Therefore, I was faced with the decisionwhat to do until I could transfer. I then signed up for an intro to nutritionclass (207) with a professor named Dr. Joe Williford. That day changed my life;I just didn’t know it yet. What started as me taking a class because my friendswere in it became what I wanted to do with my life, all because Dr. Joe was soamazing and the class captivated me like very few things had.  One week into the class, I called my motherand said, “Hey, do you think you could see me as a Dietitian”; she replied,“Sure, (with odd hesitation) do you know anything about being a Dietitian?” Ipromptly said, “Nope, but I’m pretty sure I want too”. From a major that was nomore, a class I only took because my friends were in it, and a teacher thatseemed to get it, here I am many years later a Registered and LicensedDietitian with a Masters in Food and Nutrition, all from BGSU;  sharing my passion, dedication, and expertisefor nutrition with you.


I want these to continue to be as honest with limited or no editing. 


The 2nd Power Plus class I taught, I ended the class by reviewing the definition of Namaste.  I said something along the lines of "Its too bad we only say Namaste near the end of a yoga class."  From what I've read, Namaste is defined and/or interpreted a couple different ways yet they seam to all mean the same thing... My heart acknowledges your heart; my light acknowledges your light; my goodness bows to your goodness and so on.  "I bow to you."  In my opinion, in understanding the root of the word, we are free to interpret as we please as long as we do not lose the meaning. 

"Its too bad we only say Namaste near the end of a yoga class."

Imagine if business meetings began with placing our hands at our heart, bowing and saying "Namaste," and all parties understanding what they're saying... imagine your work place... imagine that happening.  Would the meetings be different?  Would the workplace be different?

Imagine if we began our mornings hugging our loved one and saying Namaste before heading out for the day... would your mindset be different, more ope and positive for the day?

Imagine if instead of saying "Hello," and "Good-bye," we said "Namaste." 

Imagine if we were all mindful of any of the interpretations and meant it fully in every encounter... How different would our life be? 

How many work meetings feel negative and leave people worried about their jobs?
How many coworkers stab other coworkers in the back for advancement? 
How many conversations have you had with friends or family members that ended with harsh feelings or an unease?
How many times do we go into a gas station or supermarket and we become angry with how we treated as we check out?

Its a very simple question, do we treat each other well enough every day?  Every moment?  Every chance we get?

"Let the goodness in me, honor the goodness in you," and it flows back and forth and all around us.  A room full of people, truly honoring each other, using kind/mindful speech and showing respect...

Our world would be different.

Personal note:
"Our world would be different."  I used to say "Waiting on the World to Change," was the laziest song every written.  John Lennon wanted change, John Mayer wants to sit on his ass.  (I'm also a huge John Mayer fan.  HUGE.  In a mini man crush kinda way but its OK.)  So "Waiting on the World to Change," bothered me, especially coming from a guy like that.  I believe musicians can change things. 
Can we change the world? 
No.  I guess we cant.  We cant fix the economy.  We really have no say so in terms of what our government does.  You can think so if it makes you feel better, but at the end of the day, money controls Washington. 
My sister is in Africa on a retreat with her church and they have rolling black outs and limited power.  My daughter (8 yrs old) asked "Why cant our country go over there and help them have better power lines?"   I lied to her and said they're working on it, but we know the truth :) I'll save my politics for another rant.

Can we change OUR world?  Absolutely.  I, we have the power to control and change every person we come in contact with at every step. 
If someone is rude at the grocery store, I have the power to choose how I respond.  Do I respond with more rudeness?  Do I respond to aggression with aggression?  No and no.  Fire cannot put out fire.

So if words like rude, aggression, anger, and meanness stem from the negative, we must counter with the positive and it will have double benefit. 
Benefit #1, they're negative didn't turn us negative.  How may times has that happened?  Someone was mean to you and it put you in a bad mood.  Probably often.  But had you responded with kindness, you would have been unaffected.  Think of how many times someone speeds ahead of you to cut you off while exiting the freeway... what good does it do get angry?  Does flicking them off really help either of you? 

Benefit #2, you begin altering their path.  Now, when someone is rude or mean, is your smile going to change them and put them in a good mood?  Maybe, maybe not.  But it does alter their state whether they acknowledge it or not.  Subconsciously they felt your warmth, your empathy and kindness.  They felt your energy. 

(Energy.  Do you know someone that you can feel?  You're near them and all the sudden... your mood is effected, for better or worse.  Ever wonder why?) 

Back to the point because I'm rambling... I can go on and on with this stuff :)
Namaste... treat each other well.  I posted something earlier today like "Go out of your way to be extra friendly today."  Why not?

I don't want to say some speech anymore at the end of my classes.  I want to assign mindful homework.  Dedicate a full day to smiling and improving other peoples moods all day long.  Go to work and do everything you do, but do not engage in gossip, do not bad talk anyone, do not say anything or act in any negative way towards yourself or any other living creature for one full day.  Think about that.   


Blue Chip Training Camp/Power Plus Notes
I think this past week was the first week where things really started to make sense and the training philosophy is coming into a true light and people are "buying," in.  I've always said that yoga made me train or taught me to train w a smarter and with a new, more thoughtful intensity.  I often emphasize on Mondays to sink deep and really feel your muscle engaging in whatever move we're working through.  One of the first points I wanted bring up months ago was to be mindful of your shoulder/scapula movements through the high plank/low plank/up dog/down dog transitions.  Once you can put the mind on the muscle, the training changes.  To sink deep into those crescent lunges that we love so much :) and sit in there and gently take on that burn and understand whats going on and enjoy it in weird way, the training changes.  How you notice your body moving changes.  So on Tuesday, when we were really grinding it out... and boy were we (you actually as Scarlett pointed out, the trainer doesn't actually go through the workouts with you), you could feel everything the way you should.  Your form was great, your focus was incredible, and your effort was truly one of the best classes Ive ever been a part of.  That class last Tuesday will be very memorable and something to build on as things move along.  That was intense cardio.  Flat out, and just like the pain in the crescent lunge that you cant ignore, that you just have to dive deep into and sink and settle and take it on... you have no choice but to be in that moment and work it, just like those plate pushes.  Your thighs were feeling like crap, your lungs were on fire and your heart was beating into your throat.  And you continued on... it was really really impressive.       


A note from Alex!!
I've been loving everything from this blog lately! I've definitely been snagging some photos for my own blog http://yogaholics.tumblr.com/


Big thanks to everyone who voted on the "Cleveland Best of!"  Blue Chip was only on the ballot 8 days and quickly jumped from 15 or so on day #1 to finishing in 7th... behind 2 Zumba instructors :) 

Things were much easier when training is all I did. 
Easier but more stressful, I guess.  I was never comfortable feeling pressure for sales to be able to pay bills, which inevitably was why I found a 9-5... 7-3:30 actually.  Some of you have probably figured out one way or another, I'm uncomfortable even mentioning money.  (Some day, I'll figure out a way to do this for free.) 
But now there's a very different challenge for me and it really sucks.  At my day job, hate to say this, but its not very stimulating.  I don't mean its a "dumb job," by any means, but its very repetitive.  Its very physical and we lift some pretty heavy parts but for the most part its the same thing every day, every day, every day, every day, every day.... odnfjdnflsdnfulsidfleifn
Get it?  
The challenge is go from there to training, to go from steel toe boots to running shoes, to go from "work energy," to "Lets bust some ass!" energy or even harder "yoga energy." 
My car has become my "office," where I go and focus and reset everything.  I rarely listen to the radio or ipod anymore.  I need some quiet time to envision what I want to see happen in the next class. 
But something happens... No matter where I go, I get there and a switch flips.  Someone walks in and everything changes.  Someone walks in and I think "This is exactly where I'm supposed to be," and your energy, your enthusiasm, your "vibe," flips that switch. 
Ever know deep down what you were meant to do?  What your dream is?  I've never doubted what I was meant to do.  Not one day.  Might seem dumb to some people but I really don't care :) training and running awesome classes with amazing people, is exactly what I was meant to do.  And I mean that full blast, AMAZING PEOPLE.  You are.   And now, having yoga with us and this blog and avenues to share... its all I want to do. 
You really do have to practice yoga to be "OK," living in Cleveland.
Think about this... The weather sucks! Don't lie and say "shut up! I love the snow!" Ya right, for about 1 week. But after about 30 inches and 3 months of never seeing the sun, you're ready to blow something up just to see something bright.

Our sports teams suck and we have no faith they'll ever be good.   I'm naturally an extremely optimistic person and I truly believe anything great can happen.  Remember Northcutts drop in the flats a few years back vs the Steelers in the playoffs?  
(I said I wasn't going to edit anything but I just deleted all the horrible draft picks and guys we shoudve drafted... it was just too depressing to read.)
Do I really need to talk about LeBron?  He was just in town and the talk on the radio was "Should we root for him and beg for him to come back or boo him?"  Holy crap... what a loser mentality! 

I'm about to be 36 and I've seen MAYBE one Browns playoff win, i don't actually remember it, and that was in the 2nd grade, Major League Baseball is forever tainted and the NBA is more fixed than the wwf... Or is it wwe now?

Downtown always was and always will be Gotham City to me. It's gray, it's a bunch of square buildings and NO ONE IS EVER FRIENDLY!

Why yoga?
What else is going to teach us to NOT kick our televisions over every Sunday, to smile at snow on the first day of spring and find something unique and pretty about E.9th?

Last thing... these are getting lengthy!  Ill probably start writing throughout the week, they've been a really nice outlet for me and I really look forward to sharing.  For the record, in no way do I actually think these are anything more than something to read when you're bored out of your mind and flipping through facebook.  But on the flip side, I wish more people wrote things like this.  I do think its important that we share and get to know each other, even if it is via blogs or social media... but you can text me and buy a bottle at corks too.  That would be way better than typing away for hours and Id probably say something way "nuttier," after a bottle of Moscato :)

I have two daughters, Abby Jean (8) and Livi Grace (6).  This weekend, Abby was in her first pretty legit play for UpStage Players in East Cleveland.  We were talking and I asked "Are you nervous?"  She said "No, why would I be?" 
I said "Just wondering, dumb question."
She wasn't nervous because shes 8.  At 8, you don't know people are watching you or judging you.  You still have that innocence.  So much can be learned from kids, all you have to do is watch them.
Imagine if we could "unlearn," the things that have created who we are...
Imagine if our ego's could just dissolve...
If we could return the things that we loved as kids... laying out in backyards, under the stars, and just talk. 
My kids don't care about whats "cool," or the news or what someone thinks.  They care to be nice, friendly, intelligent, thoughtful young people. 
So someday our kids may meet... and we need them to be much better than we were.  Why not?
........... did my first topic tie into my last?

Copy, paste.... Rick out a little to this :)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

D1 401k, Summer S&C & Evolution Baby

Just so its out there again, these opinions and things I write about our mine and do not represent the other trainers and instructors affiliated w/Blue Chip.  They may or may not agree, you'd have to ask them.
Just putting that out there just in case something nutty pops on the screen and I forget to erase it :)


Its St. Patty's Day and I have a feeling very few of you will be reading this today.


Ive been a little nostalgic lately, it happens around certain times of the year I guess.  We probably all go through it from time to time.  And the television has been very... helpful?  If that's the right word.  I taped the Fab 5 documentary the other day and finally had time to watch the entire thing, 2 hours long but actually felt like 30 minutes.  What a story.  For those of you who aren't quite sure who the Fab 5 were (and that's weird to me if you don't, but again... I'm getting OLD!), they were 5 freshman who started together at the University of Michigan in the real early 90's.  Back then, starting freshman was pretty rare and starting 5, I don't think ever happened, which was one reason why it was such a story.  The other reasons were because they changed they changed the college game.  They changed the shorts, the socks, the behavior and gave the youth of the time their team.   Back then I wasn't much of a college basketball fan, but when I saw Chris Webber play, I became a fan.  They were cocky, fun and exciting to watch AND they won a ton of games, but never a title.  Most memorable game was probably their loss to UNC in the championship when Webber called a timeout but didn't have any, forcing a technical foul and lost by 4-5 points, I forget.

A few years later I read a book about the team and everything they went through, from the racism they dealt with, to going from the ghettos of Detroit (Jalen Rose) to the big time college game.  The part that has always stuck with me and changed how I saw college sports forever was a story about Chris Webber needing a few bucks for gas. 

Think about that before I go any further.  Think about the college game that you know now.  Think about everything you see on television and the jerseys you see for sale.  Think about the ticket prices and the concessions sold.  Think about how a big college team supports the local economy and everything it involves all year around.  That's huge, huge money.  Millions and millions of dollars.

Chris Webbers jerseys were being sold for $75.  Nike started selling black socks because he wore them.  Other teams were changing the length on their shorts because he (they) did.  But he needed gas money. 

Do not say "They are/were getting a free scholarship."  How much does that cost or did cost then?  $10,000/year?   I truly don't know, but I do know Michigan's merchandise sales went from 1.5 million the year before they came to over 10 million after their first season.  So lets see here... 5 kids... $10,000 per year x... lets say they did decide to stay all 4 years... that's about $200,000 give or take.  Which is about $9,800,000 less than they earned for the school, JUST ON MERCHANDISE.  Crazy, huh?

College kids, on big levels like U of M are exploited.

The answer? 

A retirement plan based on % of ticket/merchandise/overall profit that the athletes see at a certain age.  Maybe some type of 401k plan that forces them to invest their plan and let it grow as they get older, with options to pull from it when they reach a certain age. 

Currently writing up some summer plans regarding High School Strength & Conditioning.  Strong possibility we'll be adding classes to the Power Room schedule
Potential Schedule/Rough Draft
Agility, Jump & Conditioning 4:30-5:30
Power Yoga Plus 6-7

Beginners Yoga or Slow Flow 6-7
Blue Chip Training Camp 6:30-7:30

Strength, Agility, Jump & Conditioning 4:30-5:30
Power Vinyasa 6-7

Ready, Set, DANCE 6-7
Training Camp 6:30-7:30

Training Camp/Power Plus 8:30-9:30
Strength, Agility, Jump & Conditioning 9:00-10:30

Just looking over that rough draft now... If I'm a high school athlete, I'm ALLLL over that schedule, every single class.  I'd attend both Monday classes, the training camp on Tuesday, as many as possible on Wednesday, training on Thursday and training on Saturday. 
Like everything else, count on it being very affordable.  Talk to your coach now and get your team involved.

And I like to day dream about things that some people think is silly or impossible or will never happen.  Its a long shot, but I emailed Eric Thomas co about getting him to Lake County.  Its probably a 2-3 year goal but possible.  I just need to figure out the finances.


On any given week, including groups and classes and teams, I talk to about 150 people or so, and the conversations are usually always about progress and change and they're motivational and inspiring.  This week the words CHANGE and EVOLUTION and GROWTH were hot topics. 

So often, for whatever reason, people fear change.  Maybe because its the unknown.  You can say or think "i want to change this," but in the back of your mind you wonder what will happen.  So I never use the word change.  I do think the word feels abrupt and like a 90 degree turn or a 180.  I like "evolve." I prefer a nice bend in a certain direction vs slamming on the brakes and turning a hard left.  I know its a perception thing but think about diets.  Some just say "No, this is my change, this is what I'm doing," and change everything.  A few months later, they slowly creep back to their old habits.  Maybe because the change was too extreme, maybe it was forced and unnatural, whatever the reason, it didn't stick. 

That year I reference where I lost 100lbs.  I cut everything and ate the exact same meal 6 days per week.  Was it extreme?  Yes.  Did it work?  Yes.  Did I lose it at some point and gain some weight back?  Yes.  Because it wasn't a very functional, natural way for me to live.  Now, I'm much more at ease and my nutrition is very natural and stress free.  It evolved as did my vision. 

So think about those words:  CHANGE, GROWTH AND EVOLUTION
My philosophy is to just keep it moving in a positive direction.  Do some people need a drastic change?  Yes, if their lifestyle is dangerous or hurtful, and even then, there is a risk in going back to old habits.  Habits that we are looking to shed take time, the way a snake sheds its outer skin.  He doesn't do so by sitting in one place and thinking about.  He sheds by moving forward and keeping it moving towards the goal, inch by inch. 

We're all changing and theres nothing wrong with it.  If you work with love & truth and stay positive and you're helpful, your evolution will be long lasting and will even inspire others.   

Side note:
The word evolution always make me think of two things, Pearl Jams song "Evolution," and my book collection.  No matter what little gadget is invented, I'll always enjoy owning books.  I like to cover art and the unique texture of the pages.  If you buy used books, there may even be some notes or highlights from a previous owner.  That's authentic.  You cant get authentic on a kindle.
Anyways, I look at my books and if I put them in order of purchase... its pretty interesting, maybe :)
Growing up, once I got into basketball, Dennis Rodman was my guy.  I loved those Piston teams and watching Rodman was just the best thing Id ever seen.  And this was "pre-freak," Rodman that we all know now.
When he went to San Antonio, the freak was let loose and things got really fun!  So his biographies are in my collection and his first book was one of the first books I actually cared to read and didn't put down until it was over.
In a very odd way, his book set a lot of things in motion, because after reading his book, I had to read Phil Jackson's books and then I had to read David Halberstams boot about MJ "Playing for Keeps," which is probably the best sports book Ive ever read.  So in depth, so intense, so "live," you feel like you're right there in practice with the Dream Team or on the team bus.  Great, great book. 

But Phil Jackson's books were the centerpiece and his style changed me.  Opened me up to thoughts I always had but didn't put to use.  Changed how I coached because it let know "no fear," and to be yourself.  Imagine working with 30 young boys, ages 14-18 and you want to introduce meditation.... not easy and could easily be rejected with some jokes.  But I always felt coaching young men lacked a softer, more mindful quality.  Football was/is all about hitting and aggression and it got mean and nasty sometimes.  I wanted to slow it down and think a little more.  I wanted to teach life skills in the football environment.  To teach them to see their own successes before they ever developed.  To teach critical thinking, to teach remaining calm in a storm.... think yoga helps develop that skill?
Did my "goofyness," assist in their 10-0 season?  Maybe not.  Will it assist them in 10 years?  Id like to hope so.

From Phil I found Deepak, Russel Simmons, Thich Nhat Hanh, Dan Millman, and Hunter Thompson.
(WHAT THE...?!  How did Hunter sneak in there???  That's another story, but actually referenced in nearly every blog.)

But the above authors were my Psych 101 and Philosophy courses.  If you get some time, I highly recommend Hanh's "The Art of Power," Russel's "Do You!" and anything by Deepak.  Anything by any of them really is worth your time if you're looking for something different. 
Remember that one time I said "Some people are so good, its hard to believe they're real people," that's Thich Nhat Hanh.  Hearing him speak or reading his books, makes you wonder.  A perfect person.

Thich Nhat Hanh on Amazon 
"Do You!" by Russell Simmons on Amazon
Dan Millman on Amazon


A lot of requests coming in for Nicks nutritional services and I HIGHLY recommend this.  In my opinion, people know how to train hard, they know how to run, but something that we often do not know or think we know but don't, is how to grocery shop, how to plan meals, especially when raising a family.  Give Nick a call and schedule your consult.  Do not procrastinate.
Phone: 216-269-5942
Email: spotlightnutrition@gmail.com
Check out his page on the Blue Chip site: Spotlight Nutrition


Someone asked me about my marketing and promotions and about my business approach and philosophy.  This is where those books and their philosophy comes into play, from Simmons to Deepak to even Rodman.
I've never sold anything. If anything I've talked people out of purchasing and steered them to smarter purchases.  I've presented options.  Even when I worked in gyms, I never tried to actually sell a membership.  I presented what the gym could do, what it offered, what the prices are and if any deals were going on and they made their decision.  Could I sell cars or something random?  Possibly.  But I know I couldn't for a company where I didn't know where the money was going or if it was piece of crap product.  I wouldn't be able to sell a crappy car and I wouldn't be able to sell a car to someone couldn't really afford it.  I need to know my efforts are going to something I personally believe in, all around.
My philosophy is to work hard at developing ideas  (classes) that I think people will enjoy and find useful.  For instance, the Tuesday night class will not only be an outstanding class, it will also teach people how to workout throughout the week, especially when the weights are set up.  I'm 100% confident, we'll be doing things we've/you've never done at a level you never thought you could, getting results you didn't think possible. 

My marketing is create an image for the logo
so that when you see it, you know what it means.  My goal is for it to represent a standard and to build trust.  If there's a class going that is a Blue Chip class, you'll know theres a very good chance its a great class.  If I post a check in at a local company, you'll know theres a very good chance that company is a great company with great customer service.   If a trainer is wearing a new Blue Chip T-Shirt, they're a great trainer (not the old T's and not downtown). 
I like playlists with emotion and enthusiasm and explosions.
I know we all come for different reasons, but for my own practice, I don't understand Yoga without an element of Zen/Buddhist philosophy. 

Monday, March 11, 2013

It shouldnt be easy...

(Originally written 11/21/11 but still relevant)

This is a topic that has always come up and until recently, for some reason, I wasn’t able to put into a proper context.

Here's an example: We're in the middle of the workout and things are progressively getting more intense and you're not really sure why. You're out breath, your body is fatiguing rather quickly and now you start to doubt yourself. You say "I'm so out of shape," and I reply "No, this is hard! This shouldn’t be easy for anyone."

For some reason, that’s been a hard point to sell. Sometimes, I think people don’t believe me and I just say it to make them feel better. Not true. Trust me, I've said it the other way too. "I'm so out of shape," and I've replied "Yeah, I don’t know what your deal is today but you're not bringing it."

I recently posted a workout on the Facebook page that I found on YouTube. It was a trainer taking some NFL linebacker through a functional power circuit. Everyone who trains with me knows this is what we love :). So the workout is 4 rounds and 10 reps of pull-ups, burpees, lateral hurdles, hang cleans, and plyo push ups. People who have been with me long enough to have learned how to hang clean has probably done a circuit very similar.... and probably a lot better than the linebacker. The female trainer went through it one time AND was able to talk about how to perform the movements. Then the big boy got up there and about half way through, you could see him give a look to someone off camera like "are you kidding me?" Pouring with sweat, he finished 1 round. Obviously he could’ve finished it but this is just where the video ended.

My point is, this guy is an NFL linebacker, probably one of the best athletes in the country and he very clearly knew he was in the middle of a very hard workout. Regardless of all his previous training, all his hours in the weight room and all the miles he's run... this was still hard.

Don't mistake these workouts kicking your butt as you being out of shape or that you're not getting in shape (that’s the other example I hear a lot of. People feel they're not progressing). These workouts should always push you to your limit... and then nudge you past it. And then we'll do it again and again and again. And that’s the point, that’s the fun and the journey. If your cardio is easy... that’s a problem. If your workouts do not leave you completely exhausted... that’s a problem.

Be prepared to lose your breath... be ready to crunch so hard you can’t breathe... know what it feels like when you literally cannot lift your arms... when your legs feel like rubber and you know you need to be careful walking up the stairs... when the sweat is running through your eyes and you exhale out of your mouth and you can see the sweat come off you lip. The part where our hands are on our knees and we're trying to slow down our breath and we can feel our heartbeat through our chest and we look in the mirror and see the pulse in our throats and taking a seat has never felt better.... this is what we came for.

And we'll do it again

Updated Note:
Tomorrow = Sandbags!  Woohoo!!!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

So Macho, FREE CLASS, No Girlie Push-Ups, & the Browns are the best Yoga! (These are basically my newsletters now)

In keeping with the style used last week, a little week in review of my posts/tweets/pics/nonsense/rants...

I posted:
I really need to start keeping "free class," passes on me 24/7.
For every macho douche meat head that says "yoga? I workout." Me too lil fella, so here's a pass, see you Monday at 6.
Or "bootcamp? No thanks, I don't do girlie weights." Oh no Arnold? Because those legs kinda say you've been skipping sessions, so here's a free class, see you Tuesday.
Guys are pansies (most)

I think a lot of guys don't do yoga because your sorry little ego can't handle women kicking your ass.
And lets be honest... Women kick men's asses in nearly everything anyway.
Maybe a tad aggressive because I was pretty annoyed with a conversation I had with a gentleman at a training location, but still true.  I was about to begin a class at a downtown location and this guy comes to the lobby "Hey Yoga Guy!"  I smile and say hello.  I then ask him if hes joining us today, which he obviously wasn't but he answers "Yoga? No, I workout."  Now I'm really not an ego guy at all... but hes saying that to me?   Hes 5'8" maybe 180lbs and... lets just say he could use my classes.  I tower over him, completely.  And he dogs "Yoga Guy," with No, I workout?  I'm smiling on the outside but my blood is kinda heating up.  SO I follow with another invite because he was kinda dogging the gals in the class, I say "Hey come check out the Boot next week."  He says "Nah, I don't do girlie weights." 
Fellas, before trying to downplay the workout your wife/mom/sister/girlfriend/fiance/friend goes through, try it out first.
**1 Free Class**
Ive been doing this for a little while now, 10 years or so, women are tougher than men.  Its not close.  Its never been close. 
Theyre called modified push-ups, not girl push ups.  Think about what that says.  I know its petty but I have two daughters and train 300 middle school/high school girls, Im not teaching them that "girl," anything is the easier version of anything.  Any gym teacher that calls it "girl push ups," should be fired and secretly Im waiting for the day my daughter comes home and tells me that.  
Today it peaked around 64 degrees or so and lets be honest, its really hard to be positive and optimistic and cheerful when 4-5 months of the year are gray and cold... and the Browns suck.  Days like today really make you think "Thank God!  Only a 8 more weeks left of iffy weather!" Look at how bad we need yoga!  :)  Talk about "smiling through the pain," try smiling through a Browns game when its 20 degrees outside and you haven't seen sunshine in 3 weeks.
The sessions and boots and classes are onl;y as good as they are becuase of the energy you bring.  Those who attend the Monday and Tuesday classes occasionally see my posts that follow and they pretty much say just that.  You come ready to do whatever is thrown out there and you start strong and want more, I can feel that and we take off. 
Is there any better reason? 
Thinking about what we can do to help build our mindset around our goals and Scarlett had a great idea.  She is really good at staying on me, making sure I follow up on random ideas i have at home.
So this week, we'll start incorporating weigh ins and tracking BF%.  Im also going to schedule a class with Nick from Spotlight Nutrition.  I think it would be very beneficial to have a nice Q&A and get everyones mind "right," on what you should be eating and not eating. 
My goal, and Ive said this before, is to give you a personal trainer just for taking these classes.  So I want to be held accountabile for your success and journey.  I really want to put the pressure on myself to make sure you acheive those goals. 
Dont forget, Karl is subbing fo rme tomorrow and is going to run a pretty different class.  Defintely check it out and let me how you like it.  If you do, its probably something we'll be looking to add to the schedule at some point so your feedback is really important. 
Pretty soon, I'll be sitting down w Scarlett, Steph and Sara (and maybe you?) and planning some things or at least diving very deep into what it will take to make some pretty cool things happen.  Looking at creating a couple events for charitys and schools.  Id like to have one for a local, Lake County chrity, one that flies under the radar.  In my opinion, big corporations constatly send their money to large charities, so out $500 or $1000 wont really help there.  But our $1000 would drastically improve a local day care... thats what I want.  To make a real difference, not just one that looks cool posting on FB.  I want to fix up some playgrounds, day cares and build a weight room for local school.  I think it can happen, I day dream it can happen, with some direction, hustle & heart, it will happen. 
Lets do something cool, really cool.  For me, I wouldnt be ok if my 7-3:30 job was all I did.  I think about it all the time and say "eh, I kinda just want to go home today."  I do but Id feel empty and bored in about 3 days of that.  I need to build something people enjoy and helpful.  Want to help? 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Random thoughts on yoga, classes, music and the industry

Ive been letting personal things fly onto various social media sites lately and its kind of fun looking back on the week and reviewing where I was or what I was doing/thinking during random posts and elaborating a bit.


I'm about to turn 36.  And for some reason, its feeling a little old.  I think because 35 felt like a "peak," of sorts and now 35 feels a little like I'm rolling towards 40. 

But here's the kicker!  I was talking to Scarlett the other day and she was talking about some older people and said "They're older and their energy is so low... Look at you, you're old and still have high energy,"  and she was dead serious!  She was honestly putting me into some "old," category!  What is that all about? 

But I'm feeling.. not necessarily "old," but lets call it "old school."  :)  That feels a little cooler.  Trust me, the number can be what it is, but I'm faaaaaar from old.  Except for the bad back, creaky/cracky knees and ankles and zero knowledge of new music.  We cant add bald head, the hairs been falling out since high school. 


More about age...
I posted something on one of the pages about age and added this pic

The quote made me think about the "real world," actually and relating to other people.  I used to think I had trouble relating to adults a little because I didn't consider training a real job with adult interaction and such.  I mean we do interact, but come on, we're in a gym and only for 30-60 minutes.   I didn't have job stress or issues with coworkers or anything like that for a long, long time.  I now have a 40 hour day job and things haven't changed so that's pretty good.  I was very concerned early on that it zap me a little and drain some energy.  But I do think I'm lucky to work with the guys I work with.... actually, they might have the relating issues I have! :)  Now that I think about it, they help keep me weird. 


Creating the playlists for the yoga class is by far the 2nd hardest part of my week.  It literally takes me 2-3 hours every Sunday night and really stresses me out.  I go through 3000 songs every week trying to find the perfect song #1 and perfect song for this part or that part and the whole thing.    On the Internet, I define the class as a "music driven hybrid..." because we do what the music tells us, I know that sounds nuts. I never plan those classes and have no clue what's going to happen or how and couldn't tell you when it's over.  Prior to class, I have a few ideas and always take requests, but I don't know what is going to happen or when.  If the song is chill, we're chill.  When the song gets cranking, we let it fly a little.  The regular attendees can probably tell certain artists are definite favs and usually intensify things. 
I think I went through a little moment where I was tyring to get trendy and find some new stuff to play... it was hit n miss.  The music ranged from so-so to decent... which to me, I think made the classes so-so to decent, maybe with moments of intensity and moments of "wtf are we doing?" 
So I need to keep it simple and personal and it'll continue to rock... fairly confident in that.  And I think its funny to play Audioslave in yoga :)   
Or maybe no one even notices the music but me.


The other part of my week is after savasana... the moments where we sit up and prepare to end class.  I think I'm starting to sound like a drunken Eddie Vedder, mumbling through some half thoughts and you're thinking "ummm, I think I know where he was going with that but... he started mumbling and cut himself off and blurted out namaste." 
Which is pretty accurate.  And also something I need to improve.  I kinda struggle with the whole "yoga box," that I have in my head.  And I know its all in my head and this class is supposed to be a "hybrid," so I really should be fine but I also feel pressure to deliver and share some of the cool things Ive read and lessons and... just random neat things I think we can all benefit from sharing.  Because that's my hang up and whole point to do this... to share.  But I'm wussing out at the whole thing!  I'm sharing through the music and trying to sneak out while you're half sleeping during savasana :) 
I've read some pretty cool books and quotes and had some neat conversations and heard some cool songs.  I need to share.  Maybe we should take turns ending class!
I kinda like the homework idea. but not normal Training Camp type homework but "Human Homework."  Something like "perform 2 random acts towards a total stranger every day this week," or "smile first at every cashier you see."  So random, so minor... but it really really does improve someones day.  Example:  My new mechanic is fantastic (Mark at the sunoco on the corner of Richmond and Wilson Mills).  Totally honest guy and just loves to chat.  So I go there for service and hang.  I never cut him off.  If anything, I let him eventually shoo me away. 
Homework:  Out-nice someone.  Extra credit:  Out-nice someone who you don't think deserves it!  That's what I really love to do!  Someone is being a dick... I go out of my way to smile and stay polite and eventually, they break their cranky little mood and they're good to go.


Anger doesn't extinguish anger, hatred doesn't extinguish hatred.  Kindness and love does.  Its like water.  Water always find a way.  It can change forms and turn to gas or freeze and turn to ice.  It can wear down down the strongest rocks and create new paths.  It cannot be stopped.  same goes for kindness and love.  It can and will always continue and never die or fade or lose.   


Someone said "Dude, you have girl feelings sometimes."  I said "how so?"  They said "You just think and feel about everything."  I said "Oh, like humans? How crazy." 
So feelings and thinking is like a girl and I shouldn't?   Guys shouldn't?  Maybe if more guys did more often and weren't scared they wouldn't fuck so many things up :)  awwwww


SO Blue Chip was just added to some Cleveland vote thing where we vote for the best of the city!  I don't really care other than the fact that its good promotion for the room.  Trust me... best?   I don't really care who thinks I'm the best trainer.  Don't get me wrong, its important to me that you're confident and think you're working with the best, but I don't care what some random website posts.  Just you.
If I win a contest, I want it to be for customer service.  I want to win a "Best, Most Thoughtful Service Award."  That would mean much more.  I don't think we're treated well enough where we should be.  That's why when you come in for class, no issues, no chaos, no bullshit or drama.  Smile, enjoy class, have a good time, pass it on, you know?   Simple. 
Life is too much sometimes, Blue Chip wont be a concern for you. 


Very inspiring pic that kinda fits the above thought:

 My thoughts on the industry are this:  I can bitch about the things I hate, or I can "build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete."  That's exactly what you see going on... very slowly, but its happening.  Only one thing will stop it and I don't see it happening anytime soon... despite someone thinking I'm getting old :)
Ideally, I think it would be really cool to have the yoga room between an old school coffee shop and a cd/record store.  By old school coffee shop, I mean the ones that had comfy couches and played cool music that made you want to learn to play the guitar.
Even if something nuts happens and we no longer have a room to go... I will still find a way... like water.  I love it too much.

K... I think Ive gone on long enough.  Have a fantastic week and be sure to "Out-Nice Someone," who really, really needs it! 

See you tomorrow at 6!
Take care,

This Is Blue Chip