Dan John: Wandering Weights, Issue # 166
Our Epic Journey Through All Things Heavy, Issue # 166
We all want to leave the gym better than when we arrived, but all too often, poor technique, misguided programming and inefficiency set us up to miss our training goals, and even worse, injure ourselves. The devil is in the details. Chris Holder is back on OTPbooks.com this week to describe the details he considers the most important.
I’m sitting in my kitchen after a great weekend at the University of Texas Sports Performance Conference and watching NFL football. The Vikings proved that you should never turn off the TV watching a game; that was a “one of a kind” finish.
I’m off to Norway this weekend and I am trying out a new workshop. I enjoy my European trips but everyone I know (including me) is fighting off this cold this year. It’s a cough fest and having a cough is an awful way to fly over twelve hours.
Life is good. This week on the internet, I found a lot of interesting stuff. The New Year must be getting people to think and reevaluate things.
This article is a “standby” piece that you see a lot. However, this section is something I really liked.
“The trouble is, you think you have time” — Jack Kornfield
You only have this one crazy and precious life. That’s why you owe it to yourself to see who you can become, and how far you can go.
However, to do that, you need to ditch meaningless time wasters and stop allowing them to be an escape from your most important goals.
To do that, you should learn how to take control over your focus, attention and make the most out of your 24 hours within a day.
Remember that you will die, so never stop creating your legacy and doing the things that will enrich your life.
I’m a big believer in working a job and embracing your passion. Many, like in this article, argue that what you love should be your “side hustle” until it becomes your career.
Understand what you’re uniquely qualified to share. After his initial failure, Dar was hesitant to try again. But he realized he could dramatically improve his outcome if, instead of imagining what his audience wanted, he listened to what they were already asking for. At his day job, things were going very well, and he was getting promoted frequently. His friends and colleagues noticed, and he found himself “being invited for these coffee/mentoring sessions nonstop.” Dar realized others found his perspective valuable, and perhaps an audience might pay for it. He was right: His online course about how to win promotions earned him an extra $106,000 — on top of his day job salary — in its first full year.
Assess integrity with this question.
Knowing whether to hire someone or pull the trigger, so to speak, on the interview process, is a matter of asking the right questions. Seasoned job candidates with interviewing experience know exactly what “scripted” answers to give to overcome any objections or get around a weakness or negative quality. To safeguard from hiring bad apples, throw them a curveball when they’re expecting a fastball, to catch them off guard. Ask a question like this one:
If we ever got into a bind with a client, would you be willing to tell a little white lie to help us out?
That’s what one high-level CEO routinely asks to test out a candidate’s integrity. If you are asked that question and say yes, expect a short interview and your parking stub validated early. A no indicates a high degree of integrity and a possible good hire.
It’s nice to see an intelligent article about dietary fiber. This article will get you reaching for veggies and bran.
As my colleague Ed Yong has written, low-fiber diets make gut bacteria more homogenous, possibly for generations. Mice that are fed high-fiber diets have less-severe food allergies, potentially because gut bacteria break down fiber into short-chain fatty acids, which support the immune system. A more recent study in mice found that a low-fiber diet can spark inflammation in the intestines. We still need more studies to understand exactly how fiber and the microbiome interact in humans. But we do know that hunter-gatherer communities in Tanzania and elsewhere, who don’t eat Western diets, eat about 100 grams of fiber a day and have much more diverse microbiomes than Westerners.
“We’re beginning to realize that people who eat more dietary fiber are actually feeding their gut microbiome,” Justin Sonnenburg, a microbiologist at Stanford University, explained to NPR.
There are also already plenty of other studies detailing the many ways fiber boosts health.
Behold, an extremely confusing flow chart, from a 2005 study, showing how fiber leads to greater satiety, less insulin secretion, and more short-chain fatty acids, which all amounts to one thing: Less body weight.
I lifted for the Sports Palace team. Our coach, Jim Schmitz, has a great interview here:
What I ask of my lifters is that number one always show up on time and be prepared for their training session, number two that they control their bodyweight and weigh no more than 1 kilo / 2.2 pounds over their bodyweight class limit and number three they follow their workout program.
I’ll close with the three “S”s for success in weightlifting that I learned from Dave Shepard, 1956 Olympic Silver Medalist, 82.5 kg class: SQUATS (meaning heavy, hard training), STEAKS (meaning plenty of proper nutrition), SLEEP (meaning rest for recuperation).
Jim sums so much here with those simple points….wisdom!
Until next week, let’s keep on lifting and learning!
This is the time of year we look to Josh Hillis for guidance, either for ourselves or our clients. The author of Fat Loss Happens on Monday (co-written with Dan),Josh knows what most people need to do to lose fat and, more importantly, he knows how to explain and teach those skills. Based on his lengthy experience in the field, as well as his study of how habits work, he tells us how to give and receive a fat-loss discussion. Here are a couple of key conversations: The Josh Hillis Hard Talk and How food works in fat loss. Even if you don’t need to lose weight, chances are good that someone you know or coach will benefit from your quality conversation.
The Sword in the Stone
Madame Mim Two
The cottage had lace curtains. These stirred ever so slightly, for behind them there was a lady peeping. The gore-crow was standing on the chimney.
“Come on,” said Kay.” “Oh, do come on. I tell you, she’ll never give it us back.”
At this point the door of the cottage opened suddenly and the witch was revealed standing in the passage. She was a strikingly beautiful woman of about thirty, with coal-black hair so rich that it had the blue-black of the maggot pies in it, sky bright eyes and a general soft air of butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-my-mouth. She was sly.
“How do you do, my dears,” said Madame Mim. “And what can I do for you to-day?”
The boys took off their leather caps, and Wart said, “Please, there is a crow sitting on your chimney and I think it has stolen one of my arrows.”
“Precisely,” said Madame Mim, “I have the arrow within.”
“Could I have it back, please?”
“Inevitably,” said Madame Mim. “The young gentleman shall have his arrow on the very instant, in four ticks and ere the bat squeaks thrice.”
“Thank you very much,” said the Wart.
“Step forwards,” said Madame Mim. “Honour the threshold. Accept the humble hospitality in the spirit in which it is given.”
“I really do not think we can stay,” said the Wart politely. “I really think we must go. We shall be expected back at home.”
“Sweet expectations,” replied Madame Mim in devout tones.
“Yet you would have thought,” she added, “that the young gentleman could have found time to honour a poor cottager, out of politeness. Few can believe how we ignoble tenants of the lower classes value a visit from the landlord’s sons.”
“We would like to come in,” said the Wart, “very much. But you see we shall be late already.”
The lady now began to give a sort of simpering whine. “The fare is lowly,” she said. “No doubt it is not what you would be accustomed to eating, and so naturally such highly-born ones would not care to partake.”
Kay’s strongly-developed feeling for good form gave way to this. He was an aristocratic boy always, and condescended to his inferiors so that they would admire him. Even at the risk of visiting a witch, he was not going to have it said that he had refused to eat a tenant’s food because it was too humble.
“Come on, Wart,” he said. “We needn’t be back before vespers.”
Madame Mim swept them a low curtsey as they crossed the threshold. Then she took them each by the scruff of the neck, lifted them right off the ground with her strong gypsy arms, and shot out of the back door with them almost before they had got in at the front. The Wart caught a hurried glimpse of her parlour and kitchen. The lace curtains, the aspidistra, the lithograph called the Virgin’s Choice, the printed text of the Lord’s Prayer written backwards and hung upside down, the sea-shell, the needle-case in the shape of a heart with A Present from Camelot written on it, the broom sticks, the cauldrons, and the bottles of dandelion win. Then they were kicking and struggling in the back yard.
“We thought that the growing sportsmen would care to examine our rabbits,” said Madame Mim.
There were indeed a row of large rabbit hutches in front of them., but they were empty of rabbits. In one hutch there was a poor ragged old eagle owl, evidently miserable and neglected; in another a small boy unknown to them, a wittol who could only roll his eyes and burble when the witch came near. In a third there was a moulting black cock. A fourth had a mangy goat in it, also black, and two more stood empty.
“Grizzle Greediguts,” cried the witch.
“Here, mother,” answer the carrion crow.
With a flop and a squawk it was sitting beside them, it’s hairy black beak cocked on one side. It was the witch’s familiar.
“Open the doors,” commanded Madame Mim, “and Greediguts shall have eyes for supper, round and blue.”
The gore-crow hastened to obey, with every sign of satisfaction, and pulled back the heavy doors in its strong beak, with three times three. Then the two boys were thrust inside, one into each hutch and Madame Mim regarded them with unmixed pleasure. The doors had magic locks on them and the witch had made them to open by whispering in their keyholes.
“Gore-crows” is a tough word to get a good definition. It is a crow brought back to life by a necromancer and it has become a popular concept in modern fiction and role-playing games. I think we can assume that Grizzle Greediguts is a bit of evil, especially for its hunger for round, blue eyed boy eyes. “Maggot Pies” is probably the modern “magpies,” those cousins of crows who tease domestic cats at every turn. Certainly, T. H. White is given us a clue that Madame Mim and her crow are close companions.
One thing that leaps out to me each time I read this section is that Mim is beautiful.
“She was a strikingly beautiful woman of about thirty, with coal-black hair so rich that it had the blue-black of the maggot pies in it, sky bright eyes and a general soft air of butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-my-mouth.”
Butter wouldn’t melt in my mouth. Now THAT is a way of describing beauty that I need to use in my daily life. The reason I note this is that the Disney version makes Mim everything BUT beautiful. Her clothes are ill-fitting, she has a bulbous nose and there is nothing remotely attractive with the Disney version of Mim.
Now, I can run with this a bit and take a knock on the Disney vision. Beauty is good, not-beauty is bad…in the Disney universe. One can even argue that up until only recently, Disney’s vision of beauty was strictly Scandinavian: blonde/light brown hair, fair eyes and white skin.
I find White’s beautiful Mim actually more of a challenge for young Kay and Wart. Wart will fall, a bit, for Maid Marian later in our readings and I’m not sure we ever get a glimpse of what Kay finds alluring. In this story, we see that Kay has an interesting weakness:
“He was an aristocratic boy always, and condescended to his inferiors so that they would admire him.”
“His inferiors.” It’s an interesting term for a modern audience and this tension will be central in the later works of The Once and Future King series.
Let me say this: in THIS version of The Sword in the Stone, Wart (and Kay) truly are in trouble. Merlyn is NOT around, no one knows where they are nor the danger they are in and we don’t see any allies in this cottage.
I’m not sure why this story was dropped from later editions as, unlike many of the other stories, Wart is in danger.
This is the time of year we look to Josh Hillis for guidance, either for ourselves or our clients. The author of Fat Loss Happens on Monday (co-written with Dan), Josh knows what most people need to do to lose fat and, more importantly, he knows how to explain and teach those skills. Based on his lengthy experience in the field, as well as his study of how habits work, he tells us how to give and receive a fat-loss discussion. Here are a couple of key conversations: The Josh Hillis Hard Talk and How food works in fat loss. Even if you don’t need to lose weight, chances are good that someone you know or coach will benefit from your quality conversation.
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