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What I Learned From My 48 Hour Facebook Fast

What I learned from my 48 Hour Facebook Fast!

Fb fast

This past weekend I decided to unplug from all social media for 48 hours. In fact, in order to not feel tempted to login, I actually deleted all the apps from my phone and steered clear of the my Mac for the entire weekend.

No Facebook.

No Twitter.

No Instagram.

No Periscope.

No Pinterest.

No Snapchat.

No LinkedIn.

Wow, just writing out all the social media platforms I’m on is a bit overwhelming.

Now, before we go any further I have to just say that I have absolutely no problem with social media. It is a great way to stay connected, reconnect, and market your passions and businesses in this the information age. I actually love Facebook and all her cousins.

The point is, I was loving Facebook too much. I found myself spending too much time posting. Too much time updating my statuses. Too much time posting new pics. All followed up by too much time checking to see if people or how many people and who exactly had “LIKED” my latest contribution to the social media stratosphere.

It was not only beginning to affect my productivity, but I found at time it was affecting my psyche, mood, and emotions.

Not enough likes?

Wait he or she didn’t like this post, why not?

Why are only a few people viewing my latest video?

What’s wrong with my post?

What’s wrong with me?

Childish I know, but it’s the truth.

All this to say, on Friday night when I was aimlessly staring at my phone on the couch for no particular rhyme or reason, I just decided to take a break from it all and hit RESET!

Yep, just like back in the day when I was playing Techmo Bowl or Mike Tyson’s Punch Out  on Nintendo and was losing, I’d hit RESET and start over and here’s what I learned from my 48 Hour Facebook Fast:

  1. We are all connected… ALL THE TIME. Again, just look above and not counting Facebook Messenger, Text Message, Voxer, Phone calls, and emails- I have 7 varying social media accounts going right now. All are interconnected and all are connected to 1000’s of people all the time. We are constantly inundated with notifications, questions, follow ups, and calls. So much so, is really hard to comprehend how many people are so disconnected at home when they’re attention is being threatened and pulled by so many different avenues of information- ALL THE TIME. Again, don’t take this as I’m talking dirty about social media, I’m not, I’m actually disgusted as to how much time I personally was spending online when i could have been spending exponentially more time playing catch, running, reading (by myself and with my kids), talking to Mikah, etc.
    • Lesson Learned: I was able to stay more present and enjoy my time way more without any distractions simply by unplugging for a couple of days.
  2. As mentioned earlier, my psyche was being threatened or at least messed with based on the production of my posts and pics; and responses produced (or did not produce). Ya know, at church our pastor delivered a message entitled “#Struggles” that dealt with this very principle of how people can be negatively effected via social media. At the time I thought it was  bunch of BS…. until it was happening to me. I’m sure many out there can relate, but I’ve always had an issue with validating myself as compared to others like me. It could be best friends, co-workers, mentors, or even people I don’t even know in “real life” but feel I should somehow measure up to them in some way or form. Well, being that social media is the mother of all highlight films and doesn’t truly represent a person’s daily life, you can imagine how hard it is to measure up at times when all you’re doing is comparing your production (or lack thereof) to the biggest achievements of someone else. With all this, I have to say how much more enjoyable my weekend was just being present and not comparing what I was doing at any giving moment to anyone else.
    • Lesson Learned: I feel way better about everything I am doing in my life when I take the daily comparisons out of the equation and just be present.
  3. What I have to say/post is way more valuable and received better when I’m not posting all damn day. Since my brief hiatus I have posted twice in the 36 or so hours. Normally, I would  have probably posted more like 36 times in the last 36 or so hours… or 36 posts is a little high, but you get my point. These two posts have been received and “LIKED” or commented on by way more people than any of the previous days’ worth of posting… why? Well, it’s really simple, people simply become almost “numb” to seeing the same posts from the same people all the time, me included. I don’t think it’s that people don’t want information, it’s the opposite, it’s the fact that we are constantly bombarded with information all the time. It’s just part of the instant info digital age we leave in. So whether or not my content or your content is read or not has a lot to do to the fact of whether or not it gets lost in the ever present Facebook feed shuffle.
    • Lesson Learned: I can reach more people with better QUALITY of content as opposed to QUANTITY… a.k.a.—> don’t just post to post, actually have something to say.

And there you have it.

Again, I hope you don’t take this as I’m bashing social media, or that I’m speaking ill of anyone who spends a great deal of time on social media. Social media itself has altered our reality so much over the past few years that it has completely revolutionized how people interact, how businesses market, and how we all perceive things. Both good and bad. I’m just saying for me, I needed a break and from that break I was able to pull some personal truths that I hope will continue to serve me as I continue to use different social media platforms effectively in m own life and business.

What about you… When’s the last time you unplugged for day or two?

  • Michael Watkins

How To Cut 661 Calories Per Day!

how-many-calories-to-lose-weight

 

Look, when it’s all said and done, this whole “weight loss” thing is a simple numbers game.

 

You have to burn more calories than you’re taking in… You have to create a caloric deficit so your body uses your food to fuel it’s daily functions as opposed to store extra calories as fat (for use later)… Or, how about this:

  • Calories Burned > Calories Consumed = Weight Loss
  • Calories Burned < Calories Consumed = Weight Gain
  • Calories Burned = Calories Consumed = Weight management

 

There are countless “diets” and nutrition experts out there who would love to charge you an arm and a leg for you to use their systems of proper dieting. But the truth is all the fad diets and cleanses and detoxes simply will not work for long term weight loss and weight management goals for the general population. So, how can we simplify this process and break it down into a realistic, long sustaining and effective way to cut calories without all the hoopla and crazy macro counting BS that typically accompanies these sophisticated nutrition plans these days?

 

FNK_Lightened-Up-Asian-Turkey-Sliders_s4x3.jpg.rend.sni12col.landscape

 

Here are Six (6) easy steps that you can do TODAY to cut ~661 calories from  your daily caloric intake immediately!

 

  1. Eat Your Juice! Next time you’re craving some OJ with your morning meal, swap out the glass for a medium orange instead. This will save you ~106 calories!
  2. “Gobble Gobble” Up Some Bacon! Staying with your breakfast, try out some turkey bacon instead of the your normal, maple (pork) strips and you’ll save yourself ~118 calories.
  3. Go Naked! Next time you order a burger, or a chicken sandwich for lunch- order it “naked” or without the buns! At most restaurants you can ask for the sandwich to come wrapped in lettuce or just on a plate without the bun. Either way you’re cutting ~100 calories from your lunch by going “naked.”
  4. Trade in the Tortilla Chips! When it comes to sides at lunch, chips and salsa or chips and hummus is hard to beat, for sure! Next time though, swap out those fried tortilla chips for 1 cup of celery to dip in your favorite salsa or hummus and save yourself ~125 calories (per ounce of chips) in the process!
  5. Lose the Skin! For dinner, eat skinless chicken breasts and cut ~102 calories from your plate immediately!
  6. Drink Chocolate Milk! Next time you have that dessert craving or your nightly sweet tooth goes on the attack, sip on 5 oz. of chocolate milk instead of 5 oz of chocolate milk shake and save ~110 calories.

 

Now Total It Up! Simply by making the above adjustments to a typical day of eating, you’re cutting out approximately 661 calories! But take it a step further- if you do this every day for a normal work week (Monday – Friday) you’re actually cutting out ~3,305 calories throughout the week!

 

And did you know that 1 pound of fat = 3,500 calories?… Think about it?… keep it relatively clean on the weekends too and add in a couple of days of exercise throughout the week and you will easily find yourself in the Calories Burned > Calories Consumed = Weight Loss category in no time.

 

Easy enough.

-Michael Watkins

 

 

 

 

Wait,… Did you just call me a Clydesdale? WTF?!

I guess I should take it as a compliment, because as we all know the horse breed that made Budweiser even more famous is just a BEAST of a horse, no?

clydesdale

 

Big… Strong…. Powerful animals to say the least.

 

However, being of the human species, you can obviously take it the wrong way when you’re compared to the larger breed ya know. One could become a little self conscious. I mean, why not just call me a “thoroughbred” and be done with it, right?

 

Let me back up a second and give you the full run down.

 

There I am starting my registration process for a sprint triathlon I will be competing in come June, and the question asks me (as a male registrant): “Are you over 200 lbs?”

 

Well, YES I am…. it then directs me to register in the “Clydesdale” division for the race.

 

Ha! Had no idea there were different divisions based on weight classes, but cool. So I’m a clydesdale, hell yea, let’s giddy up horsey and get this shit done!

 

When I was telling one of my clients about this, it’s even funnier, because she was not so entertained by the fact that I was now a large horse breed, but she quickly asked, “Wait, why are you doing a triathlon?”

 

She then asked me, “Did you just do a boxing match or spar or something too?… what’s with all the extreme physical challenges lately?”

 

Ahhhhh, now I get it.

 

So, if you follow me at all, you know I like to challenge myself every quarter and set what we call “90 Day Outcomes.” These are not just goals for the sake of setting goals. These are demanding tasks/goals that make me continue to evolve as a man and continually challenge myself to grow and become a better human.

 

I set goals not only for me physically, but also in my relationships, in my businesses, and even in my spirituality. These allow me to grow, to EXPAND my capacity and live up to a higher set of standards day in and day out. With these goals I am forced out of my comfort zone and must completely change my way of thinking and become someone new in order to achieve them.

 

Whether it’s get into a live, heavy duty sparring session or compete in a triathlon, I must master the art of silencing doubt and fear as well as commit to training my ass off to get ready for them.

 

But why?… Especially at 33 years old, why push yourself so hard physically? … couldn’t I just study more, market better, and be happy and content?

 

Truthfully, yes, I probably could…. but what I’ve found is I cannot be content with complacency. And it literally takes me pushing myself to the brink of physical exhaustion in order to gain the mental and emotional clarity and capacity to expand in my life.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I train smart, I listen to my body, but I push hard for the 90 day goal at hand.

 

I stay focused and committed and see it through.

 

This shows me that I can compete. That I can stand up to a challenge. That I can continue to expand and that I can continue to produce.

 

So, even at clydesdale status, I’m going to compete so I can continue to expand.

 

What’s your story?

15 Things Fit People Do

People working out with ropes in gym

You’ve heard this before, “Fitness is a lifestyle,” right?

Well, study after study shows that this statement is about as true as they come. Fit people live by a different set of standards, or a code, that is different than most of society.

Just take a second and reflect on that uber fit co-worker, or that totally ripped up family member, or even that friend that looks amazing at the pool every summer… chances are they do a few things “different” in their daily routine. Whether it’s planning their meals to a “t,” or meditating, or just exercising daily; the most fit and healthy people in your life will be some of the most structured and organized people you know.

Here are 15 things we found congruent between fit people:

    1. They prepare and plan- especially when it comes to their meals and their workouts. Whether it’s a crazy day at the office, an unexpected lunch meeting, or a trip to the grocery store, fit people are prepped and ready to go. They don’t leave results up to chance. Instead they prepare for every scenario that may arise throughout the day and make the best choices available.
    2. They declare what they’re training for- this could be to lose 20 pounds, to get down a dress size, to compete in the games, to run a marathon… the list goes on and on. But regardless, not only is their goal in front of them all the time, everyone around them knows why he or she is busting their ass in the gym daily. Why? Because with public declaration comes public aka increased accountability. Whether known or unknown, you are actually holding your fit friends accountable to their goals simply by knowing what they’re training for. It’s kinda a secret, ninja way of staying on track.
    3. Associate themselves with supportive people – This is as simple as joining a group to train with, having a fitness family, or joining an online community- the truth is we all need support. We all need accountability. And we all need extra motivation once and a while. You can always go faster on your own, but you’ll always go further with a group at your back.
    4. Eat for fuel over pleasure- Don’t get me wrong, fit people LOVE food. They talk about it all the time. But more often than not, they will have meals prepped that are designed to fuel their workouts instead of indulge the senses. They understand the notion that you cannot out train a bad diet, and while the occasional food or alcohol indulgence is warranted, the rest of the time, food is fuel and nothing more.
    5. The test their limits- What are you capable of achieving? How much weight can you lift? How fast can you run? How far can you bike? Those who are successful are constantly working to lift heavier weights, to run faster, and to ride further. Never underestimate your strength, and never hesitate to test your limits. This attitude can also help push you past a plateau.
    6. Hire a coach- this one is relative to those who are uber fit as well as uber successful in life. A coach or mentor keeps you accountable and guides you along the path that you need to follow. Those who succeed usually have a coach or mentor who helps them sift through all the misinformation and create a customized program for your unique body and goals
    7. Do the simple shit every day- In the fitness game, there is nothing worse than trying to hit a home run every time you step foot in the gym. When you do that, you’re subjecting yourself to increase in injury, increase in soreness, and a decrease in actual results. You can’t workout if your incapable to actually move due to soreness or injury. Instead, why not consistently do the simple items every day and worry simply about getting on base instead of knocking one out of the park. One phrase my coach told me is: “Simple success swinging singles,” meaning extraordinary people don’t focus on extraordinary tasks… they do the ordinary tasks consistently and yield extraordinary results. Do the simple.
    8. Rest- fit people take their rest and recover as serious, or even more serious, than the actual workouts themselves. They sleep 8 hours per night. They take time to meditate, or even nap. They get massages and physical therapy when needed. They train their mobility and flexibility as much as they train for strength and conditioning. They’re fully aware that results will only happen when they rest. And proper rest and recovery will allow them to hit the gym even harder the next go around.
    9. Prioritize their workouts- whether it’s an early morning session or a workout after the kids go to bed, fit people get in their workouts every day- no excuses. They leave nothing to chance. They schedule their workouts just like any other important appointment. If they miss one, they carve out time to make it up. Life is unpredictable, but your workout regimen shouldn’t be. Planning is key to sticking to your fitness routine, and once something feels routine it’ll be easier for you to participate without even thinking.
    10. Treat themselves- as mentioned, fit people love food just as much as the next person. However, instead of over indulging on some of life’s calorie ridden treats- fit people tend to treat themselves with experiences that not only make them feel good but a lot of the time will benefit their bodies as well. These “treats” include massages to recover from a brutal week of training. Or a  weekend get-a-ways to show off their tight, toned bods. Or even a quick mani-pedi to show themselves a little appreciation for the hard work they put in that week. The options are limitless as are the experiences.
    11. They eat real food- pretty simple here… fit people stay away from overly processed junk food that’s made in a lab instead of grown naturally. Easily understood as if your food never spoils, it’s not real food and why would you put synthetic crap in your body?
    12. They take the stairs- whether it’s just getting to the 2nd floor or all they way up to 9th… you’ll more than likely catch the super fit sprinting the stairwells while bypassing the escalator or elevators. It’s just another way to get more steps in that day so why not?
    13. The take the first parking spot (and it’s usually the furthest from the door)- piggy- backing on taking the stairs, fit people will typically park in the first spot available instead of circling the lot for 30 minutes. Again, walking a few extra yards is nothing, and once again adds to that total step count for the day.
    14. They ask, “Can we walk there?”- Put your walking shoes on if your destination is nearby. Whether you’re going to a friend’s house, the grocery store or to work, walking is very beneficial for your body. Fit people look at driving and taking a cab as second and third options. Exposing yourself to outdoor exercise also lowers levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, and improves your mental health.
    15. They make exercise fun- Fitness is not one-size-fits-all — and the fittest people understand that and dedicate the time to finding an exercise routine they actually enjoy. Bob Harper, from the Biggest Loser, takes it to the next step: “For me, working out is therapy, it’s cathartic for me, it’s a good stress reliever,” he told Parade in 2013. “I know that when I go to the gym I am taking care of myself and I know I’ll feel so much better afterwards.”

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