I've finally taken action to start making videos for this site and blog - something I wanted to do from the beginning, but had to practise first. I'm still not great at it, but I'm satisfied with the result.
So as a first presentation attempt, I've made this video about handstand pushups, and what I went through to get to this stage. I've also started a You Tube channel for "my Great New Body", and the link for that is here
. Only got two videos up at the moment though, and they're already featured on this blog.
My plan is to do a lot more video-blogging in the future... makes a nice change from just writing. See what you think.
I've never been to a personal development seminar - never done a workshop. But PD has been an interest of mine throughout my life, and I've read about these seminars - even watched them in action on video. Groups of people with diverse personal issues, and goals for self-improvement. Lead by an "expert" (guru) who is there to inspire, motivate, and lead them to the discovery of their "inner power" and "unlimited potential" - helping them to overcome their fears.
A typical scenario is the fire-walking session... or learning to break a plank of wood with a karate chop. These experiences are intended to help the person overcome their conditioned beliefs about their capabilities and limitations. The idea is that breaking through a limiting belief on the physical plane will help them see through all their other limiting beliefs.
The person thinks: "HEY! - I never thought I had the strength to chop through a piece of wood with my hands... but I did. I've been underestimating myself. Maybe I've also got what it takes to do other things I never thought I could do: be a success, be attractive, stop being afraid to take risks, start that new business, improve my whole life..."
The message is: break through your physical barriers first - then you'll have the references to help you break through all your psychological barriers... the ones that are really holding you back.
No-one ever set up a successful business just to prove to themselves they have what it takes to break wood with their hands.
Question: Who's had experience of Personal-Development seminars and workshops? And did they help? How?
Share your experiences with us in the comments section below.
So my third session - third hour on the mats.
I'd hoped to attempt a backward somersault, but seems that was a little ambitious. But the forward somersaults are more than just attempts now. as you can witness in the video below (I told you I'd get it on video!).
It's interesting to analyse this process - what's holding me back from doing the back-somersault? Some would say I shouldn't be so impatient - hell, this is only your third hour session, and you can already do this much. And I am happy with my progress - no question about that. But I don't think I'm being impatient - one hour of jumping up and down in one spot gets tedious very fast... learning the stunts is what makes it interesting.
The thing is, I know how to do the somersaults... I know the technique, I did them at 19 and that experience doesn't go away. And I know I'm quite capable of doing them now. But there's a certain amount of fear holding me back from making my first attempt. I remember this from when I was young too.
But maybe it's not just fear - I have to improve my balance in the jumps, up to the point where I get more height and still be in control. I think once I get that height and balance together, I'll feel safer at making the first backward flip.
Oh oh oh! - maybe I shouldn't be analyzing it at all, but just enjoy doing it. In a couple more sessions, I'll improve on what I can already do, and the back-somersault will come when I'm ready for it. And then the back-flips, and the somersaults off the wall, and the forward flips without hands, and, and, and....
I'll keep you updated of course. For now I leave you with a little video of my present achievements. To think, only a couple of years ago I was laid-up for a year with chronic back-pain!
Let's be honest and truthful here... 50 is NOT old!
It used to be... but times have changed. The problem is that society's view of being 50 hasn't changed. It's still locked in to the belief that 50 is the definitive end to our prime years, and that it's too late for dreams and ambitions, for new learning, for new practices and new goals. Everything is so much more difficult after 50 than ever before.
But there's a huge discrepancy with this view - because when we DO reach 50, we realize that we don't actually feel any different in our hearts and heads... we don't feel old there, we feel the same. And yet our bodies tell a different story. They seem to confirm our fears, and tell us that it's time to slow down, that we shouldn't expect too much, that we've probably only got another 20 years or so left on this earth, so we need to take it extra careful.
But society is lying to us; our bodies are lying to us; our fears and conditioned minds are lying to us. It's all a lie - complete and utter nonsense.
At fifty, you are still very much in the prime of your life... and your life is bursting with potential. Especially on the physical level is this important to realize. At 50, and for many years after, we have the capacity to be as fit, strong, sleak, toned, flexible and active as we've ever been.
Ask yourself how you would like to be physically. Think back to your youth and ask yourself if you reached your physical potential then. Probably not - only top athletes get close to that. But just as in your youth you only used a fraction of your potential, so is it now. And using more of your potential NOW, is very likely to see you in better shape than you allowed yourself to be when you were younger.
To use myself as an example: I'm 53, and I'm in better shape than I've been most of my adult life. This isnt the result of years of training - far from it. I've led a rather sedentary, unsportive life, relying on my natural metabolism (and under-eating) to keep me thin, and a little manual labour to keep me strong. But then came the hormonal changes that slowed my metabolism, and started storing fat around my belly and eating away at my muscle tone.
My body followed the "normal" patterns of middle-age. But I was convinced that it didn't have to be like this - and that's when I bought the Shapeshifter program and transformed my physique in 6 weeks. Just 6 weeks to turn around the effects of years of physical neglect.
A return to the youth of 10 or 20 years ago? We can't have that. But we don't need it, because there's enough youthful vitality still in our "aged" bodies. And we don't want it either, because we would probably take it for granted and waste it again as we did back then. The point is to NOT waste your potential now, but rather discover it and develop it - so you're not looking back in another 10 years from now, wishing you could be young again like you were when you were fifty.
You've got to understand that the "magic source of eternal youth" is within you... it IS you. It's your committment to yourself, your respect for your body, your belief in your still undiscovered potential - it's your "decision" to be a better physical you... now. To be your own role-model... be your own hero.
Let the world think what it wants. You can still be any shape you want, be as fit as you want, live any life that you want. Fifty years has given you the life experience, the self-awareness, the insight and the wisdom to understand this.
If you don't believe this, let's look at what it takes to get in shape. What you lost from your youth was muscle-tone, strength and mobility. What you got in return is body-fat. This is the simple result of the slowing of your metabolism - partly due to hormonal changes; partly to your lifestyle habits and physical inactivity. To get back your youthful figure, you just need to get rid of the fat, and build up the muscle-tone - right?
Can you lose fat after 50? Yes. I did. It's simple when you combine the correct nutrition with exercise designed to increase metabolism.
Can you build muscle-tone after 50? Yes. I did. It's easy when you combine exercise that is designed to increase strength, with eating enough of the muscle-building nutrients.
Does it take long? I got my results in 6 weeks (not long). The more fat you need to lose the more time it takes; the more muscle you want to build, the more time it takes. The older you are, the more time it takes. But time shouldn't be an issue - regardless of the time it takes, improving your body at any age, is always better than never.
No, you can't go back... but you CAN go forward in excellent shape.
What is it that you want to hear? That you ARE old? That it's dangerous to try to improve yourself physically after a certain age? That it's so hard that it's not worth it? Some people really DO want to hear this - it gives them a good excuse not to do anything... to continue neglecting their bodies and blaming it on their age. But there are no excuses. You're body may require more attention than it used to, but that is not an excuse to give it none.
After fifty, we can look back on a life rich in the experiences befitting each life-phase:
*Our 20's were a time for self-discovery and definition,
*Our 30's for establishing our role in society,
*Our 30's and 40's for the sacrificing of our egos in the service of our children...
All these phases have made us wise - but not old.
Now, in our 50's, we are free'er. We have more time for ourselves. We can reflect on who we've been, how we played the "societal" game, and we can define ourselves anew. We are above the game, we can choose our own values, independent of peer-approval. We can be our own creators in mind and body.
So who are you?
Some people are old at 35, others are young at 75 - which are you?
Some people are grunting and groaning already at 40 - others are running marathons into their 90's - who do you want to be?
YOU can decide who you want to be - and then recreate yourself in the image of that "ideal".
The chances are good that you will reach 80, or beyond... but in what state? The more attention you give to your body now, the more you increase those chances in your favour. The choice is always yours: to take charge of your body and improve it, optimize it for a rich experience of the next 30 or more years... or lay down the towel now, at the halfway stage, never discovering your potential, continuing on a well-trodden path to an expected demise - getting old and worn-out by 70, helpless and dependent by 80 - giving away what may be your BEST years, just because you don't believe in them.
If you ever had doubts about the physical capabilities of an old body, watch this video
. I stumbled onto this in my search for tips to help me with my handstand-pushup project. This makes me more determined to master it. And there are many more "old-man feats" videos to match this one.