LIVE WITH AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE…
That’s the title of Chapter #3 in my new book Rise Above: 7 Strategies to Crush Adversity. Here are a few snippets from that section:
We expect everything for nothing, and we wanted it yesterday. We take things for granted. We’ve lost the ability to appreciate what we have. Instead, we focus on what we do not have. If nothing is ever good enough, you will never have enough.
Quit whining and pining. If you’re reading this on a Kindle, found it through Facebook or Twitter, and are sipping on a gourmet coffee drink, etc., you are not doing that bad.
There are people in this world who wake up to bombs, don’t have clean water, and go to bed starving. Be grateful for what you have while you are trying to get more. Most of us are living in luxury, yet think we are lacking.
– Nate Miyaki, Rise Above: 7 Strategies to Crush Adversity.
Yes, I did just quote myself. Isn’t that frickin’ awesome!
You have my full permission to do the same. For most it will probably just annoy them (with the hippie bullshit and whatnot), but it might just help a few. Who knows? I certainly hope so.
And damn man, although I do grow tired of myself often, I gotta listen to myself more often. That’s what I want to do right now. There is nothing worse than a writer or coach that talks one way, but lives another. It’s an out of control plague that may eventually lead to the downfall of modern Internet society.
MY MANY THANKS TO YOU
So man/girl, I just wanted to say thank you so much for supporting this book, and over the years, for supporting my writing career.
We did it my friends. Because of you, Rise Above has risen to #1 on a few of the Amazon charts. Even if just for a day, I can now say that I was once an Amazon #1 Best-Selling Author.
Now that’s total egotistical bullshit, image-projection nonsense, and PR-spinned marketing material to use for later on. But that’s not the point. The end goal of any good writer, artist, craftsman, or coach seeking personal fulfillment should be to help people get the results they are looking for regardless of rankings or social status/praise. I hope that’s what my content, writings, work, and ramblings are somehow doing for you.
HOWEVER, there are a lot of people who have made sacrifices along the way to allow me to do what I do – my wife Kalai; my Fab 5 brothers and one bad-ass sister, my late and great parents, my super cool step-family; and all of you, spending your hard earned dollar to hear what I got to holler.
I am forever grateful. But the truth is that my bro hugs, or real hugs with my patented “accidental” cheek squeeze, are just not enough of a thank you this time around. You need to know that your support is really paying off.
RISE ABOVE RIDES ALONGSIDE SOME GREATS
RISE ABOVE: 7 STRATEGIES TO CRUSH ADVERSITY
Sometimes life can throw you some curveballs. Every once in a while, it lands a freakin’ haymaker right on your chin. If you don’t believe that, you haven’t been alive long enough.
Adversity. We all face it my friend.
In our sports, or our health and fitness endeavors. How can you overcome the odds and succeed against great challenges or competition? How can you stay on track in a world full of temptations and distractions? How can you come back from failed game plans, devastating losses, or unexpected injuries and setbacks?
In our business or career pursuits. How can you merge passion and personal fulfillment with professional and financial success? How can you keep fighting on if your first attempts fail? How can reach your goals while sticking to your core values, and without burning out, breaking, or giving up?
In our personal life and relationships. How can you best support those that are suffering and struggling around you? How can you deal with your own baggage and bullshit? How do you find some peace of mind and clarity amongst the modern chaos?
Life can be full of challenges. Instead of running from them when they do arise, staying in bed to hide, burying your head in the sand to procrastinate, or drowning your sorrow in drugs to escape; you are better off developing the right mindset to roll with it all, whatever may come.
Because one thing is for certain: you can’t change the reality of the challenges you face no matter how much you wish things were different. You can’t let every surprise or setback make you snap. Otherwise, you just might end up giving yourself a heart attack. Then what use will you be?
But what you can change is your reactions to your challenges; your actions to overcome them, and your everyday state of mind in order to better deal with them.
The most profound lesson I’ve learned in over 15 years as an athlete, coach, consultant, and fitness author is this – The human body is strong. The human spirit is stronger. Both can persevere through almost anything. It is our weak minds that ultimately bury us.
The 4th quarter, the 9th inning, the final period, the championship rounds, the last 100 meters, the last set, the last rep, etc., it is mental strength that separates the champions from the rest of the pack.
And it may be the most important thing you need to get through the greatest game you will ever play in – the game of life.
That’s what Rise Above: 7 Strategies to Crush Adversity is all about. It takes principles from sports psychology, “street” psychology (from 15 years of working with people from all ages, abilities, and walks of life), some samurai philosophy, and a little bit of surfer dude mentality; and narrows it down into some actionable strategies that can help you tackle any obstacle that may come your way.
I am honored that Rise Above was selected to be a part of The Best Life Book Event. This event includes some big dogs and best-selling authors. Since Rise Above was written by little old me (A.K.A Little Shiitake), I am assuming that means the content itself stood out on its own.
The overall goal of this event is to get different perspectives on the tools you need to overcome your challenges and succeed, in whatever your pursuits are in life.
All books are on sale for $0.99 for today only – Wednesday August 13th, 2014. I honestly have no idea what they will cost after today. That’s in the hands of the gods (the publishers).
You can check out the event here: The Best Life Book Event
I hope my new book — or any of the other books – can help you out in some way. Regardless, I wish you the best in whatever battles you are facing in life. My thoughts are with you my friend.
Computer screens don’t laugh at your penis and poop jokes.
That’s the main reason I still work with clients in da gym, and don’t spend all of my time writing online.
A second reason is that there are some hot chicks that work at my gym.
A third reason is that you get to learn about some of the real problems people face in their fitness efforts, try to come up with practical solutions, test and assess and refine your methods, and see how the advice you are giving (both online and off) ultimately impacts people’s real world results.
Some of the writers who devote their whole day, career, life, and afterlife to pontificating about fitness just don’t know what is going on in the Suit-to-Spandex Streets baby. Off the glossy magazine pages and outside academic circle jerks, busy professionals are struggling to find sustainable fat loss plans.
One of the biggest obstacles people face is figuring out how to integrate an optimized fat loss diet into an overall lifestyle plan. In non-geeky terms, how to get and stay lean without becoming a crazy obsessed fitness person that freaks out if they can’t get tuna or protein shakes every 2.5 hours.
This dietary dilemma on top of career craziness is leading to frustration, struggle, poor results, and people laughing less at my above mentioned penis and poop jokes. Here’s a quick test to see if you are over-stressed. Does this photo make you laugh, or sit there stone-faced?
Maybe you’ve grown up too much my friend. Take it down a notch.
PLANS ON PAPER VS. REAL-WORLD RESULTS
While its cool to TALK about living like a caveman, or to HAVE a calculus looking, bio-hacking diet strategy, its even cooler to TAKE the real-world steps necessary to actually reach your physique goals.
And bat shit crazy stuff can work in the short-term, but it rarely sticks as a long-term plan when you have one of those meaningless things called a life. You know, social shindigs, a significant other, business dinners, hobbies, travel hassle, etc.
So a few weeks ago – damn man, time’s flying – I posted up an article and video about food, calorie, and macronutrient tracking. I talked about who I thought should do it, when it is useful, why its not just for crazy fitness competitors, and how it can help beginners get started making more informed food choices, etc.
If you missed it, here’s da original post: When and How You Should Track Your Food Intake, Calories, and Macros.
Since that time, I’ve had a lot of interesting conversations with a few of my friends and private clients. Once they stopped whining about doing something useful rather than looking for the next magic pill, they were stoked about what tracking taught them about implementing practical weight loss strategies in the real world.
They were even more stoked when they discovered that gaining a little nutrition knowledge, empowerment, and a tool to increase dietary flexibility yielded some pretty quick physique results.
Here are five fantastic reasons you should get on the rails of a tracking train: Read the rest of this entry
What’s up my beach physique clique? We’ve interrupted our regularly scheduled blog post programming and e-course teachings for some impromptu feasting. Go ahead and just let that take your imagination wherever it wants to go for a gluttonous or perverted moment. No judgements here.
I just wanted to share this podcast episode with my friends over at First Callout. They are some cool dudes and have had some epic guests on their show (at least if you are a bodybuilding, physique, or bikini nerd), so to get to be a part of it was an honor for sure. Its a show primarily geared towards physique peeps, but don’t let that scare you off. We covered a broad range of topics that I think will help anyone interested in a practical and sustainable approach to fat loss and physique enhancement.
Here’s the promo for it. They did a cool job. And you’ll notice clips scrolling through this very website that you are on right now. Its like frickin’ Inception — a dream within a dream…
After listening to it (I’m like every other egotistical fitness dude on the planet = I love to hear myself talk), I was actually surprised how much we covered in just over 20 minutes. Hey man, when I’m excited I ramble, swear, and talk fast. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, have read any of my books, or are currently taking our Beach Physique course, this podcast provides a nice, precise review of my overall nutrition approach. Some FitnessCenter highlights:
1. Why targeted calories, macros, and food choices matter more than diet structure, and you should use whatever meal frequency and food distribution pattern makes your plan as practical as possible to follow. That includes, but is not limited, to my intermittent fasting and feasting approach (and of course when I say my, I mean evolution’s).
2.We talked about the Belle Curve distribution of meal frequency patterns that I’ve seen work best in my experience. *The reverse of a warning — our conversation was not as boring or geeky as that sounds.
3. Why I don’t believe in either the extreme OCD bodybuilding approach, nor the extreme calorie counting/IIFYM (if it fits your macronutrient)/eat whatever you want as long as it fits your diet numbers approach. Most would best be served following the middle ground approach (well, leaning more towards clean eating) for flexibility, functionality, and overall health (including psychological health).
4. The difference between working with elite athletes vs. the general, busy professional demographic.
5. A step-by-step (oooh baby) guide of how I might transition someone from no nutrition knowledge and out of control Y2K eating into a more targeted fat loss plan, and all the way to intermittent feasting fat away for good, if that is what they so desire.
The goal of this post was to give you a break from having to read my bullshit, and just let you kick back and listen to it. So I’ll go ahead and remove my pudgy fingers from the keyboard now, and get this podcast party started. Click on da link below to listen.
Over the last few posts, we’ve battled through tough times together, and bid farewell to a few that we’ve lost. But dammit, its high time we get back to having a little fun and getting some shit done. So for your fat loss satisfaction, we return to the nutrition action.
As many of you know, the core principle of my intermittent feasting-style diet (Feast Your Fat Away) is to eat lighter during the day, and enjoy your biggest meal — with the majority of your calories and carbs — at night.
As Big Poppa once said, “And if you don’t know, now you know.”
But I’d be lying to you if I said that diet structure is THE most important step to slashing fat and looking dead sexy (or deadly shredded). It is really just a way to make your fat loss plan a lot more practical, easy to follow, and enjoyable than most traditional fitness or commercial weight loss diets.
But here’s da no bullshit truth — consistently hitting the right diet numbers (calories and targeted macronutrients) is by far the most important step to achieving any higher-level physique goal. I can’t (MC) hammer that point home enough. It’s just too legit to quit (talking about).
When clients ask, “why am I not losing any weight/fat?”, “why have I hit a plateau?”, or “why can’t I lose that last layer, that last 5-10lbs?”, I usually dig into the diet numbers to find the answer. As the great Brian Fantana once said, “60% of the time, it works every time.”
Actually in my experience, it’s been 95% of the time.
With the first day of summer fast approaching, I figured we’d dive into the diggity-details of diet numbers. I want to spend the next few posts helping you get them right. Part of the reason is that my goal with this blog is NOT to make you co-dependent on me. It’s to empower you, and give you the tools you’ll need to coach yourself.
So first things first. To get to where you want to go, you first need to know where you are starting from. How do you figure that out, and ultimately make the dietary adjustments necessary to reach your fat loss goals?
TRACK YOUR FOOD INTAKE & DIET NUMBERS FOR A WEEK
“That’s a pain in the ass Nate.” “I’m not a fitness freak.” “I have a life”. Etc.
Yeah I know, but this is not something I recommend you do indefinitely. Hell, I don’t track my food intake anymore. I gravitate towards certain foods and can now eyeball portion sizes like a hawk. But I highly suggest it at two different points in your fitness journey.
1. When you are first starting out, it’s a great educational tool.
By simply tracking food intake and numbers for a week, I’ve had clients realize their protein intake was paltry, they were committing “carbicide” like Bruno, or they were eating 1000 calories per day above maintenance levels via refined oils. In short, they were not eating nearly as good as they thought they were.
This can even happen with “good” food choices. So if you want to get uber-lean, it’s not just about eating low carb, low fat, Paleo, All-Natural, Raw, Whole Foods, Island-style, The All-Weiner Diet, The All-Beaver Diet, or any other approach. Keep eating Costco size bags of nuts like an over-sized squirrel every day, and that spare tire probably ain’t going away.
By getting on track(ing tools), you’ll get to know what your general serving sizes should be in order to hit your optimal fat loss numbers. You’ll also probably see how much extra shit is sneaking in there. After you cut the excess crap and get a good feel for the right portions for you, then you can start to eyeball everything. You don’t have to be a statistician forever. But it definitely helps educate and guide you in the beginning.
You can also see how where and what you like to normally eat, including restaurant meals in your regular rotation, etc., can fit into your overall fat loss plan. In essence, being more rigid with your tracking allows you to be a little more flexible with your diet, yet still get great results.
Perhaps it is most important from a psychological perspective. Doing something as simple as tracking your food intake forces you to take personal accountability AND some kind of action towards your physique goals. These two steps are necessary to achieve anything in life.
2. When you hit a plateau.
Going from out of shape to decent shape is one thing. But going from good shape to the cover of a fitness magazine, or top of an e-dating site profile page, is a whole other thing. If you want to jump to the next physique class, often times it necessitates being more detailed and consistent with your diet numbers.
Don’t listen to the intellectual pontificators that say “calories don’t count”, and throw around big boy words like “metabolic advantage” to make up for their lack of practical experience.
I don’t care what sounds good in a lab, lecture, or debate. I only care about what works in the real world. And unless you have great genetics or are using physique enhancing drugs, trust me, the numbers absolutely matter if you want to get ripped. Calorie deficits, metabolic advantage of macronutrient amounts and ratios, satiety impacts of food choices, etc., it all frickin’ matters baby.
And I’d say the diet numbers matter a whole hell of a lot more than throwing a bunch of BCAA’s, MCT’s, fat-burning herbs, and other magic pills into some bone broth, and cooking it all up in a caldron like Gargamel.
Busting through plateaus does not always necessitate biohacks, complicated cyclical diet strategies, or being cool and cutting edge. Sometimes it actually necessitates the opposite — getting back to the boring basics. Maybe you’re underestimating how many carbs or added fats you are taking in. If all is on point, maybe its time to re-assess and adjust the numbers for continued progress, but only if you’re actually sticking to your current ones to begin with.
See what I’m saying?
GOOD TRACKING TOOLS
These days, with food databases and even smart-phone apps, its relatively easy and pain free to track your numbers. Here are a few free resources I recommend:
1. Pen & Paper Food Journal
Go old school and just write things down in a notebook. Use this food database to find the calorie & macronutrient information of any food.
2. Food Tracking Software
Keep track on your computer or smart phone. I suggest the following:
A VIDEO RECAP
I talked about this topic in the video portion of our Free Beach Physique Guide and ongoing e-course. I think it makes a nice recap to this post.
In the next post, I’m going to dive into protein numbers and research. If you would like more useful fat loss tips and strategies like this, in the same multi-media format, or you don’t have the patience to wait for my next post (with my leisurely working schedule), you can check out The Beach Physique Guide and Ongoing E-course.
Until next time, TRACK IT!