Sweat is Not Enough

Prepare to succeed and you are likely to.

“Army Basic Training is demanding.  Prepare yourself for Boot Camp, mentally and physically.  Set yourself up for success – excel at your new military career!”

Army Basic Training; The Ultimate Preparation

The above is the leading sentence from the BaseOpps Army web site for raw recruits. Even the US Army realizes (and pretty much always has) the importance of preparing one’s mind for difficult changes.

We who have been fat foodies and are wanting to change our shape and become thin foodies, are asking our bodies to achieve something so difficult and rewarding that most who attempt this change do not succeed completely. Many fail, and the bulk of the rest settle for less.

Why is succeeding at this weight loss-shape change thing so difficult? Because we are attempting something on the scale of a boot camp experience that has many hurdles built against it from the start with none of the support that Army recruits enjoy.

  1. Boot Camp is only for 9 weeks.
  2. Boot Camp is experienced together with like-minded individuals who all have a Failure is not an option attitude.
  3. The alternative to finishing at Army Basic is so devastating that most find new character from within that they didn’t know they had, and change their very personality such that their own parents don’t even recognize them at week 7.
  4. The payoff is a lifetime achievement award unmatched by anything else the world can offer.
  5. Boot camp is only for the young and fit. Even somebody who is determined as “too shy” can be submitted for Administrative Discharge. But, we who are going through our own boot camp experience are not young and fit. We don’t have the luxury of living in an eighteen year old body with well lubricated and cushioned knees, a flat stomach and a strong back.
  6. Boot Camp is a paid gig. The raw recruit’s full time job is getting more fit while learning new trades and self defense techniques. It’s like the world’s best fitness plan. But, we have to do this all on our spare time and it actually costs us money instead of earning us an income.
  7. Boot Camp teaches one how to effectively defend one’s self and how to kill; and they are even issued a brand new gun. The fat foodie losing weight however, is not issued a gun. This is probably a good thing.

To enter into this daily battle against the comfortable old self, we need to prepare daily. This means that the morning bike ride doesn’t start at 7am. It starts the night before.

What you eat at dinner, snack on at midnight and how you sleep, strongly determines how well you will exercise the next morning or if you will even show up.

Pro Trainer Tony Estrada. Better photos on the way.

My friend and “trainer” Tony Estrada (the word trainer is in quotes because I don’t pay him, he is not available to

Palos path, south Chicago suburbs

 me on a regular basis, and we don’t even see each other for months at a time. He only “trains” me as I ask questions and really was only largely instrumental in getting me started on the right foot) has often been in a running mode where he runs difficult courses on a regular schedule. In his proverbial back yard in the south suburbs of Chicago is a smallish ski and toboggan run. During the non skiing months it is a favorite for path runners. This is not your average twelve minute light jog. It is a determined and prepared person who is already fit who takes on runs like these.

What would be a major, massive heart attack inducing task for me is nothing but a weekly fitness outing for him.

When we went on a business meeting together to Provo Utah, he talked about running “The Y Path”. It’s like the toboggan run times ten. This rough terrain switchback can be seen from space. Leading from the foot of Brigham Young University’s neighborhood up to this giant Y (think Hollywood in the hills) planted in the foothills of the Uinta National Forest, hiking up this path with the benefit of my spring loaded walking sticks would still take me hours.

Tony talked about this little morning hike/run long before the event. We all knew he was doing it more than a day before the event. While I was sitting in my car eating a sausage biscuit early Saturday morning, I knew that Tony was running up this broad but rugged dirt and rock path towards his Y.

Tony planned for it by bringing the right gear on this business trip, talking it up to those around him, eating and sleeping a different way Friday night before, and getting up early in order to allow him enough time to accomplish it before Saturday’s morning business briefings.

Tony, a professional and fit trainer, did all of this preparation; preparation that was not seemingly necessary for a young man who is already fit and motivated. But, he did it anyway. And, I know from his later dialogue about it that he enjoyed it. Tony eats these events like I do sushi from Todai’s in Schaumburg.

Exercising is an event. The morning jog or bike ride needs to be an event that we can look forward to, enjoy while doing it, and remember with like after it’s over.

Liking a difficult thing is a sign of maturity. Difficult things take preparation where most simple things do not. It takes a whole lot of nothing to plop down on the couch and thumb the remote. And, I am living the results to prove it, while Tony is living the results of his preparation of hard things.

Find things in your hard tasks that you can like. For guys, it’s easy to get caught up in the gear for the task. This has happened to me.

I own not one expensive bike, but two of them.

On my main bike, a Sedona, I have a wireless bike computer that records and reports miles, grade percentages, time and trends. I also have a mounted tire pump, a drink holder and a rack on the back that holds a very nice expandable bike bag for our day trips. There is also a smaller front gear pouch in front of the handlebars that holds my Blackberry, whistle, compass, car keys, and camera. The front forks are dual shocked against road vibration and calibrated for gravel and hardpan while the seat is mounted on an adjustable shock absorbing post.

On my person I have a pair of padded bike shorts (very long, past my knees, very lose fitting) under which I often wear long, lose fitting ultra light bush pants. I wear Underarmor self wicking shirts under my lose fitting cotton shirts of choice; usually with important messages like, Stop Communism Again with a picture of Hillary crossed out, or the My Company Increased a Client’s Sales by 30% IncreaseSalesWithVideo.com bright yellow shirt, or the Old School Conservative, Reagan grey t-shirt. I wear Redhead wool extra padded lifetime socks, and rebook or sketcher bike shoes. My blue streaked safety helmet is a Bell which I often leave in the truck for my old orange canvas biking cap. I own several types of side view mirrors that clip on hats or glasses. I wear padded bike gloves that alleviate the hand and finger numbness somewhat.

To carry our bikes we have a Hollywood brand bike carrier that easily fits into the 2” trailer receiver at the back of our Trail Blazer.

We have dozens of important waypoints programmed into our TomTom GPS navigator and last year we bought a Hero action outdoor weatherproof video camera for recording our rides.

Yes, I am geared up for the task at hand.

The night before a bike ride (almost every night) I make sure I don’t over eat and that I eat healthy which means no large quantities of either meat or bread, opting for rice and veggies. Chinese is good because it is most certainly all gone out of my system before the next morning’s ride. I put out my special bike clothes and get to bed as early as possible.

Most importantly, I get up early regardless of how poorly I slept or how I feel, I get dressed and get on that bike. There is no checking email or even looking at my desk. The current weather is not even an issue unless there is a monsoon occurring at the moment because I will ride in the rain. Not snowpack, but rain yes.

Prepare for success and you will succeed. Do nothing and you ARE PREPARING DILIBERATELY for failure.

We have an important midterm national election coming up here in The US of A. Anyone really happy with the last election and the current direction of our leader, need only turn out to vote for more of the same. Because most of the media is for the socialism and unconstitutional bushwhacking going on in the capitol and the rest of the country (excluding maybe Texas and Arizona).

But, those of us wanting to switch America’s tracks back to a constitutional republic for the sake of our God given rights of Liberty and Freedom need to “kick against the pricks”. We need to do the hard thing and buck the media by not allowing the lies to go forth freely around us. We need to use our voice and our vote to help America get set aright. We can’t live by default.

If the fat foodie lives by default instead of on purpose, we are just in for more of the same. We need to “kick against the pricks” of our internal laziness and do the hard thing. We need to prepare for success daily and hourly.

Anyone can do the easy thing. It’s the hard things that need preparation, execution and follow through.

Prepare for success and you WILL succeed.

See you after that next scale date.


Outdoor Grilling Tips

Leave Your Mark

Larger veggie pieces are easier to grill.

To brand attractive grill marks on meats and larger veggies, turn foods a quarter turn after a couple of minutes.


About Stu Lite

Media Designer since 1977. Video Producer of commerce, instruction, church and outdoor. Photographer, writer, print designer, marketing guru and voice over artist. Has worked on projects for Mario Batali's Chicago Brick Oven, Midwest Christian Boys' Football Camp, Chicago Arch Diocese and numerous radio and TV stations on west coast and in Chicago area market. Born and raised in Medford, Oregon. Graduated from Medford Senior High School in 1976. Attended Southern Oregon State College for Law Enforcement, Middle Tennessee State University for Computer Sciences, Hyles-Anderson College for Bible Literature and earned a BFA degree in Multimedia/Web Design from Illinois Institute of Art, Chicago Art Institute. "It was never my goal to become a Jack of all trades. My advice to normal people is to allow your mentors like parents to help you choose your path. Then stay on that path. You will be a happier and more productive individual. One God, one spouse, one profession, many children; a good plan for life."
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2 Responses to Sweat is Not Enough

  1. Debi says:

    From my in-progress book:

    I wish there was some sort of Miranda right for the obese: “If you cannot afford a trainer, one will be appointed for you by a court of law.”

    • Stu Lite says:

      Oh Debbie, that’s a classic! Great thought.
      If it were not for the good friend of mine who is a trainer I would have none. I am one of those who can not afford one right now.
      The information that he gave me was priceless. Would have taken me a lot of research hours to find and test stuff that just falls out of his head accidently.

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