Responsibility to Change?

Responsibility to Change?

Hello,

Food addictions, shopping addiction, drug addictions, emotional hanger, chronic anxiety, habits that hurt us or others, unhealthy lifestyles…Do people have the responsibility to change? It’s the topic of this video.

It’s one thing to be who you are today, which is the cumulation of all your past actions, habits, and external influences up to this point. But moving forward, is it your responsibility to change when you roughly know what needs to be done?

You hear this often, this person and his behavior is who he is, or this is who I am, you must take me at my best and worst, so what, does it mean we cannot change, improve our lives for the better? in any aspect we choose to? If people can deteriorate or improve in all walks of life, it’s because we are flexible, the human body and brain is plastic, we are not robots who can’t reprogram themselves when needed.

When it comes to nutrition, fitness, and wellbeing, I think each of us as humans need to become fully responsible for improving in those key areas, mainly because our happiness is linked to wellbeing but also for the world. Imagine if each of us looked deeply within and made an effort to improve our emotional mind, our nutrition, fitness, how will that impact the world at large.

We all want others to improve, racists need to change, the police need to change, murderers and criminals need to change, haters need to change, angry people, bullies, but how about us.

This is where Jesus saying of “Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at those who sin”…is super relevant…

Obesity cost the economy 190 billion a year
Mental Health cost 200 billion a years
Back and Neck pain cost 87.6 Billion a year
Cardiovascular diseases cost 328 billion a year, project to be 800 billion by 2030

These four big issues can all be reduced if individually, we take full responsibility for our emotional and physical states. Locally that will make our live drastically better, our interaction with people around us kinder, healthier and at the Macro level, the country will be able to allocate more capital and human resources to other issues, improving education, infrastructures, roads, fast trains, better transportation, addressing homelessness, which drastically increased after the defunding of psychiatric hospitals all around the US in the 1970s…or helping rehabilitate people in prison, which is now the largest psychiatric institution in the country.

This is how improving your well being can achieve at a micro and macro level. How much energy are we spending looking for other people to do something for society? our voice matters, but our actions, improving ourselves is even better.

Now, let’s bring the conversation back to your direct wellbeing. If we all look at our lives and times where our behavior was self-destructive or hurt someone we care about, we can all agree that if we had more control over destructive emotions like anger, jealousy, hatred, which can erupt under many situation we face…our happiness and those of others would be better off…or if we successfully transitioned to healthy nutrition and fitness lifestyle, our well being will be much better.

Simple, but far from easy. Improving our emotional and physical states doesn’t happen overnight. Stopping food urges and unhealthy habits doesn’t happen in 3 months…Getting rid of anger or fear once and for all seems almost inhuman. How many times people say they will not get angry again yet it keeps happening.

It’s possible as millions of people have shown but it takes commitment and consistency. The moment you take full responsibility and put it into action, you can start this shift, this transformation today.

Social media and the news have people thinking that someone else needs to change the world, Gucci needs to do this, Biden needs to that, Jeff besoz needs to this. All these people are human just like you. We are all part of a biological ecosystem which means that each of us can influence and reshape this system.

But if you turn the focus on yourself, you realize quickly how hard changing for the better is, I know people who are super vocal about all the changes that government needs to do, but they cannot even eat healthy consistently and be more at peace within. This is one of the best contributions you can make to existence and society, be healthy, at peace within…which will all be reflected in your behavior and interaction with other parts of this eco-system. You first need to be fit in order to serve.

If you don’t have the time, energy, or resource to directly change the system at large, start at home. The same way the American economy depends on small businesses, the same way people, individually can reshape the dynamic of the system.

That’s what the meaning of the butterfly effect is, we are in a biological system, every single part has an effect on the system at large. So are you contributing to making the system healthier, better, or are you a pain point in this system, are you a headache.

The human body is a system, and you know if your ankle is hurting, the whole body’s mood shift downward…so in the same manner, If you are physically in trouble, the whole is also in trouble.

You being emotionally, physically stable, being at peace within, relaxed and balanced is removing one problem from the hand of mother nature.

Now, as I said in many videos, none of this self-improvement will happen if we are not aware of key areas we need to improve. You get angry at someone, your anxiety is making you less sharp, your nutritional habits are making you gain weight, get sick or lose your vitality, you first have to be fully aware of these areas your need to improve before you can take care of them.

In the midst of anger, anxiety, emotional eating, we often feel powerless, it’s happening already. But there are times where we are more clear-minded, this is when we can start to apply the antidotes to destructive habits when we can make improvements to our minds.

You don’t try to learn a new move during a game or a fight. It’s when everything is more relaxed, that you can work on improving yourself.

I am currently reading some books on the culture of consumption we currently live in, what is our ecological footprint, we all seem to always want more. This is pretty relevant to fitness, nutrition, and mental health because one of the reasons why people want to buy more stuff is due to the belief that they will directly be happier or indirectly because of how their status in the eyes of others will rise. Evolutionary psychologists call this signaling.

If the rest of the world consumed as much the US, we would need 5 planets to make it work. This is another element to help you become aware of your responsibility to change, to reassess how your behavior impacts the world at large.

It’s cheap and easy to talk about global warming, about the destruction of the amazonian forest, about the bad cartels, about children working in factories in Asia, but what can you personally do about it? Reduce your consumption.

Do you really need that many clothes, that many shoes, do we really need to eat that much? all these elements can be improved individually. 1.6 billion people go to sleep overweight every night when 800 million people go to sleep starving. 40% of the food in the US is wasted…how many resources going toward making this food is wasted just like that.

We are all part of the system, your behavior can reshape the system because it’s a feedback loop, consuming less, buying less material things will send a message to manufacturing companies, the butterfly effect, we can create a tsunami of change one person at a time. There is no need to wait for someone else to start, you can start today because this will first and foremost increase your well being and overall happiness.

I don’t need you to change the way you eat, improving my nutrition and mental state is enough to myself.
I started thinking about my personal responsibility in this world back in college. And weirdly, it was not because I care about the world like a hippy for example, it’s because I looked at my priorities, what will really make me genuinely happy and realized that by improving my health and well being, I would automatically help move the world, in a better direction.

By eating healthy, I’m helping the country and healthcare system, and maybe being an inspiration to someone around me or to the next generation.

By making sure I improve my emotions, my mind, I’m more at peace, balanced and relaxed within, which helps me reduce the need for more material things.

In my first years of college, I had 10 to 20 Jordan sneakers, more than 30 hats, all kinds of clothes…and by the time I finished college, I was and still wear this black t-shirt almost every day.

After college, I sold every single pair of shoes and hats I had. Today I wear the same black sneakers, all year long, I have 5 pairs of the same shoes.

This shift in my life didn’t happen because I wanted to save the world, no, it happened because I started to improve my health, mental and physical, and the need to buy all this extra stuff just went away. The more at ease, fit, and healthy you are, the better you feel in your skin, the less material things you need outside.

Now, when I’m reading all these books on consumerism, ecological footprint, and how we are robbing future generations, it’s getting easier for me to follow those solutions because I’m feeling better within. And I can totally understand the appeal of consumerism, looking back at my younger self because my mind wasn’t in the same place as it is today, I made a commitment to make it better.

I used to have a list of countries I would love to visit, you know how everybody today wants to visit every corner of the planet, but after reading about ecological footprints, I changed my mind in this area.

There was a passage in a book where the author said how foolish are people traveling to other corners of the planet to go lay on a beach. When you have some great beach around us here, in the Caribbean or even within the US.

If you tell me that for the rest of my life, I’m not allowed to leave the United state, I would be fine with it. Because traveling to exotic locations is not going to trigger a new positive emotion in my mind I don’t have access to here, right now.

So to summarize this video, it’s about asking yourself if you have the responsibility to change, first change for your own wellbeing and betterment, and second for your environment, family and entourage, community, country, and the world at large.

We live in an interconnected system. Your fitness, nutrition, mental health are the cornerstones of a happy life and a better world. It’s up to you

Do you Need Help?

Do you need Help? Wellness-Lose Weight

Hello, In today’s video, I will cover an important topic. As usual it’s mostly focused on nutrition and fitness, being healthy, but this one goes beyond that, it’s about improving your life in every area you can think of. How and why do so many people out there are reluctant, uncomfortable, maybe scared, maybe ashamed to seek help when they need to?

I want to address this topic because I see a lot of people out there that would get help from people around them if they asked and some really need that help but for some reason, they don’t reach out.

Personally, I grew up in Africa, with a passion for playing basketball. And one of the things that me and my basketball friends talk about looking back is the lack of mentors or guidance we didn’t have access to back then…because When I came to the US in high school, I saw right away that the level of coaching and guidance in the basketball ecosystem was on another level. Wherever I would go play, you had people, older or the same age giving you advice left and right, not junk advice, real helpful advice.
It’s still up to you to absorb it and get better.

Then when I started focusing on entrepreneurship in college and really started to get serious about reading and learning this field everyday, I realized how much advice and guidance I was getting from those books. Which led me to the other insight, the lack of mentorship back home in Africa when it comes to education. You have 75% of the 1.2 billion African below 35 year old…and there is an enormous absence of mentorship, no guidance from people who are experts in their fields and can help people with advice and recommendations.

Then, my last experience on this topic of guidance and help is through fitness and nutrition. I realized how so many people might need help, but for some reason, they don’t reach out. It doesn’t have to be reaching out to me, but to anybody that can help you improve your health, nutrition and fitness. And as you will see in the rest of this video, that can be directly done through someone or on the internet, or via books. So you can either seek out help from someone or search and find resources to help you get over problems you are facing. Let’s get into it.

Recently, I was in a zoom video chat with some of my cousins around the country. We talked about the current events and specifically the police brutality, racism and expanded the conversation to inequality in the US and around the world. During these conversations, I said that what frustrates me the most is how one important solution to poverty and inequality in minorities is missing in the current conversation. The fact that people are not being taught how to individually get better, healthier, smarter to a point where they can get out of poverty or unhealthy cycles they might be stuck into.

It’s great to say, let’s change all those external factors, but I argue it’s even better, more realistic, to help individuals, to show them how to navigate through life and get better, improve and prosper. You can help someone who is negatively affected by war by ending it, or you can give him weapons and ammunition to fight. Inequality is a war that has been going on since the dawn of humanity, it’s not about to stop tomorrow.

Life has never been fair nor equal, these are utopian ideas. Nature obeys to the law of Survival, Competition and Cooperation.

My approach to life is very pragmatic, the most important factor in improving your life is yourself. Without a doubt, there are external conditions that can make it harder if not impossible for you to succeed in a specific field. But take health, education and work…across the board, you have the power to improve these three aspects of your life. But the problem is that first, some people don’t know how to get better and second, those who actually know and can help, in majority, are not reaching out to mentor, give advice or just point toward resources that can help those who would benefit from this knowledge.

This is why the title of this video is Do you need help? What area of your life do you need to improve, are those areas important to your well being and overall growth in life? Are you happy where you are right now?

I’m asking this because a person cannot reach out for help without being aware that he needs help.
This is very important, put aside those who can help you improve, if you are not aware that you actually need some help to fix issues in your life, there is nothing more to say, you will stay where you are or struggle to get better. You have to assess yourself, perform a 360 review of your life, put it down on paper.

Recorded human history is about 5000 years old, and we have the luxury to be alive at a time where so many answers to our problems in life have been somewhat addressed by other people, we really don’t need to reinvent the wheel.

Why waste your time trying to come up with answers to problems if those answers are already out there? All you need is to find these answers and apply them to improve your life. The energy to execute is crucial, so don’t waste your time reinventing the wheel if answers are out there.

If you are unhealthy, out of shape, emotionally distressed, there are resources out there to help you get better, there is literally no limit to how much better you can get today, financially, emotionally, physically and spiritually. But you have to pause and reflect, assess and ask yourself, do I need help here, where do I want to go, what do I need to know.

Unless you are thirsty, you will not seek water to drink.
Now, for people who need help, advice or guidance in a specific area of their lives and are aware of it.
Why are they not seeking help?

This is something I really want to understand myself, because I see it around me. I have a good friend who is overweight, he is around 18 years old and close to 300 pounds, it’s not good.

And this friend of mine never reached out for help, I reached out many times to help him but there was no answer back. So what makes people who need help unwilling to reach out.

Shame, pride, fear,guilt or they just don’t care? Let’s go quickly over each reason why someone is unwilling to ask for help if he needs it, and even better, if someone is offering to help them.

Shame and pride are two sides of the same coin, and one of the reasons people don’t want to reach out for help is that they might feel ashamed or too proud. Some people feel like asking others for help is admitting that they are less, they are not capable of figuring out by themselves.

Two things might cause this. People who could help you might be your peers, friends, so you feel too ashamed or too proud to ask them to help you…Or maybe these people who can help are part of your family, and you want to show that you are your own man, you can stand on your own feet and do it by yourself.

Many people have this mindset but it’s self limiting, check this out…One of the greatest NBA player is Kobe Bryant, who recently passed away, and he is known to have perfected the moves of his idol, Michael Jordan, who is the greatest basketball player of his era. Kobe had a huge ego and supreme confidence, but his ability to listen and seek out people for advice to improve was like someone who knew nothing about basketball.

Do you think Kobe was ashamed of asking MJ for advice, you think he felt bad copying every single move from Jordan? Not a second. Kobe was a fierce competitor, and he wanted to win. MJ had the formula for winning, so Kobe adopted this blueprint. There are few ways to win in life, and millions of ways to lose. If someone has a winning formula, copy it then make arrangements to make it yours. This is even more important if you are losing, if what you are doing is not working. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help. Also, don’t fear rejection, you miss 100% of the shot you don’t take. Hence Steve Jobs saying good artist copy, great artist steal.

Reading the biography of many successful people across all fields, I discovered that the best are those who can learn from others, who are not afraid to ask for help, who are able to be coached, to be guided.

This is what a lot of people get wrong, they think that the greatest, the most successful people in society are self-made. That they solve every problem from scratch. This is wrong on so many levels. The best are constantly finding what their weaknesses are and seeking those who can help them learn what needs to be learned. They are like sponges, open-minded and mentally pliable, flexible to learn new stuff from others and integrate that into their lives.

Isaac Newton, the father of physics said, I stand on the shoulders of giants, meaning, his success was built upon what scientists did before him and he learned from.

There is no shame in asking other people to help you out. We are all at different moments of our journey, and because someone knows more than you in a given area doesn’t mean you can’t outgrow them, or that you are not better than them in other areas.

Another reason why people are reluctant to ask for help is because of guilt, which is close to feeling ashamed or they don’t want to bother. This can happen for a couple of reasons, one is that you feel that you already asked those people for help and that asking again is too much.

Or that they already helped you get to a certain level and you either relapsed or need help to go higher. If you still need help from them, keep asking, or try to ask someone else who can, but there is really no need to feel guilty, what’s the worst that can happen, you get a NO from them. It’s okay, they might not have the time to help you, but don’t take it personally.

Which leads me to this next point, if you don’t want to reach out to people for help because you think you might bother them, or for all the reasons I mentioned up to this point, but you are aware that you need help, find that help on the internet or via books.

This is the road I took. Back in college, I realized I didn’t know many entrepreneurs. I couldn’t ask for mentorship or help, and didn’t have those people in my family to ask for guidance, I’m a first-generation immigrant from Africa. We don’t have the blueprint to success. So I got my mentorship from Amazon, via books. Paul Bloom, Warren Buffet, Steven Pinker, Buddha…people who are masters in their field rarely have time to mentor us, nor do we have enough money to pay them for their time.

But if you are willing to spend, or better yet, to invest your time reading, you can have the best mentors in the world giving you top advice and recommendation in any field you wish to improve. Nutrition, fitness, emotional and mental development, finance, relationship, parenting, spirituality, or any field in education, you can access the leaders in those fields via books, audio books and now online videos.

This is the era we live in, realize the number of resources out there you can use to improve your life. Everything I know about nutrition and fitness I got from reading books. Everything I know about business, marketing, entrepreneurship, I first learned it from books before applying it and gaining direct experience. 4 years ago, I started doing yoga, and like many, I was a bit shy to go to Yoga Studios. In my mind, it was something for women, not something for a fitness, basketball guy.

But I read that it could take my fitness to another level, so I bought some DVDs and started doing them at home, learning from the best right from my laptop. Now I’m ready to do a 500-hour training to get a Yoga teacher certificate. In the same manner, I learned meditation and how to improve my mind, concentration, emotions and get rid of mental poison like anger, fear, anxiety and attachment via books getting amazing results.

I’m saying all this so you understand that if you are aware that you need, or you must improve some aspect of your life, if people around you cannot help you, take some time and research, find books or videos that will show you what you need to know. Now the next step is applying that and growing.

So to summarize this video, it’s about reaching out for help. First, you need to assess what aspect of your life you want to improve, see if that matters to you and your life goals. Next, seek out where you can find help, directly through someone or indirectly through video courses, books or audio books.

It’s really up to you, we have to pass this message to people around us, that they can get out of situations they are stuck into by their own inner power, hope is not going to help, only through effort.

Thank you

Be Healthy:Do it for the kids

Be Healthy-Do it for the kids

Transcript:

Hello,

This vlog is called do it for the kids. The more I think about this, the more absurd it becomes, how come kids and children in school are never taught how to manage their mind and emotions. How come there are not taught nutrition and fitness science, how to cook healthy, those are crucial life skills.

David Benatar is a PhD in Philosophy and college professor in South Africa. He writes about having or not having kids. And his thoughts are shaking the whole field of psychology, philosophy, ethics, and religion. I read him a lot.

One subject he writes about is how so many parents and soon to become parents rarely think about the entire life their children will live after they pass away. We often think of kids when we are going to be here. But he said, when you really think about what kind of life your children will live, people rarely think that you know what, my children will experience more pain and suffering than joy and pleasure in their life.

Think about it, it’s weird to reflect on that. Benatar goes as far as to say that, when you look at human life, at a bigger scale, you find out that most people on earth suffer more in their lives than they experience happiness and pleasure. But few are willing to admit that.

I won’t go deeper into what David Benatar writes about but I wanted to start this vlog with these thoughts to make you more aware of the power you have in shaping the lives of kids you bring into this world.

Either you are already a parent or plan to be, so this video goes out to you. We all talk about making the world a better place, but it starts at home. I focus on nutrition, fitness, and wellbeing, and there is a deep health crisis in America right now. The majority of people eat unhealthy and are inactive. This American lifestyle puts a huge burden on the health care system, obesity alone costs the country 174 billion a year. Worse, you have millions of people who will finish their lives in pain and suffering, for some, major health issues start around 40 years old.

Now, I’m all about individual freedom, but it’s one thing to live with the consequences of your actions but it’s another to raise children with those same habits, hence why this video is called Do it for the kids.

What is your responsibility in the future health of your children, even when they become adults?

When I first start helping clients lose weight, I have them write down 20 to 30 reasons why they want to lose weight, the list is long because I want to make them really think and ponder about all the benefits of eating healthy and being fit. I also encourage them to read this list every day.

Most people have 3-4 reasons why they want to lose weight:
Because there is a big event around the corner like a wedding or vacation trip
Or their birthday it’s coming, Or it’s a new year resolution, Or just because they are sick and tired of being overweight and not feeling their best.

All these reasons are fantastic, but you need to give your mind more ammunition, plant more seeds. This is why you need to build a longer list. So to help them build this list, we talk about it and I share with them some of the reasons why I want to stay healthy and fit.

One of the reasons on my list is being healthy and fit for your kids and grandchildren. Would you like to be there for them with all your vitality later in your life? Being able to play with them, to support them mentally and physically, without being hurt OR do you want the whole attention of your family to be on you, in your senior years because you are sick, always at the hospital, so your children and grandchildren are always worried about your health. How about the financial burden of being sick, how will that help you and your family?

Really think about this, it’s great to look good and feel good when you are relatively young, but it’s even more important at the end of your life.

I have been coaching my mother since she retired 10 years ago.
She wasn’t overweight and ate healthy but it wasn’t optimal. After she retired, my mother had very weak bones. The doctor said she had low bone density and started to have arthritis in her hands, elbows and shoulders. At the time, she was around 55 years old. And she used to tell me how she couldn’t squeeze people’s hands because she would feel so much pain, or kneel down at church.

So I started to give her fitness and nutritional advice and she followed it. She started to lift weights, I gave her specific exercise to strengthen her hands, elbows and shoulders. She also started doing squats, lunges, all with weights, and even running full speed at the end of her daily walk at a stadium near the house.

Today, she is 66 years old and in better shape than she was 10 years ago. Her bone density increases all over her body. She also has more muscle in her upper and lower body.

When we talk, she tells me that her worst fear is suffering at the end of her life, because we all know grandparents, uncles, or aunties who are currently suffering from all kinds of physical and health issues.

So when I mean do it for the kids, by taking care of your health, imagine the tremendous burden you will save them from. And also, imagine how much better will your own well being be. How do you want to finish your life? Do you think about this?

I am very cynical about people having kids because I really don’t think people think about the life their kids will live. We are very short-sighted and think about the joy children will bring us, but how about them, in the entirety of their lives.

As a parent, you have or will have the most profound impact on the lifestyle they might stick with as they grow. Directly or indirectly. You get to be the first one to condition them, another word for brainwashing.
They will most likely learn all your habits and your perspective on life.

As you know, eating habits and staying fit is far from easy when it’s not a lifestyle yet, it’s not your identity yet. This is why I focus on helping people make those changes by starting from within, in the mind, because it’s the control center. To stop unhealthy eating habits and start new ones is difficult, you have to pay a lot of attention to your emotional state, and not green light urges to eat unhealthy.

I’m saying this so you realize that if you raise your child with unhealthy nutrition and fitness habits, you are giving them problems they will have to fight and maybe suffer from for the rest of their lives. Children don’t have the same degrees of free will adults have, so they are under your control for almost 10 to 18 years.

Again, DO it for the kids, reflect, and think on the positive impact you can have on their well being if you raise them in a household where you are eating healthy and exercise often. Children learn by example, monkey sees, monkey do.

I can’t tell you the amount of time I’m walking outside and see kids eating complete garbage, it’s sad, because the junk parents are giving to their kids is actually making them addicted. Ice cream, cookies, cereal, you are making them addicted to sugar. People tell me, but Karl, they are happy, but how about giving more drugs to someone who is addicted, it does make them feel good in the short term but how about after. That’s the definition of an enabler.

Sugar is more addictive than cocaine, it targets the same areas in the brain, the reward system, pleasure center.

Dr Robert Lustig is a well-known endocrinologist, who works a lot with children. He is a hormone specialist and teaches pediatrics at the University of California. He said in his books that the effect of sugar on kids is like giving them alcohol and that sugar for kids is a gateway drug because you are training them to seek specific dosage of pleasure which drugs like cocaine provides.

Sugar is not just white table sugar, but it’s also in bread, pasta, rice, cereal, cookies, fruit juices, and sodas.

Children do not ask to come into the world, you want them to come, so you have to be responsible and not enslave them in a vicious unhealthy cycle that is extremely hard to break. The failure rate in people looking to follow a healthy diet and stay fit is 95%. 70% of Americans are overweight or obese, exposing themselves to all kinds of preventable diseases, and you have the power to make your children join this group or the power to help them grow up with a healthy lifestyle.

Personally, I think the educational system has a major role to play in the health, fitness and well being of children, from elementary to college. Nutrition and cooking classes should be part of curriculums from middle school and up. Fitness science should be required in high school and college. It’s one thing to improve what children eat at school, for those who don’t have the means to buy their own lunch, but it’s more impactful to teach kids the in and out of nutrition science, it’s not as complex as people think it is.

Thomas Sowell, the great American economist said education is the great equalizer because public education if done well, can help someone from an impoverished family, background or neighborhood rising up in society. School can help him learn and develop important skills that his parents might not have, and thus breaking a cycle of poverty.

In the same fashion, I think inserting a rigorous health and nutrition curriculum right from middle school and up will help millions of kids break unhealthy health cycles they might be in at home.

If you want to Do it for the kids, you have to first make it happen for yourself. Make a healthy lifestyle the core of your identity, your flavor. People are living double lives out there, where a part of you wants to be healthy, sometimes you get back in shape and then you relapse again.

This is what parents are teaching their kids, be fragmented within, be divided, crave for cookies and also get some abs. Move two-step in the direction of being healthy than 10 steps in the direction of being unhealthy.

If you want to move all-in and be fit once and for all, you need to learn nutrition and fitness science. But start first by understanding how to take full control of your mindstate and emotions, so they don’t drive you to eat unhealthy. Mindstate management and increased peak wellness, this is what I teach on the video program to lose weight forever. So you don’t have to go read 100 books on nutrition and fitness. I build an entire course, over 25 hours that covers everything you need to know and what to do to lose weight and get in top shape, but we start from within, in the mind.

In the past five years, after spending thousands of hours meditating, observing my mind, and emotions from within and improving it, I see the world and human interactions in a new light, a wider lens.

Anger, depression, hate, racism, jealousy, envy, anxiety, these emotions are to be expected when mindstate management is not taught in school. Few parents teach their kids how to deal with emotions and increase their peak wellness.

This is why some biologists call humans bipolar apes, we have the potential to do good and to do bad. But it’s possible to remove any seeds in your mind of those negative feelings and improve your overall well being.

So if you are a parent, or looking to become one, ask yourself this, what legacy will you leave your kids with, what nutrition are you teaching them, what example are you setting, are you preparing them to flourish when they become independent or suffer because of the influence and habits you taught them?

It’s up to you. Thank you

I am not Losing Weight, What’s Wrong?

I am not losing weight, what's wrong?

Transcript:

I’m not losing weight, what’s wrong
I’m not gaining muscle, what’s wrong

Hello

From time to time, I hear people I’m helping lose weight or gain muscle or doing it by themselves express how something is wrong because they are not making enough progress, at least as quickly as they think they should. And this leads many people to lose patience, start cheating on their food and slowly relapse in their old nutrition habits.

If I know those people, what I tell them is, think about how many years you have been eating unhealthy and didn’t proactively take care of your body and health, 10, 20, 30 years of bad eating and now, after 2-3 months of changing your nutrition for the better you want to quit, you are tired of it already.

People spend all this time gaining weight but if you tell them, you know what, realistically, it will take you one year or two to get in the best shape of your life, and then almost three years to make this new lifestyle part of your identity, of your flavor, many people hearing this will not sign on, they will have to be super unhealthy to make this shift, or they will postpone it to another time.

But fortunately, you may not be one of those people, because people and others are a generalization, the crowd really doesn’t exist, we are all unique individuals. So just understand that even if you are following a good nutrition plan, doing everything the right way, from eating to exercising to working on your mind,You might hit some roadblocks where it seems like you are not losing weight as fast anymore or gaining lean muscle mass as quickly as you did in the beginning.

But that’s okay, there are many reasons why this can happen, let’s go over them quickly. I go over them in more depth in the video program Lose Weight Forever.

In the first few weeks of following a healthy lifestyle, you might lose more weight because the bulk of it will be water weight. When you stop consuming a lot of carbs and sugar, you are turning off the hormone insulin, which leads the body to retain more sodium, which in turn increases water retention in your cells and tissues. Reduce your carbs and sugar intake and see how less water you feel like drinking. So a lot of weight you lose in the beginning might be amplified by losing water weight.

Next, you might not lose fat as much later on… because your calorie deficit is not low enough. Let’s say you start your weight loss journey with a calorie deficit of 500 calories a day. But then, a couple of months later, you hit a roadblock, try decreasing your calorie by another 200 calories. Some people adopt a calorie deficit of 1000 calories below they Basal Metabolic Rate, which I think is good for many people looking to lose weight. A calorie deficit triggers your body to use your fat cells for energy, hence burning fat for fuel.

Or you might hit a hormonal roadblock, meaning, your body has been used to be overweight for so long that your baseline weight is being overweight. So when you start to lose weight up to a certain level, your hormonal system puts on the break because it thinks you are starving yourself, even though you have all this extra energy in your fat cells to be unlocked.
Your metabolism slows down, so you have to stay patient here, keep eating healthy and exercising and your weight will continue to go down, maybe not as much as in the beginning but you will keep progressing.

For those of you who are looking to gain lean muscle mass, you might hit a roadblock for many reasons.

One can be that you are not paying enough attention to your recovery. As your intensity and the amount of weight you lift increase, optimal recovery is crucial. Are you sleeping enough, are you eating enough, are you allowing enough resting between gym sessions for super-compensation to take place.

Another reason for a roadblock might be that you have to switch your reps, sets and how you are doing some exercises. Hitting your muscles at different angles can help stimulate growth.

Another common reason why some people find it hard to gain more muscle is that they are simply not lifting heavy, or the intensity is not where it should be. And I see that all the time in the gym, people coming and acting like it’s a night club, talking to their friends, taking long breaks between sets, barely sweating, don’t be that guy. You want to maximize your time in the gym or at home training, make it as intense as possible, it’s the best way to stimulate muscle growth.

Or, maybe you are doing too much aerobic cardio, which can slow down your muscle growth.

And last but not least, you might not be eating enough food overall or proteins specifically. This for me was the reason WHY when I started to lift weight in college, I wasn’t seeing good results. The intensity and all other parameters were checked but I realized I wasn’t eating enough. And this is common with people who are naturally skinny, they don’t feel like eating a lot. So I had to push myself to eat, eat and eat. And boom, I started to see amazing results and reached my goals.

In both cases, facing roadblocks losing weight or gaining muscle, look at these elements I mention and see how you can take care of them. What I didn’t talk about, for those of you looking to lose weight is that maybe you are not actually eating healthy. Cheating here and there is one way to make it impossible to lose weight. So take a good look at your nutrition, be honest and see if you can make it better, one cheat day a week and 6 days of clean eating.

And to finish, understand that Incremental progress is the blueprint to success, we are so used to see big body transformation or those total home makeover that as a society, we got used to big changes, but if you look at history, changes happen very slowly…

For example, in the 1960s, scientists and presidents said that by the year 2000, most wealthy countries would run on solar energy, yet today, in 2019, solar energy accounts for less than 5% of energy sources on the planet.

In almost 50 years, solar energy increased by only 2-3%. So reflect on this, change is very very slow. The good thing is that losing weight or gaining muscle is actually way faster in comparison to the example I just gave.

So develop cool patience, not fake patience where you are boiling inside, cool patience is enjoying every step toward a healthier version of yourself, mentally and physically, because inch by inch, if you are mindful, you can see you are feeling better and looking better, stronger every day. This is why I say the mental aspect of losing weight is 99% of it. The missing link.

Enjoy the process that makes you great, the small victories, don’t panic when you hit a wall and stagnate for a few weeks, assess, stay on the road and keep driving.

It’s up to you, Thank you

Change from your center

Change from your center-Lose Weight

Transcript:

From your epicenter.

Hello, this video topic is on one superpower to improve your health, start from your epicenter.
The gist of this video is this, it’s more effective to change from your root, your center than from the surface. Easy to understand but not easy to do. Because there is a difference between the most effective way and the easiest way to do it.

The issue is that people look for an easy way to lose weight or gain muscle, which is the least effective way to do it, hence why 95% of people dieting fail. And the irony is that by failing year after year, it actually looks like people are taking the hardest road by looking for an easy way. Instead of starting from the root and losing weight once and never go back again, you fail again and again and again.

First, ask yourself this question, where should you apply your energy to get the biggest return on your health, fitness, nutrition and overall well being? This is what everyone thinking of getting in top shape should ask themselves in the beginning.

Ultimately, there are two ways to change in life, one is from the surface, and the other is from the center, from within. You will get results with both options but the failure rate is not the same. The failure rate from changing from the surface is 95%. Whereas changing from your center is transforming yourself, like graduating a class, you cannot go back again.

If you look around, observe and listen to people looking to lose weight, gain muscle or stay vibrant as they age, here are questions they are asking:

  • How to lose weight fast
  • What is the best diet to lose weight
  • What is the best fat burner supplement
  • Does drinking warm water help lose fat
  • How to gain muscle quickly
  • How to put on lean mass
  • What is Michael B Jordan workout plan
  • What is the best supplement to gain muscle
  • What is intermittent fasting or Keto

All these questions are valid, but how effective are they, or better yet, does spending your energy finding answers to these questions help you lose weight once and for all, help you stay fit and vibrant?

From experience, I think people, unknowingly, are missing the forest for some trees.

Because the core of changing in life, such as improving your health and fitness is changing behavior.

If you are looking to lose weight, if you are overweight, or trying to gain muscle mass, you are looking to change your behavior, and this is the domain of the psyche, the mind, the missing link. The most important element helping people stay in shape, fit, decades after decades is their behavior, which is controlled by the epicenter, the mind.

I’m not saying knowing which diet will help you lose weight is not important to know, it is, but that’s secondary. A 360 approach to improving your nutrition and fitness has to start with your mind and even deeper, at the core of your emotional center, your heart. Ancient Egyptians called it the intelligence of the heart.

You have to be all in toward a new way of living. Move as a unit, be in the driver seat, manually shifting, not automatic.

That’s step one, step two is turning off unhealthy eating behavior, not outside in your actions, that’s ineffective, you have to do it mentally, where they originate, go to the source. And this requires you to become more aware, alert and mindful of your inner life, your mental life.

You start to see how to react to the environment and how this affects your mental state and your ability to eat well or not. Then you assert control, over your environment. Again, this is not done by saying, this person or that situation is badly influencing me. Nope, it’s all in your mind.

Then once you asserted control over negative influences and thoughts associated with your old lifestyle, you simultaneously start feeding new thoughts, new desires, toward health, toward fitness, toward peak wellness.

One unhealthy thought has the potential to generate more unhealthy thoughts. Healthy thoughts, generate more healthy thoughts, so you then become a gardener, in charge of building a fresh ecosystem, in your mind which your thoughts…and in your heart, with your emotions. This will naturally bleed in your actions and lifestyle.

This is what I mean by changing from your epicenter, in the eye of the storm. This change will have a long-lasting effect on your identity and make it a breeze to exercise, eat healthy, go to the gym on the regular because it becomes who you are.

You see, superficial changes from the surface are like spray painting mango fruits to look like apples. That’s what people looking to lose weight without taking care of the mental part are doing, jumping on all kinds of diets, losing weight, and relapsing. Don’t try to spray paint the mango tree to look like an apple tree, remove the root and plant a real apple tree. Don’t try to look like an athlete, become one, make that part of your lifestyle. From…..your….epicenter.

Think of this, if you want to stop a tree form flowering, if you start by cutting the flowers, cutting the branches, and then leave, they will grow back, more so this time, this is called pruning.

Ancient Greeks understood the importance of changing from your center, from your roots vs the surface. I’m sure you heard or saw the legendary Hydra creature, the mythical animal with 3,4 sometime 6 heads. Worse, every time you cut one head, it grows back.

The only way to conquer hydra is the cut the roots. It’s the same with habits, your nutrition and fitness.
Your body and life is the result of your actions, thoughts, state of mind, emotions up to today.

The new you require a new software or a radical update. You cannot expect a new you with the same old software that made you overweight, unhealthy or out of shape.

This is why Einstein famously said we cannot solve a problem with the same kind of thinking we had when we created this problem. He said it’s the definition of insanity. I wouldn’t go that far, it’s just that we are not used to investigating our mind, emotional state and taught how to develop it. These important skills are not taught in school or by our parents.

So in conclusion, Your outlook on life has to change, and in order to do that you need to:

  1. Increase your level of awareness, become less mechanical, more mindful of your mental state and triggers…
  2. Reevaluate and articulate your goals and priority in life
  3. Clean up your mind and upgrade it, toward peak wellness
  4. Understand your infinite potential to adapt and morph
  5. Increase your wellness IQ, about nutrition and fitness
  6. And remember, Change from your center, not from the surface.

It’s up to you, thank you.

Can Stress Make you Fat?

Can Stress makes you fat?

Can stress make you fat?

Hello, today’s vlog is about stress and gaining weight. Stress is one of the biggest factors why billion of people are overweight, obese, and facing painful diseases. Nobody is immune to this, every man has a breaking point.

Yet, people don’t take this enemy seriously, you hear people look for what’s the best nutrition plan to follow, what’s the best fitness plan, but how about, what are the triggers that make you eat unhealthy and gain weight, how about those triggers.

What is the correlation between stress and unhealthy eating, what is the correlation between stress and your ability to eat healthy every day and stay active by exercising at home or at the gym regularly?

Again, it’s great to learn what diet will help you get back in shape, keto, low carbs, Atkins, carnivore diet, intermittent fasting….wonderful, great…but if you don’t prepare to deal with enemy number uno, stress, you will join the 95% of people who fail at dieting or getting fit. This failure rate is so, so high, that if you are really serious about getting fit and adopting a lifestyle once and for all, make it your flavor, you have to deal with stress right away.

I can’t tell you the number of people I see eager to lose weight but because they are not taking the stress problem seriously, In my head, I know they are already defeated, it’s just a matter of weeks before they throw in the towel.

And this is why I emphasize so much dealing with stress, being proactive with it, because it will increase your will power and allow you to manually take control until new healthy habits set in.

I personally didn’t take stress seriously when I started to prioritize my health, fitness and nutrition. Back then, I was in college and had a lot of free time. Fewer things to worry about, so stress wasn’t on my radar at all.

Then after college, once I started working and then helping people get in shape as a side job, I started to realize how many of them were under a lot of stress from their jobs and life in general. Back then, I was in my early 20s, and most people I was coaching were in the 30s and 40s.

Besides helping them get in better shape, it was a great learning experience for me because I was able to project myself in the future and see what life was like from their viewpoints. This is when I realized the importance of stress in staying in shape and started to learn everything on this topic.

Today, I talk about doing yoga and meditation all the time to my friends, family, and people I’m helping but this started from understanding the impact of stress on human life, physically and mentally. I guarantee you that if you read what I read, you would come up with the same conclusion I had. Which was, wow, I really need to find a way to deal with stress, proactively every day so it doesn’t build up and create problems in my life.

Look at the top 10 leading cause of death in the United State, stress is one of the main factors
Look at the top 10 health reasons why people miss work…stress is one of the main factors
Look at why there is an epidemic of drug addictions in the country, stress is one of the main factors
Look at the mercurial growth of depression and anxiety in America…stress also plays a role
There are literally books and groups out there for Mothers on Xanax, because women are twice more likely to get depressed…stress is one of the main reasons why. And relevant to this vlog, 225 million Americans are overweight or Obese, stress definitely plays a role here.

From experience, I think one of the reasons people don’t want to think about the impact of stress in their lives is that, unconsciously, we believe saying or admitting we are stressed is being soft.

People think that being stressed is just the way it is, it comes with working hard and pushing it in life. At the end of the day, why live if the whole experience of being human is peppered and contaminated with stress all along and you don’t want to take care of it.

One of the motto of the website is being at ease because I think it’s a better term than happiness, but you can never be at ease if stress is bothering you. Are you comfortable being stressed, anxious, and not able to really be at ease, calm, feeling healthy, centered, and balanced?

Now, getting back to losing weight and staying fit, research is conclusive on this connection, stress makes you fat. Let’s get more technical on this.

The body, more specifically, the nervous system has two modes of operation, one is called the sympathetic nervous system, the other is called the parasympathetic nervous system. Think of a car that can either be on resting, relaxing around the city mode or on war, snow, mountain, alien invasion mode…This is the same with our nervous system, which is connected to the brain. actually, the brain is the end of the nervous system, it’s the control center.

You may have heard this term before, fight or flight, or an updated one that is fight, flight or rest and relax. These behaviors are the external effects of what happens to us when one of the two nervous system modes is operating.

The sympathetic nervous system is active when you are fighting or running away from a threat. Back twenty thousand years ago, that might have been a neighboring village attacking your tribe or being chased by a tiger, or hunting.

Today, this system is activated when we are anxious, worrying about our future, or about something at work that we need to get done asap, or worrying about our career, this next job position we want to get…or when we get sick, or when there is a problem in relationships we might be in, or family issues we need to deal with…You get the picture, every time there is something difficult that bothers us and we need to deal with, the nervous system has to switch to sympathetic to help us take care of these problems.

It’s like switching a car system from road to mountain mode, but this is costly.

When the nervous system switches to sympathetic, a whole chain of events happens inside the body.
Heartbeat increases slightly or through the roof, blood pressure increases, stress hormones like adrenaline, cortisol, and dopamine are released in the bloodstream, alerting every cell in the body.

The immune system takes a backseat, meaning it becomes less effective because the immune system is there to help us live another day, whereas stress prioritizes surviving now. The more stressed you are now, the less optimal your immune system will be.

This is crucial to understand if you really want to understand the connection between stress and gaining weight and not let it dominate your life.

Being stressed, we are more likely to reach out for sweets, snacks, carbs and unhealthy foods in general, because these types of food are ways to cool off, to make us feel good right now. Whereas following a healthy diet is about balancing feeling good now and tomorrow, being healthy today and tomorrow.

So a person under mild to intense stress will be more tempted and susceptible to succumb to eating unhealthy food than someone who is not as stressed. Especially if a healthy lifestyle is not part of their identity yet.

Stress also impacts your decision making, it clouds your judgment, not that you cannot think straight but you will rationalize decisions made under stress. Hence people always have very logical excuses as to why they are not able to eat healthy every day.

Now, before I speak about the parasympathetic nervous system, which is the mode when you are relaxing, resting and basically able to plan for the future, there are some few things left about the body under stress you need to know.

Evolutionary wise, the main mode we operate from is the sympathetic nervous system. Lower organisms, which we inherited part of our nervous system form, were built to first and foremost survive.

Which means, the most ancient part of our brain and nervous system is called the reptilian brain, and this bad boy is all about surviving.

One biologist said this, basically, our first mode of being is stressed, survival mode is number one. Look at a baby coming outside the womb, his mindset is to survive, he is not coming out laughing, he is crying all day every day for attention.

But we have the possibility to release the breaks, and switch from surviving mode to relaxing, resting and then striving, flourishing in life. This is basically the history of human evolution, we can come in and build our future.

Getting back to gaining weight and being healthy, you have to understand this. The more stressed you are, the harder it will be to eat healthy and switch to a healthy lifestyle forever.

And I know, there are some people out there always saying, but I don’t feel stressed, I’m good. So why are you overweight, gaining more weight and can’t take care of this?

It’s either, you don’t care about being overweight or obese, which to me sound self-destructive
Or you don’t have the will or knowledge to lose weight.
Or because you fail to prioritize your health and allocate time to improve it.

In all this case, I think stress is part of it because it makes it hard for us to control our behavior. Stress can make something easy as difficult as performing a surgery.

Take some time, sit down and think about this, how difficult is saying, you know what, from today on, I really need to take my health seriously, then spending a total of 20 hours learning basic nutrition and fitness science and then, the most challenging part, adapting your behavior to this resolution.

If you are at ease, centered and balanced, this should not be a problem, I’m not saying it’s not going to be challenging, I’m saying, you faced more difficulties in your life than switching your nutrition so you can look and feel better.

But this can become extremely hard if you don’t reduce your stress levels. I will share with you in another video what I have done to take care of stress in my life. Be proactive with stress, don’t let it build up and destroy you, zap your mojo and capacity to adapt.

It’s up to you. Thank you

Curvy-Fit vs Curvy-Fat

Curvy-Fit vs Curvy-Fat

Curvy-Fat or Curvy-Fit

Hello,

In today’s video, I will talk about one of the biggest misconceptions in fitness and health, related to women. The idea that some women believe they can only be curvy with being fat or overweight, worse, that some think they are naturally thick boned but not actually overweight.

If you want to age with grace, stay healthy, and improve your fitness, you have to be aware of this myth and not fall into this thinking trap.

I wrote this video from experience, talking to women I helped get in shape and for relatives, friends, and people that this video might help.

Before diving in this topic, I have to say that, when it comes to aesthetics, beauty is indeed in the eyes of the beholder. But my focus is health, and that’s pretty straight forward, being curvy and fat is unhealthy.

A great aspect of the United State culture is that, even though 70% of the population is overweight or obese, women are more into fitness than a lot of countries around the world. There is probably a bigger culture of sport in women here in the state than in any other culture.

Yet, many women are not into lifting weight, even though this has changed a lot in the past 10 years. The discussion I have with many women looking to lose weight is this…But Karl, I will lose all my curves and look skinny.

Now, back 20-30 years ago, being a skinny woman was not bad in some groups of American Society. But today, being curvy is a fitness goal all across the board. Just look at the top Instagram women account in fitness.

Here lies the problem, many women are satisfied with appearing curvy, without caring about the nature of those curves, is it muscle or is it fat, and why should they care?

You should care because if you are only interested in how you appear, you might be sabotaging your health now and in the future. Being overweight and obese exposes you to a plethora of diseases, hypertension, disease, heart failure, cancer, knee, back pain, hip replacement later in life…

If you only care about looking the part, fine…but if your health matters to you, don’t deceive yourself.

First, let’s check this idea that if you lose weight, you will automatically lose all your curves and become skinny. That’s a lie. And you don’t have to spend too much time breaking this myth because today, Instagram and many people in our lives are proof that you can be curvy and fit, curvy and healthy. It’s not either-or, you can have both.

Second, what is the difference being curvy fat or curvy fit?
Number one, curvy, and fat means your body fat percentage for your height puts you right into the overweight or obese BMI chart.

Google Image the BMI chart, that stands for body mass index. In it, you can see where you stand, you only need to know your current weight and connect it to your height.

But this chart doesn’t take into account your body fat percentage, which makes the difference between a woman that is fit and curvy and another one who is curvy and fat.

So Next, you want to google image body fat percentage estimations. Look at these pictures and check which body type is the closest to you. A woman who is fit should have from 18% body fat to 23% body fat. 23 to 25% of body fat is okayish, above that you are not fit anymore, trending toward being overweight and obese.

There are specific machines that can help you assess your true body fat percentage, check your local gym if you want to get better measurements.

When you look at someone like Jennifer Lopez, Eniko Hart, The Bella twin, Whitney Simmons, or Michelle Lewin, you can see how they have all the curves and then more yet, flat stomach and overall, lean. That’s because their body fat percentage is below 23%, closer to 20%, yet they have a curve because of muscle mass.

This is it, in order to be fit, healthy, and keep your curve, you have to eat well and add lifting to your workout, lower and upper body.

It’s far easier to say, well, I don’t like to lift weight or don’t know what to do, so I rather stay curvy and look the part. If that’s your choice, great, but understand you are in an unhealthy range and exposing yourself to preventable disease.

Diabetes, which is common among overweight and obese people cost about 16k dollars a year, in term of medical expenditure. We are not even thinking of the mental cost of being sick.

Now, before I finish this video, let’s go over another fitness myth linked to women being curvy and fat yet being okay with it.

The myth of being naturally thicked boned. Some women out there, unconsciously believe that naturally, genetically, they have heavier, thicker bones than other women, not because of the extra fat but because of their bone density.

Naturally, some women do have more muscle mass than other women, which can make them carry less fat. But this doesn’t last long, around 26, 27 years old, if you have not been proactive with your health, eating healthy and staying physically active, your muscle mass will waste away rapidly, before you know it, you will gain fat and continue to do so in your 30 and 40s.

The thick bone myth is so absurd, yet, millions of women and men believe it. Understand that the body does not like to waste things away. Your bones adapt to your lifestyle. If you are not in an environment that stimulates your bones, like living in the African jungle twenty thousand years ago or lifting weight and exercising today, your overall bone density will waste away as you age.

Which is why so many women face osteoporosis and fractures as they get older, because of having weak skeletal structures.

The same way muscles grow because we stimulate them, bone density also grows by external stimulation. No women are walking out there with high bone density and not working out, don’t fall for this.

And finally, I have to highlight one problem destroying the health of black women in America and around the world. For some reason, many have accepted the fact that being overweight or obese is the only way to be curvy. And since many are getting positive feedback from men and society, they keep going with it.

If you are my friend, daughter, a client, or relatives, there is no way I can agree with you that, you know what, it’s okay to be overweight, fat and curvy, just love yourself. Keep eating the way you do. That’s like saying to a friend who is addicted to drugs that it’s okay.

In the end, these women are putting their health at risk, and if they are parents, what are the consequences on their family, of them eating unhealthy and worse, getting sick because of it.

It’s possible to go from overweight and curvy to fit and curvy, but first, you have to lose weight, lose fat. Which means you will go through a period of losing your curves.

This happened to some women I was coaching. And I had to remind them that this was a transitional phase because we have to stay focused on one goal at a time. You can’t say, I’m going to keep all my curves, mostly made of fat, and then build muscle. This will lead you to gain more weight in total and expose your health.

You have to slim down first and then, after reaching a healthy, normal body weight, which is key here, we are prioritizing your health…you can then keep a good diet while building lean muscles to get all the curves you want.

If you are a woman on Instagram these days, there are 1000s of women out there who are fit and curvy with super healthy lifestyles. But it comes down to you, your beliefs, and what you want out of your life.

It’s up to you, Thank you.