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Jul 27, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 21, Volume 21
Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Remember Why We Started

Deep into a dream the morning alarm rang like a boot camp sergeant banging two garbage can lids. Time to get up you say to yourself. But maybe I can sleep in this morning. I have worked out every morning this week, this has been a solid month of training and I deserve to sleep in. Then you mumble to yourself the words you have been repeating each morning since you started: “Remember Why You Started” and immediately you find yourself up and getting ready to go to the gym. Remember why you started is a simple mantra that if repeated every day and at the start of any endeavor will real you back to your Big Fat Why when you get side tracked. Notice I said when you get side tracked. You see it’s not a question of if, but when. Our Why will be critical.

Seth Godin wrote a very interesting book on the topic, The Dip, where he addresses our challenges as we identify our Why. Remembering Why you started in the first place keeps you excited to get going. Godin, said that “The dip is the long stretch between beginner’s luck and real accomplishment.” It’s easy to be in excellent health, maintaining your perfect weight and feeling strong. What’s hard is getting there. At the beginning of a new regiment you are excited to start feeling healthy again and as you start to lose some weight in the first couple of weeks, you are feeling great! But then you hit the Dip:  obstacles and temptations start to appear virtually out of nowhere and you find yourself being drawn back to old habits. The how and what are critical aspects of the big picture and that will take you only take you so far. It’s the why that keeps you moving forward and motivated as you slip deep into the Dip.

John Maxwell suggests you think of it as your “why-power.” This will help to keep you going when it all becomes challenging and you find yourself down and discouraged. Maxwell goes on to say “When you make the right choices, however small, and do it consistently over time, it can make a huge difference in your life. If you remember why you’re making those choices, it becomes easier.”  Commander Mark Devine, Navy Seal, Seal Fit Academy stated: “Success is defined by choice, and its small choices, not the major ones that make the difference between good and excellent.”

Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever. Keri Russell

Stay focused on the process and not the outcome. Let’s use losing weight as an example. On my own personal journey, I recall a particular Monday morning at weigh-in time. I was really excited after a solid week of eating clean and crushing my workouts. I stood on the scale and with absolute horror looked at the numbers staring back up at me. I had actually gained 2.5 pounds! How can that be? To say I was angry and upset was an understatement. So, I let it bother me for about an hour but went right back to eating clean and working out the very next day staying focused on the process so and my outcome, my Why, will be obtained.

Sole Searching

Jul 20, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 20, Volume 20
Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Six Times Don’t Make a Try

I recall a couple of years ago, a Facebook friend posted his frustration and disappointment with his experience and attempt at yoga. He simply posted “Well, I gave this yoga thing six sessions and it doesn’t seem to work for me. I guess I will go back to just stretching on my own.”

My first thought was that this person’s why was not big enough. And, according to the Seven Habits of Successful People, he failed to embrace the three P’s: Patience, Persistence and Practice Perfectly.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau once said that “patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet;” knowing that patience is not always easy and not always welcome but will ultimately reward those who can embrace it. And, as we continue along the road of persistence, William Eardley IV documented that “Ambition is the path to success, persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.” It’s when we least expect our deliberate and purposeful embracing of patience and persistence that we slowly start to see the fruits of our labors. And practice, practice and practice.

As we practice our discipline whether it be spiritual, mental or physical eventually we start to see progress. From time to time, setbacks will show their ugly head and you can feel completely defeated and let down. But, never take your eyes off the three P’s. The three P’s need to encapsulate your WHY. Knowing your why makes embracing the three P’s not a challenge but a desire, goal and ambition to your future.

William Barclay summed it up best when he said: “There are two great days in a person’s life-the day we are born and the day we discover why.”

 

Sole Searching

Jul 13, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 19, Volume 19
Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Bruce Lee once said: “If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.” Each day brings an incredible opportunity to expand beyond your self-induced limitations. Now is the time to act. Aristotle once noted: “Men acquire a quality by constantly acting in a particular way.” At times, it seems like the world is conspiring against you. Do not buy into that! You are the mover and shaker of your own world. Today is the day to step forward, even one step past your boundaries.

Watch this great Daily Mentoring segment with Darren Hardy “The Tiger Within.”

http://dd.darrenhardy.com/the-tiger-within?utm_campaign=DarrenDaily&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=54005235&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9fMQEYiqPN2Ol_iWjxaxasElY1-d0ka_jQOweP7J2pgrdYspJreGXQGqHJjA2IcmSTnu-vCUC2FT92je1O7Qpf3GQ2ZF7hhNL9Ctjhv2o_b2_jsS4&_hsmi=54031404

Sole Searching

Jul 6, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 18, Volume 18

Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Failure is something we all try to avoid like the plaque, but as we work hard avoiding failure we are also working just as hard from avoiding growing. Personal growth will come with many failures, but persevered failures mean you are also stepping outside of the box. Remember, on the other side of a failure is the success you are striving for. Og Mandino said it best: “Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.”

Great article by Guy Winch Ph.D. on the 10 Signs That You Might Have Fear of Failure…and 2 ways to overcome it and succeed.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-squeaky-wheel/201306/10-signs-you-might-have-fear-failure

Sole Searching

Jun 29, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 17, Volume 17

Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Stay Focused on the Process

“I don’t focus on what I’m up against. I focus on my goals and I try to ignore the rest.”-Venus Williams

            There is an old saying that goes “Stay focused on the process and the outcome will take care of itself.” This was told to me years ago by my coach and it is something I have never forgotten. I’m not saying it’s easy to do, but it simply works. Today, many are in search of the quick and easy, hack your way to success, magic bullet that will make us lose weight, grow more hair, get stronger muscles, make more money, play an instrument, become faster in our swim bike and run. Process, by definition, is a series of actions that produce something or that leads to a particular result. Nick Sabin, head football coach of Alabama, is certain to go down in history as one of the winningest and most successful coaches in college football. A part of his strategy that has led him in building successful teams is this simple statement: “Don’t think about winning the SEC Championship. Don’t think about the national championship. Think about what you need to do in this drill, on this play, in this moment. That’s the process: Let’s think about what we can do today, the task at hand.” That’s it, it’s that simple. There is no secret sauce, it’s all about staying consistent along with being resilient. Sabin goes on to address the concept of process by existing in the present, taking it one step at a time and not getting distracted by anything else. Every challenge and endeavor is built around small innocuous details, one on one, moment by moment, workout by workout, clean meal after clean meal each and every day. it is simply a matter of steps.

The Shinny Object Syndrome

“Focus is a matter of deciding what things you’re not going to do.”-John Carmack

            You are moving along with your training and some days you question your progress. You are feeling like you are not moving forward as quick as you think you should. Your diet is not working as fast as you want, your investment is stagnated, you get the picture. We look, research, investigate, study, search and explore options because we want results! Stay at it, trust your intuition and keep moving forward. Your financial investments are sound, give them time. Your nutrition plan is solid, give it time. Your swimming is coming along, give it the time it deserves to improve. Ryan Holiday said it best: “The process is the voice that demands we take responsibility and ownership. That prompts us to act even if only in a small way. Like a relentless machine, subjugating resistance each and every way it exists, little by little, moving forward one step at a time. Subordinate strength to the process. Replace fear with the process. Depend on it. Lean on it. Trust in it.

 

 

Sole Searching

Jun 22, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 16, Volume 16
Technique driven swim elements, endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

The Ability to Be Resilient

Resilient: Able to become strong, healthy or successful again after something bad happens.

To break out of the normal, remove yourself from the middle of the pack, finally move the needle forward and embrace the full potential you know resides within you is going to take hard work. No, it’s going to demand a real commitment to Hard Work. It will require and demand you to push deeper into areas of discomfort that you didn’t even know existed.  It will demand you to be firm and to demonstrate the ability to respond to adversity and misfortunes with resiliency.

Example:  For the past three months, I have been 100% deliberate in my nutrition and training. My goal was to lose 32 pounds. I decided to eat a ketogenic nutrition knowing this plan would be best for me along with my strength training, running and swimming. For the first few weeks, I have been losing as little as half a pound and as much as one and half pounds per week – 19 plus pounds to go and moving forward. Monday morning is the day I weigh in. This past Monday, after a solid week of training and eating properly, I got on the scale.  To my absolute shock and dismay I gained over two pounds. I got off the scale, moved it around on the floor, reset it and stepped on again. Nope, it was right and was I angry.

Seems like a harmless story but in actuality I was disturbed and bothered the entire day. So much so I started to question all my hard work and was wondering why even bother. I was whining and moaning poor me, not realizing that the words I was using were having real power over me, and whining was making me feel worse. I decided right there that resiliency was in order, the ability to bounce back from a so-called failure of the week and stop the complaining and put the mental energy into a positive and deliberate plan to move the needle forward.

The moral of this story is how resilient I am with small issues will dictate how resilient I am with big issues.

The ability to be resilient will be necessary and essential as you move forward to make change. The ability to push yourself physically, mentally and emotionally will take resolve. Change of any kind especially change that is deep and deliberate will create layers of uncomfortableness as you start to go through a state of metamorphosis. Elizabeth Edwards once said “Part of resilience is deciding to make yourself miserable over something that matters, or deciding to make yourself miserable over something that doesn’t matter.” Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/resilience.html Discomfort, challenge and distress is eventually coming at you. Will you be resilient enough to make the change?

 

Sole Searching

Jun 15, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 15, Volume 15
Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Please enjoy a small part of Chapter 2 of my upcoming book Working Hard vs. Hard Work, What it Takes to Move the Needle Forward . As Wayne Huizenga once quoted: “Some people dream of success, while other people get up early every morning and make it happen.” Well to make it happen you will need a vision and action. To move the needle forward you must create a vision for the future. Each day you need to decide will this action move me closer to my vision. And, moving closer to your vision, will require substantial action, planning and simply doing the necessary hard work.

Chapter 2

“Time to go to work, Hard Work”
 The song Hard Work, The Bus Boys

Many times, hard work is thrust upon us in an instant, out of nowhere, with no hesitation and little to no time for deliberation or consideration. We simply just do. Mel Robbins speaks directly to this point in a highly acclaimed and renowned book The 5 Second Rule: “Have you ever noticed how the smallest things can feel hard?” Our brains are wired in such a way to talk it away and say not now. But The 5 Second Rule was all it took for her to talk herself into doing the necessary hard work.  Other times, hard work comes from a deep and mindful evaluation, along with a period of refection. A process generally stimulated by our current state of being and the realization and acknowledgement that to finally move beyond our stagnated self, camped in a state of limbo, will take real and substantial change. This kind of change will demand a consistent, deliberate and purposefully approach. This type of change is not only necessary, but mandatory. This type of change will take hard work. At times the thought of taking on Hard Work should stop us dead in our tracks, asking the question:  What am I getting myself into? This is going to be challenging, tough, and at times, even downright fearful.

Moving beyond will take Hard Work to overcome your current stalemate and gridlock. It will not happen by wishing, hoping, dreaming, yearning, or simply by working hard. Sorry, working hard will only get you so far. Working hard is something you do after you do the necessary Hard Work. The world is filled with people who work hard. In order to do the necessary Hard Work, you will need to be deliberate and precise in your attack. You will need to identify, prioritize, minimize distractions, focus and search deep to set goals and chart exactly what that next level is.

Working Hard is something you do after you do the necessary Hard Work. If you have been stuck on a plateau, and we all have experienced periods of stagnation, it is time to act and the time is now!

Why You Should Work on Weaknesses

Jun 8, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Excellent session with Steve Cook addressing why you should work on your weaknesses.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7S2mPQJD17s

Sole Searching

Jun 1, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 14, Volume 14

Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Expectancy Theory

A family member of mine has a notorious saying that goes like this: That’s what you wanted, that’s what you asked for. Simply meaning what we think and dwell on through our self-talk along with our subconscious and conscious energies will generally come back at us, though this is not what but we expected, really?

The Expectancy Theory developed by Victor Vroom proposes that an individual will behave or act in a certain way because they are motivated to select a specific behavior over other behaviors due to what they expect the result of that selected behavior will be. In essence, the motivation of the behavior selection is determined by the desirability of the outcome. Plainly, the Expectancy Theory revolves around the idea of how bad you want something and the likelihood of you succeeding in your goals. So, if you are motivated and apply effort it will lead to a performance goal.

Expectancy:  A feeling that something is going to happen; the feeling you have when you are expecting something. Most of the time your expectancy is not matching up with your dreams and goals and you undermine yourself with minimalist thinking and negative self-talk.

Instrumentality:  The belief you have that is directly related to rewards of your actions. Rewards are in direct relationship to how you decide to train and live your life. Create clarity in your training; the what, how and, most important, why you are doing something. Next add the necessary amount of discipline, doing the necessary hard work built around purposeful and deliberate attention to details in your daily life and in your training.

Value:  The value you put on the effort to achieve a specific reward.  For some just coming across the finish line in a triathlon is reward enough while others feel the reward is qualifying for nationals or worlds. Each outcome can have a value that is either negative or positive.

Motivation:  A force or influence that causes you to do something; the condition of being eager to act to do the necessary hard work.

The Expectancy Theory for many goes just like this: John is discussing his triathlon results with a friend and he explains; “Well, the swim went just as planned. I knew my times would be slow and I never could swim straight and my bike and run didn’t fare much better.” As you can see the theory worked to a T and will always work directly on how you think, whether be negative or positive. You need to step back, evaluate and assess where you are in life at any given time and your willingness to put the necessary action steps in place to create the motivation that will ultimately lead to a more triumphant outcome.

 

 

 

 

Sole Searching

May 25, 2017   //   by Frank Sole   //   Blog  //  No Comments

Week 13, Volume 13

Technique driven swim elements; endurance performance tips and personal growth essentials

Regrets. Webster defines regrets as: feel sad, repentant, or disappointed over (something that has happened or been done, especially a loss or missed opportunity). In all disciplines within our lives, training, racing, education, relationships, and our nutrition, look at each day as an opportunity to stay consistent with a high intensity to complete the necessary hard work. Leave it to no one else for your success. Eliminate all regrets. 

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/study-reveals-5-biggest-regrets-people-have-before-die-iwuoha

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