Is there an underlying truth about the loved and hated movie/book, “The Secret“?
So Let’s kick this party off with some basic fundamentals about you, Life and I. What I have learned over the past 2 decades is that there are no short cuts, express lanes or get rich and happy overnight formulas. I spent many years chasing something outside of me to get a taste and feeling within me. You do not have to reinvent the wheel and can learn from my experiences and mistakes. This is fundamentally why I love to be who I am.
So let’s get crystal clear! Master Your Life is NOT about the “latest” gadgets or tricks to help you get enlightened, rich or whatever quickly. And it’s not about any “Secret’s” that’ll allow you to rub a genie’s lamp to manifest shiny trinkets at your beckon call.
The Truth about Life is that all the wisdom, intelligence and perfection we all seek is already in here within us. Hmmm?? Really?? You might be thinking! The question I have for you… Is now a good time to start living your greatest life? Master Your Life is all about you rockin your most extraordinary life. Ready, aim, fire…. OK let’s start rockin this awesomeness!
I loved the book “The Secret” and so did many others. Yet many people who loved it didn’t take the necessary action to see all the goodness transpire within them. The truth about the secret is engaging in the process of Mastering Your Life. It’s about living a life filled with true joy, love, meaning, gratitude, inspiration, energy, contribution and enthusiasm. And all of this greatness comes from within you, your inner character guided by a compass of VIRTUE and INTEGRITY. This is the truth about the Secret that you may have missed between the lines.
Now with this inner guidance system all you need to do is ACT on life and BE Patient, Persistent and Enthusiastic (PPE) while embodying your inner truths so that what you feel is most important becomes completely aligned with who you are being and how you show up every day in your life and the world. Sound simple? It’s so simple! Yet it will take lots of PPE!
You see, your quality of life is all about engaging in the process of excellence and mastery. At a core level within all of us, this has a much deeper meaning that essentially means to live your greatest potential not just everyday, but from every moment to moment to moment…
So let’s take a closer look at your life. Are you living your greatest potential. Personally I am living my dream life, yet I can honestly say that I am not living my greatest potential. That’s why I practice my 100 Tips to Live an Extraordinary Life, moment to moment. When I look at my greatest potential of who I can be and what I can do and compare it to what I’m actually doing there appears to be a space or gap. Now if your rockin your inner truths of who you’re being and how you show up guided by your core Virtues and Integrity, you are closing the gap.
If that’s you… Congrats, you’re awesome! If you’re not rockin it with extraordinary style, look out. You are opening the door to let negativity, fear, depression, poverty, anxiety, disease and illness to walk into that gap and consume you and your life. You know what this life looks like and it sucks!
So the remedy is simple (not to be confused with easy). Sit in quiet contemplation and imagine your greatest potential. Write it down. Look at where you actually are. Write it down. The width of this gap is how far you are in or out of integrity. So to close this gap pour your core Virtues and Integrity into your life and practice 100 steps to Live an Extraordinary Life moment to moment. With patience, persistence and enthusiasm you will see your life transform.
I would love for you to start right NOW. Let me know how this resonates with you!
To Your Mastery,
This V-Blog is going to rock your world!
Do you ever wonder what the fastest way to improve your life is?
Would you like a tool that could create massive change in any area of your life right now? Your Results and Performance are intimately linked to your Beliefs.
Check this video out. I’m going to show you how to increase your results, productivity and performance Right NOW!
Remember these 4 quadrants and 2 steps.
Your Potential is determined by your Beliefs and will influence how much Action you take to get the Results you desire. Start TODAY!
To Your Mastery,
The Key to living an extraordinary life is to do the things that will move you closer to being more purposeful, powerful and authentic. So many people let their life pass them by feeling unfulfilled. You have the power to Master and live the life you’ve always dreamed. Make this year extraordinary by practicing the following tips daily.
1. Don’t Settle for Anything Less Than Extraordinary.
2. Dream Bigger than You Think is Attainable.
3. Get Inspired.
4. Develop a Routine and Rituals.
5. Exercise Everyday.
6. Start Your Day With Visualization.
7. Laugh and Play.
8. Create Short and Long Term Goals.
9. Love People and Use Money (not the opposite).
10. Do Something that Scares You.
11. Get up @ 5am.
12. Maintain an Attitude of Gratitude.
13. Drink Lots of Fresh and Clean Water.
14. Smile at Strangers.
16. Hug Somebody.
17. Ask Yourself Questions That Help You Grow.
18. See Challenges as Opportunities.
19. Get a Mentor.
20. Know What You Value.
21. Be Somebody Others Respect.
22. Model Somebody You Respect.
23. Forgive Somebody Who’s Hurt You.
24. Find Time Each Day to Be Alone In Silence.
25. Spend Time in Nature.
26. Accept that Everyone Just Wants to Be Loved.
27. Seek Adventure.
28. Read Books that Stretch Your Mind.
29. Be Enthusiastic.
30. Plan Your Days, Weeks and Months.
31. Create Extraordinary Experiences for Those You Love.
32. Cultivate the Kid in You.
33. Watch Less TV.
34. Talk About Big Ideas.
35. Love Yourself.
36. Pamper Yourself.
37. Take one Action Step Towards the Pursuit of Your Wildest Dreams.
38. Remind Yourself Anything is Possible.
39. See Your Goals and Dreams Becoming Fulfilled.
40. Love Somebody.
41. Breathe Deeply.
42. Always Do Your Best.
43. Believe In Miracles.
44. Work On Your Weaknesses.
45. Cultivate Your Strengths.
46. Be Impeccable.
47. Don’t Compare Your Life to Others.
48. Never Make Assumptions.
49. Under Promise and Over Deliver.
50. Be a Critical Thinker.
51. Get Outside Everyday.
52. Appreciate Art.
53. Invest in the Present Moment.
54. Always Tell the Truth.
55. Be Persistent and Patient.
56. Don’t Judge Others.
57. Be a Student of Life.
58. Accept that Life Never Gives You Anything You Can’t Handle.
59. Focus On Mastering One Area of Your Life Daily.
60. Join a Group or Community.
61. Accept that Inner Work Leads to Bigger Outer Results.
62. Hire a Coach.
63. Speak Less, Listen More.
64. Cultivate Your Creativity.
65. Thank The People In Your Life That Have Helped You.
66. Write In Your Journal.
67. Integrate Past Wounds into Present Wisdom.
68. Create a Compelling Future.
69. Donate Your Time, Energy or Money to Something Worthy.
70. Stop Worrying About Things You Cannot Control.
71. Eat More Foods that Grow on Trees and Plants and Less from Manufacturing Plants.
72. Don’t Take Yourself so Seriously.
73. Respect Everyone.
74. Spend Time With 5 Extraordinary Friends.
75. Never Let Your Mind Grow Old.
76. Whatever You Earn, Spend Less.
77. Take Risks.
78. Learn a New Skill or Activity.
79. Sweep Somebody Off Their Feet.
80. Get Enough Rest and Sleep.
81. No Matter How You Feel – Get Up, Get Dressed and Do Your Best.
82. Never Settle for Less.
83. Get Rid of Anything that Isn’t Useful, Joyful or Beautiful.
84. Be Polite.
85. Avoid the News.
86. Celebrate Life’s Victories.
87. Ask for Whatever You Want.
88. Give Yourself Time To Grow and Heal.
89. Be a Good Tipper.
90. Help Somebody Achieve Their Goals and Dreams.
91. Learn from Your Failures and Mistakes.
92. Be Somebody Worth Becoming and Make Your Life Matter.
93. Value Mastery and Excellence in Every Area of Your Life.
94. Live With Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy.
95. Believe in Yourself.
96. Invest in Your Personal Growth and Development.
97. Show Somebody How Much You Love Them.
98. Enjoy The Journey of Life.
99. Remember, the Sun Will Rise Tomorrow.
100. Please Forward this to Everyone You Care About!
I would love to hear if you have any tips that you would add to my list or if you have a favorite. I encourage you to start implementing your favorite tips and then come back and let me know how things in your life are shifting.
And If you enjoyed this post, do me a favor leave a comment and also share it with your Twitter and Facebook friends by using the share buttons below!
To Your Mastery,
Before you begin reading this you may want to get yourself a glass of wine or some tea… it is long, just like Ironman!
“Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome”
The journey to IMC 2010 began just over one year ago. Standing in that line in Penticton on that hot summer day in August, 2009 registering for this race was a day I will never forget. In 1989 when I was a high school drop-out I woke up one morning, still trying to recover from a hard night of partying, and flicked on the TV and watched 90 minutes of pure inspiration. It was the NBC encore presentation of the infamous Kona Ironman where Dave Scott and Mark Allen went to battle. Being completely inspired with their efforts at defying the laws of human limitation I told myself, I too would inspire others and compete in Ironman one day…. !
We arrived in Penticton on the Tuesday and had a great house only minutes from the start/finish line and transition. My training had literally come to a close and by this point I was just ensuring all my gear was in order and that I followed my usual tapering routine. Saturday, the day before the race, I went for my last ride and checked my bike, swim-bike bag and bike-run bag into transition. This was a lot more challenging than I thought it would be as I kept teetering with what to wear for race day. One forecast said warm with highs of 22 and others would say 15 with a few showers. All week this was causing me more distress than it normally does. Innately it meant to me that the weather was still undecided.
Race morning came and I was up at 3:30 am having breakfast. Food went down well and I was in good spirits getting ready to race. I got down to transition at 5:15am, got body marked, dropped off my special needs bags for the bike and run and headed over to my bike. Racing for me is very much an individual journey so in the mornings I have my nano blaring my eardrums with upbeat dance and rock music. This allows me to not engage in any conversations with anyone, even with people I know, I simply give’em a head nod and smile or walk over and embrace them with a hug. I’m fairly focused and do my best to hold my space. After a little dry land warm up and more to eat I put on my wetsuit only to learn that I misplaced my goggles. “What… no Freakin goggles”!!!! I back tracked my path for over 20 minutes looking for them, but to no avail. I started to get into a little panic as it was only 20 minutes to the start gun. So I stopped, closed my eyes and took several deep breathes. “OK MAN, just chill the F**K OUT, you’re ok, we’ll get you some more goggles. I opened my eyes, smiled, reached into a corner zipped pocket of my transition pack and voila, there it was, another set of tinted goggles… Whew!
Over the past year I have spent 15 to over 30 hours every week training. Racing Ironman Canada was truly a celebration of all the training, hard work and dedication I have put in. One of the biggest challenges for my mind was wrapping my head around a 3.8km swim in the open water of Lake Okanagan with almost 3000 other athletes flailing their bodies around one another. In fact the idea of this frightened me so much that I have literally spent 5-6 days a week working on my swimming over the past year. Fear is an interesting thing. It can literally handcuff us and prevent forward momentum or it may act as a catalyst to thrust us forward into the world of wonder and possibility. We fear only what is unknown and create a future filled with illusions that appear bleak.
In Septemeber 2009 I began to spend several hours each week making the unknown… known. The truth was that I could not swim. Fear came from my knowing that I could not swim. The solution was simple, learn to swim fast yet efficiently. Ironman races are never won in the swim, but they can be lost here. My days over the past year would begin at 5:30am every morning and I would visualize a cavalry of people behind me with each stroke forcing me to hold form and turn my arms over as efficiently as possible. I have spent the last year swimming at the local pool in West Van, the open waters of the Pacific Ocean and the Aegean Sea of the northern Sporades of Greece. And yes all this hard work had paid off. The outer work on my swimming was an amazing catalyst to slay the dragons and move “FEAR” out of my stratosphere of consciousness for the swim.
“The only journey in life is the journey from within”
I left transition walked over to the spectator fence where Kate and the rest of my family was standing. I gave Kate a big hug and kiss, waved at the rest and headed into the water for a nice 15 minute warm-up. I found my start spot, right on the buoy line 2nd row, upfront. The anthem ended and “bang” the start gun went off. I felt nervous but kept turning my arms over and the body contact was kept to a minimum. I sighted every 8 strokes and swam perfectly straight on the buoy line. 300 meters in all hell started to break loose. Up until that point I was with a nice pod with people several inches to my left and right all swimming in my same line. At 300m dozens of people started to cross our paths from the left and what appeared to be like a seamless swim became very effortful and aggressive. Bodies were everywhere; I was getting elbowed, punched and kicked everywhere on my body. The people swimming with me originally completely backed off their pace to look for more open water. I decided to hold my line. As the bodies came from my left I just kept swimming over them, I told myself “If they want to swim left to right, be my guest, but don’t mess with my line, I’m going to the next buoy. Over the next 1000m I swam over dozens of peoples hips as respectfully and politely as I could. Body contact is something I’m very comfortable with as I grew up playing hockey, lacrosse, and martial arts. I had to get pretty tough and aggressive to hold my line, form and breathing.
After the first turn buoy I knew I had seen it all. That turn was the bottlenecks of bottlenecks. 100’s of bodies thrown into a space of 10 yards, all I could do is laugh and smile… “Welcome to Ironman!”. I kept holding my form and turning my arms over working at about 75%. Eventually the swim leg came to an end and I was close to the shoreline. The water was knee deep and I stood up and started my beach run with high knees to pass the water. The swim finish shoot looked so far away and I realized I’d made a crucial mistake.
In life we have what I call the “herd mentality”. We do things simply because everyone else does them too. We do things without ever questioning and critically thinking about why we are doing what we are doing. To me this is the disease of humanity. We consume drugs, vaccinate our children, eat malnourished foods and then refer to our state of being as “age” and just being “life”. I go out of my way to never follow herd mentality until I have thoroughly dissected it with a fine comb making my own informed decisions and choices. I stood up from my swim at 1:04, yet I had to run for over 3 minutes to the swim finish because I followed all the swimmers in front of me… Herd Mentality! I know for next year to keep right and exit the water at the swim exit. This day it cost me over 3 minutes… ouch!
“Follow the road less traveled and that will make all the difference”
At this point I was still pleased with my performance, my first Ironman swim… 1:07! As I was getting my wetsuit stripped off me and running through transition I was looking up at the sky and debating whether or not to put my arm warmers on. I ran into the change tent, got my shoes, shades, helmet and arm warmers on. I ran out grabbed my bike and was off for a 180km journey through the high desert of British Columbia’s interior. This ride would take us through the wine country and include 2 significant mountain pass climbs with many rolling hills in-between. Even on days when the weather is ideal this ride can be a challenge.
Since last year I have been hitting my pedals hard on my time trial bike. Training consisted of short threshold rides of 1 hr to long base rides of 8hrs. Each week I would be on the saddle from several hours up to 20 hours cycling. I felt much more confident on the bike compared to swimming. My build leading up to Ironman felt great and I was oozing with confidence for a strong bike split.
The ride from Penticton through OK Falls, Oliver and to Osoyoos was fairly seamless and I felt great. My nutrition and hydration plan was perfectly executed and I was getting ready for the first major climb at mile 40, Richter’s Pass. It was a good thing I had my arm warmers on as they kept me comfortably warm while the sun was still trying to come up. I was riding my perfect “A” race riding my own pace averaging about 23MPH. However, it was disheartening to see the amount of cheating that was going on. There is a “no draft” rule on the ride where every bike must have at least 7 metres between the bike in front and behind them. I was literally seeing clusters of people riding in a peloton of 12-15 people all drafting one another. I know that when one cheats they are only robbing themselves. I just sent them vibes of compassion!
The sun was out and I was heating up spinning my legs up Richter’s Pass, the first mountain climb. I looked up and saw nothing but blue skies and sun, perfect race weather. I got to the top of Richter’s fast, in about 15 minutes and decided to throw my arm warmers off and gave them to Kate and family as they were cheering me on at a spectator point at the top.
After Richter’s a series of 7 long rolling hills began. I call them the 7 angels. I would hammer down each hill to get as much momentum as I could for the uphill. At this point I began to creep up to about 75% of my effort. I eventually arrived at Cawston where there is a tough 14 mile out and back section of the ride. This is where the race truly began for me. I started to work hard here increasing my effort levels to 80+%. I felt very strong mentally and physically, my legs did not feel like they had just rode over 75 miles. I was on my “A” race… : )
After getting more lifts from my entourage and other spectators I continued to pass dozens of athletes. I looked over my shoulders and saw that I had close to a dozen athletes now drafting me. This continued for the next 20 miles through the false flats up to Yellow Lake, the next mountain pass. I was still riding my race letting the other athletes ride on my coat tails. After Cawston nobody would pass me on the bike again and I caught many people who had started racing too early on the ride.
“Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out”
As the climb up Yellow Lake was approaching the weather unfortunately started to turn. I began to get extremely nervous. My last race was a half Ironman and the temperatures were so cold I actually got hypothermic. “Please don’t let it get that cold”… “Why did I toss my arm warmers????” The mental chatter began in my head! The temperature dropped from 19 to 9 degrees in what seemed like a matter of minutes. I kept my cadence high, put my head down and kept on climbing. I began to talk to my body, “stay warm body, stay warm, come on don’t fail me now”. It was freezing, and then the head winds started, I would later learn that these head winds were over 50 km hour straight into my face. Minutes later the rain started and turned into torrential down pours. Big fat water droplets soaked my body head to toe. I was still climbing, “keep it goin Suke, you’re tougher than this. Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse the rain turned to Hail. “OUCH”, this began to hurt, my body temperature dropped even more.
“What should I do, other athletes are stopping, should I take a break, no way, keep it going, how am I not going to get hypothermic????” “Race your own race!” I began to slow my pace and contract my hands and feet as quickly as I could to keep the circulation going, even though they were completely numb, this would continue back to transiton. And then I got a message from a spectator that would change my focus and state completely. She yelled at me “you’re almost at the top, keep going, it’s way warmer in town, dig deep, you’re doing awesome, don’t give up”! Thank you! Thank You! Thank You! You never know how far reaching the words that you speak may transform the lives of others. This person was getting dumped on as I was and she stayed out there to cheer us on and lift my spirits.
I eventually started the descend back into town. I was freezing and hadn’t taken in many calories or water over the past hour as my entire vascular system was working on turning my legs over and trying to lose as little body temperature as possible. There was little left for digestion. I was also off my bike split pace by about 15 minutes. I made it back into town and my inspiring friend at the top of Yellow Lake was right, it was warmer! I finished my bike split in 5:47. Not an “A” race bike split, but still very respectable for my first Ironman. An “A” race was still in my cards with a properly executed marathon.
I was in and out of transition in a hurry, but lost over a minute because a volunteer pointed me in the wrong direction. Oh well, they’re doing their best out there and this race would never be possible without the army of 4000 volunteers! I just laughed and smiled! I got my race belt on, had my gels in my pockets and was ready to hammer out 26.2 miles.
Over the past year I have been running 4-5 times every week. Some runs were short 25-minute transition runs off the bike and others lasted as long as 4 hours. Those of you who know me well know that I am a super passionate runner and love to push the boundaries of what’s possible. Training for 100km and 100 mile races in the past and running well over 100 marathon distance runs I knew I had the endurance to run off the bike for Ironman very strong. But, in gaining all that endurance I sacrificed in giving up some of my speed. My goal was to get back to my sub 3hour marathon speeds.
“The more challenge one encounters, within and without, the more significant and higher in inspiration life will be”
The wonderful thing about running is that you can take it with you wherever you are. All you need is a pair of shorts and runners. Training for Ironman over the past year Kate and I have hiked and ran on the sacred soils in South America during a 7-day trek to Machu Pichu in Peru. These mountain passes were as high as 20,000 feet elevation, talk about altitude training. We had also spent some weeks in the mountains and villages of northern India. Here I would find myself being a street spectacle as people and animals would look at me as if I was from another planet. It was an interesting experience navigating through cars, trucks, buses, scooters, motorcycles, cows, elephants, goats, donkeys, buffalo and millions of people. Experiences I will never forget.
One of my favorite places I trained was on the island of Skiathos in glorious Greece, a place that is very sacred and dear to my heart. Here I was hammering out 20-25 mile runs through hilly mountainous terrain in 40degree/Celsius temperatures. This was a special treat. And finally, the majority of my running was in the beautiful city of West Vancouver and downtown Vancouver. There’s not too many cities in the world that you can go for a 4 hour run and spend 95% of the time on a seawall with picturesque back drops of the city on one side and mountains on the other. It was a great year of lessons, journeys and “aha’s” while pounding the pavement.
I had so much adrenaline coming out of transition 2 that I had to keep telling myself to slow down. I wanted to pace for a 3:03 marathon time and hold consistent 7 minute/miles. Every time I would look at my watch I was running 6 minute/miles… “too fast keener, slow the heck down and stick to the plan”, I kept telling myself.
After mile 1, I found my legs and pace. The turn over felt great, my legs felt strong, I was good to go. The first 2 miles were seamless and then I started to get on my nutrition plan. My body was still quite cold and I hadn’t fully recovered from the challenging weather on the bike. Before I even tried to eat anything on the run I could feel that my stomach was not quite settled. I began with water at every aid station, which was at every mile. I was taking lava salt and VO2 max pills to maintain my electrolyte and mineral balances too. From mile 3 to 4 my stomach started to feel worse, “damn it, there’s no way I can hold this pace if I can’t eat”. At mile 4 I said, “screw it, just have a gel”. I tore open a gel, plunged it into my mouth and down my throat and……. BOOM, I projectile vomited instantly… not cool! “Apparently my stomach doesn’t want any food”.
“What to do… I’m totally noxious now! Just keep running, one foot in front of the other”. Mile 5…. 6… I continued with water and then tried my cocktail drink of what I keep in my fuel belt. I quick sip… and again… projectile vomit. “OK, I’m still not ready to eat, I’m holding pace, but I can feel my carb stores are getting depleted. At this point of the run I was hammering past people like they were parked, I even passed a handful of professionals that started 15 minutes before the 2700+ age groupers like me. I’m a very a confident runner and know what my body is capable of. In fact I began racing at mile 75 of the bike and since then I would find another athlete 20-30 yards ahead and slowly track them down. Since mile 75 of the bike no other athlete had passed me and it was my goal to hold that to the finish line.
So I began on the cola at mile 6. Now most people would tell you that’s way too early to start taking in cola, cause it’s like nitrous oxide and only lasts for several minutes. Yet I figured with aid stations every mile I would just have to consume it from here to the finish line. The cola was better but I kept feeling more and more noxious. My energy levels were dropping big time and I was getting depleted from a lack of calorie consumption and from being ill. I continued to track people down and pass them, but I couldn’t hold my “A” race pace. I got to the half way point, 13.1 miles, in 1 hour and 40 minutes. “OK no problem, let’s pull out a solid “B” race.
“If you do not dream, you will never find what is beyond your dreams”
The marathon run at Ironman Canada is an out and back course to the halfway point along Skaha Lake. It’s a very hilly and challenging run. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any worse on the run, the wind from the north had picked up and was now hitting all of us straight into our face back to Penticton. I was told after the race these winds were over 40kms per hour. Running the last 13.1 miles reminded me of my old hockey days when I used to skate with a parachute attached to my back to add serious resistance. What was a moderately tough pace to hold now turned into an intense speed run. I held pace through to mile 15 and then my energy levels nose-dived. The lack of calories was catching up to me. “OK, one more time, let’s get some fuel in here.” “Let’s get some food in here”, I downed a couple of shot blocks. It felt ok for a minute and then again… I was sick. It was right next to an aid station and some young volunteers handed me some sponges so I could clean myself up, while I was still shuffling my feet towards the finish line.
I had 11.2 miles to go and clearly my GI system was done for the day, but I wasn’t. I kept on with small sips of cola and water, I would get extreme cramping in my stomach but I could manage that. I kept my focus strong and dug deep. In life many people identify themselves as their body. Truly our bodies are our vehicles in which we experience life. We must honor and nurture our bodies, but it’s during times like this that I’m reminded that I am NOT my body, I am something far greater than that!
“It is that special something that allows us to overcome even the grandest of challenges and obstacles.”
“One foot in front of the other, keep looking ahead and track somebody down”. There was one gentleman ahead of me that I had been behind for several miles. Similar to myself he was passing everyone and he looked to be having a solid race. Every cell in my body just wanted to curl up on the side of the road and lay down to have a nap. I was at a mentally low point and had to act fast to counter it. So I dug deep, increased my pace and finally caught this guy at mile 17. The wind was howling hard at our faces, running into the wind is not easy, he looked at me and said, “this wind is crazy, I feel like I’m at a snails pace”. He was another professional triathlete, so I knew he could dig deep too. I yelled back, “You look great, do me a favour and don’t let me pass you”. He looked at me a little confused, “So I looked at him again and said, “ you’re a pro… start running like one!” That got his attention and later at the finish line he thanked me for those “harsh” words as it got him back into the race. That was my goal! I picked up the pace and waved him forward. He stayed on my heels and drafted behind me.
At this point I knew that I needed some help, I was in very rough shape and could break at any moment. The last time I felt this bad was during an ultra-marathon in 2007. I knew that mentally I was on a roller coaster with extreme highs and lows. My strategy was that when I was high I would hammer as fast as I could to hold a decent pace with this killer wind blowing me back. During my low points my professional triathlete friend would begin to overtake me and I could draft him. Over the next 5 miles we would take turns drafting each other holding a decent pace together and still passing other people like they were parked.
“In life if you think you can… You WILL”
At mile 22 I saw Kate and my entourage on the side of the road making my way back into Penticton and the finish line. Right when I saw Kate, I couldn’t help but feel the disappointment from not having an “A” race. All the sacrifices she had made during the year and everything she does for me. As tears rolled down my face I knew that I was still fulfilling a dream of mine by becoming an Ironman. Somehow from my completely depleted and demolished body, I was able to dig even further and increase my cadence and pace. The last 4 miles was an emotional download. The streets were packed with spectators cheering, you could hear Steve King at the finish line on the microphone and I just ran as fast as I possibly could. I’d lost my pacing friend as he couldn’t hold my pace any longer and I was running fast 6 minute miles which was faster than I had run all day. I was digging deep into a body that was completely depleted and destroyed; yet I kept asking it for more.
“The only way to find the limits of what’s possible is by going beyond them into the impossible”
This day started with nervous butterflies on the beach and ended with cramping, pain and a roller coaster of emotions. Nearly 2800 athletes began the race, the largest Ironman Canada has ever seen. I exited the water in 721st place overall. I was passed by many early on the bike, but after mile 75 of the bike nobody would pass me again this day. I finished the bike split at 453rd overall. And I had a 3.5 hour marathon time which was 132nd place overall. I had some challenges but I was able to persevere and put together a solid race and finish in the top 8% with a time of 10.5 hours, plus change.
“The road of life is full of many twists and turns, yet no two directions are ever the same. The lessons in life come from the journey, not the destination”
My journey to becoming an Ironman is now complete. I will never have a first Ironman again. Being an ultra-endurance athlete has many parallels to life. In fact it is races like this that allow the essence of our human will to be fully exposed. In life the greater the challenges the greater the opportunity for grand success. Today another dream of mine came true. I became an IRONMAN!
“The key to success is to take relentless action towards the pursuit of your dreams”
What I have found journeying through life, my studies and working with great masters is that we can increase the probability of both inner and outer abundance, which leads to improving your quality of life! In other words:
Inner Fulfillment + Outer Success = Mastery!
Doesn’t that equation look great! How the heck does one achieve this?
In this post I am briefly outlining all 10 areas of the Master Your Life wheel. You will discover how important they all are and how they are each connected to one another. You will discover as you explore all the strategies, content and videos on this site that you will become more conscious of every category and realize how they will all contribute to and transform your life. The purpose of this post is to simply define all ten areas and give you a brief overview. (My purpose in all that I do over the weeks, months and years ahead is to provide you with the strategies to achieve this.)
- Spiritual – This is your source, your power supply, inspiration and reason for being. Sound deep? It doesn’t have to be. This can be whatever you make of it. These are the reasons your feet hit the floor each morning, why you put a smile on your face and what drives you through life. This is an inside job, it’s the capacity of your human will and mark my word it is the most powerful force you have. It’s the same power supply that created you from 2 little cells. FYI: It never left you when you were born either and it’s still there today, you just need to access it!
- Finances – Do you have “mucho dinero”? This is the amount of dollars you can muster up, right now, this second, TODAY! All the assets you have (which includes cash) minus all your liabilities equals your net worth. The greater your net worth the more CHOICES you have in life. Cultural domestication is misleading, suggesting that the more money you have the happier you will become. Sorry, only by Mastering Your Life will you do that. Remember this: the amount of money you have = the number of choices you can make! End of story!
- Family – Yes as much as some of them may push your buttons, they are an essential ingredient for your life. Family can extend beyond your bloodline, however, some of the greatest gifts and lessons in your life will be learned from within your family bloodline or people you live with. Do you have loving relationships with your family? Your family can produce the greatest sources of joy, amazing memories, and a lifetime of physical and emotional pleasures. Getting crystal clear on creating extraordinary family dynamics will transform your quality of life.
- Vocation – Each and every person in this world has been given unique gifts and talents. If you do not express your gifts to the world your song will be lost forever. That would be a shame! Your vocation is how you express your talents and gifts to the world in your chosen career or discipline in life. Do you spend every day in your vocation? If you do, you can change the word from “work” to “play” and congratulations you are a part of an elite few. As one of my mentors taught me, “When you find your vocation, life becomes an endless vacation”!
- Social – Humans are social creatures. You need to be around other people, places and things. This is how you relate to everyone and all the things around you. In a healthy social dynamic there is a constant ebb and flow of giving and taking within all things. Contribution, connection and growth are the natural by-products of this realm.
- Intelligence – Use it or lose it baby! Yup, if you are not challenging your intellect your brain and mind will go to mush. I am a huge advocate of education. Now you don’t have to be formally in school to get an education. My classroom today is the school of life; in fact I’m a dedicated student of life. No matter what, never stop learning. Similar to exercising a muscle you must exercise your mind everyday so it remains sharp, on purpose and creative.
- Emotions – Yes, we all have them and they affect us everyday throughout our lives. If it’s healthy with the right outlook it fuels us to our bigger selves and contributes to every other area of our life in a meaningful way. On the flipside emotional distress can impact your relationships, social life, finances and even lead to illness or disease. Being more conscious of your emotional state and having the strategies to change them when you’re in a funk will pay huge dividends to your quality of life.
- Physical – Your body and health is the vehicle you have been given so you can fully experience life. It is your house, if you do not take care of it where will you live? Treat your body like a prized racehorse and it will take you on grand adventures with endless energy, vitality and performance. You’ll learn the strategies that will crush any roadblocks and strengthen your commitments to get you to exactly where you want to be and improve your quality of life.
- Character – This is the very foundation of who you are as a human being. You character controls who you are being and how you handle the temptations and challenges of life. It sets your limits of what you are capable of and if you have the inner drive and strength to transcend them. Your character will define who you are being in every area of your life. Defining the person you need to become to live the life you deserve will transform your virtues into habits.
- Quality of Life – Last, but certainly not least. What surroundings make you thrive? What would you like to experience? What would you like to own? These answers can transform your life in important and unintended ways. Your quality of life is exactly that… the degree to which you love or hate your life. This will affect every area of your life and change who you are as a human being.
The interesting thing about life is that you get out of it exactly what you put into it. There is always an equal exchange and you are in control as the driver. Now that you are aware of all 10 categories of your life you may know where you are strong and where you have some work to improve your quality of life. The rewards will be enormous when you fully decide to Master Your Life.
I would love to know where you are thriving and where you need some support. Leave a comment below and share the love with your friends. Welcome to THE ride of a lifetime.