Day 92: One Quarter In


keep-calm-and-check-progress-5So now that I am one-quarter of the way through this year, I took the opportunity to revisit some of my goals to see where I stand…

Physically:  I’ve been able to get a workout in every single day.  Some days, that workout consists of 50 pushups as I get ready to crawl into bed.  Some days it’s a full, heavy weight session at the gym.  But I’ve done some sort of muscle punishing workout every single day.  I’ve seen some results, too.  Nothing too tremendous, but enough that I’m happy with my progress.


Day 4


Day 89

No, I’m probably never going to be huge.  I resigned myself to that my senior year of high school.  Nor do I want to, as my wife claims she doesn’t like overly muscular dudes.  So that’s good.  But I am happy with my results so far.


I’ve completed a number of books so far, but I’m slightly behind pace.  I realize that, but I’m not freaking out too badly by that, because when I get into a fiction book, I usually devour it.


I’m pleased with my progress.  I’ve made a desk, learned to identify a lot of birds (which reminds me, we’ve seen our first robin in the yard), and I’m progressing towards my first belt in karate.


Again, pleased with where I am.  I’m slightly off pace, but that will all change as rugby season comes into full swing this spring.  I run a lot during the spring and fall seasons.  So anywhere that I am behind, I will make it up very soon.  In addition, we’ve got our first adventure race of the season coming up in two weekends.  I’m excited to be running with my wife.  Also, I love my Vibram Five Fingers.

People Who Matter:
I’m a little behind on this, but several upcoming posts include more than one person, so I will be back to pace very shortly.

So that’s it.  A brief look at the first quarter.  I’m sure I could be more in depth, but none of this matters to you.  What really matters here is you.  Is this inspiring you to do something better?  Does it help you continue on a path you’ve wanted to walk?  In the end, that’s what I hope to do…inspire you.


As always: This is simply my journal as I try to better myself. I hope it inspires you to focus on yourself. Make 2013 YOUR year.
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Day 49: Pasta Night

“Cooking is about passion, so it may look slightly temperamental in a way that it’s too assertive to the naked eye.”
-Gordon Ramsey

Knocked out the first of my 12 dishes tonight, one month behind schedule.  We had homemade ravioli tonight.    Believe it or not, despite the fact that I cook often, made it onto TV by cooking pasta, and enjoy all modes of Italian cuisine, I have yet to master ravioli.  I have no idea why I’ve never really tried ravioli (none whatsoever) but I knew I had to wipe it off my to-do’s this year.  Thus, it was A#1 on my list of my 12 Meals to Master.

I’m not going to go into depth regarding recipes and cooking methods on this blog.  There are plenty of other places out there where work of the kitchen can be expounded upon.  Here is not one of them.  This is simply my way of telling you that I forced myself into catching up on one of the goals that I had fallen behind on.

Yes, it was simply cooking; an easy-to-achieve goal.  But sometimes those are the hardest goals to stick to.  We think that the ease of attainment makes it ok to ignore the goal until we’re ready.  We begin to procrastinate, since tomorrow is just as easy as today.  Somewhere down the road, it fails to ever take center stage, and we wind up forgetting about our goal until it is too late.


I’ve been guilty of this already.  I’ve been so focused on my working out, my reading, and some of the other goals that I completely forgot I was supposed to be cooking some new dishes.  I went back and opened up the first few pages of my journal tonight to review my goals and see where I am falling behind.  My stovetop is not the only place.

So, I’m making it a point to check back in on my list every few weeks to see where I stand.  I think this is a good idea regardless of how big or small your goals may be.  One should always hold themselves accountable by putting their thoughts, goals and actions into writing.  Then, be sure to check back in and be honest with yourself:  are you living up to the action end of your bargain with yourself?

Are you?

As always: This is simply my journal as I try to better myself. I hope it inspires you to focus on yourself. Make 2013 YOUR year.
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Day 47: A Dinner Date, What is That?

Funny Wedding quotes

Last night my wife and I got to reconnect as a couple.   As part of a Valentine’s Day celebration, we lined up a babysitter and went out on the town for the night.  Side note:  With three kids who don’t sleep in,  “for the night” now means approximately 6-10:30pm. We both got dressed up, I in a shirt and tie, she in a dress I bought her for Christmas, grabbed a bite of sushi to start the evening, followed this up with a stop at our church’s annual Jazz Band Dance, and then finished the evening with a fancy dinner at one of the best-reviewed restaurants in town.

It was a lovely dinner and such a wonderful chance to spend time with the woman I dearly love.  We don’t get to do it often right now.  The kids are not yet old enough to leave them with a babysitter for extended lengths of time, so we wind up structuring our days and nights around sleep schedules.  Between the kids, the household chores and the day-to-day stresses, it is very easy to forget who you and your spouse are individually.


This is one of the goals my wife and I expressed to each other at our wedding – that we never wanted to lose sight of each other as we are.  The diapers come and go.  Bills will get paid.  Fights happen.  Summers and winters will fly by in the blink of an eye.  But thirty years from now there is only one person who I will be standing with in my arms, on a beach somewhere watching the sun set: my wife.

As much as I enjoyed last night, with the quiet conversation, eye contact and well-coiffed hair, I will continue to try to let her know every day that she is beautiful to me, regardless of the flannel pajamas or hoodies or baby spit-up.


Quick Blasts:  I’ve nearly finished Dracula, and am continuing to work my way through How to Win Friends… and have continued my devotional every day.  I made positive identification on another new species of bird in the backyard today, the Common Redpoll.  The finish work on the desk is nearly done.  I’ve run 19 miles so far.  My workouts have increased from simple pushups, situps and wall squats to a full routine of lifts and exercises, and I’m slowly seeing results.

As always: This is simply my journal as I try to better myself. I hope it inspires you to focus on yourself. Make 2013 YOUR year.
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Day 45: Love

It is important for me to remember as I go through this journey that my goal is to be a Better Man, not just have a more in-shape body. Even at 45 days in, I find myself focusing on the physical when I think of being better. But the truth is that my goals are far more diverse than just working out, and I need to remember to focus on these other goals when I blog.

One of my biggest passions this year is to work in increasing my awareness of, and expression of, my love for my friends and family. Today being Valentine’s Day, I thought I would focus on one of the greatest, most poignant, and wholly true passages about love found anywhere. Even if you don’t share my faith, you can appreciate 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 from the New Testament.

4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8 Love never fails.