What do you think is your best habit?

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

Anything you do regularly that makes life better?
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

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I’m not relentless about it, but I try to look for, and take, opportunities to be giving.

This week, I know some relatives like granola from a local cafe, so I bought some bags and mailed them out as surprise gifts. Just got a thank you email from my 87-year old aunt that was so sweet and kind.

It makes life a bit like a video game where I become aware of these little side quests that, when completed, result in good energy.
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!

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odin
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by odin »

For me, it’s my habit of closing down potentially profound, developmental questions with flippant responses.

It really serves me well.
Don't try too hard, don't not try too hard

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

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"The unexamined life is worth living." -- Odin
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!


motherjuggs&speed
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by motherjuggs&speed »

I think 99% of self reflection is not only narcissistic self indulgence, but illusory. Sudden painful realizations are real enough, like when someone (me) sees how wrong he's been and/or just how shitty someone is, but the kind of ponderings most people write about are self aggrandizing self deception. So my best habit is doing less of this myself and reading less of it. Admittedly in January I did binge on YT videos of girls talking about themselves but I attribute that to not getting my test Rx refilled.

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

I think good questions are very powerful. But a good question for person A is not a good one for person B.

I shared this particular question because I first asked it of a relative stranger, apropos of nothing, and got a thoughtful response. My own answer didn’t reveal anything to myself, but I enjoyed hearing what they had to share.
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!


lenny
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by lenny »

I think it behooves one to examine one's goals and if they are worth attaining? If not let go. Sometimes that's really rough depending on the beliefs motivating the goals and the time and energy invested. If the goals are worthwhile what strategies are being employed to attain said goals. Does the strategy or strategies work? How would one know if progress is not tracked.

For example does a heavier and heavier deadlift make sense for me at the age of 74? No, I quit barbell deadlifting totally. But it might be someone's goal here. Is it a worthwhile goal? Stuart McGill says it could be very injurious for some people, but if you are a powerlifter you have to train it.
https://www.t-nation.com/training/an-in ... ll-part-1/
https://www.t-nation.com/training/an-in ... ll-part-2/

Dan John says to do a hip hinge. Does everyone need a hip hinge? I've been asking myself. Obviously for tackle American football if you're a lineman it does. If my goals are to surf, skateboard, do krav maga and for general health does it make sense?

Bram what do you think? I'm not sure. It looks like a take off- front side (the first module in Gerlach's wave-ki (I subscribed and just started) is a hip hinge.

There's another issue for people my age. The loss of type 2 fast twitch muscle fiber which are responsible for falls - the biggest killer of the over 65 population. I heard Pavel say years ago that as long as your strength in the squat and the deadlift went up your power (dictated by type 2 muscle fibers) goes up. Recently, I've been hearing differently. So I've been doing jumps with dumbbells (neutral grip) by my sides of about half body weight from the hang position. I also do some deadlifts with dumbbells at my sides with neutral grip. I don't know if I need the latter.

A lot of times recently I have no idea what I'm doing for training for rep to rep. I've never been like that and always knew exactly the weight I need for each set and how many reps per set.

I have a lot of rage. It doesn't help. I keep saying I don't expect to survive. I'm still here. I don't know why. I have been using physical training as a way to let go of rage.

I never left Israel. I postponed my trip to Florida twice. I don't know if I can use my international Israeli gold master card there. I can't come with thousands of dollars in cash. I'm trying to get information. But if I got an answer it could be used today it might not tomorrow because it could change if the Biden administration wants to.

Instead of physical training, I wrote this and it calmed me down. I'm exhausted.

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

Lenny,

I think that a hip hinge--that works for that person's body--is good for any sport or general well-being.

But what weight?

I believe, to a degree, that the weights we use are over-emphasized. Yes, your chest will be be bigger and more muscular if you are benching 80lb dumbbells instead of 40's. But if you can't do heavier than 60's with good form, then you're putting your health at risk.

An additional thing to consider, for some, is that your appearance can be affected by how much you're lifting on a given exercise. I used to train a beautiful girl who had done modeling work. If we had her do lunges with any more than 5lbs each hand (almost nothing!), her thighs would grow out of proportion. I believe we all have a max weight, for the purposes of aesthetics, for every lift--biceps, neck, squats, bench, etc.

Much more importantly, I believe, is doing the exercise correctly. As someone who surfs regularly, I highly value squats, deadlifts, and other major compound movements--as well as isolation and stabilization exercises-- for keeping my joints strong and my athleticism up. If I squat correctly in the gym, I'll squat correctly on a surfboard. If I squat incorrectly in the gym, I'll squat incorrectly on a surfboard--which can lead to injuries, decrease performance, etc.

If you can do it correctly, and the weight used isn't negatively impacting your athleticism or aesthetic goals, then feel free to add more.

When it comes to explosive movements, I think you also need to find out what works for your body.

I've been using box jumps, on to a soft box, emphasizing a perfect landing, and stepping down. This feels as good as anything else I've ever done for athleticism, and with a very low risk factor. I'm 45 and I wouldn't do heavy dumbbell jump squats. I figure there's always a way to get towards the goal, without a high risk.

For reps....

I like up to 20 for bilateral movements (bench, squats) up to 15 for unilateral movements (lunges, 1-arm rows). Lately, I've been using the following approach for clients:

Weeks 1-2, 15-20 reps
Weeks 3-4, 12-15 reps
Weeks 5-6, 8-12 reps
Weeks 7-8, 5-8 reps

It's just a simple linear periodization approach.

I used to have a lot of rage. Life's hard. People can be assholes, hurt us, and let us down. And we can do those things as well. Working out is a good outlet for the rage. Wishing you luck and peace wherever you end up!
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!


lenny
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by lenny »

Bram
Thank you very much for your detailed answer. I appreciate it. I tried to get the right size box. I wanted a 12 inch to start with to progress to a 15 inch to an 18 inch. I needed a few. They were outlandishly expensive. An Italian company had the exact dimensions. The representative said someone would contact me and I never got an answer despite repeated emails. There was a company from the UK that wouldn't ship internationally with the right dimensions.

The boxes in Israel and from Alibaba in China are way too expensive. I probably spent 10 hours researching box jumps because Peter Attia said it was such a great exercise. He is a fraud but has some truth.
I wrote about him before on this site.

I agree with you that the dumbbell jumps I'm doing are not the smartest thing for my age, but I've gotten away with it so far. I'm doing very low reps. Like one or two per set.

What brand box do you use? I'm still planning on visiting Florida and could have one shipped there.

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

Lenny,

Another option is simply to jump up a few stairs. For example, there's a flight of five stairs by my apartment. You can start with one stair and step down, progress to two and so on. Focusing on very clean reps, landing with legs almost straight.

The boxes are prohibitively expensive, but I like any brand that is made out of soft foam with velcro attachments to adjust height. As someone who lives in a small apartment myself, I don't own any gym equipment outside of a few bands. After a couple years of working out in my apartment during Covid, I finally joined a gym. And that place is pretty cheap and has a full set of soft plyo boxes. I could probably get five years of gym membership there for the price of one good set of plyo boxes.
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!


lenny
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by lenny »

Bram
Thanks again. I have to find the right set of stairs when the war ends or there is a ceasefire because of potential missile attacks. I don't want to jump and hear a siren warning of incoming missiles, get anxious and then badly injured. My special sealed room is what I should work out in but have decided it's ok to be in my living room for workouts with weights, gymnastic rings and chinups on a doorway pullup bar, core strengthening on the floor etc.. I agree with you about good form and generally video sets of squats. I was videoing kettlebell swings, ring pushups, ring rows, and jumps with weights but haven't recently. I should start again.

I wrote someone not long ago that I could die before sending off this email due to a missile attack. There was one probably 15 miles from here while I was writing.

We all make choices. Mine is to stay here for now for a lot of reasons that I won't enumerate. It might be a disaster or not depending on my evaluation.
What seemed like the right choice in 1978 seems like the absolute wrong one now but maybe I'll view it differently in the future. I don't know. There's no purely objective measurement that I can discern of what is absolutely good or bad for me. I know I don't want to get paralyzed but it could happen so I have to be careful with activities like surfing, skateboarding, and even crossing the street here. Would being paralyzed result in being a good thing? Maybe if it changes how I view reality. I don't know.

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

In that situation, I would do the jumps on a yoga mat (to soften the landing), land making as little noise as possible (to soften the landing) and ditch the weights.

When I was 27, I was paralyzed with indecision. Do I keep living in San Diego? Do I keep working as a personal trainer? Do I keep surfing and training jiu-jitsu? Do I keep the same friends? I found a highly-recommended local therapist. Her advice came down to:

Luan: Well, what does your gut say?
Bram: To do X
Luan: Well, why don’t you try that?

After a year of this, I found that my gut instincts were trustworthy. Your experience might vary wildly. Maybe your gut is off, or only right some of the time.

The point isn’t that her advice is the solution for everyone. But being asked different questions, and trying different solutions, can help us figure ourselves out

Good luck Lenny! 🙏🏼


lenny
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by lenny »

Bram
Thanks for the advice. I have some camping pads. I'll try them out for jumps. A lot of my life felt like I had no choice. Where I was born, who my parents were, my culture, language, religion of my youth, moving from a small town in Pennsylvania to a suburb of a major midwestern city at the age of 6, even where I went to university was not of my choosing. Columbia was the only university that accepted me. I left in the fall of 1968 because the education was dreadful, I hated Manhattan. Ten of my friends also dropped out. I had to protest the war despite being granted a deferment because I thought it was wrong.
I transferred to the University of Wisconsin at Madison where I received a much much better education than at Columbia. I only went to Madison because of a girlfriend who dumped me after a few weeks. I found a much better and prettier one who dumped me four years later and broke my heart. I have written this before but I find it hysterically funny now.

I found this movie a few days ago called The War at Home, about the protests at the UW Madison campus. Here is the trailer
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zY-OlxLpclo&t=2s


I might rent it. At 1:25 into the clip, you see the National Guard with bayonets. What you don't see are when they donned gas masks and started firing tear gas. I lived a few miles from campus and if I had seen these guys on TV, which I almost never watched, I wouldn't have gone to the protest. It was terrifying. I fled to one of the main streets of town which was deserted of cars and only a few pedestrians at 6PM. That never happened. I was walking with a couple other guys when a cop car pulled up and a cop asked, “Where are you going?” I politely answered, “I’m going home.” With one exception I was always polite to the police. About ten seconds, later another cop car pulled up and threw a tear gas canister at point blank range (maybe 5 feet away) from some students. I didn’t stay around to find out what happened. They could have suffered serious injuries for the rest of their lives. What I realized the other day was that police car could have turned around and shot me as a witness. I have been lucky over and over again. Too lucky. I’m amazed I’m not paralyzed.

I used to be very impulsive and still am at times. When I was 35, I read a teaching in a Jewish mystical text that a wise person should consider the consequences of one's actions and then decide how and whether to act. That's not how I would translate the Hebrew, but it's close enough to be understood hopefully. I try to gather information from different sources - assess it rationally, intuitively (from the gut is what I think you would call it.) My gut has been telling me I will die if I don’t get out of here. It’s not so simple. My international gold master Israeli credit cards have been denied in certain transactions. I think they may be banned totally. I don’t feel comfortable traveling with thousands of dollars in cash. Traveller’s checks which I once used are no longer taken.

What do you think of this?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmBWk2--x6c. The Chinese are sending their soldiers to American soil where they train for war. There was a Chinese bioweapons lab found in San Francisco.

It doesn’t make me feel too great about visiting Florida. But I might go.

Is my 37 year marriage really over? It sure feels like it. Telling my wife in the middle of this insanity just adds more chaos to what has been an unbelievably draining situation. I’ve had a virus for 4 months. But at least, I am back to doing chi gung breathing, and this breathing technique by Kitaro Wago which has been very helpful.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HHEEC_gOpxw&t=1s


I’m trying to get to sleep earlier but haven’t had much success. I don’t sleep nearly enough. I need to stop reading news for a week at least. I am not on social media and don’t read much news but what I do has been really disturbing.

Bram
Thanks again. Have a good weekend

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Bram
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What do you think is your best habit?

Post by Bram »

Lenny,

The camping pads might increase your risk of injury. Yoga mats are sticky and won't move. But camping mats (at least the ones I'm familiar with) are quite slippery.

No one controls their parents, their birth city, culture, language, or religion they are born into. My mom died when I was a kid, I grew up lower-middle class, I both skipped a grade and was a late bloomer so I was under-sized until college. I think at some point you have to let these things go and make decisions based on who you want to be now. Could you transfer your funds to a bank that would work in the United States? Or open a credit card that would be accepted there?

That Madison trailer was intense! Those were some very large protests you happened to be at school for. I've never lived through anything like that.

As for the Chinese potentially setting up an army inside the US....I've mentioned this before, but I've quit the news. I have a few passions and many interests. Geopolitical things don't fit into either category. There's a zillion things to care about, but I've chosen to stick to the ones that call out to me. Maybe that will change some day. Or maybe there's a huge impact I could have on these major issues that don't interest me and I'm fucking up by sticking with things that fill me with happiness, curiosity, or meaning.

That looks like a good meditation, thanks for sharing! I hope you have a good weekend too :)
If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit!

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