MINDFUL: RITUALS TOWARD HAPPINESS

 John Giorno

John Giorno

We all have our rituals, some of them positive, others negative, and most just keep us in holding patterns that leave us stagnate.

If you want lasting change you need to commit. Decide on what you want, make a plan, and do it. Day in and day out. The process of conditioning ourselves feels incredible, especially when you experience that initial momentum, but most people never reach that.

WHY?

Because getting to that momentum takes time. On average, people give up after 2-3 weeks of consistent training (this goes beyond working out) after not "seeing results" they were expecting. The problem is focusing on counting the days rather than fully committing. Knowing that you have committed to living a healthier and more fulfilling LIFE both in body and spirit, you hold yourself accountable each waking day. Not tomorrow, a week from now, or even a year.

If you want lasting change you have to give up the idea of just trying something. Commit to MASTERING it. STEP UP and discover what you're capable of.

If you are ready for a change join the TBW club today.

 

MINDFUL: Against the Ordinary Language: The Language of the Body — Kathy Acker

 Photo by Alphonso Lingis.

Photo by Alphonso Lingis.

Bodybuilding is a process, perhaps a sport, by which a person shapes her or his own body. This shaping is always related to the growth of muscular mass...[and] can be seen to be about nothing but failure. A bodybuilder is always working around failure.

I want to fail...I want to shock my body into growth.

Every day, in the gym, I repeat the same controlled gestures with the same weights, the same reps,... The same breath patterns. But now and then, wandering within the labyrinths of my body, I come upon something. Something I can know because knowledge depends on difference. An unexpected event. For though I am only repeating certain gestures during certain time spans, my body, being material, is never the same; my body is controlled by change and by chance.

My unexpected failure at the sixth rep was allowing me to see, as if through a window, not to any outside, but inside my own body, to its workings. I was being permitted to glimpse the laws that control my body, those of change or chance, laws that are barely, if at all knowable.

By trying to control, to shape, my body through the calculated tools and methods of bodybuilding, and time and again, in following these methods, failing to do so, I am able to meet that which cannot be finally controlled and known: the body.

In this meeting lies the fascination, if not the purpose, of bodybuilding. To come face to face with chaos, with my own failure or a form of death.

Link to full PDF: Against Ordinary Language: The Language of the Body – Kathy Acker

HEALTH: The importance of HYDRATION

 Marilyn Minter

Marilyn Minter

The human body is comprised mostly of water:
Blood: 83% water
Kidneys: 83% water
Liver: 86% water
Brain: 74% water
Muscles: 76% water
Skin: 70% water
Connective tissue: 60% water
Bones: 22% water
Fat: 20%

It’s really simple, just DRINK MORE WATER !!!

1 glass upon waking up to activate and rehydrate your organs after a night of fasting
2 glasses 30 minutes before each meal to help with digestion (which aids in significant weight loss over the course time)
3-5 glasses throughout the day to stay hydrated

If you are very active, you always drink at least 1 liter (1000ml, 32oz, 4.25cups) of water after a cardio heavy workout to replenish

Replace sugar laden drinks (soda and anything sweetened) with WATER for just a week and you’ll notice a tremendous difference.

MORE REASONS TO DRINK WATER

Helps with weight loss
Helps carry nutrients and oxygen to your cells
Helps convert food to energy
Keeps skin healthy
Boosts your energy level
Helps make exercising more effective
Cleanses by flushing out toxins and wastes

HEALTH: The Government’s Bad Diet Advice

By NINA TEICHOLZ

  Mark Pernice

Mark Pernice

America’s dietary guidelines have long been based on weak science.

For two generations, Americans ate fewer eggs and other animal products because policy makers told them that fat and cholesterol were bad for their health. Now both dogmas have been debunked in quick succession.

First, last fall, experts on the committee that develops the country’s dietary guidelines acknowledged that they had ditched the low-fat diet. On Thursday, that committee’s report wasreleased, with an even bigger change: It lifted the longstanding caps on dietary cholesterol, saying there was “no appreciable relationship” between dietary cholesterol and blood cholesterol. Americans, it seems, had needlessly been avoiding egg yolks, liver and shellfish for decades. The new guidelines, the first to be issued in five years, will influence everything from school lunches to doctors’ dieting advice.

How did experts get it so wrong? 

Read more at nytimes.com

HEALTH: MATCHA GREEN TEA BENEFITS

Matcha Green Tea is the highest quality powdered green tea available. Made from the nutrient-rich young leaves picked from the tips of shade-grown Camellia sinensis plants, Matcha Green Tea is steamed, stemmed, and de-vined before being stone-ground into very fine powder. Matcha Green Tea powder is then stored away from light and oxygen in order to preserve its brilliant green color and antioxidant properties.

The benefits of Matcha Green Tea, a cancer-fighter, a fat-burner, and much more.

The health benefits of matcha tea exceed those of green tea because when you drink matcha you ingest the whole leaf, not just the brewed water.

One glass of matcha is the equivalent of 10 glasses of green tea in terms of its nutritional value and antioxidant content.

1. High in Antioxidants
Antioxidants are the magical nutrients and enzymes responsible for fighting against the negative effects of UV radiation, giving us younger-looking skin, and preventing a number of life-threatening maladies. Antioxidants are something that all health-conscious individuals seek from such foods as raw fruits, green veggies, and (let’s not forget) dark chocolate. The first amazing benefit of Matcha Green Tea is that just one bowl provides over 5 times as many antioxidants as any other food – the highest rated by the ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) method.

2. Loaded with Catechin, EGCg
Not all antioxidants are created equal. Green tea contains a specific set of organic compounds known as catechins. Among antioxidants, catechins are the most potent and beneficial. One specific catechin called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg) makes up 60% of the catechins in Matcha Green Tea. Out of all the antioxidants, EGCg is the most widely recognized for its cancer fighting properties. Scientists have found that Matcha Green Tea contains over 100 times more EGCg than any other tea on the market.

3. Enhances Calm
For over a millennium, Matcha Green Tea has been used by Chinese Daoists and Japanese Zen Buddhist monks as a means to relax and meditate while remaining alert. Now we know that this higher state of consciousness is due to the amino acid L-Theanine contained in the leaves used to make Matcha. L-Theanine promotes the production of alpha waves in the brain which induces relaxation without the inherent drowsiness caused by other “downers.”

4. Boosts Memory and Concentration
Another side-effect of L-Theanine is the production of dopamine and serotonin. These two chemicals serve to enhance mood, improve memory, and promote better concentration – something that can benefit everyone!

5. Increases Energy Levels and Endurance
Samurai, the noble warriors of medieval and early-modern Japan, drank Matcha Green Tea before going into battle due to the tea’s energizing properties. While all green tea naturally contains caffeine, the energy boost received from Matcha is largely due to its unique combination of other nutrients. The increased endurance from a bowl of Matcha Green Tea can last up to 6 hours and because of the effects of L-Theanine, Matcha drinkers experience none of the usual side-effects of stimulants such as nervousness and hypertension. It’s good, clean energy.

6. Burns Calories
Drinking Matcha Green Tea has also been shown to increase metabolism and help the body burn fat about four times faster than average. Again, unlike many diet aides currently on the market, Matcha causes no negative side-effects such as increased heart rate and high blood pressure.

7. Detoxifies the Body
During the last three weeks before tea leaves are harvested to be made into Matcha, Camellia sinensis are covered to deprive them of sunlight. This causes a tremendous increase in chlorophyll production in the new growth of these plants. The resulting high levels of chlorophyll in Matcha Green Tea not only give this tea its beautiful vibrant green color. Matcha is also a powerful detoxifier capable of naturally removing heavy metals and chemical toxins from the body.

8. Fortifies the Immune System
The catechins in Matcha Green Tea have been shown to have antibiotic properties which promote overall health. Additionally, just one bowl of Matcha Green Tea provides substantial quantities of Potassium, Vitamins A & C, Iron, Protein, and Calcium. Further studies have even suggested that the nutrients in Matcha may have the ability to inhibit the attacks of HIV on human T-cells.

9. Improves Cholesterol
Researchers aren’t entirely certain how Matcha Green Tea has such a positive effect on cholesterol, however studies of different populations have show that people who drink Match Green Tea on a regular basis have lower levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol while at the same time displaying higher levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. Men who drink Matcha Green Tea are about 11% less likely to develop heart disease than those who don’t drink Matcha.

Finally, the tenth and final benefit of drinking Matcha Green Tea

10. Amazing Flavor
Drinking something just because it’s healthy can be a lot like swallowing medicine. It’s unpleasant and you dread it, but you feel obligated to do it. After all, it’s good for you… right? Sure, but wouldn’t you rather look forward to improving your overall well-being? Of course you would!

Fortunately, unlike a lot of other teas which require sugar, milk, or lemon to make them palatable to the average consumer, Matcha is absolutely wonderful all by itself. It’s crisp vegetative notes are complimented by the savory taste of the L-Theanine amino acid making Matcha a tea that is truly unique in every way. So sit back, relax, and enjoy a delicious bowl of hot Matcha.

 

FITNESS: The Benefits of a Lunch Hour Walk

To combat afternoon slumps in enthusiasm and focus, take a walk during the lunch hour.

A new study finds that even gentle lunchtime strolls can perceptibly — and immediately — buoy people’s moods and ability to handle stress at work.

It is not news, of course, that walking is healthy and that people who walk or otherwise exercise regularly tend to be more calm, alert and happy than people who are inactive.

But many past studies of the effects of walking and other exercise on mood have focused on somewhat long-term, gradual outcomes, looking at how weeks or months of exercise change people emotionally.

Read more at nytimes.com

WELLNESS: Learn to Say “Fuck You” to the World Once in a While

LETTER FROM SOL LEWITT TO EVA HESSE:

Dear Eva,

It will be almost a month since you wrote to me and you have possibly forgotten your state of mind (I doubt it though). You seem the same as always, and being you, hate every minute of it. Don’t! Learn to say “Fuck You” to the world once in a while. You have every right to. Just stop thinking, worrying, looking over your shoulder wondering, doubting, fearing, hurting, hoping for some easy way out, struggling, grasping, confusing, itchin, scratching, mumbling, bumbling, grumbling, humbling, stumbling, numbling, rumbling, gambling, tumbling, scumbling, scrambling, hitching, hatching, bitching, moaning, groaning, honing, boning, horse-shitting, hair-splitting, nit-picking, piss-trickling, nose sticking, ass-gouging, eyeball-poking, finger-pointing, alleyway-sneaking, long waiting, small stepping, evil-eyeing, back-scratching, searching, perching, besmirching, grinding, grinding, grinding away at yourself. Stop it and just DO!

From your description, and from what I know of your previous work and you [sic] ability; the work you are doing sounds very good “Drawing-clean-clear but crazy like machines, larger and bolder… real nonsense.” That sounds fine, wonderful – real nonsense. Do more. More nonsensical, more crazy, more machines, more breasts, penises, cunts, whatever – make them abound with nonsense. Try and tickle something inside you, your “weird humor.” You belong in the most secret part of you. Don’t worry about cool, make your own uncool. Make your own, your own world. If you fear, make it work for you – draw & paint your fear and anxiety. And stop worrying about big, deep things such as “to decide on a purpose and way of life, a consistant [sic] approach to even some impossible end or even an imagined end” You must practice being stupid, dumb, unthinking, empty. Then you will be able to DO!

I have much confidence in you and even though you are tormenting yourself, the work you do is very good. Try to do some BAD work – the worst you can think of and see what happens but mainly relax and let everything go to hell – you are not responsible for the world – you are only responsible for your work – so DO IT. And don’t think that your work has to conform to any preconceived form, idea or flavor. It can be anything you want it to be. But if life would be easier for you if you stopped working – then stop. Don’t punish yourself. However, I think that it is so deeply engrained in you that it would be easier to DO!

It seems I do understand your attitude somewhat, anyway, because I go through a similar process every so often. I have an “Agonizing Reappraisal” of my work and change everything as much as possible = and hate everything I’ve done, and try to do something entirely different and better. Maybe that kind of process is necessary to me, pushing me on and on. The feeling that I can do better than that shit I just did. Maybe you need your agony to accomplish what you do. And maybe it goads you on to do better. But it is very painful I know. It would be better if you had the confidence just to do the stuff and not even think about it. Can’t you leave the “world” and “ART” alone and also quit fondling your ego. I know that you (or anyone) can only work so much and the rest of the time you are left with your thoughts. But when you work or before your work you have to empty you [sic] mind and concentrate on what you are doing. After you do something it is done and that’s that. After a while you can see some are better than others but also you can see what direction you are going. I’m sure you know all that. You also must know that you don’t have to justify your work – not even to yourself. Well, you know I admire your work greatly and can’t understand why you are so bothered by it. But you can see the next ones and I can’t. You also must believe in your ability. I think you do. So try the most outrageous things you can – shock yourself. You have at your power the ability to do anything.

I would like to see your work and will have to be content to wait until Aug or Sept. I have seen photos of some of Tom’s new things at Lucy’s. They are impressive – especially the ones with the more rigorous form: the simpler ones. I guess he’ll send some more later on. Let me know how the shows are going and that kind of stuff.

My work had changed since you left and it is much better. I will be having a show May 4 -9 at the Daniels Gallery 17 E 64yh St (where Emmerich was), I wish you could be there. Much love to you both.

Sol

Health: CONSISTENCY, CONSISTENCY, CONSISTENCY

Does this illustration look familiar? The journey towards a healthier lifestyle is not a straight line, however, it does not need to be a jumbled mess. When there is no clear plan it is difficult to stay on track. Success requires CONSISTENT hard work, eating well, and rest. When you’ve set goals and expectations for yourself in this new year, make every decision count towards accomplishing them. 

Last week we talked about PREPARATION, this week we focus on CONSISTENCY. The two go hand in hand. Preparing in advance and identifying all known obstacles allows you to solve problems before they happen. Need help? #TBWClub’s Jumpstart 30 provides exactly that, a CLEAR, FOCUSED, and SUSTAINABLE program designed specifically for your goals.

DON'T SKIP A MEAL

Eating CONSISTENTLY throughout the DAY keeps your metabolism up, which directly contributes to the burning of excess fat. Skipping a meal and letting yourself go for more than 3 hours without eating, even if you don’t feel hungry, leaves your body wondering when the next time it will be fed. In turn, whatever you eat next, will be stored as fat and kept as reserves in the event that you skip another meal and leave your body feeling starved again. You can prevent this from happening!

PROBLEM:
Being hungry in the middle of the day and running between two meetings that are directly across town from each other with no healthy and quick options in sight!

 (Left)  Roy Lichtenstein   ,    Crying Girl   (1963); (Right)  Claes Oldenburg ,  Fried Egg

(Left) Roy LichtensteinCrying Girl (1963); (Right) Claes Oldenburg, Fried Egg

SOLUTION:
Pack an easy source of PROTEIN (eggs!), HEALTHY FATS (unsalted almonds!), COMPLEX CARBS (Mary’s Gone Crackers!) that you can easily eat in the car, cab, or bus ride over.

DON'T SKIP A CHEAT MEAL

  Stephen Shore ,  Trail's End Restaurant, Kanab, Utah, August, 10, 1973

Stephen Shore, Trail's End Restaurant, Kanab, Utah, August, 10, 1973

Eating clean CONSISTENTLY throughout the WEEK doesn’t come without any rewards! A cheat meal is waiting for you so plan accordingly. Don’t go off the rails! If you’re in the mood for a burger, go somewhere that will give you 100% grass fed beef, a whole wheat roll, and all natural fixings NOT a fast food chain. Foods that are overly processed can set you back much longer than the same meal made with preservative free whole foods. Weekly cheat meals are crucial for maintaining CONSISTENCY because you need to have THOSE moments ONCE IN A WHILE to satisfy your cravings so you don’t completely fall off the wagon.

DON'T SKIP A WORKOUT

At the start of any project there is an unrivaled energy and confidence. This is especially true when it comes to health and fitness. We tend overcommit and burn out after 2 or 3 weeks of going to the gym everyday, eating a strict diet with no cheat meals, and not allowing for proper recovery time. When you commit to a healthy lifestyle remember that it is for LIFE. Of course there will be fixed goals to achieve along the way, but the focus should be creating a SUSTAINABLE way of living that can allow for life’s surprises.

Here are some tips on how to set up a sustainable workout schedule:

  • Get a calendar 
  • Identify all fixed obligations/responsibilities (work, school, pick up kids from school, date night, weekend brunch, etc.) for each day and pencil them onto the calendar
  • Identify the windows where it is possible to fit in a workout ranging from 15-60 minutes (this may require you to wake up earlier or reevaluate what you wrote above as an “obligation/responsibility.” Find ways to integrate health and fitness into some of these responsibilities. Get active with your partner or kids, add squats throughout your day, etc.)
  • Chose 1-2 days of rest (typically those can be the weekend, but if those are the days you have the most time to workout, place each rest day after a day of working out. 
  • For the smaller periods of time focus on cardio/interval/circuit training
  • For the longer periods of time focus on strength training
  • Evaluate and finalize your calendar

BOOM! Stick with this schedule for 2 weeks. If you’ve completed every single task through a 2 week cycle, go on for 2 more. Once you’ve reached 30 days, congratulate yourself! Continue until you reach your initial goals. If you need help #TBWClub’s Jumpstart 30 is perfectly designed with you in mind. Join the club today

WELLNESS: Six reasons not to scrimp on sleep

1. Learning and memory: Sleep helps the brain commit new information to memory through a process called memory consolidation. In studies, people who’d slept after learning a task did better on tests later.

2. Metabolism and weight: Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates, and by altering levels of hormones that affect our appetite.

3. Safety: Sleep debt contributes to a greater tendency to fall asleep during the daytime. These lapses may cause falls and mistakes such as medical errors, air traffic mishaps, and road accidents.

4. Mood: Sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do.

5. Cardiovascular health: Serious sleep disorders have been linked to hypertension, increased stress hormone levels, and irregular heartbeat.

6. Disease: Sleep deprivation alters immune function, including the activity of the body’s killer cells. Keeping up with sleep may also help fight cancer.

via Harvard Medical Review