Monday, March 2, 2009

Once upon a time...

Well, since I'm technically on break from school I thought I would write about my background a little bit.

For approximately 20 years now, I have been a rather serious student of the Japanese martial arts. I hold 3 black belts in separate arts, have trained and taught briefly throughout Japan, dabbled in the esoteric and spiritual aspects a bit, and basically lived my life as a peaceful warrior for many years.

When my wife became pregnant 2 years ago, my training slowed down quite a bit. I ate a lot of the wrong things, drank too much beer, smoked too many cigars, and put on a lot of weight. When I did train it was taxing to say the least. My reduced physical health had a negative impact on my self esteem and my work life. Pretty soon I wasn't training at all and generally felt like crap.

Almost 1 year ago, I made the decision to make some life changes. I was going to start working out hard again, watch what I ate, live a cleaner life stlye, and generally start to take control of my health.

I started working out at a local gym very consistently. I was too embarrassed to go to to the dojo in my condition at the time, so I decided I wanted to lift weights and run. I wanted to concentrate purely on improving my physical health and conditioning. I started studying nutrition and putting my new found knowledge to work. I applied the discipline that martial arts training had honed in me over the years to really working hard and getting into shape.

In the first month I dropped 15 pounds, and was able to run farther and faster than I had in a long time. I started to feel better about myself. At 3 months I was still going strong and was 25 pounds lighter. I was back in the dojo training and teaching, and it was at this point that I decided to not only improve my health, but my mind as well. I had worked hard and made some changes, the truth of the universal law of cause and effect, it was time to apply this principle to another area of my life that I wasn't happy with, my career. That is when I decided to go back to college and pursue a different career path. That is when I decided to pursue my dream of entering into health care, and after a lot of research, into respiratory therapy.

It will be 1 year exactly tomorrow since I started down this new fork in the road. I'm 40 lbs lighter, and have put on quite bit of muscle. Still eating clean and working out almost every day. I've reduced my alcohol consumption by 80%. I quit smoking. I dropped my blood pressure by an average of 25 points. I've also completed 1 and a half more semesters of college with a 4.0 so far.

As rough as things seems lately, if I look how far I've come in the last year, it makes me optimistic about what I potentially see in the future. The law of cause and effect rules, and I'm continuing to work really hard towards my self and life improvement, so karma dictates my just rewards in the end.

Got to go to the gym now :-)

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