“When you want to succeed as bad as you want

to breathe, that’s when you will be successful.”

This quote comes from one of the most well known speakers today, Eric Thomas.  The qhote comes from a story he tells about a young man who goes to a guru to learn how to be successful.  He has the young man walk into the ocean and holds his head underwater until he is fighting for air.  He then says the quote and the mood is set.  This quote refers back to our first quote of the challenge about setting a goal great enough to overcome the temptations of failure.  When the young man is about to drown, the absolute only thing on his mind was taking a breath.  He did not care about sports, television, his car, his job, hunger, if it was raining, or anything else going on in the entire world.  When you want to truly be successful, it will be the only thing on your mind.  This may seem pretty deep for a health challenge, but without health, there may not be anything else.  Health is your foundation; your vehicle that will take you through life.  Even if you are successful without it, it will not sustain because you will not sustain.  You have overcome seven weeks of this challenge.  You have tried new things, gotten rid of some bad habits, and started a new path that could lead to an entirely new life.  In order to sustain these results and continue to move forward, you must learn how to sustain your new lifestyle forever.  Even though we look at things as simple foods and cravings, we are talking about the fuel that will carry you through life; that will give you the energy to play with your children, or succeed at your job, or whatever you choose is important.  Continue forward now and do not look bad.  Do not be tempted by failure and addiction.  You have the power to overcome all of that and you have proved it the last seven weeks.  In order to believe this you must believe in yourself.  So look in the mirror, take a deep breath, and go succeed at everything possible wanting it as bad as the young man in the story wanted to breathe.

Exercise of the Week: Deadlift

We definitely saved the best for last.  For the final week we will be teaching the deadlift; by far one of the best exercises.  However, although simple, there are many points of interest to look at, and if not done properly, your body will be  very vulnerable to injury.  A deadlift is simply lifting a bar off the ground and setting it back down.  This simple exercise works the entire posterior chain (back of the body).  It is recommended to ask for help in person to learn more.

The important things to note about performing a deadlift correctly are:

  • Keep your core engaged and your lower back flat during the entire rep (as shown)
  • Move downward slowly to strengthen the full range of motion
  • The first movement should be to push your butt backwards as if bending down to touch your toes, but without locking your knees
  • Push the butt out as the upper body falls forward, while keeping a flat back (left). Continue until your hamstrings are tight, THEN bend the legs
  • Always keep a stable upper back, without using your traps (use your rear delts; rear shoulder)
  • Never go heavier than your upper and lower back can handle with perfect form

More on the Deadlift:
The deadlift is an exercise worth taking extra time to learn properly.  Although it is a simple movement, it is very beneficial for your entire body.  Some people stick with the basic motion of the deadlift, however, if you master the standard form rep, you can always make it a unilateral (one leg) exercise and also add more balance work by adding weights in a single hand (right).  When done unilaterally, keeping the hip “closed” while going through the motion is the key factor to watch.


Nutritional Tip:

Even if you screw up, screw up smart.

The most important part of ALTERA CLXV is the sustainability aspect that we teach.  The world is filled with so many fad diets, quick fixes, 15 minute workouts, and although they “work” they usually are not sustainable.  When you quit doing the actions, your body usually rebels against the extreme state you just had it in and goes back to how it was prior.  Also, it usually ends in not just giving up, but failing completely by over indulging with the foods you were not able to eat.  Same goes for the yearly new years “weight loss” challenges.  You do certain things to lose weight, which is not the correct focus, and then you quit the diet, and you back to your old self.  Everyone knows this is the case, so how do we change it?  ALTERA has a different approach called pursuing health and being human.  The key is to pursue the correct goal; health.  Not just weight loss.  When you pursue health, it becomes a lifestyle, not just a short term fad.  Also, and in my opinion the most important part, we teach you how to sustain this lifestyle.  We practice a vegan-based way of eating but when the situation arises where the only healthy thing on the menu is fish, we eat some fish.  We teach to turn away from things like birthday cake, wings, pizza, etc, but if there comes a time when you want to try some of one of the mentioned, DO IT!  But do it SMART!  When you do “screw up” and have pizza, only have a piece or two; not eight.  If you decide to get dessert at a restaurant when you are on vacation, only eat half of it!  If you are celebrating and there is a toast and cake, have a taste.  You do not have to ruin your life, or your diet, because you ate a small “mistake”.  We recommend this step be implemented after the program is complete and you have learned how to eat properly and make smart decisions.  But once you have learned sustainability, fear of any type of food will never touch you.

“What does your ALTERA Life look like?”