Sunday, March 29, 2009

What I Learned At The Summit

What I took away from the summit sessions is that you need to have “purpose”, you need to have “goals”, you need to have a “plan” of what you want to achieve. You need to “see” or envision what you what, not just in yourself, but for your Beachbody coaching business as well. I dreamed big, or extremely.

My dream is simple – achieve all of my fitness goals, be a better coach, return to the 2010 coach summit as a diamond (or higher) coach. I remembered how the coaches have described the coaching system with Beachbody as “people helping people”. As I remembered this, I started brainstorming. Help, support, giving time, giving support, utilizing energy for workouts, eating well… everything that I’ve experienced as a Beachbody member has come to fruition at this summit. Then two words hit me – give back. I thought ‘to whom?’

Then I remembered Beachbody’s work with the American Diabetes Association, and how together they developed the program Project You: Type 2 for people with type two diabetes. That is when I made the connection. I looked at my wrist to see my Medic Alert bracelet, which is for my anti-seizure disorder (epilepsy).
What is the one event each year in Washington, DC to support people with epilepsy? The National Epilepsy Foundation’s Walk For Epilepsy on the National Mall. I knew THAT is how I could give back.

I am writing another blog about this because that is how passionate I am about it.

Then I developed a plan of action. Establish and develop a team of Beachbody coaches, and members to support this cause – fighting epilepsy, and searching for a cure. Actor Greg Grunberg is the chairman for the National Walk For Epilepsy. He has done this for three years.

I believe that one person can make a difference no matter how small or great. What matters is you DID it, and that you gave it your best shot, striving towards that goal.

2009 Beachbody Dream Extreme Coach Summit

The last time I visited California was in 1998 for a ten-day vacation.
This time, it was different. This time, my girlfriend and I went to California as Beachbody Coaches to attend Beachbody’s Dream Extreme Coach Summit. This was very special for me. I have been anticipating this event. We flew from Newark, NJ to Los Angeles, California. As we arrived at the hotel, we found many coaches chatting at the bar. Although I only knew a few coaches, this weekend was an opportunity to meet and learn from many people. It was great to meet the coaches in person and “see” how they have transformed themselves through the workouts. This was very inspiring. I would have chatted all night with them to learn from them, however, I knew that the next morning would start very early, so we said our ‘good nights’ and went to sleep.

Since I expected Friday to be an all-day event, and to we woke up early to have breakfast at the hotel. I ate healthy - a plain mini muffin, a lot of fruit, some vegetables, and cold salmon.

We are members or the TeamBeachbody coaching team, Team Genesis, and Friday was an all-day team-building event. I learned much more about the coaching business and ways to expand your coaching business from several successful Beachbody coaches. The successful coaches and guest speakers shared their experiences on how they became successful.

TeamBeachbody coaches are members of the Team Beachbody community who have decided to become coaches to help other members achieve and surpass their fitness goals and dreams. We are not just coaches; we are also customers and members of the Beachbody community. We started as everyone else did - searching for answers, achieving goals, striving to achieve our maximum potential. Now, we are able to give back and help others do the same by coaching them and helping them achieve their goals.

While walking around the hotel, we met Beachbody coaches Yamille Hurst and Earl “Wink” Broughfman who are also members of TeamGenesis. They won in Beachbody’s Million Dollar Body Game for their amazing transformational stories. Yami won $10K for her transformation story in October 2008, and Earl won the grand prize of the Million Dollar Body game last year - $250,000!!! They are great people, and it was great to meet them in person.

That night, we worked out to ShaunT. His workout room was playing dance/club music, and ShaunT was in the front of the room motivating everyone to workout and “do it”. Although my girlfriend and I were in the back of the room, ShaunT walked around the room, motivating people throughout the workout. I worked harder, pushed more, sweat a lot, and I loved it. At the end of the workout, the intensity of the workout had every sweating – and everyone loved that! After using ShaunT’s workouts at home (Hip Hop Abs, Dance Party Series, Hip Hop Abs Ultimate Results, and Rockin’ Body) it was great to workout with him in person. After the workout, everyone is taking photos with Shaun and Tania Ante (who is in each of ShaunT’s workouts). When I had an opportunity, I thanked ShaunT for the intense workout and said, “It’s great to FINALLY meet you”.

That night, TeamGenesis hosted a fun 70s party with healthy food to nosh on, which was very helpful after the workout. I did not dress-up for the party, but many folks did. Gotta give them a lot of credit for that!
I met many coaches and that was very special. Connecting with new people is always a good thing.

Saturday morning, Beachbody coaches would be working out at Universal Studios with ALL of the trainers. As we were waiting in the lobby, we met Debbie Siebers, who was both very friendly and very helpful. J Thank you Debbie!!! We arrived at Universal and walked over to CityWalk. People stretched and prepared for the workout. Beachbody trainers Gillian & Teigh, ShaunT, Tania Ante, Debbie Siebers, Chalene Johnson, and Tony Horton worked the crowd hard throughout the workout. At the completion, everyone was sweating. Beachbody CEO Carl Daikeler came out afterwards to congratulate everyone, saying that they did a great job on the workouts. Afterwards, everyone returned to the hotel, and cleaned up in preparation for the Saturday morning’s Dream Extreme Summit sessions.

Everyone returned to the hotel. An elevator at the hotel was not working (since we arrived on Thursday). Everyone piled into the maintenance/service elevator around the corner. As we are waiting in the elevator, Beachbody trainer Tony Horton walks into the elevator smiling and saying, “Hey what are all of you doing in my elevator?” J We returned to our rooms (to clean up from the workout). Then, the morning and afternoon sessions, so the Dream Extreme Summit could begin.

Beachbody President Jonathon Congdon and CEO Carl Daikeler congratulated everyone for their achievements and provided motivational comments to the crowd. Throughout the course of the day, we heard from many of Beachbody’s top coaches, who explained their success and how they “did it” - what it meant for them to become top coaches, and how we had the opportunity to do the same as well. We also had the opportunity to listen to guest speakers Larry Zimmer and Les Brown, who provided information and inspiration to everyone, so we can each build our coaching businesses.

Beachbody also announced NEW programs to be released in 2009.They included: Brazilian Butt Lift, Shakeology (the workouts associated with the drink, with workouts by Tania Ante), Turbo Fire (by Chalene Johnson), Insanity (by ShaunT), and new workouts from Tony Horton’s One On One series. The newest supplement is Shakeology. This is a meal in a drink, literally. Shakeology has over 70 vitamins and nutrients and comes in two flavors – chocolate and greenberry. I tried both. They mixed the greenberry flavor with orange juice, and they mixed the chocolate flavor with peanut butter – both versions were fantastic! Now, the ingredients of Shakeology are incredible. It has over SEVENTY, yes 70, different vitamins in that drink. So it is a meal in itself! Gotta tell ya, I went to the summit fighting a COLD. Beachbody had samples of the different Shakeology flavors on different tables. After doing five shots of Shakeology A DAY, the cold was GONE by Saturday night…for the main event.

The main event on Saturday night of Beachbody’s Dream Extreme Summit was held at the Globe Theatre in Universal Studios, Hollywood – the Top Coach Celebration, and the 2008 Million Dollar Body Game Grand Prize Drawing. After a light cocktail hour and speaking with different coaches and trainers, the event began. This is the moment, THIS is when people are recognized for their achievements and awarded for their accomplishments. Beachbody’s 2008 Top Coaches were brought on stage. We also met the eight finalists of the Million Dollar Body Game. Six of whom would receive $50,000 and two people (one man, one woman) would walk away with $250,000. After watching videos of each of the eight finalists, Carl and Jonathon brought each finalist on stage and interviewed them. After the interviews, they announced the winners of the 2008 Million Dollar Body Game – Dallas Carter of Mililani, Hawaii, and Kristy McLean of Foothill Ranch, California – each walked away with $250,000!!!

So now the goal for 2009 is this – what is YOUR why? Why do YOU want to get in shape? Which program will you use?

My question to those of you reading this is, how can I help you achieve YOUR goals and dreams? Feel free to contact me, and/or ask any questions you want to know. I look forward to working with ALL of you!

Friday, March 6, 2009

This Is Just The Beginning

I was a skinny kid growing up. I was active, even though I did not play any sports. However, that changed when I got to college. I ate whatever I wanted to, which was usually fatty or fried foods, did not exercise, and I started gaining weight. This continued after college as well, and I continued to gain weight. My health suffered.

Pre-college (1988), I was a 30" waist, 120 pounds.
Post-college (1995), I had a 33" waist, 150 pounds.
After graduating college, I continued eating unhealthy foods, and the pounds continued to come on.

In 2007, someone I knew had a collection of fitness videos from a company named Beachbody. Power 90, Yoga Booty Ballet, Slim In 6, Power Half Hour, Turbo Jam, Slim Series, Yoga Booty Ballet Master Series... I was impressed, and asked if I could borrow Hip Hop Abs. I tried the different workouts of Hip Hop Abs for two weeks.

On July 1, 2007, I officially began my fitness journey. I weighed 176 pounds and had a 39" waist. In addition, after a visit to my doctor, my diagnosis was:
- high blood pressure
- high cholesterol (319 total to be exact)

I worked out to Hip Hop Abs every day. I enjoyed the program so much; I bought the next level from Beachbody called "Hop Hop Abs Ultimate Results, Level 2". After completing Hip Hop Abs, I began Hip Hop Abs Ultimate Results. Before completing Ultimate Results, I wanted to kick things up to another level by using a different workout. I borrowed Power 90.

Since I enjoyed Hip Hop Abs Ultimate Results, I worked out to that AND Power 90.

Hip Hop Abs is a 30-day program. Power 90 is a 90-day program.
During those first 30 days, I worked out to Power 90 AND Hip Hop Abs Ultimate Results. When I hit day 31, I started experimenting with other Beachbody programs, mixing them with the Power 90 workout. As I worked out to Power 90, I mixed in Slim in 6, Hip Hop Abs, Power Half Hour, Hip Hop Abs Ultimate Results, and a stretching program titled Ho' Ala Ke Kino (which stands for Awaken The Body.

During this time, I visited my doctor, and he checked my cholesterol again. The result - 253 points. After working out consistently for almost three months, I dropped my total cholesterol 63 points. Even though it sounded good, I heard a voice in my head say "that's not good enough". Why? Because I knew, I could do better than that.

I saw a Beachbody advertisement for their program "P90X", which was an extreme version of Power 90 along with many other types of workouts. Karate, yoga, stretching, core work, ab work... I knew that I was not ready for it yet, but wanted something more than just Power 90. Luckily, Beachbody had a program titled Power 90 Master Series was prepared me for P90X. I did two rounds of it - Standard, and Lean. During the Power 90 Master Series, I dropped some weight and some inches, which was very positive. Many people on Beachbody's message boards told me how many moves from the Master Series are in P90X. I felt confident about that. I believed that after doing the Power 90 Master Series for six months, I was familiar with the moves used in P90X, and thought I would be able to handle it...

As a side note, I contacted the CEO of Beachbody on my MySpace account, explaining to him about my Beachbody experience and my medical history. I have epilepsy, controlled through an anti-seizure medication, and I have been able to live a seizure free life for over ten years. I am very comfortable about discussing it because my epilepsy is a part of me.
Epilepsy is part of who I am, but it is not just who I am as a person.

The CEO suggested that I send a message to Beachbody's news team - Beachbody Network News (BNN). I did. Several days later, a representative from BNN contacted me, saying that they wanted to do a story on me. Two weeks later, BNN came out to my place to film my story. After they left, I continued working out with the Power 90 Master Series. The weekend that I was going to begin P90X, the story aired on BNN.

That Sunday, I began P90X Classic. For anyone reading this that is unfamiliar with P90X, P90X is a workout program created by TeamBeachbody with 12 different videos, which cover weight workouts, cardio workouts, stretching, yoga, and abs. After studying it, I wondered, "which one should I start with?" I chose to do the three P90X schedules in this order:
P90X Classic, P90X Lean, P90X Doubles

In retrospect, a better approach would have been: Lean, Classic, and Doubles. Well, I learned for the next time. :)

P90X Classic pushed and pulled me. There were moments where I brought it and moments when I backed off. After week 13, I felt like I needed a break - but I did not take one because I started P90X Lean. By this point, I was used to drinking about 60 oz of water a day.

Around this time, I had my quarterly doctor visit. Fortunately, my results were good - my epilepsy meds were in check, and they were in the correct levels. My cholesterol was around 232. Once again, that voice in my head said "not good enough, push harder". This time, I changed it up.

Halfway through P90X Lean, I thought, "Should I kick this up a notch in Doubles?" I approached my girlfriend, and borrowed her Turbo Jam videos. The first month of P90X Doubles, I was also doing Turbo Jam. Turbo Jam was the "starting workout" and then I would go into the P90X workout. It kicked things up, it challenged me, and I liked it!

Since I liked the Turbo Jam workouts, I purchased "Turbo Jam Fat Burning Elite" from Beachbody. I mixed that in there as well.

When I was in stage 2 of P90X Doubles (cardio workout + weight workout), I had the quarterly doctor visit - and this visit blew my mind!!! My doctor checked my vitals, listening to the heartbeat on my left arm and made a puzzled face. He started shaking his head and said, "This can't be right", and went over to my right arm and started listening to the pulse. He took off the stethoscope and said, "I don't know what's the matter with this thing." I'm like, "Hang on a second". (I was wearing a heart rate monitor on my left wrist)> I checked it, and it read 72 bpm. I read that to my doctor, and without missing a beat, he looked at me and said, "Stop taking the heart medication, you don't need it anymore."


In addition, my doctor also did some blood work to check on my cholesterol level, and THAT blew my mind even more than the blood pressure.

Now, my cholesterol has had its difficulties over the years. As an adoptee, I do not have any family or medical history to go on. I have always viewed my history as ME. I have had a high cholesterol since 1990 (age 20), and it has progressively gone up and down over the years depending on my physical activity or my cholesterol medication. On a visit to my doctor in December 2008, my cholesterol reached an all time low - 156 points!! This was a HUGE accomplishment, considering that two years earlier, my cholesterol was 319. This is a 163 point drop in cholesterol over two years!

As I continued P90X doubles, I remembered that the Beachbody Coach Summit was coming up in March 2009. I scheduled workouts with two Beachbody trainers, and started using their workouts in preparation for the coach summit (as you will never know what they would do). I admit I went "off the reservation" and schedule for P90X, to prepare for the summit. I did that because I chose to. I needed to refresh my memory for many of the workouts. I practiced, I did the workouts, and I am confident that I will do well - in either workout. My girlfriend is also a Beachbody coach, so we are both excited to attend. This trip is both business and personal. Business - as we will learn from other Beachbody coaches; and personal - as we will be able to meet many coaches we have spoken to on the message boards for a very long time.

Once we return from the coach summit, I have already set-up a plan on "what do I want to do next". As someone (probably from the movies) once said, "You have to go back to the start, and go forward to do it again". Instead of taking a cardio approach and mixing in weight workouts along the way, I'm doing something different.

I am going to start with Power 90. Beachbody's original program by trainer Tony Horton, which was the basis for the Power 90 Master Series, P90X, and P90X+, and One On One. Take what's learned and used in ONE program, and apply it to the NEXT, as you continue in your fitness journey.

This is the order that I will be doing them:
1. Power 90
2. Power 90 Master Series (standard program)
3. P90X (classic program)
4. P90X+ (classic program)
5. Creation

#5, the "Creation", was designed by fellow Beachbody coaches Joey Petri and Mark Briggs. This utilizes workouts from P90X, P90X+, and One On One. The reason why I am doing this one LAST is that everything that I am doing will lead up to it. The exercises learned in P90 (or Power 90) will be used in the Power 90 Master Series, and they'll be used in P90X... and since I haven't tried P90X Plus or One On One (which is where the workouts from Creation are from), I'll just find out about them when I get there.

On March 16, 2009, I am going back to the beginning with Power 90. Then as I complete each program, I will progress to the next stage, and see where that takes me. If my calculations are correct, the order of workouts will take me to the Beachbody Coach Summit 2010. I have a lot of work to do in the next year, but I WANT to do it.

I will be back here from time to time to blog and fill you in on my progress, as this is just the beginning...