Sergeant Tony's Blog

Archive for March, 2010

A Rose By Any Other Name — Newsletter of Sgt. Tony Ludlow for 3/31/10

Mar. 31st 2010

“I’d like some pepper for my baked potato, please,” I said to the waitress in perfect Japanese.

Too bad I was in Frayser.

No, I was sitting in a restaurant in Tokyo.

Japanese is a hard language to learn. I mean, REAL hard!

In fact, linguists say that it’s the most difficult language for a native English speaker to learn. And I believe them. But I learned to speak Japanese because I’m an idiot.

OK, maybe “idiot” is a little too strong.

What’s a single word description for someone who isn’t afraid to look stupid in an effort to learn something?

Whatever that word is, that’s me.

I don’t really have a great gift for language. My mediocre grades in college Latin, Greek, and Hebrew will attest to my less than stellar linguistic skills. But what I lack in natural ability, I try to make up for by being stubborn and tenacious. Plus I hate hate HATE BEING stupid. Looking stupid doesn’t bother me. BEING stupid does.

I was highly motivated to learn Japanese because I was weary to death of looking AND “being” stupid. If you’ve ever traveled to a foreign country and been dependent on a translator then you know what I’m talking about.

Thing is, if you’re just a tourist for a few days it really doesn’t matter. So what, you can’t read? No big deal. You can’t speak and you have no idea what anyone is saying to you? No worries. You’re a tourist. It’s all good. You’ll be gone soon.

But when you’re NOT a tourist it IS a problem.

The stuff that’s in your mailbox is a complete mystery. You can’t really distinguish the junk mail from the important stuff. And not being able to express yourself or understand what is being said to you becomes a huge source of discouragement and frustration. And the ringing of your home phone makes you break out into a cold sweat.

And getting lost is a daily occurrence. You can’t read the street signs. I used The Force a lot to navigate around Tokyo.

If you aren’t willing to look a fool, you’ll never learn a foreign language. One of my American friends in Japan was probably much smarter than me. He had, after all, a BA from Boston College and an MA from Harvard. But even though he’d lived in Japan longer than me, and was a good deal more cultured than me, my Japanese was way better than his. He just couldn’t stomach the idea of looking foolish. I guess that’s one of the heavy burdens of being a Harvard grad. You have to be the smartest guy in the room. But when you’re from Arkansas, the intellectual expectations are fairly low.

So there I was. I’d lived in Japan for about three months and was making my first solo trip to a restaurant without a bi-lingual Japanese friend to help. And even though I was pretty nervous, I’d successfully ordered my food and the exact thing I’d ordered had actually arrived at my table. Sweet! And now I wanted some pepper for my baked potato. Typically Japanese restaurants don’t have pepper on the table. You have to ask. So … I asked.

The waitress looked at me like I’d just grown a second head. But I got that a lot anyway. “hmmm?” I thought. “I guess the Japanese don’t eat much pepper and they don’t use any on baked potatoes,” I reasoned.

She stood there with a confused look on her face, so I launched into a full explanation about how Americans love pepper and how all the restaurants in America have pepper on the tables. I was quite proud of my ability to explain all of this in my kindergarten level Japanese language skills. Despite the look of bewilderment on the waitress’s face.

She disappeared into the kitchen behind the swinging kitchen door to get my pepper. I waited patiently and proudly. But within a couple of minutes I heard uproarious laughter come from the kitchen.

Oops.

That was my second clue that something might be wrong.

The kitchen door then swung open just enough to reveal the waitress and the five or so Japanese kitchen staff clustered around the small door opening … just wide enough for them to get a look at ME. The waitress pointed at me … as if that was necessary. I was the only foreigner in the place. The door closed again and another round of laughter erupted from the kitchen.

Great.

The waitress, fully composed and looking professional, came from the kitchen with the pepper. She set it down on my table, smiled, and repeated the word I’d used for “pepper” with only a slight variation. As if to say, “Here’s your PEPPER.” I said thank you and then … as soon as she was out of range, I snuck my Japanese/English dictionary from my briefcase.

There I discovered the problem. I read that the word I’d used … was NOT pepper. It was something else. And the pronunciation between the word I’d used and the word that she’d used was only slight. I mean, slight. If I said the two words to you, I don’t think you’d notice the difference.

What was the meaning of the word that I had used?

The Japanese have a word that is used for, well, basically anything that comes OUT of the body.

Yep. That’s right. Think the worst and you’d be right. (It kinda rhymes with “shift.”)

I had taken great pains to tell the waitress that we Americans love “shift” on our baked potatoes. Why, we love “shift” so much that we have “shift” on the tables of our restaurants. We’re just crazy for “shift!” We put “shift” on our eggs, and in our soups, and …

Oh shift.

Well, shift happens. And it usually happens when we get out of our comfort zones. My Harvard buddy was only willing to get out of his comfort zone just so much. He wasn’t willing to be foolish enough to order shift for his baked potato. And consequently his Japanese was severely limited. He couldn’t speak Japanese for shift.

Out of the comfort zone and into the spotlight where you’ll more than likely look stupid is where you’ll also probably learn something too.

There are experiences to be had and a world to explore that will require you to step out of that comfort zone. No one has actually died of embarrassment, so why not go for it?

And so long as you know who you are and are comfortable in your own skin, you can plunge headlong into the river of fun and new things! Who cares if you look silly or sound ridiculous? You’re still you!

This month is bring a friend to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP month. Your friends can try it out for a whole week for FREE! No obligations and no strings attached. They won’t even have to give me their contact info. But they’ll have to get out of their comfort zone. And I’m asking you to help them.

You’ll have to help them get over their fears too. And you can do it. Because you care about them. You give a shift!

Hoping to see you and your friends on the Quarterdeck in April!

—————————————————

HOLIDAY SCHEDULE

All classes will meet as usual on Friday and Monday.

————————————————–

APRIL IS OUR ANNUAL “BRING A FRIEND TO BOOT CAMP MONTH”

In honor of my friend Tom Farrar, you can bring a friend to Boot Camp during April for a FREE WEEK! No strings attached and no obligation to join.

The Boot Camper who brings the most friends in April will get $100!! US Legal Tender. Not 100 Dollars in Boot Camp Bucks! Real money!!

Here are the only rules:

1. Your visiting friends must be prospects for membership, so no out of town visitors will count toward your total number of friends for the contest.

2. Repeat visitors don’t count beyond their first visit – so you can’t bring your friend Bob 15 times during April and count it as 15 friends!

3. Friends who join are counted twice!

Your friends can join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP for only $90 in April! That’s 50% off the first month’s fee of $180! Only your friends and family can take advantage of this deal.

Use Facebook to invite your friends AND get a discount on your enlistment at the same time! (See below)

——————

RAMPED AND AMP’ED IN APRIL!

We’ll be ramping things up in April! Here’s the schedule.

The 0530 Class will meet regularly with these changes.
On Tuesday April 6 and 13 at the 0530 class, we’ll be inside for those rockin’ workouts that some of you guys will remember. We’ll be in the “other gym” the east gym … not the blue one that we usually use. Enter the Recreation Building off the north side entrance.

On Thursday April 1, 8, and 15 we’ll have BOGA in the blue gym at 0530.

On Tuesday April 20 and 27 we’ll have BOGA in the blue gym because we’ll be returning to the U of M for our “Mt. Fuji” workouts at 0530 on Thursday April 22 and 29. We’ll be using the parking garage (Mt. Fuji) on Zach Curlin at the U of M. You’ll hear more about this later.

——–

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes have returned! We are running at the track at St Agnes, located at Walnut Grove and Mendenhall, on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 5:45.

You’ll hear more about April as the month goes! I’m back, boys and girls! And I’m bringin’ it!

———————————————-

BOGA Expands

By popular demand, in addition to the 0530 class tomorrow morning, BOGA will be on tap for the 08:30 AM and the 5:30 PM classes on Friday!

All BOGA workouts are inside unless I say otherwise! hahaha

BOGA is 22 minutes of hardcore Boot Camp + 22 minutes of Power Yoga = BOGA

————————————————-

LOSE THE WEIGHT – “TAKE SHAPE FOR LIFE!”

You could lose 20 pounds by June! NO KIDDING!

The secret behind weight loss is more about diet than exercise.

After my own personal success with Take Shape For Life, I became a health coach for TSFL. That’s how much I believe in it!

Seriously, y’all … it’s easy, it tastes good, you’re not hungry, you don’t starve, it’s affordable, AND you get to have “normal – regular” food too!

You can go directly to my Take Shape For Life website (below) to get more information. You can also sign up there as well.

Feel free to call me if you’d like more info. 901-644-0145. I’d be happy to be your coach and help you genuinely lose the weight you’ve been wanting to lose!

Go to: www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com

——————————————–

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

So far this experiment has been pretty amazing!
Here’s how it works!

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee!
Up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

The deal gets better …

When one of your Facebook friends, who isn’t a boot camper, goes to the website (www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com) because of YOUR status updates and contacts me through the boot camp website, you get an additional $5 off your next enlistment for a max of $20!

Your friend has to actually contact me through the website, not through Facebook. This will help to measure traffic to the website generated from Facebook.

AND … if someone joins because they learned about us through your status update, your next monthly enlistment is FREE!

Already FOUR of you have qualified for $40 off for April and your May enlistment is FREE!

So log on and get started now!

——————————

RACE JUDICATA

Race Judicata is scheduled for Saturday, April 10 at 10:00 a.m. The race will take place at Jefferson Davis Park, located at 51 North Riverside Drive and there will be food and music following the race. Check-in starts at 8:30 a.m.

The race is open to the public. Runners and walkers are welcome!

Strollers welcome! Food and Music Following the Race!

Race Judicata benefits Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS). MALS provides free legal service to the elderly and low income families. For more information about MALS, visit:http://www.malsi.org/

To register or donate an

What would you do today if fear were not a factor, failure were not an option, and money were not a question?

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Sad News. 3/25/10

Mar. 25th 2010

It is with great sadness that I must inform you of a tragic loss within the Battalion.

As many of you have no doubt heard, a medical helicopter went down early this morning east of Memphis, near Brownsville. All three aboard lost their lives. One of those crew members was the father of our own Jonathan Phillips.

Jonathan is a member of the evening class but has often been on the Quarterdeck at 0530 as well. He’s the finest of young men and a new husband.

May I ask you to take a moment now and remember Jonathan and his family in your thoughts and prayers.

Jonathan, our hearts are heavy with this saddest of news. Please know that you are fixed in our minds and in our prayers without ceasing.

Tony

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


OLD SPICE — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 3/24/10

Mar. 24th 2010

I asked Meredith to the junior high school dance.

When I was in the 7th grade.

Not yesterday.
(I know what some of you were thinking … and shame on you!)

Meredith had light brown hair and the most enchanting green eyes. She was a little shy, and a little bookish, a really good student, and she had a great sense of humor. And because her last name started with an L, we sat next to one another in most of our classes. Thank you alphabetical seating chart! This gave me a lot of opportunities to talk to her.

She thought I was funny, and when she laughed hard she snorted a little. I loved that! And since I thought — and still think — that a girl snorting when she laughs is waaaay too cute, I tried hard to make her laugh as much as I could. Being shy, she kinda sorta didn’t want to laugh and snort in class, but I couldn’t help myself! And the more she tried to suppress it, well, the worse it got!

It was wonderful! She would playfully hit me on the shoulder while she laughed and say, “Sttttoppppppp-snort-Tonnnny!”

Pure joy!

Meredith wasn’t a cheerleader and she didn’t run in the cool popular clique of girls. Think Jan, not Marsha. In fact, most of my buddies didn’t even know who she was. But I thought she was irresistibly cute and fun to talk to. I really liked her. And the fact that she thought I was funny, and that she had that sweet laugh, endeared her to me. I couldn’t imagine going to the dance with anyone else.

On the evening of the dance I waited for Meredith in front of the school. When her dad drove up and she got out, I felt like the luckiest boy in the world. “Wow … ” I said to myself. She looked like a princess! Absolutely breathtaking!

She wore a dark navy blue dress, almost black, with a small white floral pattern with touches of powder blue in the flowers. I’d never seen her wear that dress to school. As I thought about it, I imagined that maybe she and her mom might have gone out shopping and bought that dress just for the occasion. I noticed that her hair was in a different style than usual. I imagined that she’d spent a long time getting it just right.

I wondered if her parents had taken pictures of her looking so radiant on the evening of her first “date.” She looked gorgeous and I was love sick! I didn’t pay any attention to the disapproving look that I’m sure her father was giving me. A look that probably said, “If you touch her, I’ll keel you!” He probably pointed at his eyes with his right hand and then pointed them at me …

As for Tony Ludlow, I looked awful. There was nothing particularly special about what I was wearing. And to make matters worse, the dance was held in the school cafeteria where it was like a sauna in early October and I felt like I was sweating through my shirt and looked horrid. I was very self conscious.

Despite how I looked, I thought of myself as a pretty good dancer, for a 13 year old white kid. I was cuttin’ quite a rug once the dance began in the dimly lit cafeteria! I might have been doing the “Funky Chicken.” I don’t remember. I’m sure that what ever I was doing, it was funky.

Truth is, I probably looked ridiculous. But if I did, Meredith never let on. She seemed to be having a good time! She actually seemed to be proud to be with me. It was the first time in my life that a girl actually chose to be with me and seemed to be okay with that decision. (Turns out it would be a rare thing in my later life!)

Well, everything was going just great until the first slow dance.

A SLOW DANCE?? Are you KIDDING ME??

I was terrified.

Meredith and I just stood there looking awkward and nervous as the official slow dance music started – “Nights in White Satin” – and other couples, mostly older more mature 9th graders, started slow dancing. I’d never slow danced in my life!

I was very nervous and could feel my shirt clinging to my back as projectile-flop-sweat was leaping off my forehead like rats abandoning ship. I had no idea how to put my arms around Meredith. Was I supposed to put my arms around her shoulders? Around her waist? High? Low? And where were my hands supposed to be? Not too low, I was pretty sure. How tight was I supposed to hold her? How close were our bodies supposed to be? What parts could touch? So many things to try to figure out in 2 seconds.

I was quite the playah.

Lucky for me, Meredith didn’t seem to mind my awkwardness and we stumbled into one another and wrapped ourselves up like fishing worms.

And then we started doing that little foot shuffling circle movement that passes for slow dancing. After I quit worrying and fretting, I started to relax a little and enjoy my first slow dance. Niiiiice …

This was really fun, I thought, no matter how stupid I looked or how uncomfortable I felt. It was pretty wonderful to hold Meredith in my arms and feel her arms around me. This was awesome! The smell of her perfume was intoxicating. And I was hoping that the gallon of industrial strength Old Spice I had applied to my skinny hairless chest and my pale whisker-less face wasn’t causing her to become nauseated.

Through the dim light and the crowd of couples slow dancing, I spotted my buddy Ronnie over to my left. He and his date were in the darkest part of the cafeteria … and they were not only slow dancing, they were kissing too! NO WAY! But there they were, making out!! … and it looked like fun! I wondered if Meredith wanted to do that too.

Now I had kissed a few girls by this time. Several of us had played Spin the Bottle in 6th grade so I wasn’t completely unfamiliar with the whole kissing thing. It’s true that I weren’t no ladeez man, but I sort of had a general idea how kissing worked.

So I managed to “dance” us over into that same corner with Ronnie and Becky. There was plenty of song left (Thank you Moody Blues) by the time I got us over to the corner to make my move.

So I pulled back, looked at Meredith, calculated the distance from my lips to hers, tried to allow for wind speed, humidity, velocity, lighting, angle of attack, and the phases of the moon, and prepared to move in for “the kiss” … and then … got cold feet … and froze. Froze!

Meredith – God bless her – waited patiently while I mustered up the courage to close the deal.

Time seemed to pass in slow motion as I attempted to achieve radar lock-on for the guidance to Meredith’s waiting lips. I knew what to do … but I just … couldn’t … move. I was terrified and started over-thinking and over-analyzing it all. And the longer I lingered the more awkward it became.

At last I managed to unfreeze myself. Unfortunately at the exact same moment that I finally started to make my “make-out move,” Meredith decided to save the moment and end my embarrassment by resuming the slow dance posture, moving her face toward my shoulder.

The result was that I completely missed her lips … and her cheek … and ended up kissing … her right ear.

My first school dance … I have a really cute girl who is waiting for me to kiss her … and I totally screw it up!

I kissed her ear.

“Did you just try to kiss me?” she asked sweetly.

“Uh … no.” I lied, unconvincingly.

I felt like a complete moron, a total goober, a miserable disappointment to all men everywhere. What a loser!

The rest of the dance went without incident … or a kiss. But we had a really good time anyway. I thought. And the night ended when Meredith’s dad picked her up in front of the school. Ronnie and I stood there as I waved goodbye.

“Did you kiss her?” Ronnie asked, as we waited for his dad to pick us up.

“Yes,” I lied.

A couple of months later, at the Christmas break, Meredith’s family moved to Dallas. I never had a chance to go on another “date” with her. And although I never saw her again, I’ve never forgotten her either.

Timing and opportunity aligned that night at the dance and I blew it. I missed my chance to kiss my first date.

Timing and opportunity are things we’re presented everyday. Maybe not with kissing at a school dance, but with other more meaningful things. More important things.

Timing and opportunity.

Sometimes the door of opportunity opens only once. Be prepared to move! The universe rewards action. And even though this was a silly little story about a 13 year old me and a “move” that I never made, opportunities of all kinds are presented to us everyday. Be prepared all the time to take advantage of the opportunities that are presented to you!

Luck favors the prepared!

How many opportunities have you missed because you were frightened? Or not ready? Or too timid? Or not bold enough? Or simply moved too slowly? And how many times have you moved quickly on an opportunity and the most amazing things happened?

When opportunity knocks … OPEN THE DOOR and invite her in!

Thank you Meredith! I had a great time … and I hope that you still snort when you laugh!

———————-

5K RUN AT CHRIST METHODIST THIS SATURDAY

Ready for a 5K run? Here’s an opportunity!!

Why not run this Saturday at CUMC!? The race begins at 8 AM at the church. You’ll need to register at the church this week, or race morning. Proceeds benefit Cornerstone Preparatory School!

Talk to Jan Averwater or James Hanrahan at CUMC Recreation and Athletic Ministries.

———————-

APRIL IS OUR ANNUAL “BRING A FRIEND TO BOOT CAMP MONTH”

In honor of my friend Tom Farrar, April is our “Bring a Friend to Boot Camp Month!”

You can bring a friend to Boot Camp during April for a FREE WEEK! No strings attached and no obligation to join.

The Boot Camper who brings the most friends in April will get $100!! US Legal Tender. Not 100 Dollars in Boot Camp Bucks! Real money!!

Here are the only rules:

1. Your visiting friends must be prospects for membership, so no out of town visitors will count toward your total number of friends for the contest.

2. Repeat visitors don’t count beyond their first visit – so you can’t bring your friend Bob 15 times during April and count it as 15 friends!

3. Friends who join are counted twice!

Also, your friends can join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP for only $90 in April! That’s 50% off the first month’s fee of $180! Only your friends and family can take advantage of this deal.

Use Facebook to invite your friends AND get a discount on your enlistment. (See below)

——————

RAMPED AND AMP’ED IN APRIL!

Next month will be pretty special at USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP as we ramp things up!

“April” actually begins next Monday on March 29th.

We’ll be returning to the U of M for monthly “Mt. Fuji” workouts at 0530 on April 22 and 29th.

We’ll be going into the “new” gym once a week at 0530 for our special workouts … the ones we did before the church remodeled. (Remember the “rifle drill?”) Those workouts will be every Tuesday in April, actually beginning on Tuesday, March 30. These are awesome workouts!

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes return beginning on Tuesday March 30! Those evening classes will be at the track at St. Agnes on Walnut Grove. (Actually behind St. Dominic)

You’ll hear more! I’m back! And I’m bringin’ it! GET SOME!!

———————————————-

BOGA Expands

By popular demand, in addition to the 0530 class tomorrow morning, BOGA will be on tap for the 08:30 AM and the 5:30 PM classes on Friday!

All BOGA workouts are inside.

BOGA is 22 minutes of hardcore Boot Camp + 22 minutes of Power Yoga = BOGA

————————————————-

LOSE THE WEIGHT – “TAKE SHAPE FOR LIFE!”

You could lose 20 pounds by June!

The secret behind weight loss is more about diet than exercise.

After my own personal success with Take Shape For Life, I became a health coach for TSFL. That’s how much I believe in it!

You can go directly to the Take Shape For Life website (below) to get more information. You can also sign up there as well.

Feel free to call me if you’d like more info. 901-644-0145. I’d be happy to be your coach and help you genuinely lose the weight you’ve been wanting to lose!

Go to: www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com

——————————————–

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

So far this experiment has been pretty amazing!
Here’s how it works!

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee!
Up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

“Great Boot Camp workout with Sgt. Tony this morning!” is good!
“I love USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!” is good!
“I love Sgt. Tony and his Boot Camp ROCKS!!” is REALLY good!

You get the idea! Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

Restrict yourself to just one of these status updates per day. You don’t want 8 status updates in a row going out on the same day!

The deal gets better …

When one of your Facebook friends, who isn’t a boot camper, goes to the website (www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com) because of YOUR status updates and contacts me through the boot camp website, you get an additional $5 off your next enlistment for a max of $20!

Your friend has to actually contact me through the website, not through Facebook. This will help to measure traffic to the website generated from Facebook.

AND … if someone joins because they learned about us through your status update, your next monthly enlistment is FREE!

Already FOUR of you have qualified for $40 off for April and your May enlistment is FREE!

So log on and get started now!

——————————

RACE JUDICATA

Race Judicata is scheduled for Saturday, April 10 at 10:00 a.m. The race will take place at Jefferson Davis Park, located at 51 North Riverside Drive and there will be food and music following the race. Check-in starts at 8:30 a.m.

The race is open to the public. Runners and walkers are welcome!

Strollers welcome! Food and Music Following the Race!

Race Judicata benefits Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS). MALS provides free legal service to the elderly and low income families. For more information about MALS, visit:http://www.malsi.org/

———————————–

What would you do today if fear were not a factor, failure were not an option, and money were not a question?

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


“A slip noose hanging … ” Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 3/17/10

Mar. 17th 2010

Get naked.

Now go stand in front of a full length mirror.

What do you see?

The majority of us will see flaws. We’ll see the imperfections. We’ll see the things that need to be changed, supported, reduced, enhanced, shifted, lifted, or eliminated.

Few will look at their naked image and not have some desire to make an alteration.

If you’re one of those who look and see things that you want to change, more than likely the change you want can be achieved through smart dietary habits and exercise. If you’re looking for that six-pack and it’s hiding under a down comforter … diet is going to be the key to getting reacquainted with those abdominal muscles hiding under a layer(s) of fluff.

If you want to make changes in your life, sometimes you have to see the stark reality of a situation before you’ll be empowered to change. Standing in front of the mirror might be that reality check. If you want to make a change in what you see, you can. It’s possible. It’s doable. It’s achievable. It’s attainable.

For the small price of self discipline, you can have change. Nothing too harsh or hardcore. But determination, maturity, honesty, and commitment is all you need.

And you need a plan.

If you need an eating plan, I’ve got one.

If you need an exercise plan, I’ve got one.

But nothing will work if you don’t.

So take a look at your naked image. You can probably change what you see. If you really want to.

Some of you have been carrying around the same unneeded, unnecessary, and unwanted pounds for a long long time. Aren’t you ready to let them go? Some of those pounds are putting you at risk. Some of those pounds are not only weighing you down literally, they are also holding you back personally.

And I’ve heard of some people whose weight became detrimental in their professional and vocational lives too.

How you feel about yourself effects everything in your life.

Trust me. I know what I’m talking about.

I’m being your best friend right now. I’m attempting to tell you some hard truth. Sometimes having the life you want is a matter of losing the weight that you don’t want. Some of you are frozen in a place of discouragement and disgust because of your weight. The connection we have with our self image and our weight can’t be overstated.

I want you to be free! I want you to be healthy! I want you to live the kind of life that you’ve always wanted and dreamed of.

Yesterday a friend and I had coffee. She wanted to tell me something that would be hard to say and she wanted to meet face to face to say it. Something very hard to tell me, she said … but something she was sure I needed to hear. It had nothing to do with her weight or mine.

What she told me wasn’t so much about me as it was about her. Without an agenda, she told me things so serious and deep that I couldn’t speak. Her words touched me in a way that I can’t explain. And I’m not being melodramatic when I say that. It was to me … sacred. Truly and most profoundly … sacred.

I sat mesmerized and silent as I listened to her like I’ve never listened to another human being in my life. I’m not sure that I’ve ever been so affected by something shared with me. Spellbound and speechless, I was unable to make a sound as she spoke. It would take a long long time to process everything she said. And in the things she said I saw a shadow of myself. In her triumph I saw a glimpse of my own.

Many of you know that six months ago I tore my right quadriceps tendon playing in a tennis tournament. 2009 had already been one of the hardest years of my life and now a major knee injury was going to require major knee surgery.

My orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Robert Miller, had to cut me open, attach sutures to my severed tendon, drill holes in my bone, run the sutures through the holes, tie them down, and then staple me back together.

Sounded more like carpentry than surgery.

My terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year was getting worse. (My apologies to “Alexander” and Judith Viorst)

For the next three months I was on crutches with a straight leg brace that extended from my upper right thigh to my ankle. I couldn’t bend my right leg at all. Do you know what you CAN’T do when you can’t bend your knee at all?

The easier question is: do you know what you CAN do when you can’t bend your knee? Not much. Not much at all. You can’t drive. You can’t sleep. You can’t go to the kitchen and get something to eat. You can’t take a shower. You can’t, you can’t, you can’t … ad infinitum, ad nauseam.

And going to the bathroom required me to learn a brand new set of gymnastics routines that are sure to become an Olympic event.

As the days wore on I got depressed (did I mention that 2009 had already been a miserable year already?) and I got fat and out of shape. Your muscles disappear quickly when you don’t, or can’t, use them.

None of my pants fit — not even my “fat” jeans — and I was disgusted with myself. I was a fat, depressed, out of shape, crippled man.

While you slept, I sat in my recliner with my leg propped up, trying to sleep in that straight leg brace. But unable to. And in the darkness the demons visited. I had never weighed this much or been this low in my entire life. Ever.

I saw no light at the end of the tunnel … as the seconds ticked by in the middle of the night, night after night, I saw only darkness. Darkness everyday.

The more weight I gained, the more depressed I got. The more depressed I got, the more I ate. And exercise was out of the question. The mental and emotional boost that you get from exercise wasn’t mine to have.

Hello depression and gloom and self loathing.

This went on for weeks.

Then I got a phone call from my son Matthew, who was stationed in Quantico, VA at the time.

He’d had a dream the night before. In his dream he was cheering for me as I was about to cross the finish line of the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii … when I’m 80 years old!

“Dad, you looked like an 80 year old badass!” he said.

Well, that changed everything.

Suddenly I had a vision of an 80 year old me kicking some serious tri-butt!

But I wasn’t going to become an athlete again by wallowing in self pity and despair. The only way I knew how to dig out was to dig in. I had to redouble my efforts to get out of this hole. I had to get out!

I formulated a plan.

I spent three agonizing hours EVERYDAY taking the brace off my leg and forcing my knee to bend. I had no muscle strength to bend it, so I sat on the floor — no easy task — and put a towel around my ankle and heel. I painfully tried to bend my knee by pulling the towel toward me, sliding my heel along the floor, working hard against a tendon that was working harder to keep my leg straight.

I was also going to PT three hours a week and having the physical therapists force new degrees of knee bend. This usually brought tears to my eyes and left me covered in sweat and exhausted.

I had to learn how to walk again. I had to learn how to climb stairs again. Then came weeks and weeks of leg muscle building exercises, agility exercises, balance exercises, stability exercises, stamina training, torture, and pain. I worked hard. Very hard. I took control. And the harder I worked, the more I was able to add to the list of things I COULD do!

I lost the weight (over 25 pounds) and got stronger. I was determined to be the most motivated and determined patient that my surgeon and PTs had ever seen. I was committed to getting back to the activities I love in record time. I was determined to reclaim my life! I was determined to become the man who could become that 80 year old badass that Matthew had seen in his dream!

Last Saturday I ran two miles outside for the first time since September 22! This morning I ran with the 0530 class for the first time too!

Yesterday Dr. Miller confirmed what I had worked for; I was in fact his most committed, hardest working, and most successful patient ever. “None of my patients have ever worked this hard at rehabbing a quad tendon repair nor made this kind of progress,” he told me, looking over his glasses with a broad smile on his face. (That’s for you, Nancy!)

Yesterday my Physical Therapists shook my hand and said goodbye to me. I was done, all done! I had graduated from PT, weeks ahead of schedule, they said!

As of today, I’m on my own!

I have been cleared to slowly resume my activities: running, cycling, swimming, and even tennis! I’m determined! I won’t let fear keep me from going for it! I have an appointment with an 80 year old me!

“It’s not how you start, but how you finish … everybody gets knocked down … how quick are you gonna get up?”

How about you? Are you ready for a change in your own life?

Can you be honest with yourself?

Can you see a vision for your life?

Can you get an image of what you want to look like physically? (Weight lost, smaller size clothes, stronger muscles, optimal health).

Can you make a list of the things you’d like to do?

Are you determined to change … or will you just settle?

Will you find the courage to be an agent of change in your own life, or will you simply come up with more creative excuses for why you won’t reclaim YOUR life?

You can do it. I promise that you can!

A dear friend saved my life yesterday by telling me something I needed to hear. Maybe something I’ve said here will save your life too.

“Life is mostly froth and bubble.
Two things stand like stone.
Kindness in another’s trouble.
And courage in your own.”
~ Adam Lindsay Gordon

——————————————

RAMPED AND AMP’ED IN APRIL!

Next month will be pretty special at USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP as we ramp things up!

We’ll be returning to the U of M for monthly “Mt. Fuji” workouts at 0530!

We’ll be going into the “new” gym once a week for our special workouts … the ones we did before the church remodeled. (Remember the “rifle drill?”)

These are awesome workouts!

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes return!

April is also “Bring Your Friend To USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP” month. Your friends can come and try it out for a week at no charge and no obligation! And the person who brings the most friends during the month gets $100. (Not 100 dollars worth of “Boot Camp Bucks!”)

You’ll hear more! I’m back! And I’m bringin’ it!

———————————————-

BOGA Expands

By popular demand, in addition to the 0530 class tomorrow morning, BOGA will be on tap for the 08:30 AM and the 5:30 PM classes on Friday!

All BOGA workouts are inside.

BOGA is 22 minutes of hardcore Boot Camp + 22 minutes of Power Yoga = BOGA

————————————————-

LOSE THE WEIGHT – The Body You Want in June Begins With a Strategy Today!

You could lose 20 pounds by June!

The secret behind weight loss is more about diet than exercise.

A testimony from Amy Beth Dudley!

“I started Take Shape For Life on 2/13 and so far I am down a good 10 lbs. For the past few years, I have been struggling with food sensitivity and wonder what I could do to cut down on that problem and get healthy (aka lose weight and get moving). Well, TSFL is the answer!! I haven’t had any troubles so far and have enjoyed the program. My life is beyond hectic but even with all my eating out, I have been able to keep on track and stay healthy and lose some weight.”
~ Amy Beth Dudley amybethdudley@yahoo.com

And this from Melissa Speck:

“Take Shape For Life” has proven to be a very rewarding experience in my quest for weight loss and healthy living. I am a 34 year old mother of three young daughters, and I decided to take that necessary step in finally losing those extra pounds! I began the TSFL program in January, and 3 1/2 weeks into the program I had already lost 12 pounds! TSFL is a fool-proof, no brainer weight loss program that is extremely easy to follow.

The program allows you to eat their meals throughout the day, including a lean and green meal of your own, so I never felt as if I were “starving” or hungry.

I am currently transitioning into the re-introduction phase of a wider variety of foods. During this phase I am continuing with the program’s bars, shakes, and soups, but I am also eating fruits, vegetables, sandwiches and lots of healthy proteins. I have kept those 12 pounds off, and have lost an additional 3 pounds! TSFL has had a positive impact on my life, allowing me to attain
my healthy lifestyle goals. If it worked for me, it will work for you!!!” ~ Melissa Speck

TSFL works! This is the program I used to lose the weight I gained after I had knee surgery.

After my own personal success with this program, I became a health coach for TSFL. That’s how much I believe in it!

You can go directly to the Take Shape For Life website (below) to get more information. You can also sign up there as well.

Feel free to call me if you’d like more info. 901-644-0145. I’m Amy Beth and Melissa’s coach! I’d be happy to be your coach too!
Go to: www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com .

Those in Sgt. Tony’s TSFL Battalion will have a meeting tomorrow night at 7 PM at Panera Bread, Poplar/Grove Park. We’ll be in their side room.

If you’re interested in TSFL you’re welcome to come too. You can feel free to talk to me or anyone else who’s in the program. You won’t be asked to join or anything like that. So, no pressure at all!

——————————————–

Sgt. Tony’s Return to Running!

I am planning my return to running in the first annual Freedom Run 5K on April 24.

This is a new race sponsored by the Navy – Marine Corps ROTC unit at the University of Memphis. This is the unit that my son, Matthew, was the Commanding Officer of last year. And our own Pat McGhee’s son, Christopher, is a member of.

I will be a “beginner” runner, so my pace will be slow. Won’t you join me? Maybe run with me and keep me company? Run past me and make fun of me?

Never run a 5K before? Wouldn’t this be a perfect FIRST 5K?!!

What should you do to start? If you are brand new to running, I’m going to post a training plan on the Boot Camp blog with a training plan for running your first 5K! Look for it!

I’d love to have a big group of us turn out for this run.

http://5kfreedomrun.racesonline.com/

—————-

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

So far this experiment has been pretty amazing!
Here’s how it works!

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee!
Up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

So, “I love boot camp!” won’t work cuz there are lots of fake boot camps out there!

“Great Boot Camp workout with Sgt. Tony this morning!” is good!
“I love USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!” is good!
“I love Sgt. Tony and his Boot Camp ROCKS!!” is REALLY good!

You get the idea! Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

Restrict yourself to just one of these status updates per day. You don’t want 8 status updates in a row going out on the same day!

The deal gets better …

When one of your Facebook friends, who isn’t a boot camper, goes to the website (www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com) because of YOUR status updates and contacts me through the boot camp website, you get an additional $5 off your next enlistment for a max of $20!

Your friend has to actually contact me through the website, not through Facebook. This will help to measure traffic to the website generated from Facebook.

AND … if someone joins because they learned about us through your status update, your next monthly enlistment is FREE!

Already FOUR of you have qualified for $40 off for April and your May enlistment is FREE!

So log on and get started now!

——————————

RACE JUDICATA

Race Judicata is scheduled for Saturday, April 10 at 10:00 a.m. The race will take place at Jefferson Davis Park, located at 51 North Riverside Drive and there will be food and music following the race. Check-in starts at 8:30 a.m.

The race is open to the public. Runners and walkers are welcome!

Strollers welcome! Food and Music Following the Race!

Race Judicata benefits Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS). MALS provides free legal service to the elderly and low income families. For more information about MALS, visit: http://www.malsi.org/

To register or donate and see more information, such as the race route, please see visit our website:http://www.racejudicatamemphis.org/

————————————————–

Be bold, my friends!

“It’s not how you start, but how you finish … everybody gets knocked down … how quick are you gonna get up?”

Keep your eyes on the life you want.

Don’t settle!

To your continued good health and fitness!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

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Sgt. Tony’s Take Shape For Life Battalion News for 3/13/10

Mar. 15th 2010

Hey Everyone!

WOW! What a great week it was!

It was good for YOU too, yes?

Sgt. Tony’s TSFL Battalion continues to grow! That’s so awesome! More people are discovering just how cool this program is!

Since 4 of you will be starting the program this next week, I thought having some testimonials would be encouraging to you.

“I started TSFL on 2/13 and so far I am down a good 10 lbs. For the past few years, I have been struggling with food sensitivity and wonder what I could do to cut down on that problem and get healthy (aka lose weight and get moving). Well, TSFL is the answer!! I haven’t had any troubles so far and have enjoyed the program. My life is beyond hectic but even with all my eating out, I have been able to keep on track and stay healthy and lose some weight.”
~ Amy Beth Dudley amybethdudley@yahoo.com

“Take Shape For Life” has proven to be a very rewarding experience in my quest for weight loss and healthy living. I am a 34 year old mother of three young daughters, and I decided to take that necessary step in finally losing those extra pounds! I began the TSFL program in January, and 3 1/2 weeks into the program I had already lost 12 pounds! TSFL is a fool-proof, no brainer weight loss program that is extremely easy to follow.

The program allows you to eat their meals throughout the day, including a lean and green meal of your own, so I never felt as if I were “starving” or hungry.

I am currently transitioning into the re-introduction phase of a wider variety of foods. During this phase I am continuing with the program’s bars, shakes, and soups, but I am also eating fruits, vegetables, sandwiches and lots of healthy proteins. I have kept those 12 pounds off, and have lost an additional 3 pounds!
TSFL has had a positive impact on my life, allowing me to attain
my healthy lifestyle goals. If it worked for me, it will work for you!!!”

~ Melissa Speck, melissaspeck@yahoo.com

Thanks Amy Beth and Melissa!

Write yours I’ll include it in next week’s newsletter!

——————————————-

FISHY!

A few of you don’t like fish and so your lean protein is coming only from chicken, beef, lamb, etc. No problem!

HOWEVER, since you aren’t getting any of your Omega 3 from the fish, you’ll want to be sure to take that as a supplement. (I do anyway, just to be on the safe side.)

“But Tony, those fish oil supplements don’t sit well with me … if you know what I mean.” I do indeed!

Here’s a tip for all of us who take fish oil supplements but HATE the whole fishy-burbing-aftertaste thing.

Put those fish oil supplements in the freezer. I have NO idea why taking them frozen prevents that aftertaste nonsense from happening, but it does for me!

Give it a try if this is something you’d like to avoid.

———————————————

NEXT BATTALION GATHERING!

We’ll meet this coming Thursday night at 7 PM at Panera Bread, Poplar/Grove Park. We’ll be in their side room.

This is a meeting for us to get to know others in the program, encourage one another, share ideas, tips, success strategies and even exchange some food items that you may not prefer for something that someone else would like to trade. I’ll bring some. Also, any of your friends who might be interested in TSFL are welcome to come too. They can feel free to talk to me or anyone else who’s in the program. They won’t be asked to join or anything like that. So, no pressure at all!

Panera has some food items on their menu that qualify for our “lean and green” so you could have dinner during the meeting if you’d like!

——————————————–

Have a GREAT weekend everyone! Don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of any help!!

I look forward to hearing about your success!!

Yours,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

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SEE ME!?! — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 3/10/10

Mar. 10th 2010

My dogs are in the backyard.

Drake and Aki (ahh-key) are sitting outside my window looking up at me.

Well … not exactly.

They’re outside the window where I’m standing. I don’t think they see me. They appear to be looking “at” the window. They don’t look “through” the glass and see me. They look at the glass and … sort of see … something. Shadows, maybe. Shapes. Changes in light. I don’t know. But it’s clear that they don’t see the real me. (My apologies to The Who)

During my first Japanese language class in Tokyo the instructor said in very slow, precise, and measured English, “You … will soon … think things … that you’ve never … thought before.” She didn’t speak that way because her English was poor. She said it that way for emphasis. (She was right.)

An older male member of my family once declared, “If I don’t know it by now, I don’t need to know it.”

When I was 19 I stood in an art museum and watched in wonder as an elderly man started to weep as he looked at an abstract painting. Something about that painting touched him. But the painting had no effect on me.

I don’t really get “I Love Lucy.” If you’re female, you probably do … but you probably don’t get The Three Stooges.

A woman I went out with once informed me, on our one and only date, that “Oh Brother Where Art Thou” was the dumbest movie she’d ever seen. She said that right after I told her that it was one of my favorites. “CHECK, PLEASE!”

I heard the Japanese National Anthem the other day and it moved me deeply. It probably would not have the same effect on you.

I get choked up at the end of “Field of Dreams.” Everytime.

There is a fragrance that I associate so strongly with a particular woman, that when I smelled that perfume the other day, standing behind a woman in line at the grocery store who was wearing it, it caused me to long for that person I miss so much. It also, oddly enough, made the woman in front of me appear more attractive.

Illogical, irrational, involuntary responses. Most of them.

Perhaps you’ve heard it said, “A person’s perception is their reality.” How a person perceives and processes the world around them becomes the mortar and brick with which they use to construct their version of reality. And we all do it … differently.

The younger I was, the less tolerant I was. Growing up in my little Arkansas town, I was sure that the world of Fort Smith was all there was. It’s a characteristic of insecurity and lack of knowledge. With age, and education, and an exposure to other people and other cultures, I saw the myopia that was mine for what it was, ignorance, fear, and self-doubt.

Being able to genuinely accept another person who has a different point of view or a different set of beliefs — especially if they’re religious or political beliefs — from our own requires maturity, wisdom, and confidence. It also requires patience, openness, and a desire to truly understand the other person.

People who attack what they don’t know, or what they don’t understand, are usually insecure and they frequently respond with inappropriate and aggressive knee jerk overreactions to things; they try to keep others on the defensive and at arm’s length … mostly trying to keep from being found out.

Being open minded is tough. It requires a willingness to entertain the notion that we *might* be wrong about something. We may be forced to face and overcome our fears, our ignorance, our insecurities, our prejudices, and be honest with ourselves. We may be forced to think new thoughts, or be led to believe new things, or discover a new way to live!

If I asked you “how well do you know yourself?” you might be forced to admit that you really don’t know yourself all that well. Oh, you know things *about* yourself. You know your personal history and the roles you play and the responsibilities you bear: parent, child, employee, athlete … But what would true self discovery reveal about the real you?

Philosophers concerning themselves with epistemology ask questions about the knowledge of knowledge. What is knowledge? Can we truly know anything? Or anyone? And how do we know what we know … or think we know? And then there’s the desperate desire, at times, to unknow what we know; which is different from simply forgetting or choosing not to remember. This is one of the reasons I find the movie “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” to be so fascinating … and unsettling. And why the thought of Alzheimers terrifies me.

So if there is a high probability that you don’t know yourself all that well, what are the odds that you know others well … and that they know you well? Especially when we masquerade behind social masks of social convention, social acceptability, social status, and social expectation. So many layers to peel away. So many masks to take off. So many facades to dismantle to get to the real you.

So why judge anyone? Why label another person with designations of politics, religion, or race? Why pigeonhole another pilgrim on this planet who’s just trying to get along as best as they can … or as best as they know how?

If we have trouble explaining to ourselves why we do the things we do, why we say the things we say … what makes us think that we can know the secret counsel hidden inside the motivations within another person’s heart and mind? How will we arrive at an explanation for what goes on in the hearts and minds of another human being, when we can’t adequately explain those things about ourselves? It’s presumption at best.

There’s a passage in the Old Testament that says,
“The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it?”

I won’t attempt to analyze the first two assertions, but the question is a good one. Who can know the mind of another when our own hearts, passions, prejudices, preferences, self interests, and past experiences — mostly unclear to us — mix in our minds and often lead us to distort our own perception of reality?

We are, in many ways, no better than my two dogs. We look at the world, but we seldom see it. Shadows, maybe? Shapes. Changes in light?

Wouldn’t it be nice if all of our hearts were full of tolerance and acceptance today, quick to forgive and forget, slow to judge, able to see? Like a parachute, our minds work best when open.

———————————————

BOGA Expands This Week

By popular demand, in addition to the 0530 class tomorrow morning, BOGA will be on tap for the 08:30 AM and the 5:30 PM on Friday!

BOGA is 22 minutes of hardcore Boot Camp + 22 minutes of Power Yoga = BOGA

——————————————–

I GOTTA GUY …

“Tony, do you know anyone who …?”

I get this question a lot. So I thought I’d compile a list of my “go to people.” Here’s a list of “my peeps!”

I’ve used all of these folks, so you can call on them with confidence! You might want to save this or print it out and keep it handy, just in case. And if I’ve missed including you and your biz, let me know. If you’re listed here but there’s a better contact number or method for you, let me know.

Sergeant Tony’s …
Doctor … Dr. Arthur Franklin (901-756-4338)
Dentist … Dr. John Whittemore (901-754-0540)
Eye Doctor … Dr. Carl “Buddy” Flinn (901-681-4040)
Running Store … Fleet Feet Sports! – Eric and Robin Flanders … (901-901-761-0078)
Veterinarian … Dr. Amy Moffatt – Mobile Vet – she comes to you! (901-569-3683)
Florist … Piano’s Flowers and Gifts … David Strong (901-345-7670)
Painting, Roofing, and Home Repairs … Rodney Stafford (901487-0017)
Lawn Service … George Rose … (901-494-2175. grose@fedex.com)
Website Design and Domain Hosting … Cathy Graham (901-888-2932. cgraham@grafixunlimited.com)
Chiropractor … Chiropractic Memphis … Dr. Dave Kellenberger (901-323-3613)
General Massage … Rick Owings (901-323-1220)
Sports/Athletic Massage Therapy … Kelly Stone (901-754-6008)
Plumber … Kevin Savage (901-674-3637)
Carpet, Upholstery and Tile Cleaning … Dennis Beatty (Tiger Paws) … (901-327-1884)
Heating and Air Conditioning … Greenway Appliance Repair …Mike Miller (901-754-1515)
PC Computer Repair … David Bensman – he comes to you! (901-830-4362)
Interior Design … Karen Pennington at Samuel’s Furniture & Interiors … (901-761-4998)
Vitamins & Wellness products … Rhena Lindsey … Shaklee … (901-647-7636)
Media Transfer Services … Ande Demetriou … (901-213-7890)
Tennis Instruction … Taylor Taylor (Racquet Club – 901-765-4409)
Real Estate Agent … Barbie Clayton … (901-831-0103)
Closing Attorney … Doug Earthman … (901-685-1322)
Pet Grooming … Mathis Young – Aussie Mobile Pet Grooming – he comes to you! (901-497-1128)
Pet Waste Removal … On Doody … Lee Bowling (901-753-9004)
Termite Company … Greg Inman (901-388-0852)
Moving Company … Affordable Moving (901-388-3313)
Auto Repair … Midas Auto Services … CJ Passmore (901-682-6623)
Auto Glass Replacement … Discount Auto Glass – they come to you (901-937-0588)
Tree Service … Woodland Tree Service … Tom Munhollen … (901-652-5750)

———————————————

ART, ANYONE?

A Boot Camper is looking for art instruction in East Memphis. Charcoal and pencil drawing are the things they’re mostly interested in. Do you know of someone who does this?

———————————————

Sgt. Tony’s Return to Running!

I am planning my return to running in the first annual Freedom Run 5K on April 24.

This is a new race sponsored by the Navy – Marine Corps ROTC unit at the University of Memphis. This is the unit that my son, Matthew, was the Commanding Officer of last year. And our own Pat McGhee’s son, Christopher, is a member of.

I will be a “beginner” runner, so my pace will be slow. Won’t you join me? Maybe run with me and keep me company for a while? Run past me and make fun of me?

Never run a 5K before? Wouldn’t this be a perfect FIRST 5K?!!

What should you do to start training? If you are brand new to running, I’m going to post a training plan on the Boot Camp blog with a training plan for running your first 5K! Look for it!

I’d love to have a big group of us turn out for this run.

http://5kfreedomrun.racesonline.com/

My PT’s have cleared me for outside running!! So I’m going to the U of M on Saturday at 9 AM and run around the track there. Join me, weather permitting! I’m only going to run a mile … then walk a lap … and then, if i can … run another mile! And I won’t be running very fast at all, so please join me!

—————-

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

The hottest buzz in internet marketing is the use of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

So far this experiment has been pretty amazing!
Here’s how it works!

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee! Up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

So, “I love boot camp!” won’t work cuz there are lots of fake boot camps out there!

“Great Boot Camp workout with Sgt. Tony this morning!” is good!
“I love USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!” is good!
“I love Sgt. Tony and his Boot Camp ROCKS!!” is REALLY good!

You get the idea! Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

Oh, and for you haters, the reference has to be POSITIVE! “Sgt. Tony is mean!” or something similar, wouldn’t really work! But, “Sgt. Tony is wonderfully mean and kicked my butt at boot camp today!” does! “Sgt. Tony is the Devil!” is OK too!

Have fun with this! Be creative!

Restrict yourself to just one of these status updates per day, please. You don’t want 8 status updates in a row going out on the same day!

That would not be in keeping with the experiment!

The deal gets better …

When one of your Facebook friends, who isn’t a boot camper, goes to the website (www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com) because of YOUR status updates and contacts me through the boot camp website, you get an additional $5 off your next enlistment for a max of $20!

Your friend has to actually contact me through the website, not through Facebook. This will help to measure traffic to the website generated from Facebook.

AND … if someone joins because they learned about us through your status update, your next monthly enlistment is FREE!

You could get up to $40 OFF for one month and the next month after that could be FREE, simply by making a few Facebook status updates!

So get started right now! This also applies to Boot Campers who’ve taken some time off to hibernate for the winter! You know who you are!

Log on to your Facebook account and say something like, “Sgt. Tony is the most awesomest man in Memphis!” And your discounts begin!

—————

LOSE THE WEIGHT – The Body You Want in July Begins With a Strategy Today!

A testimony from Boot Camper, Melissa Speck!

“Take Shape For Life” has proven to be a very rewarding experience in my quest for weight loss and healthy living. I am a 34 year old mother of three young daughters, and I decided to take that necessary step in finally losing those extra pounds! I began the TSFL program in January, and 3 1/2 weeks into the program I had already lost 12 pounds! TSFL is a fool-proof, no brainer weight loss program that is extremely easy to follow.

The program allows you to eat their meals throughout the day, including a lean and green meal of your own, so I never felt as if I were “starving” or hungry.

I am currently transitioning into the re-introduction phase of a wider variety of foods. During this phase I am continuing with the program’s bars, shakes, and soups, but I am also eating fruits, vegetables, sandwiches and lots of healthy proteins. I have kept those 12 pounds off, and have lost an additional 3 pounds!
TSFL has had a positive impact on my life, allowing me to attain
my healthy lifestyle goals. If it worked for me, it will work for you!!!”

~ Melissa Speck, melissaspeck@yahoo.com

You can go directly to the Take Shape For Life website (below). You can also sign up there as well.

Or feel free to call me. 901-644-0145. I’ll be happy to be your coach too!
Go to: www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com .

—————-

Be bold, my friends!

Keep your eyes on the life you want.

Don’t settle!

To your continued good health and fitness!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/=

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Sgt. Tony’s Take Shape For Life Battalion News

Mar. 7th 2010

Hi Everyone!

How was your week?

Some of you reported having a crummy week and others of you have had an awesome one!

Why the difference?

I’ll let you think about that for a minute.

The answer isn’t really that hard to figure out.

Those who had crummy weeks planned to have crummy weeks.

“WHAT??? Wait a minute there Tony Ludlow! I did NOT plan to have a crummy week!” I can hear you say.

“Yes, you did.”

See, here’s the thing. You guys are smart, intelligent, educated, and accomplished. You didn’t get that way by chance or accident. You had a plan.

You’ve heard that old adage, “Failure to plan is planning to fail.” Right? Heard that one, right? Probably even said it a time or two yourself.

Since you guys are accustomed to academia, let’s just say that every Friday you’re going to have a history test. If you know that on Sunday night, that on Friday you’re going to have a test, you’re going to look at your week and schedule time to study. Right?

Waiting until Thursday night to cram probably won’t work, will it?

Waiting for the history book and your class notes to schedule time with you won’t work either.

Those of you who had a crummy week were like those two Northwest pilots who overshot their intended airport by several hundred miles while they were “distracted in the cockpit.”

You got distracted. You didn’t focus. You didn’t plan. You sort of flew by the seat of your pants and didn’t log a flight plan that would get you to your destination.

Ever look at the flight board at the airport and see “Not Sure” as the Destination for Delta Flight 247? Of course not.

I look at my Friday morning weigh in as my weekly test. So I make plans to be successful on the Friday morning of that week.

Y’all, Take Shape For Life is the easiest, most convenient, no-brainer weight loss plan I know of! I mean, seriously. It’s like you’ve been given the test ahead of time with the answers already written in!

You’ve been given a detailed flight plan to get you to your destination. All you have to do is follow the plan!

Plan to follow the plan! And plan to follow the plan the night before. Set your food out the night before if you’re going to be heading out the door in the morning in a hurry and you just need to grab it and go.

If you’re going to be eating out, make good choices at the restaurant and eat smart. This past week I had lunch with friends from out of town and dinner that same day with another friend. In both cases I was eating out. My lunch date with my friends from out of town was at Corky’s. They’re from Virginia and say the bar-b-q there is unfit. So we HAD to go to Corky’s! Oh my.

In both cases I made fairly smart decisions, enjoyed the meals, and brought home half of what I ordered in to-go-boxes. The next morning on the scales, no weight gain!

If your goal is that important to you, and I think it is. Then get as serious about achieving it as you were about getting that degree or arriving at the destination you set out for on your last road trip. (I’m assuming that if you were intending to go to Arizona, you didn’t end up in Kentucky, right?)

Weigh yourself Monday through Friday at the same time everyday, preferably in the morning after you’ve gotten up and gone to the bathroom. And if you were bad on Tuesday and you know you probably gained weight and you want to skip your Wednesday morning weigh in … DON’T SKIP IT! GET ON THE SCALE AND TAKE YOUR LUMPS!

Oh, but Tony I’ll get depressed. Maybe. You’ll probably be disappointed and you might even get angry. Use those emotions to fuel your resolve and determination. It’s a temporary set back, not a life sentence!

Be accountable! Burying your head in the sand won’t work. Your butt will just get big and it’ll be exposed!

This is your kick in the seat of the pants newsletter!

I want you to be successful and YOU CAN BE SUCCESSFUL!

The reason I know this is because you have already been successful in your life. Now just apply the same principles that led to those other successes to THIS challenge!

YOU CAN DO THIS!!

PLAN FOR SUCCESS!

Several of you told me about great successes this week! AWESOME!!! Keep it up!

Get out your calendar and give yourself a weight loss goal and date deadline!

Let me know how I can help!

Tell your friends about Take Shape For Life. Let’s not keep this to ourselves! Let me help them. Or you can become a coach too and help them. In fact, more than a couple of you guys need to really consider becoming a coach too. Let me know.

———————————-

Our next group gathering will be on Thursday night, March 18 at 7 PM at Panera Bread.

———————————-

Congratulations to Sarah Bowen who ran the New Orleans Marathon last weekend! Way to go Sarah!

And Margaret Caffey (and David) are in Orlando this weekend to run a half marathon at Disney World! Good luck Mags!

———————————–

Have a great weekend everyone! Get some exercise, the weather is wonderful here in Memphis!!

To your continued good heath, weight loss, and finess!

Tony

http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

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THE FRONT PORCH — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 3/3/10

Mar. 3rd 2010

We clicked from the very beginning.

You know what I mean?

We were instantly drawn to one another.

You meet someone, male or female, and immediately you get them. They get you. You feel a connection with them. You want to know more.

In seconds you go from strangers, to feeling a sense of familiarity that you can’t explain. You sense their personality and spirit; yours and theirs are so similar … and you know it in a moment!

Yesterday I had lunch with two such people.

I met Mark and Linda in Tokyo in 1989 and within minutes we had formed an immediate bond. Call it chemistry. Call it a connection. Call it cosmic. When it happens, it’s magic!

But I’ll tell you this, it doesn’t happen everyday. It’s rare. Rare indeed. In fact, I can probably count on one hand the number of times it’s happened in my life.

It’s impossible to explain.

You meet someone and you know instantly that this person is, what I call, “a life changer.” Do you know what I mean? It’s not one of those things that you finally recognize after months of knowing them. You know it instantly. There is something about them! And you know immediately that this chance encounter, this random meeting, is going to alter your life … forever. They’re a life changer!

Mark and Linda became two of my dearest friends in a heartbeat … and over the next 10 years we enjoyed that friendship at every opportunity doing all kinds of things together. Trips, travel, triathlons, tennis and endless hours of the best conversation to be had … that always ended too soon; and the time in between always too long.

But as often happens in life, circumstances caused the trajectory of our lives to vary and our paths to change. They returned to the States from Japan and moved to Richmond, VA and I returned and moved here to Memphis. Within a year or so Mark’s job literally had him spanning the globe. (In the past month he’s been in Johannesburg, South Africa, London, Hawaii, and Idaho.) And opportunities to be together practically evaporated. Emails and phone calls … but no opportunities to see one another in years.

Until yesterday.

And then, in an instant … reconnected … as if the years apart had never existed at all. Magic!

We spent the next 3 hours talking about the details in our lives, telling stories, laughing, being amazed, being grateful. But it wasn’t the telling of the details of our lives that brought us close again … that was always there … just like when we first met! It was inside of us always and never left. Kindred spirits that are drawn to one another by forces and energies that can’t be understood, described, or explained. It just is. And it’s either there or it isn’t. Impossible to fabricate.

I have a lot of close friends and warm acquaintances that I’m thankful for everyday! I have a deep desire to know people and to connect with them. Being with people energizes me. I genuinely like people. Odds are, I probably like you too! (Don’t tell anyone that I like people. My reputation as Evil Incarnate will take a hit if you tell this story about me.)

One of the absolute joys of my life is connecting with people. I don’t look at you boot campers as clients or customers … you’re like family to me — granted we’re a dysfunctional family — but that’s how I connect with people and probably how I connect with you.

One of my long time friends, someone who’s known me since I was 12, says that I let a lot of people onto my “front porch” where I entertain and get to know you … but I invite few people into my “house.” She says that I invite tons of people to climb the steps to my porch, but the front door doesn’t open to many. Those who get in, she said, I never allow to leave, even if they behave badly. She may be right about that. I have a hard time letting go. Actually, I don’t know if I am capable of letting go of those who’ve been inside.

But there are some people in my life for whom there never was a front door to open … they just had immediate and welcome access to my whole life … the whole house. There was never a door for Mark and Linda. They appeared in my den in an instant!

And I’ll bet that you’ve got your own Marks and your own Lindas in your life too. People with whom you connected at once! People with whom your relationship has required no work. It just is! There is a connection, a mutual understanding, an engagement of kindred spirits that is natural, comfortable, easy, and deeply fulfilling. Effortless. Effortless. Knowing them is as easy as knowing yourself. And the passing of years doesn’t affect it. You could go five years without seeing them or talking to them and yet meet them for lunch tomorrow and there would be that instantaneous connection and the years would be as if they had never existed. You’d pick right up where you left off!

And if you were lucky enough to marry such a person with whom you connected so immediately and so deeply, you should be thankful everyday! Everyday! What a wonderful thing! You might call that person your “soulmate.” Someone who connects, complements, and (my apologies for the “Jerry Maguire” reference) completes you.

The Japanese have a word that is similar to soulmate, but not necessarily a romantic term. “Shinyu” means “close, intimate friend” and can be used to refer to a male friend or a female friend. But as one of my Japanese language teachers told me, that word means so much more. It literally means that if you were to lay the soul of one person over the soul of the other, there would be no differences. They would be the same. Not copies. Not duplicates. More like mirror images of the same original.

Of course, our lives are also filled with deep, meaningful, and significant relationships that were slower to take hold and build and those we should celebrate and be thankful for as well. That said, those that happen in an instant are particularly significant to me.

I hope that those kinds of special connections in your life are being nurtured and given opportunity for expression as much as possible. Take time today, or in the next 24 hours, to reach out to those extraordinary people in your life. (Maybe even forward this newsletter to them!)

Honor those who had, and have, an instant and welcome access into your life, your “house.” Tell them how important they are to you. That you love them. And if they are far away or out of reach, tell them how much you miss them. Because when it comes down to it, my friends … those connections — those people and the relationship you have with them — are the core and substance of our lives … everything else is just smoke and mirrors, stuff … background noise.

Thank you Mark and Linda. I love you guys. You are life changers … you are shinyu.

———————————————

Sgt. Tony’s Return to Running!

I am planning my return to running in the first annual Freedom Run 5K on April 24.

This is a new race sponsored by the Navy – Marine Corps ROTC unit at the University of Memphis. This is the unit that my son, Matthew, was the Commanding Officer of last year. And our own Pat McGhee’s son, Christopher, is a member of.

I will be a “beginner” runner, so my pace will be slow. Won’t you join me? Maybe run with me and keep me company? Run past me and make fun of me?

Never run a 5K before? Wouldn’t this be a perfect FIRST 5K?!!

I’d love to have a big group of us turn out for this run.

http://5kfreedomrun.racesonline.com/

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BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

The hottest buzz in internet marketing is the use of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.

Here’s the experiment:

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee! Up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

So, “I love boot camp!” won’t work cuz there are lots of fake boot camps out there!

“Great Boot Camp workout with Sgt. Tony this morning!” is good!
“I love USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!” is good!
“I love Sgt. Tony and his Boot Camp ROCKS!!” is REALLY good!

You get the idea! Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

Oh, and for you haters, the reference has to be POSITIVE! “Sgt. Tony is mean!” or something similar, wouldn’t really work! But, “Sgt. Tony is wonderfully mean and kicked my butt at boot camp today!” does! “Sgt. Tony is the Devil!” is OK too!

Have fun with this! Be creative!

Restrict yourself to just one of these status updates per day, please. You don’t want 8 status updates in a row going out on the same day!

That would not be in keeping with the experiment!

The deal gets better …

When one of your Facebook friends, who isn’t a boot camper, goes to the website (www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com) because of YOUR status updates and contacts me through the boot camp website, you get an additional $5 off your next enlistment for a max of $20!

Your friend has to actually contact me through the website, not through Facebook. This will help to measure traffic to the website generated from Facebook.

AND … if someone joins because they learned about us through your status update, your next monthly enlistment is FREE!

You could get up to $40 OFF for one month and the next month after that could be FREE, simply by making a few Facebook status updates!

So get started right now! This also applies to Boot Campers who’ve taken some time off to hibernate for the winter! You know who you are!

Log on to your Facebook account and say something like, “Sgt. Tony is the most awesomest man in Memphis!” And your discounts begin!

——————————————–

LOSE THE WEIGHT – The Body You Want in July Begins With a Strategy Today!

Take Shape For Life – weight loss program is simply amazing!
The program calls for you to daily eat 5 Medifast replacement meals (soups, shakes, bars, puddings, oatmeal, and even brownie bites!) and one “lean and green” meal that you prepare or have at a restaurant.

Take Shape For Life …
* It’s simple
* It’s scientific (Johns Hopkins endorsed)
* It takes the guess work out of the process
* It’s goof proof
* It’s very affordable!
* IT WORKS!
* It’s delivered right to your front door!
* You’re not hungry!
* You learn the habits of long term weight loss. No yo-yo’ing!
* And best of all, you get ME as your coach!

You can go directly to the Take Shape For Life website (below). Plenty of detailed information. You can also sign up there as well.

Or feel free to call me. 901-644-0145.
Go to: www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com .

I’m very excited about Take Shape! The success that those who are on the program have had has been sensational!

———————————————-

MAKING A FACE!

Several of you need to move up in your weights. Many are using the same dumbbells that you started with. MOVE UP! You should be making a face during the last few reps of most of our exercises. So it’s time to increase your dumbbells!

———————————————-

JOB SEEKER

Tay Joslin is a veteran of the sales and service

industry. He is seeking a position within an

established department which can benefit from

his expertise in customer satisfaction, as well

as his competent communication skills. If Tay

can add value to your place of business, give

him a call at (901) 355-6771. Resume available

via email at maninblack21@hotmail.com.

———————————————–

Be bold, my friends!

Keep your eyes on the life you want.

Don’t settle!

To your continued good health and fitness!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com
http://www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/esuite/home/combatchallenge/

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