Sergeant Tony's Blog

Archive for April, 2018

Cosmic Tumblers — Tony Ludlow, 4/18/2018

Apr. 18th 2018

field-of-dreams-2

The first book that I ever read was a book about running. Well, maybe not technically. But the very first sentence I ever read was about running.

“See Tom run.”

That was the first sentence I ever read in my life.

Running — pure running that wasn’t associated with some sport I was playing — has been a part of my life since I was 18. I’ve been running ever since. I started coaching other runners in 1981.

Huffpost Healthy Living recently posted an article entitled “19 Reasons to Start Running.” None of those 19 reasons were anything new to me, and if you’re a runner they wouldn’t be news to you either. I like the list. It’s a good one. But there’s nothing on that list that runners don’t already know. The experience of years leads to that kind of knowledge.

I started keeping journals of my running and weight training workouts beginning in 1977. By 1998, I’d written in and filled up 12 journals covering 20 years of weight workout diary notes; running workouts, running notes, and race results; triathlon training, triathlon notes, and race results. My journals included nutrition experiments, equipment analysis, training ideas, trial and error approaches, and everything else you could imagine that covered my personal athletic and fitness journey.

When my shipment from Japan arrived here in Memphis in 1998, guess what was missing?

I was devastated.

The journals, along with all of that knowledge, experience, and wisdom gained over two decades were lost, along with everything else in that box. The written journals were lost, but the knowledge, hopefully, remains. One of the things in journal #2 was the list of lessons learned from my first triathlon. Seven lessons, actually.

Today’s installment will only highlight the 7th lesson, and one that has been an encouragement to me since the day I learned it: July 22, 1980, when the sport was so new I had to explain the details of it to all my friends.

As we join our story, yours truly has come to the last mile of the last leg of the race, an 8-mile run. The run followed a 1-mile swim and a 35-mile bike race. The run, like the bike leg, was up and down horrible hills that seemed to have no end.

The finish line was on a horse racing track inside a county fairground. Runners entered the fairgrounds, ran onto the track, and took one lap around the track to the finish. So, with “Rocky,” “Chariots of Fire,” and “Eye of the Tiger” blaring from the big speakers set up in the infield, I entered the horse racing track and tried to pick up the pace a bit. I wanted to finish strong.

With about 150 yards to go, I started hearing a wheezing gasping sound from someone behind me. They were obviously in distress. “Good lord, someone’s dying back there,” I thought. But the thing was, the dying sound was getting closer!

WHAT???? How could this be? How was the dying guy gaining on me???? “Inconceivable!” I thought, in my best “Princess Bride” voice.

With about 100 yards left in the race, the “dying guy,” … with the gray hair, passed me. HE PASSED ME! I tried to keep up with him. I tried to stay near him. But I was spent. He wasn’t.

The old dude beat me!

Although I crossed the finish line, proud of my first triathlon, I was a bit miffed about the old dude. After all, I was only 3 days from my 23rd birthday and the very idea of some ancient mariner passing me was messing with my head. My finish time was respectable, not bad at all. But post-race, all I could think of was finding that decrepit dude.

You know how people linger after races around the refreshment area, eating free snacks and gulping down Gatorade? That’s where I found the gray-haired gentleman (aka “the dying dude”) eating a banana.

“Congratulations on a great race!” I said to the man who humbled me.

“Oh, thanks,” he said with a smile, kind of embarrassed.

“That was ME you passed right there at the end!” I said.

“Oh, sorry ’bout that,” he said with a smile that said he wasn’t sorry at all. And then he added, “I hope you’ll forgive me.”

“Sir, I hope you won’t be offended by my question … but, I have to ask … how old are you, if you don’t mind me asking?”

Sticking his chest out with satisfaction, he said, “I’m 65 years old!”

“You, sir, are my new role model … my goal … my HERO!!!”

And this unknown 65-year-old man has been my hero ever since.

Seventh Life Lesson from First Triathlon: “It’s not about age either.”

I’m now closer to that gentleman’s age than I’ve ever been. Last year, I entered my 60s! An age I own with pleasure! If I hadn’t met him, maybe I wouldn’t have tried to be like him my whole life! At 23, I lived in a world of young Marines, bullet-proof and badass, in a society that glorified being young. That man was the first athlete I ever met who was older than 30. It’s not hyperbole or a storyteller’s exaggeration to say that I decided right then and there, on that day, July 22, 1980, at that very moment to live my life like that man was living his.

Sometimes, life can turn in an instant. Over a casual conversation. An encounter that probably left that gentleman’s memory within hours, changed my life and has stuck with me for a lifetime.

And those moments, those spontaneous and unremarkable moments, can alter a life. And you’re never too old or “too far out of the race” to have those moments! I had one of those conversations with one of my professors just a couple of weeks ago. A casual conversation that put parts of my thinking and planning, that had been foggy, into sharp focus!

As Ferris Bueller famously said, six years after my encounter with that 65-year-old-bad-ass, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

And while I’m quoting 80s movies, here’s this one from one of my favorites of all time, “Field of Dreams,” when Ray Kinsella, played by Kevin Costner, says, “There comes a time when all the cosmic tumblers have clicked into place … and the universe opens itself up for a few seconds … to show you what’s possible.”

Those things I learned in my first triathlon have been true in my life and not just about triathlon. It shattered many of my misplaced notions and prejudices born out of youth and inexperience. It helped to realign my thinking about things. They were not exactly the lessons I thought I would learn, but it was proof that one of the cool things about life and about sport is that we can continue to grow and learn and evolve, with or without the humble pie!

— 30 —

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TODAY’S NUTRITION TALK
by Sergeant Major Ashley Holloway, M.S., Registered Dietitian, LDN

(A Registered Dietitian has a BS in Food Science, followed by a one year internship through an accredited university, and then with the recommendation of the internship program’s supervisor, a national examination is required. After that, an RD must have continuing education units annually in order to remain active and registered. An RD is an expert, not a hobbyist or a “food enthusiast.”)

Hot! Hot! Hot!

The temperature and humidity will arrive SOON! Despite the current situation!

This increases your risk of dehydration and even life threatening hypernatremia if you exercise in the Memphis heat. But just how much and what kind of fluid should you be taking in?

For those shorter runs and for some general hot-weather fluid tips, try these tips adapted from the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines:

Before exercise: Try to drink plenty of fluids in the 24 hours before your planned exercise session and then drink two or more cups of fluid two to three hours before exercise. This will help keep you hydrated while allowing your body time to get rid of any excess fluid before your exercise session begins.

During exercise: Drink 6 to 12 ounces of cool fluids (water is fine) every 15 to 20 minutes. If your exercise session or run is less than an hour, a sports drink is not needed. These drinks contain calories, many up to 200 a bottle and can add to weight gain if they aren’t counted.

If, however, you are to be exercising longer than 60 minutes, you will definitely benefit from the extra sugar/carbohydrates and electrolytes from a sports drink. The carbohydrates help to fuel your muscles and the electrolytes, especially sodium and potassium, reduce urine output, speed the rate at which fluids empty the stomach, promote absorption from the small intestine, and encourage fluid retention.

After exercise: Be sure to continue drinking after your exercise session is over. You can weigh yourself before and after your runs. Try to drink about 24 ounces of fluid for every pound lost. Don’t forget to include some sodium (salt) either in fluids or with the post- exercise meal. Sodium can help in the rehydration process and increase your desire to drink.

If you are curious to see just how much fluid you really need when you exercise, then be sure to check out the USA Track and Field’s Self Testing Program for Optimal Hydration. This test uses a formula to determine how much fluid you need based on your weight, the weather conditions and your exercise intensity. You can find this self-test at:
http://www.usatf.org/groups/Coaches/library/2007/hydration/USATFSelfTestingProgramForOptimalHydration.pdf

Knowing how much fluid you need is just as important as being fitted with the right running shoes or following the perfect training program. Too little or too much fluid can have serious, even life-threatening consequences. Be sure you know how to properly hydrate by following the above guidelines and by following your thirst.

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Patreon

Through the years—almost 19 now—folks have been super supportive of USMC Fitness Boot Camp and all that I do through it.

Weekly, I hear from former boot campers who’ve moved away. They write saying how significant the program was to them, how much they miss it, and how much they enjoy getting the newsletters and Facebook updates.

Sometimes, those who’ve moved away send money because they want to be helpful and to support the program. This happened just a few days ago. Sometimes these folks know that at any point in time, there are about half a dozen boot campers coming for free because they lost their job, or there’s been some other detrimental change in their finances and they’d have to drop out boot camp.

We’re the only fitness company in Memphis that allows members to continue to participate for free if they lose their jobs or their finances take a horrible hit. And when they’re back on their feet, they just start paying from that point forward. The months they came for free never have to be paid back.

I consider what I do to be more ministry than business, and don’t kick anyone out because of money problems.

Like you, I support different causes and organizations in Memphis just because I believe in what they do and want to help them keep doing it. Monthly, I support 8 different local entities, including WKNO and Literacy Mid-South.

Additionally, last year I started supporting two different people on a site called Patreon. It’s a way to support artists, musicians, writers, instructors, and others who produce content or provide services of a broad nature but might not be able to continue doing so without financial support from patrons … like how educators, artists, musicians, and others were supported by patrons back in the day.

I’ve been encouraged to join Patreon myself, giving folks an opportunity to support the program in small automatic monthly amounts.

Check out the page and if you feel led to support the work I do, even if it’s $1 a month, the number of patrons will be an encouragement to me and others!

https://www.patreon.com/TonyLudlow/overview

Thank you so much!

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80% OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH EXERCISE!

But 80% of your HEALTH and WELLNESS DO!

And 100% of your FUNCTIONAL FITNESS AND CAPABILITIES ARE DIRECTLY TIED TO EXERCISE!

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DO YOU USE VENMO?

If you’d like to pay using VENMO, you may! I’m Tony Ludlow on VENMO!

If you’re unfamiliar with VENMO, it’s a payment app for your phone (or computer) owned by PayPal and functions like a check. You can LITERALLY make a payment on your phone in less time than it takes to fill out a check! Click, click, click, done! All done!

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Have a GREAT day!

Yours in good health and fitness!

Sgt. Tony

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


A Perfect 10 — Tony Ludlow, blog post for 4/11/2018

Apr. 11th 2018

SN-FEA-POOL-01-7-11_t600

After reading a recent essay I wrote, a friend of many years said, “Tony, I think I’ve heard most of your stories, (he hasn’t … I haven’t even told half my stories!) but I don’t think I’d ever heard that one.”

By most accounts, some of you have heard this particular story. In fact, several of you tell me it’s your favorite story.

Bless your hearts. Thank you for that!

I shared this tale with a new friend the other day. She was also a swimmer and diver in high school. And since she thought it … amusing, I share it again. A humiliating story from the annals of yours truly.

Allow me to set the scene.

Imagine, if you will, you’re sitting in the aquatic center at the University of Arkansas. You’re watching the State Swimming and Diving Meet. It is the senior year of this story teller’s high school adventure.

As we join our story, yours truly is standing on the diving board, preparing to perform his tenth and final dive of the state meet. (I never know if I should capitalize that or not: State Meet?)

Anyway.

I stood there, suspecting that fame was in my grasp.

But it wasn’t the kind of fame that comes from doing something awesome. This kind of fame was about to be acquired by doing something dreadful.

This is what happened.

In addition to being an unremarkable swimmer on my high school swim team, I was also a slightly average diver. I came by this perishable skill through the help of one of my brother’s friends, Paul. Paul had been a diver in college and took me under his wing during the summer between my 7th and 8th grade. That summer I went from doing “cannonballs” and “can openers” to doing “inward 1 ½ somersaults” and “reverse double somersaults.” Learning those kinds of dives required me to wear a sweatshirt to practice in. I landed on my back and my belly a lot.

Fast forward from that summer to the State Swimming and Diving Meet. And now picture me in the finals of the state diving competition. In fact, as we turn our attention back to that meet, our hero (Tony Ludlow), is actually in SECOND PLACE (pure luck, I assure you!) … with only one more dive to go!

The guy in first place was mathematically untouchable. None of us were going to catch him. Second place was going to be GREAT though! My previous dives had gone pretty well and I’d practiced this last dive several times that morning. The dive was a reverse 2 ½ somersault, degree of difficulty: 2.8.

And there I was, standing on the board, preparing my thoughts and getting myself ready. If you’ve watched diving on television, you’ve no doubt seen divers do this many times.

Diving is a pretty standard solitary sport. It’s not easy, mind you. But no one is playing defense against you, trying to keep you from doing the dive. There’s no adversary trying to trip you up. No one is trash-talking you from the stands. In point of fact, everyone is quiet when you dive.

The diver stands on the springboard ten feet or so from the end of the board in mental preparation. Then when he or she is ready, the diver strides forward, leaps straight up into the air (called the hurdle), and comes down on the end of the board. Then the board flexes, and the diver rides it into the air and performs the dive.

So, there I stood, like I’d done a hundred times before. Nothing unusual at all … until something happened.

For reasons I can’t explain, I became painfully aware of everyone waiting on me to dive.

There were hundreds of people in the aquatic center that day. All of my teammates were there. My girlfriend was there. Friends from school were there. All of the other teams from around the state were there. The other team’s friends and families were there. The other team’s coaches, officials, and judges were there. The place was packed.

And everyone was waiting on me. All of those people … waiting.

On me.

And all of those people were being quiet.

For me.

And all of those people silent so I could concentrate.

Everyone was looking at me.

And waiting on me.

To do something.

But there I stood.

Doing nothing.

No one was whispering. No one was standing up. No one was moving at all. I could feel everyone leaning forward, holding their collective breath waiting for me.

This crowd of people had been simple background noise, scenery with no consequence to me during the whole swim meet. I never paid them any attention. But now … all of a sudden … for reasons I can’t explain … there they were! They’d materialized in my consciousness like they’d been beamed there by the USS Enterprise, NCC 1701.

One minute they weren’t there, and then in the blink of an eye, there they were.

And that crowd of people was all I could think about.

Eventually you have to do something. You can’t just stand on the diving board forever. I don’t actually know if there’s a time limit, like a shot-clock, where you MUST go. But I didn’t want some referee or umpire to jump up and blow a whistle or throw a flag for delay of game. I didn’t want to be ordered to dive.

And I could feel everyone becoming anxious. Whatever the usual time for gathering my wits was allowed, I felt I’d probably exceeded it. The crowd’s anxiety was rising. My not doing something was making them uncomfortable. I had to move. I had to do something.

I thought maybe once my feet started moving forward everything would fall into place. It would become rote. It would just happen!

It didn’t.

But I continued moving forward anyway, praying for inspiration! I jumped up into the air — as seen on TV — came down on the end of the board, as seen on TV … and instead of taking off into the air and performing the dive, as seen on TV … I froze on the end of the board. I mean I FROZE there!

“Boinngggggggggggggggggggg,” went the diving board and it bounced up and down with me on the end of it riding it up and down with bent knees, looking more ridiculous than I have the ability to explain. Imagine the most absurd scene you can conjure and then double it.

And there I was. NOT DIVING.

You could hear the collective sound of everyone in that place gasp. They sucked the air out of the building, making that “OOOHHHH!!!” sound as they inhaled all of the oxygen, followed by the “ohhhhhhh no” whisper that was an exhale.

“Nononononono!” I said to myself.

In that situation, there is nowhere to hide. You’re completely exposed! Standing on the end of a 3 meter board in a swimsuit skimpier than your underwear, there’s nothing to hide behind. AND, you’ve just done something no other diver had done during the two-day meet … or EVER! And ALL EYES are upon you.

Time suspended and every second passed like an hour.

I heard the head judge say into the microphone, “BALK!” But he said that in slow motion, like you’re playing a song at half speed.

Yes, that’s right. They called “balk,” just like in baseball. That’s what it’s called when a diver fails to “take off!” No one in the aqua-center at the University of Arkansas had ever heard the judge say that because no one had ever seen what I had just done. I had never seen what I had just done! Or not done, as the case was.

What happens next?

I wasn’t even sure. I was ready to just jump in and do a cannonball or a can opener and splash the judges. But I didn’t.

According to the rules, the diver can back up, regroup, and do the dive. Unfortunately, the diver will only be awarded HALF the points he’d have gotten. So, a dive that would’ve scored 50, would only be awarded 25 points.

Just like that, second place was gone.

I backed up, regrouped, and took my spot on the board again. Waited for the judge to indicate that they were ready for me to dive. Got the signal. And …

With EVERYONE in the place leaning forward and watching my every move …

Nothing.

I was 17 years old and having the worst day of my entire life in front of a crowd of people … and I was doing it practically naked. I could literally FEEL the people sitting on the edge of their seats, waiting for me to dive, willing me down the board and into the air.

I thought maybe THIS time it would work. I’ll just start my approach … go into the hurdle … come down on the board and it would happen. It’ll be magic!

It was a disaster.

The exact same thing happened. With me planted on the end of the board like a 5-year-old afraid to jump. And again, the collective and horrified inhale and exhale of the crowd. And it all happened in slow motion in my mind.

“SCRATCH DIVE,” announced the judge soberly.

What happens next?

I’ll tell you what happens next.

The ultimate walk of shame is what happens next. I had to walk back to the other end of the board and climb down the ladder. Once I got down the ladder I had to walk the entire length of the pool and in front of the stands where everyone was looking at me.

Funeral homes have more fun and excitement than that place as I walked. I was looking down at my feet the whole time, not wanting to make eye contact with anyone. I could hear the sounds of people murmuring and the sounds of teenage girls giggling.

I walked toward my team’s bench and glanced up just enough to see my coach having a meltdown. His face was bright red and his teeth were clinched. I could see the veins in his temple and neck. He threw a towel to me. Actually, I think he threw the towel AT me. I caught it, put the towel over my head, and just kept walking. I walked past the bench where all of my teammates sat … all the way into the locker room. And there I sat for the next 5 years. Or so it seemed.

The next day there was a tiny headline buried on the 5th page of the sports section of my hometown newspaper that said, “Local Diver Comes in Ninth in State Meet.” (Do you know that they actually HAVE a ribbon for 9th place!) I went from 2nd out of 14 to 9th in the most epic fail known to man … That’s how I felt.

The next week at school I was met in the hallway by my worthless friends mocking my shame with “BalkBalkBalkBalkBalk” … sort of like how someone imitates a chicken clucking. Like how that camel in the GEICO commercial who said, “MikeMikeMikeMike, guess what day it is?”

I had no focus on the board that day. I became distracted. I thought of everything else but what was important. If I had blocked out everything else and concentrated on the main thing, I’d have taken home a trophy and a title instead of that little pathetic 9th place ribbon. If I had put my energies into the dive instead of the distraction, the headline would have read differently and might have been on the front page of the sports section.

I’ve learned since then how not to choke.

How do you stand up in front of the world and perform? How do you walk into a situation with the potential for embarrassment and humiliation and not choke and stumble? How do you nail that interview, that speech, that presentation, that meeting with the boss, that blind date?

In a word, breathe and relax. Get control over your breathing because you’ve probably started breathing shallow. When you’re tense you breathe shallow and your whole body gets tense. And the more tense you get, the more tense you get.

Concentrate on your breathing.
Slow your breathing down and breathe deeply.
Relax.
Breathe deeply.
Focus.
Breathe deeply.
Smile (hard to be tense with a smile on your face).
Tell yourself something funny or obscene!
And then tell yourself that you can do it! You can do it! You can do it!

Choke prevention from Tony Ludlow

You’re welcome!

— 30 —

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Patreon

Through the years—almost 19 now—folks have been super supportive of USMC Fitness Boot Camp and all that I do through it.

Weekly, I hear from former boot campers who’ve moved away. They write saying how significant the program was to them, how much they miss it, and how much they enjoy getting the newsletters and Facebook updates.

Sometimes, those who’ve moved away send money because they want to be helpful and to support the program. This happened just a few days ago. Sometimes these folks know that at any point in time, there are about half a dozen boot campers coming for free because they lost their job, or there’s been some other detrimental change in their finances and they’d have to drop out boot camp.

We’re the only fitness company in Memphis that allows members to continue to participate for free if they lose their jobs or their finances take a horrible hit. And when they’re back on their feet, they just start paying from that point forward. The months they came for free never have to be paid back.

I consider what I do to be more ministry than business, and don’t kick anyone out because of money problems.

Like you, I support different causes and organizations in Memphis just because I believe in what they do and want to help them keep doing it. Monthly, I support 8 different local entities, including WKNO and Literacy Mid-South.

Additionally, last year I started supporting two different people on a site called Patreon. It’s a way to support artists, musicians, writers, instructors, and others who produce content or provide services of a broad nature but might not be able to continue doing so without financial support from patrons … like how educators, artists, musicians, and others were supported by patrons back in the day.

I’ve been encouraged to join Patreon myself, giving folks an opportunity to support the program in small automatic monthly amounts.

Check out the page and if you feel led to support the work I do, even if it’s $1 a month, the number of patrons will be an encouragement to me and others!

https://www.patreon.com/TonyLudlow/overview

Thank you so much!

———————————————————

80% OF YOUR WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH EXERCISE!

——————————————————

DO YOU USE VENMO?

If you’d like to pay using VENMO, you may! I’m Tony Ludlow on VENMO!

If you’re unfamiliar with VENMO, it’s a payment app for your phone (or computer) owned by PayPal and functions like a check. You can LITERALLY make a payment on your phone in less time than it takes to fill out a check! Click, click, click, done! All done!

——————————————————

TODAY’S NUTRITION TALK
by Sergeant Major Ashley Holloway, Registered Dietitian, LDN

(A Registered Dietitian has a BS in Food Science, followed by a one-year internship through an accredited university, and then with the recommendation of the internship program’s supervisor, a national examination is required. After that, an RD must have continuing education units annually in order to remain active and registered. An RD is an expert, not a hobbyist or a “food enthusiast.”)

The meat section at the grocery store can sometimes be a little overwhelming. There are so many cuts to choose from and then they are all labeled with different terms like “choice” or “prime.” How do you know what to choose? Hopefully the information below will help sort out some of the confusion.

For most types of meat, the more fat that is on and in the meat, means more flavor. The less fat and marbling (the white streaks of fat throughout the meat) of the meat means it is less tender and less flavor.

The meat we see in the stores all meets safety standards set by the The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is all then graded and labeled as either USDA Prime, USDA Choice, or USDA Select. These grades are not based on nutrition, but instead are based on juiciness, flavor, and texture. “Prime” is considered the best quality, is the fattiest, has lots of marbling throughout, is tender, and is full of flavor. The next best is considered “Choice” which are still
high quality cuts of meat, but are leaner with less marbling. “Select” cuts are the leanest of the bunch with little to no marbling.

If you are cooking a steak and are looking for tenderness, juiciness, and flavor, I would choose a “Prime” cut. If I am making a stew that has a lot of seasoning and is cooked over low heat for a long period of time, I would go with the “select” cut. It is less expensive and will become more tender with the slow cooking process and more flavorful with the seasoning of the stew.

When choosing ground meat, the numbers represent the amount of lean versus the amount of fat in the meat. For instance, and meat that is 80/20 is 80% lean and 20% fat by weight and 90/10 is 90% lean and 10% fat. The more fat usually means more flavor and juiciness. The higher the fat content the higher the calorie level too. The advice for consuming is the same for whole pieces of meat. If you are mixing it into a flavorful dish, leaner may be a great choice
because of less calories and total fat, but if you are wanting a super juicy burger, higher fat ground meat would be your go to.

It is important to note that often ground turkey isn’t always the better choice then extra lean ground beef. In regular ground turkey it can contain dark and white meat and even skin and fat. This can increase the calories and fat content. On the other hand, ground turkey breast, which is the white meat only, is fairly lean. But in a side by side comparison, the leanest ground beef
still comes out on top in regard to grams of total protein and the mineral content.

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MAKE A FACE!!!!

INCREASE YOUR WEIGHTS!

YOU GET OUT WHAT YOU PUT IN!

What you get out of the workouts is determined by you.

How much do you work? How much effort you put into trying to do all of the repetitions with proper form and how much weight you’re using will determine what you get out of each workout.

YOU DETERMINE WHETHER YOUR WORKOUT IS HALF-ASS OR KICKASS!

It’s time for you to go up in weights … that’s what I’m thinking!

MAKING A FACE (THE GRIMACE) IS THE POOR MAN’S (OR WOMAN’S) FACELIFT!

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EVERY WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY ARE T-SHIRT DAY!

WEAR YOUR RANK INSIGNIA SHIRT, SUB 7 SHIRT, OR OTHER USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP SHIRT EVERY WEDNESDAY!

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Have a GREAT day!

Yours in good health and fitness!

Sgt. Tony

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


But I just looked around … and he’s gone.

Apr. 4th 2018

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My grandfather—my “Big Dad”—taught me things that would have equipped me for his world, his generation. But didn’t really help me much for the one I would be in. Much of what he taught me disappeared in polite society along him:

• Hats worn with suits,
• Walking on the outside, closest to the street, when with a lady,
• Hand-written thank you notes,
• Opening doors for ladies,
• Standing when a lady enters the room,
• Taking off your hat when speaking to a lady or someone older,
• Taking off your sunglasses when speaking to a lady or someone older,
• Giving up your seat on a train or bus for a lady or an adult,
• Asking permission to leave the Table,
• Saying “may I have,” not “I want,”
• Addressing all men and women with “sir” and “ma’am,”
• Addressing older men and women as “Mr. Smith” or “Mrs. Jones.”

How do we measure others today? How do we measure a man? A woman?

Wasn’t it character?

Isn’t it character?

Shouldn’t it be character?

In 9th grade, I started keeping a notebook of the quotes of great people in history. After I filled it, I carried it with me all over the world. It was lost in a box that never made it from Japan back to Memphis in 1998. I imagine that box fell off the cargo ship in the Pacific and washed up on Tom Hanks’ little island.

The quotes of great people inspire and inform us, don’t they?

Martin Luther King said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

Plato said, “The measure of a man is what he does with power.”

J.C. Watts said, “The measure of a man is not how great his faith is, but how great his love is.”

Plutarch said, “The measure of a man is the way he bears up under misfortune.”

“The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can’t help him.”

One way to measure a man, or a woman, is by what kinds of things irritate them.

Or moves them.

Or breaks them.

I nostalgically hold on to the things my Big Dad taught me. When he came to visit us from Little Rock, he slept with me in my room. In the darkness I asked him questions I was too afraid to ask my parents or even my teachers. “When will I be a grown man?” “Do you ever get scared?” “What is death?” “How can I be brave?” “What do I do when my heart is broken?”

He taught me to look for greatness in others and to try to use their example to shape my own life.

In the darkness of my bedroom on the night of April 4, 1968, I asked my Big Dad, a man of noble character, why the negro man was killed in Memphis. There was a long pause from my grandfather, V.W. Lancaster. A pause so long that I thought perhaps he’d fallen asleep.

And then he sighed.

I thought at first the sigh was an indication that I’d finally asked him too many questions. That he was tired of the nightly inquisition. That I’d exasperated him to the point of fatigue and irritation.

He had never tired of my questions before. Had never shown any sign of agitation from them. But now I seem to have asked one too many of them. I imagined his patience had run out and that I’d asked an inappropriate question.

And then, he cleared his throat.

I expected him to chastise me and tell me he was tired.

But in a broken voice, almost a whisper, he said, “Son, there is greatness and goodness in the world.” And then another long pause, a pause I didn’t understand for many years. And then he said, “And son … there is also hatred and evil.”

It wasn’t until I had children of my own, when I had to dispel the myth and take away their innocence by explaining to them that there was greatness and goodness in the world, but there is also hatred and evil. It’s the moment every parent dreads the most. To tell their child something that will take the twinkle from their eyes and will tarnish the joy in their hearts.

But then we encourage our children to love. Just like my grandfather did for me. To be a light in a dark world where hate and anger and evil try to destroy us. We must be better and to do good in the world.

Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Hate can’t drive out hate. Only love can do that. Thank you, Dr. King.

— 30 —

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APRIL IS BRING A FRIEND TO BOOT CAMP MONTH!

In honor of my friend, Tom Farrar, who passed away at the tender age of 54. Tom was my accountant and a great guy, but he did NOT take care of himself.

Ever since Tom’s death, a death I believe was preventable, I’ve designated April as the “TOM FARRAR MEMORIAL BRING A FRIEND TO BOOT CAMP MONTH.”

• You can bring a friend for a week for free!

• No strings attached, no pressure to join!

• I won’t gather their contact info, and I won’t do anything but make them feel welcome!

• Absolutely no sales pitch, no guilt, and no veiled attempt to sign them up.

In fact, if they decide to continue after their free week with us, they’ll have to initiate that!

Let them come and enjoy a week on the Quarterdeck at no charge!

If you no longer live in Memphis, but your friends and family are still here, send them to me for a FREE WEEK!

If you’re injured and unable to exercise with your friend, go ahead and send them to me. You don’t have to be with them. Your referral will be enough.

And if you need to get back on the Quarterdeck yourself, c’mon!

I promise NOT to guilt you or give you a hard time! I don’t care if you’ve gained weight or you’re out of shape. Don’t be embarrassed! I’m not going to shame you or make you feel bad. I’m always so happy to see you! You’ll be met with a hug or a hearty handshake and a “welcome home” reception!

Since I don’t advertise, you guys are my sales staff, so please share this post and tag your friends in the comments.

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TODAY’S NUTRITION TALK
by Sergeant Major Ashley Holloway, MS, RD, LDN

(A Registered Dietitian has a BS in Food Science, followed by a one-year internship through an accredited university, and then with the recommendation of the internship program’s supervisor, a national examination is required. After that, an RD must have continuing education units annually in order to remain active and registered. An RD is an expert, not a hobbyist or a “food enthusiast.”)

Have a Snack Attack

Is snacking throughout the day bad or good for you? Some people believe that it is better to eat three square meals a day without snacks in between. Others believe that snacking is not healthy because when they think of the word “snack” they think of typical vending machine fare such as candy bars, chips, or regular soda. If you do find yourself craving sweets or other not so healthy treats, it could just be that you let yourself get too hungry.

The good news is that proper snacking is healthy for you and is an important part of anyone’s diet. Eating often, every three to four hours, helps to maintain your blood sugar levels, your carbohydrate stores, and keeps your body fueled for the next activity. Snacking often also helps prevent uncontrollable hunger, which can lead to an unhealthy snack attack where you eat large quantities of food or you make unhealthy snack choices that you wouldn’t have made if you were not so hungry.

The best way to snack is to consider it as more of a mini-meal than a snack. Focus on choosing items that you would have for a regular meal but on a smaller scale. To optimize nutrition, be sure to select items from several different food groups. To make sure that do not skip these all-important snacks, pack your desk at work or your gym bag with healthy items such as dried fruit, nuts, instant oatmeal packets, granola or sport bars, peanut butter, pop top cans of tuna, and whole grain crackers. If you are on the go a lot, take along a small cooler stocked with healthy snacks. Some great healthy snacks to try include:

· – a slice of veggie topped pizza
· – string cheese and a piece of fruit
· – sliced apples spread with peanut butter or almond butter
· – trail mix with nuts and dried fruit with a glass of milk
· – Greek yogurt sprinkled with mixed berries
· – instant oatmeal made with milk topped with almonds
· – whole wheat toast topped with peanut butter and banana
· – baby carrots dipped in hummus
· – 100 calorie bag of microwavable popcorn with 1cup low-fat chocolate milk
· – Triscuit Thins with Laughing Cow or Baybel cheese
· – Whole grain pretzels dipped into peanut butter

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MAKE A FACE!!!!

INCREASE YOUR WEIGHTS!

YOU GET OUT WHAT YOU PUT IN!

What you get out of the workouts is determined by you.

How much do you work? How much effort you put into trying to do all of the repetitions with proper form and how much weight you’re using will determine what you get out of each workout.

YOU DETERMINE WHETHER YOUR WORKOUT IS HALF-ASS OR KICKASS!

It’s time for you to go up in weights … that’s what I’m thinking!

MAKING A FACE (THE GRIMACE) IS THE POOR MAN’S (OR WOMAN’S) FACELIFT!

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Patreon

Through the years—almost 19 now—folks have been super supportive of USMC Fitness Boot Camp and all that I do through it.

Weekly, I hear from former boot campers who’ve moved away. They write saying how significant the program was to them, how much they miss it, and how much they enjoy getting the newsletters and Facebook updates.

Sometimes, those who’ve moved away send money because they want to be helpful and to support the program. This happened just a few days ago. Sometimes these folks know that at any point in time, there are about half a dozen boot campers coming for free because they lost their job, or there’s been some other detrimental change in their finances and they’d have to drop out boot camp.

We’re the only fitness company in Memphis that allows members to continue to participate for free if they lose their jobs or their finances take a horrible hit. And when they’re back on their feet, they just start paying from that point forward. The months they came for free never have to be paid back.

I consider what I do to be more ministry than business, and don’t kick anyone out because of money problems.

Like you, I support different causes and organizations in Memphis just because I believe in what they do and want to help them keep doing it. Monthly, I support 8 different local entities, including WKNO and Literacy Mid-South.

Additionally, last year I started supporting two different people on a site called Patreon. It’s a way to support artists, musicians, writers, instructors, and others who produce content or provide services of a broad nature but might not be able to continue doing so without financial support from patrons … like how educators, artists, musicians, and others were supported by patrons back in the day.

I’ve been encouraged to join Patreon myself, giving folks an opportunity to support the program in small automatic monthly amounts.

Check out the page and if you feel led to support the work I do, even if it’s $1 a month, the number of patrons will be an encouragement to me and others!

https://www.patreon.com/TonyLudlow/overview

Thank you so much!

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ARE WE FACEBOOK FRIENDS?

We should be!

HAVE YOU “LIKED” THE USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP FACEBOOK PAGE?

You should totally do that!

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Q. How can I get up in the morning on a consistent basis?

A. Contrary to what many think, I am NOT a morning person. I have to be “dynamited” out of the bed! Here are some tips to help you get going in the morning:

1. Use two alarm clocks. I have a snooze alarm that starts going off several minutes before I intend to get up. Then I have a “Last Call” alarm clock that is located across the room. This alarm clock is set to go off when I MUST get up.

2. Once the last call alarm goes off, the bed becomes OFF LIMITS! Get moving!

3. Get out of bed, turn off the alarm clock, and start turning on lights all through the house. Turn the TV on!

4. Lay out your clothes the night before. Don’t go wandering around the house in the morning trying to find your left shoe and your favorite shorts. So, have things ready the night before.

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What would you do if money was not an issue, fear was not a factor, and failure was not an option?

To your optimum health and fitness!

SEE YOU ON THE QUARTERDECK!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Text: 901-644-0145

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