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Congratulations Kevin & Jill — Sgt. Tony Ludlow — Newsletter for 8/19/09

Aug. 19th 2009

I’ve seen it at least a dozen times. It always makes me smile! Every time! The first few times I had tears in my eyes and just smiled from ear to ear with this big goofy grin on my big, handsome, noble, wonderful looking face!

And now, all these times later, I’m still smiling.

No one is telling a joke.

No one is falling down.

No one is singing off key.

No one’s “draws” are falling down and showing their underpanties.

No one is getting … uh … hit in the privates … with a bat, a ball, a stick, or an anything.

No one is getting a pie shoved in their face.

No, this video would never be considered for America’s Funniest Home Videos.

This is a video of Jill Peterson and Kevin Heinz, along with their closest friends … dancing down the aisle at their wedding to Chris Brown’s “Forever.” It’s probably likely that you’ve seen this. Jill and Kevin have been on the Today Show, People Magazine, and tons of other news outlets since their wedding. It’s a YouTube sensation!

And now they’ve reached the pinnacle … honorable mention in this newsletter!

It’s the joy!

That’s what makes me watch it over and over again … and makes me smile. It’s the joy! Those people are happy … they’re having fun … and they are full of joy! (And the song is pretty good too!)

I don’t know Jill and Kevin … but I wish I did! I like those two knuckleheads! They took an occasion that is so often sickeningly pretentious and full of itself, or so over the top, or so stilted and somber, or so liturgically sanitized and turned it into an occasion of great joy and gladness!

Now before I get hate mail, let me be clear, I don’t mean to put down anyone’s religious tradition or practice, or anyone’s interpretation of holy writ, dogma, creed or confession. And if “serious and somber and worshipful” are your canonical, ecclesiastical, or denominational approaches to a wedding, that’s perfectly fine! But the next time I’m invited to one … I sure hope it’s like Jill and Kevin’s! Fun, happy, … and full of joy! (Turns out that Jill and Kevin are just as married as Prince Charles and Lady Dianna were!)

But this isn’t about that.

This is about joy.

What brings you joy?

What makes you grin uncontrollably? Who are the “joy-agents” in your life? Who, just by their mere presence, brings joy into your life and the situation you’re in?

There are some people in my life who I just can’t get enough of! They are fun, well adjusted, and flood lights of joy and happiness! Some of them are YOU!

If you’re a grump, day in and day out, just know this, people are probably only tolerating you. If you’re a Negative Nellie, people don’t long for your company or hope you’ll call. If you’re a moody beotch, people aren’t looking for ways to spend more time with you. They’re trying to avoid you. If you’re a stuffed-shirt-blow-hard-know-it-all-jerk, more than likely you’re just being tolerated. And perhaps that’s ok with you. Maybe you don’t mind that. But I bet you do.

If you’re positive, happy, looking for the best, looking for the light, willing to give others the benefit of the doubt, tolerant, patient, and full of joy … you’ll attract the world to you.

Need proof?

I just watched Jill and Kevin’s wedding entrance … again! And I’m not alone. The count is approaching two million times that it’s been viewed! Two million times people have watched a five minute video of strangers dancing down an aisle … just because it’s so much FUN!! And when Jill comes down the aisle, you just can’t help yourself! You cheer for and root for this couple!!

Find a way to change your view of the world. It might require a relationship overhaul. It might mean a new career. It might mean a drastic change in your circumstances. It might mean sitting down and talking to a counselor. Or it might just mean readjusting your gaze … looking for the light instead of the darkness. Search for ways to spread more joy and happiness around you! Be a joy-agent! It’ll come back to you, a hundred fold!

And you know what … being healthy and fit play a HUGE role in that world view, that self image, and that sense of happiness and joy!

Thanks Jill and Kevin! You guys rock! May you live a life with as much joy as your wedding day has given to us!

“Because we only got one life … ”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8DCt3Lmi28

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MOUNT FUJI

Tomorrow morning at 0530 we’ll be climbing the mountain! See you at the parking garage on Zach Curlin, on the campus of the U of M. Bring your dumbbells, mat, water bottle and towel!

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ANNIVERSARY DISCOUNT!

Every August the initial enlistment fee is discounted in celebreation of our anniversary! If you have cheap friends or family, tell them that NOW would be the BEST time to join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

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0645 and 0830 Class Info

8:30 Class Returns in September. The 0645 class WILL NOT go on hiatus at the end of August. I’ve heard you, 0645 Boot Campers … maybe we’ll keep the class?

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HALF MARATHON TRAINING

Half Marathon Training begins on Saturday, September 5 at 8 AM at Shelby Farms!

If you can run/jog/walk 3 miles in 36 minutes or less, you are a candidate! It’s easier than you think! Every year half of the members of this training group are new and have never run a half marathon!

Cost of the three month training is $75 for Boot Campers and $125 for “friends of Boot Camp” (non-boot campers).

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Don’t smoke.
Drink in moderation.
Eat sensibly and less.
Exercise often.
Don’t quit!
No excuses. Ever!
To your continued good health and fitness!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Memphis, TN
901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

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MORE TO LOVE — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 8/6/09

Aug. 6th 2009

MORE TO LOVE

Overweight people live in a different world than the world that isn’t.

I have been learning this more and more over the past couple of years through the Combat the Fat Challenge … but the new reality show, “More to Love” has been a crash course in cross cultural awareness.

If you’ve not heard, “More to Love” is The Bachelor for big people. One overweight guy being pursued by lots of overweight girls.

I didn’t want to watch, quite frankly. I thought it might be exploitative and maybe more harmful than good. But I couldn’t NOT watch it.

Everyone of these young women, overweight for their entire lives, told the same story. One after the other looked at the camera and, through tears and pain, told of what it was like to grow up as “the fat girl” in the class. Most of them, in their mid 20’s, had never been on a date in their lives; never been kissed. (I kissed Carolyn Orr when I was in the first grade!) Everyone of them looked like one of those overweight girls you’d describe this way: “She’s so pretty … if she’d only lose some weight …”

I’m not a big fan of reality TV shows that have people living in the same house, or on the same island, or trying to be the next model or the next chef. All of that catty gamesmanship and back-biting doesn’t interest me. I like The Amazing Race though! I’d try out for that show!

I just recently watched Wipeout and found myself loving it when people got knocked into the water by some swinging padded whatchamacallit. I laughed at these knucklehead’s misfortune. Well, not really misfortune. They auditioned to be a contestant on a show that has “people falling down” as one of it’s major appeals. So those people knew they were gonna get pummeled and catapulted into the water … and look ridiculous in the process. That’s not misfortune. That’s just part of the gig! I think I’d try out for that one too!

And there’s a part of me, a less appealing and immature part of me, that thought “More to Love” would be sort of funny and ridiculous like those other shows. I rather thought “More to Love” would become fodder for some of my foolishness and sophomoric jokes.

Instead, it inspired this newsletter.

What “More to Love” has reminded me of is that the lives of overweight people are much different from the lives of those who aren’t overweight.

Not only did these girls not date in school, they got picked last every time the class had to break up into teams. Even when teams weren’t competing in anything physical they still got picked last. They grew up with few friends … they ate lunch alone … they played alone on the playground … they were made fun of … they went home after school alone and ate while they watched TV or read. Their physical experiences were limited. They didn’t play sports or know the joy of physical achievement.

They grew up in a world of restricted social involvement and opportunity. As they became teenagers they were often times bitchy and mean … as a defense mechanism. They held people at arm’s length or pushed them away all together … as a defense mechanism.

They didn’t really know how to make friends so they became good at hiding behind a tough exterior. An exterior that was as false as a movie studio fortress. They often got involved in self destructive behavior. Their lives didn’t mirror anything like how my life had looked. Nor did it look like how they themselves wanted it to look. They just wanted to be loved.

And this just crushed me.

My heart broke.

I got choked up.

The knight thing again.

I chastised that part of me that was prepared to make fun.

I was glad I was watching it alone so I didn’t have to worry about hiding my tears.

All I wanted to do was rescue all of them!

I wanted to take them all to “Sergeant Tony’s Island for Pretty Overweight Girls.” Kind of like Parris Island without the M-16’s! I’d put together a staff of people on my island (sociologists, psychologists, counselors, nutritionists, dietitians, philosophers) who’d help to alter their self esteem, their eating habits, their self concept, address their insecurities, help them with social skills and interaction with people, teach them how to engage people in such a way as to build meaningful relationships and healthy emotional bonds, address their spiritual selves … and of course I’d work their butts off BOOT CAMP style!

What I was reminded of is that overweight kids are ostracized, ridiculed, and miss out on a lot of very important social skills and life events. They become overweight adults who are missing some very fundamental, and in many cases essential, life lessons and skills.

This isn’t true 100% of the time, of course. I’m not saying that all overweight adults fall into this category. But it was certainly true of 100% of these young women.

On TV these girls were having their first date. Getting their first kiss. And hoping to have their first boyfriend.

I believe that we live in a spiritual world. But we most certainly live in a physical world that judges and categorizes people based on physical attributes. Part of what we do, consciously or unconsciously, is to label people, pigeonhole people, assign people a place based on race, gender, age, social capital, income, and physical appearance … it allows us to deal with that person in a way that is consistent with how we’ve dealt with that kind of person in the past.

Doing this gives us security and confidence, it allows us to know our place and theirs. If every new person we encountered had to be learned without the use of prejudices, stereotypes, and labeling it would make social interaction so laborious and time consuming.

It would also be wonderful!

How many of us KNOW that we are more than the sum total of our race, gender, age, social capital, income, and physical appearance? Everyone reading this knows it!

Nor are we the sum total of our mistakes and failures. Those things don’t define us … unless we allow them to.

There’s that great scene in “Fight Club” where the character Tyler Durden, played by Brad Pitt, declares that “you are not your khakis!”

We aren’t our houses. We aren’t our percentage of body fat. We aren’t our social status. We aren’t our bank accounts. We aren’t our church memberships. We aren’t our cars. We aren’t our jobs. We aren’t our country club memberships. We aren’t our zip codes.

Take time to get to know people … all over again. Start by introducing yourself to the person known by your name.

And we aren’t our bodies.

We are something much much deeper and more eternal than those things.

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ANNIVERSARY PARTY!

This month we will celebrate our Ten Year Anniversary! I’m taking ideas and suggestions for a party at the end of the month. If you have a good idea or a party place, pass it on!

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ANNIVERSARY DISCOUNT!

Every August the initial enlistment fee is discounted in celebreation of our anniversary! If you have cheap friends or family, tell them that NOW would be the BEST time to join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

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RECORD BROKEN!

Wednesday night the record attendance for the evening class was SHATTERED!! Our previous evening class record had been 38. Last night we were 45 strong! Checkout my Facebook page photos for a pic of that fine group! If you were there, tag yourself! Be proud! Thanks everyone!! That’s pretty cool to break a record here at our 10 year anniversary!! Wow!!

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Today’s Big Three

1. Natalie Williams (Boot Camper) looking for a Marketing/ Event
Coordinating or Advertising job. Has a degree in Marketing Management
and has several years of experience. Please contact nnwllms1@gmail.com
with any leads or job opportunities.

2. Anna Haug (Boot Camper) is looking for a new job. She’s had experience in outside sales.

3. Simple Organizing Solutions by JoAnn Jones (Boot Camper), Professional Organizer (joannjones63@comcast.net
C: 901-292-7607) Customize and help implement organizing systems for clients for their homes, garages, attics and home offices so things can be found readily when needed. Special Boot Camp Rate – Up to 1.5 hour assessment of project(s) and written overview for $50 (book by August 31st).

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8:30 Class Returns in September

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Half Marathon Training begins on Saturday, September 5!

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Do better tomorrow.

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Memphis, TN
901-644-0145
www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

Evening Record Breakers

Evening Record Breakers

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5 ADJECTIVES — Newsletter for 6/18/09

Jun. 18th 2009

If you’re on Facebook you probably have some of the same kinds of friends that I do. On Monday their status updates are full of negative and downer talk.

(If you’re NOT on Facebook, a “status update” is a way for you to tell your friends something about your day or your life. Some people update their status once a day or once a week and others update their status every 10 minutes! “I’m in line at Kroger.” and then ten minutes later, “I’m driving home from Kroger.” Oh boy! And then other people give you something of what their life is like on that particular day. “Such and such is enjoying this beautiful day here at Hilton Head.”)

The Negative Nancies who whine about Monday have just a few things they seem to be passionate about.

They can’t wait to leave work.
They can’t wait for Friday to come.
They need a vacation.
They love _____________ ! (fill in the blank with wine or margaritas)
They’re tired.

A lot of their status updates are just whining and complaining. Most, but not all of these people, are twenty something single women who seem to be confused by their “singleness.” They can’t understand why guys aren’t beating a path to their door. Not all of them are twenty something women. Some are in their thirties and forties. Most are women.

I have started clicking on the “show me less about this person” button just so I don’t have to be reminded that it’s Monday and that it sucks. I mean, seriously … who wants to read that?

Whining and complaining are HUGE downers!

One of my female friends is going to go out on a date with a guy she’s really not that into. But she’s going to give the guy a chance. She asked me for some advice on how to sort of “cool his jets” if there isn’t any chemistry on the date. I suggested several things to do, including “dominate the conversation with endless boring details about stuff and do a lot of whining and complaining, and telling of ‘woe is me’ stories.” That ought to extinguish any possible spark that might exist. Any guy who’d ask for a second date after a full night of that crap is desperate beyond measure.

On the other hand, there is nothing, and I mean NOTHING, more appealing and more attractive and more winsome than people with a passion for life! A lust for life!

Mark Sanborn wrote a book called The Fred Factor. The subtitle is “How passion in your work and life can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary.” Maybe you’ve read it. It’s a fabulous little book!

The “Fred” of this book is Fred Shea. Mr. Shea isn’t Mark Sanborn’s doctor, pastor, counselor, attorney, or priest. Fred is his mailman. But Fred isn’t your average mail carrier. Mailman Fred knows the people on his route like ministers know their congregations.

Fred knows each family by name. He knows the kids, the dogs, and the cars that belong in the neighborhood. He knows when people on his route are ill, when they are celebrating, when they are mourning. He pays attention. He engages those folks in conversation. He is passionate about his life and his work. He has turned the simple act of bringing mail to a house into a vehicle for kindness, friendship, compassion, and caring.

Who would have thought that a mail carrier would be the subject of a national bestseller about passion? With almost 2 million copies sold!

It’s doubtful that many of the people on Fred’s route knew too much about Fred himself. Of course they discovered things about him after the book came out. What this means is that Fred talked to the people about them and their lives. He took an interest in the other person and paid attention when the other person spoke.

The point is passion! The goal is passion for EVERYDAY, not just Friday. Not just for the weekend! Our daily mission statement must be to live THAT day successfully … with passion. To live THIS day with joy and gladness. A day designed to put more positive things out into the world than negative ones. A day planned to put a smile on another’s face for no other reason than to see another person smile.

Here’s your homework. It’s a multi-part assignment.

Part One: Write down the five adjectives that YOU believe best describes your personality. Which five adjectives would you choose to describe yourself? Don’t bother with physical descriptions. Focus instead on the personality attributes and character qualities that you believe best describes the real you. This is what you believe YOU bring to the table.

Part Two: Read that list.

Part Three: Write down the five adjectives that you would LIKE to describe you.This is what you wish you brought to the table.

Part Four: Share these two lists. Enlist the help of a friend or family member who will be honest and frank with you. Ask their opinion. Then ask them to help you live more according to the list of adjectives that describe your idealized self. And give them permission to kick you in the seat of the pants when you act contrary to the you that YOU want to be!

I think it’s interesting that Facebook is called face book. What is the “face” that you show to the world? When you leave the company of another, what are the “take aways” that person will take from their time spent with you?

Are you a Fred?

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YOUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS

Please keep Teri Trotter and Tawnette Baker in your thoughts and prayers.

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0645 CLASS CALLED TO DUTY!

This is a Monday, Wednesday, Friday class and will follow the same routine as the 0830 class!

The 0830 is currently on hiatus for the summer.

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SUMMER SCHOOL SPECIAL

Have a student who’d like to join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP for the summer? Special discounted program for summer student recruits! Email me for details!

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MOUNT FUJI

Next Thursday! The fourth Thursday, June 25 at 0530! Meet at the U of M in front of the parking garage on Zach Curlin!

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What are your 5 adjectives?

To your continued good health and fitness!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding

4888 Southern Ave

Memphis, TN 38117

901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

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MONSTERS and GYPSIES! — Newsletter for 4/8/09

Apr. 8th 2009

He was my older brother and my best friend.

Brothers mess with one another a LOT and Jack and I were no exception. He played and pranked and involved me in all sorts of tomfoolery and mischief. You can almost lay all of the blame for me being mean on him! Thanks bro.

When I was 9 or 10 he thought it would be hilarious to put a bra on me. While I was asleep. So while I was sleeping he got one of our sister’s bra’s and put it on me … and then took some pictures. These he showed to everyone. (Years later, he continued showing these pictures to my buddies and to girls I dated! “Oh Honey, you don’t really want to date my ‘pervert brother,’ right?” he’d ask my dates, after showing them the picture.)

I needed to get even for that one. I needed revenge! And my 10 year old brain concocted an awesome plan.

I would stowaway in his car.

On a date.

Before he left the house to go pick up Diana, I crawled into the back floorboard of his car and hid under a blanket. (Why did Jack have a blanket in his backseat?)

No one, including our parents, knew I was doing this. I didn’t tell anyone for fear of a breach in security. I was afraid someone would tip him off. Plus I was pretty sure that my mother wouldn’t let me do it.

It was really fun hiding away in the backseat as we rolled down the road and him not knowing I was there. hehehe wooohooo!! I thought of myself as a super cool spy like James Bond or one of the guys on “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” At one point he started singing along with the radio and I had to bite my hand to keep from laughing out loud. And he must have put on a gallon of Old Spice, or whatever he took from my dad. He was only 16, so I guess he hadn’t learned that cologne shouldn’t announce your arrival before you arrive! I could smell it even under a blanket in the back floor board. Poor Diana. I hoped she could breathe shallow.

After she got in the car, I heard Jack say that he was taking her to the drive in movie. Oh boy! We’re going to the movies! I love movies! This is going to be LOTS of fun!

Riding along in the back floorboard under the blanket, I was only aware of the movement of the car, the music on the radio, and the muffled conversation in the front seat. A bench front seat, like the kind you find in Buick’s and pick up trucks. The kind of seat that allows the passenger to sit right up against the driver. I imagined that Jack had his left hand on the steering wheel and his right arm around Diana. Cute.

When we got to the drive in, Jack took the speaker and attached it to the window inside the car. Not long after that the movie started I couldn’t hear those two in the front seat talking anymore. I guess they were trying to listen to the movie. I knew they were still there because I never heard the car door open. And I could hear some unidentifiable sounds. They were at least moving around up there. I wasn’t sure why they couldn’t seem to sit still.

I started listening to the movie and trying to figure out what the movie was all about. Monsters and gypsies I thought. Unfortunately the sounds in the front seat started getting a little louder and I couldn’t hear the speaker very well. What were they up to? And all of that moving around too! They sort of sounded out of breath, like they’d been riding their bikes, or running fast, or doing some sort of exercise. I really wanted to see what was going on, so I got out from under the blanket and popped my head up over the seat back.

“Hey! Whatchall dooin’?” I asked.

“OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD …!!” screeched Diana!

“#&%&!=$#*?#&%!!!!!!!” shouted my brother!

They both jumped away from one another as if they’d been zapped with electricity! Then quickly and awkwardly fumbled around with re-buttoning and refastening items of their clothing that had somehow managed to become unbuttoned and unfastened. Whatever had gotten them out of breath had somehow made their buttons come lose. It had also messed up Diana’s hair something awful.

After her initial shock, Diana immediately seemed happy, almost relieved to see me, as she readjusted herself and smoothed down her hair. It seemed like I had just rescued her from something. I felt proud … for about a second. Jack on the other hand did not share Diana’s joy. He seemed to be really, really, REALLY upset with me! More than I thought he would be. It was as if I had just ruined something for him. Whatever that was. At any rate, I had apparently torpedoed some grandiose plan of his. He was not happy with me.

I stayed in the car with Diana while Jack went to the snack bar to call our parents and tell them where I was. (I hadn’t really thought through what the repercussions were going to be for me when I got home. They weren’t good. I’ll just tell you that right now. My joy at getting even was short lived.) While at the snack bar, Jack bought us all a bunch of fun movie food too.

Unfortunately, he banished me from the car for the rest of the night. I was ordered, on threat of death, to sit on the hood, watch the movie and eat my snacks. I was to look straight ahead. Under NO circumstances was I to turn around and look inside the car. “No matter WHAT,” he said. Bless his heart, he still thought he had a chance with Diana after this fiasco. You gotta love that kind of persistence and wishful thinking. As you can imagine, I kept turning around and checking to see what was going on in the front seat of the car. Nothing was going on. Unless you call Diana smiling and waving at me and Jack scowling and giving me a different kind of hand gesture, something.

It was a fun night until we got home. I was in deep trouble. Jack silently laughed at me standing behind our mother as she “got all up in my bizness.” It was pretty funny actually. I was grounded. Until forever.

Jack dated other girls, but I never got to go on any of those dates. A couple of years later my brother preceded me in the Marine Corps. Years later when he was home on leave, he ran into Diana again. They started a long distance relationship and guess who was his best man when they got married? To get even, I thought about wearing a bra on the outside of my tux, but thought better of it.

Diana is the mother of my nephew, Jeff, my brother’s only child.

We lost Jack 18 years ago last Thursday. And a day never goes by that I don’t miss him.

There’s no real moral to this story. No real teaching point. But maybe today might be a good day to tell a brother or a sister … or a really cool uncle or aunt … that you love them and that you’re thankful that they’re in your life! It’s never wrong to tell someone special that you love them.

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

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

You can bring a friend to Boot Camp during April for a FREE DAY! No strings attached.

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! (You get that John Winford?!)

3. Friends who join are counted twice!

In addition, your friends can join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP for only $90 in April! Only your friends and family can take advantage of this deal. New recruits taking advantage of this special discount MUST have a sponsoring friend who IS a Boot Camper in good standing. It’s for our friends and family only.

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OFFICE SPACE IN EAST MEMPHIS!

668 Colonial (Across the street from Target). Two awesome spaces available.

Office Suite #1 is 2,400 square feet.

Office Suite #2 is 1,600 square feet with 4 dental operatories. Perfect dental office or even solon space.

Call Boot Camper Kim Mullins at 901-283-5913

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AWESOME Boot Camp Service Project! — Organized by Anne Emmerth

Anne says:

Boot Campers are coming together to help Soles4Souls, a nonprofit that provides shoes for people in need in the United States and around the world. Shoe companies, retailers, and individuals can donate footwear (both new and used).

Soles4Souls is a 501(c)(3) recognized by the IRS. Soles4Souls distributes shoes internationally and in the US (they’ve served over 30 US states, including Tennessee). The web site is: http://www.soles4souls.org/.

For the next two weeks we’ll collect your used athletic shoes at Boot Camp then we’ll ship them in bulk to the distribution center. Take a moment to look in your closet – if you’re replacing shoes as often as Sergeant Tony recommends, you should have some spares. Tie the laces together and bring them to Boot Camp on these days:

Friday, April 10
Monday, April 13 (last day!)
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SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING AT SHELBY FARMS

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or St. Louis Half Marathon) will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 11 April!

We’ll meet at 0800 in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

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CONGRATULATIONS!!

Boot Camper Daniel Shaffer completed the Ironman Triathlon 70.3 in New Orleans this past weekend! A 70.3 triathlon is a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and 13.1 mile run!

OUTSTANDING JOB DANIEL!

You, sir, rock the house!

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Everyone is important. Everyone matters.

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

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HILLBILLY — Weekly Newsletter for 4/1/09

Apr. 1st 2009

Once upon a time, in a land far away, I went to a Toyota Motor Corporation banquet.

I was the guest speaker.

Don’t ask me why I was invited to speak — in Japanese, no less — you wouldn’t believe me anyway. You’d only say I was making stuff up. (“Tony, you lie!” “Don’t play, be serious!”)

This extravagant event was held at Toyota’s World Headquarters in, where else, Toyota, Japan. Gathered in this enormous and ornate banquet center, were all of Toyota’s corporate executives and their wives. More than a thousand people. And it was a very very formal affair. When the Japanese do formal, they eclipse any European potentate or aristocracy. Formal in Japan means FORMAL.

In attendance at this banquet was Mr. Toyota himself. (Yes, there is such a man.) The city is named after his family … his family is responsible for the company. He is a third generation car man, about 73 years old.

If I were asked to speak in English at such a banquet it would have been nerve-wracking enough, but doing it in JAPANESE?!! What was I thinking??

I was supposed to speak after the meal but I could barely eat anything at all because I was so nervous. So instead of eating, I decided to drink the wine. On an empty stomach. Not my best decision.

If you know me very well, you know that I’m a cheap drunk. Two, maybe, three beers, and that’s about it. Yes, I know, I drink like a teenaged girl. Whatever. I’ve heard it all before. Let’s move on.

The glass of wine I drank not only settled my nerves, but probably made my Japanese a little comical. Hopefully the jokes I had in my speech would work better this way. Or not.

The program began. My part came. I gave my speech. Everyone laughed at the right times. I got applause. I sat down. I nearly passed out. People came up to me afterwards and were very very nice. “Oh, Tony-san, your Japanese is so … so … interesting.” they said.

The most important thing that happened that night wasn’t anything about what I’ve just told you. That was just the back story.

No, the most important thing was what happened when I was standing back stage waiting for my turn in the program. While the MC was conducting other parts of the program, giving out awards and whatnot, I was back stage with others who would have a part in the program too. Including Mr. and Mrs. Toyota!

I was standing off to one side by myself, reading over my speech, trying to prepare myself, when THEY came over to ME! Oh lord! Mr. and Mrs. Toyota!!! Mr. Toyota’s personal assistant led the way and proceeded to make the introductions. OMG! OMG! OMG! MR. TOYOTA AND HIS WIFE!!!

They were the preeminent picture of Japanese grace and elegance. On the other hand, my socks were FULL of sweat. I could literally feel, and hear, the sound of my soaked feet in my soaked shoes. And I just knew the wine was going to totally screw up my Japanese and I was going to sound like a buffoon. Stupid wine.

Introductions in Japan are extremely important and very complicated. Who is introduced first? Who bows first? Who bows lowest? How many times do we bow? Who quits bowing first? Who looks at whom? Who hands their business card first? What is the proper way to receive the business card? How long do you look at the business card before putting it away? How do I properly put the card away? And on and on it goes. It’s very choreographed, rooted in Japanese culture and tradition, and based on who is considered the “superior” and who is considered the “inferior.”

There was NO question as to who the inferior was.

I somehow managed to survive this minefield of cultural exchanges and introductions without sounding like a goober and without embarrassing myself. And then there we were … standing around making small talk. Mr. and Mrs. Toyota were asking ME questions about myself!?? They asked the usual kinds of questions that most Japanese would ask me. Where are you from? What do you do? Do you miss America? Why did you choose to come to Japan? Do you realize that your nose is enormous? Stuff like that. (By the way, big noses are considered attractive there … explains my interest in Japan, huh!?)

And then this happened.

We were just chatting along casually when I mentioned, very off the cuff and without any agenda whatsoever and just trying to make conversation, that my brother-in-law owned a Toyota truck. When I said that, both of them, Mr. and Mrs. Toyota … the head of Toyota Motor Corporation and his wife … bowed to me … low … low … low … and remained bowed … and said, while bowing, in the most formal and polite Japanese, “Thank you very very much, most Honorable Mr. Ludlow sir, for your most honorable family’s support of our most meager company and for your most honorable trust in our most inferior products.”

Say WHAT?

Didn’t they know my family is from Arkansas? That my brother-in-law hauls around deer carcasses in the back of his Toyota truck? That the car that brought them to the banquet cost more than the house I grew up in? That the personal assistant standing in front of me makes more in a year than my father made in a decade?

And they remained bowed for so long that I was embarrassed. People were staring. Those back stage saw the head of their company, AND his wife, honoring me as if I were the most important person at the banquet. The fact was, THEY were the most important people there! He was one of the most important people in the world! And the treatment they gave me was the kind of thing the lowest worker on the Toyota assembly line would show to them! The honor they gave me was so embarrassingly respectful that I returned their bow to them, time and time again, and then started begging them, in whispered and respectful Japanese, to please stop, that I was unworthy of such an honor.

When we finally stood up straight, I had tears in my eyes. I’d never been treated that way in my life. I didn’t know what to say or do.

I’ve never forgotten the lesson they taught me that night. Never have I seen such class and elegance … such humility and kindness … all extended to a hillbilly from Fort Smith, Arkansas … from one of the most powerful men in the world.

GET OUT!

Ask me how everyone treated me the rest of the night.

Like royalty.

When I returned to my seat from giving my speech, and it was evident that I hadn’t had a chance to eat before hand, and that my food was now cold, two waiters came quickly and brought me hot food. One of them stood just a few feet away from me for the rest of the evening to ensure that I was completely taken care of. I was entirely and completely humbled and embarrassed by the preferential treatment I was shown.

What was I taught that night?

Mr. and Mrs. Toyota taught me that everyone is important. Everyone matters.

Everyone is important. Everyone matters.

That’s why I remember your name.

Let me take this opportunity to tell you, those who come to Boot Camp, who make this program possible by your support, who have stood by me through thick and thin, who have been more friend than client — and even to you who are in your very first month of Boot Camp — thank you … thank you so very very much for your honorable trust in my meager and inferior efforts to serve you. I will continue to work hard for you and will, to the best of my ability, abuse you with enthusiasm and humiliate you — most honorable Boot Campers — with humor and great affection!

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

My friend Tom Farrar was a great guy and an excellent CPA.

Former Air Force vet and a numbers genius, but an overweight, hyper-type-A personality that concerned me from the time day I met him.

I worried that Tom was a walking time bomb … a heart attack just waiting to happen. Tom was my CPA and I badgered him, sweetly invited him, tried to shame him, and attempted to humiliate him over the years in an effort to get him to take care of himself and get in shape. I tried everything.

“Tom, you need to come to Boot Camp … I promise not to kill you.” But he would always laugh it off and promise me that he’d come “one of these days.”

Tom ran out of days in April 2007. Unnecessarily. Completely preventable.

He never came to Boot Camp. He never let me help him.

Tom walked out to pick up his morning paper and had a heart attack. He died in his front yard.

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

You can bring a friend to Boot Camp during April for a FREE DAY! No strings attached.

What’s in it for you?

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! (You get that John Winford?!)

3. Friends who join are counted twice!

In addition, your friends can join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP for only $90 in April! Only your friends and family can take advantage of this deal. New recruits taking advantage of this special discount MUST have a sponsoring friend who IS a Boot Camper in good standing. It’s for our friends and family only.

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OFFICE SPACE IN EAST MEMPHIS!

668 Colonial (Across the street from Target). Two awesome spaces available.

Office Suite #1 is 2,400 square feet.

Office Suite #2 is 1,600 square feet with 4 dental operatories. Perfect dental office or even solon space.

Call Boot Camper Kim Mullins at 901-283-5913

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AWESOME Boot Camp Service Project! — Organized by Anne Emmerth

Anne says:

Boot Campers are coming together to help Soles4Souls, a nonprofit that provides shoes for people in need in the United States and around the world. Shoe companies, retailers, and individuals can donate footwear (both new and used).

Soles4Souls is a 501(c)(3) recognized by the IRS. Soles4Souls distributes shoes internationally and in the US (they’ve served over 30 US states, including Tennessee). The web site is: http://www.soles4souls.org/.

For the next two weeks we’ll collect your used athletic shoes at Boot Camp then we’ll ship them in bulk to the distribution center. Take a moment to look in your closet – if you’re replacing shoes as often as Sergeant Tony recommends, you should have some spares. Tie the laces together and bring them to Boot Camp on these days:

Friday, April 3
Monday, April 6
Friday, April 10
Monday, April 13 (last day!)

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SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING AT THE U OF M

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or St. Louis Half Marathon) will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 4 April!

We’ll meet at 0800 in front of the parking garage on Zach Curlin at the U of M. We’ll be going 1hr 10 min.

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

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THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Every week I’ll be introducing you to three businesses, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

1. Ande Demetriou (BNI) Gemini Media Transfer Service — Transferring video imagery from different media to DVD, 901-584-0010.

2. Tom Dorian (Boot Camper, BNI) American National Insurance Co.– Multiple line insurance company specializing in the personal market. Claim free benefits. 901-328-5858×151

3. Lloyd Caldemeyer (BNI) Alliance Services — Health Insurance. 901-338-2501

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Everyone is important. Everyone matters.

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


THINK JAN, NOT MARSHA! — Newsletter for 3/25/09

Mar. 25th 2009

I asked Meredith to the 7th grade dance. When I was in the 7th grade. Not yesterday.

Meredith had light brown hair and green eyes and wore the most adorable glasses. 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, according to the alphabetical seating chart all of our teachers followed. This gave me a lot of opportunities to talk to Meredith.

She thought I was funny and when she laughed really hard she snorted a little. I loved that! And since I thought/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, “Stoppppppp-snort-Tonnnny!” It was pure joy for me!

She 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. 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.

Even still, I was VERY nervous when I asked Meredith to go with me, and was so relieved when she said yes. It was my first “date!”

The dance was our fall mixer. They called it a “Sock Hop,” but I never knew why. We never actually took our shoes off and hopped around.

The evening of the dance I waited for Meredith in front of the school. When her dad pulled up and she got out, I felt like the luckiest boy in the school. She looked absolutely stunning! She was wearing 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 she and her mom might have gone out and bought that dress just for the occasion. The dress was more flattering than the clothes she usually wore to school and she looked amazing. I even noticed that her hair was in a different style than usual and that she’d probably spent a long time on it. She looked beautiful!

Me on the other hand, 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 very hot in late September. I felt like I was sweating through my shirt and looked horrid. I was very self conscious. But despite how I looked, I thought of myself as a pretty good dancer, for a 13 year old white boy, and was cuttin’ quite a rug once the dance began in the dimly lit cafeteria! Truth is, I probably looked silly and ridiculous. But if I did, Meredith never let on. She seemed to be having fun!

Everything was going just great until the first slow dance.

A SLOW DANCE?? Are you KIDDING ME?? I was terrified. We stood there looking awkward and nervous as the official slow dance music started — “Nights in White Satin” — and other couples started slow dancing. I’d never slow danced in my life! And with me being sweaty and all, I was horrified at the very thought of Meredith wrapping her arms around the sweaty mess I’d become. I was sure she’d be repulsed and pull back, totally grossed out. This made me sweat even more. I could feel my shirt clinging to my back and projectile flop sweat leaping off my forehead like rats abandoning ship. But Meredith didn’t seem to mind and we wrapped ourselves up like fishing worms and started doing that little foot shuffling circle movement that passes for slow dancing. After I quit worrying and fretting, I started to relax and enjoy my first slow dance. This was really fun, I thought, no matter how goofy I looked or how uncomfortable I felt.

Through 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! Wow! There they were, making out!! Gosh, that looked pretty 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. I weren’t no playah, but I sort of had a general idea how it 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 her’s, tried to allow for wind, lighting, 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 mouth. 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 fowl it up! I kissed her ear. Actually it was a combination of her ear and her hair. Either way, I felt like a complete moron.

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

“Uh … no.” I lied unconvincingly.

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. I felt like a big goober.

“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 from my hometown. 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 Sock Hop, but with other more meaningful things. More important things. (Is it time to get back in the Stock Market? Maybe so! Is is time to come back to Boot Camp? Absolutely!)

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 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!

Thanks Meredith, wherever you are! I had a great time!

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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 the Neighborhood Housing Opportunities under the Memphis Leadership Foundation!

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

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PRAYERS AND THOUGHTS

Please keep Teri Trotter and her family in your thoughts and prayers. Teri’s surgery was a success last week and they are preparing for the next step in the process.

We love you Teri!

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CONGRATULATIONS!

Congratulations to these AWESOME Boot Campers who ran the Natchez Trace Duathlon (2 mile run, 15 mile bike, 3 mile run) at Natchez Trace State Park this past Sunday! Way to “du” guys!

David Caffey
Holly Spraker
Amy Cone
Kirk Johnston

You rock!

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SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or St. Louis Half Marathon) will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 28 March!

We’ll meet at 0800 in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.

IF IT IS RAINING, MEET AT THE U of M PARKING GARAGE ON ZACH CURLIN

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

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THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Every week I’ll be introducing you to three businesses, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

1. Dana Whitmore (Boot Camper) In-Rel Management — Commercial Office Space Leasing at some cool locations! 901-333-8654, email: dwhitmore@in-rel.com

2. Anna Haug (Boot Camper) Graphic Systems Incorporated — printing distribution, 901-487-6580.

3. Lynn Street (BNI) Street’s Accounting Service — taxes, bookkeeping, general accounting, 901-759-0359.

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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
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


TEN — Newsletter for 3/18/09

Mar. 18th 2009

I lived in Japan for 10 years as a civilian.

I lived for 3 years in Tokyo and 7 years in Nagoya. Not far from where I lived was Mt. Osutaka. On a ridge of that mountain range is the crash site of the worst air disaster in history.

Japan Airlines (JAL) flight 123, taking off from Tokyo bound for Osaka, crashed there on August 12, 1985. It was one of the most unusual plane crashes not only because of the great loss of life, but because the passengers and crew knew they were going to crash. For almost an hour they knew.

A mechanical failure that occurred shortly after takeoff rendered the aircraft mostly uncontrollable. The flight crew lost practically all steering capabilities. What little control they had was primarily made possible by varying the thrust of the engines. The erratic and wandering behavior of the plane made it necessary to inform the passengers of their situation. And ultimately of their peril.

Film developed from cameras found at the crash site chronicled the scene within the cabin of the ill-fated craft. There was no chaos, no panic, no pandemonium. The photographs showed flight attendants calmly walking up and down the aisle giving out refreshments and words of comfort. Passengers remained seated. Many appeared to be praying. While others looked as if they were taking a written examination. The flight attendants had also handed out paper and pens.

In 1985 there were no cell phones. Passengers spent their last hour writing letters to their loved ones. Letters that were discovered in the pockets of their clothes. Their last letters.

If you knew that you only had one hour to live, and you could only speak to 10 people, who would they be?

That was a question posed to me a few years ago when I was facing a tough time in my life.

I wrote down the names of the 10 people I would want to talk to if I had only an hour to live.

Whoever those 10 are, I was told, THEY are the most important people in your life. THEY are the ones to treasure. THEY are the ones who matter. THEY are the ones to invest your life in. THEY are the ones who deserve to get your best. Your time. Your patience. Your understanding. Your love.

Who are YOUR 10? Write down their names.

Today, take care of your body as if you were going to live forever. Make it healthy and strong!

But today — and everyday — behave toward your 10 as if this were your last day on earth. Today might be a good day to tell them how important they are to you.

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PRAYERS AND THOUGHTS

Our Teri Trotter is having breast cancer surgery today at 1:30. Please keep our sweet friend, her man Brad, and their awesome kids, Lanie and William, in your thoughts and prayers. You can read about Teri’s situation at: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/teritrotter

This is what Teri wrote this morning:

“I am overwhelmed. I am overwhelmed with fear. I am overwhelmed with the uncertainty of the unknown. I am overwhelmed by the complexity of this disease. I am overwhelmed by the graciousness of people around me. I am overwhelmed with love for my husband. I am overwhelmed with love for my children. I am overwhelmed by the faith I have in God. I am overwhelmed with a calm that can only be brought on by the prayers of so many people. I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love for me. I am overwhelmed with thankfulness. I am overwhelmed by how God has blessed me with such an amazing family. I am overwhelmed with relief that today is finally here. I am overwhelmed with the need to move forward to the next stage of treatment. I am overwhelmed with worry as to just what this treatment will be. I am overwhelmed by the power of the Holy Spirit. I am overwhelmed that all of you care so much. I am overwhelmed.
Just two more hours until I leave for the hospital. Bring it on!!”

——

Boot Camper Emily House and her husband, David, are hurting right now. Emily had an emergency c-section on Sunday. Their little boy was born with too many life threatening conditions and died a few hours after he was born. I don’t think I can convey to you the desperate need they have for their hearts and emotions to be made healthy and whole again. Please remember them.

If your heart is light, if your body is healthy, if your life is good … reach out to someone whose heart is heavy, whose body hurts, whose life is in turmoil. On the shoulders of those around you are the unseen and heavy burdens they bear.

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OPPORTUNITY TO HEAR A SUCCESS STORY!

Last week I told you about my friend Rachel. She’s lost over 60 pounds and as a former smoker and mother of 3, had a long row to hoe when she decided to take charge of her life and become physically fit.

But she didn’t let anything get in her way (sounds like something I’ve been harping on to you guys for years!) And now she’s ready to tell me how she did it. (And of course, I wasn’t gonna leave you out!)

To see how she pulled it all off, you gotta get on the 3-part series she’s gonna do via phone. First, sign up to get the call-in details:

www.RachelDYoung.com

She’ll supply the rest.

I just knew you guys wouldn’t wanna pass up an opportunity to see how a full-time mother and entrepreneur “found” time in her schedule to workout, eat right on a family budget, and take the weight off.

I can think of at least one or two of you that could really use these calls to your advantage!

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CONGRATULATIONS!

Congratulations to these Boot Campers who ran the Germantown Half Marathon this past Sunday! Way to go guys!

Estelle Winsett
Kay Ryan
Elizabeth Stacey

And David and Margaret Caffey ran in the Walt Disney World Family Weekend! They ran a 5K on Saturday and a Half Marathon on Sunday!! Awesome!

All y’all ROCK!

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THIRD THURSDAY MOUNT FUJI AT 0530

Tomorrow morning the 0530 class will meet at the University of Memphis for our Mt. Fuji workout! Meet in the parking lot in front of the parking garage on Zach Curlin. Bring your dumbbells!

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SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING at the University of Memphis

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or St. Louis Half Marathon) will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 21 March!

We’ll meet in front of the parking garage on Zach Curlin! Saturday’s run will be speed oriented and will only last 1 hr. 10 min.

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

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THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Every week I’ll be introducing you to three businesses, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

1. Eric Flanders (Boot Camper): Fleet Feet Sports “Running Shoes, Apparel and Gear”, 901-761-0078. Sgt. Tony’s running store.

2. Dr. John Whittemore (Boot Camper) Germantown Dental Group, 901-754-0540. Sgt. Tony’s dentist.

3. Greg Inman (Boot Camper), Inman-Murphy Termite & Pest Control 901-388-0852. Sergeant Tony’s termite company!

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If you knew that you only had one hour to live, and could only speak to 10 people, who would they be?

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


GREAT EXPECTATIONS — Newsletter for 3/11/09

Mar. 11th 2009

“Great Expectations” is the name of a pretty interesting song by Elbow. The other day I listened to it over and over again. So much so that the next morning I woke up repeating one of the lines of the song. Has that ever happened to you?

Of course, “Great Expectations” is also the name of a famous book by Charles Dickens. I think the book should have been called “Dashed Hopes.” But that title might not have sold many copies.

Expectations are horrible little hobgoblins of the mind that will pump you up and get you excited and then stand off at a distance and act innocent when their first cousin, “Disappointment” moves in to ruin the party.

It’s said that a person’s happiness is in direct proportion to the degree to which their expectations are fulfilled. And the inverse is true about someone’s unhappiness or disappointment; in direct proportion to which a person’s expectations are unmet or unfulfilled.

Unrealistic expectations are part of the DNA of a person with a critical spirit, a perfectionist, or the self righteous. They impose upon the world a view of how THEY believe it should be and then criticize, judge, or complain when the reality of the situation doesn’t match their expectations.

Do you know someone like that? Maybe it’s you. Maybe it’s me. Thing is, we can all fall victim to it. Any one of us on any given day. Critical? Self righteous? Intolerant?

Nothing and none of us are perfect. Let me say that again … nothing, nothing, nothing and NONE OF US are perfect!

Expecting perfection is “ignert.” And because nothing is perfect, we can always find something to criticize about the world around us … the people around us … or ourselves. You don’t act like I want you to act. I don’t act like you want me to act. Lunch was not as good as it could have been. He isn’t as spiritual as me. I’m right, they’re wrong. I’m better than he is. My boss is a chowder head. My house isn’t big enough. Dinner tonight will not be as good as it could be. My run times are too slow. Your push ups are horrible. (hahahaha) It’s too cold outside. It’s too hot. My hair is always a disaster. My friends are stupid. My mother didn’t love me. My father was too distant. My family is dysfunctional. Whatever.

It takes no talent or intelligence to criticize or tear down. Ever notice how quick those guys can implode a building? They can tear down in minutes what took years to build. And don’t you grow weary of the person who’s only contribution to conversation consists of complaining and criticizing?

I know that it’s an overused phrase, but “it is what it is” is wisdom in five words. Things are the way they are. Period. The first step is to accept that truth without judgment or intolerance. Maybe things can be changed. Change it! Maybe they can’t. Accept it! We all struggle with the balancing act. We all need what Reinhold Niebuhr’s prayer mentions: acceptance of the things we cannot change, courage to change what can be changed, and the wisdom to know the difference … and peace in the process … with contentment.

And all of this is coming from a guy who DEMANDS perfection from you everyday! I know, I know, I’m a hypocrite! Demanding excellence and success from you is my job! You get healthier and stronger when I demand your BEST, when I push you! In “Boot Camp World” good enough never is!

But today … take it easy on your fellow man and your fellow woman … give everyone a break … you don’t know their story or the burdens they bear … and while you’re at it, give yourself a little slack too. Don’t beat yourself up … let ME do that for you! Appreciate the world you live in and the people around you. Appreciate your life and the contributions that others make in your life. Be grateful.

Be content.

—————————————————————-

OPPORTUNITY TO HEAR A SUCCESS STORY!

If you’ve been a Boot Camper for any amount of time, you know that I’ve had my hands full with the hiatus of the Midtown Battalion, the awarding of Sgt. Tony’s Combat the Fat Weight Loss Challenge (congrats again, Tawnette!), not to mention Riverdancing my way across Memphis!

But even with all this on my plate — and other things too — the one thing that hasn’t changed is my commitment to you. Making sure that you’ve got all the tools you need to truly embrace good health and fitness.

So when my longtime friend, Rachel Young came to me and said that she had recently lost over 60 pounds…kept it off…and wanted to tell me exactly how she’d done it – I wanted to make sure you were included in the festivities!

She’s gonna ‘tell all’ on March 17th at 9pm EST (that’s 8pm Central Time for you Ole Miss grads). You can go sign up to get the call details here:

www.RachelDYoung.com

Keep in mind that I’ve known this girl for almost 20 years and she pulls no punches. (She’s even begun training for the Women’s Tri-Fitness Competition in 2010!)

I don’t know how many ‘seats’ she’s got available so you probably don’t wanna wait around on something like this.

—————————————————–

SERGEANT TONY’S $5,000 COMBAT THE FAT WEIGHT LOSS CHALLENGE

With friends and family gathered at Jason’s Deli this past Saturday morning, our champion was awarded a check for FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS!

Tawnette Baker won with a weight loss of 20.13%!
Andy Cook was second with a weight loss of 18.17%
Josh Miller came in third with a weight loss of 17.45%

Don Baker, Tawnette’s husband, probably had the second biggest grin in the room. His wife had promised to buy him new speakers for his stereo if she won!

Congratulations to everyone who participated!

I’ve been asked about the next Challenge. Look for a new and revamped Challenge, maybe in June. Stay tuned for further details.

———————————————————-

SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING!

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or St. Louis Half Marathon) will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 14 March! We’ll meet in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.

Cost for the three month training is $100 for “friends” of Boot Camp and $75 for active duty BOOT CAMPERS!

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

IF IT IS RAINING, WE’LL MEET AT THE ZACH CURLIN PARKING GARAGE AT THE U OF M!

————————————————————–

THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Every week I’ll be introducing you to three businesses, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

1. Melissa Dixon (Boot Camper, BNI): Affordable Moving “Local and Long Distance Moving”, 901-388-3313

2. Taylor Taylor (Boot Camper) Summer Junior Tennis Camps at the Racquet Club taught by Taylor, a USPTA Professional, 901-765-4404. tayholden@hotmail.com (901) 292-7177 cell. Call or email her for class times and schedules.

3. Dr. Carl “Buddy” Flinn (Boot Camper), Peepers Optical 773 Estate Pl, Memphis. 901-681-4045. Specializing In Pediatric Eyewear, Pediatric Ophthalmology & Adult Strabismus. Sergeant Tony’s eye doc!

——————————————————

Shameless, Shameless, SHAMELESS PLUG

My son, Nathan, a starving college student at MTSU has become a sales rep for Cutco, a knife and flatware company. He just started last week. He makes $15 every time he makes a presentation, irrespective of whether he sells anything or not. Nathan needs opportunities to give his 35 minute presentation when he’s home on the weekends. If you’d like to listen to a cute young college boy and help him out, or you’d just like a chance to heckle my kid in person, please give Nathan a call at 901-289-2738. Thank you Scot, Margaret, David, and Kay!

——————————————————————


This is from my good friend Troy Donald.

I Believe…
That just because two people argue,
doesn’t mean they don’t love each other.
And just because they don’t argue,
doesn’t mean they do love each other.

I Believe…
That sometimes when I’m angry I have the right to be angry,
but that doesn’t give me the right to be cruel.

I Believe…
That we don’t have to change friends if
we understand that friends change.

I Believe…
That no matter how good a friend is, they’re going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.

I Believe…
That true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance.
Same goes for true love.

I Believe…
That you can do something in an instant
that will give you heartache for life.

I Believe…
That it’s taking me a long time
to become the person I want to be.

I Believe…
That you should always leave loved ones with
loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I Believe…
That you can keep going long after you think you can’t.

I Believe…
That we are responsible for what
we do, no matter how we feel.

I Believe….
That either you control your attitude or it controls you.

I Believe…
That heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.

I Believe…
That money is a lousy way of keeping score.

I Believe..
That my best friend and I can do anything, or nothing, and have the best time.

I Believe…
That sometimes the people you expect to kick you when you’re down, will be the ones to help you get back up.

I Believe…
That maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you’ve had, and what you’ve learned from them…..and less to do with how many birthdays you’ve celebrated.

I Believe…
That it isn’t always enough to be forgiven by others.
Sometimes, you have to learn to forgive yourself.

I Believe…
That no matter how bad your heart is broken the world doesn’t stop for your grief.

I Believe…
That our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are,
but we are responsible for who we become.

I Believe…
That you shouldn’t be so eager to find
out a secret. It could change your life Forever.

I Believe…
Two people can look at the exact same
thing and see something totally different.

I Believe…
That your life can be changed in a matter of
hours by people who don’t even know you.

I Believe…
That even when you think you have no more to give, if
a friend cries out to you……..you will find the strength to help.

I Believe…
That credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

I Believe…
That the people you care about most in life are taken from you too soon.

I Believe…
That you should send this to all of the people that you believe in. I just did.

The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything;
They just make the most of everything they have.

Thank you God for all the wonderful people who help us
throughout this journey called Life..

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


OBAMA GAY SCANDAL — Newsletter for 3/4/09

Mar. 4th 2009

“OBAMA GAY SCANDAL”

That was the huge headline on a supermarket tabloid I saw this morning.

Next to that tabloid was another one that had a picture of Angelina Jolie on the left side of the front page and another picture of Jennifer Anniston on the other side. According to the headline they were about to have a “SHOWDOWN!” Neither of them seemed to be dressed for a rumble though.

There seems to be no end to people’s interest in scandal, gossip, half truths, and full out lies. Or their capacity for stupid. Case in point, Rush Limbaugh ($33 million dollar a year radio talk show host who flunked out of college his freshman year) said recently that he hoped that President Obama failed.

Wanna run that one past me again there genius? (I Timothy 2:1-3)

Isn’t that a little like hoping the guy flying the plane you’re on fails?

Charlie Brown said it best, “Good grief.”

So in the spirit of gossip and scandal, I’m going to tell you MY dirty little secret.

Get ready. It’s very titillating. But not exactly lascivious.

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP is NOT a weight loss program. There. I said it.

Let me say it a different way, “USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP is NOT a weight loss program IF you eat more calories than you burn.”

Fit fat people are not unusual. I’ve gotten passed by them in every marathon I’ve ever run. I’ll be chuggin’ a long and a fat guy (or girl) will pass me.

Skinny unfit people are everywhere too. Lots of people lose weight without exercise. They just quit eating. They don’t look very healthy, but they’re skinny.

Here’s the deal.

If your level of daily activities burns 2,500 calories, for example, but you eat 3,000 calories, guess what? You’ll GAIN weight!!

This is easy to calculate, even for Ole Miss grads. Let’s say that your daily activities, minus BOOT CAMP, burns 1,500 calories. Now add, say, 800 calories that you burned at BOOT CAMP. That gives you 2,300 calories burned. But look at what you’re eating. Maybe 800 or more calories per meal, plus calories from snacks and drinks, and you’ve got well over 2,300 calories. BOOT CAMP will make you physically fit. You’ll be strong. You’ll have more stamina. You’ll have more energy. But you won’t lose any weight if you eat more calories than you burn … no matter how many push ups you can do.

Here’s the fitness industry’s dirty little secret: THERE IS NO EXERCISE PROGRAM THAT WILL MAKE YOU LOSE WEIGHT UNLESS YOU EAT FEWER CALORIES THAN YOU BURN!

That’s it.

June will be here before you know it and you’ve got PLENTY of time to take control and get down to your beach-going-cruise-taking-reunion-attending-bikini weight. Some of you fellas could actually take off your shirt this summer!

Focus on success! Make a commitment and DO IT! DO IT! DO IT!

————————————————————-

CONGRATULATIONS BOOT CAMPERS!!!!!

Congratulations to the following BOOT CAMPERS who ran the 1st Annual Move it Memphis 10K last Saturday. (In no particular order!)

David Caffey
Margaret Caffey
Scot Bearup
Sarah Bowen
Rebecca Rawlinson
Celeste Pryor
Austin Nichols
Angela Haug
Ashley West
Jean Johnston
Dana Whitmore
John Winford
Holly Spraker
Amy Cone
Nina Sublette
Laura Rogers

Way to go everyone!!

———————————————————-

SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING!

Half Marathon (13.1 miles) Training for the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville on April 25, 2009 (or the Louisville Half Marathon or will continue at 0800 this coming Saturday, 7 March! We’ll meet in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.

Cost for the three month training is $100 for “friends” of Boot Camp and $75 for active duty BOOT CAMPERS!

The training schedule is posted on the blog page of our website: http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/

IF IT IS RAINING, WE’LL MEET AT THE ZACH CURLIN PARKING GARAGE AT THE U OF M!

————————————————————–

THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Every week I’ll be introducing you to three businesses, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

1. Rick Owings (Boot Camper): Body Mechanix Theraputic Massage, 3486 Poplar Avenue, (901) 323-1220

2. Cathy Graham (Sometimes Boot Camper, BNI): Grafix Unlimited (website design and lots more!), cgraham@grafixunlimited.com

3. Les Bonnett (Collierville Boot Camp Commander, BNI): Ugly Signs (signs, magnetics, banners), 901-592-7097

——————————————————————

MIDTOWN BOOT CAMP STANDING DOWN

After much consideration, contemplation, and consultation, we put the Midtown Battalion on hiatus last Friday.

The careers and personal obligations of the two commanders have grown, changed, and become increasingly more challenging over the past year. And despite their heartfelt desires to continue providing topnotch inspired leadership in Midtown, the realities of time and space are not cooperating. This is both a good thing and a not so good thing.

It is good that Theresa’s and Holly’s lives, careers, and opportunities are expanding and allowing them new pathways for personal and professional growth. The not so good part is that it leaves them unable to provide the level of leadership required and needed to maintain the consistency of commitment to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Midtown.

It is my hope that USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Midtown will, at some point in the future, be reactivated and brought back to active duty status.

Many thanks to Theresa Andreuccetti and Holly Guthrie! And special thanks to Mike Barta and Anne Emmerth who assisted Theresa and Holly countless times and in so many ways! Thanks guys!

——————————————————

Shameless, Shameless, SHAMELESS PLUG

My son, Nathan, a starving college student at MTSU has become a sales rep for Cutco, a knife and flatware company. He just started last week. He makes $15 every time he makes a presentation, irrespective of whether he sells anything or not. Nathan needs opportunities to give his 35 minute presentation when he’s home on the weekends. If you’d like to listen to a cute young college boy and help him out, or you’d just like a chance to heckle my kid in person, please give Nathan a call at 901-289-2738. Thank you Scot, Margaret, and David!

——————————————————————

Take three minutes, right now, and think on one thing or person that you’re grateful for! If it’s a person, tell them!

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


WHIPPER SNAPPER! — Newsletter for 2/25/09

Feb. 25th 2009

Saturday night I got Riverdanced!

I absolutely love that show!
It is a FEAST for the eyes and ears!

It’s strong and powerful, beautiful and elegant, majestic and unbelievably athletic!
It’s the kind of excellence that makes you start applauding even before a number is over.
And the kind that makes you sad when it’s over.

In 2002 I was a guest on FOX 13’s Good Morning Memphis show. They regularly had fitness professionals come on the show and talk about exercise and other related topics. Since several FOX 13 folks were boot campers at the time, I was invited to be a guest on the program almost monthly. It was a lot of fun and Valerie Calhoun is great!

It just so happened that Riverdance was in town one week when I was on the program. I really didn’t know too much about Riverdance at the time. And as luck would have it, the male lead dancer was also a guest on the program the same morning that I was.

He and I made small talk while we waited on the set of the studio where our interviews would take place 30 minutes later. He was a really nice guy but, again, I didn’t have much of an appreciation for what he did.

That was about to change.

During one of the breaks, Val came over to the studio to say hello to us while we waited and to make introductions. Still off camera and off air, she casually asked him to show us a “little something” of his dancing. Like asking one of the Harlem Globe Trotters to spin a basketball on their finger or something. So he stood up and then what I saw next was something I will never forget. Without hardly any movement it seemed, he started to dance and I’d never seen anything like it in my life! This incredible athlete/dancer started moving and tapping his feet faster than I had EVER seen the human foot move … with a rhythm and precision and a sound that was immediately mesmerizing and hypnotic. It was like magic! How did he DO that?? I was amazed, entranced … and hooked!

When I left the station, I went directly to Davis Kidd and bought tickets for the Saturday performance!

The things that appeal to me about Riverdance are some of the same things that appeal to me about air shows, well executed football plays, basketball fast breaks, the Marine Corps Silent Drill Team … precision, timing, athleticism, discipline, focus, dedication.

With the possible exception of the first three, the last three are the footprints of all successes. A case could probably be made for precision and timing too.

There is no substitute for discipline, focus, and dedication.

Yesterday at the pool I met a guy who’s trying to cut 5 seconds off of his swim time. We had both just finished swimming laps and had started talking about trying to get a little faster in the water. He’s training for a big event this summer and is hoping that his dedication and hard work will pay off. He’s training in the pool 3 to 4 times a week for an hour and a half each time.

My new buddy is 92 years old … and I liked him immediately when he called me “young man!” Later he told me I was just a “young whipper snapper!” I REALLY liked him then! But when I discovered that he’s a former Marine, well … you know.

There’s no statute of limitation on excellence or achievement or ambition. Your life isn’t written in stone yet and the description of your life is still being written! The person you are today isn’t the person you have to remain. The most interesting people I know are the ones who sort of reinvent themselves every so often!

My 92 year old friend intends to compete in the Senior Olympics this summer and WIN!! Bless his heart! He could have given up years and years ago! But he pushes on!

Let’s all push on! Let’s all push up against the margins and boundaries of our lives and make new discoveries, new achievements, new horizons!

And the next time Riverdance is in town, buy a ticket!

——————————————————–

SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING!

No organized training run this Saturday. Instead run the first annual MOVE IT MEMPHIS 10K!
www.moveitmemphis10k.com

————————————————————–

THESE TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES

I try to promote and patronize Boot Campers in their businesses. I am also a member of a business networking group (BNI – Business Networking International) that meets weekly to promote one another’s businesses.

Beginning today, I’m going to introduce you to three businesses every week, either owned by one of you guys or one of my BNI buddies. Maybe you’re not a business owner, but you work on commission and would like to be mentioned, please send me your info!

Today’s Big Three are:

Ginny Craig (Boot Camper): Pageboy Salon, 650 S Perkins Rd, 901-767-1268.
Kevin Savage (BNI): Picture Perfect Plumbing, 901-674-3637.
David Strong and Nikki Strong (Boot Camper, BNI): Piano’s Flowers & Gifts, 901-345-7670.

——————————————————————

Shameless, Shameless, SHAMELESS PLUG

My son, Nathan, a starving college student at MTSU has become a sales rep for Cutco, a knife and flatware company. He just started last week. He makes $15 every time he makes a presentation, irrespective of whether he sells anything or not. Nathan needs opportunities to give his 35 minute presentation when he’s home on the weekends. If you’d like to listen to a cute young college boy and help him out, or you’d just like a chance to heckle my kid in person, please give Nathan a call at 901-289-2738. Thank you Scot, Margaret, and David!

——————————————————————

Your Thoughts and Prayers

Diane Thackery lost her father on Monday. Diane, as many of you will know, is a veteran Boot Camper. I had the privilege of meeting Diane’s father at a Christmas party a couple of years ago. He was a delightful man and will be missed by all who knew him. Please remember to keep the tender heart of our friend in your thoughts and prayers.

We’re thinking about you D.

————————————————–

Have a great Wednesday everyone!

To your continued good health and fitness,

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow
USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
4888 Southern Ave
Memphis, TN 38117
901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.shaklee.net/tonyludlow/main

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized, Weekly Newsletter | No Comments »


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