Fitness: The Only Failure Is Not Being In The Game

This is my new column in The Tennessee Star. It comes from seeing much failure in the world of health and fitness, particularly self-inflicted. I discuss the way to overcome this failure and start succeeding in the fitness game, and in the game of life! Hope you enjoy.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

The Best Diet Book Doesn’t Exist

This is my second column with the Tennessee Star, as a Contributor. It reflects the years of study and practice trying many diets–from vegan to low-carb to quite a bit in between! I’ve learned a lot through this journey, mostly about myself. I think you’ll relate to much of what you will read in this column. Let me know what you think.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

I Made It Back to Good Health… So Can You

I’m happy to announce that I’m now a Contributor with The Tennessee Star! This is my debut Column for the Star, and it provides a great background on some of my numerous past injuries and surgeries, which led me on the path of true health and fitness. I hope you enjoy it, and that it provides some inspiration in your own journey. Let me know what you think.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

Which “Tree” Are You Eating From?

“But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shalt not eat of it; for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

–Genesis 2:17

“Knowledge” seems to be king these days. Meaning information gathered from another human being or a computer. And to a degree, knowledge is critical. In the world of personal training, for instance, one needs to know enough to avoid injury, and the trainer can help in that quest.

But seeking external knowledge to an extreme demonstrates a lack of internal compass. “Following the recipe” may make a nice cake. But utilizing some creativity in the kitchen breathes life into the “art” of baking–it makes it more enjoyable. Physical culture is the same way.

In my own training, and in my studies, I am constantly discovering new ideas, or at least new wrinkles to old ideas. This is progress. Think of the greats in the world of physical culture, like Eugene Sandow–you know, the guy on the trophy given out to Mr. Olympia.

Or Steve Reeves, Vince Gironda, Joseph Pilates, and others. These men–and many others–revolutionized the world of physical culture.

From the world of martial arts, think of Bruce Lee, who pioneered cross-discipline training, the deemphasizing of forms, and the emphasizing of efficient simplicity–ultimately, freedom. There would be no explosion in the popularity of mixed martial arts without this man’s example, I assure you.

There are so many examples from other disciplines, of those who dared to innovate. Think of Nikola Tesla, the genius who brought us alternating current, and the inventions that led us to radio and wireless transmission, and even space communication.

Tesla was not interested in copying what had been done before. He had another vision, and worked tirelessly to create bold, mind-blowing inventions.

For a recent example, look at Steve Jobs. A true artist who sought to change the world, not to just get rich or famous.

So be careful which “tree” you’re eating from. Obtaining all of your sustenance from the tree of knowledge kills, while eating from the tree of life (discovery) gives life. You will notice this in your training. Don’t be content to merely count reps, calories, macros, and ounces of water.  Or to merely measure the size of your biceps or the amount of fat your body is carrying. ENJOY THE PROCESS! Discover new wrinkles that improve your workout and nutrition. Or perhaps you will notice completely new ways to train, eat and live with more freedom and purpose.

This will ensure your workouts, meals–and your life–remain fresh, and your enthusiasm for living remains high.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

Why Are We Pulverizing Our Food?

Something occurred to me this morning as I was downing my
morning nutritional shake: this may not be the best way to do it.

God has designed the food we are to eat in a certain way. For instance, fruit is fibrous. It includes sugar, but it comes with the fiber, so that the sugar is introduced SLOWLY into the bloodstream. When we pulverize our berries mechanically, for instance, and gulp them down, we are no longer consuming them at the SPEED they were intended to enter our bodies.

Sugar introduced too fast is not good. Insufficient fibrous action in our bodies is not good.

And dropping many items into your smoothie may satisfy your need for maximizing nutrients, but how natural is that?

I often think of the way nuts come in a shell. In our fast modern world, we’ve mechanically shelled them. But I’ve often wondered if it is not better to do the work of shelling the nut myself to ensure I eat them slowly–and not too many at that! We really don’t need to eat many nuts or seeds at a time anyway. A little go a long way.

Think about what I’m saying here, and think of the overwhelming, increasing epidemic of obesity, diabetes, and the myriad of other ailments related to eating that are plaguing our society. Something has gone off track, and much of it relates to how we go about eating–even healthy foods.

I believe much of the habit of pulverizing our fruits and veggies into drinks comes from our rushed lifestyles. Gotta get to work or school–down the smoothie!

Rushing is not a good strategy. It indicates a lack of priorities. We’ve been lied to–we can’t have it ALL–choose!

We need to start considering why our food was designed as it was. It was not haphazard. I think this maxim makes sense: The further we alter our food, the further we move from health–despite our good intentions.

So how about eating a bowl of berries, or an apple, or some walnuts, or a salad with rich, vibrant colors? Too boring? I’d rather be “bored” and alive, than stimulated and dead.

How about actually EATING our food instead of drinking it?

How about resisting the urge to mix 20 items into a smoothie, and pulverizing them beyond recognition?

The road back to health begins with simple steps.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

Nailing Your Diet–It’s Often About What You DON’T Do

We’re bombarded multiple times a day, it seems, with new “breakthrough” diets. Nothing wrong with new things, sometimes they can keep things interesting.

Yet, Solomon, one of the wisest men of all time, famously said, “There’s nothing new under the sun.”

The laws of health are immutable. They’re unchanging. And following them is pretty simple.

Often, we don’t need to ADD things to our lives, we need to simplify, and sometimes let go of things.

Another wise man–I’d say the wisest–famously boiled down all of his Father’s laws into just two–“Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.”

That’s nice and simple!

And while we’re contemplating the sayings of wise men, I have one more,  from the late, great Bruce Lee: “It’s not a daily increase, but a daily DECREASE. Hack away at the inessentials.”

Well said, Bruce!

Specifically, in the world of nutrition, people generally get into trouble by doing too much–too much food, too many meals (especially too much food too late at night!).

Would-be bodybuilders often chug down too much protein, which turns to fat. Not to mention the multitudes who eat too much sugar, which also turns to fat. The list goes on.

Paul “Coach” Wade covers much of this ground and much more in his brilliant book, Convict Conditioning 2, which is the sequel to the classic Convict Conditioning (BTW, I’m not getting paid to endorse these books, but maybe I should look into it!). The man spent many years of his life in some of the meanest prisons in America, and has come away with fascinating, yet completely common sense, insights into simple yet profoundly productive physical training, diet, injury prevention, and more. Don’t be turned off by the titles or judge this man’s past–these are amazing books.

One observation Mr. Wade made that is really sticking to me, is that prison inmates have regular meal times, which establishes consistency. He also observed that they’d eat dinner at 5 or 6 PM, and not eat again that night, with lights out 5 or so hours later, so the body would automatically be in a fasted state while they slept. This gives the body’s digestive and other systems a much needed rest, and allows the food we have eaten to properly assimilate. He remarked that he saw a much lower incidence of obesity inside prison than on the outside. Makes sense.

So don’t pay too much attention to new shiny objects in the world of diet and nutrition. Yes, there are some great new breakthroughs out there, and I have looked into and implemented many of them, but overall, a sound diet–and a sound life– are reached through timeless principles that never change.

To Your Health & Fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

Did You Know that the Act of Eating Can Actually TRIGGER Hunger?

It sounds counter intuitive to say that the act of eating can actually TRIGGER hunger. But it can.

Don’t believe me?

Notice how you feel before your first meal of the day. Likely a LITTLE hungry.

Now contrast that with the way you feel once you’ve started eating, especially if you’re eating starchy carbs and/or sugar. Hmmm, now you have a ravenous hunger!

So you’re hungrier now than when you started!

There is a phrase in the Lord’s Prayer, “…lead us not into temptation…” Many people understand this phrase, but did you realize that it applies to food too?

The more we give in to the relatively small temptation to gorge ourselves with starchy carbs and/or sugar, the more we are led down the path of temptation. The temptation to eat more becomes stronger!

Better to minimize the trek down that path, or avoid it altogether. Because once you indulge that path, it is filled with fire and will burn you up!

So watch your eating triggers, and know that the earlier you catch and resist them, the easier it is to avoid the temptation.

Fight the baby bear, an easier battle than the Grizzly!

To Your Health and Fitness!

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the President of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC, a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

When Did Fun Become Fanatical in Fitness?

When we were kids, we played. We moved, we laughed, we had fun.

And we were in pretty good shape, if you measure fitness as having the ability to freely move and enjoy our activities.

The average child has a far higher degree of fitness–and enjoys his or her activities much more–than the average adult. Why is that?

The answer is not simply that they are younger.

Most adults I have come in contact with don’t enjoy the ACT of working out–only the results they achieve.

Kids do.

So as we “progress” in the fitness world–and don’t get me wrong, there are some amazing things going on here–let’s not consider “progress” to be just the latest gadget or “do complicated movements till you drop”. I would argue that true progress is coming back to the joy we had as children by simply “playing.”

This world needs more play, and less “do complicated movements till you drop.”

I hope you agree.

To Your Health and Fitness!

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC, a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

What is “GREEK”? It’s Appearance AND Function!

Why do we have to settle for attaining JUST a better

appearance, or JUST better function through our workouts? Why can’t we have both?

This is not a new idea. My inspiration for GREEK PHYSIQUE™ is the ancient Spartans. They were famous for their amazing appearance AND function. Think about it–they didn’t go down in history for having great abs–they became famous for what they could DO with their minds and bodies.

Do you really want to do endless curls which basically just develop your biceps muscles? Wouldn’t you rather do functional exercises that develop multiple muscles AND the biceps, while having fun doing it?

Now I’m not talking about bodybuilding. I think bodybuilding is great, but unless you’re a pro, or really into it, I would rather build the body AND improve my ability to fully (or as full as one can) take part in life’s activities.

And there’s so little downside to training for appearance AND function. You lose very little on the appearance side. In fact, it can be argued that you actually GAIN improved appearance, because functional workouts provide a very nice natural balance to your body.

My older clients particularly appreciate functional movement in their workouts, because this is what they need to fight the ravages of aging. When they lose function, in many ways they lose their life. They certainly lose their independence.

So let’s bring some real function–and fun–into the world of physical training. I think you’ll find it much more fulfilling than just another set of bicep curls (yawn).

To Your Health and Fitness!

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC, a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.

You Won’t Believe What These P.E. Students Could Do!

I’m so excited for you to see the incredible level of physical fitness demonstrated in this video (these are high school students!), and yet, I’m also saddened by how far the state of physical education in our schools has fallen.

President John F. Kennedy took La Sierra High School in Carmichael, California, and made it the “poster child” of his commitment to make America a healthy place.

As said in the video, “President Kennedy knew that if America was physically healthy, it would be mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and patriotically healthy.”

The President was never able to see his vision to fruition, but perhaps the new Administration will see the value in leading a new generation of Americans (and especially their parents) to get beyond “participation trophies” and become their absolute best.

I know the producers of the video have an IndieGoGo crowdfunding page, and are raising money to make a film about the La Sierra High School program. I’m not associated with them, but I encourage you to to go here to find out more about what they’re doing.

I’m 100% behind the desire to get our young people fully functional, and ready for the challenges they–and we as a nation–are facing and will face.

I hope you are too.

We’ve heard a lot about “making America great again.” I’m all for that. Let’s start in the schools.

To your health and fitness,

Patrick

Patrick Rooney is the Owner of GREEK PHYSIQUE™, LLC, a Personal Training company located in Middle Tennessee, which specializes in body sculpting for men and women. Patrick is certified through the National Association for Fitness Certification (NAFC). Patrick is available for Personal Training, Small Group Training, and Nutritional Consulting, both in person and via phone and Skype. He can be reached at info@greekphysique.online.