Chris Powell: My Training Inspiration

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Chris Powell is known around the world as a weight loss guru, transforming not only body image, but the way people feel about themselves as well. Every summer, ABC’s hit show Extreme Weight Loss comes back, and I find myself inspired, not that I could lose more weight or eat healthier, but that I could help others, and even if I was half as good as Powell, lives would be changed for the better.

I’ve talked about my inspiration before, needing to get fit for races, preparation for miles that I haven’t even thought of in six or seven months, but when it comes to Chris Powell, the inspiration comes from a different place.

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I know that the picture is blurry, but that is an 11 or 12 year old version of me, at a solid 150 lbs, give or take. At my heaviest I weighed in right around the 180-190 range, and stood a whopping 5’2″, and that is why I find comfort in watching Chris Powell, knowing that he is able to help those people that continually live in the discomfort and agony that I at one time knew.

In relation to the show, I’d sit, summer after summer, telling my family that I could do that if I just had the education for it, but Public Relations isn’t a job at a gym. After putting in so much time to get an education that you think you need, or want, it’s easy to trap yourself into the mentality of searching for the perfect job at the perfect startup or firm, but every time you see your source of inspiration, you think about how you could be doing that if you hadn’t invested so much into your formal education.

But that’s when Paige came through for me again, deciding to invest in me and pushing me to further myself.

One day on a Randall’s Island run, what we consider our long runs mainly because they’re outside, she turned to me and told me to take some of our leftover wedding money, find the right certification process and get personal trainer certified.

Because of how fast I can write, she wasn’t concerned about me picking up freelance writing jobs, but knows that I exceed when it comes to working hands-on and with other people; for me to work at a desk all day would wear on me, and she recognizes that. Instead of letting another year go by, full of me saying what I could probably do, she’s called me on it, telling me to go for it, and instead of talking about it, to prove that I can make it happen.

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So that’s what I’m doing. Thanks to Chris Powell’s inspiration, and a firm push from Paige, I am now plowing through functional anatomy and biomechanics in pursuit of becoming a certified personal trainer.

Using Equinox as my gauge, I came across the National Council on Strength & Fitness, NCSF, and ordered my study materials to knock it out.

As I said at the beginning, Chris Powell is an inspiration to people around the globe to pursue a healthier version of themselves, and maybe it’s the combination of Paige’s encouragement and my inner fat kid, but I’m taking his attitude to heart and making this happen.

Whether it’s “thinspiration” or “body confidence” there’s no excuse to not be healthy, and there’s no excuse to not be better. For that, I’ll thank Chris Powell for encouraging so many to be better versions of themselves.

The Cursed Double Standard

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The one skill that every person seems to have mastered is the double standard.

Who has taken that skill to the next level?

Politicians, especially of the American type, seem to be the best at speaking out of every side of their mouths, but they never know what to do when someone calls them on it. Today’s example came from the ultimate slap in the face, Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.

According to Hypervocal, Assad was busy denying the current Syrian civil war when he pulled out this gem:

What did you do in Los Angeles in the ’90s when you have rebels? Didn’t you send your army? You did.

In no way am I defending Assad, nor am I condoning any particular uses of military force in certain situations, but what I do support is taking a closer look at the way we as Americans believe that there can be no wrong in the world. It is a hopeful way of life, but a naive one to think that no other countries are allowed to make mistakes, despite the plethora that we are still dealing with from our own past.

Again, gassing your own citizens shouldn’t be tolerated, but we do have to be aware that the skeletons in our own closet like to be seen, and we’ve got the biggest closet on the block.

For more of the awkward moments with Assad, check out the highlights of his interview with ABC News.