Welcome back brew nation!   As the “Friday Coffee Guy” I am excited each week to provide a weekly assembly of material I am reading, listening to, watching, or thinking about that is designed to equip and call you to uncommon leadership, and I am grateful you choose to spend a few minutes with me!

Here is your weekly sip of what I have been reading, listening to, or watching to equip me to:

  • Eat Healthy & Exercise Daily – How are your 2023 goals and disciplines starting off?  I know it’s hard.  But you CAN do it!  Trust me.  If I can do it, you can do it.  I love Timehop.  Pictures pop up from the past and I love to share them with family and friends of the times we had.  This week, I was reminded of a personal health transformation for me that started January 11, 2017:

When I got married in 1994, I weighed 225 pounds and felt like I was in decent shape. For the next 20+ years, though, my weight would go up and down. I would eat whatever I wanted; there was really nothing that was off-limits. One summer, I printed out the list of the top 10 burger places in my hometown area and tried every one of them over the summer. Of course, I’d accessorize the burgers with French fries and beer. Not the best weight-loss food plan.   Other than playing pickup basketball once a week with the guys from church, I was not very active.

I gained weight and lost it a few times, but it never stuck because I wasn’t consistent about it.  I’d wake up with knee and foot pain and hated how I looked in clothes. A health scare—severely high blood pressure that landed me in the emergency room – convinced me that I needed to make a change. When I stepped on the scale, I was shocked to see it read over 260 pounds.  Geesh. 

The transformation I have gone through since that time has turned out to have a cascade of positive effects on not only my weight, but my overall health, and my life.  By September 2019, I was able to shed over 75 pounds, getting back to my high school weight and I have maintained that loss since then.  It really was a simple plan, but not easy!  I thought this was a good time of year to share six (6) steps that I took to  make this transformation.  While this is a health/fitness transformation, it can work on other areas of your life as well such as relationships, career, finances, etc:

1) Make a Choice – I was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  I knew that what I was doing wasn’t working.  In any transformation, a choice must be made between the ‘pain’ of remaining the same and the pain of the change itself.  Choose your ‘pain’!

2) Track it– What you measure you control what you don’t measure, you accept.  Create a scorecard for your success.  Track what you eat through an app, like LoseIt or MyFitnessPal to monitor calories, macros, and other nutritional milestones. An exercise tracker or smart watch is helpful as well.  Laboring on work or other habits?  Use an app like Strides to help or create yourself a simple spreadsheet. 

3) Get a coach Having someone to guide you out of your comfort zone and into your learning zone is important. I knew that if I was going to transform the way I desired, I needed a coach. Back on January 11, 2017 I found a local gym called 180 Fitness in my hometown of Roanoke, VA. I’d driven by it for years. I walked in the front door and said I needed help, and Margaux Bellinger was there to help me out.  (She has been a guest on the Uncommon Leader podcast where we talk more about that journey).  But the first few days were…interesting. The first workout was miserable, and I was sore and tired the next two workouts. But I was sick and tired of being sick and tired, so I went back! I knew it would be worth it.Signing up with a trainer also puts some skin in the game. I bought a 20-session package so I HAD to go back.

4) Start With a Small Change  If you’ve had a lifetime of bad eating habits, it might be hard to go cold turkey overnight – translated:  Crash diets aren’t sustainable!  Your transformation is just that… a transformation… a new lifestyle.    I started with cutting out one thing—french fries—which turned into cutting out other fried food, he says. That was the gateway to a more healthy eating lifestyle.  I have been able to add foods back in because I’ve built the knowledge on how to eat these in moderation.

5) Take someone with you on the journey  – It’s so much more fun to have someone go on the journey with you.  It is one thing to hold yourself accountable, but it is different when you have to be accountable to someone else. 

6) Seek New ChallengesDoing the same routine will get boring.  I had a breakthrough in 2019 when I found  Jeremy Scott Fitness through a Men’s Health video series. His 47 Day Transformation program was instrumental in dropping the last few pounds.  I continue to follow him today on social media and am currently working my way through the program along with two other family members (see #5 above!)  He has also been a guest on the Uncommon Leader podcast and I have been on his as well !

So, if you really trust the process and focus on continuous improvement, the results will take care of themselves, but you must make that tough choice first.   To say that I feel ‘better’ would be a total understatement. I also sleep better, my digestive system works better. I feel better just walking around, I’ve grown closer to my family—it’s been an all-around improvement. You can do it as well!

  • Read More – I have committed to reviewing one law per week from John Maxwell’s 25th anniversary edition of the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership.  This week’s law is:

Law # 12 – The Law of Empowerment

Only Secure Leaders Give Power to Others

The Law of empowerment requires that we identify leaders to grow, equip them with resources, authority, and responsibility, and then commission them to achieve.  This chapter was a dichotomy of sorts in that it invested as much time in what empowerment was NOT as much as it did identify what it was.  The chapter is worth a read to understand the profile on a leader who broke this law (Henry Ford) and a leader who thrived with this law (Abraham Lincoln)So, if empowerment is so important, then why do so few leaders to it well?  Here are a few barriers to empowerment:

1) Leaders have a fear of losing what they have – Insecurity is a major pitfall for leaders and the truly is if you can continuously empower others and help them develop so that they become capable of taking over your job, you will become so valuable to the organization that you become indispensable. 

2) Leaders have a resistance to change – By its very nature, empowerment brings constant change.  Effective leaders embrace change and desire change.

3) Leaders have a lack of self-confidence – I loved this quote: “Murphy’s Twelfth Law states: ‘You can’t lead the cavalry charge if you think you look funny on a horse.’”  Mark Twain said, “great things happen when you don’t care who gets the credit.”  Leaders, you need to learn to give the credit to others for success!

These aren’t the only three barriers.  I am sure you can think of a few more.  Empowerment is powerful for the person being developed AND the leader.  Growing champions makes you an even greater champion!!

  • Quote – “Your greatest hope shouldn’t be for them to just be successful.  It should be for them to be MORE successful than you!” – John Maxwell

What You Need to Do:

Call to Action:  Are you in need of making a personal transformation and are ready to make that hard choice?  Do you need to have a coach to help you get there?  Let’s chat.  Click this link to set up a free 15-minute call with me to see if coaching may be right for you.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of Champions Brew. If you did, I would appreciate it if you would share it with someone who might enjoy it as well and ask them to subscribe! I will make sure they automatically get this email every week.

Until next time, Eat Healthy, Exercise Daily, Work Hard, and Grow Champions!

P.S. – Are you a podcast fan?  Maybe the Uncommon Leader podcast is for you.    This past week I interviewed author, podcaster and former professional baseball player, Bob Wheatley about his soon to be released book, Our Hearts’ Desire.  Check it out on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you consume your podcasts.  Are you interested in being a guest on the Uncommon Leader Podcast?  Do you have a story to tell?  Email me [email protected] and let’s have a chat and set something up!!

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To become Champion leader, we have to be on a continuous improvement journey for ourselves and others.  We have to be able to take advantage of the precious seconds that we have each day.  
There are things that I come across each week that help me, inspire me, relax me, motivate me, and are sometimes are just funny that I want to share with you so that you can smile more, build faith, think positively, network well, exercise often, eat healthy, and grow daily.

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