My 5 Steps On Learning To Surf

partner surfing

Last year after some deep meditation and visions. I've wanted to surf! Didn't know how I would do this, but knew it needed to be done.

Step 1 - Learn To Swim
As a grown man I had to fight my ego, swallow my pride & take swimming lessons. It's a skill I just never learned as a kid. But I love the water, weather it's chilling out in a boat with friends, going kayaking with Laura or just sitting and watching a still river or waves crashing in the ocean. Even now with our home I made sure we had a river view in London.

Step 2 - Find A Surf School
Like everything in our life lately - people and things cross paths with us at just the right time. With a Airbnb 5 mins from the beach in Porto we had a great location, an easy walk up 1 street and we were at the beach. At the end of that walk was a surf school just as the beach started. A quick talk with Markos and I was signed up for the next day 11am.

Step 3 - Get In The Water
Show up 10 mins early get changed and wet suit on. Pick up our board and off to the water. After a quick warm up and some tips on the beach, in we went. Just like the swim lessons I had to fight my ego, in my head I could do this already no problem. But after the 5th failed attempt at standing up I realized it looked a lot easier than it is. There comes a point where I need to become vulnerable and surrender to the process.

Step 4 - Stand Up
Numerous attempts and crash falls later I finally found success. Although short lived, I now knew what it felt like to ride a wave, and I was instantly hooked!! I was telling Laura it's just like golf, once you know what a perfect shot feels like you spend the rest of the time chasing it. Which seems easy since you did it once you must be able to do it again but proves to be quite frustrating at the beginning.

Step 5 - Keep Practicing
I wrote this sitting in the sun after the first session but already have my next session booked for tomorrow at the same time. After reflecting back on what happened I'm even more excited to keep working and improving.

Although short lived my wave riding experience can't be described with words. The freedom I felt was magical & I can't wait to get back at it tomorrow.

With all that being said I'm so glad that I put my ego aside and didn't listen to all the negative self talk. Which is no easy thing to do, but with the right tools and following a process I did it. Now I get to reap the rewards.

Surfs up Dude!!

- Michael

300 Burpees - What was I scared of

300burpees

This crazy idea came to me last year, while watching an episode of London Real with guest Joe Desena talking about how he does 300 burpees in 18 minutes. 

I took this as most men do, instantly thinking "I could do that" so out came the stopwatch and camera, because if it wasn't recorded it didn't happen right? 

After 34 minutes of self inflicted torture I finished 300 burpees. Not anywhere near my goal of 18 minutes but finished nevertheless. But I did gain a whole new respect for the movement of the burpee and respect for Joe Desena for completing it in 18 minutes. 

With the North Star of 18 minutes guiding me, I made a deal with myself to perform every week till I reached my goal. I did this for 9 straight weeks getting better every time. The best time I reached was 21 minutes 38 seconds. Everything I was working hard for was in my grasp - it was becoming real. 

Then I just stopped! I quit doing my Sunday routine 300 burpees. The first few weeks I had some great excuses why I wouldn't do it. "I can take a week off to recover" right? Don't want to get hurt or anything. 
"I'm training so much, I won't lose my progress" this carried on for weeks before I finally just gave up. 

WHY!! I worked so hard for over 2 months and was getting in the best shape of my life then I just quit. It's taken a long time to even admit that to myself, the fact that I just quit. 

Processing this I'm really interested why I would be so close to my goal and on the other side of "greatness" but then just stop. What was I scared of? 

burpee

It sounds silly and stupid when I say it out loud. I was scared of success. It makes no sense to me, why would I be scared of what I wanted in the first place?

If I reached my goal of 18 minutes, what's next? 17 minutes? Is that even possible? 
What would people around me think? Would I make them feel bad? Would I separate myself from "the group." Who am I to think I could do this? 

Like I said, when I say it out loud it seems so silly. Of course people wouldn't feel that way. If anything I would show that it's possible. I could be the guy they could ask questions on how to reach 18 minutes and the steps I took to get there. And since this limit I was experiencing can apply to anything in life, I could answer questions on how to reach any goals and help overcome some challenges. 

I now feel that I'm that guy, I welcome all challenges and success with an open heart and an open mind. 

This didn't happen overnight, it took a lot of going deep and asking myself some tough questions. "Who do I really want to be?" "What Am I scared of?" "What does my dream life look like?" "What kind of husband do I want to be?" 

Everyday is a blessing and a challenge, I finally know that we can choose to see it that way and not be scared of doing so. 

I recently took the 300 burpees on again - it took 27 minutes. So I have lost a step or 2, but I welcome the success!! 

 

-Michael