“The difference between dreams and goals are timelines and accountability”.

I heard this quote from Dr. Phil on Rogan last week.  I wanted to use it – not sure if he said it originally, but I needed to give him some credit here.

Honestly, the number is now exactly 151.0 pounds.  221.2 this morning on the scale.  After losing 7 pounds in 2 months, I changed up my foods a bit and lost 3 pounds this week.  Either my changing up of things shook things loose, or my body hit a “set point” that it was holding on to.  I had also STOPPED running in January and recently have been focusing again on walking and weight training.

Any which way, it was nice to see the scale moving again.

My next goals:

  1. Get under 220.  I chase the 5 pound markers.  Hoping in the next 14 days.
  2. Get under 216 – this is my magical “26% bodyfat” marker which I need for the military.  This should also theoretically have my waist measurements floating around 39″.  Hoping by early April.
  3. Under 200 – only 21 pounds away now.  I hadn’t been under 200 pounds since 6th grade folks.  The lowest I can recall since 6th grade was 208 in wrestling in junior high.  Hoping by end of May
  4. 190 – that will hit me at 15% bodyfat.  Hoping for end of July.
  5. 186 – this is EXACTLY half the weight I used to be.  End of August, which will conclude my 3 year project.  That might take me to 12-13%.
  6. 177 – This is a life goal.  With a lot of endurance sports, over time, I might reduce my muscle mass/fat mass to get me here.  I feel like I’d rather be that guy at 90 running a marathon than being jacked at 65 and dead at 75.  A lot of the muscle I had was to move a very large man around.  While I might look good at 185-190, it’s also just extra weight my body won’t need.  It will probably take 2-3 years to gently go down to 177.  My bones will actually reduce in size because I don’t need the big ass bones to support me.  Muscles will go away because they aren’t launching a 250 pound man.

I wanted to put that quote up there because this is how I’ve lived my life in a LOT of areas.  From my education, career, certifications, specific job, military, and just about anything else I’ve ever done – I’ve thought carefully about:

  1. What do I want to accomplish? Putting my PM hat on – what is the scope of the project?
  2. What is it going to take to accomplish – meaning, do I have the proper roadmap to do this?  What materials, resources, or charter is needed to do this?
  3. Is it achievable if executed properly?  Meaning, do I have proper tools and methods of executing tasks?
  4. Can I get it done at a specific start and end date?  All projects require a start and stop date.

When I am all done with this, I have a book I’m writing.  I’ve started and stopped this 5 times.  Currently, I have close to 70 pages of my latest draft.  The concept is to more or less show you a plan at 50,000 ft and take you through how I did this.  I am not sure if I will try to self publish or just have a giant word document I give away to friends and followers to help them.  I’m not looking to hit a best sellers list overnight, I’m looking to leave behind a document which is essentially the blueprint of how every single person can overcome obesity.

If you look at the items 1-4 above, the biggest problem I had my whole life was not 1, 3, and 4.  It has been item number 2.  I had spent most of my life calorie counting and following the standard American diet.  This is:

  1. Eat lots of grains, breads, fruits, and a relatively high carbohydrate diet.
  2. Have LOW FAT
  3. exercise your face off with running

Time and time again, a problem would hit me:

  1. I’d lose weight
  2. I’d be starving ALL THE TIME
  3. I’d get injured
  4. I’d eventually stall out and all of the weight I lost would come back on and then some.

 

This time around, I solved my issues.  Well, I did have some guidance from my trainer pointing me originally to 40/30/30.  This concept is called “If it fits your macros”, or IIFYM.

I have several hundred followers now here and I know anytime I post content like this, I get about 80 of my facebook friends checking it out.   By now, they are expecting me to rant about keto.  And yes, I praise it highly.  But for many of you, you aren’t ready for keto.

You want to lose all the weight NOW!!  “I’m going keto and I will lose 100 pounds in 4 months!”.  Sorry, it’s not like that.

The truth is, many people are going from a SAD diet heavy in carbs to then eliminating them completely.  For some of you, this works.  For many of you, going from one extreme to another is “ludicrous speed”, if you will.

For me, I did IIFYM for 15 months before keto.  This allowed me to:

  1. Track all of my food to understand nutrition content of just about everything on the planet.  I can glance at something and know how much of it I can eat to stay within my keto plan.  You need to understand what foods are made of.
  2. Reduce and eventually eliminate my shitty foods over time.  I started at the worst weight in my life at 372, and I needed to gradually cut out all of the shit.  If I had gone from THAT life right to keto, yeah, it could have been a problem
  3. Learn a lot of substitutions over time to help break some poor habits and re-wire my gut flora.

 

About a year into IIFMY, my carb count was gently increasing to 45% and 50% and I had a 3 month stall.  This is when my trainer suggested keto.  I had done atkins 15-20 years before, and all I pictured were days upon days of eating nuts and bunless burgers.  Today, I eat a LOT more foods than I used to, and I LOVE how I eat now.  I CRAVE my salads like I used to crave McDonalds.  It’s funny how you CAN re-wire your body.  P.S. – the salads below, are MASSIVE.  I can’t seem to take pictures with my camera to do them justice, but these are LARGE mixing bowls where you could put 1-2 gallons of water in them.

 

 

Military

I have had some interesting discussions over the last few months with members of the military.  People I work with (mostly military), civilians (those who never served), and people who read these articles and those on LinkedIn who have reached out to me.  There was a slight disconnect, and it’s been good feedback for me to process, overall.

Here’s how I was seeing it:

  • You are older than normal age, so don’t worry about OCS.  You are highly skilled and we are dying for your skills.  Our old business model of offering O-1 direct commissions did not attract the level of talent we are looking for.  We are now authorized by congress to offer up to O-6 direct commissions.  Generals asked for it and congress has approved it.  Sign up now, and we can harness your talents!

Here’s how many members in the military read it:

  • You are skipping over those who earned their ranks through deployments and potentially blood.  It is not fair.  No one will listen to you on the battlefield because you have no experience.  You should not do this.

 

The key takeaways I have from these conversations:

  • People like me are established professionals with a family, mortgage, career, and roots.  We cannot do full time active duty, so we want to do the reserves.  In the reserves, depending on the branch, there is a chance of deployment at some time, and is most likely needed to advance in the rankings.  We have a high number of bills per month.
  • In order for the high level of talent to be attracted, the military has needed to be able to pay these people better.  Because of how pay schedules are set, this meant they would have to offer higher ranks. People like me looked at the pay of the higher ranks and felt that if we went to 4 months of training or were deployed for 6 months later, that we would not lose our house if paid active duty and BAH at the higher ranks.
  • People like me didn’t care about the rank, we cared about the pay structure being able to pay our mortgage if deployed/in training.

So – I feel the solution here is for them to change the pay structure.  I don’t think they will do that anytime soon.  For example…

Instead of hiring in a doctor/cyber guru at the rank of O-3, you would recruit them at O-1, but the pay structure would be different based on your MOS/job.  For example, maybe an O-1M is a medical doctor and has the pay of an O-3.  Or an O-1C is a DC cyber officer and paid like an O-4.

This way, you can get the top talent so people do not lose their houses when deployed, but you also don’t skip rank.

I would add that I would be in favor of accelerated promotion schedules.  For example, the latest NDAA had changed this so it’s no longer time-based, but “merit based”.  This allows for promotions of obviously qualified individuals, but may not have a 4-6 year wait.

For a 45 year old O-1C who comes in, and demonstrates tremendous capability, perhaps he may have reviews every 2 year instead of every 4-6 years?

Another thing with the NDAA, it basically allowed people to stay at ranks.  If you have someone who is a highly capable O-3 doing his job in the cyber world, let him keep doing it for the next 10 years.  No need to kick him out if he doesn’t make O-4.  Apparently, we are losing a lot of good talent because those who aren’t promoted are kicked out.  Not everyone has to be a general.  There are plenty of awesome airplane mechanics, IT workers, and electronics engineers who love their job who might not want to lead 500 men.

So what if you hire in an O-1C with a direct commission and he loves his job – and he doesn’t have any interest in trying to be a colonel?  Should you boot them out after 4 years?  Thoughts?

So – the NDAA has talked about constructive credit.  Most of these DC programs for cyber are relatively new.  I’m wondering if they might be flexible enough in the next NDAA to make changes?

Maybe a O-1C could be given 20 years of constructive credit and paid VASTLY different than an O-1C with 4 years of constructive credit?  Both start at O-1 rank, but their paychecks are different because of their prior experience?

I feel like I have worked in the “merit-based” system of the private world which is not congruent with the military world of promotions.  Which, are merit-based, but time-oriented rather than solely merit-oriented.

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