Becoming Superhuman by Brett & Kate McKay

Becoming Superhuman in 2011 | The Art of Manliness

As we advance in the spiritual life and in the practice of systematic self-examination we are often surprised by the discovery of vast unknown tracts of the inner life of the soul. They seem like great plains stretching out in mystery and wrapt in mists that sometimes for a moment lift, or sweep off and leave one looking for one brief instant upon great reaches of one’s own life, unknown, unmeasured, unexplored. Men stand at such moments breathless in wonder and in awe gazing upon these great tracts upon which they have never looked before, with kindling eyes and beating hearts; and while they look the mists steal back till all is lost to sight once more and they are left wondering if what they saw was reality, or the creation of their fancy. Or sometimes they see, not far-stretching plains which fill the soul with an awestruck sense of its expansiveness and of how much has been left absolutely uncultivated, not these plains but mountain peaks climbing and reaching upwards till lost in the heavens, echoing it may be with the voice of many streams whose waters fertilize and enrich those small tracts of the soul’s life which have been reclaimed and cultivated and which many a man has thought to be his whole inner self, though he never asked himself whence those rich streams had their source. Now he sees how their source lay in unmeasured heights of his own inner being whose existence he never dreamed of before. In one brief instant they have unveiled themselves. He looks again, and they are shut out from his eyes, there is no token visible that he possesses such reaches, such heights of life. The commonplaces of his existence gather in and crowd upon him, the ordinary routine of life settles down upon him, limiting and confining him on all sides, the same unbroken line measures his horizon, such as he has always known it, the same round of interests and occupations crowd in upon his hours and fill them, the pressure of the hard facts of life upon him are as unmistakable and as leveling as ever, bidding him forget his dreams and meet and obey the requirements of the world in which he lives. And yet the man who has caught but a momentary glimpse of that vast unknown inner life can never be the same as he was before; he must be better or worse, trying to explore and possess and cultivate that unknown world within him, or trying—oh, would that he could succeed!—to forget it. He has seen that alongside of, or far out beyond the reach of, the commonplace life of routine, another life stretches away whither he knows not, he feels that he has greater capacities for good or evil than he ever imagined. He has, in a word, awakened with tremulous awe to the discovery that his life which he has hitherto believed limited and confined to what he knew, reaches infinitely beyond his knowledge and is far greater than he ever dreamed. -From Self-knowledge and Self-Discipline by Basil William Maturin

“I know this has happened to me. I’ll meet someone who has an amazing level of some virtue or strength, to the point they’re truly radiating it, and when I encounter them and partake of their aura, it stirs a dormant desire within me; a part of myself I’ve shoved down and buried awakens to exclaim, ‘I too could live a life like that!’ All the rationalizations for having been too lazy or too fearful to work on that part of myself evaporate in the presence of someone who could have made the same excuses but didn’t.”

Flight Radar, Air Traffic and Weather

Flight Radar 24
Watch Air Traffic – LIVE!

A Day in the Life of Air Traffic Over the United States Video

(http://www.airlinenewsresource.com/video67.html)
“An efficient and effective air traffic management system is vital to the U.S. transportation infrastructure. Since 1978, when the airline industry was deregulated, the inflation adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) has increased by 62 percent. In this same time period, total output of scheduled passenger air transportation (as measured by Revenue Passenger Miles) has increased by 190 percent and total airfreight ton miles have increased by 289 percent. Since 1997, flight delays have skyrocketed – doubling in only four years. These trends are expected to continue. In 1998, airline delays in the U.S. cost industry and passengers $4.5 billion — the equivalent of a 7 percent tax on every dollar collected by all the domestic airlines combined.”

CWSU National TAF METAR maps – NOAA NWS
http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/zoa/mwmap3.php?map=usa

Happy New Year!

Even if you don’t think you need excuses, leverage the motivation of a New Year to make progress towards your goals. Even if you claim not to acknowledge New Year’s celebrations or think resolutions are malarky or don’t believe in a fresh start, I know you call tomorrow January 1st. If nothing else, use the convenience of a new calendar to start tracking your progress towards your goals.

This month has been full of wonderful people and new experiences, but it’s been abscent of any routine outside of sleeping at least once per day and eating too much food. I have no regrets, but it’s time to get back on the wheel. I’m buying a new workout log book and heading home with my new Vibram Five Finger KSOs to lose the useless weight I’ve gained this month. (I hope my parents’ scale measures a bit on the high side.)

My plan is to start fresh and ease back into a routine similar to last year. I’ll be moving to Los Angeles soon and joining 24 hour fitness. I would like to alternative between yoga, running, biking, and swimming; and restart my body-weight strength efforts with a reduced volume and focus on push ups, pull ups and sit ups. As usual, I’ll keep you posted with progress, thoughts and breakthroughs.

Regardless of your goals, good luck to you. If you have any questions, please always feel free to contact me. Best wishes to you and have a happy new year!

Travel Hacking Basics

All credit to Chris Guillebeau,
creator of the online manifesto “A Brief Guide to World Domination”.
http://chrisguillebeau.com/3×5/

The following is taken directly from Chris Guillebeau’s book:
The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live The Life You Want, and Change The World

Travel Hacking Basics

  • Once you earn elite status with one airline, you can request a “status match” from several others to become a high-flyer on every major airline alliance. (Just be careful, because some airlines only allow one status match per lifetime.)
  • If you’re stumped with a travel dilemma, visit the forums at FlyerTalk.com. Some of the experts on these boards are even more experienced than I am, and if you ask nicely, several will offer free advice on your itinerary or travel issue.
  • If you’re looking for lodging and hotel prices are high, check Hostels.com for a large database of guesthouses and smaller establishments. In addition to dorms, many of the properties offer private rooms with breakfast and Internet access. If you’re up for company, you can also stay for free thanks to CouchSurfing.com
  • Priceline.com can be a good source for discounted hotels (it’s not usually worth it for plane tickets), but the company has an advantage on consumers by not disclosing the minimum successful bids. To negate this advantage, use Google to search for “Priceline winning hotel bids” to find several sites that list the hidden information. I’ve used this strategy to stay at the Brussels Marriott for $60 (usually $240), the Prague Sharaton for $45 (usually $195), and many other nice hotels all over the world.
  • If transatlantic airfare is pricey, look for a repositioning cruise. These cruises take place twice a year as cruise lines move their ships from the Mediterranean to the United States. (A smaller number also go from Alaska to East Asia, and from California to Florida via the Panama Canal.)
  • I use round-the-world tickets for most of my long-haul flights. The booking process can take some time to navigate, but if you travel extensively, it’s well worth your time to study up. My tickets are usually booked through the OneWorld or Star Alliance airline families.
  • Without a lot of effort, most people can easily earn at least 25,000 miles a year without changing any of their spending habits. That’s enough for one free ticket – and for those who are up for it, you can spend more time on it and earn up to 100,000 miles without much difficulty.
  • When redeeming frequent flyer miles, you can request rewards on partner airlines, and the value is often better than on the domestic carrier. I’ve used partner rewards to go to Mongolia (Korean Airlines, booked with Delta SkyMiles), Kuwait (Qatar Airways, booked with American Express points), and dozens of other places.

Staying Healthy in Times of Frequent Travel

Throughout December I’ve been relocated nearly a dozen times for 2 to 4 day periods, and it’s been very hard to maintain my aggressively balanced physical training routine.

I often point out the difference between energy exertion and effort. At home, it’s comparably easy to fall into a healthy routine; this requires regular energy exertion but very little effort. In the case of travel, adhering to training goals requires a lot of extra effort and we don’t often train for this variety of challenge. Here are a couple ideas to help stay healthy in times of frequent travel.

Always Prepared
It’s far to easy to forget running shoes or a pair of shorts and use it as an excuse to not exercise. Keep a pair of old running shoes and athletic gear in your suitcase and trunk, even when you don’t plan on travelling.

Versatile Activities
Activities like running, push ups and sit ups can be done virtually anywhere.

Travel can be pretty exhausting. Sitting in a car or plane for hours is physically taxing. Unfortunately, it’s most important after being cramped up and still for hours to get out and loosen up and keep yourself in shape. Happy travels!

The Search for Meaning, Two Questions, and a Legacy Project

All credit to Chris Guillebeau,
creator of the online manifesto “A Brief Guide to World Domination”.
http://chrisguillebeau.com/3×5/

The following is taken directly from Chris Guillebeau’s book:
The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live The Life You Want, and Change The World

“Ambition is not a vice of little people.” – Michel de Montaigne

“…convergence is the state of being where everything in our lives is in alignment. We have good relationships with family and close friends, we’re excited about work, we’re in good health, we do more or less what we want to every day, and we know we’re making a difference in the world. In short, we find ourselves full of gratitude and regularly challenged in an active, abundant life. To achieve convergence, two separate (but related) activities are required: saying goodbye to unneccessary tasks, obligations, and expectations – then welcoming in a wide range of other things that enrich our lives.”

The Search for Meaning and the Two Questions

  • What do you really want to get out of life?
  • What can you offer the world that no one else can?

Whatever your answers to those questions are, you can likely find the beginnings of your quest to live a full life and make the world a better place for others.

Legacy Project
When you set out to create something that will outlast you, there are a number of characteristics you need to consider by answering the following questions:

  • Vision – how will the world be different because of the project?
  • Beneficiaries – who will benefit from the project?
  • Primary Method or Medium – how will you do the work?
  • Output – what will be produced as a result of your work?
  • Metrics – how will success be measured?

My Legacy Project

My Legacy Project (beta)

Inspired by Chris Guillebeau’s book, The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live The Life You Want, and Change The World, I have drafted my own Legacy Project characteristics by answering questions relating to Vision, Beneficiaries, Primary Method or Medium, Output, and Metrics.

My Legacy Project

Vision: To empower people to understand their world and manifest everything they truly want in life.

Beneficiaries: A group of at least 100,000 passionate individuals who want to live happy, fulfilling lives.

Primary Method or Medium: Writing and Speaking

Output: At least two articles each month, one book within the next two years, guest columns, and 30,000 annual total words

Metrics: Site Visitors/Subscribers/Page Views/Social Networking Stats/Nice Emails

Chris Guillebeau is also a blogger with similar interests so his Legacy Project characteristics were easy to adapt to my own. Check out his blog!

Simplified Weight Loss Program for Lifeaholics

Here it is, The Easiest Weight Loss Program You’ll Ever Find, with only one condition. This program is for lifeaholics, live hard play hards, energizers and die hards.

The Easiest Weight Loss Program You’ll Ever Find:
Simplified Weight Loss Program for Lifeaholics

1. Every morning, workout before you eat breakfast.
2.1. Get to work and stay busy all day being productive and having fun.
2.2. Break only for lunch with coworkers and friends.
2.3. Come home exhausted and go to sleep.

The One-Year, Self-Directed, Alternative Graduate School Experience

All credit to Chris Guillebeau,
creator of the online manifesto “A Brief Guide to World Domination”.
http://chrisguillebeau.com/3×5/

The following is taken directly from Chris Guillebeau’s book:
The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live The Life You Want, and Change The World

The One-Year, Self-Directed, Alternative Graduate School Experience

  • Subscribe to the Economist and read every issue religiously. Cost: $97 + 60 minutes each week.
  • Memorize the names of every country, world capital, and current president or prime minister in the world. Cost: $0 + 3-4 hours once.
  • Buy a round-the-world plane ticket or use frequent flyer miles to travel to several major world regions, including somewhere in Africa and somewhere in Asia. Cost: variable, but plan on $4,000.
  • Read the basic texts of the major world religions: the Torah, the New Testament, the Koran, and the teachings of Buddha. Visit a church, a mosque, a synagogue, and a temple. Cost: materials can be obtained free online or in the mail (or for less than $50) + 20 hours.
  • Subscribe to a language-learning podcast and listen to each 20-minute episode, five times a week, for the entire year. Attend a local language club once a week to practice. Cost: $0 + 87 hours.
  • Loan money to an entrepreneur through Kiva.org and arrange to visit him or her while you’re abroad on your big trip. Cost: likely $0 in the end, since 98% of loans are repaid.
  • Acquire at least three new skills during your year. Suggestion: photgraphy, skydiving, computer programming, martial arts. The key is not to become an expert in any of them, but to become funcionally proficient. Cost: variable, but each skill is probably less than three credits of tuition would be a university.
  • Read at least 30 nonfiction books and 20 classic novels. Cost: approximately $750 (can be reduced or eliminated by using the library).
  • Join a gym or health club to keep fit during your rigorous independent studies. Cost: $25-$75 a month.
  • Become comfortable with basic presentation and public speaking skills. Join your local Toastmasters club to get constructive, structured help that is beginner-friendly. Cost: $25 once + 2 hours a wek for 10 weeks.
  • Start a blog, create a basic posting schedule, and stick with it fo the entire year. You can get a free blog at WordPress.org. One tip: don’t try to write every day. Set a weekly or biweekly schedule for a while, and if you’re still enjoying it after three months, pick up the pace. Cost: $0.
  • Set your home page to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Randompage. Over the next year, every time you open your browser, you’ll see a different, random Wikipedia page. Read it. Cost: $0.
  • Learn to write by listening to the Grammar Girl podcast on iTunes and buying Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. Cost: $0 for Grammar Girl, $14 for Anne Lamott.
  • Instead of reading the entire Encyclopedia Britannica, read The Know-It-All by A. J. Jacobs, a good summary. Cost: $15.