“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.” I start off 2023 strong with a review of my pursuits for the year. These aren’t goals or resolutions, but rather long-standing tenants I will be organizing and prioritizing my time and energy towards to rise to my full potential.
2023 is here and we have no time to waste already! In keeping with the energy of Constant Elevation, here are my pursuits for the year.
Marriage – After celebrating my 20th wedding anniversary to my beautiful wife Gina, I want 20 more years. And then 20 more years and so on. However, that type of longevity in a marriage doesn’t happen easily, let alone in a military marriage. All of my pursuits have to be aligned in her direction, or else what am I really doing? None of my accomplishments or personal goals mean anything without being first grounded in connection with my wife and our relationship as a couple. This means carving out time for each other and building memories we can fondly look back on. This means understanding each other’s weaknesses and strengths and being a supportive partner.
Health – Spoiler #1: getting older does not mean staying healthy becomes easier. This goes beyond the times you are in the gym. Arguably, the choices one makes during the other 23 hours of the day will have more impact on your health than otherwise. My sleep has never truly been regenerative the way it should be, and I probably lack the right type of nutrient-dense diet that I really need. I’m not looking for fads; I’m looking to integrate positive behaviors that contribute to a holistic and healthy lifestyle. Sleep and nutrition will be the two areas I will prioritize to build toward what I’m looking for.
Stress – Spoiler #2: jobs do not get less stressful throughout a rising military career. The challenges you face may differ, yet the most alarming change may be the scale of responsibility you have. That scale can be a 1-for-1 correlation to your stress levels if you don’t properly and actively manage it. I’m definitely feeling it in my current position, yet I know I am capable of performing at this level and am dedicating myself to leading my team through a positive example of leadership. Part of that example is demonstrating harmony across all professional and personal angles of my life. To achieve that harmony, both short-term and long-term stress management will be key. Similar to health, I’m looking to integrate positive behaviors that contribute to a stress-managed lifestyle. I won’t say stress-free because I don’t believe that is realistic, but I do believe I can learn how to preserve my sanity and not let the world destroy my light.
Preparing for the Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT, CF-L3) – I have held my CrossFit Level 2 Trainer credential since 2017 and have been fortunate enough to find CrossFit coaching opportunities since 2010. I am currently coaching at CrossFit Hampton Roads and have found a staff interested in developing me further as a coach. To that end, I will dedicate time and energy to studying for the Certified CrossFit Trainer, also known as the CF Level 3. I’ve heard this test is no joke, so I’ll have to stay on my grind to study and prepare for the challenge. I don’t want my coaching abilities to get stagnant, and having a goal to work towards will help me organize and prioritize my time.
Sharpening my gymnastics abilities to become a better coach – Over the past year, I’ve dedicated more of my personal time to becoming a better coach than a better athlete. Not to say that I don’t work out, I just have prioritized my time to study the art of coaching and making those hours the best of our athlete’s day. However, a glaring weakness I have is gymnastic movements. I’m ok when it comes to coaching those movements but admittedly need to get better. To that end, I’ll be “re-learning” gymnastics movements so I can take those experiences and translate them into better coaching abilities. I want to turn my weakness into my strength. This will not be at the expense of weightlifting or monostructural activities (which I am mediocre but better than most at), but rather a dedicated focus of my personal training regime that can be carried over to my coaching toolkit.
Creating my own fitness-related content – Similar to my approach with Constant Elevation, I plan on creating content that carries my unique take on fitness and being able to share it with the masses. I currently run a few in-person seminars at CrossFit Hampton Roads, so I intend on sharpening up those materials into a more polished model that can be accessed and/or repeated as necessary. In 2015, I attempted to a YouTube channel called RockOne Fitness, so this idea isn’t entirely new to me. However, my coaching and content production abilities have improved since then, so it’s time to level up.
Drawing – Ever since I was a kid, I always wanted to be a gangster. And by a gangster, I really meant an artist. From graffiti to comic books to anime to digital art, my tastes in art may have changed and expanded over time, but I have never lost the desire to both consume and create art. Admittedly, I go through waves of inspiration that are fleeting at best, but I do understand that drawing brings me joy. I’ve found a few Inktober challenges that will use to improve my drawing skills and develop positive drawing habits.
Photography – In addition to drawing, photography is another method of creativity in that I have had various levels of interest in. I’ve owned a DSLR and enjoyed that challenge, yet usually defaulted to the simple methods of photography and never truly grasped all of the intricacies of that art form. For now, I’m going to focus on a photography tool that I currently own: my iPhone 14 Pro. The device is pretty powerful and I always have it on me, so I might as learn to use it well.
Videography – It may not be super evident, but I do care about producing video content that doesn’t look like total horse shit. The primary medium of Constant Elevation will remain an audio podcast, but I also enjoy creating the visual portion at the same time. I’ll be tinkering with my video setup, so if you consume my content through YouTube be ready for some changes in visualizations.