Prelude To A Championship

Since we are only hours away from the NCAA basketball championship. My beloved Michigan and Louisville. Two great teams. The question that came to my mind. What are the ingredients for a great team?

A great team buys into a system.

Each person on the team depends on eachother to do their own job.

The right team has chemistry

The teams problems don’t belong to me, the belong to us.

Each team mate refuses to allow preferences dictate decisions

The team will not fight to maintain status quo but rather do everything possible to advance the situation

The right team is way more obsessed with their dreams of what could be rather than their memories of what has been.

The Harvard business school says that “ Ideal team merges individual talents and skills into one super performing whole with capabilities that surpass those of even its most talented member.

The team must trust one another and have confidence in their effectiveness as a team

When you create a climate of trust and sense that we are better together than we are apart, it leads to greater effectiveness.

One of the most famous speeches about The Team came from legendary Michigan football coach Bo Schembechler in 1983. Here is how he addressed the Wolverines:

BO SCHEMBECHLER: “The Team, The Team, The Team”

“We want the Big Ten championship and we’re gonna win it as a Team. They can throw out all those great backs, and great quarterbacks, and great defensive players, throughout the country and in this conference, but there’s gonna be one Team that’s gonna play solely as a Team. No man is more important than The Team. No coach is more important than The Team. The Team, The Team, The Team, and if we think that way, all of us, everything that you do, you take into consideration what effect does it have on my Team? Because you can go into professional football, you can go anywhere you want to play after you leave here. You will never play for a Team again. You’ll play for a contract. You’ll play for this. You’ll play for that. You’ll play for everything except the team, and think what a great thing it is to be a part of something that is, The Team. We’re gonna win it. We’re gonna win the championship again because we’re gonna play as team, better than anybody else in this conference, we’re gonna play together as a team. We’re gonna believe in each other, we’re not gonna criticize each other, we’re not gonna talk about each other, we’re gonna encourage each other. And when we play as a team, when the old season is over, you and I know, it’s gonna be Michigan again, Michigan.”

Go Blue !

I’m So Sleepy !!

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Ok, before I get into this, I want to make one thing very clear , I am not a doctor. I’m just somebody that did a little research and found out some stuff that’s a little disturbing.

There is a crazy thing out there called Sleep Apnea and listen up , it’s dangerous. Sleep Apnea is a common and potentially serious disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts as you sleep. Hmmm.. Doesn’t sound like a good thing. They say this whole breathing stoppage can last 10 to 20 seconds and occur hundreds of times a night. When the breathing is paused , you are then jolted out of your natural sleep rhythm, so you spend more time in light sleep than deep sleep. Oh ,by the way in order to feel energetic, mentally sharp and to be productive you need the deep sleep. Sleep apnea can also lead to serious health issues like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease , stroke and weight gain.

What in the hell causes this?? Anyone can have sleep apnea but certain factors can increase your risk of getting it. Being overweight, being a male, related to somebody who has it, over the age of 65, black or Hispanic and being a smoker.

What are the symptoms? Loud and chronic snoring, choking, snorting or gasping during sleep, long pauses in breathing and daytime sleepiness. The biggest sign could be how you are feeling during the day.

Since all of that was totally depressing, let me give you some good news. It is a treatable condition. Yipppppeeeee!!!! . We are back to the whole subject of losing weight. Son of a b#*&h !!! Good thing is that sometime losing weight can correct sleep apnea. Quit smoking. Ok, you human chimney’s give it up . To a smaller extent, avoid alcohol, sleeping pills and sedative. Oh by the way please see a doctor. If the above solutions don’t work than the most common treatment is to wear a mask like machine that provides a constant stream of air that keeps the breathing passages open so you can have a good nights sleep and prevent some serious medical issues in the future.

Good night John boy, Good night ma, Good night pa…….zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Off The Beaten Path

I’m going to make a left turn and go a different way tonight. I haven’t posted in a while, the whole NCAA basketball tournament got in the way. I also was privliged enough to listen to some coaches speak last week so I decided to talk a little bit about leadership and what it means. How does this relate to this blog site? Don’t know if it does but it’s my blog so I can write what I want. Although everybody should be a leader in their life, whether it be a leader of your kids, a leader of your employees or even a coach of your kids Little League baseball team. I find it interesting to listen to people who are in a position to lead others and how successful they are at being a leader.
I am going to give your some points to think about. As a leader you need to look at your goals and look at your behavior. Does your behavior match your goals?
Why is leadership necessary? Leadership is necessary because everything is coming at kids sooner. They are having to absorb information through social networks that they are not ready to deal with. A sociology professor named Tony Campolo said, “I am convinced that we don’t live in a generation of bad kids, but we live in a generation of kids who know too much too soon. ” As a leader you must know yourself and seek self improvement, set the example, ensure the job is understood, supervised and accomplished. A leader must make sound and timely decisions. You must develop a sense of responsibility in your subordinates and probably the most important, you must seek responsibility and take responsibility for your actions.
Leadership is about influence. Whoever you have the ability to influence, you have the oppurtunity to lead. If you are a leader people will follow you. You cannot lead by example. You are just setting an example. If you are a leader you must get people to follow you and you must make them feel accountable.
Two quotes I am going to leave you with.

Martin Luther King said ” I have a dream.” He didn’t say I have a very good plan. A person with a vision talks little but will usually act out his vision.

General Norman Schwarzkopf said “Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without strategy”

Go out and lead something even if it’s your own life. Be in charge!

More, Less and Even Less

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Truckingsos.com says that “more than 80 percent of truck drivers have poor eating habits, which includes consuming typical truck stop food.
These foods are often sugar-laden, fatty,high calorie foods”

Eating healthy is difficult for truck drivers because of their lifestyle but if we all understand what eating healthy means maybe something can be done about this.

Try following the following rules. Eat more protein, less carbohydrates and even less fat. In addition, eat as little sugar as possible and watch your portions. Don’t eat until you get so full that you have to undo the top button on your pants.

Some examples of protein are chicken, beef, fish, pork and eggs. Try and stay away from fried foods. Go for baked chicken, baked fish and scrambled eggs.

Carbohydrates are a tricky subject because some will turn into sugar. Hmmmm… Hang on , don’t click off the post yet. Remember just eat a little less carbohydrates that you normally would. Let’s try a baked potato or a wheat bun or wheat bread. You also don’t need to throw all your carbs in the garbage but just watch your portions. Some more examples of carbs are pasta, sweet potato, bread, vegetables. Vegetables are great for you. Stay away from french fries. If you are looking at me weird because we all know how good french fries are then how about fries only once a week. Rice is also a popular carb. Of course brown rice is best but again if you want rice just take a small portion. Portion control is why diet programs such as Weight Watchers are so successful.

Lastly, let’s talk about fat. There are some good fats like peanut butter, olive oil, nuts and fatty fish like salmon. Bad fats at chicken with skid, cheese, butter, ice cream, pastries, cookies, fried foods and candy bars. These are just a few. Don’t want to scare you so I’ll stop but just remember if you really like some of these foods have them for a treat every once in a while and treat yourself.

I think that is enough for tonight. All is not lost. There is still good food out there for you to eat we just need to make better choices with the type of food we eat and the amount of food we eat.

A New Perspective !

In a few months our lives will change. About a month ago Kim and I found out we were going to be grandparents for the first time. Talk about being excited. of course the first thing we did was go and buy a Michigan football uniform. It’s something that we are really looking forward to. The excitement of a new baby. I think about my mom and dad at a time like this. This would have been so exciting for them. Hopefully I can be half the Pepe (grandfather) that my Dad was to Lindsey. He loved her so much. Now it’s our turn. You can bet that little boy will be spoiled and loved. Lindsey will be a great mom. It really changes your perspective on life. When you are having a bad day, I get a smile on my face thinking about the Little Man.

Some might think, “Ok but what does this have to do with the life of a truck driver”. I guarantee that there are plenty of people out there that need some kind of inspiration to change their lives, to get healthier or to lose weight. Let me tell you that a little grandchild may be just the ticket. Think about. Don’t you want to be around as long as possible so you can see that child grow up. Of course you do ! Don’t you want to be healthy enough so that you can take your grandson in the backyard and play catch or get on the floor with your grand daughter and read her a book or help dress one of her dolls. If you don’t have a grandchild yet, hopefully some day you will and you’ll be able to chase them around the yard hearing that innocent laugh.

I for one am going to do everything I can to be around as long as possible and to be as healthy as possible.

The Scary Person In The White Coat

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Ever hear about something called “White Coat Syndrome”? Wikipedia says that White Coat Syndrome is a phenomenon in which patients exhibit elevated blood pressure in a clinical setting but not in other settings. It is believed that this is due to the anxiety people experience during a doctor’s visit. Has anybody experienced this? I know you can’t see me but I have two hands raised waving them like that little kid on one of those AT&T commercials.
I think I start freaking out about a doctor’s visit the day I make the appointment. Seems crazy but I can’t help it. I always think that something is bad is going to happen by going to the doctors. I know.. I know.. the doctor is there to fix your health problems.
The reason I bring this is up is because about 12 years ago I went to a doctor for the first time in probably 10 years and that one visit may have saved my life. I was a guy that always worked out, ate right, rarely drank, never smoked and not overweight but what I didn’t know was that I had high blood pressure that was through the roof. The doctor at the time said that if they hadn’t caught it before it had done damage than I would have been very susceptible to a heart attack or stroke. Don’t get me wrong I still hate going to the doctor but I know that I have to go.
I know there are some of you that say you feel fine, you are not overweight and don’t smoke but I can tell you that the medical people are right when they say that high blood pressure is the silent killer because a lot of time you don’t know if you have it.
So man up and see the person in the White Coat!!!

Move That Body

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We’ve just barely scratched the surface of nutrition but I want to talk a little bit about exercise. Nutrition and exercise go together like peanut butter and jelly. Can’t have one without the other. When I talk about exercise for a truck driver, I don’t mean going to a gym five days a week. That’s not realistic. I’m talking about simply moving your body, moving one foot in front of the other. It can be as simple as going for a walk and slowly increasing your speed until it becomes a brisk walk. Eventually carrying weights while walking but we’ll get into that later. The simplest exercise can help build and maintain healthy muscles, joints and bones. Exercise can increase strength, burn fat, boost your energy level, promote better sleep and also help create a more positive outlook. Moving your body can decrease stress, improve your mood and reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer. It’s tough to find anything negative about a little bit of exercise other than sweating a little bit. With the weather getting better each week, it’s time to take a little bit of time out of your 10 hour break, put the head band on, turn the Ipod up and go for a walk.