Fall in love with yourself

By David Tepera, May 30, 2018

Well, summer weather is here, and is your body ready for a swimsuit? How many diets have you already failed this year, as well as in your entire adult life? Are you tired of disappointing yourself?

There’s not one person reading this column today that hasn’t failed a diet or two. Here’s my best advice: stop dieting. All it takes is making small adjustments until it becomes habit, then making another adjustment.

Look, fall in love with yourself, and don’t worry about what other’s think. I’ve written this before, but no matter how you look at this moment, there are lots of people out there that find you sexy.

I know plenty of men who prefer big or tight butts, tall or short women and other parts of different sizes. Women feel the same way about men, or whatever your sexual preference is. I’m sure each of you fall into those categories.

This world is full of different races, colors, hair texture, body types and so on. I promise, each of you is uniquely beautiful.

Ever since I became a mature adult, I see beauty and sexy in everyone. Admit it, there are plenty of choices out there that fit your preferences.

Yes, I constantly help people with diets and exercise, but I also let them know how beautiful they already are. My only goal in helping others is for them to be healthier so they can enjoy life.

I know a young lady who’s very depressed and upset because she’s gained more weight than ever before. Over the past month, she’s desperately been trying to lose weight, and has lost almost 10 pounds. I let her know it’s not a sprint, but a marathon.

Think about it. If you lose just one pound a week, at the end of three months, you’ll have lost almost 15 pounds.

So, really, don’t be embarrassed, just strut your stuff and lead with confidence. Life is way too short to beat yourself up over the models used in advertisements.

Now, wear some comfy clothes, have fun, shake that big butt and go enjoy the outdoors.

You’re already a multimillionaire

By David Tepera, May 23, 2018

Recently, a close friend asked me to speak to his son, whom I’ll call Jim, because he keeps expressing feelings about “lack of worthiness.” I know Jim well, so I asked him to completely describe himself to me.

His description contained these words and more: lost, depressed, worthless, financially broke and no future.

I told him, it’s not only common to feel that way as a young man, but people of all ages will have this battle throughout life. But, just know, it’s more common of people out of high school and early 20s.

For the past 18 years of your life, your future was already set as you went through 12 years of school, including kindergarten. Now, your future is undetermined and finding your way into society with a destiny will take time.

My first topic of conversation was to reply to Jim’s statement of worthlessness and being broke.

So, I asked Jim, “If someone offered you a million dollars for one of your legs, would you do it? If someone offered you five million for both legs, would you? How about 10 million for both arms?”

Well, you guessed it, Jim, like all of us, replied “no way.” I then led Jim to a mirror and told him to stare at that handsome, brilliant and lucky man to have all his body parts. Guess what my friend, “You’re already a multimillionaire, so let’s start the process to find your passion.”

Jim understood my point, so we went through a list of all his good qualities like being kind, loving, dependable, and even a sports fanatic.

I told Jim, “Do you know there’s a shortage of volunteer youth coaches, referees and umpires? I promise, since you’re a former star athlete, these young kids will learn a lot from you. Your sense of worthiness will soar knowing how you not only impact young athletes, but their families as well. You have an opportunity to change lives.”

At this moment, I know there’s plenty of people reading my column today sharing the same feelings as Jim. Believe me, I’ve been there several times in my life, too.

Almost all of us are surrounded by people who unconditionally love us. They accept our faults, and will continue to cheer us on, as long as we keep fighting the battle of life. I promise, your determination will lead you to destiny

I understand, we all want a better version of ourselves, but also recognize, loving yourself first is more important than loving others.

Now it’s your turn, go look in the mirror and see that multimillionaire staring back and blow a big kiss.


Too busy to workout?

By  David Tepera, May 16, 2018

As you can imagine, being in the fitness industry, I’m typically in daily conversation with people about diets, exercises and weight training. It’s inevitable how many people, especially parents, tell me they’re too busy to workout.

My immediate reaction is always the same, “you’re not too busy, it’s just a matter of priorities.”

I’m sure many people reading this have used that same old excuse. Yes, I called it an excuse.

I understand family and work will always come first, but if you really plan your schedule, working out can more easily fit than you want to accept.

How many times do you hit the snooze button each morning? How many TV shows do you watch at night? You get my drift because there are multiple gym memberships that are open all night or super early in the morning.

When I was married and my kids were much smaller, I would do all my training early in the morning while they slept. Then, I would come home, wake everyone, cook breakfast and get them ready for the day.

For all you school-age athletes, the summer is coming, and how do you plan to prepare for next year’s sports? You going to suck up AC all day or get climatized to the heat, so you can be the leader at practice? I know in these modern days, schools offer summer camps to help all athletes. I recommend joining in.

Back in the 1990s, when I was a high school football coach, I learned an important lesson from my father when he coached football. Two months out from two-a-days, Dad would start running and exercising in the heat as preparation. I followed his lead and became known as “coach on the run.” I would perform the drills with the team to push them past their comfort zones.

Now parents, be the leaders in your family. Show your kids that working out will always be a part of life. It should be as routine as brushing your teeth and making the bed each day.

Almost every time I’m in the gym, I see parents training with their teenage children. If you think about it, it’s not really a parenting moment, but an opportunity to bond and spend healthy quality time.

So, start today and throw away excuses, organize your priorities and I’ll see you in the gym.

Are you bitter, or better?

By David Tepera, May 9 2018

Every day we fight a multitude of challenges — some small, some big. But, what’s most important is how we allow “challenges” to define us. Do we find ourselves getting bitter or better?

Have you ever noticed when you have one little setback in the morning, the whole day seems to snowball into a flurry of negative events? That happens because you stayed bitter, chose a bad attitude, and sulked in your pity party. You unconsciously attracted every situation to go wrong.

Really, the only people I feel sorry for were those you interacted with. I’m sure you weren’t the sunshine in their life, and probably created a bad day for them, too.

I’ve seen this many times in sports. One team gets into a funk, loses all confidence and continues to make ridiculous mistakes. We often see baseball players go into a slump in hitting, basketball players lose their touch on shooting, golfers choke while putting and so on.

Now, here’s the beauty of being bitter. You can flip your attitude immediately and get back on track to a better day and life. Just understand that out of every situation you can find goodness, positive experience, growth and maturity.

A small example was recently when I was carrying the dog bowls full of food from the kitchen. One bowl slipped from my hand and the food scattered in all directions. My first instinct was to say some words that would upset my grandma.

How many of you all ready figured out the solution? Of course, the dogs had a field day eating off the floor. I’m sure they found a few extra particles along the way. I was just as excited as the dogs because I didn’t have to pick it up, plus the floors were getting a true spit-shine.

Look, I understand that we all face much more difficult and challenging situations than I just described. But, the point was for you to realize that with conscious effort, you can switch every situation to be better. Sometimes, it takes a little more time than others.

For years, I’ve trained myself that when I feel backed in a corner of defeat, I think of all the people I hold deep in my heart. Believe me, nothing is stronger than true honest love.

Time to conquer, not cower

By David Tepera, May 2, 2018

At the beginning of each year, I will tell my children to make each month better than the one before. Once the month has ended, I ask them to reflect and share everything they felt was accomplished. The goal is for them to develop the habit and drive to succeed and never be complacent.

Recently, I was having a conversation with my business partner, Tina, as we were discussing the progression of our business model. During this intense strategy, we realized that not only was each month getting better, but it felt more like “conquering.”

We’ve now taken on the attitude of Vikings, with kicking “better” to the curb, and attacking life with a conquering force. Believe me, nothing will stop us from succeeding.

Remember, we all make thousands of decisions throughout our day. It starts the moment you wake up. Before you get out of bed, besides daily routines, what’s your attitude and thought process to start each day?

Are you ready to get out there and kick some butt, or is it another day to cower?

Just know, the definition of conquer is to overcome and take control, and the definition of cower is to crouch down in fear and to be a person who lacks courage.

At this moment, you should be game planning how to take back your life. It could be as simple as improving your diet or tying up your sneakers to head out the door for a brisk walk or jog.

For all you athletes, do you train to conquer the opponent, or just going through the motions? Even if you’re not a starting player, you must train like one because, in time, you’ll be the lead person in something. So, step up your game.

For some of you, have you taken the steps to get rid of bad habits? Are you still hanging with destructive friends?

How many of you are allowing someone or others to keep you down? For some reason you decided to not be confrontational and to let this person belittle you, which keeps you from conquering your destiny.

Today is your day. Delete “cower” from your vocabulary and take on the Viking attitude of conquering everything in sight. Put your game face on, fill your lungs with a deep breath and bust out that door to kick life’s butt. You own your body, you own your thought process and attitude, and now, you have complete control of your destiny.

Make one small adjustment

By David Tepera, April 25, 2018

Recently, I’ve taken up playing golf more consistently. In my youth, I was too hyper for the slow pace of the game. But, now that I’m older and with more patience, I’m actually enjoying golf, while constantly working to improve my strokes.

Even if you don’t play or understand golf, keep reading because I’ll get to my point.

For those you who do play, I had developed a terrible slice with my driver, plus a horrible hook with the irons. I kept trying to adjust my stance, swing and pin angle, but for some frustrating reason, it kept getting worse and out of control.

Finally, after a few holes, I recognized something else needed to change or I’m going to give up. “OK,” I thought to myself, “It has to be something that only needs a little tweaking for improvements.”

I decided to close the head on my woods to correct the slice, and to open the face of the irons to straighten the hook. BAM, all strokes were back on target, plus hitting the ball further than ever before. All it took was just one small adjustment.

How many of you are frustrated with diets? Maybe, all it needs is one small adjustment like taking out dairy, sugar or both. You’d be shocked how this one deletion can catapult significant fat loss.

Are you getting bored with the same old-cardio routine? How about increasing your pace and incline, swinging your arms, switch machines, or all the above? This will force your body to burn extra fat.

I know plenty of people who perform the same weightlifting machines each week, Yes, at first, your muscles were sore and felt stronger. But now, nothing is improving and you’re getting frustrated. It’s time to switch the order of machines, try different angles, increase weight, and so on.

Are you starting to understand that really all it takes is one small adjustment to make the biggest impact in your life?

This can be applied in every aspect of your daily routines. If you feel you can never get caught up at work, then go in 15 minutes early and stay 15 minutes later. This extra 30 minutes ought to get the attention of your employers.

Now, sit down and think of all the frustrating components in your life. Start by making just one small adjustment, and soon you’ll find success. I promise, this will take a lot of unnecessary stress off you shoulders, and you’ll probably hit a hole-in-one.

You can’t keep me down

By David Tepera, April 18, 2018

There are many well-known athletes who’ve come back from what most would think were career-ending injuries. One of the most popular names is Peyton Manning who played in four Super Bowls — winning two of them in 2007 and 2015 seasons.

I’m sure most of you remember that Manning suffered a severe neck injury in 2011, which sidelined him for the rest of the season. Everyone counted him out, including the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts decided to get rid of the perceived old man and replace him with a new young talent out of Stanford named Andrew Luck.

But, general manager and Hall of Famer John Elway saw a seasoned veteran and signed Manning to the Denver Broncos in 2012.

Within three seasons, Manning led his team to win Super Bowl 50 at the ripe old age of 39. This made him the oldest winning quarterback in Super Bowl history. He not only won, but set so many records, that I don’t have enough column space to list them.

An interesting fact: Elway was the previous oldest winning Super Bowl quarterback at 38.

After listening and watching many interviews of Manning, it was obvious, as everyone was trying to keep him down, he was determined to get back up and fight for his passion of the game.

Now, haven’t we all had or have people trying to keep us down? You’re told your ideas are stupid, you’re too fat, old, broke and worthless.

A friend of mine who’s been working for the same company for many years had an upper management change. He’s upset because they’ve changed his salary and commission structure to where he’s lost a lot of income. Obviously, he wants to quit.

I asked him, “what’s your biggest passion in life?” His reply was how much he loves to foster animals and find quality family homes for them.

I told him to start his own organization or partner with others and find a way to generate an income in the multiple avenues in the animal industry. Maybe, start a specialty pet and supplies service or store.

I don’t know what the income can produce, but once you start researching and networking, then you’ll get many ideas.

So, no matter what your situation is, don’t let them keep you down, get up and take control YOUR life.

Don’t be scared to strike-out

By David Tepera, April 11, 2018

In 1977, while I was in high school, Reggie Jackson became a household name for hitting three home runs on only three pitches to win the World Series for the New York Yankees.

Reggie was given the title as “Mr. October” for his postseason spectacular batting career, for not only the Yankees, but his time with Oakland Athletics as well.

Reggie was the home run king for many seasons expanding to 563 throughout his 21-year-career.

But, guess who had the most strikeouts than any other player in the history of the MLB? Yep, Reggie Jackson with a total of 2,597.

Don’t we all fear striking out in life? Don’t we fear standing up to the bully that keeps putting us down, starting a business, asking the girl for a date, trying something new, and so on?

How many times did you fall down learning to ride a bike, but eventually, you could ride with no-hands?

Think of every skill you’ve become an expert at and all the times you failed or struck out. None of the failures matter once you’ve mastered your craft because you were determined to be at your best. Now, you’re known as the leader in that category.

In all sports, as I watch the professional players, I think about how many times they must have failed in-order to reach the pinnacle of their skills. Yes, we will get frustrated, but our passion should catapult the drive and determination to get back up and keep pushing through it.

Maybe, you’re battling an addiction. How many times have you struck out trying to beat the habit? I’m sure each time only made you more depressed, which didn’t help to get out of the rut.

Just know, I’m not a therapist, so I always tell people to seek legal, professional and spiritual help, according to the severity of the situation.

But, I am telling you not to get down on yourself for each failure. As long as you get back up and try again, you can eventually succeed and hit that home run.

Words from the hall of famer himself Reggie Jackson, “I feel the most important requirement in success is learning to overcome failure. You must learn to tolerate it, but never accept it.”

Beauty of being “Bull in the Ring”

By David Tepera, April 3, 2018

If you’ve played sports, there’s a good chance you’ve experienced the drill “bull in the ring.” This drill typically consists of one person in the middle with everyone else circling around them.

In football, the circled players take turns hitting the bull, while the bull takes on the block or tackle.

In soccer, I had my goalkeeper as the bull, with each player rapidly taking turns firing the ball, while the keeper deflects.

In martial arts, the circled attackers would quickly take turns grabbing and putting the bull in specific holds, then the bull uses self-defense to free themselves.

The beauty of bull in the ring is that the bull learns to think fast and be quick on their feet. It’s an extremely exhausting drill that typically leaves the bull digging deep to get back on their feet and keep fighting.

How many of you can relate this to life? Haven’t we all seemed to be just moving along smoothly and carelessly, then out of nowhere, something comes along and knocks us off our feet? Now, you must think quickly trying to resolve the best outcome.

Maybe you were diagnosed with an illness or unexpected medical bills, your car suddenly breaks down needing engine repair or a new transmission, an unexpected divorce, death of a loved one or unemployment.

But, that’s just it. This is our time to be the bull in the ring. There’s no choice — you must get back on your feet and keep fighting back in this game of life.

There’s no time to play the pity party. We all have or will have extreme circumstances that change our course. You can either choose to let it define you or you can take action and make you stronger.

Sometimes playing bull in the ring in sports can leave external scars where you can wear them proudly. But, also, life’s bull in the ring will leave internal scars.

When scars heal, they leave a stronger thickened skin to protect the body from future impact. Well, guess what? You should recognize internal scars react the same way.

That negative impact should harden you, not soften. Take that experience to find determination and get back up, plus take on another challenge. Because, through time, you’ll always fight your way back in life to win the day.

Now, get ready bull because another unexpected event is coming, but you’re a warrior and will kick its butt. So, put me in, coach — I got this!

Spring season is your new beginning

By David Tepera, March 28, 2018

If you’re like me, this is your favorite time of the year. Yep, spring season has arrived! The air is still cool with sunny days, plus all the plants are blooming. But, the best part of all, baseball season has started.

I remember when my kids were younger, playing ball to dust off last year’s gloves and bats to see if they had outgrown them. Sometimes a glove could make a few seasons, but because of yearly growth spurts, a new bat would always be purchased.

I loved the many years of building memories and bonding with my children through baseball and softball seasons. Even if you don’t volunteer to coach, it’s still a great opportunity to spend quality time with your children.

How many of you, like me, actually take on the task of spring cleaning? We’ve been cooped up throughout winter months of dreary weather. But now, the windows and doors are open while cleaning all the extra dust, including putting away jackets and sweaters.

I enjoy getting outdoors, working in my flowerbeds, riding my bicycle again, and feeling the sun radiate on my skin.

Really, spring should be a yearly decision to not only do external cleaning, but internal as well. I guarantee, almost everyone of us has something in our past that still haunts us or is hard to let go.

Look, last year is gone, even yesterday has past. All you need to do is learn from it and keep moving forward. Sometimes, life will slow your momentum, but it’s OK because there’s times you need to change speeds.

It’s time to recognize what’s holding you back. Get outside, breathe the fresh air, and fill your mind with positive thoughts. We all have something to be thankful for, so baste yourself in goodness.

Let spring season be your new beginning. It doesn’t matter what your current status is. You’re never too broke or worthless when you project kindness and love. Step out of your norm and go hug your family members to let them know you appreciate who they are. I promise, lives will change instantly.

Now, get out there and make this world a better place because you are needed.