Starting at Zero (64/365)

I’m in awful shape.  I think it is safe to say that I am in the worst physical condition I’ve ever been in my entire life.  Every time I see our scale in the bathroom, I slowly back away.  I don’t even want to know what my official weight is right now.  I’m sure it’s a personal record.

Now, I don’t mean like I’m in terrible shape as in I’m physically ill.  The worst off I’ve ever been as far as that is concerned is when I had to get my appendix removed.  That’s another story in itself, and it’s a classic.  I’ll have to go into detail about that later.  I mean, I have zero endurance, and no strength.  This is coming from a guy that ran college track and cross country.  Back then, I was in ridiculously good shape.  We would go for eight mile easy runs.  Yes, I said that right.  In my current state, everything is difficult after eight steps.

I’ve been waiting to get back at it because my knee is not quite right.  I hurt it playing too much basketball and soccer in the fall.  I stopped the soccer because I was just helping out at my son’s soccer practices, and the season ended.  I stopped playing basketball in January because my knee doesn’t agree with lateral movements.  I’ve also been waiting on working otu because I like running outside, and Wisconsin in the winter is harsh.  As I type right now, on March 5th, it is 12 degrees Fahrenheit.  If you convert that to Celcius, it’s like negative 42.  I might be wrong with that conversion.  Point is, it’s well below freezing, and it’s MARCH!  When will it get warm?

No more waiting.  I’m soft because I’m soft.  I should make a meme out of that quote.  My body soft.  It’s nice and squishy like a marshmallow.   My willpower is soft like a freshly baked donut.  Apparently, eating stacks of pancakes doesn’t give you muscles like a burly lumberjack.  You have to do hard work too.

Do you really need an excuse to eat blueberry pancakes?

Do you really need an excuse to eat blueberry pancakes?

No more.  I must step away from the blueberry pancakes.  I have to work out!  It’s time to HTFU.  Look that up if you don’t know what that acronym means.  It’s NSFW.

I battled with the brutal weather yesterday and squeaked out a half mile run.  Then I came inside and played Just Dance for 20 minutes with my kids.  Today will be no different.  I need to build up my beach body.  Muscle up, butter cup!  Wish me luck.

Lifetime Writing Goals – (40/365)

I’m reading a book by this blogger lady, Kristen Lamb, that helps fiction writers, and one of her suggestions is to write down all your goals.  You start with your goals six months from now, and work up to your Lifetime Goals.  Let’s write ’em down. This will be fun to look back on, provided I am successful.  Otherwise, this could be the beginning of my personal trail of tears.

Six Months – August 2015.

1. I’ll still be writing one journal post per day.  2. I will have my first book either published or sold to a publisher.  3. The first book I wrote, “O.K. is Great” has an editor looking at it right now, but if it doesn’t get an offer, I’m putting it out there on my own.  Also, “The Axe” should be edited and ready to be pitched to the publishers.  4. My blog will have at least double the amount of followers.  I have six right now.  COME ON BIG 12!  5. The Brewers will be in first place in the NL Central (that’s just wishful thinking), and I will take my kids to at least one game this year.

Look at that serious home run face!

Look at that serious home run face!

One Year – February 2016

1. I will say the word “February” with out always pronouncing the “r”.  I like to annoy people by saying FebRRRUUUary.  I should stop that.  It’s annoying.  2.  I will have my fourth book written.  I’m not sure which book it will be.  It could be O.K. number Three, The Cross Country Running Realistic Fiction I’ve been thinking about, or a sequel to The Axe, but I better have another book written a year from now.  3.  I will have sold at least 1,000 copies of O.K. is Great if I self published it.  4. I won’t blog every day anymore, but I will blog three times a week.  I want to at least have 24 subscribers to the blog by next year.  Exponential growth!

Three Years – February 2018

1. I will have three books for sale, “O.K. is Great”, the sequel “The Beast of Boykinville Road”, and “The Axe”.  I will have sold at least 10,000 copies for my books by then.  2.  During the summer, I will visit schools and bookstores to promote my books!  3. I will have at least six books written, and at least three for sale.  The Cross Country Book will have been written by now.  4.  I will maintain the blog with at least one post per week, but I also will be doing at least one video per month on my Tips4Running YouTube channel to strengthen my audience for my realistic fiction Cross Country book.  I will have at least 50,000 subscribers on my YouTube channel.  The Blog should have 384 subscribers if it continues to double every six months.  This post is now turning into a math problem.  Yeck!

Five Years – February 2020

1. I will finish the “O.K. series”  I plan on writing five books in this series, and by this time, I will be putting out the last in the series.  The five books in the series will be titled, “O.K. is Great”, “The Beast of Boykinville Road”, “Money is O.K.”, “O.K. 4.O”, and “The Basketball Book (working title)”.  The total number of books sold by now will be over 20,000.  2.  One of my books, either “The Axe” or the first “O.K.” book will be picked up by a traditional publisher.  3.  I also will be working on the sequel to the Cross Country running book, and it will be about track.  4. The blog will have more than 384 followers.  I got tired of doing math and I don’t know where my wife’s calculator is.

Ten Years – February 2030

1.  I will be able to decide if I want to keep teaching or not because my books are making enough money to afford me that choice.  2.  I will have at least 10 books written by this point and eight of them will be published.  3.  I will still have a strong social media presence, but I will be flexible enough and work at least once a week on whatever medium I prefer (blog, YouTube, etc.).  4.  I will be a high school coach for either cross country, track, or baseball because my kids will be in one of those sports (That is assuming they like one of these sports).  5.  My books will have sold over 100,000 copies all together.  6.  I will eat caviar and drink things that require my pinky finger to be extended.

Twenty Years – February 2040

I’ll be 58 years old.  I’ll have the financial flexibility due to my book sales plus the money I’ve earned from teaching to decide if I want to retire or not.

Wish me luck!

The Best Diet Book Ever, FREE – Guaranteed Weight Loss – (39/365)

***I’m only kidding at the start, but my Diet Book really is free***

Because I’m a running guru, and an Internet sensation, I get approached to promote countless products. (I actually do have over 10,000 subscribers on YouTube. I’m kind of a big deal.) Most of the money is in the diet and nutrition side for product promotion because people will pay lots of money for you to tell them why they are fat.  Now, I’ve never once agreed to promote any of their products, fancy gadgets, and weight loss miracle food plans.  You know why?

Well I’m here to tell you why!  I hold the secret (a heavily guarded secret by the fat cats in the food industry).  Matter of fact, now that I posted this article onto the Interwebs, my very life is in grave danger.  Don’t worry.  You can share my secret.  I’m going into hiding after this and changing my name to Divad instead of David.  They’ll never find me.

Stand back.  Hold the phone.  Brace yourself.  Hide the women and children.  Umm, I’m running out of things to say to build the drama.  Here it is.  My Best Diet Book Ever for FREE!

DietBook

Did you read my book?  Great stuff, right!  Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.  Eat less of everything else.  I kind of ran out of room with the word ‘everything’ on the front cover of my book, but I still think it has a chance to be a best seller.

Can a free book be a best seller?  I’ll be like U2 after they dumped their album into everyones’ iPhone and made people want to delete it.  So cool!

Okay.  That’s it.  You don’t even have to look the inside cover of my book.  There is no inside.  It’s just that picture I drew with a blue marker and a green crayon.

At the start of the article, I mentioned my running background.  Here’s an informative video I made about running to lose weight.  I mention the same stuff about diet in that video too.

Feel free to share my unbelievable weight loss secrets, but eat an apple or a carrot first.

Six Things to do Everyday of the Year (28/365)

I’m only 28 days into my Project 365 challenge where I’m attempting to write a journal entry for every day of 2015, and I’m already thinking of ideas for next year.  That’s probably not a good sign, but it is a good journal writing topic.  BONUS!

1. Go outside for an hour every day.  That one could be tough in the winter months.  I’m not built for the cold.  I shouldn’t say that anymore.  When I was younger, I was razor thin.  I’m much softer these days.

2. Celebrate a different holiday everyday.  I like looking at this website, checkiday.com, where they list all these random holidays.  For instance, today there are five holidays listed: Data Privacy Day, Fun at Work Day, National Blueberry Pancake Day, National Kazoo Day, and Thank A Plugin Developer Day.  If I were doing this, you know I’d be eating blueberry pancakes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  I’m liking that idea.

Do you really need an excuse to eat blueberry pancakes?

Do you really need an excuse to eat blueberry pancakes?

3. Vlog everyday.  I’m technically blogging everyday, but I prefer the word journalling.  A vlog is a video blog, where you’d see my ugly face on YouTube every day talking about something not very important.  I’m not so sure about this one, unless I came up with a theme for each day of the week.  Like on Monday’s I’d make a Minecraft video (so I don’t have to be on camera).  On Tuesdays I’d do something like film myself outdoors trying to find a deer.  This idea would require a boatload of work.  I don’t think it’s a possibility.

4. Run at least a mile everyday.  This one would be doable as long as I don’t push it too hard.  I don’t have the best knees, but if I don’t try to run a lot of mileage (like going for six or seven mile runs) I could do it.  This would get me outside of the house too because I refuse to run on a treadmill.  I feel like I’m in a hamster wheel whenever I get on one of those contraptions.

5. Try a new food everyday.  As I’m getting more into the blogging because of this journal, I’m finding out that blogging about food is a pretty big deal.  I could join those ranks, but I’d have to go to a place like Whole Foods, and there isn’t anything like that near my house.

6. Catch a creature on camera everyday.  This idea would be awesome because I think my kids would get into it as well.  My daughter, The Flower Child, catches bugs all the time in summer.  We could film these adventures.  The winter months would be tough.  I could focus on birds and maybe go ice fishing?  Nah.  Ice fishing is brutal.  Nothing’s worse than staring at a hole in the ice while I freeze.

What ideas do you have that would be fun to try?  Do you think you could do any of the ones I have listed above?

How Cold is Too Cold? (8/365)

How cold is too cold?  I think I have an answer.  It’s rather disturbing, and I apologize for even sharing it, but if your boogers freeze when you take a breath in through your nostrils, it’s too damn cold!

Have you ever had that happen to you?  It kind of hurts.  After you breathe out, the mucus in your nostrils will unfreeze, but man that’s cold.  That reminds me of the coldest I’ve ever felt.

I went to college at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, and when I was there, I ran on the cross country and track teams.  During a terribly cold winter, myself and about five of my teammates went out for a run in sub-zero temperatures.  I don’t know the exact temperature it was during that four mile run, but it was somewhere between booger freeze cold and hell freezing over.

I made two critical errors during this run.  First of all, I started the run with the wind.  This gave me a false sense of how cold it really was outside.  The second mistake I made was to lower the scarf that was covering my face.  During the first two miles of the run, when I was headed downwind, my face was warm enough without the scarf.

Oh, but did things change when I turned around to head back to campus.  The wind and cold slapped me across my bare skin wicked hard.  It felt like I was getting poked with thousands of little needles.  I reached up and attempted to put the scarf back onto my face, but I couldn’t.  It was frozen around my neck.  The water vapor from my breath collected on it and then froze.

I could have been in The Shining!

I could have been in The Shining!

I spent the next agonizing two miles running with one hand over my face.  My feet felt like blocks of ice by the time I reached campus.

When I finally made it back inside, I immediately went into the bathroom to run hot water over my hands.  The image I saw in the mirror was ridiculous.  A crust of ice had formed on the front of my winter hat.  Small particles of ice were in my eyebrows and eyelashes.  My face was burnt scarlet red from the wind.  The scarf was frozen solid around my neck.  It took a good five minutes to undo the frozen knot and take it off.

Miraculously, I didn’t get frostbite.  Keeping one hand over my face somehow prevented this from happening.  It probably helped that I ran the two miles back to campus in ten minutes.

Now, I’m smart enough not to run in these temperatures.  Unfortunately I’m not smart enough to run consistently when it is nice out.  I need to get back into good shape, but that’s a story for another day.

I’m Too Much of an Idiot to be Successful

On November 16th, 2014, an email account that I never check punched me in the face so hard, I still have tears in my eyes.  Here’s why.

I have a moderately successful YouTube channel called “Tips4Running”.  As the name suggests, the videos I produce are focused on running tips.  I also like to use my GoPro camera when I run in Tough Mudder races, and I post these videos too.

I’ve been busy with school and with writing lately, so I haven’t uploaded a new video in some time.  Over the weekend, I found some free time, and I made a new running video.  While it was uploading, I was checking the different pages on the Tips4Running YouTube channel, I visited the “About Tips4Running YouTube page”.  On this little page, I wrote, and I quote, “Coach Tief is currently seeking sponsors, partners and product samples to review. Contact him at the following email.”  Then there is a link to an email account that I haven’t checked for six months.

So, I thought, let’s check out that email address while I wait for my video to load.  I get on the email account, and there are 364 emails I haven’t read.  Quickly I filter through them.  Most of them are spam, but once I get past about 200 emails, I find an interesting one sent to me on August 15th.  It was sent by Tina Theriot, with a title of “Edge of Tomorrow – Tough Mudder”.  I open the email, and this is what it said, word for word.

Dear Coach Tief,

On behalf of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group and EDGE OF TOMORROW, we would love to invite you to participate as a member of our team at Tough Mudder: Seattle on September 27th and 28th.  Our goal is to create a version of the “J-Squad” as seen in the film, with a range of team members from celebrities, YouTube personalities, top tier media, fitness gurus and even contestants from American Ninja Warrior.

As a participant on the EDGE OF TOMORROW team, we will pay for air travel to and from Seattle, hotel accommodations for two nights and the ticket entry fee.  In return, we ask that you help promote awareness of the Blu-ray/DVD release of EDGE OF TOMORROW and the great time we guarantee you will have by participating with us!

We think you would be a great addition to our team and would love to discuss this opportunity further.  Please let us know your interest and availability by Friday, August 22nd. Please feel free to email us any questions or concerns you may have.

Thank you!

Tina Theriot

Associate Marketing Specialist

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment

“NOOOOOOO!”  I screamed to myself.  How could I be so stupid?  How could I miss out on something like this?  This is the whole reason I make the running videos!  I want to do cool things like this, get footage of it, and then share the videos with my viewers.  I pay a lot of money to run Tough Mudders, and I could have ran one for free, not to mention I could have done it with American Ninja Warriors and other YouTubers!  Plus they were going to pay to fly me out there, and pay for the hotel.  I’m such an idiot.

Hi.  I don't like to check my email.  I'd rather run in mud.

Hi. I don’t like to check my email. I’d rather run in mud.

Needless to say, I’ll be checking that email account daily from now until forever.  I’m going to try and make this right somehow.  I know I’ll be running another Tough Mudder in 2015, and I’ll make a video for that.  Tonight, I’m going to rent or buy the movie EDGE OF TOMORROW and watch it immediately.  Then I’m going to email back Tina from Warner Bros. with my sincerest apologies.  They probably didn’t miss me at all, but I still feel really bad about the whole thing.  I only have myself to blame.  I hate me!

Tough Mudder Chicago

Hey everyone!  I just finished the Tough Mudder Chicago this weekend.  For Christmas, my wife bought me this really cool camera called the GoPro 3.  You can wear it on your body and tape you doing stupid things like running an 11 mile race with 22 obstacles and tons of mud.

You can watch my experience right here.

– Dave

Tough Mudder in Chicago

Holy buckets.  The Tough Mudder Chicago is coming up wicked soon.  On Sunday last week, I ran six miles and felt pretty good.  This weekend, I guess I should go for seven.

Do you not know what this Obstacle Course is?  Here’s video of me running it last year.

 

Wish me luck.  My wife and the kids are all coming to watch this year.  Hopefully, I remember to take off my new wedding ring before the race this time.

– Dave

My Thoughts and Prayers go out to People In Boston

I’m a runner, and know several people that are in Boston today for the Boston Marathon.  I was shocked when I heard that two bombs exploded near the finish line of the race.  My thoughts and prayers go out to the people in Boston.

Hug your loved ones.   If you don’t live close enough them to give them a hug, make sure to call and tell the people in your life how much you love them.