Today is all about doing whatever it takes to never live in fear. Because during the past two years of this COVID pandemic, the powers to be have done their best to control you by instilling fear in your mind, body and spirit. No doubt fear controls – so never let it happen. In our last Tola Talks Texas, at least for now while I travel and spend time with family, I do my best to communicate why we need to get rid of the divide between the vaccinated and unvaccinated. Plus kudos to Bill Maher for his recent monologue about not wanting to live in a masked, paranoid world and never being scared of COVID, but rather the reaction to it. Not to mention this particular comment that I totally agree: So, the fact that America, the medical establishment never even attempted to get people to live a healthier lifestyle as response to this pandemic is a giant scandal to me. Right on Bill, because everyone needs to get with the program and Drink from the Fountain of Youth, like I do. And no matter what, stay strong, stay positive, stay true to your dreams…and get your workout in.
Today is all about giving kudos to those who deserve it most. Like England for ending their Omicron restrictions, Amazon for opening its first clothing store in SoCal, the White House for distributing 400 million N95 masks, Starbucks for rescinding its vaccination requirement, the Supreme Court of the United States for striking down President Biden’s employee mandate, fashion icon Andre Leon Talley for following his dreams and making a difference, and the four NFL quarterbacks that I pick to win their divisional playoff games this weekend: Joe Burrow, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes. Plus the final three Steps to Everlasting Youth from my book, and of course, more positive cryptocurrency news as they begin their ascent (hopefully for good).
Today we’re talking about the best exercises anyone can do from head-to-toe using only dumbbells. And since the news is rather depressing this Wednesday when it comes to current events including President Biden’s approval rating and paltry school lunches, not to mention murder rates we haven’t seen since the 1990’s and homelessness and inflation on the rise, let’s focus on an easy and affordable daily fitness program that positively affects your 7 body parts: abs, shoulders, back, chest, triceps, biceps and legs. Plus three more steps to everlasting youth from my book, as well as some encouraging price moves from our beloved – and sometimes unbeloved – cryptocurrencies on Robinhood. Have an awesome day everyone…and get your workout in!
Today we’re talking about the cancel culture (aka the call-out culture) as a modern form of ostracism and why it should be rebooted, or more specifically, treated individually on a case-by-case basis. And kudos to the new employment website, redballoon.work, for their efforts to value freedom of expression and go beyond the cancel culture where employees are free to work without fear of being on the wrong side of their employer’s politics. No doubt Americans are in need of a higher functioning democracy with less censorship and less judgement upon others for their personal choices, not to mention the need for everyone to embrace Love the Five Y’s – Step 22 of my book, How to Drink from the Fountain of Youth. Plus get ready for a long Crypto Winter – or not if you ask me – although there are plenty of reasons why Bitcoin is poised for a precipitous decline.
Today we’re paying tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It’s a national holiday in the United States and time to honor a great man who stood for never ending equality and justice for all. MLK was also the youngest man to receive the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964, and a civil rights leader who inspired a nation with his “I Have a Dream” speech in front of 250,000 people gathered around the Lincoln Memorial during their peaceful march upon our nation’s capitol. We’re also talking about the Wolf Moon, a full moon that illuminates to its fullest tonight at 6:48p EST. Plus more fitness tips and inspiration as well as three more steps to everlasting youth from my book, How to Drink from the Fountain of Youth. Have an awesome holiday everyone…and get your workout in!
Today’s we’re talking about crazy crime stories involving victims young and old throughout the United States who were stabbed, frozen to death, shot and killed and/or left for dead, plus road rage incidents that’ll have you questioning your thoughts on who deserves to live or die for their offenses. Capital punishment is real and can be debated as positive or negative, depending on your personal values. Either way both are valid, just like being for or against Coronavirus vaccines that may or may not work. Both or valid and like the saying goes, to each his own. Plus more fitness tips to keep you drinking from the Fountain of Youth, and some quick talk about my Wall Street days as well as cryptocurrency prices and how no matter what, nothing goes straight up.
Today we’re having some fun with the Top 10 Phobias that have millions of Americans shaking in their boots. Because fear of anything including the number 13 is usually a bad thing that controls your mind, body and spirit. Especially in these fear-mongering Coronavirus times, everyone should – and must – face their fears head-on. Regardless of their origins, whether Biblical or pre-Christian or Babylonian times, phobias are real so we’re counting them down. Including two rather innocuous ones I just made up: Gymophobia and Yogaphobia. Fear of working out and fear of doing yoga…both of which you should never fear if you want to Drink from the Fountain of Youth. Like I do.
Today we’re talking fact vs. fiction when it comes to inaccurate claims about children being hospitalized for COVID (3,500 actual vs. 100,000) plus total US deaths and comorbidity, including highlights of the Fox News interview with Bret Baier and CDC director Rochelle Walensky; the negative affects of 5,000 schools still being closed for in-person learning; kudos to Marc Cuban for his clarity on Dogecoin vs. Bitcoin as an inflation hedge and better than a lottery ticket; plus a breakdown of soaring obesity rates throughout the US (up 26% since 2008) to an all time high of 42.4%.
Today we’re talking about the negative impacts the pandemic continues to have on children of all ages, especially more school closures leading to our worst “academic achievement crisis in living memory”, as well as suicide rates rising sharply among girls 12-17 years old (up 51% from 2019-2021); another variant called IHU in France that is “definitely not worth worrying about at the moment”; kudos to Green Bay Packers star quarterback Aaron Rodgers pushing back on criticism for hugging NFL reporter Erin Andrews in a postgame interview on Christmas Day; decriminalization measures in NYC meant to combat their growing crime; the good and the bad news when it comes to US companies hiring employees in December (good) while thousands of flights are still being cancelled and more Broadway shows are closing their doors (bad); plus good news from Goldman Sachs about Bitcoin potentially reaching $100,000 as it takes store of value share away from Gold. And of course, more talk about drinking from the Fountain of Youth and my new Tola Yoga class at Plano Athletic Club starting this Saturday at 12:30p.
If anyone told you they walked 4,000 miles in the past 12 months you’d probably think they were crazy right? Because walking 4,000 miles is the equivalent to walking from the hot and sunny confines of The Valley of Los Angeles, California, to the balmy and tropical valley of Caracas, Venezuela. And yes, it’s totally possible as you can walk across the Panama Canal by way of a pedestrian walkway across the entrance of the locks of Gatun, so no worries if you want to follow my footsteps to get there. Figuratively speaking, that is.
Let me explain.
I didn’t actually pull a Forrest Gump and wake up one day and start walking south through Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and Columbia before arriving in the capital of Venezuela one year later. No, but wouldn’t that be cool. I actually walked the entire 4,000 miles throughout the streets of LA, from my home in Chinatown going back and forth to a plethora of neighborhoods including DTLA, South Park, the Arts District, Lincoln Heights, Boyle Heights, Little Tokyo, Echo Park and yes, Dodger Stadium.
From June 1, 2020 until June 1, 2021, I walked between 10-12 miles every single day as part of my personal COVID relief. Or shall I say, personal COVID insanity prevention. Because when the lockdowns in LA were imposed back in March 2020 and all the gyms and yoga studios were closed, my daily walking meditations became my only savior. The longer the better, and mostly in perfect quietude with no human interaction whatsoever. Except for the occasional homeless person, who seemed even more surprised to see an even less occasional pedestrian. LA was like a veritable ghost town where I can honestly say I felt like the legendary actor Will Smith, aka US Army virologist Robert Neville, cruising the empty streets of Manhattan in the 2007 post-apocalyptic thriller, I Am Legend.
For anyone who knows me, you know that I can’t go a single freaking day without exercising in some form or another, e.g., weightlifting, Tola Yoga, stretching/abs. Good news is for as long as I can remember I was taught that your physical body, aka your temple, is the most important asset you’re ever going to possess in this world. And to respect your temple with a daily fitness program that keeps it vibrant and strong and injury-free, is paramount to maintaining a healthy lifestyle as well as turning back the hands of time.
Something I’ve also been doing for the past 58 years. Drinking from the Fountain of Youth, that is, and yes, something that’s rather challenging to achieve – especially as you get older – but something anyone can do with the help of my 30 Steps to Everlasting Youth. Including Step 20 – Walk to Win, arguably the most important step of all because walking is a perfect source of aerobic exercise not to mention it does wonders for your brain.
That’s right, walking is great for your brain. Just this week the New York Times reported that “Exercise can freshen and renovate the white matter in our brains, potentially improving our ability to think and remember as we age, according to a new study of walking, dancing and brain matter. It shows that white matter, which connects and supports the cells in our brains, remodels itself when people become more physically active. In those who remain sedentary, on the other hand, white matter tends to fray and shrink.”
Fray and shrink just like everything else in our bodies with the help of good ole’ Father Time. Forgettaboutit! Don’t let the world’s most non-beloved Father get the best of you…get with the program now. Translation: start walking today. Or else stay seated and wait for your brain matter to wither away, and hopefully not before your temple does. And if you don’t care so much about improving or at least maintaining your ability to think and remember things as you age, then do it for your family. That’s right, start walking today and bring a loved one along so they can reap the amazing benefits of walking. You can even bring your dog Spot or cat Fluffy if none of your human friends desire to capitalize on such a great opportunity. I’m sure your pets won’t complain, and if they do, then pick them up and carry them for an even better workout.
Just remember to bring water. And if walking to improve your white brain matter doesn’t really matter to you, then maybe these “12 Benefits of Walking” as described by the Arthritis Foundation will motivate you (see arthritis.org):
Shore up your bones
Enjoy a longer life
Lighten your mood
Support your joints
Improve your breath
Slow mental decline
Lower Alzheimer’s risk
Do more for longer
So there you have it, 12 more reasons to walk every single day of your life (or at least 3 times a week for 40 minutes). If you’re capable that is, because not everyone is fortunate enough to walk. But if you can, don’t deny your body, mind and spirit these amazing benefits by choosing a sedentary lifestyle that’s only going to shorten your stay on Planet Earth.
And by the way, in case you were wondering what it’s like to walk 4,000 miles in a 12 month period, let’s just say it may do wonders for your brain but it sure takes a toll on the physical body, especially the low back, hips and knees. But what’s interesting about the routine of walking nearly 100 miles a week is that once your body gets used to it, it’s not only easy to maintain but it almost becomes a daily obsession that you can’t do without. Even with all the aches and pains that come along with it, during and after.
Would I recommend walking that many miles in any given year? No. But I do recommend walking 1-2 miles a day for the rest of their life, no matter who you are. And if you need some help try this: walk out your front door and keep walking for exactly 15 minutes, at a brisk pace with good posture, then stop, turn around, and come back. Voila! 2 miles in about 30 minutes. You can do it, especially if you live in LA or Venezuela or anywhere with a beautiful climate. Or just brave the rain and snow like I did in Chicago and Seattle. But then again you might say it’s summertime in the northern hemisphere and just like DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince rapped back in Philly circa 1991, “Summer, summer, summertime, Time to sit back and unwind.”
No doubt unwinding can be a good thing, especially to decompress from our busy lives. But when it comes to your health, walking is something anyone can incorporate into their current lifestyle. And should incorporate, based upon all the goodness it brings. Especially in today’s new normal world of working from home, there should be ample opportunity in your day to lace’em up Rocky style and kick the bricks, as I like to say. I hope you do, your temple will love you for it.
Have an awesome summer everyone, and get your walking in! Peace – R