|as they say on MTV Cribs - "this is where the magic happens"|
i eat too much. i have learned that, although i've been selling myself on the idea that i'm eating healthier cuisine than before, i never really addressed the quantity that i consume. i'm eating way more fruits and vegetables, eating earlier in the day, drinking lots of chocolate milk (my ghetto recovery drink), and toting around a water bottle. paying attention to what is going on in my daily diet parallels my commitment to sound quality. i preach that it is crucial to use good technique and make a beautiful sound every single time, paying attention to all of the daily detail that ultimately makes a difference.
i wasn't really that fit to begin with. uh, it's humbling - that's for sure. i spend a fair amount of time doing physical stuff, lifting, exercising, abs, etc. week one on this thing revealed quite a bit to me. so did the "before" pics sonja took of me. eek. the musical equivalent that i encourage my students to do (but am lackadaisical about employing myself) is recording on a regular basis. when i hear my true sound, i am far quicker to address the hang-ups in my playing than just estimating where i'm at on tone and execution of ideas. i benefit from a real time reflection of my playing and am hesitant to pursue that, probably for fear of what it may disclose.
i am motivated by results. it's kinda weird, but i really am seeing a transformation in my body through the P90X stuff. i would hope so - geesh. i write down my progress and work out in front of a mirror to be sure that i'm using good form and technique. my ego feels wonderful with this gawking, but it actually is showing my progress and pushing me to achieve more ambitious goals. hearing my own progress, getting positive feedback from listeners and colleagues alike provides me with evidence of musical growth. results, although few and far between in the arts, are the motivational fuel that i desperately need.
i appreciate clear instructions. horton is telling me stuff that, yeah - it's motivational and encouraging, but is also understandable and applicable. phrases like "your ears need to be next to your biceps" or "the distance between your toes and your heels should be the same" are directions i can comprehend. i am able to maximize the moves immediately without guessing what in the hell he actually means. this relates directly to my one-on-one teaching and rehearsal technique. i can make more efficient headway by conveying exactly what i mean with clear and concise suggestions.
credibility is key. these exercises are a bitch, and he is actually doing them. so are the other folks in the video (in fact, they are the ones really doing it while he's coaching). i make it a point in my teaching to show my students what i'm asking them to do, to empower them in a way. i know that sounds cheesy, but i want them to know that i'm just a regular guy like them and i can do the exercise that i'm asking them to attempt. i'm not coming up with ideas that are ridiculous or unfathomable, and the quickest way i can show their legitimacy is by doing them live for my students. credibility is difficult to establish and, once lost, nearly impossible to reacquire.
i found something that is working for me. i need the accountability of these exercises and the journals. i like the discipline and the challenge and the levity and the barking and the jokes. i need that timer on the video expiring, the other workout pals sweating, the positive affirmations. i need the variety, the limited downtime between moves, the fired up vibe when me and the video dudes complete an exercise successfully. i often struggle with making progress in my writing or my practicing or my educational research, and then i realize that i have yet to find the angle that works for me. when i do, the sky's the limit. this silly workout dvd has reminded me that i am my own personal trainer in life, which is a difficult yet necessary pill to swallow.