JOHNTJ1's SparkPeople Blog JOHNTJ1's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Some Food for Thought This made me think: <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> Have a great Wednesday Wed, 27 May 2015 08:03:31 EST It's Amazing How Quickly People Change :) I lost my locker key at the gym this morning. It fell out of my pocket while I was walking. <BR> <BR> My phone kept sagging my pants down so I pulled it out to hold it. That's when the key fell out. I didn't realize it was gone until I went to fish it out of my pocket standing in front of my locker, sweat pouring off my head. <BR> <BR> Not a pretty sight. <BR> <BR> I ran (Well what passes as a run for me now days) upstairs and started looking. I saw Michael was sitting at the trainers d... Tue, 26 May 2015 09:15:44 EST Our TRUE Purpose <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Being of the Roman Catholic faith one of our practices is to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. It used to be called Penance, but I think that scared a lotta people away so the Catholic Church got kinder and gentler. <BR> <BR> Anyways.......... <BR> <BR> I hadn't reconciled myself formally in quite some time. It was one of those things I just kept putting off and like lots of things... Thu, 21 May 2015 16:59:19 EST Did You Ever Wonder? I hopped in the car this morning on my way to an early morning network event and flipped on the radio. <BR> <BR> It was The Beatles!!!! --- "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" circa 1964; 51 years ago. <BR> <BR> I sang and bounced and generally looked deranged as I drove down the road. <BR> <BR> Then I started to wonder. Its been 51 years and we have certainly upped the anti, so to speak , when it comes to song lyrics. We've gone from the innocuous practice of hand holding to.......... <BR> <BR> ... Wed, 20 May 2015 12:55:43 EST Finding Nothing I was putting stuff up in my locker at the gym yesterday afternoon when someone whose locker is next to mine came around the corner. <BR> <BR> "Hey, how are you," I asked. I hadn't seen him in a month or so. <BR> <BR> "I'm fine," He responded. "How about you?" <BR> <BR> "I've got nothing to complain about." I answered <BR> <BR> "Yes you do. You just don't want to acknowledge that you do." <BR> <BR> I really don't have anything to complain about. My feet hit the ground this morning. I c... Mon, 18 May 2015 10:47:28 EST As It Really Is............. <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I always take consolation in the fact that I have never given up. I may waver, I may drift and I may get a bit off kilter but something inside of me always takes a deep breath and plunges back in. <BR> <BR> Drink lottsa water, make healthy food choices and exercise. <BR> <BR> Track your food and exercise and above all be honest with yourself. <BR> <BR> Look, we can at whatever we want ... Sun, 17 May 2015 15:56:46 EST Pass This On if You Know Someone Who'd Benefit From This A friend of one of our son's took his own life Monday night. They had roomed together in college, Joan and I knew his mom, and his brothers and sisters knew my kids, etc. <BR> <BR> He was 31, well educated and was in the middle of a life journey that included a successful career. Everyone is shaking their heads and saying stuff like "He was such a good guy." or "He had everything going for him. I don't get it." <BR> <BR> No one knows the "why" <BR> <BR> No one bothered to ask him. <BR>... Wed, 29 Apr 2015 09:50:32 EST For Someone Who Needs It........... I was searching my computer for an errant file this morning when I ran accross a blog posting I'd written a few summers ago. <BR> <BR> A tiny voice inside of me said "Someone needs to read this today!" <BR> <BR> I know I did <BR> <BR> "Friday afternoon Joan informed me I was getting out of the house on Saturday. “You need a day,” she pronounced. I made plans to head east towards Louisville to see son Paul and help him overcome a weed eater issue he was having, visit Whole Foods, pick... Mon, 27 Apr 2015 08:06:52 EST Our Daily Bread My brother and I spent 8 years of our lives as alter boys, serving Mass each morning. I surmise we prayed the Our Father over 3,000 times during that period. <BR> <BR> Since then it's something I simply say by rote each morning and evening. Sometimes I don't even listen to what I'm saying. In modern parlance it's become a mantra. <BR> <BR> Last night I was laying in bed worrying about something I cant even recall when I lapsed into that prayer. Nothing spectacular occurred until I reached t... Fri, 24 Apr 2015 08:04:22 EST Grow Where You Are Planted <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Our weather has been mercurial at best. Warm on day, cold the next. Not warm enough to turn on the AC and some mornings just cold enough to kick in the furnace. The trees and flowers don't mind. They just keep on a blooming. Somewhere in that thought there's a blog posting. <BR> <BR> I hadn't slept well in about 3 days. On top of the weather being fickle the birds like to wake Joan and I up around 4 AM and well t... Mon, 20 Apr 2015 09:14:12 EST His Final Words.......... I sat at Mass this morning listening to the Gospel being read. <BR> <BR> It's Palm Sunday and that means one of the four Passion Narratives. I have to admit I'm not a huge fan. Standing there for 20 minutes or so I get lost in my thoughts. <BR> <BR> But today something struck me that hasn't in all the years I've heard and read that gospel passage. <BR> <BR> It was Jesus final words before he commended his spirit to his Father in heaven. <BR> <BR> For a brief moment Jesus was scared. H... Sun, 29 Mar 2015 16:18:01 EST Living With the Everyday As i'm writing I can hear the birds singing to each other outside my office window - a sure harbinger of spring. <BR> <BR> It's hard to believe that just a week ago Joan and I were eating breakfast, listening to the weather and saying "Surely they're mistaken!" <BR> <BR> They weren't. We woke the next morning to 14 inches of snow and considered ourselves fortunate, 20 miles south it was close to two feet of snow. <BR> <BR> We dug out most of Thursday and I noted with a bit of humor that ... Wed, 11 Mar 2015 07:41:26 EST Finding Faith in the Every Day <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Winter showed itself this past week or so. From sleet to snow to freezing rain to sub zero temperatures, to more sleet and ice to more cold................. <BR> <BR> I sat on the couch looking out our double doors on to the deck. I have a clear view of the telephone wires that traverse the neighborhood easement. Some birds, about a dozen of them sat there, looking around at the snow and searching for some food. ... Sun, 1 Mar 2015 10:46:49 EST No Matter What Happens.......... "Trust In Time of Trouble." Did you ever feel compelled, almost pushed to share something and you didn't understand why? <BR> <BR> Yes, I know, the Holy Spirit and all that stuff........... I agree with you but sometimes, well sometimes it's just plain eerie. <BR> <BR> I keep a Bible in the restroom adjacent to my office. That way........... well TMI. But at least I get one daily Scripture reading to reflect on. <BR> <BR> I wasn't fully awake this morning and so when I reached into the magazine rack to grab the Bi... Fri, 27 Feb 2015 09:51:01 EST Busy Is No Excuse It's been two weeks since I blogged and I apologize for that. There is this thing that's called life, more accurately called winter, tha seems to have gotten in my way. <BR> <BR> Quick recap and another gift for you. <BR> <BR> Drove 400 miles to celebrate my mom's 84th birthday in weather that changed every 10 minutes (No joke) She is an memory care facility and when Joan and I arrived we found out they had just put the facility on lock down because of the flu. So I stood in zero degree w... Tue, 24 Feb 2015 10:41:44 EST A Gift For You: Success or Failure What Scares You More? It's been awhile I know. I've been really busy with work related stuff so I apologize for my absences. <BR> <BR> I have a gift to share with you . Four colleagues of mine and myself recorded a YouTube video on our Fears, on Success and Failure's. No sales pitch, no hidden agenda's, nothing to follow up on. I run with these folks because, like me, they realize the most important thing you can do is give to other people freely so they can be happier and healthier. <BR> <BR> Be advised its a... Thu, 12 Feb 2015 10:41:37 EST If Only........... You know those adds on the side bar of your Spark Page? The ones that promise health, wealth and prosperity if you click and agree to get 10,000 emails a day until your spam folder yells "Enough!!!!" <BR> <BR> I usually don't pay much attention to them but this morning when I went to log my food and exercise I noticed an add for some sort of supplement or other. <BR> <BR> The man in the add was stripped to the waist all buff and stuff and his long hair flowed about his shoulders. <BR> <B... Fri, 30 Jan 2015 08:05:30 EST A Work Out Tip Maybe you have been one of them. (I know I have.) <BR> <BR> You exercise so vigorously that you can barely make it to your locker or your car. Sweat is pouring down your face and oozing out of every orifice of your body. <BR> <BR> You is a warrior. <BR> <BR> But, let me ask you something................ <BR> <BR> How do you feel three hours later? <BR> <BR> A trainer at my gym told me yesterday that the test of a good work out is to evaluate how you feel 3 hours after the workout. <B... Mon, 26 Jan 2015 08:56:10 EST Some Saturday Wisdom <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Thought I'd share with my friends Sat, 24 Jan 2015 09:42:32 EST Could Someone Help Me Understand Okay, I'll admit there are lots of things I don't quite understand. <BR> <BR> What I mean is how some things suddenly rocket to the center of our universal attention as issues that have the fate of the world hanging in the balance. <BR> <BR> Under inflated footballs <BR> <BR> All I've heard about since Monday morning is how we need to convene a spacial session in Congress, re-institute the firing squad as a form of capital punishment; all because the New England Patriots let 2 psi out of... Thu, 22 Jan 2015 08:29:52 EST True Purpose: Update A few weeks ago I penned a log about a chance encounter with a friend at our gym and how he'd just found out his wife had cancer. <BR> <BR> I ran into him yesterday as I walked in the gym and he told me that they's just returned from Vanderbilt Medical Center. She has been given less that 6 months to live. <BR> <BR> I know miracles are possible but I ask you prat for John and his family that God grants them the strength for whatever lies ahead. <BR> <BR> Thanks guys Sun, 18 Jan 2015 12:15:50 EST Roadblocks & Obstacles <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I never knew how much my toes really mattered. <BR> <BR> Until I broke one. <BR> <BR> It's the toe next to the pinky toe on my right foot. <BR> <BR> I have no clue how it got broken. <BR> <BR> My doctor says it's what happens when you start getting old. <BR> <BR> It (was) all black and blue and swollen and it hurt like hell. <BR> <BR> I was able to get to the gym and in the pool on Thursday afternoon a... Sat, 17 Jan 2015 08:50:40 EST A 2 AM Conversation With God: "Why You're Here." It's maddening, really. <BR> <BR> No matter what time I go to bed, drink a warm beverage, meditate, shower, etc. --- I eventually wake up around 2 AM. <BR> <BR> I don't mean grumble, mumble, look at the clock and roll over. I mean "Oh it must be 2AM. I'm wide awake." <BR> <BR> I've surmised, in my more positive moments, that somewhere in heaven an angel looks up from a large book and hollers "Next!" That's supposed to be my cue. That's when God has time for me. <BR> <BR> So just a few ... Sun, 11 Jan 2015 09:13:16 EST Judge Ye Not.................. My niece shared this article on her Facebook page from the Huffington Post. <BR> <BR> I was so impressed with it I thought I'd share the link with you in place of a blog posting. It really says it all when it comes to weight loss, healthy eating and our perception of other people. <BR> <BR> The article is titled "To The Fit Woman at Marketplace Foods." <BR> <BR> Here it is <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <link><BR>er/to-the-fit-woman-at-marketplace-foo<BR>ds... Wed, 7 Jan 2015 10:02:14 EST True Purpose <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Yesterday was one of those "Go to the gym, you'll be glad you did." days. That's what I kept repeating over and over in my head. <BR> <BR> I climbed on the bike, snapped my ear buds in place, closed my eyes and prepared to gut it out for 30 minutes or so. <BR> <BR> I just didn't want to be there. I didn't really want to be anywhere. <BR> <BR> Riding the bike loosens my muscles and afterwards I'll walk or use ... Tue, 6 Jan 2015 15:22:48 EST Reflections On A Year Gone By If my credit card payment hadn't been due today I wouldn't have known it was December 31. When the alarm went off on my phone around 9 AM I did one of those "Oh gee. It's December 31." <BR> <BR> I'm not sure if that's good or bad but it is what it is. <BR> <BR> When Joan and I were much younger we'd go to the Men's Club dance at church and then a late night breakfast. The kids would take great delight in charging in the bedroom around 7:30 am yelling "Happy New Year!!!" <BR> <BR> This New... Wed, 31 Dec 2014 20:09:12 EST Deep Laughter (Especially at Yourself!!!) is a Good Way to Reduce Your Stress Level Be advised, some of you may consider this blog a tad bit risque or inappropriate.If you are offended or feel uncomfortable when someone writes or talks about sex, I'd suggest you hit the "back button." I wrote this blog because when I finished the experience I had in relation to it I was laughing so hard I was crying. So you have been advised --- ahead of time. <BR> <BR> As many people in my chosen profession I subscribe to a bunch of social media sites. One of those pages is called Skil... Tue, 30 Dec 2014 08:07:41 EST A Sacred Pause When I was a kid I hated Mass on Christmas Eve. At some point they would read what I called the "Begats" Gospel. It seemed like it took forever!! <BR> <BR> Huh? <BR> <BR> The passage is the first chapter of Matthews Gospel. It's official term is The Martyrology. It traces the genealogy of Jesus from Abraham up to Jesus father Joseph. In between you have your usual heavy hitters like David and Solomon, people who'd look impressive on anyone's family tree. Then you have a whole lot of people ... Wed, 24 Dec 2014 12:02:35 EST Why Wait? "Well I guess we should enjoy the next week or so." The first voice said with a hint of resignation. <BR> <BR> "Why is that?" Asked a second voice. <BR> <BR> "The New Years Resolution people will be here soon. This place will be a zoo." Answered the first. <BR> <BR> In the back ground the Greek chorus murmured their ascent. <BR> <BR> <BR> I was standing in front of my locker getting dressed after my morning workout and those voices migrated over the bank of lockers in front of me. <BR... Sun, 21 Dec 2014 09:11:18 EST Inspiration I ended my blog yesterday with an inspirational posting from Coach Jim Valvano over 20 years ago. Jim passed away three weeks after he gave this speech at the ESPY Awards where he was honored with the Arthur Ashe Award. <BR> <BR> I share this with you because it not only inspires me and motivates me <BR> <BR> Here is the link <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Thu, 18 Dec 2014 07:55:44 EST Those Small Victories That Mean So Much. The regulars at my gym are pretty much used to my off beat behavior. I've been known to burst into song on the recumbent bike or do a dance on the elliptical. <BR> <BR> They've never seen me cry. <BR> <BR> I don't mean the "Sniffle, sniffle dab at your eyes with a tissue." <BR> <BR> I mean like full blown tears running down your face only instead of looking pain stricken you are smiling and talking to yourself while your Ipod is sorta blaring Jay-Z. <BR> <BR> That kind of crying. <... Wed, 17 Dec 2014 12:19:01 EST Absolutes? ---- There Aren't Any!!! "Ya know, it took me five years to realize their were no absolutes in living a healthy life style. That's sorta sad." <BR> <BR> "Well it could be," Joan said. "Or you could share that with other people just getting started and it might help them avoid the trap you fell into." <BR> <BR> She's always been a glass half full type of person. <BR> <BR> I'll admit it I am a "monkey see monkey do" sort of person. I'll latch on to something everyone else is doing and I'll use it until I realize i... Tue, 16 Dec 2014 10:04:59 EST Celebrating 5 Years of Spark Today It's hard to believe it's been that long and on the other hand it seems like I've been here forever. <BR> <BR> I could go on and on about how many wonderful people I've met along the way but if you have been here for awhile, you know what I am saying. Each of you has developed special bonds, special relationships and lasting friendships even though you may never hug that person or share a cup of coffee with them. <BR> <BR> The beauty of Spark is that there is something on many different l... Sun, 14 Dec 2014 08:11:22 EST We Can Rationalize Anything, Can't We? If I told you I felt miserable for the past two days I'd be exaggerating. Miserable would be a step up for me. I'm not gonna go on and on about winter colds and flu. You know the drill. We all get them. We all struggle through them and most of us survive. <BR> <BR> I guess if you are reading this you've survived one, hey? <BR> <BR> But shortly after this virus way laid me my I started to rationalize. <BR> <BR> It's "Feed a cold and starve a fever," right? <BR> <BR> Unless you have a fev... Thu, 11 Dec 2014 10:30:07 EST It's In Our Hands I created this picture(?), graphic (?) motivator(?) for a small group I work with monthly to help develop their communication and networking skills. We are starting a new group in January so I put this together to help the group focus. <BR> <BR> I shared it with my Facebook friends yesterday so I thought I'd share it with my Spark friends today. <BR> <BR> Have a good weekend <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> One more thing.............. Sat, 6 Dec 2014 07:43:18 EST Belated Thank You's and one of those I've been absent for about a week or so, and not by my own doing. My web site crashed. No, that's not right, crashed is too light a word. It expired with no notice. Being self employed I went in the bathroom and looked at my IT department in the mirror. The good thing about reconstructing my site is that I've been wanting to do it for about a year so maybe the crash was a divine nudge in that direction. It is leaner, meaner and easier to navigate and if you'd like the link you are gonna have ... Wed, 3 Dec 2014 08:17:23 EST On Being Thankful I'd like to tell you that I am grateful and thankful each and every day of my life for all the blessings I've received over the past 61.5 years but if I did I'd be telling you a bald faced lie. <BR> <BR> Maybe I should amend that statement and say that I'm not consciously grateful and thankful. It sorta hums in the back ground. I dont participate in those thankfulness challenges. I've always felt that if I have to think about 30 things I am thankful for I'd be making a third of them up ju... Thu, 27 Nov 2014 07:54:03 EST Right Here, Right Now "You are free to believe what you choose, and what you do attests to what you believe." <BR> <BR> Just between me, you and the gate post I hate reading that line. It pops up in my morning reading 3 or 4 times a year. Maybe Jesus said it better: <BR> <BR> "By their fruits you shall know them." <BR> <BR> Honestly when I read that I want to cringe. <BR> <BR> I had a good breakfast this morning: Egg white omelet with lo fat cheese and a waffle. Drank 2 bottles of water. Had just finished a... Mon, 24 Nov 2014 08:47:46 EST Wearing Blinders Do you know the reason they put blinders on race horses? It's so they don't become distracted or discouraged by the performance of the other horses on the track. They can only see their finish line and run towards it. <BR> <BR> Yes, I know, we're not animals but the process bears some examination. <BR> <BR> When you are at the gym do you ever find yourself looking at someone who seems to breeze effortlessly through their workout while you are wondering which part of your body may break a... Thu, 20 Nov 2014 08:38:30 EST Staying the Same Isn't a Bad Thing I didn't lose any weight last week but I didn't gain any weight either. <BR> <BR> A few years ago this would have devastated me, but it dawned on me that I was looking at it through a "glass half empty" mind set. I did SOMETHING right this past week because if I hadn't been careful what went in my mouth or managed to do something that resembled exercising I would have gained weight. <BR> <BR> Patience is the most arduous virtue. I should know. It took me 61 years to even be in the same ro... Tue, 18 Nov 2014 09:44:33 EST Perceptions and My Health. It's a scary realization. <BR> <BR> It's the moment you discover that most of what goes on in your life is about 100 millimeters beyond your control. The things you spend your life working so hard, to lasso, hog tie and stow away have been and always will be elusive. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> No, I'm not advocating we give up or anything like that........... <BR> <BR> Our knowledge, especially our knowledge of ourselves is wh... Mon, 17 Nov 2014 09:16:33 EST Touching Base Hello all. Thank you for all the Goodies and the notes of concern. I am doing just fine, TYVM, lol. Busy but fine. So here is whats going on in my world. <BR> <BR> My Mom: If you've ever known someone with Alzheimer's then you know it is scary and painful to watch someone slowly slip away into a world you and I cannot fathom. Mom is down to 118 pounds, not eating because she is sleeping all day because her anxiety issues keep her up all night. They have switched meds but it takes 2-4 week... Sun, 16 Nov 2014 10:39:07 EST Precious Joys <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I woke up in a foul mood this morning. It was a culmination of all the small things building up inside of me and setting the stage for a rotten and foul morning. I wont go into detail, everyone has them. <BR> <BR> To top it off the fog was, as they say, as thick as pea soup. <BR> <BR> I ran to the store to pick up a few things so I could hit the ground running at 8. The problem was I'd misread the sale add and t... Wed, 29 Oct 2014 08:42:08 EST Little Treasures It's hard to see my mom waste away. This was a strong creative woman who was an artist, in a number of mediums --- We grew up with a kiln in our basement and paints and swatches of cloth all over the house. Yet the gift I received from my mom, and both my parents for that matter , was her absolute and unequivocal faith in God and his ability to make any situation, no matter how bleak it seemed have a ray of hope and sunshine. <BR> <BR> I saw her 3 times this past weekend. She has roughly 15 ... Tue, 28 Oct 2014 09:46:00 EST There Is Always Hope Joan and I are visiting my mom in Wisconsin this weekend. It is hard to imagine and experience a woman who was so strong minded and creative, slowed by Alzheimer's. But as the 10th century mystic Meister Ekhart said "Oh the depths." <BR> <BR> We were leaving out hotel yesterday afternoon when a family of five started coming in the opposite way. I held the door for them and the mom, dad and two kids passed through without a thank you or even making eye contact. (I'm sorta used to this........... Sun, 26 Oct 2014 08:29:34 EST A Lesson In Perseverance My grand daughter ran in the state elementary school cross country meet this morning. She was in the top 3 finishers at her school so they put her on a bus and sent her 100 miles to the east to compete against a whole bunch of other kids in 3rd, 4th and 5th grade. <BR> <BR> Yesterday at gymnastics practice she hit her shin against the balance beam and got a pretty nasty bruise, but she ran this morning. <BR> <BR> When I talked to her a few minutes ago she was disappointed that she didn't... Sat, 25 Oct 2014 13:16:34 EST This Is a Novel Approach........... I am not sure where I heard or read the following story but I thought it was worth sharing. <BR> <BR> There is a community of people in the South Pacific who handle mistakes made by a member by placing them in the center of the circle. Community members then take turns citing all the good and positive things the person has done in their life so they'll forget their mistakes and move on. <BR> <BR> Pretty cool, huh? Sun, 19 Oct 2014 18:23:08 EST I'm Tired of Failure, Aren't You? It's not what you think. <BR> <BR> Every time I open a social media platform any more I am bombarded with pictures, phrases and sayings about over coming my failures, moving on, fighting the good fight........... You get the picture. <BR> <BR> Failure, no matter how many ways you choose to slice the whole grain, low fat loaf of bread, is a negative term. We're coerced into believing it's almost some sort of noble virtue. When you suggest I've failed your suggesting a negative, a flaw or a... Fri, 17 Oct 2014 10:34:30 EST Life Is a Long Journey, Isn't It?: Where I've Been & Why I've Been There Did you ever accomplish something you were so darned proud of that you just couldn't wait to share it with the world? The hard work, the effort you invested in yourself and your goal just about made you burst at the seams? <BR> <BR> Deep inside you heard this voice chirping "I knew I could do this, I knew I could do this." To the world at large it might not have been anything significant but to you it was a culmination of something you always dreamed of. And you wished to share it, if for ... Mon, 13 Oct 2014 13:45:12 EST Need Additional Prayers Just about the time they got all settled at home and my grandson was happy to have both mom and dad home together on a Monday, my daughter-in-law received a phone call that her dad had been in an automobile accident in Indianapolis. He was driving from Louisville to Chicago to pick up his wife who was visiting relatives. He fell asleep while he was driving and cracked 3 ribs and fractured his sternum. Tim is 66 and is not in real good health to begin with. <BR> <BR> Your thoughts, prayers a... Tue, 30 Sep 2014 07:38:16 EST