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Looking Back….

January 21, 2014

1506524_696132103753967_1666396887_nI noticed the following quote from the Wholesome Athlete[1] – “Not much winning but lots of learning. Lots  xx”

Below is a Summary of this week’s Parsha Mishpatim  from

Following the revelation at Sinai, G‑d legislates a series of laws for the people of Israel. These include the laws of the indentured servant; the penalties for murder, kidnapping, assault and theft; civil laws pertaining to redress of damages, the granting of loans and the responsibilities of the “Four Guardians”; and the rules governing the conduct of justice by courts of law.

Also included are laws warning against mistreatment of foreigners; the observance of the seasonal festivals, and the agricultural gifts that are to be brought to the Holy Temple in Jerusalem; the prohibition against cooking meat with milk; and the mitzvah of prayer. Altogether, the Parshah of Mishpatim contains 53 mitzvot—23 imperative commandments and 30 prohibitions.

G‑d promises to bring the people of Israel to the Holy Land, and warns them against assuming the pagan ways of its current inhabitants.

The people of Israel proclaim, “We will do and we will hear all that G‑d commands us.” Leaving Aaron and Hur in charge in the Israelite camp, Moses ascends Mount Sinai and remains there for forty days and forty nights to receive the Torah from G‑d.

With just over a week to Challenge Melbourne Triathlon I am planning my taper[2] training and thought that I will look at the last triathlon I did and copy what I had done as it seemed to work pretty well. There are a lot of variables in Triathlon and everyone says you need to do what works. This applies specifically to tapering, pre-race nutrition and race day nutrition (which is the hardest to get right). So only by looking back at what you have done in the past can you plan for the race. At least for my training programs I have everything recorded, but I am not good at recording my nutrition. This I need to improve.

In the past once I have posted a Blog I realise I have left something out or after doing the Blog I see something I wish I could have added. This week I would like to add something to my last two blogs:

  1. Strengths & Weaknesses –

I would like to add a few point about this Blog:

  • I think we need to look favourably at other people’s Strengths & Weaknesses and love them for what they are. This is expressed beautifully in John Legends song – All of Me. To quote

                ‘Cause all of me

                Loves all of you

                Love your curves and all your edges

                All your perfect imperfections …..’

In my blog I quoted the story of violinist Itzhak Perlman, so I thought I would add a special version of John Legends song featuring Lindsey Stirling on violin – Watch it, it is so beautiful –

  • I am currently reading Mike Tyson’s book – Undisputed Truth. One theme that runs through the book is that Mike Tyson needed a “fatherly” figure to tell him continuously of his Strengths & Weaknesses (especially of his weaknesses). In the early part of his career he did have such a person, Cus D’Amato and throughout the book he continuously say to himself, what would Cus have said or Cus would have not approved with what I have done etc. Sometime we all need someone to tell us what we are doing wrong to learn what we need to do in the future (and to tell us what we are doing right). Maybe if Mike would have had less “YES” men around he would have reached his true potential. To quote Cus – “Tommy, if Mike keeps his head on straight and focuses on the intended purpose, he will become one of the greatest fighters, if not the greatest fighter in the history of boxing.” In the book Mike says “Cus would reprimand me…”


  1. Stuck on Stupid –
  • I would like to add something that I read from Rabbi Frand. In my Blog I mentioned that Rabbi Channan said “… if a person does not spend time learning Torah he will always struggle with religion…” The Question posed by Rabbi Frand is what Prompted Yisro to Come (I.e. to join the Jewish people) the answer Rashi quotes is that he heard about “the Splitting of the Red Sea and about the war with Amalek”. Why these 2 events and not for example leaving Egypt?
  • The answer to Yisro’s question is that ‘ruchniyus’ (spiritual matters) and spirituality is not like climbing a mountain. When one climbs a mountain and reaches the summit – the mission is accomplished! It’s done. It’s over. Maybe one can climb another mountain, but the first mountain has now been conquered! Judaism is not like that. There are two separate challenges: There is the challenge of “Who will climb the mountain of G-d?” and then there is the secondary challenge –- equally important and almost more difficult — of “Who will stand firm in His holy place?” [Tehillim 24:3].
  • This is what Yisro did not understand. The lesson of the combination of “the Splitting of the Red Sea “and “War with Amalek ” is that if one does not do constant battle and maintain vigilance after having “climbed up the mountain of G-d” then one will inevitably slip. A person can achieve the greatest heights of spirituality – he can see “the splitting of the Red Sea” – but if he does not maintain it and does not work at it, he will slip right back to where he was originally, if not worse.

The same applies to all aspects of a healthy lifestyle, we can all finish an event, reach our goal weight, set up our homes to eat more healthy food. This is our Mountain. The hard part is the battles that follow to continue with an exercise regime, to maintain your weight and to continue to buy and eat healthy foods.

Life on the farm. Alarm at 5am. Green tea. Workout. Breakfast. Check on mares & new foals. Office correspondence & calls.

Life on the farm. Alarm at 5am. Green tea. Workout. Breakfast. Check on mares & new foals. Office correspondence & calls.

Encouraging healthy habits at the #HumanaChallenge today w/@Humana.

Encouraging healthy habits at the #HumanaChallenge today w/@Humana.

I have been following Gary Player on Twitter and it is amazing what he does at his age to keep fit and healthy. Most people of his age are taking it easy, but not him. Gary has reached the highest peaks of Golf and is regarded as one of the all time “greats” of the sport, but is still doing battle to keep fit and healthy. Gary is a big supporter of health and well being. I noticed the following quote from him on Twitter – “Healthcare is self care!!” This is our battle!

I am not going to try link this all together, but I am always happy to try help people based on my past experiences. Just thinking there is one link I thought about. In this week’s Parsha Mishpatim we talk about a number of laws and we also talk about judges (“And these are the laws that you should place before them” (21:1).). I think when we talk to people and look at their strengths & weaknesses we need to judge them in the correct way.

“In this bright future you can’t forget your past.” – Bob Marley

[2] In the context of sports, tapering refers to the practice of reducing exercise in the days just before an important competition.[1] Tapering is customary in many endurance sports, such as the marathon, athletics and swimming. For many athletes, a significant period of tapering is essential for optimal performance. The tapering period frequently lasts as much as a week or more.


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