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HABBITS

October 21, 2015

Cindy Crawford quote. “As for diet, she says she strives to be “80 percent good, 80 percent of the time,” avoiding white carbs, sweets, and taking in lots of H2O.

Torah Portion Lech Lecha from http://www.chabad. org in a nutshell

G‑d speaks to Abram, commanding him, “Go from your land, from your birthplace and from your father’s house, to the land which I will show you.” There, G‑d says, he will be made into a great nation. Abram and his wife, Sarai, accompanied by his nephew Lot, journey to the land of Canaan, where Abram builds an altar and continues to spread the message of a one G‑d.

A famine forces the first Jew to depart for Egypt, where beautiful Sarai is taken to Pharaoh’s palace; Abram escapes death because they present themselves as brother and sister. A plague prevents the Egyptian king from touching her, and convinces him to return her to Abram and to compensate the brother-revealed-as-husband with gold, silver and cattle.

Back in the land of Canaan, Lot separates from Abram and settles in the evil city of Sodom, where he falls captive when the mighty armies of Chedorlaomer and his three allies conquer the five cities of the Sodom Valley. Abram sets out with a small band to rescue his nephew, defeats the four kings, and is blessed by Malki-Zedek the king of Salem (Jerusalem).

G‑d seals the Covenant Between the Parts with Abram, in which the exile and persecution (galut) of the people of Israel is foretold, and the Holy Land is bequeathed to them as their eternal heritage.

Still childless ten years after their arrival in the Land, Sarai tells Abram to marry her maidservant Hagar. Hagar conceives, becomes insolent toward her mistress, and then flees when Sarai treats her harshly; an angel convinces her to return, and tells her that her son will father a populous nation. Ishmael is born in Abram’s eighty-sixth year.

Thirteen years later, G‑d changes Abram’s name to Abraham (“father of multitudes”), and Sarai’s to Sarah (“princess”), and promises that a son will be born to them; from this child, whom they should call Isaac (“will laugh”), will stem the great nation with which G‑d will establish His special bond. Abraham is commanded to circumcise himself and his descendants as a “sign of the covenant between Me and you.” Abraham immediately complies, circumcising himself and all the males of his household.

In the kitchen at work this week I asked a lady who I know runs how her running was going and she said after 35 years she has given up. She trained a few people for last week’s Melbourne Marathon and felt no desire to compete. How do people make such changes? On the other hand I was most inspired to see some of BEAR running group that I run with competing for 15 or 20 years with no signs of stopping. These guys are true creatures of habit – They have their fixed Tuesday, Thursday and Weekend Runs. Coffee shops only change if someone has a fight with management!

“And God said to Avram, go for yourself from your land, from your relatives, and from your father’s house to the land that I will show you.” (Gen. 12:1)

This week’s Parashah begins with Hashem telling Abraham to leave behind his entire life and go to the unknown. This commandment is counted among “The Ten Tests”, ten trials that Abraham went through and came out of as the originator of Hashem’s Chosen People, meaning that even for a man as great as Abraham, this was a test.

This concept is actually hinted at in these very Pessukim (verses). Hashem tells Abraham first to leave his land (drop evil traits that are slightly there, picked up from his country. The culture of a person’s country is not so deeply ingrained, and so it can be uprooted relatively easily.), then to leave his birthplace (More difficult is to get rid of bad habits a person acquired amongst his social circle and friends.), and finally to leave his father’s house (Finally, to shake off bad habits acquired at home is very challenging.).[i] The Sfas Emes quotes the Zohar, which states that G-d called out “Go for yourself,” in every generation, today, and we need to respond. We must distance ourselves from bad habits and serve G-d even though it may require inconvenience or hardship.

“Humans have a unique relationship with food in that we are able to make choices…” – Triathlete Jodie Swallow

In a recent article in the Herald Sun 6 diets[ii] were road tested. The articles were written in a humorous way, so I can’t exactly say which diet was the best. Loren thinks Paleo came out trumps.

“I experimented with different diets over the years – low fat, low carb, and fruit only before lunch, vegetarian and high protein. Of course as I told myself I wasn’t going to eat sugar, bread or whatever, all I could think about was sugar, bread or whatever!” – Model Cindy Crawford

One think I noticed in all the conclusions was that all the people had stopped the diets. All participants indicated that they had broken bad eating habits like over drinking Diet Coke, or over snacking etc. and new habits were learnt like learning some healthy recipes, eating breakfast, developing a healthy mindset, understanding what a healthy “detoxed” body feels like and enjoying things in moderation. So are diets the answer or just adopting healthy eating habits the better outcome?

“There are numerous ‘quick fix’ diets surrounding us in the media and in the mainstream but as athletes it remains of paramount importance to embrace a holistic view of nutrition rather than subscribe to diets.”  – Triathlete Jodie Swallow

In a recent podcast I heard ex basketball player John Salley. John was talking about legendary coach Phil Jackson. John asked Phil why he was getting a pep talk, but fellow player Dennis Rodman was not. Phil answered that some people need the push, motivation or reinforcement, but others like Dennis know exactly what they need to do on the court.

“You want to learn from a chief like that so you can be a chief one day. And if you don’t pay attention, you’re an idiot.” JOHN SALLEY, Los Angeles Lakers:

IMG_8649I am not going to try to tell you how to change your habits, but both good and bad habits can change, but I do think we all should try to identify and think about our bad eating and other habits. Some people can make these changes easily, but others need a push or a need a diet to make these push start these changes.

Former Australian Pole Vaulter and Qualified Health Expert Amanda Bisk made the following comments on consistency and habits “The difference between those who succeed and those who don’t all comes down to who consistently shows up. No matter what.” –  Amanda Bisk[iii]

Some people feel that keeping Shabbos can become a chore and you become a creature of habits. This week is the Shabbos Project and it is amazing to see so many people that are excited about the weekend. This is truly inspiring and very motivating for myself and all involved. The Shabbos Project is a day to show people the beauty of Shabbos and the feeling of community #KeepingItTogether. Have a Good Shabbos.

[i] Thought based on two articles – http://www.aish.com/tp/b/1-min-vort/280454452.html?mobile=yes  and http://greatneckkollel.org/2014/10/30/parashat-lech-lecha-avoid-evil-do-good/

[ii] The 6 Diets – Pressed Juice, I Quit Sugar, 12WBT (Michelle Bridges), Paleo, Protein Shakes, 5:2 Fast

[iii] Amanda Bisk on Instagram – The difference between those who succeed and those who don’t all comes down to who consistently shows up. No matter what.

Everyone can have motivation and enthusiasm on a good day…but what happens when things start to work against you? It’s easy to give up, to hide, to feel sorry for yourself and your situation…

What’s tough is being motivated & excited on your bad days.

The truth is, these days are where it counts the most. They are the days that separate you from the rest. Your chance to work away & power on when most would think to quit.

To succeed is to show up and fight. Even though everything & everyone might be telling you that you can’t. Trust in yourself and your potential, and those bad days will become some of your biggest steps forward 👊🏼

I know you are a fighter.

ab❤️x

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