Tag Archive for: fatherhood

Over the last month, several fellow fathers joined me participating in the 30-day HERO Challenge, where we witnessed the value of committing to one simple, daily practice. We got to watch first hand the exponential growth possible with small iterative habit improvements, and the power of routine practice.

Whatever goal you want to reach, or behavior you want to improve, PRACTICE the things you want to get good at — even if you have to start in very small ways. If you commit to it every single day, you are bound to see transformation over time.

Take it one step at a time, and eventually you’ll find yourself in a whole new world.

One person who has really proven this for me recently is Andrew (watch below) who shares his journey sof habit change and personal transformation on his video channel Sorting Myself Out. He’s been incredibly transparent and very inspiring.

Andrew helped inspire me to set a monthly behavior change goal EACH MONTH, to drill a 30-day habit change challenge around it, and gather an accountability group of guys around me to help keep me pointed at my target each month.

So August became the Heroic Dad Pushup Challenge. Throughout September, I’ll be waking up bright and early for a cold shower each day at 7am! (Have the discipline to join me?)

But before we start our next 30 day challenge, my friend and fellow HERO Project member Brandyn Shoemaker and I promised to award the dad who made the most progress on this pushup challenge with a little gift from the Heroic Dad store. So, with that, please welcome Brandyn to the blog:

And the Winner Is…

August 18th marked the end of the #30DayHero Challenge. It was 30 days of sore arms, squirmy kids, frustration, and joy. We also did a ton of pushups.

The challenge was simple: for 30 days do pushups with your kids, or with your kids on top of you. Some of the dads even did pushups with their wives on their backs. Props to those guys.

On the surface it was a pushup and physical fitness challenge, but it went much deeper than that. While physical fitness is extremely important, the challenge was really a way to build good habits with our kids.

Traditional wisdom says “Your kids won’t listen to what you say, they’ll do what you do.” We’ve all heard it, and it’s become one of those cliche sayings we don’t even pay attention to, but it’s true. We’re all guilty of telling our kids to go out and play and be active while we’re sprawled out on the couch binge watching Rick and Morty, or to clean their room while we have piles of laundry sprawled all over our room. (I might not be speaking from experience, don’t judge me.)

So with the challenge we aimed to create something that would force us to build good habits, teach our kids the importance of building good habits, and bond with our kids all at the same time.

I think it worked.

The challenge ended about a week ago, but the pushups haven’t. Earlier today my three year old hopped on my back and told me to do pushups. My one year old got next to us and started doing his own version of the pushup. You should see it, his form is AMAZING. We all had fun while doing something productive. The best part of the 30 days was watching the habit form in my little man. There were days I would forget but he was right there to remind me.

We had a good group of great dads that stuck it out with us the entire 30 days. All of us had good days and bad days. We all had days that we didn’t want to have anything to do with a pushup, but we did them anyway. It felt great fighting through the struggle.

It was extremely inspiring to watch all of the dad’s daily photos and video check-ins. Everyone worked hard and everyone gave it their all. At the end though, one father stood above the rest. He’s even starting his own pushup challenge to build off of what he accomplished in the #30DayHero Challenge.

Christopher Wolf worked hard all month, built a strong new habit, bonded with his kids, and maybe most importantly, he won a comfortable new Heroic Dad tshirt!

heroic dad

(If you want a Heroic Dad shirt, head on over to the store. At checkout just use the code “HERO” for free shipping on anything. I won’t even make you do pushups every day for a month.)

When the challenge started I struggled to do 5 pushups. STRUGGLED. It was embarrassing. It still is. But by the end of the 30 days I was doing 25 pushups with a 40-pound wiggleworm on my back.

I hated pushups. Pushups were the enemy. I’ll be honest, they still are, but I’m not afraid to do them anymore. I can drop down with my little man and knock some out anytime, anywhere.

What are you struggling with right now? What do you want to teach your kids? Whatever it is, do it. Do it everyday and soon enough it will change from a struggle to a habit.

“I hadn’t really done any exercise in about 2 to 3 years,” said winner Christopher Wolf. “I’ve been following a ketogenic diet since October of last year, and I’ve lost about 50 pounds. But all of that was due to food, none due to exercise.”

“I’ve had a real serious battle for about 10 years with anxiety, most of it being health anxiety, that culminated in 10 to 15 major panic attacks — several of those resulting in hospital visits because I was convinced that I was having some sort of cardiac event.”

“My heart is fine, but somewhere deep in my mind I was convinced that that wasn’t the case, and that kept me from doing anything physical. I walked slow, I was very hesitant to play rough with my kids for fear that raising my heart rate to I would trigger something.”

“I saw this challenge as something I could control. It was just doing push-ups every day. I could do five or ten, and have little to no change in my heart rate and be fine. After doing that the first couple days, and then passing 20 or 30 about a week into the challenge, I started changing that deep-held belief about what I could and couldn’t do safely.”

Day 29! I did 50 push-ups a day early! #heroicdad #30dayhero

A post shared by Christopher Wolf (@aaaarrrrgggghhh) on

Chris is now launching his own September pushup challenge to increase his one-set pushup max from 50 to 80. “Just goes to show that facing your fears head-on is generally one of the most effective ways to overcome them,” Chris shared. “This is probably one of the five most important things I’ve done in the last year.”

Final Note from Cody: September HERO Challenge!

Every month at the HERO Project, we drill incremental habit change and gather accountability groups to help you connect with others and become the best version of yourself!

If you want to join me for the next 30-day HERO Challenge, we will host the group inside my mentor David’s private group The Warrior Way.

From my coach David DiFrancesco:

“I thought it would be appropriate to bring one of my favorite ‘tests’ to this group as a way of starting the initiation process. A step in proving you’re worthy and have been tested. It’s something I’ve done with all the guys I’ve trained for Navy SEALs and something I’ve personally done every New Years Eve at midnight. A cold water swim in the ocean for about 20 minutes in trunks. (one year I even got to enjoy having a shark swim with me)”

“But as I’m here and you’re, well, there and perhaps not near a convenient, freezing cold body of water, I’m thinking of the next best thing. After a great conversation with Cody today we’re putting this idea into action as a part of his next 30-Day Hero Challenge. Beginning this coming Monday, September 4th, we’re all going to take a bracing cold shower first thing upon rising. It’s probably (well, most assuredly) the last thing you’ll want to be doing, but the very practice of making yourself do something you don’t want to do, along with a little bit of physical discomfort will have a host of benefits in your mindset that we’ll be discussing over the coming weeks and certainly as we wrap it up at the end of September.”

“I’m going to be with you along the way and will be following up with you each day as we go through this testing together. Feel free to share your own experiences on what’s happening for you and what you’re discovering. As I tell the SEAL guys, you are not going to get through the days ahead relying on only yourself. You’ll get through it as a team, a tribe. So tribe, let’s get to it!”

It’s completely free to join The Warrior Way on Facebook. Join me and David here all through September for a cold shower challenge. I’ll be waking up early every day at 7am and starting my day with a cold shower for a month!

ATTENTION FELLOW FATHERS!

Join a crew of proud dads for the first Heroic Dad Challenge – a fun, free 30-day habit change challenge for fathers (or uncles/grandpas/other care providers) and their little ones to get some fun recreation together! Try father-kid pushups with us, EVERY day for a full month.

We’ve gathered a small private group of over 60 dads around the world, and we’ll help keep each other accountable by checking in with a video or photo evidence each day in our private group, or if you want to spread the fun, feel free to share YOUR posts publicly on your Facebook or Instagram with the hashtags #HeroicDad and #30dayHERO.

It doesn’t matter if you can only do 1, or if you can do 100; if your child is 1 year old or 10 (as long as they can hold onto you), but if you make it a regular daily practice, then over time you will slowly build increasing strength and provide a great example for your kids too.

Milo of Croton

We officially start this Thursday, July 20th and go through August 18th, but please don’t hesitate to post YOUR pushups anytime you’re able to participate.

5 easy steps to join the fun:

  1. Please RSVP and get the details here.
  2. Join our private dads group on Facebook here to follow all the action and get daily accountability prompts.
  3. PLEASE help us spread the word and invite your father friends using the “Share” button in the right sidebar on this event page OR by clicking any of the share buttons on THIS page.
  4. Sign up for my email updates to be sure not to miss a thing (and get lots of resources for the fatherhood journey) by filling the email form at the bottom of this post.
  5. Stay tuned for our official launch THIS THURSDAY, July 20th, and post YOUR videos and accountability updates inside our HERO Dads group for your chance to be featured!

Recommended tags include #30dayHERO #heroicdad #30daychallenge #HEROdad #pushupchallenge #HEROproject #dadfitness #30DC #pushups #fatherson #fitness

See you this Thursday!

Maxims are universal ethical rules of conduct that guide us when we encounter unexpected or difficult situations in life.

It was asked on Quora:

If you could write a rulebook for being a man, what “Man Law” would you write?

Don’t feel limited by anything. Think about what you would want to see in an ideal man. What are the qualities of a good husband, father, brother? What one thing would you want to see in your daughter’s boyfriend or husband?

Here is the wise list of guiding maxims espoused by Dr. Jordan Peterson, a psychology professor at the University of Toronto and clinical psychologist:

  1. Encourage children through play.
  2. Promote the best in people.
  3. Keep the sacred fire burning.
  4. Guard the women and children from harm.
  5. Confront the eternal adversary.
  6. Build the crystal palace.
  7. Confront death with courage and return.
  8. Dare to cut down a tree.
  9. Offer your sons up as a sacrifice to God.
  10. Protect your daughters from exploitation.
  11. Store up wealth for the future.
  12. Consult the ancestral spirits.
  13. Read great books.
  14. Speak the truth about unpleasant things.
  15. Pay close attention.
  16. Make a worthy temple for the Lord.
  17. Keep the howling winds of winter at bay.
  18. Stand up for the oppressed.
  19. Provide a warm and secure home.
  20. Be a prince of peace.
  21. Don’t be too civilized. (related video)
  22. Organize yourself with other men. (related video)
  23. Be faithful to your wife.
  24. Be hospitable to friends and strangers.
  25. Rout the wolves and chase the lions so the shepherds can eat.
  26. Establish a destination – and a path.
  27. Bring heaven to earth.
  28. Take on the sins of the world.
  29. Dig the wells and mine the gold and copper.
  30. Gather everyone to the banquet.
  31. Grow up and take responsibility. (related video)
  32. Resist pride in all things.

[source: Quora]

What would you add? Or what do you think needs more context?

For a more thorough understanding of maxims, see this video about Immanuel Kant’s moral philosophy and conscience in the film Kingdom of Heaven, particularly at 1:45

Luang Prabang

As I sit looking out the window at the mountain, bathed in heavenly rays of light as the sun begins its journey downward to slowly disappear over the summit, I face a situation I have put myself in what feels like a million times before.

Do I join the friend who has been making promises for weeks up in the beautiful mountainous countryside? Or do I endure the long and painful journey back to the big bustling city?

Robert Frost’s words come to my mind:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

At 33, I’ve finally learned about myself that I’m not a city slicker.

But Bangkok, in all its sweaty, greasy, seedy glory, is one step closer to Home. One step closer to my beloved family, who are are on a terrorist-infested tropical island far away.

Freedom means accepting responsibility, and the necessity for making painful decisions.

God only knows what I’m missing. What I may have learned, or who I could have become. I will never know.

But it’s time to stop chasing, and take one step closer to where my heart is, rather than one step further away.