Here at the frontier, the leaves fall like rain. Although my neighbors are all barbarians, and you, you are a thousand miles away, there are still two cups at my table.

Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn, a cool breeze in summer, snow in winter. If your mind isn't clouded by unnecessary things, this is the best season of your life.

~ Wu-men ~

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

2009 Lenten Challenge

Every year, I throw out the Lenten Challenge to my martial arts buddies. It has nothing to do with Christianity or religion. We are simply using this time as a convenient reminder to rededicate ourselves to our training. It’s kind of hard to miss either Fat Tuesday (Mardi Gras, the last day before Lent, which is also Paczki Day!) or Easter Sunday (Bunnies, candy, colored eggs; that stuff). Several of us have been doing this for years now.

The challenge is this: from Ash Wednesday (Feb 25) until Easter (April 11 or April 19th for the Eastern Orthodox Church), train every day, without fail, no excuses. Simple enough said.

It's not as easy as it sounds; things come up. Some days, you might only be able to get a few minutes of training in; but the point is to do it everyday, no matter what.

It doesn't have to be martial arts training either. Whatever it is that you need to really rededicate yourself to: studying, practicing an instrument, walking, watching what you eat; anything - do it every day, without fail.

In the past on some forums, people have posted what they’ve done everyday. I think everyone who’s done that has become tired of writing, and the others get tired of reading it. How about you just post if you’ve had some breakthrough, or you’ve had to overcome some unusual circumstance to continue your training? Maybe just check in every once in a while to let everyone know you’re keeping at it, or to encourage everyone else to keep at it.

If you fail, we won’t hate you. If you fall off of the wagon, climb back on board.

For those of you who insist that you really do train everyday anyway, by all means continue and be supportive of the rest of us. For the rest of us who intend to train everyday, but sometimes come up short due to life’s propensity for unraveling even the best laid plans, here is an opportunity to put a stake in the ground and show your resolution.

As a gesture of solidarity with my Orthodox friends, I’m going to keep it up through their Easter celebration.

Won't you join me?

Best Regards



Patrick Parker said...

I'm in. Mark me down for everyday karate and yoga in addition to my regular schedule

Anonymous said...

this is part of my 2009 challenge! i'm definitely in.

Zen said...

I'm in! Ganbatte everyone!

Blackbeltmama said...

I just have to tell you that your comment about handing nunchaku to your attacker on Ikigai's post, cracked me up. Oh how I laughed, probably because if I wouldn't have learned that weapon with replica foam, I would have knocked myself out many times.

Rick Matz said...

Thank you all for joining. I bet more people than ever take up the challenge this year.

BBM - I wasn't kidding about the nunchucks. I think anyone who picks those things up should have to pass either an intelligence test or a sanity test.

Michele said...

I am going to give your Lenten Challenge a try.

This past week, I did not make it to the gym, karate or Tai Chi. To top it all off, my racquetball game just was cancelled.

Erik the Strange said...

Thank you for the challenge. Count me in as well.

Rick Matz said...

Welcome aboard!

Compass360 Consulting Group said...

I am in ....

Rick Matz said...

Great to have you join us.