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Why get in shape? 

For obvious reasons, but, I believe that getting in shape is an important step to getting what you really want in life. Who cares what you have if you don't have your health! Good physical health leads to good mental health. And I'm challenging you to get on top of it now. 

I have stuck with working out for close to 40 years. And, I've worked with the folks at Total Gym for almost 20! So believe me when I tell you, there is no better deal on this gym than the one they're offering right here! So, get your Z on and get in shape. 
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Check out the start of Chapter 6 below...this is the original (mistakes and all), from the never-seen-before manuscript--before the publisher's edit! 


      Chapter 6



Z-6: No Excuses


“It ain’t meant to be for guys like us.”

“Just what the hell does that mean?” I thought as I politely nodded.

“I mean come on, how’s guys like us gonna get a shot,” he bellyached. “You gotta come from money or know someone.” He gestured, “Look at you. Where would you be if you had connections?”

I just continued quietly nodding.

“I mean, hell, if I had the money I could …,” he went on and on.

Whether it’s at a party where this took place, at a ball game or like the guy at my book-signing, the conversation is always the same. Different people say it in different ways, sometimes with good intentions, but always with self-serving motive. It’s their masquerade. It’s how they hide pain and soothe their beaten aspirations. Who are these guys kidding? You need to be prepared to take advantage of good fortune. Countless contacts and endless breaks can’t help the unsuspecting.

“It’s not meant to be, you have to know someone, if I could get a break … if I had, if I were, if, if, if …”

It reminds me of a pithy comment my buddy George would often repeat.

If the dog didn’t stop to take a leak, he would have won the race.”

These “ifs” and the rest are the battle cries of the well-intentioned and self-deluded. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that accomplishing something extraordinary has all to do with money, connections, breaks, or for that matter, divine providence. And don’t camouflage failure or a lack of gumption with could have “ifs” or “it ain’t meant to be for guys like us”—no matter how soothing it is to your aching ego. Accept no excuse. Don’t dupe yourself. Follow your heart. The heart knows what it wants. The only reason anyone feels the need to offer you or themselves an excuse like “it ain’t meant to be for guys like us” is because of the pain an unfulfilled dream inflicts. Listen, if I had a nickel for every extraordinary accomplishment of man that occurred on the heels of an excuse I would have … well, not a nickel.

I think it’s safe to say we all know one person who just can’t stand seeing anyone get ahead, unless of course it’s them. I don’t waste time on those types and I suggest you don’t either. On the other hand, guys like us know people who genuinely want to see us succeed. Balcony people, big fans, people who mean well, people who support us and offer precious empowering advice. Perhaps some have donned the knight’s armor in a worthy quest of their own. Learn from them. There are also those who with good intention give poor and perhaps enabling advice. You will find that few, if any of them, have worn the warrior’s armor. Learn from them as well—and be wary of what they are truly offering. Both may mean well. However, there is a distinct difference between them. It is crucial to recognize this distinction. You must not permit yourself to accept a fool’s hand, advice or excuse in the form of misguided well-intentioned support. You must not allow anyone to lull you into a state of content with a comforting pat on the back or accommodating hug when you have done anything less than everything possible in the pursuit of your dream. It’s the doing “everything possible” which separates the doer from the talker, the gladiator from the spectator. And you can be sure those enabling hugs, pats, “ifs” and “it ain’t meant to be for guys like us” will get tossed your way when you set out on the impossible dream. Because regardless of intention, untested spectators will often defend their position in the cheap seats by contributing enabling and comforting excuses to the blood-soaked staggering gladiators in the ring. It may sound like they mean well, but you can bet your can their contribution is nothing more than a comforting effort to stroke their own bruised and battered visions of untested glory by proxy. Don’t let well-intentioned comforts or some fool’s excuse for an aborted launch or abandoned journey interfere with your shot at the stars. If all that can be done hasn’t been done, then don’t accept any excuse for why you have not, or may not succeed—including and perhaps especially your own.