Post 2: Jumping in Feet First

“There are several appropriate ways to enter a swimming pool, the steps or a ladder is not one of them.”
Ilove this quote which I stole from someones list of rules to live by. This post uses a bunch of idioms, metaphors, similes, etc. I don’t always write that way, but I am trying to psych myself up, so please bear with me.

Another good one liner is: Go hard or go home. Doing anything half-assed is almost always going to result in you getting the ass portion and nothing more. A diet that you only adhere to on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and part of Sunday is going to be 0% effective, despite your 50% effort. Before concluding the math portion of this article, I will add that I think you need to be at >80% compliance to really get any of the benefits of a diet you are on. This number was not reached on any scientific basis, but I think that at 80% you will derive some of the benefit, and the closer you get to 100%, the better.

This same principle applies to parenting. I’ve seen aunts, uncles and friends who think that they have tested the waters of raising a kid by watching a niece or a nephew for a couple hours, but as all parents know, it just isn’t the same. Either you get it or you don’t. Either you do it, or you don’t. As with most things in life, if you really want to be successful at it, you can’t go halfway.

I am not saying that dieting or parenting are for everyone, but if you are going to try one, the only way to really do so is by diving in. The nice thing about a nutrition challenge, is that the consequences of failure are much less significant.

Prior to the challenge, I sort of dieted. I sort of ate real food. By that I mean I ate real food whenever I wasn’t eating junk food. I counted calories sometimes. And I made smart decisions when choosing my meals, unless I was polishing off my kids grilled cheese sandwich or ‘leveling off’ their ice cream cone. . . I saw no results.

The last time my gym did a challenge, I was brand new, and tried to participate from the sidelines. This time I contemplated doing the same. Then I realized that I would get as much out of thinking about dieting as I would from thinking about working out.

I’ll try not to be too crossfit centric in these posts, but one thing I love about crossfit is that there is no try, just do. Each workout starts with 3,2,1,GO! Sure there is strategizing and fretting beforehand, but once the clock beeps to signify the start of a workout, you have only one goal in mind, getting through that workout. Sunday morning, 9/8/13 for those keeping track, when I woke up, I mentally said 3,2,1,GO! and for eight weeks I hope to crush this challenge, just as I would any workout.


Failure is not an option. Failure is something you achieve after doing everything you are humanly capable of.

You don’t need to be a crossfitter to understand this. If you have ever run a race, done a project at work with a hard deadline, stood at the altar and said ‘I do,’ or held your newborn baby in your arms, you know the importance of engaging in something whole heart.


Most things in life do not go as planned, every parent (and probably everyone) knows that. But without a good plan, you are doomed to fail. I am jumping in to a rather non-historic 8 week journey. I think it will make me a better person all around, and I hope you will continue to go on that journey with me. And don’t worry, the next couple of posts are much more about the details than my philosophizing about a diet!

As always, your feedback and questions are encouraged and welcomed. You can reach me in the comments section, on Twitter @showmetheberger, or via email steven@dadlifts.com.




About The Author

Steven Schoenberger

Steven is a former estate planning and trust attorney turned life insurance and wealth management professional with Tamar Fink, in Minneapolis, MN. He is a husband and father of four. Steven is a CrossFitter and former swimmer.