What 'Wake Up And Work' Means to Me

Reading the words, it sounds simple. It sounds familiar. And it sounds like a common phrase anyone could use, which is true. Anyone can use it, and what it means to one individual is not necessarily what it will mean to another. That’s the beauty of Wake Up And Work. It’s ability to be interpreted and perceived differently from others it what makes the brand so unique.
- To a stay-at-home mother, it means waking up every morning and busting her ass for her children, tending to the household needs, and ensuring there’s a beautiful home for everyone to come home to everyday. For a stay-at-home mom, it means putting in the daily work that's necessary to keep the family as happy & healthy as can be. They're often the glue that holds the family together. Stay-at-home mother's are the rock of the family.
- To a construction worker, it’s waking up all hours of the night, driving out to their current project, and working long & grueling blue-collar days in the sweltering heat during the summer and frigid cold during the winter, indoors & outdoors, every kind of weather. It's risking their life & physical health day after day to do what they can to provide for their families while doing something they love.
- To a student-athlete with a dream to turn pro, it’s waking up early to work on their craft, go to school or work all day, then return home or back to the gym to work on their craft again all hours into the night. It's waking up at 5 a.m. on the 'weekend' to make sure there's enough time in the day to get enough practice in. It's giving up the party life and chasing boys and girls so they're future becomes their focus. To a student-athlete Wake Up And Work, is giving up the things they want now to live the life they ultimately want.
- To a school teacher, it means getting up early enough and going to sleep late enough to make sure your day and next day's schedule is prepared enough for class. It means following a school's curriculum day after day to ensure their students are getting their expected education. It means being diligent enough from mid-summer through the end of the school year so that their students meet & exceed expectations.
- To a doctor, nurse, surgeon it means hours upon hours of clinical work and practical hours so they have the training they need to perform a proper surgery, to diagnose a patient correctly, to save lives every single day.
- To a police office and fire fighter it means going to work every single day knowing that any day could be the day they're called duty and something goes wrong. It means any day when tragedy strikes could be the last morning their loved ones see them, just so the average citizen can live freely and safely.
Wake Up And Work has the ability to drive anybody, in any career or job, in any aspect of their life, to do exactly that. To me, it came differently and I hope this begins to shed some light. To me, it's not about waking up and going to work.
To me, it's so much more than just that. I knew at an earlier age I was going to have to do it myself, and by that I mean work hard for the shit that I want. I matured at an earlier age because I had no other choice to because of my domestic situation and my family’s financial situation. It began to resonate with me when I was a teenager and more into my late teens & early 20s.
I began to think differently, react differently, and understand more. I realized more and more that I started to blame others for the shit I was dealing with and going through. I blamed my parents for the situations they put my brothers and I in when they split up. I didn’t hold myself accountable enough, and I wasn’t honest with myself about why I wasn’t happy. I stopped feeling sorry for myself and most importantly, something I live by to this day, is that I realized I was never the product of my circumstances, but that I was the product of my own actions & decisions.
I was starting to see things a little more clear. The more independent I became and the more bullshit I dealt with, the quicker I started to see the bigger picture. It was all going to be on me, solely, 100%, no matter what, no matter when, no matter where. It was on me to achieve my goals and to make myself happy & successful. I started to Wake Up and understand what it was going to take control of my own life and to create my own happiness.
It was March 2013, a few weeks before my 22nd birthday. It several years after I started to let myself go physically and mentally from too much partying and not holding myself accountable enough. I decided to take control of my life again. It was after years of losing loved ones, always being broke even while working as much as possible, bills piling up, losing financial aid and getting kicked out of college (for the 2nd time). It was years after I was always drinking when I was either mad, upset, depressed, etc. It took a lot of self-reflection and looking in the mirror to understand what I had to do. I knew I had to Wake Up, and I did on Monday March 4, 2013. That was the day I decided to take back control of my life.
From that day on, for the last 5+ years, I’ve constantly put in the Work, and I've done it consistently. I realized how much work I had to put into my life, in every aspect of it, and it started with my own health & fitness. From 18 to almost 22 years old, I grew from 140lbs and 10% body fat to 177lbs and 25% body fat. It was absolutely fucking disgusting. I was so grossed out by looking at myself in the mirror, and I felt pathetic. I knew in order to progress in life, to really see what I was capable of, I would have to challenge myself and I was starting to get excited and pumped to take the next step.
Christmas of 2012 I asked my mother for 2 things, money to help pay a few bills, and Shaun T’s Insanity at home workout program. It took me 2 ½ months, but on Monday March 4, 2013 I finally opened it up and got started with the first video. For the next 65 days I would bust my ass, eat clean, and focus on bettering my physical health. What I wasn’t expecting, was the mental strength and stability it would also improve. Everything started to change. I woke up with more energy. I gained more focus. I was more optimistic everyday. And I was more motivated than I have been in years. It was like a breath of fresh air to me.
After finishing the DVD set I lost 15lbs and I was amazed at what I was able to do in such a short time. I was proud of myself for grinding every single day, holding myself accountable, and putting in the relentless work & effort to make a change in my life. What I ultimately saw wasn’t just the physical effect. It was more than that. I saw what I was capable of. I saw that I created the opportunity for myself, I kept myself in check, and I let my ambition & work ethic do the talking. I was always a hard worker and no matter what I put my mind to or wanted to do, I made sure I did it. But this was a different kind of feeling. It was revitalizing. It was the begging of a new journey, a healthy journey, one that I would use to connect my reborn passion for fitness to my what I believe to be my purpose in helping others take control of their lives and create their own happiness, as I have. Wake Up And Work has been dubbed "A brand with a purpose, built by a passion," for those specific reasons, and I couldn't be more proud and humbled to know what my purpose is in life.
I knew I had it in me to make a life change, and to make sure I never looked like the ‘Fat Lou’ that I was ever again. More importantly, it was reassurance to myself that no matter what I put my mind to moving forward, no matter how hard it would be, I would fucking do it. I knew I was going to have to go to work on myself, my ambitions, and my goals, for as long as it took. And I was so fucking pumped. So I worked harder and harder and began setting more goals for myself. I wanted to push my limits and see just how far I could make myself go.
Something came over me in March 2013. I can't really quite put into words exactly what it was, but I was something I never felt before. it was a sense of pride, a sense of self-belief and encouragement, something that I remember to this day. I knew my goals had meaning. I knew I was more than able to do whatever I set my mind to and that my love and passion for fitness isn't solely physical. What Insanity did for me was so much more than that. It was just as affective mentally & emotionally for me as it was a physical gain.
It provided me with the mindset that I had growing up, playing high school football, and has ben the foundation for the way I see things and believe in myself to this day. I realized then that I had the whole world in front of me and no matter what I sent my mind to, I would be able to speak my goals into existence: by working for them. I was engaged with the belief and empowerment that I could help people channel their insecurities, their depression, their anxiety and anger, their self-doubt and limited self-belief, and that I could help them use their past struggles and turn it into fuel to find their strength, just as I have been doing for the last 6 years of my life.
So for me, Wake Up And Work isn’t about waking up and going to work. Yes, it means those things at times, and to a lot of people. But for me, more importantly, it’s the ability to see the bigger picture, see what needs to change or be changed and what has to be done in order to grow and reach my own success & happiness. I want to help people Wake Up to see the same things I saw in myself, And Work to become the best version of themselves to create their own happiness & success. I want them to see what their capable of, how many opportunities they have in front of them, or have the ability to make for themselves, and that their goals are important, they do matter, and they are worth it & have what it takes, like I believe in myself.

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