I need to apologize.
As of today, I have published 370 articles on Nerd Fitness. I’ve taught you how to do push ups, how to do a pull up, how to eat better, how to become a super hero, how to become an assassin, and countless other things. Despite all of that, there’s one thing I’ve never written about, and it truly ashames me to admit it. I’m sorry to have let you down.
I have never written about Chuck Norris.
Fortunately, that egregious oversight will be remedied today. By the end of this post, you’ll not only learn how the man, the myth, the legendary Texas ranger, Chuck Norris dominates life…but how you can do the same.
Pick something and get really good at it
Chuck Norris has more manliness in his beard than most men have in their entire bodies.
This is a man whose roundhouse kicks create gaps in the space-time continuum.
He’s counted to infinity…twice.
To make a long story short, Chuck Norris is a badass mama jamma.
But we’ll get to that in a minute. Leg’s go back to where it all began…
Chuck Norris was born in 1940 and grew up in Ryan, Oklahoma. As a kid, he was nonathletic, shy, and scholastically mediocre. Hmmm, I wonder if there’s anybody in this community that can relate…
While enlisted in the US Air Force, Chuck spent time in South Korea where he studied Tang Soo Do and fell in love with martial arts. Upon returning to the states, he started competing in martial arts tournaments, and promptly lost in his first two entries. Undeterred, the man continued to train and learn and study the craft.
Thus, Chuck got good. REALLY good.
In 1968, he won the Professional Middleweight Karate champion title, which he went on to hold for for six consecutive years. In 1969, he won Karate’s triple crown for the most tournament wins of the year along with the Fighter of the Year Award from Blackbelt Magazine.
At this point in time, one could argue that Chuck Norris was the greatest human being on the planet. Although I would advise against arguing with Chuck Norris, if you want to live.
Go Chuck Yourself: In fitness - Let’s say you’re 100 pounds overweight, out of shape, and just getting started with exercise. Are you gonna try to run a marathon, pack on 50 pounds of muscle, get great at Yoga, and compete on Ninja Warrior…all at the same time? Chuck no – that’s a recipe for disaster! Put your focus on weight loss; get really good at eating right, exercising regularly, and staying consistent. You can deal with the other things you’d like to accomplish once you master that first goal.
In diet - Want to start eating healthier? Never cooked before? Pick ONE meal, and get REALLY good at cooking it. Don’t worry about having a million spices, or 18 different kinds of ingredients to mix in for variety. Pick a healthy meal, and dominate it.
In life - Want to stand out in the workplace? Find something at work that everybody needs done, and get REALLY good at it. Maybe you can become the power point guy, or excel sheet guy, or kick-ass presentation guy. In a crappy economy when you’re the new guy in a big company, being kind of okay at a lot of things but not great at anything is a great way to go unnoticed. Become the go-to guy/girl for something! Note: “pees his pants guy” and “eats other people’s lunches girl” aren’t what we’re looking for. I decided to become the “Nerd Fitness” guy – so far so good!
Diversify your talents
What do you do after you win Middleweight Karate Championship six years in a row? Retire happy and become a martial arts instructor?
I should roundhouse kick you for even suggesting this.
Chuck Norris wasn’t satisfied with just dominating martial arts, so he diversified his portfolio by setting out to conquer the acting world as well.
AND CONQUER IT HE DID!
Chuck’s career launched to super-stardom when he starred as Bruce Lee’s arch-nemesis in Return of the Dragon. Bruce Lee, maybe you’ve heard of him?
For the next twenty years, Chuck starred in increasingly more epic action films. Had the Academy not been so biased against Chuck Norris’s beard, I can only imagine he would have won Best Actor for each of them. I’d like to see Jack Nicholson round house kick people in the face. I rest my case.
Go Chuck Yourself: In fitness – It’s important to be well-balanced. After all, it’s not going to matter that you can bench press 400 pounds if you can’t outsprint a zombie, right? Conversely, who gives a crap if you can run a marathon if you can’t do a pull up when previously mentioned zombies corner you in an alley! Although my current focus is on strength and muscle building, once I reach my goal weight I will be expanding my focus to other areas so that I can further my training as a secret agent.
In diet – it’s time to expand your cooking skills. Yeah, cooking one meal really well is a great start, but eventually that meal is going to get REALLY boring. Luckily, there’s a simple solution – learn a few others! If you’ve only been cooking with chicken, try steak or pork or fish. If you’re cooking stirfry, how about mixing in some new vegetables? By diversifying your options, you’ll never go hungry, even if your supermarket is out of certain ingredients.
In life - Yeah, it’s important to be really good at something when it comes to your job if you want to make an impact. Now, imagine if your boss comes up to you to thank you for a presentation you just CRUSHED, and you get to say “oh, by the way, I also do this too!” Boom. Office place diversification can go a LONG way to keep you a valuable member of the team instead of at the front of the unemployment line. To loosely quote my buddy Kappy, there’s no crime in being awesome…at more than one thing.
If you had conquered the martial arts world and then laid waste to the film industry, what’s next?
More dominance, but in another field.
After cranking out a few more films that went largely unnoticed (though I hear he had Oscar-worthy performances in each of them), Chuck made the transition to television. In 1993, Chuck began a 8-year career as the toughest Texas ranger the world has ever seen in the appropriately named show, Walker: Texas Ranger.
To ensure the show had maximum appeal, Chuck even sang the freaking theme song.
As my mom says whenever she hears me sing, “to hell with the tune!”
On Walker: Texas Ranger, Chuck would constantly end up in realistic predicaments to which any of us could relate. For example: wrestling a bear, jump-kicking a car, or solving airplane crash mysteries by eating dirt. DID I MENTION HE SANG THE DAMN THEME SONG?
Go Chuck Yourself: In fitness – So you’ve reached a baseline in fitness, and you’ve gotten better at some activities that you enjoy. It’s time to get even more risky, and try brand new activities that weren’t on you radar. For me, that’s Yoga and martial arts. For you, it might be running a 5k or picking up a barbell. Try something new, even if you think you’re going to suck at it! It will diversify your talent, further increase your fitness knowledge, and who knows…you might even have fun!
In diet – TRY NEW FOODS. This one is particularly tricky for me as I’m an incredibly picky eater, but I know how important it is. Yup, it’ll be outside your comfort zone. Yeah, you might not like some of the foods you try. But then again…you might identify new favorites, learn how to cook new recipes, and also expand your horizon.
In life – At work, sign up for a training class that you hadn’t previously considered. Challenge yourself with new skills and obstacles and improve your ability to problem solve, learn, and adapt…all things that are crucial in this volatile job market. If you’re heading out for a night on the town, try a new activity or visit a new restaurant/bar. To simplify things, do sh** that scares you! Who knows what you’ll discover, who you’ll meet, or what could result from it.
Don’t like how things are done? Forge your own path
Chuck Norris began his martial arts career by studying Tang Soo Do. However, he eventually decided that he wanted to improve upon what he learned, so he created his own fighting style: Chun Kuk Do. Yup, the dude just made up his own martial art. Here’s the code that he and his Chun Kuk Do disciples live by:
- I will develop myself to the maximum of my potential in all ways.
- I will forget the mistakes of the past and press on to greater achievements.
- I will continually work at developing love, happiness and loyalty in my family.
- I will look for the good in all people and make them feel worthwhile.
- If I have nothing good to say about a person, I will say nothing.
- I will always be as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
- I will maintain an attitude of open-mindedness.
- I will maintain respect for those in authority and demonstrate this respect at all times.
- I will always remain loyal to my God, my country, family and my friends.
- I will remain highly goal-oriented throughout my life because that positive attitude helps my family, my country and myself.
IS THERE NO LIMIT TO THE POWER OF NORRIS!?
Go Chuck Yourself. In fitness – Be creative! Maybe you don’t want to run on a track, or get in a stuffy gym, or spend hours on a treadmill. Don’t! There are a million and one ways to get in shape. Go climb a freaking tree, sprint through the woods, throw a frisbee while swinging nunchucks, invent a new game with your kids, whatever! What’s important is that you’re having fun, you’re active, and you’re excited to continue staying active.
In Diet – Recipes are for squares! Go off the beaten path and create your OWN recipes. That way, when you show up to parties, people will start to say things like “oh man, can you PLEASE bring that ______________ you cook?!” Want to impress a date? Cook him/her a dinner, and you actually get to say “oh this? It’s just something I whipped up.” On top of that, I guarantee a meal that you’ve created will taste better than any other meal created from directions by somebody else.
In Life – Not happy with your job but love the company you work for? Sit down with your boss and create your own position. If you’ve been dominating the workplace thanks to your previous “go Chuck yourself” lessons, your boss will jump at the opportunity to keep you around. Don’t like your job OR your company? Create your own. Want to make a splash in the __________________ industry but don’t know how to differentiate yourself? Instead of competing for every person interested in [big industry], why not carve out your own tiny community of _____________ who want to ____________? That’s exactly how Nerd Fitness was born – we even have our own code of conduct, just like Chuck!
Be so interesting that you’re always relevant
Chuck hasn’t had a starring role in anything since the made-for-tv movie, Walker Texas Ranger – Trial By Fire in 2005. And if we’re being honest (forgive me Chuck), it didn’t exactly light up the airwaves. Before that, it had been years since Walker, Texas Ranger had gone off the air.
And yet. To this day, Chuck Norris is still a household name. And an American Hero. And a possible mythical creature. But that’s beside the point.
Why does everybody know Chuck? Because he is so interesting and talented that people had to start making up facts about him just to keep up:
- Chuck Norris can kill two stones with one bird.
- Chuck Norris doesn’t call the wrong number. You answered the wrong phone.
- Chuck Norris’s tears can cure cancer. Unfortunately, he’s never cried.
- Chuck Norris once threw a hand grenade and killed 50 people…and then it exploded.
- Life insurance premiums are based on how far away you live from Chuck Norris.
Conan O’Brien even had a lever installed on his old show so that he could watch Chuck Norris clips whenever he wanted. Like now:
Chuck Norris and his interesting awesomeness have allowed him to stay relevant and noteworthy throughout his career. And that shouldn’t come a surprise to anyone – how many roundhouse-kicking, epic beard-wearing, Television/Movie/Internet/karate superstars do you know? I can only think of one.
Go Chuck Yourself – I hope I’m known among my friends as the [something great] guy. I want to leave this planet known as the guy who [changed the world somehow]. I want to live an interesting life full of adventure so that I can look back on it, years from now, and share stories with my grandchildren who are actually excited to listen.
I hope some day people are making up random facts about me.
I want the same for you. You don’t need to change the world to be interesting, but you do need to be interesting to stand out. Decide here and now what you want to be known for. What will the history books to say about you? What will your children to say about you? What will your friends to say about you? What will your coworkers to say about you?
Doing the same thing every day while trying to squeak by unnoticed isn’t going to lead to an epic life. Taking chances, roundhouse kicking fear in the face, and working hard to to be known for something CAN lead to an epic life. Growing a beard also helps, but I can’t do that so I’m just going to stick with hard work and risk-taking.
Go Chuck yourself, hard
What do you want to be known for?
And what’s one awesome fact you hope people make up about you some day?
Leave it in the comments!
May the eyes of a ranger always be upon you,
PS – I’m headed to Austin, TX for five days starting this weekend! If you live in Austin, I’d love to do a meet up on Tuesday night, January 17th! Sign up on the Facebook event page for updates and we’ll figure out where we’re meeting! I might even be able to convince my buddy Vic Magary to come
PPS - Did you hear Chuck Norris and Superman got into a huge fight back in the day? Apparently the loser had to start wearing his underwear on the outside.