25 Things You Didn’t Know About Me

July 07, 2014

todd & allison

Building a blog can be lonely.

I’m sitting behind my computer. You’re reading this on your iPhone. Where’s the connection? Where’s the relationship building?

My vision for this blog is to not only have it be a source of information, but also a community. I know a few of you by name but I’d love to get to know more of you.

Yes, that means you there, reading this right now. Time to introduce yourself. ๐Ÿ˜‰

A week ago I stumbled upon a fitness blogger named Krista Stryker. She wrote an article called Imperfection where she shared 39 things about herself. I was inspired by this and decided to veer a bit from writing about the latest bodyweight technique, and instead share more about myself on a personal level.

After learning more about me, I’d be honored if you shared something about yourself in the comments below. That way, I’ll know you by name.

25 Things You Didn’t Know About Me

1. My full name is Tadas Vitas Kuslikis (Thanks a lot, Dad!)

I have a name that no teacher could pronounce. I would usually get anxiety during attendance as the teacher would go through the list of kids. They would come to “K” and be like, “Ummm… hmmm…”

2. I am extremely introverted.

When I was in 5th grade, my teacher set a goal for me to say one word out loud in class. I can’t remember if I actually achieved that goal, but I’m guessing that I didn’t.

Most of my friends (when I actually see them) say that I’m antisocial. I actually have very high emotional intelligence and interact well in groups or with individuals, but I prefer to be one-on-one or by myself. I recharge when I’m alone and get exhausted if I’m around others too much. I’ve been to weekend-long seminars where I have lost my voice, even if I’m not talking. Pretty strange.

3. I am an eternal optimist.

The world is full of great opportunities. Why see the glass as half empty?

The motto of my senior class in high school was “Carpe Diem” or “Seize the Day”!

You only live once. Itโ€™s time to give it your all and stop living in the world of “what if?”

4. I don’t like to eat.

In fact, I hate it. I think itโ€™s boring and I wish someone could stick an IV in me for a few minutes and I’d be good to go.

5. I drive everyone nuts with my diet.

There is a running joke in my family that every time someone sees me I am on a different diet. It is true that I have experimented with pretty much everything. However, I am now 95% Paleo and just tweaking it here and there.

I used to drive my family nuts because nobody would know what to cook for me. Now I just drive my wife nuts. ๐Ÿ˜‰

6. I was cut from my freshman high school basketball team and never tried out again.

I stunk at sports in high school. My older brother played basketball at the varsity level throughout all four years of high school and all four years of college.

I was always a “B” level player, and even though I was a shoe-in for the b-ball team because of my brother, I still didn’t make it. I was devastated at the time.

7. I am a follower of Jesus but I didn’t always follow Him.

I was raised a Catholic, but at the age of thirteen I started questioning everything. I had so many questions. Is there a God? Why would God create humans and then send them to hell? Who am I?

At the age of thirteen I began a deep quest to answer these questions. I practiced Taosim, Buddhism, Shamanism, Atheism, and Baha’i religiously for over a decade. The practice I became most involved with was zen meditation. Most days after school (including much of grade school), I would come home, lock myself in my room, turn on Buddhist chant music, light my candle and sit. My breath would slow. My mind would slow. I simply sat. These sessions would frequently last for hours and I had experiences that veteran monks would envy. However, the experiences would end, the feelings disappeared and I realized that they were not truth.

I came to realize that I was creating my own religion, and that there was only  One Way, One Truth and One Life.

8. I have wiped so many male butts it doesn’t bother me any more.

For much of my life I have been a caregiver for people with closed head injuries and spinal cord injuries. Part of that work is helping them with their bowel programs (for the uninitiated, that means going number two). During the first few times I would dry heave because of the smell. Now, it doesn’t bother me in the slightest.

9. I have a heart for the mission field.

citymission

This is a picture of some service work I did in downtown Grand Rapids, MI.

The last mission trip that I did was when we were pregnant with Emma, two years ago. We went to Krygryzstan and it was an amazing trip. I would love to incorporate regular service projects for my family, so that we can learn and remember the value of blessing and serving others.

10. I am not a huge fan of formalized education.

That may sound weird coming from someone with a Masters degree, and with a wife and sister that have degrees in education, but I just think I’m a little jaded. I have racked up so much debt that your eyes would probably bug out. Formalized education is good for a lot of people, but for those individuals that love to learn on their own and grow professionally and personally, I donโ€™t think itโ€™s needed. The new generation puts more weight behind “What have you done?” or “What can you do?” than “How many letters do you have behind your name?”

11. I get annoyed when people swear.

Swearing is low class. People think that itโ€™s cool or that itโ€™s just an expression of their emotional state. They’re wrong. I believe that the world would be a much better place if people controlled their tongues and chose their words more carefully.

12. I have biciptial tendonitis in my left shoulder.

At one point in my life I wanted to be a professional boxer. I even trained under one of Floyd Mayweather‘s trainers. The Sessions were intense and repetitive. Eventually, I injured my left shoulder from jabbing so much, and I ended up with bicipital tendonitis. I have to spend extra time stretching and rehabbing it before doing handstand work or intense push-up work.

13. I love being around elderly people.

One of my first jobs was at a nursing home. I worked in the kitchen as a dietary aide. We cooked the food and then delivered it to the residents at meal times. After work some of us would go to the main activity room, turn on the mic, and adjust it so that it could be heard throughout the facility. We would then sing “You Are My Sunshine”, “Amazing Grace” and many other favorites. The residents absolutely loved it.

14. I have a bump on my tongue from when my brother kicked me in the head as a kid.

bump

I have an older brother. Yes, he would frequently give me injuries.

One time, we were playing karate in the basement. Things got a little out of hand, and I got pissed. When I get mad, for some reason, I bite my tongue. Well, Tom decided that was the perfect time to deliver a roundhouse kick to my jaw. Blood started squirting everywhere, including down my throat. My mom thought the hospital couldn’t stitch up a tongue, so we iced it and let it bleed. The tongue healed, but not how I would have liked.

15. I once walked with a group of wild deer.

I used to have a friend in Kalamazoo, Michigan who was a scientist. He told me about one of his friends, Dr. Peter Beamish, who could communicate with animals using a system called Rhythm Based Communication. He said that itโ€™s very similar to a system that Native Americans used. After he taught me the system I didn’t quite believe that it would actually work, until a week later.

I was hiking on a trail in the forest and, all of a sudden, I saw a deer. I immediately crouched down and looked at the ground so that I wouldn’t scare it away. I then flicked my hand quickly up in the air at certain intervals. When I looked up I noticed that the deer hadnโ€™t run away, and that there were other deer around too. They were about twenty yards away through the trees, and I spent the next three hours patiently using RBC to get so close that I could actually touch them. It was one of the most surreal and magical experiences of my life. It ended when we heard someone coming down the path and the deer bolted.

16. I once gave away practically everything I owned.

I am not very materialistic. When I was in Nursing School I felt the urge to downsize. So I pulled out two pairs of shorts, t-shirts, pants, shoes, socks and underwear (big mistake with that one) and gave pretty much everything else to Goodwill. My TV, stereo, bed and everything else… see ya later!

17. I have been in an acapella group.

When I was at Western Michigan University, I was in a 5-person acapella group. We sang a ton of songs including “My Girl”, “Stand by Me”, “Oh Draw Me Lord“, and others.

17. I am as stubborn as a mule.

I don’t compromise my values.

As an example, about a month into my marriage my wife baked a loaf of home-made bread. I started eating it and said, “Wow! This is really good. What’s in it?” She rattled off the ingredients and when she came to the word “sugar” I immediately spit the bread out of my mouth on to the floor. I reprimanded her for using sugar. Needless to say, we ended up having a huge fight.

Lesson learned: Don’t major in the minors.

18. I served in New Orleans for two months after Hurricane Katrina

Hurricane Katrina

I was in Nursing school at the time Katrina came through. I was one of those people that was glued to the TV screen and knew that I had to do something to help. So I asked my professors if I could take a semester off to help, and they were OK with it. I joined the American Red Cross and embarked on a two month journey that drastically changed my life.

19. I faint when I give blood

I can’t give blood. I’ve tried three separate times, but every time, I faint.

My first time was when I was 16 years old. For some reason I thought I was supposed to not eat anything for 24 hours beforehand, so that my blood would be purer. After giving blood, I was standing at the juice and cookie station. I turned to my dad and said, “I feel a little light-headed.” Before I knew it, I’d fallen and hit my head first on the counter, then on the table where my dad was sitting, and then finally on the floor. I was only out for a few moments, but that was my first experience.

I tried two other times (making sure to eat a ton beforehand) and similar things happened. I guess my body just likes to hold on to its blood.

20. I don’t have a TV or a smart phone

Yep, that's Emma in the background. I got this phone almost 2 years ago and haven't missed text messaging or internet at all.

Yep, that’s Emma as my background. I got this phone almost two years ago, and I haven’t missed text messaging or internet access at all.

Yes, I run a technology-based business but don’t even use a smart phone. In fact, I don’t even have text messaging on my phone. Above is a picture of my current dumb phone.

I used to have an iPhone, but when I got to the point where I was checking my email at 3am, I decided to axe it. I have an addictive personality, and I need to safeguards around me to make sure that I don’t get out of control.

21. I used to teach Tai Chi

tai chi

Above is a picture of my first class. It was such a joy.

We did Secret Family Yang Style and focused heavily on the martial application of each movement. I’ve had several occasions where someone came from behind and “attacked” me, and my body naturally neutralized them by putting them in a hold before I even realized what was going on.

22. My first car was a Camaro

I mentioned above that I’m stubborn. I am also persistent. When I was fifteen years old (yep, I had my license before I turned 16 – long story…) I saw an ’85 Chevy Camaro that I wanted. It had dual exhaust, T tops, manual transmission, and was just plain awesome. I didn’t quite have enough money to buy it, so I begged my dad to chip in for weeks on end. He eventually caved and I was in heaven.

23. I have an addiction to cold water.

toddpolarbeardive

My buddy Nate and I jumping into frigid Lake Michigan several years ago.

I have made it a habit to break the ice at my parents’ cottage during Christmas-time and jump in. I love the energy I feel when I’m in the cold water. I give my props to Rickson for this.

24. It took me nine years to get my Bachelors degree.

nursing

Nursing clinicals. I miss you guys but I hold no regrets.

Farley – “Did you hear I finally graduated?”

Spade – “Yeah, in just a shade under a decade… alright.”

Farley – “A lot of people go to college for seven years.”

Spade – “I know. They’re called Doctors.”

Ahhh… rest in peace, Chris.

I totally related to Chris in Tommy Boy. Although I didn’t spend my time partying, I just didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. After graduating from high school, I went to Western Michigan University to study Occupational Therapy. After a year, I decided I didn’t want to do that, so I switched to a local community college and studied general topics. After a year of that, I dropped out and studied nutrition, herbal medicine, acupuncture, personal training and massage therapy for a couple of years. I tried to start up a practice but was unsuccessful so I went back to WMU and entered Nursing School. After three years of Nursing (one year to go, and hating it), I dropped out for a second time to start my own business, which eventually went bankrupt. Here’s our pitch video that we created. Pretty good, huh?

I then tried several other business pursuits including Multi-Level Marketing (which I was terrible at), and finally decided to go back to college to finish up my degree. I ended up getting a General Universities Studies degree, immediately went into a Masters of Public Administration program, and finished up in one and a half years. My goodness what a journey this has been.

I am officially done with formalized education and I’m NOT going back.

Note: For those of you that are struggling to find your profession, realize that it takes time. Don’t rush it. Find what you are passionate about. This is WAY more important than trying to choose based on “job markets”. Do what you love. Get good at it and the income will follow.

25. We just found out that we are pregnant with #2!!

Just wait Emma! You'll have to share that couch soon!

Just wait Emma! You’ll have to share that couch soon!

Having children has been one of the greatest blessings in my life. I would easily trade everything I have, including my life, for the health and livelihood of my daughter, Emma. A few weeks ago we found out that we are pregnant with number two! So excited! Not quite up to par with my buddy Chris, but well on my way!

***

If you have read this far, I bet that you feel like you know me well now.

I’d like to get to know you!

ACTION ITEM FOR YOU: Introduce yourself in the comments below and share one thing about yourself.

-Todd

Show/Hide Comments (55 comments)
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55 Comments
  1. Mattie

    My name is Matilde (like Matilda above only spelled different ๐Ÿ™‚ ) I go by Mattie. I went back to school in 2011 at age 44 to finish up a degree I started in 1985. I completed my bachelors in exercise science May 2103 and my Masters in exercise science May 2014, so I have been busy ๐Ÿ™‚ I served in the Army for 14 years and now will continue teaching fitness as I have done for over 30 years. I love the fitness industry but sometimes I am saddened at the direction it is going. I just recently began following you after purchasing your program. I always love learning from other fitness professionals and finding new workouts!

    Reply
  2. Carl

    Thanks for sharing Todd. Found your blog a few months back and I appreciate your philosophy and approach.

    We share a number of things in common including connections to western Michigan (I grew up just south of St Joe and now live in Cheboygan), our faith, and introverted nature. I do appreciate formalized education, and am currently finishing up a doctorate in spiritual formation. In terms of kids, I have a head start on you – have 5 of my own, the youngest being twins that just turned 5.

    Look forward to continuing to learn from you so that I can be healthy and strong for a long time (my motivation for fitness is being an involved and active dad and maybe someday grandfather).

    Reply
  3. Robby

    Hi Todd,

    I’ve been subscribed to your blog for several months now. I help Al Kavadlo moderate and answer questions on his forum and blog. I’ve been doing this for over a year, training calisthenics for about 2.5 years. I am always intrigued by new training information and approaches to help achieve high level calisthenics skills.

    Reply
  4. Markita @ SweshFit

    I stumbled across this from something I saw on Twitter…I love this post and totally inspired to write my own at some point! I also went to WMU…and switched majors a ton of times…and none of that had anything to do with fitness and I do that now! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
  5. Trevor

    Todd it’s amazing to get to know you. I applaud your courage to share yourself personally on the web. And I can relate to a few of the things, and I’m probably the opposite on a few of the things. I’m actually on an autoimmune paleo diet and I have to be strict on it. I have a ton of food allergies, and I can usually not remember listing all them to people. And I have digestive issues, and yet at 41 I’m healthier than most the people half my age. The digestive issues may be the cause of the food allergies, I’m working with a Naturopathic doctor on that stuff. But I have another food issue, I have an addiction to sugar and I have to absolutely avoid it. It’s through Jesus that I’m able to stay on the diet I’m on. Partnering with him and a Christian support group was the only way I could ever stay away from sugar for the last 19 months. The only time I have sugar now is with a little grape juice once a month for communion, I have to pass on the bread. Your sharing is also encouraging me. I’ve been thinking of doing a food blog on helping people with food allergies. I’m researching and learning what I can at the moment. But this post has really encouraged me. And through my recovery from sugar, fear and anxiety, I discovered I’m a strong extrovert, I used to think I was always an introvert who had some extroverted characteristics. So thank you for your sharing.

    Reply
  6. Brendan Kelly

    Vidas! i got this link through LinkedIn. Gotta love those old CRH days. “And rounding out the lineup, cart to south” Remember doing that when delivering food carts? congratulations on the 2nd baby coming. i got three so you are catching up.

    I hope all is well my friend.

    PS What kind of goofey seeds, plants, tree bark, oats, etc. are you eating nowadays ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Brendan

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Whats up BK! Great to hear from you!

      Yay, I remember that. Those were awesome times. I also remember the sausage incident with JJ. You remember that one? ๐Ÿ˜‰ That is carved in my memory forever.

      Heard you got a new house. That’s awesome! Congrats on the 3 kids. I feel like 1 is a handful. Can’t image 3.

      Reply
      • Brendan Kelly

        Oh the sausage incident! That was classic. I never seen you laugh so hard in my life…thanks for reminding me of that hilarious moment.

        You are a great man Vidas. Keep up the awesomeness.

        BK

        Reply
  7. bodhi

    Todd

    There was one comment, actually the first one in this blog from Stephen that mentioned Prana-bindu practice. Your reply led me to believe you were not aware that this is a fictional program. It was practiced by the Bene Gesserrit which are characters in a book by Frank Herbert – Dune.

    Just thought I would mention it to you.

    later

    bodhi

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Thanks bodhi. I appreciate that. I definitely wasn’t aware of that so I appreciate you saying something. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  8. Tom Kuslikis

    I can’t help but notice a few references to me and not necessarily in a positive way. Looks like I’ve played my role as the older brother perfectly!

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      LOL! You got that for sure. And I think you are still doing it perfectly. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Reply
  9. John

    Hi Todd, congrats on your new addition very exciting and yes busy times ahead!

    thank you for a very powerful post!

    i too am a follower of Christ who followed some of the same faith journey as you from what you have written. My physical journey has been a roller coaster of strength, aerobic, martial arts, boxing, back to strength etc.
    In January of 2013 i stepped on a scale and was a biscuit short of 300 lbs and said enough, i started eating Primal, following Mark Sissons exercise advice and dropped 70 lbs so far, i found you through the Body Weight bundle and am really enjoying the training.

    thanks for all you do!

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Way to go John! Score 1 for the primal lifestyle. Congrats!

      Blessings my brother!

      Reply
  10. Matthew

    Hey Todd, congrats on baby number two. They sure are a blessing.

    I also have a second on the way as well. I was in the military for four years and have always loved bodyweight training. Your website is what I’ve been looking for for awhile. Great stuff.

    PS: I curse a lot…out of habit(again military) sorry bro

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      LOL! That’s ok. I forgive you. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Congrats to you on your 2nd as well.

      Reply
  11. Michael

    Hi Todd,

    my name is Michael, I am 40 year old and I am from Germany. The last couple of weeks I have made the Freeletics program, which is really great. For the next 8 weeks I am planning to make your Isometric strength program in combination with Calisthenics progressions. I have read the books from Paul โ€œCoachโ€ Wade and in my opinion they are very good. After that I am planning to make a bodyweight program from your site (maybe the overload program). I think, that it is good, to switch from time to time the routine.

    Good, that I have your website !

    Unfortunately the last few years I did not have had the time to make a lot of sports (maybe you know, with two little childrenโ€ฆ).

    By the way, I love travelling to Norway and Sweden. One of the nicest place in the world are the Lofoten โ€“ really great. Where do you live in Norway?

    Best regards from Germany,
    Michael

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Michael, I live in the US but have always wanted to visit Norway.

      Good luck with the programs!

      Reply
      • Michael

        oh, sorry Todd. I was sure that I have read, you are from Norway ๐Ÿ™

        Reply
  12. Pablo Vera

    Hi everyone,

    First of all I want to congratulate Todd for his fantastic website and contents.
    Well about me, I’m 31 years old and I live in a small city called Castellรณn which is located near Valencia (Spain) in the Mediterranean Coast. I work as a Chemical Engineer in a Chemical plant but since I was a child I love sports. I played soccer until I was 25 when I became a soccer referee. One year ago I began practicing bodyweight exercises and although I have a low level I must recognized that I’m a little bit hooked on it.

    I encourage you to follow with SOA

    Best regards

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      That’s awesome Pablo. Glad you are hooked. Its an awesome training style!

      Reply
  13. Matilda

    Never be ashamed of your name, it’s part of who you are. I love my name.
    Thanks for sharing a bit of you with us, it was a great insight.
    I’m a mum, a photographer, a runner and a blogger.
    I’ve just a new weights training regime and enjoying it. Still perfecting the handstand, it’s getting there.
    ps. thanks for being you.

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Thanks Matilda. I appreciate the comment. Yep, now I’m glad my dad named me Tadas. Good ice breaker. Good luck with the handstand!

      Reply
  14. Tom

    Hey Todd

    I also took 9 years to get my Bachelor degree (teaching). It took me so long because I hate study which is why I left school in year 10. My wife was also sick with cancer for the last five of those nine years (sadly, she died) and I was also full time teaching when I started my degree.

    Some of my story for you. Keep up the good work.

    Tom

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Tom,

      I’m sorry to hear about your wife. I appreciate the openness.

      Keep up the great work too!

      Todd

      Reply
  15. John

    It takes a lot of courage to be that vulnerable. I share number # 7,9,13 with you. I work with the elderly in nursing homes as a hospice chaplain. I also worked in New Orleans after Katrina as a chaplain. Funny story – I actually went to a nudist campground. I was the first chaplain to a nudist camp. Somebody asked why, I said they need Jesus too. Anyway good stuff Todd! Proud to call you my brother.

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi John. That’s hilarious. Yes, even nudists need Jesus. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Take care my brother.

      Reply
  16. Ellen

    Congratulations! Thanks for letting us know a bit more about you, the internet can seem so isolating some times. My name’s Ellen, I’m doing a PhD in computational chemistry and working as a personal trainer on the side

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      That’s awesome Ellen. Best wishes with you PhD. My dad has his in chemistry and I know its tough!

      Reply
  17. John

    neat idea – good to understand where you’re coming from
    I value openness highly – I get the feeling we may have different experiences & beliefs, but would get along really well…

    Me
    approaching retirement, both my parents recently died from cancer, but in their late 80s having been pretty fit most of their lives.

    There is so much fun and so many things still to do – I just want to get out ther and do things.

    Religion and beliefs
    read Tim Parks “Tongues of Flames” – the names have been changed, but that captures a large part of my experience…

    I definitely sign up to a large part of the paleo / primal lifestyle – I need to do much more on the high effort / high speed sections – which is how I found you and what I am looking for…

    happily married for over 35 years, 4 kids, 5 grandchildren (so far) – and two dogs – who are great for the regular gentle exercise part…

    Introversion
    I think my understanding is getting refined as I learn more (about me and people)
    I’m very happy with my own company, and people who are important to me, an manageable quantities of new people – and pretty good coping with large numbers of new people professionally…
    but what does that mean boiling things out?
    where do I get my energy from? – inside me – not from others
    How do I know I’m doing the right thing – I’m internally validated

    Cars
    started out with a Mk1 Ford Cortina GT – I think that dates me and makes me English!
    grew up wanting a Lotus Europa type 47 – now drive an Elise SC – took my a while but got there! (cars for transporting kids were priorities before)

    Swearing
    they’re just words… looking back “swear words” are literally anglo-saxon words used by peasants, it’s more refined to use the words of the French / Norman overlords. Much of this is a class distinction
    a) getting uptight about them empowers those who see class as important.
    b) actions and what is in your heart are more important than words
    c) actually I somewhat agree, but would say the difficulty is that if you routinely swear – what is the right expletive when you hit your thumb with the hammer?

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      John, awesome comment! There is a lot of wisdom in here. I especially like the part about being happy with my own company. I definitely prescribe to that.

      The books sounds cool. I’ll have to check it out.

      Reply
  18. bodhi

    Hi! My first name is garland-john (that is all one word) but I prefer bodhi which is short for bodhidharma. My personal motto, which is tattooed across my chest, is “Carpe Diem et Strangula Merdam Ex Eo!” This translates to “Seize the day and choke the shit out of it.” Sorry if you consider that swearing. I enjoy your blog and site. I don’t like wasting the travel time to and from a gym and prefer a body weight workout. I am a member of a twelve step recovery fellowship and it has been 10,097 days (27 plus years) since I used any mood or mind altering substance. Unlike you I like eating – too much. That is one of the things I struggle with constantly. I live Tucson AZ. I really like it here because I can ride my motorcycles 365 days a year, and I do. Congrats on the pregnancy. I have 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren. Good luck with your future endeavors.

    bodhi

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Way to go on the 27 years Bodhi! That’s awesome. I know its good to take it one day at a time. That’s cool that you are counting the days.

      Reply
  19. Anne Schmidt

    Hi Todd thanks for sharing your personal information. I always enjoy reading your blog. Great information. Congratulations to you and Alison on the coming of your second child. I am sure Emma will make a great big sister. So happy for you both.

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Thanks Anne. I very much appreciate that. Yep, I know she will too. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  20. Caitlin

    Having read this I believed it was very informative.
    I appreciate you spending some time and energy to put this article together.
    I once again find myself spending way too much time both reading and leaving comments.
    But so what, it was still worthwhile!

    Reply
  21. Nick

    Hi Todd,

    Nice article!

    I first found your site maybe last year, but I begun to follow your posts approximately six months ago. I am from Greece and I was raised as an Orthodox Cristian, but having a strong interest in ancient mythology, especially Greek, I never considered my self a “true” Cristian.

    I like reading philosophy, a lot. I enjoy arguments and arguing in general, which can be a bad habit sometimes, as I check arguments on Youtube comments, where users usually don’t know how to argue with valid arguments. Also, I used to argue without reason and without believing what I was saying, but people couldn’t defend against me…. This of course was annoying to some and it cost me some friendships in the past. Nowdays I don’t argue so much, especially without a reason.

    I begun training around 4 years ago. I wanted to start earlier, but I had some injuries going on. I worked out with bodyweight movements, because I didn’t have access to equipment. Right now I train mostly for straight arm strength (SAS), mobility and some basic leg work. I have achieved some good bodyweight skills along the way. I started a website to share some advice to beginners who want to train with their bodyweight 3 monts ago, but I am still a newbie blogger. I was thinking of sending you a message asking for advice, but after reading your post I decided to ask here. Can you take a look at my website? I would really appreciate it! ๐Ÿ˜€ You can contact me with your comments.

    ~Nick Antonogiannis (Writen in Greek: ฮ‘ฮฝฯ„ฯ‰ฮฝฮฟฮณฮนฮฌฮฝฮฝฮทฯ‚ ฮฮนฮบฯŒฮปฮฑฮฟฯ‚)

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Nick,

      First of all. Love your name, especially written in Greek. Very cool.

      Interesting about the arguments. I have off and on been a part of Toastmasters which teaches rhetoric and the power of language can certainly be used for good or bad. As Uncle Ben in Spiderman states, “With great power comes great responsibility.” Haha! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Your site looks great. I’d be happy to share some tips and would enjoy hearing your story. Shoot me an email and we can more specifics.

      Reply
  22. Lance Hamilton

    Todd,
    I’ve really enjoyed reading your latest post; great stuff. I’ve followed your website/posts off and on now for last 1 1/2 years or so. I just turned 35, a christian, live in south central Ky. with my beautiful wife and 2 amazing daughters. I’m a P.E. teacher (starting year 12) and turning into a nutrition nut. I’ve all always enjoyed sports, exercise and nutrition, and have tried numerous exercise/health approaches over the years. I’ve come across many exercise websites, gurus, etc…, but must say, you have been the most interesting. I knew about calisthenics, but you have really inspired me to take this form of exercise to another level. You have very interesting posts: top body weight athletes, 100 top exercises, etc… The posts are just interesting. The post about the obstacle course races is an example of eye catching info., that just makes your site cool. I can tell that you are passionate about what you write and share with us. You’re not out there creating websites to make a lot of money; you are a great a resource without a price tag. Because of that, I feel as though you are reaching more people than you could imagine. By the way, those who have followed your website, even if off and on, know you pretty well. Thanks man.
    By the way. I’m currently do something called Freeletics (body weight routines). Some of the best workouts i’ve ever done. I downloaded the app for 4.99 (well worth it.). Check it out at freeletics.com (created in Germany in 2013)
    thanks again for all that you do

    Lance

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Lance,

      Its great to meet you. ๐Ÿ™‚ I very much appreciate the compliments and the encouragement. Glad you like the site so much.

      Freeletics looks awesome and a wonderful resource!

      Reply
  23. Mark Salamango

    Well Todd, we have quite a lot in common. Uncanny really. I could related to all except the cold water thing.

    I’m a Michigander as well. I’ll add that I play in our worship band and released my first cd last year. http://www.talldarkandjim.com if you want to take a listen. It’s definitely conducive to working out to!

    I look forward to the journey my brother!

    Mark

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Mark your music is awesome! Just listened to Empty Without You and Broken. In fact, Emma was listening too and dancing. LOL!

      Keep it up bro!

      Reply
  24. Doug

    Thanks for sharing! I’ve been following you for about 2 months now and was surprised to see that we have a few things in common. You have ties to West Michigan! I live in Kalamazoo and am in Grand Rapids often (twice last weekend). I went to WMU on the 8 year plan (and am not a dr.). I am a believer. Although I can’t say I love cold water, I have swam in it a lot. Thanks for sharing! It was great to get to know you better!

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Doug,

      Wow. You are very close to home. I lived in Concorde Place Apt for a few years as well as on campus. I think West Michigan is a hidden gem that most of the world doesn’t know about. We’ve got Art Prize, Laugh Fest and so many other things.

      Nice to meet you!

      Reply
      • Danush

        Man I just love you, it’s just because of you that I’m fulfilling my dream of becoming an UFC superstar your workout and motivation are leading me to achieve my goal, I’m still 16, many might laugh at me after reading this, but atleast by your motivation, now I have a vision and I’m moving towards it, it might be slow but I’m sure I’ll achieve it and just as you even I’m gonna try my level best and help others. Love you man thanks for everything you’ve done for me. ?โ™ฅ๏ธ????

        Reply
  25. Meghan

    Have you heard of the Soylent Drink diet? You could avoid that eating ๐Ÿ˜‰
    I am Meghan….
    I am an Identical Twin
    I won the inaugural Illinois Marathon and a few half Ironmans
    Now I want to get STRONG

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi again Meghan. ๐Ÿ™‚ Never heard of it but I just Googled it. Looks interesting. Not sure I’d ever tried it but its good to know my non-eating desire could be taken care of if need be. Is your identical twin as into fitness as you?

      Reply
  26. Mark

    Tod thanks for getting so personal and congratulations on you’re second baby my name is mark I am a life martial arts practitioner and a personal trainer

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Thanks Mark! I appreciate that! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Reply
  27. Simas

    Tod, your real names are Lithuanian! Do you have roots in here?

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Simas, yep. My grandparents came over during WWII. Its actually a pretty intense story. My grandma was pregnant with one of my aunts, a bunch of their friends were shipped to concentration camps in Siberia, etc.

      Reply
  28. Patrick

    Two things:

    1. Thanks for the Tommy Boy reference. You spray that thing for bugs?

    2. My wife is the diet-nut in both our families – always makes the holidays interesting! It’s grown on me, though; we’ve progressively moved towards a Paleo-esque diet (some because of her health and some because of my love for minimalism and simplicity). I still like sugar, though.

    Thanks for sharing. I really enjoy your blog and how you make your hard work so available to the rest of us. Yours was one of the blogs I discovered while living overseas a couple of years ago and trying to figure out a workout routine in the absence of equipment, gyms, etc. Go live in the developing world and body weight exercises are all you have! But since returning to the States, I’ve never gone back; I really appreciate your vision of integrating body weight workouts with balance-multi movement-isometrics based exercises. Body mastery, not for it’s own sake, but to a better end. So thanks.

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      LOL! Brothers don’t shake hands, brothers gotta hug!

      I appreciate the remarks Patrick and I’m happy I could help while you were overseas! Keep up the great work!

      Reply
  29. Stephan

    I have to say Todd, you are one of the few people out there who is not a Guru, but genuinely interested in your community.

    As to me, my name is Stephan and I am from Cape Town in South Africa. I have been following your site for a few years now I think and still recommend all my friends (many of whom are Strongmen and Bodybuilders) to try your workouts for a more holistic way of exercise.

    I work in Financial Services, and live a pretty full life in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The next time you are heading this far south, please do stop by and see what I mean.

    Aside from that, having grown up as a devout Christian with a strong desire to help my fellow man, a lot of what you said really resonated with me. I wish you all the best in the future!

    Kind Regards
    Stephan Hoffman

    PS: Hope to see a post soon with a workout similar to the Bene Gesserit Prana Bindu ๐Ÿ˜‰ (Although I am thinking the Animal Flow/Ido Portal stuff you recommended is probably a close second)

    Reply
    • Todd Kuslikis

      Hi Stephan,

      I’ve heard great things about Cape Town. We would definitely like to do more traveling so we’ll add that to the bucket list. ๐Ÿ™‚

      The Prana Bindu stuff is very interesting. I did some Google search on it and it sounds wild. Do have any favorite resources on it? I’d like to do more digging.

      Thanks for the comment!
      Todd

      Reply
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