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Showing posts with label What Inspires You ?. Show all posts
Showing posts with label What Inspires You ?. Show all posts

If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It

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A Dream, a vision, a goal, a desire, these are all things most of us know we need when we are working towards success but have somewhere along the line, forgotten why it is so important we follow them through.

 Well, lets call it a reminder of why it is so important to follow your dreams...

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Stoked Daily: Monday Morning Motivation

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Rise and shine...

It’s early in the morning and you can’t seem to get yourself out of bed...

This is your Monday...

Welcome to The Grind!

"Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it's always your choice." - Wayne Dyer

HyperActiveX - Surfing Is My Therapy

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For me, surfing is like no other outdoor activity. Surfing, or as I like to call it - "soul surfing", is my therapy. For me, surfing is an outlet for anxiety and stress, an inlet for nature and satisfaction, a connection between me and the ocean. Surfing is my religion, and the ocean is my temple. It helps me battle my inner demons.

The physiological effects of surfing are widely known.

Studies have already demonstrated that physical activities such as running can chase negative feelings. And although there's plenty of anecdotal evidence suggesting positive results from using surfing as therapy for a range of physical and mental ailments, only recently has science begun to establish a link between surfing and mood.

In October 2010, Britain's National Health Service (NHS) concluded the first phase of a pioneering program to assess whether surfing can be used as an effective therapy for treating depression and other mental health disorders.

Under instruction from coaches, 22 participants between the ages of 12 and 23 with mental health issues from depression to schizophrenia and psychosis learned to ride waves for six weeks on the rugged Cornwall coast, in southwest England. The essence of the program: get participants stoked on surfing and build on those good feelings.

As a result, Ryan Pittsinger, a surfer and doctoral student at the University of Iowa, presented a paper at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association showing that riding waves for 30 minutes increased positive feelings and diminished negative ones.

Pittsinger and colleagues polled more than 100 surfers in Manhattan Beach, Calif., on their mood both before and after surfing. The result: subjects described being in a better mood and experiencing increased feelings of calmness after catching a couple waves.

Also, surfing offers a wide range of sensory stimuli:

Visual – reflection and refraction of light on the ocean surface associated with the constant motion of the waves.

Gustatory / olfactory – The intense saltiness of the sea, and the smell of the sea and algae.

Tactile / Proprioceptive – Buoyancy, sliding over the surface of the sea, and the simple passage of the hands through the water distal movements as they drop into the wave, or tactile stimulation of the foot on the sand.

Auditory – The sound of the waves and movement of the sea.

Vestibular: Constant imbalance and rebalance inherent to the activity.

In short, surfing can and should be seen as an added value in the prevention and treatment of many pathological conditions, contributing to social inclusion, avoidance of a sedentary lifestyle and stress, improvement of self-esteem and encourage teamwork as well as to stimulate protection of the environment and quality of life.

There's no question that for many -- whether with a disability, disorder or not -- surfing is fun and feels good. The healing waters of the oceans work in mysterious ways...

 Stress dissolves when exposed to water

Stoked Daily: Never Too Old

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A recent study at the University of California, Los Angeles found that men over the age of 55 who were in the top 25th percentile of muscle mass proportion were 19 percent less likely to die for any reason than guys with the least amount of muscle.

Use the stories of these "7 Old Guys Who Can Kick Your Ass" to see why it's never too late to reach your lifelong fitness goals—and beat out everyone else your age...

24 Things To Do Before You Turn 30

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"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream." ~ C. S. Lewis 

It doesn't have to be before 30... Many of the things in the video I did after 30... The important thing - never stop looking for inspiration, something to dream about, something new to try, something to look forward to...

Simple Life: 23 Feet Movie Trailer

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This is how it all started for me... I don't remember who, when or even why somebody recommended me this movie trailer. I was nothing like any of those people: I didn't really have any passion for anything, I loved comfort, I didn't want to sacrifice it for anything else, and I'd never considered myself to be a dirtbag ( I always thought it was just another name for "homeless" ) ...

A simple life has a different meaning and a different value for every person. Living a simple life is nothing new.The practice of voluntary simplicity is advocated in the teachings of Jesus, it also has its roots in the teachings of other world religions, the teachings of Gandhi, and the writings of Thoreau. The American Friends Service Committee (The Quakers) define simple living as a "non-consumerist lifestyle based on being and becoming, not having."

For me, it means spending my time doing what’s important to me, getting rid of many of the things I do so I can spend time with people I love and do the things I love.

The "23 Feet" movie trailer is a film about a community of people who make the conscious choice to live simply to do what they love in the great outdoors. Three women set out across the west in their 23 foot, 1970 Airstream to search for the stories of people who have turned their backs on the creature comforts of society to live in school buses, vans, and other small spaces. From an inspiring campfire chat with legendary Yosemite climber Ron Kauk, to hearing the powerful story of a woman who changed her whole life for surfing, 23 Feet gives an intimate look at the ups and downs of dedicating your life to your outdoor passion.

Adventure Travel Goals For 2014

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As you know me, I can't stress enough the importance of writing your goals down... or the least, having clear, measurable, and achievable goals. I think goal setting is the first, and THE MOST IMPORTANT step on your way to personal growth and self improvement. They give you a clear target to aim for, and help keep motivation high by providing an objective way to measure progress.

Don't get it wrong ! There are many types of goals ( one research review came up with a list of 135 (!)  different kinds of goals that people tend to pursue ). But since the main topics of this blog are adventure travel, fitness, and the outdoors, I will focus mostly on these ones.

So, without further ado, here is my (short ) list of goals for 2014:

Business Goals 

1 - The most important goal I've set for myself this year is to make my blog ( and everything else I do online ) "career/full time job/". Since I started this blog almost 4 years ago, it's become a huge part of my life. I'm very passionate about it, and I love what I do !

2 - Since I've already been working  ( on/off ) online full time for the past 2 years, I'd love to share my knowledge and experience to help people journey their adventures to share their stoke and excitement with friends and family ( while making extra money on the side to get that new outdoor gear or extra cash for that dream trip ).

3 - I want to create XHyperActive brand, something like Red Bull ( mines poisonous drinks, and low-paid sponsored adrenaline junkies ). Instead, I want to focus on people just like you and me, I'd say "Regular Joe's" - somebody who wants to live a happy, healthy and adventurous life full of  great memories and memorable evens ! Somebody who is not afraid to get out of their comfort zone to pursue their goals, and to take necessary steps to accomplish their Bucket List adventures.

4 - I realize that many people who would love to get into fitness and outdoors, simply don't know where to start.  That's why I'd like to take XHyperActive brand offline to go back to training people, and personally encourage, motivate and guide ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

Adventurous Goals

- Do more kiteboarding ( and may be teach it too )
- Make soul surfing/SUP surfing a monthly event ( to help me battle my ADD and find more peace )
- Introduce my son to surfing... Go to Westport and California !
- Get my next scuba diving certificate ( and eventually become Dive Master )
- Take paragliding classes ( to learn something new, and see if it's something I can do long term )
- Do my first static skydiving jump ( tandem jump was fun, but solo should be awesome !!! )
- Take a sailing class ( and who knows, may be buy my first boat ! )
- Go bow hunting/spearfishing/fly-fishing ( and learn how to cook my kill/catch )
- Go skiing/snowshoeing/snow camping to Goldmyer Hot Springs this winter
- XC ( cross country/ski touring ) hut-to-hut in Mt Rainier
- (Finely ) go skiing Mt Adams
- Climbing Mt Baker/Olympus/Rainier ( again )
- Now that I dove with sharks in Florida's Aquarium, I want to do that again in our state
- Kayak and bike touring/camping has been on my list for the past few years ( just need to find 4-5 days to do that, and may be somebody to go with )
- Canyoneering is gaining more popularity in WA... I had fun canyoneering in Utah, and hope our state can offer places as breathtaking as the ones in Moab
- Haven't been climbing for a while... There a still a bunch of epic places I haven't climbed... The two I really want to do are : Leavenworth, Mt Erie, and Smith Rock ( in Oregon ).
- Since I sold my motorcycle, I've been feeling really sad :( Hope this spring to get into dirt biking, and buy a bike ( either dirt, street ot dual sport ).
- Windsurfing my SUP/paddleboard was fun, but would love to try something more challenging ! Hood River offers both amazing kiteboarding and windsurfing opportunities. Learning water start and switching to shorter/faster boards will make it more fun !
- My first sailing experience was a complete disaster ! If you're ever offered a cheap "sailing class" by Seattle Mountaineers/Seattle Singles Yacht Club - run ! It's not worth your money and time. So, this year, I hope to find a reputable sailing club to actually learn how to sail.
- I also want to introduce my son to sailing, and take him sailing on one of those historic tall ships.
- Bungee jumping in WA
- Balloon flying, and fat biking in Winthrop !
- Backpacking Olympic Coast/ Wonderland Trail/ Go back to the Enchantments
- Visit San Juan Islands !!! Can't believe I can't make it there 3 years in a row !!!

Adventure Travel ( outside WA )

- Visit Colorado !!! Would love to go skiing and try speed riding in Aspen !
- Neighboring Oregon has been inviting me for a long time to check out its adventures ! Visiting/xc skiing Crater Lake; skiing, ski-biking, airboarding at Hoodoo ski area; dirt biking/sandboarding Oregon's dunes; chilling in one of many famous Oregon's hot springs are just a few things I want to do there.
- Introduce my son to the beauty of travel ! First stop - California ! then...
- Not sure about border crossing laws yet, but would love to take him to Whistler, BC !
- The BIGGEST trip I'm planning this year is visiting Russia, and hope to explore Europe on the way there !

What are your goals for 2014 ? Why are they important to you ? Are they clear, exciting, measurable achievable ?

I wish you achieve every goal that you set up for yourself this year, and hope you'll share it with us !!! And remember :

“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hope.” - Andrew Carnegie

Goodbye to 2013... It Was ... Uneventful ( Almost )

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How was your 2013 ? What kind of memories have you created for yourself ? What have you achieved ?

Hope 2013 was better for you than it was for me... Since I started this blog, 2013 was the most uneventful year so far, and, as you know,  I blame myself for not writing my goals down and not planning the year ahead. 

But I can't complain that it was that bad. I had a few great moments, like:

- visited Roslyn, WA ( the unofficial "movie town of WA" )
- tried fly fishing for the first time
- did a couple gigs for Toyota
- went diving at a new spot in Washington
- went sailing ( it was awful ! )
- lived off-grid for 3 months in my Subaru
- celebrated another great birthday surfing at Westport
- had another great winter working my favorite job !

But one thing that made 2013 great and memorable for me was the time I spent with my son ! We had a few great father/son moments :

- we celebrated his 6th birthday in our favorite cabin in Leavenworth
- got to go flightseeing over our beautiful Seattle
-  picked up a new sport ( archery )
- tried skimboarding at a popular skimboarding beach in WA
- went camping, hiking and caving at Mt St Helens
- hiked Point Defiance in Tacoma
- switched to a BMX bike and electric scooter
- chilled ( a lot !  ) at a local waterpark during summer

So looking back, I can honestly say : "I'm blessed, and 2013 wasn't that bad" :)

It's crazy how all that happened in just one year !

The Importance of Setting Clear, Written Goals

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Let me begin this post with a couple of my favorite quotes about goal setting, afterwards, I'll explain why these are my favorite :

"Never begin the day until it is finished on paper." ~ Jim Rohn

"Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible" ~ Tony Robbins

"People with clear, written goals, accomplish far more in a shorter period of time than people without them could ever imagine." ~ Brian Tracy

2012 was a great year for me ! My online business was booming, I traveled a lot, had tons of fun, and met many inspiring, adventurous, stoked folks ! All that I owe to my goal setting the year before.

2013 on the other hand was... not so great. Untill I got to sit down to write this very post, I couldn't understand why... I went back to my blog just to realize that I didn't put my goals for 2013 in writing !!! Yeah, sure, I had my "Bucket List"  board on Pinterest, but as it states above "clear, written goals, accomplish far more" than just simply wishing ( even if you have a visual representation ).

Until you write it down, your goal is just a dream. Dreaming is elevated above execution. And that’s never good. That doesn’t get you anywhere. It makes you feel good, but then later you have all these regrets that surface.

I am not saying that committing your goals to writing is the end-game. It’s not. But it is VERY important. Writing down goals clarifies priorities to keep the person on track. It’s preeminently important for your goals to exist in written form, not floating in that ether that exists in your head.

When you put pen to paper you turn your thoughts into something tangible. You can actually see it, touch it, and even smell it if you want to. Your goal is no longer just a thought.  It becomes something, what motivates us and creates a gut feeling inside.

 Even the act of using the eye in coordination with the hand holding the pen makes a much stronger impression on our mind as we write out the phrase or expression. Now when we read and re-read that phrase or sentence the impression on the mind becomes deeper and deeper.

There is something semi-magical about writing one’s goals down which makes achieving well-written goals an almost certainty.

If you want to make commitment to your goals even more solid, share them with those around you. In essence, this is another reason for my blog - feeling accountable to my readers motivates me to stay on track.

Have you committed your goals to paper ?  Do you have a deadline for your goals ? Are you accountable to your friends/family/followers ?

And remember :

Living In Your Car Like A Bohemian ( Or A Bum )

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For me, the word "adventure" has always been associated with something that presents a challenge, something that offers an unbelievable, firsthand experience,   and creates unforgettable, vivid, self-defining memories.

Since I started this blog I've been blessed with meeting, reading and writing about people who push their physical, mental and spiritual limits, who challenge orthodox social viewpoints, who possess a burning desire to expand their knowledge through firsthand experiences to test the limits of their own strength and endurance, and in doing so, discover their true self.

There are many names for people like this :  adventurers, wanderers, vagabonders, nomads, minimalists, bohemians... One thing they have in common - living the life on their own terms.

The choice to live an adventurous lifestyle is not an easy one. It is very difficult to break free of the monotonous routine of daily life when you have been repeating it for years on end. There is only one way to break the routine, and that is to just do it. And that's exactly what I did...

Living off-grid in a trailer/RV/van like a traveling nomad enjoying life, going on adventures, and writing inspiring stories has been on my Bucket List for quite a while. I talked to people who lived "RV life style" full time, read and followed the blogs of those who went off-grid in tiny houses , wrote about fellow adventurers who perused their passion full time while living in vans and camp sites, and even created a visual aid to help me try this new exciting way of living. Until one day, I just decided to go for it....

Since I'd been traveling for quite some time, at that time I didn't have too many possessions. Everything I had fitted in  a  5x10 storage. It just took me a matter of two days to rig up my faithful Subaru, and "hit the road".  Because of my family circumstances I didn't go too far, and spent the next 3 months living in my car.

Unlike many unfortunate folks out there, my experience wasn't created by a financial situation. It was a pure adventurous and social experiment. Inspired by people I read and write about, I wanted to see if I had the guts to walk away from the convenience of every day life, challenge a few social norms, and to see what I'd be capable of physically and emotionally. 

As you might know, many stories that I write about I experience myself firsthand.  Surviving and off-grid living haven't been the topics of this blog... not till now.

Today I'm starting a new category " Survival/Off-Grid Living ".

Looking back at my adventures living in a car, traveling cross country, spending majority of my time playing in the backcountry, and coming from former USSR with nothing but $50 in my pocket ( and surviving the first 7 years as an "undocumented alien" ), I think I've deserved the right to share my knowledge and experience to help people prepare for times when SHTF or/if they fall into harsh financial times.

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The Salt Trail : The visual story about breaking away from the mould and following your dreams.

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In my previous post I wrote about my personal experience with surfing in my life, and how it affects my body and my soul. As soon as I finished writing, I came across an AMAZING video that beautifully shows what surfing is all about :

"This is a visual story about splashing some color into your lives, by opening your eyes, breaking away from the mould and following your dreams. As wave sliders, we are inspired by waves to travel the globe in search of perfect waves but the deeper you look and the further you go, you realize that its not about finding that perfect slide...its about the people you meet and what you find along the way and how these experiences change you deep within."

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How Do You Celebrate Your Birthday ?

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There are only two major holidays on my calender : my birthday and New Year. For me, both of these dates represent a new beginning, a fresh start, a clean slate. It's time to look back and reflect on my goals and achievements, and time to make new exciting plans for the upcoming year !

It saddens me to know that many people don't really celebrate their birthdays. In my opinion, if you don't celebrate your birthday, you don't celebrate (your) life.

As somebody said : "If we are to appreciate the fruits of life, we must first appreciate the tree that bears the fruit: birth itself."

I've never considered myself to be religious, but I think a birthday is the Greatest Gift of Life, the Miracle, the Once-In-A-Life Time-Occasion that you have a chance to celebrate every year. The same energy that God/Universe/Nature invested in you at birth is present once again. It is our duty to be receptive to that force.

A birthday is a time to celebrate birth itself, the joy of life. It is also an occasion to rethink your life: How great is the disparity between what I have accomplished and what I can accomplish? Am I spending my time properly or am I involved in things that distract me from my higher calling? How can I strengthen the thread that connects my outer life and my inner life?

Celebrating my birthday by going surfing is my way to get in touch with my soul.

You don't have to be a hard core "surfer dude" to enjoy this, I'd say, most spiritual "sport/outdoor activity". And I put it in quotes, cause I can't even call surfing a sport. Yes, surfing has its competitive side, but for most folks, surfing is the way to engage nature in such an intimate way that very few people have access to. I call it Soul Surfing.

In soul surfing, we challenge the ocean, we challenge ourselves, and  not other people. Soul surfing is not about scoring points and winning titles, it's about having fun, it's as much about physical challenge as a spiritual experience. Especially at times of good surf in beautiful surroundings.

Soul surfing is one of the best ways to find your Zen, your inner peace, your "True Self".
The Ocean will clear your mind, get rid of stress, anxiety, and negativity, it will recharge your tired mind, and will strengthen your spirit.

As J.F.K. once said : " "We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch - we are going back from whence we came." 

So your next birthday, I advice you to give soul surfing a try. It doesn't matter if you don't catch a wave, or you won't be able even to get up on a board. It's about the experience, the feeling, the memories you will create for the next year ( OR MAY BE THE REST OF YOUR LIFE ).
                                                         It's all about STOKE !


"Each birthday is a new beginning, full of promise and opportunity and the chance to make dreams come true."

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Our Amazing World

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... the beautiful pictures of places and spaces I'd love to visit...

Sunrise in Alaska



                                                Ailsa Craig from the isle of Arran, Scotland

        Amazing Photo of The Sawyer Glacier in Alaska where the glacier meets the ocean

                                                Arches and La Sal Mountains Sundown


Cave Of Hearts - Doi Pha Tang, Chiang Rai, Thailand

Creator Lake, OR

Hang Son Doong Cave, Vietnam

Feel Like A Kid Again : Epic Trike Drifting

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...as a kid I never knew the excitement of riding a trike... As a grownup I've never imagined trike drifting can be so epic...

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From Ex-Con To Icon : The Inspiring Story Of Kali Muscles

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If you haven't done time in jail or prison, you will never know the price of true freedom. I believe that nothing tests your strengths ( both physical and mental ) as much as being locked up 24/7

In  solitary confinement you realize there is nobody to help you but yourself.  There are two things that motivate people to make dramatic changes in their lives: inspiration or desperation. In prison it's both...

Below is an inspiring and motivational video of  Kali Muscles. The journey of a man from the streets of Oakland, through solitary confinement of San Quentin, to becoming an icon to young kids to show that your environment doesn't define you, and your past doesn't define your future.

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Admit It, You Are Not Like Them : YOU ARE XHYPERACTIVE

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“Admit it. You aren’t like them. You’re not even close. You may occasionally dress yourself up as one of them, watch the same mindless television shows as they do, maybe even eat the same fast food sometimes. But it seems that the more you try to fit in, the more you feel like an outsider, watching the “normal people” as they go about their automatic existences. For every time you say club passwords like “Have a nice day” and “Weather’s awful today, eh?”, you yearn inside to say forbidden things like “Tell me something that makes you cry” or “What do you think deja vu is for?”. ― Timothy Leary

 Think for yourself. Doubt everything. Find your own light...

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Never Too Old For Adventure

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...true what they say: " Age Is Nothing But A Number"... Nowadays, there are many seniors who refuse to submit to ageist stereotypes, and continue to inspire younger generations to step out of their comfort zone and try out new things.

Old age clearly hasn’t stopped this cool grandma from living life to the fullest. She's 90 (!!!), and it was her first time zip-lining.


What extreme sport/outdoor activity/adventure have you thought about trying, but never did because you thought you were too old to do ?

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