The Best Birthday Present I Could Ask For…

The Jerd SDCC Birthday
This past weekend I celebrated turning 42 surviving another year!

I spent the weekend with a vigorous workout, enjoying the company of my family, selectively ignoring the gray hairs cropping up in my beard, and reflecting on life in general.

While I often get caught up in the day-to-day, and complain about how little free time I seem to have, when I step back and look at my life I can’t help but be thankful.

One of the things I am most thankful for? All of you loyal readers!

Not only did I spend the day reflecting on my life as I moved my game piece another step forward on the game-board of life, but I also celebrated this website’s birthday!

That’s right, you best prepare yourselves because turned 2 as well. Time to unleash the “terrible twos” on you all! (Don’t worry, I’m potty trained.)

I have poured my heart and soul into this site for the last two years… I have always 100% believed that this silly idea I came up with while sitting in the San Diego airport (you can read the origin story right here) would make a difference in people’s lives.

I didn’t know what I was getting myself into, and I still don’t feel like I have a clue as to what I am doing (seriously, you should hear the cursing that echoes from my office as I try to tweak site code,) but the hundreds of email subscribers and over 5000 registered users lead me to believe this is time well spent!

I knew I wasn’t alone!

I knew that there were other people out there who not only loved reading comic books and playing video games, but who also wanted to be fit and healthy. People who wanted to go from geek to real-life superhero!

As I gear up for another pilgrimage to Nerd-Mecca (San Diego Comic-Con); preparing to meet, and hang out with, 160,000 other nerds and geeks, I want to stop and ask you for a little birthday kindness.

Because it’s my birthday, I’m asking each and every one of you to help me celebrate in 1 of 3 ways…

1) Support A Superheroic Cause

The Wayne Foundation

I’ve been in contact with the fine people who run the Wayne Foundation and am working on a more formal way to sponsor their charity and spread the word about the amazing work that they do, but this is as good of a time as any to start.

In their own words:

“The Wayne Foundation is committed to spreading awareness of CSEC (Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children) & DMST (Domestic Minor Sexual Trafficking) occurring within the United States.”

There is nothing more abhorrent to me than the exploitation of helpless children, and to be able to provide any sort of assistance to victims of these heinous crimes means a lot.

In my eyes, this survivor led organization is truly doing the work of a real-life superhero. Their goal to provide those who have fallen victim to DMST with a means of leaving the sex industry for good, by providing a safe home environment with rehabilitation services, is as noble a cause as you could ask for.

So if you can’t go out and lend a helping hand to a child in need on your own, please find it in your heart (and wallet) to donate to the Wayne Foundation today.

Click this link to their donation page.

As cliché as it might sound, every little bit helps!

2) Help Me Help You

Another thing you can do is support the upkeep of this site.

While I spend an inordinate amount of time writing articles, answering your emails and tweaking code I would never just blatantly ask you for donations.

Instead, I want you to spend money on yourself and let me reap a little benefit from it. Below are the products I have personally endorsed over the last two years, and affiliate links to them.

By purchasing through these links I get a very small kickback… so take a look and see if anything catches your eye.

  • Beachbody Pro-Grade Chin-Up Bar – A pull-up bar in your home is one of the best fitness gifts you can give yourself! Check out my full review here… Your back, arms, shoulders and forearms will thank you!
  • DipGrips – Round out your upper-body workout with this revolutionary at-home piece of workout equipment. Get the chest and arms you have always wanted! Check out the full review here.
  • The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg – A spectacular book about how habits are formed, maintained and re-programmed. This book laid the framework for the article How To: Build Positive Habits.
  • Starting Strength” by Mark Rippetoe – This book is the resource for barbell strength training. No other book on strength training even comes close to explaining the theory and methods of basic barbell strength training in this much detail. A must read that influenced our Basic Strength Training Program.
  • Salt, Sugar, Fat” by Michael Moss – Vital reading for anyone who cares about their diet. The compelling narrative is grounded by meticulous research, interviews and scientific facts all describing exactly how food companies have manufactured their food in such a way to addict us. Scary, eye-opening, stuff!
  • Quest Protein Bars – The only protein bar I endorse. Tasty and nutritious without all the chemicals, sugars and empty calories of most other brands!
  • Muscle Milk Protein Powder – This is my protein powder of choice. A great happy medium between expensive and taste. I use it in my protein smoothies all the time!
  • Emeals – I just recently found and I think it is genius! A very inexpensive service that plans your meals for you, a week at a time. They send you recipes, shopping lists and even go as far as to coordinate them with sales at your preferred grocery store! Best part of this? They have over 15 different plans to choose from! Paleo, portion control, clean eating, gluten-free, vegetarian, low carb, and so many more… If you are trying to clean up your diet, do yourself a favor and start here!

While this is a labor of love on my part, a little assistance in the upkeep would be greatly appreciated!

3) Be Someone Else’s Real-Life Superhero

Best Birthday Gift Ever - Be Batman

Why do we all love superheroes?  

Because they look snazzy in tights and kick bad-guys in the spleen.

Because they represent what we all wish we could be; beacons of hope and justice in the face of the darkness of chaos!

“A hero kills people, people that wish him harm. A hero is part human and part supernatural. A hero is born out of a childhood trauma, or out of a disaster, and must be avenged.”Dwight Schrute, The Office

But just because we can’t literally go out and punch evil in the neck doesn’t mean we can’t be a positive influence on someone’s life! I always say we are building our own Superhero Team of Awesome, and I truly believe it.

Remember law #7 of the Jerd-Herd?

“We lead by example.”

I want us to be dedicated to helping each other, to support each other when we need it, to hold each other accountable for our goals. We should be ready to offer assistance, support, and insight to whoever, whenever.

I want you to be a real-life superhero for someone in need!

Do something, anything, to improve someone’s day:  

  • Leave a big tip for your waiter, waitress or barista if you eat out today.
  • Prepare a healthy meal for a friend and deliver it to them.
  • Instead of just blindly dropping some change in a homeless guy’s cup, offer to buy him lunch… have a conversation with him, you might make his day!
  • Clean out your closet; gather up the things you don’t wear anymore and donate them.
  • Remind a friend exactly how much they mean to you, or offer some encouragement towards something they are working on.

Even better, go out and share a real experience with someone!

So often we get so caught up trying to buy someone the perfect gift, instead of giving someone the perfect gift. The difference may sound subtle, but I honestly believe the best gifts you can give are experiences, not things. Life is about creating memorable experiences and stories, not accumulating stuff; so find an activity to do together go make some fun memories with your loved-ones (here are more tips on how to give awesome gifts)!

So let’s make today awesome, for ourselves and for everyone around us.

Oh, there is one final thing you can do for me – Share this site with a friend!

I know each and every one of you has at least one friend who wants to make a change in their life. Point them my way so I can help them too! Gathering a few hundred more people into the Jerd-Herd would be the best birthday present you could give me.

Regardless of whether or not you take any of the suggestions above, thanks so much for taking this fitness journey with me and for being so darned awesome!

Also check out our YouTube channel (if you want access to our Nerd-Core Fitness exercise videos), follow me on Twitter, and like us on Facebook and Google+ (there is content on both not available here on the site.) There are so many different ways for you to get your daily dose of Jerdly goodness so don’t miss out!

(Photo #3 credit)

PS: Make sure to get your free e-book, “The 7 Fitness Obstacles Newbies Face” by subscribing to our newsletter… no spam, I promise!

Join Our Superhero Team of Awesome

4 replies
  1. LIsa
    LIsa says:

    I have two of the books: “Salt, Sugar, Fat” and “The Power of Habit”. I am almost finished SSF and am ready to seriously clean the kitchen of all processed food. TPofH has helped me break down big fitness roadblocks into smaller, more manageable commitments. I finished that book 3 months and 13 pounds ago. Happy birthday Jerd! Thanks for all the great info.

  2. Sweetman @
    Sweetman @ says:

    Happy belated birthday to you and the site! As a fellow blogger I understand just how much work goes into a site like this, and you constantly produce fantastic content, here and on YouTube. I’m going to purchase ‘The Power of Habit’ as I’m sure it will help me on my Healthy Habits Quest!

    • TheJerd
      TheJerd says:

      Thanks so much!

      Yes, it is a lot of work but it’s feedback from great people like you that makes it worth it. Let me know how you like the book!


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