Radiolab: 9-Volt Nirvana

Takeaways from Radiolab’s fascinating episode: 9-Volt Nirvana

The Radiolab podcast episode 9-Volt Nirvana grabbed my attention immediately:

“Learn a new language faster than ever! Leave doubt in the dust! Be a better sniper! Could you do all that and more with just a zap to the noggin? Maybe…”

Sign me up!

I pressed play, expecting an entertaining analysis of some new technology, drug or medical operation that could instantly make you think and do stuff better – like a get rich quick scheme for the brain.

The 25-minute episode did all that, and sparked a much deeper discussion, calling into question concepts of self, entitlement, ethics and the learning process.

I recommend you set aside about half an hour to listen to the show, and stew on it for a bit after it’s over. Then, read on to see how your reactions and takeaways compare to mine.

Continue reading Radiolab: 9-Volt Nirvana

The real MVP

In a world smothered by scripted interviews, entitled stars and vanilla soundbites, Kevin Durant – the 2014 NBA Most Valuable Player – delivers a slam dunk speech that pulls back the curtain, transcends sports and inspires leadership, humility and perspective.

These days, I don’t expect much from post-game press conferences, sideline reports, superstar interviews and other sports speeches. Why? Because we rarely get more than a quick thank you to God, followed by a litany of canned sports cliches.

If we expand the scope, the same low expectations can often be applied to other arenas, with force-fed agendas, rhetoric and scripted remarks clouding our glimpses at the true character and opinions of our leaders, influencers and role models.

But every now and then, we’re treated to something genuine, something thoughtful, something inspirational.

Kevin Durant’s exceptional acceptance speech for the 2014 NBA Most Valuable Player Award was one of those times.

Judged in a vacuum (in my amateur opinion), the speech stands strong as an organized address with a heartfelt and well-delivered story.

However, in the vanilla, lay-up context we’ve grown accustomed to in sports speeches, Durant’s MVP remarks deliver a posterizing slam dunk.

In this post, I’m going to break down why the speech is so special, and list a some of the lessons I took away after watching it a few times.

Continue reading The real MVP

Ironman Arizona: Conquered!

140.6 miles, 13.5 hours and one of the best days of my life

Adam Fuller, You are an Ironman!

“Adam Fuller, you are an Ironman!”

I had been working hard – training, stretching, studying and strategizing – for a year to hear that phrase announced over the loudspeakers at Ironman Arizona on Nov. 17, 2013.

As I plowed through the 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile run, there were many times when I heard it pop-up in my head to keep me moving and motivated.

But when I turned down the final straightaway chute and sprinted to the finish line, I was in such an ecstatic frenzy to finish strong that I didn’t even hear Mike Reilly – the voice of Ironman – yell out my name as the latest member of the exclusive club.

Continue reading Ironman Arizona: Conquered!

Tri for Les: Idiot infected

My left foot.

In March 2012 it stepped on a rock and suffered a stress fracture. A couple weeks later it trudged through the Lavaman triathlon – which made matters worse.

In February 2013 it collapsed after running over 20 miles in the Ragnar del Sol Relay.

Now, after recovering from those two setbacks, going strong into these last two months before Ironman AZ in November, the problem dog is at it again.

Read about the latest development in the foot fight in my Tri for Les article: Idiot infected.

You’ll see how it was a part of a series of miscues by yours truly, and learn a few good lessons from my bad examples.

While you’re over on Tri for Les, check out another one of my recent posts: Running unplugged: Why I don’t wear headphones when I exercise, and how I still hear the music.