Heath · planning · Sleep

Welcome to the 5am club?

"It's mind over mattress!"

Unlike fight club, people do talk about 5 a.m club. They talk a lot about it on YouTube, Twitter and in the many seminars I’ve been watching.

Do these magical hours between 5am and work time hold the secret to success, wealth and fitness? A lot of people think they do. This for me is day one as part of this exclusive club of mind over mattress. It’s 5:42. It’s dark, I’ve done some exercises and I am about to shower.

Oh, and I’ve written this… and this.  Wow.  It’s early.  I guess that novelty will wear off.  I’ve just seen the full moon set.  The sun is starting to rise.  The sky is turning gradually more blue.  The birds are awake now.  Traffic.  Noise starts.  Glasgow is awake beneath my 8th floor window.

Right.  Fast forward to the end of the day and I’m impressed.  It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.  I got stuff done, and I didn’t feel more tired or “jet lagged” throughout the day.  I did mention my new “ritual” to someone at work today and they said “why?”.  Well, today wasn’t about the WHY, it was about the WHEN and today was the first day.  Tomorrow’s 5am will be much more productive.  Tonight I’m thinking making a list of what I need to achieve in those 3 quiet hours before the sun wakes up for the day.

This week away from home has been a complete success in terms of diet and exercise – aided by the walk to and from work – some 3.4 miles a day really helps keep my FitBit happy and quiet.  The notifications do help, but not when you have a crushing deadline that has to be finished by 6pm before our boss in London leaves the office.

Anyhoo.  Tomorrow morning’s list is as follows:

  1. Wake up – 5.am. – done
  2. Exercise for 20 minutes – done
  3. shower – done
  4. Coffee – done
  5. Work on website for 1 hour – done
  6. Write 1st draft script for MLC YouTube trailer – done
  7. Get bags airport ready – done
  8. Check out of hotel – done
  9. Walk to work (1.2 miles) – with suitcase! – done, but it hurt!

That should take me up to 9am easily.  That’s the plan.

Thanks for reading and subscribing – and I’ll keep you posted with how it all goes.  Getting some good video content together, and the first video and the trailer will hit the channel soon.

Diet · Exercise · planning · YouTube

Monday. Bloody MONDAY!

Monday has come and gone like a blurry thing that’s moving so fast you’re like “What was that? Was that Monday?”… Yes, sadly, that was MONDAY.

It’s late – and I’ve now got the whiteboard up.  On it are lists of stuff to be done, long term goals, and an empty column for exercise… it’s been a busy day.  EXCUSE!


You see, I’ve started working on the weekly VLOGS for the YouTube channel.  As an editor of 20 years, I know how long it takes to edit 10 or 15 minutes of video.  It takes time.  As this is the first episode, it’s got to do some heavy lifting for the “quest”, also be a summary of my first week.  It’s taking up a big chunk of time.  It will be worth it.  I want to ensure though that I can keep to the upload schedule of 4 videos a month.

Research indicates that a regular upload schedule will achieve a good subscriber uptake.  Even if no one watches to start with, at least the content is up there, and being edited and gathered through out it.  Just going through the process of editing the first video is demonstrating to me how much I need to shoot to be able to offer up something which is valuable to a viewer.  I hope so anyway!

Another thing for today was I got a dedicated email address for MidlifeCoolness and I designed some very basic branding to the blank YouTube channel.  It’s all ready for some content now.

YouTube Logo

Also, I contacted a Bristol based life coach today.  We are meeting up in the coming weeks to discuss the project and hopefully start to work a plan out for me.


In terms of exercise, I fell slightly under my FitBit’s request for 10,000 steps.  I think I’m nearly at 7,000, which considering the lack of an early rise again it’s not surprising.

Due to the time now (1am!) I doubt tomorrow will start early.  We have plans to go for a long walk tomorrow – so that’s going to be nice.  Hopefully the weather will be kind to us.

So, all in all not a bad day.  Eat well, and stuck to the WW diet.  Cooked a curry and checked some things off the lists.

Tomorrow is another day.  Onward and upwards!


Diet · Heath · planning

I’ve lost 14 pounds?!

So this was the weekend.  It’s now Sunday – I’ve just weighed in and it’s good news!


Friday morning, kids at school.  We went in to a local town and had breakfast in a cafe.  Porridge with Honey and a black coffee.  The whole place smelled like bacon.  I resisted.

I also got a new whiteboard for scheduling and planning out the week.  This will include goals, exercise and weight loss before and after totals.  I’m weighing in on Monday mornings.  The whiteboard is still in the hall.  I need to wall mount it, which in this house requires a big drill, raw plugs and swearing.


I also had two of my TV producer friends agree to read the first version of my Dad’s book.  Also, a publisher replied and asked to read it.  No guarantee’s, but it’s a step in the right direction.

Saturday we dropped the eldest off at Air Cadets for training for his Duke of Edinburgh bronze award.  We then had a mosey around Wiltshire, first Malmesbury in the southern Cotswold’s – which was nice.  By chance I met an independent publisher and I took her card.  I mentioned the website about the book and she said it was a good idea.


Then we moved on to the rather splendid Bradford on Avon.  A lovely place to walk about.  I definitely will be going back here.  It’s a beautiful place we spotted when travelling back from our summer holidays in August.  Roman origins, but a town built around the wool industry.  Now, it’s full of trendy cafe’s and loads of charity shops, book stores.  It’s lovely.


I also started editing my weekly vlog today – which will go live in 2 weeks time.  I also edited a bunch of photos of my Dad, mostly cropping, rotating and colour correcting.

Sunday is a slow day, as it should be.  Lunch was cooked for me.  I washed up, and now I’m sitting writing this.  Off to Yate this afternoon to pick the boy up, so it will be just casual today.

I’m also happy to report, based on my Weight Watchers bathroom scales I’m now 19st 4lb or there about’s.  The scales seemed to go slightly up and down when I stepped on, but 19st 4lb was the most recurring figure and not the lowest offered up.  Based on my starting weight of 20st 4lb – I’ve lost a stone in a week – or there about’s.  An amazing result!

Tomorrow (Monday) will see me returning to my 6am starts with an hour of exercise in the morning.  I’m also signing up with the doctors tomorrow, another goal on the list, and will request a nutritionist consultation.  My Mum who successfully beat type 2 diabetes with diet told me that the NHS are keep to sign as many people up to this as possible due to government initiatives about obesity.  At 19st 4lb I’m still officially classed as obese.

I’ve also just googled “I lost a 14lb in a week” and according to some, this isn’t healthy.  It also said that I might have lost bone, organs! Oh and water.  Well, I don’t really agree with that.  What I’ve eaten this week isn’t a starvation diet.  It isn’t a fast.  All I’ve done is monitor my input, increase output and logged the results, and I’ve been drinking water more that ever before as I’ve cut out smoothies, fruit juices and Coke!

I don’t expect to lose this amount a week for the duration of this diet either.  As the weight decreases I wan’t to be able to increase exercise, build muscle and focus on nutrition.  Feeling good.



Accountability, achievements and rain

Well, it’s Wednesday and my final night in Glasgow for a couple of weeks and it’s raining.  Last night was my first attempt to set some goals.  One of which was to watch, or start a seminar in achieving goals.  I’m aware this risks an inception like moment where everything fold in on itself, but hey, let’s live life on the edge.  Goal, learn about goals.

So I found, and this not a paid or sponsorship deal.  No one is reading this blog at the moment anyway – I just want to keep a record of what I find, how useful it was to me and if it’s worth considering paid options for finding help and advice in this new world of life coaching.

Project Life Mastery  is the site, and I found it via YouTube.  The free course offered is 7 types of income generation online, so that’s of interest and a goal of mine.  Another goal of mine for the week is to watch a web course, so that’s ticked off the goal list.

The charismatic host also talked about the situation you find yourself in attempting to achieve a goal.  Reaching a plateau and giving up.  This is me, it’s probably a lot of people.  It must be, because he mentions it.  The energy of the honeymoon period of a project is my favourite.  In all seriousness, I have a problem with plateaus.

He also discussed in a another video, where he is having a live chat with his subscribers – he talks about accountability, meaning that you put yourself out there as an inspiration to continue.  That’s something I’ve done in the past and it does work.

I went on to watch some of his other free videos – focusing on the blogging, vlogging and pod-casting as a business.  Some very interesting ideas about marketing, SEO and audience conversion, including tips about how much content to create to build an audience.

I’m now thinking of my goals in a slightly different way.  Mind, Body and Income streams and at the moment, I’m excited to be learning about what I can do to revitalise all three.  The temptation is to concentrate on just one section – and for the past 20 years, I’ve just be concentrating on INCOME.  I’ve neglected the mind and body – and as I take the first faltering steps into this new sphere, I neglected the most important aspects.  That is my motivation – to enable me to fine tune all three.

So, might an online course or seminar be a useful tool?  Sure – it might be, but I need to keep laying down the foundations to build on bigger ideas and concepts.  I really am starting at the beginning here.

Right – I’ve got to pack.  Flight tomorrow night after a busy day at work.  The flight from Glasgow is usually delayed so I’ll definately have some time to read and listen to more stuff tomorrow, and focus on achieving the other goals I set myself on Monday.




Goals a plenty.

Ok.  Goals.  There are so many, it’s hard to know where to start.  I’m just going to start.  The aim, or goal of goals is to set something that you will do in set period of time.   I recently read somewhere that vague goals produce vague results.

I don’t know how tired that statement is, but it does some up how I’m feeling about GOALS.  I could write a huge bucket list, but I think it’s a good place to start with achievable specific things I can check off, adding more as I go.

  • By next Monday, I will walk 10 miles.
  • I will have found a nutritionist (I will also learn how to spell it).
  • I will have started a diet plan.
  • I will found a way to monitor my spending.
  • I will have created a detailed and lengthy list of goals.
  • I will have completed one online free course about setting life goals.
  • I will have completed one online free course about online commerce.
  • I have to go to bed as I have to wake up at 6am for an early work start.





And we’re off…

Well, every journey has a first step.  For me, this is it.

Welcome to Mid Life Coolness.   I just registered the domain, and here goes!

I’m 42 and not long ago I realised that I am in fact “mid-life”.  This time – it’s common for men to buy a sports car, undergo surgery to put hair back on your head and suddenly validate dwindling virility by attempting to woo women who are too young to know what a floppy disc is.

So, this website, blog and eventually a daily vlog isn’t about a midlife crisis – it’s about coolness, the opposite of a crisis.  I’m not a crisis kind of guy, I always try and see the positive.  So, I figured, as I don’t crisis – I’d aim for cool.

At the moment, I’m very happy with who is in my life.  I have a wonderful wife, 3 fantastic kids and I love my job.  So what’s the problem?   Life is short, you only get one throw of the dice and hitting middle age has made me take stock, consider what I want life to be as opposed letting situations dictate the outcome.  I’ll say it, the classic midlife crisis phrase… “There must be more to life, and to enable more you have to want it, plan it and achieve”.

That’s easy to say… harder to do – but I’ve become big on lists and idea maps and this blog with almost certainly be awash with those.   Lists & idea maps are an excellent way to plan, prioritise and visualise a route around a challenge.  So, this is the planning phase.

Oh! I need to do a phase list – but first I’m concentrating on big picture stuff.  Things I want to do differently in life.  Things that I can aim for that will effect a change.

  1.  Health:  It’s fair to say that I am currently over weight.  This not only effects my ability to do certain things that I want to achieve but it will start to effect my health.  It hasn’t yet as I think I’m just teetering on the edge of a healthy lifestyle.  The main excuse I use for my weight is work.  It stops me from exercising.  That is bull.  I know it is, and I am prioritising sorting that out.
  2. Wealth:  We don’t use the money we make as well as we could, so I want to get advice on my financial situation.  This will be the subject of many entries – as my financial situation is slightly more complicated than most.  The aim though is to become less reliant on conventional income streams and generate passive income which will also enable a less tethered existence.  I like the idea of being able to earn the money we need to live.  At the moment, my work life balance is well and truly favouring work.  That has to change.
  3. Travel:  I grew up travelling the world.  I want to be able to give my family that experience too.  I want to make memories and experience cultures that widen my families view on the world.

I think that’s enough on this list for tonight.  It’s a top 3 – and those are certainly them.  If I can aim to start those first, I think that’s a good start.

I am currently sitting in a budget hotel in Glasgow on a work trip.  Further reason I really need to address number 2!  Glasgow is a great city, but damn, budget hotels really can be soul destroying.  However, this room, this hotel will forever be where this blog started.

I’ll try and do something every day that is motivated by one of these 3 goals.  From that, more lists!  A diet is probably an easy first step.