The Dangerous Nature of Not Being Fit in Fargo

fargo-moorhead-davecscott-blog(image credit: Google images)

A few weeks ago, our CEO and I traveled to the Big Apple, where my palate fell in love, but my hips didn’t lie afterwards.

I thought I would hate traveling to New York City, and was hesitant to even go, but I’m grateful I did. (I‘ve purposely avoided the Big Apple because I had no desire to be in the presence of 8 million people)

The trip overall was a business success, but an epic-fail because of the sheer amount of garbage I ate.

The culinary mea culpe

We stayed in Hoboken, at the W Hotel. The W was amazing, but the most amazing part was Pier 13 which is across the street from the W Hotel.

Pier 13 is a large, long pier that extends over the Hudson River. The Hudson river separates New Jersey and New York, in case your geography is as bad as mine.

The coolest part of the Pier is that it’s lined with food trucks. Food trucks are basically trucks that resemble Fed-Ex delivery vehicles which create culinary masterpieces, like home-made-waffle-meals, custom chicken sandwiches, and toasted panini, among others.

Pier 13 in Hoboken is a must-visit when in New York/New Jersey.

Misery sets in

When I returned from my foodie-foray in New York, I was miserable. I was the heaviest I’ve weighed in 37 years and physically felt awful.

Being I traveled to New York with my friend, we shared our miseries with one another, and after getting home, chose to come up with a plan to shed our unfit nature.

We decided to do a 4-day cleanse. The cleanse consisted of one part water, one part pure maple syrup, and one part squeezed lemon juice, all for four days. There was to be no food, just the delicious drink and half an ounce of water per body weight each day.

The cleansing-concoction sounds nasty, and it was anything but. It tasted amazing, and this coupled with the water I drank every day, for four days, allowed me to accomplish a few feats.

  1. First, the cleanse allowed me to lose a few pounds of excess water weight, while “cleaning” my pipes. No need to explain in detail…
  2. Second, the lack of food during my cleanse forced my stomach size to go back to a smaller size.
  3. Third, the drink I consumed for four days was an appetite suppressant that helped kill my addiction to coffee, sugar and Dairy Queen blizzards. (yes it’s possible to be addicted to DQ)

After the misery of eating like a fool in New York, the result of the cleanse was just what the doctor ordered.

Then what

Now that I successfully completed my cleanse, I wanted be active outside, taking advantage of the great outdoors, and summer evenings in Fargo.

There’s really nothing better than a summer evening in Fargo-Moorhead, or anywhere in the Midwest for that matter. (Twin Cities and Minnesota included)

So, I bought a great new pair of Mizuno running shoes and began running on the hundreds of miles of trails that surround West-Fargo.

Click here for the best places to bike, jog, or walk in Fargo.

I also highly recommend Mizuno’s Wave Riders. I’ve been running in them for over five years and love them. I bought mine here. 

Beyond that, our CEO and I have been holding each other accountable by working out every morning at 6am. (6:15am to be precise)

I feel the accountability, and camaraderie, is key to sticking to a workout routine. You have to share your life-goals with others in order to make them a reality, and by working out with Brady, I accomplish this each day, as does he.

Write it down

And let’s not forget setting goals.

I know, I know…goal setting and establishing commitments is boring. Such a buzz-kill, right?

But it’s not.

Goal setting is one of the most powerful exercises a person can do to find success.

Besides, if you’re going to go through all the trouble I did in a four-day cleanse, buy new jogging shoes, as well as invest your time, you’d better not quit. One of the best ways to not quit is by writing down your goals.

Often times, people quit really good endeavors because they had no defined purpose or goal. – Dave Scott

By writing down your goals you’ll subconsciously be on your way to being fit in Fargo…or wherever you live.

Watch this video to see how I create goals, using the S.M.A.R.T methodology.

And by writing your fitness goals down, your subconscious mind is triggered and becomes a powerful ally in your fight of fat.

Take action

If you’re unhealthy, or want to make a change, it starts with taking action. Don’t dwell on your troubles, rather take action. Start somewhere, and get active.

Then establish good eating habits. You ARE what you eat. If you eat lots of sugars, breads, and the like, you’ll gain weight and be unhealthy.

From here, break the status quo by creating goals. Most people who are unhappy, won’t make or keep goals. Change status quo and be different. By not taking action, and thus being different, you’ll never become healthy.

The results

In the last month I’ve lost 10 lbs, leaned up a bit, and overall feel mentally and physically great. If you take the above approach, you will become fit in Fargo, too.

Are you unhealthy? If so, what action do you need to take in order to improve your lifestyle? What are you willing to do in order to find physiological success?

How Moving to Fargo Wasn’t Actually the Hardest Part of Moving to Fargo

Downtown Fargo December 19, 2010. Carrie Snyder / The Forum

Downtown Fargo December 19, 2010. Carrie Snyder / The Forum

(image credit: The Forum; Area Voices)

Giving up something you love is always hard.

Whether it’s something tangible such as a car, or a home, or something intangible like a relationship, or a career you love; sacrifice is always difficult.

So when my wife and I first started talking about moving from the suburbs of Minneapolis and St. Paul to Fargo, we prepared ourselves for an emotional engagement, as this would be hard.

We experienced a perpetual wave of sadness as we moved, but the decision to pursue a change, the packing, and moving itself wasn’t the toughest part.

The struggle is simple to fix.

Two things that can erode any relationship are unmet expectations and poor communication.

So when my family and I began exploring our monumental move to Fargo, we started the process by reaching out to and communicating with all the companies that we’d need to engage as a part of our transition.

We started with the logical approach.

We began by communicating with a local bank in Fargo to get a mortgage lined-up, then a real estate office in Lakeville, in order to list and sell our home.

We then spent time talking with a home builder in the Fargo-Moorhead area and alerted all the service-based businesses that charged us monthly fees for services rendered like our mail carrier, the garbage collector, and the broadband provider.

Of all the businesses we had to interface with, the most important one was the most frustrating.

Our greatest source of stress was dealing with the title and closing company.

(I’m not going to name the title and closing company in a public blog because it’s super inappropriate. It doesn’t matter who the company was, rather how it was resolved)

From a missed deadlines, incorrect instruction, to a lack of clear direction, it was all a bit disappointing.  Despite the stress, we persevered, and ultimately it all worked out.

As you can see in our moving escapades to Fargo, taping boxes and lifting totes was the simplest part. It was communication with other companies that ultimately gave me gray hairs.

Inspired by our trials, I’ve created a list of three ‘must-haves’ as a part of effective communication that anyone can use in order to avoid typical moving blunders.

Effective communication must be H.O.T.

In order to create a positive communication climate in your personal and professional life, communication must be H.O.T.

H.O.T. stands for Honest, Open and Two-Way.

And in order to avoid verbal-judo from friends, family members, and business professionals, everyone should consider this methodology.

  1. You must be honest. (but be kind)

When communicating effectively there isn’t a perfect method to do it right, but you need to at least be willing to put your heart on the table, be transparent, and get naked.

Get naked? Yes, naked.

In his book Getting Naked, author Patrick Lencioni talks about being completely open and honest, despite your fears.

The three fears that keep people from being vulnerable are the fear of losing a relationship, the fear of being embarrassed, and the fear of feeling inferior.

For our mortgage title and closing company, I feel they were rushed and weren’t willing to be honest by over-communicating with me and my wife because they feared looking incompetent by over-communicating.

And it was this missed expectation that caused the relationship to erode.

Let me also say that you need to be kind when communicating. For example, if your co-worker is a rude jerk, don’t call them a rude jerk, even though it may be true. Pull them aside, have a private talk and let them know that when they act a certain way, it makes you (and others) feel hurt and unappreciated.

Be kind in how you talk with and communicate into other people’s lives.

  1. You must be open.

I feel this is the hardest part of the HOT methodology and it’s the toughest for me personally.

Being open means you need to be vulnerable. It means you must emotionally let another person in, while letting everything out. Being open means you need to not stuff your thoughts and feelings inside.

You need to open up and get everything out in your dialogue. The freedom you will experience by truly being naked as Lencioni coins it, will give you a remarkable emotional high.

Plus you’re learning through doing. This is called practice. You don’t learn new things or develop unless you actually take action through ‘doing.’

Michael Jordan missed more than 9,000 shots in his NBA career, lost over 300 games, and was trusted to win the game by taking the last minute shot 26 times, while ultimately losing the game by missing those same 26 shots.

But Jordan practiced by taking shots, and missing them. Just like this metaphor, you need to practice being open and vulnerable, which takes courage to overcome the fear associated with the risk.

Be open, and keep aspiring to be open time after time so you become a better communicator.

  1. You must have two-way dialogue.

This is easier for me, but can be harder for others. Hard because having a two-way dialogue means you need to listen.

Having two-way dialogue means listening, while not interrupting others when they are being open and honest with you. If you want to see people shut down and disengage, then don’t allow them to have a two-way dialogue with you by interjecting every time you have a thought.

Interrupting others is not a skill or a character trait to be proud of. Interrupting others is a bad and hurtful habit.

Listening, however, is an art.

It takes patience, hard work and diligence. The best listeners are often times the best communicators.

In two-way dialogue you need to be heard, and be open as well as honest, but most importantly need to listen.

The rest of the story

The title and mortgage company could have done well to follow the HOT methodology.

That being said, none of us are perfect. Often times I’m the worst of offenders when it comes to communicating inadequately. But that shouldn’t excuse bad communication.

Communicating is often the toughest part of any relationship or circumstance, so why not become a communication-ninja, and do it well?

What do you need to do in order to improve your communication? Much like my weakness, when it comes to being open and not stuffing my emotions, what are your failings and how can you improve your communication craft?

10 Reasons Why I’m Excited to Finally Be in Fargo, North Dakota

davecscott fargo bng marketing

(image credit: downtown Fargo)

We’re officially Fargo residents!

And even though we are sad to leave our home in the Twin Cities, we are excited to start the next leg of our life-journey.

Over the next few months, as a part of our adventure, I’d like to invite you to join my family and I as we experience life in tropical Fargo, North Dakota. (I promise you it is nothing like the movie)

You’ll be seeing daily blog pieces about the people we meet, the new experiences we enjoy, along with everything else that is new to our family about the Fargo-Moorhead area.

Why Fargo?

In case you missed the impetus to our move, click here for the whole story.

And when you finish reading that blog piece, take a look at the ten reasons why we already love Fargo and what we’ve discovered so far.

  1. Don’t have to pay a trash removal company.

My family and I are renting, temporarily. With that, we have no additional costs to pay for trash removal. And paying a company a monthly fee to collect my garbage, to me at least, is the most ridiculous idea in the world. When you own a home, it’s a requirement to have this service, in the Twin Cities. You cannot avoid it. It’s like paying $7 for a bottle of water at a ballgame. Totally insane. Glad I won’t be paying that fee for a while.

  1. No mowing the lawn.

This is my personal favorite. Not that I don’t mind what little exercise comes along with pushing my mower to trim the grass, it’s just I can think of a hundred other things to be doing that are way more productive uses of my time. It’s like driving versus flying. Driving = zero productivity, as your focus is on the road. Flying = ultimate efficiency as flight is fast and you’re not the one operating the vehicle, which means lots of time for reading, learning, or working.

  1. Automobile license tabs are half off.

Back in 1998, the state of Minnesota elected Jesse Ventura as its governor. One of the best things that Governor Ventura did was to change how taxes were collected on vehicle license plates. Gov. Ventura instituted a flat-fee payment model for any citizen who owned a vehicle and had to buy license plates, for said car, SUV or truck. Once Governor Ventura left office, the status quo of lousy Republican and Democrat rule took over and the license plate costs to Minnesota residents were jacked up. Not so in North Dakota. My license plate costs are literally half the cost in Fargo. #BringBackJesse

  1. Economic boom.

There is more economic development happening in Fargo than ever before. There are new high schools, growing businesses, tech companies that are hiring, and droves of young families thriving. There are tech sector jobs, healthcare careers, and construction companies all providing good wages to the citizens of Fargo.

  1. There are 9 Dairy Queen locations.

I love Dairy Queen and I am definitely addicted. That said, there are nine DQ locations between Fargo and Moorhead, with seven of them located in Fargo alone. You’ll never run out of ice cream or Dilly bars when residing in Fargo.

  1. The people are awesome.

We had breakfast our first morning in Fargo, at Perkins. The server there was amazing. She told us she’d been working at Perkins since the year 2000, because working there allows her to be with her two boys. She also noticed I was spending too much time on my iPhone, while not eating my pancakes, and swiftly shamed me.

  1. State income tax is lower.

I’m not one of those entrepreneurs or business-guys who believe all taxes are bad. I don’t. Taxes are a part of life and I support that notion. However, there are states in America that have a lower tax rate, versus other states that have a higher tax rate. North Dakota is one of those states that has a lower state income tax, than Minnesota. Living in MN is expensive. Then again, I don’t live in Minnesota anymore.

  1. Traffic is a breeze.

Ever fight to get home from Minneapolis to Lakeville, at six o’clock on a Friday afternoon? Ever try to efficiently navigate highway 494, Cedar Avenue south, or highway 169, in the Twin Cities, after the work day is done? How about trying to drive through road construction season, when traveling in the Twin Cities metro? It’s bad. I’d argue worse that attempting to drive in Los Angeles or Boston. How’s the traffic in Fargo, you ask? It’s splendid, absolutely splendid, as traffic is a non-issue for the most part.

  1. College football champions four years in a row.

If you enjoy college football as much as I do, then you’ll love the Bison. The Bison are Fargo’s resident mascot of North Dakota State University, who so happened to be four-time national champions. Read more here about the awesome tradition they’ve started.

  1. The housing market is on fire.

If you happen to own a home here, let me be the first to tell you that you made a great financial decision, as you undoubtedly have some sweet equity in your home. If you’re like us, and hoping to find a home to purchase, be prepared for a challenge. In my research, you can almost build a new home for the same cost as buying an existing home. Before you settle, do your homework, and research, in order to make a solid housing choice so you too can gain some equity with your next residence.

If you’re already a resident of Fargo, what else can you think of that you love about the Fargo-Moorhead area?

What can you share about what you love about the Red River region? Tell us in the comments below.

Five not-wrong-but-annoying-things you can do on Twitter

I’m addicted to Twitter.

It’s short, sweet, to the point and relevant! It’s such a great way to communicate.

But man is it frustrating when I login to my Twitter account only to see some of my followers completely hijack my Twitter feed because they choose to post random things 50 times in a row.

Here’s an example: you check Twitter and see 50 posts…from the same person.

Annoying. So what does this do?

It ends up flooding my Twitter feed from anything relevant and good.

blogger_fargo_davecscott_twitter

I’ve got a solution. I’ve created a guide that you can follow, with five technically not wrong — but annoying — things you can do on Twitter that cause the world to shift out of alignment. These five things are practices you should avoid.

  1. When posting throughout the day, don’t Tweet 50 Tweets all at once. By randomly and strategically Tweeting throughout the day, you’ll gather more followers because you won’t annoy the masses. You’ll get more traction — in terms of relevance — and engage more people.
  2. Tweets with food pics. Okay, this is just gross. I’m guilty of it, just like many Twitter addicts. Enough said.
  3. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s a duck. If you follow a Twitter account that looks naughty and share their content, you could potentially look silly. If it looks subjective, then it probably is. Plus, no one likes to get a call or email from your social media manager asking, “did you know that you shared a inappropriate photo of Kim Kardashian…again?” Avoid those touchy conversations.
  4. Political Tweets. Be kind here. If you’re complaining about various political candidates via Twitter and it’s perceived as negative, then it’s negative. No one likes a “Negative Nelly” or a “Debbie Downer.” Be kind, be high level and be encouraging.
  5. Be creative and original. Don’t post the same stuff all the time. Tweet about a run or walk or a great coffee shop meeting. Engage people on Twitter with what you’re passionate about. Don’t Tweet the same stuff all the time.