Todd McCullough (he/him) is the founder of TMAC Fitness and creator of the TMAC20 program, offering 20 minute no-equipment workouts for everyone from beginners to elite athletes. He’s also one of my closest friends. In this episode (recorded in my kitchen), Todd shares the background and how-to of his four-part “mindright” meditation practice. He’ll explain how football injuries and a cold ocean led him to meditation; Melissa talks about the first moment she realized mindright was magic; and they explore why choosing to meditate immediately post-exercise is so impactful. Todd and Melissa also walk you through how they complete each section of the four-part meditation.
Connect with Todd
DTT listeners receive 30 free days of TMAC 20 workouts with the code WHOLE30 at check-out (it says 15 days, but enter the code and Todd will double it!)
Todd’s FREE 4-part #mindright meditation video: MY DAILY MEDITATION (free)
Todd’s four parts, from the podcast/video:
- Lifting someone up (like praying for them, or imagining them in a bright, healing light)
- What success looks like to you today
- Presence (paying attention to the breath or the sounds around you)
What #mindright looks like in practice, at Melissa’s gym
Melissa’s Instagram posts on her #mindright practice
MU: 00:00 Hi, my name is Melissa Urban and you’re listening to Do the Thing, a podcast where we explore what’s been missing every time you’ve tried to make a change and make it stick.
MU: 00:20 Today my guest is Todd McCullough. He is one of my very best friends and the founder of TMAC fitness and TMAC20, 20 minute, no equipment workouts. He’s not here to talk about TMAC 20 but I want to talk about TMAC20 because it is such a great exercise protocol, 20 minutes, no equipment needed. You can do these workouts at home, in your living room, at a park, at a gym. I see people doing them with their spouses, doing them with their kids. He’s got workouts for every level from beginner to advanced, and there are even some new yoga workouts. I love them when I’m short on time, when I’m staying in a hotel that doesn’t have a great gym or when I’m home and I just don’t feel like going all the way to the gym to get a good workout in. So for anyone who wants to stay in shape or get back into shape, but you don’t have the time or capacity to spend hours in a gym, trust me.
MU: 01:10 TMAC20 workouts will do the job and while this is not a commercial for TMAC20 if you did want a discount code for 30 free days, we’ll have one for you at the end of the episode. Okay. What we are here to talk about today is that Todd is the person who introduced me to the four part mindright meditation practice. This is the one you see me doing every morning in my Instagram stories. I’ve been sitting down in the middle of my gym immediately post workout and meditating for almost two years now and it’s hands down the single most impactful part of every training session. My gym on a weekday morning is loud and busy and chaotic and frantic, and yet most days when I end my practice and open my eyes, I’m calmer, more centered, more grounded and clear on my intentions for the day.
MU: 02:02 I’ve been researching the benefits of meditation since I wrote it starts with food in 2011 the more I read, the more I believed meditation was the key to everything. Physical health, emotional wellbeing, spirituality, resilience. But despite trying really hard, I could never develop a habit of meditating, which is like silly cause I’m such an upholder. I’d tried guided meditations, listening to my breath, loving kindness, meditations, apps. I would meditate at night, I’d meditate during the day no matter what. It never stuck and tell Todd sat us down after a hard workout in Nashville in a room full of gym goers. Told me to close my eyes and walked me through a mindright meditation. From that day on, I’ve never missed a session. And this episode we’ll talk about what mindright means to each of us. His background in spirituality and the relationship between prayer and meditation.
MU: 02:59 He shares why tacking your meditation on post workout, Walk, run, or hike is the most effective way to drop in. And each of us shares what the four parts of the mindright meditation practice sounds like when we’re going through it on our own. I’ll also share some of the unexpected benefits of this practice and Todd will explain how even the busiest of us can incorporate a mindright habit. Even if you don’t have a dedicated exercise practice, I promise you don’t need to have a spiritual practice or religious affiliation to reap the benefits. Although I do use my time on the turf to listen to God, you know those messages from the universe that I’ll share on Instagram. I’ll explain in this episode where they come from. This episode is for everyone. If you want to feel more connected to a higher power, others or yourself, if you want to show up in life with more capacity and grace, if you trust that in just five minutes a day, you can fill your own cup so you have more to give. Those you love. Please keep listening. I’ve experienced the life changing benefits of this practice and I want you to experience it too now onto the episode.
MU: 04:12 All right, Todd McCullough. Welcome back to do the thing. (TM) What’s up? Glad to be here. (MU) I’m going to have you say back because we are actually recorded this episode for the very first one in a million years ago and I was very bad at it. (TM) You’re like a real like podcaster now. (MU) Now I’m a little bit better. Yeah, but I could, I didn’t want to air the first one because it did not do our relationship justice. Like we are such good friends and I don’t think that came across in the first one.
TM/MU: 04:35 Happy to be here. Happy to share with the whole30 community and all the other folks who follow along with this sitting in my kitchen table. Very Professional. It’s been a good morning. It has been a good morning and we’re going to talk about what we did this morning in light of this podcast, which is all about your mindright Meditation practice, but the first question I ask all of my guests is, what’s your thing?
TM: 04:55 My thing is to help busy mom and dad’s move and connect each day. You know, years ago I did personal training in La for about 10 years and I really saw that there was this huge demographic of people that wanted to work out, wanted to have some sort of daily spiritual practice but didn’t have time. You know, we basically, you know, we try to provide a really great opportunity for mom and dad. So wake up each day, move their bodies, get connected again and do a quick little meditation slash prayer at the end.
MU: 05:23 Yeah, all the good stuff. I love that. I love that. So you’re going to hear us say the word mindright like 723 times in this podcast. Or Hashtag mindright. What does mindright mean to you?
TM/MU: 05:35 That’s a great question. I think for if you were to ask our audience, they would probably all give you different but similar answers. For me personally, it is, I would say mindset and purpose. Meaning that one thing I’ve learned over the years as an athlete is that the one thing you can control each day is your attitude. But what really, it also just as equally important for me is the purpose part and so we can talk more about the mindright meditation later. But as you know, there’s a critical part of that. It makes you, helps you feel connected each day. And when we all mean by connected is like this understanding that it’s more than just about you. right You’re connected to something bigger. Yeah. For some people that’s a spiritual practice. For some people that’s community, but for me it’s a daily reminder that like this isn’t all about you, Todd, to be able to start your day with the sense of purpose. Yes. It helps you filter in the rest of the day, I think in a proactive manner.
MU: 06:32 Yeah. For me, it’s funny that you said everyone’s going to give you a little bit of a different answer. I associate mindright specifically with the meditation practice that we’re going to talk about, but every morning I find that I need something different. Some mornings I may need to feel energized. Some mornings I may need to ground, some mornings I may need to like project and give. Other mornings I need to sort of recharge for myself and just the act of having this practice that allows me to get my mindright, to check in with myself, find what I need in that moment in that day and then set the intention for the rest of my day. Makes the biggest difference. And how does it make you feel? Oh my gosh, we’re going to talk about it because this has been, I could name on one hand some of the most life changing things that I’ve experienced over the course of my life. The work of Byron Katie is one, the whole30 is one, this mindright Meditation practice is also one. That’s how life changing it’s been. Those are some big names. They’re big names. You are right up there. So I want to talk about mindright in association with the specific meditation practice that you’ve created and developed. This meditation practice started for you back on the beaches of California when you would wake up in the morning and go surf. Can you describe what that looked like?
TM/MU: 07:45 Yeah. So I think to kind of bring it all the way back, right, I came to know Christ at 12 years old, right I had a deep connection to God at an early age. I grew up in the south and that was a critical part of my upbringing and you know, I’d wake up in the morning and do my kind of morning prayers and as you would have been around like a pray before we eat, it’s just, it was kind of a part of my life is since I was 12 and as I, you know, moved to California, started studying, practicing yoga. I was introduced to meditation and was kind of honestly in Yoga for the first, I don’t know, five or six years was just about the movement for me was just about a weight that I had some injuries from. Football was a way that I could sweat and not, you know, not hurt afterwards.
TM/MU: 08:26 And then really the injuries flared up again and it got where I literally couldn’t even do yoga. Like the pain was so bad and my knees, my shoulders, not back from football, go gators. By the way, those of you listening. Um, so I would go out, I was like, all right, well, you know, being an athlete, like you have to move your body. Like if you’re not moving your body, I feel so disconnected. right And so I was like, all right, well how can I move my body in a way that flew? I can’t run, I can’t do a pushup. So I was like, all right, we’ve got this cold ass Pacific ocean. And it was like during the winter, which is about 55 degrees, the ocean out there. And I could go at sunrise and get in the ocean and the first five minutes is just brutal for those who are familiar with the Pacific Ocean or in the winter.
TM/MU: 09:07 And it helped me develop this meditation practice, right Because if you’re going to stay in there, I would say I would know kind of swim around for about 20 minutes. But if you’re gonna make it past that first five, you start to develop the skill set, so to speak, where you remove yourself from the actual physical body where you’re like looking down from above. And a lot of yogis would call it like being the observer. I mean I’ve heard about it in the yoga world, but it really happened in the ocean, in the cold therapy have been just like, I’m going to last longer than five minutes tomorrow, my last day, longer than eight minutes. And you develop this muscle, right Like the brain is just like too, well, look at us just like your glutes, right If you want to train your glutes, you gotta do squats.
TM/MU: 09:44 If you wanna train the mind, you need to meditate. So go back, you’re back in the ocean. You then found this observer mentality where you were able to stay in this cold environment and quiet the mind coming out of the ocean. You would sit on the beach, I would sit on the beach, it’d be freezing cold, like your teeth are chattering and you have to learn to control the breath. And again, start to build that muscle of bringing your mind out of the body. And I would have, you know, start to visualize myself, you know, back then around the campfire in Georgia after hunting in the morning with my family and sitting around and like, I could actually see my dad, my brother, my nephew around a campfire warming up and I would actually start to warm up whether my body temperature did that or not, but I start to feel warmer.
TM/MU: 10:30 So I just became really fascinated with the power of the mind and I was like, alright, this is pretty freaking amazing. And going back to a sense of purpose, right I was like, I’ve got this. I had this background for the first half of my life as an athlete, right Like I dedicated my life to football and I had a certain skill set in that area and now I felt like I just learned this new incredible tool with the yoga and meditation. And I was like, it’s now my responsibility to take what I’ve learned from the yoga and meditation and to give this to the community. You know, I’d like to say it started with TMAC20 workout, which for those who have done our workouts, you know there are 20 minutes workouts, no equipment, no excuses, and each workout ends in the meditation of prayer.
TM/MU: 11:10 And that’s what we offer. You know, I said in the beginning for busy mom and dads each day, but it was this really like two years of just may look like a crazy out there in Santa Monica playing around with like, all right, I got this from sports, I got this, you know, from Yoga, how can I merge these things? And I, you know, there could be other ones out there. Now I’m not saying we’re not, but I don’t know many workout programs that include a mindfulness practice. And to me that was, I was asking for advice years ago when I was starting this, or like Todd do not include this spiritual practice with exercise. There’s a reason why people don’t do that, right They’re separate. And my response was like, look, I could be wrong, but I’ve got no desire just to create a workout program and worked.
MU: 11:53 Sure. I definitely want to ask you about the relationship between prayer and meditation
TM/MU: 11:58 and for those of you listening, this is a question I get a lot often from those from more of a traditional like Christian practice is like they’re a little worried about the word meditation and the way that out describe this, I get this question often is think of praying as a way of talking to God and think of meditation as a way to creating the space to hear God, you know, whatever your spiritual practice is. One of my favorite thing, so we opened this up to everyone. You don’t need to be a Christian to do this, is that when you can still the mind, you create the space to hear God. And I think that is something in our busy tech world that we all live in is so needed. Yeah,
MU: 12:38 so you started with being in the ocean and then sitting after and meditating and then that eventually translated into the gym when you were able to get back into the gym and started doing TMAC20 workouts in gym workouts, getting in and meditating. I have found that meditating after my workout has made the difference in creating a meditation practice that sticks. Cause I had been trying for years to meditate. I try in the morning, I would try at night I would try midday and I could never get a practice that sticks until I discovered meditating after my workout. Why is that specific time so effective?
TM/MU: 13:16 There is something about shocking the system, right Getting the blood flowing and then once you’ve done that for whatever reason, then you can drop in easier to the meditation. right So for example, you like to go to the gym, you’ve already got that good routine. Now drop the meditation in right after that. we’ve got runners who go do their run and then they come in their house. They do the meditation but shocking the system. And what I mean by shocking the system. Again, it can be a run, it can be jumping in the ocean, it could be surfing, it could be going to the gym and then dropping into the brief meditation and allows the nervous system to switch over, go deeper into the meditation is a game changer.
MU: 13:53 It is. So you’re describing it as shocking. The system. The way I think about it is that I need like a toddler who needs to like get the tantrum out before they can have a rational conversation. I go into the gym and I physically work through whatever stress or whatever negative emotion or anger or fear or resentment. I’m physically working that through my system so that by the time I sit down to meditate after my workout, the bulk of those feelings have been physically processed. And now as you said, I’m able to drop in. I’m more, I’m calmer, I’m a little bit more rational and a little bit more logical. Um, and I feel like that movement is what allows me to actually then sit a little bit more comfortably and more in peace and set that intention.
TM/MU: 14:38 Well, I think you said it perfectly, right It’s like there’s just something about moving the body, getting out the stress out of the body first with movement to drop in.
MU: 14:44 Yeah. And then the other piece that you mentioned, which is so mission critical is that anytime you’re trying to set or create a new habit, the best way to start a new habit is to tack it onto an existing habit. And for, I don’t know, which is more effective for me, I think they’re both equally effective, but the fact that I was already going to the gym every day or six days a week and all I would do is just add an extra five minutes at the end.
MU: 15:10 The fact that I was able to add it onto the end of my existing workout and just tack on an extra five minutes means that it was always getting done. And so it was a habit from the very, very beginning because I added it on to something I was already doing.
TM/MU: 15:23 And, and we see that a lot with our people, right On most people, you know, whether we like it or not, they come to our program to lose 10 pounds, right And we meet them where they are with a 20 minute workout, right And they can do it in their home with no equipment. And then then they start to do the little brief meditation where like, well, I’m already here now. I might as well do it right. So they came there just for the physical and then they start to realize, they’re like, I’ll get, you know, get some of these messages like from some guy and you know, middle of nowhere, Georgia, like I’m doing that meditation thing and I don’t know what it is, but I feel good. You know? And that’s, that puts a huge smile on my face because look, I’m a dude from north Florida. If you’d have told me I would be doing meditation and Yoga, there was no way in hell I could ever imagine that. So I really do have a passion for people that are just curious about it. They, we all know that movement’s good. We all know that a meditation or prayer, mindfulness crisis could assist. Most people don’t have the time.
MU: 16:16 Yeah. They don’t have the time and they don’t know what it looks like. And this is, so what we’re going to get into next is what your specific four part practice is. And what I love about it is that it’s sort of a hybrid. If you asked someone to just sit and meditate on their own, they’re like, man, what am I supposed, am I supposed to go totally zen and not think about anything? Which is impossible. Exactly. Am I supposed to count them? Do My breathing and my listening? Like what do I do? And it’s very um, difficult I find to get into that practice. Guided Meditations are really, really nice, but you don’t always have like the time or capacity to sit through a guided meditation and ease that meditation, what you actually need in the moment. So what you’ve designed is a very nice hybrid. Take us through each of the four parts of the mindright Meditation.
TM/MU: 16:59 Sure. I’ll, I’ll take everyone through it. And again, this is what’s amazing about what Melissa has done is think of this as a template, right Like I’m not one, it says sits and says this is the only way to do it, but think of as a template. Go through it a few times and then tweak it to make it work best for you, right So we’ll go through this. It’s a four-part meditation and each part normally lasts about 30 seconds to a minute. And the first one is just a moment of gratitude, right You just got to move your body. You finished your workout, you woke up today, you had a roof over your head, you’ve got family friends. But make it personal, right Just a moment of gratitude and just starting your day that way is so powerful. And you’ll sit with that for about 30 seconds to a minute and then you move into lifting up a loved one, right
TM/MU: 17:41 So for example, I always share that one that out and do is my brother’s a police officer. So I’ll see him come home from work in his, in his, his wife and kids are waiting for him on the front porch. I see a big smile come across my niece and nephews face my brother’s face and you’re just pouring blessings. Imagine this glowing light hovering over your loved one and you’re just pouring blessings upon them throughout the day, which is such a special thing to do, right To be again, to realize it’s not just about you. Right. And the third part it’s visualizing success. What does it look like? But more importantly, what does it feel like? So like our friend Kathleen at the whole 30, uh, you know, this weekend was actually talking about what does that success look like in your business? Feel that have that moment now.
TM/MU: 18:25 And it could be as simple as like literally taking your kid to soccer practice and seen him kick the ball, but visualize what successes and what more poorly again, what does it feel like have that moment. And the final part is just being present, being still listen to the rise of the fall of the breath, the sounds of the room. So for those of you who you know are familiar with Melissa story, she’s in a gym weights or moving around sounds for every square. But that’s her special place, right And she’s just being completely present and that’s where the magic happens. The mind stills are able to settle in and when you’re done, you open your eyes. There’s this sense of peace. Like you just did this badass workout. You’re sweating five minutes ago you were huffing and puffing and now you’re just have so much peace and calmness. And again, I think it’s just a better way of operating throughout the day and whatever filters come your way, whatever stimulus comes your way, you just have a better lens to see an operate in the world.
MU: 19:21 Yeah. So that is the original practice that you took me through. It’s gotta be what, two years ago now, when I visited you in Nashville, we sat down and I had done it with you on the o in the ocean, but I had never done it in the gym. Most people thought we were crazy. Yeah, we were. We sat in the middle of our gym. We had done this like pull up and dead lift and all these different workouts and we sat in the gym and did it and it was the first time I had done the practice in a space like that. Yep. And I came home and immediately implemented it into my own gym workouts. And as you said, I keep that template in mind, but I have customized it a little bit along the way. So
TM/MU: 19:55 tell folks about it, I actually really like how you’ve improved and I think it could be an improvement.
MU: 20:00 Well I just think it works really well for me. So I never time it. I sit in each practice, I sit in each section as long as I need. I have no idea how long it takes. I’ve never tried to time it before. I’m in the first practice. That’s gratitude and sometimes I’m cycling through. Sometimes it is just a laundry list of gratitude and sometimes the gratitude is that I was able to get into the gym and move my body, that my head felt good enough that I got a good night’s sleep. Sometimes it’s like one big thing that I’m grateful for. One person that I’m grateful for. Often it’s just Brandon, I’m so grateful that he’s in my life. I, I’m grateful for you all the time for this meditation practice, which is kind of Meta. Um, in the second section, lifting someone up, this is where I think about sending light to people that I love and sometimes it’s people in my own life.
MU: 20:42 Sometimes it’s people in my community, so I’ll get a DM from someone who’s battling cancer or who lost their mom and like that’s who I’m lifting up. Sometimes I lift myself up because Lord knows I could use a little bit of help and I could use some connection to God. The third part I think is what I’ve customized the most. And I’ve used that to start setting my own intention for the day. This is where I ask myself, it is what is success look like? But it’s me checking in with myself to say, what do I need today? And I will cycle through like words or feelings until one lands. Do I need grounding? Do I need connection? Do I need quiet? Do I need energy every once in awhile? And I use this opportunity very clearly to talk to God and to listen to God.
MU: 21:24 He will like jump into my space and throw a word in my lap. And when I tell you that that message comes through loud and clear as if he is talking directly into my ear. I’m not kidding. And sometimes I’ll share those on my Instagram feed. I call them messages from the universe. Um, but I’ll get a message that’s very loud, very clear and I know that that’s what I need and that’s coming directly from my connection to the universe. And then I sit and listen. And the sitting and listening part is like my dessert. Honestly, there are times where I will be like kind of tired and I’m not really sure I want to go to the gym, but I’ll go because I know if I go, I get to do my mindright. And if I get to do my mindright, I get to sit and listen.
TM/MU: 22:00 Totally. Yeah. I mean that’s honestly why I go to the gym. Now. The reason, I mean I love to move and exercise obviously, but honestly like yourself, like the biggest thing for me now is, is the mindfulness practice.
MU: 22:10 Yeah. It’s absolutely magical. So I sit and listen and I listen as you said, you, you did it in my gym with me just an hour ago. We listened to the sounds of the weights and the trainers barking orders and the two different musics that are playing over the sound system and balls slamming and um, and I find it quite beautiful.
TM/MU: 22:27 It is and it’s been so awesome to watch you and kind of on that journey and go through that as your friend and for those you are at home watching again sometimes. I know that, look, if I was listening to this years ago, it sounds very abstract. This is a very practical and easy to implement way, right It’s, I’m not going to say the first time you’re going to start, feel like you float on a cloud, but it’s something that you can implement in every, uh, in everyday life. And then if you’re someone who’s interested in, again, like I said, being in a better parent, a better coworker, a better friend, try to explore it, you know, again, like it’s completely free. Just try and explore what happens.
MU: 23:02 So this is where I wanna go next, which is I think people are intimidated by the idea cause they’re afraid they’re not going to do it right. Or if their mind is kind of squirreling all over the place that they’re not doing it right or if they can’t get to a place.
TM/MU: 23:16 Oh really? I used to feel that way. Yeah. I used to feel that way and yoga guy was like, everyone’s doing this shavasana meditation thing and my mind is all over the place and there’s a couple of tools to kind of help with that. right Like one of the ones is like, you can imagine your thoughts. It’s like a balloon coming by and you just simply like, you don’t want to fight or ignore it. You just simply pop the balloon, let it pass by. But I also think there’s something beautiful about like just listening and being present to the thoughts in the sounds you hear. All right. There’s just that it allows the mind to still. As you as you were saying, like, you know, you think God like brings you, God brings you, you feel like God brings you a word. Again, one of the biggest differences, or I’ll say differences. I’m all, I, like I said, I prayed throughout the day, but you’re creating this space. So I think here, God, and that’s how you’re able to get these messages, so to speak, as you say, um, is such a beautiful
MU: 24:06 yeah. And whether you think you’re connected to God or whether you’re connected to an energy that we all share or the universe, or even just sitting with yourself, there’s something so beautiful about sitting with yourself and asking yourself, what do I need in this moment?
TM/MU: 24:22 Yeah. Reconnecting each day to your physical body. That alone has so many benefits.
MU: 24:28 Yeah. So I think it’s important to remember that meditation is a practice. It’s not a destination. And sometimes the practice is me sitting down and realizing that 700 times in this five minute period, my mind has wandered and I’ve just noticed that it’s wandered and I’ve brought it right back. Um, and I think that’s, that’s the key. The, the, the act of showing up for yourself in this fashion every day. That is the lesson. That is the benefit.
TM/MU: 24:53 Absolutely. And I think going back, one of the things that has been really, again I touched on earlier, we were talking is the purpose part. Yeah. You know that again, I’m fine. I don’t understand. People come to us to lose weight and we’re happy to meet them where they are, but once we can get them shifting to a stronger why, like I feel great when I do this TMAC20 workout, I’m happier. I’m more like my better husband, I’m more present with my kid, I’m not on my phone all the time. There’s a lot of people out there that want to be a better parent. Right. And like these are tools to do that.
MU: 25:29 There is another benefit of this mindright Meditation practice that I don’t think, I’m not sure you realize. I did not realize until I started doing it and started sharing it, which is the idea of claiming space. So you’ve seen me, I will sit down in my gym and I don’t sit on the middle of a platform while someone’s dead lifting, but I’m also not stuck in a dark corner. I’m finding a quiet spot in the gym and I’m sitting… you were right in the middle of the turf. I sure was.
TM/MU: 25:54 I was waiting for a sled to get pushed over you.
MU: 25:56 Yeah. I tried to move away from the sleds at least, but I’ve done this in a very busy gym in the middle of Manhattan. I’ve done this in LA. I’ve done this in gyms all over the world where I will find a space and sit and claim it. And I’ve had so many people, particularly women say just the act of claiming my space in the gym is so empowering. Like I deserve to sit in this spot and have this mindright meditation just as much as the guy who’s doing bicep curls or the person who’s dead lifting. And like, that’s such a powerful mindset that I don’t think even I realized when I started doing it,
TM/MU: 26:31 I certainly didn’t. And I’ve heard that a lot through some of the direct messages through Instagram that I get, um, you know, being a bigger than normal guy, it’s not really something I’ve ever had to deal with. And I think we have, we touched on what does mindright mean to you? And I said, I think that if you ask our community, they’d all give you a little different answer. And that’s one right there that I never anticipated, but I’ve heard it over and over and it such an amazing thing for someone to do. Yeah. It’s so empowering.
MU: 26:57 It is really empowering. It isn’t. Now I think the more, I think that translates into every area of your life, as you said, I believe this mindright Meditation practice, especially when combined with like a TMAC20 workout or your workout in the gym or your run or your hike makes you a better parent, a better spouse, a better employee. It makes you more confident. It makes you happier. One of the earliest experiences I had with meditating on my own when I came back up to from Nashville was I had gone in on a Saturday morning, my kid was having a really tough morning, like one of those mornings where I could not be happier to drop him off in the daycare. I was like, he’s your problem now. And I get into the gym and it was just, I was just so pissy through my whole workout. Like I was annoyed and I was just, how am I going to handle this kid for the rest of the weekend? Like it was a bad parenting moment. And I sat down to do my mindright. And I came out of it an entirely new person. I had grace, I had patients, I had compassion, and we went on to have a wonderful rest of our weekend. And I firmly believe that his behavior changed because my behavior change because my mindset changed. And in that moment I realized the power of this meditation practice.
TM/MU: 28:07 That’s pretty amazing. Yeah. No, I mean that’s, um, and I hear that a lot like similar stories like that. Um, being able to control your mindset. You know, there’s not always, like I said, every day is not perfect, but being able to be in a positive mindset affects your kids. It does, right
MU: 28:28 If someone doesn’t have a regular workout practice, they don’t go to the gym five days a week. Like I do. They don’t to do team at 24 times a week. Yep. How could they implement this mind? Right practice.
TM/MU: 28:38 So I, I tell people all the time, honestly, when beginners reach out to me, I said, well, we actually built out a whole beginner platform now for beginners of the TMAC20 workouts. I’m so happy we’ve done, we’ve got two amazing trainers who teach that Belden and Lauren. Um, but what I’ve been telling people for years, I say walk. Um, but after your walk, do the mindright Meditation. There’s a concept in our program we call the three twenties. You have three 20 minute windows in your natural day, right When you first wake up, lunch and dinner, right And this is huge, especially for people trying to develop a new, healthy routine. So maybe you don’t like to work out first thing, walk your pet first thing in the morning, go for a walk and then drop into the meditation. But try to move first and then during your lunch break, try to get in your walk again, right Like most people have 30 to 45 minutes to an hour for lunch and then in the evening is, you know, after work try to get into another walk or even your team at 20 if you didn’t do it that morning. So the idea, I think the three 20 concept is really something that’s tangible and practical for busy people that are looking to build a new routine. And just whenever you fit in, whenever you do that movement, try that meditation. Just a couple minutes.
MU: 29:44 And I think I’ve also heard you talk about how it doesn’t have to be a structured exercise that you probably have moments in your day where you’re out throwing the ball with your dog, you’re playing with your kids, you guys are walking around the block or you go to the park. And that’s a perfect opportunity also to then afterwards throw mindright in and like bonus do it with your kids.
TM/MU: 30:03 It does. That’s one of the most encouraging things I see people from around the world teaching their kid this and maybe even the kids may be awake half the time, half the time not, but what a great thing for your kid to see you do that like one day they’re going to sit there with their kids, but like I don’t, you know, our couldn’t remember, mom was such a bad ass. Like she got up every day, did her team at 20 did this meditation and now it’s something they’ve been able to implement in their life and pass onto their children. And that is honestly, we tell them about goosebumps. Like that is that purpose and why for what I do at [inaudible] fitness.
MU: 30:37 Yeah, it really is. And everything I’ve read said that meditation for kids is such a powerful tool for things like attention and behavior and even just confidence and socialization. So I do love that idea. I have a lot of people who come to the gym with me and they’ve asked me about mindright and I keep saying, if you ever want to try it with me, come sit down. I’ve had one or two people take me up on it. Shannan Hanson, who we just spent the weekend with was one of them. We went to the gym, did a workout, she did a mindright with me and she was like, this is really powerful, Lee, transformational, and so I’m with you. I’m your biggest advocate. I want to share this message and have every single person in the world doing their mu healthy movement, doing their mindright, meditation and then using that, carrying that over into every area of their life.
TM/MU: 31:24 Thank you. No, it’s, I mean it’s something that, look, we’ve know that moving it, like I said earlier, we know that moving is good. We know some sort of mindful practices is good, but we just don’t have the time and so I don’t, I, I didn’t, right Reinvent the wheel here. I just basically pulled from a lot of unique life experiences and hopefully give people a tangible, usable, everyday platform to move and connect by simply moving in, connecting each day. We can put our best foot forward to better serve those around us. And so again, maybe you come to a whole 30 or you come to T-mac 20 for the, you know, to help help your life personally, but as you grow in that, understand how that is going to also help those you love the most.
MU: 32:03 Yeah. All right. At the end of every episode I ask all my guests, what’s one thing you can recommend for someone who’s ready to do the thing?
TM/MU: 32:13 One thing, one thing is tough. I would say, okay, first when it comes to say like understanding a strong why understand that moving, connecting each day will not only improve your lives but the lives you care the most about. That’s it. Let’s leave it at that. Like understand that that is the work that we’re here to do.
MU: 32:33 That’s so beautiful. I love that and I love you so much. Where can people find here more about you find team at 20 workouts and the video you made explaining this mindright Meditation practice. Yes,
TM/MU: 32:45 so the easiest way to connect is obviously through Instagram, right at tmacfitness which is tmacfitness. Um, on the Instagram there’s a link there in the bio to the workouts, the team at 20 workouts, it’s 15 days free for everyone and the whole 30 community gets a whole free month with coupon code whole 30 so go to checkout. And then if you can go to the team at fitness website, if you’re not on Instagram, again it’s TMACfitness.com and you’ll see a little tab there says join and that’s where you sign up for your free membership.
MU: 33:16 I love it. We’ll make sure to include all these links in the show notes and I’ll also link to the one Instagram post where I videoed myself doing the meditation in my gym on a busy Saturday morning so people can see what it looks like.
TM/MU: 33:26 One more thing that to be clear on the actual meditation yourself. This for those who are listening to simplest way to go to that find that is through the Instagram and when searched the highlights, is that what they’re called? Yeah, on highlights. It’ll say meditation and then you just enter your email there and it’s completely free.
MU: 33:39 Wonderful. Thank you so much Todd. Thanks for rerecording this with me. I did a way better job this time. Can I have another Waterloo now. Can have as many waterloos as you want. Yeah, that was great. Oh my God, you crushed it. Nice work. I haven’t. Oh, how is like with all of them so I thought that went great. It was beautiful. It was wonderful. I listen, I was way too ambitious in the first one and we didn’t get to talk about this stuff. That was like the most important stuff to talk about. I have a lot more experience interviewing now. I’ve done a lot of interviews, but that doesn’t mean you’re a good interviewer. So you are my practice. Thanks for being so awesome to like see how you allowed room for depth. But then as if I was going too far one direction, you brought us back.
MU: 34:24 I tried to really you and yeah cause I really want, there were like pieces of the story that I wanted to tell you. It was brilliant. Just kind of guided me along and then we’ll, I think we gave people some real home like take home, went buy some practical things that can be implemented. That’s the one of the things from the podcast and I’m like, oh this is good, but how does this implement apply? I think that we really helped deliverable, the whole point of this podcast is helping people figure out what’s been missing when they’ve tried to like make habit change. And for me, when I’ve been trying to meditate for years since I ran red Dan Harris’s 10% happier book years ago. And the reason I couldn’t make it stick was because I didn’t have the post workout practice. As soon as that dropped into place, everything changed. So imagine if that’s what’s been missing for so many people. It has been, I hear it all the time. They’re like, Hey I don’t do your workouts. I do a morning run and I do the meditation and I mean honestly like how much better in world do we live in knowing that there’s some dad in North Carolina right now that’s going to do this before he starts his day. Yeah, I mean that’s awesome. I know exactly what that dad feels like and it’s amazing. Sweet.
MU: 35:36 Before go, I want to touch on the very first part of the podcast where Todd and I each shared our version of what mindright means to us. After we recorded, I was thinking about how on first glance it might seem like our versions are totally opposite. Todd talked about using mine, right To think about connection and purpose, to remind him as he goes about his day, that it’s not just about him. I talk about using it to check in with myself and to ask myself, what do you need today and then use that to set my intention for the day. But when I think about it, we’re really talking about the exact same thing. I recognize that in order for me to serve, which is my purpose, serving my whole30 community, serving my listeners here, I have to know myself really, really well and I draw strength and energy for that service from the universe and from God.
MU: 36:35 So touching base in my mindright Meditation and asking, what do I need today? Provides a foundation so that I can reach out and help others. I check in with God. God sends me messages and I either keep them for myself and I use them to set my intention for the day. Or I share them with you because God tells me sometimes that these messages are far bigger than just me. So through mindright I’m able to better give back to you and my family and my relationship and my friends and everyone I consider myself of service to, which goes right back to Todd’s vision of connection and purpose. Whether you use mindright to connect to the universe, connect back to yourself or fill your own cup so you can better connect to others. I truly believe this simple practice can help you find your purpose.
MU: 37:30 And if you ever see me on a hike or in the gym about to meditate, you are always welcome to join me. Thanks for joining me today on do that thing.
Thanks for listening!
Continue the conversation with me @melissa_hartwig on Instagram. If you have a question for Dear Melissa or a topic idea for the show, leave me a voicemail at (321) 209-1480.
Do the Thing is part of ‘The Onward Project,’ a family of podcasts brought together by Gretchen Rubin—all about how to make your life better. Check out the other Onward Project podcasts– Happier with Gretchen Rubin, Side Hustle School, and Happier in Hollywood.
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