Of all the reasons that lead to chronic diseases, the highest risk factor that is within people’s control to alter is whether they exercise. And one of the most commonly cited reasons people give for not exercising is “lack of time.” I feel that pain. Do you? Would you like to reap key benefits of exercise in a fraction of the time? An academic paper making the rounds concludes that you can. Specifically, the study finds that you can realize the same key health benefits of a 50-minute workout in just 10 minutes.
In this post I will summarize the study and share my thoughts on the 10-minute workout. (more…)
The weekend before last, my wife and I stayed 2 nights at the historic Hotel Del Coronado, just south of San Diego, CA. Using Hilton points, I booked a free stay for us in a standard room, which sells for around $350/night. I wasn’t excited about the room. It wasn’t on the ocean, didn’t have a view, etc. But we were upgraded for free to an Oceanfront Tower Resort Suite on the top floor of the hotel. That room sells for over $1,500/night. It was 900 sq. ft. large. And it had the two features that I wanted: a spectacular ocean view and a balcony to enjoy it from.
The view from our upgraded room’s balcony at Hotel Del Coronado
The upgrade was a gratuitous gift from the hotel. That said, I took certain steps to ask for the gift. I’ve now taken those steps to try to secure an upgrade on 9 separate occasions in three different countries. In all 9 cases, I succeeded in receiving a free room upgrade. Some of the upgrades, such as the one my wife and I just received, have been jaw-dropping. Others have been more modest, but still extremely meaningful to me, providing larger rooms, connecting rooms, better views, etc. Each upgrade has added substantial value to my family’s trip without costing a penny.
In all 9 cases, I booked the rooms for free using points prior to asking for, and receiving, an upgrade. Most people might be hesitant to ask for an upgrade on a paid stay and would be downright embarrassed to ask for an upgrade on a free room. But I have no shame in asking. And neither should you. Worst the hotels can say is “no.” But that’s not what they say.
Here’s how to get hotel room upgrades—sometimes incredible ones—for free: (more…)
On a Friday afternoon last month, just when one’s thoughts might wander to the weekend, I received the call. My wife had gone to the doctor for a routine checkup. But the doctor couldn’t find our baby’s heartbeat. At 9 weeks along, we had lost our 4th child—Mary Rose—to miscarriage.
The burial of Mary Rose and other miscarried infants in Mount Olivet Cemetery; Wheat Ridge, CO
The floor seemed to go out from under my feet. Too many realities struck me all at once; I couldn’t process them.
The initial shock turned quickly to sorrow as some of the implications began to take root. One of the hardest aspects for me is accepting that I won’t be able to get to know her, at least not in this life. I won’t be able to memorize and anticipate her smile. I won’t be able to hear her voice. No “papa doggy” rides. No sleepless nights, which I would gladly have endured.
To not be able to experience Mary Rose is a gut-wrenching loss. To suffer it profoundly is understandable and fitting. Feeling the loss keenly manifests her loveableness.
Yet at the same time, to suffer—and only to suffer—the loss would be to miss an opportunity. For good—some good, at least—can come from anything. Even from death. To find that good and bring it to birth is to honor even more the life of the one who passed. I owe it to Mary Rose to try to make of her death the greatest contribution possible to what matters most. But how? (more…)
When you purchase a computer, should you buy insurance in case it breaks? Or should you purchase travel insurance for a trip? What about car insurance, health insurance, homeowner’s insurance, or life insurance? You can save a lot of money over a lifetime by answering these difficult questions well.
Building destroyed by Hurricane Irma on St. Maarten island
Properly understood, insurance is always a bad deal. But there are 4 times when you should get it anyway. Let me explain. (more…)
Prayer is an unusual activity. With most activities, if you engage in them, you have less time for other things. But not so with prayer. Engaging in prayer provides more, not less, time for other things. Philosopher and author Peter Kreeft puts it this way: “We think our lack of time is the cause of our lack of prayer, but our lack of prayer is the cause of our lack of time.”
Following are 4 reasons—drawn from billionaires and from saints—why it is, paradoxically, the case that you have more time if you pray. (more…)