Monthly Archives: October 2013

Oct 07

Surprising My Parents With a C6 Corvette

Black CorvetteMy parents mean the world to me. They have done so much for me over the years and are a major reason why I am where I am today with my family life, business, and health. They have brought me up to care about others, put family first, give back, live with integrity, but yet be strong, independent, and to always push hard for my goals and dreams. Growing up our family motto was “Spencer’s Never Quit,” and no matter how hard things got, how bad we wanted to give up, my parents drilled that motto into our heads and we would always figure out how to make adjustments and continue moving forward. On top of all that, they made incredible time and financial sacrifices to get me the proper training for baseball and to allow me to travel all over the country, and they made it happen even when they were working long hours and struggling financially. I have a ridiculous amount of love and respect for them and wanted to figure out a way to show them how much I appreciate all they have done, and that’s when the idea of purchasing their dream car, a C6 Corvette, came to mind.

For years I wanted to do something, but unfortunately wasn’t able to afford it. However, Corvette C6over the past 5 years my Beachbody Coach business has increased so much that not only has it given my family and I complete financial freedom, but it has allowed me to do some things for the people I care about most, my friends and family. To me that’s what it’s all about, giving back, and I get this incredible feeling of fulfillment whenever I am able to do something for someone else. Anyways, something that my parents and I really enjoy doing with each other is cruise in our cars. I had a 2011 BMW Z4 and they have a BMW 1M, and whenever it’s nice out we take the tops down and just cruise around town together, stopping at different coffee shops and car shows and just enjoying the time with one another. Back in July I decided that I was going to get rid of the Z4 and purchase a 2014 Corvette Stingray and thought to myself how cool it would be if they had a Corvette as well so that we can put our cars in car shows and even join a Corvette Club together. That’s when I started picking dad’s brain to see exactly what kind of car he wanted.

Black 2008 CorvetteIt was interesting because they had absolutely no idea what was coming! I kept saying things like, “Well whenever you do eventually get your Corvette, what year and color do you want?” Over the course of a few months, I literally found out everything I needed to know to purchase my parents their dream car. I went up to the sales rep at Doug Chevrolet (Brian McGuinness), the one who sold me my Corvette Stingray, and told him what I wanted to do and exactly what I wanted, and after about 3 weeks he had found the perfect car. It was a black 2008 Corvette Z51 coupe with black interior, a carbon fiber dash, and a performance exhaust upgrade. It was PERFECT and everything that they were looking for! I went ahead and bought the car (paid cash thanks to Beachbody) and worked with the dealership in planning something very special to surprise my parents.

A few days later I texted my parents and told them that “the car arrived” and that I wanted Our Familythem to come up and get it with me. They assumed that since I have been waiting on my Corvette Stingray for so long that it’s what I was talking about, but of course they were wrong. They met us at our house and we all rode up together. Melinda took mom and Maddie in the 3 Series and I rode with dad in the 1M. On the ride up to the dealership I was ridiculously excited about the surprise and showed it, but dad figured I was just excited about finally receiving my car that I preordered months ago. When we got there, the plan was to walk over to Brian’s desk, which was on the opposite side of the showroom, and then all walk over to the showroom together where “my car” was sitting. We walked over there and there was mom and dad’s car with a large red bow on top and a letter I wrote to them in a card sitting on the windshield. When dad saw it he whispered to mom, “That’s the car I want to get!” not know it was actually his. Then the confusion set in as I walked over, grabbed the card, handed it to them and told them to read it. Here is the video of how it all went down.

As you saw, after they read the card dad was shocked, mom was in tears, and they truly weren’t sure what the heck was going on! After it finally sank in, they were so appreciative and I could see the excitement and joy in their eyes. That moment is one that will always remember.

If you want to experience one of the greatest feelings that you can ever feel in your life, do something for something without expecting anything in return. Truly incredible. This is why I donate, why I help others, and why I do things for family and friends as much as I possibly can. Purchasing a Corvette C6 for my parents was truly an awesome experience and moment, and I know that we will all enjoy our cars together as much as we possibly can. It’s just one more thing that brings our family closer together. I do have to thank Beachbody  for creating this awesome business and opportunity, and my team, Team Next Level, for helping me build a business to allow me to do these things for others.

Oct 04

2014 Corvette Stingray Review

blacked out 2014 corvette

I just received my Corvette Stingray yesterday and wanted to take some time to write this 2014 Corvette Stingray review because so many people have been asking me about the car. Before I get into anything, though, let me give you a brief review of the events that led up to the purchase.

For the past 4 years I have been a BMW guy. I own a 2006 3-Series and owned a 2011 Z4 35i, which I just traded in for the new Stingray. BMW is known for it’s incredible quality, and that’s why I decided to go with both of those cars. The Z4 was my first “big” purchase, and it was a reward to myself for winning the Top Beachbody Coach Corvette Stingray Front End2010 award. When I first saw the car I knew I wanted to purchase it, and for 3 years it was an outstanding car that both my wife and I enjoyed on many date nights and vacations. However, back in early July I saw a picture of the new Corvette Stingray and instantly fell in love with the car. After reading a few reviews, I went ahead and pre-ordered a Black Z51 2LT with black rims, red calipers, black interior, with the upgraded performance exhaust package and transparent roof. For months I sat in anticipation and read through the Corvette Forums daily to learn about the car and receive updates on production. A few weeks ago I finally received the good news that my Stingray was produced, and just recently I got a call from the dealer that my car had arrived. My family and I went up to pick it up, and all I have to say is that the car absolutely lives up to its hype and in my opinion SURPASSES it! Here is my review.

2014 Corvette Exterior

Blacked Out 2014 CorvetteEdges and Angles. Pictures don’t do the Corvette Stingray any justice. Seriously, it looks good in pictures, but it looks absolutely INCREDIBLE in person! The new Corvette is much edgier than the previous C6 version, giving it a “meaner” look, and I can see how it definitely appeals to the younger crowd. Being 28 years old, I guess it worked. I love the C6, but the C7 has a greater appeal to me. There are a greater number of sharp edges and angles on the hood and side, and there are even some on the removable top as well, which I was rather surprised about. The front comes to a point rather than being rounded, and the 2 separate triangular points underneath the grill really gives the car a very sporty look.

Back End. The taillights are the most controversial part of the Corvette Stingray, but in my 2014 Corvette Taillightsopinion look fantastic, especially in person. I really like the direction that Corvette took with the taillights, again, giving the car that “edgy” look. Something that took me by surprise with the taillights, though, was that they aren’t flat, but rather they are almost 3D, with the center of the lights sinking in towards the car. It wasn’t something that I picked up from any of the pictures I saw. The tail pipes are much larger than they seem in the pictures, and after doing a side-to-side comparison with my father’s 2008 C6, they are quite larger than the C6’s as well. I also really like how they bunched them together and enclose them with the back bumper, rather than separate them and have them sit below the bumper. It gives it a much more elegant look. On top of that, they sound AMAZING when the flaps are open in Sport and Track Mode! It has a low, mean growl.

2014 Corvette StingrayTires and Rims. When I looked at pictures, I loved the black Z51 rims than came with the car, but I didn’t know if I would like them in person, and I even started looking at rims to replace them. However, again, after seeing them in person I don’t think I will ever purchase another set of rims. They are sharp, sporty, and have an excellent shine to them. The smaller front tires (19″) and the larger back tires (20″) give the car a nice downward, sporty angle as well. The only thing that I worry about, though, is keeping the rims shiny. I noticed that the brake dust really builds up quickly, so I’m going to have to wipe them down after every time I drive the car.

Black 2014 Corvette

Headlights. This is another area that I think GM made major improvements on. The headlights are much sharper, edgy, and are much more luxurious. While driving, a bright, halogen like blue light can be seen reflecting from the cars ahead of you. The headlights remind me of a Ferrari’s headlights.

2014 Corvette Interior

2014 Corvette Touch ScreenTouch Screen. The interior is absolutely fantastic. The first thing you notice when you get into the car is the touch screen that you can actually press a button and hide. When you hide it, a hidden storage compartment with a USB port pops up. It’s a great place to stick your phone, wallet, etc. The regular radio, XM radio, car settings, and bluetooth are all controlled from the touch screen. The only thing that I didn’t like about the touch screen is how hard you have to press to make it work. If you don’t like to touch the actually screen, though, there are manual buttons and dials you can use as well, which in some cases has proven to be easier.

Seats. The seats are everything I could have asked for. I got the leather GT seats and ICorvette Stingray Seats was immediately surprised with how comfortable they were. They are seats that you could sit in for hours and not have any issues with, which is good because I will be traveling with my Stingray quite often. The little Corvette emblem stitched into the seats is also a great touch. This is one area that I think GM made massive improvements with.

Audio. The premium Bose surround sound system is by far the best that I have ever heard in a car, seriously, and it’s one of my favorite things about the 2014 Corvette. I decided to turn up the bass to a notch over halfway (halfway is factory setting), and the car was literally shaking once a high bass song came on. The subwoofer is in the back of the car, and there are numerous speakers all Corvette Stingray Steering Wheelover the place. Audio definitely gets an A+!

HUD (Heads Up Display). This took a little getting used to for me because I have never had it before, but it’s a pretty neat perk. It’s a small display that’s projected onto your windshield that you can adjust to show you a number of different things, like speed, revs, etc. There are a few buttons and dials that allow you to change the display settings, lighten or darken it, and move it up and down, and it’s just to the left of the steering wheel.

Memory Seats. I actually just found this out, but in additional to remembering where yourCorvette Stingray Interior seat settings were, it also remembers a number of other different things, like steering wheel position and the position of the side mirrors. You can save the settings for 2 people.

Heated and Vented Seats. Even though I haven’t gotten a chance to use these yet, but the seats can be heated if you get cold and vented if you get warm. In my Z4 I always had heated seats, but never vented, and I’m pretty anxious to try it out to see if it really does cool you off. The passenger seat also has it’s own controls for the heated and vented seats.

Interior of 2014 CorvetteStorage Space. If you have the removable top on, there is quite a bit of room in the back for you to store your luggage. In my best guess, I would say that you could store about 4 suitcases or large duffle bags in the back. However, if you have the top stored in the back, there is barely any room for you to store anything, maybe a small bag or two underneath.

2104 Corvette Driving Experience

Shifting. I saw a few 2014 Corvette Stingray reviews that mentioned that it was very tough to shift gears with a manual transmission, but I definitely have to disagree. In fact, I would even go as far as saying that it shifts much better than my BMW Z4! For those of you who don’t already know, it’s a 7 speed transmission, and in my opinion 7 gears might be a little much and unnecessary, but it’s not a nuisance. I guess it would be beneficial on long highway trips, but I don’t think I will be using that 7th gear very often. Also, new to the Corvette Stingray is the Rev Matching. This is a pretty cool feature that has been added to the 2014 Corvette, and it is controlled from the paddles (look like shifting paddles) behind the steering wheel. It’s a rather odd placement for them, but it will just take a little getting used to. When the rev match is turned on, it automatically matches the revs for the next gear when downshifting. I have found it to be very nice while stuck in a lot of traffic. However, if you want the full manual transmission experience, you can shut the rev match off.

Power. As much as I wanted to get on it and stomp the gas pedal to the floor, I couldn’t because it’s so brand new. After talking to the dealer, I will probably wait until the car has at least a few hundred miles on it before really seeing what it has. However, just from the short time I did drive it, it’s obvious that it has an incredible amount of power and torque. I’m pretty anxious to have experience my first burnout with the 2014 Corvette, but I will have to be patient.

Driving Modes. I believe there are 5 modes (I might be missing one): Weather, Track, Sport, Touring, and Eco. I messed around with most of the modes and they are all very different, and you can feel it in the car. The track and sport modes are obvious, and they are for a more aggressive driving experience. What I like about those 2 modes is that the flaps on the NPP exhaust are kept open for the most part, and it sounds absolutely amazing. With the Eco mode, you can barely hear the exhaust. Once I use all of the modes more, I will update you with a better review of them.

The last thing I want to mention about the driving experience is that I was pleasantly surprised with how smooth it was going down the road, just as smooth as it was in my Z4, if not smoother. I forgot to add on the magnetic ride when I placed my order and was a little worried that it would be a rather rough ride, but the Z51 suspension seems to work very well. I definitely have no complaints about the ride.

Hopefully you found my 2014 Corvette Stingray Review helpful, and if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask me by posting a comment below.

 

 

Oct 02

Change Isn’t Comfortable

Anniversary TripMy mind is always going. I’m constantly trying to figure out why people struggle becoming successful with both business and fitness and what I can do to help them. Strangely enough, I do most of my thinking in the shower and then something suddenly clicked the other day. I reached for the squeegee to clean off the glass and it wasn’t where it normally was. After I used it I went to put it back in the old spot, but the holder wasn’t there anymore, it was in the new spot. I stopped for a second because for some odd reason I became a little uncomfortable. It was different, it was change that I now had to adjust to. Then my mind began to race and I started thinking about how much this exact situation is a great example why people can’t succeed. Why? People don’t like to continue doing things that they aren’t used to, that they aren’t comfortable with. They don’t give it time to become a habit, to become comfortable.

In the example above, I could have easily just put the squeegee holder back in the old spot, but instead I purposely left it there. I knew that it would take time for me to get used to, take time for it to become a habit. Over the next few days I still reached for the old spot, but then started catching myself, and eventually I stopped reaching for the old spot and went right to the new spot. The more I did it, the more comfortable it became. I then started thinking about another situation where this played true in my own life, a longer example, and several popped into my head, but there was one that really stuck out, and it has to do with my baseball career. It was the time that I decided to become a switch hitter.

I am a natural right handed hitter, I always have been. It’s the way I hit when I first picked up a bat when I was just a little boy. It was comfortable for me and for years and years I was strictly a right handed hitter. I never thought about becoming a left handed hitter too until one day an instructor of mine challenged me. I was about 15 years old and was at a hitting camp held by a very well known travel baseball coach. The entire group was sitting in a large circle surrounding him when he said, “Raise your hand if you can come up here and hit 50 balls off the tee without hitting it once.” You have to remember that my work ethic was ridiculous and I hit about 750 balls off the tee every night, so I was confident that I could do it and raised my hand. After looking around, though, I realized that I was the only person with a hand up, so of course he called me up and told me to do it. I walked up and hit 50 balls off the tee without hitting it once. At that point he understood my work ethic, could tell that I loved a challenge, so he then told me to switch over to the left side of the plate and do the same thing. I was nervous this time, though, because I have never hit left handed before, but I switched to the other side and did it. It was unbelievably uncomfortable, but I managed to do pretty decent with it. The instructor looked in my eyes and said, “Son, I’m turning you into a left handed hitter.”

You better believe I accepted the challenge, but I knew that I had to work incredibly hard every night to master my left handed swing. For months and months I went down in my basement and hit hundreds of balls from the left side of the plate, but it was still so damn awkward. If you want to know what it felt like, just pick up a bat and try swinging from the opposite of your natural side and you will quickly understand. I struggled, I hit the tee, I got frustrated, but I still kept doing it over and over and over again because I knew that it was the only way I was going to get better, the only way that I would become comfortable with it. After getting fairly comfortable with it after about a year of hitting off the tee, I knew it was time for the next step, and that’s to hit live pitching. Talk about uncomfortable, I felt like I was swinging left handed for the first time again. My form was there because I practiced so much, but my timing was so incredibly off. Again, I knew I had to do it over and over again to become comfortable with it, so that’s what I did, and it got to the point where my left handed swing was just as comfortable as my right handed swing, but that was about 5 years later, 5 years of an insane amount of hard work and practice. I got a scholarship to play ball in college, and my junior year I decided to stop hitting right handed and just hit left handed full time. My junior and senior years were my 2 best years of baseball in my entire life. I ended up winning numerous conference and regional awards, and even a National Championship.

It would have been so easy for me to stop hitting left handed because it was uncomfortable for a lot of years, but I didn’t. I didn’t because I knew the importance of hitting from the left side of the plate with my right eye being my dominant eye. I could pick up the ball a lot quicker and easier than I could from the right side. On top of that, I was a step closer to first base than I was from the right side. So many people would have given up the first few weeks of hitting left handed off the tee because it wasn’t natural for them, it wasn’t part of their routine, it wasn’t something they were comfortable with. Whenever the majority of people begin to make a change in their life, they give up so quickly because it is well outside their comfort zone. It’s like a constant nagging feeling that just won’t go away, and instinct is to go back to the old lifestyle because that’s what they were used to, what “feels good” to them. This is when you have to fight that feeling, especially if you are trying to make a positive change in your life like with your health or your finances. You have to focus hard DAILY on powering through that uncomfortable feeling, and practice whatever it is that you’re doing over and over and over again for it to become a habit, for it to feel comfortable to you.

I made this post mostly for all you Beachbody Coaches out there and all of the people that I coach (make me your coach) through the various Beachbody programs. When you start something new, you have to understand that it’s going to suck at first, it’s not going to “feel right,” and it’s going to take quite a while for you to become comfortable with it. After doing it over and over again for a long period of time, though, you will notice that the more comfortable it will become. The goal is to do it long enough to the point where it becomes habit, where you don’t think twice about doing it, but just go out and do it. It will get to the point where you will be so comfortable with it that it will feel like your old lifestyle, but this time you are doing GOOD things for yourself, making POSITIVE changes in your life! With the workouts and diet, for example, at first you’re not going to enjoy working out every day and it’s going to be tough as hell to eat healthy consistently. So many times will that little voice inside your head tell you to give up and go back to your old, unhealthy ways because it’s what you’re used to and comfortable with, but you have to keep fighting it, keep pushing forward daily towards your goals. The longer you do it, the easier it becomes, and eventually you will get to the point where I’m at, and you won’t think twice about eating healthy and working out every day because it’s now a part of your daily routine. You just have to push through that “uncomfortable zone” long enough to make it happen. The same goes with building the Beachbody Business. Talking to people on social media, out in public, is very awkward at first, but after doing it over and over again it becomes a normal part of your routine. I love going out and talking to people about health and fitness because I’ve been doing it for years, but at first it was well outside my comfort zone. Keep fighting, keep pushing forward, and don’t ever give up.