Discussing 101 Tokens on route to a friends wedding on England’s south coast, Parker made it clear that he didn’t need 101, he had been training most of the year with strict attention to detail and he planned to keep it that way. What we did discuss was the potential for him to join a community of people who could share skillsets. His mentoring via fitness advice was something that our immediate friendship group had benefitted from, so why not the Token Crew… This is a powerful story from an athlete who has competed professionally across two sports and how he continues to test himself both in sport and everyday life…
When I first heard about 101 Tokens, I didn’t take much notice. I don’t really drink much nowadays and most people know that. However, I currently sit at 40tokens, roughly 1 a week!
When I was 19 years old I started university, free from everything! So, like any normal kid, I ended up partying and spending every penny on booze, clubbing, lads holidays and festivals. GREAT! Right? Well, yeah, when you’re a kid and the only thing on your mind is enjoying yourself there’s not a care in the world! That is, until one day I decide to call a guy out…
My uncle was coaching a premiership rugby side, I had watched the match and after, decided to tell him “I’m a better goal kicker than your number one guy”. His response — as embarrassing as this is — “doesn’t matter how good a goal kicker you are when you can’t run the length of the field” (Pointing at my gut). Wow.
There was the truth. I was a fatty. I’d let myself go. Life had become about partying and skulling back cheap ass vodka mix drinks pre pub/club rather than being fit and actually putting my ability to good use.
At this point it was the first time I had a real challenge put to me, “stay off the booze and out of clubs for 6 months, show me you can play, and I’ll give you a chance”, said my Uncle.
My first taste of a very different 101 tokens approach. Long story short, I did it, I swapped the party lifestyle for a sporty one and it paid off. 11 years as a paid professional rugby player, numerous club and national records broken, 6 different countries, 10 different teams, ranging from club level to international level.
That story sounds like a made for TV movie, but it’s the truth. When you break it down, all I did was give up one thing and focussed on another. Simple.
Fast forward a couple of years and I had finished up with rugby. I started to go out more, more parties, more beers. The body was slowly slipping back towards the bad old days. So, once again, I decided I needed a new goal. This time, something even more demanding on the physical capabilities of my body, bodybuilding!
The physique — while not terrible — wasn’t quite ready for the budgie smugglers just yet, so I hired my coach and we set out the plan: 30 weeks, 18 to bulk, 12 to cut, to ready me for the stage.
I loved it! It was a great experience, it was tough, there’s no doubt about that, but to be 31 years old and standing on stage in the best shape of my life, felt amazing!
So, you are probably already thinking; Why is this guy doing 101 tokens? He doesn’t need it to keep off the beers!
Well, you’re 100% correct. I don’t. But, I wanted to be part of something bigger, I wanted to get involved and help encourage and motivate others that might not believe that a change is for the better. I won’t try and force you, no one will. But as I sit and type this blog post, its November 21st and this year to date, I’ve used 40 tokens, not because I’m doing my best to stay within the limit, but because I want to enjoy the free time I have!
I don’t want to hammer some beers on a Saturday night and sleep in until midday on a Sunday, I wanna plan things, I wanna achieve things! I set goals, small achievable goals every single week. It might be to clear out my wardrobe and take some stuff to the charity shop, it might be to learn how to cook a new dish, it might be to hit 5 gym sessions in the week, it might even be something as simple as wanting to be up before 8am on the weekend in order to make the most of the time I have off from work. As long as there is something to aim for, then I know I’ll put 100% in.
What Benny is doing is amazing. Hes a top bloke and he dreams of making the world a better place. All we have to do is stop drinking so much and give him a few shout outs to help make his dream become a reality.
Give it a bash, set a target, think of a new goal and swap nights on the booze for other activities. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference it makes.
Parker has helped the token crew with bespoke training regimes and been available for general health advice in 2017. Testing the waters on bringing in specialist skillsets has been a valuable addition to the Token Year.
In 2018, we will have a focus on up-skilling in many areas to hack our drinking habits and reach our goals. Look out for business, meditation, cooking and yoga to name a few. To get involved check out www.101tokens.com
Drink Less, Live More.