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Category: Interview (page 2 of 13)

Dr. Thomas V. Taylor

Taking retirement to a new vivacious energy level, Dr. Thomas V. Taylor pursues his passion for music and singing as a tenor with the Choral Society of Performing Arts. As a musician, he plays the guitar as a challenge to elevate his playing competencies to optimal performance levels. As an author, he has published ten books. Dr. Thomas Taylor’s latest book is being prepared for launch by his publisher. The book is the study of individuals who are predisposed to life longevity. His book identifies individual factors for a healthy lifestyle. These are only a few activities that bring pleasure to Dr. Taylor’s retirement days.

Alternatively, Dr. Thomas V. Taylor is a huge sports fan. He played cricket as a younger man and he continues to stay up on the latest games. He is a member of the Manchester United Football Club Supporters. He supports the Houston Astros and is an avid supporter of the Houston Texans.  Furthermore, Dr. Taylor has been a train enthusiast since he was a child.  When he allows himself the time, he is an artist of watercolor painting which adorn the walls of his home.

Many retirees have too many hours in a day. This is not the case with Dr. Thomas Taylor. He Enjoys teaching and studying various topics, writing, and discussing current affairs. He is an Author, Vocalist, Musician, Inventor, Train enthusiast, Sports Enthusiast, and a Painter. His days are filled with creativity, intelligent conversation, and entertainment all of which he gains great delight.

What is your favorite hobby?

I sing classical and choir music. I also play the guitar. I am a train enthusiast.  I’ve always liked singing and when I was a student, I used to sing the more popular music of the day. The songs I use to sing were the top twenty songs. I’ve always enjoyed singing. I have done it for many years. In later years my singing has evolved from popular music to classical music of the Choral Society.

Can you tell us what you love about singing Classical and Choir music?

I find that singing classical music is very satisfying. It is also relaxing at the same time energizing. It provides a stimulus to achieve good results, to concentrate on the music, and to perfect one’s technique as far as possible. It is a challenge and it is both interesting and exciting. It also enables me to have the opportunity to meet many people. Often times we meet socially. Overall, it is a very healthy and beneficial thing to get involved in.

Other than the Choral Society and your Church Choir, In what do you participate?

In the past, I was with the Choral Society in Houston, and the Choral Society in England, I also sang with the choral section of the Houston Symphony Orchestra. I’ve sung in Church Choirs all over Houston and I’ve also sung at and with a Choral Society in Massachusetts.

Have you had to invest in any equipment and if so can you share whatever you have bought?

I have purchased music from a variety of music stores. The only music equipment that I have purchased is my guitar. I purchased the lessons to learn how to play the guitar.  I play it as well. It is another hobby of mine. I also enjoy railways. I have been a steam engine train enthusiast my entire life.

Where do you buy most of your supplies for your music and singing?

I purchased the printed music from a variety of music stores. I purchased my guitar from a guitar supply store along with the lessons in playing the guitar. I had voice lessons over the past twenty years or so from various teachers along the way. I wanted to learn about the theory of music. I also wanted to learn how to read music. While I was still a surgeon, I took a semester on the theory of music and how to read music from Houston Community College.

Are there any good music or singing books for beginners?

When I started out playing guitar, I first purchased any basic beginner books for guitar players. There are different books for styles or methods of playing the guitar. There are books that provide simple guitar chords to start off. You can also buy music that is written specifically for a guitar. The kind of guitar you play will determine what kind of music books you will want to buy. It will be very different music played from an acoustic guitar then there will be from an electric guitar. There will be several questions to consider when buying the music books that will suit the music you want to learn.

How has your guitar and singing changed your life?

I find playing the guitar and singing to be enjoyable and quite satisfying. They are a great source of stress relief. It has been a challenge. It is a wonderful way to keep the mind active. It always provides a stimulus because there is always a variety of different kinds of music. It requires a lot of effort to achieve the optimal results for your capability. I have found it to be extremely enjoyable and enormously challenging. That is in addition to being an extraordinary stress reliever.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

I would tell anyone, including my younger self, Dr. Thomas V. Taylor, to start in either singing or playing the guitar that the first thing they would have to do is have lessons for either hobby. Learn from a professional to optimize your technique. There is a lot of learning to optimize an individual’s technique. The guitar is not an easy instrument to learn, at least it was not for me. It requires a lot of practice. Much like everything else in life you have to be dedicated and put in a lot of hours. Everything ultimately comes with repetition and learning and attempting to improve your technique. It is all in practice, practice, practice. You have to put a lot of time and energy into it but you also get a lot of satisfaction out of it. So, in the beginning, you really have to have a great interest in learning how to play and a passion for the time you will spend for each and every achievement that you will eventually triumph over in order to succeed.

Are there any other hobbies you have?

I love all sports, particularly baseball and cricket. The world cup is going on right now. I have been listening to it on the radio. The games go on for several hours. It is a good thing that I can listen and enjoy it immensely, and still get other things done. The game comes down to the last few balls to decide the winners. It makes the game very exciting right until the end. I use to play when I was younger. It takes a lot of skill to play.

Regarding my interest in trains, my interest was piqued when I was a child. There was a railway station next to my home. I use to love to watch the trains pass by or stop. They were steam engines that were driven with coal. They had to stop across a field for water. I’d go down and watch them fill and prep before they moved on. I love steam engines, and although they are not often used anymore, there is still an interest. There are still a few small lines that must use steam engines to run.

I also have an interest in current affairs. I wish I had the time to do watercolor paintings as well. Although, I have many of my paintings on my walls.

You can learn more and follow Dr. Thomas V. Taylor on:

Jeff Yapp

Jeff Yapp attended the University of Michigan and graduated with a Bachelors degree in Business Administration. He continued his education in pursuit of a Masters degree in Marketing, Finance, and Operations from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, located in Evanston, Illinois. As he achieved that goal, he moved with the same momentum into his career.

His first professional position was with Kraft Foods Group. It didn’t take him long to move from an entry level marketing position to the Product Group Manager in the Beverage Division. This was his first significant foray into marketing and developing the skills that followed him throughout his career.

As Jeff Yapp developed the skills, he searched for bigger and greater challenges. He moved onto work in a variety of positions, revitalizing brands and developing new skill. Among some of the jobs he moved into are Newscorp’s 20th Century Fox Entertainment, Microsoft, the Pepsico, and Viacoms MTV. Believing he had the skills he could obtain from all of his positions with others, the natural next step was to begin his own company. In 2011, he launched the consulting and marketing firm Wutznxt.

At Wutznxt, Jeff Yapp has been able to turn the skills he developed through experience into an asset for his clients and customers. His company specializes in direct to consumer and most recently small business leadership, but has continued to work with Fortune 100 companies as well. The teams at Wutznxt help their diverse clientele stand apart from their peers and competitors. They do this in a way that creates experience, blending brand recognition with positive memory creation. The lasting connection leaves better brand knowledge in its wake.

It isn’t uncommon for Jeff Yapp to be traveling for business or with his family. It is also not uncommon for him to bring his camera along to take some amazing images and create memories that will last a lifetime.

What is your hobby?

One passion of mine that started over 20 years ago has turned into one of my favorite pursuits. My photography is another part of my business portfolio. We are a visual based world and capturing the moment, the emotion and the surroundings through the lens of my camera allows the feeling of the experience to come through. It’s true in all aspects of my work.

What inspired you to get started with photography?

It developed while the kids were growing up. I worked a lot more than I would have preferred to at times, so I wanted to capture every moment. It didn’t take long to realize how fun it was to take pictures of my family and it quickly worked its way into my professional life. The camera is one of the most amazing creations in that it allows anyone to create art, even those of us who didn’t pursue it as a career.

Tell us what you love about it.

Initially, it was just a way to collect memories with my children. What I remember most was watching my daughter in dance at age 3, she is now 27. I would photograph her earliest performances to her majoring in dance at the university of Michigan. The camera allowed me to capture the artistry and emotion in a way that was truly unique.

I have shared this passion with my family as well and it has worked its way into the professional life of my kids as well.

My oldest daughter Kristine is an event planner for twitter. Her photography skills and years of experience in event space and marketing allows her to understand what success looks like from many angles. She has a keen eye to understand the big picture and create events that translate to the consumer.

My oldest son Ryan loved to make movies when he was little. He’s taken his love of film and photography and turned it in to a career. He has his own company that shoots educational videos and is still making movies with his best childhood friend. He has helped me with many events.

My daughter Kelli is the marketing Director of Brand Product & Development at Shadowbox in NYC. Her ability to photograph allows her to capture the feel and experience at the clubs for their print and digital media.

My daughter Molly is the creator of MY Magazine and currently in her 9th issue. She is extremely talented on telling a story through her lens and has taken her magazine from a digital publication to newsstand print in a short span of time.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your photography?

I have studied with many professionals. My two favorite are Moose Peterson and Joe McNally.   Moose is one the top nature photographers in the country and Joe is globally recognized artist with his use of light and flash. Both are Nikon ambassadors and have received many awards.

Have you had to invest in equipment? If so, please share some of the things you’ve bought.

I have been a Nikon photographer for over 15 years. My equipment has evolved as the technology has changed. My current go to favorites are the Nikon 850 and the new Nikon z7. Both cameras are amazing creative tools. Four years ago, I finally made the leap into the Leica pool. Leica rangefinder cameras have been the gold standard for photographers for decades. Leica represents a completely different more intimate connection to the experience. The pictures have a quality that just is not available on most digital cameras today

Storage cards Lexar pro and my preference is the Sony xqd cards, there speed and reliability are unmatched

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

I have been buying from Neptune Photo for the last 15 years. Robert is the store manager and has been amazing to work with. I love supporting a small local shop even when I moved to the west coast.  Another retailer on the other end of the spectrum is 47th Street Photo. Amazing place, amazing selection. if you can’t find it at 47th Street Photo it doesn’t exist! Finally, my local shop in Portland is pro photo supply great team and strong selection and great availability.

Are there any good books for beginners?

Moose Peterson’s “Guide to Wildlife Photography: Conventional Techniques” is great intro into wildlife photography. Joe McNally has so many books my favorite is “Life Guide to Digital Photography” for people looking to take their skills to another level and “The Moment It Clicks” for the more experienced photographer.

How has this changed your life?

This has brought art and creativity to my world in a way I didn’t expect it would originally. It is really a wonderful thing to be able to look at the images over the years and see the progression from a novice to an experienced photographer. Having this outlet has brought great joy to my family and those I’ve taken pictures of around us. We are able to look back at the unique lighting and creations and enjoy the moment or emotion again.

What advice do you have for others starting out with photography?

Just do it. Looking at the world through a lens of a camera gives you a whole different perspective. It requires you to slow down and notice the subtles. It is amazingly rewarding. Pick up a used digital camera, find an old film camera experience the differences between them. Find a camera and learn how to use and change the depth of field the focus points the exposure, stay out of the auto mode, engage, and enjoy!

Are there any other hobbies you have?

Ask my wife! Too many to list. She always asks about my new costumes. My latest love is golf. After 50 years of watching, I finally decided to pick up a club and see what all of the fuss is about. So far I really enjoy it.

However, my number one passion has always been my wife and my family. As the household has changed as the kids have flown the coop, finding meaningful time to stay engaged and involved in their lives is a real focus for my life now.

You can learn more about Jeff Yapp at:

jeffreyyapp.fotomerchant.com

jeffyapp.com

LinkedIn

Twitter

Johnson Nguyen

Johnson Nguyen owns a small Marketing company in Vancouver, Canada.  He was born and raised in Vancouver along with his two sisters.  His family originated in Vietnam and immigrated before he was born.  They carried their strong work ethic with them and passed that along to all the kids!  After traveling with his family, he pursued and received a degree at King’s College in London and upon graduating, opened his business in Canada.

As an online Marketer, he spends his days helping clients improve their online profile, such as a fresh website and updated keywords.  The company is doing well and has grown to have fifteen employees. Johnson has recently married and is now sharing his passion of travel with his wife, who seems always ready to pack a bag!

What is your hobby?

My hobby is to travel.  I love to go to different countries and explore. There is so much history and beauty around the world to see and experience.  I feel like I have an inner growth spurt each time I go to a new location.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

My parents actually!  They moved here from Vietnam a long time ago, and my Father’s work would take him on business trips, which he often turned into a family affair.  I was fascinated by our trip to London as a teen, so much so that I went to college there.  Seeing the way people live around the world is truly very interesting and at times, eye-opening.

Tell us what you love about it.

When I travel, I really like to go to the places that the locals recommend.  Don’t get me wrong, I will see the recommended tourist sites, but the best food and entertainment is local.  It is fun to people watch while sitting at an outdoor café or just walking around.  It is also so much fun to visit a local pub and get to chatting with the people.  Those stories that you hear around the globe are full of knowledge and wisdom.  The kinds of stories that are passed down for generations.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your hobby?

There is not really a club to join for me, but we do have a number of friends who also travel and we often swap stories and share tips souvenirs.  I tend to travel with my wife now, but unless you sign up for a guided travel tour, you are on your own!

Have you had to invest in equipment and if so, please share some of the things you’ve bought?

Well, since we do travel regularly, I did get us two very nice, sturdy sets of luggage and some small containers for toiletries.  Otherwise, most of the money goes for the plane ticket or gas if it’s a road trip, a hotel, and meals.  We plan way ahead, so we usually get pretty good deals.

 

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

I buy all of my tickets online!  In fact, we buy or book everything we need online or at Amazon.  Of course, if we need something along the way, we just pop into a store.  Luckily, we do not have to buy to many things to travel.

Are there any good books for beginners?

I think you can easily find Travel books for beginners, but I really recommend Rick Steves books for the places I go.  He has all of the good places to see, eat at, or stay.  He also includes all kinds of places that are off the beaten path.  I especially liked his Paris travel book, because he had information on the catacombs, which we wanted to see.  We found the perfect entry point for our day.  His shows are great too.

How has this changed your life?

You know, I have been to over twenty countries and I am in constant awe of how alike people around the world really are.  It is eye-opening to see how people approach things.  The truth is, we live in a great country and I am always grateful when I come home to live here.  Not all places have all of the comforts that we do.  I am reminded when I travel how grand the world is and how lucky I really am.  I am just happy for each experience along the way.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

If you really want to start traveling in your spare time, be realistic with and stick to your budget.  You may start by seeing things in your area or the next city, working up to international travel.  You could be a weekend road tripper for sure, that is fun and not too expensive.   There are so many places to see that are even free!

Are there any other hobbies you have?

My other hobby as an avid reader is the total opposite.  I like to get into my reading nook in my home office and read a good novel every day.  Even if I only have half an hour, I like to read and decompress.  That little bit is enough for me to reenergize!

You can learn more about Johnson Nguyen at johnson-nguyen

Dan Doyle

Dan Doyle is an experienced studio and event photographer based in Queens, New York. Over the past twenty years, he has explored many different facets of his craft, from landscape and architecture photography to headshots and portraits. His studio in Jackson Heights, Queens is a gathering place for artists and creatives.

Dan Doyle Queens resident attended Ohio State University where he majored in art with a concentration in photography. He credits his college professors for his professional career. After graduation and leaving Pleasantville, Ohio, he traveled through Europe, taking photos along the way. His photoblog became popular when he returned from Europe, and it gained him several professional assignments.

Doyle photographs portraits, events, musicians, and headshots. He has also begun to offer photography courses out of his studio. His contributions to the art scene in Queens have brought him a good reputation in the local community.

What is your hobby?

My hobby is hiking. I started hiking when I was in Europe after college graduation. I really enjoyed exploring the countryside around Switzerland and Austria, and I decided to take some trips when I returned to the United States.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

I love the solitude and the connection with nature. Since I am a photographer, I am a very visual person. I love seeing the different views of nature and of nearby cities and towns. Hiking is also an excellent form of exercise which helps me keep in shape.

I love to get up in the mountains and see where the plants and trees begin to change. Getting up to the top of a mountain is such a satisfying accomplishment. I relax and eat my lunch at the summit and then take the long way down the mountain. It’s an amazing way to get in touch with nature.

Tell us what you love about it.

I tend to hike by myself, though I occasionally bring friends with me. I don’t participate in any local clubs or activities related to hiking. My job in photography requires a lot of close contact with people, and I often find that I need to unwind and get away from the crowds when I hike.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your hobby?

I have invested in quite a lot of equipment over the past several years. I have a brand new pair of hiking poles which have really helped me on some recent trips to the White Mountains of New Hampshire. I have a new hiking pack, boots, and a backpacking stove for when I want to eat a hot meal on the trail.

I also recently bought a food dehydrator so that I can make my own backpacking meals to take with me. That has saved me a lot of money and has also enabled me to bring healthier food with me. Commercial backpacking meals are loaded with salt. I try to eat healthy at all times.

The one thing that I buy almost every time I go shopping is wool socks. I am always looking for the best wool socks and I have dozens of pairs in different weights.

Have you had to invest in equipment and if so, please share some of the things you’ve bought.

I get most of my supplies at REI. It’s a great store with a huge variety of outdoor equipment. I also order some things on Amazon, but I like to try things on before I buy them. I also like to talk with the people at REI to decide what I should buy.

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

My favorite hiking book for beginners is Backpacking by Emerson Woods. It has a great breakdown of all the tools and equipment you need to safely make trips in the outdoors, and it also offers suggestions on how to train for longer trips and bigger climbs. I recommend this book to all of my friends who want to try hiking.

Are there any good books for beginners?

Hiking has brought me a sense of peace. My life in New York is fast-paced, and it is great to have a way to get away from it all. Before I started hiking, I was a little bit overweight, but now that I go out each weekend, I have noticed that I am stronger and more fit. Climbing is great exercise. I have also found that my outdoor photography is better because I have so many chances to practice when I am out on the trail.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

The first piece of advice that I would give is that you absolutely must have a well-fitted, high-quality pair of hiking boots. You also need to wear wool socks — there are many technical materials out there now which aren’t itchy and sweaty — and you need to carry plenty of water. Carry more water than you think you will need, because hiking is thirsty work. Also, you should carry emergency supplies in case you are stranded on the trail overnight for reasons that are out of your control.

Are there any other hobbies you have?

I also love to cook for my family and friends.

Lilly Goga

Lilly Goga is a native of Calgary in Alberta. As a child, she found inspiration in everything around her and her parents encouraged her artistic side. This led her to experiment with many different mediums. Among the options that she pursued for a time were finger painting, drawing with charcoal, creating digital art and eventually photography. It was the last one that moved her the most.

As a teen she began learning how to take portraits at family reunions and other events. By the time she attended college, she knew she loved photography, but she didn’t know she could earn a living doing it. Between entrance in a contest and earning a good pay amount from online stock photography sites, she realized that it was exactly what she wanted to be doing. Eventually, she earned her certification in photography alongside her degree in environmental science.

Today, she employs several methods of making a living with her favorite passion. This hobby turned profession has been the cornerstone of her life and future.

What is your hobby?

Art has always been my hobby. I have been doing something artistic since I was a little child. At first, it was painting, and my favorite was finger paints. I finger painted until well into my teen years. It was my cousin who bought me a camera as a gift. It was love at first picture.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

I had a party as a child and my cousin, who grew up locally near me, bought me a camera as a gift. I took a lot of pictures. We didn’t do anything real with it until our first family reunion. I took several pictures when we were there, and it was so much fun.

Tell us what you love about it.

I love being able to capture the moment and the energy in it. It is a whole lot of fun to find the right image before the camera catches it, then move anyone or anything into that right position. If the lighting is just right and falls upon the perspective things come together through the lens like nothing else.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your hobby?

There are some online communities that I connected with. It has been thrilling and enjoyable to connect with other artists who understand your passion and joy. It is invigorating to be able to discuss editing programs, cameras, lenses, and other supplies with those who actively use them. And for many of us, we are able to help each other see fresh or new perspectives in our images.

Have you had to invest in equipment and if so, please share some of the things you’ve bought.

Photography can be very expensive. I have purchased several cameras, but my favorite brand to use is Cannon. You have to stay in supply of memory cards, cleaning supplies, and you need a case for each of them.

Sometimes settings also require lighting, so I have to purchase the right lighting equipment applicable to the setting. Thankfully, not all of my events require new lighting. That has been an on and off project to learn how to find the right lighting. Having the communities on Facebook and elsewhere have been key to that learning process.

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

Really, I do a lot of shopping around when I’m looking for supplies. Often, I’ll pick up items from areas my peers have suggested, but some stores require more upfront investment, so I shop around instead. I have purchased some items from Amazon, others from Abes online, and some from other areas.

Are there any good books for beginners?

I would suggest starting with Studio Anywhere by Nick Fancher. He really has a handle on some artistic approaches that I was already starting to use. You can find so much more in this book that will help you see the art through the lens.

I enjoyed Exposure Mastery too. It helps you understand how your timing works with your shutter speed among other things. I don’t want to give too much away but it has such a wealth of knowledge that any beginning will gain something incredible from it.

How has this changed your life?

This hobby has become my life and my career. There is nothing more amazing than waking up each morning, checking my schedule, and knowing that everything on it is me getting to play all day long. There are few jobs you can do that you can both enjoy and make a living at it.

There are few artists that know they don’t have to be ‘starving artists’. I’m blessed to be one of those who know it and live it daily.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

Get a camera and start taking pictures. When you find some you really like that you took, upload it to one of the stock photo sites. I also suggest doing a search for groups on Facebook that relate to photography as a business instead of a hobby. There are plenty of hobbyist but if you’re going to make a living out of it, you need like-minded individuals to work with or encourage you.

Even if you’re in business for yourself, there’s no reason to work it by yourself. Being connected to others in the industry makes a huge difference in your skills and success.

Are there any other hobbies you have?

I still paint on occasion. I also create images in pencil or other drawing methods. When I have time to play with the images in a design program, ones that aren’t from a portrait session, I like creating original and unique takes on the images. They are a whole lot of fun. Also, whenever possible and time allows, I like to travel. I hope to one day visit and take pictures of ancient Roman cities.

You can learn more and follow Lilli Goga on:

Marudeen Aivaz

It is amazing when you are able to find your passion so young in your life and it is a passion that keeps you physically fit. Marudeen Aivaz has evolved his passion to suit his healthy way of life. He is a weightlifter and bodybuilder. He also believes that good nutrition goes hand in hand with the whole fitness aspect. In addition, Marudeen Aivaz believes that the cornerstone of any fitness lifestyle is the attention to nutrition and that chronic health issues can many times be addressed with good nutrition.

Marudeen was born in California. He is one of three children raised with a Middle-eastern culture centered around family, food, and fitness. His parents were very active and went to the gym regularly. By the age of fifteen, Marudeen Aivaz would join his parents at the gym and work-out on the equipment. By the time he reached college, he had a great foundation for pursuing weight lifting and bodybuilding.

According to Marudeen Aivaz, fitness is a lifelong journey. He believes nutrition is one key on the path. There are no short-cuts to be taken and no pill to replace the hard work, focus, and dedication it takes to achieve healthy lifestyle goals.

What is your hobby?
My hobby is weight lifting and bodybuilding. My parents were very active. They believed in staying fit and going to the gym. I use to go with them when I was about fifteen and I used some of the equipment and dabbled a bit with weight lifting. But I didn’t start my actual weight training until later.

How did you get started with your weight lifting and bodybuilding hobby?
Initially, I began weight lifting as a sophomore in high school when I was on the wrestling team. Our training consisted of learning how to grapple, but also required that we spent a portion of our time learning weight lifting for strength training. We learned techniques such as squat, bench, and deadlifts. It was not a passion of mine at that time more than it was a requirement of the sport.

Weight lifting was a part of the college culture and many of my friends were into weight lifting. As a result, I continued weight lifting through my college years. My interest really peaked when I was in my first year of college. I was about 18 when I began to learn more about nutrition, fitness and the importance of sleeping habits. It was at this time when it became more of a passion for me. I have been pursuing knowledge and I have been evolving ever since.

What do you love about weight lifting?

There are many reasons why weight lifting is a benefit in my life. Being able to see your body transform over time is one reason. You can control the way you look. It is also a challenge. The more you put in the more you get out. I am a challenge-oriented person in general, it is always a challenge for me.  You can never be the strongest or the best or the fittest. It is the continued striving to be better that keeps me going.

What are some of the challenges that you have encountered in weight lifting?

There have been flexibility problems, back problems, shoulder problems and minor strains. Sometimes you can be walking down the street and if your hip is tight, you can pull a muscle, and be limping for the rest of the day. That has happened to me numerous times. I have also had a few surgeries. I have had broken fingers and broken toes.

Do you have any groups that you are a part of or that you attend to encourage you with weight lifting & bodybuilding?

I am not a part of any groups or organizations who participate in weight lifting or bodybuilding. However, I attend local powerlifting events to learn about the culture. I have not yet competed in any of the events.

Have you had to invest in any equipment and if so, can you share whatever you have bought?

Most of the equipment that I have bought is used for safety. I have purchased running shoes and a safety belt for my back. I purchased straps to make your grip stronger. I purchased chalk to make your grip stronger. I purchased wrist wraps to keep your wrists from hyperextending when you are working out. I believe that everyone should invest in safety equipment.

Where do you get most of your supplies?

There are two stores that I would recommend especially for bodybuilding equipment. The first source that I go to is BodyBuilding.com and the other one is EliteFts.

Are there any books you would recommend for beginners of weight lifting and bodybuilding?

For bodybuilding, I would recommend Arnold’s Encyclopedia by Arnold Schwarzenegger. The book I would recommend for powerlifting is 5/3/1: How to Build Pure Strength by Jim Wendler. These two books together would give anyone learning about both sports as a great comprehension of each sport.

How has being involved in each of these sports has changed your life?

One way it has enhanced my life is that I have been able to make so many friends with people who have the same interest. The gym is a very social place. You can develop a lot of close relationships and a lot of trusted relationships. If you go to the gym every day, you are seeing the same people there all the time. You become close to a group that you spend a lot of time with. Participating in these sports has increased my confidence. It always feels good when you reach a personal goal that you have set for yourself. It could be a body weight goal or a strength goal perhaps it is a certain number of repetitions that you’ve had in mind, it is just a really rewarding feeling. There are also times when a perfect stranger will approach you to ask questions about what you are doing. It is nice to share knowledge with people. It has kept me at a good body mass index (BMI) and maintain good habits.

What advice would you have for someone else starting out with this hobby?

My advice would be to remember that fitness is a journey. You will always be making evolutions in your body. Don’t rush the process. It takes a long time. It is not something where you can see results overnight. It takes much more work than people probably think. There is no magic pill or potion to achieve your goals. Stay consistent and continue to educate yourself as much as you can. I would also recommend lifting smart. Always keep in mind that an injury at the gym is not likely but always a possibility. The more you progress in weight lifting, no matter which techniques you use, powerlifting, bodybuilding, or Olympic lifting, there is always a chance of getting hurt. Also, taking rest periods is not a bad thing and it is good for your body. Picking the right exercise selection is a good idea. It would be a good idea to first focus on bodybuilding to start off with and then go to powerlifting. It would be a good foundation to set for yourself. After you map your foundation you can get into other things.

Are there any other hobbies that you have?

One of the other things I love is to cook. I started cooking in college. I believe it goes hand in hand with the whole fitness aspect. The cornerstone of any fitness lifestyle or program is the attention to nutrition. I believe chronic health problems can many times be fixed through nutrition. It is a very big part of my life.

You can learn more and follow Marudeen Aivaz at:

Schlomo Schmuel

Dr. Schlomo Schmuel became a podiatrist because he cares for people and aspires to be the best healer he possibly can be. He began his medical training in Independence, Ohio at Kent State University in their College of Podiatric Medicine. He continued his training at the University of Southern California Medical Center, located in Los Angeles County, California. The education that Dr. Schlomo Schmuel received provided the basis for his exceptional skills and encouraged the drive to care for his patients.

For the last twenty-five years, Dr. Schlomo Schmuel has excelled in patient care. His clinic is an accredited Ambulatory Surgical center. This enables his ability to care for all issues related to the ankle and foot. Some of those issues includes all forms of complex reconstructive and emergency surgery.

Dr. Schlomo Schmuel’s hobbies include outdoor sports like jogging and cycling. He also enjoys flying to exotic locations in his own plane. All of this he shares with his family.

What is your hobby?

I love taking my bike out for a long ride. Cycling is a passion as well as a sport I enjoy sharing with my children whenever possible.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

Like many people, I started riding the bicycle as a child. It was something that connected me to my friends and gave me the freedom to go places I couldn’t have before that time. As a child, I earned the trust of my parents and was soon able to cross town to visit with friends or go to the parks further from our home.

Tell us what you love about it.

I love what it feels like to be able to extend my reach and go into nature. The ride is both peaceful and refreshing for the mind. It gives me the joy that comes with both solitude or the connection when I am enjoying it with my family.

Are there any groups you’re a part of or events that you attend related to your hobby?

I’m not part of any organized group of bicyclers, although there are many that exist. I have engaged several bike tours for longer routes and looked into a variety of additional opportunities of that nature. Perhaps, when things are slower at the clinic, I’ll consider doing a long tour that takes me across the country or to some of the more scenic areas of the state.

Have you had to invest in equipment and if so, please share some of the things you’ve bought?

Everyone has to invest in this hobby. I have of course purchased a good quality bike and the needed safety equipment. Safety equipment is a must. I would suggest, as the bare minimum a person purchases, a quality helmet. The brain is one of the most important parts of your body and should be covered in the event of a longer ride, especially when that ride may take you into traffic.

With the options today, helmets are much more lightweight and durable than years past. Really this eliminates many of the uncomfortable excuses for not protecting your head.

Where do you buy most of your supplies?

That’s a good question. My favorite locations for quality bikes are the local bike shop. They are an amazing resource for trying new things and finding a bike that fits you and your needs. You’re able to ensure you find the right product for what you need it to do. You can, of course, go online to buy it afterward if you want to shop around, but start with your local shop.

Are there any good books for beginners?

Well, I can’t say I’ve read a lot of books on cycling. I’ve read some magazines, kept myself up to date on new trends through a few other channels, but not so much through books. Although, you can pick up audiobooks for longer rides. That’s always a nice way to enjoy a bike ride. Oh, and podcasts are good too. You can always set up a podcast.

How has this changed your life?

This is one of my favorite ways to stay healthy and share that fitness routine with my family. It has enabled me to remain energetic, flexible, and still have good stamina even as I’ve gotten older. Over the years, it’s introduced me to numerous people, kept me connected to old friends, and provided a way to connect to my children.

What advice do you have for others starting out with this hobby?

Go to a local shop to find something that’s good for you.

Don’t be afraid to start riding and get into the flow of things. Getting going is the best way to hone your skills, but more importantly, have fun. This is a low stress, low threshold sport. If you like the freedom that comes with getting outside and getting moving, all you have to do is get on the bike and go.

Oh, and if you’re at it for a while, it might be good to know the local laws.

Are there any other hobbies you have?

Well, I love jogging. Really, I like anything outdoors. Most outdoor sports give you a measure of connection to nature, which is peaceful and refreshing. I also like flying. I got my pilots license a while ago and that has really given me wings. My wife and I make it a habit to visit uniquely exotic locations when we are able to.

Anytime I am not able to do one of those things, I take long walks, often with my wife. It is so wonderful to be able to spend that quality time together. There have been times when those walks are all we get out of a busy week between the clinic and our other obligations. There is no measurement for being able to keep yourself healthy, both in body and mind. And having that connection to my wife ensures my mind is not distracted by anything when I am working, flying, riding, jogging, or anything else I may do.

You can learn more and follow Schlomo Schmuel on:

 

Hyounsik Noh

Hyounsik (Andrew) Noh is currently a student at Columbia University in New York, New York. Currently pursuing his Masters of Science in Enterprise Risk Management (ERM), focusing in the areas of financial risk management, strategic communication, and market volatility.  Hyounsik, originally born in Seoul, South Korea moved to the United States to pursue an education in Risk Management in 2012. Hyounsik is passionate about participating in campus clubs and societies and is currently a project manager for the Korean Graduate Student Association at Columbia University.

Hyounsik’s hobbies include badminton, surfing and scuba diving. When he is not analyzing market results for the day, searching for volatilities and potential you can find Hyounsik spending time with his friends whether they are just hanging around campus or trying a new activity to burn some extra energy. Hyounsik is especially interested in learning how big economic markets influence the daily lives of people, but also, organizations and hopes to use this interest to develop a fruitful career in risk management.

What is your hobby?

Narrowing down all of the activities I enjoy to just one hobby is tough. I see myself as a very energetic, people-oriented person so that has influenced the many hobbies I have taken up. Most of my hobbies have been developed by the fact that I can do them all with my friends. A couple of things I absolutely love to do are playing badminton, surfing, and scuba diving. I get to do all three of these things with my friends, but I also have the chance to meet brand new people through the various clubs that I have been a part of for surfing and scuba diving. I have also acquired my first-step, open-water scuba diving license which was a major accomplishment for me.

How did you get started with this hobby? What Inspired you?

Many of my hobbies were taken up because I love physical activity. I have never been one to just sit around and play video games, instead I find my passions in activities that challenge my body and my mind. My dad used to preach to me a famous quotation from John F Kennedy, “Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, but it is also the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity”. This line has stuck with me and drives me to always try new things to push myself further.

What is your favorite thing about your hobby?

I like being active and my hobbies allow me to do that. On top of having the chance to be physically active I also get the opportunity to spend time with people and meet new friends. Badminton requires a teammate or opponent, while surfing and scuba diving demand a partner for safety reasons. All of my hobbies encourage me to get moving with my friends and create lasting memories that will stick with us forever.

How would you say your hobby has changed your life?

My hobbies have shaped me into an incredibly passionate, people person. I have been able to translate all of the energy that I carry with me every day into an opportunity to stay physically active, build lasting long relationships and maintain a healthy mind even through the mental stresses of university. My hobbies have made me who I am, and I hope to maintain these hobbies as well as find new ones in the future.

You can learn more about Hyounsik Noh  at hyounsiknoh.com

Paul Brunst

Paul Brunst is an outdoor sports enthusiast from Cincinnati, Ohio. Some of his hobbies include mountain climbing, hiking, running, sky diving, and has a real passion for biking. His passion for biking began at a very young age when he and his father would share twenty-mile bike trips together. That activity inspired him to participate in downhill kamikaze mountain bike riding on the challenging terrain of the San Francisco hills. He was also enthralled with the beauty and magnificence of the giant red oak trees as he made his way through winding paths of the California forests.

Paul attended the University of Southern Illinois with a focus in business administration. His passion for biking followed him through college as he found the time to continue biking throughout Colorado and across much of the United States.

Paul was enlisted in the Naval forces for many years. He spent the first few years as an entry officer into the Navy and eventually transitioned into created a full career with the hopes of serving his country. One of the principals that remained consistent during his years of service was his desire to stay in top physical condition.  As an outdoor sports enthusiast, he took every opportunity to maintain the balance of his mind-body connection.

When not pursuing his passion for outdoor sports, Paul Brunst is a full-time entrepreneur.  He has created a thriving family business providing top quality camouflage pants. He enjoys spending quality time with his family and volunteers his time within his community.

What is your hobby?

I have many hobbies. They all revolve around the outdoors. The hobbies that I enjoy most often are hiking, mountain climbing, running and sky diving. The most prevalent activity throughout my life was bike riding.

How did you get started with your hobby? What inspired you?

One of my father’s most revered hobbies was bike riding. At a very young age, my father would take me on twenty-mile bike trips. We were on the main roads. I gained an exuberance in biking as the trips continued to develop.  It ultimately became a passion.  It eventually led me to downhill kamikaze mountain bike riding in San Francisco, California. I biked through the large red oak trees as well as the forests; I found it to be so beautiful. Throughout high school and college, I was able to travel to Colorado and all over the United States.

What do you love the most about biking?

What I appreciate the most is the health benefits that come with the sport. There is a significant health advantage gained by doing what I love to do most. It also offers the value of a challenge. It provides a detachment from everyday worries. It is a positive activity that enables you to clear your mind.

Are there any groups that you are a part of or any events that you attend?

I am a member of the National Mountain Bikers Association. The association collaborates with other biking organizations to assemble groups for outings, they also do fundraising from time to time to develop new mountain bike trails.  Having local mountain trails enhances the value of communities and encourages a healthier lifestyle for everyone.

Have you had to invest in any equipment and if so can you share whatever you have bought?

My father purchased my first mountain bike so that we could share the sport. I used it for quite a while.  Ultimately, I gave that bike to my best friend who wanted to begin riding. I upgraded my bike at the same time, and I have had this one for years.

Where do you get most of your supplies?

I get all of my supplies at bike specialty shops. They carry most of the same supplies, so I don’t really shop at any particular bike shop. I don’t buy supplies online, I prefer to shop in stores.

Are there any books you would recommend for beginners?

I have been riding since I was very young with my father. I had him as a guide, so I haven’t read about the sport itself.  However, for the information that I want, I have watched YouTube videos.  I search YouTube under the title of “mountain biking” to research trips, locations, and destinations that I would like to go next.  I find that YouTube is a great resource to plan my outings.

How has this changed your life?

Biking just makes you feel good. It does your body well and is an excellent way to clear your mind and focus. I have always been athletic by nature. I believe in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and I think biking is a beautiful way to maintain that lifestyle easily. It is something that anyone can do to be fit.

What advice would you have for someone else starting out with this hobby?

I would advise people just starting out with biking as a hobby to start out slow and build up your endurance. Always challenge yourself to get to the next level.  You should always consider safety at all times, cars are not always watching for cyclists. If you are on a mountain trail, one slip up can land you in a tree or cause some sort of injury. I would suggest that you make sure to wear a helmet when biking.

Are there any other hobbies that you have?

I work out in the gym. But, I am an outdoor sports enthusiast. I really enjoy mountain climbing, hiking, sky diving, and of course biking.

You can learn more about Paul Brunst at:

 

William Tharpe Roberts

William Tharpe Roberts is a U.S. Military Veteran based out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Mr. Roberts worked as a Marine Science Technician and as a member of the U.S Coastguard for 13 years. William specialized in the areas of Pollution Response and Law Enforcement and received an Honorable Discharge. During his enlistment, William was responsible for activities including but certainly not limited to overseeing extensive marine projects as well as disaster response. Most notably, William was a member of the team sent to respond to the Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster in 2010, one of the largest marine oil spills in the history of the petroleum industry.

William Tharpe Roberts’ education, prior to his enlistment in the military, consisted of extensive training on computer processes such as, HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript alongside a considerable background in Law Enforcement training.

What is your hobby? 

Being raised in Fort Lauderdale, Florida meant that as a young boy I had always been surrounded and enamored by the beautiful blue abyss that is water. For this reason, one of my greatest passions is swimming. When the weather is not as cooperating, I’ll swim at a local public pool by my home, but when the Florida weather truly shines down on me, I love making my way to the beach and taking a quick jaunt in the ocean.

How did you get started with this hobby? What inspired you?

For as long as I can remember, the water has always been where I have felt most comfortable. Whether I was swimming, sailing, or simply dipping my feet in its magnificent blue shimmer. Growing up in a coastal city had a lot to do with my attraction to the ocean and many of my fondest memories are those of my family and I hanging out at the beach on a hot summer’s day. To me the water represents a beautiful combination of wonder, calm, and tranquility. That being said, I have an immense appreciation and respect for the strength and power of the ocean. I have seen it tear boats in half and shape the land on which we stand.

What is your favorite thing about your hobby?

I think my favorite part about swimming is the fact that I can have so much fun and so much freedom while also training my body and keeping my heart and mind sharp. Swimming is one of the most physically exhausting things, yet when you’re floating in the water your body feels almost weightless. The aches and the pains go away and it’s just you and the water.

How would you say your hobby has changed your life?

Well, what started as a hobby of swimming greatly influenced what I ended up spending 13 years of my life doing. As a Marine tech for the US coastguard I spent months at a time on the water saving lives and making a real difference for my country. My passion for the water lead to my drive and determination to preserve it and keep it safe.

Do you have any other hobbies?

I also love to go for bike rides. Physical activity like biking and swimming are great for your mental health and are the two main ways that I like to stay in shape.

Check out these links to learn more about William Tharpe Roberts:

http://inspirery.com/william-tharpe-roberts/

https://medium.com/william-tharpe-roberts