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The Mission

Luke Richmond, an Australian adventurer has climbed five of the seven highest mountains on the seven continents. He has one more to do before finishing with the mighty Mt Everest. He is raising awareness for the Children’s Hospital at Westmead who care for over 70000 children annually and the Royal Flying Doctor Service, who have been the medical lifeline for Australians living in the vast Australian outback for many years. In between expeditions Luke owns and operates BoxHQ in Sydney where he trains hard for the ever looming Mt Everest.

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Tell me a story!

Money is not the root of all-evil, however your own necessity for it can be. In my life I have worked some demanding jobs like 12hr shifts underground in the heat of a coal mine or clearing old railways in the tunnels under the London cobbles. However I’ve also pulled off scams that made me the type of easy money we all know and love. What I held true during all these years was my ideals of why I’m doing it all, and that was to enjoy life. Every dollar I made I spent on an adventure, an experience or a path.
The following words of the great Alan Watts resonated with me today as I analysed my current position and made plans for the future. He touches on working for the sake of working but puts it far more eloquently than I.
“You will spend your life completely wasting your time. You will be doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living, that is to go on doing things you don’t like doing. Better to have a short life that is full of what you like doing than a long life spent in a miserable way. “
I agree with Alan. Yet we cannot follow the example of Chris McCandless and revolt against society, venture into the Alaskan wilderness to ultimately die of starvation. We need to work to make our lives better and never let the work become the life. Years from now when your on your death bed with the family gathered around, no one will care about how high up in the company you were or how big your house was. They will care about your stories; stories are all you really own in this world. They can be carried through the generations and told over and over and when written down can be etched in history forever. So next time your with someone on a date and there is that awkward silence that cannot be filled with technology, turn to your companion and ask,
Can you tell me a story?

OLOC-One Life One Chance

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Disability of the West

I saw a thought provoking picture the other day. It was a picture of four young African boys shot from behind as they looked out upon a lush valley.
They bore the skinny frame of the “malnourished” that we have come to associate with poverty, yet it was a wholesome and happy image. The captions above showed a conversation between two of the boys. One said to the other, “do you know in Australia, kids have to stay in school six hours a day and If they move around and play to much they give them drugs to keep them quiet.” The other boy says in reply, “wow, maybe we should raise some funds to send to them”.
With the evolution of the western world we have grown more and more disconnected from the real one, Smart phones, play stations, internet, we are over analysing every single act or thought that enters our heads and ultimately holding ourselves stationary. We have backed ourselves into the corner of financial paralysis earning thousands yet unable to have a day off. With every itch there is a new drug and with every newborn we innovate a new way to feed ourselves from a laboratory. We must change and if not change begin to be aware of the rabbit hole we are sliding down.
Next time you are in a busy place put your phone on silent, place it in your pocket and for 30 minutes fight the anxiety of being disconnected and just watch the people moving past and try to interrupt what you see.
You may see nothing at all, or you may see the reason why a small African child who eats only once a day wants to send us his money.
You may see, the disability of the West.
OLOC- One Life One Chance

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Health or Wealth

In remote parts of Africa, a swollen belly or obesity is considered an amazing thing. If a man or women is overweight in these parts of the world it means something very important. First it means that this person must not have to do manual work every day to live, and it means that they have plenty of money to buy all the food to make them that way. In parts of Mauritania and Nigeria, girls are force-fed to make them plump and attractive on their wedding days.
So it could be said obesity is the exception and not the rule in these parts of the world and being “big” is the same as winning the lottery.
So have we in Australia and the western world all won the lottery? With obesity levels climbing out of control with no system in place to correct it, are we all just not doing enough manual work or are we making to much money?
I think the answer is both, we are all living very well and can afford the overabundance of food that comes with a healthy economy, and with the advances in technology and innovative ways to perform manual tasks with machines, the typical “tradesman” is showing all the signs of the wealthy African also. There is no easy answer to the obesity epidemic, but it must start with the education of the youth. I really do hope that this world problem doesn’t go the same way as the forgotten Climate Change issue because our fatty hearts will give out long before the polar caps melt and drown us.
Have you ever heard the story of the person that won the lottery and died the next day, well guess what. According to the Monash University in their study on Obesity growth, by 2025 80% of Australians will have won the lottery, but they will never collect.
Make a Change-OLOC (One Life One Chance)

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I am the Rice Farmer

It has been widely studied and concluded that the Rice Farmers from the Southern provinces of China are the hardest workers on earth.  Their trade in growing rice teeters on failure daily and if this occurs their families could go hungry and profits never gained.  Engrained in their culture is a combination of words I have grown to cherish and reflect on when my own ethics begin to wane.

The people of the South believe, “No one who can rise before dawn three hundred and sixty days a year will fail to make his family rich”

No matter your profession or ability, if you can get out of bed and start working towards your goals 4 hours before your competition, the total hours of toil will far outweigh any degree or aptitude that stands in your way.

So next time your alarm goes off in the middle of winter, at an hour far earlier than the rise of the sun, repeat these words,

I am the Rice Farmer.

One Step Closer- Luke Richmond

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Pills, powders, creams and injections, we have many tools at our disposal to help us through the sickness, stress and diseases that life can sometimes throw at us. The lifestyles we create for ourselves or the ones society expects us to live are more often then not the very reason we are sick, stressed and close to the end of a rope. Life is hard, it always has been and will always be, finding a simple balance so that we can live a long and happy life is a goal for many. Sometimes before a CrossFit class ill joke that I’m high on life, this isn’t to far from the truth. I’m doped up on the meds that I have come to love, trust and plan to take every day of my life until the last. My Medicine is Training. Its a daily dose of energy, stress relief and endorphins, it boosts my confidence and gets me one step closer to my goals, and just like the pills I am addicted. I have the withdrawals of a junkie when I miss my dose and I know it is something I can never live without. Next time you look in the mirror and see the stress of life weighing you down drop into the Gym and see me, your local Pharmacist, I’ve got a prescription that will save your life, one push up at a time.


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Fitness in the Grind

I often wonder what a life without fitness would be like, Id assume that I would take up watching a lot more TV, get slightly fatter every year and often complain about how hot, cold or rainy it is. Fitness and health spreads through your life like the flu in winter, in saturates the way you move, think and plan for the future. It can shape the course of your life with the gravity of death and financial ruin yet it is easier and less painful to acquire then both. If you miss a train your path will change for a day, what if you were fit enough to run and catch that train, would your day have turned out better. ?

Now I love a coffee, I am part of the highly-strung generation of caffeine and Taurine addicts and my daily does is as much a necessity as a breath of air, or a glass of water. I found out today that fitness has even penetrated how my daily shot of life will turn out. I opened BoxHQ 12 weeks ago and one of my first clients was a barista of the finest quality. This guy could not shift a broomstick above his head without quivering and struggling to do so, yet 12 weeks on he completes 30 reps of clean and jerk at 40kg. He comes up to me after today’s workout and tells me that CrossFit has helped him change his life. He’s fitter, stronger and has limitless energy at work. He now moves with speed and endless precision behind the coffee machine where once he used to tire and wait for the end of shift.  This made me think, on those days when all I wanted was a perfectly balanced caffeine charged cup of coffee but received nothing of the sort, was the barista tired and waiting for the end of shift. ?

So next time you sip your warm strong flat white expecting that familiar taste yet receive a nasty bitter cup of disappointment. Turn to the Barista and ask,

What’s your Fran time. ?

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Success of the Nervous

It’s the three seconds before the gun fires as a sprinter loads himself into the blocks, it’s the feeling when your future wife comes into view as she begins her walk down the isle, that feeling in your gut as you stand with the rest of the platoon waiting for the Helicopter to fire up and take you out on a mission.

Being nervous is sometimes perceived as being weak, I on the other hand believe that nervousness warns you that what you are about to embark on will make you a better person and ultimately lead to your success.

I have just returned from a weekend competition for the growing sport of CrossFit. On a Sunday in November 600 Athletes mustered together at dawn on an Athletics track, all ready to take on some grueling workouts in the Midday heat, all hoping to be crowned the fittest man, women or team by the end of the day.

I saw today in the eyes of all the athletes as they lined up for their heats, not fear but the look of the nervous. They have paid to be punished and to punish themselves and even though at the end of the event only a few will be crowned champions, all will have benefitted from the day and all are one step closer to being successful.

While you read this, think back to the last time you felt real nervousness and then track it to the success of your life, if you cannot remember the last time I want you to start asking yourself, why?

I tell my class every day during our strength sessions that you should be afraid to get under the barbell because you know how hard it is to lift it. If your not afraid then your not working to your maximum.

I think tomorrow morning I will ask them “are you nervous.”

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Always Say Hello

It was almost two years ago at a training camp in the jungles of Thailand that I said Hello to a stranger, I could never have know then that this person would show me a world unknown to most and attainable by only a few.

It started with 12months of Adventure, visiting 7 Continents and climbing some of the biggest Mountains on the planet. I was given a roof over my head, food in my mouth and the chance to succeed. I delivered a speech on stage in front of 600 of Sydney’s elite, and then took my shirt off, all in the name of Charity.

I found myself in the passenger seat of luxury cars listening and learning but never muttering a word. To 6 months later being seated around a finely finished table in a head office weighing in my opinion among colleagues as we moved towards a common goal.

From a simple beginning that has only a week ago culminated in a dream coming true.

BoxHQ Canada Bay opened last week with a bang in Five Dock and the community of the Inner West. Our holistic approach to fitness combining CrossFit, Gym and Bootcamp is proving to be exactly what the people were needing. I love waking up and heading to work knowing that this is mine and at the end of what would be considered a massive work day I’m left wanting more.

I think back to who I was a short two years ago and the path that I was on. In all honesty it was a good path leading to a nice life. Today that path is one of excitement on a daily basis; it’s keeping me on my toes form hour to hour and is loaded with obstacles. There was more then one occasion in the last 4months that I was literally going through hell and It could all have come crashing down at any second, but in the words of the great Winston Churchill “When your going through hell, keep going” He was spot on.

So next time you find yourself in the presence of a stranger, have a quick think about your wildest dreams and how much you would love them to come true, then walk over and say    “Hello”.

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Crossfit Addiction

I walk out into the morning chill, a slight shiver through my body as it feels the breath of cold. I walk to my car in the dark, knowing that only a small percentage of people on the planet is doing what I’m doing at this exact time. I turn up the heat in the car and wait for it to cross over from blowing cold air to warm as i plug the iPod in. Im about to put 100% effort into this craze that is sweeping Australia called CrossFit. Im am one of the addicted showing the full effects of this strength and conditioning method.
In the last year I have become bigger, faster and stronger then I have ever been in my life. Im eating cleaner and my thought process has become razor edged. I am loving life to its fullest and can handle the stresses of every day living with ease. To many the 4AM wake up to travel to a gym and put yourself through hell seems like insanity.
To me it is now the norm. I am one of the thousands who seek to improve on a daily basis and now have a lifestyle orientated around health.Every time that cold bites into my skin as I step out of the front door I am taking One Step Closer to my goals. I am locked in for life, to the Crossfit Addiction

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Lap of the Bay

Cold, rainy and early on a Sunday morning I am sitting here drinking my four dollar McDonalds black coffee with the cars heater working overtime, but more importantly I’m watching the endless parade of runners, joggers and fitness enthusiasts do the famous lap of the bay. Now that I’m back in Australia I can really see how the Aussies are the tip of the sword for the fitness and health boom around the world. Even while Countries and companies are struggling and initiating cutbacks, you will still pay top dollar for a Personal Trainer and a protein shake, and that is a beautiful thing. Not simply because that is the business I’m in, but because finally people are putting a dollar value on their fitness as they do with say there health checkups and pharmacy needs. Is is a well known correlation between being fit and healthy and having low medical bills. “Those that cannot find time for training better find time for sickness.” A big thumbs up for the Australians as I step out of my warm car to begin my Lap of the Bay.

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