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A Birthday Question

Last Friday I received an unexpected but great phone call.  It was my birthday, and a surprise, a friend had arranged for a phone call to me from the owners of Café Gratitude.  Café Gratitude is a small string of cafés through the bay area.  I love going there and I love the grateful and positive philosophy of Café Gratitude.  The owners of the café ask their employees and guests an insightful question every day.  For my birthday, they had a special question: “In 43 years of life, what have you learned?”  I pondered for 5 seconds.  The answer was clear to me.  In my 43 years, I’ve learned just how important it is to surround myself by great people: great family, great friends, and great people at work.

At Nutrition53, I have the ability to surround myself with great people at work because I am part of the hiring process.  Although you can’t pick most of your family members, I was fortunate enough to grow up with supportive parents and siblings, who I love.  My wife takes very great care of me, is always there for me and is very loving.  For that I am very thankful.  She has given me the two biggest blessings in my life, Dalton and Alexandra.  Dalton turned 15 last month and things can be a day to day challenge at that age.  But it’s a challenge that I love and am open to each and every day. Alexandra turns 12 this month, she and I worked out together for the first time yesterday.  I was blown away by her strength, work ethic, and determination.  When I told her the workout was finished, she said “Daddy, can we do more?”  I thought “Yes!”  I love it.  Love the passion, love the determination.  She is a great gymnast. 

Now I want to ask you to share with people, whether you are a 15 years old or 75 years old, what you have learned in your life? What can you share with someone to make a difference in their life? What are you grateful for?

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8 Responses to “A Birthday Question”

  1. DavidN said:

    Hi Mr. Romanowski,
    First off, I want to say thanks for the website. I just checked it out today for the first time. I actually went on the web to read up about you because we sat next to each other in a breakfast diner in San Luis Obispo today. In all honesty I want to apologize for not being courteous enough to engage you in conversation. Being stuck between two college couples is not the greatest eating experience I bet. At the time I was not sure it was you but after seeing your picture I knew my first guess was correct. I have to attest though to your nutrition and your own personal lifestyle. I am a Kinesiology major at the university here and looking back I particularly remembered you had a healthy well balanced meal. I guess you could say you do walk your talk. All in all if I had that moment back I would have liked to say “thank you for being a man that takes responsibilities for his actions”. Kind of an awkward conversation for strangers during breakfast I know. But so many men and fellow students I am in contact with do not know how to say “it was my fault” and leave it at that. Every man will fall, inevitable, but few know how to pick themselves up and properly apply Newton’s Third law positively. I have followed your career here and there as child and adult, and I want to say thank you. About your question, I am young. Experience is not all knowledge but it is one of the greatest forms of understanding. Because of that what I have to offer does not come from a man who has stood the test of fire and time. About a year ago I started to struggle with a question in my life, “How will I not have regrets at the end of my life?” pretty original right? Even though, this is a question that every person asks in some form, few I believe actually answer it and accomplish it. I am an individual of faith and because of that my beliefs are central to guiding my life. But my conclusion though is not exclusive I feel but rather universal in its scope of humanity. That is, all things fade away with time (accomplishments, material possessions, etc) but the impact that a human has directly on another human is infinite. I just finished a book, “Tuesdays with Morrie”, and it had a great quote “death ends a life, not a relationship”. I have learned that putting into others fills you up more than receiving it and a life chasing materials is a never ending circle of wants. How we leave an impact is how we approach life and how we approach life determines how we live it. It seems from even how you set up your website you also know the value of relationships. Your family is central to you and you know one of your greatest impacts will be through your children. I can attest to that because I can see clearly how much my parents have shaped my life and my four other siblings. Their influence will therefore impact all my children and all the people I interact with and so on. That’s my goal for my life, now it’s the reality of just living it daily.

  2. Ryan said:

    Mr. Romo,

    I just completed your book. I rarely read books but really enjoyed this one and appreciated your truthfulness within the text. Happy belated Birthday. I am from Denver Colorado and am currently in Law Enforcement. I attended many clearance sales at the old EAS factory in Golden that was for law enforcement only so I too have experienced much of their products. I’m thinking about trying some of yours but need to finish up what I’m using now. Anyway, I wanted to ask you sir, in your book you stated that taking vitamin C immediately after a workout is a big “no, no” How come? I figured since it was an antioxidant it would help with an immediate detoxification ie: lactic acid. Also, you seem to be a good guy and I wouldn’t be down on yourself for some of the things you’ve done. The pro football field sounds like a war zone and you treated it as such. I’m sure there’s plenty of smack talking going on out there to provoke you. Some people are there to collect a pay check while others such as yourself are looking and have left a mark within the NFL. God forgives you brother ;). Ok, well please respond in regards to the vitamin C question. Thanks. Ryan R.

  3. Jim stewart said:

    dear Mr. Romanowski,

    Hi my name is Jim Stewart and i have been a huge fan of yours since i started watching football as a kid. i am 22 years old, live in dallas texas and play super league rugby for the Dallas Harlequins. you have always been a great inspiration to me in sports and on my show i have mentioned you as a great inspiration in my life. showing me that anything is possible if you work hard enough for it. I wanted to show that inspiration to others and all who listen to my show. allowing others to see that anything is possible. that a small growing sports talk show if they work hard enough can be successful and to have the honor of interviewing you on our show i think would show everyone that you don’t have to be someone like ESPN to be able to get an interview with a great and famous professional athlete.

    your biggest fan
    jim stewart

  4. Romo53 said:

    Thanks for the great comments and insights. Great to hear what you have learned in your lifetime, thank you for sharing with me here.

    Ryan, regarding your question about Vitamin C, that appendix section was co-written. I am a big believer in Vitamin C, in amounts much greater than the Recommended Daily Value such as 1,000 mg. It is a powerful anti-oxidant, great for your immune system, and generally helps absorption of other nutrients. Most mammals can produce Vitamin C themselves, but humans need to get it from their diet.

    David, don’t worry about being occupied at the diner, I understand how it goes.

  5. Aundrea Hasselbach said:

    Hey BILL + JULIE

    Okay so I am going to be 40 soon! And things are definitely changing but I also have an intense work schedule. Things are changing meaning I have to worry more about aging and staying healthy.

    Can you please let me know a diet schedule and would these products help me lean out without bulking up or have man features (haha)

    I hope you two are well. Do you guys have Facebook? I will see but write me back ASAP if you can help me.

    harald says hello


  6. Bryce said:

    Dear Mr. Romanowski,
    I am a high school football player in Colorado that grew up watching and idolizing you. It is my senior year in high school and I’ve had major injuries my past two years of football preventing me from getting real play time. I had to have my ACL reconstructed and my rotator cuff re-attached. I am a very good kid, I read your book the week it came out and have used it as a model for my life. I have never drank alcohol or done any form of drug because I have had that voice in my head asking me if it would keep me from my dream. Because of my injuries no colleges have been able to see what I’ve got so they aren’t interested in me. I’m not ready to give the game up yet I’m to young and I love it too much. I am a hard worker I spend multiple hours in the gym and running everyday. I live and breath football the NFL dream is all I want, I have the drive to do it but I’m lacking a way. I guess what I’m trying to get to with all of this mindless rambling is some guidance. I wouldn’t normally ask someone I didn’t know for life advice but you are the one I look up to most. Even if you don’t have an answer for me I thank you for taking valuable time out of your day to read this.

    Thank You, Bryce

  7. Throwbacks said:

    Stumbled on your site quite by accident, I’m glad I did. I’m always on the lookout for a new football resource and your site really fit the bill :)

  8. Sharon said:

    Mr: Romonowski:

    I just happened to see you on our news station here in Hawaii this am, and thought I would send you a note. I can appreciate your dedication to nutrition, as I too am in the health and wellness field. I am a distributor for a great company with a dedication and commitment to changing the world. We market over 150 products, our flagship product being Bios Life Slim. We address obesity because it is the largest contributor to heart disease, and because 1 in 3 Americans will die from heart disease. What people don’t know is that 80% of all heart attacks are preventable. We are a franchising business, & I would like to talk to you about our company. My son lost over 100lbs using our products, and working at his lifestyle changes. I hope to hear from you. Aloha

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