“You Can’t Take It With Ya”

“Use your health, even to the point of wearing it out. That is what it is for. Spend all you have before you die; do not outlive yourself.” ~George Bernard Shaw

My friend’s recent addition reminds me that “you can’t take it with ya.”   Gabe is all for working hard but he also knows too well that life can be cut short at any moment.   People forget to enjoy the fruits of their labor and more importantly, share the joy with their family and friends while they have the health, energy and means to do so.

Cheers to all the folks out there, like Gabe, who “make it happen” and appreciate the difference between success, happiness and the ultimate… fulfillment.

A Day to Remember

Program Cover

In case you haven’t heard, Sunday, May 1, 2011 was an unforgettable day. People were cheering, smiling, sharing a few emotional exchanges and uniting together to celebrate  extraordinary efforts.   Why?

The Glenpointe Marriott’s Grand Ballroom was packed for the MS Center’s 14th Annual Spring Fashion Fling.   The event raised money for patients and families living with Multiple Sclerosis with a fabulous luncheon, raffle and fashion show.

And of course, if you’re like most folks here on the east coast, the day became even more memorable later in the evening for much different reasons.

On top of it being one of the nicest days of the year weather-wise, it was great to see the whole MS  Center team in action and all the volunteers gathered again for such a worthy cause; like Susan Zurndorfer, from the MS Center, as the event Chairperson, Chris Cimino, from WNBC-TV as the Honorary Chairperson and Saks 5 Avenue providing  the fashions.

MS Center friends and VIP's: (From Left) Gabe Savarese from Biogen Idec, Marcello Pedalino from MMP Entertainment, Englewood Cliff's Mayor & HNHC Foundation Chairman- Joeseph Parisi, Susan Zurndorfer- Fashion Show Chairperson, Sandi Farrell- MS Center Volunteer, Marie Franco from The Westchester Marriott, Patrice Jungermann from The Sheraton Crossroads, Lisa Futterman from The MS Center, & Chris Cimino from WNBC TV

It was also nice to spend the afternoon with my good friend from high school, Gabe Savarese. He works for Biogen Idec, a fortune 500 company that provides research and development in the fight against neurological diseases like MS.    Biogen was a generous contributor at the event and Gabe volunteered his time to assist the patients from the MS Center who were modeling onto and off  the runway during the show.

MMP Entertainment provided the audio support for the production as well as the annual half-time performance.

Click here, if you’d like to support the MS Center and the fight against Multiple Sclerosis.  Onwards and upwards.  See you next year!   -mp

They CAN Jump! Jacob Tucker Represents

Thanks to my good friend, Gabe Savarese, for sharing this video.  Even if you don’t like basketball, or 1990’s movie references, you’ve gotta appreciate the athleticism.  Holy vertical jump Batman!  -mp

Never Give Up: Alex Federico

Alex Federico (May 2009)

In case you haven’t noticed all the positive themes here in The Sunshine Club, we Celebrate LifeLove, Laughter, Inspiration, Achievement; on days like today….we Celebrate Results.

My good friend and frequent Sunshine Club contributor, Mike Walter, often says… “There’s two things you can make in life: results, or excuses.”

My new friend, Alex Federico, is all about the results…   Even though the odds were stacked high against the successful entrepreneur, (owning 22 ice cream trucks), he took control and made it happen.  Breaking up with his girlfriend also proved to be a powerful motivator.

Could you imagine yourself being 100 pounds heavier than you are right now? Alex can, because he was.  Last May, he weighed in at 296 lbs. If he didn’t show me this photo from a year ago, I wouldn’t have believed him either.  Today, ‘the new’ Alex weighs in at about 200. If pictures are worth a thousand words, feel free to look at these ‘after’ shots and write a few of your own in the comment section below.    I’ll start…  1) Wow! 2) Holy lifestyle intervention Batman! 3) I’m proud to be Italian. 🙂

Like our other dynamic guests here in the Sunshine Club, Alex was kind enough to share his success story and sage advice with all of MMP’s readers.   Enjoy!

mp: I’m always curious about the “trigger.”  Describe the moment you decided to change your life.

Alex Federico (Summer 2010)

AF: “Believe it or not, the quest to lose weight began the day after me and my ex-girlfriend of 6 years broke up.  May 9, 2009, I joined the gym and weighed in at 296lbs with 24% body fat.  Today, I weigh somewhere in the area of 200 lbs. and maintain a body fat percentage of well under 10%.”

mp: What adjustments did you make to your diet, lifestyle, etc.?

AF: “My lifestyle has not seen very many drastic changes in the way of dieting- mainly because I don’t diet.  I eat whatever I want but I am just extremely conscious of portion control and the times at which I eat.  I have a saying that I tell everyone looking to lose weight: “eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.” I do however workout for about an hour a day at 5am before I go to work with p90x, which is largely responsible for a majority of my weight loss.”

mp: Tell me more about the ice cream venture.

AF: “I started my ice cream truck business when I was 18 years old with one truck; currently I own 22 and have exclusive distribution rights to several large venues and park systems throughout Monmouth and Ocean counties.  Over the last 7 years of business, I have had extreme highs and dramatic lows but still manage to maintain order amongst chaos currently employing a little over 40 employees and managing about 30 or so national accounts. Although the ice cream business has been good to me over the years it is time to move on.  At the conclusion of the 2010 season I will be putting the ‘for sale’ sign on the door and moving on to my next venture in life which will be joining the family business out in Staten Island.

mp: Now that you’ve dropped the weight, what goals are you currently working towards?

Life is good!

AF: “My personal goal since I was 18 has been to purchase a home by the time I’m 25. I am currently under contract and scheduled to close July 31, 2010 on a condo in Red Bank, NJ.  In business,  although the recent focus has been redirected from the ice cream industry to the family business which is plumbing supplies,  my goal  has always been to strive to lead the industry in sales and my goals shall remain the same as my career transition begins this fall.”

mp: When people see your photos, they’ll want to know what you learned throughout your journey.  What advice would you give them?

AF: “I’ve been offering the same advice to everyone I run into over the past few years in business, life and now in fitness.  Write down your goals and NEVER, no matter what anyone else says, GIVE UP!!!”

Thanks Alex, the Celebrate Life Team wishes you continued health, happiness and success.

Special thanks to my good friend, Gabe Savarese, for introducing me to Alex a few weeks ago.  He told me about Alex’s story and set up a quick lunch down the shore.  Gabe told me that in addition to Alex having a great story to tell, he was an awesome cook as well.   A few weeks later, Alex invited us both back to his beach house for a delicious barbeque lunch.   Life is good.  🙂

Marcello Pedalino is a 3-time National DJ of the Year, ADJA Leadership Award Recipient and Health and Wellness enthusiast who believes that life should not only be lived, it should be celebrated.

If you have a Sunshine Club story you’d like to  share or know a person who should be on our radar, please submit an e-mail, photo or link for consideration.

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