Archive for the ‘fun’ Category

I only recently heard this term, and it was in the context of learning about a program called “Rethink Masculinity” where men are taught how to get in touch with their feelings as well as other helpful things like being sensitive towards others and crying in public.

Go to the page (which I will not link) and you will see four men – who are probably the last people I would think of when I think of the term “manly” – and you’ll see what I mean, these people mean to teach you how to get rid of what they call “toxic masculinity”.

Now “Toxic masculinity” can mean different things to different groups… as per wikipedia the definition is “traditional norms of behavior among men” – so does this mean standing to pee?

I am going to go out on a limb and guess that this is largely a group of effeminate men who are intimidated by testosterone-filled, angry dudes.

If that’s the case I can sympathize, but I will suggest that a man who is not in control of his temper is merely a child and does not deserve the title “man”.

Our world is trying so viciously to be nice that we are seeing more separation and contempt for one another than ever. Just look at the political landscape in the US right now. An educated society should be able to embrace their own uniqueness while understanding the necessity for people with differing qualities. But instead of uniting we make our neighbors into villains.

Similarly, claiming that men behaving like men constitutes “toxic behaviour” does the exact same thing. And unfortunately it is becoming more and more uncommon for men to have the qualities that are natural. If the word natural pisses you off, I would ask how it is that our species has survived so long… the clear answer is that in the beginning of time we had a social construct that supported our evolutionary means of survival and reproduction… in other words: men were men and women were women.

Both are equal in importance and yet both are different in design AND purpose.

I began a video series on the topic, let me know what you think…

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I’ve seen a bunch of articles popping up today citing a study from Birzeit University that suggests fizzy/sparkly/carbonated water can lead to fat gain…

The reasoning is that they feel it leads to a release in ghrelin – the hunger hormone.

Now there are a few details that I think are important to note here…

According to the information provided They tested both diet sodas and carbonated water on rats and found they ate more than the taking non-carbonated drinks.

What this information seems to leave out is the minor detail of artificial sweeteners… sucralose and aspertame do a lot of nasty business to your body and are obviously in abundance in the diet sodas, but how about the fizzy “water”? Just look on the labels at a grocery store and you’ll notice that the vast majority have some form of artificial sweeteners.

I know this is purely anecdotal, but when I drink a carbonated drink I don’t feel hungry but rather I feel full. I also tend to get sparkling water sweetened only from natural sources.

So from what I can tell – and I stand to be corrected – this study was greatly flawed from the outset. That being said I would certainly avoid artificial sweeteners and sugary sodas.

douche

Okay in fairness, much of this is not from Greg himself but rather his minions, but since they view him as a god I give myself licence here. I used to be a member on the “Project Beach Body” facebook group (if I recall the name right), and it was usually good for a laugh, but eventually it became less entertaining and more frustrating, so I had to separate myself from the rampant stupidity that people want to believe.

Regardless, here are some of the gems they taught me…

1. Greg is God!

2. Intermittent Fasting is the only effective way to burn fat.

3. Exercise form is unimportant (unless you’re taking steroids).

4. It doesn’t matter what you eat as long as your calories meet your goals, the Twinkie is evidence of this.

5. Getting high before lifting heavy weights is not just safe and intelligent, it’s downright awesome!

6. The whole point of making progress is so that you can post selfies and lifting videos to show how awesome you are.

7. Diet soda is good for you.

8. The more education someone has the less they know (after all, grand master Greg has no qualifications and no education yet knows everything).

9. Sugar has no impact on insulin.

10. The only way to build muscle is by lifting heavy with poor form.

11. Adrenal fatigue is a myth. The more stimulants you can take the better!

Okay I gave you eleven instead of ten. Don’t you feel enriched!

And here’s the video version:

When Man of Steel hit the screen I wrote some of my most popular blogs:

  • Man of Steel: Building a physique like Henry Cavill’s Superman
  • Man of Steel Cannon Ball Shoulders
  • Building a Man of Steel Chest with “SUPER DROPS”

    Now That Batman V Superman is on the way I’ve taken it one step further by making an interactive video-based program, starting with: Man of Steel training program Part 1

  • Two little words when put together may be the things holding you back… I learned this because I saw it in myself first and then began observing it in others.

    Those two words are: I Know

    The problem with these words are that they take on an assumption of knowing things and therefore closing your mind to all other possibilities. Ironically some very bright people fall prey to this, and then limit what they are capable of learning.

    Of course there is a difference between being open-minded and being gullible, but that’s a whole other matter.


    Hey guys and gals,

    So in my efforts to adapt with the times I’m revamping my blog and videos a little…

    I’m going to be publishing a new video each week, but the theme will be alternating between:

    • one Superhero-physique-themed video per month (based on whatever the newest blockbuster is)
    • one fitness program review per month including books, online programs and even equipment
    • the other weeks will cover all kinds of topics in the physique transformation world like exercise, nutrition, hormones, tips and tricks, supplement and maybe even the odd rant *cough* Planet Fitness *cough*

    A lot will be linked here in my blog but they might not all be (and some will be relating to my archived blogs), so to get it all please subscribe to my new YouTube channel, and as always your feedback is appreciated: Buff-N-Toned Channel


    As a kid I loved Tarzan, even though my main source of exposure was audio stories on vinal – which were recorded versions of the 1966 show starring Ron Ely. When Casper Van Dien played the role in the 1998 I wanted so badly to love it despite it being pretty awful.

    Now a new version is coming out starring Alexander Skarsgard (and my mistress-to-be Margot Robbie) and if you’ve seen the trailers for The Legend of Tarzan – whether you think it looks visually stunning or narratively stupid, no one can deny that the dude is peeled!

    Skarsgård’s physique is either inspirational to those who enjoy getting fit or maddening to those who don’t know how to. Before I get into some specifics on how to train and eat for this let me point something that the cinema hides: people “peak” for very short periods of time.

    A perfect example of this is the movie Man of Steel where the production schedule was coordinated with Henry Cavil’s trainer to get him to peak for the one shirtless scene.

    Fitness models and bodybuilders have the same challenge, to get into their peak condition for stage time. 

    So it is an unrealistic expectation to think anyone walks around like this 24:7, but working towards this type of shape we can certainly stand apart from the crowd.

    Alexander is tall and lanky, which leads me to suspect he is a stereotypical ectomorph. While he was fit before this film, his challenge was probably putting on muscle more than it was getting lean.

    Because of this his specific training was probably hypertrophy-based. There are bound to be magazines popping up with “Tarzan training” designed as all-in-one programs, but while such stories (strong emphasis on the word “stories”) may be entertaining they are not likely to be practical for most people.

    For most people on the earth what I’m about to suggest will get you much closer. It’s a 2-phase regime, first getting buff and leans and then getting scorched.

    PHASE 1 – FROM AVERAGE TO AWESOME

    In phase 1 we need to lay the foundation and get into great shape. This requires dedication and mental resilience. It’s about building and toning muscle while dramatically singeing body fat.

    I’ve had a number of “false starts” through the years so here are the ways I’ve found to overcome those…

    Probably the most important is a shift in mindset. I will say this again but the most powerful mental switch you can make is changing “I want” or “I should” into “I must”. This has helped me in every aspect of my life.

    With a new-found commitment to getting into ridiculous shape, here’s how to begin phase 1:

    Day 1: gorge! Shop! Read! Goals! Spend $!

    The day 1 feast is as vital as it is enjoyable. If you have been a yo-yo dieter in the past there’s a good chance your metabolism is slowed down so this will help kick start your engine. It is also a good way to remind yourself that junk food is not as good as your brain wants you to think. Mentally it tells you that this journey is about enjoyment and pride, not self deprivation.

    Make sure to stock up on healthy food that you will be using to fuel your transformation.

    Read and/or re-read good material to help inspire you and remind you of key principles. Suggestions are “Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle” by Tom Venuto, or check out “SuperHero Physique” which was designed to be motivational as well as educational. Even “Body-For-Life” has a few good nuggets. You can always click on my Fat Burning blogs for tons of material.

    Set your goals. What I suggest initially is to take your current measuring stick and use that. For example if you just think you look out of shape something like “I must get a six pack” – write it down because we’re going to come back to it.

    Spend a little money. Invest in yourself. This could mean buying a treat at the supplement shop, ordering a fitness book, etc, it really doesn’t matter. The fact that you are putting cash into this tells your mind that you are commuted and stand to lose if you don’t see it through.
    Day 2: Measure! Refine goals! train favorite part! Log your food!

    Begin day two by measuring your weight and body composition. Also take a picture. This is not fun but remind yourself that this is going to be the worst measurements and it’s only going to get better from here on.

    Using your measurements refine your written goal. For example having a six pack might now mean burning 30 lbs of fat. As a measurable amount you can now track your progress.

    Start of your training program with your favorite body part/parts. For example I generally begin with chest and biceps or shoulders. Make sure to log your training (I use the free app Pump-N-Log). I’ll get into the nitty-gritty of the actual training shortly…

    Begin the habit of logging what you eat. As with training I’ll get into the details shortly but the most important thing you can do is log your food with either an app, a book (such as Buffer’s training and diet log) or a spreadsheet.

    Day 7: measure and adjust

    Take your measurements again after a week. Pictures are usually best every two weeks. Based on your results make adjustments to your diet. Whatever you do, don’t get discouraged. Tell yourself “I must see this through”. There are bound to be ups and downs along the way, so use this as a tool not an excuse to quit.

    This phase is a typical program I run for 6-12 weeks.

    PHASE 1 TRAINING:

    Simply put, the best training here is a 3-4 day split using a rep-range of 8-12 to failure.

    Here is a good example of such a workout:

    Day 1 – chest & biceps

    • Barbell Bench press – 4 sets x 8 reps
    • Incline dumbbell press – 4×8
    • Ez bar curls (wrists supinated) – 4×8
    • Cable crossovers – 3×10
    • Alternating dumbbell curls – 3×10

    Finish with 10-20 minutes of cardio.

    Day 2 – back & hams

    • Straight-arm pull downs – 4×10 (plus drops after last set)
    • Lying leg curl – 6×6 (partials after each set)
    • Barbell or cable rows – 4×8
    • Stiff-leg deadlift – 3×10,8,6

    Finish with HIIT cardio

    Day 3 – Quads & Calves

    • Barbell squats – 8×8
    • Leg extension 3×12
    • Seated calf raises 100 reps in as short a time as possible 

    10-20 min cardio

    Day 4 – delts and triceps

    • 3-way delts raise – 3×10
    • Cable press down – 4×8
    • Seated barbell military press 3×6 – super set with
    • Dumbbell laterals – 3×8
    • Overhead dumbell triceps extensions – 3×10
    • Rear delt bent dumbbell laterals – 3×10 superset with
    • Dumbbell upright rows – 3×8

    HIIT cardio.
    PHASE 1 DIET:

    What to eat is a huge thing here. The main thing is to eat enough good food to keep you metabolism running well.

    The most effective strategy still is to follow these guidelines:

    • Keep calories around 85% of maintenance for 3 days then have one re-feed day every forth day at about 110%
    • Have 6 meals per day ensuring protein with each meal
    • Drink a cup of water every waking hour
    • Keep carbs clean; avoid carbs pre-workout and first thing in the morning
    • Include omega-3 fat sources
    • Have lots of vegetables

    PHASE 1 supplements:

    The main purpose of sups here is to fill in gaps of your diet. So protein powder, greens powder, multivitamins and omega 3 fish oil are awesome for this.

    Despite the speculation around whether krill oil is worth the added cost I’m a huge advocate of it. I’ve found it significantly helps with inflammation in my shoulders and absolutely no fish burps unlike other fish oils. I also suspect that it is superior for insulin sensitivity based on my personal resultsof lowering belly fat but I have no concrete evidence to support that at this time.

    Since this article is getting a tad long I’m going to give you Phase 2 or “the grand finale” in my next post. Phase 2 is where we will go from a great physiqu to an “elite” physique!

    PHASE 2 – coming soon

    Related:

    Super Hero Physique