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January 31, 2012

Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.


Rant and tip for January 31, 2012

Quote:  “Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.”  George S. Patten

Yes another quote by the General. OK I am not a war monger but I do believe there are some things worth fighting for. OK now back to this quote. During your workouts as well as you daily battle in controlling what we eat, there will be days that you hit rock bottom. In your workout it may be a stall in gains you hope to make in a particular lift. We all hit those. It can be frustrating as well and mentally draining. It is how you rebound from this set back that will tell what a success you training is or isn’t.
The same applies to your diet. When you fail whether it be, due to poor planning or a moment of weakness when that cookie that just seemed to jump into your mouth, you feel like you have hit bottom. Yeah I know it has happened to you. All of a sudden you are thinking, “What did I just do.” It is at this time you need to bounce right back up and get back on track. You can and will be successful if you handle these moments of weakness as a learning experience instead of letting it defeat you mentally. I have seen it happen many times to friends and even myself when trying to lose the fat. We make a mistake in our diet plan and we feel defeated. We end up feeling like there is something wrong with us. We say to ourselves “Why can’t I just stay on plan? “ I just want you to know you are just human. We all make mistakes when we work a diet plan that is a new way or eating for the rest out our lives. That is truly the journey you are on, the journey to get fit and live a healthy lifestyle which includes a healthy clean diet. There is nothing wrong with you. You have been eating all the foods that have gotten you to where you are for so long it will take the ability to bounce back from setbacks to be the success you deserve to be. How high can you bounce back? 

Benching went well Yesterday. To change things up a bit and confuse the muscles after working up to a one rep max I switched my grip out wide on the bar. When you bench with a wide grip you stretch the chest more and actually shorten the stroke of the lift. I wanted to isolate the chest and this was the way to accomplish that. I also wanted to get myself use to the wider grip. If you recall I stated last week that benching in the Super Katana it was suggested I move my grip out wider. I will bench again in the shirt on Wednesday night and am looking forward to getting the grove right. I felt very strong today and fully expect that it will carry over on Wednesday.

Today will be squat day. I will work my 5X5 workout making sure to hit dept on each set. While I will not be doing box squats today I will use the box to make sure I am low enough. I will not have a spotter available so I will have to set the safety rails on the rack and as a friend has told me “Just be Fearless”. Over the next few months you will see I mention a 400 squat. Each time I right this number down it becomes engrained in my mind and I see it happening.  

Have a great workout!

Tip: Be sure to get enough fats while on a low carb diet.
This can be a real problem. Despite some effort to get out the word about so-called "healthy fats", hardly a day goes by that I don't see or hear a negative message about fats in the diet. This leads some to attempt a low-fat version of a low-carb diet. At the beginning, some can even manage it, if they are using up a lot of their own fat (as opposed to eating it). However, fat loss inevitably slows down, and people can then become hungry if they don't add some fat to their diets. Nothing will sabotage a diet faster than hunger. So don't let this happen to you!

January 29, 2012

"You're never beaten until you admit it." George Patten


Rant and Tip for January 30, 2012

Quote: "You're never beaten until you admit it." George Patten

Now while General Patton my never had the desire to hit the weights or not I do not know. He did however lead many a man to a successful battle. Sometimes that is exactly how we feel as we tackle our diets and our fitness regimen. It is a battle. If you have a lot of weight to lose still then it becomes an all out war. I believe that his words are absolutely true. If you admit that you cannot follow your chosen diet then you will fail. It truly is a mindset that you need to adapt that you will not admit defeat. You will not get beaten in your quest. I remember the last meet I did there was a point with I started to falter during a lift. I remember thinking there is no way in hell I was going to let that bar start a decent back down and I did not let it.

It seems many people want to get better abs. I know I have repeatedly told you that it is mostly diet that will get the abs to pop. If you do not lose the fat the abs will never show no matter how many crunches you do. With that said let’s talk a little about getting better abs. To get the most out of your ab-crunches you need to keep the muscles tight throughout the movement. You never want to let muscles relax during the motion. You want to keep them tight though the entire movement. You should not rest during a rep whether at the bottom or the top of the rep. Do not rest or bounce on the floor or bench. Be sure to exhale as you contract the abs on the upward movement. When you do exhale be sure to fully exhale as if someone has punched you in the stomach. Inhale as you lower your body on the way back down. Lastly you need to keep in mind the range of motion for an ab crunch is very short. A full sit-up or crunch brings in the hip flexors as well. So be sure to focus on crunching of just the abs. For an added benefit you can crunch to the left and the right and get the obliques involved.

I missed a training session yesterday because my daughter was not feeling well and I need to stay home with her. This is a session that I will not get back but I will however train twice as hard tomorrow. The intensity I will apply to my bench session will be all out. It is hard to explain, while I try to train hard each day I am in the gym tomorrow I will almost make myself pay for not training yesterday. Not only did I really miss the training session emotionally I feel that it is my own fault for not having a backup plan in place. It seems I always come back to the need to plan better. So today for me will be a benching day. I will warm up and then work on hitting heavy weight sets for reps of 2. Incrementing repeatedly until I cannot get 2 out. Either that or my 5 x 5 set finishing with a set of 5 at 310. At least at this point I have two plans in place.

What do you have planned for today regarding your diet and exercise?

Have a great workout!

Tip: If you are having problems with crunches or other ab exercises try this while sitting at your desk at work or at home. I know you at your desk right now. Tighten you abs as tight as you can and hold it for 30 seconds. Now release and do it again for a set of 10. At the end you should feel like you had just done several crunches without the pressure of sitting on the floor.


Please visit The Tribustolplus web site and give Tribustol a try. When purchasing you supply be sure to pick my name in the drop down box when asked where did you hear about the product from. As an affiliate the proceeds will help me get to the World Powerliftng meet in the Czech Republic. 


January 27, 2012

Mother-In-Law

Mother-In-Law

Contributed by Milford Woods


I just moved my mother-in-law to an apartment just across town. Prior to this move, she had been living 8 hours away. This is both a blessing and a curse. I am happy to have her here so the kids can get to know her better, and have her in their life more, but I am a little concerned that she will not have her own “life” and always be at our house. Don’t get me wrong, I love my mother in law, but I really need her in small doses. I’m going to introduce her to some other single women her age, but one of the first things I’m going to do is go to http://www.satellitetvfamily.com/order.html and get her set up with TV, so at least she will have that to do. My wife told me that her mother enjoys cooking shows, so I’m hoping there are plenty of those to keep her busy. Who knows? Maybe we will even get to try out some of the new recipes she learns. Now that is a win-win for everyone!

If you are going through hell keep going

Rant and Tip for January 27, 2012

Quote: “If уоu аrе gоіng thrоugh hell, kеер going.” (Winston Churchill)

Wow does that quote pack a punch or what. I was sitting here wondering what to write and found this quote this morning. Really what choice do you have, if you are going through a tough time, give up? No way that is not something we are going to do. We will not give up.

If you feel like you new eating plan is not working or you have hit a plateau do not just give up, change your caloric in take based on your fitness activities. Or increase your net carbs or decrease them do not keep them the same and do not give up. It may feel like hell now but success is write around the corner and you will have worked you way through hell. If you can keep away from those simple carbohydrates you will eventually succeed.

Simple carbohydrates are found in most processed or refined foods and some natural foods. These carbohydrates have short-chained sugar molecules and, because they break apart quickly, enter the bloodstream quickly. Sugary foods--including corn syrup, fruit juices, and honey--contain glucose that is absorbed directly through the stomach wall and rapidly released into the bloodstream, almost as quickly as if delivered by syringe. When this happens your body cannot burn the fuel fast enough and this has no other option but to be stored as fat. Your body recognizes it as a fuel and just wants to store it for later.

I work out a couple different gyms and a training center. When I am at Albany Strength there is a great group of lifters that help everyone keep on track. I wish I could get there 5 days a week but my schedule will not allow it. When I go to the training center, there is always someone there to help and push and spot as well. Have a workout partner is very helpful and encouraging. When I work out during the day I have a consistent workout partner as well. While he does not lift the weight I do, he does work hard and pushes me to hit new marks. The past few weeks he has been nursing an injury and has not been in the gym. I can tell you when he is not there I do still work hard but the moments when I need to get that last rep out and I am pushing with intensity I could use him pushing me verbally.

Have a great workout!

Tip:

It’s been proven time and time again: Support for your fitness efforts is a very potent part of your motivation. I have often thought that the most consistent people exercising are the those who have a partner. Often, another person’s encouragement may be just what you need when you do not feel like hitting your workout.

Here are some tips to help you find that support:

● You and your partner should be “like-minded,” that is, be interested in exercise, nutrition, and good health – and the benefits they bring.

● Your partner should share the same workout and thoughts on eating properly. You do not want someone who is chowing down a donut while you are eating you energy bar before the workout.

● Each one of you should be a “positive motivator,” and not a “cheap complimenter.” In other words, don’t tell your partner he’s looking great, when in fact he has only worked out twice. Tell the truth. Be supportive and encouraging – especially when new fitness goals are attained.

● Partners should have compatible schedules so that you can work out at the same time during the week. It’s easier to stick to a set routine rather than do sporadic activities. Schedule your exercise sessions at the same time, on the same days. This is an excellent carrot to dangle in front of you. Eventually, your workouts will become cemented into your daily routine.

● Both of you should be willing to work out at the same intensity levels and not be afraid to sweat! Commit yourself gradually and progressively by increasing your intensity. Keep in mind this does not mean you have to be pushing the same weight. Just pushing with the intensity






video

January 26, 2012

It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe


Rant and Tip for January 26, 2012

Quote: “It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.” – Muhammad Ali

Yes another Muhammad Ali quote. I personally like this one because that pebble can be any little thing in your life that you will let you down. Sometimes the pebble is poor planning on our part and not preparing for the events of the day to get the proper fuel. Other times that pebble is that little guy on your shoulder that is yelling in your ear that you are putting too much weight on the bar or you cannot squat that to depth. We need to remove those pebbles no matter what they are. It does not matter how big that mountain is if you are stuck on dealing with that pebble. So deal with the pebbles and move on.

So my diet is getting where it needs to be, I am increasing my dietary Fiber and working on keeping my water intake up. The funny thing is I truly enjoy my vegetables and I just need to plan better and prepare my vegetables properly. It is time to get to the store and get some fresh vegetables. We all know that Dietary Fiber is important to keep the system running smoothly and helps avoid constipation. However did you also know that it is beneficial in lowering your risk of diabetes and heart disease? High-fiber foods generally require more chewing time, which gives your body time to register when you're no longer hungry, so you're less likely to overeat. Also, a high-fiber diet tends to make a meal feel larger and linger longer, so you stay full for a greater amount of time. And high-fiber diets also tend to be less "energy dense," which means they have fewer calories for the same volume of food. So you see by increasing your dietary fiber you can also aid in your weight loss goals. Some vegetables that are high in fiber are: Avocados, Tomatoes, Artichokes, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Edamame, Eggplant, Endive, Fennel, green beans, Kohlrabi and Okra. All of these have 4 or more grams of fiber per serving. Broccoli, Cauliflower, Asparagus, Celery Lettuce, Spinach and Squash all have 2 to 3 grams per serving. So you see there are a lot of choices here. Make sure to get your vegetables today.

My call for the day in terms of exercise will be shoulders and back. I had a good workout with squats yesterday and will work just as hard on my shoulders and back today. If I can get my back to be thinker and not just wide this will help me increase my bench and allow me to handle more weight on my shoulders when I squat. Many people believe the bench press works just the chest and the squat works just the legs. These are compound exercises and work the whole body. I have a friend that states he knows he had a good bench workout when his legs are sore. If you are driving with your legs properly you will feel it there as well. The squat requires the entire body to stay tight. If you are loose at all you will not make the lift. Even the deadlift is a compound exercise and will the entire body when working out. I even feel my deadlift in my chest.

Have a great workout!

Tip:
In order to add depth to your back, you need to build the trapezius muscles, which form a kite from the base of your skull to your mid back. You need to build the teres major and minor, just above and behind the lats. You need to build the rhomboids, which sit in the middle of the back and help the traps retract the scapula. These muscles are best built with rows. Cable rows, T-bar rows, barbell rows, and machine rows are all useful. They each hit your back from a slightly different angle, emphasizing different muscles for full back development. To maximize that development, sometimes use lighter resistance and concentrate on pinching your shoulder blades together.

January 25, 2012

It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges,


Rant and Tip for January 25, 2012

Quote: “It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.” – Muhammad Ali

We can all learn something from one of the greatest boxers there ever was. If you do not have the faith in yourself that you can and will make the changes to meet the challenges that come from starting a new way of eating or exercise regimen, you will fail. However, believe in yourself and have the faith that you can succeed in making these changes you will be successful. I have the faith you can do it. It is just a matter of you convincing yourself you are worth the changes.

Benched again yesterday and I believe it was too soon after Sunday’s workout. I should have waited till Wednesday. I was only able to get 305 for 2 and wanted to get it for 5. This was after hitting 240 or 5 then 260 for 5, 275 for 5 and 290 for 5. I really should have gotten that 305 for 5. Then like a fool I attempted 335 for one but I was already spent at that point. I should have rested the body one more day. I guess I did not head my own advice there. OK squats are the call of the day and again I do not plan on going to heavy. No smith machine either. I may do box squats and try to hit 350 from the box. I will definitely need a spotter for this one. I do hope to hit 380 or 400 in August.

I recently had a friend at work ask me what he can to at home for his workout so I pointed him to my Exercise Schedule page. Today on that page is back day. Here is my suggested workout for you on back day. All of these can be done at home with dumbbells.

For those working out at home:
Dumbbell rows 4 sets of 10
Weighted hyper-extensions - 4 sets 10
Shrugs - 4 sets 10
Pull ups or let downs 4 sets of 5 Pull ups if you can do them lets downs till you can.

If you are having trouble sticking to your diet, try to access why; determine what your disabling factors are. Take an inventory of them and decide to push them away. Whether they are physical, emotional or environment challenges you need to find a way past them. Some of us have family members who seem to sabotage our efforts. Now you may not be able to remove them from your life but you can stand up for yourself and say something. This is your body after all land they have no right to attempt to keep you fat for their own delight. Say something, let them know this is important to you and you do not appreciate them under mining your efforts. Of course they will come back with some statement saying they did not realize they were doing that and maybe they didn’t, but if you make it a big deal, they will get the point.

Have a great workout!



Tip:  Take a few minutes every morning and write down some of the qualities you do not like about yourself. Take that piece of p aper and crumple it up and throw it away. Throw away those qualities today. Now write down some qualities you like about yourself and some that you believe others like about you. Have faith in these qualities and use these as your reason to succeed. Turn you negatives into positives and have faith you will be successful.

January 24, 2012

There is no such thing as over training just under resting


Rant and Tip for January 23, 2012

Quote: “There is no such thing as over training just under resting” John Parrillo

I have taken this philosophy to heart. I try to train very hard during my training sessions. Longer is not always better. I am not one of these guys that get to go to the gym for 2 hours and put in a huge workout and then go home to rest and give my muscles enough time to heal from a 2 hour workout. Heck sometimes I have trouble just getting 6 hours rest in. Really not enough for the simple hour I get in a day. The only days I get a longer workout in are a Sunday morning or a Wednesday evening. It is at these times that my children are busy with other functions or are able to be with a family member while I train. THANK YOU Hilary!!!  Any way my point here is to make sure you get the proper rest for the amount of working out you are doing.

You may not see a correlation to this quote and your diet however think if it this way. You need to spend a lot of time training yourself to eat properly. There really is no such thing as overtraining when it comes to teaching yourself to eat properly. You need to retrain your taste buds as well as retool you mind to plan your diet better and be more consistent in your daily walk with your new lifestyle. Actually this is harder than any exercise program you start to follow. You will still need to make sure you get enough sleep as well. Even if you exercise is minimal. Sleep is the time you body takes to repair itself in many ways. I remember when I was learning to write code. I would sometimes wake up dreaming code. The code I was dreaming was actually the answer to a homework assignment that I had. I got out of bed and wrote it down. Then I was able to get to a sound sleep. I had gone to bed the night before feeling defeated and broken. I needed rest and my body new it. I just didn’t know it. After a few hours of rest not only had my body had time to heal but my mind was refreshed and I was able to finish my project. OK I know this was a reach applying the quote to your diet plan, but I had to try.

Today will be a day for squats. March is right around the corner and I want to make a solid showing. I think I will go for box squats to a 14 inch box. This brings me below parallel and will assist me in developing explosive power out of the hole. I will keep an eye on my shoulders during the lifts so as to not cause any injury from the weight resting on them. I have to keep my exuberance in check and keep in mind my main goal is to have a good showing at the world meet.

Have a great workout!

Tip: Think about what you can add to your diet, not what you should take away.

 

January 23, 2012

All know the way; few actually walk it. ~Bodhidharma

Rant and Tip for January 22, 2012

Quote All know the way; few actually walk it.  ~Bodhidharma

We have all been told or read all the different thoughts on diet and exercise. With the internet there really is little that you cannot educate yourself on. So what this brings to mind is this, we know or can learn, the way to a healthy fit body. The challenge will be to take that information and walk or in my case run with it. Some of you just starting you exercise regimen will be walking others may be running. In either case you are implementing the knowledge you have learned whether you learned it here or someplace else it does not matter. Taking those first steps is a huge step forward for the rest of your life. I commend you.

There is something to look out for though and being prepared for it mentally will be key to your future success. Many people will fall off the exercise or diet plan at some point in the future. It has happened to me and will happen to you. One of two things need to takes place at this point. You either come back with a vengeance realizing that we all fall off the wagon at some point or another and there is no shame is getting back on course after a brief unplanned break in you will. The other thing that happens to many people is that they will get a guilty feeling about not being in the gym or not following their diet plan. They then get into a malaise and think it is to late to get back on track, they get depressed in their thoughts and decide whether consciously or subconsciously that they just cannot do it.
Do not let this happen to you. You are better than that and so deserve to get to where you want to be. Do not be the second kind of person that just gives up. Even if you have put another 20-pounds on and feel to embarrassed to get in the gym get there anyway. Put on a big sweatshirt and get to work, get back to tracking your meals and pull all the key points together.

I have changed my workout schedule around so I can get to a bigger gym that has more equipment for my powerlifting goals. I now lift Sundays and getting in my deadlifts and then some raw benching will have to let you know how this all works out. I would prefer to get to this gym on Tuesday nights but with family obligations that has not worked out yet. Last Wednesday night I tweaked my shoulder and it was bothersome when I deadlift. It will be fine in another week. I have loose joints when it concerns my shoulder blades. This is why it is so important to not let the bench shirt pull my shoulders out. When I bench raw I do not have a problem because as I go heavier my shoulders simply stay tighter. As I first started benching my shoulder felt a little tight but not a sharp pain or anything that would cause me concern. So I just made sure to warm up nicely. Once I was warmed up I tried something-new called drop weight sets. This is a little tough to explain, but I will try to anyway. You load the bar with a weight you can press with confidence and power. Then you hang these hooks on the bar that are loaded with more weight. What this does is allow you to handle much more weight when lowering the bar to the chest and at the bottom the weights on the hooks drop off this lightening the load. This loads the muscle on the way down and you explode in to the lift at the bottom.

Have a great workout!

Tip:   Always believe in yourself. If you start doubting yourself you workout will not be effective. You attitude can make or break you. Once you attitude changes everything changes. I remember the last competition I entered after my second lift I was pumped and had a great attitude regarding my third and final lift. I knew the weight was going up.

Too many times have I heard people say, "Why do you go to the gym so much, you don't need that" or "Why you building all the muscle for? It’s all a waste of time and besides, all those guys are on steroids",

I ignore these people with their negative attitude. I consider negativity to be a disease and if you hang around with people with negative attitudes you will catch it as well. Ignore them or replace them in this portion of your life.


January 20, 2012

Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.

Rant and Tip for January 20, 2012


Quote: Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. Winston Churchill


Our quote today comes to us from across the Atlantic Ocean form Sir Winston Churchill. “Success consist of going from failure to failure with out loss of enthusiasm.” I had never heard this quote before but can say to you that this is so true. Think about the things you have attempted and failed at. I am sure there a few things that when you did fail, it did not kill you desire to keep going.  I have failed many times at a lift that I should have gotten. I have even failed at eating properly whether it be not eating enough or eating the wrong foods at the wrong time. Still I never lose sight of the dream and keep enthusiastic in my desire to keep moving forward. If you can look at the bright side of each failure, learn something from each one and remain optomistic you will have success.

Wednesday while performing my cardio about 35 minutes in to it my calf cramped up pretty bad. I was gong pretty hard at the time at 7.5 miles and hour and had to abruptly stop. The young lady on the machine next to who was walking at a brisk pace, which was good for her, said to me “Had enough?” I do not know why but I felt I had to explain my calf cramping. Silly really because she was only noticing that I was running along and stopped rather quickly. Anyway it was feeling fine with just a little discomfort yesterday and when I ran up the stairs I felt 2 little pops in it. I thought I had pulled a muscle but there is no bruising. I am not sure what it was just now I need to be more careful. In the future what I learned from this is I need more potassium in my diet to keep from getting a cramp like that. Today will be biceps and shoulders. The shoulders feel good enough today to hit them and since I hit the triceps hard yesterday I will do the bicep today.

Foods rich in potassium include parsley, dried apricots, various nuts (especially almonds and pistachios), potatoes, bamboo shoots, bananas, avocados, soybeans, and bran, although it is also present in sufficient quantities in most fruits, vegetables, meat and fish. Looks like I will start eating my avocados again. Avocados are an excellent source of Omega 3 fats as well. A lot of times when someone switches to eating a low carb lifestyle they will tend to hit the wall during their exercise. This is because they need more fat to fuel the activity they are doing. I will usually introduce them to the wonderful qualities of the avocado.

As many of you may have noticed I have added a link to a supplement called Tribustol. It is derived from the Tribulus flowering plant. It is suppose to increase your own natural testosterone. It is one of the sponsor for the 100% Raw Powerlifting Federation. I thought I would give it a try. While taking it for the 8-week cycle I felt like my recovery time from my workouts was quicker and prior to taking the supplement the most weight I had pressed in a competition were 305. At the end of the cycle I was putting up 325. Now while the lift itself did not count because my foot moved and my butt came up slightly. The strength was there to press twice my weight. Now was it the Tribustol or just me busting my backside harder in the gym or did Tribustol give me a boost in the gym. The bottom line is, if you try this supplement you will need to really push yourself. If you take it and do not push yourself you are only increasing your natural testosterone and not doing anything with it. If you decide to give it a try, please choose my name in the drop down under, How Did You Hear About Us? Wesley Kipp. This will also help me get to the world meet.

Have a great workout!

Tip: Keep enthusiastic through your failures and look for those bumps that caused the failure in the first place. This will help you to stay on track next time.


January 19, 2012

“Nothing will work unless you do.” - John Wooden

Rant and Tip for January 19, 2012

Quote: “Nothing will work unless you do.” - John Wooden

Changing you lifestyle is not an easy task. It is not something that happens over night. You have to work at it. There is not a diet in the world that will work for you unless you are willing to work at it. You all know my preferred way of eating and I do realize that some people who read my blog try to do the complete opposite. As long as you work at following the programs and learn a way or eating that you can do for the rest of your life you will be successful. However remember you need to put a concerned effort into working the program. Many times a person will come to a new eating plan and expect the weight to just fall of. There will be plateau or stalls in your weight loss. There will be times you want to just quit. These are the times that the most work must be applied to being successful. Stick to it and ask questions. Be prepared though when you get the answer it may not be what you wanted to hear, but be what you needed to hear.

I trained in a new shirt last night. It was the Super Katana. This shirt has more of a swooped neck and it felt plenty tight in the arms. This is the shirt for me. One thing I learned last night was to increase the width of my grip. Wow what a difference. This forced me to use the shirt in the correct manner. Now when I bench raw I will put either my middle or ring finger on the rings. In the shirt I am putting my index finger on the ring. Usually a new shirt needs to be broken in before you can get anything to touch. Last night with minor effort with a wide grip getting 365 to touch was pretty smooth and I was able to find the groove pretty easily. The one area that is my weakness seems to be my middle trapezius muscles. They are becoming and more important in the equipped lifts. This is because I need to keep my chest up when the material of the shirt stretches across it. If I can keep my shoulder blades tight and close together I will get more out of the shirt. So today I will be working those muscles and working them hard along with my triceps.

Eating properly is important as well right now. I need to make sure I have the fuel to work as hard as I can to make the gains I need in the shirt as the world bench press meet get closer. It use to be I would live to eat and now I eat to live. Early on in the history of man our bodies learned to deal with the constant threat of starvation and deprivation. Our bodies learned to store fat and burn fewer calories, in much the same fashion a bear does during hibernation, during times when food is hard to come by. If you go hungry all day and then eat a big meal you are doing the same thing to your body. Try eating several small meals through out the day. Getting 35% of you of you nutritional intake at breakfast. You will feel full all day and your body will have more of a chance of burning off the food you have taken in and have the cranked metabolism to burn even more.

Have a great workout!

Tips
: I have talked about muscle imbalance many times over the past year and I guess my tip of the day is to not ignore your week points. Concentrate on them and get them stronger. This includes your eating habits. If you week point is 2:00 in the afternoon and that is when you fail at your diet plan. Set something aside on plan and eat that.

January 18, 2012

Some people dream of great accomplishments, while others stay awake and do them

Rant and Tip for January 18, 2012

Quote: “Some people dream of great accomplishments, while others stay awake and do them” via Danielle Luedtke

I had never heard this quote till this morning. It really made me think about how I use to wish I could lose weight. How I would sit back and just dream about what could be. I still have things in my life that I need to stop dreaming about and just do them. However others I know longer dream about and have fully awakened and I am doing my best to accomplish them. Pick one of your dreams and stop dreaming about it and put together a plan to get it done.

Yesterday was Tuesday and during my lunch I chose to get my squats in. They went very well and I was pleased with my results. One of the things I like to do is load the bar and just get use to the weight. Yesterday for whatever the reason I had the bar resting perfectly on my shoulders. It was like the bar found the sweet spot and just rested comfortably on my shoulders. Remember I had stated I was not going to train real heavy in the squat until after the world Bench Press meet and I am still going to hold to that. I finished my workout yesterday with a set of 3 at 350 pounds. It really felt great and I felt strong. As you approach your workout today find that sweet spot in whatever you are doing. It makes your lifts so much easier. When you are in the right grooved you whole body becomes in tune with it and you will feel great and most likely feel stronger.

As we talk about you diet today lets address the packaging of foods. When you shop I have heard that the front of the package is “Real Estate owned by the manufacturer” so obviously they want to pretty it up. However when you shop you need to turn the package over and read the Nutritional Facts on the back. Some things to keep in mind are very simple and very basic. If you are a carbohydrate counter like myself you need to know how to get to the net carb count. You take the total Carbs, subtract the dietary fiber and the sugar alcohols. This gives you a net carb count. The only part that gets tricky here is for every 20-sugar alcohol I add 1 carb back in. Many people still think that if an item is low in fat that it has to be good for them. In actuality a better way to look at is to get foods with healthier Omega 3 and monounsaturated fats to get the some benefits for your heart. Lastly one more thing to look out for is the sodium. If it contains more sodium than calories it is a food I like to stay away from.

Some of you may wonder what monounsaturated fats are. I went to www.heart.org to get the answer for you.

From a chemical standpoint, monounsaturated fats are simply fats that have one double-bonded (unsaturated) carbon in the molecule.  Monounsaturated fats are typically liquid at room temperature but start to turn solid when chilled.  Olive oil is an example of a type of oil that contains monounsaturated fats.

Monounsaturated fats can have a beneficial effect on your health when eaten in moderation and when used to replace saturated fats or trans fats.  Monounsaturated fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood and lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.  They also provide nutrients to help develop and maintain your body’s cells.  Monounsaturated fats are also typically high in vitamin E, an antioxidant vitamin most Americans need more of.

Most foods contain a combination of different fats.  Examples of foods high in monounsaturated fats include vegetable oils such as olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil, sunflower oil and sesame oil.  Other sources include avocados, peanut butter, and many nuts and seeds.


Have a great workout!

Tip: Target your weakness and make it a strength. If you have an exercise that you just hate doing because you do not do t well or are weak in it. Work harder on it and make it a strength. I know that this is easier said then done but if you really push yourself you will get there and be much happier



January 17, 2012

Do not trust everything your read

Rant and Tip for January 17, 2012

Quote: “Do not trust everything your read” , Unknown

OK I am probably going to catch some flack on this one mainly because you have to read this and hopefully trust what I am saying. Don’t worry the irony of that is not lost on me.

I have recently been getting the Men’s Health magazine. My son had a fundraiser for school and selling magazine subscriptions was what he had to sell. Any way I chose Muscle fitness and Men’s Health. As I was going through the magazine I came across an article which did not really surprise me at all and is something I have suspected for some time. The article was titled “ Can I trust the calorie data provided by the chain restaurants.”  Of course it was stating how the counts were inaccurate.(this is the part where you do not trust what you read) One of the restaurants was stating their chips and salsa dish only had 415 calories when in fact it had 1462 calories. Can you believe it, over 1,000 calories miscalculated? Now I am not going to sit here and state that the error was deliberate or not. It was probably an issue of cheaper ingredients used from what the original recipe called for. Which is not surprising. Restaurant managers have a bottom line to meet and they need to keep their food cost as low as possible. So where does this leave us the consumer, well in my opinion if I am being strict with my diet, I go for the simple foods. Foods that I already know the carbohydrate, fat and protein count on. It is when you get into these sauces and marinades that get us into trouble. They are usually loaded with sugar and flour or cornstarch. All simple carbohydrates that will just get processed to fast in our bodies and be stored as fat. I want to let you all know of this so you can be more careful in your choices.

I had yesterday off as one of my rest days. Sunday was a great workout day though. I first worked on my deadlifts. I was once told my a fellow member of team OMG pulling from a deficit will making pulling from the floor easier and you will be able to pull more weight. I achieved this by pulling in my squat shoes. This adds another inch and a half to the lift. When I switch to squat slippers or my Chuck Taylors the lift will come up faster and I will be stronger for the lift. Then went on to benching with a camber bar. The camber bar allows you to bring the bar deeper which will strengthen you coming out of the whole with a regular bar. I have been told I have a strong lockout and that working from the bottom will increase my raw and my equipped lifts. I did a 5 set of 5 work out on both lifts and will go 5 pounds heavier on the bench next week and 20 lbs heavier on the deadlift. The reason for the bigger jump in the deadlift is because it the last set of 5 still came up pretty smooth. While on the 5 sets of 5 on the bench was more difficult. Let’s see how next Sunday goes.
video


I have already touched on diet today and the challenges that are presented when dining out. Do not let this be a deterrent to dining out. Simply be careful when you do so. Do not choose a fast food restaurant. I would even a chain restaurant if you can. If not speak to the manager and ask them what items are prepared on the premises and which are actually delivered to the restaurant frozen ready to be heated and served. You will be surprised at how many items are simply thaw and cooked just like you would have a TV dinner at home. Make a point of knowing what the fat, carbohydrate and protein counts are on the foods you enjoy eating and then when you have the managers attention ask him what is added to the food during the preparation phase. He should be forthright with you, as he will not know at this point why you are asking. As far as he knows you have allergies that may react to one of the foods or spices. Lastly if he does make a comment about you avoiding carbs, politely tell him you are allergic to carbohydrates and that they make you break out in fat.

Have a great workout!

Tip:  Exercising during your lunch can help you improve your productivity during the rest of the day. I have been doing this for the past 3 years and now research from Sweden states that exercise does improve your productivity. It stated Employees who exercised 2.5 hours a week during work hours accomplished more than those Employees who did not exercise during the day. Exercise boost oxygen consumption, which may help improve concentration and problem solving ability. I know many of you do not have the benefit I do of having a gym in the building you work in. Try just going for a brisk walk everyday during your lunch. It will help you get the heart pumping and increase your metabolic rate.

Choose Wesley Kipp in the drop down

January 16, 2012

Martin Luther King Day

I thought it would be nice to provide you all with the link to the text of Dr. Martin Luther King's speech. I have a dream

As you approach your workout today please keep in mind an attitude of tolerance for all people. Dr. King's speech is very inspirational on so many levels. Not just racial in-equality but equality for all. Whether a person is obese, short or tall male or female.

If you are a fit person keep in mind that the person not as fit as you fas just as much a right to the equipment as you do. Be tolerant and offer to help. Be a mentor if you can it will do your heart good.

Have a great day my friends.


I will be back to my regular format tomorrow.

January 14, 2012

The Top 10 Workout Songs For Winter 2012

The weekend post is a guest post from
Chris Lawhorn
Run Hundred
http://www.RunHundred.com

The Top 10 Workout Songs For Winter 2012

San Francisco, CA – Jan 5, 2012 – Traditionally, winter is the time of year when folks find it hardest to get out and exercise.  In the hopes of keeping folks motivated, readers from RunHundred.com--the web's most heavily-trafficked workout music blog--were polled regarding their favorite, current workout songs.  The resulting top 10 list has a little of what you'd expect—and a little you might not.  Flo Rida, who's no stranger to this list, shows up in two recent tracks.  Enrique Iglesias continues his transition from balladeer to club rocker.  And Kelly Clarkson, after faltering with the first single off her new album, bounced back ferociously with the second.

As for surprises, they're mostly entries from folks relatively new on the dance scene.  Highlights include songs from Tim Berg (who remixed his own track under his Avicii moniker), Skrillex (whose collaboration with Kaskade is the first dubstep track ever the make the Top 10), and Wolfgang Gartner (who's made the chart with a little help from the Black Eyed Peas' Will.I.Am).

Here's the full list:

Tim Berg - Seek Bromance (Avicii Vocal Edit) - 127 BPM

Katy Perry - The One That Got Away - 135 BPM

Alexandra Stan - Mr. Saxobeat (Maan Studio Remix) - 126 BPM

Flo Rida - Good Feeling - 129 BPM

Wolfgang Gartner & Will.I.Am - Forever - 128 BPM

Hot Chelle Rae - Tonight Tonight (Goldstein Remix) - 118 BPM

Taio Cruz & Flo Rida - Hangover - 129 BPM

Enrique Iglesias, Pitbull & The WAV.s - I Like How It Feels - 129 BPM

Kaskade & Skrillex - Lick It - 128 BPM

Kelly Clarkson - What Doesn't Kill You (Stronger) - 117 BPM

To find more workout songs--and hear next month's contenders--folks can check out the free database at RunHundred.com. Visitors can browse the song selections there by genre, tempo, and era--to find the music that best fits with their particular workout routine.

January 13, 2012

Low Carb or Low Fat for your Health and Fitness

Before

After
Rant and Tip for January 13, 2012

Quote: “Even when experts all agree, they may be mistaken.” Bertrand Russell

For the past 40 or 50 years health professionals have preached a low fat diet. They have told us repeatedly that we need to eat a low fat diet to be healthy. However as a nation we are one of the fattest group of people on the planet. We have all these high carbohydrate foods just begging us to eat them. All of the snacks on the shelves are not only high if simple carbs but also have a fair amount of fats as well and not good fats either. Even when you find a low fat snack it is so high in simple carbohydrates that you do not have a chance at ever eating a healthy diet. Well we are at a point in society where science is starting to catch up and debunk the low fat, hi carb diet. Many scientist and doctors are rethinking the whole low fat diet. Some are even willing to acknowledge what we have been taught for so many years is in fact wrong. They were mistaken and they were the experts.

I enjoy a low carb lifestyle. I eat plenty of complex carbohydrates and lots of dietary fiber. I eat more healthy green vegetables than I have ever eaten in my life and I love it. The real key to having a higher fat lower carb diet work is the fibrous carbohydrates. They come from the healthy vegetables you eat or at least should eat. Make sure you get your veggies in today and everyday. You will be happy you did.

I worked my triceps, and middle back muscles today. The mid and lower trapezius muscles. Usually I will give the triceps a rest after a day of benching, but for some reason I just felt like I had to hit them for that big bench I am eyeing. As far as the trapezius muscles if you recall I need to strengthen them to avoid aggravating the bicep tendonitis I am recuperating from.

Now on to a different subject, as you all know I like to blog about health and fitness and sometimes I will touch on a sensitive subject. Today I wanted to mention something that happens to be dear to some of my readers. You know it really is amazing the people who contact me overtime via this blog. It never ceases to amaze me the people that have interesting stories to share with me. I have to tell about one such story. This person has been dealing with a family member that required a drug abuse rehab center. They were very concerned about their family member to the point of just reaching out to vent and look for encouragement. I personally have not had to deal situation like this. However my heart went out to them. Drug abuse rehab is one of those services you think that you will never need nor know of someone who will need it. For whatever reason a person turns to drugs whether it is alcohol to the point of addiction to prescription or even illegal drugs the effects on them and their family is devastating. Please take care of yourself and your family when it comes to drug addiction. The first step is recognizing the condition and then seeking help.

Be there for your friends and family!

Have a good workout!

Tip: Here are 3 exercises that work the lower and middle trapezius muscles. Courtesy of Livestrong.com

Behind the Neck Presses

Behind the neck presses require a barbell, and you can do these standing or seated. If you do them seated, use a workout chair with a backrest instead of a bench. This will give you more support. Hold the bar straight over your head with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart. Slowly lower it behind your head, push it back up and repeat. To help you get the bar up to the starting point, have a spotter on hand.

Cable Rows

Cable rows are performed on the seated cable machine. These work the middle and lower traps as well as the rhomboids and latissimus dorsi, which are back muscles. While sitting on the bench, place your feet shoulder-width apart on the steel plate, grasp the close-grip handle with both hands and sit up straight with your arms extended in front of you. Pull the bar to your stomach as you pinch your shoulder blades together. Slowly extend your arms back out and repeat.

Behind the Back Shrugs

Regular shrugs work the upper, middle and lower traps, but when you do them behind your back, you place more emphasis on the middle and lower segments. From a standing position, hold a barbell down by your butt with your palms facing backward. Carefully raise your shoulders as high as possible and hold for a full second. Slowly lower your shoulders and repeat.

Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/202590-middle-lower-trapezius-exercises/#ixzz1jJ6OLNRg


January 12, 2012

The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.

Rant and Tip for January 12, 2012

Quote: “The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

You are the star that is invisible by day. What I mean by this is, just as the night sky reveals the stars, when you make the decision to commit to living a healthier lifestyle your inner star comes shining through. You become the bright beacon just like the stars in the sky.

Sometimes our inner star is covered by a layer of fat, more likely though that layer of fat is just the result of another symptom. Maybe low self-esteem or depression over life’s challenges. Sometimes it is simply not knowing the proper way to eat for your body and not taking the time to get the proper exercise needed in to maintain a healthy body. I know some of you may read this and think, “I do not have the time to exercise.” I say to you, “You do not have the time not to exercise. Our bodies were built to stay in motion. When we become sedimentary, like many of us are, (I sit at a desk all day just like many of you) our bodies crave motion. I think, and this is just my humble opinion, this leads us to over eat. I use to sit at my desk and munch on high carbohydrate snacks all day. The results were 40 pounds of fat on a body that was not meant to carry that much fat. Once I learned the proper way to eat and incorporated an exercise regimen I was able cut the fat and maintain a healthy weight. I was able to let my inner star shine.

I say to you, take a moment to focus on your inner star and let that star come out and shine in day or night!

Training went well yesterday. 30 minutes of cardio before lunch with some middle trapezius work and then in the evening I trained in my bench shirt. I jumped up in size on the shirt and I was able to work with the weight much better. I have a feeling though I will be putting the smaller shirt on as I get closer to May 23rd for the World IPR Bench Meet. Johnny O mentioned I have a strong lock out and as I use the shirt more and my body understands how to use the shirt the numbers will come up nicely.

Fund raising is going very slowly but I am hopeful to make some strides by the end of the Month. If anyone as any suggestions along these lines please let me know, my email in at the top of the page.

Have a great workout!

Tip: Bench Press Setup.  Courtesy of Stronglifts.com
1. You need a strong base to press the weight from. Tighten your upper-back. Grip the bar hard: try to break it apart like breaking spaghetti.

2. Grip Width, Too narrow & you'll lose strength. Too wide & the distance the bar travels shortens. Grip width should be about 55-71cm/22-28" depending on your build. Forearms perpendicular to the floor when the bar touches your chest

3. Gripping the bar. Secure the bar with your thumbs by rotating your hands in. Put the bar in the palm of your hand, close to your wrist. If you put the bar close to your fingers, you'll get wrist pain.

4. Tight Upper-Back, Squeeze your shoulder-blades before getting on the bench. Keep your shoulder-blades back & down at all times like on the picture below. This gives your body a solid base to press the bar from.

5. Chest Up. Don't allow your chest to go flat or shoulders to roll forward. You'll lose upper-back tightness, losing power & increasing risk of shoulder injury. Keep your chest up at all time.


6. Feet. Use a wide foot stance to increase stability on the bench. Feet flat on the floor, weight on the heels.

January 11, 2012

You never know what you can accomplish till you truly try

Not my back but maybe someday!

Rant and Tip for January 11, 2012

Quote: “You never know what you can accomplish till you truly try” Unknown

I heard from a friend today regarding accommodations for the world meet. I will be staying with the entire USA Team in a designated hotel. My friend Karl G. is going to come along. He has family in Germany and he has never been there. Since the Czech Republic is right next to Germany he is going to try to visit family as well. In an effort to determine my out of pocket expenses, I had started looking into hotels in Plsen. It struck me that maybe I will have to stay at a team-designated hotel. That is when I sent an email to a fellow competitor; he informed me I stay with the team. When I informed my friend Karl G. that I stay with the US Team. His response was “You are on the #%$#@ US Team”. It is times like this that it hits me and makes me more determined to train hard. I want to do well for my country. Admittedly, there are moments I am just in awe at what is happening. My son and daughter keep me grounded though because to them I am just dad. I like it that way. If someone had told me 3 years ago when I started my transformation from an over weight 48 year old dad, that I would be competing in a bench press meet for the IPF world team in the Czech Republic I would have thought they were crazy. If I can make the changes in my life to get healthy and fit so can you.
Yes this is my puny leg
Worked my legs today did my 5 sets of 5 and then hit the leg press machine. Once I was on the leg press machine and already fatigued I started with 210 lbs. for 5 reps and kept incrementing by 20 lbs. for sets of 5 reps until I could do no more. I want to continue to make my legs stronger with out having the stress on my shoulders. I still need to make sure my shoulders are healthy and strong for the Bench Press World meet. My training has to be smart but intense at the same time. I try not to let my mind limit my own expectations, at the same time making sure I do not over do and ruin my chances in the Czech Republic.

If you are just starting your diet as your New Year’s Resolution, make this year the year you stick to it. Make this year the year that you achieve the illusive goals that you have set in the past. You truly never know what you can accomplish until you truly try. You will need to be determined and ready to make the changes you want. I have conversations all the time with people at work. They all want to prize at the end of the tunnel. However they are not ready to make the changes to get there. You have to convince yourself you are worth the changes ahead. You need to be ready to make wise choices in your diet and give up the things you know that will side track your new way of eating. Good Luck and remember I am hear to help if I can.

Have a great workout!

Tip: Dumbbell Rear Lateral Raise Procedure 
1. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart and your knees slightly bent.
2. Bend forward at the waist and keep your back straight.
3. Knees slightly bent
4. Hold a pair of dumbbells with your palms facing in and elbows slightly bent.
5. Keep your knees bent and back flat, inhale and raise the dumbbells out to your sides until your upper arms are slightly higher than your shoulders.
6. Exhale as you lower the weights to complete the