Fitness Over 40

You Thought This Was About Fitness?

I guess I can see you point, since 21 days of exercising is at the core of this process.  But this assumption would be incorrect, however, fitness is a vehicle to reach the goal that I have placed on myself.  Coming up with 21 Shred was to help build mental and physical strength by facing that dark side in your life: for me, that was alcohol.  It had become a dependency in my life to help cope with anxiety and the stresses of my life.  I have always looked at myself as a strong and determined person, so the idea that something is controlling me is an unacceptable thought, but it took me many years to accept that.  21 Shred is about facing those demons in your life.  It can be something as strong as alcohol, or maybe you have an addiction to sugar, or you just don’t have the motivation to get up and exercise.  Whatever that is, this is about facing it and conquering it.

21 Days to form a habit, so once you establish “whats your 21?” it is time to face it head on and prove to yourself and to that demon, that you will not be controlled by that force.  You are the one in control, and it is up to you to conquer it.  As I am conquering mine, I welcome all that are looking for someone going through the same experience and can be that support system to get through this.

So why 21 days of exercise?  First, it’s good for the mind and body.  But secondly, I am well aware that there would be soreness and fatigue, all the factors that would tell the mind to force the body to “rest and recuperate”  Not during this 21 day period.  This 21 day period is about being uncomfortable, it is about feeling like you want to give up.  I wanted to put everything in place that I could to create an environment that pushes me to the limit of wanting to quit.  And well my friend, I am just in the beginning, so my strength is yet to be determined.

So why Intermittent Fasting?  I will refer to the above section about being uncomfortable.  Going 16 hours of fasting can be a challenge, especially when you are not consuming any artificial foods or sugars.  Actually, as I state in my book, not consuming these makes it easier since you are eliminating blood sugar spikes and reducing hunger pains.  There is plenty of research now backing the benefits of intermittent fasting both mental and physical and to me, it just makes the most sense as to how our bodies were designed to eat in the first place.

Yes, this is a fitness challenge, but that is just a piece of this pie.  This is a mental challenge.  A test to show you that you are strong, and you can overcome the obstacles in your life that are holding you back, or leading you down a path that is undesirable.   And as your Shred Head Coach, I want to make sure you are successful!

37957-quotes-about-overcoming-adversity

Fitness Over 40

Day 1 on 21 Shred: In the books

Like anything in life, the excitement of beginning something new helps fuel the motivation and ambition to succeed.  When that “honeymoon” phase wears out, it is what separates the doers and the not-doers.  So completing day 1 was a success, and I am proud of my accomplishment (more the decision to undertake this mental and physical challenge) and I will look to use the accomplishment as more motivation to keep myself going.

Took my son with me in the afternoon to shop for food at the wholesale club and our local farmers market for some organic fresh veggies.  Here was my list:

  • Coconut milk
  • vegan burgers
  • raw almonds
  • vegan vanilla protein powder
  • avocados
  • guacamole
  • wild caught swordfish
  • parsley
  • cilantro
  • organic corn
  • organic black beans
  • spaghetti squash
  • turkey
  • bananas
  • spinach

I posted my 21 Shred routine in the previous blog, so this one is dedicated to my “Veg-aleo” approach to my diet yesterday.:  All the times are “-ish”.

  • 11am: fruit and veggie smoothie with almond milk (no pic
  • 12:30: tried a new vegan burger and was impressed!
  • 2pm: handful of raw almonds and apple
  • 4pm: my favorite baja salad over whole sprouted brown rice and quinoa
  • 7pm:  turkey spaghetti in a bowl of spaghetti squash.
  • 9pm: fat burner tonic to cleanse the body

Now that the food intake is complete, nothing will be consumed(except for black coffee in the morning) until 11am the following morning.  Yesterday, I weighed myself at 227, which was about where I expected, but still hard to digest how fat I have gotten.

Definitely was sore this morning from yesterdays day 1 workout.  Wasn’t trying to go easy, but also wasn’t trying to kill myself either.  But no doubt, the glutes and hamstrings are sore, so needed a little more warmup this morning before Day 2 of 21 Shred.

Have an awesome day!  All recipes are posted on our private facebook page.  Register now at www.whatsyour21.com and use coupon code 21Shred for 50% off for a limited time.

Fitness Over 40

The Beginning Has Begun

I honestly had troubles sleeping last night.  A mixture of excitement and nervousness consumed my mind, causing me to wake up several times throughout the night, mixed in with dreams of how my video production and getting everything set up was in complete disarray.  Well, workout #1 is completed, felt awesome to do so, but no doubt, looking forward to upgrading and improving the “exercise studio” to every ones viewing pleasure.

I wanted to post the video to todays workout, so anyone who is curious what the 21 Shred Workout looks like, can watch in its entirety. After today, all the daily videos will be on our members page at http://www.whatsyour21.com and click on “shred heads”.  I am surprised (also concerned) that my legs are a bit wobbly now that the workout is completed.  Might have some soreness tomorrow that I have to work through.

Now that the workout is complete, I will finish my large glass of water, enjoy a hot cup of black coffee, then off to the Co-op to get some organic produce for my first meal at 11am.  Still not completely sure of its ingredients, a lot depends on what’s available there and looks ripe.  My goal is to make a green smoothie with almond/coconut milk, 1/2 avocado, 1/2 banana, spinach or parsley, hemp seeds, and maybe some mango or pineapple.

Anyone not familiar with intermittent fasting, remember to first:

  • welcome the feelings of hunger.  Science has already proven the benefits of this program for our bodies and mind, so this state of hunger was something modern man and women experienced and adapted to.
  • Don’t calorie count!  Remember, you are eating for only a 8 hour period, eat throughout the day foods that are low on the glycemic index (all explained in my book).
  • Stay away from “set meals” throughout the day.  Eat only as your body requires, just grazing on foods at intermittent periods.  Your last meal of the day is your feast!

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Fitness Over 40

21 Days To Form a New Habit!

3tj4reAnyone else out there that can relate to this?  Had great intentions on that “beach body” for the summer, and here we are, end of July and you’re thinking, “well that didn’t go as planned!”  Yep, me too.  Took on a new job, this was the first time I worked full time while the boys were off, kind of just threw me off my game!

No more excuses!  We all can make them.  It’s time to get laser like focus and test our mental and physical capabilities by completing the 21 Day Shred.  This will be 21 consecutive days of 21 exercises, performed in 30 second intervals with 30 second rest, all body weight and some dumbbell exercises, performed in the comfort of your own home.  Live video feed for those that want to follow along at 5:30am EST or complete on your own time.  We will be tracking on our private facebook page and pushing and motivating each other to keep going!  In the end, 2 men and 2 women will be chosen by the group who represented the contest the best by logging each consecutive day, and being there to motivate and support the others.

In addition, the goal of the group is to make a few dietary changes as well.  This includes the follow:

  • No added sugar.  If the label says “sugar” do not consume!
  • No breads
  • No alcohol
  • No processed meats, crackers, cookies, or anything artificial
  • No dairy
  • No concentrated fruit juices

Think you can do it?  I am betting that as a group, we all can!  In addition, completing the exercises I have outlined will benefit in the following ways:

  • Spike the metabolism into high gear with 21 consecutive days of exercise.
  • Develop phenomenal core and stability strength
  • Develop a strong mental attitude
  • Provide support and encouragement for all contestants
  • Lay the foundation for new habits, since it takes 21 days to form a new habit.

Click here to view the contest details and see the exercises that will be performed during the 21 days.  There will be variation to the exercises, but all are of medium difficulty and can be performed by most.  How much determination do you have?  Enough to make it for 21 days?

I am going for it, and I would love to see you too!

Fitness Over 40

Setting the Vibe

Over the last year, I have attempted to incorporate this routine first thing in the morning, which I have found, really helps me get my mind into the correct state and help me be more productive and positive throughout the day.  I used to always wake up and watch the news, however, I simply can’t stand to turn on the news anymore!  I am so sick of all the negativity and bad energy that is occurring in this country.  I am not saying I don’t care or want to know about the current state of our country and world, unfortunately it just creates negativity and fear into the minds of society, and for me, it serves no purpose to fill my head with more anxiety.  Among all the chaos, I still have a family to provide for and a mission of my own to complete.

Before anyone else is awake, I go downstairs, I find my comfortable spot, open up my iTunes, and I have about 10 different selections of meditation style sounds and frequencies to get me into the right place.  Today was the 528hz frequency with ocean sounds and ambient sounds.  img_0267For the first few minutes, I really like to focus on my breathing, I follow a inhale for a 4 second count, drawing in as much air into my lungs as possible, then hold for 7 seconds, release all the air for a 8 second count, and keep my lungs depleted for the 4 second count before repeating.  After several minutes of that I just really try to empty my mind, which is nearly impossible, but I really just try to be in the moment.  As soon as a thought enters, and no doubt, 9 times out of 10 it is something that brings me anxiety, I will then do all I can to remove it.  It took me more time to be able to do this, but it is possible.  Usually my response when that occurs is to say to myself, “I am attuned to the frequency of my purpose” and this is usually effective at getting that negative thought out of my head.  Once I feel I have been in the completely relaxed state and emptied my mind, I finish with stating my gratitude.  Things in my life I am thankful for.  This whole process is about 15-20 minutes, but I will never question the effectiveness and benefits I receive from this almost daily routine.  If you are interested in learning the proper technique as well as the benefits to the mind and body, you can listen to Dr. Weill on Amazon.

I save a later post for how and why this practice is so important to the aspect of happiness in our lives, but for now, I would like to encourage you, that if this is something you have not done, to try to incorporate it into your daily life.

So this morning, after completing my meditation and proper breathing, (and my cup of coffee), it was time to hit the basement for my morning workout.  All I can say is, “man, I hope these get a little easier!”

7/25/17 Workout:  5 Rounds of:

  • 30 calorie row on the concept 2
  • TRX chest press with fly for As Many As Possible (AMAP)
  • 50lb kettlebell goblet squat for 10 reps
  • ab roller for AMAP

Ab Roller on Amazon for $17.99, comes with a knee pads (which is highly recommended!)

Concept 2 rowers never go on sale, so no need to keep waiting around.  It is the same price here on Amazon as direct from Concept 2.

TRX Home Unit is $40 off Amazon right now, that is an awesome deal!  I like the Home version since it comes with the door mount.  I personally screwed additional 2 x 4’s in my basement to mount off the wall which if you can do this, you will get so much more from your TRX!

Fitness Over 40

Early Morning HIIT this 24th of July 2017

This morning completed 10 rounds of:

  • 150 meter row
  • 10 TRX crunches

Funny, after the first set, I was thinking “hmm, I might want to add another exercise to make this more difficult” well, by the 5th set, I was sucking eggs! Why I like this is that the concept keeps track of the entire session, so now my goal is to be able to complete faster than my 27 + minutes.  (The calorie is not cumulative, but per 150 meter.)

Here is a little summary of how things went.  Thank god it’s over!  Trust me, it is still embarrassing having my shirt off, but I guess its not where you’re at, it’s where you’re going!

Without hesitation, when asked what is the best fitness equipment to own, the first two things are the Concept 2 Rower and a TRX Suspension Trainer.  You can accomplish so much with these!

TRX is running $40 off right now!  That is an awesome price since I never see these things go on sale!

Fitness Over 40

At 45, It’s More About Functionality

As much as I look on social media and see these dudes all ripped up and shredded and want to look like that, I have learned my body well enough to know that keeping it strong and injury free has to take precedents in my exercise routine.  Today was lower body stability work after my 2000 meter row, finishing with 4 high intensity intervals on the treadmill.  Why functional training is so important, and especially to me, after a knee surgery in my teens, I have had continuous knee problems in my left knee, resulting in an atrophied left quadricep which creates a imbalance in my movement system.  You will see in the video when performing the TRX lunge with the left leg, it is much harder to maintain balance.  For this reason, I need to be focused on functional strength and flexibility.  This morning I completed 3 sets of 2-3 reps per leg on the TRX and then 3 sets of TRX stretches to finish my lower body workout.  I ain’t no spring chicken anymore!

Have a great weekend!  Stay healthy and happy!

Fitness Over 40

Most Effective Ab Exercise…But Proceed With Caution!

During my “glory days” of about 12 months, when I had the privilege of being able to lift up my shirt when any of my friends asked to see my abs, the first question was always..”Man, how did you get those?  I realize that my accomplishment was minimal of what you can see on the internet these days, but for a dad in his early 40’s, it sure was an accomplishment for me!  IMG_3689But to answer the question of how a 40 year old can develop abs, without hesitation, the first answer is “in the kitchen.”  You can do ab work all day long, but if your diet sucks, you won’t have anything but a pot belly!  But my second answer is that I lived with my ab roller.
Core Roller
There is no better way to destroy the core than doing as many reps as possible with this torture device.  I would usually do about 5-10 reps for 2-3 sets a couple times a day, then do to extreme soreness, I would have to wait about 2-3 days before completing the exercise again.  But as I began to lose fat around the mid section, this exercise surely did bring out the separation between the abs and the obliques.  Not to mention, the wife loved that “V” that shows up right around the pelvic region!

So why do you have to proceed with caution?  I will put on my Corrective Exercise Specialist hat to help with this one(Yes, for those who don’t know, licensed in addition to an advanced degree):  Everyone is familiar with muscle soreness and tightness that occurs with that.  absThis exercise not only focuses on strengthening the abdominal wall and obliques, but muscles that flex the hips (such as raising your legs off the ground) known as the iliopsoas are also engaged in this exercise.  When you couple those muscles that bring our torso closer to our lower region, and combine with how we tend to be sitting most of the day as a society, this can create a whole host of movement impairment issues.  The hunching over of the torso, the shoulders rounding forward from typing on a keyboard (as I am doing now), and extending our chin forward as we hunch, creates a great potential for future lower back problems, shoulder impingement issues, stiffness in the neck or even “knots” in the trapezius area.  So what I am getting at is that in the quest for a nicer stomach, we can introduce more tightness in that area that already is susceptible to issues.  So if you plan on adding this exercise into your regime, and yes, you will feel sore, then you must also incorporate plenty of stretching immediately following to lengthen the anterior portion of your body.  cobra-poseThe cobra is definitely a great stretch to do in between sets and immediately following your bout of ab rolling.

Good luck, keep stretching!

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Let the games begin…almost!

If you are like me, I can get inspired in a moments notice, and within the hour, it was like it almost never occurred.  I am aware that hitting that 40 mark is a game changer, and everything that “makes you a man” begins to slowly diminish.  Let’s face it, 100 years ago the average life expectancy of men was around 46, that is pretty depressing!  I am sure you can agree that in my mind, I still feel like a 20 year old.

So, this brings me around to the current post.  I know there are guys out there who have reached the 40 year mark and feel similar feelings that I do.  Even if you don’t, I would imagine that you still feel that hitting 40 took a turn of events in regards to your energy and activity level.  And like me, it would feel good to have that “inner drive” again and get up every day with the desire to conquer your goals.

Curious, any 40 year old guys out there relating to what I am saying?  In this day of community support through social media, what better way to get back in shape than to create a fitness group challenge where each day we can perform some basic exercises, calculate our points, and compete for the top 3 spots of the month for the cash winnings.

Introducing the Sisu Fit Games!  Some people might not have heard the word “sisu” and until my in-laws of Finnish decent introduced me to it, hadn’t heard of it either.  It means “perseverance, determination, guts, tenacity, stubbornness, and steadfastness.”  Basically the unwillingness to give up.  I love that word!  I learned that later in my life, that you must always possess some “Sisu” to accomplish anything worthwhile in life.  Now, here is our time to regain that inner and outer strength and compete in a friendly, supportive and encouraging manner.  Here are the details:

Eligibility:

  • Men 40 and over.  Must take a picture of drivers license(blur out license number) so that DOB is showing.

  • Classification of age group will be awarded points in the following manner:

    • 40-45 calculated points

    • 46-50 calculated points x 1.2 factor

    • 51-55 calculated points x 1.5 factor

    • 56 and over calculated points x 1.75 factor

  • Must have the ability to video record and post short workout segments for point verification.

  • Must have a distance tracking device via cell phone app or GPS monitor.

  • Must have a Facebook account.  Will be invited to our Private Group.

  • Exercise equipment needed:  Pull up bar and Abdominal Wheel (strength bands may be desired to help with assisted pull ups)

Rules:

  • Official launch date is September 1, 2017

  • Calender of exercises shown here: sept2017 

  • Each day on sisufitgames.com, a specific exercise will be assigned(air squats, push ups, plank, pull ups, 1 mile run, etc) with a directional video going over the details of the exercise, point value of completed repetitions, what is considered acceptable variations, and is not acceptable.

  • Contestants will have 2 minutes to complete as many repetitions(1 mile run n/a) in proper and acceptable form.  The repetitions must be video recorded with verbal time and date stamp.  All recordings must be from a side view(except pullups and ones noted).

  • Contestants are allowed to complete as many 2 minute rounds prior to 9 pm (EST) that evening as desired for maximum point values.  Only 2 minute video segments may be uploaded per time. Once round is completed, video is to be uploaded to the private FB page with point value noted.

  • Contestants must complete a point value form which will be provided with the exercise of the day, to be submitted by 9 pm that day the exercise was assigned.

    How To Compete In Sisu Fit Games

Log onto sisufitgames.com and go to the “EOD” page.

Screenshot 2017-07-05 10.03.11

You will see the EOD and instructional videos to complete each version Record and complete your 2 minute round of the EOD Click on the “Submit Your Points Here link Total your points for properly completed repetitions Screenshot 2017-07-05 10.05.05 Submit your points once entered Visit our Facebook page to upload your video of your 2 minute clip Official Rules for Standard of Conduct on Social Media Here Screenshot 2017-07-05 10.03.34 Post your video You may complete as many times during the day as you are able to Visit our Leader Board on Sisufitgames.com to see your ranking

  • At 9 pm on the last day of the month, winners will be announced.

  • 1st place: 50% of the jackpot

  • 2nd place: 30% of the jackpot

  • 3rd place: 20% of the jackpot

    • Jackpot amount is indicative of the amount of eligible contestants registered for that given month.

  • Winning distribution through Paypal or Visa Check Card.

  • Yes, I will be competing as well in the games, however, any personal winnings will be put back into the cash pot for the next month of competition!
  • To be eligible for each monthly contest, participant must submit entrance fee of $15 ($12 prize account, $3 processing) prior to the 1st day of each month.

To register go to www.sisufitgames.comDo you haveSisu_