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

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

The “Food-Like” Culture

As I write these food related posts, I must begin to explain that I too, like the rest of society, has been sucked in to the culture of “food-like” nutrition that has plagued our American diet.  I spend a lot of time discussing this in my book, since overcoming the addiction of what food manufacturers have created is by far, the biggest obstacle to overcome in the quest for proper health and nutrition.  So what is “food-like” products?  I would probably imagine by now you can read between the lines and figure out it is food that has been converted, processed, refined, artificially flavored, colored, and preserved and put into a very attractive bag or box, celebrity endorsed or just heavily promoted, and typically inexpensive food that sits on the shelves at your local grocery store.  I briefly touched on this in my last post about the meat industry, stating that 100 years ago, there was no such thing as any of the above listed items found in our food.  The introduction of all these chemicals have created a very unhealthy society, and it’s only getting unhealthier.

Unfortunately, as much as these products taste good, our society truly doesn’t understand the magnitude of the food they are consuming.  Again, pointing back to the fact that we have become so detached from our food, that we don’t even question its relevancy anymore to our overall health and well being.  To us, it’s about enjoying the taste, and providing the calories that our body and mind think we need.  I will spell it out right now:  THIS IS NOT FOOD!  I know that the old phrase, if it walks like a duck, talks like a duck; it’s probably a duck.  So you think to yourself: “it smells like food, it tastes like food, so it must be food!”  Unfortunately some truth there, but looking further into the industry behind that food sheds light on a completely different picture!  There is a great book by Michael Moss, called “Salt, Sugar, Fat,” which really opens the door to discussing how the food manufacturers are working to create a food so closely to have the same addictive properties as a drug.  By combining those three things into food, and at exact amount in order to create something called a “Bliss Factor” which creates this immediate pleasure to the system that says, “oh yeah! I want more of that!”  It is really funny to think about the idea that these food manufacturers are basically scientists that are in a lab, adding more of this, taking away some of this, adding this, and all in search to get you addicted to their product so that you keep coming back for more.  This is how sad our food system has become, it has pretty much gone away from the farm, and now is built inside a laboratory.

With this much effort put into creating an addictive food product, no wonder it is so hard to try and eat a well balanced and healthy diet! Not to mention, if you are a father like me, having 3 teenage boys who see these commercials and they see their friends bringing it in their lunch bags to school, they ride your coat tails to get some in the house. And of course, in a weak moment, you come home, you are hungry, it will take 30 minutes or so to prepare a healthy meal, so it is so easy to just grab that bag or box and eat a few, and a few more, and some more, and next thing you know, you have consumed the same amount of calories you would have consumed in that healthy meal you were about to prepare. So what do we do?

This was an area I had to discuss about more thoroughly in my book, since the psychology of eating plays a much greater factor in our food choices than simply the nutrition or purpose.  I (at the time of my vegan run) had to daily work on verbally announcing to myself when I saw a bag of something on the shelf or a box of something in the pantry, I had to tell myself, “that is not food!”  and I would have to search my house for something that nature had provided me, not the laboratory.  Simply put, the only thing I would allow myself to eat would be a food item where the ingredient, was the ingredient!  Make sense?  It had to in its natural form, a piece of fruit, vegetable, or something else that grew out of the earth, but not in a processed form!  If there were more ingredients than the ingredient, it was off limits!

This little activity actually began to give me power.  Sounds funny, but having the strength to say no to artificial food-like food and yes to something natural, even though I would go through periods of feeling hungry, this sense of inner strength made me proud of my decision and each time, it became easier and easier.

Try practicing this activity, and I promise you will begin to see improvements in your health and energy levels!

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The GI Chart: The Holy Grail of Health

A brief passage from my book, “Reinvented After 40”

…Depending on how easy our body converts to glucose determines the body’s hormonal reaction. If we eat something that has a high sugar content such as candy, cookies, crackers, chips, bread ( I will provide a list later), our body immediately receives an overload of sugar in the blood and our body fights to regain homeostasis.  To do this, our pancreas releases a hormone called insulin, which goes after the excess sugar and converts it to fat to store for possible famine.  Unfortunately, in our society today, famine is almost non-existent in our country, so our bodies continue to store more and more fat.   Now, when we eat carbohydrates that have a much lower sugar content, referred to as complex carbohydrates (vegetables, most fruit, beans, legumes, sweet potatoes, to name a few), our body is not able to convert to sugar as quickly, so our body does not panic and send insulin out to convert and store as fat.  So as you can see from this example, we MUST focus on eating foods that do not quickly convert to sugar.  This has been documented as the Glycemic Index

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Reinvented After 40 on Kindle

newcoverDownload my story of battling depression and overcoming my own personal demons in search of becoming the best example for my children, and being proud of myself.   My goal is to reach out to fathers like me who seemed to hit a wall upon reaching 40, and are looking for that “reset” button to start a new path towards something greater.  Health and Happiness!

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Time To Reinvent Yourself

Hi, my name is Darren, author of Reinvented After 40.  I wrote this book after discovering how challenging it became closing in on that big 4-0 age in regards to overcoming the challenges of daily life with job, family, financial concerns, and still having that inner fire that knows we can still feel young and energized again.  These years are such an interesting paradox in that by this age you have gained so much wisdom and there is a sense of confidence with that, yet those feelings of that inner drive for the hunt, the kill, the conquer, have seemed to diminished.  Falling into the path of complacency has overtaken the desire to fulfill that inner drive.  That complacency has led to a lower drive to take care of our bodies, both inside and out.  If you have a partner, you have probably noticed a substantial reduction in intimacy, set off from our lowered levels of testosterone.  We have increased the amount of body fat, lowering our self confidence in the bedroom and in public places.  Our energy levels have decreased, the motivation for taking care of ourselves has become one of our lowest priorities.  After spending many years personally, in a dark place, I think i found out how low I could be.  Sometimes, I realized, that is what is required when you want to move up, and that was the spark I needed.  It was a rocket ship to the top by any means, everyday a battle to fight the demons, however, each day, like a muscle, you become stronger in your choices.  That inner voice telling you it is time to reinvent yourself and become a new you.  Step by step, change by change, day by day, things began to change.  I began to feel better about myself, becoming stronger each day in my decisions to move me in the path I believed was the correct one.  Turning 40 is hard enough, and I wanted to share my experience with other men who know they still have that inner drive to achieve something great, but may need a little push or direction.  Maybe my story and my path can provide some insight.

My practical guide, “Reinvented After 40” puts the steps I utilized to transform my mind first, and then my body, to achieve the most shredded physique I have ever displayed.  Even though I was into lifting as a teen and beyond, I had never looked this good!  My eBook, takes you through 6 step by step chapters to show you how I transformed my mind and became “the hunter” one more time.  I lay out by Chapter:

  1. Introduction:  My life is definitely story worthy, and I would hope that I can offer encouragement that if I can find the mental strength and the time, so can you.
  2. The Peak of Paradox:  Hitting that 40 peak, is kind of like that mountain, in many regards you are or can be at the top of your game since you now have 40 years of experience, however, in many aspects of your life it seems many things are going “down hill”
  3. Back To Basics:  I lay out how implemented a very primitive and simplistic view of my nutritional needs.  This “mindset” was the catapult of my reinvention.
  4. The Hunt Out of the Hunter:  No doubt, in our 20’s and 30’s we have have “hunter” mentality.  We basically use our strength in all aspects to find our mate and “do the deed” as often as humanly possible.  Around 40, finding time once a week almost seems like a miracle.  Of course this is going to take the hunt out of the hunter.
  5. Maximum Effort:  Exercise training in the most simplest form, however, it doesn’t matter how many you do, it’s all about “maximum effort”.
  6. Fin:  Just my thoughts as I wrapped it all together, how you begin, how you keep going, How I want to help in any manner possible.

Hope I can help you!

Best Regards,

Darren