Archive for the ‘BodyBuilding’ Category

Hypoxic Weight Vest Training

Want a simple uncomplicated workout that pushes you to the physiological & psychological brink?

Here I am with my elevation mask & 80lb weight vest.

weightvest

elevation mask

Just put them on & walk for 40-60 minutes.

Why Muscle Man Cant run – Or why the Army wont take Arnold look alikes

Lets face it those good at mid & long distance running are skinny little runts.

If you want to be military, particularly Army you have to be able to run and run fast for long distances. Sadly you can not do this if you are big.

You may be a far better athelete but if your BMI is high you will be a bad runner even if you are not obese but muscular. You simply can not have the best of both or all worlds. Trust me the military has been at it for thousands of years. If they had figured a way to have super muscular troops that can run 10km fast they would not be testing BMI.

There is simply no trade off or workaround. If you want to do well in the military you need to get your BMI down and increase your strength to weight ratio. So for me at 5ft 11in this would mean going down to 80-90kg and getting as strong as possible.

Clearly this is not an athletic ideal but it is a military ideal. Remember the military is an outfit that is training you potentially to die not to win a muscle man contest.

So what can you do if you are young and have instinctive yearnings to be a combat soldier but also want to be a muscle man?

Well what I would do is focus on the military objective because once you are 35-40 you will be past the expiry date anyway. Go hard, have your military career. Then when the time comes retire & change your training & physique.

Now another option is to cut to the chase. Stuff the military, pack on the muscle & become a muscle man – hell you can pay for your own gun & skydiving – right?

Its up to you – just be aware you can not do both at once.

Muscle Man can not run!!!

He can however sprint & can carry heavy loads for long distances. Could muscle man be a better soldier? Maybe but not within the institutionalized military.

Maybe he can be a better operator but not at official special forces. He can certainly be a better police officer, bodyguard, arena combat athlete or street fighter.

Also if you are too big for medium & long distance running accept that as your reality. Dont fight the flow – go with it. Take up sprinting & high intensity training.

Now take a look at these sprinters:

sprinter sprinter sprinter

Those are magnificent lean physiques right?

Who the hell would not want to look & feel like that? Well stop trying to do mid & long distance. Do the hit training. Be a sprinter, bodybuilder, power athlete. You can still have a magnificent cardio-vascular system. Whats more this style of training is better for your heart & longevity than skinny man endurance training which actually causes heart muscle damage.

Muscle man is fitter than skinny man even though for certain jobs skinny man is better – including ironically being a modern combat soldier or special forces comando.

If you want to be a comando do not become a bodybuilder or a sprinter. Simple fact easy to understand. BMI may not accurately reflect your athleticism or health but it does reflect your ability to run mid & long distance.

One final point to raise is just why upper body mass seems to be beneficial for sprinters. It is extra weight to carry after all. The answer’s involve biomechanics, peripheral heart action & nerve force irradiation. So be assured that yes a bigger & stronger upper body definitely amplifies sprinting capacity – which is great.

Finally here are some links on sprint training, BMI and VO2max:

Sprint Training

Ideal Running Weight

Rebounding – Is it worth it?

I got a rebounder some months ago. I always used to enjoy briefly using a rebounder at the gym & I am too heavy for running much at 100+ KG’s.

So a rebounder seemed like a good idea. Many books & sites claim rebounding is as intense calorie wise as running or skipping. Well I can tell you that that is not the case unless you make it so.

I find rebounding much less strenuous than either running or skipping but having said that if you go all out it can indeed get your pulse pumping.

Main benefits: Conditioning of archiles tendons & calves, feet & shins, safe for knees & hips.

The above benefits will greatly improve your injury resistance while running & if you are big like me you just cant run too frequently without injury.

Lymphatic drainage: Yes all forms of exercise will drain your lymph but rebounding certainly seems to be particularly effective.

Cardio: The more you put into it the more you will get out of it.

rebounder

Time for Breakfast

juicing

Kettlebell Snatch Training

The big test for kettlebell snatch is the SSST – for males that’s 200 24kg snatches in 10 minutes. RKC also has a test that is 100 in 5 minutes. Women can do the tests with 16kg.

snatch

Now those numbers represent a “pass” but some people do it with much more weight.

Snatch is tough on cardio & on the hands. Hence if you want to do well with snatch training then you will benefit from doing a lot of intense running and other similar cardio. If running is too hard on your knees you can row, cycle and jump rope.

Snatching alone won’t get you to top numbers in the snatch due to the hand damage.

So you want to take a two pronged approach as like most kettlebell work this is “strength-endurance”

For strength I recommend the Alpha Snatch program which is designed to take you up to the next level kettlebell in six weeks.
If you can snatch 50 reps in 5 minutes with a 20kg then after this program you will be able to do the same with a 24kg.

You then rest from it and do some other stuff for six weeks and you may repeat aiming for the next level up.

alpha snatch

OK Alpha Snatch will take care of your strength approach to the snatch.

For the endurance side of things apart from a cross training approach I also recommend Kenneth Jay’s famous “Viking Warrior” program. Its a great kettlebell snatch endurance & cardiovascular program.

Now Kenneth was clearly full with great enthusiasm for the snatch when he developed this program but has since released “Cardio Code” which explains that snatch while being very good is not the absolute best exercise for cardio.

viking warrior

So this is the general approach to take:

1: Use “Alpha Snatch” to increase your snatch specific strength. Its is only a short workout so you can still do all othe your other regular strength & fitness training with minor adjustments.

2: Use a “Viking Warrior” style regimen to increase cardio & snatch endurance when not doing “Alpha Snatch” – this is done with less weight.

3: Use “Cardio Code” to increase your cardiovascular fitness above and beyond what snatch training alone can do for you.

The end result after 6-12 months will be super performance in the snatch for both strength & endurance.

What Recreational Drugs Really Do

cannabis

OK this post will be blunt (no pun)

I grew up in a small town called Kaikohe in the north of New Zealand. A small farming community with a population of around 4000. Not far from one of the most beautiful tourist resorts in New Zealand, the Bay Of Islands.

My town was rough, a town with high unemployment, domestic violence & drug use.

When I was 12 I was abducted off the street & nearly murdered by a paedophile. My family busted up a year later after years of turmoil & domestic violence. Not perpetrated by my father I might add.

So around the age of 14 I began to drink regularly & heavily. I would drink until paralytic at least once a week & pop packets of painkillers. I was having nightmares every night & in a great deal of emotional pain.

I made friends with some oddball bad characters. One was an old irishman who used to give me and all my mates free grog.

Essentially I became a part time street kid at 14. All my older siblings left after my parents divorce & I was left with my younger sister and abusive mother. It was sheer hell. At around 15 after a year of serious drinking I added cannabis to the mix and began hanging out with a bunch of hard core dope smokers.

These guys were 10 years my senior. They were my best mates. Made me feel safe & we had a lot of fun.

One of them was a convicted rapist. He and 3 others had raped a woman in a car. He used to tell us all about it, how he ripped her pubic hair out, punched her repeatedly in the vagina while they held her down etc. He did time for that. He was as mad as a shit and it paid not to piss him off.

Another one was a nice guy, very shy & soft spoken. But he had schizophrenia and when he had a psychotic break he would become violent and try to stab people. One time his parents left him to look after the house while on holiday. He burned the family home to the ground.

Another had been inside and had “Hang Loose” tattooed across his forehead and chin. A friendly nice guy who enjoyed having punch ups while drunk.

So there were a bunch of these guys, heavies & dope growers that became my best friends when I was 15 years old. Trust me I was every bit as bitter & crazy as them at the time.

At this stage I became in love both with a girl that I couldn’t get & with a drug that I could get.

I was given an ounce of weed per day to smoke – that’s a very large amount of Cannabis – about the same as a tobacco pouch.

Some time it was just leaf, often head – often extremely potent weed.

At first I was obsessed with Cannabis. I loved it. I would smoke my ounce, get pissed on whiskey and tequila, my mates & I would go to parties, beat people up etc.

All my mates were doing the same. This was our world.

Once they robbed the liquor store and we had free flagons of gin & rum for weeks.

I was totally stoned & drunk for an entire year.

I smoked more Cannabis at the time than any of them & I was only 15. Marlies, Pipes, Numbers, Doobies.

I became insane.

After 2 months of smoking I needed more and more to get high. What once took a joint now took a bag.

I was on a roller coaster. I would awake in the morning deeply depressed, often cry, I was so lonely with all my great friends, no family.

My memory was gone, hell after a few months I didn’t know the month or the season – all I know was there was a session tonight, and a party.

But it wasn’t fun anymore. I had loud tinnitus 24/7. I also had kind of visual tinnitus – blobs of psychedelic aura’s floating around before my eyes 24/7. My eyes were extremely light sensitive.

My weight dropped to 6 stone. That’s about 80lbs & I used to wear 4 shirts & jeans all the time to hide my skeletal appearance.

I also used to hallucinate. The voices, yep I dont wanna talk about that but Cannabis does cause hallucinations when you smoke enough and combine it with alcohol & painkillers.

About the voices I can tell you this. I had real loud tinnitus & real loud voices in my head for a very long time. I knew if I told the doctor or anybody I would be off to the nut bin. So I told nobody – that was my little secret.

Essentially after living like this for a year I was near the end. Either death, the nut bin or go straight were my only options.

I decided to go straight.

Well at first I ditched my friends which was very difficult. I went back to school and after a year I actually passed university entrance. I doubled my body weight in the first six months.

I think I probably doubled my IQ in this time also.

It was extremely, extremely difficult. Like a paraplegic learning to walk again.

But I was still topping up in the piss & drugs once a month I would get totally smashed which kept me from withdrawal.

Finally after this tough but amazing year of recovery – with zero intervention or support – it was time to go totally clean forever.

I did it in an isolated shack on a farm out in the sticks. The old booze doesn’t like to let go of a man. It makes you pay a price, same for the codeine & opiate pain killers and of course the THC.

I had a psychotic break big time.

I kept it secret from everybody but it was pretty obvious things had been up for some time.

I gave up Nicotine, caffeine, codeine, cannabis & alcohol all at once so I guess it was to be expected.

I can tell you that I was not rational, I was paranoid & obsessed with a crazy notion which I totally believed in. Like a huge conspiracy that I rationalized. You dont need to know the details because none of them were real.

After two months of drug and alcohol withdrawal, extreme rage, anxiety and stress, I came to an epiphany.

I had actually been insane for two months. It was all wrong – a delusion caused by the drug dependency wearing off & my neurotransmitters returning to a normal balance.

Quite a profound personal experience but that was the turning point & in the months that followed I remained abstinent and eventually by the age of 19 I was fine.

So that’s what Cannabis did for me. Everybody that I smoked it with was mad.

Many of them went on to become some of the worst drug dealers in New Zealand. Some died violently.

Most are still mates with rapists and convicts. They are scum still & I am not.

If you choose to smoke cannabis I am better than you.

I and those like me are better human beings. As I did these things as a child my respect for adult drug users & proponents is zero.

Your word is worthless. Your opinion meaningless.

Isometrics Revisited

Isometrics should not be revisited – Its should be done everyday.

Way back at the age of 16 I was actually anorexic at six stone & close to my current height of 5ft 11in. I had a bad drug & booze problem so when I cleaned my act up I took up bodybuilding.

My first ever course was – You guessed it “Charles Atlas” Dynamic tension isometrics. I followed that up with the Dan Lurie course & barbells but kept up with the isometrics.

Well it’s not hard to double in body weight when you are that skinny & that is exactly what I did from six to twelve stone in six months.

Those were tough times for me but by the time I was 19 my head was straight & I was on the right path in life.

However at some point I ditched the Isometrics. Bummer.

It’s a bummer because Isometrics are just as important as Isotonics and back in the sixties they were probably considered more important.

You see the initial research revealed a 5% weekly gain in strength from isometric exercise. That’s compounding so just google up a compounding interest calculator & you can see what it will do for you.

Say for me one arm pressing my 70lb kettlebell – I should be able to press 114lb after a ten week cycle.

Heres a good calculator http://www.moneychimp.com/calculator/compound_interest_calculator.htm

Now that’s respectable but if I do another ten week cycle & get the same progress it calculates to 185lbs and that is phenomenal.

A 5% compounding weekly gain is the absolute max you could wish for but even 2% per week non compounding is a decent gain over 10 weeks. I’m sure that if you have never trained isometrics or have not done so seriously in a long time, and you put super effort into it, you will get the top results on your first cycle.

Isometrics are best done daily – every day of the week. Keep them within the hormonal window 40 – 90 minutes.

Now you wont continue to get a 5% increase for eternity. You can expect that for 6-10 weeks only.

You need to use periodization with your isometrics. Should you just do isometrics on a 2 months on 2 months off cycle? Or can you cycle static & dynamic isometrics?

The static isometric cycle would be low duration high intensity – dynamic long duration lower intensity, I am referring to the actual isometric contractions.

The static isometric cycle would coincide with a strength or power focussed isotonic cycle.

In this way you should be able to do isometric training every day of the year. Isometrics also compliments & accelerates flexibility – just study the Thomas Kurz material for full programs.

Your dynamic isometrics can include Harry Wang’s Dynamic Strength style training & Sanchin, even bodybuilding posing routines. You would do this stuff while cutting and doing more muscular endurance type isotonics.

So it seems to be a two month cycle can be introduced give or take.

During those dynamic periods cardiovascular and muscular endurance can be enhanced and fat can be burned off. During the static phase massive strength gains can be made.

I’m going to give it a serious shot.

Steve Justa Crazy goings on

Old Steve Justa is a real character as we all know. I have his book “Rock Iron Steel” which is great. I love training with my weight vest and doing isometrics and other stuff.

steve justa

I never looked Steve up on youtube before and seen as his stuff didn’t seem to be available on Bud Jeffries site any more I took a look.

Well what I came across was his crack head best buddy singing about him raping:

A kind of catchy tune but I’m sure it was a one off performance.

This is his crazy buddy ranting about smashing over Bud Jeffries:

Well its all a bit crazy the bummer is that none of Steve’s stuff is available off his site any more & I wanted the isometrics videos

leverage while smoking

World’s Strongest Man competitor Hafthor Bjornsson’s diet

In a Facebook post, Bjornsson shared his daily diet ahead of the 2016 World’s Strongest Man event.

In total he eats 900 grams of beef, more than 1.5kg of sweet potatoes or potatoes and up to 14 eggs.

6:50am Morning workout! Cardio + CORE for 30min Bcaa (branched-chain amino acids), Glutamine + handful of almonds
7:30am 8 eggs + 200gr Oats + blueberries & strawberries + avocado
9:30am 400gr Beef, 400gr Sweet potatoes, handful of spinach & greens
11:50am Bcaa, glutamine,
12:00pm 400gr Chicken + 400gr potatoes, greens + some fruits
2:00pm Blender = 150gr oats or sweet potatoes, 2 bananas 150gr kellogg’s rice krispies, frozen berries, handful almonds, peanut butter and glutamine
2:30pm Training strongman, Bcaa, glutamine, Vitargo
5:30pm 60gr protein + 2 bananas
6:00pm 500gr beef + potatoes, greens
8:30pm 500gr salmon + 500gr sweet potatoes
10:30pm 50gr casein protein or 6 eggs + avocado + 30gr almonds + 50gr peanut butter
Drink a lot of water throughout the day + Juices to get more calories!!
middle of the night 50gr casein protein or raw eggs

Real Lumberjack Fitness

I grew up in the north of New Zealand. Many area’s in New Zealand are covered in large commercial pine forests. Pinus Radiata that soft timbered lovely smelling stuff. Up north work was thin on the ground so many teen agers and young men went to work in the forest. In New Zealand its simply known as forestry work, not being a lumberjack – nobody is referred to as a lumberjack.

The fact is that my mates working the forest were the fittest individuals I ever knew. Most of them had resting pulse rates around 40 bpm. Some of these guys were small and nimble but others were big like 300lbs and lean.

Seldom did they ever set hands upon an axe, that kind of work was done with a chainsaw.

So how did they get fit?

1. High Pruning

In this video the guy is doing it with a chain saw:

But everybody I knew normally did it only with the loppers because its too dangerous to do with a chain saw. Let me explain the procedure. You have an 8 or 12 foot ladder that hooks around the tree at the top. You take the bottom feet of the ladder & military press the whole thing above your head full stretch. You then haul your self up onto the ladder and climb to the top, standing on the top rung.

You then reach up as high as you can and begin cutting off branches with the loppers. If you drop the loppers you must climb back down & get them.

OK now these are not sticks & twigs, you are cutting off solid damn branches all day long with brute force & technique.

I tried it one summer’s day & my heart red lined all day long while the sweat came from every pore just like a sauna. I managed to prune 40 tree’s & quit never to try the job again.

The other guys were doing 80 trees in a day, some could do over 100.

That’s climbing from 20-30 feet up a tree then cutting off every branch by hand and they were able to do 100 in a day then come back the next day, and the next for a 40 hour week. Week after week.

These useless no hopers and bums were super athletes.

Another job was planting the seedlings & fertilizing them. How do you think that is done?

Well with a 40lb box of seedling or fertilizer is how, then you proceed in a dead straight line over hills gullies, dead fallen trees, whatever and you plant until empty. Then go back get more and continue, bending over, hauling and walking all day long.

I never tried it but some of them reckoned this was harder than the high pruning.

Now you can not get fitter than these guys. This is their job five days of the week.

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