Friday, March 27, 2009

Fit TV

Wathing t.v. last night and was watching an episode of Insider Fitness on FitTV on our local cable network (Gabrielle Reese is one hot chick and a formal volleyball player too. Mario Lopez is a loser). Anyway, the topic was on some professional Hockey Players who train and play for professional Hockey. I don't follow Hockey much but there were 2 guys and a Female Olympic Hockey Player featured on this week's segment.

It was very interesting to hear their sides of how they prepare for their sport and how much involvement training is to them to be playing their sport for a very long period of time. I think one has been playing professional Hockey for over 20 years! And get this: all of them were over the age of 40. I look at these guys and their training approaches and it's all about conditioning and focusing on developing core strength.

And they look younger than they are!

One of the players (again, I don't know their names)...was talking about how he used to just toss around weight in the gym for the hell of it earlier in his career. At the time (I'm presuming the early 80's at the time...and I don't think he knew any better). What's startling was he had 3 abdominal surgeries while playing a very young professional career when he realized that his training approaches were all wrong. He got introduced to circuit training and he swears by it - is the best approach to sport conditioning. He developed such a strong solid foundation through circuit training - he won Defensive Player of the Year the following season. He also pointed out it's not about getting muscle but getting stronger and working on power. Nice.

The female Olympic Hockey player on the other hand, was giving insights on core training and the effectiveness of the stability ball. For such a long time - I saw no use of the stab ball until I came across some effective programs that utilize it. She was sharing some personal insights on the stability ball and it's unique uses. She was saying how it's not all just about using it for stretching or crunches. She states it's one of the best fitness equipment to utilize to work the core. I saw what she was doing and was pretty amazed. She would take a hockey stick, keep it at chest level (at the clavicle) - and start moving side to side while maintaining balance. Then she was seen balancing on the ball with her abs all while suspended on it hands and feet off the floor - whoa. She's well off enough that her husband was a former Hockey great and has a trainer that visits her 4x/week and they would work in a gym in her garage (how ironic - garage workouts are the best!). Her trainer showed an interesting gadget that straps around her abs. If she isn't concentrating on her core muscles, the gadget would beep telling her she needs to brace her abs more...never knew there was such a thing. Sport training technology...any way to get that edge while training for your sport I guess which is cool (I guess that's why professional athletes use steroids I's all about that "edge" - a cheating edge for that matter).

She really empasized the importance core strengthening. You can only fake that your core is good for such a time, until you realize that your game only got a few seconds slower. I think that so true!

Anyway, it was a great episode and I think I need to get this on DVR if anything just to see Gabrielle Reese! Just kidding. Hahaha!

Great episode.

*** edit - FitTV is probably the only cable channel I know of that doesn't sell you crap via infomercials such as P90X or Tony Little gizmo's. =)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Power of a Power Nap...and it felt damn goooood!

So I get home from work this afternoon and the first thing I do is drop my work bag and no - not pick up a Kettlebell and start swinging in the garage - I took an hour long nap in the comforts of our cozy living room. Seriously, it just felt so good just getting a little shut eye this afternoon - the workout this morning was BRUTAL(fortunately the young one was sleeping in his crib when I got home and the twins found some writing material to get themselves busy practicing their their writing skills) - I feel a little more re-charged.

The power of a power nap! Take one when you feel you definitely need one. I've been working my tail off and this was one of those few opportunities for me to just chill and relax some.

Anyway, did my weekly stats and progress pics and am pleased at where I'm at right now. One more week of a very challenging Turbulence Training routine I've been doing (click here for more information on my workouts and nutritional strategies) and then it's a week off and back to hitting it hard again.


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Who would win this fight?

Ok, so I love youtube. So thankful to Chris Lopez for providing me a perfect tool for that (will be posting a flip camera video of mine for him shortly)...

Full slate Tuesday yesterday...still managed to get my TT workout in before anything else of course. That always starts my day right. Got a light one in today for good measure....

My son loves Iron Man. Since the movie came out he has a pretty good collection of Iron Man toys of different variants. From the red and gold, to the Silver Iron Man, to the Blue Iron Man?! Anyway, on the eldest son (Andrei) and I were watching Iron Man videos on youtube while Dad (me) was working on some cabinets for Mom in the garage (I have a laptop so access to the internet is much easier. I've been on and off the net all day yesterday taking breaks...pefect forearm workout - a screw driver! Hahaha!!).

In the garage we found a pretty amusing video of Iron Man...but here's the twist - in a fight with Bruce Lee! My twins are only 4 years of age but have seen the full movie of "Enter the Dragon" three times - and they are awed with all the stuff he can do on screen - they try to do some of Lee's stuff all the time on one another at home and I always end up breaking it up. It's so interesting to see them interact nowadays it's hillarious! Hahaha!! I know...I shouldn't be doing that! But seriously, my twin boys seem like they're ready for some pre-school Karate classes and we're planning on enrolling both of them this summer. But we're really feeling out how interested they are at this point and may get them enrolled for the summer.

Now who would win here? Watch the video...

I love Iron Man...I used to collect his comic books many years ago (yes, I am a comic book geek at heart...always will be!). I think my boys are next to follow here soon.

And just like Iron Man, Batman, Superman...they're all fiction.

That video means more to me than what the naked eye sees (i.e. my son thinking Iron Man just got his ass beat down and broken to pieces). I see it as a lesson fitness, we can really get so sulked into health supplements, the latest workout gizmo or latest high tech machine making us think there are ways to make losing weight or even getting a better physique eaiser.

I think Lee did most of his training with body weight, maybe some BB's and thing like that - and a few sparring partners to unleash his wrath. But that's besides the point. It's his will. I think his mindset is something we should all strive for. Maybe not as dedicated but at least make every effort in your gym - count.

There are no easy ways about it...Lee put his heart and soul into it, and obviously enjoyed what he was doing.. And I always use Bruce Lee as a perfect example of what it takes. I think no one will ever come close to his commitment - shoot, not even half of his commitment. But this guy has amazing abs and is super fit. I may never get to that point ever in my lifetime - but he's definitely an inspiration for us all.

His approaches to his craft is what we all should strive for...everyday.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

My Sunday Ramblings....


David Beckham's awesome...

This is what my blog theme of the day will thoughts on GOALS.

I set some high goals starting the year and I seriously think I've achieved most of them which I'm really proud about right now. Not to sound vain, but I know it...and I can see it (well at least I think I can! Hahaha!). Not a drastic transformation change from 2 years ago but definitely see some changes the start of this year to now. And it's not only at a physique standpoint here. My vertical jumps are higher, my swings are more powerful, I can last 2 hours on a volleyball court and not feel like I ran of gas anymore just 30-40 minutes of playing. And it's just that - I can move around the court. And again, people I'm surrounded by at work, my family, my friends notice it too. They're actually even encouraging me to stop but I wont let those outside influences stop me from what I want to do.

It may sound selfish here, but why stop? Keep setting true, attainable goals for yourself and that will never will be an option.

I dont ever think stopping to live a healthy lifestyle is even in my future plans at this point, because it is a lifestyle change I intend to keep. Even people I don't even know are complimenting. I was at a store the yesterday and was asked to show some ID. I kid you not: he couldn't believe I was 35 years of age. He honestly thought I was some minor...and this was just yesterday.

Read something over at the TT forums by good ol Craig Ballantyne (this guy has a great website - you will learn so much just visiting his site and his blog on a day to day basis) at his "Quick and Important Tips for Today" thread (great thread btw. I always visit that thread of his for that much needed motivation I always look for...this really gets me going.). Goals...long term or short term - you gotta have em, be serious enough to really want them - or any program just wont work. To make it work, you have to be consistent with it (from diet, exercise and rest) and it will work. I'm re-realizing it does take alot of work and a 100% commitment and I think it really paid off once again which I'm very proud about.

The only thing that I don't think I've achieved is getting my 20 reps on the wide grip pull ups. Those are very hard to do. I've lost alot of lean mass in this fat loss mode I've been on these past few weeks...but that's ok. That's definitely the goal. I did 20 full neutral grips that I got on video at the park the other day but that's a whole different move compared to the wide grip. My weight and my body fat is right where I want it right now. But back to the pull up challenge - I know I'll get there, just not in the next 2 weeks unfortunately. So we'll keep the personal record of 18 for now in my personal record books...

Looking into the next few weeks, I've been really working on looking into some new approaches with some training. I'm really interested in giving this one specific program a try soon. I like athletic type program approaches (Turbulence Training has an abundance of that which is good) and of course - conditioning workouts. Mirror muscle workouts are great but I want to really improve in areas like strength, power and endurance - things I can use my training approaches to improve on in sports like volleyball. My knees are healthy and I'm fortunate to be able to be flexible enough to still maneuver where many at my age have lost a step or two. I know I have somewhat (I wont compare myself to an 18 year old) but I don't think it's to a degree where it bothers me so much to where I can't remain active, play with my kids at the park or play recreational just gives me that great sense of well being.

No stopping here...

Onward, forward....GOAL! =)


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Off Topic: One Coooool Video!!!

Off day and recovery...and a little bit of Saturday afternoon youtube. =)

Bruce Lee is amazing! I know this simply can't happen but can you imagine this if this can actually be pulled off???!!! Unreal.

That's simply awesome.


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Take Ownership of Your Body

This may sound philosphical but if there's one thing in life we all can control - it has got to be our own bodies. Think about it. Since birth...we all have the ability to control how our body reacts to certain things, what we want to eat and what we don't want to eat, clothes we want to wear, or the car we want to drive... etc, etc.

Ownership of's just like a house. You love your house - you do your best to keep your job so that you can make those silly mortgage payments every month right? And just like our bodies, we need to have that pride of ownership to really get some positive benefit of all the hard work we do in the gym and at the dinner table.

Nobody knows ourselves more than ourselves. Even Mom's don't know every little thing about us either.

I really believe that in fitness - you really want to make it a journey more than anything else: have that common sense of ownership of your body first and foremost. You can control what goes in your control what you do to your body. Nobody can tell you what to eat and what not to eat. You control that. Nobody else has that power to do that but you. Pitfalls are common...I've done it many times...but you always try to aim for the goal as best as you can. Don't ever lose sight of it. Things may get hectic..but try and remain consistent with it.

In due will see a transformation right before you realize it.

We owe our bodies soooooooooo much. It allows us to work, raise a family, earn a living...and enjoy even the smallest things in life we might take for granted. So treasure it, nurture it as best we can and the results will come. It may take time (fat loss) but don't rush it - it will come if we stay consistent with our goals in sight. We should never find excuses because there's always ways around them.

But you have to start somewhere and it always starts with that person you see in the mirror every morning you get up...and if you have doubts about yourself that you can't do it...then that's when you really have to dig in deep inside and find that motivation and believe in yourself that you can. Shoot for the mindset of "I want to lose weight", instead of "Im exercising and dieting, but Im not getting results so screw it." It's not easy...but who said fat loss was easy anyway.

Through my own personal experiences with it, only we can control what we do or what we don't do to our bodies. But it ultimately becomes a personal choice of how much "ownership" do you want have of your body to begin with.

Ultimately, it is our body here. Now it's all up to us to do something about it.

Take ownership!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Special Thanks To Chris Lopez of

Would just like to give my thanks and blog shout outs to Chris Lopez, he's the program creator of the "FitandBusyDad" Programs. He's a Toronto based Fitness Trainer, Coach and Fitness Enterpreneur. He is a really cool down to earth guy and very knowledgable in the fitness world and has a new superb program which I think you will enjoy. If you've been following my blog, you will know that I did win an essay contest not too long ago about how would we would best describe ourselves as to how we are and can become better dad's to our kids. Anyway, I actually won the essay contest and with that, just received a brand spanking new Flip Camera the other day for getting my essay entry picked out of 20 plus essay entries that were submitted.

We almost share something in common other than being busy Dads - our birthday's are in January and just a day off from one another...

He really outdid his self with this program that's out right now. And the contest he's currently running looks pretty awesome.

Continue the great work you do, Chris. Being busy and on the go as a full time working dad and husband really isn't easy for any of us. You are the perfect role model to follow for alot of us!

To all you busy dad's out there: NEWS BULLETIN!!! He has a contest running and if you want more details on it please check out his recent youtube video on the details of this great contest he has going on:

Here's his website:
His Blog site:
His Transformation contest information:

Thanks again Chris! Looking forward to doing your program soon!

Been a Busy few days...

Wow...I haven't blogged in over 4 or 5 days. It's been extremely busy for me the past several days as I had to prepare for an annual skills competency exam. It was a 2 part exam consisting of a written exam followed up with some hands on nursing skills stations I had to go through and complete. I literally had to read tons and tons of paper...I almost felt like I was cramming for a huge test back in my college days in Nursing School!

But nonetheless, still managed to get my workouts in regardless of schedule. I learned this at the TT site from a quote from Craig on his daily tips thread (and I rephrase here): "Make exercise like an appointment". If you can set yourself 30 - 45 minutes a day to exercise, then there's no way you can skip it. It's that matter how busy your lifestyle can be. Because like every appointment you have to make, it now becomes part of your to do list. And once you're done, you can continue taking care of other priorities like family, work and school. That's almost only an hour of a 24 hour day for us...think about that.

And the true benefits of exercise is endless: one thing it provides me is MENTAL CLARITY. A perfect example of this was yesterday's workout. I did Workout B of Craig's newer TT Program called March Madness the morning of my exam day yesterday. I got up that morning kind of cob webby (all the stress an exam like this would do to you really)...but I still managed to drive my kids to school that morning, get on some gym gear and do my workout. The exercise routine I did yesterday helped so much in clearing my mind of distraction and stress - just like a cup of coffee - I was awake, alert and ready to face that dreaded exam that followed that afternoon.

I'm a morning guy...and I like to hit the gym early morning (it's the first thing I do when I get up. I just get up and do it. I've developed such a habit to keep exercise a routine in my lifestyle that I am a firm believer that exercise is probably the best defenses against sickness or disease even effectively fights mental stress that comes with an upcoming exam much like the one I had to prepare for yesterday. And you feel so much better after a round of exercise - you don't feel as sluggish throughout the day.

Just like a cup of gets your day going.

Anyway, fortunately things are finally back to normal and on schedule but slowly easing myself into my other things I enjoy doing on a routine basis (which does not include studying every night by the way).

The current TT program I'm on has really been hitting me pretty hard. It's quite a change up from the previous TT programs and I can feel a difference in body response here and I like it.

2 more weeks of this program, a week off and it's off to another program. There are quite a few good ones Im interested in doing so we'll see!


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Consistency is Key

Got this from on a new article about the team's start off season conditioning program later this month as they get ready for another exciting 2009 season. It was written by Casey Pearce from on March 9, 2009. Interesting article as it touches some pretty good insight on training, weight loads, bw stuff, how to stay consistent and even why it's still important for the players to still be watching their caloric intakes on the off season too.

Click here for the official article. Some good stuff to read!

Btw...LT (Ladanian Tomlinson) just signed a contract extension for 3 more years.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Bodyweight Exercise!

Awww man. Talking about making use of time and a no excuse attitude. Took up a personal challenge from a good friend and coworker on 2 Classic BW exercises: the push up and bw squats. We challenged each other to do a set of push ups and squats alternating each every 30 minutes for a full 8 sets of each and not going lower than 20 reps and going even as high as 30 reps each time we did them. Pretty fun and kept our day going.

Has anyone done pull ups on an actual door? I was doing full pull ups on a door for fun. Yep, a freaking door..well a sturdy enough one to handle my weight. I came to realize that doing pull ups at a door really doesn't allow you to sway your body as there is very limited movement allowed (and grip as well).

You really can't find excuses to not keep it active even if you have a desk job for 8hours. You can practically take your workout - anywhere.

Bodyweight routines - gym rat people may start laughing but it's the truth: you don't need to be in a gym constantly pumping iron. You have have all that on your own body to use to your advantage.

Go gymless's a good thing!


Saturday, March 7, 2009

Forward and onward....

Great week. I feel good, I feel great and thankfully away from any ailments (knocking on wood) when the winter season is almost coming to an end and a new season just coming around the corner.

Down to the lowest weight I’ve ever been in almost a year at just under 163 lbs. I really re-committed myself at the end of last year – that if I’m going to do a workout program – I’m not just going to just do it but will keep nutrition in check as best as I could. Pretty happy with the TT programs that I’ve been doing lately and to be vainly blunt – I feel like I’m getting to where I really want to be at this point - which is a good thing. Although I have been getting comments that I’m leaning out some and have been told to stop, I’m going to keep pushing the ticket these next 4 weeks.

May have gotten some much needed ear pulling from some friends over last Monday’s mishap…it’s all good. I always need that…it’s good for accountability on my part and got some good sound advice I got from some good group of people to keep my mind on the right path. Definitely helps refocusing towards the “goal” here.

Anyway, got a great TT workout in this morning inspite of a very physically taxing volleyball game last night. Still managed to set my alarm clock early enough to get my TT routine done before heading off to work. Lots of lighter than normal weight used and just going through the motions with the program today for the most part. Anyway, got up this morning feeling a little banged up - some soreness of both upper and lower body today. Lots of jumping and swinging last night. We were literally on the court for 2 hours. We play “winner stays” at the open gyms I go to and we were just beating everybody we were up against. Pretty good solid core group of 6 we had last night. Really enjoyed it to the fullest.

What I didn’t realize was a bruise I have on the palm of my right hand. It might have been from a block or a swing that may just have hit it right on the money…nothing too serious – just found that kind of weird as I've never had this type of injury since I was in college.

Forward and onward...


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Slipping a little? Here's an awesome "Pick Me Up" Video...

Love the Gospel quote in the beginning of this video: “Hope deferred makes the heart sick...but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.” Proverbs 13:12

Ronnie, who of my generation did not remember growing up idolizing this guy? Ok we all know he's got great beastly genetics but on the downside also with a little "unnatural-ness" with it as well considering all the supplements and steroid use these guys use. But give this man his due: he’s bigger than life in his passion for body building and it was so awesome that someone on youtube was able to make a kick butt video with the perfect song to go with it (Adema - “Planets” - a workout song I’ve had on my ipod for sometime.) He made this video apparently because it gives him that motivation when he steps into the gym. It's very motivating and kind of keeps that drive going for me too each time I watch it.

Here it is:

How motivating is that?

Moving on here. Moping and groping about some wrong choices isn’t going to help matters in reaching any type of goals. That will just hold you down even more from attaining them if you think about it too much.

To MikeZ and Fred: thanks for keeping it real for me....


Monday, March 2, 2009

A True Cardio Confessional Story....or my own act of pennance?

I heard of the cardio screw your whole diet up one day thinking you can make up for the losses in that battle with excessive amounts of cardio's true - the old saying goes: you can't outwork a bad diet but this probably has happened to the best of us. You're in denial if it's never happened to you at one point in your lives...well it hit me today and I was not happy about it. Not on a Monday.

So this was my first true cardio confessional I've had in many, many months...but I'll call it my act of Pennance.

–noun 1. a punishment undergone in token of penitence for sin.
2. a penitential discipline imposed by church authority.
3. a sacrament, as in the Roman Catholic Church (I am Catholic by the way), consisting in a confession of sin, made with sorrow and with the intention of amendment, followed by the forgiveness of the sin.

I'll call todays nutritional falters - a sin indeed - so I will call this evening workout "my act of pennance". Will it make up for a bad day on the nutritional front - who knows really.. But psychologically - it kind of made a whole lot of sense in a way and kind of "off set" an otherwise bad day of eating over an otherwise great TT workout this morning.

So after a an hour and half of volleyball...I did my own version of Nutbagness. So I dropped my gym bag and did the following routine:

- 200 KB swings (85 continuous before taking breaks after every 30 or so reps...did this one rather quickly!)
- 200 weighted jump ropes
- 200 meter run

Sweat just literally dripping from my forehead. Pooped. Wiped out. Done.

Another hard and challenging TT workout tomorrow morning....

Time to spend time with the family and watch a taped episode of tonight's Heroes! =)


A Nutritional Slip...

Wow...can't imagine how screwed up my nutrition was all day. I normally don't post my nutrition in here as it's been pretty good for the most part.

But today: I slipped...badly.

First day from work after a great 2 days off over the weekend. Had a great TT workout this morning but walked into a time bomb at the workplace this morning. I forgot we had planned a go away lunch party for a colleague that was leaving and we all pitched in $10 for food last week - and we had lots of it. And for some reason I've been hungry too boot all day so that didn't bode well either. It wasn't the food, but the food choices and how much I had. Not buffet type eating here, but I normally wouldnt eat that much bad carbs and bad fats for a Monday at the start of the week where I just had a reward meal yesterday. What's surprising (and expected) was how tired I was feeling all day. I feel sluggish after all that eating and I just know this isn't how I want to feel right now.

Today was just one of those unusual days where everything just got thrown out the door on a nutritional standpoint and I take full accountability for it. Full accountability.

Not good. Just goes to show we can all slip and slide here and there. Hope to right this ship right NOW. Tonight is volleyball night so maybe that can help me some with burning some of that unwanted calories today and still have some fun doing it, or may just take a break and reset myself for tomorrow.