Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Cutting Back on Your Sleep? Then expect to Gain Weight!

My dog, Xena, knows all about the importance of getting enough rest!
Caught an interesting little tidbit in this months issue of Men's Health... Basically all it said was that in a study where people only got 5 hours of sleep each night in a 1-week period, gained ~2lbs of bodyweight. Now whether that was fat, or just the body holding onto water the study didn't say, personally I don't think the body can put on that much fat in such a little amount of time. Keep on practicing bad sleeping habits though, and the fat will surely creep up on you! This is why sleep, rest, and recovery, are such a critical part in the renovation of your body no matter what your fitness
goal(s) is, losing fat, gaining muscle, becoming healthier, getting in shape and so on... On average the recommended amount of sleep you should get each night is 8 hours; if you're trying to lose weight you'll find that getting the right amount of good quality sleep will actually help you to burn more fat! So do whatever you have to do in order to get your straight 8!

Monday, July 22, 2013

LÄRABAR®: The Super Clean Snack Bar

Larabar's have been around for a while, and when I say "clean" I mean there is minimal ingredients in them. Generally the more ingredients something has in it, tends to make it more and more unhealthy; especially when you start seeing weird names and chemicals in them. The Cherry Pie flavor Larabar, my favorite one, has only 3 ingredients! Dates, almonds, and unsweetened cherries, and that's it; pretty crazy when you compare it to other foods especially other snack and energy bars where they all have 20+ ingredients in them!

Now if you're super picky with food and you don't like tasting new things then they might take a little getting used too, but I personally don't think they're bad at all; especially because they're not bad for you at all. The only thing you really have to look out for in them is just the sugar and carb content because well they're primarily consisted of fruit! They make for a perfect post-workout snack because they have the fast digesting sugar which comes from fruit, the only thing I'd recommend if you're eating them post-workout is to drink a scoop or two of whey protein with it because they're lower on the protein side of things. As for the flavors I've tried most of them, and I like the cherry pie ones the most by far, so try them out!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

ZERO Water: 100% Contaminate Free Drinking Water

If you're one of those people who always drink bottled water because you worry about all of the "bad" stuff that comes with drinking water from the tap, you'd be suprised to find that even your precious bottled water isn't as squeaky clean as you'd think! If you really want the cleanest water money can buy, then you need to get a Zero Water filter! Zero Water is similar to other water purification  systems you may have seen like Brita for example, but it's the only one that can boast having a TDS reading of 000, hence the name zero water. What's is TDS? Here's an explanation from, http://www.tdsmeter.com/what-is, which you
can also visit to get more information on the subject

"Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) are the total amount of mobile charged ions, including minerals, salts or metals dissolved in a given volume of water, expressed in units of mg per unit volume of water (mg/L), also referred to as parts per million (ppm). TDS is directly related to the purity of water and the quality of water purification systems and affects everything that consumes, lives in, or uses water, whether organic or inorganic, whether for better or for worse."

I did a quick little test just to use as a reference to show you guys the comparisons between tap water, bottled water, and Zero Water and their contaminants... It comes with it's own TDS tester which is simple to use, all you do is turn it on, wait for the display to read "000" and plunge it into a cup of water, that's it! I'm not sure if it's just placebo, but when I drink Zero Water it feels lighter almost, like I'm drinking air; it's very fresh and crisp tasting. All you have to do is load tap water into the top portion of the filter and wait! It can take a little while so every few glasses of water or so you gotta be filling it up with more water, not that big of deal though! Try it!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

ALLMAX Nutrition: Isoflex Chiller Whey Protein Isolate Review

The other day at work I was able to get my hands on a couple of samples of this stuff and was pretty eager to try it. I've never really heard of ALLMAX Nutrition, but they're a pretty good company from what I hear. I can't really say anything as for the quality of the supplement, it could be grade A quality; but as for the taste and consistency it was pretty bad. I had a couple of samples of the Citrus Peach Sensation, which reminded me of something along the lines of putrid fruit. Rather than use a shaker cup I tried stirring it in a glass of water with a spoon which could be why it came out so clumpy and inconsistent; which is odd because whey isolate generally mixes very well. I also figured that it would be clear looking like Isopure, instead it was a sherbet colored orange. I don't know how it would come out if you used a shaker cup or blender, but in all honesty I don't even think this product is worth a try. If you're looking for a good whey isolate, get it from a good brand like Optimum Nutrition, where you know you're getting the best quality protein at an affordable price and it tastes good! That or even just regular Isoflex is better than the Chiller version.

You can see that this stuff did not mix well at all
and what got stuck to the glass was stuck on there like glue

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Progression - 7/12/13 - Where I'm at, what I'm doing? SHOULDERS

Seriously this is my serious face; oh my gawww
I thought I'd take a little time to talk about where I'm at and where I want to be in terms of my physique and fitness goals for once. I'd like to do a show in the future, possibly in 2014, but I have a lot of work ahead of me and I still need to decide if I want to compete in a bodybuilding show, or physique. For those of you who don't know the difference to sum it up pretty quickly physique competitors are a smaller in comparison to bodybuilders, they wear swim trunks and generally go for that aesthetic "beach body" look, or that athletic look; and there is really no posing involved.

regardless of what I decide to do both require a ton of work, constant effort, dedication, and discipline both in and out of the gym and in the kitchen as well. Currently I'm trying to put on size as cleanly as possible (putting on minimal fat); right now I'm at about 210lbs at 6'3" and around ~14% Body fat. I'd like to put on 10-20lbs of clean mass over the next 3-6 months, and I'm also going to start incorporating  a lot of supplements into my regimen to help get me there so stay tuned for the reviews on those...

Having trouble developing my shoulders, we should start to see
some big changes in them very soon!
Right now one of my greatest weak points has got to be my shoulders, in terms of what they look like, I can't develop them to save the life of me. At work a couple of the trainers like to call me "Dove" because my shoulders look like that of a girl's in a Dove soap commercial, soft with no real definition, haha gotta love the people you work with sometimes. Although my shoulders are very strong they never seem to grow; it makes sense though as I hardly ever train them by themselves, and when I do it's only once a week. So for the past 3 weeks I've been hitting them twice a week and have been seeing decent results already!

Over the next couple of months I'll be keeping you guys updated on my overall progression and posting pics; hoping to see this transformation take shape soon!

I know these mirror selfies aren't the best, I'm gonna get a
permanent photographer; cuts the cheesiness in half at the least

Monday, July 8, 2013

Damn Good, High Protein, Low Carb Dessert - Super Easy to Make!

The other day my Mom had asked me to try this new dessert she had made; when I found out what was in it I said no way! One of the things it contained was ricotta cheese; I'm not a big fan of cheese at all, so when I heard this had cheese in it I thought there was no way it could taste good. I mustered up enough courage to try it and was reluctantly surprised out how delicious it was! Also, by no means am I one that likes to try new foods a whole lot, so if you're the same - don't worry, you'll like this!

There are ONLY 4 ingredients, 2 of which are optional...

  • Ricotta Cheese (which is actually sweet tasting, and has the consistency of peanut butter almost, not what you would think of cheese at all)
  • Reddi Whip
  • PB2, non-fat, dehydrated peanut butter (optional)
  • Shredded Coconut (optional)

It's super easy to put together, just throw a couple, 4-6, tablespoons of ricotta into a small bowl, throw in a tablespoon or two of PB2 and a pinch of shredded coconut and mix them in. Next just top it off with a little Reddi Whip to add a little more sweetness, and there you have it! The easiest and surprisingly good desserts to eat while watching your diet... try it out!