Archive for April, 2014

This post isn’t going to be what you think. I’m not going to write the same shit I’ve seen in 43 articles today. The jokes and memes are flooding like Pensacola right now. I get that. Jokes are funny. I’m going to try and be as impartial in this argument as possible… I’m a big Florida State fan, but honestly that has zero bearing on what I’m about to say.

It’s time for real, mean talk. Who gives a shit about Jameis Winston? I file his incident at Publix in the same category as Sterling’s racist remarks, Whitney Houston OD’ing on drugs, Paul Walker dying in a car wreck, etc.
1. Why care more about certain crack heads dying of an overdose than others? People die from overdoses everyday.
2. Why care more about certain car crash facilities than others? People die in car crashes everyday.
3. Why care more about certain racist people than others? There are racist people in every state. I know some.

Do people Facebook and tweet about Whitney Houston 9 million times in two days because she could sing well? Tons of people with incredible talent die each year. Because she had lots of money? Tons of rich people die each year. Because she was very well known in America? Because she’s generally recognized anywhere you go? That’s why it’s such a big deal when she dies? Because it creates a topic of drama that’s easily shareable no matter who you’re talking to? Because these people are famous.

When a black guy shoots somebody and robs a store in Valdosta, Georgia, nobody bats an eye. When a black guy steals crab legs from Club Publix, 7 million people mention him in tweets, blogs, Facebook posts, etc. Why? What’s different? It’s not his money before the stealing (or his million dollar car he crashed and died in). It’s not his football ability before he got caught (or her singing ability before she died). It’s his fame. Because millions of people in each state know his name, because you can start this conversation with anyone, anywhere – it becomes something easily posted. You are guaranteed a positive response from your followers. New followers. New likes. New blog followers. It’s a fame bandwagon. Everybody wants to talk about what the cool kids are talking about. People are sheep.

When this news storm happened today, I was reading the Drudge Report. Here are some of the news article links listed. Maybe you can see where I’m going with this…

al Qaeda Affiliates Surge
Antibiotic Crisis Bigger than Aids
As Border Patrol Increases, So Does Abuse
Masked Gunmen Plague Ukraine
Are Athletes Starving? Heisman Trophy Winner Caught Stealing Crab Legs from Publix

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot. What the fuck. Am I reading. How is that national news? How is a story about a shoplifter fined $30 on the same level as an antibiotic crisis that could rival the aids virus? People care about Winston as much as Ukraine being on fire, al Qaeda spreading or the Border Patrol abusing people? WTF is wrong with people.

I’ve also noticed a trend within many Winston blog articles, Facebook messages, tweets and comments. “His character is deplorable. He shamed his school. He’s an idiot.” Let’s take these people’s comments a step further. These are the same millions of people that commented in Paul Walker’s death. “RIP Paul. You will be sorely missed!!! RIP Paul 😦 Your talent on screen was unmatched!!!!”These are the same people that said the same about Whitney. “Can’t believe Whitney is gone!!!!!!!!!!!! 😦 RIP Whitney! We love you!!!!” About Sterling, “What a racist piece of shit. What an ignorant person. What a racist jerk.”

Here’s what I have to say to the plethora of people who had more opinion than news in their posts today:

“Lions don’t concern themselves with the opinions of sheep.”

Nobody important gives a shit about you. Only sheep care about your sheep opinion. Donald Trump doesn’t read Lex and Terry’s news feed. Mark Cuban doesn’t read TMZ for the latest on Sterling. He doesn’t give a shit. Neither should you. Get a life. There are more important things in life to spend hours of your day on. Like being witty in a blog post.

Judging some random black student athlete or racist team owner is pathetic. I’m reminded of Chad’s 21 Rules of Manliness. Rule 12 and 13 in particular.

12. Read often. Read everything.
Read about your heroes, but also about people who’s views oppose your own. If you’re conservative in nature, read something written by a liberal. If you’re liberal, read something written by a conservative. Read about business, religion, fitness, science, and economics. Learn about politics and different cultures.

I’ve learned the most in my life from books, and from doing things that were way out of my comfort zone. Everyone should discover the gift of reading. It expands your world, opens your eyes, and strengthens your character and resolve.

13. Unplug weekly.
It’s amidst the noise of our everyday lives that we become evermore disconnected with our mission, our values, and our beliefs. Our intentions in life become clouded. Our purpose becomes less vivid.

Silence is a valuable friend in life. We, as men, need silence. We need to reconnect with ourselves, our Maker, our purpose, values, and beliefs. We need silence to find clarity. It’s in silence that we’ll recharge and rediscover why we’re here and what we’re doing. We’ll hear our fears loud and clear.

So before you judge a book by its cover, make sure you know all the facts. I’ll leave you with this little known/very rarely advertised bit of evidence:

And that’s all I have to say about that.

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So, a teenager went on a shooting spree in a FedEx warehouse earlier today. Not a lot is known. Here’s what CNN has said:

Atlanta (CNN) — A FedEx package handler went on a shooting rampage early Tuesday at his workplace in suburban Atlanta, wounding six people before turning the gun on himself, officials said.

I happened upon a picture on the internet today. It’s a picture of the outside of the FedEx building with cops everywhere. There is also a sign in the background. The sign is a picture of a gun with a red circle and a slash meaning “No Guns.” Besides there being dozens of guns in the picture, I found the sign ironic.

ALL politics aside, I want you to think about that sign for a second. Who is that sign meant for? Think. Who in the world is that sign meant for? Let’s assume everybody. It’s meant for people that likes guns and people who don’t. It’s meant for people who have a Concealed Weapon Permit and people who don’t. It’s meant for people who can’t legally own firearms and people who can. It’s meant for everybody that enters that building. It’s meant for the boss, the supervisors, the package stackers, the truck drivers, the minimum wage teenager that gets there at 3 a.m. and leaves at noon. There are no exceptions on the sign. There are no exceptions on the sign for police officers. There are no exceptions on the sign for military personnel (ignore for a moment that police can carry guns anywhere in the country and military personnel are basically civilians even in uniform). There are no exceptions on the sign for murders.

Now that we’ve talked about the sign and it’s purpose, let’s talk about how this incident still happened – despite the sign. Assume for a moment that 100% of the 100 (for example) people in the building followed the rule of the sign. Let’s assume there are NO guns or weapons of any kind in the building prior to the shooter entering the building. Now, at 5:50 a.m., when 9-1-1 calls starting coming in, there was a man in the building with guns.

But didn’t he see the sign?

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Well. This is a really unfortunate situation. 100 people followed the rules. It’s an extremely important rule. NO GUNS. That way, nobody will get shot or killed. However, this wasn’t an accident. Therefore, the sign was not an added safety level. Just like keeping your finger straight and off the trigger, just like keeping your firearm on safe until ready to fire, just like never pointing your weapon at anything you don’t intend to shoot, the sign is a safety level.

It can never stop anyone from bringing a gun onto a property. A sign can never stop somebody from committing a crime when they came to work with the sole intent of murdering co-workers. However, the sign had a 100% success rate up until 5:50 a.m. It successfully stopped 100 people from having guns to defend themselves. Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of ways to stop a shooting in progress if you don’t also have a gun. You can run, you can hide. You can try and sneak up on him to wrestle the guns away. You can call the police to come with their guns. See what I’m getting at?

I want to start a national boycott on ‘No Gun’ signs. Obviously, the signs are completely worthless. When displayed, the only people that follow the rules are people who don’t trust themselves with carrying a concealed weapon anyway. Many of my friends admit to carrying firearms into establishments despite their silly signs. Murders obviously don’t following the rules written on signs. Might as well not have a sign, let the Concealed Carry Permit holders have their guns. Let the people scared of holding, seeing, talking about (let alone carrying a gun) continue to not carry a concealed firearm. The murders will obviously do what they want. Ban all ‘No Guns’ signs – especially in States that have Concealed Weapon Permits. The sign tells people that establishment doesn’t care what State law says.

That’s not politics. It’s simple black and white. It’s time for real, mean talk. Signs only work on stupid people that can’t think for themselves. If you value you’re life, you won’t listen to a sign. If you worry about getting fired if caught and you leave your gun in your truck – you’re suicidal. Signs don’t stop the people that need to be stopped. All others are ill-relevant.

CNN update about shooting victims.

Dear Diary,
I don’t miss leg day at the gym. Yesterday and today was not easy on my quads, and that’s ok. It makes me a stronger man figuratively and physically.
Today’s workout was an easy one, but I scaled it. The back squat I think is on par with my 190 pound max for one repetition. Today I back squatted 165 pounds five times. I need to be doing significantly more.
Also, the wall balls and hand stand push-ups went by relatively easy. However, I used a 12 pound bean bag instead of a 20 which was prescribed. Not a lot of difference, but one hundred wall balls were performed. I scaled the hand stand push-ups by using a 30 inch tall box and adding a high deficit of two 45 pound bumper plates. I completed the daily torture routine in 10 minutes and 56 seconds.

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Today’s “man” would, by-in-large, fair poorly in a culture such as that of the Vikings’. Our brains are no bigger, our capacity for intelligence no greater, we’ve merely been given knowledge that has been built up and compounded over hundreds of years. Our toughness, our grit, however, are both diminished beyond recognition.

Our fear of death so great that it prevents us from living.

Our fear of danger just as grand as it inhibits our adventures and tempers our risk. Our fear of pain has grown to dangerous proportions where we now protect our young from any semblance of it or of danger in a vain attempt to keep them completely from any ounce of harm.

In short, we’re pussies. Our society, everything that it covers and intrudes into, our parenting, schooling, and even our “everyone wins” athletics, has weakened us to the point where I’m not sure that Viking men, for example, would see us as men, but as some clone or similar species that lacks what a man has, courage, honor, a warrior’s spirit.

8 Lessons in Manhood From the Vikings

1. Accept death with open arms.

If death isn’t feared but instead welcomed there’s no limit to what you can accomplish and what you’ll aim to accomplish. Viking explorers ventured into uncharted seas to discover what was not yet known. We not only fear death but we fear the unknown and injury and failure and for shite’s sake we need to stop, and the end will start when we bring our greatest fear into the present.

Life expectancy has never been longer; as disease and war and death by the hands of another man in a feud over honor are removed from our civilized, evolved societies, we live less. We go through the motions even mocking death because we know by the odds that it’s going to be far in the future. Only, in our future we wish so gravely that we hadn’t lived our lives with more urgency and daring.

People regret more now then they did once for many reasons. There are more distractions that pull us away from what’s truly important, death is less of a constant and it’s less violent so we take most of our days for granted, and most of our lives are led to impress people we don’t like, spending money we don’t have, working a job we hate to buy clothes we discard not too long thereafter. If, somehow, we could bring urgency back into our lives our regrets in old age would surely be diminished.

The only way I see able to accomplish such a thing is purely mental, and purely a change of perspective. It isn’t bringing death back into everyday life – though I’m not sure that would be such a terrible thing – but bringing a conversation and an awareness of death into everyday life.

We need to talk about it more, it needs to be a part of our lives, like it once was in the times of the Vikings, for without darkness there cannot be light, without sadness there cannot be happiness, and without death we cannot experience life.

2. Physical toughness and mental toughness are one in the same.

The gym is now our Agoge, our training for physical toughness but also for mental toughness. Where men, both young and old, trained for war we now have to train as if we’re training for war. Of course, some men still actually do train for war and they’re tougher for it, but for those of us not following that path we still have to use our training to incur more than muscles or abs or pecs.

We need to train to become tougher, grittier men as warriors once did.

When you walk into the gym put your game face one, don’t be a goof yelling and screaming and spitting everywhere, but know that this workout is a battle, it’s a battle against your weakness, that voice that wants you to quit one rep early or walk out of the gym and back to the comfort of your couch before the workout has been fully completed.

Physical toughness, that is, the ability to push through pain, to workout when it’s the last thing you want to do, to squeeze out one more rep when everything in your logical mind says enough is enough, is mental toughness, and it’s this toughness that will help you become a man in the truest, greatest sense of the word.

3. Do what can’t be done.

There was something about that culture, the Viking’s culture, that wanted more, that didn’t fear death and that allowed them to try what others wouldn’t. They expanded at an incredible rate for such a small culture. Had they not ventured east, Russia as we know it now, would be China. They did what wasn’t supposed to be done but as a culture they didn’t think of it like that.

There wasn’t an attempt, like there is today. We try to do something but we don’t do something. We set a goal then do what we think is our best to accomplish it, falling short, but giving it a valiant effort worthy, in our minds, of some kind of accolade or applause. The Vikings, and other warrior cultures did. They had an idea and because their time on this earth was so short they didn’t ponder or over-plan or ask for advice, they just did.

Side note: With the Ultimate Warrior having passed just the other day, I watched a video of him recently where he gave some incredible advice: Don’t ever ask for advice. There’s a compass inside of you that knows what to do, where to go, who to be. To elaborate on that, when we’re asking for advice what we’re often doing is asking for affirmation that what we wanted to do is the right thing to do, but we know what is good and what is bad and what must be done. We (I included) ask for advice far too often instead of listening to that inner compass and doing what our souls beacon us to do. I just thought that was a brilliant point and may he rest in peace.

4. Eat whatever the land provides you with.

Our diets are a mess. Science today says this, science tomorrow says that. It’s a joke. What we need is simplicity. Eat what the land provides for you. It seemed to work for the Vikings who had a diet high in meat and vegetables and were massive. The key thing is meat (fish included). Look at their physical development versus the English, whose population grew forcing them to eat food of a lesser quality, or the Asians who were even smaller and had less body hair who ate more soy (estrogenic) and more rice.

The Vikings ate meat and fish and fruits and vegetables and different grains that weren’t processed. But they ate. They drank and consumed foods that were in season – of course, that was the only option – and tasty.

Eat meat. Eat lots of fatty fish. Eat veggies (lots of veggies). Eat fruits. Dabble in the others stuff, you don’t have to go completely Paleo (I’m in Italy right now and I’m on the opposite of Paleo diet), you still have to live. But if it’s something you can kill or something you can pick, eat it.

That’s pretty much what we follow in the Man Diet, something I highly recommend if you’re a guy and you want to be awesome.

5. Your fate is sealed.

How you die is a story that’s already written, or so the Vikings believed. And why not believe this? We don’t have control over how we die, so why run from it? Why worry about it or fear it?

Why not take risks in business, or with love, or with adventure? If your fate is already sealed that girl’s “yes” or “no” is as well, so who gives a rat’s ass if it’s a no, or if you fail in business, or die on an epic adventure out into the wilderness. Live as if your fate is already sealed.

Fear doesn’t benefit a man, it only hinders his quality of life and his capacity of greatness.

6. Hard climates make hard men.

The Vikings lived in a very harsh climate where it was hard to grow crops and build colonies and survive. You see it in our modern day as well, where the constant harshness that a climate provides produces men who are tougher and more resilient. That “climate” can be work. Farmers are tough dudes. Cowboys are damn tough. Guys who have to daily persist through physical labor and pain develop a thick skin, literally, and grit to accompany it.

They key to becoming a “hard man” is the repetitive, constant harshness that a climate provides and a workout can’t. A workout lasts 1 hour, and it’s intense. It’s awesome, it builds toughness, but a climate never relents. It never holds up and gives you a break. It’s there, always.

One thing I’ve done in my life is simple, and it’s something anyone can do:

Always take the hard way. It’s no grand, epic thought or idea. You just take the harder road instead of the easier one. Always take stairs not elevators or escalators, for example. Do what’s a little tougher because it’ll make you a little tougher.

7. Simplify.

It’s becoming harder to truly simplify and focus on one thing. There was a time when one thing was pretty much the only thing you could focus on. If you’re sailing, you were sailing, not tweeting or emailing or even reading. If you were farming you were farming, and if you were fighting, well, only a fool would think about something other than his enemy while entrenched in battle.

In today’s hyper-technological society wrought with things that take us away from our purpose and what we’re supposed to be doing, simplification must be self-imposed, it’s rarely the only option.

A few things to do:

Turn the internet off when you’re working. Work. Don’t surf or search or tweet. Just work.
Turn your phone off or on silent, always. Be where you are. This one’s enraging, when someone’s on their phone while they’re supposed to be in a conversation. Turn that shit off.
Focus on one thing, complete that thing, then move on to the next thing. Multitasking is a myth, it doesn’t work, and you should never attempt to force it to work.

8. Follow Your Ambitions!

Ambition is the calling of your soul. It’s that inner voice telling you where your life should head. For a few great Vikings that meant expansion or becoming king or conquering neighboring tribes. For us, the possibilities are limitless, however, we’re in a weak world where ambition is labeled as a selfish act by people who simply don’t have it, when it’s ambition that has provided us with every medical and technological breakthrough that we now take for granted. It’s ambition that brought us electricity and the automobile and even that stupid little cell phone.

Ambition is what shapes the world. When a good man lines up his ambition with action, the world is the one who benefits.

Go forth, expand, conquer, rise up and above your current status. It’s in the nature of a man to want to become better and there’s nothing at all wrong with that, it’s only good. Follow that gnawing feeling in your soul that wants you to expand and grow to a place where your fingerprints are left all over this wonderful world. It’s okay to be ambitious.

Source:

Today was my first day back in a few weeks. I was pretty hesitant to get into anything too crazy today. I was not looking forward to the Hang Squat Cleans. All-in-all, today went by without a hitch, and I feel fine. However, I really need to continue stretching because my shoulders really felt the overhead squats. Today’s workout of the day was 20-15-10-15-20 repetitions of overhead squats and ab-mat sit-ups alternating. Because my shoulders don’t work like that, I did minimum weight. By the end of the set, I was doing them quicker with better balance. There was a 10 minute time cap before you immediately started the next Metabolic conditioning workout, and I only had 5 sit-ups left at the 10 minute mark.

The second metabolic conditioning workout (Metcon) was 9 & 9, 7 & 7, 5 & 5 alternating repetitions of Hang Squat Cleans and Bar Muscle Ups (or x’s 2 of Chest-to-Bar pull-ups). I opted for Chest-to-Bar pull-ups with a green band. I went slow and steady with the Hang Squat Cleans with just the bar, 45 pounds. I think I completed it in about 11:16. I also made my lunches for the week last night. Which is good clean eating, but its a hassle.

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Meat is hands down the best source for amino acids and muscle repair. This is an excellent article about this very subject.

One of my best friends owns a CrossFit gym in the Atlanta area. He has always told me that physical fitness is 75% diet and 25% physical work. With that in mind, I need to be eating to perform. I’m doing CrossFit several times a week now, and I need to eat healthy to help me recover. What better place to find information than a website called eattoperform.com!

Protein is Simple, Do Not Make it Difficult

Summary

Protein is comprised of amino acids. There are essential aminos that cannot be synthesized by your body, and then there are non-essential aminos that your body can make itself.

Each amino acid has its own function; leucine is one of the most important aminos as far as building muscle goes.

When protein comes from a whole source, it is very satisfying and goes a long way to help control hunger. Most of your protein should be chewed; powders should be used as supplements around workouts. You cannot live off of them. Go for meat, fish and nuts!

The “golden rule” is to eat around 1 gram of protein per lb. of body weight.
When you eat protein without carbohydrates, some of the protein you consume will be used to create glucose for your brain and organs to run on. When you’re trying to build muscle or lose fat while preserving muscle mass, including some carbohydrate with your protein is a good strategy.

No matter how much protein you eat, gaining muscle is a slow, patient process. The law of diminishing returns applies here. While you’re new to weight lifting, gaining 15lbs. in a year isn’t out of the question, but gaining 1 lb. of muscle a month is a realistic goal beyond the initial stages of training.
Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) may be a valuable addition to your workout nutrition, whether you want to build muscle or just preserve what you have already.