Monday, August 10, 2015

Your #1 Worst Enemy

It's sitting there in the corner, silently. Crouching, waiting. Wordlessly, patiently, it waits for you. It silently calls to you, daring you. "Will you measure yourself by me?"

Don't listen.

Your enemy, the scale. The lying metal, glass and electronic serpent.

Do you know why? Because it seldom can tell the whole truth. Yes, it tells us how much we weigh, but it doesn't know our muscle mass, it doesn't know if our measurements changed. 

For example, I weighed the same weight for three years, I don't look the same though - it was a very different looking weight at the end of the three years than at the start.

So, don't just use a scale to document your journey, take all your measurements (chest, waist, hips, thighs, biceps). Take a picture every week. You'll be amazed at some of the changes you'll see - even when there are times the scale doesn't seem to move.

You can do this.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Don't Body Shame Yourself

Don’t Body Shame Yourself

Maybe I’m the only one that does this – maybe not – but the truth is none of us should do this ever, and here's why.

My story – I’m a 54 year old dad of 5 that had been fit most of his life till I put on weight at the worst time (at least in terms of cosmetically having my skin bounce back) – my late 40s. When I started to lose the weight at 50, there was no forgiving youthful skin.

Also at over 50, the metabolism doesn’t crank quite as fast as it did even in my 40s. So, while I see fabulous results from the programs I do and recommend for other folks, I myself see limited benefits – other than being in great health, being stronger than I’ve ever been and being able to embarrass most guys half my age – but I don’t have the fabulous abs that I think I want.

So, I body shame myself.  I think “Dude! You’re a Personal Trainer! You’ve gotten nutrition certification! You should be able to crack the code for all these mid-life crisis baby-boomers to get in phenomenal shape!

And truth, I can. But what I do is different. I like to eat dinner with my family. I don’t like to put pressure on my wife (who home schools my 3 youngest, is one of the co-administrators of the cooperative they attend, does the budget, shops organic, makes most of the meals for the family) to have to cook every meal to meet strict dietary guidelines. I also (because I have five kids) don’t train six times a week. I train 3 days with full body workouts and I get my 10k steps in every day. No half marathon training, no two a days. So, I really train a lot more like a normal 50-something year old guy with a family who wants to stay fit, strong and healthy.

But when I look in the mirror (other than flexing my arms ;-)) there are just some days I get mad. I’m frustrated. I think “DAMN! 10 years ago I would have already been 10 pounds lighter! How come I’m not?! I suck. I’m fat. I’m never going to look good in that bathing suit.”

And that’s wrong. Because, yes, 10 – 20 or even 30 years ago I would have dropped the weight in next to no time, but that’s not the case anymore. And the case is I’m studying for more certifications, getting my marketing strategy set to launch a business, working a full time mentally demanding job, and oh yes, being a husband, dad and general lawn maintenance guy for my household.

Here’s the TRUTH. Instead of being mad. Instead of body shaming myself because I’m not 20, I should be doing back-flips!

  • I can run around with my five year old son and roll on the floor with him, coach his baseball team and play catch.
  • I can intimidate the boys that want to suit my teenage daughters (yes, they’ve told me, and some of the guys have been six foot 200+ pounders).
  • I can carry my youngest girl from the car to the emergency room after she sliced open her leg and needed to get stitches – without getting winded.
  • I can carry all the luggage out to the van for my oldest girls going on a summer vacation.
  • I can motivate my eldest girl to be a fitspiration herself.
The truth is, I’m exactly where I should be for a guy that likes to spend time with his family, likes to have a little chocolate sometimes and doesn’t want to spend his life in the gym.

So today, I’m not going to body shame myself, I’m going to rejoice. I’m going to celebrate four years of turning my life around and being in great shape. I’m going to celebrate that I just ran my 3rd Warrior Dash, and did it in my best time and it had the most obstacles. I'm going to celebrate that I'm in good health, I'm not injured and I can enjoy every blessing I've been given, including time with my family.

Join me in the celebration!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


What! Blasphemy!

I know! I know! I’ve said what everyone says that you can’t do, but it’s true. EAT CARBS! And I’ll tell you why.

Before I start: this will take you about 10 minutes to read. I cut it down as much as I could while still providing at least the very, very minimal amount of explanation. To FULLY get all of the reasons for the science behind what I’m telling you, you’d have to study all the manuals I have and read all the books I have. Even to do a credible job of summarizing that, you’d be looking at about 20 pages (or so) of reading.  Go with me here – you’ll be glad you did. And, you can always as questions in the comments. :D


Understand that I am a big believer in eating grass fed beef, lamb, whatever – free range chicken and whole foods.  

Note: I didn’t include grains in there, especially not wheat or GMO corn (Momma says wheat is the DEBIL!) or even rice. Not even quinoa! But hang in.


Also note that I didn’t say you couldn’t eat the above (well, other than wheat & GMO corn), but I don’t highly recommend it.


Now you’re saying “But how am I supposed to eat carbs then?”  Great question.  An even better one is “How am I supposed to eat carbs and get fit?!”

The answer is TIMING.


What TO DO

Only eat starchy carbs within a three hour window from WHEN you worked out. Not before you work out, AFTER you work out. When you eat those starchy carbs, only do so with less than 5g of associated fat.


WHY Do What You Do

Part 1 – Starchy Carb Storage

So, carbs are cool, especially carbs from green leafy things.  Carbs from tubers (sweet potatoes, regular potatoes), grains (including rice, whole grain rice, quinoa, oats, buckwheat) are starchy carbs and they’re not so cool – they’re HOT.

Starchy carbs get virtually immediately converted to glucose, which in turn wants to fuel your muscles or refuel depleted glycogen muscle stores.  When you eat starchy carbs without having worked out, guess what happens? They get stored as fat. Yay. Oh, wait, no that’s not good.


Part 2 – Starchy Carb Utilization for Recovery and Fat Burning

When you eat starchy carbs after a workout? They do exactly what you want them to do! They fuel your muscle and your recovery. This is the BEST way to utilize carbs! Your system gets revved up and the carbs don’t get stored as fat.


What Else You Need to Do

Part 1 – So Don’t have Starchy Carbs at Every Meal

While having those starchy carbs within a 3 hour window after a workout is great, having them at other meals is not so good.  Like I mentioned, carbs (and fat) are easy to process, so they’re stored as fat almost right away while your body is processing your proteins. They also have other effects like spiking your insulin levels and causing inflammation. So, instead have FAT.

Part 2 – FAT

What you say?  Yes, FAT. Fat gets processed differently (though it does process quickly) and the body does a much better job of getting rid of what it doesn’t need (like excess cholesterol) and it also doesn’t cause inflammation.

Eat foods that are high in GOOD fat. Good fat. Fat from grass fed cows. If you can’t afford grass fed beef (and I understand this, I have 5 children and even hamburger is $6 lb at Trader Joe’s) then get REALLY lean beef and eat other healthy fats like: coconut oil, avocado and raw almonds. And you can have eggs again – the whole EGG!

Part 3 – Eggs

Eggs (especially organic eggs) are REALLY good for you. The big thing they always got a bad rap for (because of some really bad science from the turn of the 20th century – we’re in the 21st BTW) was cholesterol. As it turns out the type of cholesterol they provide for us is HEALTHY. And, it’s what our brains use to function (so even if it doesn’t make you smarter, at least you think more clearly) and for guys – it’s what keeps our (in our own minds) most important body part functioning. So there, have an nice spinach omelet for breakfast. You’ll be glad you did.


So THERE. Yes you can have starchy carbs and get FIT! The key is when you eat them.  Try to stick to sweet potatoes or potatoes (though sweet potatoes are much better for several reasons). You can also have rice (about a cup) or so if you’d like. Stay AWAY from wheat and GMO corn. You’ll be rocking in no time!

PS Also, have a cheat day. At least once every two weeks, recommended once every 7 days (or even some people are recommending one every 5 days now – I’m still testing that on myself and doing the research to see if there were good conclusions for that).

PPS Got questions? ASK them!

Monday, January 5, 2015

5 Steps to a New You in the New Year!

Ready to get healthy and fit as your New Year’s Resolution? Awesome, here’s your 5 step plan.

COMMIT.  Write down your goal (whatever it is: lose weight, get fit, be more active). 

Put it on your mirror. If you’re like me, then put it in the app that you see every morning that’s like looking in the mirror!

For me, it's my FitBit app. 

You didn’t get to where you are by accident. You won’t achieve long term health goals by doing the same things. CHANGE YOUR MIND. Get new information that will help you achieve your goals.

Eat real, whole foods. The SAD (Standard American Diet) is a pile of falsehoods, big food influences and politics. If you were born after 1950, you don’t remember a time when this nation ate the way it should. 

Ignore the food pyramid or MyPlate – eat real, organic veggies and grass fed beef or free range chicken. Don’t be afraid of fat, you need it to burn calories, absorb and process vitamins and for good brain function (especially cholesterol!)

Find someone you can partner with to be accountable for your commitments – and also as someone to encourage you and work with you towards that goal!

Don’t wait, get moving. You can start just by getting 10-15 minutes of walking/movement a day. 

Work your way up to 30 minutes in five minute increments. That’s your baseline. Don’t anticipate weight loss (likely you won’t lose any) but look for some cardiovascular endurance and general strengthening. Hit some stairs along that route too. After that, come back here and you’ll find available programs that will help you meet your fitness goals.

YOU CAN DO IT.  You were designed for greatness. Engage.



Want help? Contact me @NoGuiltFitness ( or on Facebook