Monday, August 30, 2010

Don't Diss My Chuck Taylors

Here's an article about proper footwear for training, especially when it comes to lifting heavy ass weights and you actually train.

Don't Diss My Chuck Taylors

Friday, August 27, 2010

USP Labs - Jack3d

I enjoy a good pre-workout supplement.  I like the focus, energy, stamina and pump that all pre-workout supplements promise.  I came across USP Labs' Jack3d  by curiosity. I never heard of the supplement until it came up as a special on DA Muscle.  It was cheap and offered a lot of servings.  One of the main curiosities I got from Jack3d was how they advertised "Why is 77% of your pre-workout drink nothing but useless fat-storing, physique-killing filler?".  They showed a picture of the filler compared with the active ingredients.  To me it was very interesting.  So I purchased the product.

When I received the product I was surprised with the serving size of it.  The scoop was probably a little more than a tablespoon. I followed the assessment protocol and took in 2 scoops 30 minutes before my workout.  I never actually feel the full effects that I've read others having.  I never experienced the tingling of skin, or redness, or jitteriness.

When I got to the gym, I started to feel a little boost of energy.  Right away I thought maybe it was more of a mental thing that I had going on and I was just anxious to see what Jack3d would do.  But then soon I started to feel that tingling beneath my skin.  I looked at my training partner and was like "Oh shit." This was a new feeling.  Throughout the workout, I felt energized. I wanted more weights, more exercises, I just wanted to use this feeling for everything it had.  I stuck to my workout but I always felt that urge for more.  It was amazing how I was adding weights and reps to all my exercises.  My training partner just laughed because he could't believe it.  I killed all my lifts that day.

With most pre-workout supplements I always come across the "crash".  The first time I took Jack3d, I crashed when I got home.  I took in my post-workout meal and then I was done.  Maybe because I fully worked myself with everything I had or maybe it was because of the Jack3d.

Fast forwarding to the end of my Jack3d experience.  I learned that you really must have an empty stomach when you take this.  I had a couple days when I at an hour before my workouts and I didn't feel any effects. I could tell my vascularity was increasing especially during my workouts.  I had veins popping out in my arms that I've never seen.  Also, muscle size increased and I constantly felt full muscles.  My training partner ordered his own and enjoyed the effects himself.

Final Thoughts.
I would recommend Jack3d to any lifter.  It's easy on the wallet and it delivers.  Just like any supplement it may not work for everyone but I've used it with success along with other's that I've asked.  The effects are felt much more when you have an empty stomach, how much time before a workout? I felt the best results when I ate 2 hours before my workout and then took Jack3d an half hour before the workout.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Muscle Milk - Collegiate Style

During my time as an assistant strength coach at a small division III institution, I was able to get a contract with a Cytosport Distributor to supply our school's hospitality services with Muscle Milk Collegiate since it is NCAA approved.

Here's a story though.  Our first shipment was supposed to be 50 Muscle Milk Collegiate Chocolate 5.29 lbs along with other flavors.  What ended up happening was that they sent 25 boxes with 60 packets per each box.  We called up the distributor and they allowed us to keep the boxes for distribution for whatever we wanted, and they would send up our correct order.  That meant we had 25 boxes of Muscle Milk Collegiate Packets.

We distributed some of these boxes to teams who were interested in them; football, baseball, basketball, soccer, along with others  I saw it as good time to teach them about sports nutrition, as well as promote the product to them.  Since Muscle Milk Collegiate is NCAA approved we were allowed to promote it.

The rest of the boxes, the strength staff and some of the coaches used it as our own.  It felt like I was sponsored by Cytosport, I WISH!! but only until we ran out. The packets were so easy because each packet was half a serving.

Review of Muscle Milk Collegiate Chocolate 5.29 lbs:

I used Muscle Milk Collegiate mainly as a meal replacement and post-workout meal.  I'm not one to try different flavors.  I keep it simple with chocolate, you can't go wrong. The servings called for 4 scoops.  In those 4 scoops were 580 calories. When I was trying to gain weight I took the full 4 scoops.  I used a blender because 4 scoops of the powder was a lot to put in a shaker.  One time I tried to put it all in my shaker and it ended up being just a big blob of chocolate. Not so nice.

When I wanted to lose weight, I only took half of the prescribed servings which came out to 290 calories.  Using two scoops of the powders was much easier to use a shaker. By just halving my servings of muscle milk collegiate I was able to decrease my calorie intake by roughly 500 calories, which over 7 days adds up to 3500 calories.  With that decrease of calories, it was easier for me to lose weight and much easier to keep track.  I basically ate the same as I did, but just decreased the muscle milk collegiate.

When it comes to muscle milk, some rant about the fat content of the product.  Honestly, I had no problem with it even when I was trying to lose body fat.  I've tried several flavors, but I always would go back to my chocolate.  I guess it's whatever you prefer.

Closing Thoughts

I would recommend this product to anyone. It's great for if you are trying to lose weight or gain weight.  For athletes, I highly recommend Muscle Milk Collegiate.  It's a great product with a great following.  Cytosport sponsors colleges such as: USC, Florida State, Miami, LSU, Missouri, Oregon University, Stanford, Texas, UCLA, and others. I've used this product with great success.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Iron: Facilitator of Character Part 1

Everyone is looking for that supplement to take them to the next level of their training. A supplement that will increase their energy through workouts, increase muscle size, be more vascular and more. The supplement industry is always looking for the best way to market their product and there is a non-stop competition going on between companies. Some people like a supplement because the design is cool, there's more servings, so and so takes it, they've read about it in a magazine, they like the advertisement and what the product promises, etc., etc. Yes, I've used numerous amounts of supplements some I've liked, and some that I didn't really care for. But what everyone needs to remember is that one supplement that's free and that we will always have within us. Character. No matter what supplement you take, it's YOU who is the the greatest supplement. The main question is you have to ask yourself, is how much are you worth? And what do you promise to yourself?

Where it all began..

I began my life of iron in high school back in Hawaii. I'm only 25 years old, but thinking about it feels like a long time ago and it makes me realize how far I've come in my training. I was a typical high school lifter, doing reps till failure and when I did fail I would rest and then do "burn out" reps. I wanted to train everyday not matter how sore or tight I was, I knew there was a muscle that could be trained.
I remember watching Arnold's, Pumping Iron, and it made me want to train for the pump. I started to love the feeling of "cumming in the gym, cumming at home....cumming day and night." Then finally I felt I was ready for the next big step. I began taking protein powder. I asked my dad to buy me some and he willingly did so. We went over to GNC and got their regular protein powder and I felt I was on my way to bigger and newer things. After that, I wanted to try creatine too. I told my dad and he refused to get me some. I was pissed. I wanted to get bigger, stronger, and look good. My dad then went on to tell me that I could take all this stuff but the main thing I still needed to do was train my mind.
Now being from Hawaii and of Native Hawaiian ancestry. I was brought up listening about stories of chiefs and warriors of the ancient times. How one warrior was able catch dozens of spears that were thrown at him . How one could crush a man's head with his hands. But there was one particular story my dad wanted to tell me. The story of King Kamehameha and the Naha Stone.
In the picture above is the Naha Stone. The stone weighs close to 5,000 pounds. The prophecy said that "He who lifts the stone will unite all the islands as one kingdom." It was said that an ali'i, or chief, of the Naha Cast will lift it. Kamehameha who at that time was still a young warrior and not part of the Naha Cast announced that he will be lifting the Naha Stone. He marched down to the Stone with a large following. From the stories passed down from generation to generation;
Kamehameha stood still infront of the Naha Stone. Witnesses around fell silent. His breathing got deep and rasp. Each time he exhaled it trembled the souls of the people watching. His eyes closed and his body slowly began to grow. Veins started to pop out from his arms. He started to sweat. His eyes flew open, and they were blood red. He stomped his feet into the ground at the head of the stone. His breathing got deeper and louder. His whole body started to pulse. He grabbed a hold of the rock and slowly started to lift the Naha Stone. Being in a total trance he not only lifted the Naha Stone but flipped it over. When the dust settled, Kamehameha stood their now at peace.
When my dad told me this story I didn't fully understand what he was trying to say. But as I continued to train and live the iron lifestyle I finally began to understand what my dad was trying to teach me. It's your mind that sets yourself up for success in anything. For people of the iron, it's not just a place where we lift weights but its a place where we build our character.

Stay tuned for part 2

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Anabolic Addiction: T-Alpha/Mass Addiction

I was excited to run this stack by Anabolic Addictions. I've read up on the stack and came across mostly positive reviews. T-Alpha is supposed to help support stamina, endurance and growth. It also mentions that there will be an increase in testosterone, strength, focus, and vascularity. When I read forums of users who ran T-Alpha, they felt the effects during every workout. They felt the intensity of their workouts increase. I was stoked to start it. But as I went from workout to workout I wasn't feeling the same effects as others reported. I took the capsules as prescribed, 1 hour before workout, and it wasn't happening for me. I tried it on an empty stomach, tried taking it before my workouts (because maybe the blend is absorbing in to me faster). During some workouts, maybe I did feel a extra boost of energy but I was unsure.

Then the Mass Addiction combo promised to increase protein synthesis and testosterone. It is supposed to aid in "rebuilding muscle fibers torn during intense workouts more rapidly, so you can get ready for your next muscle blasting session." Mass Addiction is promised to DOMINATE YOUR GENETICS. My opinion on this supplement is different from T-Alpha. While on Mass Addiction, my DOMS wasn't so bad. I was eating bunch of food to help out with replenishing my body, and I think that Mass Addiction aided in my recovery, and building some muscle. I was told I was looking bigger and fuller. I didn't notice
much, but for people who see me everyday were noticing something.
My overall feeling for this stack is a 5 out of 10. Mass Addiction made me a believer of the blend, but I'm not sure about what the T-Alpha promised. Maybe T-Alpha just didn't work for me but it does for others. Would I recommend this stack? No, though I would recommend Mass Addiction since it did deliver something.