to “worth” it, or to “worth” it not !

from the endomorph:

it’s pouring in cape-town.
the rain is coming down with the kind of effort that i have been trying to achieve at gym.
it’s only 3.36 in the afternoon but the charcoal grey of the sky has kissed the day with darkness.
the wind outside cutting from all sides.
even though it’s gloomy and cold with that real “twilight” glampire’s gonna jump you at any moment feel,
i am feeling kind of chipper and toasty inside, though even typing is a sore story as my arms are completely fatigued after today’s workout.

who am i to say what is “worth” it and what is not?
“worth” is something that only becomes sensible when an individual attributes value to the factor.
i am not able to tell you if pushing yourself in the gym will be “worth” it to you or anyone else for that matter.
i have only recently been able to attribute “worth” to gym-ing myself.
this may be because in general i felt completely “worthless” as a person.
no, not because i was severely overweight, that was merely the product of my emotional state.
i felt worthless because i stopped attributing “worth” to myself in comparison to others.
that was the nr.1 probable cause to a lot of my thinking, attitude and behaviour towards food, excersize, business and individual creativity.
i have had this illness since childhood.
roots so deep you need a forklift to just get through the first 100 layers of dirt.
so whats the endomorphic point to the babble ….
well just this, even though it is a pain in the ass and most of the rest of my body to keep on going, i have made the smallest connection to a very disconnected relationship with my body.
discomforting as it may sound to the sane of mind, … stretching your muscles to a place where you have never ventured to take your body, muscles or mind before, awakens a link between the physical and spiritual bodies.
it is as if small electrical currents are being blasted between the two whilst experiencing pain or extreme physical effort.
sounds very S&M i know, but for myself personally i cannot imagine separating the two whilst at gym.
for fek sakes it sounds all very fungi … but ja … it really is a reality shock.
as numb as i have felt as a living humanoid amoeba over the past year, so detached from my body that it was as if i was in a permanent state of astral projection, so connected i feel when i am aching like crap after gym.
so for me, i attribute “worth” to gym because one is forced to count on yourself for a result.
i have been forced into connecting with my physical body, drawing from the mental and spiritual at the same time, some days just to make it through the door.
i would not have been able to persist if i could not attribute any “worth” to the experience.
i don’t think it’s worth it to do anything if one is not able to attribute “worth” to the action as the reaction will be “worthless” and i would dare to say even damaging in the end.

for anyone who ever reads my babble please know that this is not a blog about trying to convince anyone that going to gym will save you from anything in particular, or that it is life changing or even that you need to ever go at all !
this is a blog about changing a life, using gym as the only thing i could think of at the time.
and it is also a way to tell myself the things many a lost friend had spent countless breaths trying to tell me before.
sometimes when we say it to ourselves, only then do we start listening and paying attention.

if it is skydiving that works for you or swimming naked in the arctic, then may all the gods poor their blessings on you, as long as you know that it is better to try something than it is to give up on everything.
i would love to say happiness can be found watching porn and jerking all day, but it seems like sometimes you need to get out there in the real world and kick the bastard in the face.

good luck to you …
and
good luck to me!

IMG_4960 IMG_4965 IMG_4964 latest pics taken at gym on the 3d july – tights and orange shoes …. now that takes a real man #LOL
IMG_4963

 

“The Brutal Kindness of Strangers”

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from the Endomorph …

Remarkably, I haven’t quit, in fact I just got back from gym ! (#goldstar)
Sundays have become one of my  days to go to gym, it real quiet and for an hour I have the floor almost to myself and thats great if you want to try out a new workout and still feel a little clumsy !
The Truth … my weight hasn’t changed that much since my last update …
The Truth … I have lost body fat and my jumpers don’t look like I am trying to find a substitute for spandex anymore!
The Truth … I would have loved the scale to say :”wow your awesome you lost pounds” but scales don’t talk they just point and point out!!
The Truth … About a week ago I burst out crying because it felt like someone had used formaldehyde on my body and I was doomed to stay the same forever !! … and then a stranger told me to pull myself towards myself and that I didn’t get fat overnight and wouldn’t get thin overnight either … brutally honest opinions from strangers can piss you off enough to keep going!
The Dare … I have promised myself that over the next two weeks I will post a report with photo’s of a much slimmer me.
I have started to really focus on what I eat with much greater clarity than before, instead of starving myself I am eating small amounts on a regular basis. I have also started taking more time to prepare food in advance instead of trying to find something adequate at a moments notice … it doesn’t work.

“a little confession”…
“forgive me Father – for I wanted to commit the sin of desperation cheating”
(enter the Endomorph)
so here goes, don’t judge me too harshly ,but …
patience has never been one of my greatest virtues and this week I sneaked down to the pharmacy to beg for some miracle pill that will take the hunger away, or kill it completely (lowering head in shame)
(enter the girl behind the counter)
“thats fine” she said, “but just let me read you a little something on the leaflet here before you start swallowing”,and she started pausing between facts with a raised eyebrow.
“Side effects !”
“May cause renal failure” (raised eyebrow)
“May cause sever dizziness and heart palpitations (raised eyebrow)
“May cause shortness of breath (eyebrow still raised )
“May cause neurological damage “(still raised)
“May cause sleeplessness and agitation “(still raised)

“So”  she said, “Whats wrong with you, I thought you wanted to be healthy and in shape and be proud of your body, ain’t no one proud when they pissing themselves and cranky !!”
“Your legs working”, she asked
“Yes mam “, I said…
“Your arms working”, she asked
“Yes mam” I said ….
“Well you ain’t gonna be needing any shit like this then!” she said
“Yes mam” I said …
I left without a quick solution and I went to gym completing my program for the day feeling grateful that in a world where we seldom meet someone who cares enough what they leave us with, someone gave a damn!
And since I have to healthy arms and legs and a (relatively) good heart, I have no right to destroy or be ungrateful for the gifts I do have.
I went for a walk this week along the beach and thought how lucky I was to walk down the beach, a healthy guy who just needed to show his belly who was boss.

I also have a new friend … those are as hard to come by as flat stomachs !

“Blood, sweat and tears”

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from the Endomorph :
the replay …

If this were a journal I think it would have to read something like this:

May 14th 2013

Traffic, strikes and a country in turmoil .
Chaos has followed me around the entire week , robbing me of my spare time, trapping me in a situation that I cannot change as
an individual, leaving me frustrated and angry!
I am not alone, I share this frustration with thousands of others.
Again in an already failing economy our entire public transportation system has been sabotaged by nationwide strikes.
Thousands of people are left stranded and battle to find their way to work and back home again.
The roads are flooded with cars and jammed from one end to the other.
A 30 min journey is taking 2 hours to complete, sometimes more.
Our governments sits back, takes little notice of the man trying to put food on his table, why should they, when they have been put there
to govern without cause.
It’s known that they are escorted during their travels with brigades of armoured cars flashing blue lights so that all must stand aside and let them pass.
Not so easy for the rest of us.
South-Africa is infected with corruption, a disease spreading so deep into her core that I doubt if she will ever be cured again.
South-Africa is dying.
Even the beautiful die. A beautiful country has collapsed, left alone to die, with no one to care for her in the last years of her life.
Most of us don’t know how, we’re not qualified.
The ones who are  qualified steal her last riches while she is down and use her weakness against her. It’s the perfect time,
the world is too busy to care. Too many countries are ill with the same infection. And unfortunately for us South-Africa does not belong to the debutantes of Europe.
She is left, no one noticing as she comes crashing down the flight of stairs. The pretty girls from the right side of the tracks steal the show, no one will help her up, eventually it will be too late.
People who no longer live here make documentaries of what a miracle the transition was. How amazing it was to see a country change it’s values. They ran from the transition though, they do not suffer with the rest of us, there is no miracle in corruption.
There is no democracy if the only change is changing the victim.
There is no democracy if the initial victim has never been healed.
There is no democracy if hate has just changed colour.
The miracle most of us wanted was just a magic trick, flawlessly executed, fooling us into believing we will become strong together, when the plan was to separate us even more.
The smart ones saw it coming and left quickly, before the world closed their doors to us.
The rest of us are sitting in traffic, wondering when the price of fuel will increase again, and how our president will spend foreign aid on his family home instead of the desperately hungry and homeless.
Then again we won’t know, because after the great “miracle” the #SECRECY ACT of South Africa prevents us talking about it.
Our leaders have convinced the world that they are now looking after their own, that we are singing and dancing hand in hand in the street, the rest is a secret to everyone.
My friend from Zimbabwe tells me their country had caught the same kind of flu many years ago for which there was no cure until the day of her death.
Make a documentary about that miss Theron and Bishop Tutu.
Tell the world how we have come together as a nation, together in our equal neglect, our equal desperation, our equal devastation.
Tell them from your home in Miami and your lounge on the hill.
Another magic trick! Forget to interview the man and woman living in an informal settlement, still living there since the “miracle”,
still without running water, still without a toilet , still without a school, a doctor or bed.
Show me the miracle of this while we are standing in a road lined with homes made from garbage and scrap, and I will show you
a magic trick too…
but this is not a journal, this is a blog about fitness, so whats my point.
Point is … fuckers robbed me of my gym time and it was virtually impossible to get to do something that ads meaning to my life because of the ripple effect caused by my current every day situation.

fast forward …

I get that all the “super-hero’s” say fitness is the mentality to create time to accommodate a dedicated lifestyle.
I failed terribly at this, I could barley manage to accommodate brushing my teeth never mind my fitness routine.
They never tell you what to do when that happens in the “body for life” and “super abs in 60 second” books.
I was going strong, and then I just couldn’t get to gym.
Did I gain a pound. Perhaps I did.
Did I suffer the wrath of the gym gods, n0 I didn’t !
Things happen to normal people.
The blood, sweat and tears we spend just getting through the average day is enough to show us that we are not quitters!
We are already dedicated to the impossible, SURVIVAL!
So I have to go to gym on a Sunday to catch up, same as working late to catch up.
So I lost a day or two and ate inconsistently, but those were the circumstances, and that was the best I managed to do.
The one thing I have learned from excepting a glitch here and there is that it is easier to get back into balance as soon as things even out a bit.
When the ocean is rough you can’t fish.
When life is rough you can’t always get to gym.
Try and restore the balance (***note to self) first by calming yourself down,
this will have better results when your working out anyway!
However fess up and grow a pair, don’t just walk away forever, a few days or a week is not forever!
As “Dori” says in #Finding Nemo “JUST KEEP SWIMMING!”
There is a truth to gym, and life and dieting that we should never forget,
“FALL DOWN 7 TIMES, GET UP 8!! “,
Sorry it’s not the secret to getting abs in 60 seconds that I just dedicated to myself more than any one else here, but perhaps I have talked myself into getting my ass back on the treadmill today and getting back to beating that unsightly bulge that makes flying coach even more terrible than …. well flying coach !

“Just keep swimming dudes!”

” Back to Basics ” free yourself mentally.

lucas-malvacini-by-leo-castro-0

from the “Endomorph”

Time goes quick, burning fat on the other hand not so quick.
I have two days to go before checking in for my second BMI take down.
I am hoping for a positive de4crease in my overall body fat, because I have worked really hard to maintain a 
goal orientated approach.
I read something great the other day on bodybuilding.com, that read something like this…
“you wouldn’t normally just get into a car without having a destination in mind, why then would
you go to gym without having a goal or destination in mind.”
This had a huge impact on me personally because I recognised that my goals or destination was not clearly set out for myself.
I wanted to loose weight, build muscle, diet , become strong , become fit, change my body image, change , change , change.
It was almost too much information and I was running around the gym from weights, to machines to treadmills trying to incorporate everything I have read online and in my various fitness guides and it has been a little mad and … desperate.

Desperation is a pothole …. pull yourself towards yourself , find a quiet place in your mind and focus on something specific . 
I cannot say if this changes for people who have trained for years and for “superhero’s” but I can imagine that it would be easier to break up tasks the more accomplished you are at something and that it would be easier to set numerous goals at once.
I can do this in business, because I have done it for years and can split my goals on a daily basis and mostly manage to achieve them.
In regards to fitness and gym, this “endomorph” is a newbie and had to (on a personal level for my character) regroup myself  
and re-asses the areas that I wanted to be “focus-specific” and goal orientated. 

For me this was a mentally quieter place and an easier approach to training.
I have decided to place my immediate focus on reducing the size of my stomach. Simply that.
I found that I could do this through a combination of cardio and weight training. 
And since I am not built like “The Rock”, I also found that I do not need to do 5000 different exercises to keep my not so clued up body guessing!
I just had to do learn the basic techniques first, just like a dancer needs to learn the basic footwork ! Everything in life that anyone has ever mastered started off with the basics, remember school and the ABC songs = basics!!
I am not fit, so basic cardio is a great place for me.
I am not muscular, so basic weight training is great for me. 
The advantage to getting to know the basics is that you will discover things about yourself and your body. 
For instance , I have discovered that my calves are particularly weak but I can bench press like a son-of-a-bitch. (not always bad being built like a rhino) 
I also like walking on the treadmill apposed to running which kill my ankles and this is not the end of the world since I still manage to increase my heart rate substantially by increasing the incline and speed to almost the point of a slow jog. 

The best thing about learning the basics is that you get to increase your skill . I you take the madness out of an activity it becomes calming and fun!
FUN … yep that’s right … FUN !!! 
For me a 30 min H.I walk has become fun, simply because for 30 mins I get to put a pair of headphones in my ears and I get to pretend the world around me is perfect. Even when things are too much on the outside , after 5 mins of just turning up the volume and working to feel that first blast of perspiration filled heat , I star to clear my mind of all the shit that I get to worry about later.
This has been another goal for me , to just relax for an hour a day , and if this means staying on the treadmill for an hour then thats what I do.
Goal = accomplished .

Please don’t misunderstand (*not to self more than anyone else) what I am trying to say. 
You still need to push yourself and you still need to move the goalpost a little further each time you go to gym , there is enough 
concrete evidence from fitness experts around the world that has proven this is the only way to achieve success! I am saying that for someone who has made the mental shift to get his ass out the house and to the gym for the first time or for the millionth time, don’t ruin it by going mental .
Think clearly and positively.
I also had to realise that I’ma not gonna look like “The Rock” in 12 weeks !
This is ok because I will be a more relaxed 30 something with less grey hair and a smaller stomach ! 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

from Men’s Fitness.com

from the Endomorph:
great article for the impatient, the overcharged and the undercharged from www.mensfitness.com
10 Reasons You’re Not Building Muscle

Building muscle and packing on the pounds isn’t just about “picking things up and putting them down.” What’s holding you back?

Building muscle and packing on the pounds isn’t just about “picking things up and putting them down.” What’s holding you back?

Jon-Erik Kawamoto, M.Sc.Kin.(c), C.S.C.S., C.E.P.
Flexing muscles

Packing on muscle is no easy feat regardless of whether you’re a string bean or a husky guy. And why you’re missing out on gains is typically caused by a number of reasons that can be easily avoided. So if you’re frustrated about being stuck in the place and at the same weight, it’s time to assess what you’re doing and make a change.

1. YOU’RE IMPATIENT

If you’re a true beginner, the first phase of your training program results in changes that you can’t see – typically, your coordination improves with each exercise and the amount of co-contraction between muscles decreases. Your brain gets better at communicating with your muscles and can actually activate a higher percentage of your muscle fibers, commonly referred to as neuromuscular efficiency. Don’t look in the mirror after two weeks and wonder why you’re not getting bigger. Be patient and put in the work, the results will come.

2. YOU DON’T KEEP TRACK

Training logs are just as important as the program. How are you supposed to know what to do today or what you did last week without keeping track of it? To maximize muscle hypertrophy, keep track of all your workouts, weight used, repetitions performed, the tempo of the exercise and the breaks between sets. Keeping a training log will allow you to track your progress and your energy levels. Logs are also a great way to look back to see how (hopefully not) you got injured or over-trained.

3. YOU’VE GOT NO STRUCTURE

Remove the randomness from your workouts and stick to a plan. This is the best way to improve strength and increase muscle size. Random training might make you strong (for a beginner), but it’s inferior to a planned periodized training program. A linear periodized plan can look like this: week 1: 3×12-15; week 2: 3×10-12; and week 3: 3×8-10. A non-periodized plan can look like this: weeks 1-3: 1st set 10-12 reps; 2nd set 6-8 reps, 3rd set 3-5 reps. Pick a plan and stick to it for maximum gains.

4. YOU’RE DOING TOO MUCH CARDIO

If your goals are size and strength, cardio workouts should not dominate your program. HIIT workouts and easy cardio sessions can be slotted into your program, but your 1st priority is getting in the 3-4 weight training days. If you can recover well between workouts, feel free to add in a cardio session here or there, but not at the expense of your recovery.

5. YOU’RE A HEADCASE

Having too much negative stress in your life can wreck havoc on your body’s chemistry and your overall health. It’s easier said than done, but you need to chill out man. Find a job you enjoy and a non-drama-filled girlfriend. Eat fresh whole foods and drink plenty of water. Try to get 8-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night. Learn how to meditate. The lower the stress, the better you recover. The better you recover, the better your progress. Make it happen.

10 Reasons You’re Not Building Muscle

Building muscle and packing on the pounds isn’t just about “picking things up and putting them down.” What’s holding you back?

Jon-Erik Kawamoto, M.Sc.Kin.(c), C.S.C.S., C.E.P.

Arm Muscles

6. YOU’RE EATING LIKE A BIRD

To put on size, you can’t eat salads all day. You need to have a slight calorie surplus to support muscle growth. This includes all energy expended from physical activity and internal processes. As mentioned earlier, eat whole fresh foods. Put time into planning your meals so you don’t have to resort to eating junk. Avoid sugary drinks and all fast food. Try to eat organic meats and drink organic milk. Eat healthy fats such as avocados and coconut oil. If you’re inclined, diets such as the “Paleo Diet” or “Perfect Health Diet” work really well for putting on size while staying lean. Ensure your growing body receives the nutrients and building blocks it needs and remember that eating junk equals junk results.

7. YOU CHEAT YOUR REPS

Half or quarter reps are commonly seen in the gym. Don’t be that guy. Half reps are going to get you half-assed results. Learn how to perform the full range of motion for each exercise. Leave your ego at the door because the weight you’ll use will be less. In the long run, you’ll maximize your gains when progressing full range of motion exercises with lighter weights than you would when using heavy weights for half reps. Half and quarter reps have their place though – they are great when used as assistance exercises to the main lifts, but only when the main lifts can be performed with full range of motion.

8. YOU’RE AFRAID OF COMPOUND MOVEMENTS

Curls, front raises, lateral raises, and calf raises are all good exercises but are normally performed at the wrong time. Focus on big compound lifts at the beginning of your workouts while you’re fresh and not fatigued. Exercises such as deadlifts, squats, cleans, presses and/or pulls should make up the first half of your workout. Save the isolation exercises for the last half.

9. YOU’RE A GYM ADDICT

Spending hours in the gym isn’t going to do you any favors. Related to the “you need to chill out” tip, doing too much in the gym will result in a tougher time recovering between workouts while adding to your already high levels of stress. Beginners can get plenty of work in a 45-min to 60-min workout, if the proper breaks are taken between sets and if they’re not checking their Facebook. Too many sets and hours in the gym can result in diminishing returns. Go to the gym, get focused, do the work and go home.

10. YOU’RE AVOIDING DROP-SETS

Drop-sets involve sub-maximal weights performed to failure over several mini-sets. Arnold referred to this type of training as training for “the pump.” For example, grab a weight you can curl for 8-10 reps. Following that set, grab another pair of dumbbells 10lbs lighter and immediately perform reps to failure. Perform this drop for one more set. Take a minute break and do it again. Constant muscle tension created with these 3 mini-sets induces hypertrophic mechanisms within the muscle. Add in drop-sets to your isolation exercises to maximize your gains in size.

Do it the “Old Khaki” way !!

"Postcards from Oxford"

“Postcards from Oxford”

 

Get your "Goat" on !

Get your “Goat” on !

Fashion is about much the same, and I believe that looking good contributes to feeling good.

My advice, find a clothing brand that works with your body.
I have been struggling with this for years.
I am a short square, most manufacturers cater to persons of lengthy statuesque proportions, which makes the search
for appropriate apparel a little more challenging.
For instance there is a big movement currently toward “skinny jeans” and “skinny  …” just about everything else.
For an Endomorph with short legs and a rugby players shoulders working his way back to fitness, this is the most ridiculous look ever.
It makes you look like a bowling pin and even larger and more out of proportion than you feel.
This is great if you have the retro body of the “Ectomorph”, and get your style tips from John and Yoko !
It took me months to find a brand that didn’t cut off the circulation in my legs and sat so low that my crack was visible to the whole world . I have almost no bum and a (currently) rounder middle , which means every time you bend in a pair of hip hugging skinny jeans, the whole lot pulls down to your knees.

I also had to find a budget friendly brand without it being typically cheap !
Its financially straining for anyone that is working towards fitness and having to buy supplements, to have to splurge large amounts on clothing as well ! I.O.W I just can’t afford “Diesel, Gucci and Prada” lol !!

I was given an “Old Khaki” gym bag for my birthday and immediately connected with the masculine, almost vintagy, postcards from Oxford kind of feel.
So I decided to check out their clothing as well and “Bam!” , what a cool brand !!
Even though the pants were a size “36” they didn’t look like my dads or like I belonged on a park bench.
They fit perfectly, a mix between cargo and smart casual. (still a little too long but nothing my tailor can’t chop)
Nice comfortable loose cut around the leg but not baggy ! (also makes an Endomorph look shorter !!)
Since winter has hit in the Southern Hemisphere, I opted for to great jumpers with the same vintage feel, slightly faded v-necks,
and slim body but not constrictive.
There is something about “Old Khaki” that wants to make you buy a “Moleskin” journal and a real set of “Travel Chests” so that you could head towards “Victoria Falls’ on a journey to finding the lost treasures of Sheba !
I’m loving it.
I am not saying that this brand is the sensible choice for every “Endomorph” out there !! (We are not all short squares)
I am saying that I made a personal connection with a certain style that suites my current shape and made me feel good about myself
and more importantly about shopping for clothes which I have found an almost traumatic experience in the past !

Again there is a small relation to fitness …. NEVER GIVE UP !

from the Endomorph:

Being Human … and Fitness

from the Endomorph :

Being human means that some days will be filled with buckets full of motivation, and eagerness to
achieve the perfect body, and some days probably won’t.
If you are anything like me ( slightly less confident about personal success ) you may actually have
those kind of days pop their dark, negative, little heads up from the fitness trenches more often than not.
I read over the past week about a guy so obsessed with muscle that he went from one extreme to the next during the past 10 years
to achieve physical perfection. I call guys like this “superhero’s” !

Personally that hasn’t happened to me yet , here’s to hoping.
What has happened to me though, is that over the past 3 weeks I have been doing just about everything right.
I have worked out regularly and eaten portions equating to such small amounts that my Yorkie has taken it upon herself
to drop tiny dog pellets at my feet, or so it seems.
Then I go and look for a pair of pants, and nothing … same fat ass sized waist as before, and I cry in a chain store fitting room.
Yes thats right, I cried.
Point, laugh, pull a face, I don’t care.
I felt completely defeated, I felt alone, and frustrated with a waistline that felt as if it were cast in cement.
I know that an Endomorphs change is a slow an gruelling process, but how did I end up in this place of suspended animation, where it felt like no matter what I had done to better myself, it was useless and I was still …. fat.
I have bigger boobs than Kate Moss.
And I was still a size 36.

Eventually I ended up buying the 36, cause you gotta wear pants in public where I live.
And also didn’t buy the most horrible pair, just because I had to buy something. I forced myself to look for something nice.
The reason for this is …
I still had hope after recovering from my little breakdown.
And I believe that if nothing else, we must be kind to ourselves as much as we would to others.
I took a days break, from the scale and from the gym and from the supplements and shakes.
And for one day, I was human again I could always try for “superhero” status again tomorrow.

Tomorrow came,
and went to gym.

Endomorph's front profile

Endomorph’s front profile

Endomorphs side profile - right hand

Endomorphs side profile – right hand

Endomorphs side profile - left hand

Endomorphs side profile – left hand

Endomorphs back profile, full body

Endomorphs back profile, full body