Tag Archives: workout

How To Crush 2017

“There is no other road to to genius than voluntary self effort”

– Michael Gerber

I’ve heard it all. The same ol’ story that leaves us with the same ol’ results. All valid mind you, your daughter absolutely needed to get to her music lesson, your wife or husband was actually sick and left you with all the house choirs, that email you’ve been waiting for actually did come in just as you were walking out of the door.

Basically, life happens and will continue to happen. The choice we all have is whether life is happening with us or to us. You may not like to hear that, but it isn’t just coincidence that some of the most powerful and busy people in the world like Barak Obama, Tony Robins and Steve Aoki prioritize exercise into their daily routine.

I believe that their ability to achieve greatness and most importantly sustain it is in large part due to their adherence to health and fitness. So, how do we, the average person find time to make health and fitness a priority in our life? I believe the real question is about energy; what produces it and how we can cultivate it?

First of all, the ego craves the status quo, and if left unchecked will continue to make self limiting, fear based choices that suck the energy right out of us. Until the ego is checked and under control, we will jump from excuse to excuse as to why someone is able to achieve physical, financial and spiritual success but not us. Trapping ourselves right where we are.

It’s the story that we tell ourselves about who we are and what we’re capable of that creates the self limited belief system that forms the basis of our decision making. Even when we know we need to change, that we hate our current circumstance and want to be better most of us just won’t make a move because no matter how terrible it is, its what we know, and that’s comfortable. When opportunity presents itself we suddenly catch a bad case of performance paralysis and stand blinking like deer in headlights unable to take a chance.

Change is hard. Trust me I know, but it also happens to be the only constant in life. So, if we’re to succeed at anything we must become pros at spotting when its time to make a move and take action.

We get stuck in our thinking that we can’t be more because that would involve doing more, and who has time for that? How am I supposed to carve out an hour a day for exercise when I barely have time to do all the other things in my life? Fair question, and if you can honestly say you spend zero time on social media, binge watching television or other idle/ low value activities then touché, you got me there. However, we both know thats probably not true.

The American dream has created a culture that idolizes hard work, pulling yourself up by the bootstraps and burning the midnight oil. Its not surprising then that few of us want to admit that we spend on average 20-50% of our day on mindless entertainment. Nobody is saying you shouldn’t enjoy a good television episode after a long day. Hell, that’s one of the pleasures of life, but that episode, cheat meal, glass of wine or any other indulgence will be ten times more enjoyable when you’ve taken care of your health and well-being first.

So often I’ve hid from doing what was necessary in order to become the man I knew I could be. I had no other reason than simply believing the story I was telling myself that I couldn’t pile anything else on to my already busy schedule. Only after taking action did I find that in fact choosing to do more was the very thing that expanded my capacity to be more. This is one of life’s paradoxes and this realization only comes after I got out of my own way and drop the self limiting beliefs that plague so many of us. Good ideas are a dime a dozen, but life meets you at action.

Once we commit to being more, huge obstacles suddenly fall seamlessly into place and clear our path to greatness. It seems counter intuitive but structure and commitment is what sets us free. Conversely, avoiding structure and avoiding commitment keeps us trapped in the throws of life unable to break through.

When we prepare our meals in advance we no longer waste our time and energy hungry and scrambling last minute for food. When we create a schedule for ourselves and time block what matters most to us we no longer mindlessly engage in low value activities. This creates the freedom to flourish personally and professionally. Things like exercise become non-negotiable. If you continue to let life happen to you then your inner dialogue will always be correct; you don’t have time, money, energy etc.. Basically, you can not be the person you know you should be because you’re still doing the same things that keep you the person you are.

As Lau Tzu said “When I let go of who I am, I become what I might be.”

Spending your day visualizing health, happiness and abundance for all, doesn’t mean shit unless you take that first step. There’s nothing magical about it really. It’s pure logic. Whether you’re an athlete or a couch potato the journey to greatness only varies by scale. There is always the next level, the next step and it’s up to us to not succumb to complacency and fall into the never ending rat-race where the average person spends a lifetime woking 60 hours a week so they can impress coworkers and neighbors with their car, house, wardrobe etc… Even if it means they gain weight rapidly due to lack of sleep, high cortisol levels from stress, too many stimulants and unhealthy foods that just turn into a means of satisfying hunger rather than nourish their body.

100,000 years ago if you were lucky enough to be born bigger, curvy,  stronger or well endowed you had a good chance of procreating and passing along your genes to the next generation. It was survival of the fittest in it’s most raw form. Now a days things are a little different. Its no longer simply physical prowess that determines your future lineage, its mental. And the part that is physical only applies to our overall state of health and well-being with the slight chance that we’ll ever need to use our physicality in a survival situation. So, if its all about health then why bother achieving the upper echelons of performance? Because of the simple truth that it’s always better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have.

There’s arguably no bigger turn off than a macho douchebag picking fights with smaller guys and therefor nothing more satisfying than that smaller guy surprising everyone with his strength and ability to defend himself. Just as with keeping our minds engaged with books, blogs and seminars so too should we adopt a general physical preparedness program to our routine that keep us ready for life’s unknowns.

Now get out there and crush it.

Justin


Add 2 Years to Your Life

How many hours do you sit in a day?

  • 1 hour in the morning while you get ready for work
  • 30 minutes in the car to work
  • 8 hours while you’re at work
  • 30 minutes on the drive home
  • 1 hour at the table for dinner
  • 2 hour the couch while you close out the day?

Crazy when you think about it that way, huh? That’s 13 hours!

If this sounds anything like you then I’m going to make the assumption you’re in a little back/neck/hip pain.

Rarely is back pain ever caused by the back itself. Pain in your back is a symptom of poor hip/shoulder mobility and movement patterns. If the muscles in your hip (mainly hamstrings, quadriceps, Gluteus, adductor and flexers) are stiff or inhibited then your lower back is recruited by your brain to pick up the slack.

The number one cause of this is prolonged sitting. Dr. Peter T. Katzmarzyk, lead researchers on a study to determine the effects of prolonged siting and sedentary behavior that was featured in the July 10th, 2012 issue of the Wall Street Journal. He estimates sitting for 3 hours or more a day can decrease your life expectancy by 2 years. Even of you’re physically active, eat well and do not smoke or drink.

By my estimations this is nearly the entire developed world. Myself included. Siting inhibits your glutes, which are the main muscles responsible for extending your hips when you run, walk, stand, lunge, jump, kick etc.. So when you sit on these poor guys all day your body, the clever creature it is starts recruiting other muscles to do the job. Over time this leads to a cascade of postural issues and cause pain when you do just about anything but sit so sitting becomes the dominate position your body feels best in.

Since we know that movement is the number 1 thing we can do to heal and rejuvenate our body it would make since then that the opposite is also true. A sedentary lifestyle will slowly kill us.

The best thing you can do for your hips and back is to be active and move every hour. give your mind and body a quick reset from your work and hop up, do a set of 20 lunges, walk around the block and stretch your legs every hour or so. A little goes a long a way and can significantly decrease your changes of falling victim to a sedentary death trap.

Try it for a day and see how you feel. I’m willing to bet you’ll feel an improvement after just one time.

Let me know how it goes!

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Hormones: Testosterone

Hey Tribe,

Here’s a quick lesson on testosterone. I’ll be posting brief breakdowns of the role and responsibilities of a few key hormones over the following weeks.

Let me know what you think!

Although women produce a small amount of this hormone by their adrenal glad, this is predominantly the hormone for muscle growth in men produced by the testes. It also helps define sexual characteristics as well as burn fat.

According to a study in The Journal of Applied Physiology called “Influences of testosterone on muscle mass and protein synthesis” – Testosterone directly stimulates protein synthesis resulting in muscle growth. Around age 40 tends to be when men experience large declines in testosterone production under normal circumstances resulting in higher body fat and lower muscle and bone density.

All is not lost though! Low carb/high fat diets and weight training promote higher than average levels of testosterone. Cholesterol in food is directly responsible for the production of testosterone. Much like GH we can naturally increase our levels by getting good sleep, keeping a cool-calm-collected demeanor, eating a high protein/fat/low carb diet and hitting the weights.

 

Justin Schollard

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15 Minute Travel Workouts Part 2

Top 5 Travel workouts with access to a hotel gym

Hey Tribe,

Last week I sent you 5 CrossFit workouts in 20 minutes or less that can be done without access to a gym.

As promised, this week we have 5 fresh workouts that can be done with access to a gym.

Remember to always warm up and stretch out!

Have a great holiday weekend!

Warm up: 50 jumping jacks, 50 high knees, 10 squats, 10 pushups. 

Cool down: 30 second pigeon stretch each leg, 30 second hamstring stretch, 30 second wall stretch each leg.

  1. 21 Thrusters, 21 pull-ups or lat pull downs, 15 thrusters, 15 pull-ups/lat pull downs, 9 thrusters, 9 pull ups/lat pull downs. Short and sweet. Pick a pair of moderately heavy dumbbells. Example, 35s for men and 20s for women, but scale the weight according to your own strength levels. Bring the weights to your shoulders and drop all the way into a full squat. As you drive out of the squat press the weights all the up until your arms are straight. After you get through 21 reps, move on to either pull ups or lat pull downs on the machine depending on your strength levels and whats available at the gym. After 21 pull-up/lat pull downs go right back to thrusters for 15 then pullup/lat pulls for 15. So on and so forth down to 9 and 9.
  1. 5 rounds for time: 1/4 mile run on the treadmill, 15 dumbbell deadlifts, 15 Pushups. After your quarter mile run grab some moderate to heavy dumbbells. With a straight back push you butt towards the wall behind you as you hinge over at the waist with a slight bend in your knees. Once you dumbbells get below your knees come back to a standing positions. Repeat 15 times. Then, in a push up position keep your butt flexed and core engaged as you lower yourself into a pushup with you elbows pointing back for 15 reps. Do knee pushups if your form is going to shit with standard ones.
  1. 20 minutes, as many rounds as possible of: 16 sit ups, 12 lunges to over head press, 8 bent over row or seated machine rows. After your sit ups grab a pair of moderate weight dumbbells and bring them up to your shoulders. From there, step into a lunge and push yourself back to standing. From there press the dumbbells over your head until your arms are straight. Alternate legs each time. After you finish 12 lunges to press lean all the way over at the waist with flat back, slight bend in your knees and row the dumbbells up to you waist like theres a string pulling your elbow up to the ceiling.
  1. 15 minute EMOM (every minute on the minute) Min 1. 15 box/bench jumps, Min 2. 15 goblet squats, min 3. 15 pushups. Set the clock for 15 minutes. On minute one perform 15 box or bench jumps as fast as possible. Rest the remainder of the minute. Exactly on minute 2 grab a moderately heavy dumbbell and hold it evenly with both hands to your chest and perform 15 full depth squats as fast as possible. Rest the remainder of the minute. Exactly on minute 3 perform 15 pushups as fast as possible. Rest the remainder of the minute. Repeat this circuit 5 times for a total of 15 minutes.
  1. For time: 25 pull-ups/lat pull downs, 50 dumbbell deadlifts, 50 push ups, 50 squats, 50 Dumbbell overhead press, 25 pull-ups/lat pull downs. After your pull-ups or lat pull downs depending on strength level and whats available to you grab some moderate to heavy dumbbells. With a straight back push you butt towards the wall behind you as you hinge over at the waist with a slight bend in your knees. Once your dumbbells get below your knees come back to a standing positions. Repeat 50 times and rest as needed. After your 50 deadlifts, move on to 50 standard or knee push ups depending on your strength level. Once you finish the pushups, go right into 50 air squats bringing your hips below your knees and standing all the way up. Once the pushups are done, grab a slightly lighter pair of dumbbells and bring them up to your shoulders. From there, press them all the way up over your head until your arms are straight and back down to your shoulders for 50 reps. Last but not least, back to pull ups/lat pull downs for 25 more reps and you are done!

Boom! There you have it folks. This time of year consistency is the main priority. You can get back to being epic after the holidays are over.

Justin Schollard

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Always trying to perfect the deadlift.


15 Minute Travel Workouts – Part 1

Traveling can be rough. Sometimes it’s for pleasure and sometimes for business. It’s a funny paradox, isn’t it?

Many of us love nothing more than hitting the open road and driving off into the sunset, or catching a flight to travel distant lands. However, the act of abandoning our routine at home can be devastating to our fitness goals. Constantly people ask me “How can I be this out of shape? I was only gone for a week!”

Despite our best intentions we often let exercise go while we travel. Thinking that an hour in the gym just isn’t realistic with everything else going on. This combined with a little jet lag, dehydration and road or airport food can leave even the best athlete in rough shape by the time they return home.

Well, I’m here to tell you it can be much easier than you think.


Maintain your fitness by focusing on intensity over duration 

Crushing an hour long workout in the gym can wait until your back home. The trick to staying fit while traveling is to keep it short and simple. Think of your “on the road training” as fitness maintenance where work capacity and consistency trumps duration. An intense 15 minute full body workout will keep you burning calories and building muscle while you’re sipping cocktails by the beach o hitting back to back business meetings.

Top 5 Travel workouts without access to a gym

Warm up: 50 jumping jacks, 50 high knees, 10 squats, 10 pushups. 

Cool down: 30 second pigeon stretch each leg, 30 second hamstring stretch, 30 second wall stretch each leg.

  1. Set the clock for 15 minutes. Perform as many rounds as possible (AMRAP) of:           5 burpees, 30 second pushup position plank, 15 sit-ups, 30 second elbow plank, 15 air squats. Keep up the pace up and push it until the end!
  1. Complete 5 rounds for time of: 10 alternating jump lunges, 10 knee tuck push ups, 10 jump squats, 10 v-ups. Keep your breaks short and burn it out!
  1. Double Tabata – 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest for 8 rounds. 1) Alternate your 20 seconds of work between burpees and air squats. Example, round one: 20 seconds of burpees, 10 seconds rest, round two, 20 seconds of air squats 10 seconds rest. Repeat for 8 rounds. 2) Alternate rounds between leg lifts and sit ups. Use same example as above.
  1. 10 minute push up and squat EMOM (every minute on the minute). 3, 2, 1 go! Do 10 pushups as fast as you can then immediately do 10 squats. Take the remainder of the minute off and repeat exactly when the next minute occurs. Do this 10 times.
  1. 4 rounds for time: 20 mountain climbers, 20 lateral lunges, 20 sit-ups, 20 squats.    This one is a leg and core blaster so get ready to feel the burn!

Boom. Thats enough body weight exercises to get you through a week or two with out a gym. However, if you have access to weights get ready for a hotel gym workout series that’ll keep your body burning calories for days.

Part 2 will come next week with a focus on workouts you can do WITH access to a gym

Justin Schollard

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3 Guaranteed Tips to Lose 10 Pounds In a Month

1. Don’t eat a single carb after 4pm.

A 2016 study conducted by the American College of Sports Medicine titled “Enhanced Endurance Performance by Periodization of Carbohydrate Intake: “Sleep Low” Strategy.” Found that athletes actually increased their performance  by stopping their carbohydrate consumption after 4pm and “sleeping low”.

They did this by splitting 20 athletes into two groups. Both groups ate the same amount of carbohydrates and trained the same way. The only difference is one group consumed their carbohydrates earlier in the day, while the other group consumed them evenly throughout the day. At the end of 3 weeks the group that consumed all their carbs before 4pm and “slept low” saw a significant increase in maximal and sub maximal performance, and a decrease in total fat mass, but not a decrease in lean muscle mass.

To me, this study says everything I need to know about carb cycling. By going carb free for 16 hours from 4pm to 8am, it allows the body to release GH and mobilized fat storage. Both of which are inhibited when blood-glucose levels are high.                                                             Even if no other dietary adjustment is made, simply ending carb consumption earlier in the day could have a significant impact on your health and appearance.

2.  Eat Fewer Carbs On Non-Training Days

Body builders have know this trick for a while. To stay lean yet not lose any muscle, carb cycling is the optimal solution. Science is now backing it up saying not only is it an effective way to look great, but has quantifiable health and performance benefits as well. Carbs should be looked at as a tool to increase performance and recovery. Not the size of our mid section. Lets clarify what I mean by that and how you can effectively harness the power of carbohydrates without accumulating any unwanted body fat.

Think of the amount of energy stored in your muscles, know as glycogen, as a bucket of water. When we train hard and exert energy the levels in the bucket drop. When we rest and consume carbohydrates the levels fill up again. So the idea of cycling your carbohydrate intake really boils down to only consuming them during periods of high exertion.

For example, today is a training day for me, so I’ll eat an extra 40 grams of carbs a couple hours before my workout, and another 40 grams immediately after. This only refills my bucket so to speak without spilling over into fat storage. If on a non-training day I roughly consume around 100 grams of carbs, on training days I will consume 180 grams. 40 before the workout and 40 after.

3. High Intensity Interval Training Is Superior to Endurance.

– Intensity Over Duration.

In a 2008 training study by Burgomaster et al at the National Center for Biotechnology Information, subjects were divided into two groups of 5 men and 5 women per group.                                                               For 6 weeks one group performed 4-6 repeats of 30 second all out sprints on a stationary bike followed by 4.5 minutes of rest 3 times per week. The other group performed 40-60 minutes of cycling at 65% of their V02 Max 5 days per week.

At the end of the study both groups experienced similar metabolic adaptations responsible for effective breakdown of carbohydrates and fats along with an improved V02 Max, but the striking difference between these two groups is the amount of time actually spent training. The 40-60 minute endurance group spent approximately 4.5 hours per week cycling in order to see the same results the sprinting group achieved with only 1.5 hours per week of cycling.

Using the same model you could replace cycling with any movement and achieve greater metabolic adaptations than with endurance training alone. In addition to improved cardiovascular health, HIIT enables you build muscle and improve athleticism.

If you don’t see results please email me for a full refund 😉

Justin Schollard
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Lose Weight Fast With a Zone Paleo Hybrid

Hey tribe, question for ya…

What motivates you to get to the gym everyday? Health? Strength and stamina? What about looking good in a bathing suit? For that matter, how about looking good naked? Bingo!

That’s totally ok.. It’s not a bad thing to want to look good. Appearance is a powerful motivator. Obviously it can be taken too far as with anything, but I think its fair to say that one of the biggest reasons we get our butts to class day in and day out, put ourselves through the wringer with exercise and diet is to make us feel more confident about our appearance.

We all have desires; career, relationship, personal, etc. Coming into this world to create the life we want and mastering one’s self is the code we get to spend our lifetime cracking.

That means what you choose to eat is just as important as what you choose to do for a living or how you choose to spend your free time. All too often I see members and clients alike showing up to workout with admirable consistency, yet remain physically unchanged after months, sometimes years of dedicated training.

A little subtle probing almost always reviles the answer; poor diet. Not surprising really, and theoretically easy to fix. However, we are creatures of habit, and despite our best intentions we all too often resort back to default patterns.

So, what do we do?

Given the undisputed evidence supporting a sound diet, first we need to get clear on what diet is going to best support our unique goals and body type. Next, we need to set ourselves up for success.

Don’t look at a new diet as a complete sea change that happens overnight. Otherwise you’ll be left with a formidable void that will no doubt find you in a moment of weakness elbow deep in a box of your favorite snack just days into your resolution.

Instead, think of crowding out the bad with the good. For example: Just commit to eating a salad everyday. Once that becomes the new norm try adding in a few extra glasses of water throughout your day. Once thats no longer a problem, incorporate eggs or a protein shake for breakfast, and Presto!

Within a few short weeks your new diet is in full effect with no trace of that evil void.

Once you’ve reached the basics of nutrition I just mentioned and are ready to take it to the next level, there are 2 diets in my opinion as a trainer for 10 years that have reigned supreme in terms of efficacy and overall heath.

Paleo and Zone

First, lets talk Paleo

In a nut shell (no pun intended) its meat, vegetables, nuts, seeds and some fruit. The idea being that we as humans did the majority of our genetic evolution during the paleolithic area where our hunter/gatherer ancestors lived mainly from tracking and eating plants and animals.

Makes sense, right? Especially when you consider how long evolution takes to make a significant change in a species and the fact that in parts of Africa there are still hunter gatherer tribes alive today.

In the book “Born to run” author Christopher Mcdougall lays out a compelling case that humans are in fact, endurance predators. With our unique self cooling ability to sweat combined with our Achilles tendon and nuchal ligaments which are mainly found on running animals, along with both type 1 & type 2 muscle fibers.

Type 1 being for long distance running and type 2 being for explosive sprints or “going in for the kill” as McDougall calls it.

A study in the Journal Of Applied Physiology Vol. 104 compliments this theory by showing the surge in hormones we experience while sprinting. Quadrupeds (4 legged animals) especially hoofed ones have no ability to self cool as they run and therefor can only run short distances before they must stop to recover, giving humans (or endurance predators) the evolutionary advantage when it came to tracking and catching them. We would literally run them to death.

In my opinion this diet works wonders for people looking to drop weight and get healthy. The biggest reason is because there are no grains or sugar which are arguably the biggest cause of our current health epidemics. Once you become “fat adapted” as Mark Sisson of Mark’s Daily Apple calls it, you turn into a fat burning machine.

However, I think even Sisson would agree that an “ultra low carb diet” under 100 grams a day, isn’t necessarily the best option for performance athletes. For this I would recommend:

The ZONE Diet

This ones a little trickier. It involves a calorie ratio of 40% carbs, 30% protein, 30% fat, eaten in portions called “blocks”.

Each block consists of 9g of carbs, 7g of protein and 3g of fat. The number of blocks you eat depends on your size.

All foods are categorized and its up to you to pick the type of proteins/carbs/fats you wish to eat and measure them out in proper potion sizes bases on the number of blocks you should be eating. You need a healthy foundation in task management for this one. However, if you are an athlete who’s exerting energy as fast as you’re consuming it, then this diet may give you the competitive edge you need to keep performing.

The reason I wouldn’t recommend the 40/30/30 ratio or “zone” diet unless you’re consistently training hard 4 or more times a week is because carbohydrates are fast energy, pure and simple.

Unfortunately our evolution hasn’t caught up to modern abundance yet, and therefor our bodies are still wired for scarcity. Meaning that as a survival mechanism we store that extra unused energy (carbs) as body fat until the day comes when we need it. The reality is that day rarely, if ever comes, but the stockpile keeps building.

The Ultimate Combo Zone AND Paleo (Zoleo?)

Personally, what works great for me is a hybrid between the two. I avoid grains especially ones containing gluten, but because I am a coach, athlete and inherently thin guy, I maintain a moderate level of carbohydrates in my daily diet. I keep it around 150 grams a day. Mainly from yams, rice and some fruit. I try to keep my protein levels north of 150 grams a day and eat all the nuts and vegetables I want.

If you look at ZONE and Paleo as dietary parameters, or a continuum of sorts, you can gage which direction to lean toward based on your exertion levels. For instance; If your goal is pure performance then you might want to turn your dial more towards Zone, but if you look at exercise a bit more casually, but want to stay trim then shifting your diet towards Paleo will be your best option. If you’re like me then you’ll most likely land somewhere in the middle.

Happy eating


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