Sunday, November 7, 2010

20s are Too Light...

The weekend started off right for me with a great "digital disconnect" day. Once per week, just like how I fast and take a break off food, I like to do the same with social media and communication.

My digital disconnect day just involves me fasting off the computer, blackberry and telephone. I usually do this when I know that everyone that I need to communicate with at that given moment is with me (ie. Rozanne and my 5 kids).

I also did the heavy day of Geoff Neupert's Kettlebell Muscle and found that it was really easy using 20kg kettlebells.

According to Geoff, the 3rd day of lifting in this program is supposed to be - and I quote directly from page 62 - "MURDEROUS".

I was expecting my heart to be beating out of my chest, my grip to be completely smoked and my legs and shoulders to be screaming in submission...but they weren't. So I'm going to amp things up and use the double-24s.

Next workout day is on Tuesday...although my week is pretty light this week, so I may get some time tomorrow to start early. We'll see.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Go Giants.


Thursday, November 4, 2010

"Off" Day and "Light" Training

I took the day off yesterday, so nothing to report other than this cool article that I read on my buddy, Brad Pilon's Blog...

Seriously, if you have kids, you should read that article.

I got a lot of sleep today getting up at 6:30am, which is about an hour and half later than when I usually wake up. I guess when your body tells you that you need it, you have to listen.

Day 2 in Kettlebell Muscle is a "Light" Day. Only 3 exercises, pretty basic, using the same sized bells (so for me the double-20s).

To tell you the truth, today almost seemed too light because I wasn't straining by the end of the last set. But I assume that's why it's called a "Light" day. I'm trusting this program nonetheless and will be following it to a "T".

Besides, Day 3 is the "HEAVY" day so I assume I'll be pretty taxed after that.

I've also decided to alter my training schedule. I'd like as much rest as possible between Day 3 and Day 1, so I'll train heavy this Saturday and then start my training again on Tuesday.

I like this idea for a few reasons...

1) Mondays are hectic in our house with everyone getting set for the week. If there was one day when my workouts get pushed to the side (and that's not often), it's Monday.

2) Tuesdays are relatively light days for me (I usually don't take clients on Tuesdays and focus instead on working on my websites - and This included filming at the gym, so if I'm there, I may as well train.

3) Sunday morning workouts will by my heavy days from now on and I like the idea of training heavy and then usually not having to worry about anything else business related for the rest of the day ... it's like a "me" day.

So, here's what I anticipate the week to look like....

Monday - OFF
Tuesday - KB Muscle "Medium" Day
Wednesday - OFF
Thursday - Bodyweight Training and/or Deadlifts
Friday - KB Muscle "Light" Day
Saturday - OFF
Sunday - KB Muscle "Heavy" Day

We'll see how the next few weeks pan out.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Bodyweight Training Junkie

It's a cold day in Toronto today, so I made sure I layered up and got out my "lobster claw" cycling mittens. Even though it's frosty outside, I still love being on my bike and plan on riding throughout the winter. I have one of those "dutch" bicycles that was engineered and made in Copenhagen and is meant to withstand the snow, ice, slush, etc.

Now onto the musclehead stuff...

Kettlebell Muscle requires you to do your workouts 3 days per week. That's it.

But, much to Geoff's chagrin I'm sure, I'm adding an additional day of just bodyweight training.

See, I'm a bodyweight training junkie and I like the idea of knowing that I can bang out 20 chin ups or 20 pistols. An added bodyweight day will also allow me to mess around with new training programs and exercises.

So today, I did a bit or an unstructured workout and then hit the foam roller and the stretch bands pretty hard for some much needed soft tissue and flexibility work.

Here's how today's workout went down...

1) Chin-Ups - 5, 5 @ 25lbs, 5 @ 35lbs, 5 @ 45lbs, 10

2a) Dips - 2 x 15
2b) Pistols - 2 x 8 per leg

That was a pretty quick workout but my biceps and lats are feeling it from the chin-ups.

On my bodyweight days I'll mess around with the rings and probably start incorporating some handstands and maybe some TGUs.

Tomorrow is an "OFF" day, so I won't be doing much - maybe the foam roller again.

Then it's back to work on Thursday with Kettlebell Muscle.


Monday, November 1, 2010

New Program: Kettlebell Muscle

Since it's November 1st today, I'm starting a new program. I'll be training at home (for the most part) doing my buddy, Geoff Neupert's Kettlebell Muscle.

So as to not divulge the intellectual property of the book, I can't post exactly what I'm doing (you'll have to get the book for yourself), but I'll give you some of the training breakthroughs that I experience over the next 6 weeks (maybe more).

Check out Kettlebell Muscle HERE
I'm using double 20kg bells (the program requires that you start with bells that you can comfortably press for 10reps) for the first few weeks and then will re-evaluate after the first phase.

As a trainer, I can't tell you how nice it is to use someone else's program. To not have to think and just do the exercises is a breath of fresh air. Mind you, you need to use the program of someone you trust (and there are less than a handful that fit that bill for me - Craig Ballantyne, Jason Ferruggia, Pavel & Geoff being among the few).

My starting measurements and "before" picture are as follows...

Weight: 167.2lbs
Waist: 32.75"
L Arm: 14"
Shoulders: 46"

The first workout took only 25 minutes and that includes foam rolling, static stretching my hips & pecs, activation and warm-up with double 16kg bells!

I did 4 rounds of the first workout with 2 minutes rest between sets.

The beautiful thing (aside from finishing in 25 minutes) is that I did the workout in my living room (with no kids around).

After the workout, I had this shake....

1/2 cup coconut milk
1 cup almond milk
1 banana
1 cup each of berries, mango & frozen spinach
cocoa nibs, chia seeds, maca pdr
1.5 scoops sun warrior protein

My goals are to get up to 175lbs and drop my waist line to 31". I'll do this by eating as much as I want but focusing on fruits, veggies, healthy fats & protein. I'll eat grains, but only around the workout window and/or in the morning. We'll see how that works out.

I'll also fast once per week using Brad Pilon's Eat-Stop-Eat program.

We'll see how it goes over the next 6 weeks or so.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tuesday C & P

I took Monday off (both online & off-line) because it was our anniversary (10 years, baby!). So now I'm kind of playing catch-up with my workouts.

Today's workout...

1a) KB Clean & Press (3 x 5/side)
1b) Blast Strap Scarecrows (2 x 10)

2a) Renegade Rows (2 x 20)
2b) Windmill (2 x 10/side)
2c) See-Saw Press (2 x 12)

3) 100 2-Arm KB Swings

Tomorrow I'll probably get on the hill at 6am and then practice some handstands and handstand push-ups.

I also made an incredible high-protein potato salad (with homemade mayo) that was so good that I almost ate it all at one sitting! I'll have the recipe for you sometime in the upcoming days.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hill Sprints at 6am

For some reason last night, Mikey, my 3 year old, found her way into our bed.

So in our queen sized bed was Mikey, Q (our 8 month old son who sleeps with us - apparently it's called "attachment parenting") and my wife Rozanne who sleeps diagonally.

The last time I tried to move Mikey and put her in her own bed, all hell broke loose and she woke up the entire house at 3 in the morning.

Lesson learned.

The problem was that there wasn't anywhere for me to sleep, so I ventured into the girls room to sleep in Mikey's spot on the bottom "double" bunk (there's a single bed on top). I end up almost crushing Joey (my 7 year old) as she climbed down to sleep with Frankie (5yrs) on the bottom bed.

So here were my final options....

1. Sleep on the living room couch - the "nice" couch - which my wife would hate. Seriously, this is the couch that she'd leave the plastic covering on - a la grandma - if she could.

2. Sleep on the basement couch which has some clean, unfolded laundry that I was going to get to tomorrow.


3. Sleep on the top bunk - Joey's bed - over my 2 peacefully sleeping children.

I went with #3 - sleeping on the top bunk. And once I got over the fear that this bed was not going to collapse and crush 2 helpless sleeping children while trying to hold a 180lb man, I slept like a baby.

Seriously, it was the best sleep that I've had a in a long, long time.

I got up at 5am and got some writing done. Then at 6, I got my Nike Frees on and drove over to the Riverdale Hill and ran some sprints.

When I got home I practiced doing some handstands while Joey timed me and made some breakfast - bacon, eggs and a smoothie - for everyone.

Good times!


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Tuesday's 10 Minute Workout

Ever have one of those days when you know nothing's going to get done?

I had one of those days today. But I promised myself that I would make it a priority to get a workout in...and I did. Albeit it was a quick one.

Here's what went down.

1) Turkish Get-Ups x 20 per arm

I just took my 16kg kettlebell and did 40 TGUs. That took me about 10 minutes.

My shoulders were still sore from yesterday's workout (with the C & P's and the see-saw presses), so I needed something light today (with my limited time and my needed recovery).

Eating was great.

Breakfast shake - coconut milk, berries, mango, banana, spinach, maca powder, cocoa nibs, chia seeds & pea protein (I don't like pea protein as much as I like brown rice protein).

Then I snacked on nuts and fruit and chopped up veggies all day.

Dinner was delicious. I made lettuce wraps (the kids had actual homemade burritos) with black beans, homemade guacamole, red pepper and grass-fed steak that I marinated last night in lime, Braggs, garlic, pepper & bay leaf.

The baby had pureed avocado.

I'm hoping to at least get more done tomorrow - which includes getting up at 5am and doing some writing and then hitting the Riverdale Hill for 6am.

Have a great day!


"Real regrets only come from not doing your best. All else is out of your control. You're measured by results only. Trade excuses and "trying" for results, and expect half-hearted results from half-hearted efforts. Do more than is expected of you. Life's easy when you live it the hard way... and hard if you try to live it the easy way."
-Dave Kekich, Kekich Credo #4

Monday, June 21, 2010

Keeping Things Simple...

Simple workout today...

1) 36" Box Jumps

2) KB Clean & Press

3a) Close Grip Chin-Ups
3b) KB See-Saw Press

4) 100 KB Swings

Without really knowing it until I re-read the book, I've been following the Warrior Diet (by Ori Hoffmekler). I've been having a good shake at the beginning of the day and then snacking on fruits, veggies & nuts throughout the day. Then at the end of the day I've been having a bigger meal.

The last meal isn't a "cheat" meal (although last night I did have a hamburger after my daughter's soccer game). I just eat significantly more than I would throughout the day. Lots of protein, lots of vegetables, some (if any) starch and then usually a piece of fruit for desert.

It's worked out well so far because I'm leaner and my energy levels are up.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Outdoor Workout on My Deck

I've been getting kind of bored of the gym lately. Last week was the straw that broke the camel's back. It was a beautiful day outside and I was in the gym doing Bulgarian Split Squats with 100lbs across my chest.

It's time for some variety. So I'm taking it outside and going back to doing strictly KBs, bodyweight and some sandbag work and tire flipping for fun.

Here's what I did today...

1a) TGU 3 x 3/side
1b) Chin-Ups 3 x 10, 10, 10

2a) Renegade Row 2 x 16
2b) Ab Wheel 2 x 15
2c) Rev Ab Curl 2 x 15

3) KB Swings @ 24kg x 100 - 50, 50

4a) Close Grip Push-ups - 20, 10
4b) Towel Curls @ 24kg - 10, 10

After that I meditated for 30mins using my

My food intake today was alright. I had Ezekiel cereal with coconut milk for breakfast with water and an espresso.

Then I had some mixed nuts and dried fruit followed by an apple and more raw walnuts.

Post-workout I had a shake with coconut milk, almond milk, rice protein, blueberries, spinach and a banana.

For dinner I'm making some broccoli coleslaw with sunflower seeds, raisins, bacon & chicken. I'm also pureeing some avocado for Q's dinner so I'll probably use the leftover for some guacamole.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

How the heck do I NOT use my upper body?

Great night last night!

After picking up the rest of the crew, we chilled out in the afternoon and then packed up the van and headed to a double bill at Drive-In Movie Theatre...all 7 of us. It was fun. We saw both the new Shrek movie and the new Iron Man.

The kids ended up falling asleep in the back and we didn't get home until 1am, but it was all worth it because it was one of those nights that you know they'll remember.

It was tough getting up at 5am this morning (yes, I even do it on Sundays), so I hit the snooze button a couple of times and finally made it to my feet. I got some work done early and then went to the gym to train a client.

I also managed to get in a lot of foam rolling and stretching and a mini-workout/ab circuit. The gym that I train at has a "land mine", so I can do one of my favorite ab exercises - a Full Contact Twist - without wrecking the corner of a wall. Here's what went down...

1) Ab Wheel x 15
2) Reverse Ab Curl-Up x 15
3) Full Contact Twist x 15/side
4) Tricep Extensions on the rings x 15
5) DB Bicep Curls x 15

I repeated that circuit 3 times and then went home.

The back is feeling much better, but I still won't really do any upper body lifting until Tuesday.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

I Got A Chiropractor For My Daughter's Birthday

Today is my #2 daughter, Joey's, 7th birthday.

I spent the morning taking my wife through a workout (she's looking really good and has lost a lot of weight doing only KB & bodyweight exercises - NO CARDIO!!!) and then we took Joey out to her favorite restaurant for breakfast.

Last night, we dropped AJ, Frankie & Mikey off at my parents house to spend the night because Rozanne and I like to spend one-on-one time with each kid on their birthdays.

I also managed to reconnect with a friend of mine on Facebook who also happens to be a chiropractor. Thank goodness for Dr. Waj because I was able to see him in the morning and get my back & neck worked on and my rib popped back in (although I had 3 ribs out on my left side and he could only get 2 back in).

The bad news is that I need a few more treatments and the left side of my back is - and I think this is a medical term - "royally messed up".

No workout for me today on the recommendation of Dr. Waj. My back will be pretty tender for a while so I'm going to lay off the upper body workouts for the next couple of days.

Luckily I'm on a deload week this week, so I'll be lifting really light and will just focus on doing hills and lots of full body abdominal work.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Popped Another One

I woke up this morning and my upper back was really bothering me.

Remember back on Tuesday how I said I popped a rib? Well it feels like another one popped. I really need to find a chiropractor to see over this long weekend (it's Victoria Day weekend here in Canada).

My lower body feels good and I was scheduled for a lower body workout today anyway, so I went down to the gym to finish off week 3 of my 3rd phase of 5-3-1.

Here's what I did...

1) Bulgarian SS w/the bar in the racked position (3 x 5-3-1)
2a) Pistols (3 x 10)
2b) GHR (3 x 12)
3) 2 arm KB Swings x 100 (24kg KB)

The kb swing s at the end of the workout was a bonehead move on my part because now my upper back feels even worse.

I need to find a chiro to pop this rib back in!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thursday Upper Body Workout

Upper body workout today. I've been using Jim Wendler's 5-3-1 system that I picked up over at

After speaking to a few people about the book and reading a few reviews about it, I decided to invest $20 and pick up a copy for myself.

The verdict? It's probably the best $20 that I've spent in a long time. I'm big on simplicity and making the most of my time and this book really forces you to keep things simple and do only the things that work.

If you're looking to increase your strength and are willing to put in some good, hard work. Then I suggest you pick this book up.

So onto my workout...

1) Military Press (3 x 5-3-1+)
2a) 1-arm KB press
2b) DB Row
3) Seated Row (1 set x 40 reps)

My ribs and upper back are still bothering me. It's not like it's painful, it's just an annoying kind of feeling. I'll hit the foam roller hard and do lots of t-spine mobility. Hopefully that will alleviate the pain a little.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

An Off Day

I'm sitting in my family room watching my 2 year old do her version of prisoner squat and push-ups. Pretty Cute.

It's the absolute truth that kids do what they see, so hopefully my wife and I are on the right track when we exercise in front of the kids.

No workout for me today. I'm still sore from the cleans, deadlifts and ring pull-ups. I also think I popped a rib on my left side.

Popping a rib is one of those annoying pains that eventually go away. Although I should try to get in to see a chiro tomorrow because I'm scheduled to be back at the gym and doing military presses as my main lift.

Nutrition today was alright...

7am - 3 free range eggs (scrambled) with chives cooked in butter, black coffee, an apple muffin (it's got squash & spelt flour in it - my wife baked them), water & a teaspoon of coconut milk

10am - Walnuts & an apple

Here's where stuff started to get interesting...

I took AJ (my 12 year old) to the dentist to get 4 teeth removed to accomodate her new braces. So, I spent an hour walking around the swanky Yorkville area of Toronto with a 6-month-old strapped to my chest and a 2 year old either in my arms or holding onto my left-ass jean pocket.

****A note to all the single guys out there...Kids are chick magnets. NO JOKE. I got stopped 6 times in less than an hour by women who just wanted to coo at my kids. If you want to pick-up, borrow a niece or nephew and take them out!****

She was hungry and I was famished. She wanted a hotdog and I wanted nothing to do with it. I bought her a hotdog, she ate 1/3 of it. I ate a the rest.

We also found out that my wife needs (another!!!) root canal.


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Coconut Oil, Training & Burritos

I had a good workout & eating day today.

7am Breakfast - steel but oats, oat bran, cinnamon, coconut milk & dried cranberries
9am - big teaspoon of coconut oil
11am - apple & walnuts

1pm - Training...

1) Cleans 3 x 3 @135, 140 & 145

2) Deadlifts 3 x 5 - 3 - 1

3) Snatch Grip Deadlifts 1 x 20 @ 135

4a) TGUs 2 x 5 @ 24kg
4b) Pull-Ups on the rings (10, 8, 6)

Then I did some "arms". What can I say, it was a slight resurfacing of my inner-meathead.

2:30pm - Barbacoa Burrito from Chipotle (I love this stuff).

My wife, Rozanne, is making dinner tonight, so I'll look forward to having the night off from the kitchen.

I also hit the grocery store and bought some celery, broccoli & red peppers to chop up for the rest of the week.

If you haven't yet, check out Today's Sign that The Apocalypse is Upon Us on my Tumblr blog...

Enjoy the rest of your day,

Monday, May 17, 2010

The Rebirth of The Original Blog

So I'm going resurrect this blog and call it the home of my daily ramblings. This will be more for me to store my training and nutrition journal and to help direct you to the various places that I post.

My day got royally messed up because of a cancelled dentist appointment for my oldest daughter. Because today was meticulously planned, I had no intention of getting a workout in. Instead, I scheduled my workouts for yesterday (squats) and tomorrow (cleans & deadlifts).

Now, I've got all this time on my hands, so I made it home early, picked up some swiss chard and some navy beans for lunch from the Big Carrot and am eating all of it with some homemade guacamole.

Prior to that, I did manage to get a workout in....

1) Foam rolling, T spine mobility & stretching for hips, hams & pecs.

Then I did an ab circuit....

2a) Ab Wheel x 20
2b) Reverse Ab Curls x 20
2c) Side Plank x 45s/side

and then some Convict Conditioning...

3) Isometric Handstand x 2 minutes

That was it. I think I'm saving myself for deadlifts tomorrow.


p.s. Make sure to check out my wife's workout over at the KB Blog...