Build Muscle for Better Health

We all know how important cardiovascular exercise is -- how it's great for your heart, cholesterol, and blood pressure. And whether you choose to walk, bicycle, or jog, you know that any exercise that increases your heart rate helps you burn calories and melt away unwanted pounds.

But that's only half the equation.

For a balanced fitness program, strength training is essential. It can slow the muscle loss that comes with age, build the strength of your muscles and connective tissues, increase bone density, cut your risk of injury, and help ease arthritis pain.

"Strength training is very important, not just for your muscles but for your bones,It's preventative for [bone-thinning] osteoporosis and other problems."

Studies from the CDC have found that muscle-building exercise can also improve balance, reduce the likelihood of falls, improve blood-sugar control, and improve sleep and mental health.

And let us not forget the weight-loss benefits. Not only does it make you look trimmer and shapelier, but building muscle also helps you burn calories -- even after your workout is done.

"Three to four hours after a strength-training workout, you're still burning calories, programs such as my H.I.G.T launch your body into fat burning hyper-mode.

Strength training is especially important for dieters. When you lose weight, up to a quarter of the loss may come from muscle, which can slow your metabolism. Strength training helps you rebuild any muscle you lost by dieting -- or keep you from losing it in the first place. So add some strength training to your fitness goals.

Could the push-up be the "perfect exercise"? Here's what it can do for you, and how to get it right.

While fitness fads may come and go as fast as their late-night infomercials, some types of exercise transcend trends. Among them is the push-up, which uses your own body weight along with gravity to tone and condition muscles. Some fitness experts have called the push-up the closest thing there is to a perfect exercise. And with good reason.

"One of the reasons the push-up has endured so long is it's cheap, it's easy, it doesn't require any equipment, it can work multiple parts of the body at the same time -- and pretty much everyone, from beginners to athletes, can derive benefits," says personal trainer Jonathan Ross, a spokesman for the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

What kind of benefits? If you're thinking the push-up is the best upper body exercise, many fitness experts agree. But, personal trainer Jessica Bottesch tells Abfitt, the push-up benefits many muscle groups body-wide.

"The primary movers [the major muscle groups that produce the motion of a push-up] are the chest and tricep. However, if you look at the form your body takes during the perfect push-up, you're typically suspended from your toes all the way to your neck, so in reality, every muscle between your shoulders and your toes is engaged," says Bottesch, co-owner of Empower Personal Training in Durham, N.C.

This includes the all important core muscles of the trunk, as well as the abdominals, legs and hips, she says.

And for women, Bottesch tells Abfitt, the push-up has an extra benefit.

"A push-up is considered a resistance exercise, so in addition to muscle strengthening, you also get bone-building effects. It can be as effective as working out with weights," says Bottesch.

Cardio vs. Weight Training for Weight Loss ....The real deal

Why Weight Training over Cardio for Weight Loss?

It really comes down to the inherent differences that separate aerobic (cardio) and anaerobic (resistance) activity. With aerobic work, you are keeping your heart rate elevated for an extended period of time, which essentially limits the intensity with which you can work. Anaerobic training on the other hand, couples periods of high intensity with lower intensity or rest intervals.

Here are the benefits of Weight Training for Weight Loss:

• Increased metabolic effect
• Increased EPOC effect (more calories burned after workout is over)
• Increase in lean body mass
• Increase in bone density
• Greater stimulus on central nervous system
• Easier to progress in levels
• Complete in interval style (less time with more results)
• Less repetitive motion
• Far less boring!

The list goes on, but it's safe to say building lean body mass alone makes resistance training the clear cut winner. Without an increase in LBM, you are just burning calories day in and day out. There has to be a long-term solution to weight loss and it is most definitely found in weight training.

If you're looking to spend less time working out and get far greater results, don't slash your cardio program completely, but instead rethink where your emphasis should be.

Long-term results don't come overnight, but they can last a lifetime!

Benefits Of Heavy Bag Training

With the advent of sophisticated training devices, and methods to achieve amazing results in minimal time, the fitness industry is increasingly veering away from many tried and tested ways to improve health and fitness.
One piece of equipment that has become almost legendary in its shaping of champions, and the results in physical fitness it has achieved for many an average person, is the heavy bag.

The heavy bag is a stuffed bag made of leather or vinyl, which weighs between 40 and 100 pounds, and is used primarily among boxers for building punching power and improving boxing technique. Hitting the heavy bag is physically demanding and a true test of strength and stamina.

For a relatively simple piece of equipment, it delivers many amazing benefits. Whether it be a full-body workout, sharpened self defense skills, or a defined, muscular body, the heavy bag is a valuable addition to any home, or commercial gym setting.


It’s perhaps the most deceptively simple piece of fitness equipment you can buy, not to mention one of the cheapest and most easily stored. Jumping rope takes care of virtually all your cardio needs. You can jump at a steady pace to immitate a jog, or alternate intervals of fast jumping with slower bouts for a more intense conditioning workout. You can also integrate the rope into all kinds of other training. Try running sprints in your driveway, and then lightly skipping rope in between for an active recovery. Make up your own circuits, doing a set of pushups, pullups, and then rope jumping for a total-body blast that works your muscles as well as your heart. Yet another advantage is the quick footwork you’ll develop, which will serve you any time you play a sport.
Best of all, the rope is a hard toy to get bored by. With all the jumping variations you can do such as crossovers, one-legged jumps, and jumping with alternating legs—it’s not likely you’ll over master the rope. One downside is that jumping rope does require a certain amount of space, particularly overhead. If you don’t have a spacious room or garage (or it’s too cold to go outside), you could invest in a “ropeless” jump rope. Handles with light weights attached by a short string simulate the movement of a rope, allowing you to work out without whipping a vase off the shelf. You won’t build the same kind of coordination and cardiovascular fitness you would with a real rope, but it’s not a bad substitute, especially if you’re brand new to exercise.
Most jump ropes go for about $10; the ropeless kind (which also counts calories, jumps, and workout time) is $50 @


In their quest to run farther, jump higher, and outlast the competition, many athletes have turned to a variety of performance-enhancing drugs and supplements. Creatine is the most popular of these substances, believed to enhance muscle mass and help athletes achieve bursts of strength.

Part of the reason for creatine's popularity might be its accessibility. Creatine powder, tablets, energy bars, and drink mixes are available without a doctor's prescription at drug stores, supermarkets, nutrition stores, and over the Internet.

Although creatine is a natural substance, it hasn't been well-studied over the long-term. Researchers still aren't sure what effects it might have on the body, particularly in young people, or how effective it might be.

What Is Creatine?
Creatine is a natural substance that turns into creatine phosphate in the body. Creatine phosphate helps make a substance called adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP provides the energy for muscle contractions.

The body produces some of the creatine it uses. It also comes from protein-rich foods such as meat or fish.

How Is Creatine Used?
Back in the 1970s, scientists discovered that taking creatine in supplement form might enhance physical performance. In the 1990s, athletes started to catch on, and creatine became a popular sports supplement. According to studies, 8% of adolescents take creatine. The supplement is particularly popular among high school, college, and professional athletes, especially football and hockey players, wrestlers, and gymnasts. An estimated 40% of college athletes and up to half of professional athletes say they use creatine supplements.

Creatine is thought to improve strength, increase lean muscle mass, and help the muscles recover more quickly during exercise. This muscular boost may help athletes achieve bursts of speed and energy, especially during short bouts of high-intensity activities such as weight lifting or sprinting. However, scientific research on creatine has been mixed. Although some studies have found that it does help improve performance during short periods of athletic activity, there is no evidence that creatine helps with endurance sports. Research also shows that not everyone's muscles respond to creatine; some people who use it see no benefit.

Despite the popularity of creatine among young people, there has been very little research conducted in children under age 18. Of those studies, a few have suggested a positive effect but the overall evidence is inconclusive. In one study, teenage swimmers performed better after taking creatine; in another study, it helped high school soccer players sprint, dribble, and jump more effectively.

Researchers are studying whether creatine might also be useful for treating certain health conditions caused by weakened muscles, including:

Heart failure and heart attack
Huntington's disease
Neuromuscular disorders, including muscular dystrophy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease)

Creatine is also being studied as a way to lower cholesterol in people with abnormally high levels. Although early research has been promising, it's too early to say for sure whether creatine is effective for any of these conditions.

How Safe Is Creatine?
Just because creatine is natural, doesn't necessarily mean that it is safe. Supplements aren't held to the same standards by the FDA as medications, which means you can't always know exactly what's in your supplement, or in what amounts.

Researchers still don't know the long-term effects of taking creatine supplements, especially in young people. Adolescents who take creatine often do so without their doctor's advice, which can cause them to take more than the recommended dose.

Although most healthy people can take it with no problem, creatine can, in rare cases, have adverse effects, particularly when used in excess. Side effects can include:

Weight gain
Breathing difficulty
Kidney problems
Nausea, vomiting
Stomach upset

Certain drugs, including diabetes medications, acetaminophen, and diuretics, can have dangerous interactions with creatine. Taking the stimulants caffeine and ephedra with creatine can increase the risk of side effects.

Creatine isn't recommended for people with kidney or liver disease, or diabetes. Others who should avoid taking it are children under age 18 and women who are pregnant or nursing. Also don't use creatine if you are taking any medication or supplement that could affect your blood sugar, because creatine may also affect blood sugar levels.

If you do take creatine, drink enough water to prevent dehydration.

No matter how healthy you are, let your doctor know before you take creatine or any other supplement.


How do I get six-pack or washboard abs?

The first thing you need to understand is this: we ALL have six-packs! Six-packs aren't 'created' by doing ab exercises...they already exist.
The reason most of us can't see our abs is because they're covered by a layer of fat. What this means is that:
Doing ab exercises to achieve a six-pack is an impossible goal
The only way to see your six-pack is to reduce your body fat
The best way to reduce your body fat is with high intensity strength training and a healthy, low-calorie diet. Notice I didn't say cardio, doing cardio has it's place, however if you want to shed fat to see those need to do high intensity work.
This doesn't mean that ab exercises serve no purpose--strong abs support your spine and protect your back. However, keep in mind that your ab workout is just one part of a complete program when it comes to getting a six-pack.

Normally when writing a post, I use a picture that best fits the story, usually a fitness model or a pro athlete. I take care in giving you visual inspiration along with solid information you can trust to be true. Today I will use myself, the reason is simple. The topic you the readers seem to be most interested in is abdominal training and how to get the coveted " Six Pack ". So at thirty seven years of age, I can tell you that I was able to take the guess work out of ab training and learn really what it took to sculpt some eye catching abs. No I am not going to sell you anything or refer you to some infomercial. What I am going to do is tell you exactly what it takes and how to do it and all for free.

In doing so I am using a picture of myself to demonstrate that you do not need to be a pro athlete or a fitness cover model to have a great mid section. I like most of you have a full time job and a family. Like most of you, at one time I was misled in believing you needed sit ups or fancy machines and tons of cardio to build a defined and trim six pack. Commercialism is so very responsible for misleading the American public, it's no wonder so many of you are just plain confused. So here goes.

If you're not a child with the metabolism of a jet rocket, better leave the basic sit up back in the gym class. It is not very effective in sculpting your mid-section. What is effective as I have already touched on is high intensity training, using weights. The key is whole body training and the basic multi-joint exercises like the squat, dead lift, pressing movements, pull-ups, yes pull-ups and then some finishing exercises like weighted floor sweepers and rope crunches. These exercises done correctly and quickly with resistance will force your body to recruit many fast twitch muscle fibers. Doing this demands more energy so first stored calories then fat are quickly used for this. The best news, when you finish training in this manner your body continues to burn calories for many hours. With cardio, the minute you step off the treadmill, your calorie burning grinds to an immediate halt.

The abdominal respond best as do any other muscle group, with intensity!! Weighted exercise create the intensity needed to cause the stress required for the building of lean muscle tissue and burning tons of unwanted fat. Listen, your abs come into play in just about every thing you do throughout the day as well as about every exercise you do in the gym. The abs must stabilize your spine and are constantly being used. Do you think some crunches on a exercise ball are going to sculpt your mid-section and burn fat? I think not, in fact your abs are laughing at the notion.

No, none of this is easy and it does require some skill and education. Be persistent and take this information to heart. The TV ads that promote fast abs wouldn't sell any product if they told you the above mentioned is what it really takes. So don't be fooled, save your money. If you need help, I will give it to you for free. It's all here on my site. H.I.G.T is the future of fitness training. Stay focused and good luck.


The NY Giants reach deal to send Shockey to Saints

I am and have been since I was a kid, a huge NY GIANTS fan. Born and raised an hour away from Giants stadium, so with that said I am definitely sad for this latest NY news. The Giants have agreed to trade their disgruntled tight end to the New Orleans Saints for a second-round pick and a fifth-round pick. The deal is pending league approval, according to a league source. Shockey must also pass a physical. The deal reunites Shockey with Saints coach Sean Payton, who was the Giants' offensive coordinator in 2002, when Shockey was Rookie of the Year.

"I have had a relationship with coach Payton and I appreciate what he has done as a head coach," Shockey said in a statement released by the Saints. "The Saints have a lot of weapons starting with Drew Brees and I look forward to joining my teammates at training camp. This will be a fun year."

"Jeremy is a player that we are excited to have on our roster. He is someone I am familiar with as a player," Payton said. "He brings a skill set to the position that I feel will be a tremendous benefit to our offense."

The compensation is the same the Saints offered New York back in April prior and during to the draft ... and it was turned down.

The move comes one day after Jason Taylor was traded from Miami to New York's NFC East rivals in Washington. According to a report on, the Giants had held discussions about a three-team trade in which they would have ended up with Taylor, the Saints would have landed Shockey and the Dolphins would have received a pair of draft picks.

The emergence of rookie Kevin Boss during the Giants' improbable Super Bowl run — a stretch Shockey missed due to a broken leg — made Shockey expendable. Boss started six games after Shockey's injury (two regular season and all four during the Giants' postseason run), making nine catches for 140 yards and a TD.

Shockey's attitude made the move somewhat necessary as the Giants sought to avoid distractions from their bid to repeat as Super Bowl champions.

The Giants also unload the remainder of a five-year, $31.2 million contract extension that Shockey signed in 2005.

"Jeremy brought great energy to the game every time he stepped on the field," Giants team president John Mara said. "He had a close relationship with my father from the time we drafted him, and I had a couple of long conversations with Jeremy this spring and summer. From those conversations, it was apparent to me that a fresh start was the best thing for us and for Jeremy."

During the team's recent minicamp, Shockey reportedly engaged in a shouting match with GM Jerry Reese, just the latest controversy involving the outspoken former first-round pick out of the University of Miami.

Shockey's absence in Phoenix during the Super Bowl was conspicuous to say the least. According to some reports, one of the many sources of Shockey's displeasure with the team was that he was not allowed to stand on the team's sidelines during the game.

In the past, Shockey also had less-than-complimentary things to say about his quarterback, Eli Manning. In fact, many have theorized that Manning's transformation from a middle-of-the-pack quarterback to a Super Bowl MVP was facilitated by Shockey's absence.

Shockey's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, called last season a difficult one for his client, who was looking for a change of scenery.

"He's been one of the most successful tight ends in NFL history, but now I think he's going to be more prolific in the Saints' offense," Rosenhaus said. "I don't think Jeremy could ask for a better situation.



The mania was supposed to be over by now.

Arguably the most popular man on the planet, David Beckham was thought to be a one-hit wonder -- critics were telling us last year that "Bend It Like Beckham" was a downward trajectory. He would be one-and-done, according to the American public, who would quickly turn back to Brangelina and a love affair with low-rise jeans.

His play on the field can speak for itself and needs no defending -- even the most stalwart of Beckham bashers must give kudos to the player. With five goals and seven assists, the midfielder has played brilliantly at times, earning his way back into England's national team and being the catalyst for his club team's rise near the top of the Western Conference. His play has turned a very average side into one of the most potent offenses in MLS.

"David's on-field performance has been instrumental in our improvement this season. He's healthy and contributing on a consistent basis," said Galaxy president and general manager Alexi Lalas. "David's presence has also contributed to the success of other players, like Edson Buddle."

Case in point. Buddle, an oft-maligned forward, has enjoyed a renaissance year with the club. With Beckham's right foot providing better service than a five-star hotel, the seven-year pro has tallied 11 goals to tie his career high. He has done all this in just 13 games with the club. Coincidence? Yet, as stellar as his play has been, the only thing louder than the cheers for No. 23's play on the field is the ringing of the cash register off of it.

Through 10 home fixtures, the Galaxy are easily the best draw in MLS by any barometer. At the Home Depot Center, L.A. has drawn 25,513 to its home in Carson, outpacing the league's second-best attendance (Toronto FC) by nearly 5,000 a game. Last year, the team drew an average of 24,252 over a 15-match home schedule, half of which was played without Beckham; this also was tops in MLS. And with the superstar player have come super high prices, sort of.

"There is a method to any perceived madness when it comes to the business of David Beckham at the Galaxy. We have and will continue to recoup our costs through ticket sales, sponsorship, tours and other traditional and non-traditional revenue streams," said Lalas on the business of Beckham. "For example, we have gone from a $20 average ticket price in '06 to a $38 average ticket price in '08. While this is a significant increase, it still makes us one of the most affordable forms of entertainment in Los Angeles."

Beckham is proving his worth not just in Los Angeles but in other MLS cities as well, making the Galaxy away match the most anticipated on nearly every team's schedule. Through six games, the team has attracted an average of 27,094 fans to MLS stadiums across the country. But for the fact that many of these matches were sell-outs in more intimate soccer specific stadiums, this number could have been much higher. How impressive is this stat? This number is about a 1,000 fans shy of the combined average of the gate that the Houston Dynamo and D.C. United have drawn on the road this year.

Last year's fixture in New York was the highest attended stand-alone game in MLS history and contributed to the Galaxy's league-high road attendance average of 28,035. With a visit at the Red Bulls this weekend, that number for this year will surely climb higher. Already, Red Bull has sold 42,000 seats for Saturday's game, almost triple the average of their home gate to date.

The pre-sale of tickets in New York is mirroring the turnout last year to the point that the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority is prepared to once again staff the game like a NFL event. StubHub is reporting that nearly 1,000 seats are available for the second British invasion, a record number for the Red Bulls this season. Tickets range in price from $15 for an upper tier seat to prime passes at $275. The average ticket price for the game comes in at $52, well above the sale price. The total dollar volume on Stub Hub is already double that of a typical Red Bull game, with the majority of tickets for the game still up for auction on the site.

It isn't just a New York or even a road phenomenon. At home, Galaxy fans continue to pay top-dollar to see their team and their Beckham play. StubHub also reports a brisk business for seats at the Home Depot Center, with fans reaching into their pockets for an average ticket price of $64 dollars. This number reflects a drop off of only four dollars over last year's average to see Beckham in his debut season in MLS.

On the merchandising front, Beckham is still making his mark. In the first week of jersey sales last year, Beckham sold over 300,000 replicas, far outpacing expectations. While that torrid pace has cooled off, sales remain strong as the total number of jerseys for the former Manchester United and Real Madrid star recently topped 500,000, according to the Galaxy. His jersey remains the top seller in all of MLS.

Eventually, the ultimate litmus of this Beckham experiment will be what culture grows out of this particular petri dish. MLS has seen its share of flop signings and bad transactions, but how the league capitalizes on this surge will determine its fate, perhaps forever. Standing at a crossroad in its development, MLS must decide how Los Angeles and in fact New York and the rest of MLS will flourish when the magic of Beckham is no longer around to inflate the attendance numbers.

"D.C. United boasts some of the most passionate and sophisticated soccer fans in America. That said, there are certain games that draw general sports fans and others to RFK Stadium for special events, as when David Beckham comes to town," said Doug Hicks, vice president of communications for United. A few weeks ago, the club drew just shy of 36,000 for its game against Los Angeles, nearly a 60 percent increase over their average attendance to date. "The sales department then follows up with single-game buyers to encourage return visits to see D.C. United play."

This will be the challenge that follows this Saturday's contest at Giants Stadium, which will undoubtedly be the largest attendance number in the league for the year. Without the Galaxy fixture last year, the Red Bulls average attendance plummets by more than 4000 a game and is near the bottom for all team's league-wide. With the game, the Red Bulls still managed to draw an average of 16,530 fans per game, still below the league average. To underscore this discrepancy, the 66,237 who flocked to Giants Stadium last August to see Becks was more than the five previous MLS games drew at the Meadowlands, combined.

"Ultimately, the true measure of Beckham's impact will be what happens after he is gone. Both the franchise value and the relevancy of the L.A. Galaxy have dramatically increased, but we still have a lot of work to do," said Lalas. "One challenge is turning a large number of David Beckham fans into Galaxy fans. We have exposed the Galaxy to a large group of casual fans who otherwise wouldn't have necessarily thought to attend a soccer game. For a good percentage, we feel that the personal experience of a Galaxy game will resonate and bring them back, even after David is gone."

Kristian R. Dyer is a freelance writer for ESPNsoccernet. He is the associate editor of Blitz


Don't believe all those horror stories about having to except those things that come with ageing. With a commitment to fitness and good eating habits, good health and a fit body will carry you well into your later years. I always say weight training is the true fountain of youth. Let’s review the many compelling benefits of weight training.

Weight Training Benefit #1

• Improving your health. Yes, you might start weight training because you want to improve your appearance, but weight training is an excellent way to benefit your overall health and wellness. Scientific research has made a direct connection between weight training and your ability to decrease the risk of osteoporosis and sarcopenia (loss of body mass), prevent injuries due to weak bones and muscle and develop coordination and balance.

It’s not just bone and muscle related health concerns that are affected by weight training. Other research has demonstrated that weight training may help positively affect risk factors such as glucose metabolism, blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and cholesterol levels.

Weight Training Benefit #2

• Improving your strength and flexibility. Not surprisingly, weight training improves your muscle strength, endurance, size and power. This improvement in these areas helps you with your everyday tasks like carrying parcels or kids, walking up stairs and lifting.

Flexibility also improves through weight training because you are working the muscles through a full range of motion. Increasing your flexibility can protect your from back pain and muscle injury.

Weight Training Benefit #3

• Boosts your metabolism. You’ve probably heard many people blame their weight gain on a poor metabolism. Metabolism is the amount of energy or calories our body burns to maintain its daily functions like sleeping, eating, exercising etc. People who are more muscular have a higher metabolism because muscle uses more calories to maintain itself than fat.

So, one of the benefits of weight training is building more muscle mass and hence increasing your metabolism!

Weight Training Benefit #4

• Enhancing your sports or athletic performance. If you are a sport enthusiast and enjoy playing certain sports, recreational or competitively, another benefit of weight training is improving your sports performance.

One clinical research study examined cross-country ski athletes to see if strength training increased their endurance.1 The group that was assigned a strength training program three times per week experienced improved strength and improved aerobic endurance than the control group.

Weight Training Benefit #5

• Better State of Mind. It is well documented that as you develop a regular strength training routine, you are more equipped to handle the everyday stresses of life. You will also notice improvements in your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.

One Australian study set out to determine if there was a strong connection between weight training and improving depression.2 A group of clinically depressed individuals aged 65 to 75 were divided into a control group and treatment group to assess improvements.

The treatment group was assigned an intense 45 minute, 3 times per weight training program. The results were that the treatment group had a significant improvement in their mental state than the other groups. So significant that approximately 75 percent of the treatment group didn’t show any signs of depression.

Weight Training Benefit #6

• Improved posture and balance. Not many people realize that by weight training you are improving your posture because the way you stand and sit is influenced by your neck, shoulder, back, hip and abdominal muscles. When you improve your muscle strength, you sit and stand straighter and develop better balance and stability.

Weight Training Benefit #7

• Age more gracefully. If you’re concerned about the declining years, fight them off with regular strength training. Strength training ensures you are strong enough to continue to participate in aerobic activities, sports and outdoor recreation. Strength training makes you more resilient and less susceptible to slips and falls and increases your ability to heal.

Weight Training Benefit #8

• Enhanced body image. In our image conscious society, many people feel they don’t measure up and lack confidence regarding their body. Strength training improves your muscle definition and helps you lose fat, which helps you feel better about your body.

A recent study looked at the impact a 12-week strength-training program had on the body image of 44 sedentary men and women.3 Before the program, they took an initial survey evaluating how they feel when others assessed their bodies and how satisfied they were with their bodies. They were reassessed after 12 weeks of training. All the participants reported a better body image after the strength-training program.

I’m sure after reading about all the wonderful benefits of weight training; you’ve identified those that mean the most to you. I highly encourage you to start a regular weight-training program so that you can see all the wonderful benefits for yourself.

BUILD YOUR BEST BODY EVER....could you, if you had the time?

On my flight over here to Africa, I found myself sitting next to a well dressed gentleman, a businessman on his way to South Africa after a brief stop in Angola. As we talked casually about the book I was reading ( boxing for fitness ) and about our work, I explained how I keep a one month on, one month off work schedule. He smiled and replied " Oh so that's how you keep in shape? With all that free time ". " Yea, if I had all that time I would be in that kind of shape too ".

I smiled and leaned back in my seat, " how old are you " I asked, noticing his bulging belly was protruding out of his neatly pressed shirt. Thirty three, he replied. I ended our conversation with a half hearted " hey, safe travels ". however what I was thinking was what a " jack ass!! " I am thirty seven years old and have made my living one way or the other through traveling, nationally and internationally since I was eighteen years old. Time, I thought....I make the time and always have, for my fitness and my health. Never have I allowed myself to get out of shape and never would I use that sorry excuse if I did.

Clearly the worst excuse you can make is claiming you don't have the time. I don't buy it. So I arrive in Africa after a day and a half worth of travel to get here. three plane rides, many security check points and a bumpy bus ride. As I drag myself to the gym I can't help but to recall that businessman's comment about time. I wondered even if a person has the time to commit to fitness and training, would they put in the effort it takes to maintain a low body fat percentage, Lean muscle tissue, resting heart rate below fifty beats per minute, supplementing and eating clean foods?

I wonder? What I am getting at is even for me, a man who has never known anything other than living a fitness lifestyle and gyms,( Stepped into my first one at the age of nine ) Finds it hard at times to keep it fresh and stay motivated. To put the hard work in, day after day, month after month, year after year. So Even if you had the time, doesn't mean you will put forth the effort it takes. Time doesn't equal effort. Effort equals results from the time you have put in to your fitness, your health.



Weighted pull up- stick a weight plate between your knees and perform a wide grip pull up.

Incline fingertip push-up....Get your feet up on a bench, press up on your fingertips and do the standard push up.

Squat press- Grab two dumbbells and hold at your sides, squat down below parallel and explode upwards pressing the weight above your head. Quickly go back down and continue.

Weighted bar dips- Again grab that weight plate stick it between your knees and dip until your elbows go below your shoulders.

You just trained all your muscle groups and have drove your body into a furious fat burning mode for hours after the workout.



You have been doing everything right. following your H.I.G.T program,( for all newcomers it's, high intensity group training ) and it's five principles. Intensity, cardiovascular conditioning, sleep, supplementation and smart eating habits. Right? Sure you have.

Now let's deepen your supplementation knowledge. Nothing replaces whole foods, bottom line, as athletes we need good foods to repair damaged cells and muscle tissue and for growth. To get lean and fit, to build muscle ( to lose fat and keep it off forever, you have to build muscle, friends ) we have get high quality protein. So remember supplements are just that, they work along with the foods your eating to insure you are getting the nutrients you need. Here's a quick look at a few essential ones.

The most tested supplement on the planet, And yes it works. A must for anyone who trains with weights. 5gr 30 min before you train , directly after.

FAST TWITCH, pre workout drink-
Loaded with micro nutrients and muscle pumping No2. Just the right mix of caffeine for that needed kick. Sip 16 oz 45 min before you train.

A no brainer, full of heart healthy omega 3's, yet many still aren't aware of this magnificent heavyweight.

Supplement smartly


"50 Fun Ways to Maximize Your Brain Fitness" By guest writer, Christina Laun

While working out and eating right are key parts of being fit and living a long and healthy life, what many people fail to think about is the health of their brains, the organ running the whole show. Your brain needs to get a workout too in order to keep itself in tip top shape and keep you mentally healthy for the rest of your life. Here are some ways that you can give your brain a challenge and have fun at the same time.

Get your brain in shape while you get the rest of your body fit as well.

Take your dog for a walk. Don’t take your usual route, however. Try going down a block you’re unfamiliar with, stopping to talk to others along the way, challenging yourself to name the birds you see or anything else that helps get you moving and thinking.
Go for a jog. Running helps to boost levels of oxygen in your brain and helps your body to produce more endorphins, which will make you feel energized and happier, and what brain doesn’t love that?
Play a sport. Playing a sport not only gets you up and running around but forces you to think on your feet (literally) and make snap decisions of where to run or throw the ball, keeping both mind and body in shape.
Dance. Dancing is a fun way to get some exercise. Try learning a new dance to challenge your brain to remember the steps or find a partner for some dance floor socializing.
Throw a ball around. Working on improving a sensory-guided movement like throwing and catching a ball can improve your brain’s visual, tactile and hand-eye coordination responses and keep them sharp well into old age.

Many foods have a big impact on your brain, so try these tasty dishes to improve your mental abilities.

Eat a variety of foods. Cooking yourself a rainbow of different foods can help keep your brain healthy for years to come. A varied diet provides numerous vitamins, minerals and nutrients that are needed to keep your brain in top shape.
Make some blueberry pancakes. Or just enjoy the blueberries by themselves. Either way, these brain boosting berries can have a big impact on your mind. Studies have found that blueberries help protect the brain from oxidative stress and may reduce the effects of brain impairing conditions like Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, as well as improving the learning capacity and motor skills of older test subjects.
Drink pomegranate juice. Pomegranate juice isn’t only a delicious treat — it can also help keep your brain up and running smoothly. It contains loads of antioxidants which protect the brain from the damage of free radicals.
Have some sweet potatoes. Whether you enjoy them in a pie, as fries, or in any other form, sweet potatoes can be a great brain boosting food. These tubers, like carrots and spinach contain beta carotene which has been shown to improve brain health and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s.
Drink water. Refreshing yourself with a cold glass of water can be a great and fulfilling way to keep your brain at its best. Like all organs in your body, the brain needs water to function properly, so keeping it hydrated is key.
Enjoy some guacamole. Eating avocados can be a great way to improve your brain health, as they contain monounsaturated fats which improve blood flow and lower blood pressure. Hypertension is a risk factor for a decline in mental abilities, so any foods that lower this risk should help you out.
Brew a cup of tea. Two to three cups a day of freshly brewed tea, whether hot or iced, can help enhance your memory and improve your mood and focus. Tea contains contains caffeine which when used in small amounts can be a great way to boost your brain power.
Eat breakfast. A healthy breakfast that is. Eating cereals or toasts that contain whole grains can give you a great morning boost. They help keep your whole body healthy, especially your heart, which is incredibly important to keep blood and oxygen pumping to your brain.
Eat dark chocolate. Indulge your chocolate cravings and improve your brain health by eating some tasty dark chocolate. Chocolate triggers the systems in your brain that pump dopamine. These systems enable learning and memory, and having a bit of chocolate can boost these, keeping your brain fit and happy.
Get Out

Don’t just sit around the house, get out and try these fun ways to keep your brain in shape.

Visit a museum. A visit to a local museum can be a great way to challenge your brain and have a good time. Try challenging yourself to remember everything you saw and relate it to a friend or in a journal later on. Activities that force the brain to receive, remember and think hard help prevent mental decline and improve brain function.
Memorize a song. Listening to music is not only something that’s enjoyable — it can also be a way to work out your brain. Choose a song you don’t know and work at memorizing the lyrics. Focusing on listening to the song will boost the levels of acetylcholine in your brain, improving your memory abilities.
Go exploring. There are likely places in your own community or neighborhood that you haven’t fully explored. Seeing new things can be a great way to help your mind think about new things, and it can be a fun way to spend an afternoon so long as you don’t get lost.
Take a trip. Experiencing new cultures, trying new foods and seeing historical places engages many parts of the brain and keeps it active and sharp, especially if you’re attempting to speak a foreign language on your trip.
Play with a pet. Playing with a pet can make you happy, get you moving and help ease feelings of loneliness and unhappiness. A happy mind is a healthy one.
Meet up with friends. Social interaction forms a big part of long term brain health. Those with weak social relationships have been shown in studies to have higher incidences of mental illnesses than those who maintain close social bonds.
Go see something funny. Sometimes laughter really is the best medicine. Cognitively complex humor forces you to think and makes you happy, allowing you to have fun and pump up your brain power at the same time.
Keep in touch with friends and family. Humans are social animals, and we need social interactions to help keep us mentally healthy. Talking with family and friends, especially those that provide mental stimulation and discussion, can be a great way to form a strong social network that can help keep you healthy for a long time.
Games and Hobbies

There’s no excuse to be bored with so many brain worthy games and hobbies out there to pursue.

Play a video game. While it may not seem like much of a challenge, playing certain video games can actually be good for your mental health. Choose games that require strategy or problem solving or check out some that are designed specifically to challenge your brain.
Play a board or card game. Whether you challenge a kid to game of checkers or play poker with your friends, these kind of games are great for the brain. They challenge your memory and test your math and logic skills.
Play pool. Pick up a pool cue and get to playing a game to improve your brain health. Players must think ahead to their next moves, strategize and concentrate in order to win, giving the brain a quick and fun workout.
Get on the greens. Golf not only gets your body moving but also allows you to engage socially with others. It also can improve mind-body coordination and uses brain power to plan shots and make decisions.
Do a jigsaw puzzle. Puzzles are a fun and challenging way to get your brain working. You will have to think ahead, see things conceptually, and analyze things visually. Get additional benefits by working on the puzzle with a friend.
Do a crossword. Crossword puzzles can help to boost your recall skills while improving your cognitive abilities and creative thinking. Plus, you’ll feel great when you finish a puzzle.
Build a model. Or if you’re not into building models, choose another activity like jewelry making or photography that requires close concentration and understanding of the process of construction. Focusing on the task can engage the brain and can also be a lot of fun.
Pursue a hobby. No matter what you’re into, whether it’s cars or gardening, pursuing a hobby can be a great deal of fun. It can also be a wonderful way to work your brain. Study up on new aspects of your hobby, concentrate on a certain task or meet with others who share your interests to get the most brain work out of your hobby.
Lifelong Learning

Keep your brain busy throughout your life with these learning opportunities.

Learn to play a musical instrument. Or just play one you already know how to play. Music can be very challenging to the brain as it recalls how to play the instrument, read music and keep up with the tempo of the song.
Read a book. Whether you read fluff or classic literature, reading a book can be a great and fun way to boost your mental abilities. Reading helps you exercise your cognitive skills and increases your vocabulary, not to mention providing a great way to relax.
Watch an art film. Watching a movie that requires your full concentration to understand can be a great way to engage your brain while learning more about art and culture. Read literature about the film after you’ve seen it and think about your own responses to it to further boost the mental benefits.
Debate. A friendly debate over the pros and cons of an issue can be a great way to keep you thinking on your feet as well as improving your logic and creativity. You’ll also get the benefits of interacting socially with someone, whether it be a friend or a coworker.
Create mind maps. Sometimes laying out your ideas on paper can be a great way to get your brain up and moving and out of a mental rut. Force yourself to connect ideas and to think outside the box when brainstorming.
Sign up for a daily. Whether you get a daily newsletter or just sign up for a word of the day in your inbox, this daily mental stimulation will help boost your memory, increase your mental stimulation and if nothing else help you sound smarter in conversation.
Take a class. Learning something new can be a great way to challenge your brain and force it to think in new ways. Whether it’s learning about what wine to have with dinner or learning how to do roundhouse kicks, classes will force your brain to retain new information and assimilate new ideas and concepts.
Learn a new language. While not everyone considers learning a language fun, it can be a great way to give your brain one heck of a workout. Acquiring a new language will help keep your brain flexible and your memory and recall skills sharp. Plus, it can be a great skill to have on your next vacation.

Stress can have an incredibly negative impact on the brain, so try these tips to relax.

Meditate. Meditation helps to focus the brain and helps reduce the harmful effects of too much stress. Best of all, you can do it anywhere.
Sleep in. Getting a few extra hours of sleep if you’ve stayed up late can help rejuvenate you and improve your mental abilities. So enjoy resting just a little bit longer on Saturday mornings.
Do yoga. Yoga can be a great workout for your body, but it can also give your mind a chance to relax and recover from stress. Try taking a class or doing yoga at home to calm your mind and train it to concentrate on breathing and movements rather than worries.
Express your spirituality. Studies have shown the embracing a faith or spiritual belief, no matter what that may be, can help reduce stress and can have many mental benefits.
Try tai chi. Tai Chi can be a great way to get your body moving but also to relax and force your mind to concentrate on each movement in turn.
Take a nap. If you’re feeling run down and mentally numb, a quick nap may be just what you need. Even just 20 minutes of sleep can leave you refreshed, physically and mentally.
Challenge Yourself

Make your brain workouts a personal challenge with these suggestions.

Use your peripheral vision. Next time you’re waiting for the bus or hanging out at a cafe, try this mental exercise. Look straight ahead and note everything you can see both in front of you and in your peripheral vision. Challenge yourself to recall everything and write it down. This will force you to use your memory and boost the levels of acetylcholine, a chemical essential to focus and memory.
Turn down the TV. Turn down your TV so that you can barely hear what is being said, and challenge yourself to listen intently to what is going on. this intense focus will challenge your brain, and it can also help improve your listening abilities.
Take it up a notch. Take an activity you already do to work your brain like doing a crossword puzzle or a sudoku and take it up a notch. See if you can complete it faster or more thoroughly than you were able to do before.
Try using your other hand. Most people can only use one of their hands with any degree of coordination, so make a game of using your other hand to do things like write, draw and do small tasks. This is a huge challenge for your brain as it adapts to using a part of your body differently than it’s used to.
Combine activities. Instead of just taking a morning jog, why not take a morning jog while listening to an audio book? Combining activities forces your brain to work at doing more in the same amount of time, giving you a great mental and physical workout.
Break your patterns. If you find yourself doing the same things, day after day, it may be time for a change. Brain health depends on novelty and the acquisition of new or different information, so change up your routines now and then to keep your brain on its figurative toes.


The Lehighton Area Adult Soccer League is being formed for the Fall 2008 season. We are providing a fun yet competitive league for adults in the carbon county and surrounding areas. If you would like to be placed on the same team with another individual please indicate this. Please accurately list your skill set (Beginner, Intermediate, or Expert). This league is open to all skill levels. Indicate your preferred position (Goalie, MidFielder, Defense, etc) so we can evenly distribute players on each Free Agent team.

We need two (2) volunteers to be the Captain and Co-Captain of each Free Agent team, so if you're interested, please indicate this. Each Free Agent team will need a team name and shirt color, so get creative and have a few ideas ready to suggest to your new team. At the current time we have four teams participating. If you would like to be placed on one of these teams please indicate this and we will check roster availability. Visit us at

*Lehighton United*Palmerton Push*Quicksilver*Jim Thorpe FC*
Please contact us at:


I have to be frank and say up front I despise the phrases " I just want to tone up " and " I like to go light weight high reps ". If you utter these words to me, then I completely understand you have no knowledge of training your body or how it adapts to the stresses of weight training, or fitness for that matter. So this article is not about the mythical toning up or training to lift weights many, many, many times with high rep work. This is about the proven science of building your best body ever.

My High Intensity Group Training also known as (H.I.G.T) was developed in 2004 and has fully evolved into the training program it is today. My training methods and principles will seem a bit extreme to some, however at thirty seven I can assure you they were developed with the idea that our bodies are ageing, and as athletes we are simply getting older. Imagine a training method that would allow you to better your fitness level and build more lean muscle tissue along with burning loads of fat was possible, even at any age. With that in mind understand H.I.G.T is efficient and effective and results-driven.

My H.I.G.T program takes men to the point where they are certain they want to quit! Sure that they can't possibly continue, then has you work even harder. You will develop explosive power and speed, you will learn the true meaning of functional fitness. Your body will expend more calories during your time in the gym, then continue to rev your metabolism hours afterwards.

H.I.G.T involves the recruitment of both slow & fast twitch muscle fibers. I wont bother with the science. I will tell you H.I.G.T was developed and planned to recruit fast twitch muscle fibers in abundance in order to better increase your potential for growth of overall lean muscle tissue.

More muscle, more body fat burned, more calories burned at rest. Hey this is work! If you are looking for fun, try PlayStation. Look I only want to help you lose those pounds and feel good about yourself. You have to build lean tissue to burn fat, you have to lift weights to build lean tissue, simple. My high intensity group training will drastically change your body composition, it will change your life... this is exactly what you have been waiting for.......More to come.

Richard Seymour

2008 Fire Expo & Firefighter Combat Challenge

Now here is an event that defines "functional fitness". The Scott Firefighter Combat Challenge®- seen on ESPN for a dozen years, now on Versus. The Challenge annually attracts hundreds of U.S. and Canadian municipal fire departments at more than 25 locations and is now expanding to countries around the world, including New Zealand, Germany, Argentina, Chile, and South Africa.
The Challenge seeks to encourage firefighter fitness and demonstrate the profession's rigors to the public. Wearing "full bunker gear" and the SCOTT Air-Pak breathing apparatus, pairs of competitors race head-to-head as they simulate the physical demands of real-life firefighting by performing a linked series of five tasks including climbing the 5-story tower, hoisting, chopping, dragging hoses and rescuing a life-sized, 175 lb. "victim" as they race against themselves, their opponent and the clock.


From the time my wife and I began dating we trained in the gym together. One of many common likes we shared was putting in some personal time pushing around some iron. Fitness has always been a priority in my life and I am fortunate to share this view with my wife. Our busy schedules and travel don't always allow for us to train together, however when we are apart we often check in on one another's progress.
We are by no means "gym rats". We do what we need to in order to live a lifestyle we feel is both healthy and satisfying, to us maintaining our fitness and making healthy choices in our eating habits has rewards worth working towards. When I am away I choose to workout on my own, I train in what many would consider an unorthodox way and many just can't keep up. At home it is a different story, my wife and I train together. Simply put..heavy and intensely, little rest and all business. She has conditioned herself to train, as I often brag "harder than most men do." We love it that way and I suppose this common goal we share has forged a deeper bond between us and has taught us to learn, work and encourage one another in our day to day lives.
My wife is my best friend and all though we have different interests and events that take place in our lives, it's great we can share this together. I am not one to give marriage advice, just let me say alot can be gained by making your significant other your training partner. It may be challenging at first for both of you, in the long run I really believe it will bring you closer and force you to learn more about yourself and her.



When it comes to food and your health, remember this. What is good for the planet, is even better for your body. If it came from our earth, it is a safe bet it is gonna be good for you. On the other hand if it is man made ( processed ) it's bad for you. Simple rule to help guide you in choosing the foods you put in your body.

FIT FACT:Drink red wine. Researchers have found that drinking 4 to 7 glasses per week cuts your prostate-cancer risk by 48%


Jumping rope is a highly intense exercise, building both aerobic and anaerobic exercise capacity. If you turn the rope as fast as you can you will amp up your heart rate quickly, if you skip at a slower pace you will still be pushing harder than if you were running with a friend. Science has proven this is so, due to the concentration required to perform this skill and the lack of focus placed on the discomfort.
Skipping rope is a top form of cardio conditioning due to how quickly it will improve your fitness. You will develop fast powerful legs, improve balance and hand eye coordination. Most important, it burns fat. Fact: Skipping rope at a quick pace for 10 min will burn the same amount of calories as running for 30 min. Why do you think it has been part of boxing conditioning for decades? Because is works. Makes sense to perform this more challenging form of cardiovascular conditioning due to many ways you benefit.

Here's a description of a beginners rope workout. Remember always do your cardio after your weight training. After!! Never before.

15 sets of skipping for 1 minute intervals with one minute rest between sets.

build up to 3 minutes skipping quickly with 30 seconds of rest between 8 sets.

Experienced: 30 minutes at various speeds and rope maneuvers.

Have fun, enjoy the results.



3 Things You Don't Know About Your abdominal muscles

1. You can strengthen your core without moving a muscle. Whereas most muscles propel you, your core resists movement--for instance, to protect your spine when you twist your torso. So don't be surprised by how hard it is to stay contracted when performing some of my H.I.G.T ab workouts. You're conditioning your core to do its job more effectively.

2. Slouching sabotages your six-pack. Training your core helps correct poor posture. But an hour a week of core work can't compensate for the 50 hours spent slumped over your keyboard. The fix: Stay tall through your hips and keep your head up and shoulder blades back and down all day long.

3. Core muscles contract first in every exercise. All the energy you exert originates in your torso, before being transferred to your arms and legs. So a weak core reduces the amount of force you're able to apply to a barbell. When you hit a plateau in presses, squats, or any other strength move, ask yourself if you're training your core as hard as you can. Here are two very challenging ab exercises to increase core strength.

**Plank with Diagonal Arm Lift
Assume a modified push up position with your feet shoulder-width apart, forearms on the floor. Keeping your torso steady, raise your right arm forward and to the right, so that it points to 2 o'clock. Hold for 2 seconds, then lower and repeat with your left arm, raising it to 10 o'clock. That's one rep. Your elbows should be bent 90 degrees and directly under your shoulders.

***Single-Leg Lowering
Lie on your back with your legs extended straight up. Keeping your legs straight, lower your left leg until your foot is 2 to 3 inches off the floor. Return to the starting position, then repeat with your right leg; that's one repetition. Think about pushing the bottom of your heel away from your hip as you lower your leg. Don't point your toes; keep your foot flexed toward you. Lead with your heel.


The most demanding muscle groups to train are for many the legs. Working your leg muscles is a great way to build lean muscle mass and to amp up fat burning. Leg workouts typically are the most difficult, but well worth it! Remember you can not target fat loss to a specific area, but you can build lean muscle tissue while simultaneously burning fat over your entire body! Without a single doubt, the deep squat is king of all leg exercises.



Most of us take our muscles for granted, not realizing how crucial they are to us. Muscles are the body’s engine, and energy is the fuel. It would be impossible for us to do anything without them, including expressing ourselves. We convey ideas through spoken words using the muscles of the mouth, tongue and larynx, through written words using the muscles of the fingers, or through body language using skeletal muscles.
The human body contains more than 630 muscles. Approximately 35-45% of body mass is muscle tissue. Muscles are long- lasting, self-healing and grow stronger with use. There are three unique kinds of muscle:
• Cardiac muscle, which is found only in your heart. It contracts involuntarily; it is automatically controlled by the nervous system.
• Smooth muscle is found in blood vessels, the digestive system, bladder, airways, and the uterus in a female. It also contracts involuntarily.
• Skeletal muscle is the kind we can see and feel. They attach to the skeleton and come in pairs; one muscle to move in one direction and another to move back the other way. Skeletal muscles contract voluntarily, you have to think about contracting them and the nervous system tells them to respond.
The combination of muscles and bones make up the musculoskeletal system. Together, the skeletal muscles work with bones to give the body its power and strength.
In most cases, skeletal muscle is attached to one end of a bone, stretches across a joint, and then attaches again to another bone. Tendons serve as connector pieces between muscle and bone; when a muscle is contracted, the tendon and bone move along with it.
Skeletal muscles come in a variety of sizes and shapes depending on their job. The muscles in your back, near the spine, are some of the biggest and most powerful. These muscles have the difficult job of keeping the body upright and providing the power to lift and push.


SQUATS are the 1# exercise you can do for overall leg development. Six hundred and fifty plus muscles in the body and with this one movement you use a huge amount of them. If there were only one exercise you were allowed to do, squats would be the one you should choose.
Squats are very important in your strength and muscularity development. This exercise can take a lot out of you, but the results are tremendous.
Usually, people don't do squats because they feel they do not need it. Some common excuses are, "I ain't no football player or powerlifter so I don't have to do that", or, "I have a weak back". This is one of the best exercises you can do to develop lower back strength.
When you begin a squat, make sure you position the bar parallel with your collar bone. Do not put the bar on the back of your neck. Just under the traps and on the rear delts is a good place.
Position your hand outside the rings on the bar. Lift the bar from the rack and take a few steps back.
Make sure your feet are slightly wider than shoulder width apart and toes are pointing out about 40 to 45 degrees.
Your head should be tilted back slightly and your eye is positioned upward.
Concentrate on dropping your hips, as if you were going to sit in a chair. Go down far enough so that your butt is even with your knees.
Control the weight as you go down, stay tight from the time you lift the weight from the rack until you return it.
Keep your knees directly over your feet. Concentrate on exploding upward, this is where the muscles and power development come from, each rep should be one smooth and fluent motion.
The mistake that beginner weightlifters do is load too much weight on and stop about half way down.
In this case, the emphasis is shifted away from your major muscles groups and on to your joints and lower back resulting in injury.
Now super set that with dead lifts or pull-ups and you have a taste of leg and back day, with my H.I.G.T program.



For the next twenty eight days I will be keeping a journal of my training to help you better understand the concept of my high intensity group training routine ( H.I.G.T ) and it's five principles. I will not discuss weight or reps, I will only tell you I do not believe in light weight or high reps. Both I believe are ineffective for building lean muscle tissue and maximum fat burning. This is a simple journal to help guide you in your future training programs. Remember fitness is not about vanity or what you see in the mirror. Fitness is a lifestyle with tremendous benefits that will carry over both in your personal and professional life. H.I.G.T will enhance your physical and emotional health. When you are fit everything in your life will be easier.

Training schedule- 28 days until I return back to the USA. 3 days on. 1 off, 1 on, 1 off- start from day 1
Training duration- 45 min to 1 hr
Training location- Angola, Africa. Malongo gym ( western, coastal Africa )
Training goal- To improve every aspect of my fitness
Training weight- 165
Body fat percentage- 9%
Supplements- creatine, fast twitch, whey protein, fish oil, vit-c,
Food- four protein shakes per day, hard boiled eggs, tuna, chicken, fish

DAY ONE: Chest & biceps

Group 1* following warm up ( usually 5 min of skipping rope ) bench press going directly to seated alternate dumbbell curls. Four sets, max 30 seconds rest between sets.
Group 2* Incline barbell presses followed directly by standing barbell curls. Four sets, max 30 seconds rest between sets.
Group 3* Various angled incline push-ups, followed directly by chin-ups.Four sets, max 30 seconds rest between sets.
Total: 12 sets Followed by 15 min of intense skipping rope, 80% MHR ( my preferred method of cardio is heavy bag work and the rope ).

Note:I only train abs once a week, on day four the full body workout.


I remind myself daily of my good fortune and blessings, I remind myself that because as a child I had a mother and father that loved me and instilled in me very valuable tools for life and for achieving. As I start each new day I ask myself these six simple yet defining questions whenever a new challenge presents itself. I call this "My six."

1) My cause- Having a goal and a plan on how to achieve it is a huge driving force in my life. I believe in achieving simple goals first leading up to the main objective. Attacking any goal this way simply allows for success and reward.

2) My passion- Fitness and competition are without a doubt a strong passion that I have. My health is my greatest possession. I cherish it and thrive on discovering new ways to achieve overall physical and mental health. My years after professional boxing have been filled with educating others in the benefits of a fitness lifestyle.

3) My diet- Food is fuel, plain and simple. Without a doubt you are what you put in your body. The reflexion in the mirror is all the proof of this you need. I enjoy cheating with tasty treats, however ultimately I stay true to eating clean.

4) My workout- For anyone that reads my site regularly, you know the answer to this. My training preference is my H.I.G.T ( high intensity group training ) program. Heavy weight, multiple exercises, up to four performed back to back with little to no rest.

5) My stuff- I have come a long way from living in a dingy studio apartment on seventh st. in Allentown PA. driving a beat up used car. Through hard work, belief in myself, and some luck I have done good for myself. I remind myself daily of the harder times of my life. It keeps me sharp, motivated, and excited about the future.

6) My style- Yeah I am a jeans and T-shirt guy, but that isn't what I mean by style. By style I mean my way of living life and seeing the world as a grown man. I believe in honoring my wife and our marriage vows. "Honor and Respect, baby."
I believe in loyalty and commitment. I dream "big" because that's the only way I can. I believe each and everyday I will be better. I feel sad for those that make excuses for not believing the same. I don't hold grudges and I don't hate, I will not carry those burdens. I love my boxers, Zoe & Hayden, the quest for adventure and loyalty that they posses, I believe are traits every human should also strive for. I have heroes that I admire and try to be like, they are my parents. Without them I could never be the man that I am today!



Watching this past weekends soccer match between LA Galaxy vs D.C. United, I couldn't help but to admire the conditioning of these men. Two Forty five minute periods of running and sprinting. Great athletes playing a very graceful game.
I couldn't help but to think that if soccer players Incorporated intense weight training along with the training needed to function skillfully on the pitch, what a near perfect athlete you could have. As with boxing I believe these athletes would greatly benefit from H.I.G.T, to combine soccer training with an intense and well thought out weight training program focusing on explosive power, speed, reflexes and improved overall functional fitness. Heavy weights and multiple exercises performed with little to no rest. Recruiting maximum type 2 muscle fibers. All it would take is one high profile player to commit to this type of training and the results would recruit a whole sport ready to be faster and stronger then ever.