Intensity for immensity - Sickness for Thickness - sizeBIGGER!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

31 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 209.4
Let me start by saying… “Legs today, gone tomorrow” yes tonight is legs and I’m so much looking forward to engorging my legs with blood. Squat to you drop, is what the poisons going to be tonight!

Just as I expected, the weigh is coming back down after Monday nights chest and arms workout. Having the 2 days off from training over the weekend, allows the body to full up again with carbohydrates. The muscles have the extra day to “carb-up”, which in turn, follows a weigh increase. But the mirror tells the story, you can’t fool the mirror and as long as the skin continues to thin, then everything stays the same.

I will start to play with my carbs’ next week, by skipping 1 or 2 carb meals (only eating protein) just to drop a little water and flatting out the muscle just a little, but not too much as to lose strength, but just enough to make them hungry. You have to give them a reason to want to pull water in and I also want to make sure I’m as low on carbs as possible and at the same time as high as I need to be. At this point in the game it’s all about playing with your water.

Time for a protein drink

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

32 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 210.2

Nothing like losing fat and building muscle at the same time, as my weight starts to slowly climb back up again.

There is something to be said for eating clean and training hard. I can clearly see in the mirror how my skin is getting thinner and the muscles are looking fuller. It’s great when everything starts to come together.

I do think that after last night’s workout, tomorrows weigh-in will be less then today, but we shall see.

I’m still going to keep everything the same as far as my caloric intake, staying at 2700 calories a day, 52% protein, 40% carbs and 8% fat.

I’m not concerned with how much I weigh, as how I look. With enough time, I could make this weight my contest weight. But 5 weeks isn’t enough time, maybe 15 could be, if you know what I mean.

The trick for competition, is to have your muscles hold as much water as possible without spilling over (water on top of the muscle) Now we all know that sodium holds water on top of the muscle and potassium holds the water in the muscle, these are our electrolytes, they balance our water.

But also carbohydrates will do the same. Not only do they hold water in the muscle as Glycogen (storage form of glucose, carbohydrate blood sugar, for muscle contraction) if you eat too much you will “spill over” causing water to sit on the muscle hiding your definition.

At this point in the game, I need not worry about spilling over, as this can be corrected in less then 48 hours. What I want to do (for me) is to eat just enough carbs where I’m burning fat and maintaining full muscle bellies, as my skin becomes thinner… This tells me I’m not over eating my carbohydrates and I’m forcing the body to shred its fat and also giving me as much energy as possible to train intensely

Time for a protein drink

Monday, September 28, 2009

33 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 209.6

Up a pound from yesterday and the only thing I can contribute this too, is the weekend and how on the weekend, we tend to sleep longer, rest longer and kind of lope around. So far I’m very happy with how things are coming about. Let’s keep it all the same for now.

Tonight’s destruction will be Chest and Arms… looking very much forward to this.

By the way, what a great time finishing up my friends video shoot yesterday. What nice bunch of people and of course there was beer and unfortunate I didn’t drink. But I was having so much fun, I didn’t care. I’ll be sure to send out the Utube clip when it becomes available… thanks again to Jerry for letting me be a part of this ...

Jay Cutler did it again, winning his third Mr. Olympia. I have to admit, he did come in shape this year, and you can see it in his face. Great Job Jay!

1. Jay Cutler

202 & Under

Time for a protein drink

Sunday, September 27, 2009

34 days out from competition

8:30 weigh-in 208.6 and just incase you ever wondered how much “crap” weighs, well I can tell you mine weighs .04 pounds, so afterwards I weighed 208.2.
The reason I mention this is, the last two morning weigh-ins were after the fact.

This means, I wasn’t dropping weight as fast as I thought I was and today I’m actually heaver from yesterday, up .04.

So if you think about it, I should have been .04 pounds heaver for yesterdays weigh-in. So 207.8 should have been 208.2 and so the day before it was 209.6 which should have been 210. The weigh–ins earlier were based on before”shit happen”.

What that being said, I think I’ll continue this caloric in-take for another week (2700 calories- protein 52% Carbs 40% and Fat 8%) and see what happens. What I want to happen is for my skin to get thinner and my body weight to slow down from going down, maybe .02 a day or less.

This tells me I’m taking in the correct amount of calories (carbs) to be as big as possible, as I burn the reminding fat through intense workouts and control my water through carbohydrates and sodium

Time for a protein drink

Saturday, September 26, 2009

35 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 207.8
With less then a week of eating clean I’ve dropped 5.8 pounds. This is mainly water held by extra carbs and sodium and beer.
I have lost some fat, maybe about a pound. I didn’t have much fat to start with and because of that I can see my body composition change fast. Let’s see what tomorrow brings after training back and shoulders today. I’m still going to stick to plan and hold back until Monday before I increase my calories.

10am starts with pull-ups and chin-ups to failure, switching from one to the other with each set. From there, off to bend-over rows on a bench for a better stretch, on the smith machine, climbing up to 225. Follow by 4 sets of one arm dumbbell rows with 90’s and finishing back with close grip pull downs for 4 sets.

There is something to be said for the basic compound movements, they really should be staples in your regular training routine for building thickness and great shape to your muscle bellies.

Still dealing with right shoulder pain, I had to start out light and work my way up on the shoulder press machine to 120 pounds, sitting in it reverse facing the backrest. Then reverse grip shoulder press for 4 more set. This really hits the front delts hard. I stayed with machines from there, onto side laterals, rear laterals, then to upright rows for 4 set with the quarters and ending at 80 pound dumbbell shrugs for 4 set.

Great workout, I’m sitting here typing and fighting lat cramps at the same time (both sides) got to love it!

Tomorrow I’m shooting the rest of that video with my friend Jerry for his new album release titled leave me alone and it can be heard here.
Jerry's website is, pay him a visit, good stuff here!

Time for a protein drink

Friday, September 25, 2009

36 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 209.6
Wow, just 2 workouts and eating clean for 4 days really changed me fast. I’m tighter today then I was yesterday and I haven’t lost any size (in the mirror), but I’m getting to far ahead of myself, having a little over 5 weeks to go.
I’m going to still keep everything the same, but if I don’t’ slow down losing body weight come Monday, I will increase my caloric intake by 300 calories to start. Basically I will add 100 complex carb calories to every other meal (I eat 6 protein meals)
I kind of knew I would have to slowly eat more food to maintain my size, so it’s not too much of a surprise.
Hoping my training partner will be able to train tomorrow morning instead of tonight. I have a date with the fabulous Evalorca. She teaches flamenco, tap dance and yoga to children and young adults in the Boston area. Check her out, she’s the real deal.
We have a date to see a movie at the MFA (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) tonight and I’m looking forward to this.

What will I eat during the movie... well, rice cakes of course, with a protein drink to wash it down… speaking of which…

Time for a protein drink.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

37 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 211.4.
Maintaining 2700 calories, protein at 52%, and carbs at 40% and fat at 8%, I’ll keep this going until the end of the week and see where I’m at then.

As you can see, I’m still losing extra water (and fat) while I maintain a high carb diet. I can tell just with 3 days of eating clean, my skin is changing. When shaving my head this morning, I could feel my scalp and all the bones in my head. I could feel the hardness from not having a cushion of water under my skin.

Legs last night, gone today!
Awesome workout, thanks to my training partner for bringing it on!
The damage was done with Smith Machine squats and if you have never tried, please do so, you don’t’ know what you’re missing. Having the ability to really crank out some reps, driving some deep penetration into your thighs, really brings you to that next level. Followed by hack squats, done with your lower back off the pad and dropping your hips (like if you were squatting) into the bucket, having your hams kick in down low as your quads stop you from bottoming out, then squeezing everything back up. This really put all the emphases on the muscles in upper quad area, as well as, your ass and hams… great pump, great workout!

Time for a protein drink

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

38 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 212… just two days of eating clean and I’m already tightening up. Calories still at 2700 basically running a 52% protein, 40% carbs and 8% fat caloric ratio intake.
I should slow down a little losing weight, only because my water is starting to get under control and this 1.6 pounds I lost in these 2 days is just unnecessary water that was being held by extra carbs and calorie. I predict by weeks end, I will be waking up at 210

Legs today…. Gone tomorrow… can’t wait to get the blood into my quads, hams, glutes and cows!
I can honestly say training my legs is my favorite workout. Now if you were to ask me this 20 years ago, I may have giving you a different answer. But knowing if I’m ever to compete in the big leagues, then the legs have to grow more!

Sickness for thickness, intensity for immensity!

Time for a protein drink

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

All bark and No bite

So I'm leaving Salem NH from work traveling down 93 south heading to Boston. As I'm passing over 495 traveling in he middle lane with my cruise control set at 70 mph, 5 over the speed limit. A car coming onto 93 from 495 pulls right in my lane. Not a big deal, he didn't cut me off. But I did have to go around him because he wasn't driving my speed. When I got in front of him he starts to ride me real close, with in 5 feet, so I touched my brakes and up comes the middle finger. So I hit my brakes harder and this prompts him to point over to the side of the rode, gesturing me to pullover... so I just look at him in my review mirror and shock my head no, as to say, you don't want me to pullover.

So we continued down the highway another 2 0r 3 minutes, he's no longer tailgating me but is still behind me. I move to the left lane as the middle lane was slowing down and eventually he's now beside me. I look over at him and he again gestures with this arm pointing over to the side of the rode for me to pull over and get it on. This time I hit my brakes pull behind him and move to the breakdown lane, he does the same in front of me. We come to a stop, I jump out as he did too and we meet near the back of his car. Now I recognize this guy from the gym. He says to me “what did you to that for" I'm assuming he meant hit my brakes hard. I said, you where tailgating me, that's why. I look at his right hand to see a black knife folded in his hand. I yell WHAT! YOU BROUGHT A KNIFE OUT. WHAT YOU CAN'T FIGHT WITH YOUR HANDS, ARE YOU NOT A MAN.

I then said if I get the knife from you I'm going to stick you with it... yeah right was his reply.
I started calling him a little boy who can't fight and he started to say hit me, but I couldn't understand him, but finally I heard him say "hit me" my reply was I would knock you out if I did... he laughs.
I noticed he had some big time gyno, tangerine size, on both nipples. I started to make fun of him, telling him he had some nasty bitch tits, as I continue calling him a little boy and he kept saying hit me. The dude kept on looking at my arms, (the veins where pumping tonight) as I was yelling at him and his eyes started to have that "deer in the head lights" look, as his mind started to wander...
Now I'm thinking two things, either he recognizes me as did I him or he realizes he bit off more then he could chew. Either way, I wasn't going to hit him first, especially with him holding a knife and he wasn't going to hit me, nor try to stick me with a knife, so I called him a little boy one more time and told him to stop wasting my time and left

I was this person back in my 20's when I lifted weights and don't know how to fight. I wouldn't have come out with a knife, but I would have bark at someone and when push came to shove, I would have said hit me, go ahead and hit me... which makes no sense, since I was the one calling out the person for a fight... Now, I'm not saying I don't' call people out for a fight anymore or I don't' do the same thing this guy did to me, point someone over while driving if warranted... but I don't asked to be hit, I just assume hit first...

Why do weightlifters who don't know how to fight always look for a fight and the ones that do, don't... Maybe when you learn how to fight, the revelation that there is always someone tougher is much clearer

By the way, when I do see this person again in the gym, I will ask him if he would still like to be hit by me seeing he's not holding a knife.
I can only hope his reply will be yes

Time for a protein drink

Biceps... To peak or not to peak

A guys comes up to me the other day in the gym and asks me for an exercise he could do for his biceps.
Now this guy has great arms. You can see he has a lot of muscle development, but he has no peaks on his biceps. They were big, but no peaks.
I asked him does he curl with his fist bent forward like the above picture or does he curl with his fist bend back, like the bottom picture...

He told me he has never curled with his fist bent back. I mentioned to him, by curling with your fist curled forward you involve more forearms (he has great big forearms) and you are not fully contracting the biceps as much as you could.
For me, I've always tried to isolate the muscle I'm working on as much as possible.
By bending my fist back and leading with my wrist during a bicep curl, not only am I isolating my biceps from my forearms as much as possible, I'm also enabling a much greater contraction and developing a nice peak.

This all leads me to this conclusion... it's not all of one way or no way, it's variety and being able to change to make changes. Just the little wrist change can make a difference in your muscle development and how that exercise shapes you.
I have been trying to get my forearms to catch up to my biceps my whole life... last night I curled with my fist curl forward towards me, like the above picture and my forearms got a great pump! Sometimes change is a good thing...

Time for a protein drink

39 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in 213.2. Total calories yesterday 2700. 325 grams of protein, 1300 carbohydrate calories and 8 grams of fat for the day. a little shy from the 3000 mark I was aiming for, but I feel good and I'm going to run with this for the week.

Gym weigh-in 6pm last night was 218 (cloth). Training partner took the night off to give his shoulder another days rest, so I opted out of the flat benching and did dumbbells instead. Starting at 65 and climbing to 100, 6 sets total. From there, it was inclines on the smith machine for 4 sets, then to flat and incline dumbbell flies 3 sets each, ending with machine flies really exaggerating the butterfly movement and squeezing hard, finishing off with a deep pump.
3 movements for triceps followed by 3 movements for biceps, ending with forearm work off the end of a bench, wrist curls in both directions, giving a nice blood pump!

No gym tonight. Calories will stay the same

Time for a protein drink

Monday, September 21, 2009

40 days out from competition

6:30am weigh-in is right at 213.6 and having just about 7% body fat, I plan on competing at 203.

What will change for me in the next 6 weeks will be, no alcohol, no simple sugars and just clean protein, complex carbs and water

Basically I'll eat every 2.5 hours as i do now. 50 grams of protein with 200-300 calories of a starchy carb. (Rice, Potato, Pasta and I like Matzo) You want your body to run off these carbs, which are stored in the liver before being used. These carbs are best for bodybuilders in terms of muscle fullness, burning fat and being able to control water.
Speaking of which, I will also lower my sodium intake down below 500 milligrams a day. Fat will be less then 30 grams a day which is 10% of a 3000 calorie a day diet.

3000 calories a day is going to be my starting point. Now this may increase or decrease depending on how fast my body starts to strip the little fat it has.

Training will stay the same, doing a Monday, Wednesday, Friday workouts, but I will add a day of posing, where I'll hold mandatory poses for about an hour. This will help in burning a little extra and also aid in shaping and growth, not to mention conditioning for competition

I will not be doing any cardio, I feel I should be able to rid this little fat/water through eating correctly and training intensely

Tonight it's Chest and Arms, looking forward to the flat bench.
Always train the basic movements

Time for a protein drink

Sunday, September 20, 2009

New England Bodybuilding

So this weekend I get a flyer in the mail from NPC (National Physique Committee) telling me about the New England Bodybuilding competition October 31st. (Halloween).

I ran it by the family, since we have plans to do the Austin Powers theme this year. Me playing Doctor Evil and Anthony our 8 year old playing Mini Me (head shaved, his idea, got to love it!) and Mom playing Doctor Evil's girlfriend, Frau Farbissina.

We also planned to spend a night in Salem MA this year in costume and Anthony has excepted this as a trade off, making up for not trick or treating this year and allowing me to compete in this event.
So starting tomorrow, I will start to prepare myself for competition... 6 weeks out, more to come...

Time for a protein drink!

Video Shooting part one- scene Smart Car

Here we have the 4 trouble makers coming to the concert/party in their Smart Car.
Recorded in reverse...

Video shoot part one

Friend on mine from the gym, Jerry Velona, is shooting a video for a song on his latest CD. The song is Leave Me Alone.

Jerry's website

He tells me I'll play a bouncer around the band and also interacting with some of the crowd. Boy now that feels right up my alley. I'll just play a Biker wearing jeans and black T. He said to bring a lot of attitude. That shouldn't be a problem, I'm a bodybuilder, at times, I'm all attitude.

Today we are shooting a small scene where another bouncer and I throw some trouble makers out of the concert/party and into the back of a pickup truck

Final shooting next week, I'll post the video when it hits U-tube

Time for a protein drink

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Legs today, Gone tomorrow!

Legs today, Gone tomorrow, is what I like to say on legs day. I’ll coin that phase throughout the day, as to keep me psyched for my legs work out that night.
Knowing if I don't get my legs up to the next level, there will be no chance at the Nationals or any chance for a pro card.
Legs today, gone tomorrow the legs will be and for a few days afterward too! You know you had a great leg work out when you have trouble bringing yourself down on a chair, because that movement of sitting is like squatting and you just squatting your ass off

I competed in bodybuilder from 1985 to 1992, then stopped to box for the next 12 years. I fought in the 1996 Golden Gloves as Light heavyweight, winning a 59 sec. first round knockout in the semi finals.

When I got back into Bodybuilding June 1, 2007 after not touching a weight since 1996, I knew the legs had to grow...

Searching the internet one day I came across this web site called Stronglifts. This guy put together instructions on how to lift correctly. Basically putting down in writing, things most of us take for granted.

Here’s the squat article, I thought I'd share it.

Time for a protein drink

Squat Setup.

You’ll have to think about a lot of things at first. Study the tips below, start with an empty barbell, focus on your technique.
Chest Up. Keeping your chest up makes lower back rounding impossible & tightening of your upper-back easier.
Forward Look. Look down & your back will bend. Look at the ceiling & your neck will hurt. Look forward.
Bar Position. Put the bar low, on the muscles of your back shoulders. Below the bone at the top of your shoulder-blades.
Grip Width. Narrow grip makes it easier to tighten your upper-back. Do lots of shoulder dislocations if this position feels uncomfortable.
Thumbless Grip. Put your thumbs on top of the bar, next to your fingers. You’ll be able to keep your wrists inline with your forearms.
Straight Wrists. Your back supports the weight, not your hands. Keep your wrists inline with your forearm, never bend them.
Tight Upper-back. Bring your shoulder-blades together. Tightening the upper-back gives the bar a solid base to rest on.
Elbows Back. Don’t let them come forward during the Squat. Pushing your elbows back prevents elbows injuries.
Foot Stance. A narrow stance doesn’t work for the low bar Squat. Heels should be shoulder-width apart.
Toes Out. Point your toes out at about 30 degrees. Your toes must always follow your knees.
Weight on The Heels. Curl your toes up if needed. Never get on your toes. Push from the heels.
Squatting Down. You have unracked the bar correctly. All muscles are tight & ready to Squat. Key to the low bar Squats are the hips.
Hips Back. Think sitting on your toilet. Hips go back first, way back. If you can’t, you probably have tight hamstrings. Do the Squat Stretch.
Knees Over Toes. Don’t let your knees travel forward in the bottom Squat position. Knees over the toes, not further.
Knees Out. Never allow your knees to buckle in. It can cause knee injury. Push your knees out.
Hit Parallel. Your hip joint must come lower than your knee joint. Ask someone to judge your depth or tape yourself. No Partial Squats.
Squatting Up. Your hip muscles are stretched when you hit parallel. Use that stretch to bounce from the bottom. DO NOT relax your hip muscles & DO NOT bounce off your knees. Keep your hip muscles tensed.
Hips Up. If your hips come forward, your knees will also come forward. Drive your hips up straight out of the bottom.
Squeeze Your Glutes. Power comes from the glutes. Squeeze your glutes as hard as you can while driving your hips up.
Push From The Heels. Curl your toes up if needed. Don’t let your heels come off the floor. Push from the heels.
Knees Out. Same as for the way down: don’t let your knees buckle in. Push your knees out.

Common Squat Problems.

If you have someone to help you improve your Squat technique, great. Otherwise tape yourself and use the following tips or Starting Strength to improve your Squat technique.
Lower Back Rounds. Keep your chest up & do the Squat Stretch. Read why your lower back rounds during Squats & how to fix it.
Leaning Forward. Happens when your hips go up faster than your shoulders. Read how to avoid leaning forward on Squats.
Bent Wrists. Will cause wrist pain once the bar gets heavy. Support the weight with your back muscles, not with your wrists.
Knees In. You have weak and/or tight hip muscles. Do the Squat Stretch & actively push your knees out on every rep.
Knees Forward. Move from the hips: hips back when Squatting down, hips up – not forward – when Squatting up.
Heels Off The Floor. Puts stress on your knees & impairs stability. Curl your toes up and push from the heels.