Day 68: Fake it until you BECOME it [Ted Talk Clip]

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As you may already know, I consider myself a very motivated and confident person. I too have my days where I feel like crap, and my personal ways to quickly gaining confidence during those days, is to “alter” my looks. This can be as easy as, getting a haircut or buying some swagger clothing (suit up á la Barney Stinson. But if you’re losing your hair or just have no money, then I got a clip for you. I wanted to share this amazing TED-talk by Amy Cuddy, where she literally gives you a 20 minute “life hack” tutorial on gaining confidence. Here’s a short description on the clip (snatched from Youtube):

“Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success.”

 

If you have 20 minutes and I’m guessing that you have (since you found my blog link through Facebook) then I really recommend you checking this clip out. Trust me, you’ll win more life points watching this than a bunch of cute cats on the Internet. And to answer the question you’re thinking right now: YES, I too sometime stand like I’m mother fucking Superman when I’m at work. Does it work? Try it yourselves!

Superman or SuperChris? Powerposing before it was cool.

Superman: Powerposing before it was cool. 

Work Hard, Eat Hard… Stay Hard….WHAT?

/C

 

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Day 66: Keep calm and lift some weights [9-day cycle #5]

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Before I start, I just want to say that this quote above is so awesome, just wanted to get that out there. Anyways, I’m lagging a bit on my workout updates, these results are about a week old, but I’ll catch up so don’t worry. As I mentioned in my last workout post (check the post HERE), I had my very first setback on the squats exercise. Nothing that severe, but enough to take some safety precautions. So to keep it on the safe side I reduced the weight by 5kg (from 100kg to 95 kg), I also changed the reps on each series to 8, 9, 10. Yet another great cycle, with a lot of improvements!

Here’s the entire 9-day cycle #4:

Bold = Changes on sets and reps
Green = Increase in weights, meaning FUCK YEAH I’m getting stronger
Red = Decreased in weights, meaning YOU A BITCH, eat more, get some rest.
Yellow = The color of my people, meaning NO CHANGE since last week. 

THE DEAD LIFT / CHIN UPS

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch.

DEADLIFT

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 50 60 70 85 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 115 kg – 6 Reps (To Failure) – (+4.54 % )
  • OffSet (~10%): 100 kg – 7 Reps – (+5.26 %)
  • OffSet (~10%)  90 kg – 8 Reps (+5.88 %)

CHINS

B.W = Body weight (77kg)

  • 3 Reps B.W
  • TopSet: Reps B.W+ 12.5 kg  (+2.5 kg )
  • OffSet Reps B.W+5 kg  (+5 kg) 

Comments about the workout: Nothing to complain about this day, everything went my way and I felt on top. I usually throw my weights on the floor to reduce the load on my back, I didn’t realize that an old lady was doing her workout beside me. I swear, I almost gave her a heart attack, damn happy to dodge that accident.

Stretching - The ultimate tool to avoid injuries and gives you the possibility to walk up stairs after leg days.

Stretching – The ultimate tool to avoid injuries and gives you the possibility to walk up stairs after leg days.

THE BENCH PRESS / REHAB

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch.

BENCH PRESS

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 40 45 50 60 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 75 kg – 6 Reps (To Failure) (+7.14 %)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 65 kg – 7 Reps (+ 5.26 %)
  • OffSet (5-10%)  57.5 kg – 8 Reps (+5.88 %)

TRICEPS

  • 1×20 triceps 
  • 2×10 excentric hanging triceps 

REHAB

  • No Warm-up
  • Shoulder exercises (rotator cuff rehab)

Comments from the workoutFelt pumped and focused a lot on my technique and form. Completed my goals and it felt easy, didn’t even have any problem with my shoulder today.

I've added a bit of triceps exercise to my bench-press workout.

I’ve added a bit of triceps exercise to my bench-press workout.

SQUATS / ARMY PRESS

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch…

Squats

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 50 60 70 80 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 95 kg – 8 Reps (To Failure) (-5 %)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 90 – 9 Reps (+3 Reps )
  • OffSet (5-10%)  80 – 10 Reps  ( +10 Reps )

Army Press

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 20 25 – 6 6 4 (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 35kg – 6 Reps (OBS completed 6 reps this week) (+1 Rep)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 27.5 – 7 Reps (+1 Rep)
  • OffSet (5-10%)  22.5 – 8 Reps (+1 Rep)

Comments from the workout: A very nervous workout since last time it didn’t go as planned. I took my time on the warm up and really focused on my execution. Didn’t feel anything other than a bit of sore shoulders from the bench press workout. Keeping calm and lifting some weights!

Working out like a sir! Had laundry day so I only had these clown socks.

Working out like a sir! Had laundry day and I was out of socks, so I only had these clown socks.

Not much left now, got to push through, lets go!

Eat hard, work hard, sleep… hard?

//C

Day 63: Its all about the abs… Or is it?

3Since I live outside of Stockholm, I don’t have the possibility to meet my parents on a regular basis. Right around day 30 on my challenge I met my mom, we haven’t seen each other since I started my Leangains diet. Her first reaction was; “Wow you’ve lost a lot of weight!  This was true since at that time I dropped about 3 kg. However, my mom kept staring at me and eventually she told me honestly: “Have you really lost weight, or is it your hair” (read giant head)?

My mom usually has a good eye on how slim/fat/bony my face looks, but this time she was mislead by my long hair. And when I say long, I don’t mean like Rapunzel’s long hair. I have a friend that calls my hair the “Birds Nest”, since, according to him it looks like one, and birds fly into my hair and settles there until their eggs hatch.

Just another bad hair day? No man, this is a good day, you should see it on a fucking bad day.

Just another bad hair day? No man, this is a good day, you should see it on a fucking bad day, old people get lost in my hair and die.

I’ve noticed that if you only look at my head (separate from my body), its actually pretty huge. To to make it even worse, just put about 5 kg of pure Filipino hair and you got yourself the next villain in The Avengers movie, Dr Gigantor Head. But together with my body, its actually proportional.  

So why am I writing about my freakishly big head? Well, I got a comment from one of my friends, and he wrote: “In the end, isn’t all about the abs?“. For some people this might be all they want, but for me, I believe that having right body proportions is the right way to go. This is were my head story enters the picture, I believe that it’s proportional to my body, it has a nice fit to it. Now, your head is rarely something you can affect in terms of altering your overall look. There are other parts of your body that can shape to get that perfect body of yours. There are different shapes men or women in the gym can have, skinny, skinny-fat, bulky, lean, chubby and my personal favorite “did you forget something?”-people. From here, it’s easier to just show you what I mean….

The don't skip leg day people..

The” don’t skip LEG day” people..

The "don't skip chest day" people

The “don’t skip CHEST day” – people..

The "Don't sky GYM day" people

The “Don’t skip GYM day” people (Danny are you aming for this body? HAHA)

And my personal favorite:

The "you are beyond BIG that your head looks like a tiny thumb"-people

The “you are beyond BIG that your head looks like a tiny thumb”- people

So back to the original question, is it really just about the abs? Think about it…..!

Work Hard, Eat Hard… Sleep Hard?

Day 61: This post will go unnoticed since everyone’s watching the football match [The Weigh-in #5]

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Just a few minutes until the kick-off between Sweden vs Portugal, important match since it determines if we’re qualifying to the World Championship in Rio next year. I’m not a big fan of fotball, but when it comes to a match that can bring a whole nation to a stop, it’s hard not to join in. Since my majority of readers are from Sweden, NO ONE will see this update, except my mother (Hey mom, thank you for liking my posts).

So a brief update since the last weigh-in, I got to admit that I was hoping for some increase on my measurements. The ones I’m referring to is my biceps thighs and chest, they haven’t changed much since I started. I’ve gained in strength but not in muscle volume, but again this was not my main goal. Here’s a great example of why it’s helpful to monitor other factors than just your weight; My diet and workout has gone great, however my weight hasn’t moved much since three weeks ago ( 77.7 +/-0.5 kg), and looking in the mirror no bigger change has shown, except maybe the lower abs are starting to show a bit. I went to check my routinely fattie check and it seemed that I’ve lost 1.2 % fat, (that’s almost 1.0 kg fat, shieeet). So, there is more than meets the eye, remember that.

So if I wasn’t clear with this before, don’t put all your focus on the weight scale it will only disappoint you when it’s moving the “wrong” direction.

Nothing new that "pops out" except my uncleaned room. My lower abs are slowly showing as well as my back.

Week 9: Nothing new that “pops out” except my uncleaned room. My lower abs are slowly showing as well as my back.

DCIM104GOPRO

Week 7:Yeah, I got a haircut, I tend to get a giant head when I let my hair grow, I feel more in proportion now. No real change since last time, except those 2 kg that’s hiding somewhere. Can you spot it?

Week 5

Week 5 – Feel actually leaner and the diet is going smoothly.

Week 3, about 3 kg lighter. Not much different, but that's ok.

Week 3, about 3 kg lighter. Not much different, but that’s OK. Does anybody see any difference?

Week 1. Still a few premium versions out there to unlock the stars.

Week 1. Still a few premium versions out there to unlock the stars.

The numbers in the parenthesis is compared with the previous week/time of the measurements. Green means a good change, red less good (not a certainly a bad thing) and yellow is unchanged.

Week 9 Monday Morning Measurements (Latest Results):

  • Weight: 79.9 kg (-0.1)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 57  (0/0)
    • Biceps: Right: 30.5 Left: 30.5  (-0.5/-0.5)
    • Chest 97 (+1)
    • Waist 78.0 (-1)
    • Hips 95 (0)
  • Fat Percentage: 10.81 (-1.18 %) (That’s fucking awesome!)

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Sidenote: Note the more defined shoulder and back muscle, compare it with the first picture

Week 8 Monday Morning Measurements (Latest Results):

  • Weight: 78.0 kg (-0.5)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57.5 Left: 57.5  (0.5/0.5)
    • Biceps: Right: 31 Left: 31  (1/1)
    • Chest 96 (-1)
    • Waist 79.0 (0)
    • Hips 95 (+0.5)
  • Fat Percentage: Not measured

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Week 7 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 78.5 kg (+0.2)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 57  (0/0)
    • Biceps: Right: 30 Left: 30  (0/0)
    • Chest 97 (0)
    • Waist 79.0 (-2)
    • Hips 94.5 (+0.5)
  • Fat Percentage: 11.99 (-0.42 %) (Still going strong)

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Sidenote: It doesn’t show but veins are starting to appear on places that I’m not used to seeing such as the biceps and shoulder muscles. Shieeeet.

Week 6 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 78.3 kg (+1.5)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 57  (0/0)
    • Biceps: Right: 30 Left: 30  (0/0)
    • Chest 94 (-1)
    • Waist 81 (+1.2)
    • Hips 94 (-1.5)
  • Fat Percentage: Not measured  

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Week 5 Monday Morning Measurements (Latest results):

  • Weight: 76.8 kg (-0.8)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 57  (-1/-1)
    • Biceps: Right: 30 Left: 30  (0/0)
    • Chest 95 (-1)
    • Waist 79.8 (-0.2)
    • Hips 95.5 (+0.5)
  • Fat Percentage: 12.41 (-1.2 %) (FUCK YEAH, LETS PARTY LIKE ITS THE YEAR 2000)

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Week 4 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 77.6 kg (+0.8)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 58 Left: 58  (+1/+1)
    • Biceps: Right: 30 Left: 30  (0/+0.5)
    • Chest 96 (+2)
    • Waist 80 (0)
    • Hips 95 (0)
  • Fat Percentage: Not measured

  • No Weekly images

Week 3 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 76.8 kg (-1.2)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 57  (+1/+1)
    • Biceps: Right: 30 Left: 29.5  (-0.5/-0.5)
    • Chest 94 (didn’t have measurement from last week)
    • Waist 80 (-2.5)
    • Hips 95 (0)
  • Fat Percentage: Not measured

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Week 2 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 78 kg (-1.9)

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 56 Left: 56  (-1/0)
    • Biceps: Right: 30.5 Left: 30  (-0.5/0)
    • Chest ???
    • Waist 82.5 (-2.5)
    • Hips 95 (-2)
  • Fat Percentage: Not measured

  • No Weekly images

Week 1 Monday Morning Measurements:

  • Weight: 79.9 kg

  • Measurements (cm):

    • Thighs: Right: 57 Left: 56 (-/-)
    • Biceps: Right: 31 Left: 30 (-/-)
    • Chest 96 (-)
    • Waist 85 (-)
    • Hips 97 (-)
  • Fat Percentage 13.64 % (10.6 kg fat)

  • Images taken with GoPro (check above).

Day 59: Do you eat 1 kg chicken everyday?

6A common question people ask me when I share my diet plan to them is: 200 g protein!? That’s a shitload of protein, do you really eat that much? The answer is, yes, I try. If you’re new to the blog I’m currently on a Leangains diet, and I went through the basic idea in my previous post which you can find here. Everyday I need to eat roughly 200 g protein a day, which corresponds to approximately 1 kg chicken (rule of thumb, 20 g protein in 100 g chicken).

I have a friend that calls me the “human trashcan” and the reason for this is that I’m the left on the dinner table that eats the left overs. I admit that I have a tremendous appetite but even for me, 1 kg chicken/beef is A LOT.

I try to eat at least a 600 g cooked chicken/beef each day and divided it into two large meals, my lunch and dinner. Here are additional protein sources I eat from, the different sources are graded by quality, price and taste:

  1. Chicken, red meat, fish (not canned tuna), grined meat
  2. Protein shakes, cottage cheese, nuts, canned tuna
  3. Eggs, dairy products, lenses, various beans
  4. Bacon, pork

So I eat little bit of everything, between my lunch and dinners. One of my favorite snacks/desserts is cottage cheese with berries and nuts on the side, winner food. Some of these protein sources have higher fat and carb contents, so if you’re planning on eating nuts, so keep in mind that you’re eating a shitload of fat.

Easiest snack ever, if you're even more lazy, skip the berries and bowls, eat the nuts directly in the package.

Easiest snack ever, if you’re even lazier, skip the berries and bowls, eat the nuts directly on the cottage cheese (lazy bum style).

As long as I can remember there’s always been buzz and discussion on the use of supplements (Sv kosttillskott). I can relate to some of the questions people discuss on, but speaking from my own opinions, I believe that taking supplements is a great complement to your diet IF used correctly. Do you need supplements to reach what you want to achieve? It’s not necessary but it can help you on the way. I’m not here to start any discussions on if you should or should not take it, do whatever works for you.

The arsenal of supplements I take. It contains of amino acids, day and night whey protein and additional fish oil and vitamins/minerals.

The arsenal of supplements I take. It contains of amino acids, day and night whey protein and additional fish oil and vitamins/minerals.

My roommate had his birthday yesterday, so I’m gonna eat some tasty cake now, part of my supplement plan….NOT.

Have a nice weekend.

Work Hard, Eat Hard… Sleep Hard?

Day 56: Punishment or Reward?

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So for this challenge I wanted to try something different. Punishment is the new way of “rewarding” myself.  I truly believe that when you’re fighting for something that you risk losing rather than gaining, you tend put a bit more effort into what you want to achieve. It depends of course on your personality, I’m not saying this works for everybody, but I think this can work for me.
There is a reason why I have this blog, and that is to deliberately expose myself to you readers. I’m no different from other people, like most people I can admit that I have my insecurities, failing this challenge knowing that you’re reading my blog, makes me a bit nauseous.

“Failing in public is the ultimate humiliation punishment for me.”

That face you do when you realize that you forgot  your headphones...

That face you do when you realize that you forgot your headphones…

 I gotta admit, having this a humiliation around the corner has helped me a lot during the first half of this challenge. But to be honest, it has started to wear off on me…. Knowing how I get (content and sloppy) when I know that things are going my way, I’ve prepared an additional punishment, here is the official mail that I wrote to a “friend” of mine:

Hello Ex,

Here is my special offer that offers you the chance to win some money:

The Challenge:

I’ve challenged myself in a 100 day event to get in the best physical shape possible. I’ve already passed the halfway mark and this “bet” is for me to keep me focused and push myself to the very end. YOU don’t need to do anything.

The Deadline:
The challenge will end December 23 (44 days from now)
The rules:
 – No candy during this period
 – No skipping of workout session.
 – No cheating or breaking the 16 hour fasting period.
 – Stretching of lower body is mandatory for at least 10 min, after each workout session.
The “Loopholes”
– Snickers is not considered candy in this agreement.
– These rules are not valid in international waters and other countries.
– IF sick, injured, or forced to work, this rule is NOT valid.
– If needed to break the 16 hour fast, permission needs to be asked first.
The Bet:
If I lose, I pay you 1000 kr and. If you lose, you pay me 4 movie tickets. In addition to if I lose, I will share a very specific secret/statement/gossip, In other words, something that I KNOW you want to know from me.
The Judge:
Since you can’t monitor me 24/7 you won’t be able to know if I’m cheating or not. Trust is the key for this to work. I have no reason to lie since it will only damage my own performance.
So why my Ex-girlfriend? Well, you know how you have friends or acquaintance that you hate losing to? She’s beyond that limit, and thinking of losing to her makes me irritated that I rather go to the gym or skip unhealthy shit rather than to lose to her. I rather stick my eye with a chopstick than to declare defeat to her. It’s not about the money, its the fact that every time I lose to this girl I feel like I’m losing a bit of my dignity. Don’t worry I’m over her, so I’m not playing that grumpy ex-boyfriend card.
I ain't losing to my Ex, bring it...!

I ain’t losing to my Ex, bring it…!

Trust me, you’ll have those lazy rainy Saturdays where you rather be in bed than to go to the gym. And when you do, it works to know that your ex/friend/colleague is at home, waiting for you to fail, and what’s not a better feeling than to prove a hater wrong? Haterz Gonna Hate. Game on Haterz.
Work Hard, Eat Hard… Sleep Hard?

Day 54: My first setback, the drama begins… [9-day cycle #4]

5Another cycle ended, and this time it didn’t go as well as the previous ones. I must say that my weight gains have gone great and from past experience, you can’t really expect that everything will go your way, at all times. It doesn’t matter how good your plan is, there will always be setbacks, success is not a straight line, am I right? As I mentioned in my third cycle  (check it out in at this LINK), I felt a bit sore on my left hip (like an old fuck). My hip has neither gotten worse or better, until the infamous squat day.

“I was 5 kg away from the 100 kg mark so I decided to push myself harder that day, just to reach that wonderful limit of three digits. As soon as I did the first rep, I felt that this shit was too heavy. Fuck me, right?”

I always aim for 8 reps, but I couldn’t go more than 6 that time. After taking my rest, I tried to do my second set but felt weaker and more fatigue than usual, and that’s when the light pain started to occur. So after many buts and maybes, I eventually decided to skip the last set, just to be on the safe side. From experience, I’ve gotten to know different types of injuries, and this one I would categorize as just an “overworked” hip muscle. These things happen and the important part in a situation like this is not to feel defeated, just keep it together and get some food or regroup. And for my retarded (racist) friends that can’t tell a difference between a Chinese and a Filipino, that kid is NOT me (if you’re smiling, you’re THAT friend.

Weighted chins was one of many exercises that went great this cycle.

Weighted chins was one of many exercises that went great this cycle.

Here’s the entire 9-day cycle #4:

Bold = Changes on sets and reps
Green = Increase in weights, meaning FUCK YEAH I’m getting stronger
Red = Decreased in weights, meaning YOU A BITCH, eat more, get some rest.
Yellow = The color of my people, meaning NO CHANGE since last week. 

THE DEAD LIFT / CHIN UPS

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch.

DEADLIFT

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 50 60 70 85 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 110 kg – 6 Reps (To Failure) – (+4.76 % )
  • OffSet (~10%): 95 – 7 Reps – (+2.7 %)
  • OffSet (~10%)  85 – 8 Reps (+3 %)

CHINS

B.W = Body weight ( 77kg)

  • 3 Reps B.W
  • TopSet: Reps B.W+ 10 kg  (+2 reps)
  • OffSet Reps B.W  (+2 reps) 

Comments about the workout: One of the best workout (so far), 110 kg deadlift without any straps, and it felt liiightway baaaaby (think Ronnie Colemans voice). Same goes for the chins, I’ve consistently increased my volume and I think it has helped me to gain in strength

THE BENCH PRESS / REHAB

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch.

BENCH PRESS

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 40 45 50 55 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 70 kg – 6 Reps (To Failure) (+7.69  %)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 60 kg – 7 Reps (+ 4.35 %)
  • OffSet (5-10%)  55 kg – 8 Reps (+4.76 %)

TRICEPS

  • 2×20 Body Weight

REHAB

  • No Warm-up
  • Shoulder exercises (rotator cuff rehab)

Comments from the workoutMy shoulder is getting better, not fully recovered but after doing 70 kg it feels I’m moving in the right direction.

SQUATS / ARMY PRESS

Rest between warm-up and top set: 4 minutes, rest between top and offsets: 3 minutes. 5-10 minutes warm-up/cooldown and stretch…

Squats

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 50 60 70 80 – 8 4 4 4 3   (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 100 kg – 6 Reps (To Failure) (+5.26 %)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 90 7 Reps (12.5 % )
  • OffSet (5-10%)  Did not finish ( – %)

Army Press

  • Warm-Up (Kg): 20 20 25 – 5 5 4 (WEIGHT / REPS)
  • TopSet: 32.5kg – 5 Reps (OBS completed 6 reps this week) (+7.69%)
  • OffSet (5-10%): 27.5 – 6 Reps (+9.1%)
  • OffSet (5-10%)  22.5 – 7 Reps (+22.2%)

Comments from the workout: Nothing I’ve already mentioned above. I ate really bad the day before and it didn’t help either that I got just about six hour sleep.

By the end of the day, there is nothing food can't cure, mentally and physically. Except herpes, that shit will stay with you 'till you die...just saying.

By the end of the day, there is nothing food can’t cure, mentally and physically. Except herpes, that shit will stay with you ’till you die…just saying.

Looking back on the overall performance of for this cycle, I got to say that I’m still pretty content even though the slight setback on the squats. I’ll have to do some minor adjustments on my workout plan to avoid breaking hip even more. Stay tuned…!

Eat hard, work hard, sleep… hard?

//C