Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Fat Loss Interview with Alwyn Cosgrove

Memorial Day weekend and the unofficial start of summer is only 16 weeks away which makes it the perfect time to get serious about your training and diet. For those of you who need to lose a significant amount of bodyfat in that time frame, I suggest you pay attention to what fat loss expert, Alwyn Cosgrove has to say...

JF: First of Alwyn, thanks for taking the time to sit down with us today. I want to talk to you about fat loss and hear some of your thoughts on this much debated subject. First of all what are some of the biggest misconceptions out there about dieting and training for fat loss? What do most people do wrong?

AC: There are two main mistakes Jay – and it might seem like a contradiction but it’s really true. The first is making too many changes to your program and diet – in other words, you stop doing the most effective exercises and rep ranges, and cut your calories or carbs way too much. Everything that works to build muscle – activate as much muscle mass as possible, multiple muscle groups with good form and decent weight – will also burn a shitload of calories and create “metabolic disturbance” – this is perfect for fat loss phases.The other main problem I see is people not changing anything BUT diet. The recent trend” has been “Training doesn't change at all - just your diet.”Really?How does the diet change?"Set protein at 1g per lb and fat at 30%. The rest comes from carbs"Hmmm. So your fat loss program and your sports conditioning programand your hypertrophy program are the same exercises, same protein,same fats, the only difference is the amount of carbs? Then you probably don't have too many before and after pics to support yoursystem do you, you training genius ?

JF: Hahaha, great point. What are some of the biggest time wasters when it comes to training and dieting for fat loss?

AC: The biggest ones are very low calorie diets (they just slow metabolism down too much) and low intensity steady state aerobics. You need to keep the “furnace” (your metabolism) cranking. The goal as I call it is “metabolic disturbance” – burn as many calories through training as possible but use a system that will elevate metabolism through EPOC significantly for several hours. Low intensity cardio (even on an empty stomach) just doesn’t fit in there.

JF: How does the weight training which you prescribe for a fat loss client differ from that of some one who is trying to get bigger or stronger? Or does it remain the same and you just change the diet and add in more cardio?

AC: It depends on the client and the amount of fat to lose really. With the beginner/ intermediate client I have NEVER seen these massive amounts of muscle loss that everyone is afraid of on fat loss programs. With these groups I use upper-lower supersets with slightly higher rep brackets.

With more advanced clients muscle loss can be a problem – but it is easily offset by doing 1-2 heavy sets of 4-6 reps as your first couple of exercises and then moving into a similar program as described above.

JF: I like that idea.

AC: I’ve been experimenting recently with an undulating periodization approach for more advanced fat loss clients and it has been extremely effective. It’s going to be the focus of Afterburn II when I get my finger out!

JF: What are your favorite methods of cardio/energy system work for losing fat?

AC: Interval training is obviously the way to go, but I like to use non-traditional methods of doing so – i.e. bodyweight circuits, sled dragging, barbell complexes etc. Again it’s all about creating that metabolic disturbance that I was talking about. Walking on the treadmill has its place – but it’s not in one of my fat loss programs.

JF: Is there a difference in the way you train females for fat loss versus the way you train males for fat loss?

AC: Not really although I tend to see more pure beginner females than I do males. So that alters the programs somewhat.

JF: What kind of diets do you prefer for fat loss and how do you determine what to prescribe to a given client?

AC: I like to use a low-JUNK diet for fat loss. It ends up being low carb, as most of the crap people eat come from refined carbs, but in reality I never restrict fruits and vegetables, or good carbs. A lot of stuff gets written about how many grams per pound etc, and how many calories pre and post workout…..and to be honest – most of the people writing this stuff are clearly not working with anyone real. An average fat loss client arrives at my gym typically eating 2 meals a day and about 30g of protein (and no breakfast). So am I supposed to cut their calories? And add training to it? No way.

I just recommend that these people eat 4-5 meals per day from a list of “approved” foods (ie proteins, vegetables, oatmeal etc) and try to hit a higher protein intake. The diet then builds itself without having to focus on numbers. Calorie control is important, but it’s rarely an issue with beginners in my experience.

JF: Your Afterburn training system is one of the best fat loss systems I have seen. What kind of results can people expect to obtain by following the programs you have in there?

AC: Coming from you that means a lot – as you’ve probably seen everything that’s out there. Afterburn is a 16-week periodized program that includes 3-4 weight training sessions each week, with 3-4 interval training sessions and a diet program. A 16 week commitment to fat loss is no joke though. I’d expect someone following the program closely to lose between 16-32lbs of fat on the program EASILY.

JF: Sounds great. Thanks so much for the awesome info Alwyn. We look forward to hearing more from you soon.

AC: Thanks Jay.

To start getting shredded for summer, pick up a copy of Afterburn right now.

Monday, January 29, 2007

How to Get More Calories In

A common complaint I hear from people is that they can't eat enough. Believe me, I feel your pain. It is difficult to consume all the calories needed to grow enormously bigger and stronger. Here are two tricks I use to help overcome this problem.

  1. Eat high glycemic index carbohydrates. You know how you eat Chinese food and are hungry again an hour later? That is because the white rice is a very high GI food. It is rapidly digested and absorbed into the blood stream. If you have trouble eating enough, focus on white rice, white potatoes and white bread as your carb sources. It's not the healthiest thing in the world but neither is being 80 pounds over your natural bodyweight; you have to make some sacrifices sometimes. Eating like this will insure that you you never feel completely full for too long and are frequently hungy.

  2. Consume tons of oil. The easiest way to get more calories is to add a tablespoon or two of oil to each meal you eat. Flax, pumkin seed, hemp, macadamia and olive oil are all good sources of unsaturated fat and will help get your calories up. Each tablespoon is 140 calories so you can see how quickly they add up. Take two a day with five meals and you have an additional 1400 calories in your diet.Simply mix them up at each meal and rotate through each of them on a daily basis.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

New Kid on the Block

There is an unwritten rule in online marketing that you don't do anything for anyone unless you are getting a cut of the action. You don't help someone promote something unless there is money in it for you. And I totally get that. It's a business, and business should always be business. You don't run a website or blog just to promote everyone that you know and to hand out favors.

But what about your close friends?

Many online marketers stick to these rules even when dealing with friends. And, to an extent, I totally get that as well. Even though someone is your friend that doesn't mean you are obligated to promote something from them that you think is absolute horseshit. Also, it is everyone's perogative to do what they want to do and keep business and friendship separate.

I, however, choose not to get down like that.

Friends always come before business in my mind. John Alvino, Alwyn Cosgrove, Keith Scott and Craig Ballantyne are all highly respected colleagues of mine. But first and foremost, they are all my good friends. So I will promote anything they do weather or not there is any incentive at all. The incentive is to see my friends do well. If they do something that sucks, trust me, I would never compromise my integrity and recommend it to you. But the fact of the matter is they are four of the smartest guys in the business and would never do anything that is less than stellar, therefore I have no problem helping them spread the word.

People have often told me that certain morals that I hold near and dear are holding me back from ever making as much money as I have the potential to. That's fine. I need to be able to shave in the morning...if you know what I mean.

So to continue my life long trend of going against the norm, I would like to promote a friend today, on my website for abolutely...FREE (shocking, I know). This is a brand new article that was written by my friend and Virginia Commonwealth University Basketball Head Strength Coach, Danny Vega (pictured above). It's the first article he's ever written and I personally thought it was outstanding. I think you should check it out by clicking HERE now.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

So What's the Deal With Tempo?

I'm sure most of you are familiar with the word tempo when it comes to training.


But why?

I searched every dictionary I could find and there is no definition that remotely resembles what most people think it means when it applies to weight training. It is basically the speed at which a piece of music should be played.

Who ever decided to apply that to training must have had some kind of imagination. The correct terminology is rep speed and from now on will be known as such.

Anyway, to answer the question, here's the deal with tempo/ rep speed; it sucks.

Well, kind of. But usually.

First of all, changing your rep speed on a regular basis is a way to ensure that you never really know if you are making progress or not. This is actually a great trick that some trainers use. They don't know how to get their clients stronger so they just change the rep speed There is no way their clients will ever catch on to this ingenious little scheme. In January you are benching with a rep speed of 505 and then in March, a 402 rep speed, come June it's 323, etc, etc. But how do you know if you are ever getting stronger? It's just like using way too many exercises (bench, incline bench, 1 board, 2 board, 3 board, 4 board, 5 board, all of those with bands, chains, weight releasers, fat bars or any combo of those) because there is just too much variety to keep track of. There are certain variables that need to remain constant in any experiment, and that's what your training basically is; an experiment. You are always testing what you are doing and you need to see if it's working, ie. you are getting stronger. If your bench goes up, is it because your rep speed was different or did you really get stronger? You never know.

That is one of the major reasons why "tempo" sucks.

Anytime you see a routine written with a slow concentric, meaning the lifting portion of the exercise, get up and walk away; it's shit. You should never, ever lift a weight slowly if you are trying to get big and strong. It makes no sense.

The rare case when this could be of benefit would be during rehab situations. Other than that, it's crap.

What about lowering the weight slowly? Well, this is where it gets hairy. You see, there actually is a ton of evidence and research showing that controlling and even stressing the eccentric portion of the movement leads to hypertrophy gains.

There are also about ninety six cajillion guys in the history of the planet that have gotten enormously bigger and stronger without ever worrying about that. (See Arnold and the entire cast of Pumping Iron, the entire WWF, IFBB, NFL and just about every other big guy you have ever seen at the gym).

So what about it? What's the answer there?

Despite all the people who successfully ignored this advice, I still think you should always control the eccentric portion of every exercise you do, never drop the weight. I would say a strict two seconds would be great and if you wanted stretch it to three, that would be okay too. But anything more than that is unnecessary. Eight second negatives are a bit ridiculous if you ask me. Control the descent and explode up, it's as simple as that.

What about pausing? Pausing is ok, especially in exercises where an extreme stretch can help you grow. Any kind of calf raise is a perfect example of this. You should almost always pause and get a skin ripping stretch at the bottom of a calf raise.

Too much variety and a lack of consistency is actually a huge problem in most peoples training programs. Using every rep speed you can possibly make up, just makes the problem worse. Stick to a controlled two or three second negative and explode the weight up. Sometimes you can pause in the bottom if there is a good reason and sometimes you can do a slower negative at the end of a set from time to time. But for the most part, keep it simple.

And remember tempo= music; it's rep speed.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Why You May Need To Eat More Protein

Today we have a great article for you on the importance of protein, by Dr. John Berardi. Check it out...

Nowadays there are a lot of misconceptions with respect to protein intake. Should one take in 1 gram of protein per lb of body weight? Or is it 1 gram per kilogram? And, to the non-scientist, just how much is that?

Well, before discussing this issue, I think it’s important to explore the difference between protein need and protein optimization. When someone asks the question – how much protein should I eat – they are usually trying to figure out how much protein they need to optimize body composition and performance. But the question, "How much protein does an athlete need?" is a very different one from "How much protein should an athlete consume to improve body composition and athletic performance?"

In the research world, the word need is in no way associated with optimization. Instead it's defined as the minimum amount necessary in order to prevent deficiency. Therefore, in asking how much protein an athlete needs, you're asking the question "What's the minimum amount of protein an athlete can get away with to prevent wasting and eventual death?"

Since most athletes have access to and usually consume enough protein to stave off death, the common protein question about how much protein an athlete needs is a bad one. This question doesn't address the issue of real importance, the one that addresses what an athlete should consume to improve performance and body composition?

So, how much protein do individuals need to optimize performance and body composition? Well, the truth is, I don’t know. Everyone is different. However, what I do know is this – about 85% of all the individuals I’ve ever consulted with have been eating less protein that I recommend. And the first thing I do to stimulate results (usually “results” mean body composition changes) is to increase the protein intake while making a few concomitant changes to carbs and fat intake.
Now, there are a number of reasons why I boost protein intake in most clients so I’d like to outline them in this article.

Reason #1:Increased Thermic Effect of Feeding — While all macronutrients require metabolic processing for digestion, absorption, and storage or oxidation, the thermic effect of protein is significantly higher than that of carbohydrates and fat. In fact, protein requires 25-30% of the energy it provides just for digestion, absorption, and assimilation while carbs only require 6-8% and fat requires 2-3%. That means that eating protein is actually thermogenic and can lead to a higher metabolic rate. This means greater fat loss when dieting and less fat gain during hypercaloric diets.

Reason #2:Increased Glucagon — Protein consumption increases plasma concentrations of the hormone glucagon. Glucagon is responsible for antagonizing the effects of insulin in adipose tissue, leading to greater fat mobilization. In addition, glucagon also decreases the amounts and activities of the enzymes responsible for making and storing fat in adipose and liver cells. Again, this leads to greater fat loss during dieting and less fat gain during overfeeding.

Reason #3:Increased IGF-1 — Protein and amino-acid supplementation has been shown to increase the IGF-1 response to both exercise and feeding. Since IGF-1 is an anabolic hormone that's related to muscle growth, another advantage associated with consuming more protein is more muscle growth when overfeeding and/or muscle sparing when dieting.

Reason #4:Reduction in Cardiovascular Risk — Several studies have shown that increasing the percentage of protein in the diet (from 11% to 23%) while decreasing the percentage of carbohydrate (from 63% to 48%) lowers LDL cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations with concomitant increases in HDL cholesterol concentrations.

Reason #5:Improved Weight-Loss Profile — Research from Layman and colleagues has demonstrated that reducing the carbohydrate ratio from 3.5 - 1 to 1.4 - 1 increases body fat loss, spares muscle mass, reduces triglyceride concentrations, improves satiety, and improves blood glucose management.

Reason #6:Increased Protein Turnover — All tissues of the body, including muscle, go through a regular program of turnover. Since the balance between protein breakdown and protein synthesis governs muscle protein turnover, you need to increase your protein turnover rates in order to best improve your muscle quality. A high protein diet does just this. By increasing both protein synthesis and protein breakdown, a high protein diet helps you get rid of the old muscle more quickly and build up new, more functional muscle to take its place.

Reason #7:Increased Nitrogen Status — Earlier I indicated that a positive nitrogen status means that more protein is entering the body than is leaving the body. High protein diets cause a strong positive protein status and when this increased protein availability is coupled with an exercise program that increases the body's anabolic efficiency, the growth process may be accelerated.

Reason #8:Increased Provision of Auxiliary Nutrients — Although the benefits mentioned above have related specifically to protein and amino acids, it's important to recognize that we don't just eat protein and amino acids — we eat food. Therefore, high protein diets often provide auxiliary nutrients that could enhance performance and/or muscle growth. These nutrients include creatine, branched chain amino acids, conjugated linoleic acids, and/or additional nutrients that are important but remain to be discovered. This illustrates the need to get most of your protein from food, rather than supplements alone.

So, looking over this list of benefits, isn't it clear that for many individuals, an increase in protein intake would be advantageous for most people’s training goals? Since a high protein diet can lead to a better health profile, an increased metabolism, improved body composition, and an improved training response, why would anyone ever try to limit their protein intake to the bare minimum necessary to stave off malnutrition?

It seems to me that whether someone's on a hypoenergetic diet or a hyperenergetic diet, the one macronutrient they would want to be sure to overeat would be protein. Instead, by limiting protein intake, most individuals look for what they consider the bare minimum of protein, and then overeat carbohydrates and fats instead. That's a big performance and body composition mistake.

SEE ALSO: For more great training and nutrition wisdom, check out Dr Berardi’s complete system, Precision Nutrition. Containing 5 nutrition guides, two audio CDs, two DVDs, and our Gourmet Nutrition cookbook, Precision Nutrition will teach you everything you need to know to get the body you want -- guaranteed.

And what's more, you get a free lifetime membership to his private, members-only website, where you can talk exercise and nutrition 24/7 with thousands of fellow members and the Precision Nutrition coaches. Find out more about Precision Nutrition.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Assuaging Your Low Volume Fears

I have been discussing training volume quite a bit lately and have gotten an inordinate amount of positive feedback for which I would like to thank everyone. However, some people can't bring themselves to admit that they are doing too much. Others are intrigued by the idea that maybe doing less would yield greater results but can't seem to let go of the rock. And then there is the group that gives it a shot, only to freak out and go back to their old high volume routines not more than two or three weeks later. To this last group, I need to issue a warning. There is something you must know about low training volumes.

You will shrink. That's right, you will actually look smaller for a while. That is because your muscles will not hold that same fullness that they did when you did high volume training. One school of thought is that with high volume training, the muscles hold more fluid, nutrients, glycogen, etc. and that is what leads to them having a slightly larger appearnance on an everyday basis. But is that really it? Or is the "swell" actuall from trauma and damage to the muscle? People always say, "you look swole," or "you're gettin your swole on." I think maybe this might be closer to the truth, that the muscle is actually swollen from all the trauma inflicted upon it. If I hit you in the arm fifteen times with a bat, they will probably be an inch or so bigger for the next few days. Fifteen sets of curls have a similar effect.

The truth is that the swollen or slightly pumped look that you carry around with you on a high volume routine is probably a combination of both of those factors. So yes, if you stop doing high volume training you will actually look a bit smaller for a while because you will not be inducing this effect anymore.

However, the body will start to compensate and in time you will grow much bigger and stronger with less volume than you ever did with more. You will have greatly improved recovery ability, much more energy, fewer injuries and a higher sex drive. All pretty good things, if you ask me.

Like Dres once said, the choice is yours.

For more low volume training information go to now.

Friday, January 19, 2007

News Stand News

I came to an agreement this week with Men's Fitness Magazine to become the new head training advisor. If you haven't picked up a copy of Men's Fitness recently, I suggest you do so. It is among the best mainstream fitness magazines out there. You won't find any 58 set pro bodybuilder workouts in there or nonsense like that. Sean Hyson has done a tremendous job assembling an array of some great writers who are among the best in the business. We will also be bringing in some new guys this year who are really going to make their mark, such as Keith Scott.

It's going to be a very big year in Men's Fitness and we have tons of good training information coming your way. So get your subscription now.

Ten time WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Triple H (pictured above reading this months issue) has his. I have it on good authority that his favorite section is the Hardgainer column. You know, the one with the picture of the strikingly handsome, goateed, bald dude...

Also, combat athletes, might be interested in checking out the latest issue of MMA Sports Mag. I have a fully detailed training program for combat athletes included in there.

And for a quick bodyweight only workout you can do anywhere, anytime to relieve some stress, pic up this months Maximum Fitness Magazine and read my de-stress workout on page 64.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

New Survey

If you get a chance, I could use your help. Please take two seconds and click HERE to answer one question for me to help me serve you better in the future.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

More On The Secret

First of all I want to apologize to anyone who had an order rejected today. Our shopping cart went down and it took several hours to fix. Because of this the sale will remain up for a few hours past the deadline. If you haven't placed your order yet to take advantage of the big savings, there is still time left.

Today's post is a follow up on my post from last week about the laws of attraction and the Secret and all that hocus pocus. This post originally appeared on and was brought to my attention by a very good friend of mine who happens to be good friends with Odd Todd. I thought it was hilarious and had to post it here. Check it out...

Messing with "The Secret"
So someone sent me a video called 'The Secret' recently and told me to watch it. So I did. It was kind of interesting kind of sort of.
It's a thoroughly cheesed out video that basically said that there's this "big secret" out there. A super secret secret to success that successful people know. Now on DVD! The general idea is linking the power of positive thinking to actual science. Like if you think that you want a new job and focus on that goal or whatever-- the laws of attraction will actually manipulate the matter of the universe to have things to help you get to your goal-- gravitate toward you. And in effect alter future reality-- not spiritually but scientifically by having the universal force clear a path toward your goal or some mumbo jumbo stuff or whatever. Like when you're having a good day things fall into place because you're attracting good things with a positive attitude. And when it's a bad day the negativity piles up because you're repelling the good stuff.. or something... or whatever. Yadda yadda... That sort of stuff.

Anyway, I do believe in the power of thinking positively and believe in sending good vibes to people who need em-- but I don't really believe universal manipulation was meant for straight profit and selfish reasons. Like if you sit there only praying for only yourself all day-- I'm not sure that's the way to go. This video was all about using this 'power' to hook yourself up with money and stuff. Sort of preying on ego maniacs who want shortcuts. Like some guy on the video said, 'He always gets a perfect parking space right in front at the Mall because he visualizes it before he gets there.' (Try that in Manhattan...) And some guy who wanted a new car thought about it and somehow he won a car or some crap. Seemed like alot of bs...
But I figured I'd give it a shot anyway! I mean I walk around doing nothing alot so I figured I might as well spend some time trying to manipulate the entire universe for my own personal reasons!

So all day long I walked around trying to visualize good things and alter my personal reality for fun and profit. And I think I might have actually had an effect on things! Because everything all day long went totally wrong. A total backfire day! If I was heading down into the subway I'd try to picture the subway pulling up just as I step onto the platform. All day long the subway would pull away just as I got there. And it would be like an overlong wait till the next one. I knew that getting $100,000 was a tall order so I tried to picture somehow getting ten dollars out of nowhere. Nothing. Not one cent. The nintendo DS game I wanted to get for my nephew was out of stock. When I approached an elevator, I visualized it waiting in the lobby for me-- but it was on the top floor and took forever to come down. When I tried to hail a cab... there were none. I spilled on my shirt. I was late to everything. A bartender ignored me. Roscoe puked on my rug. And for the most part the whole 'positive thinking' day turned out to be a big mess. Nothing I tried to visualize came together! So I chucked the whole idea overboard.

My conclusion was... positive thinking is fine and dandy but if there is any truth to the idea that you can manipulate universal matter to affect your reality-- don't mess with it all greedy and only tap into your god-like superpowers on occasion for very good reasons. Or face the wrath of a backfire...
ok bye!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The Things People Do

During a normal week of training, coaching and consulting I visit quite a few different training facilitys other than just my own. Of course, many of these visits provide me with the opportunity to witness some seriously disturbing images. Yesterday I was in a public gym in New York City and witnessed the following:

A man in his early thirties doing dumbell presses with FIFTEEN POUND DUMBBELLS!!! And not only that but he was struggling. Now I am the last guy to make fun of someone for being weak or being a beginner or what not, but FIFTEENS at thirty years old?!!? I mean come on! How can you even walk the streets as a man? I would be terrified everywhere I went if I knew that I was that weak. I've never trained a single female that didn't work up to at least thirty fives. The sad part is I will see that guy again in a few months and at the most he will be doing twentys.

Bu then again, I doubt it.

Worse than that was that this guys trainer, who after careful assesment, decided that just what a guy this weak needs is six sets of cable crossover flyes with hideous form after his dumbbell presses. Brilliant deduction. That will get him strong and huge in no time.

Later I saw that same tandem repeating a few more oddities. At the trainers instruction, ol' Pure Power boy was doing some kind of standing knee raise that seemed to make no sense at all. It was a move that you would see Tito Ortiz do to Ken Shamrock at a UFC event by grabbing his head and pulling it down into his knee while simultaneously flexing at the hip and lifting his knee to Kens head. But there was no opponent, no head to hit; just air. He did this for numerous reps, apparently as his "cardio."

I was as confused as Eric Cressey in a topless bar so I got as far away as I could.

The next thing I saw was a trainer forcing his client to do twisting sit ups on a Roman Chair with a broomstick behind his head. The guy was obviously a novice and couldn't do a single rep. But the trainer yelled at him and made fun of him incessantly and forced him to press on. One of the trainers friends walked by and he shouted, "John come here. Watch this." Then proceeded to tell his client to attempt another set, no less than twenty seconds after the last "set," mind you. They both laughed. On the last rep, it looked like the guy broke his back in four places and collapsed to the floor screaming. He had to be carried out.

I also saw a guy listening to his iPod, the entire time he trained his client. I shit you not.

And then there was the female trainer who was dressed in designer jeans and knee high boots working the streets, I mean gym floor. An odd way to dress for a job in a gym, I thought. Meanwhile her husband "trained" another client across the gym while answering his phone every five minutes and sending emails like a horny 13 year old on myspace.

It might just be me but if someone is paying you for an hour, I think it would only be right to stay the fuck off your phone. But maybe I'm wrong.

When my time was finally up in this circus, I made my way to the door, longing for the relief the outdoors would provide my scarred psyche. I tried to look down so as not to witness another travesty. It didn't work and my attention was grabbed again by an overweight girl in her twenties and her trainer. She was doing lying chest presses with a FIVE POUND medicine ball! FIVE FUCKING POUNDS! Two and a half pounds per arm. The worst part about it is that girl has been there for over a year.

I'm guessing that she won't be achieving the Jessica Biel look by summer.

How did this ever happen to my industry? I'm truly ashamed.


Don't forget that our huge sale goes until tomorrow at 12 noon. For huge savings check out and right now!

Monday, January 15, 2007

MLK Day 48 Hour Sale

One of my idols has always been the great, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. A few of the things I can not tolerate in life are racism and injustice of any sort. Witnessing eithe of these acts drives me to the brink of insanity at times and when I see it happen I can't stand idly by and keep my mouth shut.

Dr. King stood up and fought against racism and injustice at a time when black people did not do that sort of thing. Dr. King was strong in the face of violence and hatred and tried to make a better world for all of us. For his great efforts and all he did for mankind, he was thanked by an assasins bullet.

Even though he is gone, Dr. King will never be forgotten and his message will carry on forever.

In honor of one of the greatest human beings to ever live, I have decided to have a 48 hour sale. In the grand scheme of things, Martin Luther King day is a relatively small holiday. But to me, it is one of the biggest, as we honor one of our countries greatest leaders and humanitarians and someone that I have tried to pattern my life after in many ways.

You won't see a Valentines Day or St. Patricks Day or Presidents Day sale from me, or any other sales for that matter, anytime soon. But if ever there was a time to have a holiday sale, today is the day.

So in honor of one of my idols, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I am having a 48 hour sale from now until Wednesday, January 17th at 12noon, EST.

Combat Conditioning Secrets is on sale from the normal price of $97 all the way down to $59.99!
Click HERE for more information on Combat Conditioning Secrets.

How To Get Jacked is on sale from the normal price of $49.99 down to $39.99 plus a host of new bonuses from Craig Ballantyne, Alwyn Cosgrove and John Alvino.
Click HERE for more information on How To Get Jacked.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Hopes & Wishes

It's come to my attention lately that tons of people are obsessed with some movie called "The Secret." All of these people are also living their lives by some supposed law of attraction or something like that. I think the two go hand in hand, but I could be mistaken. As far as I have been told, one of the things you do, when you follow these "life altering principles" is to think of what you want in life.

Ok, visualization, I have no problem with that. Sounds good.

Not only do you think about it, but you "ask" for it. That's where I got a little confused. Who you ask, I'm not really sure. It seems quite popular though so I gave it a shot. I called Hugh Hefner and asked him if I could move into the mansion. He hasn't called back yet. It's only been three months, so I haven't given up hope. I also called Puffy (P. Diddy to the rest of you) and asked if he would put me on his next single and help me improve my dancing skills a little. He threatened to hang me upside down off the roof of some building, like he used to do to people in the mid 90's, if I ever called back again.

I guess you have to really be deep in the inner circle to get that wish granting guy's number.

A friend of mine, who is in on this whole phenomenon called me recently to tell me of all the great things that were happening in his life. I was blown away by what he had going and asked him what he attributed all his recent success to. He told me he just "asks" for it and it comes to him.


"Who da fuck you askin?! Cuz I seriously need to meet this dude!"

Another premise of this whole belief system is that you tell people what you want to happen in your life. Meaning that if you want to make a million dollars a year, you tell people that you make a million dollars a year. That is why you will see tons of online marketers talking about how many millions they made this year while there fat asses take the free shuttle to the airport instead of the limo they should be able to buy.

While I know this seems like it's lying and being dishonest, there has to be some magic behind it, right? Well, that's what I thought, so I gave this principle a try as well.

For the last three months I have told every girl that I've met that I'm hung like Ron Jeremy. Sometimes they want proof. I explain to them that as much as I would love to show them, I am engaged to be married and my fiance would not approve. I then go on to explain that the young lady I speak of is none other than the lovely and talented, Vida Guerra.

Sometimes, they ask for proof of that. This is where things get a bit sticky. I have no pictures of V (my nickname for her) and I in my wallet, nor any on my phone. Not even a text message or missed call from her. Finally I have to concede, to the ones that push the issue, that I'm caught and I was lying (wishing/asking, I forget which one).

Now knowing that the God/Master of wish granting that all these people believe in couldn't possibly let me down twice in one night, I offer to prove to them that only one of my statements was a lie (wish). If they come back to my place, I will gladly show them that I am not the liar I appear to be.

When it turns out that both of my wishes had been rejected in the same night, a general feeling of melancholy fills the room. I had been hoodwinked, duped, bamboozled, yet again, for the umpteenth time in the last three months. She, on the other hand, just has that same mirthless, desolate look on her face that most girls who get to know me end up with; only in this case it took a lot less time than the usual two months.

Like my friend John Alvino asked, how could this law only apply to online marketing and not penis size? Does that almighty master know when you are trying to sneak one by? Are there only certain wishes he grants? I mean my friend got a new job, a new girlfriend and all kinds of other stuff just because he asked. So why hasn't Vida Guera replied to the question I asked her then? Maybe I'm just a cynical bastard and it doesn't work for people like me.

Or maybe, just maybe, there is no "universal law" that is based on FUCKING LYING. How about that? Could that possibly be so? Maybe, no matter how many times you tell someone that you make five million a year on your membership site or that you are going to be opening up for the newly reunited Led Zeppelin or that you have a twelve inch penis; a lie is just a lie.

Ever think of that?

Now to be fair, there may be more to "The Secret" and all the principles that go with it. I just have never had the heart to watch it. The fact that every else is doing so, makes it even less appealing.

What I'm saying is that you can "ask" and you can "wish" for things all you want. No one cares. Hard work and perserverance; that's how you get what you want in life. If want to bench press a certain amount of weight, I can ask for that to happen every night before I got to bed but unless I put in the hard work necessary to achieve that goal, it's never going to happen.

You can also lie about how much money you make to every person you meet. It doesn't affect us. It's only you that has to live a life filled with dishonesty and deceit. And it's you that is truly missing out on the meaning and joy of life because money has become your only undying obsession.

Also, if you really discover the power to magically change the universe and make all things work in your favor just by focusing and asking, don't you think you could find something a little more noble to do with that power than just increase the size of your own wallet?

Maybe end the war, help the homeless, something along those lines...

Na, wishing for your new Ferrari is more important than all that.

(And by the way, Vida, if you're reading this... call me.)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

"I Can't Live Without My Radio"

Since I constantly publicize my obsessive love for music, I often get emails from people asking for recommendations of some good stuff to train to.

Music is one of the most important components of a good workout, so in no particular order here are a few of my favorites that are always in high rotation at the gym.

We'll stick with rock and metal today and focus on hip hop later in the week.
  • Wake Up Call- The Prodigy
  • Disposable Teens- Marily Manson
  • Millionaires- Queens of the Stone Age
  • Bullet with Butterfly Wings- Smashing Pumpkins
  • The Fight Song- Marilyn Manson
  • Zero- Smashing Pumpkins
  • Personal Jesus- Marilyn Manson
  • Irresponsible Hate Anthem- Marilyn Manson
  • BYOB- System of a Down
  • Toxicity- System of a Down
  • Rise Above- Chuck D. & Henry Rollins
  • Raining Blood- Slayer
  • South of Heaven- Slayer
  • Just Another Victim- Helmet & House of Pain
  • NIB- Black Sabbath
  • Balls to the Wall- Accept
  • Caught in a Mosh- Anthrax
  • Leash- Pearl Jam
  • Last Exit- Pearl Jam
  • Lukin- Pearl Jam
  • Brain of J- Pearl Jam
  • The Mob Rules- Black Sabbath
  • I Disappear- Metallica
  • Little Horn- Marilyn Manson
  • Go Motherfucker, Go- Nashville Pussy
  • Beat Me Senseless- Nashville Pussy
  • Crash Course in Brain Surgery- Metallica
  • At Dawn They Sleep- Slayer
  • Push It- Static X
  • Mob Scene- Marilyn Manson
  • The Shortest Straw- Metallica
  • Rock is Dead- Marilyn Manson
  • Creeping Death- Metallica
  • Blood- Pearl Jam
  • Harvester of Sorrow- Metallica
  • The Prince- Metallica
  • Cowboys From Hell- Pantera
  • Phantom Lord- Anthrax
  • Rape Me- Nirvana
  • The Horror- Superjoint Ritual
  • Blind- Korn
  • My Last Serenade- Killswitch Engage
  • Angel Below- Underoath
  • Am I Evil- Metallica
  • Guerilla Radio- Rage Against The Machine
  • Heresy- Nine Inch Nails
  • Get Loose- Primer 55
  • Bombtrack- Rage Against The Machine
  • Fuck Your Enemy- Superjoint Ritual
  • Angel of Death- Slayer
  • Death Threat- Superjoint Ritual
  • Highway To Hell- Marilyn Manson
  • How I Could Just Kill A Man- Rage Against The Machine
  • Everlasting- Smashing Pumpkins
  • Killing Time- Metallica
  • Stone Cold Crazy- Metallica
  • Wisconsin Death Trip- Static X
  • Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath- Black Sabbath
  • Fast As A Shark- Accept
  • The Better of Two Evils- Marilyn Manson
  • Testify- Rage Against The Machine
  • Wish- Nine Inch Nails
  • Sleep Now in the Fire- Rage Against The Machine
  • First I Look At The Purse- Nashville Pussy
  • Animal- Pearl Jam
  • Know Your Enemy- Rage Against The Machine
  • I'm With Stupid- Static X
  • Killing In the Name- Rage Against The Machine
  • The Beautiful People- Marilyn Manson
  • People of the Sun- Rage Against The Machine
  • Breadfan- Metallica
  • Why Go- Pearl Jam
  • Bulls on Parade- Rage Against The Machine
  • Blitzkrieg- Metallica
  • Kneon Knights- Black Sabbath
  • Spin the Black Circle- Pearl Jam
If your workouts have been lacking intensity, maybe some new music could be just what you need to get you out of your rut. It always works for me. Download some of these today and put them on your training mixes. Feel free to send some recommendations my way ( as I am always looking for some good new stuff to listen to.
Train hard.

Monday, January 08, 2007

"I Hate Losing, Even At Checkers."

Last night the New York Giants suffered a season ending, heartbreaking loss to end their 2006 season.

Without getting into detail about the season that was, it's probably safe to say that most of the Giants are happy to see this season go. Not that they wanted to lose, but it has been a bit of a mess, to say the least.

Tiki Barber was quoted as saying something to the effect that they have come to expect bad things to happen and when they do they are instantly deflated.

One guy, however was not, and is a shining example for athletes all over the world. That guy is Jeremey Shockey.

No matter how bad things got or how severely he was hurt, Shockey came to play his heart out every week. Last night was a prime example of what kind of attitude an athlete must possess to be a champion. Shockey was questionable for the game due to an ankle injury that has plagued him all season, yet he refused to miss it.

In obvious pain and unable to get up without a Herculean effort, Shockey played his heart out. On one particular play he had his helmet knocked off but continued on like nothing happened. He actually took on four oncoming tacklers by LOWERING HIS HEAD and giving them everything he had. The fact that anyone of them could have met him head- to- helmet and knocked him out of the game, possibly permanently, never crossed his mind. He was out to win.

In practices when he was at The University of Miami, Shockey was known to cheap shot a defensive back and "knock him on his ass," when he felt they weren't practicing hard enough.

If that is not how you approach every practice and every workout and every game you participate in, I have to wonder why you even bother? If you're not going to be 100% committed to doing your best each and every time you take the field or enter the weight room, then exactly what is the point?

To get out played is one thing, to get outworked is another. I have trained hundreds and hundreds of athletes over the years and have always tried to make sure that this was the attitude that they all possessed. The squat workout you do today isn't just another squat workout; it's one step closer to your goal of victory and domination. So act accordingly.

Every time you take it easy or slack off, you can be guaranteed that someone, somewhere, is busting their ass and sooner or later you will meet up with them on the playing field.

Even if you don't play any sports at all, you should still approach your workouts with the same fervor and determination that Jeremey Shockey takes with him on every route he runs. A workout is not just a social hour or a time to get a pump. Set goals for yourself in the weightroom and do all you can to achieve them. That makes going to the gym so much more fun than just going in and wasting time like everyone else. Every time you are there, you should be better than the last time. Weather it's more weight or more reps, or whatever; the point is to constantly improve. Since you don't play a sport, the weights are your opponents, and you go to battle with them at each and every workout with the intention of emerging victorious.

Much has been written about the detrimental effect of constantly training to failure. While this may be the case, there is always something to be said for instilling work ethic, building character and creating a sense of competition and camaraderie amongst teammates. I have always believed that in the real world, what looks good on paper or in the lab doesn't always pan out. You can't hold guys back in the weight room and then expect them to go out and knock heads off when the season comes. They have to be training and working all off season with this intention and determination. If that means taking more sets to failure than is optimal for the CNS, than so be it. Cut your volume way down, but never sacrifice intensity and hard work.

When asked to describe what Jeremy Shockey really cares about in life, one of his friends said, "football and fucking."

Tough to argue with those choices. Whatever it is that you care about and do, I think you should remember the example Jeremey Shockey set yesterday and give it all you got, consequences be damned.

Is there really any other way?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Eat Big, Get Big

Since it's the winter and the perfect time for bulking up I thought I would share a hilarious poem from my good friend, Dave Tate. While it is definitely a little wacked out and humorous it also stresses the importance of eating big to get big. In a perfect world, you could consume four to six thousand calories per day of egg whites, oatmeal, chicken, fruit and vegetables. But let's face it, that's impossible. No one can do that. If you really want to jack up your calories and pack on a ton of weight, you're gonna have to hit the junk food once in a while. It's the only way. If you try to stay lean all year you can still get bigger, it will just take way longer and you will never gain a ton of size. If your goal is to weigh 250 and right now you weigh 175, you're gonna have to put away some serious amounts of pizza and ice cream and be prepared to gain some bodyfat. If you eat big and train heavy you will grow. If not, you won't. It's really that simple.

With that being said, here is Dave's poem about one of his favorite junk foods for bulking up; Oreos. This is the follow up to his dissertation on how to eat a bag of Oreos at one sitting.

This is NOT a meal nor snack.
It is just another way to add some JACK.

Sometimes you have to do things to live your dream.
and yes, this may mean eating some cream.T

his may not be the best habit to keep
But remember when the rest of the world is asleep.

You will be the one paying the price.
As they wake to another day of chicken and rice.

Sometimes you need to eat healthy to stay clean.
But I am here say you may have to eat like shit to be a machine.

This may be contrary to fact
but skinny NOT, Let's get jacked.

If you want to grow up to be like the great King Kong
then mark my words, you may need some Ding Dongs.

Listen up and make sure to get this right
it all comes down to calories per bite.

Some of you may be saying "Dave you are whacked"
This is okay because I am almost JACKED.

I have done what I needed to do.
And yes. I remember the picture at the zoo.

To keep from getting decked
you should get your blood work checked.

A glass, ice cream and root beer make a float
just what is needed for a monster bloat.

Please don't get trapped
you need to eat big to get JACKED

There will be times you will want to quit
walk to the mirror and look through your slits

your face is bloated and looks like dread
but your arms are JACKED, you can't shave your head.

Eating in class once lead to after school detention
but a must this was to gain water retention.

Go to the store and hit the cookie isle
Load the cart up with a big giant pile

When you check out you will pay the toll
Never mind, this is the way to get swole.

The point I am trying to make
Is really as simple as eating cake

Candy bars, subs, and chips are the right track
A great daily lunch this is, to get JACKED.

It has to do with getting more than getting big
For some of us this may mean being a pig.

You see getting lean is a piece of cake.
It is getting big that makes most shake.

The thought of losing their abs
has them all taking jabs

They need to get in the kitchen and crank up "back in black"
Tear open a box of pop tarts and get JACKED.

They buzz-buzz-buzz like mosquitos
when all they need is a bag of Doritos.

I will say this one more time
what they say and do is such a crime

They have their ass tied and bound
Here is a clue - Fudge Round.

Dieting is easy when you set your way.
Adding mass is without a doubt a different day.

They have their way and I have mine
but please remember I walk the line

They might have been the head of the class.
but they can kiss my JACKED up ass!

Happy New Year!

You gotta love that. Now go eat like a man.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Reader Mail

Hi Jason,
I bought your "get jacked" guide maybe one or two years ago - and I can honestly say that I have not added one single gram of muscle. The reason? Probably because I did not apply one thing I read, instead I spend countless of hours reading all conflicting ideas at t-nation, and doing very little training and if I ever did - it would be something written by Christian T, like OVT or some specialization program for arms/delts etc. probably not a got thing if you are 34 years old, 178 cm, 75 kg with 15% body fat. However I came to think about your book the other day and now I feel that this is probably what I need, real advice from someone not on steroids and not genetically gifted.

JF: This is a mistake that too many people make. It's called paralysis by analysis. Don't search for the "perfect program" in hopes of a miracle. I have written a program out that will deliver exactly what you desire and will help you achieve your goals in rapid time. But if you never do the program and sit around and question everything you do and don't believe in it and put all you have into it, you will never get anywhere.

I plan to follow your advice to reach my goals, nice beach body = 75-80 kg with 8% bodyfat.

Now to my questions:
Should I try to lean down first or gain the mass first - or phase the approach and mix periods of muscle gain training and Fat loss phases?

JF: You are pretty small and skinny right now so I would go right into a mass phase. You will probably end up leaner anyway and you will look much better.

Nutritional advice: Is John Berardi's massive eating a good approach in your view?

JF: Yes it is. When you are attempting to gain a ton of size, nutrition is incredibly important. You must make it a major focus of your program.

What do you recommend for fat loss training? Cosgrove/turbulence/john Berardis new book "metabolic advantage" or something completely different - like maybe your own fatt loss program?

JF: You named the two best currently out there, AfterBurn and Turbulence Training. These programs will help you lose fat faster than anything else out there right now.

I plan incorporate your ideas to my training and reach the best shape of my life in the next 6 months- thanks and all the best,

Question: What do you think of Optimum Nutrition's Pro Complex Gainer? I ordered your book, and I'm ready to start a mass program. I know how important breakfast is, and it's always been difficult for me when training for mass, because I'm simply not hungry in the morning. I end up gagging my way through a dozen egg whites and oatmeal. What are your thoughts on the aformentioned gainer? Or any weight gaining shake for that matter?

JF: Carey, I'm pretty much the same way when it comes to eating solid food in the moring so I always start the day with a shake and then have my first solid meal of eggs, toast, oats and fruit about two hours later. I don't know much about the Optimum Nutrition shake but Lean Gainer by Labrada and IsoPure Mass are good weight gain shakes. If you need even more calories, add in some fruit, milk, a tablespoon or two of yogurt and macadamia nut oil. Good luck.

Jason, I just wanted to say that yesterdays Ms. New Booty post was the best of many classics here on this blog. Keep 'em coming my man. I look forward to reading everyday.
Mike T.

JF: Thanks Mike, I have been getting a lot of positive feedback on that one. Glad so many people liked it.

Coach, I love the blog, it's f'n hilarious. Quick question for you. I weigh about 205 right now at about 13 or 14% bodyfat. I want to get bigger without getting fatter. When should I cut my carbs off at night? Or is this just a myth?
Keith C.

JF: Keith, that depends on what time you train. After you train your body is primed for carbs so if you train at night you can still eat carbs at night. I wouldn't take it to the extreme though and you still can't change the fact that insulin sensitivity is high in the morning and that your body wants protein and carbs in the moring more than it does protein and fat. So if you train at night what I would do is eat two carb meals in the morning and then switch to low carb meals for the rest of the day until after your workout. Then after you train you should have a protein and carb shake. Your next meal, depending on what time it is, should be protein, low to moderate carbs with a moderate amount of fat.

Now if you train early in the day, simply eat carbs most of the day up until around six or so and then cut them off for the night.

Hey Jason - I just had a couple of questions about the "Get Jacked" program that I was hoping you could clarify. I'm currently in my 3rd week of training and am seeing great results. I've gained about 10 pounds and feel stronger than I ever have. My greatest challenge has been eating enough!

My first question was about the pull-ups. I can only do 3-4 full pullups in my first set, and then one the second. I've been finishing the reps doing negatives, and when the negatives become too much (no longer slow and controlled) I rep out on the lat pulldown at about 75% of my body weight. Is that the right thing to do? Or would you recommend another approach?

JF: Ryan, I would prefer to see you get some JumpStretch bands and attach them to the bar to assist you in getting the required number of reps. Get the mini, the light and the average bands. This will help you progress faster. What you are doing now is okay and you continue on that path until you get the bands.

The second question is regarding warm-up sets. Are the warmups included in the number of sets that are listed, or do I do a few before and how do you do them?

JF: The sets listed are not including warm ups. Usually you will do your first warm up with 50% of your starting weight for six to ten reps. After that, move to 70 and then 90% for five reps each. If you feel you need more warm ups than this, another set or two won't hurt.

Thanks, this program has made training fun again!
Ryan G

JF: Glad you like it. Keep up the great work and let me know how much you gain in the end.