I like to think of these as the PRISONS WITHIN. Most of us live within the prison of our own minds, with anxieties, fears and uncertainties cluttering our brains and steering us away from mental freedom.
Currently, we are waging a war against being distracted. Yes, you read that right … we are constantly waging a daily war against formidable Goliaths, ripping our control over our ability to FOCUS.
These formidable Goliaths control the platforms and framework on which the increasing advanced technologies rest … and are voraciously consumed by the masses. Individuals have easy and relatively cheap access to and from the Weapons of Mass Distraction (WMD).
In the 90s, we came to know what the “Weapons of Mass Destruction” were during the annihilation of parts of the Middle-East.
Are WE really winning?
Yes, you could argue that we are winning against the infectious diseases that have afflicted the human race. The advances mankind has made in the last 50 years in the fields of Bioengineering and the hard Sciences have benefited the lives of millions.
It has made our lives more convenient. The question we’ve got to ask is – convenience in place of what … our freedom and our ability to control our lives?
However, the recent COVID debacle may not support this (winning against infectious diseases).
It seems, to me anyway, that while the infectious diseases are under control (Externally) … we are losing a lot of ground in our true UNDERSTANDING OF THE SELF. This is significantly affected by the increasing tendency to be DISTRACTED.
Our individual ability to MANAGE THE MIND … our ability to manage the CONFLICTS WITHIN .. INTERNALLY … has been on a downward spiral.
People are struggling to achieve “Peace of Mind” at all levels of society. It is an epidemic.
You, me … each and every one of us NEED to guard the doors of our mind like a good bouncer guards a nightclub door and stop potential trouble-makers.
Individual’s skills at doing this varies greatly and I believe the majority still have a long way to go in terms of mastering that skill being the BEST BOUNCER TO THEIR BRAIN.
In order to be a good bouncer, you must first try to become more AWARE of YOU. This increase in AWARENESS should be a positive one. You should then FIRST try to find your own HEALTHY STRESS LEVEL in life, for example, are you a –
Your increase in Positive Self-Awareness should be built on a strong foundation of the KEY SKILL OF IMPERTURBILITY.
And what does this mean?
PRESENCE of MIND.
Being “imperturble” refers to having the coolness and Presence of Mind under ALL Circumstances … not some of the time but ALL of the time.
Having the presence of mind in ALL weather .. in calm weather … and in storms …
Having a presence of mind means having a CLEARNESS OF JUDGEMENT in MOMENTS of GREAT PERIL.
This is one of the KEY SKILLS needed to live a relatively GOOD LIFE.
This is a key skill that is not spoken about often … a skill that does not get ‘the light of day’ … The KEY SKILL of IMPERTURBILITY.
Improving your AGILITY ABILITY Ratio strengthens your Aura of IMPERTURBILITY.
In my experience, because individuals don’t know themselves as well as they think they do, they don’t know what their STRESS TOLERANCE Levels are. As a result, their ability to RESPOND to Stresses is very poor. They essentially DO NOT have the necessary skills to RESPOND appropriately and sufficiently.
Improving your AGILITY ABILITY is heavily influenced by your ability to ADAPT. It is in the process of adaptation that you strengthen your Agility Ability Ratio.
As a mentor told me long ago –
“It is not the smartest or strongest who survive .. it is the one that ADAPTS the fastest.”
In my experience of life and from learning from other peoples’ experiences through life, another thing that helps is to begin by ACCEPTING the IDEA … the School of Thought … that ALL STRESSES OF LIFE is “NORMAL”.
This perspective helps improve your ABILITY to ADAPT and hence your AGILITY ABILITY Ratio.
God does not give individual gifts 🎁 to frustrate a marriage. No. God gives us unique gifts to ENHANCE the marriage. God does not lead two people into a marriage to see “sparks fly”, pulling a husband & wife in opposite directions.
No… God, leads them into marriage to blend and maximise their strengths, their usefulness.
Whenever this happens in my relationship with my wife, I pray to God for his help…. To give me the strength, courage & wisdom to make good decisions.
This is where our faith in God helps us during turbulent times in the marriage. There are many forces (internal and external) that work hard to tear a marriage apart.
If you believe in your marriage & what it represents is important to you, ask for God’s guidance and work hard to keep your marriage .
Is there anything we read, hear or see ‘the truth’ anymore? THere are so many lies propagated in the media in today’s world. There is one truth – if a lie is being told and repeated enough .. the lie will eventually be believed to be a truth.
What is the truth when it comes to the covid-19 virus? There are many questions that should be asked and no question should be left out and put in an “out-of-the-question “ basket. With so much information at our fingertips, and most contradicting one another, one of our biggest risks is is our inability to sieve through the bullshit to …. Find the Truth.
I just don’t know what to believe anymore. One minute, one ‘expert’ says one thing … another minute, another expert says something else. Even the so-called experts and professional analysts cannot agree on the truth. They usually speak from their own self-interest and try to sell their ‘version of the truth’.
What have we learned in the aftermath of this pandemic?
A question I ask is – why has the containment of this virus 🦠 done already … like six months ago? Why has it taken so long?
What have we learned in the aftermath of this pandemic?
What has each individual country learned and what have we learned as human beings? One obvious thing is that the biggest threat to our existence is not something huge like a war or terrorist acts… it is the very very small (viral or bacterial) that we should be more fearful of. We should be more scared of the INVISIBLES … of what we CANNOT SEE with our naked eyes than … what we CAN SEE.
If you look at probabilities, there is a high probability (greater than 90%) that the virus originated from the Wuhann Lab, in China. The likelihood that the virus originated from “a Lab” is high. Then, it follows that, the likelihood that it originated from the Wuhann Lab is very high.
A question we should be asking is – was there a prior epidemic of this virus … that has allowed this current viral strain to be very effective in spreading? If it came from the Wuhann Lab, what were the protocols/internal controls used at the time? Why was this allowed to happen? On the other hand, if it wasn’t the Wuhann lab, we should be told that it wasn’t. If it was from nature, we deserve to be told. If it was from another lab, we need to know that , too. Why aren’t the governments giving us answers to these questions?
In other fields, say, in manufacturing, if a machine worker narrowly misses death when using a Machine or only loses a limb or his/her life, most businesses would do everything possible to NOT LET that happen again. In a factory setting, they would put up clear signs, get employees further training, counselling, boundaries indicated, protective gear and so forth…
And why? It was a “lucky break “ and control measures put in to mitigate the worst situation (losing a life) does not happen again in the future.
Why weren’t the voices that were raised in concern or this virus back in 2015 not listened to and taken seriously? What protocols were overlooked leading up to this pandemic? Why was the process off-shored to China? Did our current systems allow this? Who was responsible for this system at that time? Why hasn’t people brought to justice yet? Who is responsible for this pandemic? Governments collectively?
Is this going to be another case of INFLUENZA?
… and we will not find a cure and eliminate it but will just have to live with it.
Will it become part of our new “normal “ like the influenza virus has become? Living with the FLU virus has been a huge cost to governments and nations. Imagine the cost of living with the Covid forever? The cost to people’s well-being and the economy will be astronomical…& possibly incalculable.
** Here’s the thing:the ABILITY to ELIMINATE the disease goes down the longer we delay to have EFFECTIVE RESPONSES… to take control of its spread. It will be too late when large numbers of people catch this disease and their mutations and selections will result in adaptations that we just could not possibly manage.
Then we’ve got a HUGE PROBLEM!!
Medicine has come a long way. Yes, it has. The pertinent question is … is this going to be another case of influenza? I feel it will be.
If you look back in history, you will find that hospitals were dangerous places in the 18th century. One eminent Victorian surgeon commented that –
“a patient laid on an operating table … is exposed to more chances of death than the English soldier on the field of Waterloo.”
18th century medicine was not very effective. With all our advances in technology and medicine, can we say that 21st century medicine is ‘effective’ in it’s management of covid?
In the 19th century, Mary Wortley Montagu went back home with the smallpox inoculation/vaccine from Turkey but had a difficult time finding Doctors who would share this with people, given many were not willing to destroy a significant stream of their revenue. Even if it was for the good of mankind. Doctors were looking out for their own self-interests.
After the French Revolution, patients with similar symptoms were grouped together in wards. Doctors started to recognise and treat illnesses as ENTITIES in themselves rather than regarding complaints as being inseparable from individuals.
Is this happening in today’s world? Are beds and access to medical treatment going to be a “bidding war?” will the beds And medical professionals only be given to those with money as it was back in the 19th century?
Medicine … using vocabulary of the Military.
Also, in the late 19th century, medicine started using the vocabulary of the military, referring to diseases and germs similar in concept to enemy invasion.
Words like breakthroughs, defeats, and destruction and “let’s fight this”. Nowadays, they use phrases like ‘we’re in this together’. Like many other scientific metaphors used in the past, these images operated both ways:
Reflecting how illness was conceived
Affecting how foreigners should be treated
Back then, wealthy nations tried to defend themselves against infectious immigrants just as bodies had to be protected against viruses or microbes. This analogy was used. Question is – is it still being used today?
You see, diseases had usually been blamed on foreigners and this case of covid is no different. It also provides new grounds for rationally explaining old fears.
And what are these “old fears?”
Prejudices against race and cleanliness could now be given a “scientific label”. This was utilised by many wealthy nations back in history. Is it still being used now?
Is this one way of the government setting up a screening program to assess citizens health? Are our DNA (through swabs) just another way of science and governments finding out more about each individual? How can this be used against us?
Could the increased awareness through advertising, as “medical security “ really patchy vetting procedures … say, to allow rich immigrants easier process into more wealthy nations? Is this simply a tool to help curb unwanted immigrants?
Governments have had a history of controlling diseases by curtailing individual freedom… which is the same objection given by anti-vaccination supporters.
In science, often what seems straightforward in the labs proves quite complex outside the labs.
Over a century ago, Robert Koch, the German bacteriologist, shot to fame for identifying the organism responsible for Industrial Europe’s biggest killer – tuberculosis (TB).
Even though Koch proved that nobody could catch TB without first, being exposed to the TB, he was unable to explain why only about 10 % of people became infected. What sort of rates exist for the covid? Apart from age, are certain races more at risk?
During Koch’s time, it was found that the “Cure rate” for TB, proved lower than had been hoped. The enemy agent (similar to the covid strain identified today), had been identified but it seemed to leave many potential victims unscathed. Back then, many concluded that many individuals were somehow tainted in advance or had pre-existing conditions that made them more susceptible to getting covid.
Over one hundred years later, society has learned to “live with the disease “ – TB, that is. TB was, only recently, given an identity as a contagious disease that circulates in squalid city slums. A mark of inferiority rather than aesthetic vulnerability.
At one time, to contract TB, was to invite scorn… it was a matter of shame… making it out to be that patients had been picked out rather than innocent victims of neural microbes.
TB was as bad a stigma as contracting syphilis, blamed on prostitutes. Society attitudes stayed this way until towards the end of the 20 th century. Cancer became the new TB…. The big C that could not be mentioned by name.
Given how long it has been for us to respond to the covid strain and managing it, it is highly likely that, we won’t find a cure … but instead, just learn to live with disease, like we did with TB, over the last one hundred years.
A lot of deaths.
A quick reference on Google on world-stats indicates that as of 9th July 2021, there were a little over 4,000,000 covid-related deaths, with the USA heading the tally with > 623,000, followed closely behind by Brazil at 530,000 and then India at > 400,00 and so on. Australia has just under 1,000 deaths. So, there has been over 4 million deaths in just over a year since it began.
A lot of deaths.
In 1999, the American Institute of Medicine published a landmark investigation called “To Err is Human”. It reported that between 44,000 and 98,000 Americans die each year as a result of preventable medical errors.
Lucian Leape, a Harvard professor put it higher (at 120,000 in America alone) estimated that a million patients are injured by errors during hospital treatment.
In 2013, a study done & published in the journal of patient safety put the number of premature deaths associated with “preventable harm “ at more than 400,000 per year (in America, alone). Compare this to the number of deaths caused attributed to Covid and it is comparable. But, no one is alarmed at this knowledge because not much is said about it and so not much is known about it, by the majority of people.
Preventable harm included –
Dispensing wrong drugs
Injuring patient during surgery
Operating on the wrong part of the body
Peter J. Pronovost, professor at Johns Hopkins school of medicine testified at senate pointing out that the deaths was equivalent of two jumbo jets falling out of the sky every day for an entire year! Comparing and saying –
“Every two months, 9-11 is occurring.”
Can you imagine, news headlines repeating information of deaths caused by the crashing of two jumbo jets EVERY DAY! It would cause utter chaos .. that could lead to an up-rising. Possibly. The public has lost a lot of trust in the medical systems and are turning to alternative medicines in droves. Question is why has it got to this point?
Why do we tolerate these numbers …. These stats in preventable harm in this area of life when we would not tolerate it in any other sector? We don’t tolerate the covid-related death toll numbers, so, why has the medical profession knowingly or unknowingly, hid this information from the public … year after year?
Upon further study, you will find that the numbers put preventable error in hospitals as the biggest killer in the United States – behind only heart disease and cancer. Can you imagine that?! Third highest!!
And these are just numbers for the USA, what about when we add all the other numbers from other countries? What sort of numbers would that total to? Highly likely be greater than the 4,000,000 reported deaths relating to covid.
This Affects ALL OF US.
But those numbers are incomplete and definitely higher now.
However, it is not just the number of deaths that should alarm us, there is also the non-lethal harm caused by preventable error. Back in that 2013 study, this equated to about 1000 preventable deaths AND 10,000 preventable serious complications per day …
The problem is not a small group of crazy, homicidal incompetent doctors going around causing havoc. Medical errors follow a normal, bell-shaped distribution.
They occur most often not when clinicians get bored or lazy or malign, but when they are going about their business with diligence and concern … but these mistakes STILL happen!
Imagine the flow-on negative effect it had on the patient, their family and friends, their community and wider.
The Biggest Risk right now, as I see it…
Strong Social connections allow for a better and longer life. There are decades of evidence from communities suffering the reverse phenomenon: the gradual loss of social ties.
A study by James House, published in the journal SCIENCE concluded that social isolation is as dangerous for health as obesity’s, inactivity and smoking. The evidence was as strong as in the landmark US government report that in 1964 officially linking smoking with lung cancer.
The House report says that social isolation is actually more dangerous than lack of exercise and obesity. This is the biggest risk right now, as I see it … in most western societies- deaths exacerbated by social isolation due to covid restrictions.
This is probably the single most powerful behavioural finding in the world.
Social isolation is indeed a death sentence!, I believe, as much a threat to iur survival as hunger, thirst or pain. If individuals are deprived or it – “human contact” (as imposed by covid restrictions), the extreme case is we can start to become attached to innanjmate objects. This is demonstrated by Tom Hank’s character on the movie CASTAWAY, who has a meaningful relationship with a volleyball he calls Wilson.
Will this pandemic lead to increased purchases or innanimate objects for companionship? More sales for the IT industry?
Lesson: this AFFECTS ALL of us.
Why do so many mistakes still happen?
Well, I will leave that for a future blog.
So many questions still left unanswered, about our past … our present …. And our future.
But, as they say …. That is JUST LIFE.
You can choose to enjoy your ‘one life’ and worry about what YOU CAN CONTROL … and NOT WORRY about what YOU CANNOT CONTROL.
May God continue to shower his blessing on you and your family and loved ones,
The old Captain Viking Pirate 🏴☠️ ⚔️Enjoying a beer 🍺 in a hot 🥵 spring day here in Sydney Australia 🇦🇺
On the other end of the spectrum.
In a past phase of life, I was a Business Advisor and Corporate Consultant to a number of multinationals. I specialised in “cleaning up other people’s messes” and correcting accounting treatment errors and assessing Risks for companies. I enjoyed the relationship management side of things.
In one particular consulting firm, I went to one of the Firm’s many corporate functions. It was the usual shit, people talking about trivial unimportant things like the weather. In this particular function, one of my colleagues on a similar seniority level to me approached me and said –
“Paul, I can tell you don’t want to be here. I’m the spectrum of connections, everyone here would be on one end … the “superficial end, and you, my friend… you’re all the way on the other end of the spectrum.”
I said –
“you’re right. I’m leaving. Goodbye.”
I took my tie off and left the function.
I resigned from that role, not too long after that. … buying a gym and operating other businesses of interest.
Friends that workout together … stay together? Some of the family of gym members that called my gym ….. our gym .. their gym. Lovely people in a lovely phase of life.
Old-school Gym with a modern twist.
In one phase of my life, I owned & managed Australia’s Longest-running Gym at that time. I poured my heart & soul into it… I ran it like a Family.
The gym was old-school traditional with a lot of history. For example, the great 7 x Mr Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger trained in this gym when he was Mr O (the @mrolympiallc was held in Sydney, Australia in 1980, which he won, after a 5 year lay-off). He even took a few famous photos in this gym, of him, going through some of his poses.
Frank Zane, arguably one of the most aesthetically built physique artists during his prime worked out here. He won the “super bowl of bodybuilding “ – the Mr Olympia Title three years in a row (1977 – 1979). He had visited that place and a few other greats, too. The Dumbells we used and many of the machines were the same ones we used back in the 70s. We used the weight-training equipment that Champions used.
But, my gym was not about the equipment and the fancy lights, it was about the people. People passed 15 other gyms because they wanted to be part of this special gym. They wanted to be part of my extended family. I was very proud of the culture I created, of the love that we all shared.
I liked to say that it was an “old school gym, with a modern-twist “ … and I was the modern-twist.
They knew that I CARED. And gave them the results/needs they were looking for.
My grandfather used to always tell me when I was a kid –
“Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Very true indeed.
That challenging, yet beautiful phase of my life came to an end 6 years ago, when I sold it.
My Family of friends in my gym I owned and managed for 7 years. All working towards being the ‘best the can be’
A few things to be aware of when choosing a gym.
A few notes on gyms –
If you’re a beginner (in weight training), look for a good gym. A gym that caters to your needs. There are many types of gyms today – big, small, studios and out-door gyms. It depends on your preference. Before choosing a gym, evaluate things like – cleanliness & hygiene; whether they have lockers or not (most modern gyms do); the condition of equipment – you don’t want holes in upholstery and they should be well-maintained; the Equipment Manufacturer (some manufacturers are better quality than others; $$ (your budget) – if you’re looking for just weights & cardio then you don’t need to pay extra; the friendliness & authenticity of owner – Do they have “skin in the game?”
Now, why should you take advice about gyms from someone like me. Well, it’s simple: I have and have had “skin in the game” and still do. I have walked the walk before I can talk the talk”. You should always apply this approach with anyone offering you advice in any field, especially if they call themselves an “Expert”. I’m sure you do.
Gym Extended Family Members enjoying a day of Lawn Bowls. We had some great lawn bowls events over the 7 years.
Winning this award in 2008 for the BEST GYM in the Northern Beaches of Sydney was the best award I have ever received (better than my 2 x World Championship trophies) It was an award judged and voted on by the residents of the Northern Beaches on the BEST GYM & related Services in the Health & Fitness category
I love this quote. Increasing your awareness is parameters to having clarity and success in your life.
My LIFE LIST: to live Better, not just longer.
You may begin with part of my Life list … one that helps lower my overall Life Risk. Taking the necessary actions and giving me peace of mind that my a life Risk is lowered to an acceptable level. Having peace of mind knowing that a healthy heart 💔 & healthy lungs stave off many diseases.
Despite the prevalence of public outcry on the aged – that much has beenfocused on the vast numbers of baby boomers unprecedented toll on our health care system, mainly in the form of dementia & other costly Heath problems…
One of the KEY factors to reducing your LIFE RISK is to work on actively working on nourishment for the body, heart & mind. On helping YOU. This will directly lower the toll on the health care system.
Do you dance? Do you sing? Have you ever danced with the devil in the pale moon-light?
Living BETTER, not just LONGER.
I still have faith that more and more people will come to recognise how their lifestyle choices can improve their health span — living BETTER, not just LONGER.
People will, at the very least stay active. And when they realise that exercise is as important for the brain 🧠 as it is for the heart 💓, more and more people will commit to it. I’ve said snd seen that the best exercise for the brain is – exercise.
I’ve got a framework I’ve developed & used to help people over the last 30 years – help themselves, find their best selves.
My fridge magnet. Have courage. Continue to fuel your courage … every single day of your life.
My “3-legged stool “ : a framework that works.
I have a tried and tested framework to life/body/mind re-engineering. A framework that works.
A framework that as a former client of mine (who worked closely with the former President of the United States 🇺🇸, Barrack Obama) Scott simply said –
“your framework is Genius, Paul! It’s simplicity masks it’s complexity.”
“thank you”, I said … it is built on the shoulders of giant thinkers before me. One thing I’ve learned from helping thousands of people over the last 3 decades is : Everyone is different.
It is called the “3-legged stool to self re-engineering “. The first and the leg 🦵I would like to speak about here represents:
Life is NOT about Time Management, it is about ENERGY MANAGEMENT. Learn to manage energy better by becoming a better conduit of energy, the better at life, you become.
After almost 30 years of helping people in & around my lab 🔬 (the gym), Here’s a few reasons I believe the 1st Leg: EXERCISE- keeps you going (& you should keep going until you’re 6 feet under) ….
1) It strengthens the cardiovascular system . Main benefit in the long term is there is less strain on the vessels in the body and the brain 🧠. Basically, the organs and cells don’t have to work very hard.
2) Better management of Energy(glucose is more efficiently & effectively used). The Main benefit here as I see it – exercise increases levels of insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1), which regulates insulin in the body & improves synaptic plasticity in the brain 🧠.
3) Reduces risk of obesity. The Main benefit in long-term: not being overweight halves the chances of developing dementia. So, countless studies show that managing your weight, through smart lifestyle choices is Vital to the health of your brain in the long-term.
4) Raises your tolerance to stress. Exercise makes protein that slows down the ageing process & life stress.
5)Exercise makes you feel good (lifts your mood). Studies show many things – more neurotransmitters, neurotrophins, & connectivity shore up the part of the brain 🧠 (hippocampus) against the atrophy associated with depression & anxiety.
6)Boosts the immune system. Exercise brings “balance & symmetry “ back into your immune system. This helps stop ✋ inflammation & combat disease.
7) Compacts your bones 🦴. It’s never too late to start doing weight training to off-set the on-set of osteoporosis as you age. Largely a preventable disease. Note: by age 60, women lose 30% of their bone mass unless they do weight training & take calcium.
Now, you could probably add more benefits to this list, even write book on its benefits.
Courage is the springboard to success in anything worthwhile.
The RIGHT ENVIRONMENT.
People have asked me about what the secret is to having a “6-pack”. I tell them that there is no “secret”. The key is to increase your awareness of self and creating the “Right Environment “ for you.
How do you know and what do you do to create this “right environment ?” There are a number of ways – by yourself, getting help from someone/something that knows how to diagnose and design solution that is tailored to you.
the latter solution is what I have been doing to help people “build their bridges “ from where they are to where they desire to be. You could say that I have been an “Life-body-mind Re-engineer “ for at least 2 decades.
Become increasingly aware … take actions (sufficient & appropriate) and adapt accordingly. My Triple A to self – development.
If you’re in your fourtees and above, Ask yourself if you would like to lower your Life Risk? Ask yourself If you would like to slow down that ageing rate? Ask yourself if you deserve more love for you? Ask yourself if you can allow you to be more vulnerable and LOVE YOU, more? Ask yourself if you value life and living and if you have the courage to HELP YOU, manage your energy, better. To manage your life, better.
Ask yourself if YOU deserve more respect? More respect from YOU? Ask yourself If you don’t only deserve to die with dignity but more importantly, you deserve to live with dignity?
All elements of my “3-legged stop” is vital for your success in building that bridge from where you are to where you would like to be. If you would like to know more about how I can help YOU, help yourself, achieve something you care about: you living better, not just longer …
contact me. Don’t let the life seep out of you … create the right environment for you to continuously infuse You with VITALITY – the “essence of life”
Also, If you would like a copy of my FREE e-book: “A little book of Vitality: 27 keys to a better life”, just email/contact me.
When Alan came to me, he was in a bad place – not having enough sleep despite seeing many “experts”, was on the verge of losing his job and his marriage. With immense courage he undertook the plan I developed for him using my Lifestyle framework principles . He not only started sleeping again (from 700+ apnoea per night to under 4) … he lost > 25+ kg and got his life back.
The cost to get to below 4 per-cent.
I learned something very early on in my foray in to the sport of bodybuilding (almost thirty years ago now) and the art/sport of bodybuilding & physique artistry: the leaner I got, the harder it was to lose body-fat!
I knew pretty early on that I could just ‘clean up’ my diet a little and chop and change here and there, and drop from 14% to 8% body fat in a matter of weeks. I usually stay below 15% body-fat year round, just something I’ve done now for the last 15 years at least.
However, I also learned that when you get to single digit body-fat %, it gets even harder to lose unwanted body-fat. But, I’d get on the treadmill and x-trainer or bike in the gym a number of times in a week and drop under 10% (you can begin to ‘see’ your abdominals clearly around 9%). I keep going and then I get down below 7%. Now, to keep dropping bodyfat to 6% and then to 5% can get pretty hard, especially when you’re doing it the ‘hard way’ … NATURAL and no assistance from steroids or performance-enhancing drugs.
Sometimes, the body just does not want to barge and literally stalls your progress. Let me give you a secret, it is fucken brutal to go below 5%. Very few people go ‘there’. It is a very ‘spiritual experience’ to say the least but it can also be a soul-destroying for those unprepared for the challenges.
So, there I am .. slugging away at the cardio machines on low-carbs, hypoglycemia and fearing muscle loss. Sometimes, I question – ‘what was I doing wrong?’ Isn’t a kilo a kilo? Being at 6% is quite an achievement but I wouldn’t dare boast about getting to that point if everyone else in the world would stop there too! Competitively, they don’t. Regardless of the cost, winners DO NOT stop at 6%. Just to make the Finals (Top 5) at amateur shows, you need to get to around 4%. That is just the standard that is at minimum.
The cost to get below 4% is different for everyone. That’s what I had to get down to to beat the best Natural Bodybuilders in the World at my first of two consecutive World Natural Bodybuilding Championships, almost 15 years ago now. Here’s a tip: you’ll look your best but you’ll feel the worst you’ve ever felt.
Quite ironic, I know. I’ve been there many times in my life. Not a nice to be for very long. I believe, it is the closest thing you come to experiencing death, without dying.
Teaching you to love yourself better and more. That the most powerful show of self-respect is to say ‘no’. Saying no to foods that are not aligned to your desired body image is the highest form of self-respect and love.
Genetics: a gift and a curse.
In the sport of bodybuilding, like most other sports, genetics can be a gift and a curse that either propels you forward or holds you back. I didn’t have the height genetics for example to play basketball and dunk but I certainly have a healthy dose of Type IIb muscle fibres necessary for explosive power, muscle growth and size. You may never have my back and lats insertions and I may never have your biceps peak, even though we both try and train to maximum.
The thing is genetics dictates muscle SHAPE. And muscle shape is muscle shape.
My daughter appears to have taken after my wife in body shape and my son appears to have my build. No amount of training would transform one in to another. They will just be bigger version of what they already are (what steroids and performance enhancing drugs do) – a person’s strengths will be even stronger and weaknesses will be enhanced too.
Here’s the thing, in addition to this covid epidemic, we also have an increasing mental illness epidemic, a broken-families/home epidemic, an obesity epidemic etc. Conservatively speaking, two thirds of modern-societies are overweight and childhood obesity is consistently rising. If you dig a little deeper, something more surprising arises. Among the developed countries, though childhood obesity has increased that much in 30 years, the bottom 50% of the BMI (body mass index) hasn’t increased at all. That means the leanest 50% of kids across the world haven’t gotten fatter at all, but the heavier you are on the BMI, the higher the increase in obesity.
Translation: if a child has the genetics to become obese, then due to today’s societal changes (mom’s not home cooking, greater than 60% of our meals being out now, less activity, etc.) they get even heavier. But, children who don’t have the genetics to become obese, though they live in the same culture with the same foods and temptations don’t gain weight.
Keep your pendulum swinging … because to be stuck at one end is not life-affirming To successfully transform your body, one needs to be a better master of their internal Balanced & Breathing.
Some Genetic Differences.
Have you wondered what some of those genetic differences are?
From my insatiable curiosity of the how the human body and mind works, and my experience of helping hundreds of people over the last 3 decades, here’ a few things I have found –
I have found a few things, firstly, as children, we go through two “filling up” and two “expanding” phases in our growth. I can readily observe this in the two pre-teen son and daughter. The amount of body fat cells our body creates is mainly genetic but also is influenced by how much we eat during that first year of life and the period right before puberty. An individual may have 20 billion body fat cells and another may have 200 billion. All of the hormones that cause body fat storage now have 10 times the load for the triglyceride loading.
And what is triglyceride loading? Google it and see what you find.
Let me share an example – You’re cruising along, the diet is going great, and then you read an article on-line that says once a week you need a “giant CHEAT meal” and load up with 10,000 grams of carbs for fear of muscle loss. What do you some people do, then? Yep, you guessed it … they visit their nearest Pancake shop and eat enough to break the world record. Obviously, this is an extreme example and the ‘carbing up’ wouldn’t really take that much at all. This is also part of the reason I tell almost every person that has successfully transformed themselves NOT to be tempted to get any information from any source, except from me. There is less clutter and noise in their heads and so, better overall progress made to their original goals.
Do you want to know why this practice is a fallacy? Well, you can certainly fill up your glycogen stores with some fruit, that’s right … a simple apple or banana. And you can refill your liver with two lemon tarts? Here’s a fact – 350g to 500g of carbs can pack all of your muscle tissue with all the glycogen it can hold? Any more and you could seriously make yourself feel sick and very uncomfortable.
Here’s the catch: after consuming all those mountains of pancakes to your tilt, your body goes in to reverse. You IMMEDIATELY stop burning body fat. Normal circulating amounts of insulin are three times that of glucagon – your best friend in fat loss. That’s right, your BEST FRIEND in fat loss is the opposing hormone, Glucagon. Not Insulin! That means we’re three times better at storing fat than losing it.
Not what you wanted at all, right?
It is a great feeling to do this … but make sure it isn’t your ego that is leading. Beating genetics to get a certain result is a great achievement all in itself. Stubbornness, well that’s ok.
Evolution favours Survival.
When it comes to evolution and your biology, your body is made to be conservative and to hang on to every ounce of fat for possible future famines. Your body is designed to Survive. It’s main concern is not how your abs look on the beach or how you look in a coat of competition tan on stage at a contest, naked in front of a thousand people. No, your body is built for survival.
So, when you’re cutting back on carbs and in a state of ketosis, or calorie-deficit, your body’s primary objective is to continuously look for ways to store fat. That is just what the body does.
Insulin is your enemy my friends, brought about by you having an unscheduled “high carb’ meal/day(s). Glucagon production stops and insulin not only shuttles glucose to the muscle, but it also tells the liver to go in to the ‘glucose-to-fat’ conversion mode. The body basically begins hording the fat. That’s right, it shields the fat and makes it very hard for you to burn this. I’ve heard all the excuses, some were –
“But is was just one meal! But my body needed it! But I just had one dessert! But I even though it was three cups of rice, it was clean food!”
Your body doesn’t care – it just wants to store. Now, if I have 200 billion fat cells and you have 20 billion, who is better at storing fat? Who can afford more slips on a diet plan? Certainly not me (the person who struggles to get lean at 200 billion fat cells for example).
Balance & symmetry brings you closer to harmony … to beauty …closer to infinity. Just like mathematics does
Work WITH your body, not AGAINST it.
I believe the majority of people who venture into transforming their body, work against it. They don’t work with it.
There are so many related hormonal/biochemical reasons that some people are naturally thin and some are heavy. Working against your genetics is a hard day in the office, every day. Yes, we can do our part to gain or lose weight despite our genetics, but it’s a real slug-fest … a real battle. I’m oversimplifying and skipping important issues to make the point, but one more factor in weight loss that has been given much play is the hormone, leptin. Leptin is secreted by fat cells and basically, let’s you know when you hungry or full. It is the primary signal carrier for hunger/satiety. When enough filling occurs in the fat cells, leptin is released and tells the brain that you’re not hungry. When not enough leptin is present, hunger is the king.
As you probably know by now, there are three body types – the ectomorphs, the mesomorphs and the endomorphs, basically the skinny, the stocky and the fat types. There is a marked difference in the endomorphs (obese tendencies) versus the ectomorphs in terms of leptin. Experimental studies show obese children deficient in leptin eat dramatically less and lose weight when leptin is brought to normal amounts.
A friend and former student/client of mine who achieved the impossible. Following the Quality Plan I designed for him and adopting my “3-legged stool’ framework, Nathan went from 125+kg to 88kg. A massive transformation given he is leaning towards the ‘endomorph’ type. I have not seen anyone work as hard as this man. Very proud of what he achieved.
So, what are the lessons here?
There are four but I will just mention two. Firstly, if you have a body-type which is, you came from a family of obesity and endomorphic, then you will be ‘carb-sensitive’. If that is the case, then, you are definitely not an ectomorph and WILL just have to work that little bit harder. Sometimes, a whole lot harder. You may have to drop your carbs very low just to release fat cells and then increase the probability of using them as energy. That is difficult.. but there are tricks available. Knowing when to ‘cycle’ your carbs is essential and you will need to do more cardio and be willing to suffer more. I have had clients like these over the years and I take my hat off to them. They are real modern-day warriors.
There is little consolation when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere with your body transformation and weight loss. The scale can be very mean to those endomorphs. It is literally a “David vs Goliath” and where David beat Goliath and the tortoise beat the hare for these folks. You have to hang in there if you’re a ‘carb-sensitive’ individual. Hang in there … and summon all the patience you can muster. You will need it.
You will WIN this race and achieve your goal. You will kill Goliath.
Know YOU. Know your strengths. Work to your strengths. Not some of the time … ALL the time.
Until next time,
Quality lean muscle that “flows” takes time & a goal of balance & symmetry
At 4.2% at my 1st world championships. Getting to 4% body-fat was very hard, staying there was harder.
The very popular “most muscular” pose. It brings the ‘house down.’
You – a Father, are a Superhero, whether you know it or not. Your children are watching you like a Hawk. Don’t be in a situation where it’s – “do as I say, not as i do”. Their young minds don’t operate like that. They DO AS YOU DO. So, up your game is you have to.
Honour is a gift we give others.
I’m writing this as I do one of my key daily habits – I’m doing “cardio” on a x-trainer and This thought just crossed my mind. It is based on one of the many observations I’ve made of life over the years.
It relates to honour.
There was a time when “honour “ meant a lot.
It meant dedication, integrity, grit and doing the right thing even under trying circumstances. Does it still have importance and appeal? With the proliferation of high profile cases (& not so high-profile friends and family), planted in the news over the last decade or two, it seems …
Maybe it’s the age we’re living in, where no one seems to believe in pleasure delaying, in the value of patience. There is an unbelievable low patience level and it is one of the more silent but influential epidemics.
The word honour seems to have lost a lot of meaning in our culture, modern societies’ insatiable desire for instant and self-gratification.
When does honour mean anything? When it begins by having a perspective and view of something that is beyond & outside of ourselves. When we think of others, first… when we live to serve others, like Jesus did. Honour is a gift we give others.
This is very difficult in our culture where it is about
Usually, children learn about it when they see their fathers & mothers act honourably themselves.
Like genuine love, honour is a gift we give someone. It involves the decision we make BEFORE we put love into action that a person is of high value. In fact love for someone begins to flow once we have made the decision to honour him or here.
As fathers and mothers we give our children the gift of honour by –
extending it first to our parents (if they are still alive);
helping them find value in times of struggle.
recognising our parenting strengths and style.
providing a healthy balance in our homes.
establishing loving boundaries.
building positive loyalties.
offering honour to God.
I turn to a Bible quote I recall from my 8 years as an altar boy in my early childhood and it said –
“A good name is to be worth more than silver and gold.”(Proverbs 22:1).
That means you can “take it to the bank” when dealing with an honourable man. Are you that kind of person? Is your word , bankable?
What do you “see?” How you perceive the world influences your reality. Change your lenses if you need to.
It not only opens doors but it opens hearts too.
I have experienced it and witnessed it too. That is something a very good mentor of mine said –
“Be honourable, ALWAYS. It not only opens doors but it opens hearts as well.”
Lies, like all sins, have no degree of gravity. There’re all equal in the eyes of the Lord. A sin is a sin. Full stop! So-called “white lies” can be a slippery slope for many, as bad habits … like all habits tend to build momentum.
The entry point to anything, whether bad or good, is the first step in that direction.
The habitual slippery slope of lying will destroy your honour. Like gateway drugs, you will never comprehend how addicted you can become to much harder drugs.
A slippery slope, remember.
So, speaking to ALL fathers out there, think about what I’ve just said. Today, if you’ve just begun walking down that road of dishonour, stop 🛑!
It’s not too late to turn back now.
Your children are watching you like a Hawk and they are much more tuned in and smarter than you think. You don’t want to look them in their eyes one day, asking them to forgive or even understand why “you did it.”
Along with beauty, comes strangeness. Embrace your strangeness … your unique ness.
A major destroyer of children.
This is a real major battle for all parents, a fight against a major destroyer of children – their feeling valueless and insignificant. Every day is a battle and an opportunity for you (as a father or mother) to wage this war. Don’t ever neglect building self-worth in your children. No matter how old your children are, it’s never too late from unfolding your hands and honouring them. Consistently applying this may save the heartache of damaged relationships, and they also get a strong foundation to truly value God, themselves and others.
To you and all dads/mums/parents out there, win this war against this major destroyer of children.
Give them the gift of honour.
Don’t make it hard for your children.
Our modern-Day societies love great stories, especially ones that involve a fall from grace, a man or woman or integrity who “gets their hands dirty “.
A loss of honour. In days gone by, that would be considered worse than death.
Our culture eats people up who break their values for short-term gains and the like. Some of these men and women were once morally upright individuals doing their best for what’s right.
Then, they slip….& its a long, long, lonely ride down … Our culture will tell your children to dishonour you, just like everyone else are. But you know, and I know and all dads out there know that your children will truly want to honour you, their father. Their superhero… their dad.
So, do the right thing, ALWAYS. Not some of the time, always.
My questions to all dads – whom do you need to honour today In your life? What do you need today to restore honour to your name?
All the very best in your decisions, men of honour,
until next time,
Like an FM station, just one point off gives you an irritating “shhhh…”
My kids and I with Ruby the Dog. They just adore each other. Choose to spend time with your kids, not ‘quality time’. Keep feeding their Sense of self-worth, every single day. Never stop Giving them the gift 💝 of honour.
Find your inner-peace but don’t wait too long … or until you’re a skeleton
Just to let you know, first up … I am a Butt Man and also a Boobs Man too, in case you’re interpreting the subject heading from ‘that’ perspective. However, I am writing about a more important issue for Men, like you and others out there … which if, unattended to, can lead to some rather unwanted health issues down the track. Let me elaborate …
You see, I’ve always loved observing people, from when I was a kid. I love observing humans in all walks of life, doing all kinds of activities and apart from a growing problem of very bad posture, many people are losing their bums.
People, especially men over 40 are experiencing an ever-disappearing behind or as the French term calls it – derrie’re. Matter of fact, I believe people have weaker posterior chain muscles in general. What are the ‘posterior chain’ muscles?
They are basically, the muscles that behind you, from your head to your heels – everything connecting your joints together.
Men are at risk of leaving their behinds, behind. They’re losing their butts!
Many men past 40 don’t know this but if they looked at themselves in the mirror lately, it is plain to see that the body profile has changed, and not for the better. Where has this very important muscle group disappeared to? The bum is made up of the gluteus muscles – the muscular masses posterior to the pelvis formed by the three gluteal muscles (glutes): gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus. These muscles are in each cheek.
It seems that these amazingly strong muscles have disappeared and replaced with fat. Very sad, indeed or the part that was once the butt has moved to the gut or belly for some but for many, the arse has just vanished. Does this happen for all men? Certainly not but I believe it is happening more frequently to men that have a desk-job, sitting for hours on end every day, hunched over their keyboard looking at computer screens with very bad posture.
Stand up from where you are and go look at your glutes/bum in the mirror. Feel them, tense those muscles, do they feel strong? Can you see them when you turn to your side. If you can’t, you got to do something about them ass cheeks.
Only if you’re an Butt-Man, like I am.
Progress shots of the ‘back double biceps’ pose prior to contest. Working your ‘back/posterior” muscles is key. It is a life-saving activity you can do for no one else but YOU.
Only one half
In my observations of Boyz to Men in the gym over the last 30 years, I can comfortably say that the upper body is the half of the body that they like to train. It’s as if the bottom half, the ‘other half’ does not exist. They look in the mirror and their eyes don’t seem to look at what’s below the waist, just like seeing only the ‘tip of the ice-berg’ when you see an ice-berg in the ocean.
Most men tend to put unwanted fat deposits in certain areas as they age. This is in the form of visceral fat around the mid-section and neck and chest area (“bitch tits”) and the butt or arse area. In this social media era, many men are trying to lose weight, fast and some are going about it the right way – building muscle with resistance training and combining this with balanced nutrition and cardiovascular exercises.
Problems in the arse tend to arise when they lose muscle in the bum/arse as they lose fat in that area too. Even those men who go to the gym regularly can lose bum muscle or glute muscle too. The latter is rather sad because of the rather foolish approach many men carry out their training.
The culprit: these men only focus weight training on their upper body, only seeing one half of the body. The other half (the lower half) does not exist to them. The loss of muscle in the arse/glute area is due to these men conveniently embrace dementia-related symptoms with regards to the existence of the bum.
To them, the arse does not exist.
Work your back muscles .. you may just build a cape as wide as Batman’s
Maximus and minimus is very strong
As mentioned earlier, the gluteal muscle group is made up of three gluteal muscles in each ass cheek forming a powerful muscular girdle that keeps the pelvis stable and moves the body forward. It is arguably the strongest muscle group in the body.
The glute muscles are not specifically activated and utilised by walking or running and exercises like planks and crunches don’t help either. The maximus and minimus is very strong and are engaged with exercises such as squats, lunges, hip extensions and bridging.
Single leg squats or leg presses and walking sideways helps but unless you’re a crab, it is quite pointless.
Abdominals & Thighs … for the audience. What you should work at is the back/posterior muscles which includes the butt
Exercises to boost your arse/butt size
One day in the past, sometime in the 7 year period I owned and ran my Family Boutique Gym, one of the male members yelled out from the other side of the gym saying –
“Paul, you’ve got the biggest arse I have ever seen on a man!” and joked –
“Paul and his bus” (meaning my backside).
To maintain and even build the buttock muscles, certain exercises must be technically correct. You must have patience and allow yourself to be coachable. You should focus on the functional value of performing these exercise for your overall health and strength benefit.
The aesthetic benefits should be a side-benefit not the main motivating factor (even though there are faster options available from cosmetic surgeons who suck fat out of the belly and re-inject it in to the buttocks – yuck!).
Forget that shit, speak to your Ass-Cheeks and work it like a Real Man+ by doing exercises with weights in the gym that builds these muscles up – squats, deadlifts and leg presses.
My Family of friends in my gym I owned and managed for 7 years. All working towards being the ‘best the can be’
Emerging trend for Men
According to the American Society for Asesthetic Plastic Surgey, getting ‘butt surgery’ is an emerging trend for men. Really?! Apparently, men account for almost 10 percent of cosmetic buttocks procedures. Twenty years ago this figure was less than 2 percent.
There’s also a cheaper option available – buying padded bottom-enhancing underpants or trunks that provide a lift, like Calvin Klein’s “Body Boost Butt Trunk”, that has hidden support straps to boost the rear profile. So, men can have the appearance of a powerful behind, without doing the hard work to earn it and not having to pay thousands of dollars for surgery.
Never thought Men, Real Men … would stoop this low. But, it happens and is happening more frequently.
work your ‘back muscles’
A strong butt is a strong back and good posture
As you now know the glutes are vital to your movement and has certain sexual and aesthetic appeal. However, you may not know that these same muscles are crucial in protecting the back and lower limb joints from injury. They hold the pelvis steady and keep them aligned with the legs and the torso.
If the butt muscles aren’t strong enough they won’t do their job properly – to maintain erect posture for the upper torso and so the lower back muscles have to do extra work and this leads to chronic back pain which a lot of office workers suffer from.
This could also lead to hamstring problems as they have to work harder and overcompensate. Problems can and will also travel downwards to the knees and ankles. So, as you can see, apart from the aesthetic of a big strong butt, their role in having a strong back and good posture is key.
Back double biceps. I had this pose covered … from top to bottom. I won this division in the NSW Titles back in 2007. work your ‘butt. work your back/posterior muscles
Credit Card Test
Here’s what I’d recommend to you if you feel you’ve been suffering from gluteal amnesia, go the gym and start doing the exercises that target the buttocks, namely – squats, leg presses and deadlifts. But, you’ve got to learn to improve your ‘mind-muscle’ connection and focus on squeezing your glutes at the top of the movement. Always be in control and feel the muscle.
The glutes have become the forgotten muscles because most strength-training routines do not isolate these key muscles.
Here’s a little strength test for the largest of these muscles – the gluteus maximus that you could do in the comfort and privacy of your home or office. Take out one of your credit cards from your wallet and place in between your butt cheeks. Comfortable? No, it isn’t but that is not the point.
Now, squeeze those ass cheeks tight, holding the card in place and then run across the room. If those glutes cannot hold the card in place, then, Huston, we’ve got a problem … a butt problem!
Honesty test: so, how did you go? Is the card still there in your butt?
A friend of mine getting a sun tan on my favourite beach here in Sydney, Australia. A hot day it was. …
Don’t worry, be happy
I love that reggae song called “Don’t worry, be happy” that came out in the late 80s if I recall correctly. It is not the end of the world, if your credit card was left behind on the floor as you ran to the other side of the room.
If you have a butt problem, believe me, you’re not alone in this world. I believe most people, particularly, most Men actually have butt problems. You need to get them working well again and you can and … you will.
My son Zachary and I at a family member’s wedding. A lovely day.
Here’s my tip: get your lazy ass off the gym, ask for a more conventional assessment by a suitably experienced and qualified personal trainer and get cracking on your butt investment. Don’t worry, you’re not the only one who is lazy … humans generally are … we all, are, me included.
However, I’m pretty sure every guy reading this, dreams of or at least dreamt of having a small, chiselled waist. What society commonly refers to as the “6-pack!”.
Even before we discovered that specific exercises could give you a small waist, there were some men but mostly women trying to make their waists smaller by diet alone. People today, still do. Look around you, what do you see? Men (of all ages) are afflicted with a big gut with waists in excess of 36″ because of lifestyle choices. This not exclusive to men as a lot of women tend to accumulate fat around the hips and thighs.
Women reading this can recall that their Great Great Grandmothers were squeezing themselves into reinforced corsets resembling straight-jackets. All for the purpose of getting that ‘hour-glass’ figure.
That way of doing things did achieve the desired effect in clothes. But, what happened when off came the beautiful dresses and corsets?
BLURP! Let it all hang out!
Gone was the beautiful, small, tight waist and … in place was a spare tyre that Michelin Tyres would be impressed with.
It is the same for a lot of men.
Unfortunately, with our gluttonous lifestyles in the modern world, where every person is ‘hungry for more’ in every aspect of their lives, walking around with an extra spare tyre is the norm. This usually affected men after 30 but these days we see younger men and women suffering from this phenomenon.
The “love handles’ as they are affectionately referred to is lugged around with them. Usually deposited around the waist-line.
If you’re a man, do you like carrying this extra weight around with you every single day? Be honest now? Apart from the increased health risks you become increasingly self-conscious of the layers of ‘smoothness’ accumulating around your waist. Not a desired look, I would imagine.
A smaller waist improves your shoulder-to-waist ratio and so gives you more of the elusive “x-frame”
Men and women need to be more concerned with the ‘waist-to-hip’ ratio. Excess abdominal fat carries with it a higher risk of insulin-related metabolic problems: high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, heart disease, and diabetes amongst others.
One other great thing about getting a tighter mid-section is that you improve your overall body-shape, moving towards the elusive “x-frame”. Smaller waist makes a man’s shoulders appear bigger and overall appearance more aesthetically pleasing.
So, you can see, by shooting for a slimmer, tighter waist, you are improving reducing your waist:hip ratio and hence reducing your overall life risks but also making yourself look more attractive. Full-stop! Aiming for a 30” waist is very important, don’t you think?
Here’s are a few of my 30” Waist 101 tips for getting started. The tips here should help men aim for a 30″ waist and women a 23″ waist. Possible? Of course it is! :
Steve Reeves – the Hollywood “Arnold before Arnold” came along. The original muscle movie-star. Steve Reeves, a Mr America & Mr Universe winner. He had coat-hanger-straight-shoulders, trim waistline and diamond-shaped calves and topped it off with rugged good looks and perfect hair do. He went on to start in Hollywood blockbusters like Hercules and Morgan, the Pirate. To this day, Reeves is held as the archetype for the aesthetic physique.
Who can get abs?
Almost anyone can get rid of their spare tyre around their waist if they had a strong desire to do so and acted on a good quality body re-engineering plan. I’ve had abdominals and a tight mid-section even before I set foot in the gym
Obviously, some people will find it more difficult than others. Of the three body types – ectomorph, mesomorph and endomorphs, the endomorphs find this task more difficult than the other two. I fall smack-bang in the middle, I’m a mesomorph and then the guys and girls on the other end of the spectrum, have a skinnier, more lighter frame – the ectomorphs.
So, to put simply, anyone and everyone can have a tight mid-section if they really desired one.
Do you need to do a thousands of sit-ups to get a 6-pack and 30” waist?
Short answer: No, you don’t.
However, remember, abdominals are muscles, just like triceps, biceps, pecs and lats. As such, they have to be developed with just as high an intensity in your training as you do the others.
Sure, I may have been blessed with a narrow waist, but that never stopped me from giving 100% effort to perfect my mid-section.
I do two exercises and 3 sets of each of them for 10 reps each. A total of 60 very focused, quality reps. So here it is for those of you that like numbers:
Hanging leg raises
20 – 30
20 – 30
Hanging knee raises
It is a good idea to change exercises as often as possible. As the great 8 x Mr Olympia would say, “Don’t whip a tried horse!” meaning, you can’t make progress if you are pushing your body too hard or too fast.
What type of exercises is suitable to have a small waist?
Right from day one, I have always done two abdominal/waist exercises as main-stay: the bench crunches and the hanging leg raises. I’ve always split my abdominal workout into two distinct phases – the upper abs and the lower-part.
I like to keep things simple. Steve Reeves found the crunch as his best exercise for a good mid-section as well. The best results are gained when you perform the crunches with focused attention.
Another very important thing that I do to keep my waist small and tight is that I do not add any additional weight when working my mid-section. Why would anyone do that? Adding weight would increase your waist width, as abdominals, like any other muscle group would increase in size, wouldn’t it?
Steve Reeves had such a tiny waist that he would look great from every angle. I just love this pose from the Master Poser.
What’s the best time of day to work your mid-section?
Any time of day is ok.
However, I find the mornings to be the best time when you are on an empty stomach (before breakfast).
What equipment would a beginner require?
You don’t need any special equipment as on a more basic level, you can do the exercises I have always done on the floor or on a bench.
Most gyms have a chin-up machine where you could hang from while doing leg raises.
How long will it take to get a 6-pack and a 30” waist?
That would depend on two things:
How much fat or spare tyre you’re carrying around your mid-section at the beginning of your journey.
How strict you are on your nutritional plan
What diet will give me a 30” waist?
By now, every Tom, Dick & Harry out there is a personal trainer and/or some so-called ‘Expert’ could tell you a little bit about losing fat. One of the popular paths people go down is that of ‘low-carb’ diets.
Admittedly, these are quite effective.
They virtually guarantee to help you get lean, however, they can backfire if you don’t understand the right way to apply the low-carb format to training, protein intake and other important variables that will help determine your success in getting rid of the beer gut and keeping it off.
Another angle of the tiny waist of the Amazing Legend that is Steve Reeves. Steve Reeves had a 29″waist. He also had amazing proportions and was “Mr Balance & Symmetry”. His neck, calves and arms all had the same measurements: 17 1/4″ exactly. He was the original Sultan of Beauty (Balance & Symmetry)
Reduce your carbs by half. This would allow you to lose between half a kilogram and 1 kilogram per week.
Reduce portion size. This is a good one especially if you are fuzzy on how many grams of carbs you are currently taking. Take the path of least resistance and simply cut your portions of carbs in half.
One thing I have learned about building muscle and about many things in life – you can’t rush it. You need patience. You’ve got to put in the work, the effort. Hard YAKA … eat … rest … recover… Grow.
There is no reason for you to over-train in pursuit of a 30” or ripped abs. Leave your ego at the door if you want to build muscle and a balanced aesthetic body.
I’ve always believed in patience and doing things right, from the start and doing it right, not some of the time – but, ALL THE TIME!
Follow my advice and you’ll walk a straight-and-narrow path towards a 30” waist but more importantly, a physique-building success. Right now, I boast a <32″ waist, on a good day, <31″. This does not happen by chance. I put in the hard work, the hard YAKA. Just like you need to as well.
The old Captain Viking Pirate … & his thoughts on getting a 30” waist or 6-pack!
My number 1 body builder/body engineer ever! Mr Bob Paris. Simply wow! For more than 30 years, the public waited for the second coming of Steve Reeves. It came in the form of Bob Paris. No one has carried that torch in recent years. Flex Wheeler has come close but even his physique has flaws. My pick is Shawn Ray.