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EAT FOOD. NOT TOO MUCH. MOSTLY PLANTS. Don’t let nutrition be confusing. It really made simpl(er). EAT FOOD refers to eating more whole foods and limiting/avoiding the many highly processed foods that make up the majority of a typical Western Diet. So much of our modern food is made using questionable ingredients to extend shelf-life and increase profits. Other foods are made in a variety of unhealthy ways using ingredients that were never meant to be consumed on a regular basis. No one is ever gonna be perfect 100% of the time. The point is not perfection here. The point is for us to evolve our habits and expand our knowledge so that we are more informed about where our food comes from, how it is made and manipulated, what ingredients are used, what impacts all this might have beyond the intended purpose and why/how various food are marketed. This does not happen overnight. This happens over time. Start slowly, build stronger. NOT TOO MUCH is exactly what it sounds like. Most of us consume far more calories than we actually need. The better the quality the food we eat and drink is, the better everything will be. Starvation is not the goal here. The goal is controlled moderation. Another key concept is balancing calories with varying activity levels. MOSTLY PLANTS refers to all things that aren’t animals or animal by-products, which is the majority of what food actually is. I’m not against eating animals. I’m also not completely against eating known unhealthy food on occasion. I myself eat pretty much everything. That choice is mine. That choice is your own as well. Guilt, shame, hate, fear, etc is NOT my message. The message is this: regardless of what foods you do or do not choose to include in your regular diet, consuming more Vegetables, Fruits (and all the many other plant foods that are available) will ALWAYS be a really good option, quite possible the best option. We actually know this already. Most 5 year olds already know this. We just forget sometimes? Well here’s a friendly reminder. #bssbbooks #michaelpollanfoodrules #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #nutrition #healthyfood #drgregerhownottodie #blueskystrongbox
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I love lists. Short or small. Big or tall. It’s a huge part of my strategy to maximize precious Time & Energy. Obviously, I highly recommend them. They need not be fancy or complicated. I often use my phone for list making but I also prefer the old fashioned way of writing things down. This is/was a quick list of movement (exercises) that I like to practice at least 1 time each week. It looks like a lot but spread out over seven days it’s not. Things become more clear when written down. I find things get done when I write them down. The one danger is developing an unhealthy addiction to “getting things done”, which is fine for those things that are truly necessary but maybe not for the rest. The trick is to be deliberate and efficient. Do only what needs to be done. Prioritize action. Save “the wants” for later. Enjoy them. The wants are sometimes more fun when left to spontaneity and improvisation. Anyway, I’ve already said too much. #bssbbooks #carltonlists #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #listofexercises #carltonsmixtapegumbo #blueskystrongbox
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MINIMALISTIC DUMBBELL WORKOUT. This works the entire body using only 1 dumbbell and 2 exercises. It’s simple and effective. The key is to challenge yourself while making sure your form on each movement is smooth and correct. I promise you…long workouts are not needed. Most adults are busy. The number one excuse for not exercising is a lack of time. There is no excuse why you can’t do this (or something very similar if modified for an injury or limitation). Make it all matter. Aim for 5-12 reps on both exercises, done for 2-5 rounds, 1-3 times each week. Don’t be scared to challenge yourself. #minimalisticworkout #1dumbbellworkout #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #austinfitness #austintexas #blueskystrongbox
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STRENGTH TRAINING WORKOUTS NEED NOT BE LONG OR REQUIRE MUCH EQUIPMENT. Whether you exercise at home, at work or on-the-go, short workouts with minimal equipment are your best friend. No more excuses. In the next few weeks i plan to demonstrate a few simple routines. It’s important to note that equipment is not actually necessary for resistance training. It is 💯 % possible to work the entire body using only your body weight, for FREE. With that said, equipment can be very useful and help make things more interesting. My top 3 equipment recommendations are: 1) Resistance Bands 2) a single Kettlebell 3) a single Dumbbell. Resistance Bands are typically inexpensive and kettlebells or dumbbells can often be found used (and you really only need ONE of either). Last week I talked about the essential exercises for a short total body workout. Next week I will demonstrate an example. #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #resistancetraining #strengthtrainingathome #dumbbellworkout #kettlebellworkout #blueskystrongbox
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PERSONAL GROWTH. Sounds about as fun as the first time I heard the phrase “Adult Contemporary Music”. But the idea of GROWTH is a good thing and something to be desired. It is essential. Sure we could all stay the same but then we also run the risk of losing that sacred fire, the magic fuel that keeps us going each day for a lifetime. When I was coming up we called this predicament “burnout”. We can do better than that. We should each want to do better than that. It starts with the desire. Making any improvement in any area of our lives will likely translate positively to other areas. Think of it as Enrichment or Nourishment. I also really like the concept of Cultivation. Trust me, I dislike the sound and seriousness of adult topics like “Personal Growth & Development” as much as anyone but once the cheesy catch phrase is removed the beauty of the IDEA will hopefully, in time, ring clear with inspiration. There could be a million reasons why any one of us might seek change. Just remember – any ONE reason will do. Why not get on that today? #blueskystrongbox #bssbbooks #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #personalgrowth #personslgrowthanddevelopment #makingchange #evolve
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Let’s look a little deeper at the negative effects of too much sitting. One area that’s not mentioned enough is the effect it has on our Posture, specifically the muscles involved with keeping our posture upright versus hunched over. Understand, sitting is not inherently bad for us. It becomes a problem when done too often and with no effort made to correct any negative effects. It is true that sitting does tend to make some muscles tighter. It would be wise to Google which ones and then do regular stretching and self/massage work for those areas before they become serious problems. But what about exercise? Is there an exercise that can help with the many postural issues caused by too much sitting? Yes, it’s called the DEADLIFT. In the early 19oo’s it was still called the Healthlift. They even do this exercise at the space station. Is it a good exercise for everyone? Maybe not. For various reasons, not all exercises are a good fit for everyone. There are some simple tests that can help identify any potential problems, especially in the hands of qualified professional. Just know that most anyone can learn to do this exercise safely. In fact, there are quite a few different versions of the Deadlift and a variety of equipment can be used. Do some research. Experiment. And yes, always be careful. The point today was to get you to understand that while many of us may have to sit way more than is healthy, there are things we can and should do to keep from ending up permanently hunched over. Why not start today?! #bssbbooks #posture #posturecorrector #posturecorrection #heathsndwellness #healthandfitness #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #blueskystrongbox
“Retirement from activity promotes death”
“For years the Mighty Atom had pursued these studies, and he had a voluminous knowledge of physical culture, chiropractic, food science and dietetics, chemistry, anatomy, and allied subjects, and had received a certificate as a Doctor of Naturopathy. This complemented his lifelong study of the Mosaic Dietary Code, the Kosher laws.”
he told hecklers to “take a walk” before stepping down from his “pitchman” platform.
“No man has limits, except in his own mind”
“Look up, what do you see? Stars, planets, whirling infinity with no beginning and no end. Enough to make a man lose his mind. My deity was never born and never died. He was, is will be. My god is Space and Time.”
he was the master of “life-force”.
“if you love animals, don’t eat them”
He told the judge, “every time i swung the bat it was a home run!” after defending himself against a nazi clan. “It wasn’t a fight, it was a pleasure”
“I am a peaceable but by no means passive man. i consider mine to be important work. And i am not the kind who will accept abuse.”
“I give you respect. But i do not ask for yours in return. I demand it. If you will not give it to me, i will take it out of your hide”
“By standing still, he had become modern”
“if you can’t do any good, don’t do any harm”
“Most people, if told to close their eyes and meditate, are unable to do so. Their minds wander. The Atom asked them to keep their eyes, open, and imagine that their outsretched arms were fire hoses. They could see of out of them, while directing an unstoppable force of water. This thought process was applied to either arm, legs, hands, feet, fingers, toes. He asked them to assume this mental state before initiating physical action of any part of the body, and to practice turning it on and off”
“The Almighty must have put us here for a higher purpose that to accumulate wealth. How many meals can a man eat at one time, how many suits can he wear, how many beds can he sleep in? I figured i might as well do what gave me satisfaction.”
To the Management of 24HourFitness:
I write this letter with appreciation and affection and give my highest recommendation to my personal trainer, Carlton Cullins. He literally gave me my life back and for that he has my deepest gratitude. During the course of the past year that he trained me he made the training fun, informative, and inspiring. He always made me feel good about myself and set reasonable and achievable goals. He tailored his training to meet my particular needs and easily adjusted, added or stopped particular exercises to reach all of those goals. I consider him to be the best trainer 24 hour fitness has – and I have watched them all train people over the last year. Just as important I learned while he trained me that he is also a special person with great depth, compassion, and intelligence, seasoned with a terrific sense of humor. If this sounds like I like him, I do, very much.
When I started working out with Carlton I was 58, fat, weak and cranky. I felt old and I looked old. I couldn’t get out of a chair without pushing with my arms. I couldn’t get down onto the floor without holding onto something and I couldn’t get back up without help. I had to walk downstairs sideways to avoid falling because my balance was so bad. I had been falling suddenly if the slightest thing tripped me. I had hurt my knee badly on one of those falls and had a lot of knee pain. Several months before I began training I had had a herniated disc which had required a lumber injection to relieve the unremitting pain. My cholesterol was high and I had had my gall bladder out just two months before I started seeing him. My elbows hurt all the time and I couldn’t even begin some of the exercises we first tried. My ideal fat burning heart rate is 137 with 147 beats per minute being my 85th percentile rate beyond which I am not supposed to maintain. Going at the slowest speed possible on the elliptical machine my heart would begin to race above 155 within just two or three minutes requiring me to stop to let it slow back down before continuing.
Today I can maintain a medium high speed on the elliptical for 20
minutes without my heart rate going beyond 147 and do a total of 45 minutes of cardio total. I can run up and down stairs properly without getting breathless. I can lower myself to the floor without using my hands and get back up again the same way. My elbow pain is gone, as is my knee pain. I haven’t fallen in six months, although I have tripped on things. My cholesterol is lower. I can do three sets of 12 planks and hold each of them for 10 seconds, an exercise I could not do at all when I started. I lift weights and do squats easily. My legs and arms and shoulders show muscle definition! I feel good about myself, confident, and I believe in myself and my ability to be strong and fit.
As I said when I started this letter, Carlton gave me my life back. I feel 20 years younger than I did when I started. And even though I haven’t followed the nutrition recommendations as well as I should have, I look and feel much younger. I can garden again and I can play golf again. In fact, I can now hit a golf ball 20 yards further than I have ever hit it! And even better I can now lift and play with my granddaughter. Life has become very good.
Michael Case Lederer
September 28, 2006
James M 9/30/2009
this dude is the man! what carlton lacks in head hair he makes up for between the ears. and then some plus a little more.
carlton is a really generous warmhearted professional with a good thing going. check him out. tell him one-armed charlie brown sent you.
I have been working with Carlton for several years and followed him from the health club once he opened up his home gym. I am a middle aged woman who works hard to stay fit and healthy and Carlton is a big part of that for me. He is knowledgeable and very helpful, amazingly upbeat and positive even while making me work as hard as I can stand to. He continues to learn and grow, which I respect a great deal. He also knows what I need and tailors my workouts to take care of me, to maximize the experience of training. I don’t know how he does it. He can work with anyone and help them to, as he says, find “happiness thorough healthiness.” He’s great. And his rates are beyond fair. I recommend him without hesitation, most enthusiastically. Always professional, yet friendly and personable. One of the best.
I am a school teacher, and it is part of my job to be fit – not just to keep up with the kids, but also to be a good role model for them. I have been training with Carlton for a year. In that time I have really gotten the results I wanted. I have gained back the muscle I was starting to lose, as I have grown “older” and spend more time working inside and less time outdoors playing! Carlton is really laid back and he is great at switching up my workout so I never get bored. He knows so much about health, fitness and nutrition. And he is always studying and learning more – I really respect him for that. I completely trust his fitness advice and it has really paid off for me. I also really like the location – South Austin is where it’s at!
I found Carlton through Yelp. His location, reviews and the training philosophy on his personal web site sold me. (His very reasonable rates didn’t hurt either:)) I just finished my third session and, boy, are my arms tired:) He’s got raw dough on his hands, now, but when we’re done, this body’s gonna be some hot cookie. Thanks Carlton!
Carlton is a great trainer. I actually found him here on Yelp. I have never reviewed a business, but I thought I would register and write one for him. My fiance and I started going to Carlton to lose some weight for our wedding. He is a great trainer and has an amazing intuitive knowledge of how far you can push yourself. He is not the type of trainer who is going to sit there and bark orders at you like a drill sargeant. He will work with you and craft a personalized routine to help you reach your goals. I tend to avoid working out so there are times when I do not want to go, but I leave every session with a sense of accomplishment. I have noticed and had people comment that I look slimmer and more fit, and I have only been going for a couple months. Somehow, Carlton manages to combine his inherent high energy with a laid back attitude. It is obvious he loves helping people be healthier and happier. I do love not having to go to a gym. I was hesitant at first about going to a gym in someone’s home, but he has always been professional, and it works out great because a lot of the workouts can transfer to your living room. I would highly recommend Carlton to anyone looking for a trainer.
I worked for the YMCA for 22 years, and worked out with several different trainers. Carlton is light years ahead of everyone else. He is knowledgeable, and supportive. I have never asked a question that he couldn’t answer with clarity. An injury, several subsequent surgeries and two years in bed or a wheelchair had turned me into oatmeal from the neck down. While I was motivated and had some knowledge of training from many years experience, going to Carlton was miraculous- he encouraged me without pushing too hard, he bore with my extreme frustration, and because of his vast knowledge and experience, he kept me from injuring myself, which I would definitely have done if I had tried this alone. He has a wonderful knowledge of diet and nutrition, and has helped me a great deal in changing my eating habits. He was the best investment I have made on this long road to recovery! One of the best things he has given me is a routine that I can use at home. Simple equipment, no expensive machines, and a lot of variety lets me work out whenever I can, without having to trek to a commercial gym. My results have been everything I could have hoped for! Thanks Carlton- I love you!
If you are looking for a personal trainer in SOUTH AUSTIN I recommend you consult with Carlton. I love not having to go to a big ugly gym, he has everything you need in his home gym. The workouts are varied and he creates a program individual to you and your needs. I have trouble with my knees and was concerned about starting to exercise again– but once I started working out at Blue Sky, I have been regaining all the strength I have partied off over the years. My knees aren’t bad– my muscles were WEAK! Carlton doesn’t BS–he won’t waste your time.
Jeniffer D. 09/22/2008
I’ve been working with Carlton for over a year. I actually look forward to going to work out with him. He keeps the workouts challenging and fun. I am so much stronger and much more balanced. Carlton is lots of fun. He is super smart and intuitively knows just how far to push you. He is down to earth and very funny while remaining professional. He is creative and very supportive. I’ve continued to train with him while recovering from injuries and he comes up things I can do without involving the injured joint. The best part of training with Carlton is that I don’t have to go to a noisy gym. I get to pick the music I want to listen to and most importantly I get to work out in my bare feet!
I’ve never worked out a Blue Sky, but I know Carlton from a previous gym. He is amazing! Carlton is very knowledgeable, creative, open-minded, and encouraging. He is an over-all great person, athlete, supporter, and coach! 🙂
Carlton is fun and interesting to work with and makes your work out varied so that you would not get bored. I always get a great workout when i’m working with him.
Carlton is awesome! He is a great trainer with a private gym: very different from the average meat market gyms with hulking muscle men and skinny perfectly toned girls that make me feel even worse about myself. I also get to pick my own music, which is great because if I had to listen to anymore Lil’ Wayne, I may have given up on any chance of getting in shape.
Carlton is a wonderful trainer. He pushes you to your limit without having unrealistic expectations. I know I’m always going to get a good workout without pulling something or overexerting myself. He varies the routine enough to keep it interesting and selecting my own music is nice 🙂
A Few of My Satisfied Customers… 🙂