BLUE SKY STRONGBOX Training Compilation

May 22, 2020

This is what training looks like at the Blue Sky Strongbox. This was pre-Coronavirus, 2019-2020. My private facility is officially back open. Health is never more important than during such a time as the current pandemic. Safety and health are at the top of my list of priorities. I wish everyone well. Let’s make everything count.


Eat Food. Not too Much. Mostly Plants.

December 20, 2019

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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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Having a Plan is Essential

December 20, 2019

WHY DIETS FAIL on Netflix

November 22, 2019

 

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WATCH THIS ON NETFLIX. There is a lot of confusion surrounding the facts of fat-loss, nutrition, calories, diets, exercise, etc. The photo above is of a 14-minute episode on Netflix. The show is called Explained and this particular episode is from the first season. I think it does a pretty good job of establishing some worthwhile facts. I recommend watching it twice. Here are some highlights. ~There is no perfect diet for everyone. ~Most diets are 1 of 2 categories, Low-fat or Low-Carb. ~All diets work when followed. ~All diets stop working once once not followed. ~The only way to see consistent results is to find a diet and lifestyle that can be maintained until you die. ~Failing to be successful on any diet causes unwanted guilt and shame which can lead to an unhealthy relationship with food. ~Guilt and shame are extremely profitable and will certainly be exploited by many powerful, manipulative industries. ~In 1863 a British author wrote the first ever low-carb Diet Book that became a best seller. ~Food changed drastically after WWII, which led to the Industrial Food Complex and a plethora of unhealthy processed food. ~By the 1980’s, obesity was on the rise, food was more unhealthy and cheaper than ever and we ate/drank more than ever, especially snacks, by about 500+ calories more a day, which has continued until till the present. ~1980-2000 saw a HUGE increase in obesity. It has continues to climb until the present. ~Exercise is great for health but not very good for burning enough calories to lose weight in a healthy way without improvements in the diet. ~Losing weight too fast, doing too much intense exercise and going too low on calories can cause a serious hormonal disruption that may make things much worse in the future. ~Genetics may make it more difficult for some to lose fat but it is by no means an absolute limitation. ~Achieving a consistent caloric deficit is still the most important factor for fat-loss. ~Eat more vegetables & fruits (plants) and less of everything else. ~ ~Consume less calories on days you move less. #whydietsfail #nutrition #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #bssbbooks #blueskystrongbox

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My Attempts to Make Nutrition Simpler

November 15, 2019

 

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Nutrition should be Simple. Of course, this is seldom the case. Not knowing what to eat or worse, being scared to eat food, can be a serious problem. Nutrition is about balance NOT imbalance. When someone asks me about anything nutrition related I do everything I can to give very simple advice. Everyone’s in a different place. It’s important to start where you’re at. You may have a health, fitness or cosmetic goal. It may be all three. It’s very important to identify what it is you want and need. Personally, learning to understand the difference between Whole Food and Processed Food is a great place to start. Remember that “Food” is not only limited to what we eat but also anything we drink. We all know what Junk Food is but it doesn’t hurt to refresh. Learn to read Food Labels, not just count calories. Have a working knowledge of all 3 major Macro-Nutrients: Protein, Fat and Carbs. Understand that certain food is more like Medicine and some food is more like Poison. All Diets work because they require paying closer attention to what we consume. Any Diet will fail if we stop doing it. There is no perfect Diet for everyone. We each must find our own way live. Sleep, Stress Reduction and Exercise are important concepts that help with everything when applied appropriately. Don’t be scared to take a small step in a healthier direction. Work on educating yourself. Work to improve one main area at a time. In fact, with regards to Diet, try improving only one meal at a time (ex: breakfast, lunch or dinner). It’s ok if it’s not always perfect. No one is ever perfect all the time. Here’s a short list of my preferred references. 1) Dr Greger’s Daily Dozen list-and phone app 2) Dr Greger’s book, How Not to Die-and NutritionFacts website 3) Michael Pollan’s book, Food Rules 4) Netflix Explained series entitled, “Why Diet’s Fail” 5) Precision Nutrition website. I would highly suggest watching the 14 minute Netflix episode first. It’s a great summary of important information that is often misinterpreted in the media and pop-culture. #bssbbooks #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #drgregor #drgregordailydozen #michaelpollanfoodrules #whydietsfail #blueskystrongbox

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How to Make ANy Exercise More Difficult

November 15, 2019

 

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HOW TO MAKE ANY EXERCISE MORE DIFFICULT. There are many ways to make any exercise more challenging without adding more weight or doing more reps. Today I offer one such technique. It involves manipulating the tempo (speed). In other words, purposely moving faster and/or slower. It could also involve some deliberate pauses, often called isometrics. This can be a very useful tool. There may come a time when you want more from an exercise or a piece of equipment. If so, try some new options before adding weight or reps. With that said, it’s important to note that there is no magical rep range for the average person. That means that there might not be a huge difference if do 5 reps, 8 reps, 12reps, 15reps, 50reps, 100reps, etc of certain exercises. The magic is found in the effort. 100 reps done sh*tty is of little value. 3 reps done with smooth form and a ton of intensity may in fact be worth more. It’s always about the quality not the quantity. Find creative ways to get more out of any exercise by demanding more from your own body. Do more with less. The power is within. #tempotraining #trainingvariables #isometricexercise #austinpersonaltrainer #austinpersonaltraining #blueskystrongbox

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Whataburger and My Personal Weekly Movement Quota

November 11, 2019

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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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