Thursday, March 22, 2012

BRAND NEW Powerlifting video clip, UPDATES on Hollywood Half-Marathon and NPC 2012

I have put off making a serious blog effort for the past few weeks not due to lack of content, but lack of time. Training simultaneously for the April 7th Hollywood Half-Marathon and the July 14th NPC Men's Physique Class Bodybuilding Championships has kept me in the gym/on the running path almost everyday. In doing so, I have been very visible to members of the Santa Cruz, California fitness community and new members at Santa Cruz Power Fitness, and have taken on several new clients for personal training and group exercise.

Today I was lucky enough to be able to train WHILE training a client. Julie, who stars in this video from my February blogs, had a surprise in store for her today for her noon workout. The surprise was that I was going to have her do MY workout: MASS PHASE III Legs day (Squats, Leg Press, Sprints). It was an intense workout for us both (using our own respective weights) and I decided to dig up some footage from over a month ago and turn it into a little powerlifting clip of me doing my 1 Rep Max of High-Back Squats.

My strength training is going very well. I desire not to be looking like the third fella in. Sights set on this July 14th date. NPC San Jose 2012 Santa Clara Convention Center I'm hearing as far as the location goes, not much more detail available though. Next week I will begin to start my cutting phase. A good friend and fitness professional in Portland, Oregon, Ed Bauer, spent close to an hour on the phone with me last night telling me about his bodybuilding experiences in recent years. He is now a dedicated Cross Fitter and currently competing in the Cross Fit Opens in his state of Oregon. I trust what he says, and have a long list of tips, tricks and truths that he shared with me about this final 12 weeks of prep before a bodybuilding competition. 

This guy has his own gym (or box) in Portland, called Plant Fit Training Studio. He is a Cross Fit Level 1 Certified trainer, who has put me through one of his fine workouts in this past year. Everything in Cross Fit is done scientifically, with the goal being to "increase one's work capacity over broad time and modal range." I have frequent discussions on this topic in a rapidly growing facebook forum called Cross Fit Vegans and Vegetarians

If the above video of me powerlifting didn't get you IN THE ZONE, check out Ed Bauer's latest of him crossfitting right here: 

Aside from these plant-based BEASTS in training fellow trainers and I are still trying to make our videos widely-viewed. Latest from CrockerCreations was my good friend, Mia Azzaro's trainer profile, which can be viewed HERE, as long as you are sure to click on the stud to her right immediately after you watch hers! Have a phenomenal and compassionate day, my friends and fellow athletes. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Can the Vegan Diet Cause Low Testosterone? : The Renegade Health Show Episode #680

Can the Vegan Diet Cause Low Testosterone? : The Renegade Health Show Episode #680

This is a question I've been concerned with ever since learning about CrossFit and Olympic Lifting. Testosterone is my friend in the muscle-building and strength-building realm, so I want to have high levels of it. Or maybe just stable levels of it... watch this video.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pre-Workout Pep Talk! My kickboxers sharing their feelings about class!

Lisa and Lorena are becoming the stars of my videos because they are so consistent with their workouts- I see them more than I see my own reflection! (That's not true....I look in the mirror all the time :)

Along with them are Dana (for a second), Jackie, Cassandra and Julie. If you ever want to try my cardio kickboxing class, I teach every Monday and Wednesday at 6pm at Santa Cruz Power Fitness.

For a video of more of my kickboxing class, check this link out! I'm the guy on the right :)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Minute with Manny (sell YOU some abs)

Also in this video: Lovely Lorena, Lavacious Lisa, Mystery Man (Mo), and guy on treadmill. You'll notice Manny giving props to those two....and rightfully so, since they've both been working out with me for over a year now. Amazing results both of you! They both are featured in a blog video from earlier this month doing 5 x 5 back squats at Acadia Fitness.

Please subscribe to my YouTube channel by clicking on the top of this video or this link here. I post all of my fitness blog videos straight to YouTube also, so catch them before they even get to Herbivore Athletics!

If you know me at all, you'll know I love YouTube for this reason.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Time to share some feelings.

I'm ecstatic to have had a record number of views on my last blog entry. This whole sensation (putting my workouts, my thoughts, my reviews, my pictures, my LIFE) on the internet and updating it and keeping it fed and fueled and fresh as if it were a living, breathing entity needing my constant care is interesting. I actually really like it. Knowing that I have page viewers (not many followers...) (YET!) is inspiring and makes me want to continue putting up as much information as humanly possible to keep my readers satisfied. So, what are you all looking for?

The advice I give to people when asked that question (whether it's in the realm of teaching children, personal training, or just being a friend/confidant to somebody) is honesty and transparency. So, today I honestly want to just talk and type a little bit, because I don't feel like I can impart any great wisdom on to you today. This is mainly because I don't know who YOU are. Are you someone following my blog because I merely follow yours? If so, THANK YOU! I follow yours because when I searched at random, yours was up to date and filled with information that interested me. I hope mine is the same for you. Are you someone following my blog because you're my friend or family and I beg you to? If so, thank you and I love you. Are you a fitness enthusiast looking for more workout and health tips? If so, please read below! I give lots of information about workouts, bodybuilding, CrossFit and plant-based nutrition. I fear that I don't have anybody turning to this page for expertise in health and wellness (YET!) but it's only been a month in existence now :) I won't get overzealous. I'll forgive you if you still choose to turn to Jack LaLanne or Brendan Brazier instead!

I named my blog and twitter, "Herbivore Athlete"
I am putting myself up there with the greats like Jack and Brendan. I have heard many different opinions about Jack's diet(s). Yes, he lived 96 years, I'm sure he's followed different diets over those years...
Last I heard and trusted was one from FitLifeTV that said he was a vegetarian that advocated the occasional serving of fish. Now, we can argue this back and forth, but if someone on the 110% vegan high horse wants to try and climb to Jack's stature and share their herbivore enlightenment, go ahead. Until then, I'll take Jack's best efforts at vegetarianism and file him under my famous herbivore athletes.

Now I do know that Brendan is 100% vegan, and has done much of his training following a strictly raw vegan diet. He talks about this in his book called 

                 Thrive: The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance in Sports and Life

This book is the best addition to the vegan and vegetarian fitness community. Brendan has done nothing but positive things for our movement, and continues to thrive on his path of excellence. (pun intended)

Back to the feelings part, though I guess all of this has technically been my feelings.... I have come to appreciate a particular facebook community called CrossFit Vegans and Vegetarians. This is a group started by a vegan crossfitter named Mary Boehler not too long ago, and has grown to 317 users in a short period of time. Don't think of that 317 as a bunch of dues-paying,  non-participants either! First of all, there are no dues (it's a facebook group) and second of all, people are posting and commenting and liking and supporting constantly! I have several notifications about new images, new videos, new links, new statuses, new members, and multiple comments on all of them almost everyday. It's to the point where I want to turn notifications off, but the content of posts in this group is priceless. I've never heard so many people talk so openly and frankly, or so honest and determined as crossfitters. They all have something common- they're all forging elite fitness at their boxes, yadda yadda yadda. (I'm saying this as a fellow crossfitter...not making fun of anyone). Then THESE folks don't just have the crossfit connection, these folks are in the minority of the minority, abstaining from what is seemingly every crossfitter's favorite thing: MEAT. Dead animals, bodies, in mouths, decomposing er, I mean, digesting into elite muscle, or whatever.
If you haven't heard of the Paleo Diet, it's a grain-free, sugar-free diet that most adherents rely on meat to get their nutrients from. Some of the science makes a lot of sense if you want to build lean muscle and shed those seemingly impossible to lose extra few pounds. Sadly, meat is the product of pain and suffering that myself and millions of others choose to abstain from. We don't eat meat, so we are at a disadvantage. This disadvantage is only in the sense that we can't go home from our crossfitters' conversation and implement the advice that we are given.."Ok, great workout, you need to eat five chickens TONIGHT for your muscles to repair properly." If that person said go eat five Boca Burgers, dude, yes! I'm so there- I'll do it. But instead, I hear someone telling me to do something that I absolutely won't do, I won't even consider it for a second, and haven't been considering it for the past 12 years now. Now I actually have to go home and THINK. Or RESEARCH. Or much iron, fat, protein, etc do I really need to ingest so I can be at the level of my counterparts at my CrossFit box/gym?
What is fantastic about this facebook community, is that I can type that very question where is says Write Something... and I will definitely get a response. I will get a scientific response, I can get personal opinions and recommendations, I can get some support from fellow crossfitters who have had to encounter the same problem, I can get some comic relief from a cynical vegan or two who's fucking sick of the entire planet being so stubbornly pro-meat (like me), it's the best. I appreciate each and every person on that site. I recommend you check it out, especially if you're an herbivore crossfitter! Expect a lot of my blog to be inspired by conversations found on that site. Rather than drive them all crazy with paragraphs and paragraphs of my personal opinions, I have YOU! My blog and my followers, my precious! Oh yeah, and of course my clients. Here's one more shout out to ya'll....and one more time that I'll blast you on the internetz for everyone to see! (I only need 20 more views to get to one thousand! That's like 75% more than any other trainer at my gym has gotten! I love this community- it's all thanks to you. Please watch it once, or again, and show your friends. If you have a youtube account, please LIKE and COMMENT. I will do the same for you.)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

13 Vegan Muscle-Building Meals!

I made this video a while back when I was focusing on my CrossFit workouts. Some who adhere to CrossFit follow the Paleo Diet which if done by a non-vegetarian, consists of a buttload of meat. Truth be told, the Paleo Diet can be done by vegetarians and vegans very accurately if planned well. As with any meal plan or diet, research must be synthesized and your reading on the topic should be thorough before you embark on your healthy journey. Folks from the facebook group, CrossFit Vegans and Vegetarians, discuss Paleo-Veganism thoroughly and have many members regularly posting about their completely vegan and paleolithic meals.

This all being said, while believing that the Paleo Diet principles can help achieve results, my diet is currently far from that. I include grains and legumes in my meals- but of course every meal is corpse free. My vegetarianism is for ethics purposes. The animals and the environment mean more to me than the few extra grams of protein I would get from eating chickens and turkeys. Go veg, stay strong, watch my video.