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Archive for September 2011

The Anatomy of a Beer Belly

Anatomy of a Beer BellyNowadays we see the infamous beer belly just about everywhere. More and more men have them and most want to get rid of them. Some pop up in just a few weeks over the holiday season and most end up hanging around for the rest of your life.

The Beer Belly is a fashion trend that everyone would love to avoid and with the ever expanding North American waistlines fewer are able to make it through their 20’s without one.

In today’s post we’re going to dissect, so to speak, what makes up a beer gut and 3 important steps you can take immediately to drastically reduce the inflatable tire around your mid-section.

To defeat the beast we must first understand it, get to know it and figure out what makes it tick. Let’s take a closer look at the anatomy of a beer belly.

Visceral Fat is Beer Belly Fat

The fat located around your internal organs and not the stuff next to your skin is responsible for your beer gut. The over accumulation of visceral fat causes weakening of the transverse abdominal muscle (TVA) and is responsible for the protruding potbelly appearance associated with a beer gut.

Normally, your organs have a thin layer of visceral fat in order to protect and insulate them. An over accumulation of visceral fat gives that firm, hardened beer belly look and can be very dangerous to your health.

Visceral fat is one of the hardest adipose tissues to get rid of but it can be done.

Subcutaneous Fat is Not Beer Belly Fat

The fat underneath your skin is subcutaneous fat and although it looks bad, flops around a bit and can increase the size of your beer gut- it is not the main cause of your beer belly.

Subcutaneous fat is deposited in various fat stores around your body. Typically men deposit fat around their midsection first (beer belly and love handles) and back, chest, thighs and ass secondly. Women deposit subcutaneous fat in their hips, thighs and butt first and beer belly second.

Your genetics play a major role in determining the distribution of subcutaneous fat. Subcutaneous fat is easier to lose than visceral fat. Typically it is used as energy storage and insulation by the body. Unfortunately in today’s day and age, due to over-consumption of refined sugars and starches there is an over accumulation of subcutaneous fat. We are storing way more energy than we are using and this is not a good thing.

Beer Belly Health Risks

Beer bellies that measure 40 inches or greater are directly related to some serious health conditions. Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, metabolic syndrome and increased risk of stroke are all more prevalent in men with beer bellies. These conditions are no laughing matter and worst-case scenario can lead to an early death.

Add 6 inches to the 40 already around your waist and your beer gut falls into the category of abdominal obesity. Yep- you’re not just the guy with the big beer gut anymore, you are clinically obese. Time to do something about it.

How can I tell if my beer belly is visceral fat?

Because visceral fat is packed deep inside and around your internal organs there is no easy way to tell how much a person might have. The most accurate way to gauge your visceral fat level is by CT scan but that isn’t always an option for everyone.

To start, a “beer gut” is a pretty good indication of visceral fat accumulation. Secondly, men tend to internalize visceral fat more easily than women do. Thirdly, Caucasians tend to have more than African Americans. And lastly the older you are- the more fat you internalize and store around your organs versus subcutaneously when you are young.

Either way- fat tissue is fat tissue and it is important to reduce the amount you have throughout your body. Here are 3 simple steps you can take to reduce your beer gut and overall body fat percentage:

3 Simple Steps to Lose Your Beer Belly

1. Stop eating anything in a bag or box.

When trying to lose your beer belly you should avoid processed and refined foods that are high in sugar, sugar derivatives and preservatives. Foods like this cause a toxic environment within your body wreak havoc on your system rob you of energy making you sluggish and tired and lead to beer belly fat gain.

Avoiding processed/refined foods and eating whole food, as close to their natural state as possible is one of the easiest ways to help lose the beer gut.

2. Incorporate a combination of high intensity interval training (HIIT) along with strength resistance training into your daily workout routine.

Hopefully you are working out in the first place, and if not, get started because that is your first problem. But if you are already working out studies support the combination of high intensity interval training and strength resistance training to be far superior to steady state cardio or weight training alone.

High intensity interval training is a form of cardio that utilizes shorts burst of intense activity followed by a quick rest period repeated for either a length of time or a number of repetitions.

The intensity of both the strength resistance training and the HIIT is very important as researchers at Duke University concluded that low to moderate activity levels were not intense enough to contribute to visceral beer belly fat loss. You have to hit it hard when you workout if you want to lose your beer gut.

3. Drink beer.

That is a statement you probably would not expect to see in an article on the anatomy of beer belly. In all honesty, beer is not the culprit when it comes to losing your beer gut. Enjoyed in moderation, beer can be considered a healthy beverage when compared to all the sugary soda pop and fruit juice most of the world consumes. People’s waistlines are expanding due to the over consumption of processed sugars and not beer.

When it comes to drinking beer in moderation, here are the rules:

• For men- 5-7 beers per week with no more than 2 or 24 oz in 24-hour period.

• For women- 5-7 beers per week with no more than 1 or 12 oz in a 24-hour period.

Unfortunately for all you weekend warriors who would prefer to pound back a case of 12 on a Saturday night, studies support the link between binge drinking and visceral beer belly fat gain.

Beer Belly Wrap Up

Anatomy of a beer bellyIf someone mentions the term “beer gut”, thoughts of a Homer Simpson-Esque physique pop into my head. Don’t let me picture you.

Adopt the “earn your beer” mentality, put in a good hard workout and reward yourself with an ice-cold beer at the end of the day. It is as simple as that to lose the beer gut. No secret, magic bullet, pills or potions… just good honest hard work and you will be well on your way to losing the beer belly.

Yours in health,


Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

The Gift of Change


Change and the Force of Nature

Change and the Forces of NatureIt seems that expressing my thoughts on transformation through change is facilitated somewhat by the fact that I am currently visiting relatives on the coast of Maine. The sights, sounds and smells of the Atlantic Ocean bring a sense of tranquility and relaxation.

It is hard to believe that within minutes the force of nature could change the peaceful landscape. I have experienced the fury and destruction caused by violent thunderstorms, high seas and even lived through a tornado that destroyed numerous cottages that were in its way.

Living on the ocean can be peaceful and yet very unpredictable, as far as the forces of nature go. We always need to be well prepared should nature decide to rear its nasty head and let us city folk feel its incredibly devastating power.

As I reflect more on what I have just expressed, I am fascinated with the idea that life itself is quite similar to the unpredictable forces of nature. From my vantage point, I would have to say that one of the things I love about life, besides “life” itself, is its unpredictability and all that this brings to our lives.

The Unpredictability of Change

One thing for sure is that none of us know what lies ahead. Unlike the weather, there is no technology to predict what is in store for us. And unless we decide to try to improve our lot in life by implementing a specific planned change (i.e. health/exercise program), we’re setting sail without our navigation systems turned on.

What I have come to learn over the years is the only security we truly have is the belief in our unique talents, our capabilities and ourselves. We all have the incredible resilience to make amazing comebacks, no matter the situation. Mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually- no challenge cannot be overcome.

Most of us will have ample opportunity to demonstrate a certain amount of courage in our lives. It is at these times whereby we grow immensely as a person, no matter our age. Personal struggle is often seen as an opportunity to change for the better. I have adopted an attitude or mind-set that any change whether it is a loss of a job, a life-threatening illness, a promotion, a job transfer, etc… can be an opportunity for personal growth and development.

There are many books written about adapting to change that outline key steps to take when encountering a new situation. I would like to give you my own perspective on this subject, together with a number of ideas and techniques that I have personally found useful along my journey of adapting to life changing events.

A Gift of Change

I have sought out the services of specialists in change management, been mentored and coached by one of the best in the field and have developed, through trial-and-error, my own techniques. This is why I can say without doubt that change, no matter what the type, should be looked at as the most invaluable “gifts” you will ever receive.

The very next time you encounter any change in your life, take this gift, unwrap it slowly and look for the special benefits that lie within. May I suggest that you be very patient as it sometimes takes days, weeks and even months to realize what the gift actually is. Once you have defined your gift, I recommend that you nurture it for all it is worth and document the benefits to life that gradually unfold over time.

Unfortunately there isn’t a way to escape the need to adapt to change. Whether it happens unexpectedly or is planned, you cannot hide from it. It must be dealt with.

I learned very quickly I had a better chance to capitalize on the benefits of change if I was operating from a position of strength. The process of change itself is an opportunity for personal growth and development. I found that new situations were what I needed to operate out of my comfort zone and grow. Doing this resulted in increased levels of self-esteem and self-confidence. If I had a set back, I learned from my mistakes and kept adapting.

As I reinforced above, the more we believe in ourselves, our unique talents, our special abilities and our competencies- the better the chance we have of benefiting from any forth coming changes.

Choose to Change

Even if the change is one we choose to make, and know is a good change; the transition from the old way to the new way is never easy. This certainly applies to starting up an exercise program. The advantage though is self-initiated changes give us the time to work out a strategy to ensure we gain maximum benefit.

I am sure that for many people, thinking about implementing change in their life as simple as an exercise/health program, can be like standing on the edge of a pool wanting to jump in and go for a swim but waiting for someone to push them in. Fear of the unknown or in this case, the idea of cold water, frequently blocks people from making the change they know will be beneficial in the long run.

Research shows that most successful change happens when the person looking towards potential benefits arising from the planned change initiates it. Do not be the one caught saying, “If only someone had pushed me”, when it may be too late. Jump right in and choose to change.

Below are steps to help initiate change with respect to improving your overall health/fitness (they can be applied to any aspect of life):

1. Recognize and agree upon the need for change. Draft a personal vision of how you want to feel and/or look like, following the completion of all facets of your health and exercise program.

2. Identify key people and resources that you will need to achieve your change.

3. Assess your need to change and your state of personal readiness.

4. State as clearly as possible specific reasons as to why you want to change. Describe what you want to change.

5. Set clear priorities and develop objectives and measurements for success.

6. Brainstorm what is actually stopping you from implementing your exercise program and evaluate each one as to whether or not they are real or merely imagined.

7. Describe what you know you could do, either on your own or with the encouragement and support of others i.e. personal trainer, clubs, Internet programs, websites, etc…

8. Make a personal commitment to take action.

9. Create a plan to ensure that your change is embedded and maintained.

10. Implement the change plan, celebrate successes and modify if need be.


The only way to ensure growth; both personally and professionally is to initiate change at opportune times in our life. Yes, the type and timing of change is relevant to any potential successes that may result from our efforts but regardless of whether we choose or it is chosen for us, we must embrace it. The only real security we have in today’s fast and ever changing world is the belief in ourselves, the belief we can do anything and be anything, no matter what life throws at us.

Keep changing, improving and do not settle for mediocrity. Change is a gift to be unwrapped, nurtured and implemented into our lives. Opportunities come to those who accept and adopt to change. Those that sit around, wait and complain will be left behind.

To your success,

Coach Mike

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

The Supplement Puzzle- Part III

Beer Belly Greens

I’m back this week with the final installment of the supplement puzzle. In case you missed either of the first two you can check them out here: The Supplement Puzzle- Part I and Part II where I outlined the importance of protein powder, creatine, omega 3 oils and multi vitamins.

Today I will introduce you to 2 more supplements I have found to be very useful over the years. Let’s get right to it:

First up: Green Powders

Health thrives in a neutral or slightly basic environment within the body. The problem is the average diet contains a lot of acid forming foods. As a result people carry an excessive acid load or low pH level (for all you chemists) in their bodies and digestive tracts.

The body has plenty of mechanisms in place to buffer this acid load and bring it back to balance but it comes at a cost. Calcium from bones and amino acids from muscles are used to buffer (bring back to normal or neutralize) the acidic environment.

The easiest way to counter balance an acidic environment is to eat high alkaline producing (basic) foods such as fruits and vegetables. This way you provide a buffer from the foods you eat and you do not rob your body of precious elements.

Your mom has likely told you a thousand times before to, “Eat your vegetables!” and it is no secret that green foods (vegetables) are really good for you. Understandably it is not always practical to steam up broccoli or carry around a bag of spinach when you need it. Having greens available in powder form can come in handy and help improve your overall health as they are ranked among the highest alkaline forming foods.

What are they and what do they do?

Green powders that you might come across in various health food stores are basically ground up green vegetables, roots, seaweeds and digestive enzymes that are aimed at helping to control the acid base balance in your body. Eating the high quality proteins we suggest in the 3BG System offers many benefits but at the same time can come with an increased acid load to your system.

Fruits, greens and vegetables, all help to stabilize your acid base balance because of their alkaline (basic) nature and in doing so promote a healthier body environment.

Best sources of alkaline foods in your diet:

Spinach, Broccoli, Cucumber, Garlic, Onions, Green beans, Apple, Avocado, Dried fruits, Lemon, Lime, Berries (except for Blueberries), Cherries, Apricot, Peppers, Mushrooms, Lettuce.

The list could go on and on but those are some of the main alkaline producing foods in a North American Diet.

The take away message here is simple- include alkaline producing foods in your diet to buffer the acidic environment created from eating chicken, beef, fish, legumes, oils and dairy.

Of course when convenience is an issue you can always add a green supplement to your diet. We like Greens+ and Sun Warrior Ormus Supergreens.

Next up: Branched-Chain Amino Acids

When you eat a complete protein source (beef, chicken, fish, protein powder, dairy, etc…) you get ALL 20 amino acids (fancy word for the building blocks that make up protein). This is a good thing because when your body is synthesizing new tissues, as in growing hair or nails, it is impossible for us to know which specific amino acids it needs to do so. It is therefore smart to supply your body with all 20 of the amino acids for the various reactions that take place. A protein source is considered incomplete if it does not provide all 20 amino acids.

Now, 9 of those 20 amino acids are essential- meaning, we must get them from our diet. And 3 of those essential amino acids are called branched-chain amino acids. These 3 are preferred by your body when building muscle and serve 2 very important purposes:

1. While trying to put on lean body weight (muscle) they help speed up the process.

2. While trying to lose weight they help preserve muscle and ensure your weight loss is all fat.

Depending on your body weight your dose will differ:

100-150 pounds 2-4 grams per serving (pre workout)
150-200 pounds 4-5 grams
200-250 pounds 5-7 grams
250-+ pounds 6-8 grams

The boys at Prograde have a great BCAA supplement.

Branched-chain amino acids have even been used by some as a snack between meals on workout days to ensure lean muscle growth. A mid morning or afternoon snack could include an apple and 4-5 grams of branched chain amino acids. The protein will help stabilize blood sugar levels, prevent energy crash and supply muscles with the right amino acids and building blocks.

Anytime you are trying burn fat and maintain lean muscle mass this can be a very useful component to the formula.

In risk of sounding like a broken record, supplements are in no way, shape or form a substitute for a poor diet. They should be used as an ally to help meet all your daily needs and requirements.

Stay Strong,


PS. As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to shoot me an email or talk to us over on our Facebook fanpage. We love hearing your feedback, frustrations, successes and stories.

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Beer League Hockey Workout

Jon Landry Braehead ClanBefore we get into today’s post, I wanted to give a quick shout out to the Braehead Clan and all of our fans from Glasgow and the surrounding areas. The season is about to get underway and you can expect nothing less than the best from this years squad.

With the likes of returning players Jordan Krestanovich, Tim Wedderburn and Kyle Bruce this years season is bound to be a good one. Unfortunately I will not be returning to the ice in Glascow this year and you will all be greatly missed.

After finishing my MBA this summer I’ve been working hard on a few business ventures and will be playing ice hockey in North America this season. I look forward to seeing all of you again sometime soon. Thanks again for all your support.


Below are a few of my on ice highlights from last years season with the Clan.

Jon Landry #27 6’3 210 Left Defense- Montreal, Quebec.



Men’s Beer League Hockey Workout

Beer League Hockey WorkoutThe NHL season is quickly approaching which means most men will soon be lighting the lamp and taking down a few brewskis with the start of Beer League Hockey seasons across the world.

This is also the time of year most of you die-hard’s realize you are out of shape and decide last minute to do something about it. The doing something about it usually involves going for a 10 minute ‘jog’ because this is what you know. Then 5 minutes into the run, your heart pounding, lungs gasping for air, you begin to contemplate how you let yourself get so out of shape.

Enough about how you got so out of shape this summer and more on how you plan on getting back up to speed for hockey this season.

The boys and I here at 3BG sifted through a few workouts the pros use and tailored for you your very own “Beer League Hockey Workout”. The program will get you back to All-Star form in no time as well as help rid you of the summer beer belly.

Hockey as you know is an extremely explosive and anaerobic sport. This hockey workout will focus on 45-60 second bursts of work with a minute of rest in between circuits to simulate a typical men’s league game.

A key focus of the Beer League Hockey Workout will be on quick, explosive feet with limited ground contact time. You’re feet will be moving fast as your blood pumps throughout your body.

Jon’s Dynamic Warm up (done before every workout and on ice session) approx. 5 minutes.

- Jumping Jacks (20)
- Run (light jog, 10 metres X 3)
- Butt Kicks (10 per leg)
- High Knees (10 per leg)
- Knee to Chest Pull (5 per leg, 3 second hold at top)
- Single leg walking toe touches (10 per leg)
- Walking lunge with a twist (10 per leg)
- Leg Swings (10 per leg)
- Stick Handle (To warm up the hands, arms and eyes)

Beer League Hockey Workout

Circuit 1: (3 sets)
1A – Inch Worm w/ push up (8)
1B – Forward Skater Lunge into a Reverse Lunge (8 per leg)
1C – Skater Steps over Bench (8 per leg)

Circuit 2 (3 sets)
2A – 1 arm DB Snatch (8 reps per arm)
2B – Bench Jumps (8 reps)
2C – Lateral Hurdle Bounds (can use Dumbbells if no access to hurdles)(8 reps per side)

- Rotating Plank (Side, Front, Side) 30 seconds each X 3

- Cat-Camel (8)/Fire Hydrants (8 per leg)/Hip Flexors (15 second hold per leg)

All of the exercises should be performed one after the other without resting in between. Once you have completed all 3 exercises in sequence rest for 1 minute and repeat 2 more times for a total of 3 sets. Complete all 3 sets before moving on to the 2nd Circuit and repeat. The Beer League Hockey Workout should be performed 2 times per week on top of your regularly scheduled hockey games.



There you have it lads. A quick and effective hockey specific workout geared to get your foot speed going and your anaerobic power back. Stay tuned for next months 20 Minute Workout.

Keep your heads up and stick on the ice. Cheers,


Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

The Supplement Puzzle- Part II

Beer Belly Brain Omega 3
As promised, I’m back at it this week with Part II of the supplement puzzle. In case you missed it- be sure to check out Part I where I outlined the importance of protein powder and creatine and if you’re interested in green powders and branched chain amino acids click here for Part III of the supplement puzzle.

First up: Omega 3 Oils

What are they?

Omega 3 oils are essential unsaturated fatty acids that cannot be created within your body. They are extremely vital for normal metabolism, brain function and numerous other processes. Since you cannot produce these oils in house you have to acquire them through proper nutrition and/or supplementation.

I’ve talked to several coaches and nutritionists over the years that even go as far as saying, “If you could only take one supplement for the rest of your life, make it an omega 3 supplement”.

Yes, they are that important.

What do they do?

The health benefits of Omega 3s are vast. A high quality dose of Omega 3 oils has been shown to:

1. improve heart function
2. increase concentration, learning and memory
3. improve joint health by fighting inflammation
4. improve blood lipid profiles
5. improve immune function

When most people think of omega 3 oils they automatically think of “fish oil”. Fish oil is only one of the available sources of omega 3 oils. Due to contamination of our water systems and increased mercury load found in fish these days, there has been research pointing towards krill oil as being one of the best and cleanest forms of Omega 3 supplementation on the market.

Best sources of omega 3 oils from the foods we eat:

1. Flaxseeds (1 Tbsp of oil has 7g of omega 3s)
2. Salmon (3oz serving gives you 2-3 grams of omega 3s)
3. Walnuts (1/4 cup or handful is 2-3 grams of omega 3s)
4. Halibut (3oz gives you 1-1.5 grams of omega 3s)
5. Sardines (2oz gives you 1-1.5 grams of omega 3s)

How much do I need each day?

100-150 pounds: 6 grams
150-200: 8 grams
200-250: 10 grams
250+: 12 grams

Reading this and doing a little calculation in your head, you are probably thinking it might be hard to hit the recommended amounts by eating food alone. And unless you are eating fish and walnuts several times per day- you’re right. This is where a high quality Omega 3 supplement can come in handy.

I cannot stress enough the importance of quality over quantity when choosing an Omega 3 supplement. When selecting an Omega 3 make sure you read the label and buy one that has a high DHA and EPA content. Some of the cheaper bottles give the impression that you are getting more for your money but end up being a much less potent version. You then end up having to take more and more capsules to hit your daily target limit.

An omega 3 oil I like is Prograde EFA Icon

Next up: Multivitamins

I had a funny but recurring question about multivitamins the other day. My buddy asked if he really needed to keep taking a multivitamin. He then went on to tell me that he didn’t feel any different from it and all he noticed was the increased color of his, “Worlds most expensive pee”.

The reason I thought this was funny and I’m sure most can relate is because all of us at one point in our lives have experienced the neon pee effect you get when taking a multivitamin. It would seem as though your hard earned money is going directly down the drain (pardon the pun).

And thus full circle back to my buddy’s question- “Do we really need a multivitamin and if so what is the best kind?”

What are they?

Multivitamins are a mish-mash of vitamins and minerals that are essential for metabolism and proper body function. You normally obtain these vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat because much like essential oils, your body does not produce enough of them for proper functioning.

In a perfect world everyone would eat the way the body was designed to eat (as outlined in the 3BG System) and get their vitamins and minerals from food. However with busy schedules and poor food choices people are turning towards multivitamins for basic nutrition coverage. It is my recommendation people clean up their diets and focus on proper nutrition before popping a multivitamin. The right multivitamin should be a compliment to a well balanced diet and not a replacement.

What do multivitamins do?

Vitamins and minerals aid in various functions of the body; such as the formation of new cells and keeping your immune system and metabolism strong.

In many circumstances in this world; too much of a good thing can be bad. Therefore it is important not to ingest too many vitamins and minerals. Your urine changes color because B and C vitamins are water soluble and any extra you take in is then eliminated and excreted down the drain. However, vitamins like A, D and E are fat soluble and can be much harder to eliminate from your system leading to the potential build up of toxic levels if you are not careful.

How much to take?

Only ever take the recommended dose as indicated on the side of the bottle. Prograde nutrition carries an excellent Multi for men.

Hopefully today I’ve helped to clarify a few more things with regards to proper supplementation. Remember, when it comes to omega 3′s, multivitamins and supplements in general always go for quality over quantity and do not use them as a substitution for a healthy eating plan. They are to be used in addition to and not in substitute for.

Keep an eye out next week where I’ll bring you the third installment of the supplement puzzle. I’ll look into Green powders and Branch Chained Amino acids

Stay Strong,


Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Maintaining Momentum


Building and Maintaining Momentum

Maintaining MomentumOne of my favorite quotes comes from Herophilus, the physician to Alexander the Great who wrote: “When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot become manifest, strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless, and intelligence cannot be applied”.

The more I digest the meaning of these words, I cannot help but think how many of us have such good intentions about beginning a new exercise program yet find it so difficult to get started. If we are lucky to begin it becomes somewhat of a daunting task to maintain any sort of momentum that will produce the results we desire.

At the age of 46, I shared the experience of training for and completing a marathon (26 miles) with a close friend. Prior to this event and for many years after, I couldn’t seem to maintain any momentum with exercise. The more I reflect on the experience, I believe we were not merely interested in running the marathon- we were committed to completing it. This kind of thinking can apply to any exercise program.

Interest vs. Commitment

Research shows when we are only interested in improving our overall health through exercise there is a tendency to quit during the tough or inconvenient times. I am sure we have heard most of the following excuses: no time, tired, too busy, don’t know what to do, don’t feel like it right now and many, many more. Well, it is excuses like these that dominate our thoughts when we are but interested in implementing a lifestyle change.

The fact is when we are committed to our health we accept no excuses, only results. When we are committed, we understand that we are in it for the long haul and will do whatever it takes to feel the many benefits of our efforts. We make health our #1 priority.

Over the years I have had the opportunity to speak with many people about the above situation. Some who have mastered their commitment with respect to their exercise routine and others who continue to be challenged with not being able to maintain any sort of momentum.

How to Maintain Momentum

Here are a few ideas that will help you “jump start” your exercise program and maintain momentum:

1. Begin by creating/writing a Personal Vision Statement of the quality of life (changes and resulting benefits) you want to achieve and affirming a positive belief about yourself that your healthier lifestyle will result in increased effectiveness at work, a happier and more positive attitude, more energy for loved ones and friends, hobbies, reduced levels of stress, more relaxed and composed, more productive, less wasted time, etc… Think about the positive consequences for family, friends and others through the greatest gift that you could ever possibly give, the gift of health.

2. Read your Personal Vision Statement including benefits/consequences at the beginning and end of each day.

3. Set a weekly, bi-monthly or monthly goal related to your exercise/nutrition plan. Break each goal down into sub-goals and specific action steps. For example: First day- to run 3 stop signs at a slow pace and walk the next three and repeat. Each goal/sub-goal should be written down in a note book or personal agenda. Record your progress along with feelings and benefits. This provides a boost and can be a catalyst to establishing some level of momentum, especially in the early stages of starting a new exercise program.

4. Establish a schedule and mark it in your agenda. Be as specific as possible with respect to time, location, and duration.

5. Do not let thinking or feeling block you from implementing plans for a particular day. Remember you think first, then you feel, then you act. If you think that the weather is too cold to go for a jog, you will most definitely not feel like going. Having enough discipline to ignore your initial thoughts or how you feel and replace it with action will result in execution and positive consequences/benefits.

Maintaining MomentumRepeated success with the above technique will help establish a daily routine and like a ball rolling down a hill, there will be no stopping you. You will have achieved the momentum needed to maintain healthy living which will guarantee the benefits you are looking for. As the days, weeks and months pass; you will continue to become stronger, healthier, happier and more productive.

Stop being inspired to workout and make a commitment to regain your health today.

Mike Landry

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Beer Belly- why did I ever have one?

Beer Belly WhyHow did I ever let myself get a beer belly? This is a question I have asked over the past few months. Before starting with the 3BG System I never made time for myself. That’s the real answer. With all the things going on in my life I never found time for me. Seems a bit crazy when I think about it now but I devoted a lot of time to my Beer Belly instead.

How much time did I need out of my day to take care of myself? Let me think… thirty minutes. Twenty-four hours in a day and all I had to do was find thirty minutes for me. You might be wondering what did these thirty minutes encompass? Well, here you go… I did fourteen, yes, only fourteen minutes of cardio. What about the other sixteen minutes? Well that was used to make sure I had food to eat throughout the day.

Yeah it’s pretty tough to stay fit these days (hopefully you got the hint of sarcasm). It’s actually not hard at all. In fact it’s easier than being lazy because now I have the energy to get things done. You might be sitting there, reading this and saying, “What a bunch of BS.” And if you have any doubt I encourage you to check out my before and after photos or my testimonial video. Those are 100% real and while we’re being honest- my cardio actually started out at only ten minutes, not fourteen. Don’t worry, if you want to see what the extra four minutes of cardio is doing for me- stay tuned. I’ll be sending a few updated photos shortly.

I like to think I’m a pretty busy guy and I know we all think the same way. I’m not going to sit here and tell you how to make time for yourself. You already know where the majority of your time is being spent and if you don’t I encourage you to think again (if you want some tips on finding time and staying active, check out Sean’s post Never Miss a Monday).

No More Beer Belly = More Time For Me

How I found time for me was quite simple. I made myself a priority instead of my beer gut. I made sure I had a pair of shorts and running shoes in my car so on the way home from work I could stop at the park or the gym and get in a quick workout. If by chance I forgot to do that, I had a skipping rope hanging on my bedroom door and dumbbells in the living room just so I wouldn’t forget about me. I didn’t sit on the couch until I had done what I needed to do.

The best part about it is, and I can say without a doubt- it gets easier as you go. After about two weeks I was hooked and actually looked forward to my workouts. Where you might lose some time is looking in the mirror each morning; well maybe not, but it sure feels good to see the progress staring back at you. An easy way to stay motivated when you start any routine is to take a few “before” pictures of yourself because for me, seeing a picture of my old friend “ the beer belly” is plenty motivation to continue living an enhanced lifestyle program like the 3BG System.

No more Beer Belly = Better Cook

That covers the working out part but how the heck did I manage to have all my meals ready in just sixteen minutes? Well you got me… It didn’t take me sixteen minutes to make all of my meals today; it took almost no time at all. I do what cooks refer to as prep or for us regular folk- I prepare my meals before hand. It’s simple. I come home with my groceries and divide up snacks into bags and containers. If I am going to cook chicken breasts I cook a few extra all at once, I cut up some vegetables and bam lunch is ready for tomorrow. Hey, it’s no slap chop; it’s just plain old planning ahead. I do however own a magic bullet that I have been known to use now and again… Soup, chili or anything else that can be divided up and frozen is a great trick too.

I spend slightly more time in the kitchen than I might spend waiting in line at a drive through but the rewards are well worth it. Don’t get sucked into commercial convenience. Create your own convenience and be way healthier because of it. This is something you will learn very quickly with the guys at 3BG. They work hard but most importantly they work SMART. Don’t let the big clowns of the world tell you what to eat. Take time for yourself whenever you have it and use it. At the very least, being smart enough to prep your meals at home will save you money in the long run, not to mention- save you from a beer belly as well.

No more Beer Belly = Better Beer

Now for the fun part… I drink a wider variety of beer than I ever have. I enjoy beer more now than ever before. The first thing to go when I wanted to “diet” was beer and I always missed it. I have learned to appreciate my favorite beverage more than ever and rather than buying the cheap stuff, I find myself searching for more unique beers with rich flavors. Whenever I am in a small town I seek out local breweries and craft beers. What does that have to do with being healthy? It’s simple- I deserve a good beer and I can afford a good beer because I’m not spending my money at the drive through. Think about it… a “cheap” meal these days costs about 10 bucks. Skip the drive through for a few days and you can enjoy a six-pack of a full-bodied beer. More beer and less beer belly is the life for me.

It’s so easy for me to say this today because I took the steps needed to get me here. I remember trying to get fit in the past and most of the time I would do something drastic like try to run up the Grouse Grind or spend an hour and a half at the gym. The next day I would try to get up and my body would be so sore it was a struggle to get the Fruit Loops out of the cupboard, say to myself, “Not doing that again.” And I wouldn’t.

The biggest thing that jumped out at me after joining Team 3BG is that moderation is the key to success. There are no quick fixes. Just consistency and having the ability to care about what you love. Most importantly, having the ability to care about you. I now know why I had a beer belly and with the knowledge I have gained with Team 3BG I can safely say good-bye beer belly, I know I won’t be seeing you again anytime soon.

In good health,

David Balback

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

The Supplement Puzzle- Part I

What is staring back at you when you walk into a supplement store? Most likely a huge wall of pills and powders that promise to blast fat, pack on dense ripped muscle and add a little boost to your performance in the bedroom. What is kept from you is all those supplements that look like they come from different companies and manufactures could actually be the same stuff from the same place re-branded with unique stickers, logos and advertising.

The right kind of supplements can improve your heart function, strengthen your immune system, reduce your beer belly and when used pre and post workout- help you recover faster. However, the wrong ones can be a complete waste of money or worse yet- potentially harmful to your health.

A recent survey found that 7 out of 10 people take supplements on a regular basis and that most of them get advice on what to take from a friend. If you have been taking supplements because someone told you to or you saw it in a muscle magazine you definitely need to read this review. With a little knowledge from someone who knows a thing or two about proper supplementation; you will waste less money, save time and reap bigger rewards.

In this 3 part series (click here for Part II and/or Part III) I’m going to outline 6 (not 16) supplements that are actually worth taking. Part I will focus on protein powders and creatine monohydrate.

First up: Protein Powder

What is it?

Powdered version of protein that mixes with water or your favorite beverage for quick energy on the go or an easy workout shake.

What does it do?

Protein is an essential component for most things in your body from skin, nails, hair, muscles, metabolism, healing, tissue repair, etc… Protein also helps to burn calories as your body uses more energy when digesting or breaking down proteins. It will therefore keep your metabolism running strong. Having protein with every meal or snack prevents over eating and keeps you full longer. This is a huge benefit to not only losing weight, but gaining muscle as most of the calories you burn will be coming from the right place- your fat stores.

Protein helps stabilize blood sugar levels by slowing the release of glucose (sugar) into your blood. This will better control hunger spikes and keep the hormone insulin from rising which promotes fat burning over fat storage.

Best brands?

Ideally, the majority of your protein intake will come from whole foods. There are times when eating chicken or steak isn’t the most convenient and a high quality protein powder can come in very handy. They taste great and are easily portable.

People generally respond well to protein powders however finding the right one for you can make all the difference. It’s important to mention that some people have difficulty digesting certain forms of protein and you might have to try a few before you find the right one. Two protein powders we highly recommend are Prograde Protein® and Sun Warrior Protein®. They are both very affordable, taste great and mix well.

Having protein powder available to you for the odd morning smoothie and for post workout nutrition will help you meet your protein requirements. When selecting a protein powder, whey isolate and casein are the best. However, if those do not agree with your digestive system there are other options available in powder form like; rice and hemp.

How much to take?

Before and After a workout:

100-140 pounds: 0.5 – 0.75 scoop of protein powder
140-180 pounds: 1 scoop of protein powder
180-230+ pounds: 1.5 scoops protein powder

Next up: Creatine Monohydrate

What is it?

Creatine exists in your body naturally, is formed from amino acids (proteins) and is stored as creatine phosphate (CP). Most people have approximately 120 grams of creatine in their body at any given time. Aside from being found in you, creatine is found in many foods we eat such as; beef, salmon and tuna which all contain 2-5 grams of creatine per pound. Needless to say, you would have to eat an AWFUL lot of steak to get 5 grams of creatine and fortunately there is an easier way.

What does it do?

Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) is the energy of life and any action we do requires us to use ATP. During short bursts of activity like sprinting or weight lifting, ATP is burned rapidly and broken down into ADP (Adenosine Diphosphate). As ATP depletes to ADP, creatine phosphate can be utilized by the body to recharge ADP and turn it back into ATP- providing more energy to be used.

By ingesting creatine monohydrate prior to or during your workout you have a bigger pool circulating for your body to pull from. Therefore, when sprinting fast or lifting weights- you can perform more work, which translates to faster gains (more muscle and less fat).

As if that is not cool enough- creatine is shown to prevent muscle wasting and is even touted as a “smart supplement”, increasing mental acuity. Doctors have been using creatine to combat various muscle wasting diseases for years now.

What does the research say?

The research supports that creatine monohydrate increases muscle mass while decreasing fat mass. It is a safe and effective supplement. When taken in low doses there is no danger to the kidneys in a healthy adult, although some sources do recommend taking time off allowing the system a chance to reset. Minimal effects in muscle gain are seen in endurance athletes such as runners and swimmers but recovery time has improved.

How much to take?

Pre workout: 3-5 grams
Post Workout: 3-5 grams

Click here for an excellent creatine product that is very affordable.

Stay tuned next week for part II where I outline the best sources of omega 3 fatty acids and whether or not you really need a multivitamin.

Stay Strong,


Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Finding Your True Strength

Beer Belly Beer Gone Graeme Kelly 10KMFirst up the boys and I would like to congratulate our Team3BG member, Graeme Kelly, for finishing his 10 Km race this Sunday in under an hour!!! A true accomplishment.

Graeme, what beer did you reward yourself with?

Keep the momentum going- ask yourself what’s next? Another 10 Km, a half marathon, Everest?

Like Graeme, I too crossed the finish line with regards to a personal accomplishment. And now, a moment to breathe easy- well sort of…

I arrived home after spending three amazing weeks in the Vancouver sun. Vancity completely redeemed itself this time around after giving me a measly 2 days of sun during my previous 5 weeks there. The trip saw many highlights including my cousin getting married, my dad climbing the grouse grind with us (66yrs young), and me completing my MBA dissertation. The latter happened three days ago and I think waking up this morning I’m finally caught up from lack of sleep.

Honestly, I was a little surprised that I finished with all the distractions of the summer. There were times during the process where I didn’t think I could do it. Particularly when my Macbook and entire years research was stolen from my car while helping out at the Mike Fisher Charity Hockey Camp in Ottawa. To make matters worse I found out my external hard drive (or I) had not been backing up my work and thoughts about quitting my MBA started to drift into my head.

With the deadline fast approaching it was hard to see myself making up for lost time and finishing but I had to at least try. I borrowed a buddy’s computer and went to town. It’s funny, I can not remember ever having a set back of this magnitude before and my mind kept playing games on me. Frustration started to set in as for the life of me, I could not remember all that I had done and what I had written. This is exactly what we see with guys we help coach and inspire to workout again. When someone first starts exercising they tend to beat themselves down and confidence is at an all time low due to the disappointment of where they are starting from.

With frustration levels at an all time high my mom recommended I take a step back from the paper, clear my head and take it out on the old punching bag we have in the basement. Ironic because she hates the idea of me fighting on the ice but man, did this ever help. Three rounds later and sweat rolling down my forehead, my focus was back and I was ready to tackle the mountain that lay ahead.

I used the punching bag a couple of times when I was close to my boiling point but it was exercise and other workouts I did throughout the re-write that managed my stress and got the ideas flowing. Through exercise and movement I was able to develop new concepts and philosophies. I re-wrote the entire paper making it better than before in record time.


There is nothing better than the feeling of accomplishment. You set a goal and no matter what gets in your way- you achieve it. It gives you a feeling of confidence. A sense of knowing there isn’t anything you can’t take on. And you know what? It’s contagious.

Besides catching up on sleep, over the last two days I’ve taken time to reflect and enjoy the weight lifted off my shoulders but I haven’t stopped. I’m on to my next goal- training camp is three weeks away.

Go after it,


“Time to contemplate, time to listen to the learning, is crucial to the change process.” — Seven Days at the Links of Utopia

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

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