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3BG Blog



 

The Blog that Shows you how to Lose your Beer Belly, Not the Beer.

 
Welcome to the Blog- Let’s face it. Life without beer sucks. The boys at Team3BG share a passion for helping people achieve their personal & fitness goals without sacrificing the things they love.

If you haven’t guessed it, we love beer. This blog highlights useful fitness, health and nutritional information as well as a few of our own personal adventures.

Let us know what’s on your mind by posting comments below and be sure to sign up for our newsletter. Thanks for visiting!

Beer Belly Resolutions- Realization

Beer Belly ResolutionsThis time last year I started to develop a 3 part video series on what I believe is the real reason why people fail at following through on their New Year’s resolutions.

Then during a recent call to my brother he pointed out that I too had dropped the ball and failed on putting together parts 2 and 3 of the series…

Let’s face it, as great as they may seem- New Years resolutions do not work. According to a study done in 2007 at the University of Bristol 80 percent of people who make New Years resolutions have failed by January 20th.

The study followed 3000 individuals whom in my opinion were destined to fail before they began.

At the onset of the study only 52 percent of those involved were confident they would follow through and stick to their resolution. That’s a little less than half of the gents in the study that decided from the start they wouldn’t make it. Talk about setting yourself up for failure.
 

Why is it New Years resolutions are so hard to follow through with?

 
Most people (me included) have amazing intentions of kicking the New Year off on the right foot, wiping the slate clean and accomplishing some major goals. Only to wind up in our old routines a few days later, goals and aspirations pushed aside until next year.

Today’s date is January 17, leaving us 3 days until most give up on what we set out to accomplish earlier in the year. I read somewhere it takes 21 days to adopt a new habit into your routine. Therefore our goal over the next 3 days is to take a look at the mindset behind lifestyle change in order to make it past January 20th and beyond.

If you were one of the smart people that already knew resolutions didn’t work and decided not to set any goals or resolutions for yourself this year, this will be your opportunity to start now and do it right.
 

Getting back on track

 
As I set out to do last year, let’s get at it and tackle the first step in the 3 Phases to any Lifestyle Change; Realization of the Need for Change.

There is a big difference between the simple awareness of not being what you once were, and the admission that your current lifestyle and waistline are going to cut years off your life. Only the latter will propel you into taking the necessary steps towards change because realization forces you to take full responsibility for your lifestyle and your body.

A colleague of mine use to treat a patient for years and throughout their time together had tried on numerous occasions to get his patient to quit smoking- but nothing worked.

Then one day the patient walks in and my friend can tell that he has quit smoking. His skin looked more alive and his clothes and hair smelled better. The Doctor congratulated him and asked, “What after all these years inspired you to quit? “

The patient looked back towards my friend and said, “I’ve got emphysema, I had to quit.”

This was his realization of the need for change. He finally decided to quit smoking because he had to. His doctor told him if he didn’t give up smoking, he wouldn’t be able to breathe.

Does this seem like an extreme example? Not really… Think of the countless number of times you’ve heard of someone who waits until they have a heart attack or triple bypass surgery before they start to eat well and exercise.
 

Why wait for the heart attack?

 
Take some time today, look in the mirror and ask, “What aspect (or aspects) of my life can I improve upon?” Then write them down. Once you’ve written it down, sift through and come up with some attainable goals.

The realization of the need for change is the first step in accomplishing a lasting lifestyle change. And because I made a promise to myself and you, I’ll be back tomorrow with step 2 (Planning) of the 3 steps to change and show you what to do with the goals you’ve written down.
 

For a quick explanation have a look at the video below:

 


 

Yours in health,

Sean

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Beer Calories do not equal Beer Bellies

Beer Calories

A question people ask (or avoid asking) is, “How many calories are in Beer?”

It would seem that everyone has their own expertise when it comes to calorie counting however when it comes knowing how many calories are in beer and alcohol, most fail to realize what they are consuming.

This article will explore the amount of calories in beer, demystify the correlation between beer and the belly, as well as point out the nutritional aspects of beer when consumed in moderation.
 
 

Unfortunately A lot of Beer =’s A lot of Beer Calories

 
There are thousands of beer varieties and brands out there (thank you, thank you and thank you) each with a varied calorie content.

What it boils down to is this; the amount of calories in beer depends primarily on the alcohol content.

There are approximately 7 calories per gram of alcohol. The higher the alcohol content- the more calories a beer will have. Generally Light Beer has a lower alcohol percentage and therefore has a lower number of calories.

Because we live in a nation that is obsessed with knowing the calorie content of what we are consuming beer companies paste labels on the sides of light beer bottles and celebrate the reduced calorie content. They also make claims that the light beer in question comes with the same great taste as the regular stuff. We’ll let you be the judge of that.

In contrast you won’t find the caloric value on a regular beer. According to Malt Beverage Labeling Regulations only beer wanting to claim the title “light or lite” have to put their respective calorie content somewhere on the bottle.

Over the last few years we have seen a surge of ultra light beers that now have 50-70 calories however not all light beers contain fewer than 100 calories. On average a 12oz serving of light beer has anywhere from 100 to 130 calories. Therefore if you plan on drinking a dozen light beers in one sitting you are adding over 1000 calories to your daily needs.

A typical 12oz beer contains anywhere from 150-200 calories. Here are the nutrition facts from a can of Budweiser:

Beer Calories

The difference between a light beer and a regular beer could be at times as little as 20 calories. Are you really willing to sacrifice taste for a measly 20 calories? I for one am not.

A common myth is darker beer contains more calories than its lighter counterpart. Remember, the number of calories in beer depends on the alcohol content and not the color or texture. The color is determined by the malt and hops used in production.
 

Beer- a healthy treat

 
Contrary to popular belief drinking beer has been associated with many health benefits and a few bonuses. The bonuses to drinking beer are as follows:

• Increased Confidence
• You and/or the opposite sex appear better looking
• You think you are good at Karaoke

And

• Beer is actually FAT FREE. (This can be confusing… more on this topic later)

And now the healthy side effects to moderate beer consumption:

Beer contains some healthy nutrients- Protein, Potassium, Folate, Vitamin B12 and Selenium.

Yes, they are in small amounts but this is still way better than downing a 2 liter of soda/cola which contains nothing healthy and has 240 grams of sugar.

Moderate consumption of beer has been shown to increase cardiovascular health by raising good cholesterol levels. It also acts as a natural blood thinner decreasing the risk of clots.

Furthermore, Beer has high water content and is known as a diuretic which can both be associated with lowering the risk of kidney stones. You’ll understand this if you have ever had to break the seal after consuming a few brews.
 

Consuming beer calories in moderation is the key

 
The Dietary Guidelines recommend that if alcohol is consumed it should be no more than two drinks for men and one drink for women in a 24 hour period.

Drinking two regular beers has approximately the same caloric value as eating a double hamburger or two slices of cheese pizza so choose wisely and stick to moderation when consuming frosty ones.

When spreading the word of our Beer Belly Be Gone (3BG) – Fat Loss System we often hear this reply – “But I don’t drink beer and I still have a belly.”

The message is constant and we firmly believe that men who do not drink beer can still develop a beer belly based on poor eating habits and lack of exercise.

A high calorie diet of processed foods and restaurant-sized portions will lead you down the path of the dreaded beer belly. Extra helpings over the holidays can add up if one does not exercise. If you want to get rid of your beer belly fat follow these simple beer belly exercises that will help shed pounds and inches from your waistline.
 

Beer Calorie wrap up

 
The danger lies in it being easy to consume “liquid” calories and when there is alcohol involved our judgment becomes skewed. This makes it even easier to fall off track and the very reason you need a firm goal to succeed.

Drink to enjoy beer and not just to get drunk. Drink in moderation, savor the taste of beer, eat the way the body was designed to eat, implement some sweet full body workouts into your routine and you’ll never have to worry about the measly 20-calorie difference between a light beer and a good beer.

Cheers,

Jon

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

October 17, 2011Posted by Sean in Body

Beer Belly Exercises

Beer Belly ExerciseIf the title from today’s post is throwing you off a little- it should. Who in their right mind would want to do exercises for their beer bellies?

To reduce confusion I should have re-worded the title “exercises to reduce your beer belly, beer gut or love handles” but contrary to popular belief, it is actually impossible to spot reduce or burn fat from a targeted area on your body, hence more confusion.

I thought I was saving you from scratching your head by calling the blog post what I did but now that I read it over, it does sound a little perplexing. In any event my aim was not to confuse you but to stir the pot and encourage you to listen to something very important I have to tell you.

This “something” will save you the hundreds of dollars spent on late night infomercials selling contraptions that promise to blast beer belly fat away and carve out mouth-dropping six-pack abs where the keg once lay.
 

Beer Belly’s cannot be Spot Reduced

 
The concept of spot reduction is a widely misunderstood field and one that deserves more focus. When you exercise, whether it is in the form of running, weight training, body weight training or high intensity interval training- you cannot target a specific area like your beer belly and expect that you are going to get 6-pack abs from them.

Unfortunately, the body does not burn fat that way. If you have fat on your beer belly you cannot hammer out 1000 crunches and hope for razor sharp abs. When you exercise, fat loss happens from all over the body. You cannot pick where you want it to come off first.

Sad right? Unless you sign up for liposuction and the Doctor sticks the blow-torchy fat melting thing directly into your “problem area” and sucks the fat out, you are stuck burning fat from your entire body one small inch at a time.
 

Beer Belly Fat Distribution is Genetically Influenced

 
To make matters worse, most of the fat burning that happens is genetically influenced. Everyone has witnessed this first hand; you workout like crazy expecting to lose weight from your gut and you end up losing weight from your back fat instead. Then you put in a few more hours in the gym and it’s your love handles that disappear. And finally you’re ready to give up because it seems impossible to shed the remaining L-B’s from the beer belly.

This process also happens in reverse. Subcutaneous fat tends to be genetically influenced in its distribution. When one doesn’t exercise and eats in excess, one’s body will pack the fat on in specific areas first.
 

Beer Belly Fat (Visceral Fat) is Hard to Lose

 
More bad news… The Anatomy of a Beer Belly taught us that our beer bellies are comprised mostly of visceral fat. Visceral fat is harder to burn than subcutaneous fat. Studies support that in can be done but the intensity needs to be there. A simple walk in the park won’t cut it. You need to hit it hard when it comes to exercising and working out. You need to earn your beer.
 

Exercises to Reduce Your Beer Belly

 
Beer Belly ExercisesEnough sad news today, time to shift gears and figure out what exercises are best to reduce beer belly fat.

Now that the idea of spot reduction has been banished from our thoughts here are a few principles guaranteed to blowtorch body fat and thus reduce the beer gut as well.

1. Compound Movements – Are multi-joint movements that work several muscles or even several muscle groups at one time. Instead of a bicep curl, think about a push-up, an exercise that engages the back, abs, shoulders, arms and chest.

Compound movements activate large muscle groups and involve larger ranges of motion, both of which create a greater caloric demand and produce better results. Moreover, you can activate many muscle groups in one exercise instead of having to work each one individually, giving you more results in less time.

When performing exercises like squats, deadlifts, bench presses, pull-ups, and push-presses you demand more work from your body, which in turn stimulates the production of two very important hormones for fat loss and muscle gain- testosterone and growth hormone.

2. High Intensity Interval Training – Metabolic training that Shocks and Awes your body can be achieved through all kinds of workouts. Interval workouts, also known as High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), combined with intense strength- resistance training is the most effective way to shed pounds from your body and get into shape fast.

Low-intensity cardio, such as aerobics or long distance running, work your body at 50-70% of your maximum effort for long periods of time. This type of exercise trains your body to become more energy efficient, requiring less fuel (fat) to perform the same amount of work. If you are looking to get in shape, this is the opposite of what you want. Ideally you want to burn through the maximum amount of fuel (fat) during your workout.

Think of long periods of low-intensity training as turning your body into an energy efficient Toyota Prius; a car that is able to undergo lots of work with little fuel burnt. Instead, what you want is to be a Formula-1 racecar; a car that pummels through the same amount of fuel in a fraction of the time. Formula-1 racing is your HIIT.

An interval training session involves a light warm up session followed by intense shock and awe bouts of increased exertion interchanged with a recovery period. By going hard and fast for short bursts and then allowing the body brief recovery periods you’re demanding a ton of work in a short amount of time. An example is 8-15 second sprints followed by a 45-60 second rest period. The added bonus to this sort of training is that workouts fly by, as you are busy catching your breath and watching the clock.

3. Metabolic Circuits and Supersets – Another awesome tool aimed at getting more results in less time is the “super-set”. A superset refers to pairing two or more exercises back-to- back with little to no rest in between. The idea is that you work multiple muscle groups in a shorter period of time and spend less time resting between sets, increasing your efficiency.

The trick to getting even more out of your supersets and getting more done in the shortest amount of time is using non-competing muscle groups. A non-competing muscle group is a group of muscles used by the body for different movements. Meaning if you were doing a pushing movement as the first exercise in the superset, you can immediately follow that up with a pulling exercise. This allows you to push hard and tax one muscle group and still have energy to pull hard with another. This also keeps your heart rate elevated because you are moving between pushing and pulling or lower and upper body exercises, all in succession.

Tri-sets are the same concept as a superset, but with 3 exercises done in sequence instead of two. You can even take it as far as 4 or 5 exercises back to back as your fitness and stamina increase, each pushing your cardio further and shredding off more fat.
 

The Beer Belly Exercise Wrap Up

 
Now that you know spot reduction is as much of a myth as thinking 12 oz beer can curls can give you sleeve-busting biceps it is time to implement these concepts into your routine. Your beer gut and the rest of the fat on your body won’t stand a chance.

Remember, losing the gut is possible but takes a little hard work, determination and total body resistance training like the plan outlined in the 3BG Beer Belly Fat Loss System.

Yours in health,

Sean

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Goal Setting - The Edge

Goal Setting The EdgeI have always been fascinated with the performance of high jumpers as they soar effortlessly over the bar. What really amazes me is during any one event, the officials keep raising the bar, until the winner of the competition is declared.

Do you think an elite high jumper is able to soar over the bar as it is raised higher and higher during a competition without setting and focusing on specific goals?

I was fortunate to have enjoyed a long and successful career with a Fortune 500 company that stressed goal setting as a key business practice. Goal setting proved to be the edge in not only business but in my personal life as well.

Like the high jumper, you no doubt want to raise the bar with respect to important areas of your life; finances, relationships, family, career, health and fitness, etc… and goal setting can help you get there.
 

Very Few People Set Goals

 
In the book, “What They Don’t Teach You in the Harvard Business School”, Mark McCormack tells about a study conducted on students in the 1979 Harvard MBA program.

That year, the students were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?”

Only three percent of the graduates had written goals and plans; 13 percent had goals, but they were not in writing; and a whopping 84 percent had no specific goals at all.

Ten years later, the members of the class were interviewed again, and the findings, while somewhat predictable, were nonetheless astonishing. The 13 percent of the class who had goals were earning, on average, twice as much as the 84 percent who had no goals at all.

And, what about the 3 percent who had clear, written goals and plans to achieve them?

They were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97 percent put together.

With these kinds of results, why is it that so many do not apply the principles of goal setting on a more routine everyday basis?
 

What Prevents People From Setting Goals?

 
One of the main reasons is most do not know how to define what a goal is nor do they understand how to write a specific goal.

It is quite simple. A goal is something that you are striving for. It is the end-result of your actions. You first begin by visualizing what you want (goal) and work back words from the goal describing what you plan to do (actions) to accomplish it.

An example of a possible end-result (goal) of a yearly training plan, involving exercise, mental and emotional preparation, nutrition, etc… could be the completion of a marathon. If you were to visualize this specific end-result, you could state it as follows:

Goal: To achieve the completion of the New York City Marathon in a time of 4 hours, in November of 2012.

Actions: Anything that you plan to do to enable you to accomplish your goal. For example: Run 30 minutes, Mon and Wed; 45 minutes on Thurs at a pace of 8 mi per hour with a 1.5 hr run on Sat at a pace of 10 mi per hr (Week 4 of Training Plan).

You pick a target, figure out what needs to be done in order to hit it and execute the plan. By taking action and sticking to your plan you will accomplish the end result, in this case- finishing the marathon.
 

Quick Goal Setting Exercise

 
In future articles, I will touch on why the consistent practice of goal setting provides us with The Edge in life, as well as provide some practical and useful tips on how to write effective goals.

For now, try this quick exercise: take out a sheet of paper and write down something you dream about accomplishing (your goal or end-result). Read it over and over again. Imagine what steps you would have to take to achieve your goal. See yourself accomplishing the goal and feel the difference.

Working backwards from the end result is an easy exercise you can use to dismiss any obstacles that might get in your way.

Here’s to achieving The Edge.

Coach Mike

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

Keeping a Workout Journal

Keeping A Workout JournalI hate when this happens…

It’s 10:20 pm and I just got back from a never miss a Monday session at the gym.

I know it’s late and the last minute workout tonight will probably keep me up an extra half-hour, which I guess isn’t that bad because I’m reading a great book called Golf’s Sacred Journey.

Sometimes life and a hectic schedule get in the way and you have to make time (even if it is a late night workout) to get the week started off on the right foot.

During the pump I came to a quick realization. I forgot what weight I was using last week for the Dumbbell Step Up exercise.

Don’t you hate when that happens? Especially when you go to pick a weight from the rack and within 2 seconds after starting the exercise you know that it’s too heavy. You’re only going to get a few reps in let alone finish the complete set with proper form.

What an idiot I was. Keeping a workout journal is such a simple concept in the 3BG System and I forgot. It’s so simple to do. It takes seconds to enter your weight load during rest periods and jot down how you are feeling that day.

Being able to look back on your week, pin-point areas where you might be feeling weak or areas where you feel you are improving is a huge part of knowing if you are heading towards your goal or moving away from it.

A workout log or journal can even be used to keep track of the foods you consume throughout the week. In fact, it might be useful in the grocery store next time around. Seriously though, whether you are trying to lose weight or gain muscle it helps to know exactly what you are putting in your mouth (more on this topic later).

Over the years I’ve seen a few ways to keep track.

Printed out sheets, clipboards, a small spiral note book and now even iphone’s or blackberry’s can store notes. Personally I’d recommend you leave the cell phone in the locker room as nobody needs to listen to you jibber-jabbering to your buddies between sets.

Whatever you decide be sure to get in the habit of doing it. You will pleasantly surprised a few weeks from now when you look back and see how far you have progressed.

All in all I learned two valuable lessons tonight:

1- Even the pros mess up… and

2- I was using 45s last week not 110s.

Go after it.

Jon

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

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,

Sean

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

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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,

Drew

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.

Jon

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)

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

Stretch
- 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,

Jon

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,

Drew

Click Here and Start Earning Your Beer

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