Monday, August 3, 2015

Skinny Fat

Here is an article that states what I have been preaching to those that do cardio and diet without any weight lifting..........   SKINNY FAT

Stay tuned........ stay strong ........

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Cult Training

It has been toooooooooo long since I have posted. I apologize. I'm still training HARD. Researching and staying in tune with all aspects of "fitness".

Here is an article that I wanted to share:

Stay focused and strong !!!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Cardio for Strong People

Cardio for Strong People

Friday, January 2, 2015

Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday, August 18, 2014

2 A Day Training

Training multiple times a day is something I have done off and on in my “fitness” years.    I returned to doing this the past several months and am seeing more gains.     I wanted to share with you why I believe in it.   

Training twice (or multiple) times per day can break through plateaus and allow for more intense workouts.   The shorter sessions allows you to focus on lifting quality (concentrate on every rep).   I don’t do this every day but I do it regularly.    I do same muscle groups in the day.    Compound move in the morning and then auxiliary moves in the afternoon.   So for example, I will do heavy bench day in the morning and then in the afternoon do auxiliary chest moves.    I focus on intensity: Short and intense sessions.    

Even with cardio you can split a 30 minute moderately intense cardio session into two 15-minute sessions.   More calories will be burned with high intensity 15 mins vs. slugging it through a full 30-minutes.

Space out the workouts so you have time to rest and get in good nutrition in between.  You want to attack the sessions with focus.  

The main goal is intensity.    Stay strong !!!

Stay tuned…….. 


Friday, July 18, 2014

Program to New MAX Rep

I started a new “program”.  It is a variation of the strategy that Matt "Kroc" Kroczaleski uses.  It is to gain on your one max rep in the 3 powerlifting moves.      The important first step is to know what your actual one max rep is.  The entire program is based on that.  
I started a few weeks ago and already can see results.  LOOKING FORWARD to my week 14 and seeing what my new one max rep numbers are.

Week 1: 5 x 5 x 70% (5 sets of 5 reps at 70% of 1RM)
Week 2: 5 x 3 x 75%
Week 3: 5 x 1 x 80%

Week 4: 5 x 5 x 75%
Week 5: 5 x 3 x 80%
Week 6: 5 x 1 x 85%

Week 7: 4 x 5 x 80%
Week 8:  4 x 3 x 85%
Week 9:  4 x 1 x 90%
Week 10: 3 x 5 x 85%
Week 11: 3 x 3 x 90%
Week 12: 3 x 1 x 95%

Week 13:   No bench or dead or squat that week
Week 14: Retest your max  

Good luck and STAY STRONG and FOCUSED. 



Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Lever Press (Shoulders)

I wanted to share with you a new exercise move that I recently introduced into my lifting plans. It is for the shoulders but also works the entire body and especially the core. It is called the Lever Press. You use one shoulder at a time with heavy loads. Take a barbell and place on the floor in a corner of the room. Load the opposite end of the barbell with plates. Hold on to the bar at that end (the end with weight). Hold with right hand and stagger your stance with your left leg forward. Then press straight overhead with twisting at the torso to the left. Do 5-8 reps and then switch and use the other side. Great workout working differently the muscles in your body.

Stay tuned…….. Lift strong………

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Posture - Back and Core

This weekend I was able to get in a few great hikes. As I was hiking, I became aware of my posture. Then I flashed back to my grandmother. She used to take her middle finger knuckle and if you were slouching, she would dig that knuckle in the center of your back. Trust me – you stood up straight then!!!  I also watch younger folks especially kids. They lay all over the counters, tables, everything and anything. Good posture has sure gone out the window.

Poor posture is caused by both tight and weak muscles. To help with posture, make sure you do plenty of back and core exercises to strength those muscles and hold you straight upright. See previous blog postings for movements/exercises.

It is said that posture has a direct impact on your confidence. So STAND TALL and CONFIDENT. Practice it.

Stay tuned………. Stay strong………..

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Maya Angelou - Quote

" love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass." - Maya Angelou

Monday, May 12, 2014

GMO - What is it ?

This is an excellent article and GMO is something I feel passionate about. I wanted to share:

What Is A GMO? Genetically Modified Foods Continue To Confuse Consumers

Stay strong, focused and stay tuned..........

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Monday, March 31, 2014

KISS Method in Fitness

Those that know me, know that I believe very strongly in KEEP IT SIMPLE. Whether applied in work, lifting, food plan, etc – I really believe in a straight forward and simple approach.

When we all first started lifting, we by nature kept things simple. And we made gains !!! Great gains. Then we all want more. So we start reading more, researching, watching YouTube videos of those we thought knew more than us. And in the quest for “more” we often stray from what was and had been working all along. We start overcomplicating our workouts. We get impatient and we switch it up again for yet another complicated program we “researched” on the web. Our gains become less and less instead of more.

The bottom line………… Keep your lifting program SIMPLE. Simple WORKS.

Stay strong and focused……….

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Be Accountable to Yourself


This applies to sooo many areas of our lives: Work, family, friends, and yes, your personal fitness plan.

I have been listening to the audiobook of QBQ (Question Behind the Question). It was recommended to me by my boss and good friend. I have listened to it now at least 3 times and every time I pick something else up from it. I plan on listening a few more times.

Being the OCD person I am with a HUGE passion for all forms of “fitness”, I saw how this can also apply to my lifting and fitness plan.

BE ACCOUNTABLE to yourself. No blame, no excuses. Take ownership of your program. Stop blaming your trainer, your lack of sleep, your lack of focus, your lack of time. Ask yourself what you can do to change your results. Learn and apply that learning into action.

YOU are accountable to YOU. Ask yourself what can YOU do to help YOURSELF achieve your goals, get to your next fitness level, apply what you have learned. This “ME” mindset can really develop you into a whole new level of fitness journey.

Stay focused and strong……………

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Reverse Grip – Bust Through Plateaus

Changing your grip can add variety and help you bust through plateaus. Changing grip will target muscles from different angles and place different stress on them. If your lifting has hit a plateau, a reverse grip should be considered.

Reverse grip can be used on many key exercises. For example, lat pulldown, bench presses, or barbell rows

Reverse grip does place a greater amount of stress on the wrists compared to other grips. To help with the stress you can when training back or triceps with a reverse grip use the EZ-bar. It reduces the stress on the wrist by positioning the hand with an angled position.

Change your grip and bust through those plataeus.

Stay tuned……….

Monday, March 3, 2014

Food Labels FINALLY Get MakeOver

Hello. I apologize for letting my blog go a month without entry. Work and work travel has gotten in the way of my blog. Never in the way of my lifting (I have actually hit some personal records lately) but has made my blog suffer. Will rectify and get back on course with articles.

Here are the articles I wanted to share. FINALLY - food labels will be updated.

Focus will be on calories and sugar. FINALLY !!!!!!

Stay tuned…………. LIFT STRONG………

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Consistency in Measuring Progress

TRACK IT……….. The majority of people that have made a commitment to their lifestyle changes for better health and fitness, TRACK. Tracking / logging / recording your “journey” is very important but the key is consistency in the measuring process.

Whether you are tracking steps, miles, weights, # of floors (stairs), etc…. the key is consistency in measuring. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples. I highly recommend you track more than one area of your healthy fitness life. I track many areas of my fitness lifestyle. I track # of steps, miles, # of floors, food intake, and of course my weight lifting. I make sure to track my progress that I’m logging exact comparisons. For example, you cannot track progress if you are comparing a standing shoulder press to a seated shoulder press. My sister got me hooked on FitBit Force. So daily I have consistency in comparisons as it is measuring consistently my # of steps, # of miles and # of floors. The only way to improve is to log and see your progress. And consistency is the key .

SIDE NOTE: The point that I always preach is the NUMBER ON THE SCALE DOES NOT DEFINE YOU! When you do “fitness” correctly, you are strength training and eating properly. Your body will keep or even gain muscle while shedding fat. This is NOT reflected on the scales. Many do crash dieting and hours of cardio. This will indeed show on the scales but you will be losing LOTS of muscle as well as the fat.

Stay strong and stay tuned…………..

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Start New Year - PATIENCE

Patience. It is one of my biggest weaknesses.

However, as we start a new year, one of my self-improvement goals is to develop more patience.

I believe that patience is a big factor often overlooked in fitness. Fitness and healthy living is NOT measured in days and weeks. Rather it is about months and years. As the cliché goes, “life is a journey."

Whatever your goal is, whether it is muscle-building, strength, endurance, body fat ratio or any combination of these, you should strive for quality and balance for the long term. This requires patience and consistency. At the beginning of the year everyone wants a “quick fix" and then they want to go back to their old ways.

The BIG points to success are exercise selection, intensity, frequency, and volume. AND PATIENCE.

Stay tuned…. Stay STRONG………..

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Bales Power Training Seasons Greeting

Stay FOCUSED and enjoy the Holiday Season !!!

Bales Power Training

Image :

Monday, December 23, 2013

Chest Supported Incline Row

The chest supported incline row is a different twist on the row. This exercise really works the upper back. By laying on your chest on an incline bench., you isolate your back as it takes the momentum of your legs out of the move. Also, using the incline will recruit more muscle involvement with the traps and rhomboids.

You can use dumbbells or barbell. I prefer barbell on this move. Grab a barbell loaded with plates (or pair of dumbbells) and lie chest-down on an incline bench. Let your arms hang straight down and then row up to your chest. Pause at the chest and squeeze your shoulder blades. Lower the weight and that is one rep.

Stay tuned………..

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Shoulder Exercise - Steering Wheel

A great finishing move for shoulders is the “steering wheel”. Besides your primary muscles of the shoulder are used there is also secondary muscles in use such as biceps, triceps, chest, and CORE. This exercise is also great for your rotator cuff.

It is as simple as it sounds. Pick up a weight plate. Pick a weight you can hold with arms extended in front of you. Place your hands at the 9 and 3 o’clock position. The plate should be raised at chest high where your arms are straight out in front of you. Now simply turn the plate from right to left slowly and controlled. You will feel the “burn” in your shoulders and your abs. Do as many reps as you can without losing form.

Stay tuned………………….

Friday, December 6, 2013

Holiday Eating - Plan Your Cheats

Holiday season is among us again. No matter how dedicated we are and no matter what are our best intentions, we all stray off the path.

Plan your “cheats." Do not waste your “cheat” meal on some average dips and chips or other junk food. Plan your cheats for truly fulfilling meals. If you allow yourself to eat the foods you love in a controlled manner, you will be more satisfied and can adhere to “clean eating” the majority of the time. The secret is to plan the specific event or meal you will "cheat"and set a limit on quantity, then enjoy life but do not over-indulge.

Stay tuned……………

Monday, November 25, 2013

Mark Twain - Quote

"If everybody was satisfied with himself there would be no heroes." - Mark Twain

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Back Hybrid Move - Inverted Rows

One of my favorite finishing back moves is the inverted row using your own bodyweight. It is a hybrid between pull-ups (chin-ups) and row. So you get the best of both !!

In a power rack, place the barbell slightly above arms’ distance from the floor. Lie on the floor underneath the bar and grasp it. Keep body in a straight line and heels on the floor, arms extended. Contract your back muscles and bend your arms to pull yourself up to the bar. Touch your chest to the bar. Then lower yourself back down and that is a rep.

There are many variations you can use: underhand grip, wide grip, narrow grip. You can also elevate your feet on a bench or seat to make more challenging.

STAY TUNED………………….

Thursday, November 14, 2013

30 Squat Challenge - Russia

I often do bodyweight squats to relieve some work frustrations. Just stand up and do some, especially if you are traveling and you need to work out some energy in the hotel room. This is a great exercise. Go DEEP.

Related to this, I found this interesting article…….. In support of the upcoming Olympics, in Russia you can do 30 squats in exchange for a free subway ride. What a great promotion and a super way to motivate people to exercise.


Stay tuned…….

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Shoulder Dislocations – Exercise

Although this exercise sounds painful, it is not the same as the injury.  The shoulder dislocation exercise is great to improve your shoulder flexibility (and posture).

I stumbled across this exercise when I decided I wanted to start doing some overhead squats. Overhead squats had never been part of my routine. But the world of crossfit has made me think about trying these. Right off I noticed my inflexibility. Being a powerlifter and focusing on HEAVY compound moves, I do have boulder shoulders. However, I also let my stretching and flexibility slip. I did not realize how much until I started doing shoulder dislocations, touted as one of best exercises to improve flexibility in the shoulders. I now try to do it 3-4 times a week.

This exercise will be challenging initially, but you will see improvement if you perform it 3-4 times a week. It is a very simple move. Grab something light and wide such as a broomstick or mop.

Start with a wide grip, raise with straight arms and over your head then lower then behind your back until you hit your butt and then come back. If you have to bend your elbows, then you are too narrow and need to widen your grip. Your goal over time should be to bring your grip in narrower and narrower as your flexibility improves.

Stay tuned………….

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Pizza Crust - HEALTHY / NUTTY / Fabulous

This is a fabulous crust that is incredibly healthy !! Low glycemic, flourless, and tasty……. Since I was introduced to it, I made it two days in a row. Very nutty and tasty.

• 1/2 packet yeast
• Tablespoon of Stevia sweetener
• ¾ cup of water (warmed to 100-110 degrees)
• 1 1/4 cups old fashion oatmeal ground up in grinder to make a flour consistency
• Dash of sea salt

1. Dissolve yeast and Stevia in 3/4 cup warm water and let sit for about 8 minutes.
2. In a separate bowl, combine oat flour and salt.
3. Pour yeast mixture over flour and mix well.
4. Stir / mix with fork for about 2 minutes.
5. Spread onto lightly greased pan . Use water to smooth crust onto pan.
6. Bake at 500 for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.
Then add your healthy toppings. Bake for a few minutes until toppings are melted into the crust.


Stay tuned...........

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Cheese – Is NOT Off Limits

Cheese is not the enemy of a healthy life. Yes, many cheeses can be high in saturated fat and sodium. But, it also is full of protein and calcium. As with any food, the key is choosing the right variety and portion control.

The most important criteria of cheese is that it be REAL cheese: Natural with no artificial colors and flavorings are added. Processed cheese is unhealthy and full of additives. Some processed cheeses have everything BUT milk in it. This also occurs in the majority of all low fat/no fat cheeses (they are processed and not “real."

So now that you are on the track for the REAL cheese, next is to select cheeses that are higher in protein. Real cheese has very little to no carbs. Here are great cheeses high in protein and lower in fat: Parmasean, Cottage Cheese, Goat Cheese (my favorite), Gruyere, Swiss, Mozeralla, Cheddar, Provolone, and Gouda to name a few. The worse in terms of fat more than protein: Blue Cheese, Camembert, Brie, Limburger, and Mexican Queso

I incorporate real cheese into my diet at least every other day of the week. Remember it is about choices and quantity, and it is not the enemy.

Stay tuned………..

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Protein ALWAYS with Carbs

One of our main objectives in staying “healthy” and physically fit is to manage our blood sugar and insulin throughout the day. This affects our energy levels, disease control, metabolism, our hunger cravings, strength, and our mind/emotions.

Carbohydrates are obviously the main contributor to blood sugar and thus insulin. Not only what you eat in form of carbs but what you eat with your carbohydrates matters. Protein and believe it or not, fat, will slow the absorption of sugar (glucose). This will greatly help to prevent insulin spikes and also drops (insulin roller coaster).

Here is pretty simple tip that we can all do to be healthier: Consume less processed, more “real” food, so that your body works harder to digest it. Stick to non-sugar, complex carbohydrates (with lots of fiber) and consume with protein. Eat smaller, more frequent meals to prevent spikes and drops. The more stable and better your blood sugar is, the healthier you are in many respects.

Protein with complex carbs !!!

Stay tuned………….

Friday, October 4, 2013

Thomas Jefferson - Quote

"Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude." - Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Weight Machines - Beware of Injury

When you walk into most gyms, you will see many various machines. Machines are great for beginners. Especially until you get a proper form. Weight machines can provide faster workouts, there is no need for a “spot” and they are generally easy to use.

HOWEVER, beware that they can cause injury. The body movement patterns (path / direction) are fixed and locked in place. Consider the Smith Machine. This can be, depending on certain movements, the worst, most dangerous machine in the gym. Let us take squats as an example. When you perform squats on a Smith Machine, it forces you to take a path of motion that is not natural for you. Moreover, this can cause injury. By performing squats with free weights, you take your body's natural range of motion (keeping proper form). This decreases your chance of injury. Machines simply do not take your body height, weight, and shape into account.

Machines can also give you a false sense of your abilities/strength. Weights on a machine versus lifting something in real life are completely different. For example, when you pick up a heavy box, you do not rest the non-working parts of your body against a machine and only work certain muscle. To be functional in picking up that heavy box, you have to use more muscles (especially to stabilize). In addition, 100 pounds on a chest press machine is nowhere near comparable to 100 pounds on a barbell bench press.

Free weights emulate and carry over to real life and real situations.

Machines have their place. Do not get me wrong. Just be knowledgeable when and how you use them. For example, when I travel I have a few gyms I visit. When there, I use machines I do not have access to normally. BUT I never use machines for the “compound moves." I use machines for extra work to triceps, calves, rear delts, etc.

Stay tuned……………

Friday, September 27, 2013

Micheal Kirby- Quote

"Failure will not overcome me so long as my will to succeed is stronger" - Micheal S. Kirby

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Slash Fat / Build Muscle - FARMER’S WALK (revisited)

II have covered Farmer’s Walk before…………. But seriously folks, it will slash fat and build muscle.

The farmer's walk is an incredible exercise that is not used often enough. It is so SIMPLE that I believe people overlook it in favor of some newfangled exercise fad.

The farmer’s walk builds muscle, reduces body fat, increases strength and has very little risk of injury.

The farmer's walk is the simplest exercise you can do. Simply pick up some heavy weights and walk. Your entire body is utilized. Your arms, back, shoulders, traps, legs and YES your CORE. Imagine getting a great core workout without doing crunches. :)

Reminder that every movement starts with posture. Do not drop your head forward or use a rounded shoulder posture. This causes too much stress on your neck. Instead, work on positioning/posture and maintain a straight back (spine) and head looking forward but not extended.

You can mix the emphasis on distance (a challenging load you can walk with for two minutes) or weight. Distance means lighter weights. This will have a similar cardio effect to sprints. Distance (lighter and longer) will accelerate fat loss. Weight - is heavy and brief (up to 30 seconds). This will build more strength. The heavier weights will translate over to improving your other lifts.

Do both distance and weight often in your workout and see the SUCCESS. Yes, it is simple but brutally effective. !!!

Stay tuned.................