Monday, March 25, 2013

What is your excuse? Motivation of the day

 Mr. Milton Phillips passed 3/24/2013. However, he lived a full life! You see, he died at the ripe age of 91 years old, only a few weeks shy of 92. He lived in a time of racism, segregation, and lack of opportunity but still managed to obtain a Masters degree from Southern University, something that was virtually unheard of during that time. He was a veteran of the United States Army and a survivor of World War 2. Yep, he traveled the world! Moreover, he went on to teach for many many years, and made a very successful life for himself. He provided for many generations up until the time of his death. Matter of fact, he was one of the first black teachers to integrate a totally white Slidell school system.
This guy is a legend in my book. In the video above he was 88 years old! Yes, still working out, still fighting, still strong willed!

All to often we make excuses in this life. But you have to fight! No matter what your circumstances, you have to never give in. Not too long after this video he was diagnosed with Dementia. It was a rough battle but he never gave in and never complained. His spirit stayed strong just like a fighter's would. As his health declined the doctors continually counted him out. However, "Wolverine"as I call him always fought back. Time after time, hospital visit after hospital visit, "Wolverine" always came back strong. To the day he died, he was not even on many medicine. No diabetes, no high blood pressure, just a strong will to win! Even on his final ride to the hospital he had a look in his eyes that said, GET ME OFF OF THIS !@#$R%T^ Stretcher, lol. Yep, another great piece of history was lost yesterday. An inspiration that beat the odds, and did things nobody should have done during that time. So I ask, WHAT IS YOUR EXCUSE? Why are you not ________________________? If you want it, make it happen! Mr. Phillips did! RIP "Wolverine"

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Losing weight after pregnancy

 Six pack after pregnancy!?
Here is a perfect example of what can be done with hard work, consistency and a clean diet. True, everybody is different so I wouldn't compare myself to the woman below but I would use her as motivation to help you become the best you possible.


The woman in the video admits that she worked out up until the day of her pregnancy! That alone tells you that she probably comes from an athletic background or was already a fitness freak. There are some people who even believe that these pictures are a product of photoshop. 

The fact is that most people do not want to follow a strict bodybuilders diet. Let's be honest, it is hard to do.

The workout plan

Well, she used Shaun T's Insanity workout. Yep, 60 days of high intensity Cardio! I have finished the program myself and I will be the first to admit, it is HARD. I wouldn't say it's insane, but definitely difficult. Most women will have a hard time walking much less doing an intense workout like Insanity immediately following pregnancy. I would make sure you are cleared by a doctor as not to tear any stitches or cause any additional bleeding. However, light cardio and resistance exercise would be beneficial. 

You can check out my wife's story on the regime I put her through before/during/and after her pregnancy!

A few words of motivation from Bruce Lee!

courtesy of
 These are some of my favorite quotes from Bruce Lee. He was a true master of fitness in the broadest since of the word. I hope these words inspire you as they do me.

A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at. 

If you always put limit on everything you do, physical or anything else. It will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.

 If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of.

Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.

Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory.

Take things as they are. Punch when you have to punch. Kick when you have to kick.

To know oneself is to study oneself in action with another person.

 Use only that which works, and take it from any place you can find it.

 Don't get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a bottle it becomes the bottle; You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

courtesy of

Monday, March 18, 2013

8 quick serving ideas for peanuts

These snacking ideas come courtesy of The World's healthiest foods by George Mateljan.

1) Add chopped Peanuts to a green salad
2) Instead of a Peanut butter and jelly sandwich, try Peanut butter and banana, Peanut butter and honey or Peanut butter, sliced apple or pear and/or raisins.
3) Sprinkle chopped Peanuts over curries.
4) Trail Mix: Combine roasted Peanuts, raisins, thickly grated coconut and dark organic chocolate bits.
5) Peanut Butter and apples: Slice an apple, spread pieces with honey and Peanut butter, and dip in chopped Peanuts.

6) Spicy Peanut Butter: In a small bowl, mix 2 TBS Peanut Butter with 1 1/2 tsp of tamari (soy sauce) and hot sauce to taste.
7) Asian Salad: Combine sliced green cabbage, grated ginger, Serrano chiles and Peanuts. Toss with equal parts tamari (soy sauce) and rice vinegar and a sprinkle of sesame oil.
8) Celery and Peanut Butter: Fill a celery rib with Peanut Butter for a great lunch-bag addition or an afternoon snack.

I have tried about half of these recipes and I enjoy(ed) them! Try some and let me know what you think! For more great tips and recipes check out the book. It breaks down just about every fruit and vegetable you can imagine giving you recipes, nutritional breakdown as well as any benefits or disadvantages to preparation methods.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Apples and Peanut butter! What a great snack!

When you're craving a quick snack, why not ate something both healthy and delicious!
Apples and peanut butter provide that 1, 2 punch that your taste buds need and provide
your body with a quick infusion of protein and nutrients as well.

An apple a day...
Well you know the saying, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Apples are packed with nutritional value and it is no coincidence that saying has stuck throughout the years. One apple contains roughly 81 calories, about 4 of those coming from fat. The avg. apple contains about 21g of carbohydrates and .26 grams of protein. The vitamin and mineral composition of apples are also quite robust.
Apples are full of flavonoids and phenolic antioxidants. Studies show that these flavonoids have been found to prevent heart disease.Combine that with the two types of fiber contained in apples and cholesterol levels, risk of heart attack and stroke all decrease!

If organic apples are not available, try to wash them with a mix of apple cider vinegar and water.
I normally let my apples soak in a pot of water and apple cider vinegar for about 10 minutes. This apple cider vinegar wash helps to break down the waxes and pesticides that water can not always remove. Look for the 5 digit number starting with the number 9. If it doesn't begin with 9, then it is NOT organic.

Peanut butters-

I'll be honest, I'm a Peanutbutteraholic! Yes, I said it, I love peanut butter. Peanut butter and crackers use to be one of my favorite snacks but over the course of several raw diets I've tried to start avoiding
crackers. Ideally, your diet should include as much raw food as possible and processed crackers don't fit into that equation. Thus apples fill in that void.

Peanut butter gives you both healthy fat and a nice serving of protein! Your usual serving of peanut butter will give you anywhere from 100 to 200 calories per serving with your protein ranging from 4g to about 7g per 2 Tbsp.  Moderation is always the key as you don't want to just sit down and eat jars of peanut butter at every sitting, but as a between meal snack it more than serves it's purpose.

Peanuts promote brain health and promote digestive health. Moreover, they contain free-radical destroying copper and manganese and sleep-promoting tryptophan. Thus it won't be far fetched to say that these benefits carry over into the buttered form as well.

Which do I eat?

Tree of Life has a blended organic crunchy peanut butter. Sweetened organically, it is made of organic dry roasted blanched peanuts, organic palm oil, organic dehydrated cane juice, and salt.
You can check out the nutritional label at the link above.

My wife seems to love the Justin's Classic Almond Butter all-natural. These ingredients are even more simple - Dry roasted almonds, organic palm fruit oil. At about 200 calories per 2 Tbsp, you get 7g of protein. This one isn't bad but it has a more natural (plain) flavor. It is also a bit drier in consistency which is ok but definitely not my favorite. There are however a multitude of flavors to choose from.
Check out their nutritional label and other chooses

My favorite of the bunch is one that I stumbled across as a bit of an accident. The wife brought home some "stuff" from the organic section of the local grocery store. The label said "All natural Better'n Peanut Butter." I immediately thought, what in the hell is this!? Well, the label claimed it had 85% less fat and 100 calories per serving! Made with real peanuts and low in sodium, I said what the heck, I'll give it a try! Boy am I glad I did. I love, love, love this stuff! It indeed in my opinion is better'n Peanut Butter! The texture is creamy and smooth and the taste is ADDICTIVE!

Organic varieties will always be a bit more than the regular (Jiff, Skippy, Peter Pan, etc...) but I feel
they are worth it as you are less likely to hear about the salmonella outbreaks and the ingredients are better. If you can afford them do your self a favor and give them a try. You can also make your own. If you have a good blender, a cupful of nuts and some oil, you are in business!

So next time your craving some cookies, or candy, give this a try instead. Not only will you satisfy your sweet tooth but you will also will feel better about what you ate and how you feel.

Nutritional facts were found in the book The worlds healthiest foods by George Mateljan.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Migraines Suck! But I finally found something that works to relieve the pain!

In highschool, every Friday we had to run the mile for PE. And being the "trackstar", I felt it was my duty to show how superior of a runner I was.  And seems like almost every Friday, I would win a terrible Migraine for my efforts. At that time, I could not figure out why in the world I would always get these unbearable headaches from hell. 
The Symptons
courtesy of
were always the same, it was like the warning that you were about to be hit by a truck and there was nothing you could do about it. First, my vision would blur ever so slightly and that would increase to me seeing stars or what is called Auras. Though this was distracting this is not painful, it just makes you feel like your looking into another dimension lol.  After the auras, your eyes become a bit more sensitive to light and my hands would start to numb. Again, aggravating but not painful. However, the next symptons were the real beginning of hell. Nausea and vomiting were pretty common and then there was the slightest, dullest pain behind my eye. Once you hit this phase you know, it's all downhill for the next few days.The pain intensifies and you don't want to see any light, hear anything, or be bothered by anyone! Even once the "Migraine" is over, you still can't make any sudden moves or you will feel a sharp pain behind your eye. (The pain for me is usually only between one eye)
How did I manage the pain?
Well, I tried Tylenol, Advil, etc.. and none of that even put a dent in the pain! I thought the only thing I could do was bear down, keep a cold towel over my eyes/head and keep the room as dark and quiet as possible. Sleep isn't even a pleasant escape from the pain as the Migraine follows you into sleep like FREDDY KRUEGER!


BC's and Goody's Headache Powder

A few years ago I discovered headache powders. I only use them for my worst headaches and they always destroy the headache within atleast 30mins! I love them for that reason. However, nothing should work that fast in your body. I always think of this stuff like taking CRACK. Lol, for that reason I try to not use them too often. That being said, I had a Migraine about a year ago and figured I'd break out the big guns! I took a packet of BC's, swallowed it down and waited for the MAGIC to happen. I must admit, it brought it down from a normal 10 out of 10 to about a 5 out of 10 but I was still going through it! It was at that time that my fear of Migraines went up to another level. "If BC's can't beat it, nothing can", or so I thought at the time.

Excedrin Migraine Works!

Fast forward to last week and after another pretty hard workout I started seeing the zig-zags, and stars. I thought oh no, Not now. It has been about a year since I got one of these. As my vision started to blur, I immediately sent my wife to Walgreens to get me anything that said Migraine on it. She came home with Excedrin Migraine. I had never used this before but I figured it couldn't hurt. I immediately popped 2 pills and waited for the fireworks to begin.

20mins, 30mins, and hour and the pain hadn't made it to level 2. I decided I would take a nap (probably due to something in the Excedrin) and see what happens. About 3 hours later, I felt the worst was already over!!! Did you see what I just said, 3 hours later and I was already over the worst of it. This was unprecedented in my dealings with Migraines. I popped another pill just to make sure I wasn't premature in my thoughts and continued to get some rest. The next day there was the normal recovery that had to occur but if there is such a thing, this was the best Migraine experience I've ever had.
I don't work for Excedrin but I had to share this experience! I wish I would have known about this when I use to suffer for so many of my younger years. As you know or will see, I am into holistic, natural, homeopathic cures, but in this case I will use whatever works lol. What do you do to manage your Migraines? Do you know of any other things that work?

Check out my video below as well. Thanks!
Yall come back nah!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Let's talk Snacks and health(ier) cheat foods

When you are working out hard and trying to eat clean there will be times when you are craving
snacks. The best thing you can do is not even bring it into the house, and keep your fruits stocked up. However, there will be times when you are traveling or just don't have access to your clean foods.
So, what foods can you eat?

Nuts, seeds, and more nuts!

1) Pistachios
One ounce of these provides about 6 grams of protein and an amazing 310 mg. of Potassium.Pistachios have been shown to reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol and increase HDL (good) cholesterol. They are high in vitamins A &E, and help prevent heart disease. Some studies show that pistachios may even reduce Type 2 diabetes. These are also a great source of healthy unsaturated fat.
2) Peanuts
One ounce of these provides about 7 grams of protein and 2g of fiber. These are the highest in protein of the nut varieties and are great for helping you feel full. They contain high levels of niacin, potassium, folate, magnesium, and other great stuff! Definitely one of my favorites for a quick pick me up. Also, the honey roasted varieties help me get rid of my sweet tooth but try not to have too many.

3) Cashews
Cashews have to be my favorite all around nut. I can eat these and never get enough. They are great for making nut milks, butters, and are used in a bunch of raw recipes. The cashew has the lowest amount of fat in the nut family. Cashew nuts are rich in folic acid, zinc, magnesium, fiber, vitamins and minerals. They are a particularly good source of vitamin K, dietary fiber, vitamin B, folate, copper, magnesium and zinc.

4) Nut Butters

These are great to keep in the car, or kitchen cabinet as well. There is nothing better than nut butter to calm that sweet tooth. Additionally, they are a good source of protein and very easy to make. As I said better, cashews blend really easily so they are my go to nut for butters. However, peanut butter and almond butter can be made easily as well. 

Try to avoid the processed crackers,  chips, and cookies!!!
However you can make your own RAW versions of these!

If you have a dehydrator you can make healthy kale, apple, banana, or sweet potato chips! The video below will give you an example of how to do sweet potato chips but the concept is the same for any other chip you desire to make as well. Give them a shot! They are actually quite tasty!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Jump Higher/Run Faster with the Air Alert Program

Everybody wants to run faster or jump higher! About 2 years ago, I tried this program called Air Alert and I really enjoyed it. The makers claim that you will be able to run .2 to .4 seconds faster in the 40 and jump 8 to 14 inches higher and it has been endorsed by the likes of Baron Davis, and Larry Hughes of the NBA. Well, I didn't get to finish the program in order to see if I would jump 14 inches higher but I did make gains in  my explosive quickness and leg strength. I do believe if I would have finished the program those results would have been attainable.

Do I believe Air Alert is magic? No, I wouldn't say that either. It takes hard work and consistency to see any results. The first couple of weeks are meant to prepare your body for the heavy workload
your will endure toward the end of the program. Some people have complained about getting knee problems as well. To that I say, make sure you are using good form and not overtraining. More than anything, I always stress QUALITY over QUANTITY. 

Everybody's body is different so don't judge your results by comparing yourself to someone else. Track your progress, measure your gains and  use the little accomplishments to feed your ego.
 Remember drinking enough water, getting enough sleep, and stretching all make a difference in your gains.

Check out my video below for a sample of the workout

For more on the program check out their website :

Have you tried the program? What do you think about it? Share your tips or stories below!