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These days enarly everyone has a smart phone filled with apps, but how often is it that an app comes out that actually changes your life for the better? Don’t get me wrong, Angry Birds was a great way to kill time when bored in a waiting room but than it also became a great way to procrastinate when I needed to get work done. “I’ll do it in 5 minutes, I really need to kill this green pig!”
The app that changed my life (and this is going to sound like a huge plug) is the BodySpace app by BodyBuilding.com. Before I found this app, I used to go to the gym, do the same 5-6 exercises (which had nothing to do with each other) because they were the only ones I knew how to do and went home after. Average time spent at the gym was 30-35 minutes and a good chunk of that was spent trying to figure out what to do next or waiting for someone to get off the machine I wanted to use.
With this app I was able to either pick a premade workout from a long list of them or make my own workout from a choice of over 960 exercises. Each exercise comes with both readable and video instructions on how to do it and it records and saves the sets/reps/pounds that you lifted. I feel like I am the only guy in the gym who actually uses his phone for his workout between sets instead of checking Facebook or Instagram (though I am guilty of that sometimes).
When I first started with this app after gaining weight on my honeymoon, I got myself up to 14-15 exercises for over 1.5 hours a day working out just my upper body. (had a separete leg day). This was great for me because I was learning a lot of exercises and watching as the numbers went up but along the way I started to get pains in both of my elbows. Apparently doing this massive workout (for me) 5-7 days a week was getting to be too much and I started getting a case of golfers/tennis elbow, not sure which one.
This allowed me the opportunity to figure out how to break down my workout to having one day for arms, one day for back/chest/shoulders, one day for legs and one day for power lifting. I usually will do one of the first 2 twice a week. Doing this I was able to learn more exercises and how to do bigger lifts. It also allows me to shorten my gym time during the week so I could work out each section more in less time and get home. Getting home at 730 and get by 8 to have eat dinner at 945 and get to sleep to wake up at 4am to do it all voer again takes a lot out of you so having the extra time at night to do stuff or be with my wife is just as important to me.
The next great thing about this app is that it is more than just a how to and record keeping app. It is a social network with thousands if not millions of people who started out just like me and all working towards reaching the same goal. Can post progress photos, interact with others, status updates, forums. This has added extra motivation to my workout because if they can do it, than why can’t I? Everyone on BodySpace has been great and motivating and extremly helpful.
This app has changed my life, it takes time to get into it and discipline to make it work, but if you are willing to put in the effort, it will surely help anyone who uses it.
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So after months of me telling my wife that she would have better results doing weights and mixing up her workouts instead of just sweating it out on the ellipticle everyday, she finally decided to take my word for it. It was a huge day in the world of men when I was finally able to say to my much smarter wife “told you so.” She responded with that look that made me turn my head and ask “who said that.”
Since that fateful day she has joined me on the bulk of my leg exercises on leg day and we do our entire back/chesk/shoulder day. It has been a great bonding experiance and has brought us together and given us another thing to do together. It is a lot of fun to play personal trainer with her and to watch her go. It is always more fun to have a partner in crime, even more so when it is your significant other.
She trusts me to ensure her safety with the weights and to make sure she is doing it right, this probably isn’t the best idea but I am pretty good at making it look like I know what I am doing and she is doing good at paying attention and trying new things. She has even started to raise the weight and I can see the change in her form and body (and I like what I see ;-)).
Couples that lift together grow stronger together. That can be taken various ways. Can look at it in physical strength value or as emotional strength. I know that when we move into our next home that she will be able to help me with more of the heavier work. She can now pick up a 10 gallon water jug without issue and doesn’t ask me to help her open nearly as many sauce jars.
The trust that we have gained in each other as well as the ability to show her some of what I do at the gym has been great. To see her benefiting from it both in physical form and on the scale makes me so happy because it makes it her happy and we all know the saying, “a happy wife is a happy life.”
In closing, you want to be close with your gym partner because there is a lot of trust and companionship that goes into a special gym partnership, why not have that partner be your partner in life.
Up for review is C4 Explosive Energy Pre-Workout by Cellucor. Of the several pre-workouts that I have tried, this is my number 1 overall pre-workout drink. There is a wide variety of flavors and sizes to choose from.
Having tried several of the flavors (fruit punch, pine apple*, sweet tea*, blue razz) I have yet to find a flavor that I did not enjoy. This is big since it is a drink that you will be taking before every workout and it needs to be something that makes you excited and puts you in the mood. Even the sweet tea* flavor got me in the mood for a workout. Was not expecting that when I made the purchase.
When it comes to mixing, it mixes very easily. The can says to take with 4-6 ounces of water which is appropriate. Any less than that and it comes out with clumps of powder (when using a blender ball mix cup) but any more and it starts to dilute the flavor and makes it very watery.
It usually takes about 15-20 for it to kick in (as it says on the can) and when it does it will affect different people in different ways. For me I get a warm feeling that brings a lot of focus and energy with it. On days I don’t want to go to the gym it makes me want to go more. On days I do want to go it encourages me to drive harder. This is everything I was looking for in a pre-workout.
The downside is that it get a prickling/tingling feeling. The level of how much this affects me differs everyday but it doesn’t stop me. Some days the prickling stings more than others but it kinda feels good. In a strange way it pushes me to go harder and not stop.
Taste: 8/10, Mixability: 8/10, Effectiveness: 8/10, Value:10/10 Bodybuilding.com sells for regular price of $40 bu it is usually on sale for $30 and a lot of times has further discounts.
* – Indicates discontinued flavor
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It’s a new time in my life where I am in the process of trying to make a better me. For years I have looked for influence to go to the gym and never found it. Trainer appointments, going with friends, new diets and none of them got my interested. When I got back from my honeymoon (which consisted of cooking healthy food and a lot of hiking) and I saw I gained 7 pounds, I knew life changes had to be made.
My workouts at the time consisted of going to the gym 3 days a week for 30-40 minutes, doing 5-6 different exercises of random body parts and going home tired and exhausted but feeling like I accomplished nothing. Suddenly with new purpose I found myself going to the gym more often, generating workout plans to follow and organizing my body into different muscle
groups on different days and lifting more weight safely.
It has been 5 months and where the needle on the scale has returned to where it was before my honeymoon, the gains in stamina, my physical strength and size of my muscles show where my hard work has gone and where it will continue to go. Come with me on this journey because “you need to start in order to finish”