Basic Training…and Diet (Part 1)

Everyone always wants to talk about getting in shape. I can’t even begin to count the number of times I overhear people say (or they tell me directly) how they want to lose weight. New Year’s Resolutions get made, people “commit” to something they see on TV or read about in a magazine ad and give up after it doesn’t give immediate results.

Then the excuses come. I can’t…I can’t…I can’t…


In my opinion, based on years of doing this myself and observing others, the difference between success and failure comes down to mindset and education. It’s entirely in your head. Part of what I hope to do with these articles is help change your mental frame and remove all excuses. Your success is completely dependent on your flexibility and ability to accept responsibility for yourself. You can make no excuse that I can’t take away. This actually puts you in a much better position because you are in control. How many things in your life do you have complete and total control over?

Everything we’re going to talk about is very simple. It is not, however, easy…at least not at first. We’re not talking about quick fixes. We’re talking lifestyle changes. It’s a phrase that we hear a lot but few of us actually understand. It is imperative to change what you’re doing now because, if you’re reading this, what you’re doing obviously isn’t giving you what you want.

Do what you’ve always done and get what you’ve always gotten.

Again, you have control over your own success. That’s a good thing.

There will be a minimum of science. Sometimes, it’s necessary in order to understand the hows and whys but, mostly, the really geeky stuff won’t be here. I’m not going to bother to cite most sources because I don’t believe most people are actually going to check them so it’s just wasted energy. If that’s not the case, ask and you’ll get sources.

The goal of these articles isn’t to hand you a plan and send you on your way. The goal is to help everyone understand how to make better choices and the reasons for those better choices. A lot of it is going to center on diet and nutrition because that is ultimately far more important than how you exercise. If the body is a temple, diet is the construction material. Is that material going to be stone or styrofoam?

What gives me the balls to write this? SO glad you asked. Here’s where I started.

18 months later:

The difference between those two pictures is a little over a 90lb fat loss and a muscle gain of just under 10lbs. This is about an 85lb net loss and a massive change in overall body composition.

I’m a more or less normal guy that likes to know how and why things work and then figure out the most efficient way to make them happen. I’ve spent almost 4 years studying nutrition and metabolic physiology to determine what works and how to account for individual variables. I’ve been where you are. Hell, I’ve been way past where most of you probably are. You’ve probably never learned how to build either a diet based on what you need as an individual.

In the interest of full disclosure, I have since regained now about 40lbs due partly to side effects of some medication, partly due to a shift in training focus (function over form), and partly due to some personal issues I won’t go into. I’m back on the road and ready to do it for a second time.

Why not at least listen to a guy that’s been down the path you want to hack your way through? If I can do it TWICE, why can’t you do it once?