Start Your Mission

What is it to have purpose? What motivates you each day to stand up and take on the challenges life throws at you daily? It has to be something that burns deep within you to give you an edge over everyone else. The things that separate you from your peers must be the drive within you to better yourself each and every day. This life can’t be a compilation of hobbies to pass the time and “amuse” you. You have to find something, anything you deeply enjoy, love, or just something you’re good at and let it take over your time. Make it an obsession. Make your thoughts and actions be a part of your goal(s). when it is all said and done we all have a limited amount of time to pursue our dreams, as morbid and crazy as that may sound. You can’t be so passive that you let all the opportunities life throws at you pass you by because you’re scared, uncertain or unwilling to push. Each day should be an improvement from the last no matter how small and no matter what it is. Obviously, all I write about is gym life related stuff, but that isn’t all life is about. For me, it is a large portion of what I do, but you can take whatever dream you have and turn it into reality if you put in the work. Life isn’t easy, it will knock you back and put you in your place a lot, believe me it will a lot, but it is how you persevere, endure and brave the challenges that really mark your chances of success. Not everyone will succeed, and that is where heart, determination, work ethic, skill, talent, drive, persistence, motivation and courage come in to separate the dedicated from the wannabees. People will drag you down, tell you how dumb your goals are and how you should be “realistic”, but honestly the hell with those kind of people. They are the ones that are too afraid to push and pursue any real mission, or goal because they are too afraid to fail. Failures happen, and it isn’t the end of the road. People don’t have perfectly paved roads to their goals. Hardship will come and go like the night sky, and I mean that as they appear and disappear often. You have to have a drive to succeed and accomplish each milestone or daily mission to truly make it wherever you aspire to be and to build character. When it comes down to it, I’m not successful either. I’m not where I want to be at all in life, but I have the determination and vision to continue along my path that I have traveled long and hard down to do what I set out to do. As clichéd as it may sound it really isn’t how you start but how you finish. I would like to think it isn’t where you start, but where you finish. Everyone has a past, and some may be prettier than others, but in the end it is what you do in the now, today, this very second that will propel you past the New Year’s Resolutioners, naysayers, and cowards to have a more legitimate shot at your goal, mission, or dream.

This week has been a pretty great week for my 120 goal. As promised I will release my Day 7 Leg day, just in case anyone wants to attempt a new workout, or just to view my reps and weight used, either is fine. Logging each workout has been extremely beneficial for creating new workouts in the future. I decided to label it strictly and each entry includes “Day: Number, muscle group being worked, each exercise being performed with weights and reps to be filled out as you go along, a cardio section that includes Calories burned and duration, Calories consumed for the day, Protein consumed, Fats consumed, Carbs consumed, and an “overall Comment” section I use to describe anything noteworthy to improve on, or if the weight moved well, or just anything really” for this posts purpose and to keep ot relatively short I will post on my workout with the exercise, weight used, and reps performed.

Be sure to follow me on IG: _absher_, snap: absher97, and twitter @_absher_97 for details, daily posts and blog previews.

Leg Day:

Squats: 8X8 at 225

Leg extension/curl: 130/100×10 other 5 sets 180/140x 10

Straight leg Deadlifts: 205x8x2 and 225×8

Leg Press: 545×10, 565×10, 585×10, 585×10, 585×10

Lunges: 4 sets of body weight for a distance of 20 yards each

Front squats: 135×6, 185×6, 185×6, 185×6

Cardio: 25 minutes of a stair stepper that burned 512 Calories

Fitness Blog 5: Updates, tips, and motivation.

Hey guys! It has been a while since I’ve posted with school and workouts I don’t have too much free time. This is just sort of an update on me and how I’ve managed to succeed thus far into my cut.

Time: I spend on average two and a half hours in the gym per day. I usually warm-up, lift high volume for my muscle group of the day and do an ab routine within the first hour and a half, and as you all know I spend a solid hour doing high intensity cardio every day that I work out.

Style of Lifting: as mentioned above I tend to do high volume now. It is different than my strength workouts, but it is more beneficial to my goals. I do sets ranging from 8-12 reps with a 30 second break in between sets. On chest day for example I will do Bench press, Incline barbell press, Cable Flies, decline Dumbbell press, and dumbbell pull overs. A workout that short would only take 45 minutes tops, but I like to add some machine work in there for the added benefit.

Cardio: my cardio is pretty straight forward I just go at it for an hour. It doesn’t really matter what machine, or cardio workout you do as long as you push through it. I recently read that doing sprints, and other fast twitch exercises before your distance runs is more beneficial for fat burning. I will try it out and see how I like it and give a follow up on it in the upcoming weeks.

Diet: the hardest part for me so far is maintaining a strict diet and not falling to temptations. I have done a solid job so far. To be completely honest I wouldn’t have made it as far as I have if it wasn’t for my Calorie tracking app, called “My Fitness Pal.” I’m telling you it is a great tool for anyone looking to enhance their diet. I also decided to check into some simple concepts that make dieting even easier. Going relatively low on Calorie intake can make you feel empty and fatigued because most of the time people continue to eat their everyday meals. If you eat a 12oz Ribeye steak that will generally cost you around 750 Calories on average, and if you consider a cup of Broccoli it only contains around 31 Calories. I went ahead and did the math and with those numbers you could consume 24.19 Cups of Broccoli instead of that steak. Now obviously, we are assuming a perfect world and ignoring Macronutrients for a moment, but just given those numbers one could see how eating carelessly could make you feel hungry. I’m 100% positive that 24 cups (if you could eat that many) would be way more filling and a higher volume than the steak. So, just choose foods that aren’t so Calorically dense when dieting, it will save your day from my experience.

I have managed to increase my number of pull-ups by nearly double, cut time off of my mile and somehow increased my bench press while managing to cut around 35 pounds since my last weigh in. my mindset has been pretty fixed. I just continue to think of the long term and not allow lazy thoughts to creep into my mind. I continue to think that today is the day now is the time, because you aren’t guaranteed tomorrow. You might as well make the most out of your day that you have, and make it something special. Each day is a blessing and opportunity given to us by God to better ourselves, and maybe even help someone else along the way. Remember, losers wait for the right moment, but winners make the moment right.

Be sure to follow me on Instagram, twitter, and snapchat to stay updated on new posts and to ask me any questions you may have. Go out and make today great, and make the moment right.

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Fitness blog 3: Misconceptions

Hey guys!! These last two posts have been pretty successful, so as promised I will continue to do this fitness series. In this one we will discuss a few aspects that no one really considers, where I am in my cut cycle, and a VERY small Q&A at the end.

Exercise: guys, the number of things that qualify as exercise are impossible for me to list, there’s that many. You don’t have to stick to the traditional Lift, Run, and repeat method, which I prefer. You can change your life doing the things that you like, and fitness should be fun for everyone. If you like to play tennis, then play tennis, that will get you looking good for the summer and change your life in a positive way. If you enjoy dancing, bowling, walking, backpacking(hiking), or whatever that involves physical exertion then do that to help you along the journey. Not to knock lifting and running, that is my preferred method but that is just because I enjoy it and the results are there for me. So, it helps me stay motivated. Whatever makes you happy and healthy, do it. You should enjoy what you do, but keep in mind you should still push yourself, that isn’t a signal to slack off and expect results.

Consistency- I know I hit this topic last post, but I can’t stress how important consistency is when you have goals set. If you run once a week, but disregard all the other six days, then you can’t expect to be achieving your goals extremely quickly. Consistency is key; you must get after it every day if you really want to get to your end goal.

Comparisons- when you are on Instagram or social media in general and you see this extremely lean aesthetic huge body builder, or ladies when you see that woman that has the “perfect” body, please realize they are extremely rare. They aren’t the minimum standard of fit, so if you aren’t close to them it’s okay, not many people are. Social media can be amazing for fitness, but at the same time it can lead to discouragement and unnecessary comparisons. Just be a better you than you were yesterday.

Flexibility- Flexibility is a really neglected aspect of the fitness world. Many people just pawn it off as a waste of twenty or so minutes, but the results can be rewarding. Flexibility helps you maintain a proper posture. Also, it helps you go through greater ranges of motion with less energy expended. It’s a major point that should not be left out, and stretching before and after a lift or physical activity in general greatly reduces your chance of injury. You don’t have to do yoga or anything but it is still a great idea to at least work on your flexibility everyday with some basic stretches.

Hydration- Staying hydrated is also another neglected part of exercise and fitness. Staying hydrated will reduce your fatigue, leading to a better and more efficient workout. It also has many cosmetic benefits as well, it gives life to your hair, and teeth. Staying hydrated will help reduce joint pain and lead to more efficient movements. Personally, I drink one gallon, or 128 ounces of water per day, but I think the minimum is 64 ounces. If you meet your personal requirements, then you should be fine. Just don’t forget to sip on water throughout the day. Staying hydrated also helps with weight loss, so keep that in mind.

As far as my workouts I am right now in the most challenging part of my cut cycle. As I mentioned in my previous post it is important to slowly lower yourself down to your Caloric intake goal, and I have done just that at 1900 per day. It is difficult because the cardio portion of my workouts have also gotten slightly longer. If you want to see results you must be willing to sacrifice. These next few week will be challenging, and having this cold won’t make it any easier for me, but you have to overcome obstacles to get to your goals. So, this will just be a small bump in the road for me.

As promised guys, I will reveal one of my workouts, and I will answer a couple questions that were sent in. remember to give me a follow-on twitter and Instagram for sneak peeks of newer posts and a way to send in questions.

Q&A session

Q: Where are you from?

A: I am from Norton, Va. I small city located in the southwest region of Virginia.

Q: what supplements do you take, and what should I take to gain weight?

A: I personally don’t take any supplements, but if you want to gain weight I would consider a mass gainer. It isn’t a bad idea to talk to your local GNC employees to see what they have in stock for you, and what they may recommend.

Workout reveal

Leg day:

Cardio warm up: 10 minutes

Squats: 5×10

Leg extension & curls: 5×10

Lunges: 3×10

Leg press: 3×12

Smith machine squats: 4×6-8

Calf raises: 5×12

Ab session: your preference

Cardio: one hour of your choice, I recommend an elliptical or some relative of it for knee comfort.

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Fitness Blog 2: Advice and Q&A

I enjoyed doing a fitness post last time and I have decided to make a series that will based on the questions I receive and a weekly workout reveal. Anyways, I decided to make a short list of the things that will make you a successful gym goer!

  • Gym Etiquette- Guys, there is probably nothing more important than gym etiquette. For me, it was required of us in high school to use our machines quickly, but while still finishing our sets and it was required for us to clean the entire weight room after we completed our workouts for football, or even as a class. It seemed really unnecessary at first for me, but I honestly couldn’t thank my coaches enough for instilling that simple discipline in us. In the real gym world, there is no one hovering around you to make you clean up after yourself or to make you use the machines in a proper amount of time. Respecting your fellow gym goers and gym employees is important. Remember guys, someone has to pick up the mess you leave behind, so don’t be that guy! And also remember how inconvenient it is to wait on a machine or station, so don’t waste time while using one. It is going to ruin another person’s workout as well as your own.
  • Routine- it is essential that you get into a routine while looking for “gainz” or whatever your goals are. There are plenty of resources to find above average workouts, unless you are comfortable making your own routine which is also fine. I would recommend copying online workouts from a reputable website at first, until you get the feel for what your body responds to the most, and it is important to keep in mind that one workout may be perfect for one person, but barely effective for you, so don’t get discouraged
  • Get a gym partner-Staying motivated at first is the hardest part of the fitness life. As mentioned previously in my last post, it is because people expect results immediately because they completely cut there Calorie intake and make ridiculously intense workouts that are almost impossible to complete. A partner will keep you motivated and in check, because you both will go through times of doubt and discouragement initially which is fine. It is your job as that person’s gym partner to keep them going and challenge each other to get the best results possible. A little friendly competition will only make your workouts better and even more interesting, but do as you please and do whatever you all may enjoy.
  • Be Patient-realize that right now your goals will take time. There is no magic pill that makes you go from a couch potato to a lean massive body builder overnight. Drastic changes regarding your body are gradual and time consuming. You will start to see results relatively quickly, but if you are looking to lose 40lbs or gain 30lbs of muscle you should go ahead and expect to work hard and consistently for a considerable amount of time. It will be well worth it in the end and you will be able to reflect on all the work you put in, but it is not an overnight process, just stay motivated and you will achieve your milestones.
  • Eating Habits-the most neglected but essential part of the entire process is dieting and/or eating habits. Your body thrives off what you put into it and your weight is based off this as well. If you want great results you must have great eating habits, and there is no way around this. It is also the most mentally challenging part because it is easy to fall for temptations while out with friends or while you are alone at home with like an entire bag of Doritos that you are supposed to avoid at all costs. The only advice I can give you is to realize that this could ruin all your hard work and to remember why you are on the mission that you are on. If you REALLY want to achieve your goals then you must abstain from poor eating habits and embrace the fact that your goals depend on a lifestyle change.

 

Q: You mentioned the importance of Calories in your post, how do I track them?

A: I had a hard time counting my intake for the longest time and just gave estimations, but I settled for this app called “My Fitness Pal” on the app store. I’m not sure about android users but I know for apple users it is on the app store for free and it is pretty good. I recommend it for anyone trying to keep their calories counted. It has an under armor logo on its logo and as of today was the second result on the search.

Q: What do gym memberships cost?

A: There isn’t really a set price for gyms in general, but the lowest I have paid is $20 a month and the gym I go to right now is $30 I think, but I’m a student at the college so I don’t have to pay. Some gyms offer couple discounts and family plans so it is worth checking out and asking the owner if they have any deals.

That is all of the Q&A. be sure to ask me any questions regarding this post or any questions related to the material. Be sure to add me on the snap, follow me on Instagram or twitter for any questions or updates on my workouts and reveals for new posts.

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