100 Days of Fitness
- 100 Days of Fitness: An Introduction
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 2 - Nutrition
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 3 - Exercise
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 4 - Building a Home Gym
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 5 - Supplements
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 6 - Expectations
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 7 - Footwear
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 8 - Food Lies
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 9 - Meet the Kettlebell
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 10 - Sample Circuits
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 11 - Days vs Weeks
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 12 – The Geography of Weight Loss
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 13 - Travel Training
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 14 – Meals, Snacks, & The Pocket Workout
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 15 - What It's All About
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 16 - Endless Push-Ups & Learning the Pull-Up
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 17 – Adjustable Kettlebells + A Circuit
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 18 – Intermittent Fasting & Strength Test
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 19 – 15 Minute Workouts & A Cool Workout iPhone App + Contest
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 20 - Switching It Up
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 21 – Reflections
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 22 – A Week Without a Workout
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 23 – Why We Work Out & The 30 lbs Lost Marker
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 24 - 5 Common Home Gym Mistakes
- 100 Days of Fitness: Week 25 – Work Ethic
- 100 Days of Fitness Special: Men's Health in Movember
- 100 Days of Fitness: The Muscle Aesthetic
- 100 Days of Fitness: The Cure for Holiday Pounds
Last week's installment on Travel Training was for a reason – this weekend, I'll be out traveling without the ability to go about my normal routine in working out, weighing in, and posting my results. Rather than just leave you without an article for this week, I wanted to go over a few smaller items that wouldn't quite cut it as complete articles on their own, but can serve as a decent “I'm gone this week” replacement.
First up, a way of taking your protein shake from bland to blammo! And for the record, blammo tastes good. To cut down on calories and sugars, I started taking my Whey protein shakes with water instead of milk. This effectively cut out about 100 calories per serving from my diet and several grams of sugar, but left me thinking of vomiting. Then one day I was struck with a bit of inspiration. Instead of 8 oz of water and 1 scoop of protein, I used 4oz of cold water and 4oz of chilled coffee plus the scoop of protein. Delicious. I found that a full 8oz of black coffee with the protein powder tasted bitter, but the watered down coffee hit the mark. Bye bye boring vomit shake, hello at least somewhat decent, drinkable one.
Eating few processed carbs is actually really easy. Too many people think that “low carb” is a death sentence against all carbs, which just isn't true. You can eat most vegetables until your hair falls out – and then keep going. Since we're also not worrying about fat and protein, ground beef is on the menu – and it's inexpensive.
Starting with a ground beef base, just by adding vegetables and a few spices, or some packaged goods, you can create a ton of different meals. Many of my meals follow this recipe:
- 1lb Ground Beef (70/30 drained of fat, or 80/20)
- 1 package frozen “SteamFresh” Vegetables (Usually mixed vegetables, but peas by themselves are also tasty)
- Seasoning (Salt, Pepper, Garlic, Hot Sauce)
- Wild Card
- This makes 3-4 servings
For the Wild Card, two of the easiest and tastiest ones are either a half-jar of Hot Salsa or a couple tablespoons of hummus. This dish takes under 30 minutes to prepare and that includes walking to the store. Put your beef in the pan to brown and toss your vegetables in the microwave. Once the beef is browned, add your seasoning, then pour in the vegetables. Let it simmer for a few minutes, then add your wild card ingredient. Mix, simmer, serve.
Just by changing up an ingredient here or there, you can turn this into several dozen different meal variations. If you're not a fan of beef, or want a cool meal:
- 1 Can Solid White Albacore Tuna in Water (drained)
- 1 Package “SteamFresh” Vegetables (microwaved to cook, then cooled)
- Salt, Pepper, Hot Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Mayonnaise
- 3 Strips Bacon (chopped)
Mix all that together and what do you have? A delicious meal. Replace or exchange or remove ingredients as necessary to offer up a lot different meals.
A Pocket Workout
While I already covered how you can take a gym with you to a hotel room or a park last week, but what about a workout you can do on the bus or at your office desk? Sound impossible? Think again, thanks to the Captains of Crush line of grippers.
You probably remember these gripper strength trainers from years past, though these are far cry from those plastic piles that you could close with two fingers. The Captains of Crush start at 60lbs and go the whole way up to a ridiculous 365lbs of force required to close the gripper.
I personally have a Captains of Crush No. 1 that requires 140lbs of pressure to close. Yup, 140lbs at Level One! The IronMind website states that many weightlifters can't close this gripper without training. Now, as someone who has been lifting heavy weights for many years, I'm able to close the gripper two or three times before failing – but it's hard as hell.
What's cool about the CoC gripper is that it can be tucked into your pocket or put in a briefcase or just used while you're watching television. Now, you're not going to be shedding tons of fat and pumping up your biceps with a gripper, so why use one?
Because grip strength is very important. Sure, you probably won't find yourself in a life or death situation hanging from a ledge, but you (hopefully) find yourself hanging from pull-up bars, swinging heavy kettlebells, and hoisting heavy ass deadlifts. A strong grip lets you perform better at almost every exercise. If your grip fails before the muscle you're working does, then you didn't fully hit that muscle to your maximum ability. Plus, a strong grip gives you one hell of a handshake.
There are no results being posted for this week since I'm writing this on a Tuesday instead of a Saturday. Check in again next week and we'll see how I cope with the calorie dense food and copious amounts of alcohol surrounding me on my trip. Just because I'm surrounded by sin, doesn't mean I'll be partaking though, so I'm expecting a good maintenance week.