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June Challenge: Get Your Lime-On

posted by coach Jay D


…Or lemons. lemons work, too.

I’m a firm believer that little steps towards your goals are what make the biggest difference when performed consistently. For the average person and rookie new to this whole “live healthy and lead an active lifestyle” thing, the information available at our fingertips nowdays, is and can be overwhelming!

Should we eat primal?
Raw?
Vegan?
High Carb? Low Carb? Slow Carb?

Should we train with bodyweight?
Kettlbells?
Clubs?
Sprints?
Distance Running?
Lift Heavy? Lift Light?
Yoga? Stretching? Joint Mobility? Spin?
Zumba? Martial Arts? Nordic Pole Walking?

The choices are endless! But again, the information is and can be overwhelming.

To Re-ignite the JD Training Challenges this June, I’d like to give you all the power to empower yourselves with simplicity.

I mean I could say, “eat like JD eats or train like JD trains”, but in reality, it’s just not feasible for all of you, let alone any of you to try and mimic me (Have you seen what I eat and how I train?…it’s pathetic) let alone boring! It’s just not advisable, so let’s take this whole well-being thing one small step at a time. Let’s start with a big, juicy glass of delicious and refreshing limewater.

Remember, It takes 30 days for habit to turn into ritual; a transformation from simply going through the motions to changing your whole being. This June I’d like to challenge all of you to start and end your mornings with a glass of water with freshly squeezed lime juice (lemons work, too). I’m not asking that you kick back 20 gallons of water/day and pee every 1/2 hour like some of my water challenges of the past, I’m simply asking that you do the following:

THE CHALLENGE
for 30 days,
1) START your day with a glass of limejuice equivalent to 1/2 of a fresh lime.

2) END your day with a glass of limejuice equivalent to 1/2 of a fresh lime (preferable, the other half that you consumed earlier. let’s save the earth here, one citrus fruit at a time).

But WHY LIMES, JD?
It all has to do with balance in our bodies. Being the meat-loving carnivore that I am, I find myself consuming a ton of different animals throughout my day, whether grilled, stewed, steamed, boiled or baked. But the implications that this lifestyle has, even for JD, are hazardous. Truth is, eating a lot of meat is hard on the body; it takes a ton of energy to break down protein during digestion, but more importantly and hazardous is the reality that eating a ton of animal protein causes your body’s internal environment to be highly acidic, and that’s not good for anyone. Lime juice, or rather, lime juice in water (as challenged), helps to diminish these effects due to the fruit’s alkalinity. This, in turn, causes a ceasefire between the acid-base war within each and every one of your bodies.

But JD, a little acidity in my body won’t hurt me, will it?
Actually, good friend and JD Training Advocate and Holistic Nutritionist, Marni Wasserman offers a course on the importance of a balanced acidic-alkaline diet, that you might want to take part in.
Check out: Marni’s Acidic Alkaline Balance class for details.

Ok, so you don’t wanna believe Marni or myself!
That’s fine.

You might wanna take heed from the strongest athletes on our planet; head over to EliteFTS and check out an article written for and by some of the toughest and most knowledgeable powerlifters on earth!

You see, Powerlifters know the importance of eating the proper food that’ll fuel their training. If they’re attempting to break records while lifting heavy weights for a living and as a way of life, you might wanna at least value some of their knowledge and take a page or two out of their books.
Check out: #6 of EliftFTS’ “6 Tips for Anyone Who Wants to Improve Performance and Look Better Naked”

I try to make my challenges as easily executable as they can be. Limes cost 4 for a dollar around my neck of the woods, and that’s cheap as hell (just don’t tell the devil that I said that, he might get offended); squeezing a lime into a glass of water doesn’t require that much grip strength, effort or time, either – so grab your glass of lime water and get your alkaline and de-toxification-On!

Take on the June Challenge – stop making excuses and take a small step towards your health, today.You’ll be healthier and stronger women and men for it. G’luck.

The Stone Lock of China

posted by coach Jay D

Here’s some footage that I came across of training with a Chinese Stone Lock. Like a kettlebell, the stone lock’s centre of mass is displaced away from the body. The Stone Lock predates the kettlebell by a few thousand years, and that’s ancient considering that kettlebells themselves, are centuries old. This nasty, archaic tool, often made of stone or iron, has been used throughout time by martial artists for its effective role in strength, power and movement skill achievement.

When dealing with heavy reps from an external load, movement isn’t always going to be pretty or smooth, but that’s not to say that technique isn’t the foundation of any olympic weightlifting athlete, powerlifter or strongman. Throwing a Stone Lock is no exception.

Honing this ancient strength tool’s power is a skill that’s becoming extinct by today’s standard of training for six packs, biceps and butts, while flushing actual performance and strength down the toilet.

Watching the video, for me as a physical culturist, it’s reassuring to know that there are some people in the world who can move an oddly weighted object efficiently and with control, simply for the love of the art. That takes some serious dedication and skill. From what I can see from the examples below, the stone lock is no slouch (*Note interesting to see the uncanny resemblance that the Chinese Stone Lock has with the Russian Kettlebell).

Video 2: Spring Festival Demonstration in Beijing

Have A Strong Day.

Fitness As Obligation (Just Not My Style)

posted by coach Jay D

We need to stop thinking of fitness as our obligation. Training as penance for sinning over the weekend, whether “sinning” involved binge eating, drinking or smoking – carries little to no weight in the JD Training world, let alone for anyone trying to make this whole exercise thing a lifestyle choice towards improving health and well-being.

The same can be said for those who exercise simply because your doctor told you to or merely because it’s beach or wedding season.

For you or I to treat movement this way or even let it get to the point where exercise becomes our chore; our obligation, means we have very little passion in our movement and training in the first place.

When I start talking like this, some of my peers in the training world often comment that “I’m looking too deep into [training]“. On the contrary, I don’t think you, or myself are looking deep enough into training, especially when considering that this whole exercise thing should be a way of life.

Considering other essential areas of our lives, imagine you found no passion or meaning behind the job that you do day in and day out, or weren’t in love with your spouse or life’s partner? Sadly, that’s where a ton of people find themselves stuck.

But is it necessary?
Did it have to be that way?
Does it have to be that way?

Let’s put our health at the top of our life’s priorities and start cultivating a deeper appreciation of movement and personal ability in order to make training part of who we are and not something we do just to pass our time.

Being the lover of travelling the world that I am, I’d like to share and leave you with an important quote:

“Those who visit foreign nations, but associate only with their own country-men, change their climate, but not their customs. They see new meridians, but the same men; and with heads as empty as their pockets, return home with travelled bodies, but untravelled minds.” -Caleb Colton

Training, like traveling, when simply practiced through the motions or merely going away for the sake of going away and crossing a goal or destination of some checklist in the name of bragging rights, does little to improve or help transcend our former selves. Education and growth should be experiential in order for us to take away its most important lessons.

I challenge and encourage all of you to reconsider why you train, and also to ignite the inner fire that drives us to become damn passionate about the art and science of human movement – whether that means lifting heavy stones off the earth or going for a sunday afternoon hike. Then, and only then will physical activity become a lifelong pursuit and journey.


Above: James leaving his former self behind.
check out more strength porn at JD Training’s Flickr

Superficial goals lead to superficial results.

Have A Strong Day.

Train Like A Man

posted by coach Jay D

What does it mean to be a man, nowadays?

Along with seeking strength like all of you, I guess being a man is more of a journey that you learn about along the way through experience.

Being a man includes having a spine and standing up for your beliefs, even when your personal beliefs contradict popular belief.

Being a man means being able to provide for your family first and yourself second.

Being a man involves having true grit and determination.

Of course, there is much more to being a man but thinking about it, I guess anyone can be a man based on the guidelines stated above.

By such definitions, women can be men and oppositely, yet unfortunately, not all males are men – I’ve witnessed both cases on several occasions.

Askmen.com’s recent article “Top 10 Manly Exercises” is on point and suitable for all strength seekers – whether you’re striving to be a man or not. Of course, all of you JD Advocates who I’ve had the honour of training with, know all about these movements; they’ve been staples on our training menu for eons.

Read the list and take pride in the fact that, whether male or female, you have been training Like a Man Unlike A Sissy, whenever JD made you do those things you sucked at or hated.

*Special thanks to friend and JD Training athlete, Ron N. for sharing the article.

like I always say:
Exploit your weaknesses.
Work on your weaknesses.
Have no weaknesses.

It’s really about facing your fears, in training and in life. This takes balls – whether Woman, Man or Child.

How did you train today?

“Up Down Left Right”

posted by coach Jay D

Strength-seekers, I couldn’t help but enjoy the 2 or 3 day stretch of great sun-shinning weather we had here in outstanding Mississauga, Ontario.

After a week long stretch of rainy and cold weather, I was itching to get outside and train not only myself but my athletes.

That being said, here, Andrew performs some club and kettlebell work targeting the body in different planes of motion. Far too often, we neglect training the body in rotational motions. if you think about it, most sporting pursuits take place in transverse planes via rotation – such as throwing, and striking, so why not add an element of that to your training? Besides, variety is the spice of life.

“Up Down Left Right”- Snack on that combo.
Have A Strong Day.

Prowler Christening 2010

posted by coach Jay D

Yesterday, after many days of terrible rainy, cold, under-the-weather-type-of-weather here in Mississauga, Ontario, we were blessed with a sunny day; a day that I’ve been waiting days for.

Thanks to the efforts of JD Training Athletes: Grant, Tania and Andrew, we were able to take my Econo-Prowler out for a spin and create some sweet asphalt-scratching and skidding music. Some of us even partook in some Litvi Runs to start, but that’s another story.

One thing that I’ve missed over the winter is training outside whenever possible. There’s a special experience deep down inside gained from pulling, pushing, running with and throwing heavy objects outside. I just can’t explain it.
It goes beyond being simply primal.
Again, I just can’t explain it.


Above is footage of Dr. Clive’s prowler from the good ol’ days of personal training under a big box gym. I bet your big box gym was not as strong as our’s. Thanks to Clive for inspiring me to get my own prowler.

Litvi Runs From Last Year

Enough sweet talk, though – getting back to yesterday’s training, a big shout out and thank you to the rabid coyote that came out to watch us train. After all, his razor sharp rabies-injecting teeth spared our delicate flesh packets. Thanks, Mr. Coyote.

Get outside and train whenever necessary.