I am going to answer this question quickly.  Burning Fat is harder.

Burning fat hurts.  There are only 2 ways to burn off fat; either by burning extra calories in your workouts or by cutting your calories.

I prefer to use a combination of both.  It I cut my calories too low I end up burning off too much muscle and If I increase my cardio workouts too long, I start to feel weak in the gym.

jabeer

That’s not to say that bulking up is necessarily easy, quite the contrary, it is just not as difficult as burning fat.

One of the major differences is with the dieting.

When you are bulking up you still should be strict with your diet, but you don’t need to go overboard.  I try to stick with a high-protein/lo-carb diet and I never count the calories.

The most difficult part of gaining muscle is lifting heavy weights.

I am a firm believer that you need to lift heavy weights to build muscle and lifting progressively heavier weights is not easy.

This Monday I bench pressed 245 X 8 without a spot, but during my bulk up I will go up to 335 lbs for heavy singles and doubles.

I will also incorporate 500 lb+ deadlifts, 550 lb+ shrugs and 700 lb+ leg presses.

Heavy lifting is the only way to grow and the work outs are extremely difficult.  Heavy weight lifting is very taxing on your body, including your muscles, joints and central nervous system.

But although gaining muscle is tough, burning fat is still harder.

There is nothing harder than hitting the gym, then running 2 miles on the track during an 12-hour intermittent fast.

Dieting hurts.  I go through months of stomach aches and dieting pains before I start to look cut every summer.

That also includes going to work on an empty stomach, dizzy feelings, irritability and many nights of horrible sleep.

But most importantly, almost anyone can bulk up without much effort.  If you go to any average gym in America you will see plenty of men that can bench 275 lb’s, but you rarely see anyone with a 6-pack.

Being in good shape is difficult and lowering your body fat is extremely hard.

But overall, it is all worth it in the end.

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Hello everyone!

We are now into mid-April and it is officially cut time for the summer.  If you haven’t started dieting and introducing cardio into your workouts yet, you better start as soon as possible.

Today, I weighed in at 165 lbs after hitting a peak of 178 in February.  I am slightly behind my goal, but I still have a good chance of hitting the low 150’s by late July.

I am trying to avoid some of the long slow-distance running this year and instead I am trying to use more sprinting and real sports, ex: basketball, tennis.

Bodybuilding is not a complicated sport and losing and gaining weight is even less complicated.  I gain and lose 20-25 lbs every single year and I’m surprised that so many people struggle with it.

You can also burn fat or get cut in only 3 days if you want to.

I will show you the easiest way to guarantee that you burn fat; FASTING.

Try this routine out:

  • Saturday: Cardio in the morning (sports or running), no food until dinner.
  • Sunday: Cardio in the morning (sports or running), no food until dinner.
  • Monday: No food until lunch (assuming you are at work)

 

Use this method and I can GUARANTEE that you will burn off fat. It’s almost impossible that you wouldn’t.

I have been using fasting for years and it works great for me.

Give it a shot…

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Guess how old I was on my wedding day in August?

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One of the greatest benefits of working out and eating right, is that I truly believe you can stop your aging in its tracks.

And one of the most effective ways to slow down the aging process is with your DIET.

Numerous studies have shown that intermittent fasting increases life expectancy.  I personally find intermittent fasting to be one of the greatest tools in burning fat and losing weight and I have been using it consistently for years.

It’s also important to eat CLEANER.  Less sugar, less saturated fats, etc.

And most importantly, it is important to stay LIGHT.   Although I will allow myself to gain weight and bulk up in the winter, I don’t plan on bulking up as much when I get older.

Being overweight for an extended period of time is completely unhealthy and I firmly believe that being light weight and low in body fat will keep you alive for a long time.

I have lost around 10 lbs from my winter bulk up so far and I plan on losing another 15. Right now I am still lifting heavy weights 4x a week in the gym and I have just increased my cardio to 4x a week.

Focus on heavy weight lifting, cardio and especially your diet, and you will also be able to completely stop your aging,

So how old was I in August?

36!

-John

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I finally broke the 170 lb mark this week and I am officially down 10 lb’s since my summer bulk up.

If you are a natural lifter, like I am, then you NEED to lose weight to get cut.  I just don’t see any other way to remove body fat unless you lose weight.

This year I am trying to “work” the weight off instead of just starving myself.

In previous years, I would cut my calories down drastically and lose the 20-25 lbs that I need to get cut, but I also noticed something weird.

When I lose the weight from hard training, if makes a big difference in my physique, compared to just starving it off.

Don’t get me wrong, I always train hard with weights when I am cutting weight. But this year I want to lose weight from harder cardio work outs, more intense weight lifting, strict dieting and becoming an overall better athlete.

I always said that your body will look the way you train.  Just as a chain smoker or an iron worker is going to have a certain look to them, so will someone that is training hard.

And when you get it all right, it should look something like this.

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It has been about a month since I reintroduced cardio into my workouts and so far it is has been going great.

Although the weather hasn’t been as cooperative as I would like, I have been getting 3-4 cardio workouts in every week.

So far I have been running 3 miles in around 21:15 on the treadmile.  Generally, I am 10 seconds per mile faster on the treadmile, so I would estimate my 3 mile pace to be around 21:45 outside.

But to be honest, I don’t really care about my 3 mile time this year.  I just want to hit 21 minutes for 3 miles (7:00 per mile) pace and then I want to focus on my SPEED.

One of the best ways to get fast and to cut a ton of weight, is to use interval training.

Interval training is basically when you add short stretches of speed at a faster pace than your jogging pace.

For example: This is the workout I completed on Tuesday.

.25 miles jog at 7:30 pace

.25 mile run 6:15 pace

.25 mile jog at 7:30 pace

.25 mile jog at 6:15 pace

.25 mile jog at 7:30 pace

.25 mile jog at 6:15 pace

.25 mile at 7:30 pace

.25 mile at 6:15 place

Basically, I would sprint and then jog, sprint and then jog, until I reached 2 miles.

This year I want to add a ton of interval training into my routine and when the weather gets nicer out, I want to start sprinting on the outdoor track.

How is everyone else’s training going?

-John

To be fair, I don’t have anything against people using steroids.  I could really care less.

But, I am not going to lie, I do get a kick out of out lifting them in the gym or showing up more ripped at the beach.

The sad reality is that many people never learn the “basics”, so despite the amount of chemical they ingest, they can still be beaten on a regular basis.

I’ve noticed that steroids seem to really help in some area’s and not so much in others. They appear to really help in bench and shoulder presses.

Not so much in dead lifts and squats. I don’t care how many steroids you take, you aren’t going to dead lift 500 for 6 reps at 165 lbs unless you are training hard.  And if your squat technique isn’t perfect, you aren’t going to put up any heavy numbers.

But how do you beat them in looks?

This is tricky.  You probably aren’t going to be able to get as big and you probably can’t get as cut.

Your skin will also never get paper thin.  But that good be a good thing.

The only way to beat a steroid user in a bodybuilding competition is to be super strict with your diet, consistent in your workouts and persistent in your cardio.

It can be done.

Lets face it; if you don’t learn how to diet, your abs will always look bad, steroids or not.

It might even look worst with steroids.  There is nothing worse looking than a lumpy steroid gut.  This only happens when someone starts to use steroids but doesn’t diet down properly.  It makes the stomach region look lumpy and unnatural.

If body fat percentages are the same, the natural body will always look better.

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So, what is your job as a natural lifter? You need to get your body fat down.

Learn the basics

Work on your diet

Be consistent and train hard

And enjoy beating your competition….

I am only several weeks into my Spring Training work out and I am already starting to get fast.

My goal this year was to run 3 miles in under 21 minutes and I want to run 400 meters (One lap around a track) in under 1 minute.

Last week I ran 3 miles in 21:07, but unfortunately I haven’t been able to train on an outdoor track since the last snow storm in NYC.

I am also starting to lose weight.

This year I bulked up to 178 lbs and tonight I weighed in at 171 after work.  My goal is to start April 1st at 170 lbs and then keep cutting down until I am under 155.

April and May are when I lose the majority of my body fat and I have slowly started to tighten up my diet.

If you haven’t started your cardio or cutting down on your calories you better start NOW, if you want to get ripped this Read the rest of this entry »

Spring is finally here!  The sun is out longer, the birds are chirping and the snow is finally start to melt in beautiful Staten Island.  So what does it mean for most bodybuilders?

Its time for Spring Training.

Time to increase the cardio, decrease the calories and remove all of the body fat.

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Since January 1st I have been INSANELY busy. Between getting slammed at work, I also studied and finally passed a licensing exam at work and my wife is also 8 and 1/2 months pregnant.

Fortunately, none of this had any affect on my training, but it did affect my blogging.  Now that some of my schedule has cleared up, it’s time to kick it into another gear and start getting serious.

This year I want to focus on retaining my mass.  I feel like the last several years I have been cutting my calories too low and losing too much mass when I get cut up.  I never have a problem getting a 6-pack, but I want to also keep some solid muscle after I cut down.

My motto this year is “burn off the bodyfat, don’t starve it off” And by that, I mean that my workouts need to be harder and more consistent, so that I cut my body fat more from the gym and less from the kitchen.

Don’t get me wrong; I understand the importance of dieting, especially when it comes to getting cut.  But, I feel like I have more potential in becoming a better athlete through my training, than I do from just dieting down every summer.

This is my premliminary training  program for this season:

Monday: Chest/foremars

Tuesday: Legs, calves, cardio

Wendsday: Back

Thursday: Cardio

Friday: Shoulders, calves

Saturday: Cardio

One of my goals are to run 3 miles in at under 21 minutes and I also want to start doing more sprinting on the track.  When you get older (37) you don’t lose as much stamina as you do speed.

Rarely, do you see someone in their 30’s or 40’s working on their speed.  All across N.Y.C I see ton’s of people my age outside using long and slow distance running, but the truth is when you get older, stamina and endurance aren’t the problem.

You need to work on your speed.

Another area I want to work on hard are my back and calves.

For my back; I am going to focus on shrugs, bent over rows and weighted chins.   My shrugs need to be over 450lb’s and on occasion, I can do chinups with over 70 lbs hanging off me.

For the other bodyparts, I just want to maintain as much strength and mass as possible.  Right now I am around 172 lbs and I plan on losing at least 20.  With that amount of body weight loss, it’s inevitable that I am going to experience some strength losses, but I still want to be able to throw up some decent numbers at a low bodyweight.

And finally, I have a second book coming out soon that goes into my philopophy of heavy lifting and fast running.

My 3rd book is going to be about using sprint workouts to remove bodyfat.  Sprinting is the holy grail of cardio for body fat loss and it is very underutilized in this country.

Good luck.

-John