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November Newsletter

"We think and behave within the boundaries of our beliefs.
The key, then, to fulfilling our potential without limitations is
to master our beliefs, to master our minds."

So I guess the summer is definitely over. The summer saving time has been changed and it gets dark really early in the afternoon. And the nights are cold and mornings are wet. I did not really want to accept that the summer is gone and I was still running in shorts and a top, but eventually I started to freeze, so here I am, with warmer clothes on... writing the first fall newsletter.

Last weekend in October was the Olympia weekend in Las Vegas, at Mandalay Bay. I've met a few of you there, and it was my pleasure to take pictures with you! The Friday and Saturday was really fun, I was cruising through the expo and feeding myself with the protein bar samples and shakes and other stuff. My stomach was so full and so heavy that I didn't want to see a protein bar since then. Besides stuffing myself, anywhere you go they stick a bag with some stuff in your hands, bars, shakes, powders, t-shirts. Eventually you carry 30 lbs of stuff in your hands. Heavy stomach, heavy hands. Friday afternoon, they had a little biceps curl contest for women. A friend of mine, the beautiful pro fitness Lena Johanesson convinced me that I have to participate. Hm, biceps... that's not my favorite body part... how about something with legs or booty? But I did. It was 1 minute curls with 50 lbs. And then they measure your pumped biceps. I couldn't believe how pumped the thing felt after about 30 seconds and I have the same amount of time to go... gee, I think I did about 43 or 46. Some of the top results were up in 50... And the biceps measured 14.5 inches afterwards. The other top sizes were 14. Well, it was a cute little contest and I got a t-shirt and a towel.  And then I could continue to go and stuff myself with bars. On Saturday I was cruising at the expo with a goal to purchase a ticket for the evening finals. I bought one, and I sold it again. I got invited for the finals (thanks Roland!) and had really good time there. As you all know, Ronnie Coleman won again, after his trunks-ripping-off routine... Wow, I thought when he ripped off his white trunks, eye balling to see what's under there... not so much to see - another pair of trunks. But it was a cool thing, it gave him the first place, because after the prejudging, Jay Cutler was number one.

Isn't Peanut a cute dog?Well, this weekend was also my last weekend of my regular trips to Vegas. The summer is over, the sun tanning and relaxing by the pool in "my private spa" is over. It was getting too tiring to travel so much all the time and my dog Peanut was hating it because she stayed in Venice alone. Now I have a lot of to do here in Venice. I am getting my new client Jamie, ex world class swimmer back in shape and ready to hit the pools. That's a very fun work for me, poor Jamie, she gets tortured until she drops. You wouldn't believe what she can take. Sometimes we think how we, bodybuilders train hard and what we have to go through, but when this girl was describing for me her schedule, since 10 years old, I was dropping my chin... That puts things in a perspective. If you guys think you don't have time to work out, or you are just too busy with everything or already work out too much, don't worry. You are not.

As I mentioned before, I was car shopping for a few months and I got so far that I spent 7 hours at the dealership and had my name printed on the contract and when it was time to sign my name and shake the hands, I walked off! Yeah, dealers, they were ripping me off even after 7 hours negotiating and getting the price down with $5000. I walked off and realized that I just love my little fast Honda. My friend fixed all the maintenance things that needed to be done and it's like new and I can drive it probably for another 90000 miles.

This month, I've also done a few little photo shoots so I will have some nice new pictures for you, in the future newsletters. Also I am thinking to get together with another strong blond 6-footer and produce some fun, crazy, strong, sexy (and what else?) videos. So stay tuned... The winter is coming and more work will be done.

Water and fat loss

Posing on the oceanI get so many emails and questions what is the fastest or easiest way to lose fat. Remember, there's no easy way. Especially if you want to keep the fat off for good. There are no magic pills and no secrets. But there's something that is safe, cheap, without any side effects, always available, and it is probably the most effective aid for the fat loss. And you know what it is! Yes, it is the old good water. Pure water. You don't want to believe that, do you?

Water is one of the most effective "supplements" to weight loss, and actually fat loss. It is also the most underrated one. There's no way that you wouldn't get and stay lean if you drink lots of pure water (at least 8-12 glasses per day). Even better, 1 oz of water per 1 lb of your body weight. It's a lot of water! And I am talking about WATER, not soda (which is loaded with sugar;  even diet soda is full of salt and chemical sweeteners), not coffee, tea, juice, and so on. None of these count. Just plain water.

Why is water so effective for the fat loss? There's several important factors:

1) Water seems to act as a natural appetite suppressant. In fact, people on diets who do not increase their water intake will find themselves feeling "hungry" much more often and more severely than those who do up their water consumption. One possible reason for this is that dieters are getting less water from their food (they're eating less food) so the body is actually craving fluid. These cravings can be significantly curbed with increased water intake. So every time you feel like eating or snacking, drink a glass of water first and see it you really are hungry.

2) Consuming enough water allows the kidneys to function optimally. This in turn enables the liver to become more efficient at metabolizing fat. The result is an increased fat burning capacity in the liver.

3) When the body does not get enough water, it wants to shift metabolically in a defensive and protective strategy to "preserve" what it has. This can only result in a negative slowdown of bodily functions and processes. (Actually, something similar happens when you cut fat completely out of your diet: the body compensates by holding on to as much of its fat stores as possible, thus defeating the purpose. Because of this it is important to include "good" fats in your diet)

And last but not least, besides the increase fat loss, drinking adequate amounts of water also has numerous other biological and physical benefits, like for example maintaining healthy and vibrant appearing skin or an increased energy and performance. So remember, just poor the water!

Use this moment

What is your goal? What project do you have going on? Do you dream about something but somehow you don't believe that you can reach it? Or at least not yet, the time is not right?

Waiting for the perfect time will never bring it about. The sooner you get started, the more you'll get accomplished. Is there something you've been putting off? Why let another valuable day go by? Begin right now to make it happen. There is always something you can do. There is a first step that you can take right now. Take that step, and then take the next step. Work steadily and consistently toward the goal.

Big booty...Circumstances will never be ideal, but that doesn't really matter. You can achieve whatever you desire no matter what the circumstances may be. Your actions and your level of commitment have far more influence than mere circumstances. The choice you have is this. You can wait for the world to change, or you can be the one to change it. Indeed, the world will change no matter what you do. Yet the more influence you have on that change, the better you'll like the results. Excuses are available to you in abundance, but of what value are they? Forget the excuses. Forget about waiting for the perfect moment. Now is the time to get started. Use this moment and each following moment wisely, and you'll get precisely where you wish to go.

Do you really want to get fit?

Have you been thinking of "trying" to get in shape? Or maybe you've spend some time to "try" to do it? You try to get motivated enough to start. Every day, we all see all the people around who are "trying" but very few are "doing". There is only one thing that separates those that try from those that do -- EXCUSES! Some people may call them reasons, but whatever you call it the end result is always the same. Nothing. If you really want to get fit, strong, healthy, muscular or all of the above, you have to make the decision to do so. Remember: Do, or do not. There's no "try"

So now lets talk about "trying" or "trying to try"... How much effort do you really put into it? It is always easy to find and excuse to skip a workout or put something "bad" in your mouth. Maybe your excuse is that you have a lazy workout partner who is skipping workouts and messes up your training? Maybe you decided to take an aerobic class but don't want to exercise when "your" instructor is not there. Maybe you decided to walk outdoors but it got too dark, or too cold or too hot, and windy... name it. All these excuses can easily be overcome. There's only one rule in achieving your goals: all the efforts depend only on one person: you. Your trainer or aerobic instructor cannot make it happen, your training partner neither. It's all on you. It's YOU who can decide not to skip workouts, only YOU can eat right and only YOU can workout regardless what the weather or other circumstances are. If you get in great shape, it's because of YOU. If you don't, it's also because of you.

The booty is climbing out from the poolSo do the first step towards being fit. That step is realizing you are responsible for you. So, ask again "Do you really want to?". If you are ready to take responsibility for yourself, then you are ready to start the quest to reach your fitness goals. So what now? Maybe you have been eating right and working out consistently. It's good that you are working on bettering yourself, but now this is the moment when you have to change what you are doing. Because when you do the same thing over and over again, your body makes adjustments and becomes more efficient. Which means that the workout or the aerobic class that used to be so tough, is very easy for your body now, it got adjusted. Your workout has to contain variety. You cannot do the same class or the same workout over and over and expect to get good results. Don't be afraid to try something new. Vary your program now and then and see the results coming...

How about the motivation?

Motivation is a major problem in the world of fitness. People say too often "If I could just find some motivation!". Lets look at it how it is: motivation cannot be found. Motivation is the result of decision making. Once you make the decision that you will do whatever it takes to reach your goals, you will do whatever it takes to reach your goals. It's a hard step to take. It takes discipline to stick with it. And discipline needs to be disciplined at first too. It says that it takes approximately 21 days to learn a new habit. Which means that you need to be extra careful the first three weeks and remind yourself of your goal and make that decision every day. Eventually, everything becomes a habit and everything gets easier.

Also remember that motivation is not the only factor in the fitness goals. Fitness has to become a lifestyle for it to work. And you cannot do it part time. Motivation may get you started, but habit is what keeps you going. Just remember not to beat yourself up if you slip sometimes. Everyone messes up sometime. It happens that now and then you will give in to a desire that will interrupt you reaching your goal. It's perfectly normal. If you get stopped, start again. The Japanese have a proverb, "Fall down seven times, stand up eight." But don't give up just because you mess up.

A little black outfit...And watch out for hope. Hope will not get you into shape. Hope is like "expecting something for nothing". Everybody wants to be in shape. The problem is not everyone wants to work for it. Realize that you are going to have to get uncomfortable and that you will have to sacrifice to get in shape. Just remember that those bodybuilders and models have to work hard to maintain the bodies they have. You cannot expect to do less and gain more. When you go exercise get something out of it. When was the last time you worked out and got so sweaty you had to peel your clothes off. When was the last time you got  so sore a day or two after your workout that you could hardly walk around? Put your heart and your mind in your training. Be present and enjoy every moment. Believe that you can reach your goal. What you expect has the powerful tendency to be realized.

You need to set goals and create a good plan. But remember to be realistic when setting your goals. It's not likely that you will lose 30 pounds in 30 days (no matter what those TV ads say). If it would be that easy, everybody would be walking around skinny or muscular and lean. For example, if weight loss (fat loss) is your goal, a safe range is one to two pounds per week. That's four to eight pounds per month. I know, it doesn't seem like much, but it does add up over time. You need to look at the big picture. Time passes by fast, one day you turned back and see yourself 50 lbs leaner. Wow.

So this is another very important aspect - patience. It won't happen all at once. It can take three months or thirty months. Everyone is different. Just remember, you didn't get out of shape over night, so don't expect to reverse what you did to yourself in a week. To be fit is a never ending battle. Even when you finally get where you want to be, you will still need to work pretty hard to maintain it. Fitness is something that never stops. Prepare yourself for a long journey. Be persistent and never give up. You can do it, you just have to decide that you will. Learn how to love it and you'll be always happy.

The Masculinity Crisis

Here is something that was written by LN Shapely (2 July 2000) about the myths of masculinity and the apparently increasing preoccupation with appearance and body shape. LN Shapely is the epitome of the postwar, baby boom generation. Her radio
soapbox is with WNOS am 1450 and WTKF fm 107.3 in New Bern, North Carolina. She is also a freelance writer, roving speaker and chicken rancher... What do you think??? (the full article is at http://unquietmind.com/masculine.html)

..... We garnered focus on intelligence and ability over appearance.  Indeed, we've come a long way, Baby. We were winning the self confidence  battle. So what happens? Men have taken over where we left off. Our dream  of people as people is flopping. Young men are being blasted with images of steroid built hunks-o-meat from  action flick stars to professional wrestlers. You, too, may become Governor of a great Midwestern State if your pecs are bulky enough.

Take G.I. Joe dolls. Oh, sorry - G.I. Joe action figures. The Barbie sized  Joe has been transformed from a scrawny grunt into a figure which - in real  life - would have a 55 inch chest and 27 inch biceps. Beloved Tarzan went  from Normal Man to Amazing Hulk after Disney got a hold of him. Even  steroid use cannot accomplish these feats, yet this is the gloriously oiled
image flashed before boys today.

Take out the handcuffsInstead of coming to a middle ground with women, men are adopting our worst  traits. Who is more concerned with acne and the size of their breasts? Who  is more likely to binge eat? If you guessed women - bleep - you lose,  according to the new book, The Adonis Complex. Gym memberships for men have  topped the $2 billion mark. They spend another $2 billion on home equipment  and 900,000 men underwent cosmetic procedures in 1996. Sales of body  booster substances in the form of protein powders, fat burners, creatine, adrenal hormones and anabolic steroids are skyrocketing. Cute boy bands proliferate. They parade like peacocks with bleached and  perfectly tousled hair, various piercings and tattoos. They obviously spend  way more time in front of the mirror than I.

Susan Faludi, author of Stiffed: The Betrayal of the American Man asks why  men, like women before them - are not choosing to come together and rebel  against the society that has thrown them into crisis. Reviewer Elizabeth Gleick of Time gathered from Faludi that men are victims of a competitive,  consumerist, "ornamentalist" system that strips men of their sense of  belonging and their ability to nurture and be nurtured....

Go Nuts
Carolyn Classick-Kohn,MS,RD

Whether you're trying to gain weight, lose fat, or maintain a healthy body weight nuts and seeds can definitely be part of your diet plan. If you're conscious of calories and fat and read labels, you are well aware that nuts and seeds are a particularly concentrated source of calories and contain a lot of fat, and you may even avoid them to be "good". Well, you are right, nuts and seeds are high in calories and fat. So why are they recommended? Because nuts and seeds play a very important role in a healthy diet, and even for those who are following weight loss plans, these foods can actually help you control appetite and avoid those highly processed, "empty" snacks and desserts that lead to undesirable weight gain.

Nuts and Nutrition

There are so many varieties of nuts and seeds, and many ways to enjoy them. Not all nuts are the same nutritionally, so it's important to include the ones that contribute the greatest nutritional value to the diet - I'll get to those in this article. But to start, in general the key reasons to include nuts and seeds as part of your everyday diet are:

1. Nuts and seeds are quite high in nutrition. Aside from their high caloric value, nuts are a good source of non-animal protein, fiber, B vitamins, selenium, zinc, and Vitamin E. Vitamin E and selenium work together in the body's antioxidant chemistry, to protect certain cells from oxidative damage, and their protective role is being studied for its value in reducing risk of cancer, and anti-aging properties. Certain nuts and seeds are rich sources of certain B vitamins, which work together with enzymes in the body to help the body cells utilize energy from fats, proteins, and carbohydrates.

2. While the fat content of nuts and seeds is high (roughly 50% of their calories are from fat), the type of fat is mainly monounsaturated, the type of fat that may help to increase HDL levels (the good fats in the blood). In addition, most nuts and seeds are naturally low in saturated fat and trans fatty acids, the two types of fats most dangerous to the heart and arteries. So, it is really a good idea to include nuts and seeds as part of your fat for the day, rather than having only vegetable oils, margarines or animal fats like butter and high fat dairy products.

3. Certain nuts and seeds are good sources of linolenic acid (omega-3), an essential fatty acid that must be present in the diet in proper balance with linoleic acid (omega-6) so that the body's immune system, blood clotting, and cell growth are all maintained in good working order.

4. Lastly, nuts and seeds, if eaten in small amounts, can help curb appetite and satisfy hunger for a longer period of time than eating typical snacks that are mostly carbohydrate. The combination of fat and protein in nuts and seeds provide good "staying power" so that the stomach empties more slowly, and their fiber content provides a more satisfying sense of fullness.

For weight loss or low fat diets: Going completely nuts with nuts and seeds will add way more calories and fat to your diet than what is recommended, so unless your goal is to gain weight, all nuts and seeds should be counted as part of your fat for the day. When you eat nuts and seeds, you should eat less fat from other sources. In general, one tablespoon of nuts is equal to one fat serving (about 5 grams of fat), so it's not a huge amount, and they add up very quickly, just as all fat sources do! Now, you might think, it's not worth it - I can't have enough nuts to be satisfied....so here are some helpful ways to include these very healthy fat sources.

1. First of all, don't eat nuts and seeds just by themselves, by the handful out of a can or jar! It's too easy to overdo it. Instead, mix nuts and seeds with dried cranberries, raisins, or other dried fruits, dry cereal (like Cheerios), some pretzels or low fat crackers so that they add the value of the fat and protein to the carbohydrate in fruit or grains.

2. Measure the amount of nuts and seeds you plan to eat and stick to that amount, put the can, jar or bag out of sight.

3. Sprinkle nuts or seeds on a salad - this is a great way to boost the nutritional value and add the right kind of fat instead of just salad dressings.

4. Add some seeds or nuts to sandwiches to add some crunch, or sprinkle a few walnuts or pecans on cooked cereal.

5. Walnuts and pumpkin seeds are especially good because they are a good source of linolenic acid rather than linoleic acid (which is abundant in the western diet in vegetable oils, margarines, etc.) So these nuts and seeds can help provide a good balance of these essential fats, especially if you are really watching the total amount of fat in your diet and trying to limit all fats.

6. Avoid nuts and seeds that are roasted in oil, or have other oils added to them in processing. This adds more fat and calories, typically, the wrong kind of fat!

7. Buy only the amount of nuts and seeds that you will eat within the next month. Don't store them for long periods of time. Because of the type of fat they contain, they can "go bad" or rancid, which is not healthy! The same is even more true for nut butters, since processing the nuts exposes them to more oxidation.

8. Buy nuts and seeds that are very fresh and avoid any that look old or have mold on them. Try to buy nuts and seeds that are in their shell, and if you like, toast them yourself. Store them in the refrigerator and use them in a short period of time to prevent rancidity.

9. Try nut and seed oils like walnut or pumpkin oil for a variety of taste, but use them very sparingly and do not heat them (to prevent oxidation).

For weight gain: If you're trying to gain weight, nuts and seeds are a great source of high calories and have a high nutritional value. They are easy to eat, they travel very well, you don't have to do any preparation, and they are very versatile because they mix well with other foods. While it's not a good idea to eat a lot fat to gain weight, the fat in nuts and seeds are an excellent trade-off and can be eaten in the place of other fat sources like salad dressings, margarine and other spreads, and especially the fat in meat and high fat dairy products. Nuts and seeds definitely have their place in a healthy diet, so if you've been avoiding them, consider adding some back to your diet, using the suggestions above.

Of men and dogs

Dog property laws:

1. If I like it, it's mine.
2. If it's in my mouth, it's mine.
3. If I can take it from you, it's mine.
4. If I had it a little while ago, it's mine.
5. If it's mine, it must never appear to be yours in any way.
6. If I'm chewing something up, all the pieces are mine.
7. If it just looks like mine, it's mine.
8. If I saw it first, it's mine.
9. If you are playing with something and you put it down, it automatically becomes mine.
10. If it's broken, it's yours.

How dogs and men are the same:

1. Both take up too much space on the bed.
2. Both have irrational fears about vacuum cleaning.
3. Both mark their territory.
4. Neither tells you what's bothering them.
5. The smaller ones tend to be more nervous
6. Neither understands what you see in cats.
7. Neither does any dishes.
8. Both break wind shamelessly.
9. Neither of them notices when you get your hair cut.
10. Both like dominance games.
11. Both are suspicious of the postman.

How dogs are better than men:

1. Dogs do not have problems expressing affection in public.
2. Dogs miss you when you're gone.
3. Dogs feel guilty when they've done something wrong.
4. Dogs admit when they're jealous.
5. Dogs are very direct about wanting to go out.
6. Dogs do not play games with you -- except fetch (and they never laugh at how you throw).
7. You can train a dog.
8. Dogs are easy to buy for.
9. The worst social disease you can get from dogs is fleas.
10. Dogs understand what "no" means.
11. Dogs mean it when they kiss you.

Think Positively

"What kind of weather are we going to have today?"
"The kind of weather I like."
"How do you know it will be the kind of weather you like?"
"Having found out that I cannot always get what I like, I have learned always to like what I get. So I am quite sure we will have the kind of weather I like."

The video...

Thank you all for your purchase and wonderful comments of the video! I am glad that you are enjoying it as much as I did shooting it. And you who hasn't bought any yet and forgot what it was about, here read more about the booty video...

See you in December!
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