Monday, August 24, 2009


Hi, Alex
Yesterday, I saw something on TV that got me so pissed off...

This narcissistic nut was ranting about how rape victims are "weak" for letting themselves be defeated when they are attacked.

Now, any SANE person has to accept that this is complete bullcrap.

But sadly, and I'm sure a lot of you reading this letter will know, martial arts and self defense is FULL of complete NUTS spouting garbage like this!

As part of my training, I teach people how to deal with insult and anger, and how to come the realization that anger is just another form of fear.

But I still cant help but get mad at people saying stuff like that, its just a big fat LIE.

Yes, these people are in fact lying to YOU and THEMSELVES, and not just because they are misinformed.

In an attack of any kind, you cant just SWITCH OFF your emotions. Especially attacks that have happened in the past, or bullying that happened, that's really going to leave a psychological mark on you.

The other reason these guys don't know what they are talking about is that during an attack, your mind AUTOMATICALLY blocks out the most traumatic parts. Its almost like having a safety valve on your memory, so the worst parts don't affect you.

You have probably heard somebody at some point say that you are WEAK, because you FREEZE or PANIC when somebody threatens or attacks you.

Its not weakness, it's a REFLEX.

The important thing about reflexes is they CANT BE CHANGED. Your body has natural reflexes that happen UNCONSCIOUSLY, so why should you try to retrain them? Don't forget that you need adrenaline, it's a powerful drug that your body controls, and it can save your life.

The reason why a lot of people FREEZE on the spot is because they are going into SHOCK. Their minds are trying to BLOCK OUT the traumatic experiences they have had, all those bad memories of intimidation, fear and even social rejection can surface in a self defense situation.

The key to beating the FREEZING and PANIC is to train at RANDOM. That doesn't mean your training partner attacks you when you walk down the street, but they might grab you at any time in any way with extreme force.

Now that might not give you the exact same SHOCK in a real fight, but that's not the point.

The point is you will be able to REVIEW what happened. You cant REVIEW a traumatic experience like rape, no matter what any of those morons say.
It just isn't practical. But you can review less traumatic experiences, like someone putting you in a head lock in a training situation, or swinging wild random punches
at you. As long as you don't tell them what attack is coming, and you start to remember your mistakes, its GOOD training.

But what ever you do, don't beat yourself up about the past. Especially when you hear those morons talking about how they would have dealt with it.
These people usually don't get out enough to even realize what trauma, intimidation or real violence is.

Stay safe,

Your buddy,

Al Steele

Friday, August 21, 2009


By Barbara Russi Sarnataro
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic-Feature. Reviewed by Louise Chang

The Basics: Build Muscle for Better Health. Strength training is about more than getting buff - all know how important cardiovascular exercise is -- how it's great for your heart, cholesterol, and blood pressure. And whether you choose to walk, bicycle, or jog, you know that any exercise that increases your heart rate helps you burn calories and melt away unwanted pounds.

But that's only half the equation.

For a balanced fitness program, strength training is essential. It can slow the muscle loss that comes with age, build the strength of your muscles and connective tissues, increase bone density, cut your risk of injury, and help ease arthritis pain.

"Strength training is very important, not just for your muscles but for your bones," says certified fitness trainer Debbie Siebers. "It's preventative for [bone-thinning] osteoporosis and other problems."

Studies from the CDC have found that muscle-building exercise can also improve balance, reduce the likelihood of falls, improve blood-sugar control, and improve sleep and mental health.

And let us not forget the weight-loss benefits. Not only does it make you look trimmer and shapelier, but building muscle also helps you burn calories -- even after your workout is done.

"Three to four hours after a strength-training workout, you're still burning calories," says Seibers, a creator of fitness videos including the "Slim in 6" series.

Strength training is especially important for dieters. When you lose weight, up to a quarter of the loss may come from muscle, which can slow your metabolism. Strength training helps you rebuild any muscle you lost by dieting -- or keep you from losing it in the first place.

Getting Started

So you're convinced of strength training's virtues. But just how do you go about getting started?

The weight room at the gym, with all the buff bodies and complicated-looking equipment, can be intimidating to a beginner. Indeed, for someone with back or joint pain, just picking up a weight might seem daunting. Then there's the issue of proper form: Without it, you could do more harm than good trying to build strength.

Your best bet when starting out, the experts say, is one-on-one help from a qualified fitness trainer -- whether it's a personal trainer you've hired, or an instructor at your gym. A trainer can address your personal goals and limitations and can help you with alignment and execution of each exercise.

"I can't tell you how many people I see with a knee injury because they were not taught correctly how to do a lunge or squat," says Sue Carver, physical therapist with A World of Difference Therapy Services in Little Rock, Ark.

Siebers also recommends checking out books, videos, and/or fitness- and health-related web sites for guidance on exercises and form.

Indeed, good technique, not heavy lifting, should be your primary goal in the beginning, Carver says.

Getting Started continued...

Siebers recommends using a heavy enough weight to feel resistance, but not strain or pain. Your individual body will determine just how much that is, and you should err on the light side at first; five pounds may not seem like a lot, but it's better to be conservative than suffer.

And how much should you work out? According to the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines, beginners should do at least two days per week of any type of strength-training exercise. Your workout should consist of 8 to 12 repetitions each of 8 to 10 different exercises working all the major muscle groups -- chest, back, shoulders, arms, abdominals, and legs. (A repetition is how many times you lift the weight, pull the rubber tubing, do a pushup, or whatever.)

Machines or Free Weights?

Both free weights and weight machines work well, and experts say there's no evidence that one is superior to the other, so this is largely a matter of choice.

Machines are a good idea for people who are overweight and/or out of condition, since the exercises are generally done seated and with back support, Seibers says.

But if machines are not an option, investing a few dollars in a set of light dumbbells and/or some resistance tubing can give you what you need to start toning those muscles.

Whichever option you choose, keep your moves basic at first, the experts say. For the arms and upper body, try these exercises:

Chest presses
Reverse flies for the back
Overhead presses for the shoulders
Bicep curls
Triceps kickbacks or extensions
For the lower body, don't start out with squats and lunges, which can put too much impact on weak joints.

Instead, try:
Quadriceps extensions for the front of the thigh.
Hamstrings curl for the back of the thigh.
Side-lying or standing leg lifts to work the inner and outer thigh.
And don't forget to work on strengthening your "core" muscles -- the ones in your abdominal and lower back area. Core stability is key to avoiding injury, according to Carver. "Somebody with strong upper extremities but no core stability can hurt themselves doing a bicep curl, for example, if they can't stabilize the trunk," she says.

You'll also avoid injuries - and get the best results -- by varying your workouts. For example, if you work the biceps, back and legs one day, work the triceps, chest and shoulders the next time you train, Siebers says. Alternating between muscle groups gives the ones you worked plenty of time to recover.

Incorporating stretching in your strength program will also help keep injuries at bay, says Carver. Most important, don't push too hard. Carver always cautions people that "feeling some discomfort in the muscle is OK, but feeling it in the joint is not."

If you have a health condition or previous injury, you may need to do modified versions of certain exercises or skip them altogether, she says. That's when it's especially important to work with a fitness trainer.

Staying With the Program

Success comes from structure and constant support, according to Siebers. "Calendar it up," she suggests: Chart your week of exercise out in advance so you know exactly what you're expecting of yourself.

Having a friend to train with is one of the best ways to stick to a program, Siebers says, even if he or she is a cyber-pal.

"Internet chat rooms and support groups really help to motivate," she says. "There are a million people out there in your same situation getting online every night and encouraging each other. People need that day-to-day hand-holding."

But perhaps the most important things you need for a successful strength training program -- or for successful weight loss -- are patience and acceptance, she says.

"The problem is, people look too far down the road trying to see the big picture too quickly," she says. "You have to try to accept and love yourself today and know that each day, you're going to get better."

I hope it was interesting. If so I can recomend you this exellent guide MUSCLE GAINING SECRETS

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


By Rob Williams, For Canwest News Service

Tibialis toe raises - Adam and Eve time

Work all muscles regularly for great-looking pins.
Summer is the season for shorts, skirts, sandals and flip-flops. If you've got your legs on display, are you making sure they look their best? And what is this doing for your feet? Since many people are used to wearing supportive footwear for most of the year, the switch to less supportive shoes can cause problems with their foot function and overall alignment. This is because the muscles of the feet get deconditioned as a result of wearing shoes that constantly brace the foot.

Some exercisers might remember to do calf raises at the gym, but very few people make sure they work all of the muscles of the lower legs and feet regularly. To make sure that you have great looking legs, and functional feet that are stable and strong, it's important to challenge them with regular exercise, just like any other muscle group in the body. It doesn't have to take long, and it will pay off in terms of appearance, athleticism and comfort.

I find that if I do most of my lower-leg training with my shoes off I'm able to feel the exercises much more in the leg muscles. I also know that I'm improving the intrinsic support of the foot, as long as I pay attention to my alignment when doing the movements.

The exercises I've included this week are demonstrated by kinesiology student Heather Keep, and can be done outdoors with no equipment at all. Be certain to gradually warm up your body and stretch your calves before doing these exercises to prevent muscle strains. Always pay attention to your body alignment as you train and stop immediately if you feel pain or in any way unwell.

Rob Williams is a kinesiologist and posture specialist in downtown Vancouver. He welcomes questions at

1. Tibialis toe raises

It's always important to avoid muscle imbalances across any joint in the body. Because your calf muscles are used all day to lift your body up and down, it's important to train the tibialis muscle that lies opposite the calf muscle, down the front of the lower leg. The action of this muscle is to pull the toes upward toward the shin. To work this muscle effectively, stand with your heels on the edge of a stair, while holding firmly to a handrail. Lower your toes downward, then pull them upward toward your shins, making sure that they come higher than a neutral position. This action should raise your body slightly upward. Be careful not to lean backward as you perform the movement. With 2 sets of 10-15 repetitions you should start to feel fatigue and burning in the front of your lower leg.

2. Hop-around-the-clock

Once you've warmed up your lower leg and foot muscles, it's time to challenge them with an athletic activity. Single-leg hops are great for developing power and stability in the lower leg and foot. From your starting position at the centre of an imaginary clock, hop to each 'hour' on the clock, then back to centre, working your way around the face of the clock. Perform 1-2 sets on each leg, with controlled movements, maintaining neutral athletic posture throughout the set. It's important to begin with small hops and pay attention to hip, knee and ankle position at all times. Advanced exercisers can attempt this exercise with their eyes closed.

3. Barefoot calf raise

If you've never tried it, it's surprisingly difficult to perform calf raises in bare feet on uneven ground. It's even more challenging to perform them while maintaining good neutral alignment of the ankle joint. To do this exercise, stand near a post or railing that you can use for support if necessary. Start using two legs while holding on to the support. Raise and lower your body weight onto your toes, being careful not to let your ankles roll inward or outward. If this is easy for you, try letting go of the support so that you have to balance on your own. Progress to using one leg with, and then without, the support. Whether on one leg or two, you should feel a good burning sensation in the calf muscle by the time you finish. Perform 2-3 sets of 15-20 repetitions with each leg.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


by DANIELA NAHAS, Yahoo Lifestyle

Warm up is a key component to a great workout. More often than not I see people at the gym starting their workout without warming up, either because they are pressed for time or simply can't be bothered. I cannot stress enough how important a proper warm up is to having not only an effective workout, but also to staying injury free.

What are the main reasons to warm up?

- Warming up will prepare the muscles and the nervous system for exercise

- It will raise your body temperature and increases blood flow to tendons, ligaments and muscle

- Having a warm body will give you the functional flexibility that you need to perform a given exercise during your workout.

Traditionally many people warm up by doing a light running or jumping jacks, which is fine for getting the blood flowing and the body moving, however if you are doing an upper body workout on that day that is simply not enough.

If you are working out your upper body you should be warming up your upper body specifically as well, the same rule applies if you are doing a strenuous lower body workout.

Some things that you can incorporate into your warm up routine:

Lower body days - do some light jogging to get the blood flowing, followed by some of the following exercises: forward lunges, lateral lunges, walking lunges, and half squats, hip swings.

Upper body days - do some light jogging to get the blood flowing, followed by shoulder rolls, a good neck stretch and arms circles.

Arm Circles - Begin by standing tall, feet about shoulder width apart, with a slight bend in the knees. Swing both arms up to an overhead position and then forward, down, and backwards, in a large circular motion. Repeat 10 times rolling the shoulders back and then reverse the movement.

Shoulder Rolls - Begin by standing tall, feet about shoulder width apart. Raise your shoulders up towards your ears (inhaling) then roll them backwards (exhaling), then up again to the ear in a smooth controlled action. Repeat 10 times rolling the shoulders back and then reverse the movement.

Have a safe workout!

Friday, August 14, 2009


Provided by By Roger and Daniela Nahas, fitness trainers and founders of Best Body Bootcamp

1. Set Goals

Simply saying you want to lose weight is not enough. Instead, set three specific short- and long-term goals that you'd like to achieve. For example, a short-term goal could be, "I want to go down two dress sizes by February 14th," while a long-term goal would be "I want to lose 15 lb of fat in six months."

2. Take a "Before" Picture

Take a picture of yourself in a bathing suit or sports bra and shorts. When you look at yourself every day in the mirror you tend not to notice changes in your body. Having a picture allows you to better see results and it's a great motivator.

3. Measure Your Progress

Don’t just rely on the scale. Muscle weighs more than fat so you may not see a change on the scale but your clothes will feel different. Take your base measurements and then re-take them on a regular basis. You cannot measure your progress if you don't know where you started from.

4. Be a Joiner

Getting a gym membership is often not the best solution for getting in shape. Too many people buy a membership but then don’t actually go on a regular basis because there's no structure, accountability or group support and personal trainers are costly. Instead, join a fitness boot camp, exercise class or other fitness program (try the Wish 20-Minute Shape-Up Club) where you'll have a set time and workout plan done for you. Bonus: You will learn proper form and technique, plus you'll meet people with similar goals that can give you support.

5. Flex Your Muscles

Don’t just do cardio! Strength training is an essential part of any fitness routine. It will build your muscle and increase your bone density. Not to mention, for every pound of muscle you gain, you speed up your metabolism, which means you increase the rate at which you burn fat. We recommend strength training one to three times a week.

6. Start Your Day Off Right

It’s easy to come up with excuses for why you can’t work out when you're busy, so be sure to book exercise time in your calendar and don’t double-book. We recommend working out first thing in the morning so that there are less excuses to get in the way of your goals.

7. Rest Up

Make sure you get 7-9 hours of deep sleep each night. Studies have shown that people who don’t get enough sleep have a tendency to overeat and are more susceptible to weight gain. Also, be sure to give your muscles a break by taking at least one or two days off from exercising each week.

8. Reward Yourself Weekly

If you eat healthy all week, allow yourself a cheat day to eat whatever you want. Knowing that you don’t have to completely deprive yourself of foods you love will keep you motivated.

9. Change Your Eating Habits

Instead of three big meals a day, opt for five or six smaller ones instead. Your body needs fuel every three to four hours, which also speeds up your metabolism so you are burning more calories throughout the day. Be sure to include protein (eggs, cottage cheese, chicken, fish), low glycemic carbs (brown rice, fruits, lentils, quinoa) and fibrous vegetables.

10. Eliminate Processed Sugars

Processed sugars are carbs that have been stripped of valuable nutrients. How can you identify these sugars? They are all white: table sugar, pasta, rice, and bread. Look for alternatives that provide a nutrition boost. Try honey in place of sugar and go for whole-wheat pasta, rice and bread.

Bonus Tip

Don't get caught up in the New Years resolution craze and try to make too many lifestyle changes at once. Start with a few realistic goals you can handle; join a group workout, walk to work, take the stairs whenever possible, jog with your dog instead of walking, etc. Once you have successfully followed this routine for a month or two, you'll be ready to add more to your routine.

Roger and Daniela Nahas are the co-founders of the Best Body Bootcamp – Toronto’s most dynamic fitness bootcamp. Roger has been providing fitness training and nutritional counselling since 1999. He has been featured in Muscle Media, a leading fitness magazine and was awarded the Sports Clubs of Canada Personal Trainer of the Year Award in 2001. Daniela has been a physical trainer for five years. She specializes in training women because she knows firsthand how intimidating the gym can be.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Hi Alex,

Hope everything is going well. I have done some GOLF TIPS for my friends and customers which I want to bring to your attention. Here we are...

"You Don't Improve. You May Easily Get Worse. And You Finally End Your Practice Session Frustrated And Dejected, Or Your Round, If You Are Playing, With A Shameful Score!!”

Fortunately, there is a cure for all this, a cure that is almost miraculous. The magic move that puts you on the right track immediately is simply this:

Start the backswing with an early backward wrist break!

Of course this sounds too simple to be true. It violates every rule you ever heard about starting the swing. Your first reaction is that I may have gone completely off my rocker. But it is true - and unless your swing is now everything that you want it to be, you will find out how and why this magic move is made.

The wrist break itself is simple enough, actually, though if you have been breaking in the conventional way you may need a little time to convince yourself of what is to be done and to make yourself do it.

Since the backward break is the first magic move, let's be absolutely certain you understand what it is.

First, hold your right hand in front of you, fingers together and extended, thumb up and the palm squarely facing the left. From that position bend the hand to the right, trying to make the fingers come back toward the outside of the wrist. You can't get them anywhere near the wrist, of course, but a person with supple wrists can bend the hand back until hand and wrist form a right angle.

This motion of the hand, straight back, is the backward wrist break.

The way the right hand should move from the wrist in the early backward break-straight back toward the outside of the forearm, with no turning or rolling.

The standard wrist break is quite different. Hold your hand again as you held it before. Now, instead of bending it backward, bend it up, so that the thumb comes toward you. That is the orthodox, accepted wrist break. Forget it. You will no longer need it.

To make the backward wrist break we merely push the heel of the right hand down against the big knuckle of the left thumb. This is a downward pressure of the heel on the thumb. When it is done, without moving the hands otherwise, the right hand breaks backward at the wrist and the left hand breaks forward or inward, the back of the left hand going under and facing, in a general way, toward the ground.

How the backward break is made, with the heel of the right hand pressing down on the knuckle of the left thumb. The back of the left hand begins to turn down and under.

How not to make the break. Wrists and hands have rolled, the back of the left hand has turned upward. The right hand is rolling too, instead of bending straight back.

At this point the club will have come back slightly inside the projected line of flight but the club face will not have opened. The face will be at about a 45-degree angle with the ground and, as you stand there, you will not be able to see any of it.

How the backward break looks from the side. Note the bend in the left wrist as the back of the hand turns down, and the position of the right wrist. Notice also that the face of the club has not opened.

We have not put this into the actual swing yet, remember. We are still working on the mechanics of the wrist break. It is just possible that at this fundamental stage you will refuse to believe that you can hit the ball with such a break. So make this test....

Regards, Andy Brown

Thursday, August 6, 2009


This section of the site is dedicated to swimming training for both sprint and distance events.

There is an obvious relationship between swim distance (or more specifically, duration) and the intensity of effort from the swimmer. Assuming that mechanical efficiency in the water stays the same, the greater the intensity of effort, the greater the swimming velocity. At an elite level, swimmers perform the 200-m freestyle approximately 20-25% slower than the 50-m freestyle.

The point here is that the different durations of each event places different demands on the body's energy systems and will affect the swimmer's training program significantly.

A sprint swimmer typically has greater peak anaerobic power as measured by the Swimgate test compared to a distance swimmer for example. From a strength training perspective, explosive power and power endurance are more important than long term strength endurance. Conversely, the aerobic energy system predominates in events of 400m and above. For these distance swimmers long-term strength endurance becomes the training priority. Remember however, that distance swimmers usually take part in short-duration events during the competitive year so some of their training will mirror that of sprinters - just in different proportions.

The SWIMMERS BODY guide examines each of the components of fitness important in a swimming training plan, along with suggestions for exercise selection and training sessions.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


Today is the last part of the letter from Al Steel, the Self-Defense Trainer who allowed me to pass it to my friends.


This is the biggest mistake of all.
This is the mistake that keeps most men from EVER being able to defend themselves on the street and in dangerous situations.

I know, guys don't like to make themselves look weak or helpless. We don't like to ask for help.

Hey, I've been there myself. Let me tell you a little about me and how I figured out the best ways to defend myself out there...

About seven years ago I became fed up with my martial arts school and all the B.S. around it. I was so sick and tired of seeing students being taught what is best for the DOJO ... not what is best for the student.

So I quit! One night I was out with a friend, and I saw two guys arguing, pushing each other's chest and finally starting to fight. One guy got steamrolled, the other had a broken nose and they were arguing because they looked at each other funny. Great!

I can still remember that night...right then and there I made the decision to do whatever it took to learn the most effective ways of self defense! Not just the best techniques, moves and takedowns to knock a guy out instantly but absolutely everything that gets a person out of harms way.

Well, after a lot of hard work and trying all kinds of crazy things, I finally figured it all out.

I can not only give a guy the beating of his life if I really have to ... I can also walk into ANY room and make even the biggest and toughest guy think he better not mess with me. And the best part, I don't even have to use my fists to do that.

It has been a very rewarding experience. I no longer feel that sick, insecure feeling... like I must fear for my safety when I get approached by a mean looking jerk or drunk on the street ...and I might end with blood all over me.
I know that anytime, anywhere, I can go out and feel 100% safe!

I've written a book on the topic, and I've done seminars on both coasts of the United States and taught tens of thousands of men all around the world. But the REALLY GREAT news is that I now publish a free email newsletter three times a week
that teaches guys how to defend themselves on the street with or without using force!

I have a downloadable eBook that you can download right away and be reading it in literally MINUTES from right now. It's JAM PACKED with dozens and dozens of specific strategies for taking down an attacker, neutralizing threats, dealing with bullies,
effective striking techniques, and how to make sure everybody thinks TWICE before they want to mess with you.

To download your copy of this online eBook, just go here: Self Defense Skills.

I'll talk to you again soon.

Your Friend,
Al Steele

P.S. Do some friends a favor, and FORWARD this article to their email addresses. It might be the biggest gift you ever give them.