My Top 3 Books – They Changed My Life

The 3 books below altered how I live. They have inspired me in the form of personal growth, relationships with others, and physical development. I honestly believe if you read and study these 3 books (all easy reads) you too will find a lot more peace and fulfillment in life.

1. The Power of Now – Eckhart Tolle

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June of 2017 I was on an island off the coast of Panama with 4 beautiful girls from Chile. One of which was named Valentina. Medium-dark skin, long dark hair, and a very nice smile. One night we sat together onĀ  the island and talked for a good 2 hours. She is very philosophical but very connected with the Universe. I had never been so present and intrigued in listening to someone. She spoke as if she had been in contact with a higher intelligence, a form of energy not seen on our planet. In fact, she said she had…

Days after the trip she sent me a copy of this book. In a nutshell, the ultimate Divinity, the ultimate Essence of the Universe already exists: it’s in Us. We all have the ability to be in complete Presence, complete Peace within ourselves; free from all worry and pain. Inside of ourselves we have an eternal spirit; however, our minds have clouded us from peace. Our minds were developed to solve problems; yet, we have become slaves to them. We are constantly thinking, constantly frustrated, and constantly in pain.

Tolle describes how to disconnect from the mind (very difficult at first!) and be in a state of no-thinking. This state of Presence is the ultimate Peace. This is God. Some people have small glimpses of thisĀ  throughout life. For example: the sensation of jumping out of a plane, riding a motorcycle, falling in love, or right before death. And that moment, is the separation from the worried mind. Once you free yourself from your mind, you can be in the present moment. The present moment is all that matters. It is what allows people to connect with all beings, and, Love. And this state of being is what is needed to bring about the transformation of our world. In Tolle’s words, “the second coming.”

This book is not meditation nor religion. It simply describes us and the energy of the Universe and how we can connect with that energy we were meant to connect with.

This book has allowed me to be at peace and understand God more. I used to see God in a human form. Now I see God as a living energy, a state of being, an ultimate peace of the spirit inside of every being. But let me remind you, there is no religion preaching in this book. It is a way to be at peace with yourself and connect with the Universe. Since my reading of this (4 times and 1 time on audiobook!), I have had many more incredible and beautiful experiences in life. It’s an energy that you already have and learn to manifest; and the world will feel it.

Valentina and I still keep in contact and hope to meet up in the future. An incredible person with an energy that will help change the world. Until then, I hope this book will change your life too. The world needs it!

2. The Alabaster Girl – Zan Perrion

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This book in one word is about beauty. The author, Zan, writes about beautiful moments between man and woman in both prose and poetic formats. A concept throughout the novel is seduction and how it is a GOOD thing, not BAD! Today’s society, schooling, parenting, religions, and media unfortunately teach us to not seduce. Where is the beauty in life these days? In relationships? In the architecture? In culture? In how we interact? We have lost the sense of seduction and beauty. Zan does not comment on current generational issues, politics, or trends but rather articulates beautiful experiences between man and woman – ultimate lovers. Through colorful yet clear accounts, he directs how one’s spirit should be geared to seduce.Once one understands this spirit, one can become an incredible seducer (a good thing!).

In the end it is actually a book about women, written for women. But if a man reads this, and works to obtain such a spirit, he will have a life filled with beauty.

3. Everything You Need to Know About Fat Loss

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SUPER SIMPLE READ! The title says it all. No need to write a long review here. People are asking me all the time how to get lean, gain muscle, do both, etc. All your questions are answered and any myth or misconception you might have is busted here as well. Nothing difficult to read. Everything is broken down and explained very simply.

At the end of the day its CALORIES IN VS CALORIES OUT, for fat loss. There is no special diet, no magic trick or pill, no food you need to eliminate. Please give this book a read if you really care and want to improve your diet. If you ask me, I will simply send you to read this book first. It has changed my life, literally, when it comes to food, working out, and how to manipulate my weight any time I want! If I want abs I know how to. If I want to enjoy a whole bunch of food and still stay lean, I know how to. If I want to gain weight for a bit and then later go back to being ripped, I know how to. All from this book!

The author, Chris Aceto, is a professional nutritionist who has helped many people and trained professional athletes. Please give it a read and let me know if you have questions!

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Great Earbud Alternatives – Quit Getting Ripped Off by big brands

Great Earbud Alternatives – Quit Getting Ripped Off by big brands

Jam Comfort Bluetooth Earbuds – Only $30 and these have last me 3 years. A lot of people ask me what I use to workout. For real you can beat the system and not pay $300 for earbuds/headphones. These are super cheap, price-wise, but the quality and durability is fantastic.

https://amzn.to/2BXVJcI

Super simple. USB charged. Bluetooth. Volume/Skip/Go Back/On Off buttons. Comfortable around the neck.

I use these at the gym, on airplanes, morning walks, at the beach, and anywhere else I would want music.

Not much else to them. They work great, super easy to connect. Let me know if you have questions!

First Competition Experience

I competed in my first ever bodybuilding competition in Golden Colorado (the contest was in April called AXIS Labs Northern Colorado). I competed in Men’s Physique which is a newer physique type contest like bodybuilding. I trained hard and followed a clean diet for several months. I never had a coach/trainer and didn’t have any experience. I did everything on my own and just kinda figured it out. I have lots more to learn and will plan on getting a trainer.

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Below I will explain the whole experience to include my training, diet, pros and cons of competing, health, and my recommendations. Here’s an outline if you want to skip around.

  1. Why I did this
  2. Training & Diet
  3. Experience leading up to competition
  4. The Competition
  5. Doing it again?
  1. Why?

I love working out and becoming the biggest and strongest version of myself each and every day both physically and mentally. Waking up challenging myself to improve who I am and going to sleep with the sense of accomplishment is what I am about. Your body is the greatest instrument you will ever have and shaping it is the most purest/direct form of exuding hard work and discipline. That’s why I committed to a physique competition.

2. Training

  • 4-5 days a week. Usually earlier afternoon after classes
  • Cardio either in the morning or after lifting workout
    • Running for 10-12 minutes and/or stairmaster 10-15mins
  • 8-12 rep range, 3-4 sets
  • Muscle Areas
    • Chest/Tri
    • Back/Bi
    • Legs
    • Shoulders
    • Mix
  • Rest on weekends

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3. Diet

Okay so here is the most important part. The food. If you want a great physique it starts in the kitchen. Literally people come up to me all the time, all the time, even Facebook messages, emails, etc. and ask me what I have been doing or taking to get the physique I got. I tell them: “I don’t drink, I don’t eat Chic-Fil-A and I drink water.” That sums up what I am getting at as a college student. Let me break it down.

  • I count calories. You can’t lose weight/burn fat if you eat more than what you work off in the gym. In simple terms, eat less. If you want to shed fat, eat less food. Now there is a method to do this so you don’t burn muscle and starve yourself. I won’t explain the physiology of it but the average way to lose 1lb a week is to eat 500 less calories than your average maintenance level. Either way you need to eat less. It doesn’t make sense when people who want abs work their ass off in the gym then go out to Chipotle and then drink beer on the weekend. It won’t happen.
  • I do intermittent fasting. This is a lifestyle or pattern of eating. It’s not a diet. It’s a pattern of eating. I eat between 12-8pm everday and anytime before or after that I only drink water or black coffee. Check out the link for more info. http://jamesclear.com/the-beginners-guide-to-intermittent-fasting
  • About a month before the competition I started honing in on my macros. Macros are three fundamental nutrients: proteins, fats and carbs. I was at about 50% protein, 20% fats, and 30% carbs. Every 8-10 days I would up my carbs a bit known as a refeed day so that I could energize. Low carbs = low energy in the long term.
  • I used MyFitnessPal to track my food. Check it out its an app. Easy to use and you can search any food, restaurant menu, or scan items and it plugs in the calories and macros for you.

4. Experience leading up to the competition

1. I lost weight yea. Sometimes I went too extreme I think with my cut. Some days I ate too less and then some days I ate too much and binged. Yeah it happens. It’s not good but it happens to a lot of people. When you eat less food your body goes into survival mode and starts changing its processes to preserve whatever it needs to survive. Since this was my first time sticking to a caloric deficit, I learned how much I had taken comfort food for granted. Had I had a trainer I would have been better off knowing when and what to eat so patterns of caloric surplus or extreme deficits wouldn’t have happened.

2. Lower energy. There were days were I was super laggy and didn’t want to talk to people. This was usually the last 3 weeks leading up to the competition. I got cranky and didn’t want to exert too much energy other than working out. Again, could have been resultant of lack of proper knowledge of the diet I was creating for myself.

3. The two months prior to the competition since I had been in a caloric deficit I pretty much lost sex drive. It is common for natural competitors to lose sex drive as a result of lowered testosterone. I didn’t even have any desire to go out, flirt, mess around with girls, etc. I was just focused on working out. That is why enhanced competitors take testosterone supplements,: so this doesn’t happen. Just keep this in mind if you have a bf/gf. You are going to take a hit down there…

4. Social impact. I am a college kid. All my buddies are turning 21. They are always inviting me to go out, drink, eat, party etc. Nope. Can’t. That’s the reality of it. If you want to compete and really get that top level physique. There is no sugar coating it. I definitely missed out on a lot of social events because of the diet I adhered to. Its not to say you cant go out and enjoy time with them and have a water and chat and what not. You can figure it out though if you feel you can fit in some nachos and a beer than sure. But we as humans only have so much will power – you start off with one beer and one hot dog then you have a few chips then you go all out. It’s happened to me. That’s why you gotta plan it out and learn from your mistakes. So yeah to sum it up since I committed to competing I had altered my social life.

5. Sense of accomplishment. Like I said I love that feeling. When I am down in the gym and working my ass off knowing I am working towards a goal, I feel great. I’m on a mission. For the betterment of myself and knowing that, gives me the drive. That was the best part. Feeling accomplished.

5. The competition

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There are several different organizations for physique contests. I chose the NPC (National Physique Committee) which had a lot of events in my local area (Denver). I went to their website, looked up the rules, and picked a contest I would be able to attend. About 3 months out. That gave me 3 months to start watching my diet and working out properly. Not much time at all for winning level competitors.

I had to register in the committee for a year which was $125

I had to pay the contest fee for First Time Ever Men’s Physique $95

What I did wrong here was not sign up for more than one class. You can compete in numerous classes as they divide competitors up by height or weight or both. I didn’t know I could do that. So I had trained and dieted hard just to walk on stage for 90 seconds……should have signed up for more. Lesson learned.

Day of the competition: You get there and have a pre-contest meeting in which they will welcome you and explain how it works. You figure out when your class goes on stage and about 20-30 min before that I went down backstage to the pump up room. I started doing push ups and curls. I was a lone wolf down there while everyone else was being coached by their trainers. They finally call us up and we line up behind the curtain. The facilitators will guide you through everything.

Finally we walked out on stage and did our thing. I was a bit nervous but it wasn’t that bad.

Then we get off stage. Since that was my only class I was done until the afternoon when awards are presented. In between that time I hung out with my friends who came to support me and we watched some of the other competitors. Later I went back downstage and got pumped up. I didn’t win anything so it was the same thing as the morning. Just walked on stage for one class then walked off. After that I went to the protein booths and just loaded up on free samples.

This sport is a business. They really know how to get your money. Below is a chart of an estimate of the investment I put into this.

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