Build Others Up With Words Of Encouragement


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I really wanted to pour my heart into this and let my readers know a few things about me. I am sure I’m not alone in some of the feelings in this and hope you will understand.

I want you to understand something; calling a skinny person skinny is just as bad as calling a fat person fat!

No I am not fat, technically I am overweight (its true) and due to my height and that I flex and suck it in if I am around people I look more “in shape” than I am. Yes, you read that right; I hold my abs and chest tight if I am around people. All day if need be! I have done it for so long I don’t even think about it. One good outcome is I have a great six-Pac under a little fat just waiting to be seen and my core is very strong.

Why would you do that Scott” Well, it’s because I am not fully happy with my belly fat and my current look. I am what you can call skinny fat. (That is a real thing as well)

Telling someone “you need to eat” when they are a skinny person is the exact same thing as saying you “you can skip a meal” to an overweight person. So it’s just best to not say anything and just learn to support people in the goals they have.

Sting bean, skinny red, you need to eat a cheeseburger, doesn’t your mom feed you, I better put a brick on your head so you gain some weight. These were just a few of the things I heard growing up and I HATED it. To this day I do not like my skinny legs and arms.

Yes this is kind of a rant, but it’s frustrating to do hundreds of hours of research and years of trial and error to modify my goals to have someone that has not researched give me advice or call me crazy for trying to do something about a part of my life the (I) am not happy with.

Please, PLEASE do your own research.

I really want to inspire other and show them that if you are unhappy with a part of your life that you are only a couple of steps away from changing it; all you have to do is start and want to change.

This is my journey and your words can inspire or discourage, they can motivate or destroy all motivation. I am not looking for a health coach; I’m learning how I learn best, by trial and error, failure and success and research. I have never been one to follow the crowd or just to take your word for it; I want to see for myself, i desire to understand why. Yes I was that kid, “but why” was and is one of my favorite questions.

For all that support me thank you SO much and for those who have an opinion (especially if you do not work out and diet) please just support myself and others with words of inspiration and motivation.

We are all on our own journey; learn to embrace the differences we have and accept that we all have something about our lives that we do not like.

Are You Losing Your Mind Trying To Become Healthy


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Sometimes I feel like I’m losing my mind trying to get healthy; is it really that hard? I now know why people give up and drift back into eating whatever they want and why gym memberships come and go like night and day.

  • How much protein should I eat, how many carbs should I eat?
  • Should I eat carbs at all?
  • Should I lift high reps low weight or low reps high weight?
  • Can I work out too often?
  • What do I do and where do I start?

I can sum all the questions regarding fitness and health with one short answer. Everyone is different and what your goals are can change what you need.

Like many people searching for the “truth” about fitness and a healthy lifestyle the internet can become mind numbing and even frustrating at times while trying to filter through the endless fitness and health related topics.

I have been consistently focusing, reading articles and watching hundreds of hours of videos on YouTube trying to narrow down the truth about fitness and the only thing I have found that is 100% accurate is that we are ALL very different.

sure there are some things that are consistent for human beings in general, but most changes with the individual.

I respond very well to Intermittent Fasting, I respond terrible to the ketogenic diet, no matter how much I work on my legs they remain smaller than my upper body in proportion to the rest of my body. Genetics plays a large part in how our body will respond to health and fitness and we all have trouble areas as well as areas that develop better than others.

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Yes there is a way to overcome all the obstacles and have the desired outcome no matter the shortfalls you may have. It all starts with discipline and consistency. I will never be as big as Arnold Schwarzenegger; however I have a unique physique the I am learning to embrace. my positive areas are larger Lats, Traps and I accept that my legs look like a never train them.

Here are a few steps I have learned over the last few years that may help you narrow down the searching and time on the web.

  • Know what you want – Do you want to look like a runner or bodybuilder, do you want to look good or be strong.
  • set a goal that appeals to your desires  
  • Look at your family and any other blood relative to see the traits that they have (good or bad) . This will give you a head start with pinpointing the “trouble areas” you may have. Look at their lifestyle and see how they respond.
  • Research and understand how your body works and responds to everything. how do you respond to your diet, cardiovascular workouts, lifting programs, etc.
  • Be realistic with your progress and know that it’s taken you a long time to get to where you are today, changing that will not happen overnight.

It has taken me 34 years to learn I was overweight and unhealthy. I’m a little over 2 years being serious with my fitness journey and I am very far from being where I want to be. With that said I am very excited to see the progress I have gained and want to share that.

During my adult life (20 years old – current) my highest weight has been 248 lbs. (113 kg) and my lowest 167 lbs. (76 kg) and I have felt the complete gamut of conditions, from complete crap to incredible and full of energy. Find what works for you, learn what your body responds to, seek the truth about your specific goals and most importantly have fun with it.

Never Let Yourself Down


I found something interesting, well to be honest I’m not sure its a real thing. I have found that I need much less sleep while doing Intermittent Fasting. I was averaging between 6-7 hours a night and now I hit 5 pretty consistently and actually feel quite refreshed and I have more energy with less caffeine.

Here’s a good example, I was up about 8am Sunday morning and hit the gym pretty hard. Up all day and worked 3rd shift last night getting out about 5am this morning. Went to sleep about 5:45am and was up at 9am feeling great.

I’m not sure why, if this is actually a real byproduct of the (IF) or just coincidence.

I have also modified my diet to more of a full Keto diet, attempting to cut my body fat % more. My unofficial goal is 10% body fat.

Being that I completely hate cardio the only way I can see a cut is to restrict carbs and its day 3 lowering my carb intake. I’m not cutting it cold turkey so to speak.

I am monitoring how many grams I had in my normal diet and cutting that in half daily until I reach about 40 grams a day. At this rate I should reach that by Wednesday, today is Monday.

I know some people say “my God, why do you keep changing everything“?

My answer is simple, without change you stay the same, I don’t want to stay the same.. I want to gradually become the best version of myself that I can be.

Yes I can be a bit manic about it, I just know what I need to motivate myself and what I need to stay away from failing and if I want to continue to be discipline with my fitness this is what I need.

Here are a few guidelines I like to use.

  • Being honest with yourself is in my opinion the most important person you can hold accountable. I have a motto I tell myself, “if I can’t be honest and have integrity with myself I will for sure not have either with another person“, and to me both are very important to have.
  • If I set a goal in my mind, I will reach it. That should be your focus. Forget letting others down, there is a 100% chance of that, do not let yourself down.
  • Set a goal that YOU want and do everything in your power while respecting other and maintaining honesty and integrity to reach your goal.

If you continually let yourself down eventually you will have a feeling of worthlessness. Trust me, I have felt this and it can overcome and snuff out any chance of happiness in your life.

An update and Further Separation of Real Life and The War on Sugar


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Hey there again, this is just a little update and maybe a little further separation between the two blogs I have been writing.

As you know I began Real Life about 4 years ago and December of 2016 branched some of my posts into a fitness and lifestyle focused blog named The War on Sugar.

Mostly the War on Sugar was a way for me to focus my fitness and discuss life topics regarding the fitness lifestyle and have a more of the emotional well-being topic on the main Real Life page.

Both are equally important to me in my life and I have been getting questions regarding fitness that at times get lost in the emails from the main Real Life blog so in hopes to help both I have created a new email for the War on Sugar topics. Thank you for the support and I would love to continue my support by sharing my journey both emotionally and physically.

For questions regarding fitness refer to reallifewaronsugar@gmail.com

Update on this Journey of Intermittent Fasting, but Can I Even Have a Drink? 


Welcome back to The War on Sugar and it’s a perfect day to discuss my fitness and intermittent fasting journey.

I am currently walking, it’s too beautiful out to be in a gym at the moment. The temperature is in the mid 80’s here in West Michigan and I feel the need to trade my gym time for a long walk.

I changed up my work-out this week and tried to hit some PR’s and to be honest my entire body hurts from the attempts to push myself.
So, how is the IF going?

Well, my weight is hovering at a consistent 186 lbs. (83 kg) for a few weeks now, and only increasing due to my random failures with my diet, well its either that or alcohol consumption, yes I drink… However I have been researching the topics regarding the consumption of alcohol and what it does to your body.

Basically, alcohol is not healthy!

However I enjoy an occasional adult beverage here and there. So there are a few rules when it comes to alcohol consumption and understanding the rules will help in your fitness lifestyle.

Drinking pauses ANY fat metabolism whatsoever. So if you drink, choose wisely.

Tips if you drink:  (best to poor choices)

Clear liquor, colored liquor, light beer, regular beer or ( craft beer) and mixed drinks should be at the bottom of the list.

Beer is high in carbs, mixed drinks as well so clear liquor is the best bang for your buck (if you drink) the best bet is to limit consumption of alcohol all together, it is a poison to your body and I enjoy a drink from time to time.

Lately I have been focusing less on the damn number on the scale and more on the reps, sets and weight I’m lifting. I would rather be strong and healthy than look good with my shirt off. Although that is pretty appealing to me as beach time is approaching quickly here in the mitten.

I am worrying less about the look and more about the function, partly because the last little stubborn belly fat is holding on for dear life and keeping my 6 pack cozy under a nice thin layer of subcutaneous fat and I really don’t feel like fighting to get rid of it.

I am choosing to enjoy living and eating far too much to sacrifice the caloric reduction it will take to lose it.

Life is far too short to worry so much about the little things that only matter to you. No one cares that I have a 4 pack not a 6 and who wants to date someone that always has to complain and be picky with food. I’m sure my girlfriend would agree.

Yes it’s nice to be health conscious and desire to eat healthy (and we both do) but to be a freak that can’t eat “normal” food is not appealing.

So learn to have fun with dieting and fitness. You are far more likely to maintain and partake in something that is fun and that you enjoy doing.

This is why most diets fail; They are not fun and limit far too much. Dieting can be hard to maintain over a long period of time and it slowly drains the fun out of life. I’m 36 now, I began “dieting” in my late 20’s. Failure after failure of fad diets helped me never following through with any of them. I have found something that works, and works very well for me. The best part is it fits into my life not my life fitting into a diet.

Small changes over a long period of time is the best way to enter into anything regarding fitness.

“Imagine if you had a switch that could balance your metabolism and do a deep cleanse without the use of expensive fan dangled detox kits? Your body is designed to do so by using a genius mechanism known as autophagy. Celebrities have discovered that intermittent fasting, or autophagy,  is one of the best techniques used to turn on this anti-aging reboot switch”.- Longevitylive.com

Here is an article and list of celebrities that also have used Intermittent Fasting to reach their goals for movies.

www.longevitylive.com/editors-choice/why-celebrities-practice-intermittent-fasting/

The list includes: Miranda Ker, Liv Tyle, Christy Turlington, Ben Affleck, Beyoncé, Hugh Jackman, and last buy surly not least Duane “the rock” Johnson.

I’m not trying to pressure anyone into anything and I sure as hell do not get paid for this. I just know how long I struggled with my weight and never being able to find something that worked that I could maintain almost effortlessly.

Please read about Intermittent Fasting for yourself and follow me on Real Life (the war on sugar) to read more about what I learn as I navigate my own fitness successes and failures.

Convincing Our Minds We Are Capable


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It’s time for another War on Sugar post (IF) update, and this time I bring to you some science proving my lifestyle change has improved my health. I recently had a physical by my Doctor and also some Lab/ blood-work checkups due to being Hypothyroid.

I know from previous labs that quite a few numbers were “off” so to speak. Not terrible but not even in the “acceptable range”.

I received my results yesterday and all my numbers were either better than or in the high average range, proof that my Intermittent Fasting lifestyle is paying off. It has also been over a year since he has seen me, actually closer to two years. First thing he said was “wow, you look great” always a nice thing to hear from a doctor. After we had our “how is life” chat we began to talk about my fitness, I had questions regarding my (IF) and Hypothyroidism.

His exact words were “whatever you are doing, do not stop” YES, I have reached a healthy lifestyle that I can maintain and not even think about.

My weight is a steady 185 lbs. (84 kg) and I have visible abs. I’m no longer in the range of overweight and slowly approaching my goal of 10-15% body-fat.

I feel better than I ever have, stronger, faster and far more energy and I’ll be 37 this year. This is including my best shape in my late teen years. That without the proof in the blood-work is enough to want to tell everyone YOU CAN DO IT TOO!!

One of the biggest lies ever is that a healthy lifestyle is not for everyone. We are all human, yes genetics plays a part in the results, but your lifestyle WILL overcome if you excerpt the effort to change. You are not alone, find a friend, get to the gym, get up, get out.. Whatever it takes be willing to do it, and most importantly DO IT FOR YOURSELF!

Setbacks are a Part of Life


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The War on Sugar never ends..

This has been a not so great week, lots of stress at home and work, I haven’t been eating right at all. In fact I have spent the entire week eating wrong. One thing I have been doing, well the only thing I have been doing is staying consistent on my Intermittent Fasting schedule. My workouts have been nonexistent, my Macros have been a disaster and my stress level has been way up but I’m still losing weight.

Stress increases Cortisol levels which can by itself destroy any fitness goals you have. I have felt it this week and hope to jump back on the fitness train Saturday or as I jokingly call it the “gain train”.

In the back of my mind I fear my weight loss may be a little muscle loss but I’m lying to myself and saying it’s just water weight or fat loss. My apologies for this not so positive post but this is Real Life, failures happen, slips will be a part of our fitness journey. For today that’s all I have, I’m getting back up and trying again. Failing isn’t the opposite of success, it is a part of success. All success is, is the ability to overcome failure while reaching your goals.

Focus On How Far You Have Come, Not How Far You Have To Go


Welcome back to the fitness Mr. Jenkins I see you have been away for a while.

I have been out of the gym for a week resting my body (I’ll call it that but honestly I have been lazy).

While I was “resting” I have noticed a few things durring this time off. I am much stronger when I return back after I take a little time away. What this tells me is I do not allow for a proper rest period in my fitness.

As for my IF (intermittent fasting) I am still utilizing IF over 80% of the time and it has become second nature in my life to simply not eat from 6,7 or 8 pm to 10, 11 or noon the next day. I have adapted very well to this lifestyle and am currently about 186 lbs (83 kg) and feeling great.

My strength is consistently increasing and my body is continually gaining mass. However there are a few things I have found.

1) Salt intake – when I eat foods very high in salt I get VERY bloated and feel suboptimal, it also decreases my desire to lift and go to the gym because I feel blah, and bloated.

2) Water intake – DRINK WATER.. I drink about a gallon a day on most days and the days I don’t I usually can expect a sluggish feeling followed by a headache and increased desire to graze or eat.

3) Macros – learn to count your macros.. in the beginning you will lose weight quickly depending on how much you have to lose in the first place. You will hit a plateau in your weight loss (this is where I am today) I am learning to count my Macros, Just in case you ask what is a Macro?

A Macro is a breakdown of the basic foods fat, Carbs and Protein.

For example:

Fat has 9 calories per gram

Protein and Carbs have 4 calories per gram

Find your caloric intake (free online calculator) and begin to calculate your daily maintenance level, gain and cut levels as well.

EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT, so please don’t copy a Macro off the Internet. If you are serious about your fitness this is the foundation of everything. Learn to read and communicate with your body.

This takes time, learn how to adapt this to your life not change your life to adapt to your “diet”. That is why diets fail, sustainability is the absolute key to your fitness. If it’s too much work you won’t do it for long enough to see results, or worse you will see results and fall back into old habits and may end up worse than before.

I hope your fitness journey is successful and please feel free to email, comment or contact me for more information.

Yes, Today I eat Healthy..Wait, I smell Pizza


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Hello Real Life War on Sugar, it’s time for a fitness update.

I am still keeping a fairly consistent 80%-90% of the time IF schedule and continuing my cardio/workout routine. I have noticed a few things that are worth talking about.

Weight  – I weigh myself fasted daily as soon as I get up just to see the results over time and I have been 187 lbs.(85 kg) for some time now and no longer use the weight for anything other than charting. I use the best tool I have found, the mirror and set my desire to see less fat in areas over time. One thing I wish I would have done is more measurements of my body just to see the actual number of the changes I see.

Strength – I have gained considerable strength over the last month or so. I have increased both my reps and set on a weekly basis and can now push to squeeze a little more out of every workout. I have also learned that there are certain areas on our body’s that will naturally (or genetically) take over, adapt and grow quicker than some of the others. These areas are the areas they seem to be ones I work out the least by choice, trying to focus on the areas that are not growing as quickly. For instance my biceps are growing very quickly as well as my Lats, my calves and Traps on the other hand are not. So I set my workouts to focus more on the weak areas.

Diet – Grrrr, diet is everything and I love food! I enjoy a drink from time to time too and this is why I will not have a visible 6 Pack by beach day. I have a nice 4 but the bottom 2 are a pain and just is not quite here and this is the trade-off for loving food.  The struggle is real with the diet.

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I’m still heading in the right direction and still believe in (IF) Intermittent Fasting, so the War on Sugar continues or I should say the War on my diet continues. For me the battle is in the kitchen and not so much with sugar. My progress has very little to do with the actual gym, workouts I do or don’t do or the weight I lift, my nutrition choices are my struggle.

“Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.” ― Tony Robbins

This can be related to almost any topic in life.From relationships to fitness when you want to change more than you want to stay the same, you will change. The effort and desire is completely a choice.

Everything is a Choice


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Every action in life has an equal reaction, every choice (good or bad) has a consequence. Even something as simple as diet and exercise can change the outcome of your life.

I found my routine, find what works for you but be honest about a few things.

  1. can you sustain it for a long period of time (not eating to lose weight)
  2. does it truly inspire healthy living (taking medications to lose weight)
  3. learn to incorporate it into the life YOU want (if  YOU want to change you will)

I found something that finally fits my lifestyle, promotes muscle growth and a huge increase in fat loss and encourages healthy living for the future and the best part is its easy enough anyone can do it.

Monday- Friday my (minimum) IF (intermittent fasting) of 16/8 and Saturday and Sunday off but I try to get at least a 12/12 IF split in.

I have pretty much been eating exactly the same foods as before I began my IF up until the last 2 weeks, and this is where I noticed the biggest difference, once again proving it’s mostly diet that impacts our results.

Last week, I got into a perfect routine, I meal prepped on Sunday (Chicken, rice and Broccoli) for lunch (11AM fast Break Meal) for all 5 days, also eating healthy snacks throughout the day to help maintain the normal hunger feelings and a healthy dinner with my girls.

No skipping meals, hitting about 2500-3000 calories, eating minimal fast-food and portion moderation what I did eat, nothing a normal working person couldn’t do. I did eat very much a normal diet over the weekend including eggs, toast and a ton of bacon with all of the girls, you have to live too.

I totally expected to have a little weight gain this morning due to the high amounts of salt, carbs, fats and sugars. Nope, still on a steady decline of about 1-2 lbs. a week weighing in at 187.8 lbs. (85 kg) my new average weight is remaining in the high 180’s.

Now that I have my IF in order, it’s almost second nature and minimal effort; I have been looking into Carb cycling for my meals. I’m not sure yet if I’m going to get into this so I won’t talk much about it yet. I’m not in a hurry to reach a goal, just good overall health.

So this week I’m weighing the pros and cons of Carb cycling and seeing how much time and effort it takes.

At the age of 36 I’m stronger, faster and in better shape than my early 20’s. That feels good to know I have a system down that will help staying strong and healthy as I approach my 40’s. I’m beginning to think of life as debt, if you stay on top of payments, do not use more than you have and maintain a good “credit score” health should become a normal routine in living.

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“If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living”. – Gail Sheehy

I don’t want to get too far into unhealthy living that it takes a “health scare” to get me back on track. I want to grow old with my girls, enjoy grandchildren one day and have the stamina and desire to actually have a fun time with all of them as opposed to being the grandpa that has the “come sit on my lap” attitude, because I’m too tired or out of shape to do anything else.What I’m doing today is making a choice that will affect my future permanently.