Archive for June, 2011

Fit for Duty: Operation Rapid Response

SSG Ken Bodybuilding Workout

Get ripped with this toning and body building workout. Plus, we have information on proper calorie intake and the importance of properly rehabilitating an injury.

Hope you like the workout!

Who Will be the Next MMA Superstar?

JON “BONES” JONES is the current UFC light heavyweight champion. As of May 2011, ESPN Sports ranks Jones as the #1 light heavyweight fighter in the world and the #3 pound-​​for-​​pound fighter. Sherdog​.com ranks Jones as the #1 light heavyweight and the #6 pound-​​for-​​pound fighter. He is noted for having the longest reach in UFC history at 84.5″ and at 23 years old, being the youngest UFC title holder in the company’s history.

Bodybuilding Supplement Shocker!

When it comes to building muscle, I’m a big fan of adding the right supplements to your bodybuilding plan.

But I hate being held hostage by greedy supplement manufacturers who hock worthless junk supplements to hard-​​working gym rats.

And one of the sneakiest tricks played on us…

How to Find a Training Partner

Unless you’re already taking self defense training lessons at a local school, it can be tough to find someone who’s willing to take survival as seriously as you, right?

So are you doomed to watching self defense videos all by yourself and shadow-​​boxing?

Maybe not.

Here’s a sneaky strategy to try to get at least one of your buddies to wake up and start training with you…

Watch “Wartorn 1861–2010″

In 2007, James Gandolfini of “The Sopranos” fame produced an excellent HBO documentary entitled ALIVE DAY: HOME FROM IRAQ.  The film focused on injured Iraq veterans and their devotion to America, while surveying the physical and emotional costs of war. Ten surviving soldiers were interviewed by Gandolfini, who revealed their thoughts on the challenges which they face integrating back into society and family life. They also reflected on the memories of the day when they narrowly escaped death, and what life may have been like in other circumstances.

In 2010, Gandolfini produced another documentary with HBO, entitled WARTORN 1861–2010, which analyzed the effects of POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER or PTSD throughout American history from 1861 to 2010. It featured interviews with American Military Officials on their views of PTSD and how they are trying to help soldiers affected by it.  Blending archival research with first-​​person accounts, this sobering film  traces the history of posttraumatic stress, from the first documented Civil War cases to more recent occurrences in the Middle East. Letters from soldiers of the American Civil War and World War I who were affected by PTSD are examined along with interviews with soldiers affected by PTSD and their families.

Small Changes to Lose Big

For years, I have been telling my clients that using smaller plates and bowls is an easy way to cut calories and shed pounds without even thinking about it. After reading an article by Dr. Brian Wansink about ways to change your environment to help you avoid mindless (over)eating and then hearing him speak on an expert panel, I got excited about sharing these fantastic tips with you! With our busy lifestyles, it’s often difficult for us to make the best food and portion decisions, as good as our intentions may be. By making the following changes at home and at work, you will consume less without even thinking about it.

High Altitude Training Do’s and Don’t

For hard core athletes and military troops looking to get an edge, altitude training may be an answer to shocking your body into working harder. Altitude training has been touted by olympic-​​level athletes and coaches who claim it increase strength, speed and endurance while improving recovery and avoiding fatigue.

I gave it a try recently for this column and also did some research to see if it is really safe. My verdict: it’s no joke and not for the “faint” of heart.

All-​​Marine Boxing Team Hits St. Louis

It’s Marine Week in St. Louis!

Members of the All-​​Marine boxing team put on gloves and gave the St. Louis police and firefighters a good fight for charity during Marine Week St. Louis. Check out the video below for some of the highlights. These Marines can really throw down.


Fit for Duty: Operation Slim Gym

SSG Ken's TRX Workout

Team, I’m back with episode two! Get in the best shape of your life with the TRX Suspension Trainer.

If you don’t already know, Fitness Anywhere Suspension Training is a revolutionary method of leveraged bodyweight exercise. Easily set up the portable TRX Suspension Trainer and you’re in control. Safely perform hundreds of exercises that build power, strength, flexibility, balance, mobility, and prevent injuries, all at the intensity you choose.

Staying “Combat Ready” in a Combat Zone

TRX Suspension Trainer

By Cpl. Bryan Lett

Physical fitness and deployments play a significant part the Marine Corps lifestyle. How does a Marine deployed to a remote combat outpost or forward operating base, where gyms are a shell of what Marines are used too, stay combat ready?

Marines have come up with a variety of unique ways to physically train in a combat zone. However, in recent months TRX suspension training has become a favored form of maintaining combat fitness.

TRX suspension training is a unique training tool that provides endless exercise options for all fitness levels using nothing but your own body weight and gravity as resistance.

Fight Club 29: Got What it Takes?

By Mark Geletko

Mark Geletko is as tough as steel, fitting since he’s a Pittsburgh native and a former steel worker. He’s also a recently retired Marine Corps sergeant major and the coach/​manager of Fight Club 29, the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms’ premier fight team.

Fight Club 29 is a group of 12 Marines and three Sailors who, on their own time, train and compete in submission grappling, Brazilian Ju Jitsu, boxing, pankration and combat grappling tournaments throughout the West Coast.

He preaches the “fight mentality” for a reason: He believes it’s part of the Marine Corps’ warrior ethos, and training for the physical hardships a man will face in martial arts competitions will make him stronger and more prepared for what his career in the Corps may throw at him. Before leading Marines and Sailors into competition, he developed a warrior ethos on his own.

MMA Legend Visits JBA

Chuck “the ice man” Liddell, mixed martial arts legend, poses for a photo opportunity May 20 with, 11th Security Forces Squadron members, Senior Airman Gregory Twigg, left, Staff Sgt. Cerrato Oswaldo, center, and Airman 1st Class Pierre Andiffred during the 2011 Joint Service Open House at Joint Base Andrews, Md. JSOH affords the public an opportunity to meet the men and women of the Armed Forces and to see military equipment from the Navy, Marines, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard. JSOH is planned and conducted through the efforts of active duty, guard and reserve service members, as well as civilian employees, retirees and family members. (Photo by Bobby Jones)

Fit for Duty: Operation Tread and Shed

SGT Ken Circuit Training

Air Force MSgt Mike Scaggs and I are the two featured Pentagon Channel Fit for Duty fitness instructors for the next year. The shows are now being posted to their website, iTunes, and airing on the Fit for Duty channel. My first episode is a workout that features a 6-​​station fitness circuit that targets the entire body using standard gym equipment. Are you up for the challenge?

Hope you like the workouts. Hooah!

Get Straight to the Core

Marine Corps Workouts

By Lance Cpl. Jacob D. Osborne

When most Marines want to improve their running performance, they run. When they want to build strength and muscle in their chest, they bench press. What most people may overlook is their core. A person’s core is the foundation for the entire body. In order to build muscle, a Marine must strengthen the core. There’s no other way around it.

“I have seen people come into my gym and just work their core and within a month their running, weightlifting and just about everything else improved immensely,” said Randy Edwards, a trainer and the owner of The Gym in Dallas.

Generally, when someone hears the term core, they think of six pack abs, but there is more. Core training targets all of the muscles along the torso that stabilize the spine and pelvis, which in turn supports the rest of the body, said Edwards.

How to be Safe While Driving in a Rain Storm

The other day I was driving on Florida’s Turnpike when I saw some very ominous looking thick pitch black low hanging clouds looming in front of me. I knew that can mean only one thing-​​I was heading into a huge rain storm. Florida is notorious for having flash flood like tropical storms and I was about to drive right into one. Sure enough, just as I got under the giant black cloud the torrential down pour began. I immediately slowed down, turned on my lights and got into the slow moving lane. It was raining so hard that I could barely see the cars in front or to the side of me. Just then the two cars in front of me turned their hazard lights on. I first I thought that they were experiencing some type of mechanical problem and that they were about to pull of off the road but they kept on driving. I then recognized the wisdom in what they were doing. I could barely see the marker lights of any of the cars in front of me but the two cars with their hazard lights on were very easy to make out in the storm. BRILLIANT! I immediately turned my hazard lights on to protect myself as well, as soon as I did that the car directly behind me slowed down and increased his distance from me to about two car lengths. IT WORKED! About a half hour later the storm ended and I made it home safe.

Dirty Rotten Grappling Move For Close Quarters Combat

With the surge in mixed martial arts as a fighting sport, close-​​in grappling moves have become a necessary part of training. However, this self defense platform is mainly sports-​​based so there has been some confusion about the difference between self defense techniques, which are often used to save lives and the techniques used in mixed martial arts that are bound by rules.

One of the more common misconceptions is the Muay Thai knee strike mistake that is often made in the area of self defense.  What I mean is that many people try to throw the mixed martial arts Muay Thai knee strike while they’re locked up and still clinched with their attacker.  Many people see this move on television when watching mixed martial arts and think it makes perfect sense.  However, there is a problem…

Muscle-​​Building Landmines

With all the hard work and sweat you put into your exercise regimen at your local iron jungle, the last thing you want to do is short change your gains by making these 3 common mistakes…

1. Not setting short term, realistic goals

It’s easy to get sucked into the supplement company ads promising gains of “20 lbs in the next 3 days!”. while posing a steroid-​​using pro behind a bottle of “magic pills”.

Own the Boker Plus Pocket Stick

The BOKER PLUS POCKET STICK is an excellent new entry in the world of Eta Koppo Bo, Yawara and Kubotans. It’s made by the German knife maker Boker. The Pocket Stick comes in two models, one made of stainless steel with a black finish and one made of titanium with a very shiny satin metallic finish. For real life self defense applications I would definitely choose the one with the non-​​reflective black finish. From a tactical perspective it makes more sense to use protection tools that are hard to spot. The Pocket Stick itself has quite a lot of heft to it, much more so than any other type of small impact tool that I have ever handled. Holding a solid piece of steel or titanium in your hand most definitely inspires more confidence in you than if you were holding a piece of plastic.

Stress Solution

Everyone has stress, some more than others, and military members and their families have a lot more than others, which is why I chose the wellness product I did for this NikkiFitness Fave review. Mini Chill relaxation drinks may help your anxiety, racing pulse and nervousness. I had to give up coffee because it gave me the shakes and stressed me more instead of energizing me, and I think drinks like 5 hour energy probably do more harm than good. This might be the antidote.

The Food Pyramid Becomes a Plate

The USDA has just released the new MyPlate icon, which replaces the old-​​school Food Pyramid.  You probably remember the good old Food Guide Pyramid that was used between 1992 and 2005, which urged American’s to base their diet around breads and grains, and choose fats, oils, and sweets sparingly.  In 2005, the USDA changed the icon to MyPyramid to reflect the updated version of the Dietary Guidelines for America.  The intent was to simplify the message and add a layer that had not been included before, physical activity.  But the problem was that no one knew how to interpret or use the new pretty icon.  Now a new and much improved icon, MyPlate, is being used by the USDA to replace the previous pyramids and to promote a simple and effective strategy to eating healthfully.  This icon is intended to reflect the 2010 version of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Click here if you are interested in “A Brief History of USDA Food Guides”.