Deanna’s GREAT Before And After Pictures

November 6, 2013 by danny · Leave a Comment 

The first time Deanna contacted me was via e-mail.  While reading this e-mail, to be honest, I thought to myself, “oh great, another one of those, ‘I’ll do WHATEVER it takes to get results as fast as possible,’ types.”  When she told me her goal (and they were very aggressive goals. Not your typical, I want to lose 1-2 pounds per week, type of goals), I had to e-mail her back, telling her to slow down and ease into this thing a bit more.  But she swore to me, that once she puts her mind to something, she TRULY sticks to it.  Anyway, I was still a little apprehensive and thought that maybe she was setting herself up for disappointment.

What was the end result?  I’ll let her tell the story.  Deanna, it’s all you…

I lost over 40 pounds in 4 months with help from Danny McLarty. Sounds like one of those ads on TV but it’s true.  I did not use diet aids or magic pills.  I used hard work and self discipline while Danny guided, recommended, and encouraged.

Deanna's Before Pic

Why did I choose to lose the weight?  January 2nd I stepped on the scale at the doctor’s office and was so disgusted with my weight that I couldn’t even concentrate on what the doctor was saying.  I realized my clothes were too tight.  I noticed that the steering wheel was rubbing on my belly when I drove.  I’m over 40 and I have had two kids – that’s just what happens, right?  Avoiding the cameras should have been the first clue for my true problem…I was not happy with myself and excuses were not fixing my problem.

I joined a corporate-wide “Biggest Loser” contest through work on January 4th.  My first weigh-in was tough.  I had to get on a scale in front of one of my co-workers.  My stomach lurched as she leaned over to read the scale, stated my weight out loud, and wrote it down.  I was embarrassed at my weight and even more determined to change myself.

I was referred to Danny by a dear friend that had been going to him already.  I contacted him by email through his website and we scheduled an appointment for an evaluation.  I was surprised that his evaluation had absolutely nothing to do with a scale.  He checked my flexibility and had me do a few exercises and ran some measurements that had to do with range of motion.  There was no measuring tape around the waist.  I liked that.  We also discussed eating and accountability.  He gave me a list of recommended food choices and alternatives to what I was accustomed to eating.  We also discussed portion control.

Deanna's After Pic

After the meeting, I obtained a calendar and religiously recorded exactly what I ate throughout the day.  I made sure to measure my portions and I kept track of both the calorie count and the grams of protein for each item.  I even measured salad dressing.  By doing this I soon realized how much I used to consume because I liked the food rather than for what I needed to feel full.  I learned that by eating a reasonable portion of protein I felt more satisfied than I had with an oversized portion of pasta.

Danny created routines specifically for me.  The routines consisted of weight lifting, circuit cardio, and core exercises.  He demonstrated the routines and then monitored me while I performed them.

Final weigh in was March 1st.  With a loss of 14% of my body weight, I won the corporate wide contest.  Besides winning the contest, I also discovered that I enjoyed weight lifting; perhaps not the process so much as the invigorating feeling afterwards.  My clothes were baggy and I noticed that I had more energy.  I went to a follow up appointment at my doctor and found that my blood pressure had gone down and I was happy to report that I hadn’t needed a medication to prevent heartburn in nearly 2 months.

I continued with my twice per week training and by April 1st I had lost even more weight.  I wasn’t being nearly as strict with my food choices but my food preferences had changed.  I prefer fruit to sweets.  Peanuts are now one of my favorite snacks.  I still love pizza but I stay away from the pasta except on special occasions.  It’s now November 1st and I’m still down just over 40 pounds.  My weight has been steady and so has my lifestyle which includes regular exercise and continued training with Danny.  I’m comfortable with how I look and I love how I feel.  Thank you, Danny!

-Deanna Wolfe

Thanks, Deanna!  GREAT job!

The secret?  There is no secret.  Hard work.  Determination.  Consistency.

Let’s take another look at those pics! …

How Sarah Lost 10 Pounds In 30 Days

February 27, 2013 by danny · 2 Comments 

My friend and client, Sarah Herschlag recently finished her “30 days of perfection.”  The end result has her down 10 pounds!  Before these 30 days, Sarah had done a “pretty good” job with her eating.  Enough to make modest changes … her clothes were starting to fit looser, you could see her face start to lean out, etc.  But as I tell people, if you want to make a REAL physique change, you need to go ALL OUT for about 30 days.  Then you can get back to “mostly good.”

So, at the start of the new year, I e-mailed all of my clients and told them the plan that will help get them these NOTICEABLE changes in their body.  Sarah had to start her 30 days sometime in mid-January as she had some things to take care of before she could really start to get after it.

And from day 1, she stayed with the plan to a T!  No alcohol.  No poor food choices.  And no missed training sessions.  Her 30 days just ended, and as she said, “it was SOOOO worth it!”

I won’t go into detail in regards to her training program.  But I do want to mention that she really gave 100% at every session!  Effort is always the X-Factor.

ALL OUT Effort!

Below is the EXACT e-mail that I sent to my clients heading into the new year.  As beach season approaches, maybe it’s something you want to consider?.?  Anyway, check it out below, I hope you get something out of it…

“Hola everyone.  Ok, here’s the deal…

Some of you in this e-mail have already said that you are committed to do this (I’ll explain below), and some of you are still considering this.  And for those of you hearing about this for the 1st time, this will give you something to consider going into the new year.  What am I talking about? …

Starting in the new year - 4 weeks of perfection! No cheat meals/days, no alcohol, no missed training sessions (AND 2-3 cardio sessions on your own each week).  THIS is NOT a lifestyle! i.e. “be good most of the time, but every once in awhile have a few beers, or some pizza, or some candy, or some pop, etc.  But most of the time be good.”

THAT is a pretty good plan throughout the majority of the year.  But every now and then you NEED to make a couple runs (~ 4 weeks) where you are machine! THIS is how you see measurable, NOTICEABLE results!

Think of what a physique competitor (bodybuilder, figure athlete) does when he/she prepares for the final weeks before stepping on stage.  Think about what a model does when preparing for a photo shoot.  Think about what an actor does when preparing for a movie that he/she will be shirtless in or in a bikini.  EVERY ounce of their focus for their training and nutrition plan goes towards fast fat loss!

Again, this is not a lifestyle approach.  It is a 4-week “sprint” to REALLY make some great changes.  THEN, you can get back to your moderation, “mostly good” lifestyle.

One more point: If you are 40 years old, you’ve lived about 2080 weeks on this Earth.  All I’m asking for is 4 weeks of complete discipline and focus.  This is a fraction of your life that WILL BE OVER BEFORE YOU KNOW IT!!!


Below you’ll see a sample day of eating.  You’ll notice that I put the “fast fat loss” plan in red.  So, think about eating the foods in red the majority of the time.  And then if you OCCASIONALLY start to feel really sluggish/low energy, you can throw in a meal with carbs in there (maybe like once every 5-7 days).

Check out the sample plan with the food list below and let me know if you have any questions.


  • Old-fashioned oatmeal with blueberries, scrambled egg OR
  • Spinach omelet made with omega-3 enriched whole eggs


  • Turkey burger on whole-grain bread, salad OR
  • Grilled chicken breasts, steamed vegetables


  • Salmon with grilled zucchini and squash OR
  • Steak with plain sweet potato and salad OR
  • Grilled chicken breasts (2) over large spinach salad, olive oil-based dressing
  • (either dinner example in red will work)

Food list…

Protein: lean steak, grilled chicken breasts, turkey breast, baked or grilled fish, protein powder, etc.
Veggies: large pile of mostly green veggies, steamed broccoli, spinach, zucchini, squash, etc.
Starch: small amount of dry sweet potato, whole-wheat pasta, or rice (these foods should not be consumed at all, or like I said, *maybe* once every 5-7 days)
Salad: large salad with olive oil and vinegar dressing — no cream dressings!
Dessert: small amount of fruit

Danny’s notes:
-The point about the salad dressing is HUGE… IF you are eating salad with “regular” dressing, then you are moving further away from your goals.  Salad with dressing other than olive oil and vinegar dressing is NOT healthy (with a few exceptions)!
-If you include fruit on this plan, only eat 1 serving per day and try to make your fruit of choice berries more often than not.  Focus on veggies over fruit for this 4-week run.
-Continue taking fish oil on this plan and try to include green tea daily.”

End e-mail.

So, props to Sarah for sticking with it for the entire month!  It paid off!  Now, there is more than one way to skin a cat, but the above plan works great for a quick fat loss burst.  For anyone that I know that has TRULY stuck with it for the entire 30 days, they always see great results.

If you decide to give it a try, or are about to “hit it hard” with your fitness/nutrition plan, let me know… what is your plan?

Don’t Be a “Nutrition-Hopper”

January 29, 2013 by danny · 4 Comments 

Quite often in this fitness industry, us trainers get frustrated when we hear about people “program-hopping.”  You know, one week a person is performing a workout from Arnold’s Encyclopedia of Bodybuilding.  Then next week they want to give P90X a try.

When they realize that wasn’t for them, they say, “screw this, I’m just gonna start working on my bench press because I want hyooge pecs!”


This guy (or girl) never gives a program enough time to play-out, so to speak.  When you’re executing a program properly, you should be working to progress from week to week, on said program.  If you just hop all over the damn place, you have no idea what’s working, and what isn’t.  And you definitely aren’t working TOWARDS anything (a better butt; leaner arms; a stronger deadlift; a faster 40 time, etc etc).

If you program hop, you’re essentially throwing a dart with your eyes closed and just hoping that it hits the bullseye.  Not likely.

Anyway, I’ve touched on this before, so I’ll say no more in regards to program hopping.  But I do want to talk about…


This is not talked about quite as much as program-hopping, but it can be just as problematic.  I see people hopping from one nutrition plan to the next all the time.  Sometimes daily.  ”I was going low-carb but then I saw blah, blah, blah on Dr. Oz.  Now I’m cleansing, and then I’ll start up with the Zone Diet next Monday.”  A couple days later… “I was reading in Shape Magazine that I should blah, blah, blah, so after this weekend’s cheat meals, I’m gonna start X,Y, and Z on Monday.”

This continues for-e-ver.  For-e-ver.  For-e-ver.

Tell 'em, Squints.

Bottom line: give your plan (training and nutrition) time to fully develop.  See that plan through, and then make adjustments where necessary.  By doing so, you’ll increase your chance for success, and learn something along the way.

Keep it simple, and stay consistent…

You Can’t Taste It, So You Might As Well…

January 25, 2013 by danny · Leave a Comment 

Quick tip going into the weekend for you…

Start putting spinach into your protein shake (assuming have a blender to blend it up in!).  This is something that I’ve read about for you years, but never tried.  And then recently one of the girls that I train told me that she does this.  So I asked her, “I’ve been meaning to try that for the longest time, is there really no taste to it?”  She confirmed by telling me that you can’t even tell that spinach is in there (thanks, Chris!).

So I now put spinach in most of the protein shakes that I make, and it’s a great way to get more veggies in.  I mean, most of us need to eat a whole lot more veggies, so you might as well take advantage of this easy way to “sneak” in more.

The shake I made today…

-Chocolate protein powder



-Natural Peanut Butter

NOTE: My new go-to protein powder is made by BioTrust.  They have great ingredients and I LOVE the taste! You can find it HERE

I’m off to get some training in.  I hope you all have a great weekend!

2012: The Year That Was…

January 3, 2013 by danny · Leave a Comment 

I’m going to start off this post the EXACT SAME way that I did last year’s “Year That Was,” post…

Once again, the end of the year is already here!  It’s time to reflect on what we did, what we are proud of, and what we could do better going forward.  As a reminder, when you sit down to write your resolutions, focus on your behaviors rather than your goals.  For example, if you want to lose 10 pounds by February 14th, write down the behaviors that will help get you there…

1) I will eat 6 + servings of fruits and VEGGIES per day.

2) I will train with weights 3 times per week and get 2 additional cardio sessions in.

3) I will eat (pick your vice) only 1 time per week – max.

Focusing on your behaviors will give you the road map to reach your goals.

Ok, on to 2012 …

-After about 5000 moves in my life, I finally own a house!  We love the house and love the location!  I’m especially looking forward to the cookouts in the summer, being right down the street from downtown Rockton, being right down the street from all of the Old Settler’s Day’s concerts, using the hot tub in the back yard, having a great St. Paddy’s Day party during March Madness, and having our kids just a couple blocks away from the Rockton pool!

-Here were the babies last year…

Capri & Daxton back in November of 2011

And here they are now…

Capri & Daxton - Halloween '12 as Pebbles and Bamm Bamm!

-Sometime back in early 2012, Carson, his friend Britton, and myself all went up to “Pizza Ranch” to get our grub on!  And we went to town!  Anyway, here is how part of our conversation went…

-Britton: Man Danny, when was the last time you drank a pop?!?

-Me: Back in the 80’s (1989 to be exact).

-Britton: No way!!! I could never do that!

-Carson: I know, that would be impossible!

-Me: It hasn’t been that hard actually.  After a little while you don’t even notice it.  You two should try it.

-Britton: No way!  Well, maybe I could do it for awhile.

-Me: I’ll give you both $20 if you can go from NOW, ’til 2014 without having even a sip of pop!

-Britton: (Thinking about it for a minute…) Ok, I’ll do it!

-Carson: (Looking at Britton like he’s crazy) Really, Britton!?!  Ah, um, eee, oh, alright, I’m in!

So, here we are on January 3rd, 2013, and both of them are in line for $20.  When I made the bet, I thought there would be NO WAY that I’d lose this bet.  But I’d be happy to spend $40 if they both make it.  Awesome stuff guys!

-I made my first trip back to Wrigley Field (my favorite place on Earth) since returning to Illinois.  To make it especially great, my good friend, and huge Red Sox fan, McKenna came into to town from Omaha to join me (the Cubs were playing the Red Sox).  It was a blast and definitely one of my highlights of this past summer!

A view from our seats at Wrigley

-My favorite movie in 2012 was Django Unchained.  Shondra and I didn’t get to as many movies this year because we were so busy with the twins, life, ‘n all that.  But we did manage to find some time to see Django the other day.  It was very good and the acting was great.  Jamie Foxx was good as usual.   And Christoph Waltz is now one of my favorite actors.  I thought he was unbelievable in Inglorious Bastards, and he was great in this one as well!

Christoph Waltz

-One piece of equipment that I really started using more this year was chains.  They are great for a number of reasons, and one of my favorite reasons is the fact that can help take stress off the joints when a joint(s) is in its more vulnerable position (i.e. the shoulder when the barbell is down by your chest when bench pressing).  Here’s an example of me doing Anderson Squats with chains…

-Here’s a video tour of my current training facility.  Some of my California and Nebraska friends (places I used to live… in case you’re new to have asked me for video of what my current training facility looks like.  So, here you go…

-I tore my calf while playing basketball with the high school guys.  Worst. Pain. Ever!  I felt like I got shot in the calf.  I vowed that I am now “retired” from playing hoops.  Well, I still give a lot of basketball lessons and in those lessons I demonstrate some moves/drills at near full speed.  But I still don’t think I’m going to play in anymore leagues, pick-up games, or open gyms.  I kind of miss it, but then again, the 17 million hours that I’ve played b-ball in my life is enough for 3 lifetimes! :)

-My favorite “series” on my blog this past year was my “quick tip” series.  Here, my good friends Marci, and Michelle helped provide great, ready-to-use tips for the readers.  If you haven’t read these two posts, make sure to check them out…

Quick Tips: Training and Nutrition – Episode I

Quick Tips: Training and Nutrition – Episode II

I could probably add a few more high/lowlights of the year, but I’ll stop right here.  After all, 2013 will be filled with much more training, nutrition, and basketball posts.  So come back in and say hi whenever you get a chance.

Go out and MAKE 2013 a GREAT year!  See you soon…

Quick Tips: Training and Nutrition – Episode II

October 15, 2012 by danny · Leave a Comment 

If you missed Episode I of this series, be sure to go back and check it out.  You can find it HERE.

My buds Marci Nevin Curtis and Michelle Adams both made great contributions to the previous Quick Tips post.  Today it will be just Michelle and I.  Marci just got married, so she gets the week off.

Marci showing off the guns!

My boy Jason, looking smooth!

I will admit, I was a little hurt that she put her wedding day over my blog.  But whatever.

Tips from Michelle…

#1) Remove all tempting foods from the house. Or hide them! Peanut butter is a major trigger food for me. But, I like to have it for when I need to give my dog her supplements. I put it in the back of the fridge so that I don’t see it every time I go in there. It really helps.

#2) Deal with your emotions another way other than eating. Anger, loneliness, boredom, etc., all make people want to eat. One of my clients was reading 50 Shades of Grey and she stopped binging! Seriously! Find what works for you.

#3) Always have food pre-cooked. I regularly have chicken and ground turkey cooked and ready to go. I am hooked on Rosie’s organic free range chicken at Costco.

#4) Get clear on what your goal is. Then, attach a strong reason for wanting to reach that goal. So many people say they want to lose fat but ultimately they are really happier staying where they are. It’s got to be something that gets you outside of your comfort zone. Raise the bar! I said Yes to doing a fashion show benefit. The idea of walking down a runway in front of people is scary. I want to look good! But on a day to day basis, my mentality is I expect myself to be a role model for my clients. Change your mindset and your expectation of who you are and your behavior will change. Remind yourself daily of the expectation of the new you. Write it down!

Tips from Danny …

#1) Set up for success! This means something different for everyone.  Maybe this means you set your breakfast food out on the kitchen table the night before so when you wake up, it is sitting there calling your name.  Don’t do this, and it may mean that you throw a quick and convenient (but so not so healthy) food in the toaster – like a pop tart.

This is what’s often waiting for me on the kitchen table…




-Protein Powder


And then I grab some blueberries and natural peanut butter (or almond butter) out of the fridge while the oats are cooking.  And I’m good to go.  The day has begun on a good note!

#2) Find ways to succeed. A little slip up here.  A little mess up there.  It all adds up!  For example, have you ever done a great job of packing leftovers in the fridge that you planned on grabbing before heading off to work… only to walk out the door, hop in the car and not realize that they are still sitting back in your fridge ’til you get 1/2 way to work?  Well, I have – and PISSES ME OFF!  So, to make sure I avoid this, quite often I’ll put my keys on top of my fridge so I can’t help but remember to ALSO grab my food before I walk out the door.

It works for me!  This may seem dumb to you (but it’s not, so if you think it’s dumb, you’re wrong! ;) ), but we all have little flaky things that we do in life.  So, if you find some of these little things are holding you back from reaching your goals, adjust accordingly.

Alright, that’s all I have for today.  Thanks for the great tips again, Michelle!  And Marci, I’ll let it slide this time, but don’t let it happen again. ;)  Just playin’!  You looked lovely at the wedding!  The weights, cardio, and clean eating definitely paid off!

Quick Tips: Training and Nutrition – Episode I

September 25, 2012 by danny · Leave a Comment 

Throughout the course of each week, I make sure to find time to read nutrition/training related articles/blogs.  However I only have so much time in my day, so reading long article after long article can become too time consuming or just start to get old after awhile.  Therefore, I really like articles that can provide quick, easy to apply information… kind of like this blog post I made a few months back.  Or, like the series Eric Cressey has going over on his blog.

My good friends from back in Cali are here to drop some quality tips that can help you get one step closer to reaching your health and fitness goals.  Both Michelle Adams and Marci Nevin have already made some great contributions (found HERE and HERE and HERE), and today they’re back for more…

Tips From Michelle…

#1) Stay busy! Don’t plop down on the couch at night and eat in front of the TV. Eat with the TV off. Clean up. Move on. One of my clients gave me a tip. She schedules something to do right after she eats, like fold the laundry. (Note from Danny: Oh, me likey!  Great idea… Michelle be sure to give your client props for me.  What a great idea!

2) Keep your list of food choices small. Stick to foods you like and don’t force yourself to eat foods you don’t like. I love oatmeal. When I was dieting for a show it was my carb of choice. Are sweet potatoes better? Yes. But when I was dieting it satisfied me. Feeling deprived just leads to overeating. I enjoy more food options now but I go back to my narrow food list when I need to tighten up. Caveat is #3.

#3) Get obsessed with vegetables. Explore new veggies and see how many colors you can eat it one day.

#4) Have tea at night after dinner. That is a tough time for me. I make a doctored up lemon ginseng tea, heating up a 1/2 c unsweetened almond milk and water and adding some liquid vanilla stevia. It’s very satisfying and hits my sweet tooth.

#5) Follow someone on Facebook that inspires you. I love Jamie Eason. Who doesn’t?! Just going to her page, reading her posts and looking at her awesome pics motivates me to stay on track.

Jamie Eason

Tips from Marci…

#1) In the wise words of Dr. John Berardi, “If it’s in your house, eventually you will eat it.” This is a simple way of saying, dont bring your trigger foods into your home. There are certain foods that I just cant buy, even healthy ones, as I know I have the ability to eat the entire box/jar in one sitting. There is bound to be a time when you lose your self control and cave to these foods, which often sets off a cascade of negative emotions and can cause you to blow your diet for the rest of the day.

#2) Some of my best workouts have come on the days when I felt the worst or was the least motivated. If a time comes when you really don’t feel like training, just get yourself to the gym (or where ever you train) and at least go through your warm up and a few sets. 99% of the time you will get into the zone and end up completing your whole workout.

#3) Stop program hopping if you don’t see the results you want within the first week. There is no perfect diet or training plan. The results you get are determined by how well you execute it. Find a plan and stick to it. Just make sure it is one that you enjoy and will be consistent with, as you will be much more likely to succeed.

Tips from Danny…

#1) Similar to tip #4 from Michelle above…

When I start to get a craving that I know I have no control over (i.e. my hand reaches for my phone to dial up some pepperoni pizza from the local pizza joint even though my brain is yelling, “PUT THE PHONE DOWN!”), I have 3 things that have worked for me to beat these STONG cravings..

A) Brush my teeth.  Because who feels like eating after getting that “clean mouth feel?”

B) Chew a piece of gum.

C) Drink tea (like Michelle mentioned).

Those incredibly strong cravings aren’t going to last that long, so if you can get rid of them for even a few minutes, they usually don’t come back.

#2) Make sure you have regressions and progressions for every exercise that you perform.  For example, let’s look at some single leg exercises, going from easiest to hardest…

Static Lunges with dumbbells (DBs) < Reverse Lunges with DBs < Walking Lunges with DBs < Static Lunges with a barbell (BB) < Bulgarian Split Squats with DBs < Reverse Lunges with a BB < Walking Lunges with a BB < Bulgarian Split Squats with a BB.

Barbell Bulgarian Split Squats

Now, I know I didn’t list EVERY POSSIBLE single exercise imaginable.  And you may disagree with the order in which I ranked the difficulty level of each.  But I hope you get the point.  And that is, if you are struggling to keep good form on one exercise, regress and master another one before “moving up the ladder” to a move difficult one.

Alright, that’ll wrap it up for now.  I’ll be back with some more great and easy (in theory) to apply tips from some of my friends in the fitness biz.

Now get out of here and go stock up on some tea and colored veggies.  Now!

If you think these tips can help a family or friend out, be sure to share it on FB and/or twitter…

Good Articles From Around The Web (Fish Oils/Paleo/Vegan) …

September 18, 2012 by danny · Leave a Comment 

Hope everyone is having a good week.  I’ve been busy with training at the new location, giving basketball lessons, and hangin’ with the family.  If you haven’t already heard… if you live here in the Rockton area, I’ve started running a cardio-based, fat loss bootcamp every Saturday morning at 7:30 a.m.  If you haven’t attended yet, but are interested, just let me know if you have any questions.  Ok, on to today’s post…

Omega-3 Madness

A recent mainstream media report called into question the benefits of supplementing with fish oil.  This caused some of my friends and family members to say this kind of thing to me; “Danny!  When you told me to supplement with fish oils 5 years ago, I haven’t missed a day.  Now this report tells me that they are not beneficial.  What’s the deal!?!?!?!  You’re a liar, a loser, and you should be locked up for life!”

Well, Eric Cressey had a great blog post in which he had Dr. Hector Lopez in to make a guest post.  If you saw the fish oil report and are starting to think that maybe you should stop supplementing with fish oil, give this a read.

The moral of the story is, to always be skeptical.  Just because you read something in a newspaper or hear it on the news, it doesn’t mean it’s true.  Among other things, this report was a classic case of “cherry picking.”

In other words, they took a bunch of information and only used the information that fit into their agenda… to have a controversial headline that got many people to visit their website, even if it is full of misinformation.

A cherry picking analogy: let’s say that 1000 people graduated from Harvard this year, and 994 of them went onto run successful businesses (I know, “success” can be defined in many ways, just go with it), and 6 of these Harvard graduates went on to become drug dealers.  If I were to report that those that attend Harvard are likely to become drug dealers, I’d be cherry picking in order to meet my agenda (presumably to sell more newspapers), because I conveniently didn’t mention the successful 994 individuals.  I didn’t tell the whole story, because if I did, that would be boring and wouldn’t support my stance that Harvard grads like to slang cocaine.   Anyway, onto the next one…

Oh, and by the way, I exaggerated about what some of my friends and family members were saying about me.  No one really called me a liar, a loser, and wants me locked up for life.  At least not that I know of. :)

Paleo vs Vegan

Talk about a heated debate!  Like usual, there is a middle-ground.  Here is a good read to discuss some of the potential pros and cons of each side of the fence.  In case you are interested in my personal view (and I’m assuming you are, since you are visiting my website)…

Too often vegetarians say that “their way” is way healthier.  That is the case MAINLY because they are comparing a vegetarian diet to a typical diet that consists of Burger King, Pizza Hut, oreos, and beer.  OF COURSE a vegetarian diet is healthier than THAT.  Although I think a vegetarian diet can be healthy, I don’t think it is ideal.  I recommend eating meats, plenty of veggies, fruits, and healthy fats.

Carbohydrate sources can be mixed in there, and depending on the goal, increased or decreased to match this goal (as a general rule, consume more carbs/calories when trying to add a little size, and reduce [but not necessarily eliminate] carbs/calories when trying to drop some weight).

I want to say one more time, ALWAYS be skeptical when you hear about a new report that comes out.  If doesn’t mean it is not true, but it certainly does NOT mean that it is true.  Do a little investagating on your own.  And if you don’t know what to look for, just ask me.  Since I’m not very smart, I probably won’t know the answer either… so I’ll just ask those that are smarter than me, and get back to you. :)

Have a great week.  Work hard, but make sure to mix in a little fun!

Recipe of the Week from Marci Nevin… Greek Salad with Avo-Ziki Dressing

August 14, 2012 by danny · 3 Comments 

My good friend Marci, who has already contributed to my website HERE, has a great recipe for all of us to try (including me, as I haven’t gotten to it yet, but plan on making it later on the week).  This will help me get on track after my donut burger gaffe from last weekend. I’ll let Marci take over from here…

Marci Performing Weighted Chin-Ups

August in California is HOT. While the heat of the summer has never swayed my eating habits, I know plenty of people who don’t like eating heavy foods this time of year. My fiancée is one of them, and as a result he has eaten a big salad for dinner every night for the past few months.

Last week, one of my clients gave me 6 pounds of frozen, wild caught halibut that I’ve been eager to eat. Since we typically eat dinner at with my parents on Sunday night, I thought it would be a good time to grill it up. I was trying to find the right type of side dish to accompany the fish, and I came across this salad, which looked delicious. It ended up being the perfect summertime meal for a very warm evening. Jason got his salad fix and I got to enjoy the halibut, so it was a win-win.

While this may look like your typical Greek salad, I promise you that it is much more. This Avo-Ziki dressing is incredible, and it truly transformed the dish. It’s almost more of a sauce, really, thereby making it very versatile. I ended up putting it on my fish as well, but it would also go great on top of a burger, chicken or other type of meat/fish, or as a dressing for a different type of salad.  I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Greek Salad

  • 4 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
  • ½ cup cucumber slices
  • ½ cup Kalamata olives, halved
  • ¼ cup Avo-Ziki dressing
  • 2 T (or less) extra-virgin olive oil

Mix romaine, tomatoes, olives, and cucumbers in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix avo-ziki sauce and olive oil. Top the salad with the dressing.

Avo-Ziki Sauce

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ c grated cucumber
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 clove grated garlic
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 t fresh dill, finely chopped (I left this out as I didn’t have any on hand)

Combine all ingredients by hand or with a small food processor or hand blender.

It sounds great, Marci!  Thanks for sharing this with everyone.  I can’t wait to try it!

NOTE: This recipe comes from the Diane Sanfilippo’s book, “Practical Paleo.”  You can find the book HERE.

Mid-August Randomness… Daxton’s 1st Time Bowling; The “Donut Burger” etc etc…

August 13, 2012 by danny · Leave a Comment 

Here we go…

Daxton’s 1st Bowling Experience

Yesterday we celebrated Carson’s 12th birthday party at the bowling alley.  A lot of fun!  Here is Daxton’s 1st attempt…

Don’t Try This At Home (or at the fair)

So I went to the Boone County Fair to support some of my friends/clients that were showing their pigs/cows ‘n all that.  Definitely interesting.  Anyway, as I was walking back to the car to head home, I see this sign…

A heart attack waiting to happen!

Now, as you know, I’m a pretty healthy dude that also believes in enjoying life and splurging from time to time.  But a donut plus a greasy burger rolled into one sandwich is probably about as bad as it gets.  With that said, I just couldn’t pass it up.  If I saw a sign for a six-legged duck, I’d probably have to stop and look just because I may never have that opportunity again… same thing with this donut burger – a once in a lifetime opportunity.  ;)

What they did was cut a glazed donut in half and use it for the top and bottom half of the bun.  I honestly don’t remember the last time I ate a donut, let alone combined with a burger.  It turned out to be very tasty, very greasy, and very sticky for my fingers.  It’s now crossed off my bucket list, and I can move on in life knowing that I owned that donut burger. ;)

Torn Calf

A few months back I tore my calf while playing basketball. I then considered “retiring” from playing hoops anymore because of the fact that I make my living training others and demonstrating moves/drills while giving basketball lessons.  And getting hurt makes both of those tasks VERY tough! I’m still up in the air as to whether or not I’ll join my friends when our b-ball league rolls around next winter.  And when they ask me to play a little pick up hoops here and there, I’m not sure if I’ll keep saying no thanks… or will I say, “screw it, I’m in!”

One of the girls that I train in the weight room and on the basketball court, is heading to college in about a week to play basketball.  She’s coming off of knee surgery and has not gone up against live competition in months.  So during a portion of our last couple lessons, we’ve played a little one-on-one and my calf has responded pretty well.  No injuries, BUT I still do feel a little “twinge” as I push off of it.  I don’t know how much of it is my head and how much of it is “real.”  Injuries are a tricky thing.  Wish me luck in keeping this calf  healthy and help give me the strength to not push it too far and re-injury it!  Please, I need you! :)


Speaking of my calf injury, when I was hobbling around, I couldn’t do a whole for my quads (although I still got quite a bit of posterior chain work in … you know, hamstrings and glutes).  But since I’ve returned to going full force with quad dominant movement again, my quads have responded really well.  I used to think my legs were my weakness, but my quads have actually become one of my more developed body parts.  Unfortunately, I can’t say the same thing for my calves.  But, back to the positive…

This last month and a half or so, I’ve been mostly using 2 quad dominant exercises – Back Squats and Bulgarian Split Squats.  But mainly back squats.  Here’s a picture of my current quad development…

John Alvino posted this on facebook the other day and I shared it.  In case you missed it, here it is again…

C'mon dude, find a squat rack!

Don’t be this guy.  Be a man and work your legs!

Ladies, you like it when a guy has nice legs and glutes, right?

What do you think of Daxon’s 1st attempt at bowling?  Is he the next Roy Munson?  Or should I just keep him on the basketball courts?

Finally, would you dare try the donut burger?  Or just too frightening for you? ;)