Tag Archives: video

Day 295: Building a man of steel

Day 295 - front

Day 295 – front

  • Weight: 138.2 lbs.
  • Workout C: 30 minutes, 19 seconds; next: Workout C, June 24
  • Total inches: 125.2
  • Protein: 133g (3g over target)
  • Calories: 2,099

Henry Cavill, Man of Steel

Henry Cavill works out at Gym Jones, adding muscle to
become Superman in “Man of Steel.”

No padding.

When Henry Cavill was cast as Superman for the movie “Man of Steel,” director Zack Snyder, among others, wanted him to fill out the costume naturally.

Cavill did what any actor would do: Work out like crazy, 2.5 hours a day for 3 months, plus 5,000 calories a day. And later, getting lean by cutting to 2,500 calories a day.

I watched the movie today, which goes out of its way to show his shirtless physique. It’s impressive, as Ginny noted in that it made up for any and all flaws in the plot, the writing, the casting, etc.

Bulking up was his job. He will transform again for his next role, and the next one. Of course, he’ll likely revisit Gym Jones in Utah for the “Man of Steel” sequel.

Bulking up isn’t my job. But it might be fun to try at that intensity for 3 months.

If only for the flattering pics …

Video: Henry Cavill prepares for “Man of Steel” in the gym.

Day 294 - side

Day 294 – side

Day 175: The myth that is the Nutrition Facts label

Day 175 - front

  • Weight: 137.0 lbs.
  • Workout C: 22 minutes, 40 seconds; next: Workout C, Feb. 25
  • Total inches: 123.3
  • Protein: 145 g (16 g over target)
  • Calories: 2,308

Reading the Nutrition Facts label on food is a waste of time. Unless you’re looking for a lovely fairy tale.

Video: New York filmmaker Casey Neistat investigates
calorie data on foods for the New York Times.

As we’ve explored before, counting calories is more art than science. You must estimate the calories in cooking a recipe, or evaluating portion size. You must, with every bite, guess.

How woefully inadequate, whether trying to gain or lose weight.

Casey Neistat, a filmmaker based in New York, looked at foods he ate on a typical day in a report for the New York Times. The city requires restaurants to post calories on their menus.

Neistat bought five things from both stores and restaurants. With the Times’ journalistic resources at his disposal, he had those foods analyzed at the New York Obesity Nutrition Research Center in a bomb calorimeter.

(You could do it yourself, after spending several thousand dollars on the equipment, not to mention the training needed.)

Four of the five foods tested had more calories than reported on the Nutrition Facts label. Of the four, two were packaged items, while the other two were made at restaurants upon ordering.


He would’ve accidentally consumed 20 percent more calories than expected, some 549 calories.

Neistat asks in conclusion, “If the requirement to post the information (on caloric content) is going to be enforced, why not also enforce its accuracy?”

Oy, I may have wasted 6 months counting calories, when at best, I was counting pixies.

Day 175 - side

Day 17: Visioning is believing

day 17

  • Weight: 125.4 lbs.
  • No workout today
  • Total inches: 118.3
  • Protein: 156 g (38 g over target)
  • Calories: 2,345

A fear seems a little less intimidating when said aloud. I’ve already named a primary fear of this project: getting fat. The daily weight pendulum has suddenly begun to swing in the correct direction.

weight Sept. 17, 2012

Hooray for excess calories. The real trick is adding more pounds of muscle than fat.

Why focus on fear when I can focus on what I want? I can illustrate it much better than trying to describe it …

Charles Atlas ad

The beach bully, the original one, not the new one.
Who wouldn’t want to be the villain in a comic book ad?

Rosie the Riveter, We can do it

Rosie says I can do it.
I can do it! (Look at that bicep!)
If I had been running the riveting factories …
we’d all be speaking German now. 

Tough cat eats pain for breakfast

All I want to know is how much protein is in pain.

Mike Tyson

Tyson, the early years. Note the lack of tribal facial tattoo.
Also, how much protein in a human ear? Asking for a friend. 

Homer eats Powersauce Bars, which unleash
the energy of six different types of apples.

I’ll be a brick …






Cue the montage.

Fading out …

Day 13: Memos to myself

day 13

  • Weight: 124.0 lbs.
  • No workout today
  • Total inches: 117.8
  • Protein: 195 g (77 g over target)

As obsessive as I am about getting my numbers and daily topless photo, I’ve been remiss in a few other details chronicling Project Bulk.

• I tried to capture video of my most recent workout, but discovered at the end that the camera had frozen. First time that’s happened: I had to pull the battery just to get it to shut off.

• I haven’t taken any food shots, but I can work on that. So you haven’t seen my Balance Bars, barbecue chicken and baked potatoes, barbecue chicken and oven fries, bratwursts (that I didn’t make), veggie pizza (that I didn’t make), protein shakes and so on.

• Also, I meant to take a side profile photo once a week, but have not done so since Day 1. I don’t think we’ll see much change there, but it can’t hurt.

• Somehow, I’ve managed to remember my workout days in my head. I do have them in my calendar, but I know without checking that Saturday is the next session and that it will be Workout A, another chance to redeem myself.

The one thing that I’ve been rock solid on is turning out these posts. Body by blogging!

Day 4: On the fly

day 4

  • Weight: 123.4 lbs.
  • Workout B: 53 minutes
  • Total inches: 116.6
  • Protein: 117 g (1 g over target)

I am not a gym rat.

When you’re a nerd in school, you find ways to get out of PE. Climb the rope? Have rubber balls hurled at your head? No thanks. (Though I did dig the square dancing.)

So given the choice between signing up for an expensive gym membership or getting the most basic equipment at home, I took the latter. (I think I could’ve gotten away with doing a free 30-day trial membership, but what would I do if I didn’t bulk up fast enough in that period?)

I’m now the proud owner of a dumbbell set, barbell, plates and a workout bench for just under $130. I also built a T-handle from pipes ($19) as a decent kettlebell substitute.

Even with my careful shopping, I hit a couple of potential setbacks with today’s Workout B.

“The 4-Hour Body” [Amazon | iTunes aff. links] has great workout suggestions if you’re using a fully equipped gym. Otherwise, you might spend some time looking for alternate routines.

The first exercise is the slight incline bench press. Since I don’t have a power rack or a spotter, the safest alternative was using dumbbells instead of barbells.

Video: Incline Dumbbell Bench Press

YouTube has so many videos demonstrating the proper way to do each routine. This made it a little easier in doing the exercise with different equipment or method.

The second exercise is the barbell squat. Again, without a squat rack, I didn’t want to take chances injuring myself using the barbell. Fortunately, the dumbbell squat provides similar benefits.

The third (optional) exercise is the kettlebell swing, and author Tim Ferriss gives a great homemade substitute to pricy kettlebells. In the book (and this video), he explains how to make a T-handle (or T-bar).

Video: How to make a T-handle as a kettlebell substitute

And the last exercise (also optional) is 3 minutes on a stationary bike to alleviate any leg soreness. I do have a mountain bike, but the tires are flat and the frame in general needs a tune-up.

So I did bicycle exercises on my back. Take that, neglected mountain bike.

The home gym is working out nicely, thanks to some improvised solutions. That makes me a home rat.