The Guaranteed 28-DayPlan P. 138
End Back Pain This Move SetsYouFree P. 48
Boost Your Immunity The Natural Way P. 128
Build Muscle Fast! P. 99
How MH Guy and NFL Receiver Danny Amendola Gets Fit
Lose Weight Forever 10 Simple Changes OCTOBER 2016 $4.99 US DISPLAY UNTIL OCT. 18
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4 Ways to Beat Diabetes Scary Good
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STYLE VON MILLER NFL STYLE MVP
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NFL Apparel: This Season’s
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ERIC DECKER New York Jets – Wide Receiver
A FIELD OF COLORS FOR FALL LAYER ON NEW PIECES THAT SHOW YOUR TEAM COLORS AND WIN STYLE POINTS
AFTER WORK < Headed out to meet friends after work? Skip the stuffy blazer and show your team pride with a bright fleece, like the Tommy Bahama Half-Zip Sweatshirt. It can easily be layered over your dress shirt for an unexpected twist.
CHARLES WOODSON NFL Legend, Cornerback/Safety NFL - Tommy Bahama Packers Half-Zip Sweatshirt
< CASUAL WEEKEND There’s still time to enjoy the outdoors during fall weekends. Opt for casual pieces you can pile on as the temperature drops. A fitted flannel shirt with a versatile denim jacket is perfect for standing on the sideline of your son’s football game or trying out a new rooftop restaurant downtown. With these Levi’s NFL pieces, you can always rock your team colors.
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W HAT DOES G ENUINE ROS EWO O D H AV E TO D O W I T H A B E T T E R - D R I V I N G S U V ?
THE ALL- NEW THREE- ROW MA ZDA CX- 9 A turbo engine. Agile handling. Genuine Rosewood? Whether itâ€™s a great-driving SUV or a great-sounding guitar, the joy is in the details. In the case of the all-new Mazda CX-9 Signature, we partnered with the meticulous craftsmen at Fujigen Guitars to source the same Rosewood for our interior trim. The warm subtle hues and smooth grain fi nish indulge the senses. So every drive
A Fujigen Masterfield guitar with a genuine Rosewood fretboard.
is a better drive. And since the Rosewood is hand-selected, no interior of any two CX-9 Signature models is alike. Making it uniquely yours. Why does paying attention to every detail matter? Because Driving Matters.
Harness the Power of Light. Eco-Drive. Powered by the light around you. Never needs a battery. Skyhawk A•T
Available at Citizen Boutique Times Square Macy’s and macys.com
FEATURES / COVER STORIES
10.16 Build Muscle Fast! Greg Olsen and Danny Amendola share NFL training secrets that’ll help you. BY BEN COURT PAGE 99
114 What Leaders Know Listen to them, then inspire your team! BY TED SPIKER
120 Bread Winners Crusty, chewy, greattasting—and healthy. We found the best. BY PAUL KITA
124 Live Debt-Free Are you sinking fast? Our plan will get your head above water. BY PETER FLAX
128 Boost Immunity Billions of microbes aid your health. Make sure they’re happy. BY JOE KITA
Dick Van Dyke You’ll wish you were this cool—at 90! BY ERIC SPITZNAGEL
138 6-Pack Abs! Your 28-day plan. BY BILL HARTMAN
P H O T O G R A P H B Y P E T E R YA N G
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 5
Food + Nutrition
Style + Grooming 18/ Ask MH What’s the smartest soup order?
34/ We Ate It, We Rate It Of all those jars of spaghetti sauce, this one’s the best. 51/ Cook Once, Eat for a Week Meatloaf: It’s even better the next day! BY PAUL KITA
54/ 10 Surprising Foods with Sugar How much of the sweet stuff are you really consuming?
BY DAN MICHEL
Useful Stuff 28
YOU DON’T KNOW SQUAT!
28/ Scary Good Sex! A hot tip for movie night.
30/ 4 Ways to Dodge Diabetes Cut your risk with these tips.
Fitness + Muscle
32/ Fast-Track Your Career How? By slowing down.
26/ Strengthen Your Shoulders Injury prevention in 3 easy moves.
36/ Rule the Tailgate We’ve got your grilling gear here.
BY BJ GADDOUR
43/ Trail Riding: A Man’s Sport Dirt + speed + the great outdoors = testosterone-pumping bliss. BY ERIN BERESINI
71/ How to Lose One Pound 10 healthy habits that work.
48/ End Back Pain Here’s the one crucial exercise that can set you free.
Health 59/ Your Misspent Youth Your dignity is damaged for good, but what about your body? BY RON GERACI
BY MICHAEL EASTER
BY MICHAEL EASTER
74/ Drop the Weight at Any Age This ripped 50-year-old shares his fitness secrets. 78/ Four Fast-Food Tricks What to avoid at the drive-thru.
6 MensHealth.com | October 2016
ON THE COVER
DENIM GUIDE You love your jeans—make sure they love you back. Our style team rescued three readers with some jean therapy. Turn to this guide, and they’ll do the same for you! PAGE 85
Danny Amendola, photographed by Peter Yang. Styling by Alvin Stillwell/ Celestine Agency, grooming by Andrea Pezzillo/Bobbi Brown/JK Artists, prop styling by Faethgruppe, production by 3 Star Productions. Nike sweatpants; Alternative Apparel T-shirt, J Brand jeans (right)
S A M K A P L A N ( m e a t l o a f ) , S P E N C E R H E Y F R O N ( B o t o x ) , B r a n d N e w I m a g e s / G e t t y I m a g e s ( c o u p l e ) , R Y A N O . ( B J G a d d o u r s q u a t t i n g , f o l d e d j e a n s ) ; J A M I E C H U N G ( n u m b e r 1)
56/ Make Your Own Vegetable Chips Like regular chips, but healthy!
81/ Weird Benefits of Botox It’s not just for wrinkles anymore! An intrepid editor tried it. Here’s what he found out.
For the moment Arthur wears Okanagan shoes and Beeney glasses Available in-store and at aldoshoes.com
The Little Big Issue Q WHAT A CRAZY WORLD, NOTHING BUT PARADOXICAL EXTREMES. In this issue you’ll see
what matters at the heart of a man’s world, but you’ll also see what you can learn from life on the edges, from the big and from the little. And from Serbia.
2/ The littlest things are microscopic.
International Tip of the Month
IVAN RADOJČIĆ EDITOR, MEN’S HEALTH SERBIA
Dab some olive oil between your palms and rub it in your hair before you go to bed. Your hair will look healthier and fuller in the morning. Plus, your whole bedroom will smell like a pizzeria.
8 MensHealth.com | October 2016
1/ The biggest thing in this issue is this guy. His name is John Urschel, and he’s a 6'3", 300-pound offensive lineman with the Baltimore Ravens. Urschel is really good at math (he’s working on his doctorate at MIT), but his day job is to get in the way of guys like J.J. Watt (6'5", 289). It’s like being involved in a dozen car wrecks in a single afternoon, says senior editor Ben Court, who wanted to find out what we can learn from athletes who need to be in peak condition all week long just to survive game day (“7 Days to Sunday,” page 99). From Urschel, we found out how to harvest a playbook; Watt gave us a clever way to outwit vegetables; and from the other NFL stars Ben interviewed, we came away with at least enough advice to help you perform like a pro all week long, even if you’re just trying to survive the car wreck in your cubicle.
They’re the organisms—the wormy, wriggling, arguably disgusting six pounds of cooties—that you share your body with. They’re part of your microbiome, and collectively they’re about twice the weight of your brain (and in their own way, just as smart). Microbes are all up in your space— in your mouth, in your nose, in the jelly between your toes—and if you got rid of them, you’d be a goner immediately, according to contributing editor Joe Kita and North Carolina State University biologist Rob Dunn, Ph.D. (“Where Your Wild Things Are,” page 128). Without this population of microscopic citizens, your bowels would be furious, you might have asthma, and your body could be racked with MS, but you might not notice because of the Alzheimer’s. Our advice: Get down and dirty.
3/ But the main thing is bread. Paul Kita tells you (in “Bread Rises Again,” page 120) how to choose the best loaf. If you don’t make enough of it, Peter Flax tells you what you need to do to get by (“When Debt Gets Personal,” page 124). And if you prefer crusty, you can always try Jimmy the Bartender.
S teve B oy l e/S p o r t s I l l u s t r a t e d /G e t t y I m a g e s (U r s c h e l), S c i m a t /S c i e n c e S o u r c e (b a c te r i a), E l i s a b e t h C o e l fe n /S h u t te r s to c k (b r e ad), E n c yc l o p ae d i a B r i t a n n i c a / U I G /G e t t y I m ag e s (f l ag), M i l o š N ad a žd i n (R ad o j č i ć)
NFL players like John Urschel know the formula for success on the field: taking care of their bodies off the field.
Bulletin10.16 Sweat Now, Live Longer
Ask Your Doc Before a Test
Too much saturated fat may lead to knee arthritis. Study participants who ate the most sat fat lost 48 percent more joint space between their femur and tibia (an indicator of knee osteoarthritis) over four years than those who ate the least. Choose polyunsaturated fats, found in foods like walnuts and fatty fish.
You should know the benefits and risks of a test or treatment before going ahead with it. Only 18 percent of doctors in one study accurately estimated how the radiation dose of an abdominalpelvic CT scan compared to that of a chest x-ray. And one in four doctors weren’t aware that a single CT scan can raise your cancer risk.
Stoners Should Watch Their BP People who have smoked pot in the past 30 days have systolic blood pressure that’s 2 points higher, on average, than non-tokers’, according to preliminary research from Indiana University Bloomington. If your BP is borderline high, that could raise your risk of heart attack or stroke.
Our Diet Wrecks Lower Stress Is Just a Call Away Cafeine Doesn’t Our Willpower The typical highPick up the phone Always Help fat, high-sugar and call a friend. Smoking Hurts If you’ve had three Western diet may It’s no secret that Your Fertility or more nights of make it hard to social interaction eases stress, but a new study suggests that a simple phone chat is especially effective for men, more so than a social event. Over three years, men who increased the number of times they talked on the phone were 17 percent less likely to feel psychological distress.
bad sleep in a row, a 400-milligram dose of caffeine (about two strong cups of coffee) won’t help you work smarter, Army researchers find. The caffeine will help after two five-hour nights; beyond that, your body’s buildup of adenosine, a sleep-promoting neurotransmitter, is just too high.
10 MensHealth.com | October 2016
resist treats even when you’re not hungry. It may keep your brain from turning off the flow of positive food memories, research suggests. You can retrain your brain by eating more fruits and vegetables.
It takes a smoker’s partner 59 percent longer to become pregnant, a recent study reveals. Higher blood levels of cadmium, a heavy metal found in cigarettes, might be the culprit. Cadmium can affect hormone levels and sperm production.
Snoring May Cause DNA Damage If you have sleep apnea, your DNA may have taken a hit. Scientists in France found that the telomeres—the ends of chromosomes that fray as we age—of men with severe sleep apnea were shorter than the telomeres of healthy guys. Even men with moderate sleep apnea had shorter telomeres. Telomere shortening raises your risk of chronic disease, including cancer.
The Spice for Your Brain Eating more cinnamon may boost levels of proteins in your brain involved in memory and learning, new research finds. After mice with poor learning ability were fed cinnamon for 30 days, their ability improved to the level of mice that were naturally good learners.
Superstrain of STI Spreads
The Rising Threat of Gout
Gonorrhea that’s resistant to common antibiotics is on the rise in the United States. The CDC reports that cases of gonorrhea resistant to azithromycin quadrupled from 2013 to 2014. Bacteria may be mutating to avoid azithromycin, which is often given for respiratory infections. Also, new kinds of bugs may have arrived via travelers from abroad.
The number of U.S. men hospitalized with gout, a painful inflammatory joint condition, has more than doubled since the early 1990s, JAMA reports. But nearly 90 percent of cases can be prevented if men receive the proper care to lower their uric acid levels and modify their lifestyle to reduce their risk.
I L L U S T R AT I O N S B Y C AT H E R I N E A . M O O R E
T a n y a C o n s t a n t i n e / G e t t y I m a g e s ( t e n n i s p l a y e r ) , N i k a m a t a / G e t t y I m a g e s ( c a n n a b i s ) , M a s t e r f i l e ( c i n n a m o n ) i, mF goct o r ef d e irtm _A e rL/LG_eCtRt yE DI m I Ta_gGeUsT (TcEoRf -f leeef )t
Don’t stop exercising; it’ll pay off. People in better cardiovascular shape in their 40s have a 37 percent lower risk of being hospitalized with a stroke after age 65 than unfit folks, the journal Stroke reports. Exercise keeps your arteries flexible and clear, reducing your risk of having a stroke.
Eat This to Save Your Knees
Men at Work TRASHING TRUCKS FOR A LIVING His job involves speed, dust, mud, and bumps. Yeah, he loves it. By Michael Easter Mike Sweers is an insurance adjuster’s worst nightmare. In the past few years, he’s gone through two trailer hitches, three bumpers, one set of shocks, and a tailgate. And that was just on his personal truck. He can’t even calculate the damage he’s done while challenging the durability of Tundra and Tacoma trucks during his six years as chief engineer at Toyota. “Let’s just say the company isn’t always happy when I return testers to the factory,” he says. But the company is thankful. That’s because Sweers’s work helps bring stronger and better trucks to the marketplace. When Sweers, 52, destroyed three bumpers while working at home on his family farm in Michigan, he asked his team at work to come up with a fix. Their innovation: the three-piece bumper. Now, when you damage your bumper (if you tow often, it’s “when, not if,” he says), you replace a damaged panel instead of paying for the entire bumper. “You have to truly be a customer yourself,” he says. “That passion is the key to success in any job.” When Sweers isn’t on his farm or at Toyota HQ, he’s scaling sandstone with rock crawlers in Moab, Utah, hauling ass over hardpack with desert runners in Baja (he won the 47th Tecate Score Baja 1000 in a Tundra TRD Pro he’d designed), or towing tractors, skid loaders, hay wagons, snow Sweers prefers courses that mimic machines...you name it. the most challenging The best ideas, Sweers says, come from conditions a pickup people who are as passionate as he is. The new might encounter. Tacoma, for example, features a GoPro camera mount on the dash—a suggestion from a group The key to kicking up of adrenaline-crazed off-roaders in Utah. off-road dirt: Turn off “I’m always looking for the next improvethe stability control ment,” Sweers says, “and it’s a lot of fun.” (found on the newer Turns out that trucks, like men, are at their models) so your wheels can spin. best when driven.
3 Mistakes Truck Buyers Make Full-size pickups take the top three spots on the list of bestselling U.S. vehicles. But guys tend to get hung up on the wrong features when they shop, says Allyson Harwood of Kelley Blue Book. Avoid these missteps. 12 MensHealth.com | October 2016
C o u r t e s y To y o t a ( l a r g e t r u c k )
Mistake 1: They Skimp on Seats You’re gonna beat your truck up, so why drop an extra grand or two for leather? Because it’s more durable and easier to clean than cloth, and it won’t absorb the stink of your best friend, Sparky. Just remember it’s hotter in summer and colder in winter. Plus, it’ll need some long-term maintenance. P H O T O G R A P H S B Y A N DY WA K E M A N
Mistake 2: They Obsess Over Fuel Economy Gas is cheaper than it’s been in years, so getting an extra mile or two per gallon might save you only about $100 in a year. Instead, check the vehicle’s five-year cost to own, a stat that can include its depreciation, insurance, and repair projections, as well as fuel costs, to give you a bigger picture.
Mistake 3: They’re Power-Hungry Bigger isn’t always better when it comes to what’s under the hood, says Harwood. You’ll spend $3,000 to $8,000 upgrading from a V6 to a V8. If you tow anything heavier than your truck, it’s worth paying extra for an engine that has a higher tow rating. If not, save your money. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 13
MARIA RODALE Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
VP/ PUBLISHER / MANAGING DIRECTOR
BILL STUMP Executive Editor BILL STIEG Articles Editor MELISSA JEWSBURY Managing Editor BJ GADDOUR Fitness Director ERIC SPITZNAGEL Executive Writer BEN COURT, MIKE DARLING Senior Editors PAUL KITA Food & Nutrition Editor MICHAEL EASTER Fitness Editor JERILYN COVERT Associate Editor BRIELLE GREGORY Assistant Editor MEGAN DiTROLIO, JULIANNE JONES, JAMES NOSEK, DAN ROE Interns
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16 MensHealth.com | October 2016
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Rodale Inc. 400 South 10th St. Emmaus, PA 18098-0099 rodaleinc.com Men’s Health carries the very latest health, fitness, and nutrition reporting and taps the world’s foremost experts so you can be more knowledgeable about your health. But every body is different. Take what you read here as general information; individual diagnoses and treatments can come only from a health care practitioner.
EVENTS & PROMOTIONS
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L to R: Men’s Health Fitness Director BJ Gaddour and Contributor Andy Speer take their first ride at SoulCycle in New York
L to R: Men’s Health VP/Publisher Ronan Gardiner and SoulCycle Instructor Nick Wagner in New York
MEN'S HEALTH RIDES FOR HEALTH Men's Health celebrated National Men's Health week with a series of rides at SoulCycle in New York, Chicago and San Francisco.
ZICO.com *Not a reduced calorie food. See nutrition facts for sugar and calorie content.
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Ask Men’s Health Definitive Answers to Life’s Essential Questions HEALTH
My doctor’s office keeps trying to give me an appointment with a nurse practitioner. Should I give in? DARRYL, SILVER SPRING, MD
“I wouldn’t view it as ‘giving in,’” says Nitin Damle, M.D., president of the American College of Physicians. Granted, a medical doctor has more education, including a bachelor’s degree plus four years of med school and three years (minimum) of postgraduate training. But a nurse practitioner has a graduate degree in nursing and in most settings is on the front lines of acute care, treating such problems as flu and bronchitis. If a problem is beyond their scope of treatment, NPs will consult with a physician. In many offices, NPs are more available than doctors for emergency sick visits. “So in the context of a clinical team, it’s fine to see a nurse practitioner,” Dr. Damle says. NUTRITION
A lack of morning wood doesn’t mean your sex life has taken a hike.
I’m 37 and no longer wake up with an erection. Is something wrong? GREGG, GALVESTON, TX
18 MensHealth.com | October 2016
BRADLEY, SEATTLE, WA
In general, soup—especially when paired with a salad that has added protein—is one of your best food choices for health, fitness, and particularly weight loss, because you’ll feel satisfied with fewer calories. “Go with a broth-based soup that has a lot of vegetables, beans, and protein,” says Barbara Rolls, Ph.D., a professor of nutritional science at Penn State University. “It’s more nutritious and filling than a creambased or single-ingredient soup.” Two things to watch for: Soup is often loaded with surprising amounts of salt and sugar. Seek out a nutrition info sheet, either in-house or online, and if you have a health condition such as hypertension, heart disease, or diabetes, make your selection according to your doctor’s guidelines. For a real-life example, consider Hale and Hearty, a popular soup chain in the Northeast. Three excellent choices here are Wild Mushroom Barley, Chicken Vegetable, and Asparagus Potato Leek, says Jim White, R.D.N., of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. An 8-ounce serving of each has about 90 calories and 680 milligrams of sodium. Soups with chicken can provide up to 12 grams of protein to keep you fuller longer. On the other hand, an 8-ounce cup of Tomato Cheddar, Meatball Parmesan, or Vegetarian Roasted Root Vegetable will exceed 1,000 milligrams of sodium, and the Curried Butternut Squash with Chicken contains 15 grams of sugar per 8 ounces. (By comparison, an 8-ounce soda has about 26 grams.)
B ill Hatcher/National Geographic Creative
“You’re at the age where morning erections become less frequent,” says Tobias Köhler, M.D., M.P.H., an associate professor of urology at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine. “You’re probably fine if it happens only occasionally, but if you haven’t had any in three months, get checked.” Morning erections usually occur during REM sleep, so you may just be missing this classic sign of good sexual function because you’re waking up in another stage of slumber. Stress, antidepressants, and opioid painkillers can also sap morning wood, as can diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and obesity. You can also ask your doctor to order a testosterone test. Low T levels (generally below 300 ng/dL) can cause low libido.
There’s a popular soup place near my work. What should I order?
Ask Men’s Health HEALTH
A few “quickie” medical clinics have opened near me. Should I use them?
Every tire has a UTQG rating like this. Look for it on the sidewall.
My car needs tires. I drive 25,000 miles a year, and I’m on a budget. Advice? STEVE, NEWARK, NJ
ting a couple of independent tire stores, which have more choices than single-brand chains. Look at options that are slightly better than the originals, and then pick the set with the best Uniform Tire Quality Grading (UTQG) you can afford, says Sherman. (The UTQG comprises three values that appear on the sidewall; you want a tread wear score of at least 400, and “A” ratings for traction and temperature.) Also, make sure the manufacture date on the sidewall near the UTQG is within two years. Finally, to get the most drive for your dollar, check tire balance yearly, rotate every 5,000 to 8,000 miles, and maintain proper inflation.
Have a question? We’ve got answers! Ask at MensHealth.com/experts.
I’ve been training for a 100-mile bike ride. How can I tell if I’m chronically dehydrated? CARL, PHOENIX, AZ
A new study found that fluid loss for men in a 102-mile cycling event ranged from 1.3 to 3.3 gallons. So there’s no blanket hydration advice. Instead, look for these signs of chronic dehydration, says Rob Pickels of the CU Sports Medicine and Performance Center: 1) Elevated pulse. If it’s 15 to 20 beats per minute higher than usual, your heart is compensating for reduced blood volume by beating faster. 2) Swimming head. If you get dizzy standing up, blood isn’t reaching your brain fast enough. Low blood volume is to blame. 3) Saggy skin. Pinch the skin on the back of your hand for a few seconds. If you’re hydrated, it’ll snap back immediately. If you’re not, it’ll be slower. 4) Smelly pee. If your urine’s dark and smells like a bus station bathroom, drink more. 20 MensHealth.com | October 2016
THE GIRL NEXT DOOR Ali Eaves takes your questions on sex, love, lust, and relationships. Going up to a woman and telling her she’s beautiful: Sweet...or creepy? GARY, AUGUSTA, GA
Sweet with the potential for creepy. But mostly it’s a terrible way to start a conversation. What the hell is she supposed to say back? She’ll probably give you an awkward “Thanks?” and then make a beeline to the far end of the bar. Make it easier on her and stick to small talk. The last time a guy pulled the “You’re beautiful” line on me was at a craft beer festival. If he had just asked me which beers I liked, we could’ve had a friendly debate about dry-hopped pale ales. Instead he got the duckand-run—because there’s just no charming way to respond.
I found out my wife watches porn. Why? I’m always up for sex. DARYL, PEORIA, IL
Well, this is a first: a guy wondering why someone watches porn. Don’t take it personally, Daryl. Maybe she’s not comfortable telling you what she really wants in bed. Or maybe—my guess— she’s just treating herself. Either way, solo sex allows a woman to be selfish. She doesn’t have to worry about reciprocating oral or climbing on top or explaining that her sweet spot is 4 millimeters north of where you happen to be focusing. She can just lie back and let Tumblr and her vibrator do the work. If you’re that sore about being cut out, try gently ribbing her about her X-rated browser history—but try not to sound judgy. Then let her know you’re always game to take over for the Magic Wand. Follow Ali on Facebook at MHGirlNextDoor, and on Twitter at @MHGirlNextDoor.
G a r g a n t i o p a / D r e a m s t i m e . c o m (t i r e) , M a t t R a i n e y ( E a v e s) , V i n o g r a d o v p v/ D r e a m s t i m e . c o m (c a m e l)
The tires that were on the car when it left the factory can serve as a good baseline, says Richard Sherman, a tire design and failure analysis expert. The car’s suspension was designed for a specific level of tire quality and performance, and going below that could cause problems. Since you drive almost double the national average, get replacements that’ll last about three years or 80,000 miles. Dan Zielinski of the Rubber Manufacturers Association suggests hit-
ED, RALEIGH, NC
Yes. These facilities can handle common problems faster and less expensively than a doctor’s office or hospital ER, explains Amer Kaissi, Ph.D., a professor of health care administration at Trinity University. About 9,000 urgent-care clinics and 2,000 retail clinics are open across the country, with more on the way. Urgent-care clinics have a doctor on site and deal with non-life-threatening problems— such as burns, breaks, cuts, and sprains—that need fast attention. “You can take care of those in an hour or two for $150 or an insurance co-pay of about $75, instead of waiting five hours in an ER and then being billed $900,” says Kaissi. Retail clinics (like the ones in CVS and Walgreens) use a nurse practitioner or physician assistant and handle vaccinations and minor issues such as colds, flu, and ear infections. “You can get out with your prescription in 30 minutes for about $75 or a $25 co-pay, instead of losing half a day seeing your doctor,” Kaissi says. And don’t worry about them missing something. “They ask questions from a computer algorithm and refer you to a doctor the second they detect anything serious,” Kaissi says. Since their debut in 2000, he adds, “we haven’t seen one patient lawsuit.”
JimmytheBartender Straight-up advice on women, work, and other things that drive men crazy.
I have trouble remembering people’s names. You have some good tips, right? Jerry, Lincoln, NE Mention “good tip” to a bartender and he pays attention, which is what counts when you’re trying to remember anything. Here’s what my dad used to tell me: When you’re introduced to somebody, make sure the guy gets the impression that meeting him actually matters to you. Eye contact. Smile. All that. Sometimes I’ll whisper the name to myself or jot it down. I want all my customers to think of my place as their place, that they matter. Like the song says, you want a place where everybody knows your name. Totally true, except when the place is a police station.
“This tie reminds me of my husband, and I don’t want to be reminded of my husband tonight.”
So, Rich, you’re asking a guy whose barroom wardrobe is a white apron what to wear to a bar? If you really want to wear something that will improve your chances with women, wear your own self-confidence. Make a big display of friendliness. Wittiness makes you look great. Your clothing’s job is to cover the skin you’re comfortable in, not make you into somebody you’re not. Shakespeare’s thing about clothes making the man didn’t mean clothes should make you a different man.
Jimmy Calls BS on... 22 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Really Huge Tattoos I like art. Show me the Mona Lisa and I’ll get emotional. But show me a Mona Lisa tat spread across some guy’s belly and I’ll go full Philistine. That’s not art, it’s more like a snapshot of what you thought was cool at the time. But you’re stuck with it. It won’t improve with age. It’ll just get old. Like you.
Morris, Tacoma, WA I’m like you: I think beer should taste like beer, and adding stuff to it doesn’t make it a different kind of beer. It makes it something else. I’m no purist; if I were, I’d drink nothing but High Life. But this being America, sometimes people like crazy stuff. So? If you want pumpkin in your beer, good luck, just don’t order one from me, and don’t pretend it’s beer. It’s wet pumpkin. Ask yourself: What kind of guy takes a bottle of perfectly good beer, jams a chunk of
I know that guys complain about jobs, cars, and teams. What do women complain to you about? Robert, Denver, CO The thing you left off your list, Robert, is women. And for women, the number one item is men. Women complain about men far more than men complain about women. When men complain about women, it’s like complaining about the weather—no way to predict, mad one day, not mad the next. But when women complain about men, they’re specific: He does this and says that; he said X in 1998 but now he says Y. In my experience, men drink to forget; women drink to remember. And complain.
Best guy movies of all time: What are yours, Jim? Norm, Butler, IN I made this into a bar game: Slapped a napkin in front of each guy and told him to vote. Here’s their Top 10: The Guns of Navarone, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, The Wild Bunch, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, The Godfather (“the first two”), Fight Club, Interstellar (“IMAX only”), Sands of Iwo Jima, Dirty Harry, and Caddyshack (“twice”). The guy who wrote He’s Just Not That Into You had to buy a round for the bar—then leave.
From top: Michelle Pedone, Ber t Hardy Adver tising Archive/Get t y Images, Steve Boyle/Galler y Stock
Jimmy, I’m wondering: Who has better luck with women at your place—men who wear ties, or men in jeans and a polo? Rich, Vancouver, BC
I’ve had pumpkin beer, maple porter, blueberry ale. . . and I don’t get it. What’s wrong with beer tasting like beer?
pumpkin into it, and calls it beer? Words have meanings, and “beer” does not mean “stupid idea.” Unless, of course, you drink too much beer.
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NEVER STOP EXPLORING
Useful Stuff Tons of tips, tricks, and strategies for life.
â€œYou can usually tell that a man is good if he has a dog who loves him.â€?
I b a i A c e v e d o /G e t t y I m a g e s
W. Bruce Cameron
(Most women agree! See the next page.) October 2016 | MensHealth.com 25
Useful Stuff INSTANT SEX APPEAL
A Magnetic Mutt Your dog is so cute! And so are you, evidently. In a survey of 733 women, 65 percent said adopting a pet makes a guy seem hotter—and 68 percent said a pooch is the sexiest pet he can own. It suggests sociability and caretaking skills. She’ll be watching you with Max, so smile and be playful. Who’s a good wingman?
THE MUSCLE GUY
Forge Big Shoulders They carry a hefty load. Make sure they can handle it. By BJ Gaddour, Men’s Health fitness director Every day is shoulder day: I say this all the time because I mean it. Your shoulders play a huge role in every upper-body lift—heck, they engage every time you hold a weight. These moves will strengthen them, lessen your injury risk, and improve your proﬁle in that T-shirt.
S I N G L E -A R M
OV E R H E A D C A R RY
The snatch is fast and explosive; the press, slow and controlled. Varying speeds builds muscle. Do It Grab a barbell overhand: Push your hips back and lower your torso, back flat. Pull the bar straight up and overhead; then lower it to your shoulders and press it back up. Return to the start. Do 3 to 5 sets of 6 to 8; rest 2 minutes between sets.
Holding a weight overhead restricts bloodflow to your arm and shoulder, stimulating muscle growth. Plus, your abs will have to work extra hard. Do It Hold a dumbbell in one hand overhead, keeping your arm straight. Walk for 30 seconds; switch arms and repeat. That’s 1 round. Do 10 rounds for a killer finish to your workout.
This works the rear deltoid and mid and lower trap muscles, which guys tend to neglect. Do 10 reps, slow and controlled, in between intense exercises or as part of your warmup. Do It Grab the handles of a TRX and lean back, your body and arms straight. Make a T, W, or Y shape with your arms. Mix up the letters from rep to rep.
26 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Okay, maybe you are your khakis, just a little. A study from Columbia University and the University of Wisconsin suggests that your stuf can afect your self-image. Use that. Dress Yourself Don’t wear clothes chosen by your mate if they don’t feel like you. When what you wear clashes with your view of yourself, the inconsistency can erode conﬁdence, researchers say. Shun Knockoffs That fake Rolex may look legit, but you know it’s a fake, and that can make you act dishonestly, the study suggests. Splurge Selectively Spend big on big purchases, like your home and car; they have the most inﬂuence on how you see yourself.
Age g when kids can form relationships p via video interaction. On the road? FaceTime can help p you y bond with your toddler.
A m y Lo m b a r d ( s h o u l d e r s , G a d d o u r ) , S T E V E S A N F O R D ( i l l u s t r a t i o n s ) , I a n B a r t l e t t / t h e l i c e n s i n g p r o j e c t . c o m ( w a t c h )
M U S C L E S N AT C H A N D
3 Ways to Buy Confidence
MONDAY y your y coworkers are most likely to be rude Source: Anxiety, Stress & Coping: An International Journal
“Must remember to send Wes Craven a thank-you note for all his help.”
Actors are paid to pretend, but the Castle star does it for fun too. “I love Halloween!” says Fillion, who makes a costume every year. Embrace the goofiness. His expert tips: Start Small “Make it up as you go. Last year I found a cool mask and thought, ‘What can I do with this?’” Learn a New Skill “Think like a carpenter or an electrician. I taught myself to weld for a costume. I’ve got the scars to prove it.” Get a Mannequin “You seriously need one of these. Throw things on it as you’re coming up with ideas; it makes everything so much easier.” Make Sure You Can Pee “I made a costume once that was a Grim Reaper with these huge mechanical arms that I made out of elm tree branches and hinges and strings and springs, and I walked around on stilts. It was amazingly cool, until I realized, ‘Uh-oh, how am I peeing?’”
ScareHerPantsOff! Three date-night horror ilms that just might bring you two closer. Satan as Cupid? Hell yes! A woman spooked by a horror movie may be more likely to cozy up to you. According to Margee Kerr, Ph.D., a sociologist who studies fear, “when people are scared and presented with a suitable mate, they’ll see that person as more attractive.” Thrills cause a chemical surge that launches our bodies into high arousal, which can be mistaken for attraction to the person we’re with, Kerr says. You’ll each see the other as someone to trust, strengthening your bond. Avoid content that shuts her down, though. Some people are into gore; others are turned of by it. We asked Robert Eggers, director of our current favorite, The Witch, for date-night horror picks that involve couples.
Rosemary’s Baby (1968) A smart, attractive young couple moves into a new apartment and squabbles over dinner plans, food, sex, Satan—usual stuff. Maybe don’t use it as a segue to the “let’s start a family” talk.
Let the Right One In (2008) File this relationship under “It’s complicated.” Still, they make it work despite their differences (he’s a day person; she’s a night owl) in this clever, creepy coming-of-age horror tale.
Don’t Look Now (1973) Eggers mentions the “elongated sex scene” with “’70s jazz flute.” Sign us up! Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie star in this classic that pits reason against the supernatural. Guess who wins?
HOT WOMEN Science conﬁrms it: They really do make us stupid. In a BMJ Open study, men said they’d be less inclined to wear a condom with a woman they thought was hot. Even stupider: Knowing she probably has an STI doesn’t matter; guys are still less likely to put one on. This may stem from an evolutionary drive to reproduce with attractive women, scientists speculate. Careful: Her hotness doesn’t make you immune to STIs. 28 MensHealth.com | October 2016
12-yard rounded “out” (the primary target)
The Money Play Here’s the call from Steven Bergman, a U.S. Flag & Touch Football League Hall of Fame quarterback. QB
Deep “go” (draws defender)
G e t t y I m a g e s fo r I M D B ( F i l l i o n ) , B r a n d N e w I m a g e s /G e t t y I m a g e s ( c o u p l e ) , E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n ( R o s e m a r y ’s B a b y ) , M a g n o l i a P i c t u r e s / E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n ( Le t t h e R i g h t O n e I n ) , E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n ( D o n ’ t Lo o k N o w )
Nathan Fillion’s Costume Guide
The old way just got even older. We didnâ€™t just update the traditional eye exam. :H UHYROXWLRQL]HG LW 2XU QHZ CLARIFYE SM eye exam system uses digital precision to pinpoint your customized prescription. Itâ€™s time WRVHHZKDW\RXÂ·UHPLVVLQJ *Available in select cities.
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Useful Stuff MH CUPBOARD
Alstertor DüsseldorfStyle Mustard
That “gaming is good” BS is now backed up by real science. Memory In older adults, video games boost “visuospatial and episodic recall,” as the eggheads put it. Translation: Cracking a Fallout 4 level could make GPS redundant and help you remember your wedding anniversary.
Multitasking Grew up on Pac-Man? Nice: Scientists in Singapore (who can’t lie, by law) say early gamers can switch between tasks faster than nongamers can. But latecomers can beneﬁt by starting now.
Focus Action games (yes, Call of Duty counts) can help you stay attentive, say Swiss brain researchers. Killing zombies, crushing your meeting prep: basically the same thing.
A Man, a Pan, a Plan Fresh bratwurst needs a good simmer and sear to cook through and crisp up. Bacon adds, well, bacon. Now all you need is an Oktoberfest stein. What You’ll Need 1 cup low-sodium beef broth or chicken broth 4 bratwurst links 1 bay leaf 3 black peppercorns ½ tsp coriander seeds (if you want)
2 garlic cloves, peeled ½ medium yellow onion, thinly sliced 2 cups sauerkraut, drained 1 strip thick-cut bacon, diced Mustard, for serving
Dollar amount spent p by y millennials on coffee and fast food in a month. A basic membership to Planet Fitness is $10. Just saying. Source: TD Bank Consumer Spending Index
30 MensHealth.com | October 2016
How to Make It In a large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat, add the broth, brats, bay leaf, peppercorns, coriander, and garlic. Simmer, turning the brats every now and then, until the liquid is gone, 10 minutes or so. Then toss in the onion, kraut, and bacon; cook, stirring occasionally, until everything looks well caramelized and the bacon crisps, another 5 to 7 minutes. Serve with copious amounts of mustard; eat around the bay leaf, peppercorns, and garlic. Feeds 2 Per serving 626 calories, 26g protein, 14g carbs (4g fiber), 52g fat
Fitness If you do a six-week Xbox Kinect training program (three 20-minute sessions a week), what happens besides weird looks from your wife? Improved agility and balance, say scientists in Taiwan, who actually checked.
4 Simple Ways to Beat Diabetes 1. Relax Anxiety can cause inﬂammation, sending your body into an insulin tailspin, say Rice University researchers. Try meditation or yoga—or start simple with 10 minutes of breath awareness (just what it sounds like). 2. Sleep Seven to Eight Hours Guys who log much less or much more than that have lower insulin sensitivity, a prediabetic condition, Dutch research reveals. 3. Take Up Biking Now It’s not too late: In one study, people who took up cycling later in life had a 20 percent lower incidence of type 2 diabetes than noncyclists. 4. Cook with Vegetable Oils People with high blood levels of linoleic acid (found in nuts, seeds, and many vegetable oils) are less likely to become diabetic. P H OTO G R A P H B Y T R AV I S R AT H B O N E
F o o d s t y l i n g : M i c h e l l e G a t t o n /S t o c k l a n d M a r t e l , p r o p s t y l i n g : N i d i a C u e v a ( b r a t s i n p a n ) ; S t o c k F o o d G m b H /A l a m y ( r a w b r a t s ) , A n d r e w Tw o r t /A l a m y ( k r a u t ) , To b i k /S h u t t e r s t o c k ( b a c o n ) ; RYA N O . ( m u s t a r d , p r o d u c t c o u r t e s y a m a n a s h o p s . c o m ) , C a i a i m a g e / R o b e r t D a l y /G e t t y I m a g e s ( b i k e r )
Power Up Your Brain
Like Uma Thurman—smooth, with an edge. Try it with brats or pretzels. Cool jar, too! $9 for 8 oz, Amazon
It doesn’t matter what’s against you when you know what’s within you.
WHAT’S INSIDE IS E VERY THING When you’re true to your nature, that’s powerful beyond measure. ZICO’s coconut water comes from the core of the coconut. No sugar added.† Naturally occurring electrolytes. Perfect just the way it is. Sound familiar?
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Quick Change BY BR I A N BOYÉ
“Listening to the radio at a reasonable volume helps me collate efficiently.”
My sweaters have fuzzy balls all over them. Toss ’em? BILL, CHICAGO, IL
Do Less, Get More Done Workaholics, listen up: Step away from your desk to boost your productivity and your mood. Your boss—and coworkers—will thank you. 2/ Don’t Do Email After Hours We get it: You’re a devoted employee. But checking your email after you’ve clocked out can affect your family life and lead to emotional exhaustion, new research confirms. Even if you have no emails to read, waiting for that ping can bring on something called “anticipatory stress.” So make this an ironclad rule—confirm it with your boss and coworkers—and you’ll enhance your job satisfaction in the long run.
3/ Use Your Vacation Days Already You’ve heard this before, but evidently it hasn’t sunk in: Last year, 55 percent of U.S. employees left vacation time on the table, letting companies keep $61.4 billion in benefits (which they don’t need). Those who take their vacation days come back refreshed and perform better at work, an HR survey indicates. Those who don’t just annoy their coworkers by going full martyr about all their unused time off.
I’ve tried everything, but still end up with ingrown hairs. Help? GERARD, CINCINNATI, OH
Your partner’s sex drive is lower than yours, and you’ll just have to live with it—and sigh deeply. REALITY
The Benefits of Bare Feet Shoes can lead to overuse injuries: They trick your brain into thinking your feet aren’t working hard enough, so your legs end up working harder than they need to. The cure? Stride barefoot for 100 meters after a run. Result: stronger foot muscles, better posture and balance, and less injury risk.
32 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Men tend to underestimate how often their partner wants sex, a Canadian study shows. Could be that a fear of rejection leads you to not even try, or maybe you think this attitude helps maintain the relationship. Try this: Ask her how you can tell when she wants it, what excites her, and how she wants you to initiate. Be positive—instead of saying “I feel like you don’t want me” (defensive!), ask her how you can be a better lover. If she doesn’t know, suggest some research tactics.
Try being less ambitious. Avoid any razor promising the “closest shave possible!” Razors with too many blades pull whiskers up before trimming them, so what’s left is below the surface. As coarse or curly hairs grow back, they’re more likely to get trapped under the skin. Your solution: fewer blades. I like Bevel’s traditional safety razor and Gillette’s Mach 3 Sensitive Power Razor; both trim at skin level. The new Philips Norelco CareTouch electric razor stays just above the surface. And use a preshave oil and shaving cream—not foam—for that easy glide. Brian Boyé is the executive fashion and grooming director of Men’s Health.
© 2 0 t h C e n t u r y F o x / E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n ( O f f i c e S p a c e ) , M e r e d i t h J e n k s ( B o y é ) , Tr u n k A r c h i v e ( c o u p l e ) , C a r l o s Yu d i c a /S h u t t e r s t o c k ( fo o t )
1/ Take “Microbreaks” Taking a few minutes now and then can cut work stress while improving your efficiency and mood, a recent study reports. You can relax (“I’m not napping—I’m recharging!”), stimulate your mind (do something that’s not a chore; think Candy Crush, not online banking), or socialize (but don’t complain about work—chat about other topics). You like those Tasty videos? That’s fine. Maybe not before lunch.
Save the sweaters! First, don’t pull at those “pills.” You’d be yanking on yarn, and that’ll definitely ruin the garment. Find a razor with as few blades as possible and no lubricating strip. Hold a section flat and taut and gently swipe upward, increasing pressure if necessary. Then wrap packing tape around your hand (sticky side out, Sherlock) to collect the shavings. Or wrap fine sandpaper around a small sponge and, holding your sweater taut, gently scrub away the pills using short, quick movements. Again, use tape to gather the debris.
eau de toilette
macyâ€™s and macys.com
eau de toilette
Relax!Sex Should Be Fun Nutrition Know-It-All M I K E R O U S S E L L , PH . D.
I’ve heard that if I chug water at a meal, I’ll eat less. Really? Is my brain that stupid?
i S t o c k p h o t o /G e t t y I m a g e s ( n o t e b o o k ) , T h a y e r A l l y s o n G o w d y /A u g u s t I m a g e s ( c o u p l e ) , c o u r t e s y M i k e R o u s s e l l ( R o u s s e l l ) , S T E V E S A N F O R D ( i l l u s t r a t i o n )
TIM, VIA TWITTER
No, your brain isn’t that stupid. Hydrating is important, but chugging H2O at mealtime will not help you eat less, research shows. You’ll need to be sneakier. To combat hunger without overeating, go with a salad. You’ll still be ingesting water from vegetables, but the salad also requires you to chew, activating your brain’s satiating effect. Plus, those greens contain fiber, which fill you up—and keep you satisfied until your next meal. I love a bowl of cereal as a late-night snack. Is that a bad idea? LARRY, BUFFALO, NY
Nah, that’s okay. A latenight cereal fix isn’t a vice. In fact, consuming carbohydrates in the evening can help you relax because carbs help your body produce serotonin, a feel-good neurotransmitter. In an Israeli study, people who took in most of their daily carbs at dinner dropped more weight and felt fuller than those who ate their carbs throughout the day. Plus, the protein in milk can help your muscles recover and rebuild as you sleep. So enjoy—but stick to one bowl, Larry. Mike Roussell, Ph.D., is the author of The Six Pillars of Nutrition and a nutrition advisor for Men’s Health.
A survey pulls back the sheets on men’s biggest worries.
EN ERICAN M W H AT A M D E B N I T FEAR MOS
has an STI. 1/ My partner gasm. won’t reach or 2/ My partner will break; 3/ My condom t pregnant. ge ht ig m e sh prematurely. 4/ I’ll ejaculate ked will find my na 5/ My partner . ive ct tra at un body le to get hard. 6/ I won’t be ab x. 7/ I’m bad at se too small. 8/ My penis is will think I’m 9/ My partner ed. nc rie inexpe ard after sex. 10/ It’ll be awkw Source: Super
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1 + 3
STIs are women’s top fear too! “This is why we insist on the condom,” says Allison, 28. “It makes both of us feel safer, and it helps me relax.” Lower the tiny risk of breakage by not using old ones, and leaving room at the tip.
ctor, a U.K . onl
2 + 4
“Men are totally obsessed with not coming too fast and making sure I climax,” says Marta, 32. “But it’s really not that big a deal! Want to make sure I get there? Let’s just take our time—and start with your tongue.”
Women are on top in this category; it’s their No. 2 fear. Keep on working out, install a dimmer switch, and don’t worry. Really. “If you’re in my bed,” says Amanda, 31, “I’ve already decided you look just fine.”
6 + 7 + 9
Worrying about getting it up isn’t just an age thing; it’s a fear any guy can face. Experts say relaxing is key, but knowing that doesn’t really help. “I’d tell him, ‘Relax, we’ve got all night. I have some ideas,’” says Deirdre, 25.
You’re probably fine. Men who worry about size are usually the 5½-inch average, a study found. “It’s a nonissue,” says Terri, 29. “Remember, it’s not the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”
This was No. 8 for women, so it’s a common concern. Think about planning ahead. “Order food,” suggests Terri. “I once had a guy order pizza afterward. It put us both at ease, and I was starving anyway!”
17% Proportion p of men who have active sperm p in p preejaculatory j y fluid.The condom goes g on before you go in, fellas. Source: Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand
Attack Earwax Earwax is useful. It keeps the dust and germs of this wicked world from entering your delicate ear canal. But too much of it (technical term: cerumen) leads some guys to declare Threat Level Q and attack with cotton swabs. Better plan: Put a drop or two of hydrogen peroxide in your ear 10 minutes before a shower, says Ana Kim, M.D., of Columbia University Medical Center. It will help liquefy the wax, which will flush out as you shower. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 33
Don’t just dump sauce onto noodles. Put cooked pasta back in the warm pot, pour in sauce, and stir. That way every bite is saucy.
Easy Style Tricks to Look Taller
WE ATE IT, WE RATE IT
In Hollywood, land of illusion, short guys loom larger after visiting Jimmy Au’s For Men 5'8" and Under, a real store.
Our taste testers found the best stuff hidden among jars of sugary junk. Grab some napkins.
Hire a Tailor Extra fabric makes guys look sloppy. A good fit neatens you up and adds height, says company VP Alan Au.
Rao’s Tomato Basil Sauce It’s thick. It’s hearty. Bits of fresh garlic give it a kick. One taster called it “intense and refreshing.” It’s also pricey at $8 for 24 ounces. If that’s too much, choose your alternative carefully: You want a red sauce with less than 5 grams of sugar per serving. Rao’s flavor is from the sweetness of ripe tomatoes, not added sugars.
Use Small Patterns Yes, vertical stripes stretch you, but keep them slim. Large patterns or plaids can swallow up a shorter guy.
Low-Salt: Roselli’s A lack of sodium often means a lack of flavor. Not here. This has a generous hit of garlic, yet it’s not overspiced. $3/15 oz
Anchor Your Look Shoes do matter. A classic rounded toe is best; avoid square toes, which convey a vaguely stumpy look. Go with One Color If your pants and shirt are similar colors, they’ll create an elongating silhouette from shoulder to toe. Pick Slim Lapels If the jacket is size 40 or smaller, keep the lapel width under 2½ inches; your shoulders will appear broader.
Clean Road Rash A bicycling spill can leave parts of the roadway embedded in your skin. Flush out the grit with strong squirts from your water bottle; then grab one of the individually wrapped Preparation H wipes we told you to bring because we knew this would happen. The aloe soothes and the witch hazel disinfects.
Hang Out for Better Health You know that glow that comes from doing beers with your crew after 18 holes or a softball game? It’s natural: Guys want to hang out after anything stressful—even a close game—because it helps us deal with future stress. In a study, frazzled male rats instinctively cuddled, releasing oxytocin, a bonding hormone that helps combat stress. This benefit may occur in the nonfurry (okay, sometimes furry) human male too, says researcher Liz Kirby. (Don’t worry: No cuddling required!) So for the next postgame with the guys, tell your wife you’re training your brain to handle stress.
30% Number of antibiotics prescriptions p p in the United States that are unnecessary Source: CDC
34 MensHealth.com | October 2016
P H OTO G R A P H B Y S A M K A P L A N
© D r e a m w o r k s / E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n ( I Lo v e Yo u , M w a n ) , M I C H A E L B R A N D O N M Y E R S ( i c o n s ) , S T E V E S TA N F O R D ( i l l u s t r a t i o n s )
Organic: Muir Glen We’re able to forgive a slightly high sugar content when a sauce tastes this good. $4/25.5 oz
SHOW ’EM WHAT’S UNDERNEATH #ShowEm your Jockey
Win the Tailgate!
Your best play call for an easy tailgate: the simple rollout.
Yeti Tank 45 The polyurethane insulation can keep 52 beers cold for days. (Trust us: We tested it! The ice stayed; the beers kept disappearing.) The lid, sold separately, doubles as a cutting board. $200, yeti.com Soundcast Melody Bluetooth Speaker It’s pricey, but it’s weather resistant and can blast 360 degrees of thumping sound—for 20-plus hours on a charge. We’re cranking Chris Stapleton right now! $250, Amazon
STOK Gridiron 1 Burner Gas Grill Stand tall as a versatile, veritable short-order cook with this propanefired beauty. If partygoers call an audible, use inserts to convert the castiron grill grate to a kebab-and-rib rack, pizza stone, chicken roaster, or wok (all sold separately). Then fold it up to be easily rolled away. $128, Target
Nerf Sports Dude PerfectSmash Football Your 8-year-old nephew can catch this kid-friendly ball like Antonio Brown and throw it like Tom Brady. (It’s soft!) A breakaway target is included. $15, walmart.com Briggs and Stratton P2200 PowerSmart Series Inverter Generator This beast runs long and strong, and it won’t drown out the pregame trashtalking. It has two household outlets, plus a USB adapter. $630, Amazon Areaware Star Spangled Spatula What’s more American than football? This spatula. Made in the USA of solid walnut and stainless steel, the tool makes you a true patriot. Now go vote! $75, areaware.com Additional research: Randy Dye, publisher, Tailgater magazine
36 MensHealth.com | October 2016
P H OTO G R A P H B Y C H R I S TO P H E R T E S TA N I
P r o p s t y l i n g : V i c t o r i a G r a n o f /C o r n e l i a A d a m s ( o p e n g r i l l ) ; c o u r t e s y S t o k G r i l l s ( fo l d e d g r i l l ) , c o u r t e s y Ye t i ( Ye t i Ta n k ) , c o u r t e s y S o u n d c a s t ( M e l o d y ) , c o u r t e s y N e r f ( fo o t b a l l ) , c o u r t e s y B r i g g s & S t r a t t o n ( g e n e r a t o r ) , RYA N O . ( s p a t u l a )
Your team may be up or down, but tailgating gear gets better every fall. Rule game day with this rugged all-star lineup.
“MY WISH IS TO RACE MY BROTHER IN MONACO.”
Professional drivers on closed course. Do not attempt. Prototypes shown with options. Production models will vary. ©2016 Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
Useful Stuff The oak’s on you: This is the season to prep your grounds for spring.
BY DEBBY HERBENICK, P H . D. , M . P. H .
What Is It About Autumn? Men love fall. Why? Part of it may be visual. Colors register in your brain as significant, like a “boom” in a quiet room. One theory: They may trigger happy memories of this ritualheavy season (school, football, Halloween, Thanksgiving), and positive emotions flood back. “There’s a benefit to feeling this way because it connects us to who we were in the past,” says UCLA’s Hal Hershfield, Ph.D.
My penis is slightly curved. Can I straighten it out? DARREN, MIAMI, FL
How to Be a Fall Guy Raking the leaves isn’t the only yard work to be done. Your backyard checklist for autumn.
Split Dig up your perennial flowers and divide the root balls, says Chris Lambton, host of DIY Network’s Yard Crashers (the new season starts in October). Transplant them where you want: Voilà, a larger garden at no cost.
Punch Aerating your lawn loosens the roots so they drink more and grow stronger. You can rent a gaspowered aerator (split the cost with a neighbor), or go with a manual spike for a challenging workout. (You’ve been warned!)
Plant It may sound bassackward, but fall is the time to plant most shrubs, bulbs, and perennials, Lambton says. The weather is cool, it rains more often, and the sun isn’t out as much so it’s less likely to scorch the tender young ’uns.
WORKS FOR US As MH fitness editor, I’ve worked out in countless pairs of pricey, high-tech earbuds—some could read my heart rate, stream my tunes, even link up to satellites in outer-freaking-space to gauge my running pace. That’s great until the buds fall out of my ears or run out of juice. Because uninterrupted music is my priority, the pair I’ve settled on is decidedly low-tech: the Yurbuds Inspire 100. They fit, stay put, block outside noise, and don’t quit. They’re also just $20 (yurbuds.com). —Michael Easter 38 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Cut As fall progresses, gradually lower the height of your mower blades. The last cut of the year should be the shortest, says Lambton. Longer grass becomes matted over winter, making it more susceptible to molds.
Most penises have a slight curve when fully erect, so don’t worry— you’re normal and it shouldn’t cause problems. Even if you wanted to straighten it, you shouldn’t try. Men with severe curvature during erections—so curved that entering a partner is difficult—may have Peyronie’s disease, caused by scar tissue buildup. In that case, they can try pills or surgery to reduce the angle of curvature. But your bend might be a benefit. Focus on finding just the right angle to hit your mate’s G-spot. I masturbate almost every night. Is that too much? I’m 27 and, uh, between girlfriends. TERRY, RACINE, WI
You’re typical. In our Indiana University team’s huge National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior, one in five U.S. men ages 18 to 29 said they masturbate four or more times a week. The numbers were a bit lower for married men and higher for single and partnered men. As long as you’re not masturbating in ways that hurt your body or your relationships, break the law, or keep you from friends or family, then you’re good. Carry on. Debby Herbenick is a sexual health expert at the Kinsey Institute.
Le v i B r o w n / Tr u n k A r c h i v e ( p u m p k i n ) , C o l l i n H u g h e s / t h e l i c e n s i n g p r o j e c t . c o m ( m a n w i t h l e a v e s ) , c o u r t e s y D e b b y H e r b e n i c k ( H e r b e n i c k ) , M a d l e n /S h u t t e r s t o c k ( f l o w e r s ) , M I TC H M A N D E L ( a e r a t o r ) , d e 2 m a r c o /S h u t t e r s t o c k ( b u l b s ) , I a k o v F i l i m o n o v /S h u t t e r s t o c k ( m o w e r ) ; i l l u s t r a t i o n b y ST E V E S A N F O R D
THE SPITZ TAKE
Get in the Bawl Game We know it’s okay to show our vulnerability, but it’s still diicult. One weepy guy hopes to change that. By Eric Spitznagel Our cultural consensus on male crying can be summed up by a scene in The Godfather, where Don Vito Corleone slaps the weeping singer Johnny Fontane and screams, “You can act like a man!” We like to think we’re more evolved, that we’ve moved beyond masculinity clichés. But remember how you felt the last time you saw a man cry? When a woman cries, we want to comfort her. But when a guy tears up, we recoil and enter panic mode. “What’s happening? Did your dog die? Do you have cancer?” On some level we know crying is okay. But knowing that and acting on it are very different. Most of us would rather get advice on erectile dysfunction from a father-in-law than let a single tear roll down our cheeks. That can’t be healthy, right? We asked Andrew Reiner, a Towson University professor who teaches a seminar called “Real Men Smile: The Changing Face of Masculinity,” to talk about man tears—and whether we should rethink our relationship with them.
40 MensHealth.com | October 2016
tional vulnerability. You have to show you’re in control, that you’ve got your shit together. We want women to think we’re in control, or other men? Both, but that protective nature is strongest with our male friends. We’re wary of confiding in each other or showing too much vulnerability because we’re terrified of being found out, betrayed, or rejected. I think a lot of guys have this running loop in their heads: “What do they think of me? Do I look like a joke? Do I look weak or foolish?” That fear stops you from showing any real emotion. Again, that makes sense in theory. But what can we do? Start crying in front of our friends? Well . . . I agree with everything you’re saying, but I’m not going to be the guy in an all-male social gathering who says, “Hey, fellas, who’s up for some platonic hugging and then crying about our fathers?” It’s an ongoing evolution. You look for ways to be more emotionally honest. I’ve started drinking more wine in front of guys. Wait, what? [Laughs.] Drinking wine is more emotionally honest? You know as well as I do that if you’re out with guys and you order wine, it says something. I thought it said, “I like wine,” but now you’ve got me worried I’ve been sending the wrong signals. See, that’s it right there. We need to stop worrying about the signals we’re sending our male friends. Our friendships are key. We need to get back to the emotional vulnerability our grandparents and great-grandparents had with each other. Guys today have become more isolated and more alienated. If you’re a guy, you’ve been taught that you handle things on your own, that you don’t go around confiding in people, and it’s a sign of weakness if you seek help. But that’s bullshit.
F r o m l e f t : R y a n O . , E z r a S h a w /G e t t y I m a g e s
MEN’S HEALTH: Talking about crying is hard. Just the idea of it makes me want to throw a football at your nuts and then shotgun a beer. ANDREW REINER: [Laughs.] Well, sure, you’re a guy. That’s what guys do. But why? What’s the big deal about crying? That’s the question. One of the things I ask my students is “What if we had a world where guys were allowed to show a wider range of emotions? What if we gave them the free pass we give to girls and women? Would the world really look any different? Would less get done?” No, sure, you’re right. But it’s one thing to know that intellectually and another to walk up to a man and say, “Just hold me, bro, and feel the warmth of my salty tears on your shoulders.” Yeah, I get it. I remember the first time I cried in public as an adult. I was on a plane with my girlfriend, and I knew our relationship was pretty much over. I just started sobbing. I didn’t hide it. When people looked at me, I looked right back. Wow. You weepily stared down strangers? That sounds harder than the crying. Exactly. A man’s instinct is to hide his tears. But I wanted people to know, yeah, I’m a guy and I’m crying. It felt liberating, like casting off shackles.
Even if it were culturally acceptable for men to cry, would we want to? Do men get the same physical and emotional relief that women do? I think so, yeah. There was a study at Tel Aviv University just last year, which found that the male brain and the female brain are structurally very similar. The way they both function cognitively is almost identical. So a lot of our behavior that we think is uniquely male or female is just social construction. Men avoid crying for the same reasons we avoid being overcome with joy. We do? How do we avoid joy? I mean that unconstrained, unguarded joy. When you’re just so enthusiastic and giddy that you can’t keep it in. For men in our culture, that’s a sign of vulnerability. How often do you see guys running around with glee on their faces? Maybe while playing sports. Yeah, but that’s it. Can you imagine if we acted like that in our everyday lives? My god, people would think you’re completely mental. But it wasn’t always that way. Men used to laugh more; they used to cry more and smile more. Really? Because if you look at 19th-century photos, men seem to be mostly scowling. That’s because posing for those old photos took so long. People see them and think men were so hard and severe back then. That’s not true. If you look at men’s journals at the time, they were every bit as emotional as women were, sometimes more so. It was much more common for men to have very intimate friendships with each other. They shared sadness and joy. There wasn’t this stupid notion that crying showed weakness. So how did we get here? The social norms changed. This whole notion of the self-made man and rugged individualist came into fashion. It doesn’t lend itself to emo-
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HAPPY TRAILS, KILLER CARDIO Power your strength, endurance, and mental focus into high gear by riding dirt. By Erin Beresini Aaron Dalrymple didn’t get it. Bicycling was supposed to be fun. He’d begun riding a friend’s old steel mountain bike to his job, trying to stay fit after knee surgery and two concussions knocked him out of recreational rugby. But the 12-mile ride on cement paths to his office in Fort Worth, Texas, was mostly a drag, the 39-year-old recalls. “Then,” he says, “my roommate convinced me to take the bike out on a trail.” Everything changed. The thrill of skimming over rocks, bouncing over tree roots, and not knowing what was around the next corner hooked him. Two months after his inaugural trail ride, he bought his first mountain bike. This was a sport he could love. “It combined physical and mental challenges with technical skill, outdoor exploration, and a social aspect,” says Dalrymple, who now lives in Los Angeles and regularly competes in (and wins) races; he recently captured his age group in a 23-miler in Big Bear Lake, California. But it was the camaraderie that clinched it. “Riding the trails with a posse gives you the same kind of adrenaline rush you get playing a team sport.” Ready for your own knobby-tired adventure? With cool weather and bright colors, fall is the best time of year for riding trails. Read on for training tips, gear, and destinations to get the most out of every pedal stroke. `
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 43
1/Find the Right Bike “There’s a lot of product out there, which is great for the new rider, but it can also be confusing,” says Ned Overend, who’s won several mountain biking world champion events. One of the easiest ways to make a sound choice is to spend some quality time at a local bike shop. Most shops offer demobike programs, Overend says. Test-riding different types of rigs is smart, because you have various tire widths to choose from, as well as three major wheel sizes (26", 27.5", and 29") and several suspension options. A good shop will match you to a bike that
suits your goals, size, and wallet and even advise you on any Craigslist purchases you’re considering. “Your relationship with the shop is even more important than the bike you’re buying,” says pro coach James Wilson of MTB Strength Training Systems. The right staff will make sure your bike fits you and is put together safely; they’ll also inspect your rig if you crash it.
2/Nab the Essentials You could buy a truckload of expensive biking accessories, but you really only need a handful of essentials, says Overend: an
3/Ease into Riding You don’t need to huck off a 25-foot ridge or hop off 10-foot boulders to call yourself a mountain biker. “When you’re new at this, you’re supposed to suck,” Wilson says. Ask your shop about good beginner terrain and trails in your area. A few simple riding tips to start: You’re in the correct gear when your pedal stroke is smooth and gives you constant, steady power—no bouncing or jerking, no slack in your chain, no struggling to turn over the pedals. To brake, squeeze both sides softly and equally. One finger is enough to engage today’s high-tech disc brakes, which will stop on a dime—and potentially buck you off—if you squeeze them full-force.
Gear Up for the Ride of YourLife The world’s top mountain bikers reveal their favorite riding gear.
Specialized RBX Pro Shorts “A good pair of riding shorts with a chamois pad is crucial for comfort during those long afternoons in the saddle.” ($150, specialized.com) —Howard Grotts, U23 national champion
44 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Blackburn Airstick SL Mini Pump “Not all mini pumps are the same; this one is quite simple and reliable. I’ve had mine 10 years.” ($25, blackburndesign. com) —Pete Webber, Mountain Bike Hall of Fame member
Specialized Fuse Comp 6Fattie “Fatter tires give hardtails some suspension and make them more fun to ride. These bikes also tend to cost less.” ($1,600, specialized.com) —Ned Overend, fourtime XC world champ
Pedaling Innovations Catalyst Pedal “It’s longer than a typical pedal, to support both ends of your arch and give your feet serious stability.” ($89, pedalinginnovations. com) —James Wilson, inventor of the Catalyst Pedal
Castelli Squadra Long Jacket “Always carry a jacket in case of a surprise downpour or temperature drop. This one is lightweight and compresses to practically nothing.” ($50, amazon.com) —Pete Webber
P r e v i o u s p a g e: A u r o r a P h o to s /O f f s e t; t h i s p a g e: R o d M c Le a n /G a l l e r y S to c k (m a n), c o u r te s y S p e c i a l i ze d (s h o r t s a n d b i ke), c o u r te s y B l a c k b u r n ( p u m p), c o u r te s y P e d a l i n g I n n o v a t i o n s ( p e d a l s), c o u r te s y C a s te l l i ( j a c ke t)
extra inner tube, a tire iron, and a mini hand pump in case of a flat. Practice changing a tire at home so you don’t end up stranded on a ride. One shortcut used by racers is Stan’s Tire Sealant ($3). It fits easily in a saddlebag and can keep a puncture repaired for as long as seven months. For your maiden ride, go with simple flat pedals instead of the kind with hardware for clipping your bike shoes into. (See our list of biking terms on the next page.) Flat pedals boost your confidence because they make bailing easier if you find yourself in a jam. If you want to splurge on something, invest in a dropper seat post, which lets you raise or lower the seat with the push of a handlebar lever. Dropping your seat on downhills keeps you safer by lowering your center of gravity, says Marc Gullickson, mountain bike programs director for USA Cycling. That reduces the risk of launching yourself over the handlebar if you brake too hard—also known as the dreaded “endo.”
centrate on a smooth, consistent pedal stroke.” Many beginners fail to downshift early enough at the bottom of a climb and end up with too much chain tension, making gear changes difficult. That’s why it’s better to undergear on long hills. Pick a slightly easier gear than you think you need; that way your cadence or pedal rate will be faster and you won’t exhaust your muscles with overly heavy strokes up a long hill. On shorter, steeper climbs, just stand up and crank hard. That costs more energy, but it gives you the most leverage. In both scenarios, ride with the pedal centered in the middle of your foot, which puts the least stress on your Achilles and calves and provides more direct power from your body’s big generator—your glutes.
6/ Bomb Downhill Mountain Biking Terms You Must Know Full Suspension
Best for technical terrain, this type of bike can absorb impact from the front as well as the rear.
On a bike with 29-inch wheels, you have more momentum once you’re rolling, and more wheel contacting the trail. The result is better traction and a smoother ride than you’d get on a traditional 26-inch bike.
This is an oldschool bike with 26-inch wheels. Good luck finding one at any race nowadays.
Standard mountain bike tires are about 2 inches wide. The tires on a fat bike can be nearly double that, which allows you to run lower pressure for better grip, and float over dicey terrain like sand and snowcovered trails.
Despite the name, these are pedals that shoes with compatible cleats clip into. They’re the modern version of the original toe clips—those little pedal cages that your gym’s spin bikes probably still have.
Hardtail It has no rear suspension and may have front suspension or a rigid fork; good for hill riding.
27.5 It’s nimble like a smaller 26er but has the more responsive handling that a larger wheel provides.
4/ Surf the Trail
46 MensHealth.com | October 2016
5/ Climb Like a Goat “There are two elements to climbing: balance and traction,” Overend says. Distribute more weight on your back wheel so it doesn’t spin out and enough on your front so you have enough grip to steer—a 60/40 split is ideal. For more traction, says Webber, “lower your chest toward the handlebar, shift your weight slightly back in the saddle, and con-
7/ Stick with It “Look for a local club and join some group rides,” Gullickson suggests. The members can point you toward the best trails for your ability—an invaluable service, since there’s no universal system for ranking trails by difficulty. (Download the MTB Project app at mtbproject.com to find trails across the country.) Also, says Dalrymple, riding with others makes it easier to push yourself and learn. “You’ll see people go through or over an obstacle or blast down a tricky downhill section and it’ll give you confidence to do the same.” Eventually you’ll experience what’s kept Dalrymple addicted to dirt riding for more than a decade. “When you keep improving,” he says, “it keeps being fun.”
C u l t u r a / I m a g e S o u r c e /G a l l e r y S to c k
As you approach obstacles like rocks and roots, use your arms and legs as shock absorbers, says Pete Webber, a mountain biking coach based in Boulder, Colorado. Don’t freeze up or slow down. Think light hands, heavy feet, butt off the saddle— like a surfer crouched to absorb the force of a wave. Maintaining momentum makes it easier to roll up and over obstacles. Over time you should master the track stand, says Overend. That’s the ability to keep your balance while stopped or at very slow speeds rather than using forward momentum to stay upright. This skill helps you tackle features like tight turns and switchbacks that need to be negotiated slowly. So as you hang out in your driveway, try to stay on your bike
as long as you can without rolling forward or falling off. Do this: Stand up, rotate the cranks to horizontal, and turn the handlebar 45 degrees, keeping one finger on each brake and holding pressure on the forward pedal. “Stay loose and calm and focus on a point 5 feet ahead,” Overend says. “It’s really simple, but it really helps. Work up to 60 seconds.”
White-knuckle, roller-coaster descents are the most fun part of mountain biking— and the most dangerous. Shift your weight back in the saddle for better control and more speed. You’re too far back if you’re hanging on with your fingers and losing pressure on your palms; that pressure helps you maintain steering and braking power. If you have a dropper post, this is its time to shine. “When your seat is in the way of your hips, it messes with your ability to react and stay balanced as you bomb downhill,” says Wilson. To scrub speed, “pull both brakes evenly and at the same time with one or two fingers,” Wilson says. That’ll prevent you from doing an endo after an overly strong front-brake squeeze, unless you really want to feel the pain of a mountain biking injury like a shattered collarbone.
Pain-Free in One Move This simple exercise may ease lingering pain, prevent injuries, and help you accomplish new fitness goals. By Michael Easter Do your knees, hips, or back sometimes hurt for seemingly random reasons? Do running, lifting, and playing sports leave you sore in the wrong places? Do you walk around gingerly, feeling stiff all over? This three-second test may reveal the reason. Stand up and kick off your shoes. Spread your feet hip-width apart with your toes pointing straight ahead. Now squat. Go as low as you possibly can, making sure you don’t raise your heels off the floor or slump
skull flattening and neck stretching proved this phenomenon quite effectively. In a chair sitting position, your hip and ankle muscles shorten and your stabilizing core muscles turn off because the chair supports your body. Over time, your hips and ankles tighten while the core areas weaken, explains Doug Kechijian, a physical therapist with Resilient PT in New York City. Tight, weak muscles are a recipe for pain, injury, and compromised performance.
Learning to squat might be the most important thing you can do for your fitness and wellness. It’s a life changer. forward. If you couldn’t drop your butt to just a few inches above the ground, you just discovered your problem. “Sitting in a squat position is the most natural movement for the body,” says Roop Sihota, a Bay Area physical therapist. That’s because the joints and muscles you need for squatting—hips, knees, ankles, core, quads, glutes, and more—are your powerhouses for everything from walking and running to swinging a golf club and doing yard work. If you can’t squat properly, your joints are probably too stiff and your muscles too tight. That causes you to lose your ability to move properly, which in turn affects delicate areas such as your knees and back. The result? Potential pain and injury, and decreased range of motion over the long haul. That’s why learning to squat might be the most important thing you can do for your fitness and wellness. If you’re wondering why you failed the test in the first place, the answer is simple. Humans were meant to sit in the squat position. Then chairs came along. Ever since first grade you’ve probably been sitting in a chair eight hours a day, five days a week. A chair delivers comfort, sure, but it’s also an unnatural structure that your body adapts to. Such cultural practices as 48 MensHealth.com | October 2016
But when we spend a greater amount of time squatting, our hips and ankles don’t become tight or weak. When a muscle becomes overly tight, your brain may sense the area as threatened and send pain there as a way to entice you to move, says Kechijian. For example, sciatica— a chronic pain in the ass, literally—occurs when your hip muscles become too tight. The reason therapies such as foam rolling and stretching temporarily relieve pain is that they reduce some tension. Learning to squat correctly means you’ll loosen these muscles for good and banish your pain. Performing nearly any physical activity on tight and weak muscles is a bad idea. If you run on immobile ankles and tight hips, you risk hamstring or knee injuries because power and impact shifts to the wrong areas, says Marco Sanchez, cofounder of Movement as Medicine, a massage and movement therapy clinic outside Boston. When a guy with tight hips and ankles picks up anything from a barbell to a bag of mulch, he can’t reach the ground while keeping his back straight. So his spine bends, sending the load there. That can cause a disc bulge—and a world of hurt. Nearly every sport requires motion from the hips because your hips give your body rotational power. Take
golf: If your hips are too tight, driving a ball can lead to back pain because you’re moving from your spine instead of your hips. “An inability to squat can lead to pain or injury in every joint in the body,” Sihota says. In fact, research shows that people in rural areas of some developing countries where the “sit squat” is a common resting position have the lowest incidence of posture-related problems, like lower-back pain. In your workouts, a full range of motion in moves like the barbell squat and the deadlift is impossible if lack of flexibility in your hips and ankles make it difficult for you to drop into a full or deep squat. (And if you do it anyway, you could be vulnerable to pain or injury, especially if you’ve loaded up the weight.) That makes the exercise less effective because you engage fewer muscles and keep them under tension for less time. The result: You see less return from your workout for the same amount of effort. Learning to squat properly is more than a game changer—it’s a life changer. You’ll notice fewer aches and pains. You’ll reduce your risk of injury. You’ll build more muscle across your body. Best of all, you’re likely to see your performance improve—running faster, smashing a ball farther, punching harder—in just about every activity you do. P H O T O G R A P H B Y R YA N O .
Liftoff! Shoes with raised heels can help you shift more weight.
How to Squat These tests can help identify what’s sabotaging your squat. You may have just one problem area, or three—hips, core, and ankles. Feel free to do the fix for longer than we recommend; it’ll only help you reach your goal faster. TEST YOUR ...
Hips and/or Core
This test tells you whether your problem is tight hips or a weak core. Lie on your back and assume a squat position lying down: Bring your knees as close to your chest as you can. Can’t get them past your hips? Your hips are too tight. If you can bring your knees high, then your core just isn’t strong or stable enough to support your squat position while standing, says Sanchez.
Your ankles need to flex enough to let your knees track over your feet, allowing you to distribute your weight evenly. This test tells you whether your ankles are too stiff to allow that. Stand in a staggered stance facing a wall, your front foot 5 inches from it. Push your front knee as far forward as you can, attempting to touch the wall with it. If your knee can’t touch the wall, you failed.
G r o o m i n g : G i n a K a y / Tr u e B e a u t y M a r k s; i l l u s t r a t i o n s b y +I S M , c o u r t e s y R e e b o k (s h o e)
Hold onto a doorjamb, the frame of a squat rack, or a chair. Now drop into a squat, using the frame, rack, or chair to stabilize your body just enough to keep from falling. Your torso should be upright and you should feel your core engage. Breathe deeply in the position for up to 30 seconds. Stand up. That’s 1 rep. Do 3 reps, 3 days a week.
Get down on all fours. Extend your left leg; your knee should be above the floor. Move your right foot beneath your left leg and “pin” your right heel to the outside of your left knee. This is the starting position. Now move your hips back and forth to the right for 1 minute, feeling your right hip stretch. Switch sides and repeat. Do this drill once a day.
Do the ankle test above for 3 sets of 5 reps every day. Also foamroll each calf for 1 minute a day: Grab a foam roller, sit on the floor, and place the roller under your right calf. Roll up and down the muscle for 60 seconds. Repeat on your other calf. For a more targeted massage, you can try this technique with a tennis or lacrosse ball.
TAKE THE ULTIMATE SQUAT TEST! If you can squat well already, get down in the position and try to hold it with good form for 10 minutes (and have a copy of The Iliad handy so you don’t get bored). If you can’t do 10 minutes straight, build up to it by holding the squat for as long as you can. Rest for the same amount of time and repeat until you hit 10 minutes. This extended time “locks in” the position, helping to establish the move.
Should You Wear Lifting Shoes? You may have seen hard-core guys at your gym wearing shoes with steep, solid heels when they do exercises like squats, deadlifts, and other barbell lifts. “By design, the shoes elevate your heels and allow you to skirt around mobility issues and assume better form,” says Greg Spatz, D.P.T., of Resilient PT in New York City. If you can’t keep your weight evenly distributed through your feet and your spine straight when you do loaded squats (e.g., barbell back squat or goblet squat), you may want to find a good pair, Spatz says, like the Reebok CrossFit Lifter Plus 2.0 ($130, reebok.com). They’ll help keep you from lapsing into bad form and potentially injuring your lower back. “But the shoes shouldn’t be a permanent ‘fix’ to your problem,” says Spatz. So do the exercises at left, utilizing the mobility-enhancing shoes until you can do the moves correctly without their assistance. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 49
Today’s kids meals have lost their way. They neglect the very people they were meant to feed. At Panera we believe kids shouldn’t have to imagine what’s in their food.
Clean No artiicial lavors, preservatives, sweeteners or colors from artiicial sources.
Full of Delicious Options Let kids make their own choices from a menu full of tasty, wholesome options.
Worthy of Trust No cartoon characters, crazy colors, toys, or toy-shaped food.
Nutritiously Paired Growing bodies need a meal complete with nutritious sides like organic yogurt, sprouted grain rolls, or apples.
Drink Optional Kids meals shouldn’t encourage kids to drink a sugary beverage. Ours never have, never will.
©2016 Panera Bread. All Rights Reserved.
Food+Nutrition COOK ONCE, EAT FOR A WEEK: MEATLOAF Our updated recipe crams in vegetables and adds beer. No matter how you slice it, this meatloaf will be even better the next day. By Paul Kita and the Rodale Test Kitchen Hey, what did you have for lunch three days ago? Don’t feel bad if you can’t remember. Lackluster meals are often the result of a lack of planning. So next week, cook this memorable meatloaf instead of feeding at your company cafeteria. Yes, you’ll spend time, but it’s an investment in nutrition equity. This stuff is so good that you’ll relish the leftovers, either reheated or revitalized as breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Start loafing. `
Most loaves lean on sugary ketchup for taste. We prefer beer and bacon.
PH OTO G R A PH S BY S A M K A PL A N
Food + Nutrition ONLY $3.10 PER SERVING!
Cook It! Budget about 90 minutes to make this recipe. Two-thirds of that, though, is hands-off oven time. Which leaves you with downtime and extra beer. You’ll know what to do.
Great meatloaf should be firm and juicy, not crumbly and dry. That’s why this recipe employs an 85/15 beef blend—that is, 85 percent muscle and 15 percent fat. Anything leaner could jeopardize the moisture factor. The addition of veal lightens the loaf, and bacon injects extra fat and flavor for balance. Feel free to switch out the stout. Guinness is fine, but Southern Tier’s 2xStout doubles up on the beer backbone. Tröegs JavaHead will add a coffee kick, and Abita Imperial Stout, aged in bourbon barrels, will charge your loaf with a roasted quality. If you go with a chocolate stout...well, that’s on you, buddy.
2 1 1 1 ½
Tbsp olive oil medium yellow onion, diced medium carrot, diced medium rib celery, diced cup sliced cremini mushrooms, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, minced ¾ cup stout beer, such as Guinness 1 lb ground beef, preferably 85 percent lean 1 lb ground veal ¾ cup old-fashioned rolled oats 2 large eggs, beaten ¼ cup chopped parsley 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce 10 strips bacon
1. In a large skillet on medium, heat the oil. Add the next five ingredients. Sauté till softened, about 8 minutes. Add the stout and cook till almost dry, 4 minutes. Cool in a big bowl. 2. Preheat the oven to 375°F. To the bowl with the vegetables, add the beef, veal, oats, eggs, parsley, Worcestershire, 2 tsp salt, and ½ tsp pepper. Mix. 3. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. On it, form the mix into a 10"x 4" loaf; drape the bacon diagonally on top, tucking the ends under. Bake it to 160°F (use a food thermometer), 45 to 55 minutes. Then broil it till the bacon crisps, 3 minutes or so. Let it rest 10 minutes. Slice. Feeds 8
Per serving 454 calories, 30g protein, 10g carbs (2g fiber), 31g fat
Leverage the leftover meat for these boredom-busting meals that won’t pop the rivets off your jeans.
The Meatloaf Mac In a bowl, mix the mayo, ketchup, and a pinch of salt. In a large skillet on medium, warm the meatloaf, about 2 minutes a side. Cover one slice with cheese; melt slightly. Spread half the sauce on the bottom bun; top with the cheesy meatloaf slice, half the lettuce, and the next slice. Add the remaining lettuce, pickles, and onion. Spread sauce on the top bun. Close and chow. Feeds 1 529 calories, 18g protein, 47g carbs (2g fiber), 29g fat 52 MensHealth.com | October 2016
What You’ll Need 1 Tbsp mayonnaise 1½ tsp ketchup 2 slices meatloaf (¼" thick) 1 slice American cheese 1 hamburger bun ¼ cup shredded iceberg lettuce 2 dill pickle slices 1 Tbsp diced onion
Breakfast Meatloaf Place two meatloaf slices side by side and cut a hole in the center. Heat a skillet on medium and hit it with cooking spray. Add the slices and crack an egg in the hole. Cook till the white sets, 3 to 5 minutes. Meanwhile, season the tomato halves with salt and pepper and put them cut side down in the pan. Cook until softened, 3 minutes. Plate, add parsley, and enjoy with a glass of OJ. Feeds 1 688 calories, 46g protein, 17g carbs (3g fiber), 46g fat
What You’ll Need 2 slices meatloaf (1" thick) Cooking spray 1 egg 1 small tomato, halved ½ tsp chopped parsley
Pack It! As your meatloaf bakes to perfection, fix these simple sides to make your on-the-go meals even more nutritious. Combo 1 Peas and carrots + baked potato half with butter Combo 2 Sautéed kale + roasted beets
Combo 3 Roasted cauliflower + Honeycrisp apple
Food st yling: Jamie Kimm
Quick Beef and Bacon Quesadilla Heat a cast-iron grill pan or skillet on medium. Add a tortilla, followed by the cheese, meatloaf, and other tortilla. Cook until marks appear on the tortilla’s underside, 2 to 4 minutes. Flip and repeat. Meanwhile, grab a small bowl and mix the red onion, avocado, black beans, and cilantro. Scatter this atop your cooked quesadilla. Feeds 1 855 calories, 45g protein, 54g carbs (13g fiber), 53g fat
What You’ll Need 2 small tortillas ¼ cup shredded pepper jack cheese 1 slice meatloaf (1" thick), crumbled ¼ red onion, diced ½ avocado, diced ¼ cup canned black beans, rinsed 1 handful cilantro, chopped (optional)
Spicy Beef Lettuce Cups In a medium skillet on medium, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook till golden, about 1 minute. Add the meatloaf and cook until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Arrange the four lettuce leaves on a plate and divide the meat, cabbage, carrot, lime juice, and jalapeño among them. Feeds 1 397 calories, 23g protein, 20g carbs (2g fiber), 26g fat
What You’ll Need 1 tsp olive oil 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 slice meatloaf (about 1" thick), crumbled 4 Boston lettuce leaves 1 cup shredded cabbage ¼ cup shredded carrot 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice 1 jalapeño, minced
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 53
Food + Nutrition
General Tso’s secret: He’s got a vicious sweet tooth. Just six pieces of his sticky chicken has 3 teaspoons of sugar.
Lunch Check Cold-Cut Labels A slice of Hatfield Virginia Brand Ham has 2 grams of sugar. But no man puts one slice of ham on a sandwich. Pile that puppy with five slices and you’ve hit 10 grams. Try Applegate Naturals Uncured Black Forest Ham, which has no sugar. Beware of “Healthy” Dressing Newman’s Own Cranberry Walnut, which is advertised as “light,” has 16 grams of sugar per ¼ cup. The same amount of Wish-Bone Light Western has 24 grams. Mix 2 parts olive oil to 1 part balsamic vinegar, plus salt and pepper. That’s it. Swap Out the Sweet Beans A half cup of Bush’s Original baked beans has 5 grams of fiber, which can blunt the insulin-spiking effect of sugar, but not enough to offset its 12 grams. Rinse white canned beans and toss ’em with pesto for a side.
Snack Ration Energy Bars A chocolate mint Clif Builder’s Bar harbors 22 grams of sugar, and its ingredient list features three different sugars. That’s fine if you’re training for a marathon. Otherwise, just have a handful of plain nuts. Watch Your Nuts Sahale Snacks Valdosta Pecans Glazed Mix has 18 grams of sugar per ½ cup. A bit of that comes from dried cranberries, but cane sugar and brown sugar provide the bulk. Buy regular old peanuts, pistachios, or almonds, or a sugar-free mix.
10 Places Where Sugar Lurks American men consume about 84 grams of added sugar a day—18 Oreos’ worth. Too much sugar makes you fat, which can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and early death. This page is a checklist that can cut your risk. By Paul Kita Breakfast
54 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Drink Real Milk Cow’s milk has 8 grams of protein and 12 grams of sugar per glass. But that natural milk sugar (a.k.a. lactose) is absorbed more slowly than added sugar. Sweetened almond milk (with water as its first ingredient) has 7 grams of sugar, zero lactose, and 1 measly gram of protein.
Skip the Pump If you order a grande iced coffee at Starbucks, it’ll automatically come with syrup from a pump bottle. That’ll cost you 20 grams of sugar. Instead, make your order an iced coffee, black. No sugar at all! But you’ll need to let the squirthappy barista know: No sweet.
Lay Of the Sauce Panda Express Sweetfire Chicken Breast has 380 calories but 27 grams of sugar. In general, choose Chinese dishes that are a combo of protein and vegetables, which go lighter on sugary sauce. Panda’s Mushroom Chicken has only 170 calories and 4 grams of sugar. Say Just (Plain) Cheese Two large slices of Papa John’s BBQ Chicken Bacon pie add up to a whopping 22 grams of sugar. Two slices of plain cheese pizza still carry 8 grams of sugar, but if you eat a salad before grabbing a slice, you’ll blunt the negative effects associated with the sweet stuff.
B a r t h o l o m e w C o o k e / Tr u n k A r c h i v e
Start the Day Smart One packet of Quaker Protein Instant Oatmeal Banana Nut provides 10 grams of protein—and 12 grams of sugar. A half cup of quickcooking rolled oats has 5 grams of protein and 1 gram of sugar. Buy them. Cook them. Eat them with bananas, berries, or a few raisins.
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Food + Nutrition
Make Your Own Vegetable Chips The latest, greatest take on your favorite snack isn’t fried and doesn’t use white potatoes. Fix these yourself. Cut 100 calories a serving. Munch with zero guilt. 1. Buy
Sweet potatoes These are no ordinary spuds. They contain fiber, vitamins A and C, and a host of other disease-fighting antioxidants. Sweet indeed. Cayenne Kale It’s a potent leafy green, with sight-saving vitamin A, heartprotecting vitamin K, and cancerfighting phytonutrients. Try Red Russian, Tuscan, or curly varieties.
Preheat your oven to 350°F and cut the vegetables into chip-size pieces. If you’re using beets or sweet potatoes, grab a mandoline ($40, oxo.com) to quickly make thin slices. For maximum crunch, make sure the vegetables are dry; you can use a salad spinner, kitchen towel, or air and patience. Then toss the chips in a light coating of olive oil.
Spread the oiled slices on a baking sheet. Add sea salt and a dusting of seasoning, such as ground cayenne, cumin, freshly grated Parmesan, lemon zest, Old Bay, paprika, or whatever else you like.
4. Roast Put the baking sheet in the oven and cook the slices until crisp, 10 to 15 minutes. Let them cool for a few minutes before eating. Enjoy them the same day or they’ll lose their crispiness.
You’ll Probably Want a Beer with That Try Ballast Point Even Keel, a session IPA that clocks in at 3.8 percent alcohol by volume. (A Budweiser has 5 percent.) You’ll glug fewer calories without sacrificing hoppy flavor. Sip. Crunch. Grin. Repeat.
56 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Photographs by Johanna Parkin
Beets They’ve got vitamin C, nitrates (which boost stamina and may lower blood pressure), and a class of inflammation-fighting antioxidants called betalains.
Very thin slices create crisp chips.
EAT UP. NO MORE EGGSCUSES. A HALF-DOZEN REASONS WHY YOU CAN’T BEAT EGGS
NEW DIETARY GUIDELINES
NO CARBS. NO SUGAR. WHOA, AMINO ACIDS.
The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans remove the daily limit on dietary cholesterol and include eggs in all three recommended healthy eating patterns. Crack open an egg! It can help you build a healthful diet.
Eggs contain zero carbs and no sugar. That means you can eat a well-rounded breakfast during the week. Plus, they’ve got all nine essential amino acids. No big deal.
KEEP IT SIMPLE, SILLY
Did you know eggs have 6 grams of highquality protein? They do. Every single one of them. And kicking off the morning with protein helps sustain mental and physical energy throughout the day. So if you’re the kind of person who wants to have productive days, just remember, eat more protein (like eggs), get more done.
Unlike most cereals and yogurt, eggs don’t come with a complicated ingredient list because they don’t have one. They’re just “eggs.” And at 20 cents a serving, eggs are one of the least expensive sources of high-quality protein there is.
WHAT IS CHOLINE?
GOOD. CLEAN. YUM.
Just because you may not have heard of choline doesn’t make it any less important. Eggs are rich in the stuff, which promotes normal cell activity, liver function and the transportation of nutrients throughout the body. Think of it as a commuter train for vitamins and minerals.
Let’s not forget that on top of tasting good, eggs are free from chemicals and preservatives with no added hormones. Not only that, they are fresh as most eggs leave the farm within 24-36 hours of being laid.
INCREDIBLE, ISN’T IT? Most cereals and yogurts don’t have the nutrients eggs do. So next time someone asks how you like your eggs, say you like ‘em a whole heck of a lot. Wake Up To Eggs!
Find recipes at IncredibleEgg.org
Health SAFE OR SCREWED? Don’t waste any sympathy on this devil. Keef will be fine.
You took chances back then. How much damage did you do? By Ron Geraci During the period of our youth when we had far more hair and testosterone than brains, many of us did our best to destroy our seemingly indestructible bodies. Maybe you lived on bourbon and menthols for all seven years of college. Or evaluated more drugs than a lab tech at the FDA. Or ate so much junk food that your nickname was Big Mac and all the women you dated worked at drive-thrus. If you’ve ever wondered about your risk of repercussions from these and other long-ago sins, maybe it’s time to find out—once and for all—whether you’re safe or screwed.
P H O T O - I L L U S T R AT I O N B Y S E A N M c C A B E
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 59
You boozed so much you scared strangers into AA.
You laid more pipe than British Petroleum.
You served up your skull as a varsity piñata.
Research suggests that the health risks of 10 or even 15 years of heavy smoking are drastically reduced after about 20 smokefree years—as long as you quit young (by age 35), don’t smoke or vape now (even occasionally), avoid secondhand smoke, and don’t dwell for months in a polluted city like Beijing. For each of these factors that still bedevil you, move that “screwed” arrow a bit to the right. “If you were a heavy smoker and quit by age 30, you’ve probably lost only about a year of life span,” says Tim McAfee, M.D., M.P.H., of the CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health. A 2013 study coauthored by Dr. McAfee found that on average, lifelong male smokers died 12 years sooner than those who never smoked. Quitting between the ages of 35 and 44 returned nine years of that lost life span, and stopping between 45 and 64 returned four to six years. If you’d like to better gauge your lung damage, ask your doctor if your smoking history warrants a spiral computed tomography (CT) test. This hightech scan can reveal potentially cancerous tumors. Finally, use your trump card to defy the life span actuaries. “If you quit smoking, you made one of the most difficult behavior changes a person can make, and you can apply that knowledge to make other healthy changes,” Dr. McAfee says. In other words, if you kicked nicotine, then you can do anything.
Think back to your fun times at Kappa Swig. If you averaged two drinks a day or less, you’re probably safe. But if your nickname was Face Plant, that’s different. Several years of heavy drinking (defined as three or more drinks a day on average) likely affected some of your vital organs. “Unless you stopped drinking after those years of heavy consumption, you probably have fatty liver disease,” says Bin Gao, M.D., Ph.D., of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). “See a hepatologist and have your liver tested to learn the degree of damage.” Your boozing also probably cost you some cognitive horsepower. “In ongoing studies, men who were heavy drinkers in their teens and 20s are showing slightly reduced brain volume at age 30 compared with similar men who drank less,” says Susan Tapert, Ph.D., a professor of psychiatry at UC San Diego. These men display shortfalls in memory, attention, and concentration and can revert to adolescent thinking. It’s unclear if those effects are lifelong. Even if you’ve since brought your drinking under control (the current daily threshold is two drinks), be aware you’re at higher risk of rekindling an alcohol use disorder. “If you were a heavy drinker in your youth, you’re more likely to drink heavily later if you go through a major life event, such as a divorce or job loss,” says NIAAA director George Koob, Ph.D.
Maybe you somehow escaped the acute horrors that came with penetrating anything that breathed—pissing fire, herpes, syphilis, HIV. Then you escaped almost everything. Almost. If during and after your Caligula years you weren’t smart enough to go for testing, have a full-spectrum STI screening including a hepatitis C test now, and get treatment if you need it. Your immune system clears some STIs, such as gonorrhea and trichomoniasis, within a few months or years, but new research suggests that chlamydia can persist and cause spontaneous reinfections. Undetected STIs can also hurt fertility, so get a sperm test if you’re having problems conceiving. The unexploded grenade may be the risk of anal, penile, and especially oropharyngeal cancer from the human papilloma virus (HPV). Among Americans under age 45, the rate of this oropharyngeal cancer (affecting the tongue, tonsils, soft palate, or pharynx) rose 60 percent between 1973 and 2009. While your body clears most HPV infections naturally within two years, reinfection through sex is easy; condoms offer limited protection. Your chance of joining the 10,000 men who will be diagnosed with oropharyngeal cancer this year is tiny, though. And since you can’t test for HPV or speed its riddance, “urge your kids to get the HPV vaccine before they’re sexually active,” says Gregory Masters, M.D.
Eighty to 90 percent of singleconcussion symptoms resolve within three months, says Brian Edlow, M.D., a neurocritical care doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital. But two or more concussions or repetitive, lowlevel head knocks from a contact sport can bump you closer into the “screwed” zone. “Many men who played football, soccer, or hockey or boxed in their youth had repetitive subconcussive head blows. These don’t cause brief unconsciousness or confusion but still injure the brain,” explains Dr. Edlow. (Combat vets can suffer these head impacts from nearby explosions.) All of this increases the risk of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), the brain disease found in the football player Junior Seau after his suicide; but the degree of risk is still a mystery. “For the high school football player who had one or two concussions and repetitive subconcussive injuries, the risk of CTE is still unknown,” says Dr. Edlow. “But there’s a lot of ongoing research.” Meanwhile, he says, “manage the factors that can further damage your brain, such as avoiding alcohol and drugs, and controlling high blood pressure and diabetes.” And tell your doctor if you’ve been forgetful or have trouble concentrating, or if you think your personality has changed. Research shows that it takes a significant brain blow—one that knocks you out for at least a half hour—to increase your Alzheimer’s risk.
P r e v i o u s p a g e: D a v i d M c G o u g h / T h e L i f e P i c t u r e C o l l e c t i o n / G e t t y I m a g e s; t h i s p a g e: B e t t m a n n A r c h i v e / G e t t y I m a g e s ( H e f n e r) , H u l t o n A r c h i v e / G e t t y I m a g e s (S t e w a r t) , M a r k W e i s s / W i r e I m a g e / G e t t y I m a g e s (J a m e s) , A s s o c i a t e d P r e s s ( Ty s o n)
You smoked more than a 1950s cardiologist.
U n i v e r s a l P i c t u r e s /c o u r te s y E v e r e t t C o l l e c t i o n (B e l u s h i), R i c h a r d E . A a r o n /m p t v i m a g e s . c o m (O s b o u r n e), M i c h a e l O c h s A r c h i v e s /G e t t y I m a g e s (L L C o o l J), B o b R i h a J r/ W i r e I m a g e /G e t t y I m a g e s (H a m i l to n); i c o n s b y F R E E P I K
You ate nothing but cheese dogs before age 27.
You checked out more drugs than a CVS cashier.
You terrified the neighbors with your subwoofers.
You spent more time in the sun than a Rio lifeguard.
If you didn’t become obese, diabetic, or hypertensive and your blood work is normal, rest easy: No research has confirmed that the horrible diet you subsisted on in your 20s can cause any worrisome problems that persist a decade or more after you discovered edible plants. According to Jim White, R.D., of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, you can overturn the health risks of eating poorly in your bass-player era through years of eating a healthier diet. But that’s easier said than done. The health patterns you establish in your 20s can be hard to shake and often determine the course (and length) of your life. While the physical damage of a poor diet can be reversed, the momentum of hedonistic, mindless eating can gather speed as life becomes more stressful and time-crunched. That’s one reason health experts are more aggressively pushing college-age youths to eat healthy diets full of vegetables. “Your genetic predisposition is a big factor in determining how your body will recover after years of making poor food choices, but many men never dig themselves out of that hole,” says White. “Men who eat horribly in their 20s can turn things around later in life, but it’s a lot harder after those emotional eating and low-physical-activity habits are established, and once they’re 30 or 40 pounds overweight, many men go on to have lifelong obesity.”
Whether you toked, snorted, dropped, shot, or popped, if you’ve been clean for a decade and have no symptoms, your brain has probably recovered from or compensated for any damage. “Research shows that if you quit, the brain eventually recovers most of its cognitive capabilities,” says Wilson Compton, M.D., deputy director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Lest knuckleheads think this equals a free pass to speedball now and rehab later, there are weighty caveats. First, if you started heavily using pot (and likely other drugs) early, while your brain was developing, you’re at greater risk of cognitive problems. “Heavy marijuana use during the teen years can produce persistent learning and memory problems as well as a higher rate of depression and suicidal behavior, even decades later,” says Dr. Compton. Second, you may have permanently damaged or prematurely aged your heart, especially if you used cocaine (which can cause silent heart attacks) or meth (which can cause heart muscle disease). Be open with your doctor about your past drug use, and see a cardiologist. Be wary of opioid painkillers too. “If you were a heavy user of any drug, even alcohol or tobacco, you’re at greater risk of developing an addiction to prescription painkillers even after many years of being clean,” says Dr. Compton.
If you’ve greeted many longhaired mornings with that ringing-in-the-ears sensation of the radically over-rocked, you have a fair chance of developing hearing loss and possibly tinnitus (ear ringing) a decade or three sooner than you might have otherwise. The first inkling of this is usually the “cocktail party effect,” in which you have trouble tuning out background noise to understand a person talking to you in a crowded room, says Matthew Kelley, Ph.D., of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). “This typically happens to people in their late 50s or 60s who haven’t been exposed to loud noise, but those with a history of noise exposure may notice it in their 40s.” To gauge the damage, see an audiologist for a hearing test. If you show signs of mild hearing loss, ask if you should get an assistive hearing device. Otherwise, all you can do is protect what you have left. “You can’t reverse the damage; destroyed cochlear hair cells can never be regenerated, so it’s important to wear ear protection,” says NIDCD director James Battey Jr., M.D., Ph.D. Avoid prolonged exposure to any noise 85 decibels or higher (the equivalent of heavy city traffic). Keep the volume of your car stereo low enough to allow easy conversation and, of course, wear earplugs while mowing, using power tools, and listening to your wife talk about her day.
Sizzling your skin in the sun or on an indoor tanning bed wasn’t bright. That ultraviolet radiation damaged the DNA in your skin cells, fast-forwarding the cancer clock. “UV damage is cumulative, and there’s a tipping point when the cell flips and becomes cancerous,” says Robert Anolik, M.D., of the American Academy of Dermatology. The average American man has about a 1 in 38 chance of developing melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. But if you baked for years sans sunscreen, you’re not average. Plus, if you started indoor tanning before age 35, you upped your melanoma risk by about 60 percent. “I strongly advise people to apply SPF 30 sunscreen to all sun-exposed areas daily, just like it’s moisturizer,” says Dr. Anolik. Doing this can prevent additional damage and lower your skin cancer risk. See a dermatologist every year for a full-body skin check, and do a monthly self-exam to hunt for new or changing spots or moles. Tell your doctor about anything that’s consistently bleeding, itching, or causing pain. Finally, consider taking vitamin B. In a study in the New England Journal of Medicine, people treated for skin cancer who took 500 milligrams of vitamin B3 twice a day had a 23 percent lower risk of developing new non-melanoma skin cancers than those who didn’t. Ask your doctor if a B supplement would be a good idea for you. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 61
When Your Doctor Thinks You’re Nuts Your physician should be your greatest health ally. So what do you do when the diagnosis is disbelief? By Brian Fiske
66 MensHealth.com | October 2016
“I have some bad news for you, son. You’re fine.”
for help. Many people suffering from mysterious symptoms aren’t so lucky. They can spend years and their entire savings searching for answers and trying to convince doctors they’re not nuts. Here’s one man’s story: Seven years ago, Toby Spencer, a 47-year-old bank network administrator in Maine, developed symptoms similar to McDonough’s. Spencer’s doctor referred him to an ENT who, he says, “looked at me like I had three heads” and diagnosed a vascular disorder. Spencer soldiered on for two years before reading about SCDS on the Internet. With the aid of an open-minded ENT, he finally got help. No one knows exactly how many people with bizarre-but-real medical symptoms are being shuttled from doctor to doctor without finding satisfaction. In the United States, diagnostic errors in outpatient settings hover around 5 percent, or roughly 12 million adults a year, according to a 2014 study. But another study, published in 2013, looked at 25 years’ worth of paid malpractice claims and found diagnostic errors to be the leading cause of claims (29 percent), accounting for the highest proportion (35 percent) of total payments. And an Institute of Medicine report from last year predicted that most Americans would be misdiagnosed at least once in their lifetime.
But even these disturbing numbers may not include people whose doctors have simply written them off as delusional. Dr. Lee says he’s seen patients who were on psychiatric medications to treat symptoms he later attributed to SCDS. And there are lots of obscure illnesses like that. For example, at age 18, Chris Martin, now a 37-year-old school psychologist in Sauquoit, New York, underwent a “successful” turbinectomy. This surgery removes nasal structures (turbinates) that can cause sinus pressure and other difficulties. In the 19 years since the operation, Martin has consulted 13 ENTs and eight immunologists, plus sleep specialists, pulmonologists, and alternative-medicine practitioners in an effort to correct the problems that he says stemmed from the procedure. These include chronic breathlessness, extreme nasal dryness, and gluelike mucus. Martin’s symptoms point to Empty Nose Syndrome (ENS), a controversial condition that can stem from turbinectomy. (One skeptical ENT called it “Empty Head Syndrome” to signal his disbelief that it even exists.) Through online research, Martin found support groups and advice, plus ENS-knowledgeable physicians who’ve helped him find some relief. To find relief from what’s ailing you, follow the steps on the next page. `
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank /Get t y Images
There was a time when Sean McDonough could hear his eyeballs move. About five years ago while he was golfing in Arizona, McDonough, the new playby-play announcer for ESPN’s Monday Night Football, bent over to pick up some clubs. The end of the putter tapped him on the back of the head. It wasn’t a hard knock, certainly not enough to raise a lump or leave a bruise—but enough to trigger some strange symptoms. “On the walk from that green to the next tee, my steps were really loud in my head,” says McDonough, 54. “It was ‘boom, boom’... I thought, ‘What the heck is that?’ I kept waiting for it to go away. But it didn’t.” McDonough flew home to Boston that night and kept hearing bizarre sounds. His voice resounded in his head, even when he spoke so softly that others could hardly hear him. And then there was the swishing of his eyeballs, which he first heard as he was reading the news on his computer. After two days, his curiosity turned into concern. McDonough called his sister, Erin, a vice president at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. Her response: “Come in and I’ll get a doctor to look at you.” McDonough saw an ear, nose, and throat specialist (ENT) who ordered tests and diagnosed a rare condition known as superior canal dehiscence syndrome, or SCDS. It results from a hole or thinning in the temporal bone that separates the inner ear from the brain. McDonough’s putter tap had opened up a tiny hole there, though the bone was already so thin that a strong sneeze could have done it. The specialist referred McDonough to Daniel Lee, M.D., a surgeon at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. A few months later, Dr. Lee temporarily removed a piece of McDonough’s skull, lifted his brain to gain access to the damaged area, and made the repair. McDonough was fortunate to find a doctor who quickly and correctly diagnosed him and knew exactly where to send him
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Believing the Unbelievable An eight-step action plan for convincing a busy and possibly skeptical doctor that you’re not delusional and that the symptoms you’re experiencing are real.
2 3 4
Make Sure It’s Not in Your Head
Sum Up the Symptoms
Ask These Five Questions
Keep an Open Mind
Being tired doesn’t necessarily mean you have chronic fatigue syndrome; feeling achy doesn’t always signal Lyme disease. Sometimes you can rule things out by focusing on symptoms that you can measure (such as a fever, with a thermometer) instead of what you feel (feverish), says David NewmanToker, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins. That said, some conditions don’t present such overt external symptoms, so move on to step 2.
If you’re convinced there’s really something wrong, write a description of it. Stick to facts rather than fears, and be concise. “Develop a clear one-page-or-less description,” says Dr. Newman-Toker, who’s spent more than 16 years researching diagnostic errors. “If you have frequent headaches, describe what a typical one feels like and note how often you have them.” If your doctor accepts email, send it prior to your appointment.
Don’t blindly accept the first diagnosis. Ask: 1. Could this be something else? 2. If you were me, what would worry you? 3. Any other diagnostic tests to consider? 4. How long before we know what this is? 5. What should I watch for as a sign that I need to come back? “If you hear ‘I’ve seen this a million times and there’s nothing else it could be,’ you probably have the wrong doctor,” Dr. NewmanToker says. “You want someone who’s willing to explain their logic.”
No matter how helpful your doctor is, don’t assume you’re hearing the whole story. Make sure you understand his or her thinking and what should happen next—the expected progression of the illness, the signs that a treatment is or isn’t working, the red flags that should prompt another consultation. If you want a second opinion, approach that appointment the same way you did the first, focusing on symptoms, not the previous diagnosis. You don’t want to skew the doctor’s thinking.
5 6 7 8 Do Research Online
Share What You Learn
The anxiety of waiting for a diagnosis is understandable, but harassing your doctor with multiple phone calls and emails won’t get you answers any faster. “Give your medical team some time to interpret your testing,” says Dr. Lee, Sean McDonough’s surgeon. “In the end, a face-to-face followup visit with your physician is the best way to answer questions about an unusual or complex condition.”
While you cool your heels for those test results or to see if your condition improves, research your symptoms and diagnosis through trustworthy Internet sources. Start with the websites of large hospitals and universities. One of our favorites is Mayo Clinic (mayoclinic.org). It offers a Symptom Checker where you can select an overall major symptom and then drill down with more specifics to get to possible causes.
It’s a common thread for folks like Chris Martin and Toby Spencer; they kept seeking a solution and a doctor who was willing to listen. The unfortunate side of this? Insurance coverage. Martin submitted special appeals to his insurer (his care was experimental), and they were eventually approved. For people needing financial help, he suggests asking family, friends, and organizations (like church groups) for support, or setting up an account on gofundme.com.
Sean McDonough’s story was featured in USA Today. Not long after it ran, he heard from a woman who’d read it and realized that the misery she’d been dealing with for nearly two decades wasn’t because she was crazy. She had the same thing he had. Her life changed because McDonough shared his story and because she never stopped looking for an answer. Share yours via social media.
68 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Heart Attack Of every 100 acute myocardial infarction cases, one unlucky victim is sent home from the ER. why it’s missed Symptoms can be vague, says David Meyers, M.D., of the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine. Indigestion or shoulder pain can mean a heart attack or just musculoskeletal or GI problems. To be safe, ask for an EKG and/or blood test for cardiac markers of a heart attack. Be sure the doctor has used a riskassessment tool or fully explained why it’s not a heart attack.
Lyme Disease Tests miss 60 to 70 percent of early-stage Lyme cases. why it’s missed “Most people don’t know they’ve been bitten,” says Dr. Meyers, “and they may never develop the bull’s-eye rash.” That can leave doctors chasing vague aches, pains, and fevers. To make sure you’re in the clear, realize that screenings aren’t always reliable, so if they’re negative, ask about additional tests.
Depression Research suggests that doctors misdiagnose depression at least 60 percent of the time. why it’s missed As with Lyme, the symptoms—such as aches and fatigue—point to various possibilities. Share your concerns with your doctor. One key question to ask: “What else could this be?”
Stroke It may be overlooked 13 percent of the time, one study suggests. why it’s missed The classic signs (weakness on one side, vision and speech problems) are recognizable, but others (headache, dizziness) can mislead. Have the doc check your smile. That, plus your gait and ability to raise both arms evenly, can help with diagnosis. If dizziness is your main symptom, ask about an MRI or other tests.
Fatihhoca/Get t y Images
Don’t Be a Jerk
4 Commonly Misdiagnosed Conditions
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Weight Loss HOW TO LOSE ONE POUND Before you shed 10, 20, or 50 pounds, you need to lose that first one. Thinking small can lead to big changes. By Michael Easter Losing weight is easy. We’ve all done it a half dozen times. Problem is, it’s usually the same pounds we’re peeling off and packing back on. Research shows that about 80 percent of people who drop 10 percent of their body weight aren’t able to maintain that weight loss for a year. Look, we all love a quick fix. But ask yourself this: Will you be able to follow your special diet not only today but also every day this week? Can you do your intense workouts week after week? And can you keep these habits up for the rest of your life? If it sounds difficult, go easy on yourself. `
PH OTO G R A PH S BY JA M I E C H U N G
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 71
Put your fork down after every bite, and consciously chew slower.
72 MensHealth.com | October 2016
WEEKS 1 + 2
WEEKS 3 + 4
WEEKS 5 + 6
Put the Fork Down
Move Every Day
Join the 30-30-30 Club
Start with something really simple. Research consistently shows that being mindful at meals helps you eat less. Precision Nutrition’s Brian St. Pierre, M.S., R.D., usually starts his clients off with this advice: Put your fork down after every bite and consciously chew slower. With something like chicken, aim for 20 chews; for an apple, do 10. Over the course of a day you’ll take in about 250 fewer calories, St. Pierre says. That may not seem like much, but it adds up over time and helps you shed fat while still feeling full and satisfied. This does not, however, grant you free license to consume foods that don’t require much chewing—like Twinkies and milkshakes.
Of course, you need to exercise more too. According to data from the National Weight Control Registry, nearly 90 percent of people who lost weight and kept it off did so by combining diet and exercise. Remember, small steps: Aim to walk, run, or lift three days a week for 30 minutes. The form of exercise you pick doesn’t matter, as long as it’s the one you know you’ll do most often. Find an activity you enjoy and do it as consistently as you can. As a benchmark, 30 minutes of calisthenics burns about 330 calories; running cuts 400, and plain old walking eliminates 175. Heck, even gardening burns 155 calories in a half hour.
As in 30 grams of protein at every meal. A pork chop, a salmon fillet, or 1½ cups of cottage cheese has at least that much. Protein not only helps you build and maintain muscle but also keeps your appetite in check. People who eat high-protein meals feel fuller for longer than those who eat low-protein meals, according to a new Purdue review. So if you stock up on protein at mealtime, you’re less likely to tear open a 300-calorie snack bar later in the day. Here’s an easy trick for visualizing 30 grams: If the serving of meat or seafood in question is slightly larger than the palm of your hand, you’ll likely hit that crucial 30 grams when you chow down.
Prop st yling: Brian Byrne
“Transitioning from ‘anything goes’ eating habits to a very strict diet is like going from a bicycle in the country to a stickshift Ferrari on the Autobahn,” says Krista Scott-Dixon, Ph.D., of Precision Nutrition. “You might manage for a while, but eventually you’ll crash.” So instead of aiming for a lofty target of 25, 50, or 100 pounds, set this manageable goal right now: “I will lose 1 pound.” With the help of the country’s smartest minds in health and nutrition, your new strategy is simple. Choose just one healthy habit from the options on these pages and practice it for two weeks. That’s the amount of time people need to implement a new behavior into their lifestyle, says Scott-Dixon, and for the behavior to lose its stress factor. After two weeks, the behavior often becomes automatic. From there, adopt another healthy habit for the next two weeks. Repeat until friends and coworkers have trouble recognizing you. When one step’s time period ends, don’t stop doing it; just incorporate the next step. Here’s a helpful tactic that Scott-Dixon uses with her clients to help them select a habit: Ask yourself how confident you are, on a scale of 1 to 10, that you could keep practicing the habit every day for the upcoming 14 days. If you answer 9 or 10, then go ahead and take it on. If it’s 8 or below, either make the proposed goal easier or pick another one that you’ll be more likely to stick to. Each of these new habits will make a difference on its own, but together they can permanently transform your body.
Illustration by ELIAS STEIN
WEEKS 9 + 10
WEEKS 15 + 16
De-Stress to Deflate
Have vegetables and fruit at every meal; they’re loaded with vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Plus, they’re low in calories and help you feel full because of their water and fiber content. Here’s another way to think about the power of produce: Vegetables elbow out the more calorie-laden foods that tend to crowd your plate. If you pile on squash, you won’t have room for pasta. Think you’ll be sad missing out on mac ’n’ cheese? Maybe not: People in an Australian study who increased their fruit and vegetable intake reported improvements in overall life satisfaction. Shoot for two fist-size portions of produce at each meal, says St. Pierre.
When stressors arise, crash dieters crash and burn. So have two go-to comfort meals on deck for whenever you’re under the gun, suggests St. Pierre. One could be a giant bowl of chicken soup with two eggs and a handful of spinach. Or make a burger: In a hot, oiled pan, sear a quarter-pound seasoned beef patty, about 3 minutes per side for medium. Slide the sizzled patty into a whole wheat pita with tomato and lettuce. That’s 273 calories, 22 grams of protein, 18 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of fiber. Serve it with a tall glass of milk to hit that 30 grams of protein. To fight flavor fatigue, use the same recipe but with ground turkey or chicken or a salmon fillet.
WEEKS 11 + 12
WEEKS 17 + 18
Increase Your Liquidity
Hydrate and you’ll lose weight. Starting when you wake up, set your phone timer countdown to two hours. Drink a glass of water before the time runs out. Then reset it as long as you’re awake. By drinking this much water, you flush away the temptation to guzzle calorie-laden juices and sodas, which tend to total around 200 calories a serving. While you’re thinking about drinks, cut calories from your coffee by trimming adjectives from your order. A double caramel mocha frappe with whip isn’t coffee—it’s a 600-calorie caffeinated dessert. Try adding just whole milk to black coffee. Later, cut out the milk. If the flavor’s still too strong for you, add cinnamon.
Manage your anxiety and you might not even find yourself turning to food. “Stress is a killer,” says St. Pierre. “It stores fat, eats muscle, ruins health, and crushes fitness performance.” In fact, people in an Ohio State study who were under stress burned an average of 104 fewer calories in the six hours following a meal than those who had lower stress levels. That’s why taking just 20 minutes a day to unplug can improve your physique and help you make better food decisions. Try meditating, hanging with your dog, walking, reading, or even Legos. Anything that takes your mind off your aggravation may also help you take off the weight.
WEEKS 7 + 8
WEEKS 13 + 14
Sleep Your Belly Off
Pick Up a Pan
Shuteye is as important as diet and exercise when it comes to how you look, feel, and perform, St. Pierre says. In a small pilot study, overweight people who restricted the window during which they allowed themselves to eat (from 14-plus hours to 10 to 12) ate less, lost weight, and slept better. Your hunger hormone levels rise when you’re fatigued, which means you’re more likely to make poor food choices throughout the day. In fact, in a French study, people consumed 560 more calories the day after just one night of poor sleep (four hours) than they did after sleeping eight hours. So set a curfew and stick to it—no matter what’s next on Netflix.
Most crash diets force you to live in a black-and-white reality where some foods are bad and others are good, says Scott-Dixon. But a guy on a crash diet might take one bite of a food that doesn’t fit into the diet’s “rules” and decide that his entire diet is ruined, says Graham Thomas, Ph.D., a weight loss researcher at Brown University. This could then lead him to ditch the diet, a phenomenon known as “abstinence violation effect.” Soon he’s back at his starting weight. To avoid this trap, follow the 80-20 rule: If the vast majority of what you eat is smart, the other 20 percent is for whatever you want. Yes, even that mac ’n’ cheese.
In a Johns Hopkins study, people living in households where they ate six or seven home-cooked dinners a week consumed 137 fewer calories a day than those in homes where hardly any cooking took place at all. Cook daily for 20 days and you’ve cut 2,740 calories. There’s more good news: People in a 2016 Harvard study who regularly cooked at home had a lower diabetes risk than those who never fired up the stove. Need help? Start with our meatloaf recipe (see page 51) or go to rodaleu.com/cookingstreak to take our easy-to-follow video cooking class. The requirements: five inexpensive kitchen tools, a few basic techniques, and an appetite.
Q: Why is it so easy to put weight back on? A: Blame your biology. When you gain weight, your body produces more fat cells that are larger in size, says Randy Seeley, Ph.D., of the University of Michigan School of Medicine. This process also increases your levels of leptin, a hormone that regulates fat storage. In short, your body adapts to carrying fat. But when you lose weight, your leptin levels fall. “Your brain sees that as a problem and that you’re starving to death,” Seeley says. In turn, you’re hungrier more often and find it harder to fight off cravings. Lower leptin levels have another effect: Reduced amounts of the hormone encourage your body to burn fewer calories. So you not only want to eat more often but also have a harder time burning calories. Research shows that it’s extremely difficult to adapt to a lower weight as well as the reduced size and number of fat cells. That’s all the more reason to embrace every habit described in this story. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 73
Six months ago, Men’s Health itness advisor Bill Hartman, P.T., was like many of us: in decent enough shape, but heading in the wrong direction after years of eating on the go while working long hours. Sure, he exercised hard a few days a week and ate healthy foods. “But I didn’t pay attention to portion sizes,” he says. A snack of a handful of cashews, for example, often became ive or six handfuls, leaving him with a 600-calorie tab. With the big 5-0 approaching, Hartman, a co-owner of IFAST Gym in Indianapolis, needed some inspiration. “Jack LaLanne would often do a big physical challenge on his birthday,” he says. “I thought maybe I should do something a little crazy too.” Hartman’s goal: to get shredded and regain the shape he was in back in his 20s, when he competed as a bodybuilder. He would need to muster more effort this time, because losing fat and building muscle becomes harder with every passing year. After age 35, diminishing testosterone and slowing metabolism add to the challenge. Still, the path to a bodybuilder physique is the same: strict diet and exercise. First, Hartman devised the perfect fitness plan. Next he recruited his friend, Men’s Health nutrition advisor Mike Roussell, Ph.D., to build him a nutrition program that would satisfy his appetite and sculpt his core. “Then it all came down to following the plans,” says Hartman. Now Hartman is down more than 25 pounds, and his body fat hovers around 7 percent. Losing
Bill Hartman keeps his eating plan on the fridge, because even experts need reminding.
By the Numbers
Get Ripped at Any Age Yes, you can sculpt a six-pack like this guy did. We’ll show you the four fundamental rules to make that happen. By Michael Easter 74 MensHealth.com | October 2016
BEFORE 195 pounds 15% body fat 2,500 calories 40% protein 28% carbs 32% fat
AFTER 169 pounds 7% body fat 1,750 calories 30% protein 30% carbs 40% fat
P H O T O G R A P H S B Y R U DY A R C H U L E TA
fat and dropping pounds also benefited Hartman’s general health by reducing inflammation and improving his insulin levels, two factors that have health implications as we get older. “Smaller dogs live longer,” says Hartman, using an example from nature. Want to get your bark back? Just follow the four fundamentals of Hartman’s program.
Why Cardio Is Your WeightLoss Turbo Going balls to the wall in the gym six days a week may actually sabotage your gains. Here’s why: Your body needs time between hard gym sessions to recover and build muscle. If you limit that time by doing tough workouts more than two days in a row, your muscle can’t rebuild. Instead, it just keeps wearing down. To make progress between his hard sessions, Hartman did relaxed cardio workouts. They helped increase bloodflow to his muscles, boosting his recovery. Hit the stair climber or do a body-weight circuit of squats, stepups, inverted rows, and pushups. Keep at it for 45 to 60 minutes. Try to keep your heart rate between 120 and 150 beats per minute.
Ease Into It Many men think the only way to develop their abs is to hammer in the gym and slash their calorie intake. But if you do too much too soon, you could burn muscle and burn out mentally. Yes, big goals require big measures. “But if you go extreme right away and then stop progressing, where do you go from there?” Roussell asks. So start by cutting 200 to 300 calories a day from your diet. Stick to it. Once you reach that plateau (usually in two to four weeks), cut out another 200 to 300 and repeat. Hartman, for example, launched his plan by dropping to 2,200 daily calories; then he cut his intake further to 2,000 and ended at 1,750.
Eat Like This, Look Like That It’s an optimal mix of carbs, fats, and protein for fat loss, muscle growth, and energy.
Snack 2 oz beef jerky; or 1 oz pistachios or cashews; or another smoothie Lunch Chicken breast and 1½ cups mixed vegetables Snack (Choose from the snack options above)
Dinner Big salad and a 4 oz steak 76 MensHealth.com | October 2016
A typical training program prescribes a specific number of sets, such as 3 or 5. But because your performance can vary from day to day based on influences such as sleep and stress, that prescription might be too rigorous or too easy on any given day. That’s why Hartman based his training program around “autoregulation” sets. In those, your reps stay the same but the sets can vary depending on your performance. You do as many as you can until your form breaks down or your strength gives out. This strategy accomplishes two things: It hits your body with a stimulus that’s enough for you to make progress, and it keeps the brakes on to prevent you from digging too deep and sustaining an injury. To try it, see “The Fast Track to a Six-Pack” on page 138.
Do exactly the amount of exercise you need, and don’t go overboard. Keep Having Fun
Every Saturday for the past decade, Hartman has taken his gym’s interns out for lunch at a local Mexican cantina to talk shop, decompress, and review the week. “Obviously the fajitas, margaritas, and all the chips I could eat didn’t fly anymore,” says Hartman. So Roussell helped him find a meal he enjoyed that also worked for his diet. The solution? A spicy chicken breast on a bed of greens. “Maintaining normal rituals during your diet is key to sustainability,” says Roussell.
Midway through his transformation process, Hartman had to travel to China for 10 days. He stuck to his nutrition plan by packing 24 Epic protein bars, 10 packages of Chef’s Cut Buffalo Style Real Chicken Jerky, and four cans of cashews. “When you’re committed to a goal, your nutrition decisions need to be made beforehand,” Roussell says. At home, Hartman tacked his eating plan on his fridge so he and his wife could easily shop and cook around it. “She also lost weight,” says Hartman.
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A corn tortilla has 50 calories. This taco wrapper? We figure 250.
Your Salad Fix You probably never think about hitting up fast food for a salad. But if you’re on the go, it’s a smart, healthy option. Here are the best from the three biggies.
Don’t Fall for These Fast-Food Tricks
Double Chicken Chopped Salad with Subway Vinaigrette You take in a satisfying 36 grams of protein for only 330 calories.
Normal, innocent-looking taco, right? Check it out again. The shell is made of deep-fried chicken. Horrified? Taco Bell and other junk joints are okay with that, as long as you’re paying attention to them. Decode their deceptions. By Julie Stewart THE TRICK
Checkers and Rally’s Steakzilla!
Wendy’s Ghost Pepper Fries
Pizza Hut Grilled Cheese Stuffed Crust Pizza
It’s a burger crossbred with a cheesesteak. The only vegetables on this 810calorie behemoth are a few deep-fried onion strings.
For 520 calories, you get fries topped with diced jalapeños, cheese, and sauce made from some of the hottest peppers on the planet.
This cheese pizza comes topped with buttery toasted bread crumbs; the crust is crammed with mozzarella and cheddar. Oof.
“It’s ‘I dare you to eat this’ food,” says Dr. Dietz. Here’s the thing: These items are meant to boost overall food sales. The thinking is that even if you don’t order the item, you might consider something from the chain you haven’t had in a while.
Heat ignites intrigue. Penn State research shows that adventurous people tend to like spicy foods. If you’re drawn to new experiences, you’re probably a fan of the hot stuff. And roller coasters. Except that roller coasters have no calories.
Comfort foods like these are engineered to be irresistibly tasty. The American palate is accustomed to salty foods, while fat provides a pleasing mouthfeel, Dr. Dietz says. Pizza Hut hadn’t provided nutrition information at press time.
Dodge the dare: Order a Checkerburger—with lettuce, tomato, and onion— for a sane 320 calories.
Pack heat—a wee fillable 1-ounce sriracha bottle on a key ring ($5, sriracha2go. com). Use it on healthy stuff.
Add your own toppings to plain pizza, such as sliced red onion, fresh spinach, or precooked grilled chicken.
THE CON ARTIST
Taco Bell Naked Chicken Chalupa
Premium Bacon Ranch Salad with Grilled Chicken It has the most protein (42 grams) of Mickey D’s salads, and least sugar (4 grams). Total calories: 330 without dressing.
WHAT IT IS
You’re looking at a taco sans meat filling—the “shell” is a folded slab of breaded, fried chicken. Calories: 410. (The chicken soft taco has 160.) HOW IT WORKS
Chains create novel foods with wacky names and offbeat ingredient combos in their effort to stoke socialmedia fervor, says William Dietz, M.D., Ph.D., an obesity expert at George Washington University. Moral of the story? Tweets push eats.
Wait it out. Items like these are usually available for only a month or a season. This sold in a test market. 78 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Garden Grilled Chicken Salad (with Dressing) The King grants you just two paltry salad entrée wishes. This one is lower in calories (380) than your only other choice, the 590-calorie Bacon Cheddar Ranch Chicken Salad. (Note: BK offers a “crispy chicken” option for both of these. Don’t.)
PH OTO G R A PH BY S A M K A PL A N
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One treatment kept our intrepid reporter ageless for months.
STICK IT TO WRINKLES Photograph by SPENCER HE YFRON
...and more! Plenty of men are receiving the same skin treatments actors and anchormen are—often for reasons you wouldn’t expect. Are you next? By Dan Michel I’m not the kind of guy you’d expect to see getting Botox. I’m only 32, and I don’t get paid to read the news on cable. Thanks to years of diligently applying sunscreen and moisturizer and keeping my pale Midwestern skin in the shade, I think I’ve held up reasonably well. Yet here I am in a chair in a dermatologist’s exam room, watching as she marks potential “trouble areas”—the beginning of crow’s feet around my eyes and a barely-there crease along my forehead—with a black pen.
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Style + Grooming
Crow’s feet are common targets for men my age who seek the treatment, I learn. Every time I smile, laugh, or squint, my facial muscles create small creases that worsen over time, explains Marina Peredo, M.D., the dermatologist who gave me my treatment. Even if I kept a straight face my whole life, those same muscles would still flex unconsciously, creating lines that are impossible to prevent—without a little help. That’s what this procedure, known as preventive Botox, is for. It works a little like a 401(k) for your skin: The earlier you start, says Dr. Peredo, the better you’ll look in 30 years. For a lot of guys, that promise is suddenly very appealing. In fact, research shows that over the past 16 years, the use of botulinum toxin type A, which includes Botox, has jumped more than 350 percent among men. In 2015 alone, more than 400,000 men sprang for these treatments.
Wanna Take a Shot?
1/ The Sweats
3/ Teeth Grinding
I look like I’ve just awakened, thoroughly refreshed, from the greatest nap of my life.
If you’ve ever had sweaty palms or pit stains before a big interview, Botox can help. The neurotoxin blocks the chemical signals from nerves that stimulate sweat glands, reducing their output, says Daniel Ahoubim, M.D., CEO of the in-home Botox service Refined Aesthetics. The result: months of sweatfree confidence.
Migraines are generally considered brain related. But by targeting four muscle groups around the eyes, forehead, and sides of the head, Botox could bring relief. In a 2014 study in the Journal of Headache and Pain, one out of four chronic migraine patients treated with Botox saw a 75 percent reduction in their migraine days over a month.
About 13 percent of people grind their teeth at night, according to the Journal of Orofacial Pain. Some doctors prescribe mouth guards, but a targeted shot of Botox can prevent the muscles in your jaw from contracting as hard without disabling them completely, says Marc Lowenberg, D.D.S., a cosmetic dentist in New York City.
Botox: The Basics What It Is A synthetic neurotoxin that blocks the release of a chemical signal from nerve to muscle, reducing muscle contraction Lasts 3 to 4 months Cost $300+, depending on the amount of Botox required Beware of Bargain prices and steep online discounts, which could mean the doc lacks experience. The results will show.
82 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Other Battlegrounds and Weapons in Your Face-Saving Struggle DOUBLE CHIN Diet and exercise alone can’t always undo a double chin; liposuction and other invasive procedures used to be the only solutions. Kybella, a relatively new compound, can destroy those stubborn fat cells, which then painlessly pass through your body when you urinate. The injection causes minor inflammation, but that’s a good thing: It tightens skin, keeping it from sagging. The fat cells also never regenerate, so you won’t have to go back after you complete the two to five treatments. SAGGING SKIN Just about everything everywhere starts to sag after you hit your 40s; that’s a fact of life. Your face is no exception. Dermatologists use fillers like Juvéderm to help restore plumpness instantly, making you appear years younger. Hyaluronic acid, which is found in many over-thecounter products like moisturizers and serums, is the key to its restorative effects. For older patients, dermatologists also often combine fillers such as Juvéderm (to plump and lift the skin) with Botox (to smooth out wrinkles). The number of treatments varies depending on how much work you need, but regardless, the starting cost is about $600.
G r o o m i n g ( p r e v i o u s p a g e ) : M a h f u d I b r a h i m / D i o r H o m m e / E x c l u s i v e A r t i s t s M a n a g e m e n t ; i l l u s t r a t i o n s b y S A M P E E T; I m a g e S o u r c e / G e t t y I m a g e s ( c h i n ) , V o i s i n / P h a n i e / G e t t y I m a g e s ( v i a l s )
Warding off wrinkles is only one reason that men are lining up for a shot of the neurotoxin. Other benefits are drawing them in. Who knew, for instance, that Botox could be the solution to migraine pain and sweaty armpits? In my case, I admit, it’s about keeping up appearances. After the doctor finishes dotting my face, she makes a dozen or so small injections—each one a quick but relatively painless pinch. I take a nervous glance in the mirror. To my relief, there’s barely a drop of blood, and only a slight puffiness that the doctor assures me will go away within an hour. The next morning I can already notice a difference. It’s not like I look 18 again—more like I’ve just awakened, thoroughly refreshed, from the greatest nap of my life. After a few weeks, I notice the areas around the injection points don’t move as much when I raise my eyebrows, but I still look natural—not frozen or numb. I’ve seen unexpected benefits, too, like the fact that I sweat less from my forehead. I can’t say for sure if I’d do it again. The cost is jarring—a year of college tuition for a lifetime of treatments. But I see why men do it and why more might start. In fact, a friend who’d expressed surprise when I told him texted me later that day. Could I, he asked, share the name of my doctor?
The potential benefits of Botox go beyond erasing crow’s feet. Consider making an appointment if any of these problems sound familiar.
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A MAN’S SECOND SKIN Denim is an essential component of any guy’s wardrobe. Find the perfect pair and you’re covered for life, usually in blue. By Brian Boyé Great jeans are man’s other best friend—they’re tough, you can take them anywhere, and they never fail to make you look good. If they don’t, you have only yourself to blame. Just be sure to follow one crucial piece of advice: “Always go with slimmer cuts,” says Eric Goldstein, cofounder of New York City’s Jean Shop. “They’re cleaner and more tailored.” With that in mind, we went out searching for the right jeans for guys like you. Here’s what we found. `
PH OTO G R A PH BY JA M I E C H U N G
d Bo Dad
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 85
Avoid the Texas Tuxedo by pairing a denim shirt with jeans that are a different shade of blue—or a different color entirely.
Body Type: Slim
THE RIGHT PAIR Focus on slim and skinny fits, which won’t engulf your legs but still vary in width depending on the brand. Although Convy typically wears 30x30 jeans, we went with a narrower slim fit in his actual waist size (29), which fit his body perfectly. To avoid any ill-placed wear details, we dodged distressed jeans. Since he’s only worn blue denim most of his life, we picked olive for variety’s sake— it’s sedate enough to wear in an office, and versatile enough to go with most colors. “They matched surprisingly well with everything I already owned,” Convy says. We bought him two pairs, which saves him the indignity of sitting around the local laundromat in his boxers. You’re welcome, America.
Since he switched from slim straight to slim, Convy no longer needs to have the waist taken in.
A slim leg makes you look lean and polished. Oversize cuffs, however, reverse this effect.
Michael Kors sweater, $175; Bonobos shirt, $148; Gap jeans, $60; Grand Voyage sneakers, $195; Timex + Todd Snyder Mod Watch, $138 86 MensHealth.com | October 2016
P H O T O G R A P H S B Y N AT H A N P E R K E L
S t y l i n g: B r i a n B y r n e (s t a c k e d d e n i m); s t y l i n g: B r i a n B o y é a n d D a n M i c h e l , g r o o m i n g : H o l l y G o w e r s / D i o r H o m m e / D e f a c t o (m o d e l s)
Laundry day is easy for Curran Convy—the 32-year-old real estate broker’s wardrobe is basically built around just one pair of jeans. “I keep my wardrobe minimal,” he says. Finding that one perfect pair has never been easy, though—Convy is thin, and his waist is smaller than the average guy’s. That means the wear details—like whiskers and fading—tend to hit his body in all the wrong places. When he finds a pair he likes, Convy wears them until they fall apart and then replaces them.
Denim with stretch allows for extra movement and comfort in the crotch.
Horizontal patterns work well to shorten the appearance of long legs, and an unbuttoned Henley lengthens your neck.
Adding stretch to cotton denim alleviates most fit issues.
Body Type: Big and Muscular Hank Deraney had all but given up on finding jeans that didn’t drown his 6'5", 280pound frame in stiff, bulky fabric. “Nothing fit me,” says the 33-year-old manager at AT&T. “Or when something did fit, it didn’t look cool.” It just looked big. In the past, Deraney’s massive quads required him to size up, which meant wearing boot-cut jeans that swallowed his legs instead of doing what they should do: make him look strong and fit. “I want to be comfortable but also look like I’m with the times,” he says. THE RIGHT PAIR: Muscular guys should limit themselves to straight or athletic fits, which offer more room in the leg without being too wide at the bottom. Too tight and you’ll have sausage legs. Stretch fabric can help you get the fit right— it allows nearly the same freedom of movement as baggier cuts but looks more polished. Skip anything labeled “skinny,” “slim,” “boot cut,” or “relaxed”—another word for sloppy.
Splendid Mills shirt, $108; 7 For All Mankind jeans, $189; Chippewa Boots shoes, $420 Edox Chronorally watch, $1,725
Big guys should avoid skinny jeans—they’re unflattering. A straight-leg fit has a 17-inch opening at the bottom, a better proportion for athletic men.
A medium to dark rinse makes large legs look slimmer.
A patterned wool or tweed sport coat works better with jeans than an orphaned suit jacket.
Body Type: Fit Patrick Garrity likens the perfect pair of jeans to a great haircut. “I want to look good and feel comfortable without working too hard,” he says. Garrity wears denim to work on occasion— he’s an executive producer for NBCNews.com—and almost always on weekends. “I struggle with finding a pair that’s appropriate for the office but comfortable enough for playing with my kids afterward,” he says. Otherwise, Garrity doesn’t have a lot of issues to overcome—he’s 5'11" and athletic—but he does admit to one minor shortcoming: “I’ve got no butt,” he laughs. THE RIGHT PAIR If your build is regular, try skinny, slim, and slim-straight fits. Any of those options will hug your butt, giving it more heft, as will back pocket flaps. Larger guys should lean toward a straight leg— again, look for denim with a little stretch. For Garrity, the ideal rinse is between medium and dark—flexible enough for professional and casual settings. We avoided anything too detailed, faded, or distressed, which reads young. These slim-fit jeans from Gap strike the right balance.
Bonobos jacket, $600; Twillory shirt, $99 Gap jeans, $80; L.L. Bean belt, $69 Ted Baker shoes, $235 88 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Slim-fit jeans look best on tall, fit body types.
A dark wash with minimal detailing transitions easily from office to weekend.
Jeans with stretch denim or pocket flaps can help accentuate your backside.
Tall guys can wear cuffs that go up to 4 inches, but smaller 1-inch cuffs like these are more office- and ageappropriate. Bonus points for showing off the selvedge detail.
Now that you know what fit works for you, explore these options for every man’s budget.
Lands’ End $59
Big Star $108
J Brand $198
Lee Jeans $62
Raleigh Denim Workshop $285
Three Sizes Fit All
By Dan Michel
Step Out With Confidence To take denim to the next level, you need to be well shod. Use these style strategies to make your jeans compatible with any kind of footwear.
90 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Slim, dark jeans work best with brogues but aren’t meant to fit like suit pants. Your jeans should rest on top of your shoes, but if you have extra length, a 1-inch cuff is fine.
When wearing loafers or laceless sneakers, you want a slim pair of jeans that ends just below your ankle. One or two halfinch cuffs will look casual without seeming sloppy.
Straight-leg jeans are too wide for low-profile shoes, so go with casual boots instead. It’s okay to roll up the cuffs, but stacking the jeans on top of the shoes will look more rugged.
Tall sneakers or chukka boots should be worn with slim-straight jeans—they won’t hide them. Let the pant legs sit on top of your ankles or roll them to add some casual attitude.
P h o t o g r a p h s b y R YA N O . ( f o l d e d j e a n s ) , s t y l i n g : A n n i e E d w a r d s ; L u i s P e d r o s a / G e t t y I m a g e s ( s p o o l ) ; i l l u s t r a t i o n s b y J O H N B U R G O Y N E
Next time you’re dealing with a big rip, leave the repair job in the hands of the pros at denimrepair. com. Starting at $30 plus shipping, they’ll fix holes by using a darning machine to “reweave” the fabric together. The result looks a whole lot better than a dry cleaner’s patch job.
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A SKEPTIC’S GUIDE TO MINDFUL MARRIAGE You’re there for each other, but are you really there? Learn how to stay in the moment—together. By Paul Kita My eyes are covered with a lavender-scented mask. My body sways in a large silk cocoon that’s suspended from the rafters of the room. My mind is supposed to be tranquil and at rest. Yet all I can think about is cardboard boxes. “Noticing your breath, address the sounds coming and going,” says Jes Gale, my meditation instructor, in a calm, sensuous voice. Gale’s bare feet pad across the cool floor. Mountain birds chatter. I hear someone tap a crystal bowl, which emits a low, soothing tone. Then my mind drifts back to cardboard boxes. “What are you experiencing right now, without the use of memory?” Gale asks. Well, Jes, I’m experiencing the fact that here in Arizona, I’m 2,329 miles away from my current home in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where several teetering Jenga towers of moving boxes occupy the space that used to be my dining room. In just two weeks I’ll finish packing up everything I own. Then I’ll be selling my old home and closing on a new one, and moving there with my new wife. `
October Month 2016 | MensHealth.com 93
Sex + Relationships My wife! I’ve nearly forgotten that she’s some 6 feet to my right, swaying in her own silk suspension system. “Experience the experience,” Gale says. And with that phrase, the boxes vanish and I remember why we’re here.
for Mindfulness at UMass Medical School, describes mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” Mindfulness might as well be called “breathfulness,” since so much of it involves breathing. The benefits of concentrating on the up-down-up-down movement of your diaphragm aren’t hooey. In a 2016 study from the University of Wisconsin, researchers found that people who practiced mindfulness every day for at least three years had a lower resting respiratory rate than those who didn’t. That’s because mindfulness may train your brain to experience a positive feedback loop, which in turn helps put your body at ease. An even, steady resting respiration rate can benefit everything from your circulatory system to your metabolism, the study authors say. Science has also shown that mindfulness may help couples communicate better under stress, bolster feelings of security, and boost relationship satisfaction. Which is how my wife and I ended up swaddled in silk suspension systems at the Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, a luxury hotel that offers instruction on meditation and mindfulness. During our intervention,
C h r i s C r a y m e r / Tr u n k A r c h i v e ( o p e n i n g p a g e )
My wife, Meghan, holds a Guinness World Record for running a marathon dressed as a hot dog. She’s fit. She’s funny. She shares my passion for encased meats. So of course I married her. Long before our wedding, however, I noticed that our life as a couple had begun to tilt. It’s a problem familiar to millions of partners. During the exhilarating early days of dating, you share a single purpose: to be together. After the engagement, wedding planning commandeers your existence. After the wedding, searching for and buying a home consumes you. Your dinner dates transition from meandering flirtations to down-payment strategy sessions. In your discussions of What’s Happening Next, you feel yourself losing an appreciation for and the ability to pay attention to What’s Happening Right Now. In the lead-up to our nuptials, Meghan and I estimated that we talked about the past and the future 80 percent of the time
and the present only 20 percent. Shouldn’t newlyweds, or any couple in love for however long, experience the opposite? The likely culprit: stress, which works in nefarious ways within a relationship. External stress—the hassles of daily life— can stoke internal stress (the state of joint finances, for example) and lead to lower satisfaction for couples—regardless of age, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. And a 2014 study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that a wife with job stress was more likely to receive support from her spouse than an overworked husband would be if the tables were turned. “Our minds are extraordinarily well designed to attend to the immediate,” says Willem Kuyken, Ph.D., director of the U.K.’s Oxford Mindfulness Centre. This served us well as cautious cavemen, he says, but now, with the daily barrage of emails and smartphone alerts appearing as “high priority,” your overwhelmed brain can find it difficult to respond to actual important life events. While scientists have only begun studying mindfulness and its benefits, Buddhists have been practicing it for centuries. In the book Full Catastrophe Living, Jon Kabat-Zinn, founding executive director of the Center
Meghan and I wanted to learn as much as we could about embracing the present, for better or worse, and attempt to carry the lessons into our lives during our move. Granted, being relaxed and aware at Miraval is practically a requirement. Blissedout clients shuffle around the campus wearing white robes. In fact, tiny stickers with the word “aware” appear on everything from handicap signs to bathroom hand dryers. One morning we found a message in our room that read “Love begins in the heart.” From our housekeeper. Despite all this, we couldn’t shake the stress of the move. Our brains, trained for months on a fear-stoked negative feedback loop, were fighting the rewiring process. Walking the cactus-studded grounds after meditation, Meghan and I discussed our inability to focus during the many courses we had taken. “It’s amazing how hard it is to do nothing and be okay with it,” I said. “I’m always judging how I’m doing,” Meghan said. “Why am I making relaxation so stressful?” Then again, this was the first time either of us had ever really tried. Like most people, we hadn’t had any practice with practicing mindfulness. I’ll admit I was afraid to try. I’m
Being present let us appreciate special moments, like standing in our new home for the first time. not one to embrace passionflower incense or appreciate the reverb of a well-struck gong. Luckily, our most rewarding moments at Miraval involved little of that paraphernalia. The greatest lessons for us emerged not from silk cocoons but in the humbler moments both during and apart from the resort’s coursework. When we returned home to our boxes, Meghan and I would try to recapture those moments with a 30-day action plan designed to help us be more mindful, appreciate the present, and—for the sake of our sanity— carry us through the move. Some of those lessons we’d practice apart, others together. (See “Mindfulness for Couples in 8 Easy Steps” on the next page.) During the month after our getaway, our commitment to mindfulness vacillated. Some days I would be the only one to do my Miraval homework; other days only Meghan would do hers. We practiced being mindful
together—sometimes. Were we perfect? Hell no. But perfection wasn’t the goal. During meditation, thoughts come and thoughts go. Sometimes those thoughts are pleasant. Other times you think about boxes. But those thoughts, at their center, are still just thoughts. The phrase we found ourselves repeating from Miraval most often was “Enter the discomfort.” So often people talk about the past or future to avoid the discomfort of the present. But discomfort is part of the experience of being human and in a relationship. (“The most difficult yoga pose is marriage,” said naturopathic practitioner Tim Frank.) Mindfulness itself brings discomfort. It’s hard work that requires constant upkeep to develop that fuzzy sixth sense. The rewards are squishy and not always immediate. Meghan and I didn’t have sex at Miraval. Prior to the trip, our thinking was that we’d feel more relaxed and therefore in the mood, but that didn’t happen. We did, however,
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Mindfulness for Couples in 8 Easy Steps Be Quiet
Breathe in Rhythm INDEPENDENTLY
96 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Start the Day Focused What’s the first thing you think about in the morning? Work? Money? Facebook? “If you commit to being more present in your day, you will be more present in your day,” our meditation instructor, Alysa Volpe, told us. It sounds almost too simple, but the more I woke up and thought, “Today I’ll focus on appreciating what I have,” the more I truly appreciated what I have.
Eat an Apple the Mindful Way Really relish the thing. Chew every bite thoroughly. Concentrate on nothing else except that crunchy apple for the three minutes it takes to finish it. At first you may find this exercise extremely difficult. But after a week of apples, you’ll put down that core with a newfound sense of presence and satisfaction.
Tim Frank, N.M.D., and Pamela Lancaster are the unofficial prom king and queen of Miraval. They’ve been a couple for 16 years. When asked how they do it, Frank said, “Every morning, no matter what else is going on, we take the time to make the bed. When you do, you’re symbolically straightening out the wrinkles in your relationship.”
But Rumple Them Up Too
All of the above are considered “micropractices.” Think of them as upkeep routines, sort of like stretching and foamrolling for your gray matter. “Meditation, by comparison, is your committed workout,” Volpe said. Disclaimer: Do not attempt any meditation after drinking 2½ cups of coffee, advice that my wife learned from experience.
Spend at least three minutes a day spooning. “But do it without sexual intention,” Frank said. Added Lancaster: “There’s so much more to intimacy than sex and date night.” When you spoon, match each other’s breath. It might feel a bit strange at first, but the resulting comfort is powerful and sustaining.
Smooth the Sheets
During a morning hike through the blooming foothills of Mt. Lemmon, our Miraval guide asked the group to be quiet for a section of the trail. It wasn’t until those moments that I began to notice the Seussian desert trees and the crunch of the gravel under my shoes. Back home, Meghan and I would pick a spot in the distance and walk toward it—silent and, eventually, refreshed.
Rest Easy In the process of planning for moving day, Meghan and I would torture ourselves with checklists, only some of which actually helped. But during a sleep consultation at Miraval, Sheryl Brooks, R.N., helped us streamline our approach with a simple three-step trick: At night, think through the next day and its upcoming events, jot down potential action steps, and then tell yourselves that nothing else needs to be accomplished before bedtime; you deserve to rest easy.
M a r c e l o K r a s i l c i c / Tr u n k A r c h i v e
share several deep, intimate discussions. That further cemented our bond and, much later on, led to more in-the-moment sex. “Meditation and mindfulness are preventives, not treatments,” said Alysa Volpe, our couples meditation instructor. Within a relationship, these practices reinforce the good instead of repairing the bad. No amount of walking with my breath could diminish the stress I was feeling after I managed to hit a parked car with the U-Haul truck we’d rented for moving. But being present did help us acknowledge and savor special moments more. As we stood in our new home together for the first time, we lingered instead of immediately cleaning everything. We took five minutes to hug in front of our living room’s large window, tears welling in our eyes. Practicing meditation and mindfulness did result in one breakthrough in our lives, however. Shortly after our sellers accepted our offer, the word “baby” started popping up in conversation. Because naturally, after “house,” “baby” appears next on the list of What’s Happening Next. One night over dinner in our new home, “baby” came up again. Only this time, I was surprised to hear Meghan say, “Let’s not talk about having a kid right now.” “Really?” I said. “Let’s just enjoy our house, and being married in it, right now.” And with that sentence, I could feel the great accelerator of life ease. I could feel my breath, coming and going. “That sounds fantastic,” I said. After all, we still had boxes to unpack. 쐍
One thundercloudfestooned evening at Miraval Resort, Meghan and I went out for a walk on a nautilus-shaped path with Volpe, who encouraged us to inhale and exhale with our steps. We ended the walk feeling peaceful and serene despite the lightning in the distance. During the month that followed, I counted four steps to one breath as I walked to work, the gym, or my boss’s office. Calm always prevailed despite any looming threat of inclement office weather, so to speak.
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“Your body finally recovers about a week after a game.” —Danny Amendola, Patriots receiver
You don’t spend your weekends sprinting, cutting, pushing, smashing, and gasping like the NFL’s warriors. But take a close look at how these athletes spend the week recovering and getting ready to do it all again next week. You’ll form your own game plan for peak performance. Let Danny Amendola and Greg Olsen show you how.
By Ben Court with Brielle Gregory, James Nosek, and Dan Roe Photographs by Peter Yang
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 99
“Don’t do another man’s job; focus on your job.” —Hue Jackson, coach
SPARK A RESPONSE Pro football players don’t lack for ego, and coaches can use that to their advantage in film review of the previous game, says Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson. “I have a red laser pointer, and you normally don’t want to be the guy who gets the red dot—that means you’re not doing something as well as you need to.” Singling out prideful men in front of their peers gets guys on the same page—fast. Corrections are sharp and forward-looking: It’s about being brave and honest enough to point out flaws, even to star players who may be the best at what they do. It’s a challenge that a professional will respond to. And sometimes, if it’s a more serious problem, a coach sits down individually with a player. “If there’s some fundamental or skill that he needs to improve, you need to make sure that he truly understands it,” says Jackson. REST AND RECHARGE / How J.J. Watt, Houston Texans linebacker, unplugs to recharge J.J. Watt chills out and even naps in his home flotation tank. “I love it. Sleep is something people overlook.” Minimizing your sensory arousal allows you to relax more deeply and alleviates stress. A long soak in a bathtub with the lights off can work too. Watt also speeds his recovery by preloading his diet with anti-inflammatory produce. “I hate the texture of vegetables, so in the morning I’ll throw every vegetable I can find into a blender with some apple juice and just choke it all down at once so I can be done with vegetables for the day.”
100 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images (J ac k s o n w i t h p l aye r s), R o n a l d C . M o d r a /S p o r t s Imager y/Get t y Images ( Wat t)
FOR NFL PLAYERS, Monday morning can feel like waking up after being in several car crashes. What’s more, they have to be ready to rumble again in six days. The banged-up players start treatment, while the rest of the guys begin with gentle lifting and movement drills to start the recovery. “As much as it hurts to work out after a game, it helps that much more,” says Danny Amendola, the 5'11", 190-pound, 30-year-old Patriots receiver. After that it’s film review of the previous game. Each player has a specific role on each play, and he’s graded on whether he fulfilled it. “If guys know exactly what they need to do, for the most part they will go get it done,” says Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson. That’s the first takeaway, and it applies to any job . To succeed, first you need to know and understand your specific mission.
“A lot of guys respond well after a loss. To refocus after a win is more challenging.” —Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers tight end
Eat Food That Fights Inflammation Jennifer Brunelli, R.D., dietitian, Carolina Panthers
S t y l i n g (O l s e n): S a n d r a N yg a a r d , h a i r : Vanes s a Schmit z , makeup: J amie S vay; Nike shor ts and cleats
MAKE MOTION YOUR LOTION “You have to flush the crap that built up during the game out of your system,” says Greg Olsen, the Panthers’ 6'5", 255-pound, 31year-old tight end. “Stiffness, soreness, and tension get worse if you just sit around. We say ‘motion is lotion.’” Typically Olsen does gentle lifting, exercises with a TRX suspension system, and drills like walking lunges, relaxed running, and various static stretches and balances for stability. For example, he says, “we’ll do front squats, focusing more on depth rather than how much weight is on your back.”
4/ Tart cherries
5/ Olive oil
Deal with Pain Football, it’s been said, isn’t a contact sport—it’s a collision sport. And those collisions can have the force of a car accident, suggests research by Robby Sikka, M.D., of TRIA Orthopaedic Center, who works with the NFL. By Tuesday, delayed soreness has fully kicked in. Ice for a Nice Start Some players, including Amendola, use an ice bath after games to ease inflammation. You need to allow at least 10 minutes for it to work, says Thom Mayer, M.D., medical director of the NFL Players Association. Olsen likes massage and acupuncture. Drip, Drip, Drip Like you, NFL players will pop OTC painkillers like acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen. Amendola and others sometimes take a hydrating saline solution (which can include a painkiller) through an IV before, during, or after games, says Dr. Mayer. The Big Guns Some players can perform on opioids, says Dr. Mayer, but athletes and doctors are very cautious—just as they’d be with possible concussions. “Is the player able to protect himself and perform at an adequate level?” It’s not for weekend warriors, he says.
Amendola on the rocks: An ice bath helps with muscle soreness, and one adult beverage can’t hurt. Shrinkage? What shrinkage?
Amendola calls Tuesday “Chooseday.” For players, it’s a day off to do what they want. If they got through the game healthy, maybe it’s ping-pong and prehab. If not, it’s rehab with physicians. Take a look below at how often the three most common NFL injuries occurred last season, and how to deal if you fall victim.
SERIOUS HEAD GAMES
Concussions Despite rule changes, guys still get their bells rung often. YOUR PLAY Recovery should be like a foreign movie: gloomy and slow. Doctors typically recommend rest (no film room, no computers, no texting). When you start to feel more like yourself, emerge to do gentle activity and stretching. 102 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Hamstring Strains Most occur without contact— many during practice. YOUR PLAY If it’s a mild strain, lay your leg out straight and ice the muscle every day before performing a gentle hamstring stretch: Put one foot on a bench, keep the other leg straight, and lean in. Stay away from heated pads, which inflame the muscle.
High Ankle Sprains They’re usually from stepping on a foot or catching a cleat. YOUR PLAY Think RICE: rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Once the injury calms, strengthen the ankle and lower-leg muscles to support the damaged ligaments. Do simple balance and footstrength exercises, such as single-leg calf raises, daily.
The NFL’s Sideline Concussion Assessment Tool includes these five revealing questions. What month is it? What day? What’s the date? What year is it? What time is it? Part of the assessment: Ask the injured person to recite the months of the year in reverse order in less than 30 seconds.
Sources: Robby Sikka, M.D.; Thom Mayer, M.D., medical director, NFL Players Association
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FUEL YOUR MIDWEEK WORKOUTS Try these “power balls” from Panthers dietitian Jennifer Brunelli, R.D., owner of Sports RDpro in Charlotte, NC. The How-To Mix all the ingredients with your hands and roll golf-ball-size nuggets. Refrigerate for at least an hour. Makes 14 to 16 balls 2 cups granola 1 cup peanut butter ½ cup ground flaxseed ½ cup dark chocolate chips ⅓ cup honey 2 tsp vanilla extract 2 scoops vanilla whey protein powder Per ball: 274 calories, 11g protein, 25g carbohydrates (5g fiber), 16g fat
“I need to be able to run my route as well on the 10th play of the drive as the first.” —Greg Olsen
GLUG FOR GROWTH / Greg Olsen’s preworkout muscle cocktail Before every workout, Olsen drinks this cocktail from a recipe created by Panthers athletic performance analyst Brett Nenaber. THE MIX 6 ounces Gatorade, 1 scoop Monster Amino 6:1, 5 grams creatine, 2 tablespoons BeetElite, 50 milligrams caffeine WHY IT WORKS Creatine boosts muscle power, while beet and caffeine work together to increase your physical strength and endurance.
Create a Winning Game Plan Teams study the plan on Wednesday. The NFL Today analyst Bill Cowher, the coach who led the Steelers to the 2006 Super Bowl title, explains why any game plan needs to be flexible. 1/ Find Favorable Matchups You try to identify your collective and individual strengths and weaknesses versus those of your opponent. Then use analytics and intuition to predict the opponent’s tendencies and run plays. You find schemes and players you can exploit, and also account for your opponent’s strengths. 2/ Be Firm but Flexible Players study the plan and walk through it; then they practice on the field. It’s like speed chess: move and countermove. You prepare adjustments. The players need to have a good idea of what you’re trying to do conceptually so they can deviate from the actual application but not the concept.
B r e t t C a r l s e n / G e t t y I m a g e s (b o t t l e) , A A r o n O n t i v e r o z / T h e D e n v e r P o s t / G e t t y I m a g e s ( B r o n c o s) , L o u C a p o z z o l a /S p o r t s I l l u s t r a t e d / G e t t y I m a g e s (C o w h e r) , +I S M ( i l l u s t r a t i o n s)
“I run intervals that mimic the game, so it’s 5 to 85 yards.” —Greg Olsen
JOIN THE SINGLES CLUB Most players lift on Wednesday, and Greg Olsen does a workout that includes single-leg exercises (squats and lunges) and functional movements (sled pulls and pushes). “When I cut or jump in a game, it’s usually off one leg, so this is a sport-specific way to train,” he says. Carolina Panthers athletic performance analyst Brett Nenaber likes combining slow eccentric heavy lifts—Olsen holds 100-pound kettlebells in each fist when doing rear-foot-elevated split squats— with single-leg box jumps. Nenaber recommends this progression for regular guys. Do each exercise 3 days a week for 4 weeks, using a weight that makes completing 3 sets of 10 reps challenging. Then switch to the next exercise. (Also, try Nenaber’s body-weight circuit on page 141.)
Goblet Split Squat
Offset Split Squat
Onset Split Squat
Hold a kettlebell by the horns in front of your chest and place your rear foot on a bench. Bend your front knee and lower your body.
Hold a kettlebell in the rack position on the opposite side of your elevated rear leg. Bend your front knee and lower your body.
Hold a kettlebell in the rack position on the same side as your elevated rear leg. Bend your front knee and lower your body.
3/ Win the Situation Pay special attention to the critical stuff: the last minute of the half and the game, third downs, and the red zone (inside the 20-yard line). We practice those areas on Thursday and Friday, creating as many different scenarios as possible for the offense and defense. It gets competitive! 4/ Toss the Plan...at Times After all this, you have to be unpredictable. Surprises win games. Often they result from a quick adjustment, and it comes down to trust. The players have to trust the plan, and to do that they have to understand it. Communication is key. It’s about asking questions and understanding your role.
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 105
Master Any Playbook John Urschel knows all about complex strategy. The 300-pound Ravens offensive guard has undergraduate and graduate degrees in mathematics from Penn State (4.0 GPA). NFL playbooks and math textbooks alike are “thick and can be overwhelming,” Urschel says. Here’s how he crams for Sunday exams.
“Coach says, ‘If you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse.’”
1/ Forget Memorization To learn something new and to get excited about learning it, says Urschel, “I need to understand the ‘why’ behind it.” And you do that when you . . .
“Everybody in the league is physically gifted and can run fast and jump high,” says Kansas City Chiefs four-time Pro Bowl linebacker and defensive captain Derrick Johnson. “What sets you apart is anticipation, knowing where a play is going.” Johnson, who’s 33, ruptured his Achilles tendon in 2014; yet he’s still often the first to the tackle. He credits film study and a decade of experience. “Along with team film sessions, I watch film every night at home,” he says. “I’m looking for tendencies I can exploit and that my whole unit can exploit, especially on third downs. In the game, I’ll tell the coach what I’m seeing and suggest blitzes to call. You make adjustments on the sideline, and then on the field.” Whoever adjusts better has the upper hand. It’s high risk and high reward, and each team member has to do his job. “When you blitz, you have to get the QB because you’re leaving big holes,” says Johnson.
3/ Don’t Know It; Own It “You need to reach a level of comfort where you don’t have to look things up or think things through,” Urschel says. “You want things to flow, for the knowledge to be second nature. That’s where practice comes in. And that’s key not just for learning football or math, but for anything in life.”
GET INTO A TIGHT SQUEEZE / How Cowboys wide receiver Terrance Williams strengthens his hands To snag a football flying at 45 miles an hour requires Hulklike hand strength—the kind an average guy needs in order to get his bags to Gate A in time for the shuttle, or to give a good massage. A study in the Journal of Hand Therapy found that men younger than 30 have a significantly weaker hand grip than their counterparts of 25 years ago. Williams does grip-strength exercises at the end of his workouts. Try this: Toss a tennis ball between your hands, squeezing it as hard as you can for 10 seconds between tosses. Repeat 10 times with each hand. The farmer’s walk (walk for a minute while carrying heavy dumbbells) also builds grip strength.
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J a m i e S q u i r e / G e t t y I m a g e s (t a c k l e) , S t e v e B o y l e /S p o r t s I l l u s t r a t e d / G e t t y I m a g e s ( U r s c h e l) , J o e l A u e r b a c h / G e t t y I m a g e s ( W i l l i a m s)
ANTICIPATE AND OVERCOME
2/ Go Macro “It’s crucial to understand how my part fits into the whole and then to understand what the goal of the whole is,” he says. “I ask myself: ‘What is the larger theme? What’s the overall purpose of this?’” But then you need to go a step further.
OFFICIAL SHAMPOO OF THE NFL
SHOULDERS WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS. NOT DANDRUFF.
AWAKEN YOUR WARRIOR
“I feel really good the day after I do yoga.” —Danny Amendola
Like many NFL players, Amendola turns to yoga as a therapeutic counterbalance to the physical violence of the game. “It keeps my muscles pliable.” It’s part of his preparation process for game day, he says. Yoga is low impact; yet you’re shredding your core, sharpening your balance, and potentially expelling stress. On three: Namaste!
FORGE YOUR OWN ARMOR When you make your living running crossing patterns and diving for balls with your ribs and solar plexus exposed, you need a rock-hard core. Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola trains his core five days a week with an ever-changing mix of three to 10 exercises, performed sitting and standing. “It’s not for any aesthetic reason,” he says. “Without a strong core, I wouldn’t be able to perform on the field—or be durable enough to stay on it.” The big hits that make crowds gasp aren’t always so bad, Amendola says; it’s the little clips and dings that really hurt. Try this circuit, doing the exercises back-to-back for 1 minute each and then resting 60 seconds. Repeat for 4 rounds and build up to 6 or 8 rounds.
Kettlebell Side Plank
Standing Medicine Ball Twist
Score at Night A rested player is faster and sharper, says former NFL sleep guru Charles Czeisler, Ph.D., M.D., of Brigham and Women’s Hospital. 1/ Score a Perfect 10 Logging 10 hours of sleep nightly for a month can help athletic and mental performance. Not sleeping? Just lie there. You’ll sleep more if you stay in bed than if you get up. 2/ Lock in Bedtime Inconsistency in your bedtimes creates a kind of jet lag that’s as destructive as not getting enough quality sleep hours. Set an alarm to mark your bedtime—and stick to it.
Sit (or raise your feet and balance on your butt), and rotate rapidly, alternating sides as you touch the medicine ball to the floor. 110 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Rest on your forearm with your top arm holding a kettlebell. (Amendola uses 45 pounds.) Switch sides every round.
Stand sideways holding a medicine ball at your hip; rotate and throw it hard at a wall. Catch it and repeat. Do 30 seconds per side.
3/ Block Blue Light The blue light from electronic screens suppresses production of melatonin, the “drowsy hormone.” Must watch or read? Wear a pair of $10 Uvex Skyper Blue Light Blocking glasses.
Players lose as much as 5 pounds of sweat during a game.
LIQUIDIZE YOUR ASSETS Suffer even minor dehydration and your performance sinks. The Panthers are weighed before and after practice during camp to determine their sweat rates and hydration plans. Do the same. For every pound you’ve lost during a workout, drink 16 ounces of water. And use the urine test. The lighter the color, the better. Iced tea is trouble; lemonade, sweet, of course.
C h r i s t i a n P e t e r s e n / G e t t y I m a g e s (Pa l m e r)
INNOVATE TO OVERCOME / Carson Palmer’s high-tech helper Last season, Arizona Cardinals QB Carson Palmer started using a virtual reality headset called Strivr, which shows film from the player’s perspective. “I use it all week, especially on Saturday. The main reason is to get another look at the blitzes I will see and to force myself to redirect or change protections or react to the blitz by finding my hot receiver. It allows me to quiz myself with formations, protections, and route concepts just by hearing it and seeing it again.”
WIN THE MENTAL GAME
J e f f S i n e r / C h a r l o t t e O b s e r v e r / T N S / G e t t y I m a g e s ( O l s e n w i t h k i d s ) , R o b e r t D u y o s / U S A To d a y S p o r t s ( A m e n d o l a ) , P a t r i o t s T - s h i r t : p r o s h o p . p a t r i o t s . c o m ( A m e n d o l a )
“The natural state of your mind is like a drunk monkey,” says sports psychologist Michael Gervais, Ph.D., who works with the Seattle Seahawks. “It’s curious, it’s all over the place, and it’s naturally distracted. A disciplined mind can bring it back to the present.” A simple way to acquire that discipline is to pay close attention to daily activities, Gervais says, like putting your seatbelt on and listening for the click. Another trick: When you walk in your front door, have one thought and one breath. The idea is that you’re clearing your mind to be fully present with your family, and breathing naturally helps you reset and prepare for the time with your loved ones. These small actions can help keep you in the moment.
Tap to the Top Before a workout or a big presentation, use a physical act— like tapping a sign bearing your personal motto—to narrow your focus. Seattle Seahawks athletes tap a sign that reads “I’m In,” before practice. “It’s a physical action with a mental cue that says ‘I’m all in right now,’” says Gervais. “The distractions fade away.”
Connect Your Breath By emphasizing breathing, you are priming yourself to become calmer. Set a timer for one minute, during which you inhale and exhale through your nose on a four count. Work your way up to 20 minutes a day. Daily meditation like this not only sharpens your focus but also can rewire your brain to be more efficient.
Optimize Your Team Whether it’s for work or your kid’s T-ball team, success relies on building relationships and maintaining optimism. (Having Russell Wilson on your team also helps!) Do this exercise to boost your optimism: Every day for a week, research three things that fascinate you. Write them down. Your team will thank you.
“I watch the movie 300 0 the night g g g me before every game. It gets jjacked up. p I also drink two Pedialytes to prevent dehydration.” —JUSTIN PUGH, NEW YORK GIANTS
READY TO PLAY By kickoff the players are primed to play at their peak. Everyone prepares differently: Some get hyped up, others calm down. Learn what works for you, then use it! Conserve Your Energy “I don’t really listen to music pregame anymore,” says Amendola, who is in his eighth season. “When I was younger, yeah, I used to dance around and burn all kinds of energy. Now it’s just getting my mind focused for the game. I review film on my iPad and read the notes I made during the week’s film sessions on different plays and how to react on the field.” Trust Your Process “Getting ready is a gradual process: All of that work all week right up to kickoff prepares me,” says Olsen. “The review and workout on Monday, the massages on Tuesday and Thursday, all the game planning and practices and training. It’s about feeling that I’m physically as well prepared as I can be, and I know my role. I can go out and just play—and let the chips fall where they may.”
What It Feels Like to Get a Check for $12 Million “You dream about it your whole life,” says Greg Olsen, who received a $12 million signing bonus last year. “Then that day comes, and your life doesn’t just change.” Something else had a bigger impact: Olsen’s son was born with a heart disorder requiring surgery. “Nothing compared to watching him get cut open. It redefined terms like ‘difficult’ and ‘challenge.’” Learn more: receptionsforresearch.org
Create Your Own Luck “On game day I always eat a PB-and-Nutella sandwich on wheat bread,” says Amendola. The snack delivers slow-burning fuel with its protein and fat. And superstitions or lucky tokens can help you feel more confident. October 2016 | MensHealth.com 113
The Art of
LEADERSHIP Even if your last name isnâ€™t Franklin, King, or Jobs, you have the opportunity to step up and take charge of your life. Here are the new rules to get you started. 114 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Fill out your skills and take command.
To win the game of thrones, you don’t have to be ruthless.
IT SEEMS LIKE EVERY
116 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Leaders are vital because we look to them for cues on what to do. Duke University neurobiologists have found that male monkeys, when given the choice of what to look at, place similarly high value on the hindquarters of female monkeys and leaders of their troops. “Leadership is a way of creating order out of our complicated and ambiguous social world,” says Brad Owens, Ph.D., a business ethics expert at Brigham Young University. So it follows that the more complex our lives become, the more frustrated we feel when our leaders turn out to be monkey butts. Amid this dearth of leadership, however, lies opportunity—a chance for you to step up. Yes, you. Leaders are made, not born, suggests research led by Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, Ph.D.,
of the University of Oxford. De Neve looked at whether leadership has genetic components and found that there is a genotype shared by leaders; he concluded, however, that leadership traits stem from a mix of genetics and environment. So even if your last name isn’t Lombardi, you can develop strong leadership skills. And you don’t need to be a CEO or have political aspirations to implement them. “A leader is somebody who makes all the people around him or her better, and that cuts across all levels,” says Ethan Bernstein, Ph.D., of Harvard Business School. That person can be you, at whatever level you choose. Leadership isn’t dying; it’s evolving. To step up, you just need to understand the new rules of being a leading man.
How to Lead a Holiday Dinner Blessing No matter what your spiritual leanings, the point is to show gratitude. So give thanks for something in the moment (the bacon-wrapped meatloaf), for something much bigger than that (the health of your family), and for one thing that’s specific and symbolic that will make everyone smile (Pappy’s new pig valve that’ll ensure he’s around for another 20 years). Then give a hearty “Amen!” and dig in.
O p e n i n g s p r e a d : E R I C H E I N T Z ( p h o t o c o m p o s i t i o n ) , Lu k e S t e t t n e r /G e t t y I m a g e s ( g a l l e r y ) ; t h i s p a g e , f r o m t o p : A d a m Vo o r h e s /G a l l e r y S t o c k , I m a g e s o u r c e . c o m
time we open our social media feed, there’s news of another leader imploding. A peewee football coach starting a UFC-worthy brawl in front of 9-year-olds. A CEO caught with his hand in the coffers. A politician caught with his hand somewhere else. ¶ Now think of your life—the bosses you deal with, the officials you voted for, your kids’ coaches and teachers. How good is the quality of leadership you see every day? ¶ Inspiring? Horrible? Meh? ¶ “There’s a woeful lack of good leaders today,” says Simon Sinek, author of Start with Why and Leaders Eat Last. “We have some, but we need many more. At the end of the day, it’s embarrassing that I even have a career. I write and talk about trust and cooperation. There should be no demand for my work.” ¶ Indeed, Gallup research reveals that when companies name managers, those hires or promotions fail to work out 82 percent of the time. And the latest Edelman Trust Barometer found that only half of Americans trust businesses and 39 percent trust government. ¶ “Most organizations today lack the leadership they need,” writes John Kotter, a professor emeritus of leadership at Harvard Business School. “I’m not talking about a deficit of 10 percent but of 200 percent...or more...up and down the hierarchy.”
Be a Humble Narcissist The Golden State Warriors came closer to regular-season perfection than any other team in NBA history this year, winning a record 73 games. Head coach Steve Kerr, 51, had a lot to do with that. Part of the reason he’s so loved and respected (Fortune placed him on its latest World’s Greatest Leaders list) is his easygoing but intensely competitive style. He has smashed his fist through a clipboard during a game, but after games he regularly deflects any credit for his team’s success. This showcases an important trait of highquality leaders today: fluidity. The new leadership isn’t about exhibiting one style all the time. Rather, it’s about having a repertoire of skills that allows you to adapt to a variety of situations. You may need to be ruthless when cutting costs at work, but you don’t need that same chest-thumping behavior when you’re fundraising for your church. “There’s so much temptation to lead in a strong, authoritative way [because] that’s what’s expected,” says Owens. But the onedimensional bully leader is dead. Even though 80 percent of people in a Pew Research Center survey cited decisiveness as an essential leadership trait, today’s smart leaders understand that what precedes decisiveness is equally important—the ability to admit that you don’t know everything and the willingness to defer to others for opinions. Specifically, Owens has found in his studies that when leaders show more humility, team performance improves. One reason: In the information services age, it’s increasingly difficult for any one leader to figure it all out, he says. But perhaps the greatest advantage of humility is that it can temper perceptions of narcissism, thereby allowing a leader to remain strong without appearing dictatorial. Research in the Journal of Applied Psychology found that a leader who is perceived to have the contradictory traits of narcissism and humility is also viewed as being more effective. “It’s almost a schizophrenic process,” Owens says. Here are three ways to develop that persona: Ask questions. Pepper every conversation with them. This lets everyone know you’re considering all options and points of view. Wow, he’s listening! Act now but explain later. When you have to make a fast decision, be bold and strong. Then counter the perception that you’re an ogre by explaining to your group why the situation demanded fast action. Thank the team. Even though you’re damn proud of yourself when things work out, credit everyone else. Sure, it may sound cliché in a postgame interview, but not to your team.
M I C H A E L B R A N D O N M Y E R S ( i c o n s ) , M i c h a e l K o v a c /G e t t y I m a g e s ( Po w e l l )
I L L U ST R AT I O N S B Y J O E L K I M M E L
Put Respect Before Results Sinek recently stayed at the Four Seasons in Vegas, where he met Noah, a barista who was so sharp that Sinek left a 100 percent tip. “Do you like your job?” Sinek asked. “I love it,” Noah replied. The reason? His managers regularly ask how he’s doing and if he needs anything to do his job better. Noah also works at another Vegas resort, but he hates it there because the managers don’t care about his personal well-being or improvement. “Behavior is based on leadership,” Sinek explains. “The CEO is not responsible for customers. The CEO is responsible for the people responsible for the customers.” To put this into practice, remember three things: Lecture less. Everything a leader does is microscoped, so be aware of the possible perceptions of your actions. If you’re 30 minutes late to work, you’re not dedicated. If you congratulate Roscoe on a good play and then ignore Troy when he does the same, you’re playing favorites. Exhibit the behavior you desire. Get personal. Be efficient with emails and texts, but don’t let them replace talking. “Walk across the hall to give a compliment,” says Sinek. “Make people feel like you care. Email doesn’t do that. Human interaction does.” Pocket your phone. Putting your phone on a conference or dinner table, even facedown, tells everyone they’re not the priority. “When you show deference to the group, you’re repaid in loyalty,” says Sinek.
““Great leaders are almost always y great simpliﬁers g p who can cut through g argument, g debate,, and doubt to ofer a solution everybody y can understand.” —Colin Powell, retired four-star general
How to Lead . . .
A Group Run “The first thing I say is, ‘This is not a race,’” says Bart Yasso, who’s led 500plus group runs for Runner’s World magazine. Talk, joke, and push, but never crush. Then detail the course. This ensures everyone makes it back and keeps the herd from having to wait (and get frustrated).
Your Kid’s Soccer Team Mix required skill drills with fun activities, and stop coaching when the game or practice ends. No drills in the backyard, no chalkboard at home. “Many kids of coaches grow to hate sports because practice never ends,” says John O’Sullivan of the Changing the Game Project.
A Business Meeting Instead of asking for opinions, which people are usually tentative about giving, say what you think up front and then ask for pros and cons. This usually makes for a more efficient and productive meeting, says Roger Schwarz, author of Smart Leader, Smarter Teams.
A Formal Dance Place one hand on the small of her back while holding her other hand up. Gently press her back in the direction you’re about to step. That’s all there is to it. Oh, and remember to smile, kiss her cheek, and thank her for the pleasure of her company once the music ends.
““You can’t force your y will on people. p p If yyou want them to act diferently, y, you y need to inspire p them to change themselves.”
Make Yourself Accountable
—Phil Jackson, former NBA player and coach mon some courage and confront someone in a difficult situation in the workplace or even at home, use this four-part template to be honest yet constructive: Praise “Bob, I want to congratulate you on doing such a bang-up job with the sales numbers...” Criticism “...but there’s a sense that every transaction comes with drama that’s causing stress for the rest of the team.” Interrogation “Why do you think this is happening?” Resolution “Let’s figure out some ways we can keep getting good results without the anxiety and frustration some of your coworkers are feeling.”
Look Back as Often as You Look Ahead Today, Steve Jobs is regarded as a visionary genius. But back in 2005, in his famous Stanford University commencement speech, he said something surprising: “You can’t connect the dots looking forward. You can only connect them looking backward.” In other words, Jobs didn’t think the future should be the sole focus; it’s the ability to analyze what happened in the past that’s valuable. When you look at the arc of his career, you can see this reflected in his leadership style. From a ruthlessly honest, competitive micromanager who started Apple, got fired, launched other companies, and then returned to Apple, he evolved into a more flexible and balanced CEO who developed new skills that ultimately made Apple the powerhouse it is today. In sports, this strategy would be the equivalent of watching game film; in relationships, the periodic discussion of how far the two of you have come. In any leadership situation, it’s about analyzing what you did right and wrong
How to Lead a Fast Break If you’re handling the ball, don’t head straight down the middle. Instead, veer slightly off-center when approaching the lane. You can still pass to either of your wings, but now you can also: 1) fake the feed and accelerate for a strong layup to the short side; 2) cut across the lane to the other side of the basket (a move that’s tough to defend because your opponent will be backpedaling); or 3) flip the ball back to the trailer, which no one expects.
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so you know what to do better. To develop this skill, try these three strategies: Ask for feedback. Encourage it by entrusting people on your team to honestly tell you what’s working and what isn’t. Or pair up with a leadership buddy or mentor—someone outside the team—to bounce ideas off. Take time to digest. When you leave a meeting, instead of immediately moving on to the next thing, spend a few minutes reflecting on what happened (or take a few notes). Did everyone leave on the same page, or was there some discord? What could you have done differently? “The reflection part—to accurately diagnose the lessons you learned—is part of the continuous improvement cycle,” says Paul Tesluk, Ph.D., dean of the University at Buffalo School of Management. Track your batting average. Before you make a decision, jot down what you think will happen after it’s made. Then six months later, look back at your predictions and see how well you did. Consider what you got right and what you didn’t, and how to adjust next time a similar situation comes up.
Make Your Mission More Than a Statement In 1964, Phil Knight started selling shoes out of his car. Sixteen years later, Nike reached financial stability. If Knight hadn’t been so passionate and dedicated, he wouldn’t have turned an idea into a $32 billion business. While nobody suggests that bottom lines are rubbish, some argue that the problem with leadership today rests here: If we only judge success financially, we’re shortsighted. This is Sinek’s message, that organizations need to start with the “why” before the “how much.” “Many CEOs, when they became CEOs, don’t believe in purpose. They’re living in the economic paradigm,” says Robert Quinn, Ph.D., a professor of management and organizations at the University of Michigan. “Most executives don’t want to touch ‘purpose’ because it’s not considered ‘real work.’” A 2014 Gallup survey found that only 32 percent of workers are engaged. That, Quinn says, is also at the heart of the leadership problem. “Many companies have a purpose statement,
B y r o n P u r v i s /A d M e d i a /S i p a U S A ( J a c k s o n ) , M a r i l y n N i e v e s /G e t t y I m a g e s ( b a s k e t b a l l )
In 2010, U.S. forces bombed a truck convoy in Afghanistan and killed more than two dozen civilians. General Stanley McChrystal, a top commander at the time, called the Afghan president and apologized. Being honest about a mistake that you’ve made, he explained, is crucial to building trust. McChrystal, who was later removed from his command after criticizing the Obama administration, now teaches leadership at Yale. His decision to be forthright bucks a tendency shown by many leaders to either deny their fallibility entirely or sugarcoat or hide bad news in the hope that it’ll fade away. “We have a huge cultural problem, one of a lack of accountability and being so tolerant when it comes to confronting issues,” says Lee Ellis, a retired Air Force colonel who was held as a prisoner of war for five years in Vietnam. “Leaders, for whatever reason, want to be liked. They don’t want to make people upset. So they don’t have the courage to confront issues, and people say, ‘When is the boss going to do something about the problem?’” So the make-everyone-happy approach is actually doing the opposite—making everyone upset. And it’s counter to what groups want and need from the top. In that Pew survey mentioned earlier, honesty was the highest-rated characteristic, with 84 percent of people saying it’s essential to leadership. “It’s transparency that builds trust,” notes Roger Schwarz, the author of Smart Leaders, Smarter Teams. Ellis, who was the youngest POW in his group, says he learned his most memorable leadership lessons from the more senior POWs who endured torture in order to spare others. What’s lacking among leaders today, he contends, is one thing: courage—the guts to be honest and up front, to have adult conversations, and to ask the tough questions. “I define courage as doing what’s right even when it doesn’t feel natural and safe,” says Ellis, the author of Engage with Honor. “Overcoming fears to do what we know is right—that’s leading with honor.” Granted, this is something that’s easier said than done. The next time you need to sum-
P h o t o Q u e s t /G e t t y I m a g e s ( R o o s e v e l t ) , M a t t R o t h ( B a u g h )
but in most cases, it’s not real,” he explains. “But in about 10 percent of cases, the companies mean what they’re saying, and that’s where there’s payoff.” For example, Nike’s mission statement is “Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. (*If you have a body, you are an athlete.)” Twitter’s is “To give everyone the power to create and share ideas and information instantly, without barriers.” These are missions people can get behind. It’s easy to lead when you’re the spokesman for them. Here’s how to create your own “why”: Mimic a 2-year-old. Why do you work for this company? Why do you want to coach your kid in youth soccer? Why do you want to run for county commissioner? Instead of just articulating results (the money’s good, the current coach sucks, my property’s in danger), define your fundamental drive (the company’s creating a better world, my son needs to learn that there’s more to sport than winning and losing, I want to improve my community). If you can’t articulate your whys in this way, you shouldn’t be going down that path. Here’s the thing: Even though they often use the excuse, leaders don’t fail because they lack the right people; they fail because the people don’t truly believe the leader is right. “The leader sets the environment, and we respond to the environment,” says Sinek. “People will give you their blood, sweat, and tears to advance your vision if they feel like you care about them and they feel you want to help them grow so they can accomplish more.” 쐍
“The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and the selfrestraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” —Theodore Roosevelt, U.S. president
BE YOUR OWN DICTATOR Ever dream of ruling your own country? Meet Kevin Baugh, Supreme Leader of the Republic of Molossia. By Eric Spitznagel Inside every man is a little dictator. Not the bad kind, who commits human rights violations and invades other countries for the hell of it, but a dictator in the general sense—someone with absolute power who makes all major decisions with impunity. Alas, life doesn’t work like that. You don’t always get your way, and sometimes people refuse to recognize your infallibility. Unless your name is Kevin Baugh. Or, as he prefers to be called, His Excellency Kevin Baugh, President and Supreme Leader of the Republic of Molossia. Don’t bother looking for Molossia on a map. You won’t find it, as its existence isn’t officially recognized by the United States. It sits on a little over an acre of land that Baugh purchased in 1998 in Dayton, Nevada, an hour or so outside Reno. Not much is involved in forming your own sovereign nation. For Baugh, it was as simple as putting up a flag. No fees, no forms to fill out. “Some folks create a Declaration of Independence, although there’s no one to really declare it to,” he says. Molossia has seven resident citizens (all Baugh family members), a post office (with stamps featuring Baugh’s likeness), a national bank, industry (well, a general store and bar), a national anthem (sample lyrics: “Where hawks and mustangs roam / Fair Molossia is our home. . .”), and its own currency. It also has a thriving economy—an online store selling Molossian merchandise—and even international conflicts: Molossia has been at “war” with East Germany (yes, Baugh knows the Berlin Wall fell) since 1983. It sounds insane but also like the perfect expression of every man’s id. What guy
wouldn’t like to create his own laws based on his personal likes and dislikes? Spinach is outlawed in Molossia, as are plastic shopping bags. And who doesn’t want a holiday to honor his pet? February 4 is Jack Day, in honor of the late First Dog. We called the 54-year-old dictator, who works by day in human resources “for a large company that shall not be named,” to find out what he’s learned from being a dictator (in his own mind) for four decades. MH: What makes you a great leader? kevin baugh: Well, I don’t really consider myself to be a great leader. It’s not like I have a dynamic, commanding personality that makes people do what I want them to do. I lead my nation because I more or less created it. It’s super easy to lead a country that you built from scratch. Why create your own country? Are you not happy in the United States? No, the U.S. is great. I think things are going just fine over there. I’m more optimistic about the U.S. than most Americans seem to be. The best analogy for what I’m doing, it’s like when a kid declares his bedroom an independent country so he doesn’t have to pick up his socks or clean up. For me, it’s an extension of that. It’s my way of saying “I want to do things my way.” But how much independence do you really have? You pay U.S. taxes, right? We do, but we think of it as giving foreign aid to the United States. We’ve seen their roads—they need all the help they can get. You’re married, right? I am, yes. Molossia is a family nation. If I told my wife, “I’m the dictator of this house,” she would laugh in my face. My wife and I have been married for five years, and Molossia CONTINUED ON P. 142
BREAD RISES AGAIN! Itâ€™s about time we honored the warm, crusty, freshly baked loaf as the best thing since, well, you know.
120 MensHealth.com | October 2016
By Paul Kita Photographs by Christopher Testani
Despite what the anti-gluten hordes would like you to believe, real bread is not bad for you. Hearty hunks torn from whole wheat loaves can deliver the fuel you need for everyday energy. Real bread has fiber, which fills you up and helps you fight cravings. Plus, real bread has plenty of essential vitamins and nutrients to help your body function at its best. Worried about the ciabatta above your belt? “Good bread has gotten a bad rap over the past few years due to nutrition sensationalism,” says Jim White, R.D., of Jim White Fitness & Nutrition Studios. “All foods, including bread, can fit into a healthy diet.” So take up your baguettes! Free the gluten! Enjoy bread again!
Avoid going cross-eyed in the packaged-bread aisle with this buyer’s guide. Many bread brands try to confuse shoppers with subtle packaging and labeling tricks that make their products seem healthier. Know what to watch for and which bags to buy with advice from Valerie Berkowitz, R.D., of the Center for Balanced Health in New York City.
Don’t Judge a Bread by Its Color “Producers can add caramel color and other dyes to make white bread appear darker,” Berkowitz says. Flip to the ingredient list and look for the word “whole” before the first entry.
Watch Out for Seedy Behavior Some loaves come speckled with sesame seeds, oats, or flaxseed on the crust. “Think of these as garnish,” Berkowitz says. “There are not enough to make a nutritional impact.”
Treat Sprouts with Suspicion Sprouted grains have only slightly more protein, vitamins, and minerals. They also tend to have fewer additives and can be good options—but not solely because of the sprouting effect. CHEW ON THIS
Arnold 100% Whole Wheat Its first ingredient is whole wheat flour, but sugar (3 grams a slice) and soy are also listed.
Dave’s Killer Bread Blues Bread This option’s whole grains are all organic, but so is the sugar, which comes in at 4 grams per slice.
Food for Life 7 Sprouted Grains Barley, rye, oats, corn, millet, brown rice, and whole wheat (all organic) fortify a slice for just 1 gram of sugar.
120 calories, 5g protein, 21g carbs (4g fiber)
80 calories, 4g protein, 15g carbs (3g fiber)
Per slice: 100 calories, 4g protein, 19g carbs (3g fiber)
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How to Make It
In a wide, shallow bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Whisk in the next five ingredients. In a large nonstick skillet on medium high, melt the butter. Dunk the bread slices into the egg-milk mixture one at a time, flipping each slice to coat and pushing it down to soak up the liquid a bit. Transfer the slices to the skillet and cook till browned, 2 to 3 minutes per side. While the French toast cooks, add the banana slices to the pan and sear them lightly on both sides. Serve the toast topped with bananas; add syrup if you want. Feeds 2
Food st yling: Victoria Granof/Cornelia Adams
What You’ll Need 2 eggs ½ cup whole milk 1 Tbsp sugar 1 tsp vanilla extract ½ tsp cinnamon Pinch of salt 3 Tbsp unsalted butter 4 thick slices day-old bread 1 banana, sliced
A: “I’d recommend no more than four to six slices of whole wheat bread a day. So say you’re a 150-pound guy looking to maintain your weight. That means you can eat as much as 300 grams of carbohydrates a day. Your average piece of whole wheat bread has about 20 grams. Theoretically, you could eat as many as 12 slices a day, but we dietitians preach eating a variety of foods. So incorporate other grains into your diet, like oatmeal, brown rice, and quinoa, to name a few.” —Jim White, R.D.
1 FOR BURGERS
Brioche “It’s a sweet dough enriched with butter that’s delicious when toasted,” says Richard Bertinet, the author of Dough. It also makes an awesome French toast. (Find the recipe on the previous page.) 1
2 FOR PIZZA
Naan This Indian bread is not only great for dredging curries but also perfect for a quick pie. Slather with tomato sauce, top with mozzarella, and broil until the cheese is gooey and bubbly. 3 FOR ROAST BEEF
Ciabatta “The baker combines the flour, water, and yeast and waits 24 hours before adding the other ingredients to make the dough. This method yields a light, airy loaf after baking,” Bertinet says.
4 BEST FOR THE REST
P h o t o g r a p h s b y M I TC H M A N D E L (t a g s) , st yling: Adam Heidebrink- Bruno
“It has a crunchy caramel crust, but it’s soft, salty, sweet, and sour inside. I eat it with pretty much everything,” says Bertinet. Some suggestions: good cheddar, egg salad, a tomato slab.
“Bread is usually supplied to supermarkets by the bakery’s driversalesmen,” says Laurie Gorton of the trade publication Baking & Snack. “The tag color cues the driver to pull stale products.” While tag colors may differ and some bakeries don’t use the system, here are the colors that correspond to specific bread-baking days.
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 123
GETS You’d think a six-figure income would float your boat above all possible debt problems. But you’d be wrong, because even if you’re making good money, you could still be drowning. By Peter Flax
124 MensHealth.com | October 2016
DID YOU LOSE TRACK OF THAT American dream your parents had, the one you thought for sure you’d inherit? It’s still there, but now it’s buried under a huge pile of debt and debris caused by a tough economy, endless career stalls, a life on credit, and the rising cost of living. Then there’s that gorgeous six-figure loan your college gave you for graduation—the gift that keeps on taking because they want it back. The damage done by the past decade to American men across all income levels is shockingly broad and deep. Once, life on the edge meant dating an exchange student, listening to indie rock, and drinking single malts. Then came the economy meltdown of 2008, and suddenly the
edge became the fastestgrowing neighborhood in the country. Consider a trio of recent surveys: When the Federal Reserve asked 5,695 Americans how they’d deal with an unexpected $400 expense—say, the cost of two new tires for an SUV—46 percent said they couldn’t cover it without selling something or borrowing the money. And in a Bankrate survey, only 37 percent of Americans said they had enough savings to cope with an emergency costing $1,000. Even given a month to plan ahead, only 40 percent of people surveyed by the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center (GFLEC) would be able to handle a $2,000 emergency. This is what the American middle class looks like when
it’s drowning in debt with no savings, no plan, going down with no way up. The edge is where many of us are living right now. If that picture is yours too, think of it as a major health warning, and worry—the same way you’d worry if you got winded after a tough table-tennis rally or if your belt disappeared under your belly every time you sat down. For eight motionless hours at a time. Whether you’re overweight or underfunded, the solution is the same: To make things better, things have to change. A lot. Like, now. Because if they don’t, tomorrow’s just going to be another stressful day. How, you might ask? We have a few ideas. X
Money stress can burn in a hole in your soul.
low-income people are feeling.” A MagnifyMoney spending survey released in early 2016, just after the holidays, found that 56 percent of respondents had less than $1,000 in their savings and checking accounts combined.
Remember, it’s only money. You always have your looks. Or your dog. The point: Intense, middle-of-the-night, cold-sweat money anxiety can kill. So you need to find a way to keep it in perspective. The American Psychological Association confirms that money concerns pose a significant source of stress in the lives of Americans. African Americans, Latinos, millennials, and Gen Xers feel it to a higher degree. Bad signs: “a loss
Put a warning sticker on your credit card. “My wife
Beware the true cost of college loans. Kenny is a 35-year-old attorney at a Midwest firm. He graduated law school four years ago with $161,000 in school loans and went right to work paying down his debt, starting at $300 a month, which was less than the interest. This year Kenny will earn over $110,000; with his wife’s salary as a nurse, his household income will top $160,000. His debt payments are now $1,500 a month, and he’s chipping away at a balance that grew to “only” $177,000. 126 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Save yourself. “It’s exhausting living on that bubble,” says Joshua, 43, a Texas educator. “I feel like I can never really put anything away for a rainy day because it’s always raining.” About one in three households have zero savings, according to a 2015 analysis by the Pew Charitable Trusts. And if you do manage to keep your money in a bank, you’ll get the kind of interest usually associated with a colonoscopy story. The simple inability to save is a “really big” problem, says GFLEC’s academic director, Annamaria Lusardi, Ph.D. “It cuts across society, and it’s not something only
Create a Perfect Budget Stick to it, cut expenses, reduce debt, and save.
At least once a month, tally up your income and spending, says Bruce McClary of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling. He uses pen and paper, but we like Buxfer (buxfer.com.) You can create your own categories and set limits that will alert you when you’re overspending. 1
Don’t be “house poor.” If your home eats up more than 30 percent of what you earn, there’s not enough of a cushion for emergencies. This could derail you. Downsize. 2
Prioritize credit card debt. The “ladder method” saves you the most. Pay off the card with the highest interest rate regardless of balance; then move down the ladder of interest rates until everything’s paid. 3
Set up an emergency savings fund and aim to stockpile at least six months’ worth of income. This should be a bigger priority than paying off those lower-interest student loans (but still try to pay the minimum). Once you’ve saved your six-month cushion, attack those loans. Rework your budget until you’re saving at least 10 percent. 4
Find the fat. It usually hides in discretionary spending like concert tickets and dinners out. If you’re able to save money even after paying for those small luxuries, then don’t feel guilty. But if you’re using credit to buy your steak dinners and have no strategy to pay it down, you’ll eventually have some serious debt staring you in the face, McClary warns. 5
R ay m a n /G e t t y I m a g e s (o p e n i n g p a g e), C u l t u r a R F/G e t t y I m a g e s (c a s h); illustrations by R. KIKUO JOHNSON
and I talk about doing something about [debt] all the time. That’s the simple part,” says James, a 36-year-old manager from Texas. “But the problem is that it’s way too easy to grab a card out of my back pocket—and boom.” James and his wife together earn more than $150,000, but that’s not enough to support a mortgage, car and motorcycle loans, and $29,000 in credit card balances. The average household with debt carries $15,762 in credit card debt, according to a NerdWallet report.
“It’s an absolute joke,” he says. “When you’re paying a bill that large and the balance isn’t going down, it’s disheartening.” Still, your goal must be to pay more than the minimum, says Jean Chatzky, author of Money Rules. “When you do that, it decreases the principal balance. And that reduces the overall interest you pay, along with the repayment period.” Kenny isn’t alone: Americans are currently carrying an astonishing $1.23 trillion in student loans.
of personal control...depression [and] suicidal thoughts,” says Brad Klontz, Psy.D., a financial psychologist and the author of Mind Over Money. In fact, Klontz adds, financial stress can lead to depression, divorce, physical pain, and even sudden death. In other words, he says, financial stress “can quite literally kill you.” Even in the less dramatic cases, the human cost is high. Jonathan, a 25-year-old sales rep who lives in Connecticut, says money pressures have affected his relationship with his girlfriend. “I personally believe it’s diminished our sex drive dramatically,” he says. “We’re in our 20s. We should be romping every other day, but every time we look at our funds we’re like,
‘damn.’ It weighs on us; it’s something we carry around.” It hits men who see themselves as providers especially hard. “That’s just how we’re wired,” Joshua says. “We’re supposed to make sure everything is taken care of. And when we can’t take care of it, stress levels go through the roof. It’s this vicious cycle that eats you up inside.”
The big plan starts here. If being broke were the same as being drunk, you’d know the irst step, the one where you admit you’ve got a problem. To start with, says Bruce McClary of the nonprofit National Foundation for Credit Counseling, “you need to be brave enough to take an honest look at your financial
situation and how you got there.” Ask yourself six questions: 1. Do you know exactly how much money you spend and on what? 2. Do you respect your household budget? 3. Do you know, even roughly, how much you should spend on your housing and your car? 4. Do you have a commitment to reduce the amount of your debt? 5. Do you know which costs you can control? We’re talking food and entertainment and impulse buys. 6. Do you have a plan to bring this under control?
What’s Your Financial Type? Read the statements and answer: strongly disagree (0), disagree (1), disagree a little (2), agree a little (3), agree (4), strongly agree (5).
A. People get rich by taking advantage of others. We can have love or money, but not both.
CONTINUED ON P. 142
Good people should not care about money.
B. More money will make me happier.
AVERAGE GUY BUDGET
Money buys freedom. Money would solve all my problems.
My self-worth equals my net worth. I won’t buy something (such as a car or a house) unless it’s new.
Money should be saved, not spent.
Other (gifts, travel, charity)
Always look for the best deal, even if it takes more time.
Housing Debt or saving Transportation
Clothing i S to c k p h o to /G e t t y I m a g e s (n o te p a d)
Source: Bruce McClary, National Foundation for Credit Counseling
Money is power.
D. People should work for their money and not be given financial handouts.
THE CATEGORIES If you score more than 9 in any category, you likely exhibit that financial personality type. A. Avoider You believe money is inherently bad or that you don’t deserve to have it. You may even give away your money. Write a list of all the good things it can provide—like housing, food, and education. The more you recognize how money, used wisely, can improve your life, the less likely you’ll be to sabotage yourself. B. Worshipper You’re more likely to spend compulsively, hoard possessions, and put work ahead of family. Try to do two things each day that make you happy and cost nothing. Eat lunch outside. Call an old friend. It’ll remind you that money isn’t the best route to happiness. C. Status Seeker You’re at greater risk of overspending, gambling, becoming financially dependent on others, and hiding expenditures from your spouse. Cut up a credit card. The more often you pay cash, the less likely you’ll be to acquire debt. When you see something big that you want to buy, wait 24 hours and see if the urge passes. D. Vigilant You’re frugal. Congrats! But too much austerity can deprive you of the pleasures that money can provide. Buy something small for yourself. Maybe it’s just a fancy cut of meat or your favorite beer, or a new tie if you have a big meeting coming up. The point isn’t to waste money; it’s to give yourself permission to loosen up once in a while.
Source: Adapted from a test developed by financial psychologist Brad Klontz (see occamllc.net)
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 127
WHERE YOUR WILD THINGS ARE BY JOE KITA PHOTOGRAPHS BY MARTIN OEGGERLI
Prepare to meet some of the billions of microbes that live in your gut (left), on your feet (right), under your arms, and even inside your belly button. But try to resist the urge to disinfect; these are the good guys in your everyday battle to fend off invaders and stay healthy.
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 129
There’s a party going on in your gut. Right now, billions of microbes are enjoying one big belly dance, working together to extract nutrients from food and crowd out the uninvited guests. This gut “microbiome” has been big news lately, with plenty of probiotic foods and supplements claiming to keep the party going, which benefits health. But here’s even bigger news: Microbiomes can be found all over your body—armpits, mouth, nose, toes, and more. Collectively they can weigh 6 pounds in a 200-pound adult—about twice the weight of your brain. “We had people swab their belly buttons,” says Rob Dunn, Ph.D., a biologist at North Carolina State University, “and found thousands of different species of beneficial microbes in there.” Microbiomes like this are thriving societies that we need for life. “We rely on them,” says Dunn, “but unfortunately our lifestyles are causing some of these species to disappear. Their loss has been linked to conditions such as inflammatory bowel diseases, MS, asthma, and Alzheimer’s. New discoveries about these links are ushering in a new phase of public health. Here’s a scarier way to view it: “You have at least a thousand species of good microbes on you now,” says Dunn, “which means there are at least a thousand different ways for you to get sick in new and chronic ways if you harm them.” Got your attention? Good. Let’s meet these creatures via photography done under an electron microscope. With Dunn as our guide, let’s hunt down your wild things.
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This is what the party in your gut looks like. So far, thousands of bacteria species have been found, most in the large intestine (colon). They’re highly specialized. “Some digest difficult foods, like the fiber in broccoli, with enzymes that act as microscopic knives,” says Dunn. Others help strengthen the intestinal lining. Still others may hold the keys to weight gain and mood disorders. They’re so vital that your body produces a compound that helps them clump together so they’re not easily excreted. Despite its apparent ferocity, this microbiome is delicate. And it’s built shortly after birth, so we must protect it. “Antibiotics kill the good and bad,” he says, “and you may never fully recolonize the good ones.”
These tiny yellow dandies are called Staphylococcus, and they play a starring role in the microbiome on your feet. Back when your ancestors roamed the forest shoeless, their odds of developing foot infections were high. Dunn thinks these microbes helped keep your forebears alive by producing compounds that kill fungi. Now their valiant role has been reduced to mostly protecting you in lockerroom showers. Your feet sweat out as much as a cup of water a day. “We used to think that helped cool the body,” says Dunn, “but I believe it was to favor microbes like these. Being inside shoes and socks is a whole different environment for them, so mostly they now just make your feet stinky.”
130 MensHealth.com | October 2016
E. Coli Bacteria
We think of these bacteria as pathogens. But they’re in your gut right now, where they’re working happily with the rest of your microbiome to keep you healthy. The photo above shows them as blue capsules at low density in the colon, which is fine, says Dunn. It’s only when an E. coli species that’s new to your system or has special pathogenic genes is introduced that you can get sick and even die. “What is good and what is bad is a complex question in your body’s ecosystem,” explains Dunn. “What you want is moderation with your microbes; you want to figure out how to keep new things out while being okay with what you already have.”
A l l i m a g e s © M a r t i n O e g g e r l i , s u p p o r t e d b y S c h o o l o f L i fe S c i e n c e s , F H N W ; i c o n s b y M I C H A E L B R A N D O N M Y E R S
Belly Button Bacteria and Fungi Spores
The type of navel warfare shown here is representative of what’s happening everywhere on your skin. “You wear a cloak of beneficial microbes,” says Dunn, and it has two main jobs. It protects you from pathogens (imagine a flu virus landing in the middle of this; it wouldn’t stand a chance), and it helps create your personal odors, good and bad—your “eau de you.” “Glands all over your body feed these microbes with secretions,” says Dunn. “The belly button even has specialized glands that seem to nourish the ones in there. They’re like your body’s bird feeders.” These microbes then produce waste that goes off into the air, influencing the way mosquitoes (and people) are either drawn to you or repelled by you. Ironically, if you removed this cloak you would die, but that’s precisely what we’re doing with antimicrobial lotions and wipes or even antiperspirants, says Dunn. He advocates plain old soap and water, and skipping the pit stick on your days off.
P H OTO G R A P H S B Y I M G C R E D I T _ A L L _ C R E D I T
Mouth and Tongue Microbes
These confetti-like strands are some of the millions of microbes that live on your tongue and mouth lining (seen here in dark red). When they’re working to benefit you, they help break down food and subdue pathogens. But your diet can make their job harder. “Hunter-gatherer mouth microbes were quite different from agricultural mouth microbes,” Dunn says. “Once we started eating sugar, our entire oral biome changed, resulting in the onset of cavities and periodontal disease. And the more sugar we eat, the more we alter the microbial battlefield.” Toothpastes and mouthwashes may also change the overall balance.
THERE’S A BUG ON YOU! A Single Microbe Reproducing
As if hosting billions of bacterial microbes weren’t enough, these like you too.
M e g a n T h o e m m e s / D r . D a n F e r g u s ( D e m o d e x m i t e ) , E y e o f S c i e n c e /S c i e n c e S o u r c e ( h o o k w o r m ) , D r . D a v i d E v a n s Wa l t e r ( f u r m i t e )
This microscopic creature belongs to a larger group of bacteria, some of which are beneficial and others of which cause ear infections and deadly pneumonia. The image showcases a process that occurs hundreds of millions of times a day in your mouth and gut—a microbe dividing to become the next generation of itself. “This microbe is also found in some cheeses,” says Dunn. “In fact, many microbes used to make foods like kimchi and sourdough bread were outsourced human body microbes. Eating foods like these that are ‘alive’ can help recolonize your gut with good microbes.”
DEMODEX MITE Several of these are living in every one of your follicles. They’re geographically distinct, so mites on people in China differ from those in Europe. Dunn and his colleagues have studied them for years but don’t know much about them, other than that they’re fed by the follicle and, because they lack an anus, pop when full.
HOOKWORM About half of people worldwide will host an intestinal worm at some point in their lifetime. This monster siphons its food and can harm its host. But despite its evil look, it can be beneficial. “Some autoimmune conditions seem to be connected to the loss of these worms,” says Dunn. “In fact, some people are taking them as medicine.”
Helicobacter Pylori Bacteria
These golden threads are H. pylori, a species of bacteria living in most people’s stomach lining (a piece of which is shown here). Blame these for peptic ulcers and some stomach cancers. But here’s the thing: They’re not inherently evil. In fact, when viewed as part of the entirety of the gut microbiome, they’re important team players. For example, they help regulate stomach acid, thereby reducing acid reflux and the risk of esophageal cancer. They may also, in some as-yet-undetermined way, battle asthma and allergies. “So once again we have this balance,” says Dunn. “Upset it, and even good friends like these can turn on you.”
FUR MITE “One theory of why we don’t have hair all over our bodies is because critters like these once clung to us and transmitted pathogens,” Dunn says. So your nakedness is a result of fur mites past. “We don’t like thinking of things living on us,” he adds. “Yet they do. Your body is like a habitat, the Serengeti of your back hair.” October 2016 | MensHealth.com 133
After decades of falling down for a living, sleeping with younger women both real and fictional, and making people laugh, Dick Van Dyke is still having fun even while circling the drain. (His words!) Now 90 years old, he shares his secrets of eternal youth. BY ERIC SPITZNAGEL
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guy. He and his wife celebrated his 90th birthday last December with a flash mob and a big bash at Disneyland. (If you make Walt Disney a bazillion dollars by costarring in Mary Poppins, you can have pretty much the run of the park whenever you want.) Van Dyke’s latest book, Keep Moving: And Other Tips and Truths About Aging, will make you feel lazy for every second you sat on your butt when you could’ve been dancing on a roof like a chimney sweep who’d just done the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang with a younger woman. We called him to ask about his secrets to growing old without becoming old, and to ind out once and for all why he and Mary Tyler Moore slept in separate beds.
Andy Got ts/Camera Press/Redux
IN THE EARLY 1960s, WHEN DICK VAN DYKE SIGNED ON TO star in a new sitcom, he thought casting Mary Tyler Moore to play his wife was absurd. He was 36; she was 25. “Isn’t she a little young for me?” he asked the producers. That was half a century ago. Today Van Dyke is 90 years old, and the age gap between him and his current wife, makeup artist Arlene Silver, is a little more extreme. She’s 45, exactly half his age. Back when he was worrying about Mary Tyler Moore being too young, his future wife was still a decade away from being born. Dick Van Dyke is living proof that men can get better with age. He’s not your typical old man who marries a younger woman; Van Dyke is still very much a vibrant and active
MEN’S HEALTH: How often in a day do you break into a dance for no apparent reason? DICK VAN DYKE: Quite a bit, actually. You go into any store today and they’re playing music, usually something with a heavy beat. I’ve got what Steve Martin calls happy feet. I hear music and my feet just start moving. How do people react when you spontaneously start gyrating your hips like a crazy person? [Laughs] That’s exactly it. I think most people just assume I’m a crazy old man. If they recognize me, they’ll smile and go, “That’s just Dick.” But if they catch a glimpse of me from behind, I’m pretty sure they’re thinking, “Oh, that poor man. He has no idea where he is.” Can you still bust out with a Mary Poppins chimney sweep dance? Oh sure, yeah. Disneyland just did a big 60th anniversary tribute, and they invited me to come and do the chimney sweep dance with a bunch of kids. I’m not jumping off buildings, but the basics of it I can handle. When I was younger, I met Fred Astaire. He was in his mid80s and I asked him, “Do you still dance?” He said, “Yes, but it hurts now.” [Laughs.] I finally know what he meant. It hurts when you dance? Sometimes. I’ve got plenty of arthritis. But if you just keep moving, it won’t bother you that much. Old guys forget to get out of their chairs—that’s why they stiffen up. You let the moss grow over, it’s your fault. Many guys think they can’t dance, so they avoid it. We don’t want to look like morons. Any advice to get us back on the dance floor? There’s that great old saying, “Sing like nobody can hear you, dance like nobody can see you, and love like you’ve never been hurt.” Yeah, that’s super, but people can actually see you, and they’re grimacing. Well, phooey to them. You just have to ignore the...what do you call them? The haters. Haters gonna hate. Exactly! Haters are going to hate. I always loved to dance, but I never had a clue what I was doing. I’ve never been what you’d call a great singer, but I loved to sing. Anyone who doesn’t sing and dance at every opportunity is missing out on the joy of life. You’ve had no formal training in any of the skills you’re famous for. Singing, acting, dancing, you faked your way through all of it. [Laughs.] That’s right! That shows you how lazy I am. Once you get a job singing and dancing, a reasonable person might think, “Maybe I should learn how to do this.” Is the ultimate lesson of your career, “If you want to be great at something, skip school”? No, no, no! [Laughs.] Young people ask me for advice, and I tell them to do what I didn’t do. Get some training. I took jobs that required talents I didn’t have. What about pratfalls? Were you trained professionally in falling on your ass? I taught myself everything. I grew up watching Buster Keaton, Laurel & Hardy, all the slapstick guys. My friends and I loved them, so we prac-
Old guys forget to get out of their chairs— that’s why they stiffen up. You let the moss grow over, it’s your fault.” ticed pratfalls in our backyards. By the time I was a teenager, I could fall like a pro. In all your years of doing those moves, did you ever break a nose or a rib? Never. Even today I can negotiate a fall. Last summer I was in a hotel lobby, and they had this long marble staircase that led down to a marble floor. I tripped on one of the steps and tumbled down the stairs. Everybody ran over to see if the old guy was okay. Sure. That’s how people in their 90s die. I was fine. I just laughed and said, “Relax, everybody. I do this for a living.” Evidently my bones are still pretty sturdy. It’s been over 50 years since Mary Poppins. Has your Cockney accent gotten any better? Nope. Still terrible? Worse than terrible. And everybody reminds me about it. Sorry. We shouldn’t have brought it up. No, no, it’s not just you. I ran into Helen Mirren a couple of weeks ago and she teased me about it. The strange thing is, when I did the movie I was surrounded by a cast of British actors. And not a single one of them ever said, “Hey, why don’t you work on that accent a little? You don’t sound even remotely British.” You made your acting debut playing Baby Jesus in a church Christmas pageant. That’s right! I can’t remember how old I was, but I remember getting a laugh. You were a funny Baby Jesus? Yes, sir. Got a huge laugh. That’s what got me addicted to performing. I’m not sure what I did, but I know people laughed, and I thought that was pretty cool. Right then and there, I was like, “I need to keep doing this.” Now that you’re in your 90s, maybe it’s time to play another biblical figure—say, Noah or Moses or any of those guys who lived well past 100. I would love to be Moses. Maybe Moses with a jaunty dance number? [Laughs.] That’d be great. He probably danced a little, right? You don’t part the Red Sea without having some moves. Let’s talk about your wife. She’s younger than you, right? Just a little. Why, what’ve you heard? [Laughs.] Do you have to keep up with her, or does she keep up with you? She claims she has to keep up with me, but it’s really the other way around. You want the secret to being with a younger woman? Please tell us. We’re begging you. I’ll tell you the secret. I’m emotionally immature, and my wife is an old soul. So we meet in the middle.
Do you sleep in separate beds like on The Dick Van Dyke Show? We have separate bedrooms. No. Seriously? I think that’s the answer to a good marriage. Everyone has their own room. Can you just not sleep in the same bed with her? Does she have the jimmy legs? Nothing like that. I just think everyone needs their own private space. And then you make a date. It’s a special thing. But did the twin beds on The Dick Van Dyke Show make you crazy? You’re pretend-married to Mary Tyler Moore, and you didn’t even get to curl up next to her. That’s not fair! Back in those days, you weren’t allowed to sleep in the same bed on TV. We couldn’t say the word “pregnant” in an episode about being pregnant. One of the first who got to sleep in a double bed on TV was Bob Newhart. I called him and said, “You son of a gun!” [Laughs.] If you watch TV now, I think things have gone a little far in the other direction. There are lots of naked asses on display. I’m so tired of seeing rear ends. Just put some pants on, for the love of god. You’ll never be on a show like True Detective or Game of Thrones? Nope. I’ve had offers to do all those shows, but I can’t. I’m the anti–Quentin Tarantino. But it would be great to see you as a chainsmoking, alcoholic cop who sleeps with hookers and investigates grisly cult murders. Oh gosh, no. That sounds horrible. I couldn’t do any of that. I could probably play an alcoholic. I’ve had some experience with that. That’s still hard to believe. We can’t even picture you drunk, much less struggling with an actual alcohol addiction. I wasn’t a falling-in-the-gutter type. I drank at home because it relaxed me. I was shy around new people, but after a drink or two, I became more sociable. And your drink of choice was Jack Daniels? That was the one. You know who else drank a lot of Jack Daniels? Keith Richards. Who? The guitarist from the Rolling Stones. Oh yeah, that guy. He looks terrible. How old is he again? 72. Just 72? He looks much older than that. He looks 90, and you look more like 72. He hasn’t taken the best care of himself. But then again, neither have you. Didn’t you smoke two packs of cigarettes every day for almost 50 years? CONTINUED ON P. 143 October 2016 | MensHealth.com 135
so maybe you’re not a professional long jumper quite yet. you’re a beast at hopscotch.
A little goodness is the beginning of greatness. Whole nuts with real fruit and dark chocolate. Plus 100mg of naturally occurring cocoa ﬂavanols—the good stuff in dark chocolate. And no, we didn’t just make that up. Check the Interwebs.
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â€œFootball is an explosive game, so my moves in training are violent and fast.â€?
The Fast Track to a Six-Pack Build the best body of your life with this four-week fat-melting fitness plan. P. 141
Build NFL Strength and Muscle This body-weight routine forges a prime-time body and never-quit fitness. P H O T O G R A P H B Y P E T E R YA N G
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 137
The Workouts (from page 74)
The Fast Track to a Six-Pack In this program you’ll work out 5 days a week. On days 1, 3, and 5, you’ll lift. Here’s how: In the first exercise, you’ll “autoregulate” your sets. Afterward you’ll complete two different circuits. See “How to Do It” on page 140 for detailed instructions. You can follow this program for anywhere from 4 to 12 weeks.
2 Dumbbell Alternating Low-Incline Bench Press
Lie on your back and hold a barbell above your chest with your arms straight and knees bent. Lower the barbell until your upper arms touch the floor. Pause and press the weight back up to the starting position. If you don’t want to lie on the floor, do a regular bench press.
Lie faceup on an incline bench set to a low angle. Hold a pair of dumbbells above your chest with your arms straight and palms facing forward. Slowly lower your right arm to the side of your chest while keeping your left arm extended above your body. Press back up with your right arm, lower your left arm, and return to the starting position. That’s 1 rep.
3 Dumbbell Straight-Leg Deadlift
4 Lat Pulldown
Hold a pair of dumbbells at arm’s length in front of your thighs. Without rounding your lower back, bend at your hips and lower your torso toward the floor. Pause and return to the starting position.
Attach a lat pulldown handle to the high pulley of a cable station. Grab the handle and sit in front of the weight stack. Slowly pull the handle to your chest. Pause and slowly reverse the move.
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PH OTO G R A PH S BY B EN G O L D ST EI N
G r o o m i n g (e x e r c i s e s): G i n a K a y / Tr u e B e a u t y M a r k s; i n s e t p h o t o g r a p h b y R U DY A R C H U L E TA , g r o o m i n g : U n w a n a R o s e / W i d e E y e d B e a u t y
1Barbell Floor Press
6 Suitcase Carry
7 Dumbbell Front Squat
Hang at armâ€™s length from a chinup bar using an underhand, shoulder-width grip. This is the starting position. Pull your chest to the bar as fast as you can, pause, and take 2 seconds to lower yourself to the starting position.
Grab a heavy dumbbell, hold it at your side, and walk. Keep your torso straight throughout. Walk 100 feet; then switch sides and walk the100 feet back.
Hold a pair of dumbbells with your palms facing inward, upper arms perpendicular to the floor. Push your hips back and lower your body into a squat; then push back up.
8 Standing Single-Arm Kettlebell Push
Stand holding a kettlebell in your right hand with your arm bent, the kettlebell just outside your right shoulder. Extend your left hand out to the side. Press the weight overhead until your arm is straight; then lower it to the starting position. (You can use a dumbbell instead of a kettlebell.) Do all your reps; then switch hands and repeat. Donâ€™t rest between sides.
Bend at your hips and knees and grab a barbell using an overhand grip, your arms just outside your legs. Now stand up, pulling the bar off the floor and thrusting your hips forward. Lower it back to the floor.
October 2016 | MensHealth.com 139
10 Single-Arm Dumbbell Row
12 Kettlebell Pullover
Hold a dumbbell in your left hand and place your right hand and right knee on a flat bench. Lower your torso until it’s almost parallel to the floor. Let the dumbbell hang at arm’s length from your shoulder. Pull the dumbbell to the side of your chest. Pause and return to the start. Do all your reps, switch sides, and repeat.
Grab a pair of dumbbells and place your left foot on a bench or step. Press through your left heel and slowly lift yourself onto the bench as you raise your right knee to a 90-degree angle. Take 2 seconds to lower your right foot back to the floor. Do all your reps, switch legs, and repeat.
Lie on your back, holding a kettlebell by its horns above your chest with your arms straight. Bring your hips and knees to 90 degrees and feet together. Take in a big breath. As you breathe out, slowly lower the kettlebell directly behind your head, keeping your lower back on the floor. Pause; then breathe in as you pull it back up.
How to Do It On your strength training days (1, 3, and 5), start with the Primary Exercise. Each Primary Exercise is done using “autoregulation” sets; that is, you’ll do anywhere from 3 to 6 sets, depending on your form. If your form breaks down on, say, set 4, you’re done for that day. Some days you’ll be able to crank out 6 sets; others just 3. This method gives you a perfect muscle-building dose. Afterward, do the circuits: Perform the listed exercises in order and for the prescribed number of reps. The workout is over after you complete your circuits. Trainer: Bill Hartman, co-owner, IFAST in Indianapolis Good for: Getting ripped
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PRIMARY EXERCISE 1 Sets: 3 to 6 Reps: 4, using a weight you can lift 6 times Rest: 2 to 3 minutes between sets
Exercises: 2, 3, 4 Reps: 6 to 8 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: as many as you can until your form fails
Exercises: 6, 12 Reps: 8 to 10 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: 2
CARDIO: 45 to 60 minutes at a conversational pace
PRIMARY EXERCISE 5 Sets: 3 to 6 Reps: 4, using a weight you can lift 6 times Rest: 2 to 3 minutes between sets
Exercises: 4, 7, 8 Reps: 6 to 8 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: as many as you can until your form fails
Exercises: 6, 12 Reps: 8 to 10 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: 2
CARDIO: 45 to 60 minutes at a conversational pace
PRIMARY EXERCISE 9 Sets: 3 to 6 Reps: 4, using a weight you can lift 6 times Rest: 2 to 3 minutes between sets
Exercises: 10, 2, 11 Reps: 6 to 8 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: as many as you can until your form fails
Exercises: 6, 12 Reps: 8 to 10 each Rest: 75 seconds Rounds: 2
The Workouts (from page 105)
Build NFL Strength and Muscle
G r o o m i n g : G i n a K a y / Tr u e B e a u t y M a r k s ( e x e r c i s e s ) ; i n s e t p h o t o g r a p h b y P E T E R YA N G , st y ling: Sandra N ygard , hair: Vanessa Schmi t z, makeup: Jamie S vay/M ar il y n A gency; Nike shor ts and cleats
All-pro tight end Greg Olsen and the Carolina Panthers do this workout to speed their recovery after a game and to build functional strength and endurance for the next one. DIRECTIONS Perform the exercises as a circuit. Start with the first exercise and do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds. Rest 30 seconds and immediately move on to the next exercise and repeat the pattern. Once you’ve done all the exercises once, rest 60 seconds. That’s 1 round. Do 4.
1 Box Jump
2 Reverse Lunge to Stepup
Stand facing a box and assume a quarter squat; then jump up. Land softly on the box with bent knees. Step down and repeat. Pro Tip Start with a 24-inch-high box.
Stand facing a bench (or box). Step back with your right leg and lower your right knee until it nearly touches the floor. Pause, push back to the starting position, and immediately place your right foot on the bench and step up onto it. Return to the starting position. That’s 1 rep. Pro Tip Squeeze your glutes and lift your left knee at the top of the stepup.
3 Elevated Pushup
4 Lateral Lunge
Assume a pushup position but with your feet elevated on a bench (or box). Keep your arms straight and hands below and slightly past your shoulders. Bend at the elbows as you lower your body until your chest nearly touches the floor. Pause, and push yourself back up. Pro Tip If you can’t do quality reps for 30 seconds, switch to a regular or kneeling pushup.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Step to your left and lower your body by pushing your hips back and bending your right knee. Return to the start and repeat, this time to your right. Pro Tip Drop your hips as low as you can.
Hang at arm’s length from a pullup bar using an overhand grip. Pull your chest up to the bar. Lower yourself to the starting position and repeat. Pro Tip If you can’t do quality reps throughout, switch to a lat pulldown.
Trainer: Brett Nenaber, athletic performance analyst, Carolina Panthers October 2016 | MensHealth.com 141
LEADERSHIP, FROM P. 119
has been around for over 39 years. So Molossia preceded her. When we first got together, she knew what she was getting into. It’s not like this is a stamp collection I can put away. How about the other citizens, like your kids? Have they resisted any decrees? There’s always grumbling. But it’s easy to make everybody happy in Molossia. If there’s any unrest, I just order out for pizza. What’s fascinating about Molossia is that you don’t seem insane. Thank you. What we mean is, Molossia doesn’t exist, and you seem well aware it doesn’t exist, even as you pretend it’s a legitimate country. You know it’s delusional. Well, it’s complicated. Wait. You do think it’s a real country? We try to keep it light and funny so we don’t have the government rolling up on our doorstep and throwing us all in jail for being seditious. However, we do view our nation as a nation. A sovereign nation on 1.3 acres. Molossia has everything a larger, established country has but in a small package. We even have a navy. You what? It’s basically a handful of inflatable kayaks. But it gets around. It goes on the water. You want to pass this along to your kids after you’re no longer able to rule? I’m always eyeballing them, trying to figure out which one will run the country after I’m gone. I want Molossia to outlive me. 쐍
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MEN’S HEALTH Vol. 31, No. 8 (ISSN 1054-4836), is published 10 times per year (monthly except for January and July) by Rodale Inc., 400 South 10th St., Emmaus, PA 18098–0099; (800) 666-2303. Copyright 2016 by Rodale Inc. All rights reserved. In U.S.: Periodicals postage paid at Emmaus, PA, and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster (U.S.): Send address changes to Men’s Health magazine, Customer Service, P.O. Box 26299, Lehigh Valley, PA 18002-6299. IN CANADA: Postage paid at Gateway, Mississauga, Ontario; Canada Post International Publication Mail (Canadian Distribution) Sales Agreement No. 40063752. Postmaster (Canada): Send returns and address changes to Men’s Health magazine, 2930 14th Avenue, Markham, Ontario, L34 5Z8. (GST# R122988611). Subscribers: If the postal authorities alert us that your magazine is undeliverable, we have no further obligation unless we receive a corrected address within 18 months. For licensing and reprints, contact Nick Iademarco at Wright’s Media, (877) 652-5295 ext. 102, or email@example.com.
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WHEN DEBT GETS PERSONAL, FROM P. 127
These are simple questions—unless you’re hip deep in a debt swamp. “I don’t think my wife and I do a good job of budgeting or accounting for where our money goes during the month,” says Joshua. “If you asked me where all my money is going, I’d honestly have to say I often have no clue.”
Keep track. As a first step, monitor all your spending for a month. You want to know exactly how much you spend eating out, the real cost of dry cleaning and pet care, everything. Adam, a California-based manager in the entertainment industry who’s struggling to pay off his credit cards while dealing with rising housing costs, was shocked to discover how much his family spends on food. “We started tracking it on the Wells Fargo site, and I couldn’t believe we drop about $2,500 a month for groceries and in restaurants,” he says. Nearly every major bank or credit union offers quality online tools to help you track and categorize your spending; these are especially useful for people who often use cards for discretionary spending. Use what you learn to create a budget. Yes, a budget. A budget is like a will or a retirement plan: It’s something all grownups know they should have...but don’t have. “Personal finance is about achieving objectives,” says Lusardi. “People need to determine what they want and build a plan to reach that. A budget is that plan. If you don’t have a budget, then you really don’t know how much you are spending.” There are tons of places to find a template for a budget—Google Docs has one, as do money management sites like Mint. Your bank probably offers a free budget tool too. So does your old man, as he’s told you a million times. Thing is, you won’t get anywhere without a map. A budget is your financial map.
Say no whenever you can. None of this is easy. It’s hard because it demands that you set and stick to limits. You’d like to hit the coffee shop multiple times a day without thinking about it; you want to buy the kids good clothes; you want to order up another movie channel or surprise your girlfriend with a sweet hotel getaway. You want the freedom to make choices on the fly. But if you’ve racked up debt and sometimes get pinged with overdraft fees, it’s time to assert your freedom to live a better life than that. Realize that your financial life is complicated. Many men, even those with advanced education and a good paycheck, don’t fully understand the implications and nuances of credit and savings and borrowing.
It’s like physics sometimes. Everything is connected. If you put something on a credit card today that’s not in your budget, you’re not only borrowing resources from your future but also negating any savings effort you might be currently making. “We’ve made it very easy to borrow, and now people are relying on credit and borrowing to deal with shocks,” says Lusardi. “But the problem is that borrowing provides liquidity but not insurance. If you don’t save, that credit will become most expensive when you most need it.”
Keep this simple. Just remember that the more you borrow and charge, the more fragile you become; the point is that saving today is a lot cheaper than charging tomorrow. If you really don’t get this stuff, don’t feel bad about yourself—just use it as motivation to educate yourself. Joshua did just that and wound up cutting up his credit cards. It’s a decision he rarely regrets. (“Except when I rent a car. Then it’s a pain in the ass.”) Now he’s able to direct more money toward his existing debt. “I feel like I’m on the downhill portion of fighting this battle, and eventually I’m going to get to the point where I can get ahead,” he says. “I only have six and a half years to go on my mortgage, and I like to think I’ll get a $2,000a-month raise when I pay off that house.” Stephen, 33, a government employee married to a nurse, makes about $110,000 and has made an uneasy peace with the idea that spontaneous, pricey weekend getaways will be hard to come by for the foreseeable future. “It can feel discouraging sometimes,” says Stephen, who’s saddled with student loans and high day-care costs. “But then I remind myself that something we enjoy for a day or two could take years to pay for.” Save your sanity. Are money worries driving you crazy? You probably know which costs you’d have to cut to make the whole thing fly. So what’s stopping you? According to Klontz, the financial psychologist, your emotions and your subconscious beliefs are probably holding you back. “Everybody knows better; I’ve yet to meet somebody who doesn’t know they need to save for the future and not spend more money than they make,” says Klontz. “And yet these problems persist. It’s not like financial education is going to fix the problem. This is where the psychology comes into play. Many people have thoughts about money that keep tripping them up.” Take James, the manager in Texas. He’s quick to admit he’s an impulsive spender, especially when it comes to his leisure time and his kids. Trips to the mall for new boots
Satisfaction GUARANTEED! DICK VAN DYKE, FROM P. 135
for his daughters or Saturday night dinners have a way of veering toward extravagance. “I have trouble limiting myself.” But why? For many big spenders, says Olivia Mellan, a psychotherapist and the author of Money Harmony, “having to say no makes them feel intensely deprived.” In James’s case, when he’s asked to analyze his own spending habits, the conversation immediately turns to his childhood. “I grew up with divorced parents, and we didn’t get things,” he says. “Well, now when it comes to my girls, I like going into the store with them and letting them shop and find things and get excited, because I didn’t get to do that when I was a kid.”
Lose the shame. Without boundaries, this behavior can lead to financial distress, obviously—and to a cascade of emotional issues that are critical to recognize and address. “There’s a tremendous amount of shame associated with money,” says Klontz. “And shame is an emotional glue trap; it wears you down, and you get really secretive and depressed. Some people are hiding this even from their spouses.” Jonathan has been down that road. In the past, he’s submitted his expense reports and been reimbursed—and then spent that money instead of paying off the credit card he used in the first place. Now his debt is in the thousands. (“It’s ballooned into another car,” he moans.) What’s more, he still hasn’t told his live-in girlfriend about it, even though they’re otherwise transparent about their finances. “I feel like I need to protect my girlfriend, and I shield her from certain things,” he says. “But it eventually is going to come up. I know that.” When asked to describe his feelings about the situation, Jonathan immediately offers a one-word reply: “Regret.” To avoid this, Klontz recommends that you identify and then tackle the beliefs that trigger spending or block you from following through with budgetlike restraint. It’s an approach familiar to those trying to break addiction. “It’s incredible when people figure it out and get to it,” says Klontz. Joshua, meanwhile, is still struggling to get out of the woods, but already he can testify to the benefits of tackling the underlying issues. “For a long time, I attached my self-worth to how far I was traveling on vacation with my wife or what schools my kids attended or what kind of car I was driving,” he says. “That’s how I ended up being trounced by debt. Once I was able to get past that, it made my life so much easier. It made it so much easier to make adjustments to get my life right side up.” 쐍
That’s right. And thank goodness I stopped. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I’ve talked to heroin addicts, and they’ve told me that quitting heroin is easier than quitting smoking. I have a little COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), but I really don’t notice it. It’s amazing you’re still alive. After half a century of chain-smoking, you should be talking out of one of those mechanical larynx things. [Laughs.] I really should be. The booze, the cigarettes, falling down marble stairs . . . weren’t you dragged from a burning car a few years ago? Oh, yeah. But that wasn’t as bad as the news made it sound. The car was on fire, and you were inside it. Yes, but I was planning on getting out eventually. Any other brushes with death we should know about? Well, there was one time not too long ago, I was surfing down in Georgia. I fell asleep on the board and it drifted out to sea. I woke up and saw these fins all around me, and I just assumed they were sharks. You’re chum in the water. That’s what I was thinking. “Well, this is it. It’s all over.” But it was just a school of porpoises. They surrounded me and then started pushing me toward the shore. They nudged me all the way in. Oh come on! I’m not kidding. This actually happened? Porpoises saved my life. Well that settles it. You’re clearly immortal. [Laughs.] Well I don’t know about that. There are a half dozen reasons why you should be dead right now, and yet here you are. You’re literally invincible. Everybody thinks it’s Keith Richards, but it’s actually you. You have discovered the secret to eternal life. I really haven’t. You must know something the rest of us don’t. You know what it is? I’ll tell you. We’re all ears. I originally wanted to call my book “How to Enjoy Yourself While Circling the Drain.” And you know why? Because that’s what life is all about. We all know we’re going to die. We’re all circling the drain. Some of us are closer than others. I’m 90, I know I’m closer to the drain than most people. And you’re okay with that? You have to be okay with that. Because it’s going to happen. If you spend your life thinking, “I wonder if today is when it ends,” you’re going to miss out on everything wonderful. You’re going to die. That’s going to happen. What matters is what you do with your time before you get flushed out. 쐍
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The List By Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic, ESPN’s Mike & Mike
greenberg: Throughout our daily lives, there ought to be a guy who every now and again walks by carrying a tray of beers and offering you one. “Beer here!” You hear that wherever you are. Peanuts and hot dogs too. golic: At a morning meeting, croissants or muffins. Nothing is off-limits—weddings, funerals. Everybody needs to snack.
Instant Replay greenberg: How great
would this be? We need the chance to review important moments in our lives—and defend ourselves. So you’d get to challenge someone on what they said and prove them wrong. golic: You get two per day, and if you’re proved right, it doesn’t count against your total. Only fair. 144 MensHealth.com | October 2016
Uniform Inspectors greenberg: They should
police people’s wardrobes as carefully as the NFL polices uniforms. You show up with your shirt untucked or you have a stain, you get fined. Wardrobe and presentation are the most important things in life. golic: That’s horrible! What happened to self-expression? You think you dress well, but quite honestly you don’t look that good. I prefer to dress down. greenberg: But we represent the shield—that Mike & Mike logo. golic: That shield has had a mustard stain on it for years.
Cheerleaders greenberg: We should, throughout our lives, have people standing by watching what we do. I’d like the significant acts in my life to be celebrated by a large group, a rhythmic chant, and, ideally, pyramids. golic: You would need that reassurance that you’ve done something right. What happens when you make a wrong decision? Do they boo? You have to take the good with the bad.
greenberg: Say you have to
make a big decision and make it fast. Wouldn’t it be nice to call a timeout and talk on your headset with consultants up in the booth? They’re all highly educated in the subject, and they would chime in to help you decide. golic: I’ve given up making big decisions. See, if I don’t make decisions, nothing is my fault.
Protective Gear greenberg: We’re all walking around far too vulnerable. Every day, everywhere we go, we should wear a helmet, shoulder pads, and most important, a cup. Better safe than sorry. golic: Oh, please. I don’t want to be weighed down in life. Plus, this would lead to unnecessary hitting. Greeny, you would never initiate contact in real life. With pads and a helmet, you’d try that. And you’d be out of your element. As for a cup, forget it. You’re going to be hurt more by the pinching than any actual shots to the jewels.
ably won’t be appreciated until after my time. This would speed up that recognition. golic: No way! I’d be the guy who ignores reporters. I don’t like explaining myself.
Hand Signals greenberg: Far too much
communication is verbal or written. With hand signals, you point a certain way, and the other guy flashes a number; next thing you know, your plans are coordinated. You save on data and don’t have to worry about Wi-Fi. golic: That’s kind of weird, coming from a radio guy who talks— a lot—for a living. Just make sure others can’t steal your signals, like the Patriots did.
greenberg: I’d like to have a
sideline reporter watch my every move, and every now and then ask me about the particular brilliance with which I handled a given situation. My genius prob-
Work Schedule greenberg: Like NFL players, I would like to only work 16 days a year. You get paid millions of dollars and your entire job involves working 16 days. But imagine how hard you’d be willing to work, how much energy you’d put into those 16 days. golic: That sounds great—love it. But don’t forget, we’re going to need a bye, too—because we’ll all be working extremely hard.
I l l u s t r a t i o n b y B I L L B R O W N ; L a r r y W. S m i t h / E PA / R e d u x (c h e e r l e a d e r), L u c a P i e r r o /G e t t y I m a g e s (h a n d), A s s o c i a te d P r e s s (r e p o r te r), i S to c k p h o to /G e t t y I m a g e s (c u p), G F i u m e /G e t t y I m a g e s (b e e r v e n d o r)
9 Football Traditions We Need in Real Life
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