Issuu on Google+


AN ICON JUST GOT LARGER

THE NAVITIMER 46 mm


W

Enjoy Responsibly. Not for Sale to Persons Under the Age of 18.


Enjoy Responsibly. Not for Sale to Persons Under the Age of 18.


COVER STORIES & FEATURES

FEATURES

01.17 The Comeback Issue Bounce back – better than ever

55

BUST ANY PLATEAU New science shows how to reclaim your body

84

STRONG FOR LIFE Pull yourself out of a tedious workout routine. Our plan, built on the five new pillars of fitness, brings back the fun

100

YOUR REAL DEADLINE Procrastination doesn’t just suck. It can kill

106

THE COMEBACK KINGS A few broken bones couldn’t keep these good men down

114

6 POWER COMBOS These foods are even better when eaten together

120

MAKE YOUR OWN HEAT WAVES Summer parties got you hot under the collar? Don’t sweat it

6 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017


01.17

REGULARS & DEPARTMENTS

GUY WISDOM 44/ Model Man Lessons in masculinity – from my mom

48/ Rise Above A serious car accident left Alwyn Uys for dead. Now he’s a top Paralympic rower

52/ Boost Your Career What you can learn from an unconventional entrepreneur

SEX+ RELATIONSHIPS 66/ Bring the Heat Back into the Bedroom If your moves are more telegraphed than a D-team’s drunken hospital passes, we’ve got your playbook rewrite. Read and learn

FOOD + NUTRITION 32/ Make Your Own Vegetable Chips Like regular chips, but healthy

70/ Cook It From Scratch Learn to make real food, real fast

106 PRO OFF-ROADER WADE YOUNG STARED DOWN THE BARREL OF A SEVERE INJURY, AND WON

MUSCLE + FITNESS 24/ Chase the Dragon’s Tail Hardcore hikes are

74/ Your Misspent Youth Your dignity is damaged

right outside your back gate. Find them

for good, but what about your body?

36/ You Too Shall Overcome Take on any

78/ Does Your Doctor Think You’re Nuts? He

obstacle with advice from Hanneke Dannhauser

might be right. But what if he isn’t?

60/ Pain-Free in One Simple Move You don’t

80/ No More Weighting Around Viye Kukuleka used

know squat

bodyweight training to reshape his frame, and restart his life

92/ The Best Fitness Classes for Men Leave gym boredom behind you with our list of the top workouts for men in 2016

EVEN MORE USEFUL STUFF..

8 Ed’s Letter Mistakes aren’t setbacks. In the end they’ll make you stronger 14 Man of Action Local kayaker Jasper Mocke

HEALTH + WEIGHT-LOSS

16 Ask MH “Am I wasting my time trying to build a six-pack?”

24 Malegrams Your guide to everything a man needs in life

18 Bulletins Short answers for big health and fitness results

40 Worth Your Time How to spend every free minute this month

82/ Lose 5kg By February Want to lose 5, 10 or even 15kg? Starrt with o one

ON TH HE COVER C R Coverr Guy y Marce el Snyman @ Ice Models ograph Photo Garretth Barclay


Strong Words Cover guy Marcel Snyman has some training advice for you p92 Alwyn Uys’ success story will inspire you p48

Read Wade Young’s comeback story – then start your own p106

Our intern learns how to make all the right style moves p38

IN PRAISE OF MISTAKES THE BEST KIND OF ADVICE “A man who procrastinates in his choosing will inevitably have his choice made for him by circumstance.” Hunter S. Thompson

SQUAD GOALS

Never underestimate the influence you have in your circle of friends, family and work colleagues. Viwe Kukuleka, our Belly Off winner (p80), used the training advice provided by our Art Director, Clinton Jurgens, to lose 21kg and reshape his frame using only his bodyweight. Check out our four free bodyweight training plans on our poster calendar.

Arthur Jones Email: tellmh@media24.com Twitter: @MensHealthZA Facebook: MensHealthSA 8 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

EDITOR

@ArthurJonesSA

PHOTOGRAPHS CAMERON MACDONALD

EVEN THOUGH EVERYONE MAKES MISTAKES, THEY’VE STILL GOT A pretty bad rep. Granted, it’s not ideal to continually make the wrong choice. But the real problems arise if you don’t learn from the screw-ups, or worse, don’t make any decisions at all. This kind of inaction can be a result of either procrastination or self-pity due to past failures, but either way, it’s a surefire way to get you into trouble. And worse of all, it affects your health. One of the biggest features in this issue deals with procrastination and stress (p100), and how they are intricately linked. Stress itself is not necessarily a bad thing; get the levels right and it becomes a positive motivator and can help you perform better. But lose control of it, and it can literally kill you, or cause widespread effects on your health. It helps store fat, break down muscle, and it’ll crush your fitness performance.  Your challenge this year is to start making decisions quicker, stop fearing mistakes and to banish procrastination from your life – and that’s in everything from your work to your training. Granted, it’s not always easy to make the right decision – but even if you make a mistake, at least you learn from it. (Just don’t call it a resolution... p130). We’re here to help, with inspiring profiles of some incredible role models in this issue. Alwyn Uys (p44) ended up in a wheelchair after a car accident, but instead of going the self-pity route, he transformed himself into one of the country’s best Paralympians. We’ve also got three of the best pro athletes in the country, Ryan Sandes, Matt Trautman and Wade Young, to give us the secrets behind their own comebacks (p106). We also collected the best training science and advice to make you strong for life (p84), listed all the best training classes (p92) on offer in 2017, and paired it with a potent food formula (p114). We also show you how to start a weightloss journey (p82) if you’ve indulged a little too much over the holidays. And lastly, if you need some style inspiration for 2017, check out our new MH Makeover (p38) page. Our first subject: Ashwin, MH intern. The results are amazing. Screw procrastination – time to make this your strongest year yet.


Connected by Vodacom

It’s more than a gift. It’s summer magic. Purchase a Galaxy S7 or S7 edge and get a Galaxy Tab 3 Lite plus your choice of a Gear VR Headset or an Accessory Kit.

Standard terms and conditions apply. Contract deals are subject to signing a 24-month Vodacom Contract. VAT inclusive. E&OE. Please visit vodacom.co.za for full details.

Now available in Blue Coral.

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge + Free Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite

R699PMX24 Smart S

Samsung Galaxy S7

+ Free Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite

R599PMX24 Smart S

Additional

Additional

Data once-off

Data once-off

10GB

10GB

Valid from 7 November to 6 December 2016 whilst stocks last. Gear VR or Accessory Kit redeemable through the Samsung Rewards app. Terms and conditions apply.


Global Editions/ EDITORS-IN-CHIEF USA MATT BEAN Australia LUKE BENEDICTUS Brazil SERGIO XAVIER

TONS OF USEFUL STUFF

Bulgaria VLADIMIR KONSTANTINOV

Jason Brown

China ZHOU SONG

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Croatia ROBERT FRKOVIC

Arthur Jones

France PATRICK GUERINET

EXECUTIVE EDITOR KIERAN LEGG Features Editor CHELSEA GEACH Deputy Online Editor THOMAS OKES Chief Copy Editor ASHWIN SEPTEMBER Intern

DESIGN ROBERT CILLIERS Creative Director CLINTON JURGENS Art Director WERNER VILN Senior Designer FRANK HERMUS Designer

EXPERTS AND ADVISORS ADRIAN PENZHORN Nutrition DR ANGELA LANDER Biokinetics DR DILSHAAD ASMAL Dermatology SHONA HENDRICKS Sports Science JAMIE ELKON Psychology ALBERT BUHR Stress Expert ZANE STEVENS Endocrinology ELNA RUDOLPH Sexual Health AMELIA FRENKEL MH Girl Next Door

FASHION AZEEZ JACOBS Fashion & Grooming Editor NADIA WINDT Fashion Assistant

PHOTOGRAPHY

Germany MARKUS STENGLEIN Greece VASSILIS GEORGAKAKOS Hungary MÁTÉ PÁSZTOR India AROON PURIE Indonesia PANGESTI BERNARDUS Italy ENRICO BARBIERI Kazakhstan ASSET ABDIROV Malaysia JOHN NG

JAMES GARAGHTY In-House Photographer

Netherlands RONALD JANUS

ADMINISTRATION

Poland KRZYSZTOF KOMAR

AMINA ESSOP Office Administrator

CONTRIBUTORS Marcel Snyman (cover model), Garreth Barclay (cover photographer), Alan van Geysen, Andrew Heffernan, Ben Goldstein, Drian Fiske, Byron Keulemans, Cameron Macdonald, Elias Stein, Gentl & Hyers, Jacques Crafford, Jacques van Zyl, Jamie Chung, Jazz Kuschke, Jeremy M. Lange, Jonathan Montgomery, Kevin Zacher, Maria Rodale, Michael Brandon Myers, Michael Eatser, Nadia von Scotti, Neil Roberts, Paul Samuel, Ron Geraci, Sacha Waldman, Sean Laurenz, Serge Seidltiz, Tom Foster, Travis Rathbone, Ture Lillegraven, Zach Graham

GENERAL MANAGER: LIFESTYLE ISHMET DAVIDSON

CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER: LIFESTYLE RAJ LALBAHADUR

GENERAL MANAGER: LEISURE LOUISE MENY-GIBERT

CIRCULATION HEAD OF CIRCULATION Leoni Volschenk HEAD OF RETAIL Andreline van Tonder CIRCULATION MANAGER Riaan Weyers PRODUCT MANAGER George van Biljon SUBSCRIPTION MANAGER Jenny Marinus

SHARED SERVICES KERRY NASH Production Manager (Health and Sport) AMY MOSTERT Advertorial Coordinator

Philippines ALLAN MADRILEJOS

Portugal PEDRO LUCAS Romania MIHAI GHIDUC Russia KIRILL VISHNEPOLSKY Serbia and Montenegro IVAN RADOJCIC

REPRODUCTION Media 24 Repro PRINTING Paarl Media Cape DISTRIBUTION On the Dot Copyright © 1997 Media 24 (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or be transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without prior permission by Media 24 (Pty) Ltd.

Singapore KELVIN TAN

Unless previously agreed in writing, Men’s Health buys all rights to all contributions, whether image or text.

South Korea SEUNG KWAN PAIK Spain JORDI MARTINEZ Thailand CHATCHAWIN UNHANUN

JOHANNESBURG KATHRYN MOLYNEAUX 011 217 3197 / 083 395 3442 MILLI MAHLANGU 011 217 3051 / 078 318 8132

ADVERTISING SALES MEDIA24 CENTRAL SALES DAVID HAY General Manager: Advertising Sales 011 217 3034

Turkey FATIH BÜYÜKBAYRAK United Kingdom TOBY WISEMAN Latin America FRANCISCO CUEVAS ARGENTINA

TAMMY HOLTSHAUSEN Business Manager: Gauteng 021 443 9475 / 083 443 8107

PUBLISHING TEAM

ARUBA

FRANCOIS MALAN Publishing Manager 021 408 1228

CHILE

THERESA LAVERY Business Manager: KZN 031 566 2442 / 083 635 0205

LISE COETSEE Marketing Coordinator 021 443 9833

PUBLISHING SALES

DIGITAL ADVERTISING SALES

CUSTOMER SERVICE 087 740 1038 021 065 0033 Call centre open 8am-5pm Mon-Fri

FAX: 086 457 5942 SMS: menshealthsubs to 32511 (R1 per SMS) EMAIL: menshealth_subs@media24.com ALL SUBSCRIPTION PAYMENTS TO: Men’s Health, Free Post, No CB 006, Cape Town, 8000

COLOMBIA COSTA RICA CURAÇAO DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

RODALE INTERNATIONAL ROBERT NOVICK Senior Vice President, International Business Development and Partnerships

COMMERCIAL SALES MANAGER KYLEE ROBERTSON 011 322 0799 / 076 263 9114

CAPE TOWN 021 468 8299 JOHANNESBURG 011 993 8050 DURBAN 021 468 8070

ECUADOR

DIGITAL SALES MANAGER BEN PRETORIUS 011 217 3054 / 076 878 9150

RIDHWAANA BARADIEN Digital Project Manager 021 408 3530

HONDURAS

ANGELA KIM Director, Business Development and Global Licensing

MEXICO

TARA SWANSEN Director, Global Marketing

NICARAGUA

MICHELE MAUSSER International Finance Manager

PANAMA

SHOI GREAVES Administrative Assistant

PERU

JOHN VILLE Editorial Director, Rodale International/ Director of Content, Rights & Photo Operations

CAPE TOWN MYLES KELSEY 021 443 9475 / 082 613 8498 LAMEEZ RAIZENBERG 021 408 3960 / 082 909 9696 HANNES BURGER 021 408 3078 / 076 152 4605

CONTACT US POST Men’s Health, PO Box 16368, Vlaeberg, 8018 TEL 021 406 2121 FAX 021 408 3547 EMAIL tellmh@media24.com

Printed by A division of Novus Holdings

10 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

EL SALVADOR GUATEMALA

VENEZUELA Middle East ANDREW NAGY

KEVIN LABONGE Executive Director, Business Development and Global Licensing

LAURA ONGARO Editorial Director, Men’s Health and Women’s Health

KUWAIT

VERONIKA TAYLOR Editorial Director, Runner’s World, Prevention and Bicycling and International Branded Books

OMAN

KARL ROZEMEYER Senior Content Manager

QATAR

SAMANTHA QUISGARD Associate Editor

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

NATANYA SPIES Editorial Assistant

BAHRAIN


Z Z Z S R O R  F R  ] D


This Month On...

mh.co.za

ENTER YOUR AMAZING FEATS OF FITNESS ON INSTAGRAM AND WIN!

D Download your digital copy at .mysubs.co.za/ .m ..mens-health

Tag your post with #MHBeastMode Stand a chance to win Samsung products to the value of R70 000 ...and get featured in Men’s Health

We’re looking for the best local athletes and their fitness videos on Instagram FOLLOW #MHBEASTMODE AND CHECK OUT THIS MONTH’S LATEST FEATURED ATHLETES AT...

beastmode.mh.co.za

POWERED BY Y

NEW YEAR! NEW YOU! If you’ve made a promise to get back in shape, look no further – this is the plan you need. eed. Well We’ll transform yyour bodyy in 12 weeks with a compreh hensive i workout k p plan pl and d diet di compile ed by experts at the Sportts Science S i e Insttitute of South A Affrica

Effective training plans Delicious meals Complete shopping listss Weekly motivation Expert advice

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? START YOUR TRANSFORMATION AT...

FIND US ON SOCIAL MEDIA 12 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

bellyoff.co.za

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

590 000 men can’t be wrong facebook.com/MensHealthSA

FOLLOW US ON TWITTER

Join in on the conversation @MensHealthZA

DOUBLE TAP ON INSTAGRAM

Get even more useful stuff instagram.com/menshealthza

PHOTOGRAPH SEAN LAURENZ

for only R499!!


   

 

                     ' '- 5'1- '5 0!. .1%%- .5. #5#- .(- '#) *$!&!$ .01!. 2 '1& 00 1((- '5 3'-#'10. - 40-%$5 &!$ &'0 "1.0 '- 5'1.0-&0 10 5'1- %&0$ 3$$!&)+  .0!&0 3!$$ &'0 "1.0 ''.0 5'1- -%. .0 & .'1$-. 10 1. 5'1- $. & . &-0  .1.0&0!$ %'1&0 ' '-.('3- . 5'1 -'00 5'1- '5 0' (1$$ 0 ($ 0-'1 0 30- 5'1,- 00!&  1$$ '5 $!06 3!0 $'& $.0!& &0.)


                     

             

    

                         

  

        


Ask MH TM

LIFE’S QUESTIONS, ANSWERED

Is it true that some guys can’t get abs that show? If that’s the case, how do I know if I’m wasting time aiming for a six-pack?

16 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

A six-pack requires two things: low body fat and adequate muscle mass. But genes play a role too. “Two guys with the same body fat, diet and exercise programme rarely look exactly the same,” says Christine Mermier, director of the exercise physiology lab at the University of New Mexico. You might not shed fat easily or you might store it around your belly. So blame your DNA, age, stress or the lighting. Still, most men can get their abs to show if they hit on the right diet and exercise and are extremely disciplined.

P H O T O G R A P H G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

ALFIE, NORTHERN PROVINCE


HEALTH

I’ve been seeing little dots and shapes in my field of vision lately. It’s not all the time and seems random. What’s up with that? SPENCER, PIETERSBURG 

Sounds like classic floaters. These black flecks are collagen fibres that clump together and dart around in the jellylike substance at the back of your eyeball, casting shadows on your retina. Floaters tend to show up with age and don’t come and go. They just seem more obvious when you look at something like a white wall or a blank Word doc. you can’t do anything about them, except take comfort in knowing that you’re not alone – three out of four people see them,

according to one study. If you notice an unusual number of floaters, have your eyes checked. “Occasionally, floaters can signify an inflammatory eye disease or damage to the retina, including the possibility of sightthreatening retinal detachment,” says John Mason III, an associate professor of ophthalmology. GUY WISDOM

I’m up for a promotion at work. Know any Jedi mind tricks to convince the deciders that I’m the guy? CHARLES, GEORGE

Look the part, you must. Show them you mean business, and by “show” we mean business: wear a shirt in a bold colour, like cobalt blue. “That exudes confidence and lead-

ership,” says fashion stylist Jacqui Stafford. Your shoes should be polished – it shows that you know you’re representing the company. And don’t forget body language. Step forward when you’re presenting, which conveys fearlessness and establishes territory, says body language expert Patti Wood. In your office sit up straight. Slouching may seem cool but could be seen as disrespectful; and hunching over your computer brings your head down and saps your power. STYLE & GROOMING

Please resolve this dilemma once and for all: can I wear black with brown? KAGISO, JOHANNESBURG 

The short answer is yes. The injunction against combining

these colours is antiquated. That said, you can still look like a chump if you don’t do it right. “It should be apparent that you paired the colours on purpose,” says fashion stylist Seth Howard. “that’s why the correct proportions and tones are so important.” Howard likes the 80-20 rule: if your shirt or pants are one colour, the other colour should be more of an accent (like a brown shirt with a black suit, or tan shoes with black jeans). When picking your browns, Howard says, go dark brown or light tan; anything else makes you look like you dressed in the dark. “When done correctly, combining the two hues shows your personality and tells the world you’re savvy enough to know that the old rule is BS.”

HEALTH

NUTRITION

I recently heard that I don’t have to bother flossing. Really?

Why do I crave foods that are sweet and salty? MATT, SANDTON

RIAAD, MOWBRAY

Over the millennia, our ancestors came to learn that sweet meant a food was high in calories, while salty signalled a food that might replenish electrolytes. Today, the combination of different flavours and textures perpetuates snacking via something called “sensory-specific satiety,” says Julia Hormes, a psychologist who studies food cravings. When you merge sweet and salty, your brains has a harder time reaching the point of flavour fullness. So try peanut butter and celery: this combo delivers the same sweet-salty pleasure without weighing on your waistline.

Well, studies haven’t proved that the habit is helpful. But floss is an inexpensive product that scientists don’t have much incentive to study, says Soo-Woo Kim, of Harvard’s School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Kim sees clear benefits when he checks the choppers of faithful flossers. Guys who rarely floss have plaque build-up between their teeth, which can lead to gum disease, cavities, and bad breath. If you truly despise flossing, Dr. Kim recommends the Philips Sonicare AirFloss (R980, loot.co.za). A burst of water and air dislodges the gunk between your teeth.


NEWS THAT IMPROVES YOU

Bulletins JAN 2017

Bad Food, Bad Thinking The typical high-fat, high-sugar Western diet may make it hard to 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. 18 MH.CO.ZA | December 2016

PHOTOGRAPH G X EXTXTXY/ XX GA XL XL O I M A G E S

GROSS? YOU’RE GROSS


Big Bang Unico. UNICO column-wheel chronograph. In-house Hublot movement. 72-hour power reserve. King Gold case, an exclusive red gold alloy developed by Hublot. Ceramic bezel. Interchangeable strap by a unique attachment.


Bulletins/ Style & Grooming

For up-to-the-minute grooming news and tips, go to mh.co.za/style

These easy style solutions aren’t too much of a stretch.

Hack Your Style in a Snap Grab a rubber band and take aim at these four wardrobe emergencies

LI STE N U P

Pants Too Big/ Cinch two belt loops in back and double-knot them together with the rubber band. Cover with sweater or jacket.

ATTACK EARWAX

Pants Too Tight/ Loop the band around the button, into the hole, and back to the button. Stretch waistband! Sleeves Too Long/ Pull the sleeves up and use rubber bands like garters around your upper arms to hold them in place. (Add jacket.) Sleeves Too Short/ Unbutton each cuff; they’ll appear longer. Shoot the rubber band at anyone who questions your style choices.

Earwax is useful. It keeps the dust and germs of this wicked world from entering your delicate ear canal. But too much of it leads some guys to declare Threat Level Q and attack with cotton swabs. Better plan: put a drop or two of 3% diluted hydrogen peroxide in your ear 10 minutes before a shower, says Dr Ana Kim Columbia University Medical Centre. It will help liquefy the wax, which will flush out as you shower.

STYLE REBOUND

Details matter: a survey by the Centre for Talent Innovation found that sloppy grooming can hurt your career advancement. Stock your sliding drugstore with these supplies.

1/ Electric Razor Nobody will say you missed a spot, but it’s all they’ll see. That saps power from your presentation, the survey says. This is Plan B. Philips Aquatouch R575, Dis-Chem

20 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

2/ Hand Lotion Nothing like scaly, reptilian skin to make your handshake unforgettable – in a bad way. Soften those rough mitts with a dab of lotion. Nivea Crème R45, Clicks

3/ Mini Tootbrush Before rushing off to a face-to-face meeting, use one of these tablet brushes to extract the lettuce from your teeth and freshen that garlic breath. Toothy Tabs R125, Lush

4/ Face Wipes Yo, Slick – one swipe of this towelette will strip away dirt and oil with a formula of aloe vera, rosemary, and witch hazel. Skin Purifying Wipes R290, Dermalogica

5/ Nail Clippers Make sure your claws are kempt. Clean nails, well-kept shoes, a close shave, and manicured facial hair are crucial to a professional look. Multi-Use Nail Tool R199, Dis-Chem

MAIN PHOTOGRAPH NEIL ROBERTS P H O T O G R A P H S G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

DESK DRAWER, FULLY LOADED


I.N.O.X. PROFESSIONAL DIVER #241736

LIFE IS YOUR ADVENTURE For further information contact Picot & Moss 011.669.0500. www.picotandmoss.co.za MAKERS OF THE ORIGINAL SWISS ARMY KNIFE | ESTABLISHED 1884


Bulletins/ Sex

For up-to-the-minute sex news and tips, go to mh.co.za/sex-women

BE DROOM BE N E FITS

Whip Up Inspiration

5

CRACK THE WHIP

Eat Like a Dog Turns out your best friend is dining right. Watch how Rex does it, and learn

PREPARE FOR LIFTOFF Three simple ways to solve the hard problem of ED. Run Intervals  Losing excess weight can help boost your libido, says Jamin Brahmbhatt, a urologist with Orlando Health. High-intensity interval training is a proven fat burner. Run for 20 minutes straight, alternating between sprints and jogs. Lay Off the Porn  About a quarter of men seeking treatment for ED are under 40; for many of them, it’s due to performance anxiety. “Men watch porn and think they have to last for hours,” Dr Brahmbhatt says. Don’t buy in: intercourse lasts about 5 to 8 minutes, he says.

HOURS OF TV A DAY THAT, IF EXCEEDED, COULD LOWER A MAN’S SPERM COUNT. WANT KIDS? HEAD FOR BED, NOT THE COUCH.

Source: American Journal of Epidemiology 

FOR BETTER SEX, ASK HER THIS: “WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS THE BEST SEX WE EVER HAD?”

Stick to the Script  If you’re on statins for high cholesterol, keep taking them: they may aid erectile health, a new Greek study suggests. As it turns out, they boost your blood vessels’ ability to expand and contract, which helps more blood reach your penis faster. That’s a good thing.

1. When to Ask After sex. Studies show that more time couples spend talking afterward, the more sexually satisfied they are, says Amanda Denes, a pillow-talk expert (yep) from UConn. Feeling safe and satisfied helps you open up, Denes says. Having an orgasm floods the brain with the “cuddle hormone,” oxytocin, while levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, drop.

2. Why it Works This simple query is a good window into your partner’s preferences. You’ll each learn to be reminded of what works. That’s what sexual communication is all about, says Denes – talking about what you like and how you like it. Coax out details: setting, timing, positions, types of touch. It’s all valuable intel that’ll improve your sex life.

P H O T O G R A P H S G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S , I S T O C K P H O T O

Brainstorms turning into drizzle? It might be time to break out the whips and chains. Researchers have discovered that kinky sex – the kinkier the better – can help make you more creative. The article, published in the journal Psychology of Consciousness: Theory, Research and Practice, surveyed participants on the fetish-focused social network Fetlife and found that the mind-altering effects of bondage, dominance and submission in the bedroom could not just perk up your ability to think outside of the box, but help reduce stress too.


Travel Far | Stay Close

Simple and affordable roaming rates with MTN HelloWorld. ࠮Contract customers, you can dial 808 to have your roaming service activated. ࠮PayAsYouGo customers, you can check and change your roaming service by dialling *111*1# ࠮For rates and available services visit: www.mtn.co.za/travel

MetropolitanRepublic/19506/2

Roam from as little as R1 per MB with MTN HelloWorld.

Terms and Conditions Apply


Malegra THE BEST WAY TO SPEND YOUR TIME AND MONEY

“NO LONGER TO BE POISONED by civilisation he flees, and walks alone upon the land to become lost in the wild.” – Jon Krakauer

24 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017


ms Edi te d by K i e ra n Le g g

Chase the Dragon’s Tail Leave the beaten track. To truly listen to yourself think, find silence just beneath the sky

P H O T O G R A P H J A C Q U E S VA N Z Y L

BY THOMAS OKES

SOMETIMES ALL A MAN NEEDS IS SOME

space. And a few days. Preferably a mountain. In South Africa, luckily, this isn’t a lot to ask. Let’s not sugarcoat it: 2016 was a bad year for good guys. Prince. Barack. Alistair Coetzee. To make 2017 a better one for everybody, you need start with a clean slate. Why hike? Walther Meyer from local adventure consultancy Venture Forth lists a few benefits: beauty, wilderness, quiet. The chance to clear your head. Then there’s the sense of looking up into heaven. “I want to know what’s up there,” he says. “I want to know if the mountain will let me up today or turn me back. Every time I learn something new.” But one benefit stands out more than any of those: the solitude of standing in nothing but your own footprints, making your way up a peak no one has seen, where no one has been. “We still have proper wilderness areas here,” says Meyer. “Real remote territory, without the crowds. Most people don’t even realise the height of the peaks here, or the variety of mountaineering that can be experienced. I show people pictures of where I’ve walked right here in SA and they think they’re from somewhere overseas.”

S


Malegrams

#MHChallenge

The Wild Coast Eastern Cape 64KM / 5 DAYS

Between East London and KZN, you’ve got almost 300km of entirely undeveloped coastline to choose from. The best route might be Port St Johns to Coffee Bay: you’ll hike along empty beaches, up steep green hills onto dramatic cliffs and rocky headlands, and all the way down onto the sand again, criss-crossing the coast. “As the name suggests,” says Meyer, “this can get pretty wild.” Sudden storms right off shore, wild winds, freak waves – it’s easy to see why the beach itself is littered with shipwrecks, some of them dating back to the 18th century. Rugged, subtropical vegetation just up off the dunes make the area barely accessible, but you’ll never get bored: coastal scenery doesn’t get much more spectacular, or as varied, anywhere else. Expect to cross your fair share of high-tide rivers, and stand and watch as waterfalls drop straight into the ocean – before you explore indigenous forests, massive caves and mangrove swamps in the middle of protected estuaries, passing villages of colourful thatched huts. Take a camera – you’ll be looking at these pics for years. wildcoasthikes.co.za

2/ Research Your Route. Choose a path within your limits. 3/ Choose a Hike Leader. Detours are dangerous. 4/ The weather changes rapidly, so be prepared for the full five climates in a single day.

6/ Only Split Up if Someone Gets Hurt. Send two people back for help and make sure someone sticks with the guy who can’t walk. 7/ Use the Damn Map. Don’t take shortcuts, and don’t wander into ravines.

Drakensberg Grand Traverse KwaZulu-Natal 230KM / 10+ DAYS

26 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

1/ Never Hike Alone. Pairs are good, four is better.

5/ Forced to Stop Because of Bad Weather? Stay together, stay put, find some shelter.

Mountains are good for the mind – and body, too. Research from 2010 shows that spending just one week in thinner air can cause sustained weight loss. A study in Obesity dropped a group of overweight guys just below the peak of Germany’s highest peak, Zugspitze, and picked them up again a week later. In the time those guys spent in higher altitudes, their metabolic rate surged, along with their levels of leptin, the satiety hormone. Another study went further: tracking a thousand residents of a remote Greek village over 15 years, scientists found that they had lower lower cardiovascular death rates – and lower death rates overall – than people who lived in the lowland. Reap your own benefits, mental and physical, by scaling these six local peaks. Less hungry. More happy. Likely to live longer, too. There’s something up there. Go get it.

What sounds easy soon gets more complicated: backpack from Witsieshoek to Bushman’s Nek, zig-zagging along the Lesotho border. A few issues with that: over 200 steep ascents amounting to a total of 8km of elevation, all at an average altitude of just over 3 000m above sea level. Oh, and some of it is so steep, you’ll be climbing up chain ladders. This trail takes on the two highest peaks in Southern Africa: Mafadi and Thabana Ntlenyana – which, ironically, means “beautiful little mountain” in Sesotho. Another thing: you can expect zero facilities up there. This might be why Meyers calls the Traverse the “grand prize” of South African hikes: “Altitude trekking at its most extreme”. But Ryan Sandes and his partner in trail-running crime Ryno Griesel recently ran the whole thing in 41 hours, so what are you waiting for? peakhigh.co.za

GO THERE. COME BACK Bad at asking for directions? You’ll be even worse when there’s no one around. Here’s how to stay safe up there

Fanie Botha Trail Mupumalanga 60+KM / 3-5 DAYS

“One of the original trail-hiking classics,” says Meyer. This is the oldest designated trail in the country, and still one of the best. How far you go will depend on how long your legs can carry you, and how much time you have – these mountains just don’t end. Choose from 20km day trips, a there-and-back 54km option, or the entire 114km circle. Up in the Sabie, you’ll be high enough to look down on a range of landscapes, and along the way you’ll pass pine plantations, never-ending rainforests and the (65m-high) Mac Mac and Lone Creek waterfalls, both national monuments. komatiecotourism.co.za

8/ Water is Essential in Summer. And you’ll need food too in case you get delayed. 9/ Keep an Eye on the Time. Whatever your target, turn back before you start running late. 10/ Invest in a Decent Solar Phone Power Bank. Reception might be scarce, but you’ll need the GPS in an emergency.


Host City

Host Federation


Malegrams

#MHChallenge

Magoebaskloof  Limpopo

A circular route through the dense forest between Tzaneen and Haenertsberg, this is a testing one. A lot of this path winds right through the jungle, or what the locals refer to as cloud forest – and you’ll bash your way though overgrown ferns, fungi and 5m-high cycads to arrive at beautiful mountain streams and the famous Debengeni Falls. Take a pair of binoculars to see a few hundred bird species, and tread carefully so you don’t disturb the samango monkeys, bucks and bush pigs. Meyer suggests that as you ascend the moody, misty peaks, keep your eyes peeled for the Huilklip, or Crying Rock, which resonates with a gong when you whack it with a stone. There are six huts to enjoy along the way and chances are you will want to stop at each of them – bear in mind, though, that it’s not all warm showers and real toilet paper. If you’re not super fit and at least moderately experienced, take the family to explore one of the two-day routes on offer for a more relaxed trip. magoebasklooftourism.co.za

Hoerikwaggo Tented Classic Western Cape 75KM / 5 DAYS

It means Mountain in the Sea, which is appropriate: you’ll start on the beach at Cape Point and get vertical quickly, covering the whole table in a week’s walk over intersecting trail networks. It’s not complicated, but unmarked footpaths and straight-up-that-cliff ascents make for a fun and fairly challenging route. Look forward to views of the Atlantic seaboard on one side and False Bay coast on the other – but the best part, says Meyer, is the overnighting facilities: tented camps give a “glamping” touch, and hot showers will help you feel right at home. Book in advance. hoerikwaggotrails.co.za

Golden Gate Highlands Rhebok Trail Free State

PHOTOGRAPH JACQUES CRAFFORD

60KM / 5 DAYS

WALK ON

Pack Your Back A properly loaded bag will go easy on your joints and help maintain your balance. Your new spine-saver: the light, roomy K-Way K-Way Lite 40L Hiking Pack 15 (R999, Cape Union Mart)

Heavy Gear

Convenience Gear This easy-

The load should be centred and close to you; this keeps prevents the load from shifting as you tackle tricky terrain.

access compartment should be reserved for safety gear and anything you expect to grab in a hurry.

Sleep Gear

Light Gear

Why is the sleeping bag stowed so low in the backpack? So it can help push the heavier things toward the top, where they belong.

Pack soft items around heavier stuff. Nylon stuff sacks or plastic bags will hold everything in place in the main compartment.

Summer thunderstorms and thick winter snow make this hike one for the adventurous only. Look out for black wildebeest, zebra, endangered bearded vultures and black eagles. It’s remote enough that the wildlife won’t have seen the likes of you very often, and pretty high too, at an average of 2 000m above the sea. The trek up to Generaalskop can be strenuous, but rewarding: panoramas of Lesotho, crystal-clear rock pools and jaw-dropping sandstone cliff formations. sanparks.org 28 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

P H O T O G R A P H S G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

31KM / 2 DAYS


FI ND Y O U R S E L F #NOWYOUCAN

POLA R M600 SPORTS WATCH

POWERED BY A NDROI D WEAR

POLAR.COM/ZA Android Wear is a trademark of Google Inc.


Malegrams

Gear

BAG ‘EM UP THE DRESSY DECK

Run lightly dampened hands over minor wrinkles. Your body heat will “steam” them out.

THE CASUAL LAYER

Polos and jerseys don’t wrinkle much. But hang ’em up as soon as you arrive.

THE RELAXED STRATUM

Roll tees, pants and jeans, or fold them into squares. Keep the rolls tight and the folds neat.

THE BASEMENT

Dirt can drift. Pack a few plastic bags to protect clothes from your dirty shoes.

The right case will last you a lifetime. Bottom line: invest in luggage that can haul your ass around for decades 1/ Overnight THULE 38L ROLLER CARRY-ON BAG

This hybrid carry-on, which transforms from a runway roller to a backpack with some sleight of hand, will work for your overnight business trip or a monster hike up the nearest mountain. With 38L of space, you’ll have room to pack a pair of hiking boots and stash your laptop too. Best part? This rugged luggage is also water resistant and built to withstand a beating. R5 999, Cape Union Mart

2/ Overseas SAMSONITE TERMO YOUNG SPINNER

TOSSING A FEW THINGS INTO A BAG AT THE LAST MINUTE MAY MAKE YOU FEEL LIKE

a jet-setter. But pros, like professional organiser Barbara Reich, know the value of planning. Make a list, she says, “and then pack from the list.” Simple enough? Do it like this.

Stack Smartly

Tuck and Roll

Minimise Folds

Contain Yourself

As shown above, the heavy stuff (shoes) should go on the bottom. Jeans, T-shirts, and workout clothes (stuff that won’t wrinkle much) go in next, and then jerseys and polos. Always pack wrinkleprone items, like dress shirts, on top.

Underwear, tees, and socks can be rolled and tucked in empty spaces, like inside shoes (where socks belong, after all). Pack cords and chargers for your electronic gear in ziplock bags so you can easily extract them when you arrive.

A dress shirt can be folded in half and then the arms laid across the top. Pack in layers, and use slippery plastic (like dry-cleaning bags) between layers to discourage wrinkling. Go with cotton and wrinkle-free fabrics instead of linen.

The new K-Way Altitude 40L Roller Duffel has an internal mesh pocket, ID pocket, padded grab handle and top-access pocket – perfect for travelling and staying, too. Hidden wheels add to your I-own-the-night look, Batman. R2 499, Cape Union Mart

30 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

3/ Overburdened BLUESMART ONE

GPS-tracking means you’ll never lose this lugger, but even betterm it’s fitted with a phone charger, giving you a second wind of juice when your layover turns into a screwed-over. But it’s not all about the tech – it’s also got a few nifty compartments to stash your laptop and valuables. Yep, this is what the future of travel looks like. Approx R6 300, bluesmart.com

I L L U S T R AT I O N S + I S M ; U N I V E R S A L H I S T O R Y A R C H I V E / G E T T Y I M A G E S

How a Pro Packs Checking bags is for suckers. Carry on!

Not even an airport employee training for a suitcase-flinging Olympiad can crack the exterior of a hardshell bag. And this one is invincible. Not only will it keep your valuables in one piece, but the bag is fixed with a TSA-approved combination lock to keep all your aforementioned stuff right where you left it. Add 120L of space and an interior design aimed at encouraging neat, economical packing, and your next itinerary is sorted. R3 595, takealot.com


Malegrams

Food

Make Your Own Veggie Chips

The latest, greatest take on your favourite snack isn’t fried or refined. Fix these yourself. Cut 400 kJ a serving. Munch with zero guilt

1. Buy

SAGE Who says drinking is always bad for your brain? A sprig of sage has been shown to improvememory.

2. Prep

3. Season

Sweet potatoes These are no ordinary spuds. They contain fibre, vitamins A and C, and a host of other disease-fighting antioxidants. Sweet indeed. Cayenne

Beets They’ve got vitamin C, nitrates (which boost stamina and may lower blood pressure), and a class of inflammation-fighting antioxidants called betalains.

Preheat your our oven ove to 180° and cut the vegetables into chip-size pieces. If you’re using beets or sweet potatoes, grab a mandoline 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.

Cumin

Parmesan

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, 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 &Union Sunday or Citizen Saboteur, both light IPAs that clock in at 5.5% alcohol by volume. You’ll glug fewer calories without sacrificing hoppy flavour. Sip. Crunch. Grin. Repeat. yuppiechef.com/league-of-beers.htm 32 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

P H O T O G R A P H S G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

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.

Very thin slices create crisp chips.


Keys to Your City

HA

T’S G O D•

•IN

Y

7am/ Saddle Up The Holla trails running through the sugar cane farms in Ballito serve up 300km of prime MTB turf. But don’t worry, you don’t have to tackle it all in one go. Trail supervisor Mondli Dladla says the area’s spiderweb of routes will allow you to choose your own adventure. Just want to cruise along and take in the sights without exhausting the tykes? There’s a route for that, just follow the signs. But if you’re after a challenge, the area also packs a myriad of monster climbs to test your riding mettle. hollatrails.co.za

O

O •

BALLIT

BY KIERAN LEGG

UR HOO

D

11am/ Reel ’em In

LOCAL WISDOM A Stanford University study found 20 to 30 minutes of pedalling helped insomniacs halve the time it took them to fall asleep at night. 

9am/

Fuel Up EDITO R’S

CH

If breakfast is the most important meal of the day, this spot is top priority. The Waterberry Coffee Shoppe is probably better known for its cakes, but for some real muscle fuel you can’t go wrong with their signature breakfasts. Our pick? Eggs Waterberry. Translation: that’s poached eggs, a stack of mushrooms, bacon, grilled tomato and a breakfast muffin ladled with hollandaise sauce. Trying to cut back? Zara’s Cafe in Ballito has you covered. The Health Choice is all rocket, chunky cottage cheese, fresh tomato and avo, served on a healthy slice.

W

O

Outdoor adventures, underwater capers and muscle meals – we tap the experts, so you can tap into these experiences

OI

CE

Consider yourself a good angler? Put your fishing chops to the test out in the choppy waters on Ballito’s coast. There’s a Facebook picture waiting for you out there, you just have to catch it. Plus, Prime Fishing – who are kings of the local fishing charters – have a ship called Optimus Prime. Doesn’t get any better than that. Grab five mates and expect to snag Marlin year round, snoek, tuna and barracuda in the summer and salmon and geelbek in the winter months. 

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 33


Malegrams

Healthiest City

4pm/ Leash Up Ballito wasn’t just meant for human consumption. Rex needs some TLC too, and fortunately there are more than enough spots to get his tail wagging. Step one: grab the mutt and head for Ballito’s promenade. It’s a 4km stretch that runs from Willard Beach to Salmon Bay with more than enough sand, trail and other dogs’ butts to keep the pup occupied. Step two: there are no other steps. Spending quality time with the pooch isn’t just good for the soul, it’s good for the heart too. State University of New York researchers found that pet owners who spent time with their furry companions were less stressed out than those deprived of the chance to say, “Who’s a good boy?”

4:30pm /

World Champion bodyboarder Andre Botha says Ballito Bay is one of his favourite spots to surf in South Africa, and with good reason: you’re getting warm waters, decent swell and perfect weather for most of the year. So what are you doing? Take advantage. Grab a bodyboard and hit the water. Getting started is simple: just remember, angle your board against the wave to travel horizontally and extend your ride.

2pm/Get High Don’t scoff at the idea of a trampoline park: it’s your ticket to keeping the kids occupied and getting a fun workout at the same time. The Jump Park pegs itself as the largest trampoline park on the coast, and at 700 square metres, it’s definitely not short on launch pads. You’ve got your standard bouncers, angled ones, obstacles and foam pits. The best part? This low-impact exercise will help you burn close to 50 calories every 10 minutes. Put in an hour and you’ll burn through the caloric equivalent of a few beers.  34 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

NEVER SETTLE FOR STORE-BOUGHT. Hit up the Litchi Orchard, an outdoor market stocked on quality food, drink and crafts. Our pick: grab the ingredients for the best cuppa at the Beanstruk Coffee Roastery’s stall.

OFF THE BEATEN TRACK Been snorkelling? Sure. But have you done it at night? See, Ballito offers up a rare opportunity: not only do you have access to a swathe of ocean worthy of its own Planet Earth documentary, but you’ll be rewarded for staying up late. Tidal Tao will give you a chance to join a guided tour of KZN’s Life Aquatic. You’ll encounter – and they guarantee this – everything from octopuses, crabs, shrimps and “unusual” fish. The owners do warn that the venture isn’t for the faint of heart, but then again, you’re a badass. However, if you want to swim while the sun is up, the company offers day tours too: the fish just aren’t as weird.

P H O T O G R A P H S I S T O C K P H O T O , G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

1pm/ Hit the Waves


 !' !).*#.!**#!!*.)  !+  "'" ,'  #* '   ' #'   ''#  '" '## +#  #' "   , ' ' # , ' -*     ,'" '!#  - #'# - ,'' " -,' '"   , *#' , ' '  #"

# $.5 3)** ! $#). 5#1 ! !#3 !#5 5#1) 1* 3)2) 5#1) 3#)#1. .* 5#1'

 * ).$#! ..(* 35* ! *. #  ! !. !  !*5 $#3)1'

 

# )# . 3. )## .# . #))## 3. . !3 ) /

).3.'

  **,  . #*"*'#''+ *$//// ' '*"    .#'  #'   . "',    # !.) 5#1) 2# %#) *# #! *(*& !.# . "*.# # $..#!  5#1 ! .# # * .   ! . # !.* # !5 !*.) $#*.' .( $1. . !.# . *. #  #! #1) *.       3 ##* #1) .#$ .) 2#* #) . #!. ! .! 5#1 2#. #) 5#1) 2#1).'  3!!) )2*   *1! ) . 0  *$#).* ! ! ) #!  )$#!* ! 3  .1) ! . 6!' ! . . ! # 2 #!.* ! 2 3!!)* 3 3 ##* ! #2)  $#! 3# )!*   *1! 45 +  ).$#! ) ).1 .5 *. ) /,7  ) ! !3 ) /

).3. ! * #3! )) 3#)*#$'

"*' #* ' ' '," +  '-  " ( +   "  " )/%

  


Woman

Breaking Barriers Hanneke Dannhauser has dominated obstacle courses across the country. Now, she shows you how to run the gauntlet  BY KIERAN LEGG

1/ How should I prep for my first obstacle course race? Sign up for the Warrior race. That’s step one. Step two? Make sure you do it in a group. It will give you a sense of what it’s all about before you take it on solo. And you’ll quickly realise it’s not as hard as it looks. Now the prep work: bare minimum, you should be able to do a few push-ups and run around the block a few times. You’re not gunning for a perfect time; you just want to finish. 

2/ What if I want to start getting serious? In that case, look to the military. Those Black Ops guys and commandos fit in five training sessions a week and throw in a few cardio stints and grip work for good measure. But if it’s becoming a drain, remember to dial it down. The point of these races is to enjoy what you’re doing.

3/ Which obstacles will almost kill you? If the words “Breaking Point” or “The Eliminator” don’t send chills down your spine, you haven’t seen them yet. Here’s your game plan: first, plan. Race organisers will give 36 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

you a preview of the most daunting obstacles way ahead of time. Use this to your advantage and start visualising what you’ll need to do to overcome these obstacles. Second, mastering pull-ups is a must because you’re forced to scale ropes and swing from rings and bars. Start by hanging from a bar to improve your grip strength, then work on pulling yourself over.

4/ What mistakes do you see guys making when they hit the obstacle course? Boys will be boys, and with a crowd of spectators they can’t help but show off and go too hard too soon. Big mistake! The trick to beating an obstacle course is pacing yourself, because it isn’t the fastest or strongest guy who wins: it’s usually the smartest and most strategic player who crosses the line first. 

5/ How can guys upgrade their training in the gym to become beasts on the course? It’s all about functional training. You need to be functional and strong. Combine your lifts with a few burpees and squatted jumps. Next, hit the pull-up bar whenever you can. And don’t stick to one grip – challenge yourself every time. Still got energy left? Hit the battle ropes. You’ll up your heart rate and rip your grip within minutes.

6/ Which three races should every guy enter this year? The Warrior is my favourite, with a solid combo of manmade obstacles and lots of running. But if sprinting around isn’t your thing, the Impi Challenge is packed with more natural obstacles. Finally, in the GI-Joe Obstacle Race, you’ll be doing battle with the elements, and running past wildlife. 

P H O T O G R A P H PA U L S A M U E L

Malegrams


MetropolitanRepublic/19853

No matter where we are, we can always be together. Dial *123*115# to make “Nightshift” by The Commodores your CallerTunez. #MyNightShift

Terms and Conditions apply. For more information visit www.mtn.co.za


Malegrams

Makeover

The Fro Down

Got work benefits? Not like this. Just ask our new intern

LEATHER JACKET R3 499 Issa Leo

C STRAIGHT RC SHIRT R2 299 G-Star RAW

KAICCO WATCH R1 560 Swatch Group

TRACKSUITS. DIRTY SNEAKERS. SCRUFFY

facial hair. “Ashwin needed some serious sartorial improvement,” says MH style director Azeez Jacobs. “If Men’s Health is going to be on his CV, he ought to look like he learnt a thing or two about great style.” Ashwin’s reply: “My wardrobe consists of baggy jeans and band T-shirts. I haven’t had a haircut for four months. Go for it.” Here’s what he learnt.

1/ It All Starts on Top

SLIM JOGGERS R649 Top Man

If your curls look unkempt and dried out, get a haircut. And yes, you can maintain your texture while adding structure to your look. Use a styling product that won’t weight it down.

2/ Show Some Face Avoid scruff. Go lightly over the edges of your facial hair with a trimmer (a number 2 or 3 gets the MH nod). Keep it to a uniform length and make sure the outline – where the hair ends and skin begins – is nice and crisp.

3/ Start Fitting In

NAME ASHWIN SEPTEMBER LOCATION CAPE TOWN OCCUPATION INTERN AND STUDENT CHALLENGE KEEP THE COMFORT, IMPROVE THE LOOK A/ KEEP THE TRACKSUIT FOR THE TRACK. B/ DON’T DROWN IN YOUR PANTS. KEEP ’EM TRIM. C/ SNEAKERS WORK – IF YOU’RE ACTIVELY TRYING TO STRIKE A CASUAL TONE.

38 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

SNEAKERS R899 Aldo

“I ALMOST FORGOT HOW COMFORTABLE LOOKING NEAT CAN BE. AND IT DEFINITELY FEELS GOOD TO ROCK A MORE CONTROLLED HAIRCUT.” PHOTOGRAPH BYRON KEULEMANS

Ashwin’s main style mistake wasn’t in his choice of clothing, but the fit of those items. The classic look of a tailored leather jacket will never go out of style – and if you’re considering trackpants for work, wear a shirt over the elastic waistband (a dead giveaway that you’re getting too cozy for your cubicle).


Promotion

Insurance Made Easy All your stuff, insured 24/7 with the tap of a button. It’s that easy

Update your details anywhere, at any time. Your belongings are important to you – and your insurance cover should be as solid as the stuff it protects Even the smallest detail can make a big difference. Did you know that a change in residential address or work address can influence your insurance premiums – and your claims payout too? This information is key in determining your risk, and you will need to let us know of any changes immediately. If you start a new job, it’s important to notify us of your new work address. The same goes for moving house, even if it is in the

same neighbourhood – details like these can help us help you. Dialdirect makes it easy to update your address on our website or from our Dialdirect Insurance App. This can be done 24/7, any day of the year, so you don’t have to wait for our office hours to notify us of this critical and important change. Schedule a time to request a quote, and one of our consultants will call you back when it suits you. And if you get stuck while updating your details, our friendly online consultants will assist you along the way.

dialdirect.co.za

Authorised FSP:15259. Ts&Cs apply.

Your January sorted with the Dialdirect Insurance App


Malegrams

Worth Your Time

Nail the New Year WINTER X GAMES 21

26 JAN

THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE

10 FEB

CAPE PENINSULA MARATHON

19 FEB

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL

3 JUN

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN

JUN 3

MANDELA DAY MARATHON

27 AUG

FEDHEALTH XTERRA BUFFELSPOORT This New Year’s resolution comes with spokes: one of the toughest MTB trails in the world, right here in the Magaliesberg. Tough inclines, manicured track. Perfect. 20 JAN

1

FOR HONOR Step into the boots of a Viking, the greaves of a Knight or jikatabi of a Samurai – then wage war against beserkers and barbarians in one of the least historically accurate video games ever created. FEB RELEASE

2

40 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

3/ LOGAN The X-Men have been wiped out, and all that’s left is Wolverine – all claws, grey hairs and a bit short in the whole selfhealing department. This is where the franchise gets gritty again. 3 MAR

IRONMAN AFRICAN CHAMPS The day begins with a one-lap, 3.8km swim at Hobie Beach before athletes take to their bikes along Marine Drive for 90km in the saddle. Then run 21km to the finish line. Ready? 2 APR

4

KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE The first film excelled. (That church “massacre” scene was badass.) But the director says that was just as the tip of iceberg, with more ridiculous action sequences en route in the sequel. 16 JUN

5

6/ GOOD FOOD AND WINE SHOW Don’t get stuck in a rut of reheated ready-meals. Refresh your menu in the best way possible: eating great grub and washing it down with fine vino. Then take what you’ve learnt home with you. 28 JUL


You’ve got 1 800* hours of free time this year – here’s how to make every single one of them awesome IRONMAN 70.3

29 JAN

CAPE TOWN CYCLE TOUR

12 MAR

24/7/365 online policy management 2017 MASTERS

6-9 APR

TRANS-OUTENIQUA 3 MOUNTAINS 5-DAY MTB TOUR

26 APR

BLADE RUNNER 2049

6 OCT

STAR WARS VIII

15 DEC

WIMBLEDON Still the pinnacle of the racket-and-ball calendar, Wimbledon is a ritual that never disappoints. Fingers crossed for something in the vein of that 2010 never-ending tiebreak. That, or a Sharapova comeback. 3-16 JUL

* S O U R C E S TAT S S A . G O V. Z A , 2 0 0 1

7

8/ SPIDERMAN: HOMECOMING Yes, it’s the third time they’ve tried to restart the franchise, but we’re confident this one will be a winner. Expect skyscraper-toskyscraper slinging action and a confusingly hot Aunt May. 7 JUL

OTTER AFRICAN TRAIL RUN They call it the Grail of Trail, and with views like this, can you really argue? This brutal marathon will take you across four rivers, 2 600m of elevation and 11 monolithic climbs. 25 OCT

9

JUSTICE LEAGUE Redemption or a relapse? Batman vs. Superman was a mess, and Suicide Squad managed to be far worse. Still we hope. Have you seen what they did with Aquaman? 17 NOV

10

means that you can manage your insurance from anywhere.

Visit dialdirect.co.za today. Ts&Cs apply. FSP 15259.


Malegrams

Guy Wisdom

START HERE

How do I cope with the stress of having the extended family descend over the festive season? Your break is a chance to recover from a stressful year of work, and the in-laws, cousins and pets can easily derail any bestlaid plans of taking it easy. Sit down with your partner and discuss how you’ll lay out boundaries for visitors: how long they’ll be staying, what you’ll be expected to arrange and do. You don’t want your holiday to feel like work, but you don’t want to duck out either. A few gentle but firm boundaries will make sure your needs are considered.

42 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

Jamie is a clinical psychologist and life coach with years of experience treating guys . Now he’s here to help you

I’m struggling to stay motivated at work. How can I stop procrastinating? I’d start with the

cious gobbling – resulting in you feeling more full, and less likely to gorge on grease.

three-minute rule. Just start a task and keep it up for three minutes, regardless. Once you’ve cracked that first hurdle, buckling down and finishing things up will start to feel easier. Still struggling? Aim for quotas rather than finishing up a project in one sitting. For example, need to file a hefty report? Start with trying to complete 1 000 words a day. And just remember – sometimes you fall behind, and it’s not possible to stay on top of everything. Breathe easy; this is life. The extra anxiety of worrying about your workload will just tank your efficiency even further.

Sometimes I feel like I need time and space to myself. How do I tell my wife without her taking it the wrong way?

I’m trying to lose weight but every time I pass the takeaway joint near my place I can’t resist. How can I sort myself out? It’s all about stress levels, and how you manage them. Unhealthy “carb-dumping” with fast food is often used as a coping mechanism to deal with underlying anxiety. The biggest problem: the momentary high has a big comedown. Studies show that willpower is a resource that can quickly run out. Your weakest hours: between 2 and 4pm. Here’s what you’re going to do: eat healthy snacks regularly and really focus on chewing your food. This puts the brakes on uncon-

Pretty much any book on relationships advocates healthy “alone time” for couples. It’s normal to want that space. Your tactic: tell her what you appreciate about her and the relationship. Once you’ve done that groundwork, let her know you need some time to yourself to destress. Remember to thank her for being understanding and reinforce your appreciation for her by doing something caring to show the positive impact of having a bit of alone time.

Why do I feel depressed after binge-watching series? Excessive TV watching has long been associated with health problems, such as obesity and diseases, including diabetes. But recently it has also been linked with mental health issues, such as loneliness and depression. A University of Texas study found that those who bingewatched shows were doing so to avoid dealing with negative emotions. Instead, take breaks, connect with others and read an article or book before you start watching TV to decrease your dependence on the tube.

Are You the Guest from Hell? Manners expert Thomas Farley shows you how to keep the invites coming 1/ When you RSVP for a party, your preferred method is... A DON’T HAVE ONE. I’LL LET THEM KNOW B TEXT. THEY’LL SEE IT C WHICHEVER WAY THE HOST WANTS IT D IN PERSON OR BY PHONE

2/ When choosing a bottle to bring as a gift, you usually decide on... A WHO DOESN’T LIKE PINOT GRIGIO? B A RED I KNOW THEY’LL BE INTO C SOMETHING THEY’LL GOOGLE THE PRICE OF D THE CHEAPEST STUFF I CAN FIND

3/ If you bring a host gift that isn’t alcohol, it’s usually... A A BOUQUET. THE LADIES LOVE THAT B A PARTY GAME – THEY HAVE TO TRY IT C THIS KILLER CANDY FROM A LOCAL SHOP D THE GIFT OF MY COMPANIONSHIP

4/ When I’m at a party, I pull my phone out when I want to... A SHOW OFF MY ADORABLE CHILDREN B TAKE SOME BADASS PARTY SELFIES C AVOID CONVERSATION WITH STRANGERS D NONE OF THE ABOVE

ANSWERS 1/ C. The hosts want an RSVP their way, not yours. So if that way is snail mail, find a stamp. 2/ B. Just don’t expect to sip it that night – unless it’s after you’ve helped clean up. 3/ C. Bring food. Flowers can throw off the vibe, and games distract. 4/ D. Uploading pics is risky: you could tip off – and tick off, too – those not invited.

SCORING 3–4 correct/ Your invite’s on the way. Always will be. 1–2/ You’re still in – after a few others decline. 0–1/ Hmm. So weird. Must’ve been lost in the mail.

P H OTO G R A P H I STO C K P H OTO

Ask the Shrink Straight-up advice from a stand-up guy

JAMIE ELKON


*HDU 6 IURQWLHU

7LPHOHVV RXWVLGH 5HYROXWLRQDU\ LQVLGH

đʪʪϩ ϩ˵ʪ ͝ʪи ʪɇθ Ɗߤ ˙θͱ͝ϩ̈ʪθࢋ Ɵ˵ʪ ʪ̷ʪ˝ɇ͝ϩ ʪɇθ Ɗߤ ˙θͱ͝ϩ̈ʪθ ̈ϑ иɇϩʪθ ɇ͝ʒ ʒЇϑϩ θʪϑ̈ϑϩɇ͝ϩ ӥϩ˵ ̷͔̈̈ϩɇθцࣗ˝θɇʒʪ ʒЇθɇɵ̷̈̈ϩцࢋ Ãϩ ͱ˙˙ʪθϑ ʪуʀʪΧϩ̈ͱ͝ɇ̷ ʀͱ͝͝ʪʀϩ̈Ӭϩц ϩ˵θͱЇ˝˵ 9̷Їʪϩͱͱϩ˵ ͱθ ߥ øƟkࢋ Ǯ˵ʪϩ˵ʪθ цͱЇ࣭θʪ θЇ̈͝͝͝˝ࡡ ˵̧̈̈͝˝ ͱθ ̟Їϑϩ θͱЇ˝˵̈͝˝ ̈ϩࡡ ϩ˵ʪ ϑϩɇ͝ʒࣗɇ̷ͱ͝ʪ ťƊ ̧ʪʪΧϑ цͱЇ ͱ͝ ϩ˵ʪ ͔ɇΧ ɇ͝ʒ ϩ˵ʪ ɵЇ̷̈ϩࣗ̈͝ ϑΧʪɇ̧ʪθ ̧ʪʪΧϑ цͱЇ ʀͱ͝͝ʪʀϩʪʒࢋ Ɵ˵ʪ Ɗɇ͔ϑЇ͝˝ ʪɇθ Ɗߤ ˙θͱ͝ϩ̈ʪθ ϑ͔ɇθϩиɇϩʀ˵ ̈ϑ ϑͱ ͔Їʀ˵ ͔ͱθʪࢋ

Ɗɇ͔ϑЇ͝˝ ࣗ  иɇц ͱ˙ ̷̈˙ʪࢋ


Manhood/

PLAY IT STRAIGHT Vincent Ntunja is living proof that a model mother makes a better man BY KIERAN LEGG • PHOTOGRAPHS CAMERON MACDONALD

44 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

BEFORE HE KNEW WHAT WAS

happening, he was weeping. Tears spilled down from his eyes, glistening lines in the stark sunlight. He was a 12-year-old in a fitted suit, a kid staring at a wooden coffin, a young mind realising that this was it – his dad, this invincible figure, was dead. Then his hand brushed up against the tissue in his front pocket. His mother had placed it there, gently and without a word before they set off to Gugulethu’s cemetery. And in that uncertainty, in that desperate sadness, that thin sheet of paper was his anchor and a reminder that while he had lost

B


become an international basketball player-turned-model was just a fantasy that would fade the moment he stepped foot on the dusty streets, the resonance of those dreams swallowed up by the droning bass from a passing taxi. After his father’s death – he was a celebrated local footballer who was stabbed to death by gangsters – his family struggled for money. Shoes? A luxury. He’d ride out a year in a single pair, taking the rubber soles from school playgrounds to soccer pitches, wearing them down until he was practically barefoot. But watching his mother work tirelessly to put food on the table, and to keep him clothed, he took pride in what he had. “My uniform was always immaculate,” he says. “I made sure my tie looked just right.” While she was quick to rattle out lessons and mantras, his mom guided him with a loose hand. She lived by example, and then gave Vincent the room to do the same. “One thing that stands out is that she gave me the key to our house,” he says. For a youngster, that was unheard of. His friends’ parents didn’t trust their little tykes, but Vince was given free reign to come and go as he pleased. In the beginning he pushed the boundaries, rolling in during the early hours of the morning. But a disapproving look, a day spent exhausted, and he started to learn his lesson. Within a year he was always home before six, a disciplined teenager learning the value and benefits of sticking to a tight routine. He received affirmation and acknowledgment in the form of a warm smile and doting look.

“In the township there are many opportunities to do the wrong thing.” Stick to the Plan

his role model, he hadn’t lost his direction. “I knew there that she would be there to guide me,” says Vincent Ntunja. “That if I looked to her, I could make it.”

Take Pride Here’s something Vince tells the kids he works with, whether its on the tar of the basketball court in Gugs named after him, or inside one of the juvenile detention facilities in the Western Cape: “When you leave your house in the morning, there are three directions. Go left? Go right? You’ll find the gangs, you’ll find drugs, you’ll find yourself behind bars or dead. Go straight, and be patient, and you’ll find success.” Growing up in the township during the 1990s the idea that he would

MVP With only his mom to guide him, Vincent Ntunja navigated some pretty tough streets, and came out on top.

“For a parent it’s scary to give your child this much freedom," he says. “In Gugulethu there are many opportunities to do the wrong thing.” One example: gangs. “I remember seeing them all the time, those kids with the new Jordans and all the girls,” he laughs. “And sometimes you really want that. I would have to remind myself that that was coming, I had to be patient; I had to do this the right way.” His friends gravitated in the opposite direction. And before he knew it, he was surrounded by a social circle of drug addicts, gang members and thieves. He started feeling like an outcast, pushed to the fringes of a community, orbiting the nucleus of a lifestyle that was poison to what he wanted to achieve. “But I believed in what my mom taught me. Be patient, and you will find success.” Near the end of the 90s, Vince discovered basketball. It started with a few pickup games after soccer practice, and then he was skipping practice entirely. At the time, the township revolved around soccer and the attitude towards basketball was hostile at best. “They would call us moffies. I didn’t care. I loved the game.” Three months later and he was invited to Western Cape trials. He arrived barefoot after ruining his school shoes on the January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 45


Manhood

courts, and somehow – “I like to think it was just natural talent” – almost made the final cut for the campus team. It hardened his resolve, and the next year he dominated the trials. In a meteoric rise, he qualified first for the provincial team, then nationally, before jetting off to Russia to take part in the youth world championships. Even looking back now it felt like life was moving at the speed of light. “Sometimes I ask myself, what happened to that kid running around Gugulethu?”

Give Back Drug dealer. Addict. Serial killer. Vince lists the fates of his old friends, the latter who was once fondly referred to as his twin when the pair were still two little kids chasing through the streets. It’s a humbling reminder of how, between the financial strain and the emotional burden of his father’s death, his mother was able to help him steer through the dangerous traps of the township. “When I visit prisons to give 46 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

talks I run into people I knew from my street. Some of them will be behind bars for the rest of their lives,” he says. After a strong performance in Russia, Vince was invited to join 499 others at Michael Jordan’s Flight School in the US. He managed to stand out from the crowd and was named the most valuable player at the esteemed training camp. That honour came with more than just a trophy and a handshake from the legendary basketball player himself. Not only would Vince be able to play at a varsity level in the home of the sport, but he received a full-ride scholarship to a top school, too. “I still have that trophy sitting on my bedside table, and it’s a reminder of what I’ve accomplished, of where I came from and where I am going,” he says. Studying abroad never happened. Nor did the college ball. After a few weeks in the US he was contacted by his family: his mom was sick, plagued by migraines, and left bedridden for a month at a local hospital. “I didn’t even think twice about it. She had always been there for me. She was the only parent I had, I had to go back.” He never regrets leaving behind the opportunities in the States. He is still grateful he was given a chance to support his mother. When he returned to Gugulethu he was given a hero’s welcome. Local

GIVING BACK Vincent shares the ball skills he learnt in the US.

MODEL MOM He had a thousand opportunities to go off the rails. She kept him on track.

“I didn’t think twice. She had always been there for me. I had to go back.”


SOME SERIOUS BUSINESS Our bespoke website, SEO, Adwords and social media solutions are perfectly balanced to pack some serious business punch.

politicians lauded his success; a basketball court was named in his honour. And, in his eyes, he piqued the imagination of hundreds of youngsters. “You know, I wanted to show them what hard work looked like, what you could do if you left your house and chose to walk straight."

Push Yourself Further In 2016, the Pulse Models talent was flown up to Prague to shoot a bumper advertising campaign directed by Guy Ritchie. He spent his lunch breaks discussing world politics, friends, family and sport with his co-star, José Mourinho. He still feels like he has to pinch himself. That he has to remind himself that, with the help of his mother, he was able to pick himself up in the wake of a tragedy that would’ve broken most men, let alone boys, and make something of himself, to preserve the legacy of his father, and the lessons of his mother. Vincent’s story hasn’t ended. There will still be more opportunities, more chances to reshape the imaginations of the kids from his home town. You’ll find him there, on the court, dribbling between lines of children, passing the ball and passing on those same lessons that made him the man he is today. “You know, my mother doesn’t say to me she’s proud of me,” he laughs. “But she’ll call me, and she’ll ask me if I want to grab lunch, and you can hear how proud she is.”

IT’S OUR BUSINESS TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS www.trudon.co.za

/TR/MH/E/09

HOW TO


The Survivor/

RISE ABOVE After surviving a crippling car crash, Alwyn Uys turned tragedy into opportunity BY KIERAN LEGG • PHOTOGRAPHS CAMERON MACDONALD


HIS LEGS FELT COLD,

his back was a firebrand of pain that exploded around his neck. He felt the man tap him on his shoulder, he tried to stand – but there was no movement, just a sinking dread, a panic that rose and fell with each struggled breath. And there, on the shoulder of that road, with the world plunging into twilight and his wrecked car lying next to him, he knew he was going to die. “Sometimes I think this may have been the best thing that’s ever happened to me,” says Alwyn Uys, glancing to the wheelchair at his side. “It opened my eyes to who I was and what I was meant to accomplish.” Back in 2014, Alwyn was on a comfortable trajectory. He’d spent his university years bolstering the ranks of Maties’ dominant rugby team, bringing speed, aggression and power to the pitch. But a self-proclaimed realist, he hadn’t ditched academics. After finishing his Bachelor of Commerce with a focus on Logistics, he moved into the family business. Meanwhile, he was subbed out of the scrum after suffering a brutal arm injury that made him shift his focus to competing in triathlons instead. But here’s the bottom line: Alwyn was happy. “Things were good,” he says. “I had a solid group friends, a supportive family – everything was going my way.” However, subconsciously, the young sportsman had missed something. Outside of sport, he didn’t have his own identity, he admits. He had defined himself by what he could accomplish physically. If that were to disappear, did he even know who he was? He received his answer while driving into PE in 2014. It was 7pm, he was alone, but stone cold sober. The only hitch? His arm was in a sling and his belt was unbuckled. “I took my eyes off the road for one second.” The vehicle swerved into the shoulder, hitting a dip between dirt and tarmac and sending it spinning. Alwyn was flung through the windscreen. He remembers seeing the airbag, flying through the air, the impact – then darkness. “It must’ve been over in less than a second.” When he came to, and he guesses it was around 20 minutes later, he was looking up at darkening skies and a concerned face. “I tried to get up,” he says. “But I could just feel my body was cold. The guy who found me told me my back was broken. I felt like I was dying.” Where the crash was over in seconds, the ambulance ride stretched into eternity as the pain kicked in. He would later find out he had cracked his neck, broken his back and snapped his femur. His body had been broken against the ground and the reverberating pain of the impact pulsed through him, each wave more painful than the last.

H

“The guy who found me told me my back was broken. I felt like I was dying.” Learn to Cope “This can’t be happening to me,” he says. “That’s what I remember thinking. I’m healthy, I’m fit. I thought I was invincible.” Alwyn was certain he would walk again. His family and friends, hopeful, always verging on tears, told him the same thing. But each day he woke up and his legs were the same dead weight they were the night before. Cold, unresponsive, turning a dagger of dread in his stomach. The young rugby player was never told he would never walk again. Those conversations happened around him, and he read the diagnosis in the expressions of his parents, in the way the nurses unfolded his wheelchair and during those long hours spent learning how to shower, how to dress, just how to live again. “Rehab was exhausting,” he says. “It was stress from the moment I started – stress on my body, my head. I would just fall asleep right afterwards.”

LOOKING UP No one would have blamed Alwyn Uys if he wallowed in self-pity. But he saw a way out, and grabbed it.

Learning to start again was a challenge Simple functions he took for granted – going to the bathroom, prepping a meal – were now uphill battles. Looking down the barrel of a life like that, it was easy for Alwyn to slump into depression. “What life could I really have?” he asks. “I didn’t understand why I was still alive. I would look at the photos of the wreck and ask myself: How was surviving this any kind of mercy?” Around him, other patients were dying. He counts six that passed away during his three months at the white-walled facility, and sometimes he had wished he could count himself among them. “I was in this strange, foreign place, in a body I didn’t recognise anymore.” Being there is what saved him. Surrounded by other patients, he met guys who were paralysed from the neck down. “I still had my hands, my arms,” he says. “I could see a path to a good life. I wasn’t thinking about sport. I was thinking about living again.” January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 49


The Survivor

Learn to Live

WIN THE ARMS RACE

Alwyn works with Robert Evans at the Sports Science Institute to bolster his upper-body strength. These five moves that will elevate your arms day

50 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

1. Barbell Bench Pull Pulls, or rows, are some of the most effective ways of upgrading raw power. The speed of the movement will dial up your explosiveness, giving you a musclebound nitrous boost when you’re in the rower’s seat.

2. TRX Rows With a suspension trainer, you’ll gain access to a whole new repertoire of intense upper-body workouts. Rows will not only work your arms, but add strength your back, using your bodyweight. R2 200, trxsouthafrica.co.za

3. Push-Up Box Jumps Adding elevation (two boxes) to your push-ups means you’ll be able to go lower, which will hit your shoulders and back harder. Include jumps, and you’ll force all your limbs to work overtime as you summit the box.

4. Army Crawl “This one is super effective because it helps to activate core muscles that were left really weak after my injury,” says Alwyn. Start in a forearm plank position and crawl forwards letting your legs drag behind you.

5. Tricep Dips Dips are one of the best ways to bulk up your arms. Do them with a weighted vest and you’re doubling down on every rep, says Alwyn. And go low: make sure your shoulders dip below your elbows.

P H O T O G R A P H E S T VA N V E R M E U L E N ( C Y C L I N G )

Coming to terms with his condition wasn’t just an internal battle. Alwyn found solace in the company of his friends, too, who would normalise his life in a way no rehab facility could. “My mates would come through and always try and get me outside,” he says. “That was definitely a high point. They didn’t look at me differently. My wheelchair bothered me so much in those days, but they didn’t seem to see it as a problem.” Those relationships kept him sane in the face of daily challenges as he navigated his way through a new life on two wheels. But he was still grappling with his identity. Before, he was the sportsman, the guy who excelled on the pitch, the track, you name it. Who was he now? It was a question he asked often every day. “I realised that even though I had lost so much, I was still the same person. My humour came back; my life came back.” A trip to a rehab in Australia instilled him with confidence. When he returned, after travelling alone, he told himself: “I’ve got this. Even on my own, I’ve got this.” He went back to work and began to hit his stride. And after he conquered life’s daily challenges, he relished new ones. And that’s how he found his way back into sport.


“Everything I did before the accident was just prep for the next part of my life. Maybe this was the best thing that ever happened to me.”

Learn to Fly After looking at all the sports available to him, the young athlete gravitated towards rowing. His years spent on the pitch had equipped him with monster upper-body strength that made him a natural in the rower’s chair. But even better, when he was rowing nobody could tell him apart from the able-bodied athletes. “This was it. I was hooked.” Diving into Paralympic sports opened up a world of opportunities. He discovered wheelchair racing, hand cycling sprints and the crazy fact that he could still swim even when his legs weren’t kicking. On his feet, he had hit his physical potential. But here? “Before, I saw what happened to me as a tragedy, but then I started to think about it differently. Everything I did before the accident was just prep for the next part of my life. I started to think, maybe this was the best thing that ever happened to me.” He is now part of the SA Paralympic team and is training for his first triathlon, a challenge he was eyeing up before the crash derailed his plans. He’s going to take on the Cape Town Cycle Tour with his dad this year, and that’s a big one, because the pair haven’t had a chance to ride together since he was paralysed. And the best part? When Alwyn wakes up in the morning it isn’t into the icy cold dread of those first days lying in a hospital bed. He wakes up excited to work, to train, to live. “I just want guys to know that you don’t need to be put in a wheelchair before you start living,” he says. “You don’t need a near-death experience to start again. I wish everyone could get on that page. It doesn’t have to be training – but whatever you do, do it with passion. “Far too many people talk about what they want to do, or are going to do, but you won’t always have the strength, the mobility, the life that you have now. Use it. Get out there and do it.”


Take My Advice/

WORK, WIN, REPEAT How serial entrepreneur Craig Cooper sharpens his skills. BY TOM FOSTER · PHOTOGRAPHS KEVIN ZACHER

No shoes, no shirt – for Cooper, it’s just another day at the office.

52 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

THREE YEARS AGO CRAIG COOPER

got a retiree-benefits card in the mail. For most guys, that’s a gut punch. He laughed and shredded it. “Retiring just when things were getting good seemed absurd,” says the New Zealand–born entrepreneur, now 53. Cooper, who’s worn many hats, hit it big in 2002 when he cofounded the telecom giant Boost Mobile USA. What’s kept him going through successes, failures and near-death experiences – including a coma, a heart infection and even a lightning strike? Focus. He meticulously designs his routine for peak performance. Here’s how you can draw on Cooper’s lifelong success.

T


STAY ON THE MOVE “My office is designed around keeping me mobile all day.”

1/ Reward Passion

3/ Bookend Your Days

5/ Train for Total Recall

When entrepreneurs approach Cooper for funding, he asks them where they want to be in five years. “It gets straight to how passionate they are about their business,” he says. He also looks at the competition. “The idea can’t just be slightly better... it has to be exponentially better than what’s already out there.” He never forgets to ask why they want him to invest. “If they come in saying, ‘I’m passionate about this and I want a strategic partner and adviser,’ they’ll likely have a great result with me.”

Cooper sets aside a few minutes at the beginning and end of each day to use a notebook called the Five Minute Journal. He’ll reflect on the past day and set goals for the future. “It’s a very simple, powerful grounding and gratitude practice,” he says. He always keeps a pen and paper at his bedside in case he happens to wake up with an idea. “You don’t need the stress of having to remember it.” He also has a meditation mat next to his bed to use for 10 minutes before bed and 20 minutes after waking up.

As he crossed the threshold into his 40s, Cooper worried more about maintaining his memory. So he decided to exercise his brain like a muscle. At night, he’ll practice a total-recall drill by going over the day’s details, being as specific as possible. He’ll ask himself the name of the barista that morning or the words on a billboard he passed. He also uses the app Wunderlist, which lets users create and share to-do lists. “I’m crazy about lists, to the point where my office is covered with whiteboard paint,” he says.

2/ Beat Your Chest

4/ Make Mini-Goals

6/ Embrace Adrenaline

Tony Robbins, the motivational speaker and entrepreneur and an old friend of Cooper’s, has talked about the effect of posture on confidence and pride. Cooper has put this philosophy to use. “I’m especially conscious of my posture and physical state when I’m going into a big meeting or presentation,” he says. “I’ll jump up and down like I’m on a mini trampoline, do some air squats, raise my arms above my head, or just stand there with my chest out. You can’t go into a hot situation cold.”

To hit his targets, Cooper adopts a tactic called a goal ladder from an athletic performance specialist at Stanford. You list one big, audacious goal at the top of the page. Below that, list two intermediate goals that lead to the big one. Then, write daily, weekly or monthly activities you can do that lead to those. “It’s a great way to focus your efforts on where you’re headed,” Cooper says. He’s using the strategy to launch a health website targeted to men 40 and older and to train for a Spartan race.

Long-term stress that – ongoing feeling of not having control of your life – can be debilitating. But short bursts of stress around deadlines can be empowering, Cooper says. You just have to think of them that way, like a tighthead prop who needs to lead a last-minute drive. It’s not that he feels no stress; it’s that he accepts his pounding heart as a symptom of a high-performance state. Just remember that we’re talking about short bursts. If you have a few hours to meet a big deadline, take breaks to breathe.

POWER UP!

Craig Cooper launches his day with superfoods Match Smoothie Mix 1 tsp each green tea, organic coconut oil, red palm oil and medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil; 1 serving of protein powder; 1 Tbsp organic avocado; a handful organic blueberries; a sprinkle each turmeric and cayenne; ¼ cup rice milk; and 3 cups filtered water. Avo and Sardines “My grandmother used to make sardines for me, all the time,” Cooper says. “Their nutrients are a powerhouse of men’s health, loaded with protein, omega3s and vitamin B12.” He eats them with hot sauce, parsley, onion and avocado on a slice of low-GI bread.

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 53


DIGITAL SUBSCRIP TION OFFER Subscribe now and get the Men’s Health The Belly Off! Diet eBook – valued at R200 – for FREE!

With success stories from Belly Off! Club members and hundreds of quick tips for simple, supercharging meals and fat-frying, bodyweight workouts throughout, The Belly Off! Diet gives you the tools and the motivation to work your belly off – and keep it off.

FREE eBook! ONLY

R36 P MONTH PER O

4 E ASY WAYS T O SUBSCRIBE : FOR DIGITAL SUBS:

Go to: www.mysubs.co.za/magazine/mens-health

Call: 0861 697 827

FOR PRINT SUBS:

Email: menshealth_subs@media24.com

FULL TERMS AND CONDITIONS AVAILABLE AT MH.CO.ZA EBOOK GIFT OFFER ENDS 23 JANUARY 2017. EBOOK GIFT NOT VALID IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE DISCOVERY VITALITY DISCOUNT.

SMS: “MHJAN” and your name to 32511


Muscle Fitness Nutritionist Trevor Kashey got his BSc at 18 and PhD at 23.

BUST THROUGH ANY PLATEAU

New science reveals how to reclaim your body and reach peak performance BY MICHAEL EASTER • PHOTOGRAPHS JEREMY M. LANGE

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 55


JONATHAN

Montgomery was frustrated. His biceps weren’t popping, but his belly was. The 38-year-old firefighter was doing everything right, or so he thought. He lifted three or four days a week and watched his food intake, especially carbs. At first it worked – he got leaner and stronger – but he never quite hit the fitness level he was seeking. After a year, flab crept back and his fitness stalled. He tried to bust out of his rut by lifting more and eating less. It backfired. He found himself at a chubby 100 kilograms, feeling strong but out of shape. It didn’t make sense, he says. One night he googled for answers and stumbled upon trainer Alex Viada and nutritionist Trevor Kashey, a duo with a no-nonsense, science-heavy approach to fitness. They’d gained their expertise in clinical research settings and teamed up because, they said, fit guys are training all wrong. And then they plateau. They get stuck and frustrated and start to regress. Montgomery asked the pair for a plan, and their initial demands shocked him: eat more food, mainly carbs, advised Kashey. Do two 60minute runs a week at a boringly slow pace to supplement the lifting programme, suggested Viada. “Their ideas seemed totally counterintuitive,” Montgomery says. “I always thought carbohydrates and jogging just made you fat. But my own approach at the time wasn’t working, so I committed to following through with exactly what Kashey and Viada instructed.” By the time he’d completed six months of four weekly workouts, Montgomery had added 50kg to

J

his gym total (combination of squat, bench and deadlift), shaved eight minutes off his 5K time, run his first six-minute mile, dropped 13kg, and sculpted a ripped body. Other men who have worked with Kashey and Viada have had similar results. The pair’s secret is simple. Kashey and Viada regard fitness and nutrition research with the skepticism of scientific inquiry. That philosophy has helped them see through marketing gimmicks and fitness fads and focus on  what works. For example, many nutritionists advocate slashing carbs because large quantities can make you store more fat. That indeed happens, says Kashey, when you’re eating too many calories overall. But if you train hard and take in enough protein and fat on top of your training, carbs can help your performance, which in turn changes your body composition over time. Viada calls his approach “hybrid training”: it borrows from the best of strength and cardio as well as other disciplines. Too many guys obsess about specialising, he says. They’ll only lift or only run. Yes, specialisation can help you perform better at your sport, he says, but only at the highest levels. For the average guy who just wants to be fitter and healthier, tackling a variety of activities leads to improvements across the board and makes workouts more sustainable. The two men are living proof of that. Viada has deadlifted 300-plus kilos one day and completed a 100km ultramarathon the next. Later the same year he completed a sub-13-hour Ironman Triathlon at 105kg and then returned to squatting three times his body weight the very next week. If you follow Montgomery’s old plan, pay atten-

TRAIN LIKE THIS, LOOK LIKE THAT JONATHAN MONTGOMERY’S FITNESS TIPS

56 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

tion – the following tweaks will lead you to a fitness breakthrough.

1/ Train for Results, Not Looks If your goal is to have abs all-yearround, Viada says, you’ll end up disappointed. Once you hit any goal, you always want to set the bar higher, and you can’t stay lean and ripped forever. Your body prefers to have a bit more fat, so it’s impossible to continually progress. A performance goal, on the other hand, can be endlessly pursued, whether it’s adding another few kilos to a lift or taking a few precious seconds off your 5K PB. “Performance goals are more enjoyable,” says Viada, “and the aesthetic part comes naturally.”

1/ Don’t Be a Hero Many guys sacrifice good form for an egoboosting heavy bar. Don’t. Overreaching for that 1kg gain can eventually lead to fatigue accumulation, slowing your results.

YOUR MOVE Make sure you train three days a week minimum; four or five is preferable. Select two or three performance goals and build your training around them. (The program on the next few pages will help you build strength and endurance.) Your goals could be to add 10kg to your squat and run a 5K, or complete 20 pull-ups and do a triathlon. Having more than one goal means you’ll improve across the board – in strength, power and endurance – achieving better overall fitness. If you face a setback in one area, you can still make gains in others, which will keep you motivated. What’s more, training multiple skills can reduce your injury risk, because you limit your ability to go too extreme in one fitness area, Viada says.

2/ Avoid Extras During a great run or workout, you might be tempted to tack on kays or sets. But that additional “junk work” just compromises the quality of your next workout.

3/ Earn Your Rest “If you’re not looking forward to your rest days, you’re not giving your training days your all,” says Montgomery. Not gassed by rest day? Amp up your intensity.

P H O T O G R A P H S C O U R T E S Y J O N AT H A N M O N T G O M E R Y ( T R A N S F O R M AT I O N ) I L L U S T R AT I O N S Z A C H G R A H A M

Muscle + Fitness


Muscle + Fitness

2/ Do Slow Cardio

3/ Track Your Numbers

4/ Stay the Course

You may have heard that longduration aerobic sessions eat muscle, making you “skinny-fat.” Not true for the average guy, Viada says. Relaxed sweat sessions promote bloodflow, which negates postworkout soreness. They also improve overall endurance so you can recover better and more quickly between weightlifting sets.

Guys who cut carbs often fail to take in enough calories, preventing muscle growth. The more you exercise, the more calories you need. “People obsess too much over whether a food is ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’ – like sweet potatoes versus white potatoes, for example – and miss the fact that total calorie intake is everything,” says Kashey.

Most diet and training programs last two to three months. That’s long enough for you to notice a change but not to maximise your gains. That’s why Viada prefers – and Kashey requires – that clients commit to working with him for at least six months. Many of Kashey’s clients have worked with him for years – and they’re still improving.

YOUR MOVE Do one or two halfhour to two-hour cardio sessions a week, whether it’s running, riding or hiking. Keep your heart rate between 120 and 140 beats per minute. That’s the sweet spot where you’ll see tremendous heart health and general fitness benefits – but won’t hurt your next lifting session.

YOUR MOVE Measure your calories by weighing your food or using an app like MyFitnessPal. Once you know how much you typically eat, tweak accordingly: active men looking to be more fit should consume 4 to 9% more, while sedentary guys looking to shed fat should cut their intake by 6 to 10%.

YOUR MOVE If you want to attain elite fitness, find an expert training and nutrition plan and stick with it for half a year, says Viada. Don’t add or subtract anything. Don’t improvise. Hopping from program to program or tweaking expert-designed plans are two big reasons guys don’t reach the next level of fitness.

TRIANGULATE YOUR GAINS 3 FITNESS HACKS RIPPED GUYS KNOW

1/ Fix Your Lunch Trevor Kashey says his most successful clients prepare their lunch at home and take it to work. This simple tactic puts you in control of your calories and macronutrients, so you’ll hit your daily goals. Kashey’s go-to is grilled chicken with rice and vegetables.

2/ Eat the Grilled Chicken Salad Restaurant meals can be notorious calorie bombs, thanks to massive portions and added flavour enhancers. But you can’t go wrong with grilled chicken salad and dressing on the side, Kashey says. Make it your default.

If your usual diet is healthy, fortified cereal can be a good workout fuel.

3/ Salt Your Water

MY SECRET MUSCLE FUEL CARB-HEAVY CEREAL

Lifting heavy weights and logging high-mileage runs on a regular basis requires a ton of fuel. “If your training regimen is demanding, it’s not easy to get all the calories you need from healthy staples like broccoli, grilled chicken and tubers,” says nutritionist Trevor Kashey. And exercising without proper fuel will only sabotage your progress. So feel free to eat the occasional bowl of cereal. With milk, cold cereal tastes great – you won’t get sick of it. Plus, says Kashey, it’s packed with calories and carbohydrates, two things hardworking athletes need when they’re trying to bulk up. “Cereal is also usually fortified with vitamins and minerals,” he adds. “When my athletes balk at the idea, it’s not difficult for me to convince them that cereals aren’t as devoid of nutrients as people think.”

Replenishing your fluids after a long run or ride is important. Add a pinch or two of salt to a big glass of water to hydrate your body and keep it that way, suggests Kashey. Adequate hydration means better performance and faster progress. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 57


A Smarter Way to Get Jacked This weeklong workout plan from Alex Viada fuses new science with proven training strategies. You’ll not only build the best body of your life but also turbocharge your strength and endurance. Follow the program for up to eight weeks

1 Pull-Up

2 Barbell Squat

Hang from a bar using an overhand, shoulderwidth grip. Pull your chest up to the bar and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Pause, then slowly lower your body back to the start.

Hold a bar across your upper back. Push your hips back and squat until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. Pause and reverse the move to return to the starting position.

4 Barbell Bench Press

5 Barbell Row

6 Bulgarian Split Squat

Hold a loaded barbell above your chest using an overhand, shoulder-width grip. Lower it to your chest, pause, and then press it back up.

Hold a barbell using an overhand grip that’s just beyond shoulder width. Lower your torso until it’s at a 45-degree angle to the floor. Pull the bar toward your upper abs. Pause and slowly lower it.

Hold a dumbbell in each hand, your right foot resting on a bench or box behind you. Lower your body as far as you can. Push back up to the starting position. Do all your reps; switch legs.

58 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017


WEEKLY TRAINING PLAN

Do the numbered exercises and cardio listed on the given day. On Monday, for example, you’ll do barbell bench presses, barbell rows, and then pullups, followed by 30 minutes of cardio.

MON

TUE

EXERCISES

CARDIO

4

3 sets, 1 rep

4

6 sets, 3 reps (slow up, slow down)

Easy cardio: 30 minutes

5

6 sets, 3 reps

1

3 sets, max reps

2

3 sets, 1 rep

6

6 sets, 3 reps

3

6 sets, 3 reps

8

6 sets, 25 reps

WED

(REST DAY)

THU

FRI

SAT

Speed cardio: 35 minutes 4

3 sets, 5 reps

4

5 sets, 3 reps; 1-second pause at bottom

7

10 sets, 3 reps

5

10 sets, 3 reps

2

5 sets, 3 reps

9

3 sets, 5 reps

3

3 sets, 12 reps

8

8 sets, 25 reps

SUN

Easy cardio: 60 minutes

3 Leg Press

PHOTOGRAPHS BEN GOLDSTEIN, JEREMY M. LANGE (INSET)

Sit in a leg press machine and pick a weight that allows you to do the prescribed number of reps (and no more). Bend your legs toward your torso. Pause, and push the weight back up.

Interval cardio: 6 sets of 2-minute sprints with 2 minutes of rest in between

Trainer: Alex Viada, owner of Complete Human Performance

7 Dumbbell Lateral Raise

8 Dumbbell Walking Lunge

9 Dimel Deadlift

Hold a light dumbbell in each hand, your arms at your sides and palms facing in. Slowly raise the weights up to shoulder height; then slowly lower them back to the starting position.

Stand tall with a dumbbell in each hand. Step forward with your left leg and lower your body until that knee is bent 90 degrees. Rise back up and repeat, this time stepping with your right leg.

Stand holding a loaded barbell using an overhand grip. Push your hips back and lower the bar to just below your knees. Explosively thrust your hips forward as you pull the bar back up. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 59


Muscle + Fitness

Pain-Free in One Easy Move This simple exercise may ease lingering pain, prevent injuries and help you accomplish new fitness goals

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 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 physical therapist Roop Sihota. 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 garden 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 you started school, 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 skull flattening and neck stretching proved this phenomenon quite effectively. In a chair-sitting position, your hip and ankle muscles shorten and your stabilising core muscles turn off because the chair supports your body. Over time, your hips and ankles tighten while the core areas weaken, explains PT Doug Kechijian. Tight, weak muscles are a recipe for pain, injury, and compromised performance. 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

TAKE THE ULTIMATE SQUAT TEST 60 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

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 in the US. When a guy with tight hips and ankles picks up anything from a barbell to a bag of compost, 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 further, punching harder – in just about every activity you do.

If you can squat well already, get down in the position and try 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...

P H O T O G R A P H G E T T Y I M A G E S . C O M , I L L U S T R AT I O N + I S M

BY MICHAEL EASTER


Muscle + Fitness

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

SHOULD YOU WEAR LIFTING SHOES?

TEST YOUR ...

Hips and/or Core

Ankles

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 12cm 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.

FIX YOUR...

Core

Hips

Ankles

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 stabilise 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.

...minutes straight, build up to it by holding the squat for as long as you can. Rest the same amount of time and repeat until you hit 10 minutes. This time “locks in” the position, helping to establish the move. 62 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

You may have seen hardcore 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, of Resilient PT. If you can’t keep your weight evenly distributed through your feet and your spine straight when you do loaded squats (e.g., a barbell back squat or goblet squat), you may want to find a good pair, Spatz says, like the Reebok CrossFit Lifter Plus 2.0 (R2 000, Sportsmans Warehouse). 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. Do the exercises on the left, utilising mobilityenhancing shoes, until you can do the moves correctly without their assistance.

Learning to squat might be the most important thing you can do for your fitness and wellness. It’s a life-changer.


O&M CAPE TOWN 90440/E

COUNTLESS BATTLES WON AND THE WAR STILL RAGES ON

Sipho Didiza, 26.

Some do it for gold medals and statues, some for riches and glory. Sipho trains hard to keep fit so that he can focus on the one thing he is truly passionate about, dancing. He’s just an extra ordinary athlete and when aches and pains get in http://mentholatum.co.za www.facebook.com/deepheatza

the way of his dream, we’ll make sure he keeps going.

KEEP GOING


COVER At Men’s Health we aim to inspire you to become a better, stronger and faster. This year, Kouros by Yves Saint Laurent helped us find 10 guys who fit that mantra

stra, andon Hiem arco Klue, Br d Boshoff, M tive Director Rob Cilliers. an m Ar si, ea Makho ys and MH Cr be, Vincent , Mandla Du thur Jones, David Watke Ar ino Katombe Riaan Ellis, Al lo, Du Toit Botha, MH Ed Riyaadh Hans

Broken legs, life-threatening illnesses, even obesity: these 10 Cover Guy finalists fought back from the brink to become better and stronger than ever. They gathered at The Grand Cafe & Beach in Cape Town to be shot by photographer Byron Keulemans for a chance to be featured on the front of our December 2016 issue. In the end, that honour went to Marco Klue – start your own comeback right here, and this year, it could be you.

THE MEN’S HEALTH COVER GUY SEARCH PRESENTED BY


#MHCoverGuy #YSLKouross

GUY2016


Se R

i

Refresh Your Play Book The key to bringing the heat back into your bedroom? Spontaneity. Kick the old routine and let the good times roll again BY LORI COHEN • PHOTOGRAPHS GARRETH BARCLAY

66 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

i

IF YOU’RE FEELING TIRED AFTER A LONG YEAR,

we get it. Exhaustion creeps into each area of our lives before we notice it – and although your sex life started out hot enough to melt lead, chances are the fire isn’t what it used to be. Sexual spontaneity in men gets shelved not from a lack of interest but from fatigue, says MH resident sex and relationships advisor Dr Elna Rudolph. “If you are human, you will eventually get comfortable with your sex life. Doing the same thing over and over again takes less mental energy than being creative and coming up with something new. If you are in a long-term relationship, you might have learned to switch off your creative energy,” says Elna. And that makes you lazy.

I


Sex + Relationships

(and should) teach an old dog new tricks to keep you feeling young and energetic. In the words of George Bernard Shaw: “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” More and more excitement is not always attainable, but making things special is. “A lot of sex that is seemingly spontaneous, actually goes a long with some planning and preparation. That makes the other person feel special: the fact that you have applied your mind a bit and thought of something new and exciting for you as a couple. That goes a long a way in improving the quality of the sex you are having and also the quality of the relationship,” says Rudolph. So, how do you turn over a new leaf today and bring a playful and spontaneous edge to your love life? Here are six ways to get going.

1/Be Naughty It’s okay to “break the rules” sometimes. But in this case, making rules to play by can be a winning strategy. Shower time is one of your day’s most regular routines, so what better opportunity to shake things up? Invite your partner for a steamy session in the bathroom, but lay down

“Make her feel wanted, and she’ll be more aroused. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.” It may also be that your spontaneity switch has been put into hibernation because it’s not being reciprocated or received with enthusiasm. “If your partner has often said no to something spontaneous, they will stop asking for it and stick to what works. If you got negative feedback from a partner in the past it could have affected your self-esteem and body image, which could cause sexual inhibition and can make it difficult to take the initiative,” she says. The way you grew up might also be influencing your behaviour; you might believe that romantic men are softies, for instance. Luckily, the sack-daptable new you is only a mind shift away. The opportunities may have been presenting themselves all along, but you have been deaf to the signals (both obvious and not-so-obvious) while sticking to your routine. Don’t like surprises? No one is suggesting that your partner pops into your office wearing a coat and nothing else for a “meeting”, or that she springs a threesome on you out of the blue. But there are considerable benefits to opening your mind to new experiences. It turns out being playful has the same pros for adults as playing has for kids – it’s an important source of both relaxation (it triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals) and gives you stimulation that keeps your brain hotwired. It can also improve relationships and your connection to others. Sharing laughter and fun can foster empathy, compassion, trust and intimacy. Plus, to mix a metaphor and a quote, you can 68 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

some new boundaries. No touching with hands – only a soapy sponge – one of you has to be blindfolded while they experience a rubdown, no talking… you get the idea. You could even throw in some bath “toys”. The Remoji Lifeguard Ring Vibrator (R 1 764, matildas.co.za) is easy to slip on your finger so you can get up the pace when things get slippery. Applying new “rules” to your sex life can open up new dimensions in almost any situation. Write down 10 of them with your partner and get both of you to sign them off. For example, if you tend to have morning sex, agree to only indulge each other at night. Once the idea gets hold in your brain, you’ll both be thinking about it during your 9 to 5… nothing is sexier than anticipation. Or, take it a step further. Agree to both ditch your PJs and wake her up for some midnight whoopee. Remember the days when a one-time show was not part of your sex life – you were so into each other you could go a few more rounds? Tell her it was great, but now you want to have another go at simply pleasuring her.

Ask the Sexpert ALI EAVES TAKES YOUR QUERIES ON SEX, LOVE RELATIONSHIPS

She wants to spend a fortune on our wedding. Can I put my foot down? Step quickly. As you read this, she could be neck-deep in Pinterest boards that make her feel as if every cocktail napkin needs to be Instagram-worthy. Now’s a perfect time to budget your first year of marriage. Do you want to buy a house? Pay off your student loans? Take a trip to Nepal? Hiring a string quartet will suddenly seem a lot less appealing if it puts a spanner in those plans.

What’s the one thing that never fails to light a woman’s fire? Sometimes my husband lets me “catch” him watching the video we made on our vacation to Jamaica last year. The idea that he’d rather look at me than a blonde on PornHub? Swoon. There are plenty of ways to convey that you want her. Make out in the elevator the second the doors close. Let your eyes linger when she takes off her coat. Once she gets that message loud and clear, she’ll be chasing you around the kitchen table.


“These ideas can be productive and arousing,” says Dr Elmari Mulder Craig, President of The Southern African Sexual Health Association. “It means you are creating sexual tension which heightens desire and arousal,” she says.

2/Look for Inspiration Being creative can be challenging when you’re fresh out of ideas. A killer for spontaneity. If you want to start things off slow, look to your past for things that worked. Entice your partner with a list of your biggest turn-ons by sending her a WhatsApp listing them and challenging her to work her way through your fantasies – and it goes with out saying that you ask the same of her. Quid pro quo, dude. Anything new can feel a little uncomfortable or embarrassing, so try dosing your new approach to sex with a sense of humour. It’s unlikely to be the edited, flawless experience you’ve seen in a movie, and it may not work out the first few times you try. We’re all different, and limiting yourself to fantasies you’ve seen online or on the screen may not work for you and your partner. “Inspiration builds creativity. It all starts with the thought or fantasy about sex. When you feel emotionally safe with your partner, you can allow yourself to be vulnerable with them, which will enhance spontaneity. So work on emotional intimacy as well,” recommends Dr Craig.

3/Change Up Your Environment It’s Friday. You’ve got the usual planned for the weekend. A rugby-braai combo for your mates on Saturday afternoon, a trail run and more than likely your regular Sunday morning shag before you read the papers. Same same. Surprise her with a weekend away – all that needs to be on your checklist is a room with a view and some Egyptian cotton on the bed. Research from the Durex Global Sex Survey also shows that technology gets in the way of

sex, even on holiday – as many as 40% of people are less likely to instigate sex if their partner is on their phone in bed. Put some boundaries in place. Both agree your phones need to be locked in the hotel safe after dark. Instead of making social posts, you want to making love. Research from Tripcentral seems to back up the benefits. 58% of women aged 18-34 said they have more sex while on vacation than at home! The happy numbers: 46% of women 45-60 also agreed that they have more sex on vacation than when they’re at home.

4/Go the Extra Mile Foreplay (tick), play (tick)… how about some after play? With the extra time on your, er, hands, why not extend the fun after you’ve both climaxed? Because you’re already aroused, you may find that certain moves feel super-intense. With the rush to the finish line over you can take some time to try new things – because you’re already aroused you may both be less inhibited. A change is as good as a holiday, right? So switching things up in your bedroom can also pay off. For example, close the curtains but leave the windows open on a stormy night so that that stormy breeze blows in, upping the intensity and experience.

5/Don’t Edit Your Thoughts Have you ever been sitting having lunch and a thought pops into your head: “I wish she’d drag me into the bathroom right now”? Sometimes the thoughts can be a little more X-rated than you’re comfortable with: “intrusive” sexual thoughts are perfectly normal, but can be pretty uncomfortable for those of us who were raised with negative messages about sexual desire. Give yourself permission to keep on thinking the thought without labelling it. Recognising that you have sexual thoughts – no, it doesn’t make you a deviant – is a great start in moving towards greater sexual spontaneity in a relationship.

Once you become comfortable with owning your thoughts, start sharing. Start simple: “You have very sexy lips”, or “I love it when you walk around naked”. Expressing your enjoyment of her – and the act – is a first crucial step in sexual spontaneity, says Dr Craig. “Expanding your sexual arousal template, being sex positive and knowing your body (through self-stimulation) are also important steps,” she says.

6/Be More Spontaneous – with Yourself Coupled sex takes some beating, but there’s nothing wrong with starting with some self love if you’re trying to tap into a side of you that takes more sexual initiatives. Giving yourself permission to give in to your own desire next time you’re feeling turned on is a good way to practice spontaneity, and may help you take similar steps with your partner. Masturbation is an important part of men and women’s sexuality, says Dr Craig. “It helps us to be more ‘in our bodies’, it is a productive way of dealing with libido differences in a relationship – and it leads to greater spontaneity as it heightens your sex drive,” she says. Everyone masturbates, and that’s okay. In fact, if you are relying fully on her for your sexual satisfaction, it can cause frustration and even resentment on both sides, warns Dr Rudolph. “You are at the mercy of her wants and needs and that is not exactly a powerful position to be in. Sort it out yourself as often as you like and share something exciting and intimate with her if and when she is ready.” But enough about you. What about your partner? “One of the benefits to being more spontaneous is your partner feels wanted, and therefore aroused. You may inspire her partner to be more spontaneous as well,” says Dr Craig. Consider it the gift that keeps on giving. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 69


Foo Nut i ion SCRATCH SECRET

Put the Squeeze on ’Em Before cooking, give your tomatoes a gentle squeeze and discard three-quarters of the juice. It’ll ensure a thick sauce.

COOK IT FROM SCRATCH Learn to make real food, real fast

BY MARIA RODALE • PHOTOGRAPHS TRAVIS RATHBONE

HERE’S A SECRET FOR YOU: FOOD THAT’S MADE FROM SCRATCH

is better tasting and better for you than anything you can buy premade. Plus, you can have it on your table just as fast. I figured this out because I love food and I live in the country, where pizza guys get lost all the time. Also, I prefer organic food (I’m the CEO of the company that publishes Men’s Health). So if I want to feed my cravings, it’s easier to make the meal at home. After decades of cooking with my family, I compiled the go-to recipes in my new cookbook, Scratch. When you make the small effort to cook something from scratch, magic happens. You do more than nourish your body. You feed your soul. 70 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017


Our nurses know you inside out. When you sign up with TopMed, you will have access to our team of nurses who are ready and waiting to guide you through any emergencies or general wellness advice. Equipped with your claims history, they will know how to help you stay healthy.

SIGN UP NOW

call: 0860 00 21 58 or visit www.topmed.co.za

44369/3/MH


Food + Nutrition

SCRATCH SECRET

Poke the Poultry Chicken is done when its juices run clear. If you pierce the meat with a knife tip and the liquid is red or pink, the bird needs more time.

1 Basic Tomato Sauce WHAT YOU’LL NEED 2KG TOMATOES, CORED AND HALVED 1 GARLIC CLOVE, PEELED 1 TSP SALT 1 SPRIG FRESH BASIL (LEAVES ONLY) 1 TBSP EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

HOW TO MAKE IT

1. In a blender or food processor, pulse the tomatoes, garlic, salt and basil to combine, working in batches if necessary. 2. In a large saucepan, heat the oil on medium. Add the tomato pulp, stir, and reduce the heat to low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce reduces by half and thickens, 2 to 3 hours. 3. Pour the heated sauce into wide-mouth glass jars, leaving an inch of space at the top for the sauce to expand. Let the jars cool before you put them in the freezer, where they can stay put for up to 10 months. (Be sure to put date labels on!) Makes 1 litre Per litre: 2 225 kJ, 20g protein, 90g carbs (27g fibre), 19g fat 72 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

2 Crispy Roast Chicken with Gravy WHAT YOU’LL NEED

HOW TO MAKE IT

1 WHOLE CHICKEN (ABOUT 2 KG)

1. Preheat the oven to 190°. Place the chicken in a roasting pan (breast side up) and roast until it’s cooked through and golden, about 1 hour and 20 minutes. 2. Lift the chicken slightly so its juices drain into the roasting pan, and then transfer it to a serving plate. Place the roasting pan on the stovetop over high heat and bring the juices to a boil. 3. For the gravy: in a medium bowl, whisk together the water and flour and pour it in the roasting pan. Stir everything with a wooden spoon, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Keep cooking and stirring until thickened, about a minute. Add salt and pepper to taste. Carve the chicken and serve with gravy. Feeds 4

¾ CUP WATER ¼ CUP ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR

Per serving 1 890 kJ kJ, 49g protein, protein 6g carbs (0g fibre), 24g fat


SCRATCH SECRET

Just Add Fire

3

Grilling your greens gives them a delicious char. The same method works with radicchio, kale and baby bok choy too.

Grilled Caesar with Garlic Croutons F O O D S T Y L I N G M I C H E L L E G AT 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 VA O P E N I N G PA G E M I T C H M A N D E L ( S C R AT C H )

WHAT YOU’LL NEED 3 TBSP UNSALTED BUTTER ½ CUP EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL 2 GARLIC CLOVES (1 MINCED, 1 SMASHED) 2 CUPS CUBED STALE BREAD 1 TBSP RED WINE VINEGAR 2 TBSP LEMON JUICE 3 HEADS COS LETTUCE, HALVED LENGTHWISE LEAVES FROM A FEW SPRIGS OF FRESH BASIL OR ITALIAN PARSLEY, CHOPPED ½ CUP FINELY GRATED ROMANO CHEESE

HOW TO MAKE IT

1. For the croutons: in a large castiron pan, melt the butter and heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil on medium. Add the minced garlic and bread cubes; cook, turning occasionally, until the croutons are golden and crunchy, 5 to 7 minutes. 2. For the dressing: in a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, remaining olive oil and smashed garlic; add salt to taste. 3. Preheat the grill to medium high. Oil the grate and grill the romaine, turning often, until it’s wilted and charred, 3 to 5 minutes. 4. Transfer the lettuce to a platter, drizzle with the dressing (discarding the garlic), and top with the fresh herbs, Romano cheese and croutons. Feeds 4 Per serving 2 395 kJ, 14g protein, 26g carbs (10g fibre), 49g fat

THE SUPER-SIMPLE SECRET TO AWESOME GUACAMOLE Some grocery guacs add extras like corn, mango or black beans, which detract from the buttery avocado flavour. Go basic

Halve 2 avocados and remove the pits. Scoop the flesh into a small bowl and mash it with a fork. Add 2 tablespoons fresh lime or lemon juice and mash again. Season with salt. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 73


Health Wellness

Don’t waste any sympathy on this devil. Keef will be fine.

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 varsity. 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.

D

Safe or Screwed? Find the cause, treat it right, and get on with life BY RON GERACI


RDFPG/121/E

Need better space?

Rent space without the drama. Contact Redefine Properties. Visit www.redefine.co.za for more information. OFFICE | INDUSTRIAL | RETAIL

We’re not landlords. We’re people.


Health + Wellness

You smoked more than Danny Zuko.

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 smoke-free 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, 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 tumours. Finally, use your trump card to defy the life span actuaries. “If you quit smoking, you made one of the most difficult behaviour 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, you can do anything.

Think back to your fun times in res. 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, 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, 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.

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% 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.

Eighty to 90% of singleconcussion symptoms resolve within three months, says Brian Edlow, a neurocritical care doctor. But two or more concussions or repetitive, low-level head knocks from a contact sport can bump you closer into the “screwed” zone. “Many men who played rugby, 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. (Army 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 American football player Junior Seau after his suicide; but the degree of risk is still a mystery. “For the high school rugby 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.

SAFE

SCREWED

76 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

P H O T O G R A P H G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S ( O P E N E R )

1 234


56 78 You ate nothing but cheese dogs before age 27.

You checked out more drugs than a pharmacist.

You scared the neighbours 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, 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 varsity-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-physicalactivity habits are established, and once they’re 15 or 20kg 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, deputy director of the US 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 ringingin-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, of the US 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. 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, of the American Academy of Dermatology. The average 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%. “I strongly advise people to apply SPF 30 sunscreen to all sun-exposed areas daily – as if it’s moisturiser,” 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% 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. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 77


Health + Wellness

“I have some bad news for you, son. You’re fine.”

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

THERE WAS A TIME WHEN SEAN DAVIDSON

could hear his eyeballs move. About five years ago while he was golfing in Sandton, Davidson, an auditor with a major investment firm, 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 pretty strange symptoms. “On the walk from that green to the next tee, my steps were really loud in my head,” says Davidson, 54. “It was ’boom, boom’... I thought, ’What the heck is that?’ I kept waiting for it to go away. But it didn’t.” Davidson flew home to Cape Town 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. Davidson called his sister, Erin, a nurse. Her response: “Come in and I’ll get a doctor to look at you.” Davidson 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. Davidson’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 Davidson to a surgeon, Dr David Lee. A few months later, Lee temporarily removed a piece of Davidson’s skull, lifted his brain to gain access to the damaged area, and made the repair. Davidson was fortunate to find a doctor who quickly and correctly diagnosed him and knew exactly where to send him 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 Durban, developed symptoms similar to Davidson’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. Local statistics are scarce – but in the

year predicted that most Americans would be misdiagnosed at least once in their lifetime. The problem is, 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 psychologist in Port Elizabeth, 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.

78 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

United States, diagnostic errors in outpatient settings hover around 5% – 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%), accounting for the highest proportion of total payments. And an Institute of Medicine report from last

P H O T O G R A P H G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S

“People spend years and their life savings trying to convince doctors they’re not nuts.”


Weight Loss

JUMPSTART YOUR NEW YEAR Viwe Kukuleka used his bodyweight to reshape his frame – and get his health back on track BY ARTHUR JONES • PHOTOGRAPHS CAMERON MACDONALD

VIWE KUKULEKA AGE/HEIGHT 24/1.71m LOCATION Cape Town WEIGHT BEFORE 100kg AFTER 79kg TIME TO GOAL L 17 months

FIND YOUR FITNESS OUTSIDE Bodyweight training lets you train anywhere, and without equipment.


“It doesn’t matter how busy you are – make time to eat better and train every day.”

Muscle + Fitness

USE HIS SECRETS: VIWE’S FITNESS FORMULA RULE 1 / Start Off Slow.

Don’t try do advanced moves, lift heavy weights and run a half marathon right away – you’ll be discouraged when you don’t finish, see results or injure yourself (believe me, I’ve tried, it doesn’t work). Set realistic goals that no matter how complex they are, you can break those down into smaller short term goals, and just slowly chip away at your target. RULE 2 / Push-and-Pull Pyramid. It’s a great test of

1 2 3 4 The Problem

The Change

The Strategy

The Result

I was a runner growing up, and at school I played plenty of different sports. However, at university I had to concentrate more on my studies than my physical wellbeing. Add friends and extramural activities, and it meant I dedicated no time to exercise. Things got worse when I started working; I thought I had no time for exercise and as a result, did nothing. I was wrong, but by the time I realised that, the numbers on the scale were over 100, and my pants size had grown to 38cm. THE LESSON It doesn’t matter how busy you think you are, you can always make time to eat better, and to do some form of training on a daily basis.

I joined Planet Fitness and had a serious wake-up call. I used to be a decent sportsman, but I could barely walk up a flight of stairs at the gym or lift free weights without my stomach getting in the way. I was so unfit that I’d struggle to catch my breath after jogging a few metres. I was also sick more often, and my immune system was shot. That’s when I was fortunate enough to meet MH Art Director Clinton Jurgens doing a type of bodyweight training I’d never seen before. THE LESSON Invest in your health. The fitter you are, the less you’ll spend on medicine and doctor visits, and you’ll feel much better.

I discussed the pros and cons of bodyweight training with Clint at the gym, and introduced me to the ICON exercise programme and diet that he put together and uses himself. I started slow and focused on my eating plan. I became obsessed by what I put into my body. I cut out sugar and caffeine and focused on hydration and getting enough sleep. I then defined my vision and made sure my goals were realistic and as detailed as possible. THE LESSON Before you begin anything, ask yourself: “With all the gains involved when you invest in yourself and your wellbeing, what do you have to lose?”

I lost 21kg in just 17 months. I wear size 32 pants and my T-shirts look like muscle tees. My confidence has definitely improved. My colleagues, family and friends are always checking on my training progress and goals, and ask me for training and eating tips. This definitely helps to keep me motivated. THE LESSON Not every day at the gym is going to be a great one, and that’s alright. There’s always tomorrow.

strength and fitness and is a routine I use after months of chasing certain goals to test whether I have lost or gained my strength and fitness levels. It’s a two-part, timed routine of pull-ups, Archer push-ups, Tiger-bends and Aussie pull-ups. This provides a goal time to beat. RULE 3 / Love Your Cardio.

If you’re on a weight-loss journey, put down the shakes and diet pills and focus on cardio workouts. You don’t have to be a professional sportsman, you just have to learn to love cardio. I have found my greatest motivation is beating my 5km Parkrun time every other Saturday. RULE 4 / There’s nothing standard about hard work.

Yes, you’ll have days where you’ve got no energy or just don’t feel like it – and that’s okay. To counter this, tell yourself: “I have come too far to give up,” and “If it was easy, everyone would be doing it”. Just remember, all this hard work goes toward making you fitter, stronger and healthier – and it all pays off in the end.

READY TO LOSE YOUR BELLY? USE THIS PLAN TO TRANSFORM YOUR BODY – START TODAY AT BELLYOFF.CO.ZA We want to hear your weight-loss and personal success stories! Email us at tellmh@media24.com.

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 81


Weight-Loss

How To Lose that First Kilogram Before you shed 10, 20 or 50 kilograms, you need to lose just one. Thinking small can lead to big changes BY MICHAEL EASTER PHOTOGRAPHS JAMIE CHUNG

LOSING WEIGHT

is easy. We’ve all done it a half dozen times. Problem is, it’s usually the same kilos we’re peeling off and packing back on. Research shows that about 80% of people who drop 10% 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.

L

82 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

“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, of Precision Nutrition. “You might manage for a while, but eventually you’ll crash.” So instead of aiming for a lofty target of 10, 15 or 25 kilos, set this manageable goal right now: “I will lose 1 kilogram.” 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 behaviour into their lifestyle, says Scott-Dixon, and for the behaviour to lose its stress factor. After two weeks, the behaviour often becomes auto-

matic. From there, adopt another healthy habit for the next two weeks. Repeat until friends and colleagues stop recognising 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.

WEEKS 1 + 2

Put the Fork Down Start with something seriously simple. Research consistently shows that being mindful at meals helps you eat less. Precision Nutrition’s Brian St. Pierre 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 1 000 fewer kilojoules, 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.)


I L L U S T R AT I O N E L I A S S T E I N

WEEKS 3 + 4

W E E K S 9 + 10

W E E K S 15 + 16

Move Every Day

Prioritise Produce

De-Stress to Deflate

Of course, you need to exercise more too. According to data from the US National Weight Control Registry, nearly 90% 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 1200 kJ; running cuts 1600, and plain old walking eliminates 750. Heck, even gardening burns 650 kJ in half an hour.

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 100g 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 1150 kJ, 22 grams of protein, 18 grams of carbs and 3 grams of fibre. (Serve it with a tall glass of milk to hit that 30 grams of protein.) To fight flavour fatigue, use the same recipe but with ground turkey or chicken or a salmon fillet.

WEEKS 5 + 6

W E E K S 11 + 12

W E E K S 17 + 18

Join the 30-30-30 Club

Increase Your Liquidity

Take Breaks

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 – it 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 1000-kJ snack bar later in the day. Here’s an easy trick for visualising 30 grams: if the serving in question is slightly larger than the palm of your hand, you’ll likely hit that crucial 30 grams when you chow down.

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 800 kJ 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 2 500-kJ caffeinated dessert. Try adding just whole milk to black coffee. Later, cut out the milk. If the flavour’s still too strong, 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 400 fewer kilojoules 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 Lego. Anything that takes your mind off your aggravation may also help you take off the weight.

WEEKS 7 + 8

W E E K S 13 + 14

W E E K S 19+

Sleep Your Belly Off

Forgive Yourself

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 2 350 more kilojoules 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 food that doesn’t fit into the diet’s “rules” and decide that his entire diet is ruined, says Graham Thomas, a weight-loss researcher at Brown University. This could then lead him to ditch the diet, a phenomenon known as the “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% 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 550 fewer kilojoules a day than those in homes where hardly any cooking took place at all. Cook daily for 20 days and you’ve cut 11 450 kJ. 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? Go to mh.co.za/food/ 15-minute-meals. The requirements: five inexpensive kitchen tools, a few basic techniques and one serious appetite.

Q: WHY IS IT SO EASY TO PUT WEIGHT BACK ON? A: Blame your biol-

ogy. When you gain weight, your body produces more fat cells that are larger in size, says Randy Seeley, 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. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 83


    



 

      

    

      

  

                                            

 


A 55-YEAR-OLD GRANDFATHER IS HANGING FROM A PAIR OF BUNGEE CORDS 5 METRES IN THE AIR, PREPARING TO LAUNCH HIMSELF TOWARDS A PIPE SUSPENDED 2 METRES AWAY. This is the scene at the recent Oklahoma City finals of American Ninja Warrior, and Jon “Rockman” Stewart is tackling Bungee Road, an obstacle that has humbled several competitors half his age. The wiry 65-kilogram man hurls himself into empty air, floats, locks onto the beam, swings a few times and dismounts. The crowd cheers and whistles. The eye-popping move secures the Utah-based construction manager a trip to the show’s national finals. Stewart comes by his fitness naturally. “I got my core strength from working our family farm as a kid,” he says. His ripped upper body and never-quit legs were forged from 20 years of scrambling up rock faces and frequent, rigorous mountain-bike outings. In other words, Stewart sculpted his incredible physique and athleticism by following his bliss. He’s not alone. “People are coming at fitness from all these different angles now,” says Daniel Kunitz, the author of Lift, a book on fitness history. Online videos have led to an exciting cross-pollination among fitness tribes. CrossFitters are doing parkour and MMA; distance runners and triathletes are trying Olympic lifting. This newly omnivorous approach to staying in shape highlights an element that’s often missing from exercise programs. In the pursuit of ripped abs and flagstone pecs, many of us have lost sight of that most essential property of physical recreation – fun. Maybe it’s time for you to find a plan that can give you the body you want without it feeling like forced labour. A plan that’s both engaging and effective, a challenge for your brain and biceps alike. Submitted for your approval: the new pillars of lifelong fitness. 86 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

1

Forty years ago, during the Pumping Iron era, fitness was defined by how you looked in a Speedo. If you didn’t have huge biceps and single-digit body fat, you had no business calling yourself fit. Today, says Kunitz, “most guys realise that getting super jacked and lean is difficult to do and takes years.” A recent NCAA analysis in the US found that single-digit body fat is rare, even among elite athletes in their prime. For example: the average body fat percentage for running backs at the NFL Combine from 2006 to 2013 was nearly 12%. Indeed, extreme leanness and muscularity – the kind you see in supplement ads – is not only an unrealistic goal for most busy guys but also unnecessary for athleticism. Stop staring in the mirror and focus on performance instead. Work on nailing your first pull-up, then your first five. Try cracking 21 minutes in a 5K, then 19. Conquer a 5.2 rock face, then 5.3.

Train for Performance Consider the fitness journey of Scott Ferrara, 42, a teacher in Los Angeles. “In my 20s, my goal was to be as big as possible. I was in pain. I was eating 10 chicken breasts a day. It wasn’t enjoyable.” Ferrara eventually switched gears. He completed an Olympic-distance triathlon and then participated in numerous obstacle course races. Now that he’s more concerned about his finishing times than his arm circumference, he’s respecting his limits. “I check in to see what my body needs on any given day,” he says. Ironically, Ferrara says he looks better now than he did when he was pumping iron – a common result of switching to performance training. “Aesthetics are best obtained from training for performance,” says Mark Rippetoe, the author of Starting Strength. “Form follows function.”


2

Some fitness hucksters believe that certain approaches work because they resemble the activities of our forefathers. Nonsense, says Daniel Lieberman, a professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard. “Prescribing fitness and diet regimes based solely on what our ancestors did is rife with logical problems. We also evolved to sometimes fight, lie, get anxious, age and die.” In fact, science suggests that you can get healthier, stronger and fitter by following any plan regularly. The CDC recommends 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, along with twice-weekly muscle strengthening sessions. It’s not a high bar, but 76% of men don’t reach it, the CDC reports. That’s despite the fact that “moderate exercise” covers a broad array of activities, from jogging and yoga to martial arts and rock climbing. It even includes some activities many jocks might consider too easy. “Brisk walking on its own is great for health,” says David Katz, director of Yale’s Prevention Research Centre. The best exercise, he says, is the exercise people actually do.

I L L U S T R AT I O N S M I K E S U D A L

Seek Simplicity and Proximity The simplest rule: do something every day. That’s not easy. For documentary filmmaker George Kunhardt, 29, that lesson came a bit later in life. “I was an athlete in high school, but when I got to versity I partied a lot.” By the time he started his career, his weight was normal – but his body was soft. That’s when Kunhardt discovered a CrossFit box near his office. The key variables to its appeal were proximity and simplicity: he could walk there and do the workout that was posted on the blackboard. Now Kunhardt trains six days a week; his body is harder and he can bang out sets of 40 unbroken pull-ups. He’s rediscovered both his competitive fire and his love of fitness. “It’s my number-one stress reliever. When I’m at the gym, I go to my happy place,” he says. So if you simply do anything active for 30 to 45 minutes a day, says Dr Katz, your health will benefit. You will also likely enhance your quality of life and longevity. Of course, strategically varying the intensity of your activity will impact your results. That’s why we have Pillar 3.


3

To a strength coach, exercise and training are as different as chalk and cheese. “Exercise is something you do today because of how it makes you feel today,” says Rippetoe. “Training is a planned process to achieve a result somewhere down the road.” Most gymgoers are exercisers, says Rippetoe. They might hit chest and tris on Monday, run a few miles on Tuesday, and shoot hoops on Thursday. Each workout bears little relation to the one before or after it, so their progress is minimal. Yes, it’s infinitely better than nothing at all. But to improve your performance at a particular activity, you need to programme a performance increase for that activity consistently. “I don’t want my muscles to be confused,” he says. “I want them to know exactly how I want them to adapt.”

Set Multiple Goals

Ag e2

Ag 9 ~5 50

15

33 47

25 62 39 52 40

39 27

~3 9

30 21

0~ 49

50th percentile (average) 80th percentile (top 20%) 95th percentile (top 5%)

29 0~

e

Not sure where to focus your fitness efforts? The following standards from the Cooper Institute show how you stack up against men your age on four key measures of fitness. If you hit the 95th percentile on any test, you can consider yourself elite in that category. If you’re in the 80th, you’re fit. Fall below 50th? That’s a weak point. You’ll need to focus your efforts on improving that area of fitness.

STRENGTH Push-Ups (max reps)

0 e3 Ag

An effective exercise routine is shaped by specific goals – short-term as well as longterm – toward which every workout is a distinct stepping-stone. That often requires taking the long view. “Let’s say you want to run a 10K. You might have five obstacles you need to overcome before you can complete that goal,” says Alex Viada, of Complete Human Performance in North Carolina. You may need to address your mobility or body composition before you can start thinking about your running pace. But even if you have a long way to go, Viada says, just ask yourself what you can do now to bring each goal a little closer and make the big goal easier. Then get to work on that, consistently, one workout at a time.

e Ag

4


4

Here’s the curveball: to make that progress, you need to take strategic recovery breaks. “A lot of activities that we think are helpful are not,” says Andreo Spina, a chiropractor and mobility expert. Among these are some of our favourite pastimes. When major league baseball coaches and trainers ask him how to prevent elbow injuries in their pitchers, Spina tells them, only half jokingly, “Have them play another position.” From baseball and basketball to swimming and track-and-field events, sports are “man-made” activities, Spina argues. Many of them place asymmetrical demands on the body. Tennis and squash, for example, tax one arm and shoulder while leaving the other mostly out of the action. Swimming works your upper body more than your lower, while running and cycling do the opposite. The potential damage isn’t limited to knees and ankles. A study in the Journal of Applied Physiology revealed that the heart valves of lifelong runners showed elevated risk of failure. Sure, sports belong in your training programme, but focusing on a single sport or activity – year-round, with no time to heal and rebalance – might hurt you. For most of us, the ideal strategy is a three-weeks-on, one-week-off plan. For three weeks, gradually increase your workload at your activity of choice. Do more sets, reps, and weight if you’re into strength training; more distance or speed if you’re a cyclist or runner; more height, speed or difficulty if you’re a climber. Then ease off for a week and come back to focus on a slightly different microgoal.

POWER Vertical Jump (inches)

e Ag

16

e Ag

4

~3 9

0~ 49

~3 9

10 :0 8 9: 10

9: 47 11 :0 9

19

0~ 49

4

19.5

5 :2 12

67.6

0 e3 Ag

~3 9

22

0 e3 Ag

0 e3 Ag

57

11 :5 8

25 22 57

0~ 49

51

Ag e2

26.5 21

46.1 52

8 :0 12 :27 10

66.4

17

9 ~5 50

14 24

Ag e

20.5

29 0~

31 9: 8 :3 10

46 58

Ag

3 :3 14

80

29 0~

9 ~5 50

9 ~5 50

56

Ag e2

Ag

ENDURANCE 2.5-km Run (minutes)

e

29 0~

e

Ag e2

SPEED 300m Run (seconds)

“If you’re a runner, you might plan a block where you do hills, another where you do speed or track work, and another where you work on endurance,” says Matt Dixon, a former pro triathlete and the founder of purplepatchfitness.com. “Even that simple change of stimulus will yield bigger results than just working randomly,” he says. Reams of research have shown that one approach worth most guys’ time is high-intensity interval training, or HIIT. This involves multiple short bursts of superintense exercise (like eight rounds of 30-second bike sprints) separated by periods of low-intensity movement or rest (like 90 seconds of easy spinning). HIIT has many advantages over steadystate cardio. The workouts are short and adaptable, challenging both your aerobic and anaerobic energy systems and burning fat more effectively. Plus, most guys think they’re more fun. In a 2011 study, three 20-minute HIIT workouts a week measurably improved participants’ body composition, metabolism and cardio fitness. The one downside? You might work too hard, too fast – especially if you choose a high-impact exercise, like sprinting. Avoid exhaustion and injury by doing bodyweight exercises only once a week. Squats, push-ups and step-ups work well – 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off for each, followed by a 2-minute rest, for 5 to 10 rounds. Try 50-metre swim sprints on another day (10 reps, resting for as long as it takes to complete 1 rep). Another day you could do hill sprints on a grassy surface (do 10 and then walk down the hill to recover). Bored or excessively sore? Just abbreviate your work periods, or do mobility exercises during your rest time.

13 :0 5

Having a high vertical jump indicates that your Type II muscles are in working order.

50

HIIT Your Target

e Ag

4

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 89


5

Two years ago, John Short, a 60-year-old professor at Cal State Fullerton, was a chronic overexerter. He’d play 90 holes of golf over a weekend, jump into pick-up basketball games, and power through sets of burpees – with an 18-kg vest – just to see if he could do it. Sometime between his umpteenth acupuncture treatment and anti-inflammatory injection, Short got wise. “When you’re in your late 50s, you have to walk a fine line between pushing enough and pushing too far,” he says. He dropped the weighted burpees, hooked up with a trainer, and replaced running with rucking – walking with a weighted pack. He’s currently gunning for an injury-free, top 10 finish in a Spartan race. He’s training smarter. “So many guys my age get hurt and pack it in,” Short says. The answer isn’t to give up altogether; it’s to adjust your routine. Exercise is dose-dependent medicine – your body thrives on just enough of it. “Beyond a certain point, there is actually net harm from extreme exertion,” says Dr Katz. 90 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

Dial It Back How do you find the sweet spot? Make sure your workout feels like work. Lifting to “volitional fatigue,” the point at which you can’t do any more reps while maintaining good form, is a more significant factor in determining muscle growth than weight lifted or reps performed, a new study reveals. “As long as you work to fatigue, it doesn’t matter whether you’re lifting 55kg 25 times or 110kg eight times,” says study author Stuart Phillips, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster University. Hard work leads to progress, regardless of the load lifted. To determine when you’ve reached your limit on a workout or activity, try the toe-touch test: before your workout and between sets (or sprints or rounds of golf or sets of tennis), bend forward and reach for your toes. “If the movement you’re performing agrees with you, you’ll find that your range of motion will increase,” says David Dellanave, a Philadelphia strength coach. Feeling looser and being able to reach further means your body is green-lighting that exercise. If, on the other hand, you get tighter (you can’t bend forward as far), then adjust, move on to a new exercise or towel off and head home.

Skipping a set or two in a planned workout sounds heretical to some hardcore gymgoers. Dellanave disagrees: “Unless you’re a competitive athlete, there’s no need to do any particular exercise in a training session,” he says. YOUR MISSION, THEN, IS TO PUT THESE

rules together to figure out your perfect training plan. It starts with doing things consistently (Pillar 2). Fine-tune with Pillar 4. Choose a range of activities in a variety of intensities: two or three days of higherintensity activities (sprints, heavy lifting, climbing or body-weight strength circuits) coupled with another two or three days of easier stuff, like hiking, jogging or cycling. Track a few metrics, such as distance covered, weight lifted and reps completed so you know when you’re getting better (as per Pillars 1 and 3), and use those stats to determine if you should go hard or go home (Pillar 5). Finally, whenever and however you can, whether it’s part of a formal workout or not, just move. Play touch rugby with friends, soccer with your kids, make like a ninja on monkey bars. “Pick something you like and go for it,” says Stewart. “If you don’t have a smile on your face when you’re working out, you’re doing something wrong.”


kout r o w “It’s amproves that iphysical s yourty and test abili mental .” your ude daily fortit

guy Coverel Snyman c M a r r o s s F it uses Cmain a s h i s ng met ho d traini


W E N A SS A L C N A M F O 1 T raining t y r e v e t n ho wa er for the best w n e m r o f ssions ise time and train e s d e s i l a . i n isatio ck ’n mix of spec own to the prec adventure. m o t s u c f o ge ss class: a pi f favourites, d r new fitness a e h t o t e Welcomhe era of the fitne . This is our list o ins. Long live you This is te a new adventure plenty of fresh ga day to b o free rucksack – return. N lay By Arthur J

tographs ones | Pho

by Garreth

Barc

JOIN A GLOBAL FITNESS TRIBE

CROSSFIT

TWO TOP TRENDS FOR 2017 Cover guy Marcel Snyman suggests: 1. USE TECH “Access to wearable fitness tech is better than ever, and a few medical aids even provide you points for using them. Add apps to your routine, whether it’s to track your diet, steps, or remind you to hydrate. I’m using them to help make 2017 my fittest year yet.” 2. LIVESTREAM CLASSES AND ADVICE “You can now access live feeds to training classes or even book a personal trainer to fit your schedule. You can join virtual spinning classes hosted by Tour de France racers, or get training programmes from top sportsmen – all through your phone, tablet or laptop.”

Cover guy Marcel Snyman trains at Cape CrossFit (CapeCrossFit.com), and is living proof of what this training – and its tight community – can do for you. He’s reshaped his body, but most importantly, he performs better and enjoys every session. “It has allowed my body to react rapidly to the changes in my work. Go heavier, gain muscle. Go faster, lose fat. I try and strike a balance where I don’t become too heavy and can’t move fast, but also don’t become too lean that I can’t handle heavier weight loads.” At the time of writing, there are 135 official affiliate boxes around SA. Visit map.CrossFit.com to find them.


02/

Build Bodyguard Muscle TACFIT

This is a training plan that was created for soldiers, policeman and bodyguards. Accordingly, it focuses on movement and efficiency, and builds practical, realworld strength. It also uses some excellent training tools like clubbells. TACFIT South African Legion 083 412 5939

03/

Recruit a Faster Crew NEW-AGE RUNNING CLUBS

Parkrun started the new wave of community running with their free weekly 5km time trial sessions (Parkrun.co.za), but now there are plenty of urban-based options created by running brands for short course routes through concrete and tarmac, and some offer unique races, official pacers, product try-outs, and warm-up and warm-down stretches. A/ Nike+ Run Club Nike.com/za B/ Adidas RunYourCrew.com C/ PUMA Trac and Community Global.puma.com/en/pumatrac

5

04/

Raise the Bar CALISTHENICS

It’s still one of the fastest growing trends, and you can train almost anywhere (and even save yourself some gym costs). Visit any park or jungle gym, and you’ll find one of these ripped practitioners. Check out our Bodyweight Training poster, and the three calisthenics challenges. Here are three Instagram feeds to follow for highquality instruction:

HARNESS THE SWEET SCIENCE

BOXING

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is the fastest growing martial arts training, but there’s still plenty of fitness and strength benefits to be gained from traditional pugilism (and there’s no reason why you can’t add both to your training routine). This classic sport rewards a good strength-to-bodyweight ratio, so you’ll be building explosive speed and strength while dropping body fat. It’s also arguably one of the best stress-relieving activities on the planet.

THE ONE TOOL ANSWER PARALLETTES Invest in one of these (or build your own with PVC pipes) to train at home. Father Parallettes R439 Battlefitequip.co.za

94 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

ADIDAS TECH FIT SHORTS

A/ @Progressive_Calisthenics Kenneth Gallarzo is Vice President of the World Calisthenics Organisation and cocreator of Battle of the Bars. He’s a master of calisthenics, and a great teacher. B/ @MikeGBT Mike Fitch, founder of BodyweightAthlete.com and Animal Flow, is a fantastic resource for bodyweight and calisthenic training. C/ @al_kavadlo Al Kavadlo is a trainer, author of Street Workout, and an excellent teacher for beginners.

A/ FightFitMilitia.co.za (Joburg) B/ ArmouryBoxing.com (Cape Town) C/ RingsideBoxing.co.za (Ballito)


06/

Target Your Trunk PIL ATES

Most men think it’s reserved for women, but Pilates is a potent way to build core strength, fix back issues, and instantly walk taller by correcting your posture. It’s also being adapted and woven into other disciplines to provide crossover appeal. A/ CoreFitCentre.co.za (Cape Town) B/ PilatesInfo.co.za Has a Pilates instructor directory for studios across South Africa.

07/

Get Three Times the Cardio Benefits

08/

Go Amphibian TORPEDO SWIMRUN

It’s a brand new format of racing that hugs the coastline of Cape Town from Sandy Bay to Clifton, and looks set to spread to other coastlines around the country. You wear a wetsuit and running shoes, and then swim and run your way from start to the finish, covering over 16km (3km of swimming, 13km of boulder-hopping and running sections). It’s a full-body training adventure that also builds a potent cardio engine. TorpedoSwimRun.com

09/

Make the City Your Jungle Gym PARKOUR

Granted, there are plenty of fail videos on the web that show what can go wrong here, but if you join the right groups, listen to the right instructors, and keep a healthy respect for not wanting to faceplant on concrete – then parkour can offer plenty of health and fitness benefits. Visit this site for a map of all the coaches and groups across the country. Parkour.co.za

HURLE Y T-SHIRT, RVCA PATROL SHORTS, UNDER ARMOUR CHARGED BANDIT 2 TR AINERS

TRIATHLON

Triathlon training is currently going through a revolution thanks to the injection of new races across a number of race categories. Choose your distance (sprint, Olympic, half-Ironman, Ironman), and decide if you want to stick to the road or hit the trail. We recommend the Xterra series: it offers dam swims, MTB rides and trail runs across the country. Stillwatersports.co.za

DESTROY BOREDOM AND PLATEAUS FITKEY

You don’t need to be locked into a year-long contract at one gym – this smart app service allows you to try different classes across the country from R595 a month – from Pilates and CrossFit through to bootcamp, yoga and more. It’s like Tinder for training – it hooks up with fitness dates so you can find your true love. Fitkey.co.za

FA S T FA C T

CHANGING Y O U R W O R KOU T E V E RY 14 DAY S M A K E S YOU MOR E L I K E LY T O K E E P I T U P.

Source: University of Florida

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 95


12/

Reach for Rock-Hard Muscle INDOOR CLIMBING & BOULDERING

Like gymnastics, this kind of training is a fullbody muscle builder, and it helps you to shed fat and improve your mobility and stability. It’s a triple threat, and a lot of fun. A/ CityRock.co.za (Joburg and Cape Town) B/ WonderWall.co.za (Pretoria) C/ SRockGym.co.za (Durban) THE ONE-TOOL ANSWER GRIP TRAINING BOARD Build fearsome arm and grip strength at home. Metolius Wooden Training Board R1 285 MountainMailorder.co.za

13/

Train Like a British Soldier BRITISH MILITARY FITNESS

Forget the lone wolf training, here you’ll be paired up or put into groups, and you’ll work through high-paced bodyweight circuits while getting coached by high-energy instructors. No excuses. BritMilfit.co.za

ROMWOD

Most men don’t like yoga, but it’s exactly what most men need. ROMWOD is a digital app and training feed that offers yoga moves for lifters, CrossFitters and anyone else who wants to move better and increase their range of movement. It’s a relatively inexpensive, subscriptionbased model, and you’ll definitely get results if you put in the work. If you still need more hands-on help, try one of these yoga providers.

A/ Yogazone.co.za (Cape Town) B/ TreeNatural.co.za (Umhlanga) C/ YogaWarrior.co.za (Joburg) Feeling adventurous? Try SUP Yoga (yogaworks.co.za or SUPyogacpt.com)

Collect Gymnastic Gains GYMNASTICS

FA S T FA C T

YOGA CA N BOOST YOU R IMMUNE S Y S T E M AT THE CELLULAR LEVEL THROUGH CHANGES IN GENE EXPRESSION.

Source: PLoSOne

There’s a simple reason why gymnasts (and calisthenics practitioners) are so jacked: they’ve mastered their bodyweight, and are able to apply their strength in a complete range of movement. They’re not just about curling a weight from thigh to chest, they can hold iron crosses and do strict muscle-ups with ease (not to mention back-flips and somersaults). You can start at home by simply investing in a set of rings. Then, follow these Instagram coaches below for some help. If you want some more-on-one instruction, call the South African Gymnastic Federation to find your nearest gym or club. Tel 021 674 2377 A/ @gymnasticbodies Christopher Sommer is a US team coach with 20 years’ experience. B/ @falsegrip False Grip Training is run by two former competitive Australian gymnasts, Tori Hand and Dan Arnold. C/ @CFGymnastics The official CrossFit feed for gymnastic training. THE ONE TOOL ANSWER GYMNASTIC RINGS Invest in these plastic or wooden rings to become a ripped gymnast at home. Plastic Rings R530 RebelStore.co.za

96 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

RVCA PATROL SHORTS, UNDER ARMOUR SPEEDFORM GEMINI 2 TR AINERS

RVCA COMPRESSION TIGHTS, ASICS FUZE-X TR AINERS

11

FIX YOUR MOVEMENT

14/


15

BUILD MUSCLE BY BEATING OBSTACLES

OBSTACLE RACE TRAINING

There are now a number of good obstacle races in the country (The Warrior Race, Impi Challenge, The Grind, The Beast), and that mean there are plenty of reasons why you should be making yourself muddy, sweaty and tired and challenging yourself with tough obstacles. It’s the perfect mix of cardio conditioning (trail running) and bodyweight moves (pulling, climbing, crawling, jumping and more). The best part: we’ve partnered with Trevor Lagerwey, head coach at Fitstrong (Fitstrong. co.za) and elite obstacle racer, and he has created a video workout series to help you get ready for any obstacle race (or make you faster). Watch the videos at mh.co.za/fitness


16/

Earn V-Shaped Gains THE NEW WAVE OF TRAINING

There is no stress on your joints, and because water is 800 times denser than air, it provides plenty of muscle-building resistance. This doesn’t have to just mean hundreds of boring laps. Famous watermen like Kelly Slater and Laird Hamilton use underwater weighted walks to build strength, lung capacity and overall fitness. Cover guy Marcel also uses swimming: “It’s the most naturally available workout tool. I get into the water almost every weekend: swimming, scuba diving, paddling or surfing. Not only is it fun, it’s also one of the best recovery tools.” A/ Waterman Fit Hayden Holmes has created an aquatic centre of excellence in Cape St Francis, offering state-of-the-art water training equipment and muscle-building workouts that include exercises in and out the water. LiquidlinesUnsalted.co.za B/ Speedo Fit Download the free programme (and three different level options) created by Olympian swimmers. Speedo.co.za C/ Chad le Clos Swim Academy Check out his new elite Cape Town Swimming Academy at Jan Van Riebeek school. Chadleclos.com

18

FIND THE BEST FORMULA

17/

Embrace the Suck UPGRADE YOUR INDOOR CYCLING

A/ The Hurt Box Intense 90 minutes class of climbs, sprints and attack moves on hightech Watt bikes, all paired with a big screen experience. ConceptStudio.co.za B/ The Sufferfest Subscribe to this service, and you can download 34 high-res videos that you watch while pairing to your smart trainer, power meter and heart-rate strap. It’s a virtual experience, but with real sweat and gains. TheSufferfest.com C/ Cyclezone Tailored power sessions will upgrade your cycling performance with the latest science and tech. You will be tested, fitted properly to your bike, and then have all your data constantly monitored and fed to you. CycleZone.co.za 98 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

ASICS R ACE VEST, ADIDAS TR AINING TECH FIT TIGHTS, ADIDAS CR A Z Y LIGHT TR AINING SHOES

Spin sessions have come a long way. Forget the old, clapped out bikes and generic approaches, now each session is tailored to your ability, and you get high-res imagery, constant data feeds and special power-measuring bikes. If you’re training at home, you can even use apps like Zwift to digitally race against other people around in the world in a high res game and virtual Tour de World. Time to get more performance (and fun) out of every two wheeled training session.

HYBRID GYMS

To become the best version of yourself, you need to harness proven old school training strategies, like weightlifting and interval training, combine them with proven science, and then finish off with a huge dose of mental grit. These gyms put performance first, and the side effects of that are major muscle gain, fat loss and drastically improved fitness. A/ RoarkGyms.com (Cape Town and Joburg) B/ OTGAthletic.co.za (Umhlanga) C/ HUBAFitness.co.za (Cape Town) D/ YardAthletic.com (Joburg)


19/

Master New Martial Arts K RAV MAGA, KUNG-FU AND BRAZILIAN JIU-JITSU

A/ Krav Maga An Israeli self-defense system that offers plenty of fitness benefits. TrueKrav. co (Cape Town) Kravsa.co.za (Joburg) LearnKrav-Maga.co.za (Knysna) B/ Kung-Fu An ancient martial art that provides self-defence skills, but also focuses on holistic health. Kung-Fu.co.za (Joburg, Cape Town and Durban). C/ Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Now massively popular around the world thanks to the rise of MMA, this potent martial arts training method will provide combat skills and get you in the best shape of your life. Find a gym close to you at BJJSA.co.za

20/

Build New Muscle with Classic Lifts POWERLIFTING

Powerlifting focuses purely on three compound lifts – the bench press, squat and deadlift – and is very effective at building strength and power. Visit either PowerliftingSA.co.za or RhinoPowerlifting.com, and check out the coaches below: A/ Joshua Capazorio is a strength and conditioning coach and national powerlifter and Olympic weightlifter. YardAthletic.com B/ Lil Bianchi As an owner and coach at OTG Athletic, the former World Powerlifting Champion is a Deadlift Record holder. OTGAthletic.co.za

21/

22

TURN UP THE VOLUME & INTENSITY

HIIT GROUP CLASSES

Join a New Crew INDOOR AND OUTDOOR ROWING

L O C AT I O N H U B A F I T N E S S . C O . Z A

UNDER ARMOUR HE ATGE AR COMPRESSION CORESHORTS, UNDER ARMOUR SPEEDFORM GEMINI 2 TR AINERS

Remember when karate and judo were the only martial arts on the menu? Variety is the new normal – and each newcomer brings its own set of methods and benefits. These ancient skills are for more than self-defense: they’ll shred fat, and get you fitter too.

No longer just the tool of sinewy rowers and Olympians, this full-body torture tool has never been more popular, thanks to its resurgence in everything from CrossFit and its own trendy class in New York (called RowFIT). Find the closest club at RowSA.co.za/venues – or invest:

Workouts don’t have to be boring. Get more out of each session by joining one of these high-paced workouts that incorporate DJ’s, the best equipment, customised training areas, and charismatic instructors to push you harder. You’ll become leaner, stronger and fitter – and you’ll have fun doing it.

A/ Sweat1000.com (Cape Town) B/ SwitchPlayground.com (CPT and JHB) C/ ArenaWellness.co.za (Rivonia)

FA S T FA C T

THE KOHLER E F F E C T: PEOPLE TRAIN HARDER, LONGER AND BETTER IN GROUPS.

Source: Professor Otto Kohler

THE ONE-TOOL ANSWER CONCEPT2 ROWER Build muscle and a potent cardio engine at home. Concept2 Rower Model D PM5 R15 500 RebelStore.co.za

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 99


     

   


                                    

      


CARLKNEWHE HAD A PROBLEM. IT WAS AS OBVIOUS AS THE CRUD-CAKED PLATES PILED LIKE THE LEANING TOWER OF PISA IN

his kitchen sink – three hours after the bachelor had promised himself he’d get down to business and start scrubbing. At varsity, Carl would blow deadlines and pull all-nighters cramming for tests he’d known about for weeks. Later, as he settled into the life of a working guy, he would feel a growing dread every spring as the date to file his income taxes loomed closer. He’d delay and delay until finally he’d either panic-file at midnight or request an extension, cursing himself for the penalties and interest he might accrue. And then there were the bills. He’d open a couple, vaguely note the due dates, and vow to take care of them on time. But inevitably he’d receive late notices and toss them into a pile with the other unopened mail, knowing that the longer he waited, the harsher his creditors would be. It was nuts, all of it. I have the money, he’d scold himself. And in the end he’d always pay. Why couldn’t he just take a few minutes and spare himself the needless torment? “Each day I put it off, the stress would grow a little more,” says Carl. “Eventually there was this constant, pervasive sense of urgency, and even danger, lurking in the back of my mind.” On the spectrum of stallers, Carl is on the extreme end. But even the most punctual among us, when faced with one of life’s uphill grades, occasionally slip into idle – from the Christmas Eve panic shopper to the Sunday snoozer with the Serengeti lawn. “The tendency to delay or postpone may be one of our most basic, universal human behaviours,” says Joseph Ferrari, a professor of psychology at DePaul University. It’s also one of our oldest human traits. “Do not put your work off till tomorrow and the day after,” the Greek poet Hesiod fingerwagged back in 700 B.C. Ben Franklin singled out “to perform without fail what you resolve” as one of his 13 virtues. And while no evidence exists to prove it, it’s no stretch to picture the first caveman crawling back under his saber-toothed tiger pelt at the thought of painting yet another hunting scene on the walls of his cave. There’s even a patron saint – St. Expeditus – for procrastinators. For some, like Carl, the prayers are needed. Facing an unpleasant task of any kind turns into a psychological cage match against a monster of their own making. And recently, scientists have learned that the consequences of these battles may go beyond sleepless nights and self-flagellation. A growing body of research now links chronic postponement with a higher susceptibility to headaches, gastric problems, migraines, colds and flu, among other maladies. That alone might be enough to spur some TICK, TICK, TICKER... Never mind the red procrastinators into action. wire: to defuse this Add to all of that a finding from earlier this year: chronic procrastination time bomb, cut the may be deadly. procrastinating.

Fuschia Sirois, a researcher at the University of Sheffield in the UK, discovered that for each point people scored on a widely used procrastination scale, their chances of having hypertension and heart disease increased by more than 60%. That makes this stressor as potentially lethal as a pack-a-day cigarette habit: daily smokers also have a 60% higher risk of heart disease than people who never smoked, according to Canadian research. “The findings are significant,” says Sirois, who was teaching at Bishop’s University in Quebec when the study was conducted. “We need to start thinking of the tendency to procrastinate as something that may increase your risk of developing a potentially life-threatening health condition.” That this particular form of stress would rise above all others in its toxicity was something researchers had long suspected. “It makes sense,” says Ferrari, who’s published many groundbreaking studies and books on procrastination. “It’s already been shown to cause all kinds of other health problems.” Given the type of unrelenting, adrenalinespiking pressure that’s the hallmark of procrastination, he adds, the heart would almost have to be particularly vulnerable. Still, people tend to either make light of the behaviour or dismiss it outright as a character flaw. “People will say, ‘It’s just procrastination. Everyone does it. It’s not a big deal.’ And that’s true, though occasionally it isn’t,” says Sirois. “When it’s a characteristic way of approaching things in life, these findings suggest that it’s more than just a bother. It can be dangerous.” That distinction – between the occasional dawdle and wholesale, chronic delay across numerous aspects of life – is the key factor in determining who is vulnerable. “Everyone procrastinates, but not everyone is a procrastinator,” explains Ferrari. The worst offenders – roughly a quarter of the population (and slightly more men than women) – have made it their lifestyle. For their health to be at risk, procrastinators must also perceive the avoided task as significant and be aware that there will be negative consequences, Sirois says. It’s like the alcoholic contemplating just one drink: “You know it’s bad. You know you shouldn’t, but you do it anyway. There is a distinct feeling of acting against your own will,” she says.

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 103


THE PAPER – AN ESSAY ON CHAUCER – WAS YOUR BASIC KNOCK-IT-OUT 10-PAGER,

with a three-month heads-up to boot. To Sam Harrison, however, it might as well have been a four-volume exegesis on The Canterbury Tales. So the Bishop’s University liberal arts major did what he usually does with things he’d rather not face: he locked it deep in a corner of his brain to be dealt with later. And there it lurked. For weeks. So in this case, “later” was 10:30 pm the night before the paper was due. Panic, which he’d mostly managed to keep out of his consciousness, grabbed him and shook. “I was so stressed that I almost made myself puke that night,” recalls Harrison, 23, a participant in Sirois’s latest research. “I binged on junk food. I took this weird stress shower. I just needed to feel some hot water on me,” he says, marveling at his own agita. As morning dawned, he drifted off. He jerked awake at 9 am with his head throbbing, his chest thudding, the doomsday clock ticking in his brain. Harrison made the deadline. His mark? Bad, although after learning of Sirois’s findings, he should have been more worried that his heart would fail him. RESEARCHERS HAVE SPENT MORE THAN A HALF CENTURY WATCHING, RECORDING,

and quantifying how we poison ourselves with worry. In 1984, the Whitehall Study, which assessed mortality among British male civil servants over years, linked stress to possible cardiovascular damage. In the three decades since, so much research has reinforced the link between anxiety and cardiovascular calamity that the author of a 2008 review highlighted the 40 000 citations on PubMed, the online research database maintained by the National Institutes of Health. The trigger for stress can be anything from a car cutting you off on the highway to a dog lunging at you during a walk. The bullet is the biochemical chaos that follows, starting in the amygdala and then moving to the hypothalamus, the part of your brain in charge of releasing hormones. That tiny chunk at the base of your skull then signals your adrenal glands to send a surge of adrenaline and cortisol coursing through your system. The results are as predictable as they are damaging: racing heart rate, soaring blood pressure, narrowing veins, and juddering heart rhythms that when repeated again and again exact a heavy toll on nearly all aspects of your cardiovascular health. It’s like a personal trainer who’s out to kill you. In designing her landmark study, Sirois combined the enormous body of literature on unrelenting tension and its effects on heart health with her own observations. “One of the things I found in the past 10 years was that procrastinators have consistently higher stress levels,” she says. “I also knew that this was partly because they employ ineffective coping strategies.” Sirois divided nearly 1 000 volunteers into two groups – those who were physically healthy and those who reported heart problems – and then used a questionnaire to assess their proclivity for procrastination. The volunteers were presented with 20 statements – such as “In preparing for deadlines, I often waste time by doing other things” – and asked to rank them on a scale of 1 (not true of me) to 5 (very true). When Sirois analysed the study data, the link came into devastatingly sharp relief: the volunteers who tested high for delaying their way through life were much more likely to come from the group with heart problems. It made sense. “Imagine you have a stressor. Now you beat yourself up and you stress even more – and the last thing you want to do is deal with that stress, so you walk away

Stop Stalling! Ask yourself these five questions to find out if your slacker habits are putting you in harm’s way.

104 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

PEOPLE SAY, ‘IT’S JUST PROCRASTINATION. IT’S NOT A BIG DEAL.’ BUT IT CAN BE DANGEROUS.” from it. That means it’s going to continue and the stress is going to go up and up.” And that’s when your heart takes a beating. The dynamic begins the moment the procrastinator decides to put something off. From there, a subconscious but corrosive stress goes to work. The deadline may be months away, and he may have managed to bury the reality that it must one day be faced. But on some level it smolders. As time passes and the deadline looms ever larger, fissures open in the walls of denial. Patching the cracks requires more and more time and energy, compounding the stress. He may experience panic spikes – and with them, heart-punishing floods of adrenaline and cortisol. Forcing the inevitable back into its mental hiding place takes even more psychic effort and is less successful. That, says Sirois, “can lead to even more fluctuations and wear and tear on the cardiovascular system.” Finally, the dreaded event arrives, the stress crests, and the battle ends. But the damage is done. There’s also a more indirect danger. Sometimes the procrastination is so pervasive that it not only leads to disease but also interferes with a timely diagnosis and treatment. Checkups are either postponed or simply never scheduled. Sufferers note their symptoms – “Was that a chest twinge again?” – and then add them to a mental to-do list that never includes a deadline. They file away, and forget, lifesaving diagnostic tests that everyone should undergo at certain ages, such as colonoscopies.

1/ Your ideal bedtime is 10:30. When do you hit the sack? A B C

10:30 (+0) 11:00 (+1) after midnight (+2)

2/ How do you choose a restaurant to dine with friends? A B

C

Regularly delaying your bedtime is linked to self-regulation problems, a hallmark of chronic procrastination, according to recent Dutch research. It’s not that snoozing is unappealing; it’s just that procrastinators may have a hard time quitting activities in the moment.

A new place (+0) Narrow it down, then ask others for opinions (+1) I’m happy going wherever (+2)

Indecisiveness is a key trait of chronic procrastinators. “They don’t want to fail,” says Joseph Ferrari, a psychology professor at DePaul University. “So they let someone else choose, and if it’s a bad outcome, the procrastinator can blame the other person.”


w At the root of such potentially catastrophic avoidance, says Sirois, is a simple yet primal force: fear – of the medical procedure, of what it will detect, and, ultimately, of dying. “When you’re dealing with an unpleasant stressor, what do you think procrastinators are going to do?” Sirois asks. “They’re just going to step away from it. The problem is that these coping strategies actually increase stress because they don’t do anything to deal with the situation they’re avoiding.”

HACK

YOUR

STRESS

SO IF WILLPOWER IS NO WEAPON AGAINST THE PROBLEM,

P H O T O G R A P H S G E T T Y/ G A L L O I M A G E S I L L U S T R AT I O N M I C H A E L B R A N D O N M Y E R S ( B E L O W ) , S E R G E S E I D L I T Z ( M A N W I T H D O G )

ONE BY ONE, THE STUDENTS ARRIVE AT SIROIS’S LAB, A

warren of offices tucked into a century-old red brick hall on the fringe of the Bishop’s University campus in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Every person there is an admitted procrastinator. They’ve been told that they’re participating in research that will measure their empathy. And that’s true... partly. The hidden objective is to see how they physically react to scenarios in which they’re asked to help a fellow procrastinator. The study, Sirois says, is designed to build on her previous research into the link between procrastination and heart health. First, she asks the students to fill out a questionnaire to determine how often they procrastinate. Then they’re hooked up to finger monitors, which record their pulse and galvanic skin response while they view scenarios flashed on a screen in front of them. In one, a young woman who is normally conscientious and punctual has let time slip away and now faces a deadline she can’t meet without help. In another, a person is in similar straits but is a notorious procrastinator who’s always in a jam. The results would seem to be a foregone conclusion. Surely the study participants would feel for the second person because of their shared struggle with procrastination. Instead, as it turns out, almost no one hates a procrastinator as much as another procrastinator. Those who were chronic procrastinators were less likely to want to help out, regardless of which scenario they were presented with. At first glance, this lack of tolerance might seem counterintuitive and even hypocritical. That’s until you consider a corollary: “Most procrastinators are also really hard on themselves,” Sirois says. Having established the behaviour as a kind of moral failing, she says, they apply the same harsh standards to others. That was certainly the case in a 2004 study by DePaul’s Ferrari in which 160 self-described procrastinators were asked to judge a peer who delayed academic or real-world activities. Across the board, the study participants gave their fellow sufferers lower character ratings.

3/ How does your office look right now? A

B C

A bit of paperwork on the desk, but nothing too crazy (+0) All sorted, labelled, filed (+1) A mess: pile-ups on physical and virtual desktops (+2)

Desktop sloppiness says you’re stressed about deciding which papers to dump. But according to Fuschia Sirois, of the University of Sheffield, England, being anal could mean you’re using organisation as an excuse to avoid doing what needs to be done.

BRING BOWSER TO W O R K

In a study from Virginia Commonwealth University, folks who brought their dogs to work reported feeling 11% less stressed at day’s end. If your workplace isn’t pet friendly, meet a close friend for lunch. According to study author Sandra Barker, congenial banter can be similarly uplifting.

B

C

what is? Forgiveness, according to results of a 2010 study by Tim Pychyl, a psychologist, and his colleague Michael Wohl. In their experiment, Pychyl and Wohl asked students preparing for an exam to choose from three statements: “I put off studying until the last minute,” “I delayed preparing for the exam by doing other, less important things instead,” and “I began studying much later than I intended to.” Students who answered yes to any of the questions and who also admitted to doing poorly on the exam as a result were also asked how they felt about their procrastination. Those students not only procrastinated less on a second test but also had higher feelings of self-worth. And those who didn’t let themselves off the hook? They still felt bad and still fell back into problematic procrastination, the study found. “I figured it would be a case of ‘forgive and forget’ followed by more procrastination,” says Pychyl. But what he found instead was that absolution created a freeing effect that allowed the kinder-to-themselves students to focus on the exam “without the burden of past acts to hinder studying.” FOR CARL, LEARNING TO SILENCE THE SCOLD INSIDE

himself was a hard-won battle, waged in a psychologist’s office. “Therapy taught me to push back against that voice,” he says, “and to insist that my self-judgments be more realistic, including being more forgiving and more practical.” One of those solutions would seem almost laughable if it weren’t so effective. “I keep a stack of index cards,” he says. “And on each card I’ve written a one-word or two-word description of the task at hand. If it’s preparing for a conference in California, for example, I write ‘California conference’ and place that card face-up on my desk. I don’t flip it over and move on to something else until I’ve completed the task.” When he does find himself occasionally lapsing into old behaviours – and slamming himself about it – he reminds himself to take it easy and ask a couple of questions: what is it about this that’s making me want to avoid it? What’s the worst thing that could happen if I push through it? Once he’s done that, he says, he can see his old way for what it is: an irrational mindset that may seem to help in the moment but that’s really making his life hell – and possibly a lot shorter. The next step, he says, is easy. Just do it.

4/ You watch a favorite show. How long are you on Netflix? A

People can be very judgmental of others who have this problem, says Ferrari. He likens it to an all-too-common public perception of people who struggle with clinical depression or addiction. “People tend to say, ‘Just cheer up!’” he says. “The sufferers would love to but they can’t.”

Just for the one episode (+0) At least an hour or two – it’s hard to pull myself away (+1) The rest of the night (+2)

Delaying unpleasant tasks goes hand in hand with being sucked into mindless activities, says Sirois. A tendency to burn hours watching Homeland is an example of extreme escapism, which in all likelihood transfers to other areas of the binge-watcher’s life.

5/ Which statement best describes your outlook on life? A

B

I care more about getting ahead; I want to succeed (+0) I care more about getting along; I want people to like me (+2)

At its core, procrastination has a people-pleasing aspect to it, says Ferrari. “If you’re very concerned about what other people think of you, then you might accept – and then put off – projects you can’t really take on, because you want to make a good impression,” he says.

Your Score

0–3 4–6 7–10

Deadline Driven You probably haven’t dawdled a day in your life. Ease up and blow things off sometimes.

Borderline Tempted to stall? Commit to five minutes of work. Momentum can carry you.

Procrastinator Your delays may be deadly. Don’t blame yourself. Ask, “What do I need to get started?”

January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 105


THE COME–BACK KINGS P106 – JAN ‘17


BETTER PERSPECTIVE Injuries cost athletes time and money. Ryan Sandes has learnt how to injury-proof his career.

Do what you love often enough, hard enough, and you’re bound to break down. Pro athletes Ryan Sandes, Wade Young and Matt Trautman all suffered serious injuries – and never lost their love of competing. Here’s what it takes to come back stronger than ever BY JAZZ KUSCHKE PHOTOGRAPHS BY SACHA WALDMAN AND SEAN LAURENZ


N N O O N E H A S M O R E M E N T A L G R I T T H A N R YA N S A N D E S .

Ultra-trail running requires the kind of stubborness most of us would call obsession – like a dog with a bone, he just keeps coming back for more. On the back of a massive 2014, where he ran the La Transgrancanaria 125km, set a new Drakensberg Grand Traverse record of 41 hours, then took on the Mount Fuji 100-miler and even tackled Western States, the world’s oldest and, most prestigious 100-mile race, the 34-year-old was laid low by glandular fever. All that running left him too run down to fight it off, and it lingered in his system that he wasn’t able to finish some pretty big races. “I didn’t finish Transvulcania, in the Canary Islands, but I wasn’t too fazed because Western States was always my focus,” he says. “Then I got sick just before the race, in June. Obviously I was super bummed, but maybe a day or two after that I decided to put all those months training and effort into Ultra Trail Mont Blanc instead.” Ultra-Trail Mont Blanc is the most prestigious trail race in the world. Starting and finishing in the tiny town of Chamonix, it swarms with runners, supporters and crew. If you rock up with an immune system that’s not as its strongest, picking up a bug is easy: “I tried to be super-vigilant and washed my hands all the time and didn’t shake too many peoples’ hands,” Sandes says, “but I still went down with a severe stomach bug.” Forced to also pull out, this was the final straw that signalled the end of his 2015 season. “My system was just very fatigued. All the tests showed I still had glandular fever in my system, and though, it was super low after UTMB, my white blood cell count was still really low,” Sandes says. “Technically the bug was out of my system, but its effects can linger,” he says. He returned home with a deep need to get away from it all. So he went to the Drakensberg to run just for the love of it. “I was pretty unmotivated, but the Drakensberg got me psyched again. I was there with Ryno Griesel, who probably understands the ultra-running game better than most, and he was just so amped on being out there and running. That rubbed off on me. In the end it was cool to just escape and get some perspective,” he says.

DON’T GET RUN DOWN “The most crucial part of making a comeback from injury: an athlete needs to understand why it happened in the first place,” says Dr Lawrence van Lingen, the coaching guru behind Innerunner and Ryan Sandes. “There are very few coincidences. Ask yourself, what is the weak link that caused this particular injury?” 108 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

1. MAINTAIN GOOD FORM

“The human body is one of the greatest endurance animals and can outrun and outlast almost all other animals in a distance footrace,” says Van Lingen. “But we are too often let down by poor form when we become fatigued.” “Poor form results in the bones, joints, muscle and tendons being used in an improper way. Over time, injury becomes inevitable,” he says.

Have fun. If y you don’t love what you do, it’ll y always y be just j another job. Sandes and Griesel spent a week running free, without a set training schedule or any kind of goals. “We would run a route and when we got tired, we would just turn around and head back,” Sandes says. “That was exactly what I needed.” Slowly, his love for running returned. The lesson in all of this? “Having fun is everything. If you don’t love what you do, it’ll always be just another job,” says Sandes. “If you have to wake up at six in the morning to go run every day, and it’s adding to your already stressful life, I would say stuff it. Rather sleep in, run once or twice a week and really enjoy it.” The proof he believes came later in the year at Grand Raid de la Réunion on Réunion Island, a.k.a. The Madmen’s Diagonal. “I was a lot more chilled,” he says. “I was focused on the actual process than on a specific goal. Get the process right and you’ll get results.” Sandes believes happiness is a crucial part of your overall performance. “Your body and mind is so connected that if you’re happy and really enjoying what you’re doing your body recovers better – and if you recover better then you can run harder.”

Van Lingen recommends you ask yourself: is my technique sound, am I strong enough to support my body and hold this good form, and is something restricting me or preventing me from running properly?’ Of these key factors, restriction is what most people overlook: even the world’s greatest runners. The key centres for full range of motion are the right big toe movement, ankle bend and hip

extension. Get those wrong, and you’ll never be injury-free. “Ryan Sandes’ running technique has changed incredibly over the last few years and almost all of his running form improvement has come from flexibility and strength gains. He’s now so much more efficient, and the wear and tear on his body is so much less, that his biggest injury concerns are falls or ankle sprains on the trail.”


His best advice for runners of all levels: “understand how the hours you spend sitting tightens up your joints and posture. You need a mobility routine for every day of your life. Think of it as brushing your teeth – you get best results if you do it twice a day. The key is to choose a simple routine that you’re willing to perform over the long term. I have had amazing results with athletes simply performing mountain climbers as a pre-work-

out mobility routine. Mountain climbers done daily over a period of a year or two can have an incredible impact on flexibility, strength and posture.” 2. BE MORE MOBILE

“You also need to become more body aware,” he says. “Learning to control your core and pelvis is probably the greatest gift any athlete can bestow upon themselves. I teach all my athletes how to find a

natural posture and then how to exercise off that neutral pelvis. This separates the good form days from the bad form days. That way, you become self-aware enough to realise that their movement is off, and how to resolve it. This translates into athletes who will only run hard or long when they’re moving well. Fatigue, pain and restriction are the enemy of form. Perfect practice brings perfect results.”

3. SLEEP

Sleep longer, and better. “The less you sleep, the less you respond to training and the more prone you are to illness,” says Van Lingen. He suggests at least eight hours in a dark room with no flashing lights or disruptive noises. “Try to cut out all blue or electronic light 90 minutes before bed time. If you are a pro athlete try to sleep until your eyes open naturally. That simple strategy transforms most athletes’ careers.”


M

M O T O C R O S S P H E N O M WA D E YO U N G S H A R E S A S I M I L A R S T O RY.

Wade has the dog g in him. You get people g p p who have that ability y to dig g deep. p They y just j don’t ever give up. 110 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

P H O T O G R A P H S B E R N A R D WA L S H , J O N AT H A N H E S S I O N A N D S T E V E W I L K I E

The 20-year-old from KwaZulu-Natal was looking good to take the win at Red Bull Sea to Sky in Turkey in October, but crashed heavily early on the final day, fracturing his wrist and elbow. This setback put the brakes on what had been his best season to date, which included winning the Hell’s Gate extreme enduro in Italy, a top 10 finish in the Red Bull Hare Scramble in Austria, as well as a podium place at Red Bull Romaniacs. Young quickly dealt with the blow, and started his recovery, working with Callie Hugo, a physiotherapist at the Sharks Medical Centre and orthopaedic surgeon Dr Will Heyns. Here’s what you can learn from his crash course in recovery. 1. Work on Everything Surrounding the Injury. “I worked with Callie to try and keep my muscles as loose as possible and to make sure the rest of my body conditioning didn’t deteriorate too much,” says Young. Hugo needed to increase the range in his elbow, using the neuromuscular patterns to prevent stiffness in the wrist and elbow and to help retain muscle. “We also worked on his core and hip stability to get him back on the bike,” says Hugo. It’s been tough for Young. “This is the longest period of time I’ve been off the bike, so I began to doubt myself a little bit – and that’s why I’m doing some extra work on the cycling and gym side, because obviously I’m not riding. But physically, I feel stronger.” 2. Stay Positive and Focus on Short-Term Goals. Doubt can wreak havoc on even the strongest mind during a recovery period. According to Young, the most important thing you can do, no matter the injury or how long the rehab road, is to stay positive. To help him do this, Young has relied on long-time coach and mentor Russel White. “Russ has been helping me a lot with the mental side of things,” Young says. “He’s been helping me through a lot of my professional journey. To have someone like that with me is crucial,” he says. “Wade has the dog in him,” says White. “You get people in life who have an ability to dig deeper than most. You know, they just don’t ever give up.”


WARRIOR MODE Wade Young didn’t let a broken wrist and elbow get in his way.


I

I N M I D -2 0 1 5, U LT R A- D I STA N C E T R I AT H L E T E M AT T T R AU T M A N

was descending a hairpin mountain pass in the Swiss Alps when a mechanical issue on his bike sent him over the handlebars. Considering the speed he was travelling at, walking away with a broken collarbone was a mercy. “The clavicle was broken clean in half,” explains the Pietermaritzburg-born Ironman. “Fortunately the Swiss surgeon had seen plenty of these injuries from skiers, climbers and bikers, and inserted an internal pin right into the bone.” Prognosis: six weeks for the bone to heal, then he could start resistance exercises again. The problem was not too bad in the scheme of a season – but his goal race for that year, the Ironman World Champs in Kona, was only three months away. Trautman had followed something of an extraordinary path to the upper echelons of the ultra-distance triathlon, evolving from whitewater kayaker through racing yacht skipper to pro athlete. Even though he had no control over his crash and injury, the most common injuries with endurance sport are overuse injuries, which can be caused by biomechanical issues, upping the workload too quickly, or by simply overtraining. “For me, the best way to recover from a hard race or workout is active recovery,” says Trautman, explaining how you need to get the blood flowing to help the body perform its own intricate healing process. “This would mean an easy bike ride after a race, the following day would be an easy swim and bike, before taking a rest day a few days later,” he says. “If you stop straight away, you’ll take a lot longer to recover. The same can be said for certain injuries – most of the time, if you keep moving with light exercise, it helps speed up the healing process.” To this end Trautman used aqua-jogging to stay in shape while injured. “I don’t mean the bobbing along with a flotation device. I mean putting on shoes and running in waist- to chest-deep water,” he says. “The water takes off some weight and the short stride and fast cadence technique you have to adopt is actually great for running technique work.” Trautman’s approach can work for you, too. Aside from grabbing your running shoes and taking to the kiddies’ pool of your local gym, there were two things Trautman was careful not to do during his recovery, under the guidance of legendary triathlon coach Brett “The Doc” Sutton – who has trained dozens of champion athletes. 1. Icing. There are no studies to show ice improves tissue regeneration or speeds the recovery process, says Sutton. Gary Reinl writes in his book Iced! The Illusionary Treatment Option that the use of ice may actually “delay recovery, increase swelling, cause additional damage, and it shuts off the signals that alert you to harmful movement.” 2. Stretching. Sutton points out that a recent British Journal of Sports Medicine study found that after 25 trials with over 26 000 participants, stretching had no beneficial impact in preventing sports injuries. “Athletes competing as sprinters or middle-distance runners need a certain range of motion, Sutton says. A sport like the triathlon, however, does not need extensive range of motion. Stretching could actually be creating injury opportunities that weren’t there in the first place,” he says.

112 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

Be p patient. Rushing g brings g its own issues. The proof is on the podium. Six weeks after his crash, Trautman raced Ironman 70.3 Budapest and finished third. He ran a 69-minute half marathon (a personal best and the quickest run of the day by some five minutes). Then he went on to win Ironman 70.3 Korea. He started 2016 strong, blitzing the 70.3 series by winning two races a week apart, one in Staffordshire UK and the other in Durban, both in course record times. Ironically, this steep success curve came at a cost. “On my return to camp in Switzerland I was doing a track session, and halfway through, my calf seized up. I was running in pain for about two weeks before I bit the bullet and went for an MRI,” Trautman explains. The scan revealed a stress fracture in the Talus bone in his foot. “Because all your weight goes through the Talus, there is not much you can do in terms of weight-bearing exercise without damaging the bone further,” he says. Trautman once again pressed the pause button and returned to SA to start the rehab process by getting back into the pool. “I started swimming after a couple of weeks with a plastic cast to keep the foot at 90-degrees, and with an ankle float and pull-buoy to stop me from kicking. That wasn’t serious strength work, but it helped keep a little bit of aerobic fitness and stopped me from getting too stir-crazy.” As part of the rehab when the cast was still on, Trautman also underwent infrared light therapy to help speed up the healing process, and electro muscle stimulation to help keep his calf muscle active. Once he was walking without crutches again, he started with leg activation exercises to get the neuromuscular coordination going and rebuild the atrophied muscle. “This is not a quick process, and rushing it can definitely lead to other issues. When I started running again, about seven weeks after the MRI, it was on an anti-gravity treadmill. I built up the resistance slowly over the next few weeks until I was running continuously at 90% of my bodyweight. Only then did I get back on the road.” Here’s what Trautman learnt from his second comeback in two years: 1. Identify the Injury. “If the pain/aggravation gets worse while you are running then be cautious. Quite often you might start a run stiff and tired from a previous session but then get into it as your body warms up. With a stress fracture the pain will increase as you run and is a sharp localised feeling. The next day it might feel fine again but then will get worse as you place more load on the bone. The best way to identify a stress fracture is with an MRI scan as an X-Ray might not pick up the problem.” 2. Take Your Time “If you have patience in your quest to become an endurance athlete, then the force will be with you.”


EYES ON THE PRIZE Matt Trautman’s secret to overcoming two injuries in two years: extreme focus.


THE NEW POWER FOOD FORMULA Combine the right ingredients and your meals become even more nutritious – and delicious. Try these smart matches Photographs by Gentl and Hyers

STEAK

+

GARLIC

+ ONIONS

Like you needed a reason to eat this stuff. Research suggests that garlic or onions may help your body absorb zinc and iron from grains; the benefit may extend to meat, which is loaded with these minerals. Zinc may bolster immunity and iron is crucial for muscle performance. To cook ’em, add the garlic and onions to a cold pan with some oil; then turn on the heat. That way, the garlic is less likely to burn. MUSCLE BOOSTER

IMMUNITY DEFENDER


ALMONDS + KEFIR

Think of kefir as a tart, bubbly yoghurt. If that sounds offputting, taste and learn: dump a slug into your next shake to give your gut a batch of beneficial probiotics. While you’re at it, add a handful of heart-healthy almonds. Preliminary findings suggest that the fibre in almond skins may act as a prebiotic. And prebiotics are known to feed probiotics, found in kefir. Both can keep your gut in balance so your body can fend off illness-causing bugs. IMMUNITY DEFENDER

AFTER YEARS OF RESEARCH,

new nutritional science is seeing the value in an old piece of advice: Don’t mess with Mother Nature. Take Vitamin E, found in spinach, almonds and broccoli. If you consume these and other E-rich foods regularly, you’re likely protecting your eyes and preventing cognitive problems. But what if you’re not eating enough healthy

foods? Enter the supplement companies. Pop your vitamin E in pill form and you’ll reap the rewards without having to masticate spinach, right? There’s one problem: new research shows that vitamin E, when isolated, may not have the same protective power. One recent study suggests that supplementing with E long-term can actually increase your risk of one type of

stroke. And it’s not just E, either. Experts are now questioning supplements like selenium, green tea extract and fish oil. There are smarter and tastier ways to make sure you get the nutrition you need. Certain foods gain superpowers when paired. Adding olive oil to tomatoes, for example, helps your body absorb the tomatoes’ antioxidants.

HEART PROTECTOR

“Our bodies are complex engines – and they require a complex fuelling strategy to run best,” says nutrition advisor Mike Roussell. “A variety of whole, healthy foods provides the best benefits.” Curious? Discover the power of real food in Eat for Extraordinary Health & Healing, published by MH parent company Rodale Inc. And try these six power combinations. January 2017 | MH.CO.ZA 115


Toppings can topple an otherwise healthy meal (example: greens smothered in ranch dressing). Turn to these add-ons for more taste without the caloric load. USE THIS

Citrus zest: lime, lemon, grapefruit, orange

ON THIS

Steamed seafood, pasta with olive oil, stir-fry

Fresh herbs: basil, thyme, chives, parsley

Roasted chicken, broiled fish, roasted vegetables

Sprouts: broccoli, mung bean

Turkey sandwiches, salads

Thinly sliced hot peppers

Omelettes, soups, chilli

116 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

WHOLE EGGS

+ SPINACH SALAD

Fat has benefits. Men in a Purdue study who ate a salad with three eggs took in nine times more carotenoids – antioxidants that can help your eyes – than those who didn’t have the eggs. A diet high in carotenoid-rich produce, like spinach, carrots and sweet potatoes, may reduce heart disease and some cancer risk. You need fat to take in these compounds; that’s where yolks come in. Don’t want eggs at every meal? Olive oil, avocado and nuts may work too. EYE SAVER

CANCER FIGHTER

HEART PROTECTOR

F O O D 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 P R O P S T Y L I N G AY E S H A PAT E L

Cut Calories. Not Flavour


SWEET POTATOES

+ CAYENNE PEPPER

Give sweet some heat. Researchers in India discovered that capsaicin, an ingredient in cayenne, increased absorption of the antioxidant beta-carotene, which your body can convert into sight-saving vitamin A. (It was a rodent study, but it counts.) Capsaicin is also the compound that lights the fire in hot peppers. For a new twist on a baked sweet potato, dust it with cayenne, squeeze over some lime juice and top it with fresh coriander. EYE SAVER


GRILLED ROSEMARY + CHICKEN

When you grill meat, potentially carcinogenic compounds called HCAs form in the muscle. Too much char and you may increase your cancer risk. Limit your exposure by adding rosemary to your marinade. Its antioxidants may prevent HCAs from building, a Kansas State study found. No need to get fancy; just mix the juice of one lemon, a glug of olive oil, the leaves from a sprig or two of rosemary, salt and pepper. Use on two chicken breasts. CANCER FIGHTER

When Foods Just Don’t Get Along Some consumable combos spark trouble, with effects that can leave you with a food hangover. Avoid these three dastardly duos. 118 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

Wings + Beer

White Bread + Jelly

Lentils + Red Wine

High-fat meals and alcohol just don’t mix. Your liver processes both fat and booze but tackles the alcohol first because it labels it a toxin. So the excess fat hangs out in your blood and can then settle in fat tissue. Plus, the fat slows digestion, leaving you feeling bloated and lethargic long after the game’s finished.

Eating a pair of simple carbs taxes your pancreas. First your blood sugar skyrockets, forcing your pancreas to secrete a high dose of insulin to recalibrate. Next you suffer the crash from that sugar high and you’re likely to end up exhausted and irritable. Instead, turn to the high fibre in whole grain bread and fruit.

When the compounds that give red wine its tartness, called tannins, mingle with the iron in foods like lentils, your body’s ability to absorb iron can be compromised. Vegetarian? Well, your body has a harder time absorbing iron from plants than from meat. If lentils are on the table, drink water.


GREEN TEA

+

LEMON

+

WHEAT TOAST

Ever eat a stack of pancakes with syrup in the morning and then crash later? That’s because a blood sugar high is often followed by a nap-inducing low. A Polish study suggests that you may blunt that midmorning drag if you sip green tea while you chew through your morning carbs. Also, researchers at Purdue say a squeeze of lemon may increase the disease-fighting polyphenols that are available for your body to absorb from the drink. DISEASE FIGHTER


CASUAL IS COOL BUT LET’S NOT GO TO PIECES ENTIRELY. STRIKE A BALANCE BETWEEN SMART AND CHILLED WITH A LIGHTWEIGHT JERSEY – IT’S NOT OVERLY FORMAL AND LOOKS GREAT WITH JEANS, SHORTS AND CHINOS. FLOATABLE SUNGL ASSES R2 500 LACOSTE AT MOSCON OPTICS LIGHT WEIGHT KNIT R499 H&M T YPE-C 3D SUPER SLIM JEANS R2 899 G-STAR RAW SNEAKERS R999 TRENERY

HEAT


WAVE / Fashion Editor Azeez Jacobs Photographs Nadia von Scotti / P.121

DON’T TREAD WATER. DIVE INTO YOUR NEW SUMMER WARDROBE AND MAKE A SPLASH ALL YEAR LONG


KEEP IT LIGHT A LINEN SHIRT TRANSITIONS FROM WORK TO PLAY WITH ZERO EFFORT. SEIZE THE DAY WITH SHORTS AND LOAFERS, THEN TAKE THIS LOOK INTO THE EARLY HOURS WITH A SMART PAIR OF JEANS. PARIS WATCH R2 850 HUGO BOSS AT BACHER & CO LINEN SHIRT R1 099 COUNTRY ROAD BELT R649 BEN SHERMAN SHORTS R749 MANGO MAN


IN THE SHADE LIGHTER JEANS ARE PERFECT FOR SUMMER WEATHER, BUT ON TOP, GO DARK: THE CONTRAST OF CHAMBRAY DENIM GIVES YOU A LAIDBACK, RUSTIC FEEL. SUNGL ASSES R4 186 TOM FORD AT SDM EYEWEAR CHAMBR AY SHIRT R899 TRENERY ULTR ALEGGERO WATCH R3 650 SCUDERIA FERRARI AT BACHER & CO BELT R229 H&M ANBASS JEANS R2 400 REPLAY GABRIELLE WEARS SHORTS R149 H&M


                     

                                                   

       

 


BURGUNDY BR ACELET R899 AND BROWN BR ACELET R1 099 BOTH FOSSIL AT FOSSIL ACCESSORIES DENIM JACKET R300 MR PRICE T-SHIRT R399 COUNTRY ROAD LONDON CHINOS R1 000 KINGSLEY HEATH SNEAKERS R1 999 LE COQ SPORTIF

M O D E L S C L I N T A N D G A B R I E L L E AT F U L L C I R C L E H A I R & M A K E U P M E R L E T I T U S AT I N F I D E L S FA S H I O N A S S I S TA N T N A D I A W I N D T

SET SAIL YOUR NUMBER ONE NEW YEAR RULE: TIE TOGETHER STYLE AND COMFORT WITH STRETCH DENIM.


MAKE IT RAIN BUSINESS CASUAL DOESN’T MEAN ALL BUSINESS – IN A SHARP BLAZER, PRINTED SHIRT, DARK JEANS AND SNEAKERS, YOU’LL BE STYLISH ENOUGH FOR ANY OCCASION. BL A ZER R2 199 BROOKSFIELD FIG PRINT SHIRT R1 500 SIMON CARTER NEW GENTLEMAN WATCH R890 SWATCH 501 JEANS R899 LEVI’S AT SPREE POCKET SQUARE R150 H&M PERSOL CALLIGR APHER SUNGL ASSES R3 190 SUNGLASS HUT GABRIELLE WEARS ONEPIECE R599 SISSY BOY

STOCKISTS ALDO 021 421 5674 BEN SHERMAN 021 425 8996 BACHER & CO 011 372 6000 BROOKSFIELD 021 461 0346 CLICKS 0860 254 257 COUNTRY ROAD 021 405 4300 DISCHEM

PHARMACY 0860 347 243 DERMALOGICA 021 418 0789 EDGARS 0860 692 274 FOSSIL 021 418 0045 G-STAR RAW 021 418 9000 H&M 021 826 7300 ISSA LEO 021 426 2757

KINGSLEY HEATH 0875 508 880 LUSH 021 418 4150 LE COQ SPORTIF 011 784 6334 MANGO MAN 011 555 2300 MR PRICE 0800 212 535 MOSCON OPTICS 011 483 8001 REPLAY

021 418 8507 SDM EYEWEAR 011 334 7020 SIMON CARTER 011 884 0006 SISSY BOY 021 506 4600 SPREE.CO.ZA SUNGLASS HUT 086 100 0850 SWATCH GROUP 011 911 1200

*

TOPMAN 021 419 5900 TRENERY 0860 022 002 SHOT ON LOCATION AT THE CAPE MILNER HOTEL 021 426 1101


Getthe Look! Men’s ’ Health h Menswear Collection 2016 brought you the year’s best looks fr from the world’s top brands. Ready to revamp your wardrobe this year? Start here

ADIDAS

ASICS

In the new ZNE range, designed to help world-class athletes lock into their vision of victory, Siya Kolisi has never looked sharper. Bring razor-sharp focus to everything you do, on the pitch and in the office.

Excellence isn’t easy. Just ask MH Cover Guy Lee Thompson: ambition is what separates the best from the boring. Asics’ line of topnotch activewear will keep you on top of your game.

Street Style Gym Cred

1 1

2

2

1. Asics FuzeX T-shirt R600 0 Asics 7-inch woven shorts R450 0 2. Asics DynaFlyte trainers R2 500 0 1. Adidas ZNE hoodie R1 699 2. Adidas ZNE pants R1 199 3. Adidas Pure Boost ZG Trainers R1 999 3


SORBET MAN

Key Looks for 2017 1 Date Night Clean up with Sorbet MAN’s 2-in-1 Face Wash & Scub, and don’t forget to moisturise. Blow-dry instead of brushing for a casual look, and use a styling product with a matte finish just before you head out.

2 WOOLWORTHS

On the Beach In the sun, choose Sorbet Man Face Moisturiser SPF15 – it’ll keep you from drying out and burning up. A spritz of Sea Salt spray will give your hair that freshout-of-water look.

In quality, fashion-conscious pieces and modern classics with a sporty feel, rapper and actor Riky Rick embodies the confident, cool guy who knows where he’s going.

3

Summer Cool

After Hours For a rested look, a shave is as good as a holiday. Cleaned up your beard Sorbet Man Pre-Shave Oil and lather it up with Sorbet Man Shave Gel; finish off with Sorbet Man Post-Shave Balm.

1. Sorbet Man Face Wash & Scrub 150ml R80 2. Sorbet Man Moisturiser SPF 15 50ml R120 3. Sorbet Man Post Shave Balm 50ml R70

Style Watch

MEN’S HEALTH MENSWEAR COLLECTION 2016 DIRECTOR JAN MALAN ON THE HOTTEST UPCOMING TRENDS 1. Support Local “Whether they’re well-established or just starting out, there are some awesome SA brands producing eye-catching looks right here.” 1

2. Go Long “Comfortable can be classy. Looser, longer T-shirts offer a great way to look cool and calm in the summer heat.” 3. Play in the Sun “Activewear allows you to go from the high street to the soccer pitch, while always looking like you’re meant to be.”

2

1. David Jones at Woolworths linen shirt R799 2. David Jones at Woolworths Herringbone trousers R499 9

The international show director has staged high-profile productions in 32 cities on four continents. Apart from a myriad of events across the African continent, Malan directed several shows at New York Fashion Week. His client list in South Africa has included Carolina Herrera, Elton John, Tyra Banks, Hugo Boss, Calvin Klein, Louis Vuitton, Daniel Swarovski, BBC, Ford Models, L’Oréal and Mercedes-Benz – and in 2013 he won an Award from African Fashion International for Outstanding contribution to African Fashion.


The Column MH CALLS BS ON...

New Year’s Resolutions

Get out of bed. Get shredded. Get a yacht. Who’re you kidding? The key to achieving big dreams: smaller steps. Start now Kieran Legg g COLUMNIST

I’M GOING TO BE LESS OF A TWAT.

There you go, that’s my New Year’s resolution. You’ve pushed me to make one, and I’ve begrudgingly laid it out there. Forget the fact that all resolve will disappear within the first few seconds of dealing with Cape Town’s nefarious traffic, or the fact that, actually, I quite like being a twat: I’ve set up the goalposts and I’m going to dribble towards the line with the sort of enthusiasm you’d expect from a striker on a free loan to Scunthorpe. See here’s the reality. New Year’s resolutions are utter crap. Exhibit A: I have a mate, who every year, without fail, will tell me he’s going to get jacked. Never mind the fact that the closest he’s every come to hitting that benchmark was when an opportunistic criminal armed with a windscreen wiper attempted to steal his hatchback. But he’ll sit there – inevitably wolfing down a double burger, fries, and washing it down with another IPA – and sincerely tell me all about how he’s going to become the walking manifestation of a Greek sculpture. And then grab a milkshake to go. And this isn’t just a throwaway line from him. He’s done the research, he’s got the printouts, he “knows a guy” who has a unblemished record of transforming beer bellies into washboard abs, ropey arms into clotheslines and toothpick legs into spin cycles. That same guy runs a laundry cafe that sells vinyls, go figure. “This plan is foolproof,” he says, slurping up the dregs of his milkshake and already unwrapping a chocolate he’s fished from his pocket, “There’s no way I can fail.” Let’s be honest: he wants to fail. Because if he’s jacked by next Christmas? Then where’s the excuse to be reckless all over again? Where’s that opportunity to ditch all self-control and spoon up brandy butter until you can’t decide whether you are drunker than you are full? “I’m going to be shredded this time next year,” he’ll yell as he lapses into his 30th food coma of the festive season. “Watch this space.” I’m guilty of making the same empty November promises. As the owner of my own backlog of failed self-promises, I’ve slowly, painfully, learned the value of walking before I stumble. 130 MH.CO.ZA | January 2017

Y h, you Yeah y know all that difficult u ul stu uff th hat will improve your life bu butt tak kes a bunch of hard work and determiii-nattion?? Let’s take five on that. With fries on the side.. Y ve got this globally mandated, socially You’v accceptaable, culturally celebrated excuse to say: “Ah h, scrrew it. I’m just going to see how much creeam I can put on this cake before it ceases to be b caake.” I know, I’ve been there.. E ept when you take it, you’re just hurttExce ingg you urself. Exhibit B: it’s the new year and my y maate haas dragged himself to the gym, and he’ss sweeatin ng it out in a squat rack while jamming outt to Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing.” But the hee pro oblem m is, and you won’t see it in his smile, orr bettweeen the verbal diarrhea of his enthusiasm, butt he’ss stopped believing.

“A Ah, screw it. I’m ju ust going i to see how h much cream I can p put m on this cake before f it ce eases to b be a cake.” k ” A he’s already hoping ffor the reprieve off And thee next November b so h he can make k more empty y pro omises, and d live l recklessly, kl l and d most imporrtan ntly, l without h guilt. l. W h a week? Within k He’s llost the h printouts. He’s forggotten about his meal plan, and he’s stressed outt. And it’s because the reality off reaching his goaal is divorced ffrom his ffantasy off waking up in tthe body off the Greek God come 2017. He’s stilll the same dude, slightly heavier, less fit, and mo ore depressed because he got so caught up in p playing his Get Out of Jail free card, he forgot thaat there’s no passing Go in the real world, and thaat Monopoly man died of a heart attack.. S and here’s the point. If you want change See, som mething, h achieve h something, h experience som mething, h a New Year’s party, a h hangover, and d

a shift f from f 6 to 7 isn’tt going to make k it any y more likely. lk l Tackle kl that h resolution l righ ht now. You don’t d need d a gy ym mem emb mb m beers rssh rship hip iip p, a p pllaan n or printouts, just start taking k smal alll ll sttep eep ps tthat haat h hat will ll take k you closer l to you ur goal.l A resol sol so olu oluti ol uti tiio on n carries expectations p off an instant tran an nsfo forma maa-ma tion – b but h here’s an epiphany: h it’s the h realisation l that h you’ll ll get there, h putting in the h time, maki king ki ng the right choices, and getting out off your co omf zone.. fort And iff that all sounds to difficult ff to you, then don’t bother making the resolution in the first place. Because if you can’t summon the will to turn shit around when you’re stone-cold sober reading this, you sure as hell aren’t going to be able to stomach the shift when you’re waking u in 2017 with a hangover. up Yeah, I know I sound like a bit off a twat, but it’s okay, k I’ll ll promise I’ll ll b be b better next year.


No more dead battery surprises!

CXS+ 300R

ENGAGE BATTERY

S

Available in a selection of stores

VISIT OUR WEBSITE WWW.COLEMAN.EU/CO.ZA FOR A FULL OVERVIEW OF OUR PRODUCTS.

TTERY CO BA R SION RO

S BATTE VE R ER

E LIF

Twist in the opposite direction when you’re ready to store the device – when you see the red line, the connections are separated and your device is safe to store for years!

Y

Twist the head to tighten the connection; when red line disappears, the device is on and ready for use

DISENGAGE BATTERY

REDU CE

CXS+ 250

PRE S

CXS+ 200


TAG Heuer Boutiques; Sandton City & V&A Waterfront. Also at selected fine jewellers nationwide. For further information please call 011.669.0500. www.picotandmoss.co.za

TAG HEUER CARRERA MUHAMMAD ALI SPECIAL EDITION Muhammad  Ali is one of the most legendary athletes of our time. The Greatest of All Time was a fighter both in and out of the ring, championing all his life for causes he believed in. Absolutely unrelenting in the face of adversity, he lived true to the TAG Heuer motto, Don’t Crack Under Pressure. Ali™, Muhammad Ali™ and the Muhammad Ali signature are trademarks of Muhammad Ali Enterprises LLC. Rights of Publicity and Persona Rights: Muhammad Ali Enterprises LLC. ali.com


9sdcdscsdc