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STA The Workout That Will Transform Your Body
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ARE YOU THE NEXT MEN'S HEALTH COVERGUY? WE’RE SEARCHING SOUTH AFRICA FOR OUR NEXT COVER GUY… AND IT COULD BE YOU! WE’RE LOOKING FOR A MAN WHO HAS THE CONFIDENCE, LOOKS, BODY AND THE LIFESTYLE TO BE OUR COVER GUY WINNER FOR 2019. SOMEONE WHO LEADS BY EXAMPLE, IS FIT AND HEALTHCONSCIOUS, INSPIRES OTHERS AND EMBODIES A WELL-ROUNDED MODERN MAN. IF YOU THINK YOU’VE GOT WHAT IT TAKES, ENTER NOW AT COVERGUY.MH.CO.ZA AND YOU COULD FIND YOURSELF ON THE COVER OF THE DECEMBER 2019 ISSUE!
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ThewinnerwillreceiveaToyotaFortuner2.4GD-64x4ATworthR556 400! WHO ARE THE HEROES?
GINIEL DE VILLIERS, rally driver OUPA MOHOJÉ, Cheetahs rugby player KIRSTEN MCCANN, SA Olympic rower NKATEKO “TAKKIES” DINWIDDY, dancer and choreographer
WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO?
You’ll compete in cycling, speed and paddling challenges, and should be able to perform mental gymnastics. Your friends envy your physical prowess and fitness.
HOW DO I ENTER?
Take a photo or make a video (optional, but it will make your entry stand out) and fill in the online entry form at Toyota.M24Lifestyle.co.za. Don’t delay – entries close 27 September at midnight. Tell your friends to be on standby to vote for your online entry. The rest of the details will be confirmed at a later date. Terms and conditions apply.
ALSO UP FOR GRABS
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valued at R49 000 • Garmin Fenix 5 Multisport GPS watch worth over R14 000 • Salomon active gear
*One finalist will be chosen from Weg, go!, Weg Ry & Sleep, go! Drive & Camp, Men’s Health, Women’s Health, YOU and Bicycling entrants. The finalists’ flights and accommodation are included.
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CONTENTS MEN’S HEALTH SEPTEMBER 2019
COVER STORIES & FEATURES STRENGTH, POWER, STAMINA The power plan for lifelong fitness. 42 BUILD BIGGER ARMS Row your way to results in just 15 minutes. 50 SMALL CHANGES, BIG PAY RAISE Promote your work prospects. 72 GET RIPPED! Real guys, real results 88 50 BEST ADVENTURES IN THE WORLD Don’t waste your free time on fly’n’flops or budget city breaks. 98 A CIVILISED MAN’S GUIDE TO WILD CAMPING The exchange rate needn’t take the shine off your holiday plans. 108
FIRE UP LE BRAAI Kobus Botha wants to bring some French flair to your fire. 116
O M I N G RO
2019 S A W A R D
P.63 THE MEN’S HEALTH HOT LIST! The best new grooming products, tested and approved for you.
OFF Subscribe to Men’s Health P.76
THUMP-THUMP. THUMP… THUMP. Should you optimise training according to your heart? 48
eter rost took k the h high hi h road on the back of a Harley.
ST YLE INVESTMENT The ultimate wedding day watch. 53
UPFRONT UNFILTERED Don’t skate through life. 12
THE EXCHANGE Can smoking weed help you lose weight? 21
THE CUT Jump along for the ride. 28
ABOVE AVERAGE GUY How do you measure up? 22
DRIVE The Lexus RC F debuts in SA. 30
ED’S LETTER Start your journey: 100 days to muscle. 16
THE DEVIL’S ADVOCATE Your career doesn’t matter. 18
FRAMING THE UNTAMED Marlon du Toit aims to showcase the wonders of the wild. 24
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
GEAR Eco-Warrior Workout Kit 32 WHAT HAPPENS WHEN… … I burn out? 34
ASK THE ACTUARY Calculate life’s risks and bake up a storm. 36
DECODE THE DRESS CODE Cracked the nod to your mate’s big day? Time to suit up… 54 MAKEOVER From laid-back to tailor-made. 60
TREND ON TRIAL Obstacle force. 39
WHY DON’T YOU FINISH THE… Find your way thro the project maze. 70
SCALE UP YOUR LUNCHTIME GYM SESSIONS The one move that has it all. 46
WEALTH REPORT Leverage boredom for better ideas. 74
FOOD TAKE BACK YOUR WORK LUNCH Give your midday meal a makeover. 77
RELATIONSHIPS SO YOU WANT TO PITCH A TENT? Get down in the great outdoors. 80 GIRL NEXT DOOR “Is there a smooth way to un-ghost someone?” 82
HEALTH WHAT MAKES A FOOD SUPER? Ask moringa, the supposed silver bullet. 84
On the Cover COVER GUY
Eden Classens Jacques Weye PHOTOGRAPH: PEET MOCKE (PETER FROST)
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A REAL, FILTER-FREE LOOK INTO WHAT MATTERS THIS MONTH.
GRANT MCLACHLAN, JANSEN VAN STADEN
THE SHRED SKATE PARK, CAPE TOWN
27 JULY 2019
VANS PARK SERIES AFRICA CONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP
AT H L ET E S ON W H EEL S What I realised, while watching these amazing skaters fly across the concrete bowl with immense speed, flair and balance, is that they are indeed athletes. As in any other sport, these guys and girls were sweating and pushing and using the muscles they’d been honing just for this day. The main competition consists of three parts: The Warm-Up, where all skaters get to practise in the bowl; The Jam – a competitive run, where each athlete tries to score points; and The Final, where the top eight athletes fight for the top spot. An international VPS event team from skateboarding company The Boardr was there to ensure the event was judged by international standards. But even though it was a competition with everything on the line, the atmosphere was more like a family reunion. Everybody cheered each other on and there was no bad blood or aggressive rivalry to be found, making it that much more fun to watch. And the action was every bit as thrilling as I’d expected.
Walking into The Shred Skate Park, I immediately felt that infectious energy, bouncing off the walls and down the ramps. I almost felt out of place without a skateboard. Helmeted kids seemed to be having the best time, trying to land new tricks, falling and helping each other up again – practice for the big day when they’ll (hopefully) be competing in the big bowl on the other side of the park. That’s where I was going. Not to skate (thank heavens) but to watch local boardriders compete against each other, in a bid to represent the continent when the world’s best skateboarders throw down. This is the second consecutive year that the Vans Park Series (VPS) Continental Championship has taken place in Cape Town. It was also my second time attending, so I knew what to expect: Non. Stop. Action.
BY THAAQIB DANIELS
It was all kickflips, tailslides and good vibes at the 2019 Vans Park Series Africa Continental Championship. At stake? A spot for the winning male and winning female in the World Championship in Salt Lake City, USA. Here’s what went down (and up, and back down again).
Home of the Grind
One of my favourites from last year’s competition, Thalente Biyela returned to The Shred to represent Durban with more heat, and one key change in outfit – he wore a T-shirt. Briefly. As soon as the first round ended, he was back to his signature shirtless look. After his riveting run in the men’s final – which involved leaping out of the bowl, onto the crowd railing and back into the bowl – Thalente was crowned the male winner. “I can’t believe I won! I didn’t expect it, because I haven’t been feeling my best leading up to this contest, but now I’m really excited about heading to the finals in Salt Lake City; I’ve never been there,” he said.
1. Thalente Biyela (@iamthalente)
2. Daniel Miltiadou (@_overpaid) Daniel’s highflying moves landed him on the podium alongside Thalente and Dallas Oberholzer. Seemingly fearless, Daniel doesn’t hold back when it comes to speed and defying the odds – just check out his Instagram feed.
3. Alan Marola (@alanmarola)
Focus and precision was Alan’s game going into the park. With his perfectionist style, he was persistent in his attempts to wow the crowd. This led to winning the award for Best Trick with his epic backside tailslide, which earned him a golden Vans flask.
4. Dallas Oberholzer (@dallasafrica)
The veteran proved that he still has a lot of tricks up his sleeve, even at age 44. Dallas is a well-respected figure in the South African skateboarding scene, and continues to lead by example – both on and off the board. He earned a place on the podium for the second consecutive year, finishing second.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
5. Melissa Williams (@suzysnakes)
The women’s champ returned to take the title for a second year in a row. Cape Town skateboarder Melissa Williams has fast become a hero for female skaters all across the country. And she will soon jet off to Utah for the World Championship. “It was so much fun skating together with all the girls – there were so many more who entered this year, and the level is progressing,” she said.
7. The Shred Skate Park
Got a couple of skater boys and girls in your pack? The Shred is a great place for the kids to hone their skills while you grab a bite in an environment that’s not too grungy. Warning: There’s also a Vans Skate Store inside, so be prepared for “But Dad, I need it!”. Check out @ the_shred_skatepark and @vans_za for more epicness.
6. Marie Cavanna (@meow_marie)
Model, actress, skateboarder – Marie shredded her way to second place in the women’s competition, and doesn’t look like she’ll be stopping anytime soon.
.CO. A/ September 2019 15
LETTER FROM THE
EDITOR Danielle Weakley Editorial Director
100 Days To Muscle
Robert Cilliers Editor & Creative Director WANITA NICOL Deputy Editor AZEEZ JACOBS Fashion & Grooming Editor NADIM NYKER Digital Editor KIRSTEN CURTIS Contributing Digital Editor MEGAN FLEMMIT Multimedia Journalist DAVE BUCHANAN Copy Editor KELLEIGH KOREVAAR Features Writer THAAQIB DANIELS Content Producer NADIA WINDT Fashion Assistant
Every couple of years us Men’s Health staffers take on the challenge to transform our bodies in just 14 weeks. The reason I bring this up is to prove a point: that if we can do it, pretty much anybody can. We’re all just average guys who weren’t blessed with the genes to be cover guys. I’ve always been the skinny guy. Mainly because I have a really fast metabolism. That is why I can relate to the guys in our Muscle Up feature (p.88). Read the true stories of these real men – guys just like you – who made the decision to transform their bodies. Learn from their hard-earned lessons, and be inspired by their success. The two biggest lessons I have learnt from my own personal journey to build lean muscle mass are: 1. Compound training is key. You pick up strength and mobility with functional movement. 2. Eating clean has the biggest impact. Turn healthy eating into a habit, don’t skip meals and cut down on alcohol. But we are all different, our bodies are unique and respond differently to exercise and nutrition. So I challenge you to find what works for you and start your hundred days, today... P.S. If you already have the body that should be seen on the front cover of this magazine, enter the Men’s Health Cover Guy 2019 competition at coverguy.mh.co.za.
SIX MH EDITORS TOOK ON A 12-WEEK STAFF FITNESS JOURNAL OF HARD TRUTHS AND SOME SOLID RESULTS. USE THEIR
Contributors: Mark Arendse (Design); Sidima Mfeku (Intern) Shared services: Kerry Nash (Production Manager James Garaghty (In-House Photographer) Amina Essop (Office Administrator)
CEO MEDIA24 Ishmet Davidson CEO PRINT MEDIA Rika Swart GENERAL MANAGER, LIFESTYLE Minette Ferreira GENERAL MANAGER, MONTHLIES Nerisa Coetzee CFO, LIFESTYLE Jameelah Conway FINANCIAL MANAGER Melanie Leeman MARKETING AND PUBLIC RELATIONS PUBLISHER Nikki Ruttimann 011 713 9147 (email@example.com) COMMERCIAL HEAD OF EVENTS: MONTHLIES Francois Malan 021 406 2376 (firstname.lastname@example.org) COMMERCIAL MANAGING EDITOR Gerda Engelbrecht 021 406 2217 (email@example.com) COMMERCIAL MANAGER Lise Coetsee 021 406 2358 (firstname.lastname@example.org) DIGITAL CAMPAIGN COORDINATOR Lilitha Johnson 021 406 2320 (email@example.com) BRAND COORDINATOR Andile Nkosi 021 406 2257 (firstname.lastname@example.org) PUBLISHING SALES TEAM BUSINESS MANAGER: MEDIA 24 LEISURE SALES Danie Nell 011 322 0799/076 263 9114 (email@example.com) CAPE TOWN: Hannes Burger 076 152 4605 (firstname.lastname@example.org) Nick Fitzell 071 430 6311 (email@example.com) Daniela Di Giovanni 083 709 7040 (Daniela.firstname.lastname@example.org) JOBURG: Kylee Robertson 076 263 9114 (email@example.com) Jeanine Kruger 082 342 2299 (firstname.lastname@example.org) Lizel Pauw 082 876 8189 (email@example.com) Sharlene Smith 083 583 1604 (firstname.lastname@example.org) Yumna Rojan 072 399 5789 (email@example.com) Yelanda Mitchell 074 897 576 (yelanda.Mitchell@media24.com) DURBAN: Mariska Venter 082 898 4376 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
CHALLENGE TO CHANGE THEIR BODIES.THIS IS THEIR
LESSONS AND ONE SMART WORKOUT PLAN TO TRANSFORM YOUR BODY
CIRCULATION SALES AND SOLUTIONS CIRCULATION MANAGER Riaan Weyers 021 443 9964 SUBSCRIPTION MANAGER Jenny Marinus (email@example.com) For any queries, please phone 021 406 2121 Subscription enquiries: 087 353 1300 Fax: 086 457 5943; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; SMS: MensHealthSubs to 32511 (R1 per sms); Web: www.mysubs.co.za/magazine/menshealth Call centre operating hours: 8am-5pm (Monday to Friday) ALL SUBSCRIPTION PAYMENTS TO: Men’s Health, PO Box 16428, Vlaeberg, 8018 REPRODUCTION Media24 PRINTING Novus Print DISTRIBUTION On The Dot 011 402 1205 Copyright © 2009 Media24 (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 Media24 (Pty) Ltd. Men’s Health does not endorse the use of chemical or related slimming products that promise instant or long-term results. Slimming products should not be used as a substitute for a healthy diet and/or exercise. All prices recommended retail selling price.
SPORTS SCIENCE INSTITUTE OF SA APPROVED >
ROBERT CILLIER RS D O Instagram
@robdcilliers Email: email@example.com Twitter: @MensHealthZA Facebook: MensHealthSA 16
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
MH Staff Challenge July 2016
BY ARTHUR JONES PHOTOGRAPHS CASEY CRAFFORD
SVP/MANAGING DIRECTOR ASIA PACIFIC & RUSSIA Simon Horne DIRECTOR OF INTERNATIONAL LICENSING AND BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Richard Bean SVP/EDITORIAL & BRAND DIRECTOR Kim St. Clair Bodden DEPUTY BRANDS DIRECTOR Chloe O’Brien EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CONTENT SERVICES Shelley Meeks Global Editions / EDITORS-IN-CHIEF USA Richard Dorment, AUSTRALIA Luke Benedictus, BULGARIA Vladimir Konstantinov, CHINA Gao Zhen, CROATIA Kresimir Sego, GERMANY Markus Stenglein, GHANA Godfred Akoto Boafo, GREECE Vassilis Georgakakos, HUNGARY Máté Pásztor, ITALY Aldo Ballerini, KAZAKHSTAN Irina Utesheva, MALAYSIA Eugene Phua, NETHERLANDS Ronald Janus, NIGERIA Osagie Alonge, POLAND Aneta Martynow, PORTUGAL Pedro Lucas, ROMANIA Mihai Ghiduc, RUSSIA Maxim Semelyak, SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO Ivan Radojcic, SINGAPORE Kelvin Tan, SPAIN Jordi Martinez, THAILAND Chatchawin Unhanun, TURKEY Fatih Büyükbayrak, UNITED KINGDOM Toby Wiseman, LATIN AMERICA Sergio Rodriguez, MIDDLE EAST Carlin Gerbich
BACK YOUR HERO
CHALLENGE.CO.ZA OR DIAL *120*62800# Ts & Cs apply. Closing date 24 October 2019. USSD costs 20c per second.
THE DEVIL’S ADVOCATE
Your Career Doesn’t Matter THERE’S MORE TO LIFE THAN YOUR JOB TITLE. ESCAPE YOUR DESK TO SECURE A TRUE MENTAL HEALTH PROMOTION
Another night burning the midnight oil. Another drink with your friends postponed. At least your boss will appreciate it in the morning, right? Yeah, right. With fewer well-paying jobs on the market and the ever-sluggish economy putting the squeeze on your finances,
South African workers are unhappy in their jobs, scoring job satisfaction at 6 out of 10 in a recent survey. Worse still, a study by SADAG found that 1 in 4 SA
THIS MONTH’S ADVOCATE Geraldine Joaquim is a clinical hypnotherapist specialising in career stress and mental health.
THE DEVIL’S DETAILS
employees suffer from depression, costing the economy more than R232 billion in lost productivity from either absenteeism or working while unwell. For decades, we worked harder and longer for better houses, holidays, material rewards and status. Then came the tech revolution. Mobile phones and email have made us constantly accessible, and we’re no longer able to hop off the hamster wheel. CareerJunction estimates Saffas work 2.5 years overtime during their lifetime just by skipping lunch breaks – over R500 000 in unpaid work. And that’s without the other extra hours you put in beyond your nine to five. This is unsustainable. Long-term
for longer than two years may cut their total lifetime earnings by up to 50%. It’s not just money that matters 1 , so seek out happinesselsewhere. In
you tons of online courses. It’ll give you a better idea of where you want to be, which we already know isn’t at the office at 9pm. There are quicker fixes too, that don’t
job stress leads to occupational burnout. If you feel physical fatigue or cognitive exhaustion, you could be heading for a Falling Down-style meltdown. But there is an alternative. The much-maligned millennials seem to have a head start when it comes to how
prehistory,membersofa tribe were either huntersorhomemakers. Now there’s more choice.If yourpassion lies inhealth andfitness,knowthat “dietician”was ranked18th inCareerCast.com’s2017 Jobs Ratedreport,andthe USBureau of LabourStatisticsprojectsthatthedemand
involve LinkedIn. Seeing friends really matters. A 2006 study says that over 20 years, the number of friends with whom participantsfelt theycould discuss important mattersfell nearlya third 3 . According to a report in the journal Plos Medicine, social ties have twice the impact
they spend their nine to five. Instead of scaling the greasy corporate pole, they’re changing careers more frequently and forging ahead as a result. Before you accuse them of lacking staying power, it’s worth considering that (according to Forbes) workers who stay in the same job
for personaltrainerswillcontinue to grow by8% overthe comingyears 2 . Just be sure to avoid emotional decision-making – instead, make a considered plan for change. Why not enrol in a course? GetSmarter partners with the world’s leading universities to offer
on lifespan as exercising – the equivalent to that of giving up smoking. It’s time you looked outside the confines of your office for selfimprovement. Might we suggest a braai with the guys, for a start? Health is wealth, remember, so start investing.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Good sleep has a far greater impact on your sense of “living well” than a 50% increase in disposable income.
Top trainers earn very good money – but it takes effort. Keeping pace with your clients is also an investment in your health.
Loneliness is a bigger health hazard than obesity, according to a review conducted by Brigham Young University, Utah.
WORDS: TOM WARD; PHOTOGRAPHY: GRAHAM WALSER AT HEARST STUDIOS
the pressure to fulfil your line manager’s every demand is reaching crisis point.
IT’S TIME TO UNCHAIN YOURSELF FROM THE SLOG OF OVERTIME.
Download your digital copy at zinio.com Works on iPad, Mac or PC.
QUESTION: What do I do if my kids
catch me having sex?
Hear a creak? Cover up quickly, but don’t freak. “If you panic, your child associates [your reaction] with something that shouldn’t be happening – and you don’t want to give them that idea about sex,” says psychologist Judy Rosenberg, author of Be the Cause: Healing Human Disconnect. And don’t worry – there are also plenty of other ways to escape the situation with your integrity intact. See how: MH.CO.ZA/SEX-WOMEN
The number of kW packed into the new Subaru WRX ES
MEN’S HEALTH TWITTER POLL
WHEN DO YOU PREFER TO WORK OUT? MORNING:
Premium CVT. We took it for a seven-day test drive to see if it lives up to those of its predecessors that displayed the WRX badge. The only decision you need to make? CVT or manual. The CVT is undoubtedly more practical in traffic and daily life, and is studded with more tech; but the manual offers an even more engaging drive (and it’s cheaper). We know which one we’d choose. Learn from our Motoring Minute: MH.CO.ZA/DRIVE
26% WHENEVER I CAN:
Zain Ramsden @z_ramsden
20 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Jean Jacques @triplejayfit
Scan this QR code and see the stories featured
GETTY/GALLO; IMAGES SUPPLIED (INSTAGRAM)
WEIGHT-LOSS Can Smoking Weed Actually Help Me Lose Weight? – Dale, Kimberley You know that enduring punchline that stoners always have the munchies? Well, it’s not totally inaccurate.
Research* shows that smoking marijuana actually does affect the mechanisms that trigger hunger in your brain: THC, weed’s active ingredient, fits into receptors in your brain’s endocannabinoid system, which helps to control – among other things – your appetite. The result: heightened smell and taste. And the urge to smash every chip in sight. But even though there’s a grain of truth to the flabby, NikNaks-munching stoner stereotype,
that doesn’t mean it’s 100% legit. Some studies+ have shown that smoking dagga doesn’t lead to weight gain — in fact, it might actually help you lose weight. According to a 2011 study from the American Journal of Epidemiology, even if cannabis consumption increases appetite, “people using cannabis are less likely to be obese than people who not use cannabis”. Other studies have also shown n that many cannabis userss have trimmer
GETTY/GALLO IMAGES; *SMITHSONIANMAG.COM; +AMERICAN JOURNAL OF EPIDEMIO
HT TO YOU B
s cl e
Your biggest, strangest, and most embarrassing questions — answered!
waistlines than nonusers – and lower cholesterol levels. What’s more, these results have been recorded regardless of sample size or factors such as age and gender. But with cannabis infusions now available in everything from gin to pizza, it’s important to note that when it comes to cannabis and its effects on your weight… it’s complicated. Psychiatrist and fessor of neuroscience n Didier JutrasD Aswad has A studied how
relax a n
cannabis affects the functions of neurobiological circuits controlling appetite. “It is known … that cannabis causes temporary increase in appetite,” he says. Which can indeed lead to weight gain. Yet, he concedes, “as to whether it actually causes weight gain in the long term, the available data is limited.” Bottom line: we still have a long way to go in terms of research. For now, stick with what’s been proven to work – clean eating and exercise.
FOR WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOD IDEA AT THE TIME... Benzydamine Hydrochloride
@ HOME @ WORK @ PLAY NOT ALL MINOR MUSCLE INJURIES REQUIRE A DOCTOR’S VISIT.2 A TOPICAL, TRIPLE ACTING, ANTI-INFLAMMATORY GEL AVAILABLE OVER THE COUNTER2,3 peak to your harmacist or ealthcare Provider about an effective, on-the-go treatment option2,4 Visit www.norflexgel.co.za to find out more. References: 1. Impact Rx. Script Data - October 2018. 2. Norflex® Gel approved package insert, September 2001. 3. Difflam Gel [cited 2018 November 20]; Available from URL: http://www.myvmc.comdrugsdifflam-gel/. 4. Massey T, et al. Cochrane Database Syst Rev; (6):CD007402. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD007402.pub2. For more information, speak to your healthcare professional. Further information is available on request from iNova Pharmaceuticals. Name and business address of applicant: iNova Pharmaceuticals (Pty) Ltd. Co. Reg. No.: 1952/001640/07. 15E Riley Road, Bedfordview. Tel. No.: 011 087 0000. www.inovapharma.co.za. IN2677/18.
THE (Above) AVERAGE GUY THIS MONTH
HOW DO YOU RATE? SEX POSITIONS MOST LIKELY TO FRACTURE YOUR PENIS
THE ANGLE OF THEDANGLE The Erect Penis At Age…
25 Reverse Cowgirl Doggy Style
135 to 120 degrees
THE NAME GAME MALES AGED 18-35 YEARS ARE COMFORTABLE CALLING THEIR PENISES ‘DICK’. 8% OF MEN OVER THE AGE OF 35 PREFER TO CALL THEIR PENIS ‘JUNK’, WHILE 27% OF THEM USE ‘POPEYE’ TO DESCRIBE THEIR PENIS.
OFMENSAY THEIRPENISIS “AVERAGE”SIZED.
say it’s small.
When relaxed, there’s a 50/50 split between SA cities regarding which side men prefer to hang: CAPE TOWN AND DURBAN TO THE LEFT, JOZI AND PRETORIA TO THE RIGHT.
120 to 100 degrees
55 100 to 80 degrees
7 WAYS TO IMPROVE PERFORMANCE IN BED SHOESIZE
does NOT correlate with penis length.
of women are satisfied with the size of their partner’s penis.
of men are satisfied with the size of their penis.
60 80 to 90 degrees
FRUIT OR VEG?
WHEN GIVEN THE CHOICE BETWEEN SPECIFIC FRUITS AND VEGETABLES, 42% OF MEN COMPARE THEIR PENIS SHAPE TO A BANANA, 22% TO A MIELIE, 14% TO A MARROW AND 10% TO AN AUBERGINE.
FRUIT AND RED WINE
5 6 7
Rise And Shine Male hormones peak between 5am and 9am, maximising both pleasure and performance.
SKIP THE BOOZE
22 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
PHOTOGRAPHS BY GETTY/GALLO (MIELIE, BANANA), WESTEND61/GETTY IMAGES (BOY WITH HOT DOG), YELLOW SARAH/GETTY IMAGES (CLOWN SHOES)
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BETTER MAN YOUR GUIDE TO LIVING SMARTER, HEALTHIER AND HAPPIER.
Framing The Untamed MARLON DU TOIT AND HIS TEAM AT WILD EYE AIM TO SHOWCASE THE WONDERS OF THE WILD TO PEOPLE AROUND THE GLOBE – AND PRESERVE THEM. HERE’S A CLOSE-UP OF THE MAN WHO DOES CLOSE-UPS OF MOTHER NATURE.
THE MAN MARLON DU TOIT OCCUPATION
WILDLIFE EXPEDITION & TOUR LEADER, PHOTOGRAPHER MARLON DU TOIT
Here’s a scenario: you’re in the Zimbabwean wilderness, and you come across a pack of African wild dogs. The alpha male sees you and starts to come towards you, growling. What do you do – snap a photo?! That’s exactly what Marlon du Toit did. While most of us would be peeing our pants, this 35-year-old husband and father of two has made it his profession to capture the wild’s unfiltered moments, in all their natural splendour. MOTHER NATURE’S LENS “It started with my dad,” he says. “He had a company that took tourists into Kruger National Park, back in the 80s and early 90s. I spent countless hours in the bush with my dad, and learnt from there. “I started tour guiding at the various safari lodges in the greater Kruger region. In that position, photography becomes a natural thing for many guides.” Fuelled by his love of wildlife photography, Marlon pursued a career in the travel industry. He later joined Wild Eye SA, a travel company that specialises in photographic travel around the world, and became a co-owner along with the company’s three founders. “It’s at the core of everything I do. We visit the polar bears of Svalbard, the tigers of India, the jaguars of Brazil, and much more. We also visit 11 countries in Africa, which offers diverse experiences for our clients. “Although a large percentage of our clients are avid wildlife photographers, our tours are not limited to that – we arrange special travel packages for families, honeymooners and more.” IN THE SPOTLIGHT Marlon’s photos have garnered an enthusiastic audience since he started posting them online. From casual selfies with elephants to capturing deadly encounters with lions, his Instagram feed is a close-up view of parts of our world that most of us have never seen.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 25
A Kenyan Nile Crocodile devouring a Zebra head. One of Marlon’s favourites.
But the highlight of his career so far happened earlier this year, when he was a guest on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. He hopes the exposure will help his company grow. “I showcased my work on the show, got to promote Wild Eye, and also got to share a great conservation story on pangolins. It’s an awesome platform, with a large viewership. “Being a part of what we’ve built in our business also stands out as something I’m 26 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
very proud of,” he continues. “We started small, and we’re growing into a formidable force in the photographic safari industry, on a global scale. It’s a company to be proud of.” HEART OF THE WILD Along with providing stunning visual experiences and interactions with animals, Marlon and the team at Wild Eye also make a major effort to preserve our wildlife, by collaborating with conservation groups. He believes social media is a great tool for
communicating these important messages to people around the world. “The vast majority [of his 130 000+ followers] would not be able to afford a tour to Africa or the Arctic; but they are able to understand and share the content I share on social media. There’s an incredible opportunity to spread a conservation message, together with the beauty of the places I get to visit,” he says. “We at Wild Eye host a select number of safaris each year in partnership with conservation group Panthera, and donate portions of the profit made to them. This assists with their projects across Africa.” Wild Eye recently completed a fundraiser in which they raised $16 000 (R220 000) for Panthera’s lion conservation projects, ahead of the premiere of the remake of The Lion King. Along with raising funds, the Wild Eye guys constantly make an effort to help national parks and reserves where they can – their latest contribution was to Kenya’s Masai Mara. “We’ve added great value to the Mara Triangle recently, by drilling a borehole and funding the entire initiative,” says Marlon. “We’ve donated cameras to their park rangers, in order to capture and share the beauty of the Mara. “As a company, we try to use the influence we’ve grown in as many positive ways as we can. We have a responsibility,
PHOTOGRAPHS BY MEGAN AKERS, JESSICA TINGLEY, MARLON DU TOIT
Marlon always tries to get as close to the animals as possible for the best photos.
and we must each play our part to save, conserve and better our natural world.” THE FEARLESS PHOTOGRAPHER So how does a seemingly sane person go into wild animal territory, and casually take photos? It’s not that simple. Apart from his amazing camera skills, overcoming the fear of the wild is key to Marlon’s craft. “Rather than fear, I would say that I have a very healthy respect for wildlife,” he says. “I always remind my guests that these are indeed wild animals – animals with instincts, that react to the situations they are faced with. “I never expose my guests to experiences that are life-threatening. That’s not what I want.” The key is not to appear as a threat to your subject. “When photographing animals, the biggest reward is when they start to ignore you and go about their business, as if you didn’t exist. “That’s when you’ve struck gold – the animal knows you’re there, but your behaviour allows it to relax and act naturally. For me, these moments also make
“Rather than fear, I would say that I have a very healthy respect for wildlife.” the best wildlife imagery.” With this fearlessness, Marlon has managed to capture some of nature’s most authentic, vicious and beautiful moments. And even though he’s pushed that shutter button countless times in his career, there are a few images that stand out. “I have an image of a crocodile devouring a zebra head and neck. It’s pretty
intense, and very raw. It’s not one of those technically sound images – just very real and vivid, and it evokes a shock response from viewers. I love it!” If you’re squeamish, you may want to look away for that one. But not all of Marlon’s images are gruesome. “I have an image of an African wild dog, captured at Mana Pools [in northern Zimbabwe]. It was my first on-foot encounter with wild dogs. A friend and I crept up on the dog in a sandy river bed. “Then the alpha male stood up, and approached us head on. It was really intimidating; he was growling, low, while coming at us. I just kept photographing.” Marlon’s had many other special and exotic encounters. “One of my other favourites, certainly, is of a jaguar called “Pirata”, meaning “pirate”. He’s well-known in Brazil’s Pantanal – for good reason. He’s one mean son-of-a-gun, with one eye missing and lots of scars across his face. “We found him one day while on the hunt for caiman [Brazilian reptiles akin to crocodiles]; and there was a moment when this jaguar stepped into the water and came right towards our boat, not more than 10 metres away. It was surreal. I’ll never forget it.” WHAT’S NEXT FOR MARLON DU TOIT? “My first priority is to grow this business that we’ve built into something unique and special. I would love to do more television appearances, and perhaps host a few more celebrities out on safari, to increase awareness for the company. “Then, most importantly, I want to continue being a voice for animals, to ensure I play my part in conserving wildlife for future generations to enjoy. There are so many issues facing all sorts of animals today, and we all have a responsibility to protect them. “If I can’t do that with the voice and platform I’ve been given, then I will have failed.”
For more of Marlon’s incredible work, check out his Instagram page @MarlonDuToit, and @WildEyeSA
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 27
E BEST GEAR TO HIT MH HQ THIS MONTH
Along For The Ride A YEAR AFTER A BONE-CRUSHING MOTORBIKE ACCIDENT, PETER FROST HOPPED ON A HARLEY DAVIDSON AND HEADED FOR THE HIGHLANDS KAROO (TURN TO PAGE 124 FOR THE FULL STORY). THIS IS THE GEAR THAT GOT HIM THROUGH THE RIDE OF HIS LIFE. / BY PETER FROST & KELLEIGH KOREVAAR
PILOT 22-IN-1 IN 1 HELMET
ICEBREAKER MERINO BASE LAYER
With a front vent, breathing perforations, and a moisture-wicking and antimicrobial liner that’s removable and washable, this helmet will take your ride to the next level. R3 477, harley-davidson-capetown.com
This brand has the world’s best merino layering system, with wool sourced from New Zealand. Bonus: you can wear it during your workout (it’s odour-resistant). R1 199, adventureinc.co.za
THULE CHASM 70L DUFFEL The downside to duffel bags? Everything gets mixed up. Not in this one. Your adventures will be more organised thanks to multiple mesh pockets. R2 399, thule.co.za
KTM COROZAL ADVENTURE WP BOOT Make sure you get some hardcore all-weather adventure boots to protect your feet on your journeys. These are 100% waterproof and ergonomically shaped for optimum comfort over longer distances. R4 692, ktm.com/za
ENDURANCE LEATHER GLOVES The moulded carbon knuckle protector with venting keeps your hands cool and dry. It's time to hit the road and rack up the kays. R869, harley-davidsoncapetown.com
BUFF WINDPROOF LOG US Hitting the road is fun, but that wind chill… not so much. This buff is totally windproof and water-repellent. And the scooped shape is perfect for fitting inside the neck of your jacket. R559, adventureinc.co.za
28 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
KTM COROZAL ADVENTURE WP BOOT
FXRG MESH SLIM-FIT RIDING JACKET Outfitted with Coolcore lining to wick moisture and enhance temperature regulation, this riding jacket is the perfect companion for an openroad adventure. R7 825, harley-davidsoncapetown.com
IMAGES: JAMES GARAGHTY, SUPPLIED
RefinedPower THE LEXUS RC F DEBUTS IN SOUTH AFRICA, BRINGING V8 MUSCLE AND ENHANCED AERODYNAMICS. / BY STEVE SMITH
There’s something special about the RC F; an air of the maverick to both its aesthetics and powertrain. It certainly looks like nothing else on the road – a performance-focused interpretation of Lexus’s L-finesse design language that’s all sharp angles, flowing lines and fit-forpurpose aerodynamics. This RC F has a noticeably more aggressive stance than its V6 RC 350 sibling. It’s a case of racetrack tech translated to the road, with the RC F benefitting from the RC F GT500 and RC F GT3 race cars. They’ve not only given
the RC F unique and eye-catching aesthetics; they’ve had a significant impact on the car’s aerodynamic characteristics too. “Every shape has been given function, embodying ‘race-bred design’,” says Lexus RC F chief of development Yuichi Tsurumoto. “Extraordinary effort has been placed on reducing front lift. As a result, even at ultrahigh speeds around 250km/h, the front feels firmly planted on the road surface.” THE DRIVETRAIN Hiding behind the signature Lexus spindle
grille is an equally distinctive engine, with power and aural characteristics unlike anything else on the road. The naturally aspirated 5.0-litre V8 is a real rarity in these days of small-capacity, force-fed powerplants, but the one here is by no means a throwback. This highly sophisticated 2UR-GSE petrol engine, engineered with forged connecting rods and titanium valves, not only delivers 351kW and 530Nm of torque, but is Euro-6-emissionscompliant. With maximum power at 7 100rpm and peak torque between 4 800rpm
All dramatic angles and swooping lines, the new Lexus RC F fits right in – by standing out.
and 5 600rpm, the high-revving engine delivers an immensely satisfying blend of aural satisfaction and punchy performance. This power is transmitted to the rear wheels via an eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission, equipped with newly-developed Artificial Intelligence Shift control. It offers Eco, Normal, Sport S, Sport S+ and Custom modes, via the centre consolemounted Drive Mode Select dial – you select the one that suits your intentions. DYNAMIC HANDLING Although this is the first time it’s been offered in our market, this RC F arrives as part of a mid-cycle enhancement to the entire RC range. For the apex V8 model, this has included a lighter and stronger chassis, with a steering spring rate that’s been increased by 150%, reducing understeer and improving driver feedback. Alloy front suspension upper supports and rear toe control arm brackets also bring weight reductions and greater rigidity. The RC F's Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) features have also been improved, with faster, smoother and more precise damping force adjustment allowed across a range of 30 levels. Finishing off these dynamic handling improvements are newly-developed Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres, tailored specifically to the RC F. The fast, flowing corners of the R511 north of Johannesburg form the perfect stretch of road to test the RC F, with the new asphalt and beautifully cambered bends extracting the best from the chassis. Flex your right ankle, and the response is typically Lexus – a smooth, KEY INFO linear delivery E N G I N E 5.0 - L I T R E V 8 of power with P OW E R 351 KW @ AT tons of turn-in 7 100RPM grip as the RC F TO RQ U E 53 0 N M @ 4 80 0 R P M - 5 6 0 0 R P M hunkers down, T R A N S 8- S P E E D AU TO swooping left 0 -1 0 0 K M / H 4.3 S EC and right. TO P S P E E D 270 K M / H But get PRICE R1 318 300 into the RC F WA R R A N T Y & FU L L 7-Y E A R 105 000KM MAINTENANCE thinking P L A N A R E STA N DA R D. S E RV I C E I N T E RVA LS A R E it’s going to E V E RY 1 5 0 0 0 K M , be a twitchy A LT E R N AT I V E LY E V E RY 12 MONTHS handful with
Cutting-edge tech, and no compromising on quality.
Naturallyaspirated V8 performance, with the soundtrack to match.
razor-sharp, race-car-like responses, and you’ll be disappointed. That’s not what this luxury brand is about at all. “Controlled power” would be a better descriptor. Think more grand tourer, with plenty of muscle that will get you to your destination very swiftly… and cosset you in comfort and luxury while doing so. LUXURY AND SAFETY And make no mistake, this RC F has all the hallmarks that have seen the Lexus brand garner a reputation for premium spec and outstanding build quality. The RC F’s aerodynamics, handling and performance enhancements have not come at the expense of luxury, refinement or safety. There’s a wonderful duality to the car – set to its Sport S and Sport S+ modes, together with supportive sports seats and low driving position, the RC is an agile and responsive performance car. In Normal mode though, with suspension settings and throttle responses all dialled down, the softened chassis means a more relaxing ride, with the heated and ventilated seats adding to the comfort. All RC F variants feature an expansive 10.3-inch widescreen centre display with satellite navigation, digital radio and Bluetooth phone and audio streaming, including voice recognition. There’s also a 17-speaker Mark Levinson audio system that ensures the sort of crisp sound quality befitting a premium sports coupé of this calibre. Like all RC models, the RC F is equipped with the highest level of safety technology, including the Lexus Safety System+ suite of driving aids: pre-crash (brake-synchronised) safety system with pedestrian detection, standard adaptive cruise control, lanedeparture warning with steering assist, and automatic LED high beam. Blind-spot monitor, reversing camera, front clearance and rear parking sonars and rear cross-traffic alert are also standard. It's in Normal mode that we head back to home base. The sun dipping below the horizon signals the end of our lateafternoon blast, and the high-grade LED headlights and L-shaped tail-lights flick on automatically…
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 31
SHOE CARE adidas has teamed up with Parley to transform plastic into sportswear. These shoes are ideal for explosive drills and speed training.
adidas Alphaboost Parley Shoes R2 499 adidas.co.za
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WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine R18 850 fitnessnetwork. co.za
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CLEANER COFFEE This BPA-free glass cup ensures a purer-tasting drink, as it won’t absorb or impart flavour. Safe to put in the dishwasher on the top shelf, it’s practical and eco-friendly. And you’ll still get the buzz you need for metcons.
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Asoka Eco Yoga Mat R600 billythebee.com
PACK PROTECTION You needn’t skimp on style to save the planet. This backpack, made out of an upcycled yacht sail, has a heavy-duty buckle and even a padded laptop pocket for commuter compatibility.
Sealand Roamer Breeze R2 900 sealandgear.co.za
32 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
WORDS: MICHAEL JENNINGS AND KELLEIGH KOREVAAR | PHOTOGRA APHY: LUCKY IF SHARP
KeepCup Glass & Silicone Cup R405 faithful-to-nature.co.za
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN...
…I Burn Out? IT’S HARDER THAN EVER TO UNPLUG IN TODAY’S “ALWAYS-ON” CULTURE – BUT WHAT’S THE TRUE COST OF NEVER LOGGING OFF? WE CHART YOUR ROUTE FROM CAREER BURNOUT TO A MENTAL AND PHYSICAL REBOOT.
03. Get The Green Light
Over time, your system becomes flooded with the stress hormones adrenalin, noradrenaline and epinephrine. With its prefrontal cortex compromised, your brain struggles to regulate your limbic system and control your emotions. Cue a spike in anxiety. But there’s a simple fix: adding a plant to your workspace has been proven to cut office anxiety by 15% and help keep your limbic system in check.
01. Hit Boiling Point
According to the South African Depression and Anxiety Group, absenteeism costs the South African economy R20-odd billion annually. And depression costs SA 42% more than tourism brings in. Burnout is typically defined as a syndrome characterised by cynicism, low efficacy and tiredness. It enlarges your amygdala, a part of your brain crucial to emotional reactions, causing you to feel a general malaise – not to mention the desire to hand in your resignation by 8.05am.
04. Drift Off Faster
Finally, exhaustion hits you. As your endocrine system pumps out cortisol, your heart rate and brain activity soar, making sleep more difficult. The UK’s National Health Service warns that several nights of sleeping five hours or less can cause the depressive symptoms of exhaustion. A regular prebed routine helps. Switch off the TV, open a book, and bed down at a set time. Yes, it sounds dull, but your body will come to expect sleep, and you’ll drift off more easily.
This general funk starts to lower your productivity, and it can get worse the longer you stay in the office. Burnout causes your prefrontal cortex to grow thinner, reducing the brain’s cognitive ability. This occurs normally with ageing, but it happens sooner in people who are stressed for prolonged periods. (The International Labour Organisation says SA has one of the lowest employee productivity stats in the world.) In this case, more means less, so try to clock off at 5pm.
34 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
HOT IDEA: Learn to extinguish the flames before it’s too late.
If you’re after a cure rather than preventative measures, book a week off work – now. You need a physiological overhaul. Burnout has altered your body on a cellular level, with your physical, emotional and cognitive systems adapting to accommodate a hormone overload and inflammatory response. Rest is the only medicine. It takes seven days for your neuroendocrine system to return to normal. So, schedule a staycation and return a new man.
WORDS: TOM WARD | EXPERT: DR MARK WINWOOD AXA.CO.UK | ILLUSTRATION: GETTY
05. Press Reset
02. Watch The Clock
STRAIGHT-UP ADVICE FROM A STAND-UP GUY, EVERY MONTH. / BY KIERAN LEGG
forget to apply some of the same principles to my own life. Just understanding your sources of income, how you’re spending your money, and the variability (i.e. how those numbers may change throughout the year) is a huge step in the right direction. And remember: while stashing money in savings will feel like an expense right now, those savings will turn into your only form of income when you retire or are stuck without work.
MEET ANDREW DORE He’s a qualified actuary, leading the reserving and capital teams at one of SA’s largest shortterm insurers. In his spare time, he lectures postgraduate students at Wits, hits the gym – and bakes. That last one’s not just a hobby: he’s competed in The Great South African Bake-Off, and is busy turning his creative outlet into a business. Here’s how he calculates life’s risks to bake up a storm. I’ve finished university, and now I’m living on my own. What’s one big money mistake you see guys make? The big one: often, people don’t spend within their means. I spend a good portion of every year managing the budgeting process for a multi-billion-rand organisation, and it’s easy to
I want to squeeze in gym sessions, but between work, family, and just being too damn tired, I’m struggling to strike a balance. How do you do it?
Granted, it’s not easy to juggle work, family, baking and fitness; these are all important parts of my life, and I refuse to let time be a limiting factor. My trick: I try to combine activities, to get even more out of every minute. Visiting the parents? I run there and back. Catching up with an old friend? Do it over a few sets at the gym. By synchronising these activities you’ll be amazed at how much more you’re able to accomplish. Plus, you’ll find yourself surrounded by more likeminded individuals, and this will just fuel your motivation levels to get even more done.
I tend to over-analyse everything, and struggle to make big, risky decisions. How do I overcome “analysis paralysis”? At its heart, life is a tradeoff: risk versus reward. In business, this applies to selling insurance policies and investments; in your personal life, risk is exposing yourself to failure, embarrassment, and disappointment. I believe that without putting myself out there and risking failure, I will never be rewarded with a fulfilling life, whether it’s at work, in a relationship, or just with a
personal victory in the kitchen or gym. When faced with a new decision, try this: think about where this decision stacks up in the context of the bigger picture; assess each of your options (you can make a list of pros and cons); and then, with a bit of research, make an informed decision. Sure – sometimes, even when the odds are stacked in your favour, you can still fail. But use this as a chance to learn from your mistakes, and apply those lessons to your next decision. Don’t take life too seriously, and let these hurdles get you down.
I realised the other day that I don’t have any hobbies. Should I pick one up? And why? We only have one life, and we need to enjoy it. I’ve chased money – and I continue to do so – but as I’ve matured, I’ve realised that money only goes so far in making me feel happy. What I’ve learnt: it’s those small things in my everyday life that bring me the most joy. For me, baking is an opportunity to relax, clear my mind, and reflect on everything that’s going on. In many ways, hobbies are a distraction from (a sometimes tough) reality. But hobbies are also a chance to reset, to take a step outside of the rat race and give you a renewed sense of self to tackle another difficult day. Plus, what the f*^% am I going to do when I retire?
Life is busy. Any power moves I can squeeze in to get my fitness fix, even when I have sparse minutes to spare? I’m a true believer in mixing cardio and resistance training. If I only have a few minutes for a workout, I love doing a superset of plyometric jump squats (try and squat deep) and pushups, or plyometric burpees and deep squats combined (focus on form). I’ll do a set before I shower, after I shower, and after I brush my teeth. It gets the body moving and blood flowing and takes just a few minutes. It’s a great way to kickstart the day, too. Bonus: these moves tackle large muscle groups, and promote flexibility and strength.
BAKE THE BOOKS Working out doesn’t always have to mean cutting out. Here are Andrew’s favourite baked cheat-day kilojoule bombs, and how he puts that bad energy to good use:
1. CHOCOLATE BROWNIE Kilojoules: 949 The workout: High-intensity interval training
2. CHURRO Kilojoules: 1 003 The workout: Bench press circuit at different inclines
3. CARROT CAKE Kilojoules: 1 735 The workout: Brick session of 40km cycling and 7km run
Follow Andrew @The_boy_who_baked on Instagram to keep up with his baking (and fitness) journey.
36 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
IMAGES SUPPLIED, GETTY IMAGES (CAKE)
Ask The Actuary
Available in store and online www.polo.co.za @polosouthafrica
“Like an adult playground”: the author finally gets his chance to flip the giant tyre.
FITNESS Forge Lasting Strength Shred Your Core Row To Grow
TREND ON TRIAL
New classes promise to prep you for the next generation of obstacle-course races. ANDREW HEFFERNAN finds out that the biggest problem during training is hitting your personal wall.
I’m halfway across the Twister, a diabolical set of monkey bars with rotating handles, and I’m not sure I’ll make it to the other end of this ten-metre nightmare. “You’ve got this!” shouts Timmie Brann, a coach whose name doesn’t match her intensity level. “Don’t let go!” My legs are flailing, my forearms are fried, and I’m having flashbacks to a 2017 Spartan Race, when I had to do 30 burpees
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 39
Feeling inspired? Take on the Tough Mudder
because I fell off this very OCR-focused gyms When: 19 October obstacle. are springing up all over. 2019 “Grip it!” she yells. I grab “People are used to fitness Where: Elgin, another handle and hang on. programmes that focus on Western Cape. Forty sweat-filled seconds later, how they look,” says racer What: Choose I’ve survived my nemesis. My Robin Legat, who runs Rise between 16km (full) or 8km (half) of mud reward? I do it three more times. Up’s Santa Monica location. and obstacles built That’s how things go in the “Then they try an OCR race, to test your mental grit, camaraderie Race Day Simulation workout and their mindset shifts to and all-around at Long Beach California’s what they can do instead of physical fitness. You’ll take on RUT (Rise Up Training) Camp, how they look.” obstacles like the where classes are designed to They join classes like Kiss Of Mud and the Block Ness Monster. make you an obstacle-courseRace Day Simulation, which Plus, at this teamracing bad-ass – while crushing is packed on this morning. orientated challenge there’s no winner, fat and building agility along It’s 5am, but I’m here with 22 and no clock to race the way. gung-ho types – the kind of against. Challenge accepted! Rise Up capitalises on the people who think crawling growth of Tough Mudders, in the mud is fun – a 50-50 Spartan Races, and other mix of guys and girls. We’re 2 examples of OCR. Once a novelty sport, in a 140m outdoor area that looks like an adult playground – the Twister in one obstacle-course racing currently has more corner, a massive tyre that I’m dying to flip than 5 million participants worldwide – and in another, and logs, kegs and sandbags TV attention. Two years ago, NBC aired all over the place. There’s even a spearthe series Spartan Race: Ultimate Team throwing station. “If it shows up in a Challenge. Now there are Dwayne Johnson’s Spartan Race,” says Brann, “we try to get it The Titan Games and LeBron James and in here, too.” Tim Tebow’s Million Dollar Mile, while Almost. Most OCRs have you running American Ninja Warrior is in its 11th season. 40 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
(and “recovering”) between obstacles, but Brann doesn’t do that. There’s a warm-up at the beginning and some ab work at the end; other than that, this class is four fourmove circuits. You spend ten minutes at each station, repeating it until time expires. Fail an obstacle, and you owe Brann five burpees. “I want you moving the entire workout!” she barks. “We want your heart working hard the whole time!” Brann and assistant coach Hugo Frausto enforce the edict throughout the 75-minute session. Early on, when my lungs are on fire halfway through a 200m farmer’s carry with a giant cement bucket held against my chest, I rest briefly, but Frausto and the rest of my group aren’t having it. “Pick it up! Pick it up!” everyone says. I learn the lesson, adopting a relentless but deliberate pace that’s perfect for OCR. After the carry, I’m alternately picking up and dropping a 23kg medicine ball. Then I’m doing ten deadlifts, the closest thing to
OBSTACLE-ISE ANY GYM Want to get a taste of obstacle-course racing without leaving the gym? Try these four moves, each designed to prep you for a different portion of the race.
1. Dumbbell Farmer’s Carry
Stand holding a heavy dumbbell in each hand, arms straight. Squeeze your shoulder blades and tighten your core, then walk. Walk for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds; do 3 sets. HELPS WITH: Bucket and log carries.
3. Assisted Side-to-Side Pull-Up
2. Bench Vault
Stand to the right of an exercise bench with your left knee near the bench. Place your hands on the bench, then vault back and forth over it as fast as possible. Do as many reps as you can in 30 seconds; do 2 sets. HELPS WITH: Wall climbing, crawling.
4. Skater Hop
Forget push-ups. You’ll scale walls (above) and throw spears at Race Day Simulation, before ending with a rope-climbing relay.
traditional lifting here at Rise Up. Shortly after that, I’m wedging my forearms under that giant tyre, battling to lever it up, then pushing it over. Then it’s on to the next circuit, with a slanted wall that I must traverse using only its chains as handholds. I earn a burpee penalty here (more sucking wind), but get up and fight through more farmer’s carries (this time with logs) and box jumps. I’m breathing hard but not worn out. This is fullbody athleticism, and it has me feeling alive. I’m ready by the time we hit the finale, a rope-climbing relay. I attack the rope, climbing fast and touching the bell on top, then descend to high fives and fist bumps. Brann gives me a hug. “You toughed it out,” she says. The next time I reach the Twister in a Spartan Race, I’ll be prepared.
Hang from a pull-up bar using an overhand grip. Pull yourself up till your chin clears the bar and hold. Walk first your right hand, then your left, 15cm to the right. Lower yourself fully, then repeat the process to the other side. Do 3 or 4 reps each way; do 2 sets. HELPS WITH: Monkey bars, Twister, rope climb, farmer’s carry.
Start in an athletic stance, then lift your left foot off the ground. Leap to the left about 60cm, landing only on your left foot; touch your right hand to the ground if needed. Jump off your left foot to the right, landing on your right foot. Leap back and forth for 30 seconds, then rest 30 seconds; do 3 sets. HELPS WITH: Agility for climbing and obstacle traversal.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 41
THE BIG WORKOUT
The Power Plan for Lifelong Fitness HIT PAUSE ON TIME WITH TWO WORKOUTS THAT WILL BUILD MUSCLE MASS AND ENHANCE YOUR STAMINA, WHATEVER YOUR STAGE OF LIFE. YOUR AGE IS NO LONGER AN EXCUSE.
LASTING STRENGTH All aspects of fitness, from speed and flexibility to mobility and endurance, require a base of strength. But strength, if not maintained, wastes away as you grow older, and its loss is a major signifier of wider health issues later in life. This workout from PT Luke Worthington recruits the four fundamental movements – squat, hinge, push and pull. Perform it at least once every two weeks to ensure that you get stronger for every candle on the cake. 42 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
FRONT SQUAT 4 SETS OF 6 REPS
DEADLIFT 4 SETS OF 5 REPS
Start your session with a squat variation that builds strength in your legs and positions the weight to fire up your abs. With a barbell resting on the front of your shoulders, your palms up and fingers underneath (A), drop your hips back to sink to a squat (B). When you are as low as possible, hold for a second, then drive up. Rest for 90 seconds between sets on all moves.
Switch to another compound exercise to develop your posterior chain – the base for all athletic movement. With your back straight, bend down to hold the barbell in an overhand grip, your hands at shoulder width (A). Tense your back and think about driving your hips towards the bar as you stand, lifting the weight in front of your thighs (B). Reverse the movement back down.
WORDS: MICHAEL JENNINGS | PHOTOGRAPHY: PHILIP HAYNES MODEL: LAWRENCE PRICE, W MODELS | STYLING: HAYLEY LAWRENCE
THE SPEC EXPERT Luke Worthington EXPERIENCE Elite trainer at Third Space in London, Worthington is a pro at bulletproofing his clientsâ€™ bodies to help them move well, in and out of the gym.
WORKOUT 45 MIN RESULTS FOR LIFE LEVEL ALL
GROOMING: SUSANA MOTA | SHORTS ASOS, TRAINERS NEW BALANCE AT ASOS
HALF-KNEELING LANDMINE PRESS 3 SETS OF 8 REPS PER ARM
ONE-ARM DUMBBELL ROW 3 SETS OF 10 REPS PER ARM
Undo muscle imbalances by working one side of your body at a time. With a barbell in a landmine attachment, halfkneel with one knee on the floor and the other leg bent in front. Hold the barbell in the opposite hand to your front leg (A). Keep your elbow under your wrist as you press the bar forward and up (B). Lower with control.
Go from pressing to pulling and build muscle across your entire back. With one hand and knee on the bench, hold a dumbbell next to the bench with your other hand, your arm extended below your shoulder (A). Form a solid base with your back leg out to the side. Row the weight towards your waist, not your shoulder (B). Slowly lower the dumbbell.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 43
EXPERT Callum Nicholls EXPERIENCE The other half of a Third Space dynamic duo, Nicholls offers stamina-boosting workouts that are far more inspiring than pounding the pavement. CONTACT @callumnicholls7
SUSTAINING STAMINA The idea that your fitness spirals inexorably downward the older you get is flawed: you can improve it incrementally your whole life. This circuit from trainer Callum Nicholls uses conventional cardio kit, your body weight and a pair of dumbbells to build functional endurance as you increase the intensity each round. Perform this session at least once every two weeks to ensure that your stamina is in it for the long run. 44 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
ROW 5 ROUNDS, GOING UP BY 100M EVERY ROUND
THRUSTERS 5 ROUNDS, GOING UP BY 5 REPS EACH ROUND
Rowing will raise your red blood cell count, feeding more oxygen to your muscles. With your knees bent and arms straight (A), drive your legs away. Keep your arms straight until your legs are fully extended, then pull the handle towards your chest (B). Reverse to glide back. Beginners start at 100m, intermediates at 200m and advanced at 300m, all rising by 100m every round.
This compound move will send your metabolism soaring as you employ both your upper and lower body. Hold a dumbbell in each hand at the top of your shoulders and squat down (A). When you reach the bottom, drive up and lift the dumbbells simultaneously, so you finish standing with your arms extended (B). Start with five reps, using a weight with which you can do 25 reps in your final round.
THE SPEC MUSCLES TARGETED
WORKOUT 30 MIN RESULTS FOR LIFE LEVEL ALL
SHORTS UNDER ARMOUR AT SPORTSEDIT.COM, TRAINERS ADIDAS AT JD SPORTS
BURPEES 5 ROUNDS, GOING UP BY 5 REPS EACH ROUND
RUN 5 ROUNDS, GOING UP BY 100M EVERY ROUND
This bodyweight staple boosts your VO2 max. Squat and place your palms on the floor in front of your feet. Jump your legs back and bring your chest down to the floor (A). Bring your feet back in and jump up in the air, touching your hands together overhead (B). Thatâ€™s one rep. Do five reps in round one, then increase by five reps in each round that follows.
Complete the circuit with a stamina-spiking shock. Beginners should start at 100m, intermediates at 200m and advanced at 00m in 300m, increasing the distance by 100m each round. Keep your shoulders do own and elbows in and drive your knees high (A). Take a breather when you complete your distance (B), then head to the rower for round two. Your quest for lasting fitness is now well under way y.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 45
Scale Up Your Lunchtime GymSessions SHRED YOUR CORE, FILL YOUR SLEEVES AND UNCOIL BACK PAIN WITH THE VIPER PRESS – A MOVE THAT HAS IT ALL. BUT BEWARE; IT HAS SOME BITE.
We like to walk a fine line at MH, and that line lies between proper functionality and aesthetics. Yes, we want to move well; but we’d be lying if we said we didn’t want to look good, too. And we’re after both from the 45 minutes we have in the gym beforee lunch. If you feel the same, it’s time to inject some venom into your training with this new movement. “It’s called the ‘viper press’ because you coil up, sitting back, ready to spring forward,” says movement coach (and the move’s creator) Richard Tidmarsh. The exercise incorporates the best elements of a crunch and an overhead press, targeting your core, shoulders and arms. The hip extension then encourages mobility in your spine and hips, releasing the joints most susceptible to the pitfalls of sedentary life. “It’s an antidote to sitting, teaching you to use your hips,” says Tidmarsh. “And it’s great for both mirror muscles and functionality.” Try five sets of eight reps at the beginning of your workout for four weeks, and you can attain both dynamic movement and a shredded core to be proud of. This isn’t snake oil: it’s the real sting.
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Begin in a kneeling position d set up on the floor, and bells held with two kettleb at your collarbone in the front rack po osition. ws high Keep your elbow to engage your shoulder muscles from th he start. start
Slowly sit your glutes onto your heels and lean back. Support the two kettlebells at your chest by contracting your abs. Hold this position for a second to make sure you’re in total control of the rep.
Now, engage your glutes hard to push forward through your hips. This will take you back up into a kneel. As A you do so, uncurl your as abs until you’re as tall a ot possible. But you’re no done just yet...
In a fluid d movement, use the upw ward momentum to push the kettlebells overhead. Slowl ower them t our shoulder and sink into the next rep, for a one-stop form and function overhaul.
THE FINAL PUSH
WORDS: MATT EVANS | PHOTOGRAPHY: PHILIP HAYNES
TAKE A KNEE
H B S X RCIS YOU R O DOIN
WHAT YOU’LL GAIN:
Thump-Thump. Thump . . . Thump. (Thump.) PRO ATHLETES AND COACHES ARE USING NEW TECHNOLOGY TO OPTIMISE TRAINING ACCORDING TO SIGNALS FROM YOUR HEART. MICHAEL EASTER INVESTIGATES WHETHER YOU SHOULD, TOO.
48 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
The human heart beats like a metronome, right? All evenly spaced thumps and regular rhythms? Wrong. When you’re at your healthiest, your heart is actually more like your six-Scotches-deep uncle pounding on the family drum kit: the . . . ... beats . . . are spaced...... . . . . . . unevenly. It’s only when your body is stressed – either for a short-term reason (like a bad night of sleep, a cold, or an insane deadline) or a long-term one (you’re a smoker, have a chronically stressful job, or support the national cricket team) – that the beats are more sober and steady. (Ja, we were surprised, too.) This fluctuation is called heart-rate variability, or HRV for short. And some experts say that you can give yourself an athletic edge by tracking and responding to changes in your HRV – especially now wearable devices such as the Apple Watch, Garmin Fenix, and Morpheus (an app-based health monitor) have started measuring it. In the US, various football, basketball and baseball teams and even some UFC fighters have built their workout programmes around HRV. Should you? It depends on where you stand on all this measuring. How Training by HRV Works Wearables collect your data and spit out an HRV “score”, which indicates whether your life stress over the past 24 hours or so has forced your HRV down, or if it’s remained resiliently up.
If your HRV is low, explains New York cardiologist Dr Johnny Lee, you’ll have more difficulty absorbing an intense training session, because you’re just dumping more stress into an already stressed system. On the other hand, a high HRV indicates that your body has ample energy to devote to long-term health-enhancing projects. So if
“They say the technology has quirks. It’s inexact (but good enough for pattern spotting).” you work out hard when your HRV is high, the thinking goes, your body will dedicate its abundant energy to rebuilding muscle and improving your cardio system, says strength and conditioning coach Joel Jamieson, who has used HRV data with pro sports teams and the US military.
The theory seems to hold: scientists in Finland discovered that people who did HIIT when their HRV was high experienced larger fitness gains. Another study, by Spanish scientists, found that cyclists who tailored their training to their HRV saw their performance improve up to 14% more than those who relied on more traditional methods. So using your HRV data to inform your training schedule should theoretically net you no junk workouts. Except, of course, there are detractors. They say the technology has quirks. It’s inexact (but good enough for pattern spotting). Getting the most accurate reading you can is a pain: one device recommends measuring before you get out of bed; those that track all day are prone to error; and random events such as the onset of illness can affect your HRV score. On top of this, MH fitness advisor Bill Hartman says you really only need common sense to tell you if you’re ready for an intense workout. Rate yourself from one to five (one is grim, five is great) on two questions: how did you sleep? And how do you feel? In lieu of measuring HRV, you’re assessing the two factors that most influence it. On days you rate fives, go hard. Days you’re below threes? Ease up a bit. “I’ve found this is as useful as all these monitoring devices,” says Hartman. In other words, you’ll still improve your fitness, but you’ll also save some bucks, and won’t be at the mercy of yet another thing that pings at you.
A WEEK OF HRV
Here’s how a morning HRV check might affect your training, based on readouts from the Apple Watch (which rates HRV usually from 20 to 90). Each device measures HRV differently, but over time you’ll get to know what’s high and low for you.
PHOTOGRAPH: SEAN LAURENZ
IF YOUR HRV READOUT IS:
IT COULD BE DUE TO:
SO YOU MIGHT:
A bad night’s sleep.
Do a low-intensity cardio recovery workout and go to bed early.
Everything going well.
Opt for a seriously brutal strengthtraining session.
Yesterday’s training, which has left you wiped and sore.
Take it easy today.
A good night’s sleep, but a looming deadline at work.
Do a strength workout, but keep it to a medium intensity.
Going a bit too hard in that medium-intensity workout!
Go for a recovery walk.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 49
CHASE THE PUMP
Row to Grow
TIMING THE PULL
THE ROWING MACHINE IS USUALLY RESERVED FOR CARDIO PURSUITS ONLY, BUT HERE YOU’LL USE IT TO BUILD BIGGER ARMS IN JUST 15 MINUTES. DON’T THINK IT’S POSSIBLE? TAKE A SEAT.
THE FORMAT Row as many metres as you can in 30 seconds. Then, in the same amount of time, perform as many push-ups as possible to failure, with your hands on the rower seat. Repeat this combo for 15 minutes. Your final score is the total metres rowed multiplied by your total push-ups. Aim for 225 000 (1 500m row x 150 push-ups). Strap in.
“Don’t pull too early with your arms,” advises Tracey. Think of them simply as hooks for the first part of the move: your legs are far stronger, so let them take most of the load. When your legs are almost straight, pull the handle hard towards your sternum. Push it back, letting the momentum glide you in.
THE TASKMASTER Name: Andrew Tracey Trainer tip: “Training with high reps is what you need for plateaubusting arm growth,” says Tracey. Visit: youarenotyourgymmembership.com @theandrew. tracey
50 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Don’t blow out too early, as your subsequent efforts will suffer. Try to maintain roughly the same metres for every row, and stay in the same ballpark for the reps of push-ups. The combination of high heart rate from the row and high rep counts with push-ups will guarantee an arm pump unlike any other. For more rowing tips, head over to www. mh.co.za/fitness.
WORDS: MICHAEL JENNINGS | PHOTOGRAPHY: PHILIP HAYNES
Resting your hands on the rower seat brings them closer together than in ordinary pushups, which increases the tension in your triceps. For T-shirt-bursting muscle, lower under control for three seconds, pause for a second when your chest touches the slide, then explode up. This may mean fewer reps, but it’ll result in more muscle.
STYLE Decode the Dress Code Tailor Made The MH Hot List
You know the saying: something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. Well, if you’re lookingfor aspecial watchto wear onyour wedding day, newis whereit’s at. Watches have one major advantage over other investments: if you buy carefully, you’ll own something timeless, well made and useful, that will last for years. But take note – your Big Day is not the occasion for that running gadget that tracks your speed and measures heart rate at the wrist. For formal events, it’s more appropriate to wear an elegant dress watch. The dial should be white, cream or black, and have either Roman numerals or simple line hour markers. Asfor the strap,leather ismore traditional thana metal bracelet. It also allowsyou to matchyour watch strapwith the colourof yourshoes and belt – a black belt and blackshoes callforablackleatherstrap,whileyou shouldoptforabrownwatchstrapif you’rewearing a brownbelt and shoes. One of our favourite investment timepieces is the Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph 42. Originally introduced in the 1940s, the Premier range has always focused on subtlety and elegance. Newer editions are clean and functional, featuring a self-winding, chronometer-certified movement that has an impressive power reserve of over 70 hours. You can choose a stainless-steel bracelet, or an alligator leather or nubuck leather strap.
IF YOU LIKE THE IDEA OF SOMETHING SOPHISTICATED AND LUXURIOUS THAT CAN BE WORN FOR DECADES, A LUXURY WATCH IS THE PERFECT INVESTMENT. / BY AZEEZ JACOBS
BREITLING PREMIER B01 CHRONOGRAPH 42 R123 700, BREITLING.COM
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 53
Black Tie Optional We know, right? “Optional”. Does that mean… “encouraged”? Or could you really choose no tie at all? What it really means is “Keep it classy, but with a bit of personality”. We’re fans of nontraditional tuxedos in navy or charcoal. Remember, shinier fabrics are dressier; matte fabrics are more casual. Wear with a white dress shirt and black tie or bow tie. Keep in mind: there will be people in black tie, even if you’re not, and you want your look to feel at home among them. Important: make sure to match your belt with your shoes. Now sit back, and accept the compliments.
B OW T I E R 399 FA B I A N I , N O N - I RO N S L I M - F I T S H I RT R 599 DAV I D J O N E S AT WO O LWO RT H S, N AV Y S U I T R 7 999 R A M S E Y, FO R M A L S H O E S R 4 799 RAMSEY
DRESS CODE Cracked the nod to your mate’s big day? Time to suit up… BY AZEEZ JACOBS / PHOTOGRAPHS BY JACQUES WEYERS
Your buddy’s wedding invitation just arrived, and it looks like it’s going to be a fat jol… except he’s specified a strict dress code. Cue stress. But don’t break a sweat, because we’ve cracked the code for you, and we’ll explain exactly what you need to wear – whether you’re going to be brunching in the garden, or ripping up the dance floor until the wee hours. You’re welcome!
Black Tie No “optional” here: you need a tuxedo. If you don’t have one, rent one – just be sure you get the fit right. The no-fail solution: a black peak- or shawl-lapel blazer (like those dudes on the Oscars red carpet). You need to wear a bow tie and a tux shirt (a white wing- or spread-collared shirt and French cuffs), which you wear with cufflinks – check out Woolworths, Carducci and Fabiani for dress shirts with cufflinks. Your pocket square should be white or black. And skip the cummerbund – that’s dad territory (and not in a cool way). As for shoes, a plain black dress shoe is your best bet, but a cap toe will also work. Wear them with black socks.
SQUARE SUNGLASSES R6 490 CÉLINE AT SDM EYEWEAR, TUXEDO JACKET R1 995 C SQUARED, TUXEDO SHIRT R1 699 RAMSEY, BOW TIE R160 WOOLWORTHS, POCKET SQUARE R179 H&M, GOVERNOR WATCH R4 995 HUGO BOSS AT BACHER & CO
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 55
The “smart” bit is your hint: jeans, shorts and sneakers are not okay. You could go for trousers or clean-cut chinos. On top, wear a shirt and waistcoat, or a crewneck with a blazer. Keep your footwear choices smart – think loafers, brogues or lace-ups. Your “dressy” sneakers won’t work at a wedding. Good news: No tie of any kind required! SWINGING BRIDGES SUNGLASSES R 3 9 2 0 M A U I J I M , B U R G U N DY S U I T J AC K E T R 1 5 9 9 A N D PA N T S R 5 9 9 B OT H WO O LWO R T H S , STA N L E Y K N I T R 6 9 9 B R E N T WO O D, WATC H R 7 9 9 T E M P O AT A M E R I C A N S W I S S
56 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Summer Formal If you see the word “formal” in a dress code, it means “Wear a suit”. For a beach wedding, opt for an ultra-lightweight unconstructed suit. Linen or cotton fabrics are ideal. Add a pop of bold, graphic print to your wedding attire with a fun tropical shirt. A neutral colour allows you the option of splitting up the jacket and trousers. For your feet, loafers or smart-looking deck shoes with rubber soles, and you can go sockless. ERVIN SUNGLASSES R2 990 TED B A K E R AT S D M E Y E W E A R , L I N E N B L A Z E R R 2 7 9 9, PA N T S R 1 4 9 9 A N D S H I R T R 7 9 9 A L L T R E N E RY, P O C K E T S Q U A R E R 5 8 0 T E D B A K E R , WOV E N B E LT R 5 4 9 C O U N T RY R OA D, ARMBAND R499 AMERICAN SWISS, LOA F E R S R 1 4 9 9 T R E A D & M I L L E R
Cocktail This dress code was invented to bridge the gap between casual daywear and formal eveningwear. It’s similar to semi-formal, but you can be more creative with your styling, and pick a suit that’s more relaxed. Consider mixing and matching the pieces – say, suit trousers with a different blazer. Or wear a full suit with a crewneck jersey, because you don’t necessarily have to have a tie here. Feel free to play with colour, both in the outfit and in the accessories. As for shoes, you could do a lace-up or a tassel loafer. S H I R T R 4 5 0 ST U D I O W AT WO O LWO R T H S , WA I STC OAT R 2 1 9 9 A N D PA N T S R 2 7 9 9 S C OTC H & S O DA , L E AT H E R - ST R A P WATC H B U R E N R 1 5 9 9 AT B AC H E R & C O, L E O N A R D W E E J U N S LOA F E R S R 2 4 9 9 G. H . B A S S & C O.
58 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
SemiFormal As the name suggests, it’s a more relaxed version of its formal counterpart. You’re not wearing a tuxedo, but you are wearing a two-button or double-breasted suit. The suit jacket and pants should match, and you should be wearing a collared shirt – with or without a tie. If you’re not a fan of ties, a pocket square can up the formality. And forgo the chunky cufflinks, fat silky ties, and midlife-crisis statement watches. Simplicity is the key to looking sophisticated.
MODEL: JAMAHL AT FUSION, GROOMING: SAM AT ONE LEAGUE, FASHION ASSISTANT: NADIA EKSTEEN
D O U B L E - B R E A ST E D S U I T R 4 0 0 0 E U R O S U I T, S H I R T R 7 9 9 T R E N E RY, T I E R 1 1 9 9 R A M S E Y, P O C K E T S Q U A R E R 5 8 0 T E D B A K E R , D OT S O C KS R 1 3 0 FA L K E , F R I T Z B R O G U E S R1 299 TREAD & MILLER
Where to Buy AMERICAN SWISS 021 938 7510 BACHER & CO 011 372 6000 BRENTWOOD 087 940 4664 CALVIN KLEIN 021 418 1185 COUNTRY ROAD 021 405 4300 CSQUARED CSQUARED.CO.ZA EUROSUIT 021 555 3538 EDGARS 0860 692 274 FABIANI FABIANI.CO.ZA FALKE 021 951 2137 GH BASS ONLINE@ MEDICUS.CO.ZA H&M 021 826 7300 MAUI JIM MAUIJIM.COM RAMSEY 087 943 8554 SCOTCH & SODA 011 784 3233 SDM EYEWEAR 011 334 7020 TED BAKER 011 450 1156 TRENERY 0860 022 002 TREAD&MILLER 0860 665 533 WOOLWORTHS 0860 022 002
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 59
Wedding Crasher THIS SEASON, MIXING AND MATCHING YOUR TWO-PIECE SUITS WILL BE THE SECRET STYLE WEAPON FOR ALL YOUR SUMMER SOCIAL ENGAGEMENTS. / BY NADIA WINDT
S U I T JAC K ET (PART OF SUIT SET) R10 899 CALVIN KLEIN S H I RT R499 STUDIO W AT WOOLWORTHS P O C K ET S Q UA R E R89 STUDIO W WOOLWORTHS C H I N OS R429 H&M B E LT R499 COUNTRY ROAD S O C KS R130 FALKE M O N K- ST R A P S H O E R1 399 DUNE AT EDGARS
Keep it Personal Whether the occasion is formal or informal, you can still remain true to your personal style. Customise your look with subtle touches that are personal and memorable. Add a neatly folded printed pocket square, funky socks, or a contrast-sole brogue to stand out from the crowd. However, don’t break the boundaries too much – and be sure not to upstage the groom.
PHOTOGRAPH: JACQUES WEYERS; GROOMING: SAM AT ONE LEAGUE
60 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
From laid-back to tailor-made
Style Swap Most weddings fall into the vague category of requiring a suit, although nowadays they tend to be less formal. To prevent déjà vu in your Instagram photos, take advantage of a relaxed dress code by switching up your suiting. Try wearing separates rather than a full suit. It’s as simple as swapping out your blazer, pants or a shirt. In terms of colour, you can go beyond standard navy and grey. Warm and natural tones go well with navy trousers, as do lighter hues of blue. A crisp white shirt is always a safe bet, and a solid foundation to begin with. Wear it with or without a tie – without, for Lindelani – and for an extra touch, incorporate a waistcoat that matches either your jacket or pants.
O C C U PAT I O N
Clean-cut Acing your grooming plays a big part in your overall look. If you can, schedule an appointment with your barber the day before the wedding. Looking shabby looks lazy, so get a clean shave or beard trim, and a fresh fade or scissor cut. When raising the roof on the dancefloor, be sure to wear a good antiperspirant and consider keeping some toning wipes in your pocket. They’re great for quickly wiping away any sweat or excess oil from your face so you don’t get mistaken for the disco ball on the dance floor.
LO CAT I O N
Wedding season is upon us. And with wedding day hashtags now as standard as the vows themselves, no longer can you get away with hauling out that same go-to outfit you wear every time you crack the nod. Lindelani needed help choosing an outfit for an upcoming wedding he’s attending. We showed him how to put his best foot forward.
FEEL SMOOTH, LOOK SHAR Give yourself the edge with Lion for Men Duel shaving foams and gels. LionForMenSA
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KATHARINE McPHEE, ACTRESS AND SINGER, TELLS US WHAT DRIVES HER WILD. By AZEEZ JACOBS
O M I N G RO
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MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 63
HER EYES ARE UP THERE “The first thing I notice about a man is his hair. There’s nothing worse than when guys let their hair get too grown out. They look unkempt. A man who takes care of his monthly trims is on top of things. It’s all about that attention to the details.”
DRESS FOR YOUR BARBER
A haircut should suit your head shape and lifestyle. So give your barber a clue, especially if it’s a first-time visit. If you show up on a weekend in jeans and a T-shirt, how are they to know that you spend your workdays in Armani? Make your appointment for a day when you’re styled the way you usually dress. And be prepared to answer questions. “This is not a day to be quiet or to hide yourself,” says Vivot. “Open up and tell me who you are. That will make the haircut.”
THINK SHORT, MATTE, LIGHT
Men who have thinning hair need to follow three fundamental rules: short haircut, matte products, and light shades. These give the illusion of thicker, fuller hair, unlike longer hair, shiny styles, and darker tones. “I bleached my thinning hair for a year,” Vivot says. “It looked edgy, and I could make believe I had more of it.”
1 MOROCCANOIL THICKENING LOTION
Heavy waxes or gels can weigh thinning hair down, making it look thin and flat. Editor Robert Cilliers found this lotion plumps up the hair shafts to make them look fuller. 100ml R480 rubybox.co.za
2 TONI & GUY MEN ANTI-DANDRUFF 2 IN 1 SHAMPOO
Prevent flaky dandruff by keeping your scalp hydrated with this mineral-extract 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner. Plus, anyone who comes near you will dig the refreshing scent
it leaves in your hair. 250ml R130 Clicks 3 FISH ORIGINAL CONDITIONER
Hydrate your hair with this topnotch conditioner. It keeps hair shiny and manageable. The bottle design is great for carrying around in your gym bag, or when travelling. 300ml R100 dischem.co.za 4 L’ORÉAL MEN EXPERT BARBER CLUB STYLING CREAM
This cream is good for medium to long-ish hair. It gives a little bit of a hold, but leaves
64 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
movement, so you can still get your fingers through your mane. It will also keep your moustache and beard looking neat. 75ml R115 takealot.com
5 KEVIN MURPHY FREE HOLD
This delicious-smelling paste leaves a natural shine and delivers flexible hold, with a boost of antioxidant and essential-oil goodness. Pricey, but worth the investment. 100g R550 everythinghair.co.za
ADDITIONAL WORDS BY SANDRA NYGAARD; PHOTOGRAPHS: CATHERINE SERVEL; PRODUCT PHOTOGRAPHS: JAMES GARAGHTY; ASSISTANT: NADIA WINDT
GO GENTLE ON YOUR STRANDS
Some men use anti-dandruff shampoo even when they don’t have dandruff. They use it just in case they ever get it, says Martial Vivot, celebrity hairstylist and owner of Martial Vivot Salon Pour Hommes in Manhattan. This habit drives him nuts: “I say, ‘Do you swallow an aspirin when you don’t have a headache?’” These shampoos tend to be on the strong side; if you use one as a preventive, you could end up with a dry scalp.
KEEP ’EM BRIGHT
SINK THE STANK
Your best weapon against bad breath is brushing and cleaning between teeth. But what if you’re far from home? “Aggressively swishing your mouth with water and spitting it out is the next best choice,” says dentist Dr. Matthew Messina. That washes away at least some food particles and bacteria. Mints or chewing gum (sugarless, naturally) also work. As a last resort, try eating crudités. “Chewing crunchy, odourless foods (such as carrots, celery and apples) may increase saliva production and move the plaque around,” says Messina.
FLOSS LIKE A BOSS
1 SKINCEUTICALS DISCOLORATION DEFENSE
Drop a couple of drops of this serum on the dark and uneven marks on your face, and see them visiblyfade in just a few weeks. “I was very
3 2 5 4
Yes, you should clean between your teeth. It’s one of the most important things you can do to keep your mouth healthy. Your toothbrush bristles can’t reach the tight spaces between your pearly whites. R50 dischem.co.za 3 PHILIPS BREATH RX MOUTHWASH
Bad breath is kind of like a cold that just keeps coming back. No matter how many mints you pop in, after a while it resurfaces. This mouthwash attacks odour-causing bacteria at the source, and it’s alcohol-free. 473ml R270 takealot.com
This toothpaste includes vitamins A, B and C, and an abundance of calcium peroxide, a natural teethwhitening and enamelstrengthening component that helps remove plaque. 50ml R 249 clicks.co.za
O M I N G RO
S A W A R D
2 G.U.M ORIGINAL WHITE FLOSS
4 SMILE SCIENCE PROFESSIONAL VITA WHITE WHITENING TOOTHPASTE
O A 2019
There’s no scrubbing, just guiding the brush over your teeth like you’re polishing a floor. There’s more tech crammed into these little brushes than any other grooming tool you’re likely to use. R3 330 clicks.co.za
Yes, flossing daily is optimal. But if you floss just two or three days a week, every week, you’ll soon develop the dexterity for it and find it easier to do. “It’s muscle memory, a patterned behaviour, and in order to change patterns you just have to commit to it,” says Messina. Do it for even a couple of weeks, he says, and just like finally getting back into the gym groove, the pattern will stick.
1 PHILIPS SONICARE DIAMOND CLEAN BLACK EDITION
impressed by how quickly this product smooths out stubborn discolouration on my skin.” 30ml R1 730 dermastore.co.za 2 NIVEA MEN SENSITIVE SKIN & STUBBLE BALM
Shaving irritations on the days you shave? Stubble itch on the days you don’t? Now you can take care of both. Enriched with chamomile and almond oil to fight skin irritation. 125ml R120 dischem.co.za
3 DERMALOGICA PRISMA PROTECT SPF30
We like this new SPF because it defends against UV rays, free radical damage and pollution, hydrates for visibly smooth skin, and boosts your skin’s natural luminosity. 50ml R1 099 dermalogica.co.za
4 S+AVA MEN AFRICAN BLACK SOAP CLEANSER
Not your typical-looking bar of soap; and the ingredients are rich in antioxidants, vitamins and organic oils that relieve acne and oily skin. Scoop a 50c-piecesized amount onto the palm of your hand, add water and cleanse. 100ml R225 savaorganics.com
5 BELOW THE BELT GROOMING FRESH & DRY BALLS
Rub this gel onto your nuts post-shower to help keep them fresh and dry. “The gel absorbs quickly, leaving my groin area dry and smooth for hours,” said one tester. 75ml R150 clicks.co.za
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 65
SMOOTH YOUR SKIN 1 VASELINE MEN OIL CONTROL FACE WASH
All face washes aren’t created equal. A cleanser for normal or dry skin won’t contain the ingredients your oily skin needs. Try grabbing one with glacial clay – this ingredient absorbs oil and reduces oil production. 100ml R59 zando.co.za
STOP ASSAULTING YOUR SKIN
The urge to overscrub your face can be enticing if you work out, but it could also be especially problematic if you have acne issues. Overwashing makes your skin produce more oil, explains dermatologist Dr. Bobby Buka. He reaches for a supergentle cleanser for
catches up on repairs. They make up for the daytime onslaught of pollution, wind and UV rays, while also countering nighttime dehydration. But with so many products on the market, deciding on the right one can be difficult. A good ingredient to look for is lavender. “It’s a skincare superhero,” says Daniel Meredith, director
that second, postworkout shower of the day. When you overwash with harsh soaps multiple times a day, you also remove defensins, the natural oils protecting skin from the bacteria that cause pimples.
LOOK FOR LAVENDER
Overnight hydrating masks, creams, and oils work while you’re asleep, when your skin
2 CETAPHIL EXTRA GENTLE DAILY SCRUB
of training and education at Kiehl’s. “The aroma will help you fall asleep, and it has skin-fortifying properties to help you appear rested the following day.”
GO COOLER THAN A CUCUMBER
You may already know to cut up a cool cucumber and press the slices against your eyes in the morning
7 KIEHL’S POWERFUL STRENGTH LINE REDUCING CONCENTR ATE
A rough wash sends your skin into panic mode and activates oil. The microfine granules in this mild scrub exfoliate without drying or irritating your skin. 178ml R170 dischem.co.za
Packed with a high concentrate of antioxidant vitamin C, this non-oily lotion tackles fine lines and wrinkles, and hyaluronic acid plumps up skin. 50ml R960 edgars.co.za
3 HIMALAYAN CHARCOAL PURIFYING GLOW MASK
8 OPTIPHI DERMINTENSE ACTIVE GEL
And beyond the grill, charcoal can also make a big difference in improving your skin’s appearance. This clay mask cleanses and clears the pores and absorbs excess oil. And it’s 100% vegan! 75ml R345 thebodyshop.co.za
This retinol-free gel assists in the prevention and improvement of the 7 signs of ageing, enhances collagen production, improves pigmentation and supports sensitive skin. 30ml R1 743 optiphi.com
4 SORBET MAN FACE WASH SENSITIVE
9 KIEHL’S EYE FUEL
Yes, it’s possible to have both sensitive and oily skin. A gentle aqua cleanser with chamomile and vitamins B and E that removes impurities, dirt and daily pollutants. 100ml R70 sorbetman.co.za
Thislightweightcreamcontains caffeineandVitaminB3to reducepuffiness,andhelps fightfatiguetoreduceundereyecirclesafteralongflightor bignightout. 15mlR330 edgars.co.za
8 10 11
5 NIVEA MEN DEEP ANTI-BLACKHEAD SCRUB
It’s tempting to squeeze blackheads, but it’s a bad idea. This powerful formula with black charcoal and beads removes impurities and fights blackheads. 75ml R70 dischem.co.za
to reduce puffiness. Or, at least, you may have seen the women in your life do it after a big night. Here’s an addendum: follow that with a few dabs of eye depuffer cream. “I keep that in the fridge too,” says Meredith. Use your eye cream immediately after removing the cucumbers – that’s when you’ll see the best results.
Before heading out, generously apply a lightweight, waterproof lotion with a high sunprotection factor, like this one. Trust us – we warn from experience. Bonus: it won’t stick to your beard. 50ml R430 clarins.co.za
6 TOM FORD FOR MEN SKIN REVITALISING CONCENTR ATE
Highly concentrated serums are more effective (and yes, expensive) than creams. This formula is packed with antioxidants– idealforreducing redness andfightingsignsof ageing. 30mlR2500 Tom Ford 66 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
10 CLARINS MEN SUPER MOISTURE LOTION SPF 20
11 DERMALOGICA NIGHTLY LIP TREATMENT
After only a few nights of this – made with shea butter and vitamin E – you’ll notice fewer wrinkles and softer, fuller lips. 10ml R1 079 dermalogica.co.za
O M I N G RO 2
S A W A R D
SH E & TOOLS SOME SHOULD STAY SINGLE
For guys with straight beard hair, shaving with multiple blades can make a difference. But for African men and others with tightly curled beard hair, a multi-blade razor may create razor bumps. “These double- and triple-blade razors irritate, because they cut the hair shaft so close that the tip winds up beneath the skin,” explains barber Kamal Nuru. “As it grows out, it curls so tightly that it never makes it outside the skin again... and you get the bump.” Opt for an old-school single blade, says Nuru, and shave with the grain of your beard.
8 9 7 6
TAKE IT STEP BY STEP
“Don’t cheat yourself by skipping steps in your shaving routine,” says Todd Brisky, managing director at The Art of Shaving. Start by showering; the steam andwarmwatermake the hair easier to cut and prevent tugging. Thenapplyapre-shave oil. This may seem easily skippable, but it softens stubble and lubricates for a smooth razor glide. “The extra 10 to 30 seconds needed to put on pre-shave oil is well worth it,” says Brisky. After all, the benefits of a closer and less irritating shave will last all day and night .
CLEAR AWAY THE BRUSH 1 PHILIPS SERIES 7000 WET & DRY ELECTRIC SHAVER
Your barber might have an arsenal, but you need just one workhorse. This one is designed for shaving, styling and trimming – for any length. R2 700 takealot.com 2 LAB SERIES
MAXIMUM COMFORT SHAVE GEL
An advanced gel-to-foam formula primes the beard and conditions the skin for a close, comfortable shave, and leaves behind wellconditioned and supple skin. 200ml R445 woolworths.co.za
3 THE BODY SHOP
MACA ROOT & ALOE SHAVING CREAM
5 PHILIPS SERIES
1000 BEARD TRIMMER
Look forward to shaving with this luxuriously smooth operator. Enriched with Community Trade organic aloe vera from Mexico, it leaves skin feeling soft, smooth and nick-free after a shave. 200ml R175 thebodyshop.co.za
This rechargeable beard trimmer can cut for a long time (60 minutes!) and give you just about any facial-hair look you want; and the travel lock prevents the trimmer from switching on accidentally. R339 takealot.com
4 MVRCK MITCH
6 BUMP PATROL
This lightweight lotion instantly cools and subdues any post-shaving redness, hydrates skin, and helps reduce irritation and razor burn. 75ml R340 retailbox.co.za
This dual-action product preps your head and face for a smooth shave. A unique combination of skin conditioners and exfoliators is designed to leave your skin deeply cleansed. 100ml R63 clicks.co.za
FACE & HEAD WASH
7 LONG MARKET
9 SORBET MAN
That rough, spiky feeling is the result of coarse facial hair. This oil will soften coarse hair, and help make it supple and easier to style. 30ml R110 woolworths.co.za
Shave oil is a game-changer. It acts as a lubricant, softening skin and lifting up hair, so your razor can cut the hair right from the follicle. 125ml R160 sorbetman.co.za
8 JACK BLACK
10 GILLETTE FUSION PROGLIDE RA ZOR WITH FLEXIBALL TECHNOLOGY
After shaving your facial hair, use a cotton ball to apply some solution to problem areas. It’s best to use it at night, before bed, so it can work into skin overnight uninterrupted. 177ml R515 Gary Rom Salons
The ProGlide’s second pivot provides a third dimension of contact, so the razor responds better to your face’s contours – in or out of the shower. R160 clicks.co.za
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 67
BOD JUST NAIL IT “Men forget to moisturise their hands, especially their nail cuticles,” says dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross. “The cuticles aren’t really skin, so they have no oil glands to moisturise themselves, and dry out quickly.” By keeping them hydrated, you enhance the protection they provide your actual fingernails, which end up looking better too. Any moisturiser – applied once a day – will do, Gross says, even if you swipe it from your partner.
O M I N G RO
MAKE A BOOTY CALL
3 DOVE MEN CARE CLEAN COMFORT ANTI-PERSPIRANT
S A W A R D
When moisturising your body, don’t omit the areas you can’t see, like your back and the backs of your arms. Just as important – and even more forgotten – is your rear end. “Dead skin gets caught around hair follicles in those areas,” says Buka. With relatively few blood vessels, the skin tends to be drier there. So get into the habit of slathering on a body moisturiser after your shower, to hydrate and to avoid that dreaded and unattractive “dry butt”.
1 SHOWER TO SHOWER MEN DEODORANT
The powerful-yet-mild formula does wonders for keeping you dry, especially throughout your workouts. Affordable and easy to apply – this option is a no-brainer choice for any guy. R25 makro.co.za 2 CLERE FOR MEN ICE BODY LOTION
Testers said this body lotion had the feel of a fancy lotion, at a bargain price. It draws in moisture with vitamins E and A, and glycerine. 150ml R23 clicks.co.za
Scientifically formulated to give you expert protection from sweat and odour for up to 48 hours. Bonus: it’s alcohol-free, which makes it great for sensitive skin. 50ml R22 clicks.co.za 4 SUPERDRY BODY SPRAY
This spray covers up any unwanted smell or stench, before, during, or after your workout – without being too overpowering, which is especially impressive considering the price. 200ml R70 clicks.co.za
5 NIVEA MEN ROCK SALTS SHOWER GEL
Don’t waste your time lathering up with a wimpy liquid soap when shower gel delivers instantly. The ground rock salts in this gel will clear your skin thoroughly from all residues, without causing damage to the skin. 500ml R57 woolworths.co.za 6 EUCERIN PHOTOAGING CONTROL SPF 50+
Research suggests that many of the signs of ageing are caused in part by UV exposure. This sunscreen is packed with UVA/UVB protection and HEVIS light defence, while hyaluronic acid helps reduce visible signs of skin ageing. 150ml R270 clicks.co.za
68 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
CHOOSE YOUR STATEMENT
FRAGRANCE SMELL THE ROSES
1 BUSINESS: CREED VIKING EDP
Scents don’t have genders, so rose notes are no more feminine than leather is masculine, says Frederick Bouchardy, founder of Joya, a fragrance studio based in the US. A light musk or citrus ing g, pop popular is always a refreshin choice for summer, tho t g Bouchardy recommen nds going n for the unexpected – like ke a ric r h, he vy floral to muscle throu ug h a heea wave. “It hits on an emo motiona a l and and physiological level,” says.
Creed always nails it. Inspired by Viking longships, this fragrance combines an enduring sense of spiciness with citrus top notes and woody undertones. 100ml R5 410 edgars.co.za 2 ADVENTURE: MONTBLANC EXPLORER EDT
Bergamot from Italy, vetiver from Haiti, and patchouli from Indonesia create this woody, aromatic scent. In a sense, the fragrance takes you on a world tour with just one spritz. 100ml R1 395 foschinibeauty.co.za
HOLD IT IN YOUR HAIR Before you head out t doorr, add a spritz of your favou sceen to your pulse poin ut ’ forget to include . “Oils in your hair e nt ast longer,” says Brian Jeong, -fou fou r of Hawthornee ake a rs ffra fragra a gra grance ncess for nce for men thee bot o tle 8 to o 12c abov bo e t e c o so u d ass a lo lot nce in the a s y Jeong. I y u preferr a sp s n scent or aftershav ve, d a drop near your ur sidebu urrn n .
PASS THE ACID TEST If the th idea ea of splashing a id i on your face doesn e ’t sou ealing, here s wh w y you sh recconsider. Acidss such as a a betahyd oxy, y used in np xfoliate skin, ar he most ben di n in skincarre ” Gr od d p ls n lp lise t e loo n i de et ek, orr heen ve y ace ne a t.
3 SPORTY: HUGO BOSS BOTTLED TONIC EDT
LURE HER IN “When you’re close to a man’s skin, that’s when you want to smell his scent. Add one for your neck and wrists, and maybe just one more for below the belt. Just in case.”
Notes of grapefruit, orange and lemon combine with ginger, cinnamon and a woody base for a light scent that’s equally at ease at the gym or the office. 200ml R1 705 clicks.co.za 4 EVERYDAY: COACH FOR MEN EDT
Confident yet grounded, this everyday spray combines notes of spicy cardamom with an earthy base and hints of suede. 100ml R1 245 woolworths.co.za 5 PARTY: CAROLINA HERRERA 212 VIP BLACK EDP 4
2 3 6 1
A signature scent that you will recognise on the dance floor and won’t forget once you leave the afterparty. Gustative, woody and spicy, inspired by the scent and attitude of the most exclusive parties. 100ml R1 325 dischem.co.za 6 DATE: ARMANI CODE ABSOLU EDP
Liquorice and rum add new depth to the signature tonka bean note in this fragrance. The result is a sweet and aromatic scent that’s light, yet still masculine. It also gets better the longer you wear it. 60ml R1 420 foschinibeauty.co.za MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 69
THERE’S A PHASE IN THE MIDDLE OF EVERY PROJECT THAT THREATENS TO TANK IT. GINNY GRAVES HELPS YOU FIND YOUR WAY THROUGH.
Maybe it’s the garage clean-out. Maybe it’s your side-hustle documentary. Maybe you’re... writing a piece for Men’s Health. Ahem. Regardless of the project, the story arc is usually the same: you embark on the journey feeling exhilarated and capable. Fast-forward a few days, a week, maybe even a month. Now there are half-empty boxes all over the driveway, reference materials burying the dining-room table, tools in the hall. And what are you doing instead of finishing your project? (Is that Fortnite? Are those Nik-Naks?) There’s a reason many of us have something like a half-painted kitchen weighing on our conscience, according to Harvard Business School professor Dr Rosa-Beth Moss Kanter, author of Confidence: How Winning Streaks and Losing Streaks Begin and End. In between the thrill of starting a project and the joy of completing it lies the interminable middle, where enthusiasm sputters and your effort takes on the grim patina of failure. “The middle is where the project gets hard, and you have to face reality,” says Kanter. It’s taking longer, costing more, other people are saying WTF. Getting stuck in the middle is so cartoonishly predictable, Kanter says, that you can plan for it and possibly even prevent it. Your best moves:
70 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
ESTIMATE THE AMOUNT OF TIME AND EFFORT IT WILL TAKE – THEN DOUBLE IT.
Why? Because when you’re in the throes of your initial enthusiasm, you’re overly optimistic; and as a result, you underestimate how hard the project is actually going to be. When Canadian researchers asked undergraduate psychology students how long they thought it would take to complete their theses if “everything went as badly as it possibly could,” their average answer was 48.6 days. If things went smoothly, they predicted it would take roughly 27.4 days. Wrong, and super-wrong. The average time it took was 55.5 days. You can’t blame youth for the
misjudgment. Building the Sydney Opera House took a decade longer and cost 14.5 times as much as the architects initially projected. It’s called the planning fallacy, says Jon Acuff, author of Finish: Give Yourself the Gift of Done, and failing to account for it is one of the most common reasons people abandon projects halfway through. If doubling the time you allot sounds daunting, Acuff suggests downsizing your project instead. Aim to clean off half your workbench, or write three blog posts a week rather than seven. “ ‘Shoot for the moon’ is a recipe for failure,” he says.
BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU TELL PEOPLE UP FRONT.
Conventional wisdom holds that you should state your intentions openly, the theory being that when other people know what you’re up to, you’ll be forced to finish – or be forced to publicly own up to the fact that you didn’t. But sharing has a serious downside, says Acuff. Say you tell your friends you’re going to landscape the backyard. What do they do? They slap you on the back and say, “Good for you!” They congratulate you. You get the high of finishing before you start, and that can undermine your enthusiasm once you’re immersed in the hard work. Why eat your vegetables if you’ve already had dessert? If you do tell someone, ask them to be your ally, and check in with you once a week to IT DOWN INTO ask you what you’ve accomplished.
Obvious, right? Well, yes and no. We often get bogged down in the middle because we’re overwhelmed by a project’s scope. So instead of thinking about everything you need to do, define the next small task and focus on that. Say you want to build a tree house for your kid. The first step could be as simple as calling a neighbour with a cool tree house and picking his brain, says Dr Frank Buck, a US organisation and time-management coach. Buck suggests writing down each step like this: Call Jim Smith xx Finished Tree House. “The ‘xx’ serves as a separator between your current action step and the goal line,” he says. “Seeing both together is a reminder that every small task is bringing you closer to your ultimate goal.”
PHOTOGRAPH BY GETTY IMAGES
Why You Don’t Finish The...
WEALTH Bag a Big Pay Rise Embrace Boredom
AND FINAL LY, UNDERSTAND THE COSTS OF NOT FINISHING.
“Unfinished projects don’t go away. They become ghosts that haunt you,” warns Acuff. If you repeatedly give up, the person you’re betraying is you. Finishing, on the other hand, shields you from the spectre of projects past, helps you trust yourself, and gets the boxes out of the driveway.
FRONT-LOAD AS MUCH WORK AS YOU CAN.
M A KE
YOUR OWN RULES.
Acuff once set out to read 100 books in a year – and began posting about it on social media. “People would say, ‘That book doesn’t count, because it’s a graphic novel’, or ‘it’s an audiobook.’ At first it made me question the whole project. Then I thought, Who gets to judge? And I realised, I do. My project, my rules.”
In 2011, when he was 23, Scott Young, a writer in Canada, decided to try to complete an informal version of MIT’s computer-science curriculum in one year – 33 classes, including physics, chemistry, and economics. (MIT puts some classes and exams online.) “It wasn’t the exact MIT curriculum, but it was a pretty good approximation,” he says. By then, he knew himself well enough to recognise that he would burn out as time went on. So he structured the “MIT Challenge”, as he called it, to account for project fatigue. “I finished the first ten classes in three months, which gave me momentum and made the last half easier than the first.” It worked. He didn’t get the official credit, but he completed all 33 classes in just under a year.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
PUMP UP YOUR PRODUCTIVITY
As the emails pile up, it’s tempting to skip arms day, but men who work out at lunch are more productive than the desk-bound. Harvard Business Review
Promote Your Work Prospects
SMALL TALK, BIG RAISE
Don’t be afraid to chat to your boss. Breaking the ice at the water cooler could positively impact your salary, come review time. Kogod School of Business
FAST-TRACK YOUR WAY UP THE LADDER WITH OUR PORTFOLIO OF TIPS TO BAG A BIG PAY RISE.
SILENCE IS GOLDEN
Streaming tunes may disrupt your ability to remember the info needed to finish a task. If you’re re-reading the same sentence over and over, switch to silence or background noise. Harvard Health
CLIMB TO THE TOP
A study of sleep-deprived workers found that taking the stairs upped energy and motivation almost as much as an espresso. Step to it. Physiology and Behaviour
That comb-over fools no one. If your hairline is receding, shave it all off. Bald men are seen as more dominant and suited to leadership. It worked for Statham… University of Pennsylvania
You’re 40% more productive after mentally rebooting on holiday, so don’t be a martyr. Book that flight to Mauritius: presenteeism will only hold you back. IFEBP
CHEESE ON TOP
Stick to a cheese sarmie for lunch. The amino acid tyrosine in dairy aids convergent thinking, which promotes better problem solving. Psychological Research
SHAKE ON IT
Open and close your next meeting with a firm handshake. Contact makes people twice as likely to remember you. Firm doesn’t mean crushing, mind you. Income Centre for Trade Shows
WING IT TO WIN IT
Avoid memorising your responses to interview questions. An ability to ad lib makes the conversation feel more interactive, and will hold attention. Harvard Business Review
RISERS AND FALLERS UP
Corner Open-plan office desk
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Don’t fill your CV with generic phrases such as “hard worker” and “go-getter”. Employers prefer specific details, so start crunching numbers. careerbuilder.com
Don’t complicate your covering letter. Clear, concise writing has been shown to have more impact than regurgitating the thesaurus in a bid to impress hirers. Princeton University
If a colleague grates, swap passagg emails for face-to-face talks. Clearing the air aids your motivation and career progression. Michigan State University
WORDS: BEN WELCH | ILLUSTRATION: INFOMEN
Easy now, Don Draper. Employees who booze during a working lunch with their bosses are considered less intelligent than those who stick to soft drinks. Journal of Consumer Psychology
A TRIP FOR TWO TO MAURITIUS with Monster Energy, SWEAT 1000, Women’s Health and Men’s Health!
LOOKING FOR A WORKOUT WITH A VIEW? Mauritius is proof that working up a sweat is easier with the right scenery. From colourful coral reefs and azure-blue waters to twisting MTB routes and breathtaking (and character-building) hiking trails, this tropical paradise will reinvigorate your exercise routine. Your reward for an adventure-filled day: sip on your drink of choice while lazing on a white sandy beach. It’s the type of active holiday we dream about here at Men’s Health and now it’s your chance to experience it first-hand. Together with Monster Energy and SWEAT 1000, we’re giving you the opportunity to win a fitness vacation for two in Mauritius. So, strap on your fitness tracker, grab the SPF and hit the beach – it’s time to work hard and play harder under the sun.
HOW TO ENTER
Post a short video of yourself on Instagram explaining why you should be first in line for a sweat sojourn in the idyllic retreat of Mauritius. It must be posted to your feed (not stories) with the hashtag #summersweatcamp and tag @menshealthza, @sweat_1000 and @monsterenergy.
• Return flight tickets (and local transfers) from SA to Mauritius • Three-night stay at Veranda Tamarin Hotel & Spa • Meals • Up to two SWEAT 1000 classes per day with Paul and Andrew Rothschild • Excursions, including golf, hiking, mountain biking, snorkelling, supping and surfing
• Entries close: 6 September 2019. • You need to be available for the dates of travel – 3 October to 6 October 2019. These dates are non-negotiable. • You need a valid passport that will allow you to travel on the specified dates. • Please provide a letter issued by your doctor certifying that you are able to perform high-intensity exercise. Visit mh.co.za for the full list of terms and conditions.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 73
SEPTEMBER Put your dog to work, leverage boredom for better ideas, and survive office chirps with this in-depth research and MHcertified advice.
RUFF DAY? TRY THIS
When you get home, your loyal boerboel can barely contain himself. Sure, he’s only jumping around and yelping to try and distract you from the tornup pillow hastily stashed behind the couch, but there’s no denying his happiness and excitement are contagious.
Before B f you push h him away to clean up the mess, stay a minute longer, and enjoy the stressbusting benefits of hanging out with your pooch. A study published in AERA Open took a look at what happens when swamped university students spent just 10 minutes playing with dogs or
THE FOLLOW BACK
“Rather than changing your circumstances, change your habits. When I understood this, my entire life changed.” – @VusiThembekwayo
cats. Researchers R h measured stresshormone cortisol levels of participants before and after the petting began, and found that just a few minutes of dog time led to a big drop in stress. Just be warned – that mood boost ends as soon as you discover the puddle of pee in the lounge.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Vusi Thembekwayo is known as a disruptor on a massive scale. He’s a man who ran a R400m division at a monolithic multinational when he was just 25. Now, the South African business mogul manages his own boutique investment firm. Follow him for no-nonsense advice on how to grab life by the horns and ride it to the land of better choices, better investments and better suits.
The percentage of employees who regularly swear in the office (or, the number of guys who know how to weather the 9-to-5 grind). Source: Work Management Survey (2016)
THE WEEK LINK need to block out these distractions. While you won’t be able to stop your boss scheduling yet another sit-and-talk, you can cut out the noise with a pair of sound-blocking earbuds. We like the Plantronics Backbeat Go 3 wireless earphones, as they can double up as the perfect running companion. (R960, takealot.com)
The world may collectively hate Mondays, but for many of us, that’s when we get the job done. When staffing firm Accountemps decided to look at workplace productivity, they uncovered an interesting trend. On average, employees cited Mondays as the most productive day of the week. Unsurprisingly, Fridays ranked dead last. According to the survey, the single biggest productivity killers included chatty colleagues, general office noise, and a litany of unnecessary meetings and conference calls. Want to be more productive? You’ll 4
BORED? GOO D.
Stuck in traffic? Waiting in a queue at Home Affairs? You’re a lucky guy. Whether it’s videogames, a new Netflix special or Instagram, we live in a world of distractions, where boredom is going extinct – and that spells disaster for creativity. According to a recent study, time spent waiting isn’t time wasted, as every minute you clock while bored to tears may help spark a big idea down the line. As part of a study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, researchers divided participants into two groups. One group was induced into a
state of malaise, while the other was kept engaged. Then, both groups were tasked with completing a series of creativity tests. The result: the bored okes came up with far more creative ideas than the other groups. Hit a mental block? Go ahead, unplug and embrace the boredom.
THE TRUE COST OF TRASH TALKING The art of trash talking dates back to caves, men, and crudely-drawn appendages. But do those wellcrafted burn marks serve a purpose? Or were they just a way to let off steam? Centuries later, we have an answer. Researchers at the University of Connecticut pitted a group of athletes against one another in a few games of the classic racing title Mario Kart. During the race, some of the players were blasted with a volley of insults (and presumably, a few blue shells). The result: the heckled racers performed significantly worse than their peers. The authors note that the insulted players felt both anger and shame when subjected to these disses. Chirps getting too harsh in the office? Research suggests you should squelch them before they spread. A Michigan State University study discovered that rude employees can cost companies up to R200 000 per employee in lost productivity.
WORDS: KIERAN LEGG, IMAGES: GETTY IMAGES (YAWN)
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FOOD Reclaim Midday Meals
FOOD STYLING: CHRISTINE ALBANO, PROP STYLING: LILI ABIR REGAN/BRYDGES MACKINNEY
TWENTY-SIX PER CENT OF WORKERS SAID THEY’VE GAINED MORE THAN FOUR KILOS AT THEIR CURRENT JOB, A 2018 SURVEY FOUND. ONE POSSIBLE REASON: NOT BRINGING LUNCH. IT’S TIME TO REINVENT THE TUPPERWARE AND RECLAIM THE MIDDAY MEAL. / BY JULI ROBERTS AND PAUL KITA
IT’S BERRY GOOD This Hulked-out PB&J derives its powers from protein-infused waffles and granola. See how to make it on p78...
PHOTOGRAPHS BY MIKE GARTEN
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 77
ABOUT THAT . . .
TIP Can’tfind grapes? Use dried cranberries insted.
Problem: You can’t eat ham and cheese again. Solution: Reinvent a childhood favourite. W H AT YO U ’ L L N E E D P R OT E I N ( I F AVA I L A B L E ) F R E E Z E R WA F F L E S 2 TBSP CRUNCHY PEANUT BUTTER ⅓ C U P M I X E D ST R AW B E R R I E S A N D B L AC K / OT H E R B E R R I E S, C H O P P E D 2 T B S P H I G H - P R OT E I N G R A N O L A 2
Toast the waffles according to package directions. While they’re warm, spread the peanut butter over one waffle. Top with the berries, granola, and other waffle. Let cool before wrapping in foil. Smush before eating. Makes 1 sandwich PER SERVING: 2 853kJ, 27g protein, 54g carbs (10g fibre), 41g fat
WHAT I PACK FOR LUNCH “Any combination of salty cured meats, an assortment of cheese, pickled vegetables, and oil-cured olives.” – Dan Kleban, co-founder of Maine Beer Company, a brewery whose beer profile includes one called “Lunch”
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Chicken & Grain Salad Problem: Salads just don’t fill you up. Solution: Swap the greens for grains. They have more flavour, carry a strong dose of gut-filling fibre, and don’t turn slimy like mixed greens do. W H AT YO U ’ L L N E E D 3 SERVINGS COOKED FARRO, QUINOA, OR B R OW N R I C E ½ CUP BOTTLED ASIAN SESAME DRESSING 1 C U P H A LV E D G R E E N SEEDLESS GRAPES 1 C U P S M A L L- D I C E D SEEDLESS CUCUMBER ¼ CUP CHOPPED FRESH F L AT- L E A F PA R S L E Y 2 TBSP CHOPPED FRESH DILL ½ KG GRILLED BONELESS, SKINLESS CHICKENB R E A ST ST R I P S
In 4 storage containers, divide the grain, dressing, grapes, cucumber, parsley, and dill, and toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with the chicken. Can be served hot, at room temperature, or cold. Will hold in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. Makes 3 lunches PER SERVING: 1 741kJ, 22g protein, 77g carbs (7g fibre), 3g fat
WHAT I PACK FOR LUNCH “A simple green salad with avocado and a fresh piece of leftover fish. Then I dress it with olive oil and either lemon juice or sherry vinegar, for an effortless vinaigrette.” – Gabriel Kreuther, the two-Michelinstarred chef of Gabriel Kreuther and Kreuther Handcrafted Chocolate
Meatballs and Peppers
THE BEST LUNCH GEAR
Problem: You frequently find yourself buying pizza slices for lunch. Oops. Solution: Take the flavours of pizza, and increase the protein. W H AT YO U ’ L L N E E D 1 ½ 1 1 3 1 2 1 ½
TBSP OLIVE OIL ONION, SLICED RED BELL PEPPER, SLICED GREEN BELL PEPPER, SLICED C LOV E S GA R L I C, M I N C E D T B S P I TA L I A N S E A S O N I N G T B S P TO M ATO PA ST E ( 4 0 0 G ) T I N D I C E D TO M ATO E S KG C O O K E D ITALIAN-STYLE MEATBALLS (PREFERABLY HOMEMADE) C R U ST Y I TA L I A N B R E A D FO R S E R V I N G
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the onion, peppers, garlic, Italian seasoning, a large pinch of salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Cook, stirring, until the onions are translucent and the peppers are soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook until it darkens, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and ½ cup water and gently
nestle the meatballs in the sauce. Cover and cook till the meatballs are cooked through, about 10 minutes. Dole out into 4 containers (see right), and eat with a chunk of bread. The meatballs and peppers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. Makes 4 lunches PER SERVING: 1 582kJ, 24g protein, 31g carbs (4g fibre), 17g fat
UASHMAMA LUNCH BAG Don’t be the guy bringing his meal in a grim reused plastic shopping bag. This bag looks like leather and is treated like leather, making it washable and durable, but is made of paper. R1 289, yuppiechef.com
CRKT SPORK MULTI-TOOL It’s a lunchtime multitool. There’s a spork, but also a pry tip, a key chain carabiner, and (when things get really rough) a screw driver. R169, takealot.com
FARRO SALAD: PORTER TO-GO BOWL: FOOD52; PEN: MCNALLYJACKSONSTORE.COM
JOSEPH JOSEPH DIAL STORAGE CONTAINERS With a dial on top so you can mark the date you stored it, it’s great for preprepped food. But whether you live that #mealpreplife or not, these spacious vessels are microwave safe and sturdy, too. 5 for R1 499, yuppiechef.com
WHAT I PACK FOR LUNCH “I’ll cook chilli con carne on the weekends, and take it to work with a salad of lettuce, cucumber, tomato, and pickled red onions.” – Dr Mike Roussell, Men’s Health nutrition advisor and author of The MetaShred Diet
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RELATIONSHIPS Get Down in the Great Outdoors The Dating App DIlemma
So You Want To
EXPERIENCED CAMPER (KIND OF!) SARAH FIELDING HAS A FEW SURVIVAL TIPS FOR GETTING DOWN IN THE GREAT OUTDOORS.
I’m not one with nature. Or even two. I’m so afraid of snakes, I can’t look at pictures of them. But when I moved to Australia, I met a guy who loved camping. One bat of his blue eyes (and a promise to make me “prawns on the barbie”) and I found myself in the coastal fishing town of Cervantes, about two and a half hours north of Perth, holding a torch while he assembled a tent. He kept asking me to pass him different pieces of equipment, but I had no idea what any of them were called. In short, I was useless. Until the tent went up – literally and metaphorically.
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Somehow, all my reservations went away. I didn’t care about the people camping around us. (Sorry about the noise, mates.) I didn’t care about the disproportionately large number of venomous animals that call Australia home. My reservations about sex itself also went away. Even in such a small space, we couldn’t get close enough to each other. The walls I’d always kept up in the familiarity of a bedroom came down. It was only the first experience, but I learnt that nothing unleashes your animal instincts quite like doing it in
the wilderness, nowhere close to home. Relationship and sex therapist Eliza Boquin agrees. “Novelty is often a key ingredient for passion, which is why sex in the great outdoors during a camping trip can be so exhilarating,” she says. “The danger element can be tremendously erotic. Feeling like we’re doing something ‘naughty’ together can be a real turn-on for some couples.” Turned on to camping sex? Great. Now it’s time to get ready. Follow these tips to make your “wild” night a success.
T H E G R E AT O U T D O O R S K I T When you’re packing for your next excursion, make room for these camping-sex essentials:
PA C K S M A R T !
L E AV E N O T R A C E !
Bring a Sleeping Pad
Insect Spray Tastes Terrible
Always Pick Up After Yourself
The ground is not the hard thing you want to have in that tent. An inflatable pad like the FIRST
There’s nothing sexy about DEET. Use natural bug repellents, like BADGER ANTI- BUG SPRAY (R233, Faithful-to-nature.co.za) – some have ingredients such as rosemary or peppermint, stuff you won’t mind tasting a few hours later.
ASCENT AERO 5.5 HIKING MATTRESS
(R1 200, Sportsmanswarehouse. co.za) is the way to go, because it’s lighter than one of those foam monstrosities. You want to carry as little weight as possible so you can save your energy for later.
Bring a LARGE ZIP SEAL BAG (R52, Makro.co.za) to hold the remnants of your romp until you find a garbage receptacle. “Treat the wilderness with respect and leave it as you found it,” Barrett says. “No one wants to come across a used condom while they’re trying to appreciate nature.”
KEEP IT FRESH! One Word: Wipes
B E P R E PA R E D ! Pack Lube and a Towel “Being in the outdoors can make it easy to get dehydrated,” says Mia Barrett, a sexuality educator and consultant. For women, “that dehydration can decrease your natural lubrication. Pick up a few sample-size packets of lube for your trip.” We recommend ZOET
BABY DOVE SENSITIVE MOISTURE WIPES (R29, Clicks) will help you freshen up after a day of hiking. (Get resourceful: you can also use the wipes to clean up your post-sex mess, Levine says.) Bonus: BELOW THE BELT GROOMING FRESH & DRY BALLS is a great gel option (R150, Clicks).
COOL OFF! Let Off Steam – Literally Unzip the inner lining of your tent to let in some fresh air.
PLEASURES HOT INTIMATE SERUM
SABRINA RYNAS/OFFSET (SHOES). CAVAN IMAGES/OFFSET (COUPLE).
DON’T FORGET! More Batteries Bring battery-powered or fully charged sex toys, says Amy Levine, a sex coach and the founder of the website Ignite Your Pleasure. The cap on the PALMPOWER RECHARGEABLE PERSONAL MASSAGER (R1 499, Desir.co.za) can be removed and interchanged with PalmPower attachments. MH.CO.ZA// September 2019 81
GIRL NEXT DOOR
IN and OUT What’s hot and what’s not in the wide world of sex. IN: Online matchmaking services OU T: Swipe apps
She wants to have pool sex. How do we make sure this goes well?
– Aiden, Umhlanga
Are you sure? Because I’ve had sex in a pool. Fun for the novelty. Not super-effective for the sex. Pool water is not an ideal lubricant, and thinking about chlorine in all your sensitive parts is somewhat distracting. If she’s into it, by all means go for it, but don’t be afraid to take things into the shallow end. Sometimes the outdoor element is all you need to satisfy any exhibitionist affinities. Personally, however, I’d go by this mantra: Sex next to the pool? Cool. Sex underwater? Don’t bother. 82 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Mywife’s micromanaging our pre-baby prep, including obsessing over the name. HowmuchofasaydoI reallyhave? – Jack, Welkom Are you Don Draper and not a real part of your wife’s pregnancy? Look, I get it. It can be hard to contribute to the preparation when you’re not the one whose body is physically preparing for a new baby. But women really do want their baby daddy to be involved in every step of the process. And she wants you to get excited about the naming, too. Do a little research and list making, and come to the table with names you like and why. Sure, it’ll be a compromise, but she’s hoping you’ll be a constructive contributor. People want their partners to have an opinion above all else. We’ve just started dating; now he’s leaving for three weeks. How do I keep up the momentum but not overwhelm him? – Chris, Pietermaritzburg If you’ve just started dating, I wouldn’t worry about the momentum too much. Those early-stage butterflies are exciting for everyone. Yes to a few fun selfies. No to nightly check-in calls. Yes to lighthearted texts. No to emotional drunk dials. And yes to maybe sharing a few memes that he’d find funny. But no to asking the restaurant to send over a bottle of wine at his work dinner. You want to convey “thinking
SEPTEMBER Ask anything – and we mean anything – about love and sex.
of you,” not “thinking only of you.”
She’s rich and picks fancy wine bars for our dates. How do I suggest somewhere cheaper? – Dalen, Cape Town You can do this – it’s called being resourceful. And you don’t have to draw any attention to your meagre funds. Just because she’s choosing similar venues doesn’t mean she’s not into trying new places. Find spots within your budget that have a unique factor and sell her on those – great ambience, live music, creative tapas. It’s about the effort put in, not the cash. She’ll see that – if you do your homework. Is there a smooth way to un-ghost someone on a dating app? – Peter, Kokstad Smooth? Probably not; but if you really want to rekindle things, try going back on a different platform (text, email...). It’s less awkward if you start a new thread that doesn’t show you’ve been MIA. Offer up an honest excuse, if it’s reasonable, but you have to hope your kick-ass initial impression was good enough to overshadow your rudeness. Naomi Piercey is the Girl Next Door. Feel free to ask her anything about love and sex.
MILLES STUDIO/STOCKSY (LEFT). JOEL ARBAJE (RIGHT).
HEALTH The Rise of Superfoods
What Makes a Food Super?
THE IDEA OF EXOTIC FOOD AS SILVER BULLET EXISTED LONG BEFORE RASPBERRY KETONES, GOJI BERRIES, OR MACA ROOT. YET CONSUMERS STILL FALL FOR THESE SUPPOSEDLY MAGICAL PRODUCTS. ALAN LEVINOVITZ INVESTIGATES HOW ONE SUCH SUPERFOOD CAME TO BE. / ILLUSTRATIONS BY DELCAN & CO.
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“Moringa Oleifera. Have you ever heard of that?” Dr Mehmet Oz asked his TV audience in 2012. “Moringa oleifera comes from the Himalayas! And there’s a tree in the north-west part of India, where this grows, that has been used for many, many centuries there, for the very reason that you feel you’re being sapped, which is that you don’t have enough energy.” Dr. Oz and a guest stand behind a table covered in supplement jars, with a sign: “Re-energise your life”. He presents her with a cup of moringa tea. It shimmers yellowish green in the glass cup. She sips and grimaces. She does not look re-energised. Seven years after that episode, health-conscious consumers can find moringa everywhere from Wellness Warehouse to Spar, and in teas, powders, and capsules. There are moringa snack bars, moringa energy shots; in the US they even have moringa puffs (super-Flings?). Its purported benefits include lowering blood pressure and blood sugar, fighting cancer, and even protecting against arsenic toxicity. Moringa products come emblazoned with all the standard buzzwords – “organic”, “pure”, “raw”, “vegan”, “non-GMO” – and often advertise that they’re better for you than kale. The taste? Well, a smoothie does a good job of masking what would otherwise be tough to swallow, a bit like grass cuttings and wet earth. Still, the global market value of moringa supplements will grow by nearly 10% by 2022, according to research from Technavio. The global supplement market hit $133 billion (nearly R2 trillion) in 2016; and though moringa is a small part of that, its growth is indicative of what it takes to stand out in a crowded field. To understand the rise of moringa, you have to look at how – like so many acais and chia seeds and so-called superfoods before it – it’s moved from obscure food to billion-dollar business. That means going way back to when the marketing of moringa all started.
Spread the Exotic Origin Story IN 2010 , an American Peace Corps
volunteer named Lisa Curtis was living in Niger and subsisting on a diet of rice and millet. After a few months, she began to feel weak. That’s when some villagers told her about a local plant that natives of the Sudan had called shagarat al rauwãq: “the clarifier tree”. Every part of the plant is edible, and it’s drought-resistant, making it a reliable source of kilojoules. Its leaves are high in protein, vitamins and minerals, adequate amounts of which are vital in areas with limited food. That plant, moringa, could create miracles. Within days of adding moringa to her diet, Curtis says, she felt her lethargy lift, and she grew fascinated by the plant’s potential to help people. Curtis returned to the US in 2011; and with three business partners, she launched an Indiegogo campaign to crowdfund a company called Kuli Kuli. With three moringa snack-bar products, she and her co-founders touted its possible uses with lists such as “10 Reasons to Eat Moringa Every Day,” which included preventing and managing diabetes, supporting cardiovascular health, and treating asthma symptoms. (To their credit, they also offered the standard superfood equivocations: has the “potential” to treat, “has been recognised as a powerful tool”, etc.) Curtis had the good luck to launch Kuli Kuli at a time of explosive growth in the superfood and supplement business. Over the past five years, the number of vitamin and supplement businesses has increased by 3.4% – not a small figure, considering that the US market brought in $31 billion (around R433 billion) in 2018, according to a report by market-research firm IBIS World. An ageing baby-boomer generation, determined to preserve good health, may explain why. Even the word “superfood” has become more widespread. In 2015 alone, the number of new food and drink products labelled as superfoods, superfruits, or supergrains increased 36% globally, according to Mintel; and in true American style, the US led “super” product launches. The provenance and promises of moringa have put it on many of the same
shelves as acai berries from Central and South America, goji berries from China, and maca from Peru. “Superfood implies something exotic,” says Paul Zullo, the managing director at Silver Creative, a branding company that works frequently with food, beverage and nutrition products. “It’s probably something from Egypt or South America, grown somewhere unusual.” They all make use of the same formula: an ingredient from a foreign land that helps natives achieve miraculous health, and that may in fact do the same for you.
Sprinkle the Magic Pixie Dust IT’S EASY to see the
FOUR SUPERFOODS THAT DON’T NEED A MARKETING CAMPAIGN Here’s what’s really worth your money and refrigerator space.
BEETROOT That deep, rich red signals anthocyanins, disease-fighting antioxidants also found in purplish foods such as blueberries and blackberries. ASPARAGUS Fresh asparagus is packed with fibre (4g in 12 spears) for little caloric cost (163kJ in 12 spears). DANDELION GREENS
Some farmer’s markets now sell these bitter greens. Or eat your spinach and other leafy greens to help battle cancer and heart disease.
malnourished people. Klatt reviewed the Kuli Kuli website and its “10 Reasons to Eat Moringa Every Day”. He concluded that most of those reasons were highly speculative, and often based on small studies in journals of dubious quality. One of the larger studies, published in The Bioscan, showed that Moringa oleifera could treat hypoglycaemia. However, the journalistic integrity of The Bioscan was questioned in a 2014 report by Serbian researchers. What’s more, many of moringa’s supposed benefits might also be attributable to less exotic, less expensive plants. Klatt observed that moringa’s fans point to a specific kind of diseasefighting antioxidant (called isothiocyanates) as a reason to love the plant – but isothiocyanates are common compounds found in more mundane cruciferous veggies such as cauliflower, and
marketing appeal of a DRAGON FRUIT Now in supermarkets, purifying tree. But no one this wild-looking fruit shopping for moringa powder has a tender interior is ever likely to use the plant that tastes kinda like a kiwi. It’s high in in the way that led to its antioxidants. nickname. That’s because the people who coined the whole miracle-tree thing weren’t powdering leaves mustard greens. and sprinkling them into smoothies. They So how did Moringa oleifera infiltrate had a more urgent concern: drinking water. some of the largest supermarkets in the Powdered moringa seeds – not leaves – are world? Through high-profile advocates good for purifying H20 but not much else, such as Dr Oz, yes, but also through though many manufacturers push moringa more subtle marketing tactics. Take, for supplements as a way to help you “detox”. If instance, a 2018 Washington Post article human beings didn’t have their own miracle titled “Moringa, the Next Superfood?” organ capable of handling toxins, then It seems legit: written by a University moringa would surely be a miracle cure. But of California science writer, the story you do have such an organ – your liver. quotes researchers from her university Ask Curtis about the powers of moringa, who gush about how the plant can delay and she’ll direct you to research on the diabetes and “feed the world”. As science company’s website. “There are three main watchdog HealthNewsReviews.org pointed reasons that people become excited about out, though, the piece is actually a paid moringa: nutrient density, plant protein, advertorial, designed to look similar to a and anti-inflammatory benefits.” Washington Post news article. Not only Dr Kevin Klatt, a nutritional biochemist, that, it failed to disclose at the time that one has conducted nutrient analysis on moringa of the scientists cited was a paid consultant to assess its potential as a supplement to help for Kuli Kuli.
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 85
Nutrition experts such as Klatt have pushed back on the rhetoric of superfoods. “I’m not a fan of the word ‘superfood’,” Klatt says.“It leads to people buying perceived ‘exotic’ foods and supplements, even though consuming a nutritionally adequate diet is possible by buying foods at the supermarket.” Dieticians stress that overall dietary patterns are the key to good health, and that superfoods provide few if any added benefits to an already healthy diet. Facing this consensus on healthy eating that emphasises whole foods, superfood supplements are now appealing to consumers with a higher cause.
Grow The Halo Effect IT’S NOT ENOUGH for some superfood
companies to want to change your health. They want to change the planet, too. Kuli Kuli advertises: “Nourishing You, Nourishing the World”. Natierra-brand goji berries (motto: “Superfoods With Soul”) advertise “Buy One Bag, Feed One Child”. Dr Alexander Chernev, a professor of marketing, explains that you’re likely to see a purchase as valuable in two different ways. “For example, say that I buy a bottle of Ethos water,” he says,
referring to the Starbucks subsidiary, popular in the group’s US homeland, that contributes 5 cents of every purchase to its Ethos Clean Water Fund. “One reason is that I want to reward the company for its good behaviour. The other reason is not to reward the company but because I feel some sort of moral satisfaction and self-affirmation. I believe I am a socially responsible person.” In all of this, there’s a whiff of the ancient magic – consuming something with a good soul to fortify your own, like eating gazelle to become faster. And with superfoods, the ritual of consumption happens twice: once when you buy the product, and again when you eat it. “Food and medicine are particularly sensitive products because you ingest them,” says professor of marketing Dr Bettina Cornwell. There may also be a feedback effect between doing good and feeling good, thanks to a well-established psychological phenomenon called the halo effect. In various contexts, researchers have shown that a person’s overall impression of a product influences their perception of specific unrelated qualities. For example: high-priced wines taste better when the drinker is aware of the price. With co-investigator Sean Blair, Chernev
studied the effect of perceived corporate responsibility on product evaluations, and found that altruism functions like high price. When consumers were told a company was engaged in charitable giving, their experience of the company’s product improved: wine tasted better, teeth looked whiter, hair looked thicker, a scanned image looked crisper. The problem, though, is that this new generation of superfoods – like the first – remains bound up with shaky scientific claims. Cornwell emphasised to me that consumers are self-interested; which means they may pay a premium for a morally good product, if they also believe it benefits them. In the case of moringa, the nutritive benefits are unequivocal, but only for people in areas that struggle with malnutrition. When it comes to your average guy shopping at Wellness Warehouse or the health aisle at Checkers, the science doesn’t scream “miracle”. AFTER INTERVIEWING Lisa Curtis, I
became convinced that at Kuli Kuli, the mission is sincere. Yes, the products are overpriced based on their nutritional value for consumers, but there is no reason to doubt the company’s claim that it has generated US$1.2 million (close to R17 million) in revenue for more than 1 365 moringa farmers on the African continent. These actions encourage consumers to think globally about sustainability. At the same time, you should acknowledge the appeal of superfoods for what it is, and always has been: the promise of an easy solution to deep anxieties. In truth there is no powder that can heal your woes, nutrition-related or otherwise. You can’t buy your way to being a good person, no matter how sincere the mission of the companies you’re buying from. So applaud the new superfoods, insofar as they indicate a change in what we value – a focus on helping the world in addition to ourselves. But also remember that making good on those values, like leading a healthy life, will take much more than a little powder in your smoothies. Dr alan levinovitz is an associate professor of religion and author of the book The Gluten Lie: And Other Myths About What You Eat.
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EDEN CLASSENS HAS A FIRM GRIP ON HIS FITNESS JOURNEY
88 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
UP Struggling to up your size? Take a lesson from these five guys, and let the gains begin. Words By MEGAN FLEMMIT / THAAQIB DANIELS Photographs by JACQUES WEYERS / GARRETH BARCLAY
MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 89
EDEN CLASSENS “ I F YO U G I V E I T T H E R I G H T N O U R I S H M E N T A N D PAT I E N C E , YO U R B O DY C A N T R A N S F O R M I N TO W H AT E V E R YO U WA N T I T TO.” Unlike most people who struggle to find their purpose in life, 28-year-old model and actor Eden Classens knew from a young age what he wanted to do. His mother encouraged him to enter an eisteddfod in Grade 2, and it was here that his love for the arts was born. By the time Eden was 15, he knew he wanted to study in New York. He moved from Newcastle in KZN to live with his father in Johannesburg, where he worked diligently to make it into the New York Film Academy. When Eden was in Grade 11, his father was diagnosed with cancer. “He fought really hard. There were some good times and some bad times,” Eden recalls. But despite his battles with the disease, Eden’s father still encouraged his son to pursue his dreams in New York; and after matric, the young actor joined the New York Film Academy. The experience not only helped Eden hone his acting skills, but also opened him up to other opportunities. While walking the streets of New York, he was approached by a modelling agent – but he turned the offer down. “I grew up in a place where I didn’t know what modelling was,” he explains. “I was just this skinny little kid, with a big nose and big ears, which I eventually grew into.” But a couple of weeks later, another agent approached him. This time, he said yes. Soon, the boy from Newcastle with the big nose and ears was travelling all over as a model. Three years aftermoving totheUS, Eden received grim news.His father’s healthwas deteriorating rapidly; he wasn’tsurehow much longer he had tolive. Edenpackedhis bags and moved back home, tospendtime withhis father and take care of him asbest hecould. “He was in bed all the time,so I looked after him. I wasn’t his nurse, but I stayed withhim, and made sure he had everything heneeded.” 90 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
healthy. And when Eden started going to castings and auditions again, he realised he had gone from one extreme to the other. “That picture hit me hard. I realised I was too big. I was this massive guy, towering over everyone.” Eden knew that if he wanted more opportunities, he would need to shed some of the kilos he had worked so hard to gain. “I wanted to be at a weight where I wouldn’t fill up the whole screen – a more acceptable weight, at which I could see myself on screen and it would look good.” The first thing to change was portion size. Eden continued eating six meals a day, but those meals became smaller. He also started supplementing his strength training with cardio. And his body responded. “I learnt quite a bit about my body during this time. I figured out what worked for me through trial and error,” he says.
When his father passed away, Eden went through what he describes as the worst year of his life. “I had major depression. I didn’t want to do anything, or see anyone.” Needing an outlet for his emotions, he turned to the gym. He’d heard that exercise TAILOR-MADE SUCCESS could be a good antidepressant; and sure Getting to know what works for him enough, as he sweated it out, he could feel personally has played a pivotal role in Eden’s his mood lifting. Training became a daily career. He’s now able to transform his body habit, bordering on addiction. whenever the situation calls for it. “One thing Eden hadone goal:to get bigger.The year I realised was that your body can do anything before his father’sdeath,he’d been toldto lose you tell it,” he says. “If you give it the right weight for one ofhis modellinggigs.Tofit into nourishment and patience, your body can the clothes provided,he’d droppedto 70kg transform into whatever you want it to.” – andat1.9m tall, he’dlookedasskinnyas a Eden’s ability to transform his body beanpole. “Iremember lookingatmyself in the came in handy when he landed the role of mirror, andhating the wayIlooked.I couldsee Justin on Suidooster – an Afrikaans soapie, the bonessticking outof my body,” hesays. following the lives of three families in the Eden started following a bodybuilding fictional Cape Town suburb of Ruiterbosch. programme, and for a year and a half, all he The show first aired on KykNET in 2015. did was train and eat as much as he could. “I wanted to see how far I could push my body,” “One of my mates was a writer on the show at the time. He said they were looking for he says. He gained over 30kg. someone sexy, and who was willing to take Having no set goal weight in mind, he his shirt off. He hadn’t been weighing suggested I audition himself regularly, but for the role.” when he eventually Initially, the part weighed himself, the When it comes to your diet, make sure you balance your macronutrient of Justin was just scale showed 108kg. ratios. “The general rule of thumb a small character “My weight gain was for muscle growth is high protein, on the soapie. Eden literally just the result moderate fats, and lower carbs,” says personal trainer, Johry Batt. “Of worked hard, and of eating and gyming course, protein is king when it comes learned as much – that was my antito muscle growth, and it’s essential as he could from depressant. Focusing to up your protein intake during hypertrophy-specific training.” his co-actors. His on gaining as much Johry’s go-to foods for packing impressive efforts on weight as possible was on muscle include lean meat, avo, the show helped turn how I got through my nuts, and loads of veggies. “Don’t be scared to add high-quality what was meant to be dad’s death.” carbohydrates – you’ll need these a limited role into a Of course, to restock your muscle and liver permanent position. obsession is rarely glycogen.”
EAT LIKE A CHAMP
EDEN FIGURED OUT WHAT WORKED FOR HIS BODY THROUGH TRIAL AND ERROR
HUSTLE FOR THAT MUSCLE Getting those gains isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Before you start banging out rep after rep, read this advice from former cover guy (and personal trainer) Johry Batt.
1. UP YOUR VOLUME, NOT YOUR WEIGHT
“When you want to bulk up, you’re trying to achieve hypertrophy, which means muscle growth and not muscle strength – although you will experience increases in strength as well. Doing between 8 and 15 reps per set will help overload the muscle and increase the size of your cells.”
2. TARGET THE MUSCLES YOU WANT TO BULK UP
“If you’re working towards a bigger chest, you need to do more exercises that target that specific muscle group. Make sure you still train in proportion, and focus on the push and pull movement of the specific muscle group.”
3. ALLOW YOUR MUSCLES TO RECOVER
“Make sure you’re continuously varying your exercises. Switch between various muscle groups to allow each one enough recovery time. You need to allow time for the repair process – this is necessary for growth to happen.”
After a few weeks, Eden Classens had become a household name. It wasn’t long before viewers started recognising him in public; and through these interactions, he realised the kind of influence he had on people’s perceptions. A recent storyline he had to portray was that of his character, Justin, using steroids to help him build his body. “People thanked me for portraying the role in such a real way. They told me they knew someone who was going through the same thing, or who had died because of it,” he says. “Being recognised on the street is still something that is unreal for me, but being able to change people’s lives is great.” 92 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
As well as doing a ton of research for the role, Eden also trained to get his body in shape. He wanted his portrayal of his character’s steroid use to be as realistic as possible. “It was important for me to put on some muscle, so I started doing a lot of heavy lifting in the gym. I trained four times a week, and split my training to focus on the different muscle groups.” Over a period of three months, Eden picked up eight kilograms of muscle. By the time he appeared shirtless on the show, it looked as though he had picked up muscle overnight. “From January, I started wearing bigger shirts on the show so I looked smaller on camera. People started wondering if I really did use
steroids!” Once the storyline was complete, the actor returned to a size he was happy with. Eden landed the role of Justin when he was struggling to find work and make a living and he's still very grateful for the opportunity. “I never imagined I would work on a show like Suidooster, but the whole experience has been incredible. I’m so grateful to Suidooster and KykNET for giving me the opportunity to become a principal actor on the show,” he says. “I’m very fortunate to do what I do, and I’m very happy to do it. I learnt a lot from this experience. I hope this role is a stepping stone for me to be able to portray very complex characters in the future. ”
â€œIT WAS IMPORTANT FOR ME TO PUT ON SOME MUSCLE, SO I STARTED DOING A LOT OF HEAVY LIFTING IN THE GYM."
NISHALEN GOVENDER LOCATION: Johannesburg OCCUPATION:
DIARY OF A SKINNY KID Being a scrawny guy on the highschool rugby field isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Your peers and teachers look on, and wait for you to be crushed by the bigger boys; the first aid team’s attention is diverted from the rest of the game to you. Nishalen Govender recalls being that skinny kid. Back then, he never imagined he would train at the Sharks academy, wear a Blue Bulls jersey, or build a body that any rugby player would be proud of. Now, a decade later, the 28-year-old is a qualified sports conditioning coach.
Growing Gains “I was always the tall, skinny kid growing up. My peers made jokes about me being very thin. Although I was very active, I never had a body built for sport. I entered high school with my skinny frame, and couldn’t fit into my blazer. “I wanted to play rugby, but I didn’t physically match up to 94 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
the other boys. Being in a rugby environment and being skinny wasn’t easy, but I wanted to prove myself. My mother signed me up to gym when I was about 15. I didn’t know much about training or nutrition, but I knew that taking this step would bring big positive changes to me physically and mentally.”
Head In The Game “First, I had to break that mental barrier of being around people who’ve been training for years. I knew I couldn’t compare my journey to theirs. I was there to become better, and only compete with myself.”
Stick With It “I realised that this wasn’t a shortterm thing. If I wanted to see change, I would have to put in the hard work and be consistent, over a
NISHALEN’S CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESS Be consistent. Make sure you create a weekly training routine, and stick to it. Take your time. Don’t hurt yourself by going too heavy too soon – start off slowly, and feel the muscle working. As you get stronger, you can increase the weights or add more sets. Fuel your body. You need to get in a meal before you train, so you have energy throughout your workout. After training, you need a source of protein, as well as good carbs, to help your muscles recover and grow after training. This will also help with your performance during your next workout. THE BICEPS WORKOUT Machine Preacher Curl These are good for isolating the biceps – because you can’t use momentum to cheat, like you would with, say, a standing barbell curl. Hammer Curls The biceps are made up of different muscles – switching between regular biceps curls and hammer curls makes sure you hit them from different angles, for max size. Alternating Dumbbell Curls Working one arm at a time is a way to prevent imbalances, because your stronger arm can’t pick up the slack for its weaker counterpart.
Sports conditioning coach AGE: 28 WEIGHT BEFORE: Under 60kg WEIGHT AFTER: 90kg TIME TO GOAL: 10 years
long period of time. “I struggled to increase my size at first, which was disheartening. But I started to learn more about nutrition, recovery, and different training techniques. By continuing to learn, I became a better athlete.”
Make It A Lifestyle “After high school I spent two years at the Sharks Rugby Academy in Durban, which was a great learning experience. But one of my proudest moments came in 2015, when I became the first Indian to wear provincial rugby colours for the Blue Bulls. “I have finally built the physique I envisioned as that tall, skinny kid. But I’m not done yet. I’m still learning and improving. Working out is now part of my lifestyle. As proud as I am of my physical improvements, I’m even more proud of my mental growth.”
BUILT TO IMPRESS Twenty-eight-year-old Ruan du Preez from Jozi leads two very different lives. He’s the owner of Ruan du Preez Incorporated, an attorney and conveyancing company that handles legal issues such as litigation and family law. Outside of office hours, he swaps his suit and tie for more minimal attire, when he gets on stage as a physique competitor. But this wasn’t always the case. A couple of years back, Ruan wasn’t nearly as fit as he wanted to be. It was by finding a formula that worked for him personally that Ruan was able to follow in his bodybuilding idols’ footsteps, and own the stage.
Mind & Muscle “My fitness journey started in first-year varsity, when I moved in to hostel. When I got there, all the guys were big, with beards, and were clearly gym-ing. I was by far the smallest guy there. “My roommate had attended Grey College, where he had
RUAN DU PREEZ AGE: 28 LOCATION: Roodepoort OCCUPATION: Attorney; physique
competitor WEIGHT BEFORE: 80kg WEIGHT AFTER: 94kg TIME TO GOAL: 2 years
RUAN’S CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESS Stay focused and keep pushing. It takes time before seeing results; it’s not going to happen overnight. Do you . A lot of young guys I talk to in the gym are very negative about their progress. You shouldn’t be comparing yourself to others in the gym, especially if there are people who’ve been training for years. Ignore the funny looks, and focus on yourself and your training. Set goals. Set yourself weekly goals, even if it’s lifting one kilo heavier each week. Slow progress is still progress. Eat well. Choose healthy food over supplements. Sure, supplements can help; but if you’re not eating properly and taking in enough kilojoules, you won’t build the quality muscle you want. THE CHEST WORKOUT Incline Dumbbell Press This move works the upper part of your chest, and brings the front of your shoulder to the party for well-rounded gains. Bench Press Position the barbell over your sternum, not your neck, to work your pecs. Cable Crossovers These are great for correcting imbalances. Focus on perfecting a controlled, full range of motion, rather than going super-heavy.
played rugby, and he was also very muscular. So I asked him if I could train with him, because I wanted to get bigger. We didn’t really train that seriously then, because we loved the varsity party lifestyle as well as the gym! “But after varsity, when I started working, I still had the desire to be a stronger, fitter person.”
Call An Expert “I contacted [bodybuilding coach and trainer] George Herwill. Under George’s guidance, I learnt how to diet, and he introduced me to a more structured training regime. He also sat down with me to discuss my goals, and together we made a plan for how to reach them.” Ruan now trains on his own, using the tips he picked up from George and other trainers along the way.
Make It A Habit
“I now train every day – fasted cardio in the morning before work, and then weight training after I clock out. I also focus a lot on my nutrition, which played a big role in my transformation. From following no diet at all to having a strict diet with a healthy number of kilojoules per day, I’ve reduced my body fat and gained quality lean muscle.”
Set A Goal “I’ve competed in two PCA (Physical Culture Association) events, which has been a goal of mine for some time. I look up to local bodybuilder Jaco de Bruyn. I honestly think he is the reason most guys start training and want to get on stage. I’m off season for now, but I can’t wait until next year to compete again!”
JODY WILLIAMS AGE: 23 OCCUPATION: Model; actor LOCATION: Cape Town WEIGHT BEFORE: 59kg WEIGHT AFTER: 64kg TIME TO GOAL: 15 months
FAST METABOLISM – DON’T CARE The early stage of getting into exercise is always the most intimidating. There are people everywhere at the gym, and everyone looks like they know what they’re doing. Meanwhile, you’re just trying not to get in anyone’s mirror space. Twenty-three-year-old Jody Williams had that experience not too long ago, when he decided to pursue his dream body. But he soon overcame the initial awkward phase, and dedicated himself to lifting and sweating his way out of his skinny frame.
The Big Idea “I always wanted to be shredded and ripped like a fitness model, but I never thought it was possible for me because of my fast metabolism. I thought that by stuffing myself and eating more I could gain weight, and work with that weight to build muscle. “That never happened. I was unhappy, disappointed. I thought I was going to stay skinny forever.” 96 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
Find What Works “I went through the typical fitness slump after high school, because I wasn’t playing competitive sports anymore. My busy schedule didn’t allow much sporting activity. Eventually I joined the gym, and started working out regularly. “I still remember the first time I went to the gym – I was so intimidated, and I always compared myself to all the bigger and stronger guys.”
Get Clued Up “I kept telling myself that everybody had to start somewhere; and that kept me going. I started browsing the web for tips, and came across a few fitness pages on Instagram. “This gave me insight into different body types, and how each body type is different. I started to learn about my body type, and found out that there are people with fast metabolisms who have the body I dreamt of having.”
JODY’S CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESS Work on your diet. Focus on eating smaller portions, but eating more meals per day – if you’re currently on three meals a day, try to ration those into five a day. And always focus on greater intake than what you’re burning. Check your form. The weight you’re lifting doesn’t matter if your form is wrong. Focus on getting your form and technique correct first. Track your progress. Keep a record of your personal bests, so you can challenge yourself and monitor your progress. Ration the cardio. If you have a fast metabolism like I do, you’ll have to do less cardio if you don’t want to end up losing weight. THE BACK WORKOUT Pull-Ups These are your back’s best friend. But if you can’t even do one, start with band-assisted pull-ups and negatives – jump up to the bar, then lower yourself slowly. Lat Pull-downs Bar in front of your head, not behind. Target your lats better by opting for a wider grip. TRX YTW These target the muscles of your upper back for that rippled effect. Vests for the win!
The Bigger Picture “I learnt that gaining muscle is more than just going to the gym, and that nutrition is vital for muscle growth. Because I have a fast metabolism, my body needed a lot of good nutrition – especially protein – to help build muscle, as there was hardly anything to work with (besides skin and bone). “I created my own personalised weekly workout schedule, five days of training per week. I trained two body parts a day: a big one, like the chest, and a small one, like triceps. I recorded my PBs so I could monitor my strength and challenge myself to do better every session. I also made sure that I got sufficient protein and drank enough water. “In 15 months, I gained 5kg of lean muscle. I’m mentally and physically stronger than I’ve ever been. I’m confident, self-driven and disciplined, which allows me to focus on my goals and create my own motivation. Overall, I’m just a happier person.”
SLOW AND STEADY “Instead of mocking me, people are now asking me for advice, which is a massive turnaround for me,” says Tshepo Nyathi. The 25-year-old had a rough time as a teen, because of how skinny he was. The other kids would make fun of him, which kept Tshepo’s confidence low. But the boy from Pretoria had a love for sport – his favourites being soccer, rugby and athletics – and this was the driving force behind his training. Now, Tshepo is no longer that scared, skinny kid, but a fit and focused personal trainer. Here’s how he ignored the bullies and bulked up.
Building Blocks “When I was younger, I stopped eating meat; and I think it dampened my growth, because of the lack of protein in my diet. The kids around the neighbourhood used to make fun of me because I was that skinny. People probably
TSHEPO’S CHECKLIST FOR SUCCESS Read up. Try to learn as much as you can about proper training form, techniques and nutrition. Rest. Pay attention to your body, and take it slowly. Have fun. Enjoy the process. THE LEG WORKOUT Barbell Squats These are great for building your thighs and glutes. Keep your gaze up, to avoid frontloading your quads and knees – look at a spot high on the wall, not on the floor. Barbell Hip Thrusts Be sure to keep those abs tight; and drive through your glutes and hamstrings, not your lower back. Standing Calf Raises Alternate the position of your feet (toes in, straight and out) to target different parts of your calves.
thought I was sick or something. “After about two years, I started eating meat again. I wanted to have a bigger build, and not be that skinny for the rest of my life. I started doing bodyweight exercises, but because I played soccer and loved running (a lot of cardio), I couldn’t achieve the bulkier physique I wanted. “This led me to play a more strength-building sport: rugby.”
Lift. Sleep. Repeat. “I asked my parents to buy me some free weights, because gyms were few and far from where I lived. At first I would train myself to exhaustion – because I didn’t know better.
TSHEPO NYATHI AGE: 25 OCCUPATION: Personal Trainer LOCATION: Dorandia HEIGHT: 178cm WEIGHT BEFORE: 60kg WEIGHT AFTER: 93kg TIME TO GOAL: 4 years
“The big change came when I enrolled at TUT to study Sports and Exercise Technology. I learnt a lot about training and nutrition, which helped tremendously in my fitness journey.”
The Final Rep “I managed to gain 33kg in four years, and since then I’ve been dedicated to maintaining my muscle. I started eating more, and planning my meals more carefully. I focus on using free weights for strength purposes, because I find them more functional, and they help me develop strength that I can translate onto the rugby field as well.”
THE RIVER WILD
First up: take the plunge, by braving Japan’s finest whitewater rafting spot.
In The World YOUR FREE TIME IS YOUR MOST VALUABLE COMMODITY, SO DON’T WASTE IT ON FLY’N’FLOPS OR BUDGET CITY BREAKS. INSTEAD, LACE UP YOUR BOOTS AND STRIKE YOUR OWN PATH IN SEARCH OF THE BEST ADRENALIN-PUMPING EXPLOITS THIS PLANET HAS TO OFFER. CONSIDER THIS YOUR FIRST STEP INTO THE UNKNOWN. WORDS BY
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Go WhiteWater Rafting inJapan Had your fill of Zen pond gardens? Head to the Yoshino River, four hours from Osaka by car. Renowned as Japan’s best rafting spot, it offers everything from tranquil, family-friendly tributaries to some of the most magnificent rapids in the world. What’s more, the backdrop of the Koboke Gorge is difficult to match anywhere outside of the Land of the Rising Sun. With canyoning, trekking and a 40m natural water slide, it’s well worth looking beyond Tokyo. setouchitrip.com Like that? Discover Colorado’s rivers, gorges and rapids. Work your core by traversing the Colorado River on a stand-up paddle board. Steady, now… paddlemoab.com
Enjoy the High Life inOman If your local climbing wall isn't cutting it anymore, look no further than al-Jabal al-Akhdar, the loftiest five-star resort in the Middle East – literally. Located 2km above sea level on Oman’s Green Mountain, it's home to the country’s highest via ferrata: a series of metal holds built into the rock face for climbing, with routes for both beginners and intermediates, as well as for abseiling. Round off the day by resting your weary muscles in an infinity pool: a more relaxing way of taking in those canyon views. jabal-akhdar.anantara.com Like that? Honister Slate Mine hosts the UK’s original via ferrata, an awardwinning climb of iron walkways, slim footholds and cable bridges in the heart of the Lake District. honister.com 100 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
GO BELOW DECK Explore Poland’s deep history in the gulf of Gdansk.
Live Like a Mongolian Nomad With lessons in archery, horse riding, fishing and, er, cashmere goat-combing, you don’t need to know too much about Mongolian tribal culture before signing up to the Pavilions Mongolia summer camp. In small groups, you’ll also kayak smooth rivers, trek across grasslands and climb soaring peaks in Orkhon
Valley, a Unesco World Heritage Site. Tick more cultural boxes with a trip to Karakorum, the Mongol empire’s ancient capital city, home to the remains of Ögedei Khan’s palace. pavilionshotels.com Like that? Test your survival skills somewhere the locals speak English (sort of) at Scotland’s Cairngorms National Park. Sign up for a three-day adventure, which includes digging your own snow cave in the mountains and enjoying a three-course meal inside. scotmountainholidays.com
Take on the World’s Toughest Ultramarathons Britain’s Marathon des Sables record-holder Tom Evans runs you through the most gruelling foot races.
Dive to a Polish ShipGraveyard Poland is a country rich with history, much of which is located 90m beneath the Baltic Sea in the Gulf of Gdańsk. Dive in and you’ll discover vessels struck down by stormy seas and German U-boats – even ships dating back to the 17th century. The sea’s low salinity makes them among the best-preserved wrecks in the world. balticquest.pl Like that? Charter the 20-person yacht Infinity and use it as a base from which to snorkel the Galapagos Islands, next to sea lions, turtles and iguanas. Don’t know one from the other? Happily, your yacht comes equipped with two naturalist guides. naturalworldsafaris.com
Blazea Trailin Cambodia Go one better than a #blessed Angkor Wat Instagram post. Bring a rush of adrenalin to this holy site by racing the Temple Run, a half-marathon dreamed up by the Anantara Angkor Resort in Siem Reap. Starting at the temple, you’ll take in 21km of wild-forest running track. In case you run out of
steam halfway through, you’ll have your own personal tuk-tuk, loaded with water and healthy snacks. All of which should help you on your way to runners’ nirvana. anantara.com Like that? From the forest floors of Asia to the forest canopies of Africa: One&Only Nyungwe House in Rwanda offers the only experience of its kind in East Africa. Its suspended walkway hangs 60m above the ground, giving you a safari that's a cut above the rest. oneandonlyresorts.com
“The Marathon des Sables takes place over six days in the Sahara. This legendary self-supported race merits its rep as the toughest on Earth.”
“If you really want to hit the wall, try the SelfTranscendence 4 989km race, the longest foot race in the world. Runners have 52 days to loop an 800m track 5 649 times – or 96km per day.”
“Badwater 135 is great if you want something gruelling. Hosted in California’s Death Valley in July, the weather is extreme – temperatures can reach 54°C.”
“The Barkley Marathons are iconic. Take your pick from 97 or 160 kilometres and race through the Frozen Head State Park in Tennessee within 60 hours.”
Get to Pole Position in Antarctica For one of Earth’s last untouched vistas, you’ll have to head down – all the way down. On this 15-day round trip, you’ll cruise around the Antarctic Circle, stopping off to break the ice with penguins and follow in the footsteps of legendary explorers, crossing the Drake Passage and squeezing through the Lemaire Channel. As well as some of the most stunning scenery in the world, you’ll spot minke whales, leopard seals, humpbacks and orcas. Cool stuff. globaljourneys.com Like that? Offering a different vantage point on Antarctica, this skydive allows you to drop over the Ellsworth Mountains from 4km up, in temperatures at a crisp -35°C. swoop-antarctica.com
Go Deep in Utah’s Gorges The Grand Canyon is for tourists. Utah is the muststop state on any US road trip, with hidden sandstone gorges littering the landscape. Vertical escarpments will take you through millennia-old rock, offering more than you’ll ever have time to explore. Book a trip through Capitol Reef National Park to avoid any 127 Hours-type scenarios. redrockadventureguides. com Like that? You don’t need to get Stateside to get your fill. With guided canyoning and river boarding across the Pyrenees, you can find a tailor-made trip that won’t leave you with a mountain of debt. adventurecreators.com
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CANNON FODDER Take a leap of faith and reach speeds of 100km/h.
Get Fired in Queenstown No, not our Queenstown – it's the one in New Zealand. If you’ve always dreamed of being fired from a giant catapult (and who hasn’t?), look no further. The Nevis catapult is the first of its kind, and fires thrill-seekers over 150m across a valley near Queenstown, at speeds of 100km/h. Worried it might not quite work out as planned? Don’t be: the rigorous Kiwis spent 30 years ironing out the finer points before opening. What could possibly go wrong? bungy.co.nz Like that? The aptly-named Cloudscraper Zip Line in Canon City, Colorado, will propel you over the Arkansas River and Royal Gorge at 365m. royalgorgebridge.com
Cliff Dive in the Swiss Alps Canyoning is all well and good, but for something a little different, you can’t beat heli-canyoning. Arriving by chopper, obviously, you will be guided into the remote canyons of the Swiss Alps for a one-of-a-kind adventure. There, you’ll discover pools straight out of a Tolkien novel – deep and crystal clear, though
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happily creature-free. You’ll have no problem keeping your cool among the snow-capped mountains as you’re taught cliff-diving techniques, alpine sliding and rappelling. Make sure to get a hot chocolate afterwards. secretcompass.com Like that? Scotland offers the best canyoning in the UK. Hidden along the shores of Loch Tummel, these challenging canyons have 14 abseiling spots and a 22m waterfall. Finish off with a barbecue on the beach – you’ll be hungry for it. thecanyoningcompany. co.uk
Let Loose in a GrownUp’s Playground Austria’s Area 47 has a slightly different vibe to America’s top-secret area: it’s the ultimate stag-do destination. With 95 000m2 of action-adventure activities and 35 excursions including rafting, wakeboarding and canyoning, there’s something here to suit any trip, from work-enforced fun to the
traditional pre-nuptial blowout. Should you be in need of respite, the familyowned Central hotel in the Ötztal Valley offers a welcome break from the high-octane day trips, with thermal cabins and treatments using natural alpine ingredients. area47.at/en Like that? For a more exclusive water sports excursion, head to Angel Falls, Venezuela – the world’s highest waterfall. Naturally, you’ll want to abseil down it. This two-week hiking trip offers just that, including a night spent sleeping on a ledge halfway down. secretcompass.com
PHOTOGRAPHY: ALFREDO MARTINEZ/RED BULL CONTENT POOL (KAYAKING), MAREK OKON/UNSPLASH (SHIPWRECK), GETTY IMAGES (NOMAD), DOM DAHER/RED BULL CONTENT POOL (SKIING), GERALD SCHOMBS/UNSPLASH (SHARKS),
Ski the Very Best Off-Piste Runs
GOING DOWNHILL FAST Push your limits with the world’s coolest off-piste experiences.
Free-skier Paddy Graham has made a name for himself in the slope style scene. These are his favourite spots “La Grave is a sleepy French town offering an array of off-piste runs with a huge amount of vertical skiing. There isn’t a single machineprepared run.” “It’s hard to pinpoint a specific run, but Japan has the best lowstress skiing in the world. Time it right, and it isn’t unusual to find eight metres of fresh powder at any off-piste slope on any resort.” “Alaska may be the iconic ski destination, but it can come with a hefty price tag. If you’re heli-skiing, though, it’s worth it: there are thousands of crazy wilderness runs available.” “Georgia may not evoke images of a skiers’ paradise, but the town of Mestia is a real gem. Heli-skiing, ski touring, and resort skiing are all options against the backdrop of the colossal Caucasus Mountains, home to Europe’s highest peak.”
The World’s Best Hidden Surf Spots
Red Bull big-wave rider Andrew Cotton unpacks the beachside paradises that you never thought to visit
“Skeleton Bay on the Atlantic coast of Namibia is thought to be the longest sand-bottomed wave in the world, but was unknown before 2008.”
“The west coast of Ireland has some of the best surf in Europe – but also the most fickle. Grab a board and find the perfect giant waves produced by offshore reefs.”
“You might not have heard of Pacasmayo, a city in north Peru, but it has one of South America’s longest left-hand points. You'll clock more riding time in one day than most surfers manage in a year.”
“The southern tip of Nīas, a small Indonesian island, provides waves with predictable take-offs and flawless barrels, all at the perfect speed, for up to 10 seconds.”
Snorkel with SharksinTahiti Not only is the Pacific island of Tahiti the sort of place where you can pluck fresh mangoes from the trees, you can also share the warm, clear waters with 19 species of shark, including the black-tip reef variety. The huge number of divers works in your favour here: the sharks are so accustomed to sub-aquatic visitors that local guides can take you up close and personal without the fear of you being turned into chum. tahititourisme.uk Like that? Fancy coming eye to eye with one of the planet’s oldest and most fearsome predators? Darwin’s Cage of Death offers just that: a Perspex cylinder is all that keeps you from a 4m crocodile at feeding time. Best pack a spare pair of swimming shorts. crocosauruscove.com
AT THE SHARK END Dive down to the depths of the Pacific to swim with the big fish.
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Cruise the World’s Steepest Zip Line
MAN ON A WIRE Hurtle down the most aweinspiring zip line on the planet.
Slovenia might not be at the top of everyone’s dream destinations list, but not everyone has heard of the Planica Zip Line. The steepest zip line on the planet hangs 1 150m above sea level and runs down the world’s biggest ski jump. It isn’t for the faint-hearted – you’ll reach speeds of 89km/h over a 570m course. While hanging on for dear life, you’ll take in scenic vistas across the valley, including the Kranjska Gora alpine resort. nc-planica.si Like that? The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge is the longest suspension bridge in the world, stretching between Kobe and Awaji Island in Japan. A tour gives you the chance to walk along the transparent maintenance deck, as well as visit the 98th floor for panoramic views. seejapan.co.uk
Skydive AyersRock Every corner of Australia is an adventurer’s dream, with myriad unspoiled deserts, forests and coral reefs all waiting to be explored. But the crowning jewel in Oz’s attractions? It’s undoubtedly Uluru, or Ayers Rock, a massive red monolith in the middle of the country. For another month you’ll be able to climb to the top and take in magnificent views of the
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surrounding bush. From October, however, the climb will be banned, so the only way to experience Uluru from on high will be to skydive over it. A rock show for the bucket list. skydiveuluru.com.au Like that? Utah’s Great Salt Lake is equally impressive as a one-of-a -kind aerial excursion. With stunning views of the Canyonlands National Park, Wasatch Front’s mountains and Moab’s deserts, this is a skydiving experience that’s hard to beat. skydiveutah.com
SoarLike Maverick Want to train like a top gun? Lake Tahoe’s Sky Combat Ace offers just that, with aerobatics, combat and flight-training sessions available all year. Should you want to take it up a level, the Operation Red Flag package divides you and your friends (or enemies) into two teams for king-of-the-hill aerial dogfights. Fancy
PHOTOGRAPHY: ALES FEVZER (PLANICA ZIP LINE)
Enter the Tiger’sNest The mountain kingdom of Bhutan has near-mythical status among explorers. The Tiger’s Nest is one of the country’s most iconic Buddhist temples, located deep in the Paro Valley and perched perilously on the cliff side. Reaching this stronghold requires a gruelling pilgrimage through the mountains – there is talk of building a highway, but don’t hold your breath. gadventures.co.uk Like that? Head into the desert for another pilgrimage of sorts – this time to race quad bikes in Namibia. You’ll glide over golden sands next to herds of zebra, ostriches... even lions. A truly spiritual experience. naturalworldsafaris.com
Next-Level Bouldering Paul Jackson, coach at Jurassic Climbing, helps you get a hold on the world’s best bouldering sites.
“Hampi in India is a bouldering playground. The weird, wonderful landscape of this Unesco site is full of precariously balanced gigantic boulders, making it unlike anywhere you have ever encountered.”
“Fontainebleau Forest is just an hour’s drive from Paris, yet it could belong to another world. In 250km2 of woodland, you will find every kind of bouldering route, many of them world class.”
“Petrohrad, just west of Prague, is a Czech landscape of woodland, wildflowers and granite boulders. Virtually untouched, it boasts more than 3 000 routes.”
something less competitive but equally adrenalinpumping? The Top Gun package offers a gruelling aerial aerobatics course. Strap in tight. skycombatace.com Like that? From the stratosphere to the Earth’s dark depths: the 8.9km-long Son Doong Cave in Vietnam – the biggest in the world – will challenge your perspective. It’s so huge that it could contain a block of 40-storey skyscrapers, and it even has a jungle inside. oxalis.com
“The Buttermilks in Sierra Nevada have served as a climbers’ training ground for centuries. A surreal way to train among the best.”
Heli-Ski Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula M18 helicopters? Aweinspiring scenery? Flying down volcanoes on two narrow strips of plastic? Put a big fat tick next to all of the above, because Pelorus’s Russian heli-skiing excursions have you covered. Beginning in Moscow, you’ll fly out to the remote Kamchatka region where, over six days, you’ll have the pick of 2 000 vertical metres of ski runs, all curated by local guides. And, yes, there will be vodka Anyone know the Russian for après? pelorusx.com Like that? For a (marginally) tamer slope-side experience, unleash your inner Tarzan on Canada’s zip lines and treetop walkways, taking in the Whistler and the Blackcomb mountains. whistler.ziptrek.com
Take a Walk on the WildSide For a nature-spotting trip unlike any other, go to Slovakia, where experienced park rangers will put you on the trail of black bears. Over the eight-day trek, you’ll follow their tracks to see them in their natural habitat, while also keeping an eye out for red deer and golden eagles. Best of all, tours are restricted to groups of eight to minimise disturbance, with the whole trip tailored to protect the bears. You’ll stay in hotels and ranger cottages, with hearty meals provided – just try not to spill any honey on your shirt. walksworldwide.com Like that? For more ursine adventures, head to the Arctic and track polar bears on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen from the safety of your cruise ship.bspoketours.com
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The MH Guide To
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THE EXCHANGE RATE NEEDN’T TAKE THE SHINE OFF YOUR HOLIDAY PLANS. STAYCATIONS ARE BOOMING, WITH RECORD NUMBERS GOING OFF-GRID ON HOME SOIL. WHETHER YOU’RE MAKING YOUR FIRST FORAYS INTO THE WILDERNESS OR WANT TO HONE YOUR SURVIVALIST SKILLS, OUR SOUTH AFRICAN CAMPING GUIDE WILL ENSURE EVERY TRIP HITS THE RIGHT PITCH. WORDS BY JAZZ KUSCHKE
Gear Up For Adventure Start the right way with these backwoods basics.
The Boots Trainers or wellies? Combine the best of both. Lightweight and offering running-shoe-like flexibility, the Outline Mid GTX boots from Salomon are your go-to for tough hikes and everyday micro-adventures. Did we mention the waterproof GORE-TEX membrane? R2 499, salomonsports.co.za
The Multi-Tool This multi-tool is the ultimate space-saver. Designed for the outdoors, the Leatherman Signal packs a firestarter, hammer, one-handed blade and an emergency whistle. R 2 699, outdoorwarehouse.co.za
The Cooker With nesting vessels for cooking and eating, the Sea to Summit Alpha 2 Pot cookset 2.2 will bring out the camp gourmet chef in you, without having to lug bulky pots and pans along. R1 700, outdoorwarehouse.co.za Also pack a Stanley hip flask: no trip into the great outdoors is complete without a hearty swig of nectar before bed. R449, outdoorwarehouse. co.za
The Backpack Looking for something more than a daypack, but less than a big, multi-way pack? The First Ascent Neptune II features the First Ascent ABS (Adjustable Back System) and offers 40-litre capacity along with an additional 5 litres of expansion. Light, yet versatile. R1 999, outdoorwarehouse. co.za
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ignites your body’s primal relaxation mechanisms. These responses are hard-wired in us by evolution. Nature is the time-honoured antidote to the stresses of daily life. And best of all? There’s really no need to splash out on expensive, far-flung overseas bootcamps and bucolic yoga retreats. Entry to the outdoors is not ticketed. To experience what the wilderness truly has to offer, your smartest move is to bank your pay cheque, pack your backpack, and do things on your own terms. And you can start by refreshing your rusty equipment.
The Jacket Sleek, packable and highly practical, the Torrentshell Jacket from Patagonia is waterproof, yet breathable, and takes a responsible step forward with 100% recycled nylon face fabric. R2 299, goneoutdoor.com
Leader of the Pack Now, put it all together. “Keep water, maps and a first-aid kit in the outer pockets,” says Thom Hunt, founder of the 7th Rise outdoor courses. “Stuff your clothes and sleeping bag at the bottom, with heavy stuff on top. Strap dangerous items (your wood axe, say) to the sides of your bag. You don’t want to fall on them.”
The Shelter Unsure about going tent-free? The 360 Degrees Moonlight 2 Hiking 3-season Tent is lightweight, and can be popped up in mere minutes. R1 499, outdoorwarehouse.co.za
Base Layer In the bush, there’s no one to impress – so wearing the same outfit all weekend is not only permitted, but encouraged. Capilene base layers from Patagonia are the go-to for moisture-wicking. R849, goneoutdoor.com. For socks and underwear, choose merino, as it’s antibacterial and breathable. coremerino.com.
Weather permitting, you can forget the tent – but you need a quality sleeping bag, like the compressible K-Way Expansion 400 Sleeping Bag. R1 999, capeunionmart.co.za
PHOTOGRAPHY: MICHAEL HEDGE, ALAMY, ANOTEFROMAMY, GALLO/GETTY IMAGES, LUCKY IF SHARP, INSTAGRAM, ANDY PARSONS
An escape into the wilderness has merits beyond a break from the everyday routine. Time spent outside has myriad holistic benefits. The quiet of nature can bring about significant improvements to your mental health. Bush air raises your immunity, while the chemicals released when revelling amid breathtaking scenery can curb harmful inflammation. Switching off from artificial light will hit reset on your disrupted sleep cycles, and the mere scent and sound of a campfire
02/ Plan Your Adventure South Africa overflows with great camping spots. Here are just five for your must-do list.
For that desert magic: Bitterpan Wilderness Camp, Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park Few things are as stress-relieving as the silence of the desert. From the raised wooden viewing deck above Bitterpan Wilderness Camp, toast the peace, the sunset, and the small herd of springbok drinking at the watering hole in the middle of the pan, as you soak it all up.
For the hardcore: Mnweni, uKhahlambaDrakensberg The Mnweni area is one of South Africa’s most authentic wilderness areas, with very few tourists, lots of rock paintings, and some of the steepest trails in the country.
For West Coast beauty: Tietiesbaai The West Coast is a Marmite kind of place – you either love it, or you freakin’ hate it. And Tietiesbaai (bomb that into your translation app) near Paternoster is the epitome of seaside camping.
For a quick Western Cape escape: Tweede Tol, Bain’s Kloof Pass At the bottom of Bain’s Kloof Pass (between Wellington and Ceres) is a campsite fit for the city Houdini act. Not much happens there, but therein lies the charm. It’s extreme – on the relaxation scale. If you must get off your deck chair, hike up into the mountains and swim at the big rock pool across the road in the Witte River.
For the bucket-list hiker: Otter Trail, Tsitsikamma Section, Garden Route National Park Everyone with even a remote inclination towards hiking should do the Otter Trail. At least once. The 42km, four-night trail hugs the protected coastline and forest of the southern Cape. The coastal view combined with the spectacular forest backdrop is unrivalled.
03/ What Kind Of Camper Are You?
Whether you prefer hardwood flooring in your ‘tent’, or you camp so hard you make Bear Grylls look soft, find your niche with our guide to outdoor tribes.
Luxe Camping Despite the marketing, staying in a tree house with a private wood-fired hot tub is not camping. But it is possibly the most pleasant way to enjoy nature’s stress-relieving promises. Not ready to rough it out? Find a spot to suit your budget at africamps.com.
Glamping This term encompasses any site pre-populated by tents. If you have none of the gear and no idea, this is the smart place to start. A night in an old army tent with a solid floor and a ‘real’ bed is more economical than a heap of cash forked out on kit that may enjoy a single long weekend’s outing.
Wild camping On Site Camper Life Silence. Seclusion. A Take your own tent They've made a WiFi black spot. and gear. Head to comeback thanks to There are benefits to the store for supplies adventurers posting camping wild – but and find a spot at pics of sunsets from there are also campsa.co.za the back of their considerations. Auto-Sleepers. But, Never head out not all campsites without sharing will accept Spice your location, be campers and it Up cautious about caravans, so be From basics like salt and the weather and certain to check pepper to more gourmet vigilant with in advance. Hire spices, make use of old TicTac your cooking one if you’re not containers to take just enough fire. Then, go ready to make it a along (they pack neatly, too), wild. lifestyle. and turn any drab camping meal into something more special.
Survivalism Finally, you can make things difficult for yourself by embarking with less equipment than you require: a sleeping bag but no floor mat, for example. (You can make one of those out of leaves.) Undeterred? Start with a bushcraft course, at a venue such as boswa.co.za.
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A Breakfast Refuel
Eggy Bread and Chicken Livers For a more-ish start to your morning, beat some eggs with crumbled cooked chicken livers (or leftover boerewors), and coat slices of sourdough bread in the mixture. Heat a flat oiled pan over the fire, and fry your slices one at a time for about six minutes. Serve with crispy bacon and maple syrup.
Endless chops, boerie and braaibroodjies... there must be more to life. “These can be cooked in the forest or on the beach with minimal kit,” says Simon Stallard, chef at Cornish feast spot the Hidden Hut. His basic-ingredient recipes are simple but satisfying.
Rich in iron to fight signs of fatigue
More than 20g of restorative slow-burning carbs
Full of energyboosting phosphorus and riboflavin
Camembert, Toast and Chutney After a hard day’s hiking, you need to replace that energy, and quickly. Place the whole cheese, still in its box, inside a pan. Pop the lid on and put it on a rack roughly 30cm from the
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embers. It should melt after 20-25 minutes. Serve with chutney on lightly toasted bread and – if you’re feeling adventurous – freshly scavenged wild herbs.
A Simple Side Dish
Mielies with Chilli and Basil Oil Bring a pan of salted water to the boil and cook the mielies for five minutes. Remove them, pat dry and drizzle with basil oil (or rub with butter). Finely dice a fresh chilli, mix with sea salt and coat the mielies. Stick something sharp in either end and eat straight off the core.
Serious Muscle Fuel
Steak, Spring Onion and Parmesan Pat your steak dry, then place it on the burning embers: “cooking dirty” chars the meat nicely. Slice the spring onions lengthways from 2cm above the base, lightly oil and place on the grill, 30cm above the embers, to soften them. Brush the embers off your steak and wrap in foil for 10 minutes. Slice it into strips, season and serve with the Parmesan and onions.
A top source of creatine for better muscle function
You can do better than two-minute noodles in a potjie pot, in both flavour and nutrition. Here are a few tips. Plan. Plan. Plan. Plan your menu, and then make a thorough shopping list. However, a good, slow stroll around a (large) supermarket is a good idea, to get a grip on what options are available. Remember – you want to go as light as possible, cook with the least fuss, and still get enough nutrients and kilojoules. Think staples such as couscous, smash, tinned sardines and chickpeas. Got fruit and veg? Soft fruit and vegetables are never going to last long on a camping trip. Pick items that don’t need to be kept in the fridge, such as tomatoes, onions, peppers, apples and bananas.
A Light Lunch Sardines, Lemon Zest and Parsley One for the West Coast. Catch the fish yourself, if you can, or buy them fresh from the fisherman. Gut the fillets with a pair of scissors, remove the scales, then whittle a couple of wooden skewers. Insert from mouth to tail, down the backbone, then coat in lemon zest and salt. Get the embers hot, then fry them in an oiled pan for two minutes per side. Flake the fish off the bone, finish with parsley and serve with an old mug of chilled sauvignon blanc.
Swimming with brainpreserving omega-3 fats
The freezer is your friend. Pre-cook and then vacuum-pack and freeze one-pot meals; then simply heat them on your camp stove (remembering to carry the plastic out with you, and recycle it). Go dehydrated. Yes, it may look like food for astronauts, but packing dehydrated foods (at least for a few meals) can really make a difference in saving space – and saving energy, when it comes to cooking at the end of a long day. Trail mix still rules. Pack snacks wisely to stay fuelled up. Make your own (low-sugar) trail mix. The basics should include: nuts (raw nuts that haven’t been coated and roasted in oils and salt are best); seeds (for protein, iron and magnesium, as well as vitamins and minerals); and dried fruit (to help boost low blood sugar after physical activity). Add some dark chocolate drops or small bits of biltong or droëwors for extra points.
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Playing with Fire Starting a fire ignites a primitive joy that no gadget can match. Here’s how to keep it safe.
Fuel the Fire Holding a cheap corner-shop lighter to a big branch won’t cut it – you need to start small, and grow your fire.
WTF Is Wilderness Therapy? Swapping a session on the therapist’s couch for time in the great outdoors is gaining traction as a tonic for poor mental health. And it's happening right here in SA.
Tinder – dry grass, paper, matchstick-thin twigs. Silver birch bark is ideal, as it contains oils. Keep the tinder in your pocket – your body heat will dry it.
Kindling – small twigs split to the thickness of your finger. Use the “snap test”: a dull snap means it’s too damp. Hard to pull apart? It’s too fresh. Twigs should snap crisply and clearly.
Main fuel – logs as thick as your wrist or bigger. A smokeless fire requires dry fuel. Stack your extra logs around the fire as it burns, and the heat will slowly dry them out, ready to use.
Now Feel the Burn If the ground is damp, lay a base of flat stones. Light the tinder; you’ll have 10-30 seconds to catch your kindling. Once your fire is the size of a football, add the main fuel in a tipi shape. You need enough kindling to keep it burning until your main fuel catches. Add the larger fuel gradually. Once it’s roaring, sit back – marshmallows optional.
*Although many campsites do allow campfires, always check to ensure you have the land owner’s permission.
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Spending time in nature has an immediately beneficial effect on your brain. It calms you, and can take you out of a defensive position. When you’re away from your home, away from your routine and responsibilities, it’s easier to find a new perspective on issues that you might have felt were too overwhelming to address before. People attend “Wilderness Therapy” camps, courses and retreats for all sorts of reasons, from depression and anxiety to addiction. And no, before you dismiss it as too airy-fairy, not all wilderness therapy is meditative – many retreats include activities ranging from hiking to kayaking to game viewing. For example, ecopsychology bridges the gap between ecology and psychology, between humanity and the earth, through immersive walks. This understanding of ecological processes enables the therapist to find symbols and metaphors in the wilderness that are relevant to his client’s
personality and circumstances. The benefits of this experience come from the therapist then facilitating healing through the sensitive integration of ecology and psychology. Find out more about Venda walks at ecopsychologyafrica.com. You can also experience the natural environment through meditation, awareness and mindfulness with Grant Hine, who is pioneering Zen Guiding practice in South Africa. “The aim is to have people reconnect with nature, while discovering who they really are and then using that knowledge to live the rest of their lives in a peaceful and calm manner,” he says. Hine is a vastly experienced guide, with 12 years’ experience of active field guiding, as well as 14 years running the South African Field Guides Association (FGASA). In addition, he also has a master’s degree in psychology. Rates on enquiry, zenguiding.com.
Can I Eat it? Best find out before you chuck it in a pot. Start here. Wild Garlic Spring is peak season for wild garlic, so forage for it while you can. You’ll find this common plant in shady hedgerows and woodland throughout South Africa, from September to late November. It tends to be milder than shop-bought varieties, though you can still differentiate it from lookalikes by its pungent smell. The leaves are long, narrow, slightly fleshy, and smell strongly of garlic when bruised. Num-Num This thorny bush’s red berries are loaded with flavour. The berries can be eaten raw, and with some stretching of the imagination taste a bit like cranberries. They’re often found on exposed ridges in coastal areas, and boast a high vitamin C content. Take note, though: The plant is poisonous to dogs. Chicken of the Woods The sulphur shelf mushroom or "chicken of the woods" grows out in "shelves" from 5-60cm in diameter and 4cm thick. This mushroom grows in clusters on hardwoods and under conifers, from August to October. The name comes from its colour, (which is sulphur yellow), and its taste, evidently a bit like chicken (but isn’t everything?). Of course, mushrooms are not to be taken lightly or sourced by anyone who doesn’t have experience in the field. Learn more from the Fouries, who run mushroom foraging and cultivation courses. mushroomguru.co.za
Intertidal Zone The intertidal zone and dune fields offer a variety of edibles. Learn what’s what from Roushanna Gray, who runs Veld and Sea. She offers classes, workshops and events to introduce people to foraging and cooking with wild foods. veldandsea.com
Lit Light your campsite by turning any old bottle into a lantern. Fill it with water, and strap a head torch around the outside with the light pointing inwards, creating a glowing ambient light.
Know what to do in an emergency. Carry a first-aid kit, and the contact details for local authorities and rescue services. And don’t be one of those guys with the most expensive equipment, and no clue how to use any of it. Play with your gear in a controlled environment first – at home with your kids, in the garden, or on local day walks. Ultimately, you don’t want anything to spoil your
otherwise amazing trip. So always be in control of your situation – the better prepared you are, the more enjoyable your journey will be.
Can I drink it? Rain water is generally safe to drink, though it can be contaminated by anything it touches, whether that’s plants or the roof of your tent. So invest in a filter bottle such as the LifeStraw Flex, which removes bacteria, lead and pesticides. For each product you buy, a child in a developing community receives drinking water for a year. sustainable.co.za
08/ Staying off the Grid Some head to the e wild to get away from it all. But if you’re a man who enjoys his creature comforts, there are ways to take them all with you.
01/ Power Source If the notion of going phone-free makes you want to hitch-hike to the nearest iStore, fear not. The SolarGorilla portable solar charger from PowerTraveller is a viable charging option for your smartphone, GoPro, GPS system, smartwatch and many more devices from the 5V USB output. R3 800, wintecsolutions.co.za
02/ Memory Maker True adventure can’t be captured on a smartphone. That’s not a comment on social media culture – it’s a statement of fact. The GoPro Hero 7 operates with hands-free voice control, and has smart stabilisation tech for smooth footage on any terrain. R6 995, ormsdirect.co.za
03/ Chill Out Finally, for an extra measure of R&R, pack a portable 40-litre cooler in the back of your car. The Mobicool 40L Wheeled Thermo-Electric Cooler plugs into your car’s 12V socket, and is ideal for keeping your meat fresh and your beer chilled. R2 800, outdoorwarehouse.co.za.
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IF YOUR PLAN FOR HERITAGE DAY IS TO FLING SOME FROZEN CHICKEN PIECES ON THE FLAMES WHILE YOU FINISH A CASE OF BEERS… IT’S TIME TO GROW UP. PARISIAN KOBUS BOTHA (YOU READ THAT RIGHT) WANTS TO BRING SOME FRENCH FLAIR TO YOUR FIRE.
WORDS BY PHOTOGRAPHY BY 116 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
JAN HENDRIK VAN DER WESTHUIZEN
Kobus Botha grew up on a farm in the Klein Karoo, in a house with no running water or electricity. He had to walk 50 metres from the house just to go to the toilet. What he did have was a braai that worked overtime; the family would fire it up several times a week, often braaiing fish they had caught in the sea 60km away. A career as a film producer took Kobus all over the world. Now he’s known for lighting a fire in the heart of Paris, and braaiing for thousands of people at festivals and fêtes. The French, famed for their cooking, learn things from him in the ‘barbeque’ classes he teaches. But in turn, Kobus’s braaiing has been forever changed by French cuisine. His cooking is a marriage between the two disciplines, celebrating his South African roots with the flair of the country he now calls home. With this month being Heritage Day, and many South Africans taking to the braai to celebrate their culture and diversity, Botha’s recipes are the embodiment of what the Braai For Heritage Day tradition is all about. “A braai isn’t just about food,” says Kobus. “When you make a braai in South Africa, the guests arrive and help to prepare the fire and cook the food. Everyone pitches in, giving their opinion about the equipment, the cooking method, the ingredients… “I love the way the French talk about food when they’re eating: they share memories, recipes, addresses. In SA, these conversations take place when the braai’s being prepared. It’s not just about eating. You share a lot more than food with your family and friends.” But even though it isn’t just about the food, it’s a lot about the food; no one wants to be served a burger patty that could double as an ice hockey puck. And it’s not good enough to have mastered just one protein – you need to nail all of them to truly call yourself a king of the grid. But we’ve got a cheat: six fail-proof, protein-packed recipes that cover all your main protein sources. And none of them involves flinging a pack of supermarket boerewors on the braai. Botha calls it “braaiing with a bit of je ne sais quoi”. So fire up le braai, round up some mates, crack open the beers and enjoy the public holiday (with overdone steaks nowhere to be seen). Bon appétit! 118 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
ASIANSTYLE PORK B E L LY SA N DW I C H 2 2 1 1 4
TA B L E S P O O N S F I S H S A U C E ( N U O C - N A M ) TA B L E S P O O N S W H I T E V I N E G A R TA B L E S P O O N L I M E J U I C E TA B L E S P O O N C A STO R S U G A R S L I C E S P O R K B E L LY, C U T A B O U T 2 C M THICK S E A S A LT A N D G R O U N D B L A C K P E P P E R
For The Sandwiches 2 4
S M A L L B A G U E T T E S O R C I A B AT TA R O L L S C A R R OT S , P E E L E D A N D C O A R S E LY G R AT E D F R E S H C O R I A N D E R L E AV E S F R E S H C H I L L I , D E S E E D E D A N D F I N E LY CHOPPED
1. In a small bowl, combine the fish sauce, white vinegar and lime juice with the sugar until it’s well dissolved. Set aside. 2. Dry the slices of pork with paper towels and season them with salt and pepper. Braai for 6–7 minutes over very hot coals, turning often, so they don't burn. The pork should be well cooked and the fat should be crispy, to bring out the flavour. (It doesn’t matter if the meat is a little dry, because it will be drizzled with sauce.) Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces. 3. Cut the baguettes in half lengthways and open them up. Layer the sandwiches with grated carrots, pieces of braaied pork belly, more grated carrots and coriander leaves. Drizzle with sauce, sprinkle with chopped chilli to taste, and close the sandwiches. Serves 4
BONELESS M A R I N AT E D LAMB SHOULDER WITH FIGS 1 DEBONED LAMB SHOULDER 8-12 FRESH FIGS, FOR SERVING
For The Marinade 4
G A R L I C C LO V E S
1 1 1 Âź
BUNCH FRESH CORIANDER BUNCH CHIVES BUNCH MINT GREEN PEPPER
1 L I T R E P L A I N YO G H U R T S A LT A N D G R O U N D B L A C K P E P P E R , TO TA ST E
Beforehand 1. Prepare the marinade: peel the garlic cloves and cut them in four; or crush them, for a more intense flavour. Set aside a few sprigs of coriander and chop the rest. Chop the chives and the mint. Chop the
green pepper. Combine all the marinade ingredients in a dish big enough for the lamb shoulder. Set aside a bowl of this marinade to serve with the lamb. 2. Put the lamb into the dish with the remaining marinade, and coat it well. Cover with cling film and place in the fridge. On The Day 1. Prepare a fire with a lot of coals (it needs to last a long time), and set some coals aside. 2. Remove the lamb shoulder from the marinade and place it on the grid. Cook for 5-6 minutes, then turn it over and brush with the marinade. Repeat this process for about 30 minutes, adding more coals to the centre of the braai as necessary to maintain the temperature. 3. When the lamb is almost cooked, stop brushing it with the marinade and allow the skin to brown. Remove it from the grid and leave to rest for 5-6 minutes. 4. If you want to cook the figs (it will make them sweeter), place them whole on the grid, while the meat is resting, and turn them once or twice. (You can also serve them raw.) 5. Slice the meat and garnish with coriander. Serve with the reserved marinade and the figs, cut in four. Serves 4-6
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PERFECT PRIME RIB AND BAKED P OTATO E S WITH CHIVE CREAM 8 TA B L E S P O O N S T H I C K F R E S H C R E A M F R E S H C H I V E S , F I N E LY C H O P P E D 2 - 4 L A R G E P OTATO E S , WA S H E D B U T N OT PEELED 2 P R I M E R I B ST E A K S O R 1 C Ă”T E D E B O E U F F I N E S A LT FINE WHITE PEPPER F R E S H LY G R O U N D B L A C K P E P P E R , TO S E R V E S A LT F L A K E S O R G R O U N D S E A S A LT, TO SERVE
1. Place the cream in a small bowl. Stir in the chives, and set aside in the fridge. 2. Tuck the potatoes around the coals when you light the fire (they will take about 40 minutes). Turn them every 10 minutes. Even if the skin turns a little black, the insides will be nicely cooked. When the potatoes are almost done, start cooking the meat. 3. Put each steak on a chopping board and hit it with your fist, to flatten it slightly and make it easier to cook. (It will regain its shape later on.) Season well with fine salt and fine white pepper, including the fat. 4. Place the steaks on the hot grid, above hot coals. After 5 minutes, check the meat. When it no longer sticks to the grid and has a lovely brown crust, turn it over and cook for 4-5 minutes on the other side. When you have a nice crust on both sides, pick up each steak with tongs and roll the fat side against the grid, until all the fat is cooked and crispy. Spread the coals to lower the temperature a little. Put the steaks back on the grid. Press the centre of the meat with your finger; if it feels very soft, it isnâ€™t cooked enough. Leave for a further 3-4 minutes per side, until done to your liking. 5. Remove the steaks from the heat, place on a chopping board, cover with a clean cloth and leave to rest for 10 minutes before slicing. 6. Garnish with pepper and salt flakes. Serve with the potatoes, split in half and filled with the chive cream. Serves 2 big eaters
CURRIED CHICKEN S O SAT I E S 3 - 4 S K I N L E S S , D E B O N E D C H I C K E N B R E A ST S 4 S O F T - D R I E D A P R I C OT S 4 4
PITTED PRUNES WOODEN OR BAMBOO SKEWERS, SOAKED I N WAT E R B E F O R E H A N D
For The Curry Sauce 1
TA B L E S P O O N S U N F LO W E R O R C A N O L A OIL
12 PEARL ONIONS, PEELED BUT LEFT WHOLE 1 TA B L E S P O O N M I L D C U R R Y P O W D E R 1 TA B L E S P O O N S M O OT H A P R I C OT J A M 1 TA B L E S P O O N W H I T E V I N E G A R ½ C U P D R Y W H I T E W I N E ; S A LT TO TA ST E
The Day Before 1. Make the curry sauce the day before your braai. Heat the oil in a saucepan and sauté the onions until soft and lightly coloured.
2. Add the curry powder and stir. 3. Add the apricot jam, vinegar and wine, and cook until the mixture turns syrupy. Leave to cool, then pour into a non-metallic dish. 4. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Season with salt. 5. Cut the apricots and prunes in half. Add the chicken and fruit to the curry sauce, and stir to coat. 6. Cover with cling wrap and marinate in the fridge overnight (or for at least 6 hours). On The Day 1. Keep 8 onions whole and cut the remaining 4 onions into pieces that you’ll be able to thread onto the skewers. 2. Prepare the skewers by alternating pieces of chicken, apricots, prunes and onions. (Start and end with a whole onion.) 3. Place the sosaties on a cooking grid above the coals. The curry sauce burns quickly, so keep an eye on them and turn them often. Brush frequently with the leftover sauce. 4. Cook for approximately 12 minutes. 5. You can cook sausages at the same time as these skewers. Serves 4
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Tip: The goal is for the outside to be crispy and the inside still juicy, so don’t cook them too fast or too slowly.
HOME-MADE S AU SAG E S 2
TA B L E S P O O N S W H O L E C O R I A N D E R SEEDS 6 5 0 G B E E F ( N OT TO O FAT T Y O R D R Y – C H U C K ST E A K , F O R E X A M P L E ) 6 5 0 G P O R K B E L LY 6 5 0 G B R E A ST O F L A M B 2 TA B L E S P O O N S S A LT 2 TEASPOONS GROUND WHITE PEPPER 1 ½
T E A S P O O N G R O U N D C LO V E S TEASPOON GROUND NUTMEG
TEASPOON GROUND MACE CUP RED WINE
SAUSAGE CASING (FOR THICK SAUSAGES)
1. Crush the coriander seeds in a food processor or with a pestle and mortar. Heat them in a dry pan, without oil, to bring out their flavour. 2. Cut all the meat into large pieces. Grind (mince) it, but not too finely, alternating pieces of beef, pork and lamb. 3. Put the minced meat into a bowl with the rest of the ingredients (except the sausage casing) and mix everything rapidly, using your hands. Fry a little of the mixture in a pan and taste it. Adjust the seasoning if necessary. 4. Rinse the sausage casing. Fill it up to make one long sausage, then cut it into pieces about 15 cm long (or to your preference). The ends can stay open; they’ll turn crispy when you cook them. Don’t prick the sausages before cooking. 5. Place them on the grid over coals that are not too hot, and cook until done. Makes ± 2kg sausages
PERI PERI P R AW N S 1 WHOLE HEAD GARLIC 1 LEMON 4 TA B L E S P O O N S B U T T E R 200ML DRY WHITE WINE 2 TEASPOONS PERI PERI (OR CHILLI) POWDER Â˝ T E A S P O O N S A LT 2 0 - 24 W H O L E M E D I U M P R AW N S 4 BAMBOO OR WOODEN SKEWERS, SOAKED I N WAT E R B E F O R E H A N D
1. Cut the head of garlic in half through the cloves. Cut the lemon into thick slices. Place the garlic (cut side down) and the lemon slices on the braai, and grill until lightly browned. Donâ€™t let the garlic burn. 2. Place the butter in a small
saucepan on the grid and allow it to melt. Add the braaied garlic and lemon slices, the wine, peri peri powder and salt, and stir to combine. Cook until the sauce reduces and becomes syrupy. Adjust the seasoning if necessary. 3. Using a sharp knife, split the prawns along the back and remove the black vein. Thread 5-6 prawns onto each skewer, piercing them through the head and tail, so they fit closely together. 4. Place the skewers on the grid over hot coals. Brush with the sauce while they cook. Grill the prawns on one side until the shells are crispy. Turn them over and brush again with the sauce. When both sides are crispy, remove the skewers from the braai. 5. Peel the prawns and dip them in the remaining sauce. 6. Serve with white rice, with some extra lemon wedges on the side. Serves 4
Le Braai by Kobus Botha (R250, Exclusive Books & takealot.com).
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ADVENTURIST ONE IMPOSSIBLE CHALLENGE. ONE INCREDIBLE GUY. GO.
Ride For Your Life GETTING AWAY FROM IT ALL IS ALWAYS A GOOD IDEA; AND IT COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE. PETER FROST CLIMBED ABOARD A HARLEY, AND HEADED FOR THE BIG NOTHING – A VITAL PART OF HIS STRESS-BUSTING STRATEGY.
BIG BIKE. BIGGER SKY. There’s nothing like getting out into the wide-open spaces to change your perspective on the size and importance of the things in your life.
124 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
WORDS: PETER FROST PHOTOGRAPHS: PEET MOCKE / PETER FROST
I didn’t see it coming. You don’t, of course, you never do. When the universe is about to deliver a snotklap that will change your life, it rarely gives notice. To cut a long story short, the nice policeman’s VW Polo, crossing the flow of traffic, collected me at a 45-degree angle and left me smelling the yellow paint on Cape Town’s recently paved Marine Drive. Lying there, motorbike in pieces, my right leg like so much filling in a sausage, with people staring down at me, wondering if I was going to live, a few things went through my mind. Embarrassment. Irritation. But most of all, a sense of relief. Relief that
the accident had finally happened. It was over with, and I had survived. Weird, I know; but I’m not the only one. How many of us guys live with a sense of impending disaster in our everyday lives? Accidents, work, relationships, family – the fear of that moment when the universe will finally park a Polo in your path is ever-present. But the sixty-four thousand dollar question is: how will you respond?
Lessons From The Hospital Bed
For me, it was a wake-up call. To slow down – both literally and figuratively. To stop trying to control everything. To
stop obsessively planning. To look around and enjoy what I have, rather than what I want. Lying on a public road, with no chance of making any of those meetings I had scheduled for the next month, had a humbling effect. Bottom line? Enjoy the ride as much as the destination. Turns out, that’s not such a cliché after all. It wasn’t quite as easy as it sounds, of course. My femur had splintered in two places, and the orthopaedic surgeon suggested it would be two years before I was fit enough to get back to even a version of my previous life. Lying there in hospital, listening to the man, I didn’t want to hear it.
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WELCOME TO THE WILD A bike is the perfect way to make tracks, get out of the city, and find nature (and your soul) again.
My life has always been about movement. It defines me – I’m a dancer, an athlete, I choose to run rather than walk. I’ve relied on my body to deliver when it matters, my whole sense of self wrapped up in a simple contract: I look after you, you deliver results. Except, as a good friend pointed out, I’d broken that contract; and my body and mind were suggesting a renegotiation: Slow. The Fuck. Down. I was home in a couple of days, thanks to the expert attentions of Dr Louw and his team at Somerset Hospital in Cape Town. But there were more lessons, throughout my recovery period. At the first of many check-ups, the doc asked: “Did you smoke and drink as a young man?” “No, I don’t do either,” I said. “That’s not what I asked,” he retorted. “I asked about when you were between 18 and 25. “You’re healing remarkably quickly, and that points to no abuse as a young man. With bones, especially the large ones, it’s all about how you treated your body in the early years.” It’s a cracker, that; realising that the health decisions you make early on have long-term effects. There were other lessons. Patience is perfected only with practice. Attitude is 126 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
“If you’re going to get back in the saddle, you might as well go big. Do it with a degree of authority that hopefully will smother a simmering case of accident psychosis.” everything. There’s always a way to get past a problem, whether it’s how to reach the toilet by yourself, or how to set up a work-from-home office solution. And flying high, in neon lettering: friendship is the bedrock for us all. Those buddies who fetch and carry without complaint are in it for the long haul, and should be treated like heroes.
You Take The High Road
A year later, almost to the day, I’m standing in the Harley-Davidson showroom in Tyger Valley, about to collect the biggest, baddest bike out there and head off into the Highlands Karoo for what will be my first post-accident solo jaunt. It’s a huge bastard
and no mistake, the bike and me just this side of 500kg fully laden. Going to be a big ask, too. This is the moment when I put into practice those pavement promises. Slow. The Fuck. Down. But I’m walking the walk, thinking about the words of 17th-century scientist Blaise Pascal: “All the unhappiness of men arises from one single fact – that they cannot stay quietly in their own room.” So I’m going to go and be quiet. Go and be alone. In a very big room. And quite literally, get back in the saddle. My only companion for the next week will be Harley’s Street Glide Special, in a cool 2019 shade called Billiard Blue. An 1800cc engine, big-ass fairing, digital brain, monster sound
system, Talon wheels, stretched panniers, blacked out forks and exhaust – and an attitude that’s pure Milwaukee. No wallflower, it’s fair to say, but that’s why I chose it: if you’re going to get back in the saddle, you might as well go big. Do it with a degree of authority that hopefully will smother a simmering case of accident psychosis. Press the electric start, feel the earth move, a “clunk!” as you select first (subtle as Trump at the podium), and pull away. It’s your lounge, a La-Z-Boy on wheels, so comfortable it can’t be real. But it is; and as the speed dials in, the realisation: I’ve missed this. I’ve truly missed this. The singularity. The focus. The simple task at hand. Ride, concentrate, feel the wind, smell the world. In a hermetically sealed car, you could be doing a hundred things, phones and tunes and cooldrinks and blah blah blah in your ear from the passenger seat or from some annoying schlock-jock on the radio. On a bike it’s just you, the road, and the voices in your head. Welcome to the alone zone.
“It’s in solitude that we discover that being is more important than having, and that we are worth more than the result of our efforts,” says Henri Nouwen, a Harvard, Yale and Notre Dame University mindfulness expert. Clinical psychologist Mari van der Merwe agrees. “I see the transformation in my clients
all the time – those who take the time to be quiet and be alone show reduced levels of stress, anxiety and depression, reduced levels of pain, stronger immune systems; they get better sleep, are able to concentrate and focus for longer, have improved memory, and have enhanced brain function – and heart and circulatory health.” Studies also show that when you allow yourself time alone, your sex life improves, and your ability to control addictions jumps. The Cape winter rains hit with a vengeance, and I’m grateful for the Harley’s full-size fairing. But the N7 to Namibia is a biker’s dream, whatever the weather – smooth, and well cambered – as is the R27 into the interior. Travelling is as old and as essential as time itself – we need to move, to see new worlds and reset the brain about what’s important. It’s hard to explain the freedom out here, literally and metaphorically having my problems behind me. Out here, the trauma of broken legs and the frustration of months disappear under the wheels. Instead, I check out Gifberg, that vast mountain up ahead, the beauty of the thin black line snaking up the side of the escarpment, the adrenalin of Harley’s instantly responsive thumper under me. This, absolutely, is worth the money I’m not making today, away from the office. This is far more valuable than Rands and cents. This is the currency of memories.
The Power Of One
The experts have my back, it turns out. Time by yourself, away from the tribe, isn’t just kind of cool; it’s important. For the brain and for the body. MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019 127
Into the Highlands Karoo, up Vanrhyns Pass, then to Loeriesfontein, just for that spectacular road to nowhere; and back to a completely closed Nieuwoudtville, and an hour’s wait for fuel. Next it’s Calvinia – home of thegiant postbox, a decaying train station, the Vleisfees, and some world-class biltong. On the Karoo’s empty roads the Harley is sublime, myrespect growing with every kilometre. My week is spent in a placefar from any other place, degrees of extremeseparation – and that’s the point. Stuurmansfontein is allabout silence. Because silence is the greatest of allstressbusters. The corbelled houseI stay in(allstone, constructed by the early settlers withwhat was around them – rocks and nothing else) is nearly 100km from the nearest livingbeing, and entirely off the grid – gasand candlesare it. The point? No sound, no signal, no noise, no people (not even workers orfarmers nearby), 128 MH.CO.ZA/ September 2019
nolight at night.This is anenforcedretreat,to try andunderstand whatthe expertsmeanby thattricky phrase“mindfulness”– the benefits oftotal silenceand nodistractions. Because, as Daniel Siegel’s research in 2007 showed, the bombardment of distraction causes us to be in constant fightor-flight response, with increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. And cortisol is destructive in large amounts. Essentially, the brain never gets a break. The result? A breakdown of brain tissue. Harleyparked, kit unpacked,spectacular sunsetover, the effectispeculiar at first; unnerving, frankly.Then,asthe realitysinks in, time itself bends. For fivedays, it’sa caseofgetup, ordon’t; walk, or don’t; makefood, don’t,think, don’t –no one to careor judge(all thatwork-ethic guilt!) – until finally, you’rereleasedtorelax intoonly yourneeds. Which turnout to be few.Coffee, of course. Talkto yourself, listen,sort, clear.Andwhen
the evenings set in, step outside; walk into that Jackson Pollock canvas of stars, and feel the power of being part of something monumental. And, if you’re honest, the insignificance of your problems. That’s liberating. Anything must be possible in so vast a universe. You just have to shut up, be quiet, and see it. The trip home is a mixed bag – there definitely seem to be too many people in the world, and adjusting to the assault on my senses is tough. But it’s great to be back on the bike, moving, after so much reflection. And the experts are right on the money: there’s a clear plan in my head for what I want to achieve in the next few months. Decisions have been made; problems resolved. And the accident seems genuinely to have been consigned to the past. That Polo… someone’s moved it. The path is clear again.
PHOTOGRAPHS SUPPLIED (BIKES)
“On a bike it’s just you, the road and the voices in your head. Welcome to the alone zone.”
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels THE HARLEY-DAVIDSON STREET GLIDE WAS THE BUSINESS ON EMPTY, TARRED KAROO ROADS, BUT NOT SO MUCH ON THE DIRT. FOR THAT – SEE, I’M PLANNING A RETURN TRIP DOWN SOME PARTICULARLY NASTY DIRT ROADS, SOON – THESE CONTENDERS ARE ALL IN THE RUNNING.
THE MOUNTAIN GOAT KTM 790 Adventure Tasty, tasty, tasty – KTM’s not-too-big, not-too-small new dirtroad destroyer has the kind of off-road DNA other manufacturers can only dream about (big brother 1 090 has 18 consecutive Dakar victories under its belt, how’s that?!). So if you want to be channelling Chris Birch at the Hellas Rally, here’s the very bike. Nice, solid parallel-twin engine; low, horseshoe-shaped fuel tank for a lower centre of gravity; built like a brick outhouse; and truckloads of torque. ktm.com R173 999.
THE LAN ROVER TriumphTiger1200XC. Triumph’s about retro street bikes, right? Not only. The Tiger makes mincemeat of the rough stuff, guided as it is by a mass of electronica that ensures bike and rider stay upright, facing forward. The 1200 has been called “the Land Rover of adventure bikes”, and we like that; certainly, it feels like a landscape-flattener in the field. That iconic triple mill is now lighter and more potent – and hell, there’s that soundtrack. Save up. triumphmotorcycles.com R221 000.
THE ALL-ROUNDER BMW HP 1250 GS. The reigning king, no question, although the pack is catching up. Or was; the latest iteration moves the goalposts again, with a spooky fusion of first-class tar-road manners and peerless offroad ability. Nippy in traffic (yes, really), a locomotive on the long road. bmw-motorrad.co.za R256 400.
YamahaXT1200ZE Say “Ténéré”, and a generation of thumper aficionados get all teary-eyed. The game moved on, however; and Yamaha, frankly, were caught napping. So they fixed that – the latest XTs (either 1200 or 700) are pukka modern adventure contenders, equal to the opposition on paper and in the field, if not in marketing. Choose one, and be that guy who stands apart from the crowd. yamaha.co.za R214 950.
Honda Africa Twin “Our” bike, we like to think. Africa’s present to the world. Owners are fiercely loyal, and for good reason: it’s not uncommon for these no-nonsense sluggers to hit the 100 000km mark – and much more. The new model gets a digital dash, and more aids than a US president; but happily, that extra-long suspension travel is still there, as is the high saddle. The icon – only better. Great value, too. honda.co.za R185 000.
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