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Thank you, guys, for your commitment to the lives and safety of your fellow New Yorkers. Weâ€™re always honored to serve you.
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MEN’S HEALTH DECEMBER 2017 MensHealth.com @MensHealthMag @MensHealthMag
FLIP THIS ISSUE FOR YOUR MH TECH GUIDE We’ve handled all your holiday shopping—gear for yourself, gifts for others, and awesome stuff to dream about: cars, bikes, cameras, sneakers, gadgets, and more. YOUR ONE-STOP SHOP
DROP 10 POUNDS! Our plan gives you the body you want in the time you have.
SHOULD YOU AVOID CT SCANS? A surprising answer.
BY LARA ROSENBAUM
BY MICHAEL EASTER
46 JASON MOMOA How he got superfit for Justice League. BY ANDREW M C MILLEN
WEIGHT LOSS CALENDAR Your 31-day plan. BY MIKE ZIMMERMAN
84 OPIOID CRISIS KIT What you must know.
ST YLE WINTER WEAR You’re getting warm. BY DAN MICHEL
49 LOOK YOUNGER! Anti-aging hacks. BY GRANT STODDARD
FOOD SHAUN WHITE The once (and future?) king of the half-
pipe is now 31 years old. For his next shot at the Olympics, he’s trying something new: training! BY JOSH DEAN
HONORING MAN! Here’s to a great 2018.
HEY, YOU ASKED Survive a polar bear plunge, deal with regret, master chopsticks, and get abs without doing planks. Plus: Meat sweats? 16
CLEOPATRA COLEMAN The actress gives us something to stare at: the screen during her favorite B films.
BY PETER MOORE
BY CHRIS LEE
RELATIONSHIPS HOT SEX! INSIDE THE ORGASM LAB Can brain research improve your sex life? Yes, yes, yes! BY JERILYN COVERT
6 MUSCLE MEALS In a hurry? Zap these in the microwave.
BY MATTHEW KADEY , R.D.
90 SUPERHEROES What if they’re real?
BY MAIA SZALAVITZ, CINDY KUZMA, AND JENNIFER MESSIMER
PHOTOGRAPH BY RAMONA ROSALES
BY TYLER DASWICK
SLASH YOUR TRAVEL STRESS Pack like the pros. 34 MUST-READS Best books of 2017? Here are the ones on our nightstands. 36
DEVILISHLY GOOD Eggs, 21 tasty ways. 60 MH RESTAURANT AWARDS Chains aren’t all bad! BY BRITTANY RISHER AND PAUL KITA
ON THE COVER Jason Momoa, photographed by Damian Bennett. Styling by Steven Constancio, hair and makeup by Jennifer Stanfield.
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Chris Peel VP/PUBLISHER
Your guide to the expanding empire of Men’s Health, the world’s largest men’s brand.
Eric Hunter Associate Publisher, Integrated Marketing; Cory Rotkel VP/Digital Advertising Director ADVERTISING SALES New York (212) 697-2040: Leanne LoCastro Senior Fashion & Watch Director; Doug Zimmerman Senior Grooming Director; GilTiamsic Advertising Sales Director; Jaime Miller Advertising Sales Manager; Chicago (312) 726-0365: Autumn Jenks Midwest Sales Director; Bridget McGuire Midwest Account Manager; Detroit (248) 930-8091: Stephanie Schultz Advertising Sales Director; Los Angeles (310) 615-4567: Patti Lange Western Ad Director (310) 252-7528; San Francisco Office (415) 439-4601: Andrew Kramer Kramer Media; France Representative 011 33 1 47 30 71 80: Fabio Lancellotti Def & Communication; Italy Representative 011 39 02 874543: Angelo Careddu Oberon Media S.R.L. Katherine Louie Publisher’s Assistant; Zoe Fritz, Natalie Kammin, Kayla Savage, Pilar Silva, Challen Stadler Sales Assistants Karen Ferber Business Manager; Karen Stinner Production Account Manager; Cindy Wenrich Production Account Specialist MARKETING SERVICES Stephanie Block Associate Integrated Marketing Director; Hilary Kelley Senior Integrated Marketing Manager; Jackie Lebowitz, Nicole Lilienthal, Daria Meoli Pietras Integrated Marketing Managers; Jennifer Levin Integrated Marketing Coordinator; Delisha Fields Senior Special Events Manager; Jiri Seger Creative Director, Marketing; Robert Slagle Senior Art Director
How This Guy Gave Fear the Finger The ski jump ramp at Olympic Park in Utah turned MH Adventurist Clint Carter’s courage to pudding. But if a guy wants to land a double backflip in five days, going faster and harder is the only option. Two-time Olympian and ski jump world champ Ashley Caldwell coached Carter up. We have the video evidence.
Forge New Muscle in 40 Minutes The Ultimate Upper Body is a training plan that’ll chisel your chest, broaden your back, and make your biceps bulge in just 12 weeks. Elite trainer Ben Bruno keeps the routines at 40 to 50 minutes each. You do them three days a week, with the option to follow along digitally or in a noteready spiral-bound book. And he doesn’t ignore your legs: The exercises loop in your quads, hamstrings, and glutes. All this for $25, and no toothpick legs afterward? You’d be a scrub not to do it.
MensHealth.com / December 2017
BE BETTER, TODAY! Shaun T’s T is for Transformation is your game changer. YOUR MASTER PAN! A Man, A Pan, A Plan has 100 easy, tasty recipes.
Fighting the Opioid Crisis “You can’t save the world, but you can save a world, and that’s equally important,” says Anthony First. It’s this Tulsa police department paramedic’s job to bring overdose victims back from the brink. Go for a ride with him.
Joanne Ferenczi Finance Director; Lynn Canning VP, Group Research Director; Brunetta Cathers Research Director RODALE INTERNATIONAL Angela Kim Executive Director, Business Development and Global Licensing; Tara Swansen Director, Global Marketing; Laura Ongaro Editorial Director, Men’s Health & Women’s Health; Samantha Quisgard Senior Associate Editor; Natanya van Heerden International Editorial & Content Analyst RODALE Maria Rodale Chairman of the Board & CEO; Paul McGinley EVP, General Counsel & Chief Administrative Officer; Stephen Twilliger EVP, Chief Financial Officer; Beth Buehler EVP/Chief Operating Officer; Adam Campbell Chief Content Officer; Ronan Gardiner Chief Advertising Officer; Miranda DeSantis SVP, Human Resources; Bill Strickland Group Editorial Director; Joyceann Shirer SVP, Marketing; Heidi Cho VP, Head of Digital; Gail Gonzales VP/Publisher, Rodale Books
J.I. Rodale Founder, 1942–1971
CODY PICKENS (Carter), PHILIP MONTGOMERY (First), Matt Rainey (workout)
MENSHEALTH.COM Eileen Becker Manager, Media Planning & Strategy; Lexy Ball Digital Account Strategist; Sarah Greer Digital Sales Planner
LETTER FROM THE
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Brad Wieners Executive Editor Mike Schnaidt Creative Director
ON MATT: ARC’TERYX VEILANCE JACKET, J.CREW SHIRT, ROKA FALCON TI SUNGLASSES, CANYON BIKE; ON EDITOR BEN COURT: RAPHA JEANS, JOHN VARVATOS SHIRT, 3T BIKE
Keep On Climbing I’ll never podium, but riding the hills around our Pennsylvania offices beats the squat rack for scenery any day. Plus, the phone stays in the locker—which means you can end up in a pretty profound place, both psychologically and geographically. Between summits and sprints, endorphin-drunk, we also chase down headier fare on occasion. Such as: What does it mean to be a man now? What do we teach our children? How do we define masculinity? At best, the old stereotypes and archetypes fit like a bad suit; at worst they’re a straitjacket. They’re holding us back. I wish these introspective moments were all proactive. But all too often this year they were triggered by some guy, somewhere, screwing something up. I bet you’ve struggled to answer for that guy, felt flatfooted at times. We all have to own some of his mess, however little we feel we’re to blame. But that shouldn’t cause us to ball up and retreat. Whether we’ve chosen this moment to evolve or not, here we are. Let’s pull ahead and create change instead of feeling the whiplash of it.
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Round 1: The Gauntlet Start with the 185-pound barbell bench press; do as many reps as you can in 1 minute. Then go all-out on the rower for 1 minute and track your calories. Finish with two broad jumps; best one counts. Post your results with the hashtag #MHopen.
ART Mike Solita Senior Art Director; Hitomi Sato Art Director; Raymond Ho Deputy Art Director; Haley Kluge Designer PHOTOGRAPHY Jeanne Graves Director of Photography; Sally Berman Deputy Director of Photography; Sinikiwe Dhliwayo Photo Production Coordinator; Amy Wong Contributing Photo Editor FASHION & ENTERTAINMENT Brian Boyé Executive Fashion Director; Sandra Nygaard Fashion Director; Dan Michel Fashion Editor; Danielle Nussbaum Contributing Editor, Entertainment COPYEDIT, RESEARCH, PRODUCTION Susan West Copy Chief; Mike Wilson Copy Editor; Jennifer Messimer Research Chief; Alex Gardner Researcher; Janna Ojeda Senior Production Manager; Ana Zapata Contributing Production Manager; Jennifer Giandomenico Digital Production Leader MENSHEALTH.COM Sean Evans Digital Director; EJ Dickson Deputy Editor; Jordyn Taylor News Editor; Christa Sgobba Senior Associate Editor; John Lonsdale Style, Grooming & Gear Editor; Ashleigh Morley Branded Content Editor; Mark Emery Senior Social Media Editor; Paige Carlotti Social Media Editor; Alisa Hrustic Assistant Editor; Danielle Zickl Assistant Editor, Products; Amanda Becker Web Designer; Joel Arbaje Multimedia Photo Creator; Michael Sneeden Senior Video Producer; Ryan Bird, Danny O’Halloran Video Producers; Pat Almquist, Melora Armstead, John Dargan, Pat Pagnano Associate Video Producers; Kris Lynds Online Media Producer; Barry Knoblach Production Manager; James Nosek, Stefan Zdanowicz Junior Producers; Monica Andrade, Ashley Markle Interns PUBLIC RELATIONS Jourdann Lubliner Associate Director, Public Relations HOW TO REACH US Customer Care To change your address, pay your bill, renew a sub scription, and more, go online to menshealth.com/customerservice, email HLHcustserv@rodale. com, call (800) 666-2303, or write Men’s Health Customer Care, P.O. Box 3064, Harlan, IA 51593-0128. Editorial Offices 400 South 10th Street, Emmaus, PA 18098; Story Feedback & Questions MHLetters@ rodale.com; Licensing & Reprints Contact Wyndell Hamilton, Wright’s Media, (281) 419-5725 ext. 152, firstname.lastname@example.org Absolute satisfaction guaranteed. Scent-free subscription available on request. We occasionally make our subscribers’ names available to companies whose products or services may be of interest to them. You may request that your name be removed from these promotion lists; call (800) 666-2303 or go to rodale.com/privacy-policy. Printed in USA
JOEL ARBAJE (Bean and Court), BROWN BIRD DESIGN (illustrations)
Stream the finals of our inaugural fitness tournament via Facebook Live on November 17 at 2 p.m. We’ll have the nation’s top trainers and fitness influencers battling it out for top slots and prizes. Think you can measure up? Try Round 1 on your own; then tune in to see the finals. facebook.com/MensHealth
Our feature on page 84, “Reasons to Love Being a Man,” is a rolling start. Anthony Bourdain, Nick Offerman, and a handful of readers via Facebook and Twitter weigh in on how to make the most of the year. And then there’s our cover guy, Jason Momoa, a new kind of action hero. He’s not holed up in his trailer seducing starlets between scenes. He’s all output, all gas pedal, always moving. Momoa’s getting better at everything, from shredding on his limitededition Les Paul to scaling rock walls to raising his kids. Hit me up at my handles below. I’d love to hear why you’re psyched about 2018, what you think it means to be a man today. Evolve. Improve. Transform. That’s what’s you do. That’s who you are. Now prove it to the world.
EDITORIAL Ben Court Deputy Editor, Cross Platform Content; Bill Stieg Deputy Editor; Melissa Jewsbury Managing Editor; Dean Stattmann Brand Editor; Joe Kita, Paul Kita Senior Editors; Ebenezer Samuel Fitness Editor; John Atwood Story Editor; Jerilyn Covert Associate Editor; Tyler Daswick, Brielle Gregory Assistant Editors; Jackie Frere, Micaela Young Interns; Gregg Stebben Contributing Editor; Shoi Greaves Executive Assistant
DECEMBER When you’re whipsawed between warm-and-fuzzy and make-itstop. By Mike Zimmerman
DRINK ON IT
4 REASONS NOT TO TOTALLY DISMISS. . .
WHAT WOULD JOSEPH DRINK?
A “crowd-pleasing” single malt. THE MACALLAN DOUBLE CASK, 12 YEARS OLD $65
“At 116.8 proof, it’s unforgettable.” WILD TURKEY RARE BREED $45
BRAWN The “little Hart and a big Johnson” combo works.
CHRISTMAS, KING JAMES VERSION
IF YOU WERE SANTA. . .
DUDE, YOUR CORTISOL WARNING LIGHT IS ON. 10
WHAT REFUELING SNACK DO YOU WANT SET OUT?
BOREDOM It gets the kids out of the house for a couple of hours.
26% Cookies & milk
BACKSTORY Took a while, but we’ve finally made peace with life after Robin Williams.
TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT We’ll be watching Wormwood, a Netflix documystery by director Errol Morris spun from initials like CIA and LSD. Whoa.
THIS IS NOTHIN’
MensHealth.com / December 2017
9% Jerky & Red Bull
Men’s Health Twitter poll of 2,465 people
Last count, you have 17 gifts to buy and $43 left to spend.
53% Wings & beer
12% Energy bar & smoothie
WE CAN’T FORCE YOU Star Wars: The Last Jedi 12/15
YOUR 2017 HOLIDAY STRESS DASHBOARD
Five NBA games are scheduled to air on Christmas Day. We’ll watch the one featuring a King and a man named Steph. (Cleveland vs. Golden State, 3 p.m.)
BEAUTY Hey, that’s Nebula without blue makeup, and she’s one charming human.
IT’S NOT LIKE THEY’RE JUST GIVING IT AWAY. U2’S NEW ALBUM, SONGS OF EXPERIENCE , DROPS 12/1.
SANTA, PLEASE SAVE ME
Boss: “Plan the office party this year, mmkay?”
Sweetie: “I got you something really, really good.”
Mom: “You’ll be staying all week,” and it’s not a question.
Two shopping days left. WTF to get sweetie?
elisekurenbina/Shutterstock (red bow gift), Columbia Tristar/Everett Collection (Williams), Frank Masi/Sony Pictures (Johnson), Kyle Terada/Pool/EPA/REX/Shutterstock (NBA), studiovin/Shutterstock (milk & cookies), TheCrimsonMonkey/Getty Images (wings), Christina Peters/Alamy (beer), Jennifer Barrow/Alamy (smoothie), Sami Sert/Getty Images (energy bars), Jiri Hera/Alamy (jerky), Ian Dagnall/Alamy (Red Bull), Lucasfilm/Bad Robot/Walt Disney Studios/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock (Daisy Ridley), Christian Petersen/Getty Images (Bono), Anneka/Shutterstock (gifts), Ollyy/Shutterstock (Santa), AF archive/Alamy (3)
“It tastes much more expensive than it is.” SLANE IRISH WHISKEY
MH PROPOSES: ONE MORE HOLIDAY—DECEMBER 27, NEW SHIT DAY, WHEN GROWN MEN ARE LEFT ALONE TO PLAY WITH THEIR NEW SHIT.
A wise man will bring one of these affordable bottles picked by Jeffery Lindenmuth of Whisky Advocate magazine.
JUMANJI: WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE
RED BULL 400 BY EBENEZER SAMUEL
Lung-bursting, mind-bending lessons from a steep sprint.
Charging into Thin Air They told me not to look up, and now I get why. I figure I’m nearing the end of the Red Bull 400. Except I actually have a 75-meter bear crawl to go. I’m already gassed and tasting blood in every breath. This is how the world’s hardest quarter mile messes with your mind. You can cover 400
UNFI LTERED meters in about a minute on flat ground, but not on this repurposed ski jump, which mashes elevation (6,857 feet), slippery terrain, and steep incline (528-foot gain). It’s a breeding ground for lactic acid, self-doubt, and smack talk. About 800 people enter, and the finish is a mess of exhausted bodies and weak smiles.
1. Aimee Flint, PR professional
2. Stephen Bigelow, musician
3. Mike Brienzo, golf attendant
4. Ebenezer Samuel, MH editor
“Stay steady. There were people flying past me at the start, but my plan of attack was to go past them at the top. Maintain your rhythm.”
“You wind up partway up that hill, and you’re putting forth what feels like all you can. You need to tell yourself, ‘I can put out more.’ ”
“At one point someone’s taking a picture of me. I catch a glimpse, and she asks if I’m having fun. I’m thinking, ‘If only you knew!’ ”
“Midway through, everything’s against me—slippery turf, thin air. The only reason to keep going up? It’s easier than walking down.”
MensHealth.com / December 2017
THE LEADERBOARD FIRST PLACE
Jared Shumate 4:25
Ryan Lochte 8:08, 170th Ebenezer Samuel 12:31, 454th Ted Zuniga 1:04:12, 609th
5. Ryan Lochte, U.S. swimmer “I hit 175 meters and then started crawling. I wish I didn’t look up. I was like, ‘Crap. There’s so much more, and this is gonna kill me.’”
6. Charles Robinson, trainer “I felt the elevation effects and fatigue 150 meters up. But I kept telling myself, ‘This is just another obstacle you will overcome.’ ”
7. Melissa Maberry, trainer “ ’It’s just 400 meters’ is a dirty lie. You’re pushing your hardest. To be out of energy in just a quarter mile is shocking.”
8. Jorge Prieto, store clerk “At the end of the race, it was bad— the lack of oxygen, and my legs were burning. But finally, there’s satisfaction. It’s like, ‘Wow, I did it.’”
DECEMBER Your biggest, strangest, and most embarrassing questions— answered!
AM I DYING? After lifting, I get these bumps under my skin near my collarbone. They don’t hurt and they go away, but I’m still freaked out. Stan, Hershey, PA They say guys with big nodules must have big lift sessions. Those are “weightlifter’s nodules,” a.k.a. subcutaneous nodules. Our guess: You were doing front squats, right? Weight on the clavicle can cause inflammation because there’s little padding between collarbone and skin, says Mike Reinold, P.T., C.S.C.S. Pad the bar or wear a padded compression shirt. When doing front squats, try to place the bar on your deltoids, close to your throat. A trainer can help. If the bumps persist, see a doctor.
TECH Why did my car battery die with no warning? Wendell, Bangor, ME
I SIGNED UP FOR ONE OF THOSE CHARITY POLAR BEAR PLUNGES. NOW WHAT? Mark, Madison, WI
Shrinkage, that’s what. We found you some polar brrr advice from Scott Carney, an environmental conditioning expert and the author of What Doesn’t Kill Us. Prepare at home with showers that end with 30 seconds of cold water. At the site, shed your layers well beforehand to let your skin cool down. Then don’t hesitate, and once you’re submerged, try to relax. “Your inclination will be to clench up,” Carney says, “but after about 30 seconds the pain should give way to a pleasant endorphin rush.” Afterward, warm yourself gradually, with maybe a few pushups to kickstart your body heat. And consider keeping up with those daily cold showers. Research suggests they may help ease depression, and devotees claim to have improved circulation and less stress. Plus they build character. 16
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Failure to crank in December suggests it was fading in July. But in colder temps, your battery loses capacity and the engine needs more force to turn over, says Joe Wiesenfelder, executive editor at Cars.com. You can extend its life by keeping the radio and headlights off when the engine’s off. Until carmakers come up with a specific dashboard warning, test it with a gadget like the Motopower MP0514A ($16, amazon.com). ILLUSTRATIONS BY RAFA ALVAREZ
TEXT THE TRAINER
WHAT’S THE DIFF? Blender and food processor. Milan, Montpelier, VT
Q: Yo, coach. When I lift weights, my tracker shows that my heart rate stays freakishly low. What’s that mean?
NUTRITION A: Not unusual. Heart rates during lifting tend to be lower than during aerobic exercise like running.
Q: Oh. Why?
A: Your body’s oxygen demand is much lower for lifting. Yes, your heart will pump harder, but it doesn’t have to increase its beat rate as much as it would if you were running.
Q: Cool. So I have nothing to worry about? Should I even use a tracker when I’m lifting?
A: No worries. And nah, I don’t recommend trackers for strength training, because they tend to underestimate energy expenditure. You’ll just psych yourself out.
Bill Hartman, P.T., C.S.C.S., is the founder of Indianapolis Fitness and Sports Training.
I’m very jittery and think I might need to nix the caffeine. What’s the best way to go about doing that? Seth, Baltimore, MD Well, you could do the obvious, Shaky, and drink a little less coffee every few days. Cut back by about half a mug (that’s 50 milligrams or so of caffeine) until you feel comfortable, suggests Wesley Delbridge, R.D., of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. (Try half-caf, or swap in tea.) MH nutrition advisor Alan Aragon, M.S., says he’s seen people pull it off with a four-week modified cold-turkey plan. The first week, you’ll have no caffeine for a single day. The next week, you go caffeine-free for three days. The third week, abstain for five days. Then, for the fourth week, no caffeine at all. That fifth week? Sweet dreams.
A blender’s four tight blades spin faster than the two larger ones in a food processor. James Briscione, director of culinary research at the Institute of Culinary Education, recommends the blender for making silky-smooth foods, like peanut butter, soup, or (duh) postworkout smoothies. For texture, like in salsa or hummus, use the processor, he says. We like the Vitamix A2500 Ascent Series blender ($520, vitamix.com).
HEALTH What the heck are meat sweats, and are they real? Danny, Trenton, NJ Yep. Basically you’re sharing the rib eye with your skin. As soon as two hours after a high-protein meal, you sweat more than usual as your body processes the byproducts of protein breakdown. This provides a feasting environment for skin bacteria—i.e., a stink incubator. Digesting meat requires extra
The Cheesecake Factory’s Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake THE CRIME 1,250 calories THE PUNISHMENT 2 hours and 26 minutes
of shoveling snow to cancel that out. But why risk frostbite? Just split it four ways.
energy from your body; this “thermic effect” raises basal metabolism, and meat stokes that furnace. “This, combined with the high salt content in some meats, can lead to excessive sweating,” says Luiza Petre, M.D., a cardiologist and integrative health and wellness physician. Plus, digesting a high-protein meal triggers a flood of stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, which also ramps up metabolism, Dr. Petre says. You can limit the effect by eating less protein in one sitting. To counteract the odor, turn to chlorophyll-rich foods like kale, chard, collards, and spinach.
FATHERHOOD I’ve seen the stories of sexual assault on campus. What should I be telling my son, who’s a freshman? Joe, San Antonio, TX Save one of those stories and use it to start the conversation. That’s the advice of Kate Rohdenburg, who runs programs that educate young people about sexual violence prevention. This is important stuff, from showing respect for partners to avoiding risky situations. Then get real: Walk through a typical night-out situation. You want him to be his own man and not go along with bad behavior sometimes seen in groups. As for a woman’s consent, give him this simple, direct script from psychologist Carl Pickhardt, Ph.D.: “Is this something you really want to do?” Also: That consent can be withdrawn at any time.
RELATIONSHIPS I love my wife, but when she’s talking, I tune out for long stretches. Why? Blaine, Fayetteville, NC Because her sister’s new backsplash isn’t scintillating? Staying tuned in takes a lot of mental energy, says Matt Lundquist, L.C.S.W., of Tribeca Therapy. If you’re tired, you might not have that energy to spare. But there are tricks. Unwind after work, walk the dog, and then sit down ready to listen. Focus on exhaling to keep your thoughts from wandering. Use “reflective listening”: Play back some or all of what she says in your own words to stay grounded. That said, zoning out may mean you’re uncomfortable with intimacy, Lundquist says. She can help: Have her call it out when you’re disconnecting. MH TWITTER POLL
If you’ve zoned out and she asks your opinion, what’s your play? Based on responses from 834 female followers of Men’s Health
35% DELAY: “It all depends...” 45% HONESTY: “Sorry, I spaced.” 4% DISTRACTION: “Look at this tweet.” 16% JIU-JITSU: “I think you know.”
MensHealth.com / December 2017
BELLY OFF! CLUB
FATHER + SON = 154 POUNDS GONE!
Why does mint gum make water seem colder? Jim, Bend, OR It’s a drug messing with your brain, Jim. The drug in question here is menthol, an organic compound that’s quite the mimic. In your nerve cells, menthol triggers the same reaction that cold does, explains David Julius, Ph.D., a professor of physiology at UC San Fran-
cisco. Certain nerve cells detect things like temperature and pain, he says, and when specialized proteins on these cells sense a change, they transmit an electrical signal from, in this case, your
mouth to a region of your brain called the somatosensory cortex. So lukewarm water might feel cool. In a similar way, the capsaicin in peppers feels hot. Nature’s tricky that way.
Parmesan + Whiskey No, do not shave the cheese into the drink. Serve them together. Scientists have found that the two share similar flavor compounds. Nibble a bit of Parm. Then sip the whiskey. Repeat. See?
DEAN AND DALTON D E ROSA DALTON, 18 BETHLEHEM, PA HEIGHT 5'11" BEFORE 245 lb AFTER 175 lb TIME 6 months
DEAN, 48 W. HARRISON, IN HEIGHT 6'1" BEFORE 314 lb AFTER 230 lb TIME 8 months
THE SETBACK DEAN: We used to bond over junk food. DALTON: Oh, we bonded! DEAN: I was always tired and sore. DALTON: Same. I had no energy. I ate carbs, fat, and sugar, and did hardly any exercise. I didn’t like the way I looked. DEAN: Girls? DALTON: No! I was just tired of people saying stuff about my weight. Besides, I couldn’t let my old man show me up. THE LIFESTYLE DALTON: Every time I look at a plate, I’m doing math in my head. DEAN: I can ballpark it now. DALTON: It’s mostly about protein: eggs, peanut butter, Greek yogurt, steak. Salad. Now that I work out, I can have bigger portions. DEAN: I don’t eat potatoes, bread, or pasta. I’ll snack on dark chocolate. THE FITNESS DEAN: I go to the gym five or six days a week. DALTON: With his gloves. DEAN: I don’t want calluses! I do 45 minutes of free weights and 25 of cardio. DALTON: I’ll lift for an hour and run a mile or two. It makes me feel like I accomplished something. DEAN: He’s right. If I skip the gym I feel crappy. I might do a kickboxing class next. DALTON: Oh, you get gloves for that!
BELLY OFF! CLUB Tell us your weight loss story at email@example.com. 18
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Mack, Boca Raton, FL
Do ’em. We once had a female editor who swore that women loved strong forearms. (So we rolled up our sleeves and went to work.) “Forearms are forgotten in the Instagram age,” says Craig Ballantyne, creator of Turbulence Training. “Men don’t respect forearm training like Arnold and his crew did.” Do these after a back workout: heavy barbell hold (hold the bottom of a shrug position for 30 seconds), hammer curl (8 reps per side with a 3-second lowering phase), and reverse curl (10 reps). To hone your grip technique, see page 44.
STEVE BOYLE (DeRosas after)
THE SUPP ORT DEAN: We bond over healthy food now. And tease each other. DALTON: You said my shirts are tight. I like them to fit. DEAN: Like a sausage casing. DALTON: You’re jealous. I look good! DEAN: You do. But seriously, I’m proud of Dalton. DALTON: I’m proud of you too, Dad. DEAN: He won’t let me show him up. And I try to compete with an 18-year-old. Stupid—but I try.
FOREARM EXERCISES: NECESSARY OR NOT ?
Smart Never Looked This Good
Citizen Proximity Pryzm No wires. No plugs.
Powered by light. Any light. Never needs a battery.
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ASK THE ADVISORS
Where I live, it rarely gets cold enough for a heavy winter coat. And the layered look feels bulky. Got an alternative? Tyler, Flagstaff, AZ
ARE THOSE PROMO CODE PLUG-INS SAFE? Richard, Philadelphia, PA Web paranoia: a holiday classic. You’re smart to be cautious. A reputable site like the Chrome Web Store (chrome.google.com/webstore) is a safe start, says Cisco security outreach manager Craig Williams. Internet security consultant Steve Weisman says Honey (joinhoney.com) is safe and it works. A few warnings: Actually read the user agreement, and if a plug-in’s questions feel nosy, move on. Also, set aside a plug-in-free browser for banking, Williams says; otherwise you risk targeted ads or malware. Or just ignore promo codes and look for deals on a site like Ebates that will give you cash back from retailers without living inside your browser.
NUTRITION I’m a complete chopsticks klutz. What’s the trick? Mikey, Dallas, TX Move to fork-free rural China and amuse the locals. Two years, max—you’ll be great. Or you can practice with these instructions: Rest the bottom chopstick in the crease of your
Some Assembly Requirements Parts are all spread out Urge to wing it is subdued Directions: followed
20 MensHealth.com / December 2017
thumb and atop your ring finger. Hold the top stick between your thumb and index finger like a pencil, but two-thirds of the way up from the point. (Higher is the sign of a master; lower down is the sign of a beginner.) Pinch your food by moving only the top stick. A few etiquette tips: Don’t
drop food, spear meat, or gesture with chopsticks. And sticking them point-down into your rice bowl symbolizes death, says Edward Wang, author of Chopsticks: A Cultural and Culinary History. Do feel free to hold a bowl to your lower lip and push rice into your mouth in a circular motion. To get really good, try this training game from chopsticks maker John Economaki: Spread uncooked rice on the table. Whoever puts the most grains in a bowl in 15 seconds wins. “It’s hilarious,” he promises.
Is it possible to have a sexually transmitted infection and not have any symptoms? I can’t stop worrying. Bob, Silver Spring, MD Yes. And the only surefire way to know—and to stop worrying— is to get yourself tested. Most people who get chlamydia, HPV, and HIV don’t notice any symptoms initially. (Gonorrhea, on the other hand, is more likely to show symptoms, especially in men.) So how often should you be tested? Once a year or more, depending on the number of partners you’ve had and what you need for your peace of mind. Some people get tested after a relationship ends so they’re prepared to talk with new partners about their STI status. Others get tested with a new partner before they start having sex, or at least before they stop using condoms. Be honest with your doctor and then decide how often you should get STI testing. MH ADVISORY BOARD Brain Health P. Murali Doraiswamy, M.D.; David Liebeskind, M.D. Cardiology John Elefteriades, M.D.; Prediman Krishan Shah, M.D.; Eric Topol, M.D. Dentistry Mark S. Wolff, D.D.S., Ph.D. Dermatology Adnan Nasir, M.D., Ph.D. Emergency Medicine Travis Stork, M.D. Endocrinology Sandeep Dhindsa, M.D. Exercise Science Alexander Koch, Ph.D., C.S.C.S.; Mark Peterson, Ph.D., C.S.C.S.*D Family Medicine Ted Epperly, M.D. Gastroenterology Mark Welton, M.D. Mental Health Thomas Joiner, Ph.D.; William Pollack, Ph.D. Nutrition Alan Aragon, M.S.; Jeffrey Blumberg, Ph.D., F.A.C.N., F.A.S.N., C.N.S.; Mike Roussell, Ph.D. Ophthalmology Kimberly Cockerham, M.D., F.A.C.S. Otolaryngology Jeremiah Alt, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.S. Pain Medicine Paul Christo, M.D., M.B.A. Sex & Relationships Debby Herbenick, Ph.D., M.P.H. Sleep W. Christopher Winter, M.D. Sports Medicine Bill Hartman, P.T., C.S.C.S.; Nicholas DiNubile, M.D.; Jordan Metzl, M.D. Training Mike Boyle, M.Ed., A.T.C.; Ben Bruno; Alwyn Cosgrove, C.S.C.S.*D; BJ Gaddour, C.S.C.S.; David Jack; Urology Elizabeth Kaveler, M.D.; Larry Lipshultz, M.D.; Judd Moul, M.D., F.A.C.S. Weight Loss David Katz, M.D., M.P.H., FACPM, F.A.C.P.; Jeff Volek, Ph.D., R.D.
KYLE HILTON (Herbenick portrait illustration)
Well, you could go full Bannon and layer multiple shirts, peeling as the weather or photo op or tweetstorm dictates. But here’s a better idea from the MH style team: an outdoorsy hybrid shirt jacket—also known as a jac shirt or (our favorite) “shacket.” More than a shirt, less than a jacket, these tweed, flannel, or wool tops have been a longtime mainstay of classic brands like L.L.Bean, Filson, and Eddie Bauer. But now we’re seeing updated solid versions from J.Crew, Taylor Stitch, and Faherty. “Plaid can read lumberjack, or at least suggest that you rake your own leaves,” says MH executive fashion director Brian Boyé. A solid like charcoal, navy, or olive drab is versatile and will be appropriate in almost any professional setting. Try pairing it with a cotton button-front shirt, a Henley, or a lightweight sweater. (Just not all at once.)
PREPARED FOR A LONGER RETIREMENT? THE EXPERIMENT THAT GOT COUPLES TALKING.
We’re living longer, which is great. But it means we could be underestimating how much money we’ll need in retirement. The bigger concern? Most of us aren’t talking about it. So we invited couples to guess how much money they’ll need in retirement using our interactive walkway. It turned out that most couples weren’t on the same page and fell short of the average length of retirement. They walked away from our experiment with an important new perspective—because we’re living longer, we need to start planning for longer. A good place to start? Planning for income that lasts all our years in retirement.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, GO TO PRUDENTIAL.COM.
© 2017 PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL, INC., NEWARK, NJ, USA. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 0309529-00001-00
FIND ME A NON-GOOFY HOLIDAY OUTFIT. Martin, Lansing, MI NUTRITION I refuse to laugh at “What am I, chopped liver?” until I know what it is, and why that’s supposedly funny. Cause it’s not. Ken, Reno, NV Tough crowd. The humor may be lost in the Catskills mists, but “it” is a proteinrich side dish, often unloved and easily overlooked. Liver can be an acquired taste, but chopped liver is great stuff. It’s made with cooked beef liver and/or chicken liver, cooked onions, and hard-boiled eggs, along with salt and pepper and run through a food processor. Because it’s made from organ meat, it’s nutritious: According to Beth Warren, R.D.N., C.D.N., author of Living a Real Life with Real Food, it’s rich in iron and vitamins, including D, K 2, A, and B12. Nutritionally speaking, that ain’t chopped liver. Spread this creamy treat on crackers or challah bread—it’s a popular Jewish mainstay on the Sabbath and holidays. If your Bubbe doesn’t make it, buy it at a Jewish deli.
Abercrombie & Fitch sweater, Dockers pants, Nisolo shoes, Hestra gloves, Autodromo watch, Nobis hat
AM I NORMAL? Why do I still wince when I think of stupid things I did 20 years ago? Vaughn, Omaha, NE That reaction is perfectly appropriate, depending on how big of a dumbass you were. Obsessing, maybe not. There’s a
Is it possible to be overtired?
22 MensHealth.com / December 2017
sharply, but they tend to get over it and move on fairly quickly. Pro tip from Roese: “If you can respond to regret with action— by, say, apologizing, meeting new people, or trying a new class or hobby—you can move quickly past it.” (By the way, relax; we checked with Debbie from your chem class. She thought it was cute, not stupid. But she didn’t like you that way anyway.)
MH TWITTER POLL Describe your abs on the Christian Bale scale: 41%
American Hustle BEER GUT
The Big Short REGULAR
Bruce Wayne RIPPED
Batman armor CHISELED
MITCH MANDEL (clothing)
Yes, sleepyhead. It’s mostly a childhood thing, this exhausted resistance to sleep. But it can happen in adults, says Michael J. Breus, Ph.D., a psychologist and advisor to SleepScore Labs. To recover, don’t sleep before your regular bedtime, he says. “That can throw you off even more in the days that follow.”
term for this: “counterfactual thinking.” Neal Roese, Ph.D., a psychologist with the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, says these cringeworthy memories occupy about 2 percent of our daily thoughts. While being present and mindful is all the rage these days, Roese says counterfactual thinking—those “if only” musings—can be healthy. “Regret points to a fixable problem,” he says. You might gain some insight and do better next time. Overdoing the ruing, however, can be ruinous. Mentally healthy people experience regret
Planks bore me, and I hate crunches. But dammit, I want abs. Give me some options. Bradley, Baton Rouge, LA Stop doing just two exercises. These three moves from Anarchy Abs creator Andy Speer, C.S.C.S., hit your core from all sides; do 3 to 4 rounds of 12 to 15 reps. 1. Hollow body pullover. With your lower back flat on the floor, lift your legs off the floor. Hold a 10-pound dumbbell above your head; then lower it behind your head to 2 to 3 inches above the floor. Pull it back over your hips. 2. Weighted side plank pulse. In a side plank position on your elbow, hold a dumbbell on your upper hip. Drop your hips to the floor and then lift them back up, but focus on squeezing the oblique at the top of the lift. 3. Single-arm bent-over reverse fly. Holding a dumbbell, hinge at your waist so your torso is parallel with the floor. With a neutral neck, raise the dumbbell straight out to the side. Brace your abs and pause at the top. Repeat with the other arm.
With its available Entune™ 3.0 Premium Audio with JBL w/ Clari-Fi, you’ve got a front row seat. Prototype shown with options. Production model may vary. 2018 Camry available Fall 2017. ©2017 Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
YOUR TRAINER Gerren Liles,
Instructor, Project by Equinox, NYC @gerrenliles
Do the Perfect Pullup
A COMPLETE PROGRAM FOR MASTERING THE CLASSIC EXERCISE THAT STRENGTHENS YOUR BACK, ARMS, AND SHOULDERS.
Complete 2 rounds of this circuit. The standing wall slide fires up your upper back, while the reverse plank hits your glutes, abs, and lower back. Rest 15 seconds between moves.
To build up your back and biceps strength, perform these two moves either as part of this workout or in your normal routine. Rest for 90 seconds between sets.
Set a timer for 10 minutes. Do 1 pullup and 10 burpees; that’s round 1. Each round, add a pullup and subtract a burpee as you strive toward the 1oth round—10 pullups, 1 burpee.
Standing Wall Slide
Stand with your upper back against a wall. Raise both arms overhead (hands beyond shoulder width). Press them against the wall. This is the starting position. Lower your upper arms until your elbows are below shoulder height. Return to the starting position. That’s 1 rep; do 10.
Sit at a lat pulldown station, pick a moderate weight, and grasp the bar using an overhand grip. Without moving your torso, pull the bar to your chest, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Hold for 1 second; then slowly return the bar to the start. Do 3 sets of 10 to 12 reps.
Hang from a bar using an overhand grip, your arms slightly beyond shoulder width. Pull your chest to the bar, pause, and squeeze your shoulder blades. Slowly lower your body back to a hang. Can’t keep going? Release the bar and stretch for a moment; then jump and continue.
Alternating Dumbbell Row
Sit on the floor with your legs extended and feet together. Put your hands under your shoulders, fingers pointing backward. Keeping your arms straight, tighten your glutes and raise your hips so your body is straight from ankles to shoulders. Hold for 30 seconds.
Stand holding 25-pound dumbbells. Fold at your hips and lower your torso until it’s nearly parallel to the floor, the dumbbells hanging at arm’s length. Pull the right dumbbell straight up to the side of your torso, lower it, and repeat with the left. That’s 1 rep; do 3 sets of 10 to 12.
Stand with your feet slightly beyond shoulderwidth apart. Squat, place your hands on the floor, and kick your legs back wide into a pushup position. Do a pushup, and as you raise your torso, jump your feet back between your hands and stand up. That’s 1 burpee.
HOW MANY ROUNDS DID YOU SURVIVE IN 10 MINUTES?
24 MensHealth.com / December 2017
5 or less A fine start
6 or 7 Damn good
8 or more That’s MH fit!
Post your score: #MHBenchmark
I L LU S T R AT I O N S BY + I S M
Â© Copyright 2017 American Pistachio Growers
Snowboarder extraordinaire Born September 3, 1986 Nickname: Flying Tomato Signature move: Double McTwist 1260 Double gold medalist SECTION EDITED BY PAUL KITA
U S E F U L Shaun White’s Olympic Drive HE NEVER TOOK THE GYM SERIOUSLY BEFORE. NOW HIS WORKOUTS STOKE HIS DETERMINATION. / BY JOSH DEAN
26 MensHealth.com / December 2017
T he Manual FOR
Enligh tened Liv ing
S T U F F
Shaun White flew home from the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi having finished fourth in the snowboarding half pipe. He’d won that event at the two previous Olympics and become a global superstar. He was 27, and for the first time, he decided to take a break from competitive snowboarding. “Finally the whirlwind stopped,” he says, “and I could look at my life and say, ‘What do I want to do?’” PHOTOGRAPH BY RAMONA ROSALES
THE ALLEY OOP DECEMBER FEEL THE CONNECTION
BROWN BIRD DESIGN (illustrations), ANTHONY CALVERT (Alley Oop illustrations throughout)
We start with a recommendation. That spawns the next one, which spawns the next...keep turning pages. You’ll see.
He started a men’s clothing line (WHT Space), played with his band (Bad Things), and expanded his portfolio by launching a music and sports festival in L.A. and buying a stake in a California ski resort company. But apparently he also didn’t want to end his Olympic career in fourth place. White was always fit from his self-guided, year-round regimen of snowboarding in winter and skating and surfing in summer, but he never followed a specific regimen for fitness. “In snowboarding, it was pretty uncool to work out,” he says. His natural talent enabled him to spin faster and fly higher, but age is
blunting that edge. White will be 31 years old when the 2018 Games begin on February 9 in PyeongChang, South Korea. Winning gold again isn’t certain. It was Björn Borg who injected a jolt of gravitas into White’s training mentality. One afternoon, White caught a documentary about Borg and John McEnroe, and he was struck by how seriously the Swede took his training. “It dawned on me that Borg had a team of people supporting him,” White recalls. “I thought, ‘If I’m really going to make a run at the next Olympics, I should invest in myself.’” So he committed. He hired Esther Lee, a physical therapist who’d worked for tennis legend Serena Williams for years. Lee spotted weaknesses in White immediately—like a shorter stride on his left foot and a misaligned back. Lee also found Tim Hartwig, C.S.C.S., a Beverly Hills trainer who’d worked with many pro athletes and Olympians. White had never really trained. He would work out “and then not work out for a while,” he says. (Sound familiar?) To fight this tendency, Hartwig imposed a strict schedule. The two trained three or four days a week either at White’s home gym or a private facility in Southern California. They focused on leg and core strength and especially joint mobility and range of motion. Once or twice a week, they worked on building endurance by mountain biking. “It really changed things for me,” White says. The winter before he made the decision to overhaul his training, White would do only two consecutive days of hard-core snowboarding before taking a rest day. “Now I ride twice a day, four or five days in a row, and I’m not tired,” he says. He has more energy and sleeps better. He’s both stronger and more explosive. At the Burton U.S. Open in Vail, Colorado, in 2016, he soared 26 feet into the air over the pipe, breaking his personal height record by 2 feet. Hartwig says, in fact, that White is “by far the best athlete I’ve ever worked with. He’s naturally gifted, and it wasn’t until he started aging that he realized he needed to step it up. Not many athletes realize that.” Some skeptics might wonder why it took White so long. “People ask me, ‘You’re really going to the Olympics again?’ I’m like, ‘Dude, I feel better than I ever have.’”
White’s secret to flying high: a trio of leg-building moves from his trainer, Tim Hartwig. Use them to elevate your workout.
Band Walks Wrap a medium-strength band just above your knees. Stand with your knees slightly bent. Step left with your left foot; return. Now go right. That’s 1 rep; do 2 sets of 15.
Dumbbell Seated Box Jump Hold a light kettlebell at your chest. Sit on a bench, with a box in front of you. Rock backward slightly; then, in one motion, stand and jump onto the box. That’s 1 rep; do 3 sets of 3.
One-Leg Bulgarian Split Squat Holding a light dumbbell at your left shoulder, stand with your left foot on a bench behind you. Lower until your right knee bends 90 degrees. Stand. That’s 1 rep; do 3 sets of 15. MensHealth.com / December 2017 27
STEP 1: ORDER THIS APP Perfect for a noisy gym or airport, the free app Tunity can scan a muted TV and stream its audio to your phone.
A MAN, A PAN, A PLAN
TWIST TRADITION BY TOPPING THE PASTA WITH A POACHED EGG. BREAK THE YOLK BEFORE THE FIRST FORK TWIRL SO THE EGG WON’T GO GUMMY. / BY PAUL KITA
WHAT YOU'LL NEED 3 1 1 1
OZ REGULAR OR WHOLE WHEAT ANGEL HAIR PASTA EGG STRIP BACON, CHOPPED TBSP FRESHLY GRATED PARMESAN MINCED PARSLEY FOR GARNISH
1. In a large pan of boiling salted water, cook the pasta per package directions; drain. 2. In a small pan of simmering water, gently crack in the egg. Cook, swirling the water, until the white firms up, 3 to 4 minutes. 3. Meanwhile, return the large pan to medium
28 MensHealth.com / December 2017
heat; cook the bacon till crisp, 5 minutes. Drain most of the fat. Turn the heat to medium low; add the pasta, mix, and top with the egg, Parmesan, parsley, and freshly ground pepper. Feeds 1. 456 calories, 22g protein, 65g carbs (8g fiber), 12g fat
Give the gift of delicious: A Man, A Pan, A Plan is the cookbook your brother, your dad, your friend, and you need now. MensHealth.com/manpanplan
HOLY $@%! KITCHEN TRICK Pan-Boil Pasta! Huge, deep pots of water take long to boil. Wide, shallow pans of water take less time. Put a lid on it when moving from stove to sink; wear oven mitts. PHOTOGRAPH BY TRAVIS RATHBONE
Food styling: Jamie Kimm, prop styling: Olga Grigorenko/Honey Artists; Mauviel M’150c2 Copper & Stainless Steel Frying Pan 11.8 in, $295, mauvielusa.com
Memories are made around meals. The Savor card makes them more rewarding. SM
Earn 3% cash back on dining / 2% on groceries / 1% on all other purchases
You probably forgot what you ate. But you remember everything else.
STEP 2: HAVE A COW Grant Mombach, marketing manager at Tunity, likes Public House at the Luxor in Vegas for good grub and sports.
J I M M Y
T H E
B A R T E N D E R
STRAIGHT-UP ADVICE ON WOMEN, WORK, AND THINGS THAT DRIVE MEN CRAZY.
How the hell am I going to survive the holidays this year without talking politics? Jeff, Dix Hills, NY This one’s easy: You don’t talk. You nod. You stick a bottle of that Christmas ale between your lips. You chew your figgy pudding. You change the subject. I’ve witnessed spats at my bar going back to Reagan and Carter and have never, not once, seen someone’s mind changed by a mouth that belongs to someone else. So how about those Giants, eh? A guy at work keeps pawning his projects off on me. He’s not my boss. Should I tell my boss? Dylan, Savannah, GA Let’s say you ask me for a whiskey sour. I’m busy so I give the order to Lenny, but Lenny makes you a Rusty Nail. Do you complain to me? No, you tell Lenny he screwed up. Now if Lenny gives you guff about it, that’s when you come to me. I’ll sort it out with Len.
RANDY, BOZEMAN, MT
As a barkeep, I’ve staked money on the “daughter or girlfriend” bet. And I always win. One easy way to tell is by the way she steers his wheelchair. But here’s what I see: The max should be about 25 years between the two. That’s about a generation. So she can be 24 and you can be 49 and it’s weird, but not gross. Gross is her at 25 and you collecting Social Security checks. In other words: about a generation and a half. His favorite pickup line: “My teeth and I no longer sleep together, but you and I could.”
30 MensHealth.com / December 2017
Why is it that after I shell out $130 on concert tickets for a date, she also wants overpriced food and drinks at the show? Hugh, Selma, AL Well, because it’s a date, Hugh. Because your date figures if you’ve got the scratch for pricey tickets, you can also afford the craft beer. Look, if she offers to pay for snacks, that’s great. But if she doesn’t, that’s not something you should blame her for. You asked her along, didn’t you? Maybe if you worry about her instead of what she’s costing you, she’ll return the favor and ask you out on a date sometime. Then you can go ahead and order the 18-ounce Delmonico with a nice Bordeaux.
JIMMY CALLS BS ON
PLATES THAT AREN’T PLATES Slate is for walking on. Plates are for eating off. Enough already.
Guys who don’t wash their hands after using the bathroom: What is that? Jose, Dover, NJ In my line of work, that’s an easy shortcut to getting yourself asscanned. For everyone else, it’s called just being an ass in the can.
What’s the secret to great small talk at parties? Go to extremes. Did that guy mention he worked in construction? Ask him about his most dangerous experience on the job. Is their kid a new driver? Ask, “When were you most afraid?” Worst dates. Best dates. Most embarrassing stories. You just have to ask. —Brendan Francis Newnam and Rico Gagliano, authors of Brunch Is Hell, out December 5
KYLE HILTON (Jimmy illustration), Pulp Photography/Getty Images (couple), MATT CARLSON (drinks illustration)
Jimmy, at what point does age difference become gross?
I bought a truck. How come suddenly every friend I have needs to haul something? Kelly, Cedar Rapids, IA Like you didn’t know this was coming. When my pal Al got a shuffleboard table, I shuffled on it. When Monty put in a pool, I backstroked in it. And after Nicky brought home one of those ultra high-def TVs, his wife had to kick me out of his house every night. This is what adults call “sharing.” Which reminds me, can you take my old fridge to the dump?
STEP 3: HIT THIS BAR Public House executive chef Scott Conti says Clif Bar’s Nuts & Seeds keeps him going on long bike rides.
WHAT SHE KNOWS
Cleopatra Coleman SHE’S A FAN OF B MOVIES. SIT BACK, RELAX, AND CHECK OUT HER TOP 5. / BY TYLER DASWICK
Miami Connection 1987
The plot A rock band of martial artists squares off against a ninja biker gang. Watch it when ... you’re on a guy trip. Coleman loves the cult masterpiece for its “cool music, great martial arts, and dubbing that’s way out of sync.” A cold case of beer only makes it better.
CLEOPATRA COLEMAN THE CV
Fox’s The Last Man on Earth; Step Up Revolution THE LIST
The best worst movies of all time THE PLUG
She stars in White Famous, a series loosely based on Jamie Foxx, airing on Showtime
Teen Witch 1989
Styling: Annabelle Harron/The Wall Group, hair: Alexander Armand, makeup: Roxy/Giorgio Armani Beauty; AG top, Self-Portrait shorts, Jimmy Choo shoes
The plot A high schooler finds out she has magic powers. But will she be able to brew a cauldron of hot romance? Watch it when ... you can’t take another sappy holiday movie. It’s not family friendly, so try it as a stay-in date to neutralize the Hallmark schlock.
Troll 2 1990
The plot A family’s vacation spot is populated by ravenous goblins. Watch it when ... you think you’re having family issues. It isn’t until you watch monsters feed on your mother’s corpse that you learn to truly value time with your loved ones.
Night of the Living Dead 1968
The plot After a zombie outbreak, a group of survivors barricade themselves in a rickety old farmhouse. Watch it when ... a rough week leaves you feeling like a working stiff. Duane Jones, the lead, stays composed while the world around him panics.
Night of the Comet 1984
The plot A comet wipes out most of the planet. Two teenagers survive, but they have to fight off zombie cannibals. Watch it when ... you need to restore your faith in humanity. It’s a reminder that there’s some good to be gleaned from any disaster—with the right team. 32 MensHealth.com / December 2017
PHOTOGRAPH BY CHRIS McPHERSON
STEP 4: OUTFIT YOUR FEET Clif Bar CEO Kevin Cleary laces up Hoka One One shoes. “I go faster and farther, with less wear on my legs.”
Carve Runestone-Hard Abs THE BLOODSHED-FILLED FIFTH SEASON OF VIKINGS PREMIERES NOVEMBER 29 ON HISTORY. THIS DUAL CIRCUIT WILL BURN BODY FAT, PILLAGE YOUR CORE, AND FORGE A BODY THE GODS WILL ENVY.
WOR KOU T A NEEDS: A TOWEL, YOUR FLOOR MOVES: DO EACH MOVE FOR 30 SECONDS; THEN REST FOR 15 SECONDS. DO 4 ROUNDS.
Plank Rear Delt Raise
Assume a plank position, your toes on the towel. Using your forearms, push your body back as far as you can, sliding the towel along. Return to the starting position. Maintain a tight core and squeeze your glutes throughout the move.
Lie on your back with legs straight, knees together, and arms extended over your head. Press your lower back into the floor and contract your abs to lift your shoulders just off the floor. Then lift your legs off the floor and hold.
Assume a pushup position. Extend your right arm out to the side, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Return to the pushup position and repeat. Continue for 30 seconds and then repeat with your left arm.
WOR KOU T B
MADE/NOUN PROJECT (helmet icon)
VIEWING PARTY WHENEVER A FIGHT BREAKS OUT, HOLD A STANDARD PLANK FOR 10 SECONDS.
Towel Reverse Lunge
Towel Leg Curl
Stand with your right foot on a towel. Slide your right foot backward on the towel, bending your left knee. Stand up by driving through your left foot and sliding your right foot forward. Do reps for 30 seconds. Switch sides and repeat.
Lie on your back with your legs straight out and both heels on a towel. Slide your feet back toward your hips as you lift your lower back off the floor, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings. Return to the starting position and repeat.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Push your hips back and lower your body until your thighs are nearly parallel to the floor. Explosively stand up and jump. Let your knees bend as you land; then drop into another squat and jump again.
THIS MONTH’S BRINGER OF BRAWN: Sean Garner, N.S.C.A., Anatomy at 1220, Miami
ILLUSTRATIONS BY BRANDON LOVING
MensHealth.com / December 2017 33
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STEP 5: CONQUER THIS TOWN Hoka One One president Wendy Yang loves Big Sky, Montana, for hiking in summer and skiing in winter.
Pack Smart, Travel Easy VETERAN GLOBETROTTERS NAME THE ESSENTIALS THEY NEVER FORGET TO CARRY. / BY TYLER DASWICK
2. ROB HAMMER
3. ARI SHAPIRO
4. TOM RIELLY
5. CASEY MURRAY
California-based sports/adventure photographer
Host of the All Things Considered podcast for NPR
Fellows program and community director, TED
Commercial pilot, Southwest Airlines
My Essential AeroPress Coffeemaker
My Essential Cocoon Eye Shades
My Essential Vince Cashmere Hoodie
My Essential Jackery Bolt
My Essential Oppo PM-3 Headphones
No matter where you are, you deserve decent coffee. This cylindrical coffee press is smaller than your forearm, which makes it super packable. “It gives me a great Americano out of a couple of pieces of plastic,” Brown says. It’s TSA-friendly too. $30, amazon.com
“Having that total blackout is so key for sleep,” Hammer says. This mask has a soft microfiber interior and fits more comfortably than those freebies the airlines give out. Plus, earplugs are included so you can block out toddler squeals (and adult squabbles). $14, amazon.com
34 MensHealth.com / December 2017
Shapiro wears this everywhere; he balls it up as a pillow on the road and deploys the hood for sleeping on flights. “I traveled with Obama on Air Force One and wore it under my suit jacket,” he says. “It let me stick to the dress code and still stay warm.” $475, vince.com
This charger has the capacity to juice your phone a few times over. It has built-in cables for iPhone and Android, and there’s even a flashlight tool, which Rielly found handy in Tanzania. “It’s definitely a becausethey-can feature,” he says, “but it’s brighter than your phone’s.” $90, amazon.com
Trust an airline pilot when he tells you that noise-canceling headphones actually cancel noise. With these, you’ll be in sweet oblivion as you hear nuance—the thrum of the bass, the snap of the snare— without the intrusion of ambient din. $400, oppodigital.com
LEFT-BRAINED: SCIENCE VS It breaks down controversies, from diet soda to vaccines, by looking at the research. It’s mind manna. RIGHT-BRAINED: DISSECT Each season probes an album, song by song, like Kanye’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Eric Eddings, cohost of Gimlet Media’s The Nod
PHOTOGRAPH BY YASU + JUNKO
WONG CHI LUI (portrait illustrations); Filson 48-Hour Duffel Bag, $475
1. ALTON BROWN
Host of Food Network’s Iron Chef Showdown
THE BEST PODCASTS FOR TRAVEL
L I F E
A B O U T
M O M E N T S
STEEL, 42 MM SELF-WINDING www.baume-et-mercier.com
STEP 6: WITNESS HISTORY Chelsi Moy, PR manager at the Big Sky Resort, has a must-watch doc: 100 Years: One Woman’s Fight for Justice.
Make Better Decisions—and Pizza Chicken THE BEST PICKS OF 2017? WE’LL LEAVE THAT TO THE CRITICS. WRESTLE WITH THESE AND YOU’LL BE BETTER OFF. / BY DANIEL DUANE, PAUL KITA, AND BRAD WIENERS
BIG BAD BIOGRAPHY
GO DEEP CROSSINGS: A DOCTOR-SOLDIER’S STORY By Jon Kerstetter How do you reconcile war and “first, do no harm” as an Army physician? Publish your stunning memoirs, evidently. KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON By David Grann One of those “How did I not know this before?” truecrime exposés about the chilling case that made the FBI. THE INVENTION OF NATURE By Andrea Wolf The age of discovery comes roaring back to modernity in a biography of “the Shakespeare of science,” German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt.
PRINCIPLES BY RAY DALIO
PAIN + REFLECTION = PROGRESS 1. Don’t confuse what you wish were true with what is really true. 2. Recognize that conflicts are essential to great relationships. 3. Don’t blame bad outcomes on anyone but yourself. 36 MensHealth.com / December 2017
PICK UP AUTUMN BY KARL OVE KNAUSGAARD
Turn to page 123. Read the two-page (1 minute, 45 seconds) chapter, “Infants,” on what is arguably life’s greatest joy. Looking up, you’ll love that you’re in the holiday crush. Well, no. But it’s a damn fine reverie.
Hear Not up for an Ali tome? Go 12 rounds with Eig’s Chasing Ali podcast.
DINNER: CHANGING THE GAME BY MELISSA CLARK
Always asking “What’s for supper?” This book answers. Pizza Chicken Five-Spice Duck Breasts Jalapeño-Honey Steak Chile & Ginger Fried Tofu Salad TRUST US ON THAT LAST ONE Clark’s secret? Lightly dust firm tofu in cornstarch before frying for crispy (not soggy) results.
BECOME A GREAT COOK USING ONE BOOK
SALT, FAT, ACID, HEAT BY SAMIN NOSRAT
Nosrat will make a bona fide cook out of any willing rookie, because while she has lots of fine recipes, she’s stronger on technique. Master the art of braising, for starters, and eat through your best winter ever. ILLUSTRATION BY TIM TOMKINSON
JOEL ARBAJE (books), MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons)
That’s the multibillionaire hedge fund manager’s formula for learning from your mistakes and making your own luck. It’s a counterintuitive leadership primer packed with tough-love maxims, like the three below.
STUCK IN LINE?
“He openly attacked American racism at a time when the nation’s black athletes...were expected to...thank the white power structure that gave them the opportunity to earn wealth and celebrity, and to otherwise keep their mouths shut. Ali’s mouth was seldom shut.” —Jonathan Eig, author of Ali: A Life
T H E G I R L S N E X T DO OR ASK THEM ANYTHING—AND WE MEAN ANYTHING—ABOUT LOVE AND SEX
LI JUN LI
MEET THE GIRLS
(CHICAGO P.D.) FILMS IN VANCOUVER, LIVES IN NYC.
IS POURING, AND HER FRIENDS ARE DISHING.
IS A WOMEN’S HEALTH MAG FITNESS EDITOR.
Naomi offers gentle fixes for ill-conceived profiles.
1. Framing. Not loving that
2. Bio. Okay, the shuffleboard bit
This time of year she’s stressed and snaps at me. What’s my play? Troy, Ann Arbor, MI NAO MI: Okay, you know not to ask if she’s PMS-ing, right? Also: Don’t walk out. Stay in the room. Know she loves you but is having a bit of a meltdown. She might just want you to stick around and prove you can deal. LILI: Be there, be open, but don’t try to solve it. NAOMI: Yeah, she doesn’t have to have a reason. We’re not always reasonable. MARISSA: She may feel like you’re not paying attention. If she’s cooking and you’re on the couch, get up and talk to her. Don’t point out her bitchiness—kill her with kindness until she realizes, Damn, I’m being a turd.
SAY THIS, NOT THAT
We asked 181 women which phrase is better.
38 MensHealth.com / December 2017
LILI: I want him to say, “Is there anything I can do?” If I snap “No!” he should say, “Well, I’m here if you need me”—not “Okay, leaving now.” MARISSA: It’s probably not about you. But if it is and you know it, just apologize. Don’t ask, “Is it something I did?” That’s the worst. LILI: My reaction to that might be “It’s not all about you!” But then again, it’s all in the tone. NAOMI: It’s like Drake says: “Call me on my cellphone.” Meaning, speak her “language of love.” Talk to her the way she likes to communicate so you can get to the best part: the makeup sex. That’s the whole point, right?
52% “What’s the matter?” 48% “Is something wrong?”
Asking if something’s wrong implies you can’t tell. Show her that you’re paying attention.
is cute. But good grammar is sexy. This isn’t your AOL away message.
3. Song. A bit bleak, no? I’m sure it’s a great tune, but the title loses points for scannability. Lighten up!
COMMON GROUND SHE WANTS HORSE-DRAWN SLEIGH
YOU WANT SNOWMOBILING
COMPROMISE: SLEDDING! NOSTALGIC CHARM WITH A LITTLE DANGER, NAOMI SAYS. SHARE A SLED AND YOU’RE SPOONING. UPGRADE: DOGSLED! SOME TOURS LET YOU DRIVE.
94% “Take a deep breath.” 6% “Calm down.”
Neither option is a great one, but “calm down” is far more likely to get you in trouble.
Universal/Everett Collection (Jones and Schwarzenegger), courtesy Naomi Piercey (Piercey), Celia Au/courtesy Li Jun Li (Li), JOEL ARBAJE (Gainsburg)
clutter. Clean up so she doesn’t get hung up on your decorating.
Know Your Diamond CARAT WEIGHT
Look for diamonds graded by GIA, the creator of the 4Cs. Learn more at 4Cs.GIA.edu
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Don’t Lag on Form Have a friend keep an eye on your reps every so often; even form can be a game.
STRENGTH If you can’ t have fun, there’s no sense in doing it. —Paul Walker
Power Up Your Best Body Ever
Fitness doesn’t have to be joyless. You can make your workout fun and still be in the best shape of your life. BY EMILY ABBATE
ILLUSTRATIONS BY MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS
Training at Switch Playground in Manhattan feels more like a party than a workout. Bright lights flash as a DJ spins the latest tracks from Drake and Rihanna while you and your partner sweat through a series of workout stations. In fact, there are more ways than ever these days—from boutique gyms to iPhone apps to upgraded virtual reality fitness devices—to infuse MensHealth.com / December 2017 41
your workouts with the joy of play. The goal, of course, is to forget that your abs are on fire and your arms are turning to jelly. “Time spent in a gym doing something that feels like work just adds to the hours we spend at work in our day,” says Lenny Wiersma, Ph.D., a sports psychologist at Cal State Fullerton. “Play provides a ton of benefits, and you experience intrinsic motivation.” Level up your own daily workouts with these six ideas from the gamification age. UNDER ARMOUR SHORTS (ROWER); NIKE SHORTS, C9 CHAMPION TANK (KETTLEBELL); REEBOK SHOES (BOTH). LOCATION: CROSSFIT PROSPECT HEIGHTS, BROOKLYN, NEW YORK
WIN THE NUMBERS GAME
T U T O R I A L Trying to beat your own workout records isn’t as fun as chasing your friends’ top scores in the mile or some other fitness challenge, says Reebok trainer Conor Murphy. Start a Facebook group with pals to keep track of the best times in classic workouts. Whenever you train, aim to surpass someone in the group.
DIFFICULTY LEVEL CHEAT CODE Use this one only for workouts that include time requirements, such as AMRAP (as many rounds/reps as possible). BOSS BATTLE Can’t beat the record? You have to buy dinner for the group champ on Friday night.
R-E-P-S DIFFICULTY LEVEL CHEAT CODE Set the rep targets high enough to challenge your partner but not too high (shoot for 20 to 30 reps per set). BOSS BATTLE You don’t just gain a letter when you miss reps; you also owe your partner 5 burpees.
42 MensHealth.com / December 2017
T U T O R I A L Grab a friend and a rowing machine or assault bike and try this game from Ryan Wilke of Throwback Fitness, a group-focused studio in Manhattan. You will do a round on the equipment, rowing or biking until your pal finishes a three-exercise circuit (think 15 kettlebell swings, goblet squats, and overhead presses). Alternate until you both complete 3 rounds of each. Whoever burns more calories on the rower or bike wins.
CHEAT CODE Keep the total reps in each round to 30 to 45 per set.
BOSS BATTLE Set a calorie goal before starting. Work until you both reach it.
Nothing keeps you accountable to a daily workout like SPAR! does. Money is on the line if you don’t video check-in with your crew.
Two fun apps that can help you hot-wire your fitness.
Get in shape for a good cause. Charity Miles tracks your mileage and donates money (up to 25 cents a mile) to a cause of your choice.
SPAR! (free, iOS)
Charity Miles (free, iOS/Android)
PHOTOGRAPHS BY JUSTIN STEELE
Grooming: Marco Campos/Kiehls Hair & Skincare
T U T O R I A L Take the rules of Horse off the hoops court and into the gym. Have your partner start, picking an exercise and a rep goal. If he misses, it’s your turn to pick a move; but if he hits, you need to do it. Miss it, and you get the letter R. Miss another, and you get an E. Spell “reps” and you lose— and do a move of your friend’s choosing.
ROW YOUR BOAT
PICK UP THE PACE
ROLL THE DICE
T U T O R I A L The treadmill beckons. You and your brethren in speed grab adjoining treadmills and tackle 30 seconds of max-effort running, followed by 30 seconds of rest. After 10 minutes, the person with the farthest distance earns the win.
DIFFICULTY LEVEL CHEAT CODE It’s better (as in more fun) with a group. BOSS BATTLE The person trailing after each interval starts the rest period catching the leader.
T U T O R I A L Bring a pair of dice with you to the weight room. Pick five exercises. Then, for each move, roll the dice twice. Add the two numbers; that’s how many reps you’ve got on deck for each move. Work through 4 rounds total of that circuit.
FORCE A FACE-OFF T U T O R I A L Grab a partner and pick an exercise you can both do facing each other, such as a dumbbell curl. Stare each other down, about a foot apart. Let your partner do 1 rep; then you do a rep. Your partner then does 2 reps before you do 2 reps. Alternate and continue laddering up until one of you runs out of gas.
BULLETIN DIFFICULTY LEVEL
STRENGTH CHEAT CODE This is single-player gamification. BOSS BATTLE Finished all the moves? Roll one die. Do that many reps of the first exercise.
DIFFICULTY LEVEL CHEAT CODE A good way to finish off a workout. BOSS BATTLE Amp up the challenge by adding 5 reps every turn.
LIFT WEIGHT, EASE STRESS Strength training isn’t all about muscle; it may relieve anxiety in healthy adults as well as in people with physical and mental illnesses, a University of Limerick analysis found. Researchers point to the benefits of social interaction. Try group training if you’re stressed.
TRACK MILES, NOT MINUTES To lose weight in a walking/ running program, focus on distance, not time. Troy University researchers who studied 15 overweight people found that on average, those with distance goals lost 8.8 pounds, while time-focused people actually gained over 2 pounds. One possible reason: The latter may have overestimated calories burned.
WORK OUT TO GET AHEAD So the boss wants you to produce? Ask for a gym subsidy. University of Texas research of 6,500 workers over three years found that those who did at least five days of cardio (20 to 30 minutes a pop) and two days of strength training each week gained over an hour in added productivity per week.
MensHealth.com / December 2017 43
Please Hold for More Muscle
7 WAYS TO KEEP STRENGTH AND POWER FROM SLIPPING THROUGH YOUR FINGERS. BY ANDREW HEFFERNAN, C . S .C . S .
In the niche sport of c omp e t it i v e gripping (yes, you read that right), few feats are as impressive as the double-plate pinch hold with two old-school York Barbell 45-pound plates. Plate pinching sounds simple: Set a pair of 2-inch-thick plates on their edges (smooth sides out), pinch them between your thumb and fingers, lift them to waist height, and hold. But in practice? The plates’ surfaces challenge even the fittest guys. It’s a challenge you should try (but start with modern 5s): A large study suggests a link between weaker grip and higher risk of cardiovascular disease and early death. Plus, a weak grip is an invitation for injury. A strong grasp can also help you lift more and rack up gym PRs. “Often it’s your hands that limit you when you lift,” says Jedd Johnson, a five-time North American Grip Sport champ. Want to hone a viselike grip? Here are four ways to do it .
1. CRUSH IT Whenever you pick up a weight, squeeze the bar as tightly as you can. Actually, “crush the bar to a pulp,” says Pavel Tsatsouline, CEO of StrongFirst. Amp it up by squeezing your nonworking hand on single-arm moves like dumbbell rows. 44 MensHealth.com
The muscles on the back of your forearm work together in order to open your fingers and extend your wrist backward. TRAIN THEM Spread and open your hands as wide as you can while bending your wrists back. Hold for 30 seconds. Rest; then repeat.
These help your thumb pinch toward your fingers, and they don’t get much love in most gym workouts. TRAIN THEM Plate pinches. Start with two 5-pounders, smooth sides out. Work up to a 60-second hold.
The smooth-sidesout plate pinch is a gold standard of grip strength, but it’s not the only way. STRUGGLING? Turn the smooth sides of the plates inside and hold; you’ll still train your thenar muscles, but it’s slightly easier.
The muscles on the pinky side of your lower arm help grab and grip: key actions in nearly all sports. TRAIN THEM Do wrist curls or any of the challenging moves at the bottom of the next page.
2. GET FAT
Find extra-thick barbells, dumbbells, or handles for all your deadlifts and pulling exercises. Don’t have a fat bar? Find a towel and wrap it around a standard bar to make it more difficult to grasp. The larger bars—which are roughly twice the thickness of a standard bar—force you to squeeze harder to get a secure grip, so relatively light weights feel heavier, Johnson says.
Deadlift Use a mixed grip to handle heavy loads.
3. HANG OUT
+ISM (“True Grips” illustrations), SODAVEKT (circle icons)
For manlier mitts, strength coach Dan John recommends adding this simple challenge into your workout once a week: Do a pullup and then hang on the bar for 30 seconds. Without letting go of the bar, repeat until your grip fails or you can’t complete a pullup. Ten reps translates into fiveplus minutes on the bar—and proof that you have a badass grip.
On lighter sets, use a conventional doubleoverhand grip. But on your heaviest sets, use a mixed grip—one palm facing you and the other facing away. This keeps the barbell more secure throughout the move. Each set, switch it up (so the hand facing you now faces away) to avoid repeatedly twisting your back in one direction.
4. MIX IT UP
Stick to a standard double-overhand grip, with your thumb outside your fingers, wrapping your fingers tightly. Elite powerlifters may tell you to use the hook grip (wrapping your fingers around both your thumb and the bar) on snatches and power cleans. If you’re not a powerlifting beast, you might want to reconsider.
Your brain’s motor cortex puts to work more than 30 muscles just to control your hand. To strengthen all that sinew, think outside the barbell. “Towels hanging from the bar, thick ropes, and PVC pipes all place a different demand on your grip,” says MH fitness advisor David Jack. Each week, do at least three sets of towel pullups or chinups, PVC drags or carries, or pulling exercise variations with ropes.
You want the bar across the front of your shoulders, using an overhand grip. If that causes shoulder, elbow, or wrist pain, just tie wrist straps or ropes to the bar, grab the ends, and then lift your elbows high beneath the bar. This will allow you to grip the bar even if you have mobility limitations.
GETTING A FIRM GRASP
Olympic Lift The hook grip may not be the best here.
Front Squat Can’t grab the bar? Use your wraps.
Bench Press Wrap your thumb; skip the monkey grip.
Power Clean Put your hands just outside your hips.
Running Keep your hands loose and relaxed.
While the monkey grip (fingers and thumb on the same side of the bar) is sometimes advised for shoulder comfort, it makes you more liable to drop the bar. Always wrap your thumb around the bar and focus on the distance between your hands. Keep your forearms perpendicular to the floor when the bar touches your chest.
This one is all about hand placement. To determine your optimum hand position, hold the bar in front of your thighs, extend your thumbs so they point toward each other, and shift your hands so your thumbs just touch the sides of your legs. This will enable your knuckles to rest outside your shoulders when the bar is at your chest.
You may not be thinking about your grip when you go for a run, but you should be, says ultramarathoner Adam Chase, author of The Ultimate Guide to Trail Running. Avoid clenching your fists when you run, and focus on keeping your hands relaxed and loose, minimizing forearm strain and conserving energy.
TO BEEF UP YOUR GRIP, END EACH OF YOUR WORKOUTS WITH ONE OF THESE TECHNIQUES.
Squeeze a kettlebell by its sides as if you’re trying to deflate a basketball. Hinge forward and do rows. Do 3 sets of 10 to 12 reps.
ILLUSTRATION BY T.M. DET WILER
Give yourself a hand.
Drape a towel over a bar. Do chinups or pullups, one hand grasping the towel, the other the bar. Switch hands each set. Do 4 sets of 4 to 6.
On kettlebell shoulder and floor presses, hold the kettlebell with the weight pointing up. Do 3 sets of 10 to 12.
MensHealth.com / December 2017 45
Greatest Holiday HIITs
46 MensHealth.com / December 2017
mall? Do the last three exercises. Got 15 minutes before the office holiday party? Pick five moves. The principle behind these combinations is high-intensity interval training, or HIIT. It’s simple: You do timed bursts of exercise interspersed with periods of brief rest. HIIT can improve cardiovascular
health and preserve or even add muscle mass, studies show. This dose of HIIT, from Jeff Cavaliere, C.S.C.S., M.S.P.T., creator of Athlean-X, couldn’t come at a better time. REEBOK SHOES, RHONE SHORTS, UNDER ARMOUR TIGHTS, 2XU TANK
STANDARD VERSION Select 3 to 5 moves. Do each for 3 minutes, working in 30-second intervals (20 on, 10 off). EL DIABLO Pick 4 moves; do each for 1 minute. Rest 20 seconds between moves, 1 minute between rounds. Do as many rounds as possible.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY BEN GOLDSTEIN
Grooming: Eloise Cheung/Make Up Forever/Kate Ryan
Staying fit in December isn’t easy. So here’s our holiday gift to you: a half dozen exercises that you can mix in infinite ways for a brief, convenient, intense, fatburning, strength-building workout. Do them in the gym, at home, or anywhere at all. Have nine minutes to kill waiting for the kids to see Santa at the
For the optimal benefit, complete a session at least 3 or 4 times a week.
1. Two-Point Renegade Row
2. Dumbbell Thruster
3. Dumbbell Squat Curl Press
4. Split Squat Lateral Hop
5. Mountain Mule Kick
6. SingleArm Burpee
Assume a high pushup position, your hands on 15-pound (or lighter) dumbbells. Lift your left leg and pull that knee toward your chest. Lift the right dumbbell and pull it toward your hip. Return to the pushup position. Repeat, this time moving your right leg and the left weight. That’s 1 rep.
Hold a pair of 25pound (or lighter) dumbbells at your shoulders. Keeping your chest up, squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Stand back up and raise the dumbbells until your arms are straight overhead. Then lower them back to your shoulders. That’s 1 rep.
Place 25-pound (or lighter) dumbbells about shoulder-width apart on the floor. Squat to grasp them underhand, and then stand with them as you keep your chest up. When they’re at your waist, curl them to your shoulders. Press them overhead. Reverse the movements. That’s 1 rep.
Assume a split stance, your left foot forward. Squat until your left knee is bent 90 degrees. Before your right knee hits the floor, hop slightly left, staying in a split squat position. Hop back right, then up. Land in a split stance, right foot forward. Repeat the sequence. Too hard? Do jump lunges.
Start in a high pushup position. Kick both legs up as if you’re doing a handstand. Land with your right knee tucked toward your chest and your left leg back. Then drive your left knee toward your chest as you straighten your right leg back. Repeat, leading with your left knee. That’s 1 rep.
Stand with your left hand on your chest. Bend your knees and fold forward until your right hand hits the floor. Hop your legs to a plank and touch your chest to the floor. Push back up (knees on the floor if needed) and stand. Repeat with your other arm. Too hard? Do a regular burpee.
Remove Salt from Leather Wipe boots with a soft rag and a 2:1 water-to-vinegar solution. Wipe them clean with water and let them air-dry.
STYLE All it takes are a few s imple outfits. And there’s one secret: The s impler the better. —Car y Grant
WINTER FIEL D GU IDE 2 017
Reboot Your Winter Wardrobe PHOTOGRAPHS BY JAMIE CHUNG
When the weather turns cold, turn up your style with these seasonal essentials. BY DAN MICHEL
Function comes first in winter, which means your footwear is all-important. But boots don’t have to be boring, says Toronto stylist Jake Mossop. “Look for a rugged pair that’s also colorful.” Check out the wingtips above from Swims: A waterproof membrane keeps your dogs dry, while brogue detailing adds sophistication. Read on for more ways to heat up your cold-weather look. MensHealth.com / December 2017 49
New School Bag Move the weight of your daily schlep to your shoulders and look supersmart with this luxe backpack.
1. SHINOLA BACKPACK, $995; 2. TOMMY HILFIGER SWEATER, $225 3. LUIGI BIANCHI MANTOVA COAT, $1,295; 4. TO BOOT NEW YORK BOOTS, $450. PREVIOUS PAGE: MICHAEL KORS JEANS, $148; BOMBAS SOCKS, $12; SWIMS BOOTS, $225
Keep your Sunday vibe alive every day of the workweek with dressy pants that have a comfy waistband.
MAKE THE HOST HAPPY
For a cocktail party, you can’t go wrong with a bar-related gift, says Tariq Dixon of TRNK, a home furnishing site for men. THE GIFT
The brass accents will take on an elegant patina as time goes by. Now that’s class. RBT ICE BUCKET, $80 TRNK BOTTLE OPENER, $44
50 MensHealth.com / December 2017
THE DRINK The Kizuki Simple Japanese Highball Kevin Yu, owner of Kizuki Ramen and Izakaya in Chicago, shares the perfect recipe for appreciating the subtlety of Japanese spirits. 1 part Japanese whisky (try Suntory Hibiki Harmony) 2 parts tonic 2 parts soda water Garnish the glass with an orange peel or lemon peel.
TOMMY HILFIGER PANTS, $150
Prop styling: Alex Brannian/Art Dept, PETER ARKLE (animal illustrations)
Make It a Cinch
MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons, bear on badge)
WINTER FIEL D GU IDE 2 017
Woolly Mammoth Shearling is wool, but instead of shaving the sheep, they skin it. (Hey, deal with it.) So itâ€™s warm! Stand out with a bold hue like this blue.
THE NEW SLIM PUFFY JACKET Performance Down These jackets are nearly as warm as shearling but much lighter in weight.
BONOBOS JACKET, $1,200
Big patterns and chunky textures lend a casual feel; solid, muted colors and fine knits are for dressing up. Try brands like J.Crew and Club Monaco. MOOSE KNUCKLES CANADA, $385 FROM LEFT: UNIQLO, $30; GAP, $45; TED BAKER LONDON, $79
Get a Grip Knit gloves are cozy, but leather is what you want for a solid grip on a steering wheel. Leather stretches, so buy your gloves a half size too small. Banana Republic gloves, $90
FIEL D GU IDE 2 017
CHEERS! YOUR PERFECT TOAST What to say the next time you address a thirsty crowd.
Pick Your Angle Are you going for laughs or for tears? If it’s a close friend or casual crowd, go for funny. If it’s a formal event or a colleague from work, be sincere.
Talk About the Past Recall a time when your friend helped you out of a bind or pulled a crazy prank. Go deep on the details. Embellishing is encouraged!
Connect the Dots Tie your story to the present. Recall how it shaped your view of the person and why you’re drinking in his or her honor. Just keep it under two minutes. Source: Victoria Wellman, cofounder, The Oratory Laboratory, NYC
THE PARTY JACKET
Not everyone wants to be a peacock. Find your comfort level from classic to wild.
MICHAEL KORS A burgundy sweater or shirt will emphasize the pattern. Black jeans or trousers finish the look.
BURBERRY This check is automatically festive, so pair it with neutrals, like a white shirt and indigo jeans.
52 MensHealth.com / December 2017
TALLIA ORANGE Flip the lapel on this classic plaid jacket to reveal leather trim. Keep the rest subtle and solid.
BONOBOS Pair this with something navy if you want to tone it down, or burgundy if you’re feeling bold.
PER RY EL L IS Velvet is a big trend lately, says stylist Samantha Brown. “It has just the right amount of flash.”
TED BAKER Dark shades make a bold pattern more wearable. Add a navy or black turtleneck and jeans.
EVENTS & PROMOTIONS
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VITAFUSION™ Having the right amount of energy is vital to looking and feeling our best, from the inside out. Vitafusion partner and fitness Guru, Keoni Hudoba says, “Whether it's teaching a class, training a client, or making an appearance, vitafusion™ Everyday Energy gives me that extra push to deliver my best self, every time."
Visit vitafusion.com for more information.
“Dunkirk” opens as hundreds of thousands of British and Allied troops are surrounded by enemy forces. Trapped on the beach with their backs to the sea they face an impossible situation as the enemy closes in.
www.facebook.com/DunkirkMovie #DunkirkMovie @DunkirkMovie © 2017 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights Reserved.
HEY WEATHER: BEAD IT. GORE-TEX® SHAKEDRY™ product technology gives you more of what you need with less, making this the lightest, most breathable GORE-TEX® jacket ever.
JANUARY 1, 2018 — COMMITMENT DAY 5K FUN RUN • 40 events nationwide held at local Life Time locations • Plus indoor triathlon and daily events Bring your friends and family for a weekend filled with healthy fun!
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Turn Back Time with Tech DEFY AGE WITH THESE CUTTING-EDGE NONSURGICAL TREATMENTS. / BY GRANT STODDARD PROBLEM
YELLOW TEETH ASK FOR
Laser Teeth Whitening
DOUBLE CHIN ASK FOR
DEEP WRINKLES ASK FOR
Laser Skin Resurfacing
WHAT TO EXPECT
A dentist combines a bleaching agent with a laser to speed up the process. “At-home bleaching can work, but it can take forever to see results,” says Jennifer Stachel, D.M.D., who uses a 30-minute LED system called GLO on her patients.
Any bleach removes a layer of tooth material called calcium phosphate, so you may have some sensitivity. The layer will return after three to four days. Until then, avoid foods and drinks that stain, like berries, coffee, and red wine.
Kybella is a synthesized deoxycholic acid, which is a naturally occurring molecule in your body that aids in the breakdown and absorption of dietary fat. When Kybella is injected into your chin, it melts away fat in that area.
The treatment takes only about three minutes, says Anthony Youn, M.D., a Michigan-based plastic surgeon. You may feel a slight burning sensation for five to 10 minutes and mild soreness later. But recovery is relatively pain-free.
During this FDA-approved chilland-kill treatment, a device is attached to your problem area. For an hour, temperatures cold enough to destroy fat cells target the area. Your body will naturally metabolize and expel the dead cells.
You’ll experience tingling, pain, bruising, numbness, and swelling for a few weeks, but there’s effectively no real downtime, says Joseph Eviatar, M.D., of Omni Aesthetic MD in New York City. Best of all, the fat cells are gone for good.
A dermatologist applies a highenergy laser in a grid pattern to an area that strengthens the collagen. “This causes the collagen to contract, reducing the appearance of deeper wrinkles,”says Babar Rao, M.D., of Rao Dermatology.
A topical numbing cream makes the session bearable, but generally it hurts. Days later, skin hardens, scabs, and eventually flakes off, and your face is a little pink for a week or longer. Don’t do it more than twice a year, says Dr. Rao.
$150 to $600
Typically requires one treatment.
Based on the size of the area covered. May require multiple treatments.
($750 per side) May require additional treatments.
May require multiple treatments.
Flash that smile: A laser whitening procedure is performed in the New York City office of Pia Lieb, D.D.S.
54 MensHealth.com / December 2017
PHOTOGRAPH BY DINA LITOVSKY
BROWN BIRD DESIGN (illustrations), MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons)
HOW IT WORKS
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Swaps for the Top Not a cilantro fan? You can scatter on some mint, basil, scallions, or edamame.
FOOD I once put instan t coffee in my microwave oven and almost wen t back in time. —Steven Wright
6 Microwave Muscle Meals
Want to ace your next at-home feast? Start thinking inside the box. BY MATTHEW KADEY, R.D.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY TRAVIS RATHBONE
That microwave on your countertop can do so much more than just heat leftover pizza. “People crave efficiency, so they should call on the microwave more often to steam and heat where browning isn’t required,” says chef Keith Schroeder, author of Mad Delicious. It’s a truly ingenious invention. So put it to use and craft sensational original meals, not just reheat old ones. MensHealth.com / December 2017 57
SALMON HOBO PACKETS Fold two 14"×18" sheets of parchment paper in half. Open them and place 2 cups chopped broccoli, ½ sliced fennel bulb, and ½ sliced red bell pepper on one side of each sheet; top with a 6 oz salmon fillet. Melt 1 Tbsp butter in a bowl. Stir in 2 Tbsp orange juice plus 2 tsp each orange zest and fresh thyme. Spread this over the fish. Fold the paper over the fish and crimp shut. Microwave on high for 4 minutes; add time (in 30-second intervals) until the salmon is cooked. Let the parcels rest for 5 minutes. Open them and sprinkle on 1 tsp black sesame seeds. Feeds 2.
BAKE SMOKY TOMATO AND CRAB SOUP
In a 2-quart dish, mix 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1 cup chopped yellow onion, 1 chopped red bell pepper, 2 chopped garlic cloves, and a couple of pinches of salt. Cover the dish and cook on high until the peppers are tender, about 2½ minutes. Add 1 can (28 oz) San Marzano tomatoes, 1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth, 1 tsp smoked paprika, and ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper. Cover again and heat on high for 5 minutes. Puree with ½ cup half and half. Season to taste with more salt, if needed. Top with lump crabmeat and minced fresh chives to taste. Feeds 2.
KNOW YOUR POWER
CHICKEN PINEAPPLE CURRY In a large bowl, add 1 peeled and cubed sweet potato, 2 chopped shallots, 2 chopped garlic cloves, 2 Tbsp water, and 1 Tbsp chopped ginger. Cover and cook on high for 5 minutes. Add 1 can (14 oz) coconut milk, 1 Tbsp red curry paste, and ½ tsp each salt and cinnamon; puree. In another bowl, cook 1 lb cubed chicken breast on high, covered, for 2 minutes. Drain, add the puree, cover, and heat on high till done (stir once), 6 minutes. Stir in 1 cup frozen peas, 1 cup diced pineapple, ⅓ cup cashews, and the juice of ½ lime; heat 30 seconds. Serve with rice and cilantro. Feeds 4.
Cooking times for these and most recipes are based on a 1,200-watt oven, but not all microwaves have that much power. To find your machine’s wattage, look on the back plate or inside the door. Here are basic conversions from a three-minute cooking time in a 1,200-watt oven. TIME ADDED
100% ABOUT 15% 1,000
Time 15 minutes
Protein 39 grams
Time 15 minutes
Protein 25 grams
Time 20 minutes
Protein 18 grams
800 600 WATTS
Food styling: Jamie Kimm, prop styling: Olga Grigorenko/Honey Artists, MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons)
58 MensHealth.com / December 2017
NUKE IT GOOD Leftovers can be great—or horrible, if you reheat them the wrong way. Here’s the right way.
Don’t Go Deep
A shallow CorningWare, glass, or other microwave-safe dish is best. Spread the leftovers over the entire dish. The larger the surface area, the less time needed to reheat the food.
In the microwave, the center of the dish receives less energy than the outside. Arrange thinner, more delicate foods (such as broccoli florets or the tails of shrimp) toward the center. Thick or tough parts, like asparagus stalks, can go closer to the edge of the dish.
ANTHONY CALVERT (illustrations)
Heat It All
Ironically, cold spots in reheated leftovers can be hotbeds for bacterial growth. To eliminate them (and reduce your odds of foodborne illness) without overcooking everything else, give the food a stir once or twice during cooking.
Combine 1 lb ground beef (80% lean), 1 cup grated carrot, ½ cup minced onion, ½ cup bread crumbs or quick oats, ¼ cup BBQ sauce, 3 Tbsp tomato paste, 1 large egg, 2 tsp dried thyme, ½ tsp kosher salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Press into an even layer in a greased microwave-safe loaf pan; spread another ¼ cup barbecue sauce on top. Cover with a paper towel and microwave on high until cooked through (165°F), 12 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Feeds 4. Time 25 minutes
Protein 24 grams
MAPLE PECAN GRANOLA In a small bowl, mix ¼ cup each of coconut oil and maple syrup and cook on high until liquefied, 30 seconds. In a shallow dish, mix 2 cups rolled oats, ½ cup chopped pecans, ¼ cup sunflower seeds, ⅓ cup coconut flakes, the zest of 1 orange, and 1 tsp cinnamon. Mix in the syrup and spread in an even layer. Nuke on high, stirring twice, until the oats are crisped, 5 to 6½ minutes. Stir in ½ cup dried cherries and cool to room temp. Feeds 8. Add on top of Greek yogurt. Time 12 minutes
Protein 15 grams
CINNAMONCHILI SWEET POTATO CHIPS Slice 1 medium sweet potato very thinly. (Use a mandoline if you have one.) In a small bowl, toss the slices with 2 tsp oil, ½ tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp chili powder, and ¼ tsp salt. Then arrange the slices in a single layer on a parchment-lined plate. (You might have to do this in batches so the chips don’t turn soggy.) Microwave the slices on high until your chips are crispy, about 3 minutes. Serve alongside or crushed atop tacos. And they’re great with guacamole. Feeds 2. Time 7 minutes
Protein 15 grams
EGGS ARE A SUPERB SOURCE OF COMPLETE PROTEIN, WITH 6 GRAMS APIECE, PLUS CHOLINE FOR METABOLISM. BUT HARD-BOILED EGGS ARE BORING...UNTIL NOW. GET CRACKING! / BY MATTHEW KADEY, R.D.
The Deviled Details STEP
BUILD YOUR BASE You can cook your own eggs, or you can buy peeled hard-boiled eggs from a brand such as Eggland’s Best. They’re usually around the dairy case. Then follow this deviled egg master recipe.
60 MensHealth.com / December 2017
SMOKE AND FIRE ADD 1 tsp sriracha, 1 Tbsp chopped pickled jalapeño pepper TOP Ground smoked paprika, pickled jalapeño slice
SMOKED SALMON WITH FIXINS ADD 2 oz chopped smoked salmon, 1 Tbsp capers, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, 1 minced shallot, ¼ tsp cayenne TOP Chopped fresh dill
BACON HORSERADISH ADD 1½ Tbsp prepared horseradish, 2 crumbled cooked bacon slices, ¼ tsp black pepper TOP Chopped chives
WESTERN OMELET ADD ¼ cup minced bell pepper, ¼ cup minced red onion TOP Finely diced thick-cut deli ham, thinly sliced fresh chives
CURRY FIRE ADD 2 tsp yellow curry powder, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 2 tsp rice vinegar, ¼ tsp chili powder TOP Fresh cilantro leaves
HAIL CAESAR ADD 6 minced anchovy fillets, 1 grated garlic clove, 2 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar TOP Smoked paprika, Parmesan
ZEST AND PESTO ADD 2 Tbsp jarred green pesto, 2 tsp lemon zest TOP Finely chopped roasted unsalted almonds
CAPRESE ADD 1 seeded and chopped plum tomato, ¼ cup chopped fresh mozzarella, 2 Tbsp minced basil TOP Balsamic glaze
TEX-MEX ADD ⅓ cup black beans, 2 Tbsp minced fresh cilantro, 1 minced chipotle in adobo, juice of ½ lime TOP Scallion greens, ground cumin
Food styling: Rebecca Jurkevich/Edge Reps, prop styling: Kaitlyn DuRoss/Honey Artists
1. Halve 6 cooked eggs lengthwise with a sharp knife, wiping the blade after each cut. 2. Scoop the yolks into a large bowl. Add 2 Tbsp mayo, plain Greek yogurt, or sour cream. (Greek yogurt has a little more protein, but it doesn’t matter at this amount. Just pick your favorite.) Using the back of a fork, mash it all up. Then drizzle in 2 Tbsp canola or grapeseed oil, stirring constantly until it’s creamy and fluffy. Season with salt. 3. Using a small spoon, fill the whites with the yolk mixture. Per 2 halves (with mayo): 152 calories, 6g protein, 1g carbs (0g fiber), 14g fat
FREESTYLE YOUR FLAVORS
SHELL OUT Steam eggs for sunnier yolks and easier peeling.
1. In a saucepan, boil 1 inch of water. Add a steamer basket and the eggs. Steam 15 minutes. 2. Put the eggs in ice water for 30 minutes. 3. Gently break the shells and start peeling from the bottom end, where there’s an air pocket.
Follow the master recipe, mixing in the “add” ingredients after you stir in the oil. Then apply toppings to taste.
GREEN EGGS AND HAM ADD ½ diced avocado, 2 Tbsp chopped pickled jalapeño, 2 Tbsp minced onion, ½ tsp garlic powder TOP Chopped prosciutto
MOROCCAN SPICE ADD ⅓ cup prepared hummus, 2 tsp prepared harissa paste TOP Pitted and finely chopped kalamata olives
INDIAN MANGO ADD 2 Tbsp mango chutney, ¾ tsp garam masala spice blend, 1 thinly sliced scallion (green part) TOP Chopped shelled pistachios
PHOTOGRAPHS BY DANNY KIM
BUFFALO CHICKEN ADD ⅓ cup finely diced cooked chicken, 3 Tbsp finely diced celery, 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar TOP Blue cheese, hot sauce
SOUR POWER ADD ¼ cup chopped prepared sauerkraut, 1 Tbsp cider vinegar, 1 tsp fennel seeds TOP Fresh thyme leaves
V.I.P. ADD 1 heaping Tbsp caviar TOP Fresh jumbo lump crabmeat,
minced fresh tarragon, more caviar if you’re a baller
PIZZA PARTY! ADD ¼ cup shredded mozzarella, ¼ cup diced pepperoni, 3 Tbsp finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes TOP Chopped fresh basil
CALIFORNIA ROLL ADD ¼ cup diced cucumber, 1 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp rice vinegar TOP Imitation crab strips, chopped pickled ginger, sesame seeds
JAMBALAYA ADD ¼ cup chopped cooked andouille sausage, ¼ cup chopped scallion, 1 tsp Cajun seasoning TOP Chopped fresh parsley leaves
RED BEET AND GOAT CHEESE ADD ¼ cup chopped pickled beets, 2 Tbsp of the beet liquid, ¼ cup goat cheese, 2 tsp lemon zest TOP Chopped fresh tarragon
PIMENTO CHEESE ADD ¼ cup diced pimento, ¼ cup shredded cheddar, 1 grated garlic clove, 1 tsp paprika TOP Chopped walnuts
KOREAN BBQ ADD ¼ chopped prepared kimchi, ¼ cup finely chopped roast beef, 1 tsp sesame oil TOP Thinly sliced radish
What is TRUVADA for PrEP?
Who should not take TRUVADA for PrEP?
TRUVADA for PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) is a prescription medicine that is used together with safer sex practices to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 through sex. This use is only for HIV-negative adults who are at high risk of getting HIV-1. To help determine your risk of getting HIV-1, talk openly with your healthcare provider about your sexual health. Ask your healthcare provider if you have questions about how to prevent getting HIV. Always practice safer sex and use condoms to lower the chance of sexual contact with body ﬂuids. Never reuse or share needles or other items that have body ﬂuids on them.
Do not take TRUVADA for PrEP if you: Already have HIV-1 infection or if you do not know your HIV-1 status. If you are HIV-1 positive, you need to take other medicines with TRUVADA to treat HIV-1. TRUVADA by itself is not a complete treatment for HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time. Also take certain medicines to treat hepatitis B infection.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION What is the most important information I should know about TRUVADA for PrEP? Before taking TRUVADA for PrEP: You must be HIV-negative before you start taking TRUVADA for PrEP. You must get tested to make sure that you do not already have HIV-1. Do not take TRUVADA to reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 unless you are conﬁrmed to be HIV-negative. Many HIV-1 tests can miss HIV-1 infection in a person who has recently become infected. If you have ﬂu-like symptoms, you could have recently become infected with HIV-1. Tell your healthcare provider if you had a ﬂu-like illness within the last month before starting or at any time while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Symptoms of new HIV-1 infection include tiredness, fever, joint or muscle aches, headache, sore throat, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, night sweats, and/or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck or groin. While taking TRUVADA for PrEP: You must continue to use safer sex practices. Just taking TRUVADA for PrEP may not keep you from getting HIV-1. You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP: Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months. If you think you were exposed to HIV-1, tell your healthcare provider right away. To further help reduce your risk of getting HIV-1: Know your HIV status and the HIV status of your partners. Get tested for other sexually transmitted infections. Other infections make it easier for HIV to infect you. Get information and support to help reduce risky sexual behavior, such as having fewer sex partners. Do not miss any doses of TRUVADA. Missing doses may increase your risk of getting HIV-1 infection. If you do become HIV-1 positive, you need more medicine than TRUVADA alone to treat HIV-1. TRUVADA by itself is not a complete treatment for HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time. TRUVADA can cause serious side effects: Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. TRUVADA is not approved to treat HBV. If you have HBV and stop taking TRUVADA, your HBV may suddenly get worse. Do not stop taking TRUVADA without ﬁrst talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to monitor your health.
What are the other possible side effects of TRUVADA for PrEP? Serious side effects of TRUVADA may also include: Kidney problems, including kidney failure. Your healthcare provider may do blood tests to check your kidneys before and during treatment with TRUVADA. If you develop kidney problems, your healthcare provider may tell you to stop taking TRUVADA. Too much lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious but rare medical emergency that can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: weakness or being more tired than usual, unusual muscle pain, being short of breath or fast breathing, stomach pain with nausea and vomiting, cold or blue hands and feet, feel dizzy or lightheaded, or a fast or abnormal heartbeat. Severe liver problems, which in rare cases can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow, dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored stools, loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, or stomach-area pain. Bone problems, including bone pain, softening, or thinning, which may lead to fractures. Your healthcare provider may do tests to check your bones. Common side effects in people taking TRUVADA for PrEP are stomach-area (abdomen) pain, headache, and decreased weight. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that bother you or do not go away.
What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking TRUVADA for PrEP? All your health problems. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have or have had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if TRUVADA can harm your unborn baby. If you become pregnant while taking TRUVADA for PrEP, talk to your healthcare provider to decide if you should keep taking TRUVADA. If you are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. If you become HIV-positive, HIV can be passed to the baby in breast milk. All the medicines you take, including prescription and over-thecounter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. TRUVADA may interact with other medicines. Keep a list of all your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine. If you take certain other medicines with TRUVADA, your healthcare provider may need to check you more often or change your dose. These medicines include certain medicines to treat hepatitis C (HCV) infection. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.FDA.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Please see Important Facts about TRUVADA for PrEP including important warnings on the following page.
IMPORTANT FACTS This is only a brief summary of important information about taking TRUVADA for PrEPTM (pre-exposure prophylaxis) to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 infection. This does not replace talking to your healthcare provider about your medicine.
(tru-VAH-dah) MOST IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT TRUVADA FOR PrEP Before starting TRUVADA for PrEP: • You must be HIV-1 negative. You must get tested to make sure that you do not already have HIV-1. Do not take TRUVADA for PrEP to reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 unless you are conﬁrmed to be HIV-1 negative. • Many HIV-1 tests can miss HIV-1 infection in a person who has recently become infected. Symptoms of new HIV-1 infection include ﬂu-like symptoms, tiredness, fever, joint or muscle aches, headache, sore throat, vomiting, diarrhea, rash, night sweats, and/or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck or groin. Tell your healthcare provider if you have had a ﬂu-like illness within the last month before starting TRUVADA for PrEP. While taking TRUVADA for PrEP: • You must continue to use safer sex practices. Just taking TRUVADA for PrEP may not keep you from getting HIV-1. • You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you think you were exposed to HIV-1 or have a ﬂu-like illness while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. • If you do become HIV-1 positive, you need more medicine than TRUVADA alone to treat HIV-1. If you have HIV-1 and take only TRUVADA, your HIV-1 may become harder to treat over time.
POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS OF TRUVADA FOR PrEP TRUVADA can cause serious side effects, including: • Those in the “Most Important Information About TRUVADA for PrEP” section. • New or worse kidney problems, including kidney failure. • Too much lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious but rare medical emergency that can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: weakness or being more tired than usual, unusual muscle pain, being short of breath or fast breathing, stomach pain with nausea and vomiting, cold or blue hands and feet, feel dizzy or lightheaded, or a fast or abnormal heartbeat. • Severe liver problems, which in rare cases can lead to death. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you get these symptoms: skin or the white part of your eyes turns yellow, dark “tea-colored” urine, light-colored stools, loss of appetite for several days or longer, nausea, or stomach-area pain. • Bone problems. Common side effects in people taking TRUVADA for PrEP include stomach-area (abdomen) pain, headache, and decreased weight. These are not all the possible side effects of TRUVADA. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you have any new symptoms while taking TRUVADA for PrEP. Your healthcare provider will need to do tests to monitor your health before and during treatment with TRUVADA for PrEP.
BEFORE TAKING TRUVADA FOR PrEP
• See the “How To Further Reduce Your Risk” section for more information. TRUVADA may cause serious side effects, including: • Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. TRUVADA is not approved to treat HBV. If you have HBV, your HBV may suddenly get worse if you stop taking TRUVADA. Do not stop taking TRUVADA without ﬁrst talking to your healthcare provider, as they will need to check your health regularly for several months.
ABOUT TRUVADA FOR PrEP TRUVADA for PrEP is a prescription medicine used together with safer sex practices to help reduce the risk of getting HIV-1 through sex. This use is only for HIV-negative adults who are at high risk of getting HIV-1. • To help determine your risk of getting HIV-1, talk openly with your healthcare provider about your sexual health. Do NOT take TRUVADA for PrEP if you: • Already have HIV-1 infection or if you do not know your HIV-1 status. • Take certain medicines to treat hepatitis B infection.
HOW TO TAKE TRUVADA FOR PrEP • Take 1 tablet once a day, every day, not just when you think you have been exposed to HIV-1. • Do not miss any doses. Missing doses may increase your risk of getting HIV-1 infection. • Use TRUVADA for PrEP together with condoms and safer sex practices. • Get tested for HIV-1 at least every 3 months. You must stay HIV-negative to keep taking TRUVADA for PrEP.
Tell your healthcare provider if you: • Have or have had any kidney, bone, or liver problems, including hepatitis. • Have any other medical conditions. • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. • Are breastfeeding (nursing) or plan to breastfeed. Do not breastfeed. If you become HIV-positive, HIV can pass to the baby in breast milk. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take: • Keep a list that includes all prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements, and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist. • Ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist about medicines that should not be taken with TRUVADA for PrEP.
HOW TO FURTHER REDUCE YOUR RISK • Know your HIV status and the HIV status of your partners. • Get tested for other sexually transmitted infections. Other infections make it easier for HIV to infect you. • Get information and support to help reduce risky sexual behavior, such as having fewer sex partners. • Do not share needles or personal items that can have blood or body ﬂuids on them.
GET MORE INFORMATION • This is only a brief summary of important information about TRUVADA for PrEP. Talk to your healthcare provider or pharmacist to learn more, including how to prevent HIV infection. • Go to start.truvada.com or call 1-800-GILEAD-5 • If you need help paying for your medicine, visit start.truvada.com for program information.
TRUVADA FOR PREP, the TRUVADA FOR PREP Logo, the TRUVADA Blue Pill Design, TRUVADA, GILEAD, and the GILEAD Logo are trademarks of Gilead Sciences, Inc., or its related companies. All other marks referenced herein are the property of their respective owners. Version date: April 2017 © 2017 Gilead Sciences, Inc. All rights reserved. TVDC0131 07/17
Plan Your Scans CTs do save lives, but they can also lead you down expensive (and scary) rabbit holes.
HEALTH It’s all r igh t letting yourself go, as long as you can get yourself back. —Mick Jagger
Is This Medical Test Overused?
Nearly a third of the 80 million CT scans done each year may be a waste of time and cash. Here’s how to tell if you really need one. BY MICHAEL EASTER
ILLUSTRATION BY JUAN ESTEBAN RODRIGUEZ
The pain woke me up in the middle of the night. It felt like a strongman twisting a rigid finger deep into my abdomen. It just wouldn’t quit. By morning it was still there as a persistent, low-level ache, so I went to see a doctor. She prodded my stomach as I answered a few questions. With the exam over, we locked eyes and she said, “You need to go to the hospital for a test right away.” MensHealth.com / December 2017 65
66 MensHealth.com / December 2017
ALL SYSTEMS GLOW
We’re naturally exposed to about 3.6 millisieverts of radiation yearly; a one-time dose of 5 mSv is linked to cancer. Most CT scans deliver far more. Here’s the radiation fallout from various tests, and the associated cancer risk for a 40-year-old man.
ROUTINE HEAD CT SCAN 1 in 11,080 cancer risk
ROUTINE CHEST CT SCAN (WITH CONTRAST) 1 in 1,538 cancer risk
CORONARY ANGIOGRAM 1 in 595 cancer risk
FLIGHT FROM N.Y. TO L.A. .05 mSv
WATCHING TV .02 to .03 mSv per year
BASELINE LIFETIME CANCER RISK FOR MEN 1 in 3
ROUTINE ABDOMENPELVIS SCAN (WITH CONTRAST) 1 in 942 cancer risk
31 BEING IN CLOSE PROXIMITY TO SOMEONE WHO’S JUST HAD A NUCLEAR MEDICINE TEST 5 mSv
DENTAL X-RAYS (FULL SET)
MULTIPHASE ABDOMENPELVIS SCAN 1 in 498 cancer risk
Radiation exposures can vary “profoundly” among CT facilities, says Rebecca SmithBindman, M.D. Her research found patients who’d been exposed to 100 times more radiation than necessary. To protect yourself, she recommends asking the technician to use “the lowest effective dose.”
T.M. DETWILER (illustration)
Lying in the computed tomography (CT) machine, I convinced myself that I had cancer. Later a nurse broke the news. “We got your results,” she said. “You’re fine.” The pain eventually fizzled out. But it returned months later, after a tough workout. That’s when it hit me: Both times, I’d done CrossFit that day. Bingo! I had a muscle strain from doing barbell front squats. (My form can be shaky with those.) But here’s the thing: Unlike my muscle strain, that CT scan may have lasting effects. More than 80 million CT scans are performed on Americans each year—a fourfold increase since 1995. “CT scans are a keystone of modern medicine,” says David J. Brenner, Ph.D., a radiation researcher at Columbia University Medical Center. In minutes, a CT scan can deliver a 3D image of what’s inside your body, allowing for a more accurate diagnosis. “It’s such a powerful tool there’s a strong temptation to use it in too many situations,” says Brenner. “But these are x-rays, after all, so they do come with a small risk.” My test delivered a dose of radiation to my abdomen that was triple the level associated with cancer risk. At age 30, I now have about a 1 in 727 lifetime risk of developing cancer from that scan, according to research in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Those odds are relatively small, sure. But I’m now slightly more cancer-prone than I was before, which feels like leaving a weight-loss clinic 5 pounds heavier. Oh, and my co-pay was $1,500. I believe my scan was unnecessary. “An estimated 27 million CT scans done last year in the United States either didn’t need to be done or could have been replaced by another procedure involving less radiation,” Brenner says. The most common reason for needless tests, according to a poll of physicians by the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation, is to avoid malpractice suits, followed by simply wanting to be safe. While you’re in a CT machine, hundreds of radioactive x-rays pass through you. For a routine head scan, you’re hit with 2 millisieverts (mSv) of radiation; a multiphase abdomen-pelvis scan delivers 31 mSv. In a study of atomic bomb survivors in Japan, exposures above 5 mSv raised cancer risk. A man’s chances of getting the big C from one CT scan is low—at worst, about 1 in 330
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for a 20-year-old receiving a detailed abdomen-pelvis scan, and 1 in 14,000plus for a 60-year-old getting a routine head scan, according to the Archives of Internal Medicine study. But because docs order millions of scans a year, the numbers may add up in the future to about 29,000 annual cancers—or up to 2 percent of all new cancers, the National Cancer Institute reports. Many people get multiple scans, which further raises risk. “It’s doubled if you get two, tripled if you get three, and so on,” says Brenner. A third of people scanned have had five or more previous scans, Harvard research reveals. That’s where the real danger is, says Frank Cucinotta, Ph.D., of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, who studies the biological effects of radiation. The more body areas hit and the higher the radiation dose, he says, the higher your risk. Your abdomen and chest are the most sensitive, due to the concentration of organs there and the radiation levels needed to yield a clear image. A rare cancer caused by a scan will take decades to bloom, adds Cucinotta. That’s why CTs are generally riskier for young people; the older you are, the more likely you’ll die of something else before that cancer appears. There’s also the question of time, stress over the pending results, and the bill you’ll receive afterward, says Vinay Prasad, M.D., an oncologist at the Oregon Health & Science University. There’s no standardized price for a CT scan, and even with insurance you may pay a few hundred to thousands out of pocket. That’s why you should ask how much the scan will cost you and whether it can be done somewhere else for less, Dr. Prasad says. It’s important to put all these risks in context. “If you need a CT scan for a good medical reason, you should absolutely have it, because the benefits of getting the right diagnosis far outweigh any small risks,” says Brenner. “But if there isn’t a good medical reason, you shouldn’t have that scan.” Consider the following four factors in making that crucial decision.
FIT THE CRITERIA
When ordering such tests, doctors have guidelines: the American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria (https://acsearch. acr.org/list). That includes a whopping 230 clinical scenarios with 1,100 clinical variants. “Ask why a CT is advised, and perhaps add, ‘Does my condition meet ACR guidelines for a CT scan?’” says Brenner.
EXPLORE OTHER OPTIONS
In some cases, other types of diagnostic tests may render an adequate image. Ultrasound and MRI have no radiation, and “x-ray has about 100 to 1,000 times less radiation than a CT,” says Cucinotta. For recurring issues like kidney stones, a CT may be needed initially, when accuracy is key. “But after that, some other imaging can usually be used, such as a conventional x-ray or ultrasound,” Brenner says.
KNOW YOUR DOCTOR
My scan wasn’t ordered by my regular doc, who was away at the time. My regular doctor knows I exercise, so he may have suspected a muscle issue and had me wait. “When you know your doctor, he or she may be better at recommending or not recommending a scan,” says Dr. Prasad.
BE PATIENT, MAN!
CTs are popular because they’re quick and easy and make doctors feel they’re being thorough, says Dr. Prasad. That may be why you’ll likely get one in an ER or urgent care setting. But University of Hawaii researchers found that only 6 percent of CT scans given to people who went to an ER after fainting or nearly fainting showed anything abnormal. The study concluded that ER patients with dizziness or fainting may not benefit from a head scan unless they’re older, have a focal neurological deficit, or had a recent head injury. The same may be true for the neck down: “In young people, a lot of aches and pains are probably musculoskeletal and go away in about a week,” says Dr. Prasad.
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A buffet is a courtesy, not a doubledog dare.
Yes, it’s a long month, but don’t start skipping meals to cut calories. A 2015 rodent study from Ohio State linked meal skipping to weight gain. Slow, steady, portion-controlled eating wins the race.
Holiday Party Tip #3
A handful of mixed nuts helps fill you up and top off your magnesium levels. Low Mg may be linked to excess weight, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
Sweat today and every day. Recent research links 15 minutes of moderate exercise— think brisk walking—to reduced food craving in overweight people.
Stay hydrated by glugging plenty of water: A lower fluid intake inhibits your ability to manage glucose, especially in people with type 2 diabetes, research suggests. Smart men don’t mess with glucose.
Talk. If words are coming out, food isn’t going in.
Holiday Party Tip #1
For baking, add corn bran to batter. Slow-fermenting fiber may improve bowel function and increase fecal weight. Fat loss? That’s unclear. But we’re moved by these findings.
Holiday seafood has Polish, Italian, Slovakian, and Jewish roots (to name a few), which means someone will serve you a plate of it this month. Take the nutritional layup!
Spread some nut butter on a slice of whole grain bread. Extra fiber? Sure, and a new study from Tufts praises whole grains for raising metabolism and losing more calories during digestion.
Hosting? Have you bought to-go containers so you can send your guests off with all the extra food?
It’s cold-turkey season, so stamp out bad food habits along with the cigs. Smokers tend to be equally dumb about nutrient intake, research shows.
Protein helps control appetite, but don’t go crazy. You want 20 to 30 grams per meal. Have three or four palm-sized portions three or four times a day, especially to build muscle.
TO AVOID BECOMING THE FAT GUY IN THE RED SUIT LATER THIS MONTH, TURN THESE 31 DAILY TIPS INTO HABITS AND START THE NEW YEAR AS A NEW MAN. / BY MIKE ZIMMERMAN
Eat, Drink & Be Lean: A Holiday Strategy
Here’s yet another reason to drink more water: Red Bull and vodka make you piss like you’re auditioning for a career in pissing. Arrive at that party hydrated.
Drink less (or no) diet soda today. Sounds counterintuitive, but a large 2017 review in the Canadian Medical Association Journal suggests a link between diet soda and weight gain.
Eat 30 grams of fiber today and every day. It ain’t just about weight loss and the bathroom bliss. It’s also linked to graceful aging. (We’ll be expecting a thank-you note in 10 years or so.)
Using smaller plates and bowls at mealtime really does help you eat less. Try it tonight.
Holiday Party Tip #4
Mix a handful of rinsed canned white beans into your smoothies. “They pick up the flavor of the other ingredients really well, and you get a fiber and protein boost,” says nutritionist Gorin.
You’re halfway through the month. Celebrate the victories, forget the defeats, and plug away. The Patriots have come from behind to win 40 times under Tom Brady. Resume your comeback.
Here’s a sleep tip, because you look like you need it: How many studies have found that poor or insufficient sleep makes you crave junk food and store more fat? Just about all of them. Commit to your full eight.
Best cause-effect nutrition advice ever: We asked a French waiter what “croissant” meant. He said, “Eat shit and die.” We were like, “Truth!” A plate of healthy food makes you look intelligent and sophisticated, like a guy who knows what matters. Stand next to the guy gobbling wings and you’ll look like a genius.
Holiday Party Tip #2
Have oatmeal for breakfast. Slow-digesting carbs may trigger your “ileal brake,” a digestive reaction in your small intestine that suppresses hunger pangs between meals. Upshot: You’ll snack less.
Swap out cream and sugar for cinnamon in your coffee, says Amy Gorin, R.D.N. Tastes like Christmas, and you won’t miss the sweeter, creamier version. May help lower blood sugar too.
Go back and reread this entire list before you go out for New Year’s. It’s gonna be a long night.
This year, Santa’s stopping at one cookie; the rest get saved for the damn elves.
Food! Booze! Parties! Save your waistline with these moves.
Today only: Go wild. Eat hearty. Drink deep. And enjoy the slumber of the unencumbered soul.
MEMAW SAYS, “BUNDT CAKE’S READY!”
Before ordering greasy takeout, fry two eggs in olive oil. Put ’em on a whole wheat English muffin with tomato, red onion, cheese, avocado, and sriracha. Eat and feel better.
...eat it slowly and mindfully. Research suggests that eating quickly can mean eating way more than you ever intended to. Don’t forget, steam shovels are for strip mines, not happy hour.
PHOTOGRAPH BY TED CAVANAUGH
YOUR FATIGUED SELF CRAVES GARBAGE.
Reward yourself with a food you’ve been craving all month long. The season is about joy, after all. Just remember to...
Choose a lower-proof booze like Fireball so you don’t end up tackling the Xmas tree later. Or convince the chief that good spirits are for sipping. You might get a nice bourbon out of the bargain.
Try drinking green tea instead of your usual coffee today. Some folks swear it curbs appetite and helps them lose weight. Plus, the caffeine and antioxidants will do you just fine.
YOUR BOSS WANTS TO DO A SHOT.
On game days, shell your own nuts. Men who shelled their pistachios ate 41 percent fewer nuts than those who didn’t crack their own, according to a study published in the journal Appetite.
You can’t disappoint Memaw. Have the cake but savor that first bite. The more you devour, the less joy and more guilt you’ll feel. So have a few bites, compliment her, and then slip the rest to the cat.
You’re off work. You have new toys. When you’re playing with them, you’re not eating. Yay!
Food styling: Michelle Gatton/Stockland Martel, prop styling: Wendy Schelah/Halley Resources, RAMI NIEMI (illustrations), MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons)
FOR AD U LTS WI T H ACT I V E P S O RI ATIC A RTHRITIS (PsA)
Individual results may vary. Patient compensated for her time.
CONSUMER BRIEF SUMMARY The risk information provided here is not comprehensive. This information does not take the place of talking with your doctor about your medical condition or treatment.
What is COSENTYX? COSENTYX is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with active psoriatic arthritis.
To learn more about COSENTYX® (secukinumab), talk to your doctor or pharmacist. For more information and to obtain the FDA-approved product labeling, call 1-888-669-6682 or visit www.COSENTYX.com/PsA.
COSENTYX may improve your psoriatic arthritis, but it may also lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections.
What is the most important information I should know about COSENTYX? COSENTYX is a medicine that affects your immune system. COSENTYX may increase your risk of having serious side effects such as: Infections. COSENTYX may lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections and may increase your risk of infections. • Your healthcare provider should check you for tuberculosis (TB) before starting treatment with COSENTYX. • If your healthcare provider feels that you are at risk for TB, you may be treated with medicine for TB before you begin treatment with COSENTYX and during treatment with COSENTYX. • Your healthcare provider should watch you closely for signs and symptoms of TB during treatment with COSENTYX. Do not take COSENTYX if you have an active TB infection. Before starting COSENTYX, tell your healthcare provider if you: • are being treated for an infection • have an infection that does not go away or that keeps coming back • have TB or have been in close contact with someone with TB • think you have an infection or have symptoms of an infection such as: fevers, sweats, or chills; muscle aches; cough; shortness of breath; blood in your phlegm; weight loss; warm, red, or painful skin or sores on your body; diarrhea or stomach pain; burning when you urinate or urinate more often than normal. After starting COSENTYX, call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the signs of infection listed above. Do not use COSENTYX if you have any signs of infection unless you are instructed to by your healthcare provider. See “What are the possible side effects of COSENTYX?” for more information about side effects.
It is not known if COSENTYX is safe and effective in children. Who should not use COSENTYX? Do not use COSENTYX if you have had a severe allergic reaction to secukinumab or any of the other ingredients in COSENTYX. See the end of the Consumer Brief Summary for a complete list of ingredients in COSENTYX. What should I tell my healthcare provider before starting COSENTYX? Before starting COSENTYX, tell your healthcare provider if you: • have any of the conditions or symptoms listed in the section “What is the most important information I should know about COSENTYX?” • have inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis) • are allergic to latex. The needle cap on the COSENTYX Sensoready® pen and prefilled syringe contains latex. • have recently received or are scheduled to receive an immunization (vaccine). People who take COSENTYX should not receive live vaccines. • have any other medical conditions • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if COSENTYX can harm your unborn baby. You and your healthcare provider should decide if you will use COSENTYX. • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if COSENTYX passes into your breast milk. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of your medicines to show your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine.
ME GET INTO MY
TALK TO YOUR RHEUMATOLOGIST ABOUT COSENTYX ® — THE FIRST & ONLY BIOLOGIC TO TARGET IL-17A FOR
How should I use COSENTYX? See the detailed “Instructions for Use” that comes with your COSENTYX for information on how to prepare and inject a dose of COSENTYX, and how to properly throw away (dispose of) used COSENTYX Sensoready pens and prefilled syringes. • Use COSENTYX exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. • If your healthcare provider decides that you or a caregiver may give your injections of COSENTYX at home, you should receive training on the right way to prepare and inject COSENTYX. Do not try to inject COSENTYX yourself, until you or your caregiver has been shown how to inject COSENTYX by your healthcare provider. • COSENTYX comes in a Sensoready pen or prefilled syringe that you or your caregiver may use at home to give injections. Your healthcare provider will decide which type of COSENTYX is best for you to use at home. • Your healthcare provider will prescribe the dose of COSENTYX that is right for you. • If you inject more COSENTYX than prescribed, call your healthcare provider or go to the nearest emergency room right away.
If you have a severe allergic reaction, do not give another injection of COSENTYX.
What are the possible side effects of COSENTYX? See “What is the most important information I should know about COSENTYX?” • Inflammatory bowel disease. New cases of inflammatory bowel disease or “flare-ups” can happen with COSENTYX, and can sometimes be serious. If you have inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease), tell your healthcare provider if you have worsening disease symptoms during treatment with COSENTYX or develop new symptoms of stomach pain or diarrhea. • Serious allergic reactions. Get emergency medical help right away if you get any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: feel faint; swelling of your face, eyelids, lips, mouth, tongue, or throat; trouble breathing or throat tightness; chest tightness; or skin rash.
Active ingredient: secukinumab Inactive ingredients: Sensoready pen and prefilled syringe: L-histidine/ histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, L-methionine, polysorbate 80, trehalose dihydrate, and sterile water for injection.
The most common side effects of COSENTYX include: cold symptoms, diarrhea, and upper respiratory infections. These are not all of the possible side effects of COSENTYX. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. Keep COSENTYX and all medicines out of the reach of children. General information about the safe and effective use of COSENTYX Medicines are sometimes prescribed for purposes other than those listed in a Medication Guide. Do not use COSENTYX for a condition for which it was not prescribed. Do not give COSENTYX to other people, even if they have the same symptoms you have. It may harm them. You can ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist for information about COSENTYX that is written for health professionals. What are the ingredients in COSENTYX?
Vial: L-histidine/histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, polysorbate 80, and sucrose. The recommended dose is 150 mg, but if you also have moderate to severe psoriasis or continue to have PsA symptoms after you start, your doctor may prescribe 300 mg (taken as two 150-mg injections).
COSENTYX.COM/PSA 1-844-COSENTYX (1-844-267-3689)
IF YOU’RE ELIGIBLE
*Limitations apply. Commercial insurance only. Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation East Hanover, New Jersey 07936-1080
© 2017 Novartis
T H E
H E A LT H
R E P O R T
NEW RESEARCH BULLETINS FROM AROUND THE WORLD.
Two 2017 studies have raised new concerns about tattooing. One found the sweat rate of inked skin to be half that of bare skin, potentially compromising body cooling and your workout. The other discovered ink particles that had migrated to lymph nodes, which play a key role in immunity. Both studies were small, however, and may have been overhyped. (The first one had just 10 guys, and the second used four tattooed cadavers.) Bottom line? Think twice before covering wide swaths of your body with tattoos. But as for getting a small I-loveMom heart on your arm, you’re still clear.
BE CALM AND TAT ON
RETHINK DAILY ASPIRIN
To prevent heart attack and stroke, doctors often suggest taking a daily low-dose aspirin (81 milligrams). But not everyone may benefit, according to a 2017 study in the journal Clinical Cardiology. After three years of tracking people 45 and older with cardiovascular disease, researchers found
Experts continue to debate the efficacy of the prostate specific antigen test PSA ISN’T (PSA), a blood screen DOA YET for cancer. In 2012, a task force deemed its odds of preventing deaths from the disease at slim to zero. But in a new analysis of the same data, the PSA was found to reduce the risk of prostate cancer death by 25 to 32 percent over an 11-year period (versus no screening). What’s your move? Discuss the pros and cons with your doctor. “It’s not a one-size-fits-all test,” says researcher Ruth Etzioni, Ph.D. 3
that people who’d never had a heart attack received no benefit from daily aspirin. Regular aspirin use can raise your risk of stomach, intestine, and brain bleeding. If you’re currently popping one, ask your doctor if it’s a good idea to continue, says study coauthor Anthony Bavry, M.D.
MensHealth.com / December 2017
BREAKING BAD HABITS
People who exceeded three straight hours watching a TV series were nearly twice as likely to have trouble falling or staying asleep as non-bingers. Such viewing can leave you mulling the plot, says researcher Jan Van den Bulck, Ph.D. Mix up what you watch. Fig. 4
LOTION DEMOTION Suffering from dry, scaly winter skin? A JAMA Dermatology analysis of 174 lotions and moisturizers found that nearly all of those products claiming to be “dermatologist recommended,” “hypoallergenic,” “natural,” “fragrance free,” or “organic” contained at least one potential allergen, including fragrances. What’s more, these lotions were selling at up to a 9,400 percent premium. Save money by using shea butter. Or, if you have eczema or psoriasis, ask a dermatologist to recommend an alternative, says study coauthor Jonathan Silverberg, Ph.D.
The two most dangerous positions for sex are man-on-top and doggy style. A recent Brazilian study of ER admissions found that your penis is at the greatest risk for fracture during vigorous thrusting, when you’re more likely to exit your partner and miss the target during reinsertion. (The tissues that expand for an erection can actually rupture under the extra pressure.) So try to be mindful, wild man. If you hear a snap, says Rodrigo Barros, M.D., hit the ER. Immediately.
BEAT HOLIDAY BLUES
Accepting a bad mood instead of deeming it inappropriate caused less depression and anxiety and more life satisfaction, in a new study. The more you beat yourself up about being down, the longer the feeling lingers.
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Your Opioid First-Aid Kit DRUG OVERDOSES ARE THE NUMBER ONE KILLER OF AMERICANS UNDER AGE 50. NEARLY TWO OUT OF THREE VICTIMS ARE MEN. LEARN HOW TO SAVE THEM. / BY MAIA SZALAVITZ, CINDY KUZMA, AND JENNIFER MESSIMER
ASSESS THE SITUATION
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Combine OTC Drugs Carefully Ibuprofen, aspirin, or naproxen can be taken with acetaminophen (Tylenol). A University of Pittsburgh study found an acetaminophen/ ibuprofen pairing to be more effective than opioids for dental pain relief. Just stick to the label’s recommended daily dosage for each.
Try Taking a Different Pill Acetaminophen and ibuprofen come in prescription strengths too. If opioids are a must, ask about all options as well as the risks of abuse, misuse, and addiction; you’re less likely to become dependent on tapentadol (Nucynta) than oxycodone or hydrocodone, according to a British Journal of Pain review.
FORGET ABOUT TOUGH LOVE
If you need to act, cooperation is key. Those tough-love interventions where people are shamed into treatment are “extremely traumatic and often destroy relationships,” says Patt Denning, Ph.D., director of clinical services at the Center for Harm Reduction Therapy in San Francisco. Families can be devastated when the outcome is overdose and not recovery. Instead, try Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT). In one study, it was more than twice as effective as traditional 12-step interventions. It helps family members engage the person, without being confrontational, to encourage them to consider treatment. Ask your therapist if he or she does CRAFT or “harm reduction” therapy. (Find a guide to CRAFT at motivationandchange.com.)
GET THE RIGHT MEDS RIGHT AWAY
Methadone or buprenorphine as a medication-assisted treatment option seems counter intuitive and is often stigmatized. But it’s the only approach that cuts the risk of death by 50 percent or more, says Dr. Wakeman. Both meds are superior to abstinence for preventing relapse; and if relapse occurs, they lower the risk of overdose death. The drugs also reduce the risk of acquiring and transmitting hepatitis and HIV. “It gives the person their life back immediately,” Denning says. “They can have minimal cravings and be mentally clear to make choices.” (Vivitrol is a newer non-opioid option that blocks opioid receptors in the brain. But because it resets tolerance to opioids, a person taking it has an increased risk of accidental overdose after it’s stopped.)
WHAT IS FENTANYL, ANYWAY? An opioid that’s 50 times more potent than heroin, fentanyl can be mixed into heroin, cocaine, and
other drugs (such as OxyContin) with or without the buyer’s knowledge to boost the drug’s effect. When
people take Oxy or heroin and don’t know it’s laced with fentanyl, they risk using enough to stop breathing.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY TED CAVANAUGH
Prop styling: Wendy Schelah/Halley Resources, BROWN BIRD DESIGN (illustrations)
Daily opioid use by someone in chronic pain may not necessarily mean addiction. (Requiring medication to function is common in chronic conditions like diabetes and asthma.) A more telling sign is drug use that continues despite negative consequences. If someone is skipping work, always needs money, or becomes secretive about his or her activities, then you should worry. “Focus first on building trust and trying to understand what’s going on,” says Sarah Wakeman, M.D., of the Substance Use Disorders Initiative at Massachusetts General Hospital. “Slowing down to think through your loved one’s situation can prevent stress and conflict,” adds Carrie Wilkens, Ph.D., clinical director of New York’s Center for Motivation and Change. Consider your options carefully; most treatment facilities aren’t federally regulated. At the state level, there’s no single oversight authority, standards vary between states, and some programs are exempt from state regulation. Visit samhsa.gov/ find-help to find a local provider, but be aware that while the government keeps the list, it doesn’t vet the programs.
TAME PAIN WITHOUT OPIOIDS
When you suspect that a loved one has an opioid addiction involving a drug such as OxyContin, Vicodin, fentanyl, heroin, or some combination, SPECIAL REP ORT it can be hard to think rationally. You’re frightened, furious, or both. You may feel betrayed. If the person suffers from chronic pain, it may be unclear what role the drugs play in the problem. To make matters worse, you face a welter of conflicting “expert” advice. Fortunately, there’s now a strong scientific body of knowledge on ways to help people who are either addicted or on the brink. Here’s what to do.
DRUG OVERDOSE FATALITIES IN THE U.S. IN 2016
64,000 58,220 TOTAL U.S. CASUALTIES IN VIETNAM CONFLICT, 1954â€“1975
ON ANY GIVEN DAY IN AMERICA . . .
3,900 580 91
THIS IS A MALE HEALTH CRISIS TOTAL U.S. DRUG OVERDOSE DEATHS IN 2015
PEOPLE USE PRESCRIPTION OPIOIDS FOR NONMEDICAL REASONS
PEOPLE START USING HEROIN
32,957 WERE MEN
PEOPLE DIE FROM AN OPIOIDRELATED OVERDOSE
YEAR-OVER-YEAR GROWTH IN U.S. OPIOIDRELATED DEATHS
TOTAL U.S. OPIOID-RELATED DEATHS IN 2015
HEROIN 40 20
SYNTHETICS (INCLUDING F E N TA N Y L)
0 -20 2011
21,671 WERE MEN
CDC, U.S. NATIONAL ARCHIVES & RECORDS ADMINISTRATION, SAMHSA, NIDA, NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS
FIND OUT WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON
Once someone agrees to get help, encourage him or her to start with an addiction evaluation by a medical professional who has no affiliation to any drug program. This ensures a more objective evaluation and treatment. (Such experts
are often found at universities.) Many drug-dependent people also have a mental health disorder, such as depression, anxiety, or untreated childhood ADHD, and many adult opioid users have experienced PTSD or childhood trauma. If the drug problem is driven by psychiatric symptoms, those need to be treated along with the dependency itself.
BEWARE OF FRIENDS WHO MEAN WELL OPIOID USER’S SOURCE 1.9% 5.3%
FRIEND/RELATIVE’S SOURCE 54.2%
FREE FROM FRIEND/ RELATIVE
BOUGHT/ TOOK FROM FRIEND/ RELATIVE
MORE THAN ONE DOCTOR
DRUG DEALER/ STRANGER
MensHealth.com / December 2017
TAME PAIN WITHOUT OPIOIDS
Intercept the Message Pain sensations travel from an injury site to the brain via nerves, and doctors have new methods of jamming these signals, says Asokumar Buvanendran, M.D., an anesthesiologist with Rush University Medical Center: 1) using nerve blocks, like injections of anesthetics or steroids; 2) implanting electrodes that deliver electrical pulses to the spine; 3) singeing nerve tissue with heat (called radiofrequency ablation); and 4) implanting pumps that deliver medications directly to the spine.
SAVE THE FANCY REHAB FOR CELEBS
ACCEPT OCCASIONAL RELAPSE
Media stories of celebrity rehab may lead you to believe that a month in a posh treatment program is the best way to treat a drug addiction. It’s not. “Science has never shown that 28-day programs are effective for opioid use disorders,” says Dr. Wakeman. Addiction tends to be chronic, so a short burst of treatment in an artificial situation isn’t likely to help. (That said, if someone is in a drug den, get them to a safe place.)
No one expects a dieter to never cheat. But overcoming addiction requires new behaviors and often a complete lifestyle overhaul, so failure to change completely and immediately is often viewed as failure to change at all. Seeing relapse as a return to square one is counterproductive. “It’s harmful because it robs the person of all the gains they’ve made,” says Denning. “If someone has gone from using daily to once every three months, that’s progress that should be celebrated.”
A CRISIS 100 YEARS IN THE MAKING
LOCK UP YOUR DRUGSTORE While you’ve warned your kids about prescription drugs, it’s still a smart idea to prevent their friends (or an Airbnb guest) from raiding pills while you’re away. A small safe is best, but it’s inconvenient.
Instead, you can make a wood cabinet or drawer more secure. The two-piece StealthLock is controlled by a small wireless keypad, and its receiver latch mounts easily. Punch a code to open, take your meds,
BUILD A SOCIAL STRUCTURE
TAME PAIN WITHOUT OPIOIDS
The people most likely to overcome addiction have a meaningful social structure ( job, school) and a strong network of friends and family members who make them feel loved and needed. Unfortunately, the U.S. treatment system has focused on a single way to generate social support: 12-step programs like Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous, where people meet to confess their “character defects” and turn their lives over to a Higher Power. Since these meetings are free and widely available, it’s worthwhile to try a few to see if they help. But these groups are not the only or even the best way to get support. “Using drugs and recovering from their effects takes up a lot of space in a person’s life. When you stop, that empty space can be overwhelming,” says Wilkens. “Having social support helps fill that space with healthy alternatives.” Anything from kickboxing to choir will do, as long as it’s enjoyable and engaging. Generally, social activities are better than solitary ones, and exercise is especially helpful because it lifts mood.
1916 Oxycodone is synthesized from thebaine; a year later, it’s used clinically for the first time.
Weed it out In a recent survey of patients who replaced opioidbased pain therapy with cannabis to treat conditions like arthritis and fibromyalgia, 71 percent said it was just as effective as opioids at managing their pain. Other studies found that migraine frequency fell with marijuana use, and that oil capsules containing THC, or oral sprays containing both THC and CBD (the active compounds in marijuana), eased chronic cancer pain. Official guidelines don’t endorse smoking marijuana for any condition, and it remains illegal in many states; but in states where it’s legal, opioid-related overdose deaths have decreased. S O U R C E S: G I N A R YA N , P harm . D., ASOKUMAR BUVANENDR AN, S T E V E N S TA N O S , D . O .
M . D.,
1920 Congress first recognizes the hazard posed by unregulated heroin, morphine, and other opiates.
push the door closed, and punch in the code to lock. While 80 pounds of resistance won’t stop someone with a pry bar, it will keep your kids’ friends honest. $150, amazon.com —SAL VAGLICA
NEVER LET ANYONE SLEEP IT OFF
Because relapse can be part of recovery—and counterfeit street opioids often contain potent fentanyl and similar analogs—it’s crucial to know how to recognize and respond to an overdose. Naloxone (Narcan) is an antidote that rapidly reverses the effects of opioids. It’s harmless and can’t be misused, even when treating unconsciousness that turns out to be unrelated to an overdose. Anyone who’s dealing with addiction—their own or a loved one’s—should have it nearby. Naloxone can be obtained without a prescription in most states from pharmacies, hospitals, and needle exchange programs. It comes as an injection or nasal spray. For more information, visit the website getnaloxonenow.org. A n opioid overdose kills by stopping breathing. Signs include unconsciousness, blue lips or extremities, and a weird gurgling or snoring-like sound. Never let someone you suspect of overdosing “sleep it off.” They may never wake up. Try to arouse them. If you can’t, use naloxone, call 911, and do rescue breathing if needed until help arrives.
1980 The risk of addiction to opioids is negligible, a New England Journal of Medicine study concludes.
1996 Prescribing rates for opioids soar after “pain” is added as a fifth vital sign in clinical assessments.
HOW TO TALK TO YOUR KIDS ABOUT OPIOIDS Four conversation tips from Jeff Foote, Ph.D., cofounder of the Center for Motivation and Change.
Have a Chat, Not a Lecture Don’t say, “We need to have a discussion.” Instead, ask, “Is it okay if we talk about this?” Asking permission starts a dialogue.
Go Beyond Scare Tactics Detail the dangers (overdose, death) but also touch on the reasons why people take drugs recreationally. Don’t ignore that side. Talk about it.
Invite Dissent It’s normal for kids to push back, so ask if they agree with your view or if you’re overlooking anything. “You want them to discuss it as openly as possible,” says Foote.
Follow Up Reward participation with positive reinforcement. Thank them for being receptive. And don’t make it a onetime thing. Check in periodically.
2017 President Trump approves $500 million for opioid treatment, recovery, and prevention.
THE ADVENTURIST One impossible challenge. Five days to train. Go.
The Best Way to Flip Out
THINK YOU HAVE THE FORTITUDE TO TACKLE A MASSIVE SKI JUMP? / BY CLINT CARTER
When the rep at Utah Olympic Park told me I wouldn’t be allowed beyond the 10.5-foot single ramp, I was a little burned. I came here to learn and execute a backflip in five days, and even though I’m a rank amateur who’s never caught air before (at least not intentionally), I had my eyes on the Mongo, the 22-foot triple ramp that can launch a skier 50 feet into the sky. It sounded like fun. Besides, the UOP and U.S. Ski & Snowboard not only gave me access to their milliongallon training pool (where I’ll be landing) but also
80 MensHealth.com / December 2017
PHOTOGRAPHS BY CODY PICKENS
Data from a Fitbit Ionic
3,500 DAY 2
50 45 FLOORS
DAY 3 40
DAY 4 30
Steps? Meh. Stories (floors) climbed capture real effort.
assigned me an aerials goddess for a coach: Ashley Caldwell, the current women’s freestyle world champion. But as I look down at the kiddie ramp (a.k.a. the Mini) for my first training jump, my burn gives way to relief. Even the 3-foot jump turns my courage to pudding, so I imagine the Mongo could leave me coughing up my own testicles. Air jets at the bottom of the pool create bubbles that break the water’s surface tension, but impact can still sting plenty. The single ramp I’m building toward will shoot me off at nearly 25 mph, and even a good landing—skis down, smacking the water like a flat-bottom boat—could send a painful shock through my spine. A bad landing could end in a concussion. Even the best-case scenario isn’t great: The pool is unheated and the air temperature here is 50 degrees. I might be forced to piss in my wetsuit just to stay warm.
Fortunately, I’ve had highline training in Fort Collins, Colorado (see “Take Up the Slack,” November). That experience, in addition to improving my balance, taught me how to deal with high-pressure situations by taking deep breaths and visualizing success (not pants-pissing). So I fill my lungs with air, steady my wobbly legs, and launch myself down the runway. I build speed until the descent flattens out, and as the ramp turns upward, I can feel myself sail out over the water. I celebrate by debuting my first trick: air guitar. It’s worth exactly zero points in competition, but it ranks high in landability. The jumps set a productive tone for my first couple of days of training, which focus on adding speed, timing the jumps, and bouncing on a trampoline to learn how to control my body while I’m in the air. I fly down the ramp 29 times and take a few face flops and back flops. I’ve been given a new Fitbit Ionic to play with, and its data reveals that after repeatedly ascending to the top of the ramp, I’ve climbed 105 flights in two days. The collateral damage? Pain in my neck and back, both of which are stiff and achy after repeatedly slam-
1. (and previous) The author, his double backflip, and the view from the ramp. 2. Flips and rotations in the gym are essential to success in midair. 3. Wet landing: the Spence Eccles Olympic Freestyle Pool. 4. Ashley Caldwell shows Clint the ropes.
ming into the water. To fall asleep at the end of day two, I put a pillow under my hips to relieve some lumbar pain, and the following day I shadow Ashley for much-needed recovery work (see the opposite page). Once I feel stronger, Ashley green-lights me for the 10.5-foot single. “You’re going to have to go faster and hit the ramp harder,” she says. Caution could really hurt. Her final advice: “Just ski confidently!” I scrape my psyche for what courage I can find and try to take her advice, but it’s funny how fear slows you down. On my first run on the single ramp, I leave the ramp at a snail’s pace and topple like a dead body into the water. Ashley has a tip: “When I’m scared, I dance.” Oddly, that’s the same thing the highliners in Colorado told me
STAY IN THE GAME Active recovery is key to bouncing back after an intense training session. Tschana Schiller of U.S. Ski & Snowboard has the right plan for you.
Pump the Pedals 10 TO 15 MINUTES Light to medium aerobic activity—like a short bike ride or casual jump-roping— increases muscle temp and gives you more mobility for the second and third parts of your recovery. “You want to go easy but still break a sweat,” Schiller says.
Hit the Foam
MICHAEL BRANDON MYERS (icons)
10 MINUTES Foam-rolling tired muscles can help with soreness and restore power faster. “Spend at least a minute on each muscle group, a bit more on sensitive spots,” Schiller says. Hurts too bad? Use a roller made of softer foam. Later you can graduate to harder rollers.
to do when I was nervous. So I do a jig in my wetsuit and ski boots, and with my second run at the single, I find my momentum. On the third, I land a backflip. I pump my fist and shout a string of celebratory expletives. Then, as I swim to the edge of the pool, I stop to look back at the ramps. Teams from other nations regularly travel to the UOP for training, and one of the Australian aerialists is just coming off the triple ramp. He sails in a graceful arc over my head, flipping thrice and spinning too many times to count before landing cleanly in the water. Then he swims to the edge and starts back up the stairs for another jump. No celebrations. No expletives. Just solid. It dawns on me that while I am busy training for a trick, the real athletes are training to become the best there is.
I ask Ashley for help with a double backflip, the logical next step. The extra spinning will require me to keep my knees tucked longer, she says. Sticking the landing will be harder. So she puts me back on the trampoline, straps me into a bungee harness system, and has me spinning backflips until I’m landing not only doubles but triples too. On the final day, the ramp is covered in snow. Before I can jump, I have to go down on my ass, scraping it clean with the edge of my ski. (Ironically, snow can slow you down on the ramps.) Finally, when I’m in the air for my third jump, I can hear her yelling: “Pull! Pull! Pull!” It’s a reminder to keep my legs in tight so I spin fast enough to make it around twice. Then she yells, “Out!” And I straighten up just in time to land cleanly in the water.
Go Deep 10 MINUTES Dynamic stretches, like downward dog, pigeon pose, and yoga lunges, will help loosen stiff ligaments and muscles. Work your entire body, but spend extra time on the joints and muscles that are most sore, as well as the muscle groups you use most in your sport.
MensHealth.com / December 2017 83
BEING A MAN
Styling: Steven Constancio, hair and makeup: Jennifer Stanfield
Glad for a few hours off from shooting Aquaman, Jason Momoa is shirtless and polishing off a bowl of chicken and peanut butter. A superhero physique requires that he ration his carbs to even enjoy Guinness. But as he’s quick to tell you, being Aquaman has its perks too. The meal over, the Hawaii-born actor, 38, stands beneath a custom-built indoor rock climbing wall that plays an integral role in his workout routine. In short order, he’s excitedly leading a tour of a man cave that has become an important refuge during his six months of filming here on Australia’s Gold Coast. Between filming commitments, this cavernous space offers the extensive gym and weight training machines Momoa needs in order to maintain his muscular, 230-odd-pound frame. Of even greater interest to Momoa than lifting heavy objects, though, are the musical instruments set up in a far corner of the space. “Look at this thing, man!” he says, strapping on a Fender bass. “This thing is so fuckin’ badass!” He plugs in, flicks on an amplifier, and gives a groovy demonstration of his new creative outlet. Using his thumb and fingers against four strings, Momoa plays in a pop-and-slap style that’d sound at home on a vintage Red Hot Chili Peppers record. “There’s a bunch of stuff I want to learn. Instead of waiting around on set all day, I’d rather be learning something cool.” The photographer approaches for a few candid shots, and Momoa rolls his eyes. “We’ll do it later,” Momoa says to him. “Let me get a shirt on.” To me, he says, “That’s all they want—me with my shirt off!” He laughs, plays a few more notes, gets lost in the music, and then reconsiders. “Ah, fuck it. You can take one. Momoa continues with the funky technique and then switches to a more intricate piece. “I just started learning this,” he says, eyes on the fretboard. “I just can’t sit still, man. There’s too much shit I want to do.” Momoa’s interest in the bass arose because his costar, Patrick Wilson, who plays Aquaman’s half brother, Ocean Master, is “awesome on the drums.” Momoa wanted to play along. He’d already picked up slide guitar on the set of the sci-fi series Stargate Atlantis, in which he appeared in
78 episodes between 2005 and 2009. The actor has come a long way since then—in his musical ability as well as in his acting career and cultural footprint. He sets the bass aside and picks up another instrument near the drum kit. “This is my Aquaman guitar, dude,” he says. “I saved a lot of money so I could get this thing.” Momoa cradles it, a beauty modeled on the battle-worn 1959 Gibson Les Paul played by Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page. “There’s only a hundred of these in the world. I have number nine,” he says, admiring the gift he gave himself for earning the role in Aquaman, a film reportedly budgeted at $160 million and scheduled for release at the end of 2018. Before then, he’ll appear in fellow DC film Justice League, due out in November. With a hearty laugh, he says, “I told my wife: one woman, lots of toys!” Momoa’s wife, the actress Lisa Bonet, and their two kids, ages 8 and 10, recently returned home to California after two and a half months on the Gold Coast. (The kids were going back at school.) “I really can’t tell you what the
This Aquaman soundstage in Australia is a well-equipped playground for wall climbing, stick fighting, and occasionally a little acting. MensHealth.com / December 2017 87
BEING A MAN
HOW MOMOA GOT STRONGER To build pecs worthy of the King of Atlantis, Momoa gave a call to his old friend and trainer Mark Twight, the mountaineer who founded Gym Jones and also transformed the actor Henry Cavill into Superman. Twight was well aware of Momoa’s affinity for rock climbing, so he leveraged that knowledge to come up with a master plan: Go hard, starting his chest and shoulder workouts with brutal supersets like the one at right. Then Momoa could still hit the climbing wall once in a while.
DIRECTIONS: START YOUR NEXT CHEST WORKOUT BY PERFORMING THESE THREE EXERCISES AS A CIRCUIT. REST AS NEEDED BETWEEN ROUNDS. COMPLETE 5 ROUNDS.
Incline Bench Press Select a weight that’s about 70 percent of your 1-rep max. Don’t know your 1-rep max? Aim for a weight that will challenge you for about 10 reps. Do 6 reps , focusing on maintaining good form.
Standing Dumbbell Press Stand with your feet shoulderwidth apart, holding dumbbells at your shoulders. Tighten your core and press the dumbbells overhead. Lower them. Use a weight heavy enough to make the eighth rep hard. Do 12 reps.
Pushup Pushups may seem like they’re easy, but not as a finisher to this superset. Do 24 reps, keeping your core tight as you lift your chest off the ground.
hell I was doing before I had kids,” he says, walking back toward the middle of the man cave and sitting cross-legged on a carpet of Astroturf. “Just fucking off. Wasting time. I think I was pretty reckless and definitely a bit out of control. Now I’m more focused. I probably love myself more and take care of myself more because I want to stick around.” The way Momoa sees it, he has just five more summers with his children before he’s no longer a central figure in their lives. “When I was 15, I was out of the house; I was gone,” he says. “Right now I’m just Papa,” he says, smiling. Raised in Norwalk, Iowa, Momoa was the only child of a single mother, Coni. Momoa’s uncle Craig—his mom’s
A fighting stick (below) is the dry-land standin for Aquaman’s trusty trident; Metallica is Momoa’s muse on the bass guitar.
brother—was the main male figure in his life. “He was kind of like my dad growing up, because my dad was in Hawaii,” he says. “Craig was an all-around amazing man. He took care of his family, he was kind, he was strong, he was really funny. He was definitely the man I looked up to.” THOUGH HE’S MOSTLY KNOWN FOR HIS
roles in front of the camera—notably as the fearsome Dothraki warlord Khal Drogo in the first season of HBO’s Game of Thrones—Momoa hungers to tell his own stories too. One of his many ideas includes gathering some of his best friends and fellow fathers “and just talking about being a good dad,” he says. “Sometimes you don’t learn it from your parents. You learn it from your best friends,” he says. “Instead of just, ‘This is what a man’s supposed to be’ and all the bullshit stuff out there, you can make something really positive. The truth is we’re all searching. We’re all looking for guidance, for mentors, and I’m by no means someone to follow.” This is one of the aspects of being famous that freaks Momoa out: When strangers stop him to tell him they look up to him, he finds himself cringing. “I’m a degenerate too, you know?” he says. “I have my ups and my downs like anyone. All I can do is be me.” Sometimes he can be a little unfiltered. On a ComicCon panel with his GoT costars back in 2011, he joked about Drogo being free to cut out tongues and “rape beautiful women” with impunity. He apologized when footage of the incident surfaced online and caused a stir last month. Momoa hopes to be known as a kolohe, a Hawaiian word that means “rascal, fun, misfit,” he says. “But I want to be remembered as, I hope, an amazing husband and a great father. My kids are my greatest piece of art. If I can pump them full of amazing stuff and surround them with beautiful art and music, then I’m going to live out my life watching them. They’re already way smarter and just way better than me.” He shakes his head in disbelief. “God, I love it,” he says. “It’s beautiful. I want it to be the greatest thing I ever do: make good humans.”
Illustrations by BROWN BIRD DESIGN
88 MensHealth.com / December 2017
BY PETER MOORE AND THE EDITORS
Does it seem like you can’t get through a week without some sexist troll making all men look bad? For much of 2017 it did. And we get it: Even the best among us have work to do. But “we live in the best of times ever, no matter what naysayers say,” former NASA astronaut Leroy Chiao reminds us, and “the great thing about being a man in these times is that we have more power to effect positive change.” Damn right. And we can love guy stuff and not be dickheads. More than ever, we love being dudes because...
COLLEGE ENROLLMENT AFTER HIGH SCHOOL WHITE 72% 62%
BLACK 69% 57%
HISPANIC 76% 62%
TECHBROMUS Favorite activity: showing off some techy gadget before you even knew it existed.
Pew Research Center
“You can piss standing up. For me, that’s always been ILLUSTRATIONS BY TIM ENTHOVEN
Noah Graham/NBAE/Getty Images (Curry), Mike Kemp/Getty Images (bearded man)
IS GOING TOBE SO MUCH BETTER
3. There’s never been a better time to pour a cold one. Craft beer has approached maximum saturation since its early inception in the 1980s. In 2016, craft breweries accounted for 5,234 of 5,301 U.S. breweries, the Brewers Association reports. Sift through your options with apps like BeerMenus, TapHunter, or Untappd. Track limited-edition releases in aluminum on Instagram (instagram. com/canrelease). Our current obsession: hazy, juicy IPAs. You’ll know you’re on the right track if you see a brew labeled “unfiltered” or one bearing the ingredient lupulin powder— hops crystals imbued with all the dank flavor but little of the bitterness in a whole hops cone. 4. The NBA is nuts—and better rested. Steph Curry’s ICBMs are so worrisome they were condemned by Trump, but the Warriors don’t have a monopoly on grudge matches. / Isaiah’s Cavs and Kyrie’s Celtics rumble at the TD Garden (1/3) / Chris Paul (now dishing assists in Houston) takes on his former Clippers teammates (1/15) / Or check the race to the bottom for the 2018 draft lottery (a good one): Bulls vs. Knicks (1/10).
Helen Sloan/courtesy of HBO (Daenerys), Roaring Brook Press (After the Fall), Sam Jones/Trunk Archive (Offerman)
BABYBJORNIS Opening line: “I got peed on today.” Life goal: getting baby to dig Miles Davis’s electric period.
5. You can snatch victory from defeat. King LeBron James is both a goat—more championship losses (five) than any other player—and the G.O.A.T.: three championships, seven straight finals appearances. And he’s not done! 6. You can put down the razor and pick up a date. More than 8,000 women told researchers at Australia’s University of Queensland that they prefer light or heavy stubble for a short-term fling (like a one-night stand), heavy stubble is sexiest overall, and a bushy beard or any stubble beats out smooth-shaven for husband material. (We assume the women are talking about facial hair here.) 7. You can ditch the cable guy and not miss a damned thing. Apple TV 4K is a compact plug-in device that uses apps and streaming services, and ultra-high-def resolution means your content is crystalline. With apps for MLB, ESPN, and Fox Sports offering split-screen viewing, monitoring all your favorite teams is too easy. 8. Your chance to score a date in college has never been better. (See fig. 8.) College guys win this numbers game twice, because...
9. It’s easier than ever to marry up. A University of Kansas study found that “the likelihood of educational marrying up has substantially increased for men over time, while women’s likelihood has decreased.” The research revealed that market returns for women who married plunged over the course of a decade as their educational levels soared. Study author ChangHwan Kim, Ph.D., drily noted, “Men don’t complain a lot about this.” Of course we don’t. 10. Being a stay-at-home dad is cool. And more do it by choice, not while job hunting, than they did a decade ago. Two great reasons to try it: 1. Dads who do an equal share of chores raise daughters who are more ambitious. So the time you put in now will pay off in your retirement when you stay in President Emma’s White House as beloved First Dad. / 2. Stay-
at-home dads don’t have to stay at home. Pack baby in a Mission Critical Baby Carrier ($179, missioncritical. cc), protect the kid’s tender eardrums with Baby Banz noise-canceling earmuffs ($30, amazon.com), and make for a concert. Jay-Z is on the road, plus the “I Love the ’90s” tour with Vanilla Ice and Salt-N-Pepa. You know you’re ticketed. 11. You can read to your kid without wanting to stab your eyes out. Children’s book expert John Schumacher (@MrSchuReads) has five new titles to recommend. Why Am I Me? by Paige Britt; Happy Dreamer by Peter H. Reynolds; After the Fall by Dan Santat. Novels: Wishtree by Katherine Applegate; The First Rule of Punk by Celia C. Pérez. 12. American lives come with a second act. Tony Romo, former QB, now killing it as a mind-reading
YOU CAN MAKE WHAT YOU NEED YOURSELF.
“I’m careful about the definition of ‘manly.’ Making anything with one’s hands is a very healthy pursuit. Whether that makes you manly or profoundly more of a winning human is 50-50. I know a lot of amazing women in woodworking and there are plenty of men I know who are accomplished knitters. Anytime you’re using your craft for good is a wonderful thing. Woodworking happens to be where my passion led me. I believe our society greatly benefits from anyone who makes something instead of going out and buying it.” —NICK OFFERMAN
the number one advantage of being a man. You can use a gas station restroom without touching anything. —WHEELER WALKER JR., MUSICIAN / “Not MensHealth.com / December 2017 91
BEING A MAN
TAILGATEUS REX Natural habitat: stadium parking lot. Life goal: to be awake and upright for kickoff.
with Prius karma ...because the Ford F-150 Raptor gets 22 mpg. 19. There’s a legit reason to go to Bed Bath & Beyond. They’ve got a tailgating section in some of their stores. We love the Pouch Couch, but don’t inflate it near your Cuisinart Petite Portable Gas Grill. 20. Man’s best herbal friend is now legal for medicinal use in 29 states. A Headset report found that more than twice as many men shop at dispensaries as women. And there’s ganja for everything on your to-do list, says Matt Pennington, budtender at Organic Alternatives in Fort Collins, Colorado. For better sleep, try indica, which puts the “dopey” in dope. For energy, use sativa-packed strains and products. For less pain, go with a body rub containing CBD, a pot compound that cuts inflammation and relieves aches. The folks at CBD Oil Review (an “agnostic investigative group,” so they keep religion out of it) rank BioCBD Plus Topical Oil as a 5-star antipain rub; or you can put a few drops of Elixinol Hemp Oil Cinnamint (3,600 mg CBD) under your tongue. 21. Strong is still the new sexy. Gal Gadot, as Wonder Woman. No
MORE AND MORE, YOU CAN BE WHATEVER KIND OF MAN YOU WANT TO BE.
“We try to portray that in Big Mouth, especially with the dads. A man can be compassionate and emotional like Elliot (Fred Armisen), aggressive and old school like Marty (Richard Kind), cerebral and dorky like Cyrus (Jordan Peele), or even still figuring it all out like Greg (Seth Morris). The key is to be honest and true to yourself. Just don’t be a sociopath like Guy Bilzerian (Jason Mantzoukas).” —NICK KROLL AND ANDREW GOLDBERG, CREATORS OF THE NETFLIX SERIES BIG MOUTH
HOMO ARTISANALIS Motto: “Even my emotions are fair trade.” Favorite activity: building a bonfire or cheese plate.
gonna lie, the plumbing is convenient”—GREG WHITE (via Facebook) / “The coolest thing about being a man today is that we can be more emotionally 92 MensHealth.com / December 2017
TED CAVANAUGH, food styling: Michelle Gatton/Stockland Martel, prop styling: Wendy Schelah/Halley Resources (tomahawk); Guerin Blask/Redux (Kroll), Mike Stobe/Getty Images for EA Sports (Phelps, Woods), Karwai Tang/WireImage/Getty Images (Springsteen), courtesy Ford Motor Company (2), courtesy Mercedes-Benz, Maren Caruso/Getty Images (marijuana)
football analyst; Tim Tebow, formerly impersonating a pro QB, now impersonating a baseball player; Michael Phelps, former Olympian, now counseling fellow troubled athletes like Tiger Woods; Tiger Woods, former golf great, now...? 14. The Boss is on Broadway. 15–17. For every self-driving car, there’s another one that makes motoring awesome again. The new Mercedes AMG E 63 has a drift mode, perfect for scaring the shit out of the family on a grocery run. / The 460 hp 2018 Ford Mustang GT Fastback still comes in manual so your kids won’t even know how to drive it. / You can score pickup power
AH, THE TOMAHAWK RIB EYE.
Itâ€™s the only cut of beef that could double as a cudgel should the situation turn dire. Technically, this piece of meat is a rib eye with a length of rib bone left on. You could pay (big time) for mail order tomahawks from lafrieda.com ($70 for a 36- to 40-ouncer). Or whittle your own: Buy a bone-in rib eye and, using long strokes of a sharp paring knife, remove the meat and fat along the bone. Season with Borsari saltâ€”all a good Tomahawk really needs (borsarifoods.com).
BEING A MAN
co). It tracks each song and builds a playlist for you on Spotify for future digital-only replays. And that’s good, because the only thing vinyl’s lousy at is coming along for your morning jog. 24. You don’t have to be a workaholic to get ahead. Cut the humblebrag about 60–80 hour weeks. It’s time to get human again. 25. You still don’t have to bother with instructions. And now you can get it right. Search a home project or problem on YouTube, watch for three minutes, and you’re an instant expert. Go to class with the Samurai Carpenter, Adam Savage’s One Day Builds, Essential Craftsman, or TechBuilder, where a kid with braces teaches you to do your own BB-8 droid. 26. She’ll pick out some porn for you to enjoy together. Watching porn with a partner sounds hot, but pick the wrong flick and it can get awkward fast. That’s why having more women behind the
VEGANCIRAPTOR Favorite activity: boasting to new clients about his awesome cholesterol levels.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE AN ATHLETE TO HAVE YOUR OWN SNEAKER.
Customizable Vans in countless color and pattern combinations (including uploaded images) are just one way online retailers make it easy to stand out from the crowd . Fig. 28
camera is helpful. Here are three recommendations for couples by porn maven Lynsey G: / For vanilla couples: Takers from Wicked Pictures. A near-future thriller with sky-high production values and performers who can really act in sizzling lesbian, hetero, and group sex scenes. / For horror fans: My Killer Girlfriend is a Burning Angel Entertainment Halloween feature film. Gorgeously shot scenes of bondage, submission, electrocution play. / For the art snobs: Four Chambers is less a porn company than an art-porn collective, and its videos are full of luscious visuals and searing hotness. 28. You can be a geek and still get swole. 29. You can take a knee and still rise. Roger Federer’s reaction to his 2016 knee injury: A recuperative rest, followed by 2017 wins at the Australian Open and Wimbledon. 30. You can take a knee, end up jobless, and still rise. Whether you wear his jersey or burn it, Colin Kaepernick is an example of courage in what he stands for and what he sits for. The view is beautiful from the high moral ground. Take it in sometime.
vulnerable. We can cry.” —JIM O’HEIR, ACTOR / “I love that the norm is for guys to embrace style. Social media has ushered in an era where men are not
TED CAVANAUGH, prop styling: Wendy Schelah/Halley Resources (sneakers); ZUMA Press Inc/Alamy (Gadot), screenshot of Adam Savage/“TechBuilder” on YouTube, illustration by Joel Arbaje for Men’s Health (emoji), David Paul Morris/Bloomberg/Getty Images (Bezos), Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images (Kaepernick)
man outruns the lasso. Or wants to. / Serena Williams, giving everybody else a shot at the U.S. Open while delivering a baby. / Taylor Swift, during cross-examination, lowering the boom on the groping radio host who sued her. / Kate McKinnon, at the Emmys with her hot girlfriend Jackie Abbott, and so smart that she might burn your eyeballs out with her brain if you were to ogle. But we’ll do it anyway. / The female Navy SEAL candidate who dropped out during training exercises in California. Hey, she got farther than you would. 23. Your personal soundtrack is more personal than ever. Vinyl’s back, but you knew that already. What’s better than lush album art and the warm crackle of analog? Finding new jams, courtesy of the textto-buy service The Sound of Vinyl. Every day they’ll send you a new pick. There’s also Trntbl by Vinyl, the first wireless record player ($499, trntbl.
Erik Tanner/Contour/Getty Images (Bourdain)
YOU CAN BE TOUGHER AT 61 THAN AT ANY TIME IN YOUR LIFE. MEN’S HEALTH: Brazilian jiu-jitsu seems to have transformed you. When did you start that? ANTHONY BOURDAIN: Four or five years ago? My then-wife was a full-time martial artist and invited four of the least likely people she knew to take a private training session in the hope it would be hilariously funny and pathetic. She picked me, Doug from Big Gay Ice Cream, and two others. I’d never been in a gym in my life. I was 35 pounds overweight, a chain smoker,
flabby, zero cardio. Taking stairs was not fun. To my shock and surprise, I endured, barely, that first session. I found it very strategically and intellectually intriguing. I like problem solving and I also like being the stupidest person in the room. I like being at the foot of a very steep incline where you never reach the top. It’s one of the reasons I like Japan. Sounds like you got hooked fast. It was the last thing I ever thought I would find myself doing, which is to
say, enjoy rolling around on a mat with a bunch of sweaty dudes. But I started taking classes and these days I mostly train open mat, which means I show up at academies all over the world, walk in the door like everybody else, get in my gi, and do five-minute rounds with anybody who wants to fight. Even regular warmups in white belt class and four or five rounds of rolling get you whipped into shape pretty good. It’s also the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Getting my blue belt was easily the most difficult accomplishment of my life. Ever gotten hurt? I’ve torn a groin muscle. That took me out for a few months. Other than that I’ve been lucky. Just the usual bruises, black eyes, cauliflower ear. I had to have my ear reconstructed. A cauliflower ear is a badge of honor. Nobody picks a bar fight with you. Yeah, it was too bad. I was proud of it. But look, I’m 61 years old. I have limited expectations of how I’ll do, but every once in a while I get to feel the will to live drain out of a 22-year-old wrestler. Has your eating changed since you got focused on being fit? I was never sitting at home with a bag of chips between meals. I eat for a living, so I was already conscious of carbs and sugar. But it’s not like I deprive myself. And I don’t think about being fit. I think about being able to do jiu-jitsu well. It’s not like I’m looking in the mirror saying, “Gee, you know, I need to work on that arm.” I’m 61! I don’t have that kind of vanity. It’s more like, “What will help me get better in jiu-jitsu, or suck less at it?” If jiu-jitsu were a life philosophy, what it would be? Humility. I’ve had my ass kicked everywhere, but it engages the mind and pushes the body to extremes. You did a film about Jeremiah Tower, a chef who came out of retirement to run Tavern on the Green in 2014. Does his story have a lesson for you? Jeremiah said it best: Never underestimate your own ability to delude yourself. You still love doing Parts Unknown? I have the best job in the world. I decide where we go and what we do when we get there. It’s pretty awesome. What’s your comfort food these days? A bowl of spicy noodles on a street in Southeast Asia, pasta out of a cracked bowl at a family-run place in Rome, a pastrami sandwich in New York. What do you love about being a guy right now? I don’t know, honestly. I’m frequently embarrassed by my fellow males. Most of the people I turn to when the shit goes down—they’re all women. So yeah, not much! I enjoy having a penis, but that’s because I never had a vagina.
afraid to show the world who they are.” —DANIEL CAUDILL, SHINOLA / “Being a man is no longer something to prove. Just something to be.” —@DAMCDONALD65 MensHealth.com / December 2017 95
I N S I D E
BY JERILYN COVERT PHOTOGRAPHS BY C L AY TO N C U B I T T PAGE 96
In the world of orgasm research, scientists are in a race to decode the secrets of the female climax. What theyâ€™ve found just might help improve her sex life â€” and yours.
O Oh god,
I KNOW IT WHEN I FEEL IT. I KNOW WHAT WORKS WHEN I TAKE
my pleasure into my own hands. Still, I’d been told to expect performance anxiety— after all, I’m in a strange room far from home, with someone just outside the cracked door. You’d have to be an exhibitionist not to feel weird. (I’m not an exhibitionist.) But that familiar, wondrous feeling arrives not long after I settle in, close my eyes, and put my mind and fingers to work. A tingling between my legs, warmth in my feet. Then, pure pleasure washes over me and a pulsing sensation sends shivers throughout my body. For a brief while—21 seconds, I’d later learn—I check out. When I open my eyes and will myself back to reality, a flatscreen deadpans: “You’re done. Get dressed.” I straighten my dress, cast off the blanket covering my bare legs, and try to regain my composure. “Okay,” I say, “you can come in.”
98 MensHealth.com / December 2017
Nicole Prause, Ph.D., enters the room. She’s tall, lean, pretty in a no-bullshit kind of way—face makeup-free, blond hair in an untidy bun. At 39, she stands out in her field because (a) she’s a woman, and (b) she runs her own lab, called Liberos. After leaving UCLA last year and securing grant money, Prause became her own boss, unfettered by university politics. Her focus: sex as a way to promote general health—as a treatment for depression, chronic pain, sleep disorders, even arthritis. Someday, Prause says, doctors could prescribe masturbation. “Natural, free, accessible—what more do you want from your health care?” she asks me. Researchers have been studying sex for more than half a century. I watched Masters of Sex on Showtime and figured that by now we’ve learned all there is to learn about this fundamental act. Boy, was I wrong. There remains a remarkable amount of uncertainty about the supposed best part—that intensely pleasurable climax. That’s finally changing. In fact, Prause (PROW-see) is at the forefront of a race to decode the complex cascade of signals and inputs underlying the female orgasm. It’s a pursuit fraught with complexity: Scientists can’t be in the room while a volunteer is sexually aroused; grant money is limited and tends to be weighted toward studies on diseases like cancer. And sex research, well—let’s just say it’s a tough sell at a cocktail party. For scientists—and many women—female orgasm is elusive and complex. Heterosexual women report reaching orgasm during sex only 65 percent of the time, versus 95 percent for straight men. And being in a lab doesn’t exactly set the mood. But Prause, from a small, unassuming office in L.A., is tackling these challenges in new ways that promise to seriously advance the field—and your sex life.
YO U M I G H T T H I N K T H AT W O M E N H AV E A
leg up on men (sometimes literally) when it comes to pleasure. After all, research suggests that female orgasm can be generated from at least five areas—the clitoris, the G-spot, the cervix, the nipples, and (believe it or not) the earlobes. Some women may even be able to achieve orgasm using their imagination alone. Obviously evolution wanted us women to enjoy sex. As the renowned biological anthropologist Helen Fisher, Ph.D., puts it, it’s to a man’s advantage to please a woman in bed so she’ll come back and do it again. “The only way he’ll send his DNA down through eternity is if a woman has his baby. So it’s an adaptive mechanism to want to please her.” In the here and now, you’ll have better sex, which leads to more sex. Who doesn’t want that? The dean of current orgasm research is Barry Komisaruk, Ph.D., of Rutgers University, who’s been studying orgasms for 15 years. In 2004, Komisaruk and his team, which included the author Beverly Whipple (The G Spot), became the first to show where brain activity occurs in women at climax. Komisaruk uses fMRI, functional magnetic resonance imaging. His team slides a woman into a scanner where she masturbates while they snap pictures of her brain. (Hot, right?) The machine records bloodflow and oxygenation, indicators of neural activity. Among their findings: The brain has no dedicated “sex part,” but areas associated with pleasure and memory do light up at orgasm. That’s what keeps us coming back for more. During orgasm, Komisaruk told me, “so many different brain regions are activated. That’s not surprising, because so many body systems are activated.” Orgasm starts with the genital sensory cortex and then spreads to areas in the limbic system, including the amygdala (emotional processing) and hippocampus
Arousal areas in the brain overlap with the pain matrix. That may explain why your O face can look like you’re in pain. And why her O face is so painfully hot.
(memory, fantasy) along with the insula and anterior cingulate cortex (visceral sensation and internal feelings). Those last two are also activated when you feel pain, says Komisaruk, which may explain why orgasm can have a pain-blocking effect. And why your O face can look like you just threw out your back. The way the brain “lights up” is the same in men and women, Komisaruk says, with one key difference: After orgasm, the male brain tends to respond less to stimulation, while the female brain continues to respond. That may explain why women can have multiple orgasms, while men usually need a break before going again. The other significant contributor to orgasm research is Dutch neuroscientist Janniko Georgiadis, Ph.D., who’s done about 60 studies on orgasm from his University of Groningen lab. For him, what’s more telling is not what lights up in the brain but what shuts down. Georgiadis primarily uses PET (positron emission tomography) scans, which also track bloodflow and brain activity. Like fMRI, PET can localize the brain activity, but it’s slower, so the true flash point is easier to miss. With his PET scans, Georgiadis saw some brain regions respond, aligning with some of Komisaruk’s findings. But to his surprise, he also found an orgasmrelated decrease of bloodflow in certain regions, especially the prefrontal cortex and the temporal cortex, areas linked to planning and comprehension, respectively. These areas light up during the day when you’re speaking, listening, thinking, engaging—anything to do with conscious thought. During orgasm, they’re about 10 percent less active compared with the stages before. When you climax, Georgiadis says, you have “an altered perception of things going on around you. There is less awareness, less fear. Everyone knows that you’re
I N H E R L A B , P R AU S E N AV I GATE S PAS T M E
COUNTDOWN TO ECSTASY Scientists gave us the data. Sex therapists gave us the how-to. The results: Sciencebacked ways you can be her orgasm donor.
7 6 5
Go Slow Don’t zero in on the nipples or clitoris too early—they’re not “on buttons,” and being touched in those areas can be painful if she’s not aroused
yet, says sex therapist Lori Brotto, Ph.D. Watch her body—erect hair follicles is a good sign—and follow her lead; tell her, “I am guided by you.”
No, Slower! Ready for penetration? Ask first. Wet doesn’t mean ready. (That’s why lube is a poor substitute for foreplay.) Her vaginal walls should be
engorged and “pillowy.” Tease the vulva with your penis; play with shallow thrusts, says Kerner. Or have her do that herself. You can watch.
Stop Worrying About Her of contact—your Your well-intentioned interlocked hands, check-ins (“Almost where your bellies there?”) can interrupt touch, how her breast her flow, says sex therfeels against your lips. apist Erica Marchand, Notice texture, temPh.D. Focus instead, perature, vibrations. says Brotto, on points
Have Fun! Humor helps turn off the thinking part of your brain so you can both focus on pleasure. Know that there’s no one right way, says Marchand.
If you slip out or fall off the bed, so what? She won’t care. So lighten up. (Check out hystericalliterature. com for our favorite sexy-funny videos.)
Find Entrainment Steady rhythm is key. Start with a rhythm and pressure that feels natural, says Marchand. Ask easy, brief questions so she can stay in the
moment: “Faster or slower?” “Softer or harder?” “How does that feel?” Not: “What should I do?” If she seems close, don’t change a thing! —J.C.
how great she looks in candlelight. Nicole Prause, Ph.D., found that body-negative thoughts curbed women’s arousal while they watched porn.
Stimulate Multiple Areas own experiments, Some experts say says Kerner. Kiss her female orgasm can be neck, caress the small generated from sevof her back, whisper eral spots beyond the in her ear. And try obvious clitoris— stimulating the clitoris nipples, earlobes, cerduring penetration. vix, G-spot. Do your
through the tiny room. There’s a vintage desk, a yoga mat, a guitar. A plastic tub holds electronic devices; some are connected to the fingers on my left hand. (My right had
THIS IS HER BRAIN ON ORGASM
Prep Properly Replace “inhibitors” (chores, kids) with “excitors”—early photos of you two, music, a scented candle, says sex therapist Ian Kerner, Ph.D. Tell her
Hair and makeup: Katie Wedlund, hair and makeup assistant: Jessica Mikulski, MARK NERYS (rocket illustration), T.M. Detwiler (brain illustration)
less able to think clearly while you’re having an orgasm. This fits this phenomenon really well.” Translate this to the bedroom and you see why a woman climaxes more easily when she’s relaxed—and why planning your fantasy team helps you forestall the inevitable. In her case, she can more easily shut off those parts of her brain; in yours, they’re being prompted to light up. The gateway to orgasm is in letting go. The reason one researcher sees the brain light up while the other sees it dim could be due to the different methods they use: Turns out, what we believe about orgasm is colored by the lens through which we view it. “It’s more an apparent contradiction than a real one,” says Jim Pfaus, Ph.D., a Canadian neuroscientist who studies orgasm in rats. (It’s a living.) One tool (PET) takes a single snapshot that represents everything that came before it, from desire to arousal to the main event. The other (fMRI) shows precise moments along the way, moments that may or may not be consistent from one test subject to another. What’s more, “activation” does not always mean excitation: When Komisaruk sees frontal brain regions lighting up, that may simply be the command center telling other parts to stand down. An fMRI can see that activation but can’t identify it; PET might be able to make that distinction but doesn’t isolate specific moments. To understand orgasm, says Pfaus, “you just have to find the right time point.” That’s where Prause has the advantage—because her method is significantly faster.
been occupied.) A plated band wraps around my right upper arm, and a multipronged headset clings to my skull. Prause parks herself on a wooden chest beside the computer screen, which now displays a single line that slopes gradually down before breaking into wild undulations at about the 15-minute mark. “That could be orgasm,” she says, peering closer. “Yeah, that could work.” With data like this, Prause hopes to answer some surprisingly fundamental physiological questions: What kind of touch and movement intensify arousal? Is orgasm distinct from heightened arousal, or just more of the same? Is it the pinnacle of pleasure or, technically speaking, the moment the brain puts on the brakes? My orgasm in Prause’s lab was recorded by an EEG, or electroencephalogram, which measures brain activity; hence the headset. Prause has used EEG data since her days studying psychophysiology (how the mind and body interact) at Indiana University, where she studied at the Kinsey Institute and earned her Ph.D. Unlike fMRI and PET, an EEG isn’t very good at showing the “where,” but it’s excellent at showing the “when” of a brain event. It can pick up on changes in intervals of 20 thousandths of a second, compared to fMRI’s twosecond updates and PET’s one-minute-or-longer updates. Prause says that makes it better for measuring orgasm, which can be very transient and generally happens only once—so if you miss it, you’re out of luck. Prause pulls up images of my brain captured as I was masturbating. We’re looking at alpha, one of many electrical waves fluctuating through the brain constantly. Alpha is present when your brain is idling or in a wakeful relaxed state—as in daydreaming or just zoning out. Along with another wave called theta, it’s linked to meditation and what athletes call “flow state.” When alpha’s high, you’re feeling chill. Let’s call it “chill wave” for now. A color spectrum on the monitor goes from dark blue (low chill) to green to orange to yellow (high chill). Only one brain image is completely yellow—the “stimulate to orgasm” brain. (But crucially, not during actual orgasm.) Another chart, a spectogram, shows a bright line extending with a few breaks across the graph. That line indicates chill and should be brighter during higher levels of sexual arousal. Sure enough, it starts at a point when I’m self-stimulating and fantasizing. (Sorry, not telling!) The line is brightest just before orgasm, indicating where my brain has gone full chill. But during orgasm (I’d hit a button at start and finish) the line disappears, as if my orgasm turned my normal consciousness back on. Generally, my alpha activity fits a pattern Prause has seen before. That pattern is her most surprising discovery so far, a working hypothesis she described to me as the “sympathetic nervous system switch.” (Her research on the topic has been accepted for publication by the Archives of Sexual Behavior.)
theory” (my term) holds that climax is linked to an off-switch in our brain. Both Komisaruk and Georgiadis had concluded something similar. Prause’s twist: The switch is flipped well before orgasm happens. To begin, Prause had me think of something sexy. Sometimes she shows her study participants a pornographic image; sometimes they self-stimulate with a genital vibrator. When her volunteers first become aroused, their chill generally quiets down. They’re paying attention. But when they’re asked to attempt an orgasm, the chill shoots up. To trigger orgasm, your brain may have to zone out, as indicated on my results. For Prause, it’s not that the orgasm triggers deactivations in the brain; it’s that the deactivations in the brain are necessary to trigger orgasm. “Janniko, and to some extent Barry, are arguing that there’s increased activation especially in frontal areas, and that after orgasm happens the brain shuts down,” Prause told me. “We’re arguing that orgasm is not the off switch, that to get to orgasm you had to flip that switch before.” She suspects that if Rutgers researchers were to sample more rapidly and look at the time period preceding orgasm, they’d find data to support her hypothesis. If orgasm marked the height of pleasure, you’d think chill waves would keep rising. But they don’t; they drop. That makes orgasm not an off-switch but more like a “back on” switch, pulling you out of the trance that preceded it. For Prause, this suggests that the best part of sex—the thing that keeps you coming back for more—is not the orgasm but the part leading up to it, what she refers to as a high-pleasure state and the kids call “edging,” when you deliberately delay orgasm to make sex last longer, potentially making the eventual orgasm stronger. Your takeaway: If she doesn’t have an orgasm and insists she’s fine, she might actually mean it. “Orgasm isn’t magic,” says Prause. “Not that it’s not reinforcing, but everything before it is also reinforcing.” Some women may even confuse high arousal for orgasm and still report satisfaction. During her research, Prause found many of the women reporting orgasm did not have the pelvic contractions traditionally used to define it. At first she thought the anal probe—which senses the contractions—was faulty. But as the trend persisted, she realized that these women were not experiencing orgasms, even though they believed they were. (She did not see this in men.) Komisaruk and others maintain that women do know when they’re having an orgasm and CONTINUED ON P. 116
HER AROUSAL TIMELINE
= ALPHA WAVES BANAL THOUGHTS
Not much alpha BEGIN ORAL SEX
Got my attention MORE BANAL THOUGHTS
Oh, boy! TRY TO ORGASM
Total alpha! ORGASM
Back to reality
TRY TO ORGASM
MensHealth.com / December 2017 101
You really can eat healthy at chain restaurants—these picks prove it. Here’s exactly what to order for the body you want. PAGE 102 BY
MORE THAN A MILLION RESTAURANTS ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS
in the United States. But the landscape is shifting: According to a 2017 National Restaurant Association report, consumers want to know more about what’s in their doggie bag. Titans like McDonald’s and Burger
King are losing ground to ingredient-forward spots like Chipotle and Panera. We analyzed the menus of more than two dozen chain restaurants in search of the healthiest options—more protein, more fiber, less empty carbs (including sugar). Read up. Eat up.
The Corner Bakery Café’s Anaheim Panini (and a half): Wake up with some protein and produce.
MensHealth.com / December 2017 103
CORNER BAKERY TOP A.M. GRAB
Most chain-based breakfast options have about as much color as Anne Hathaway. This pick has (gasp!) actual tomato, onion, and avocado. Order it on a “Power Flat” to cut 120 empty carb calories and kick up the fiber by a gram.
ADD THIS A 20 oz whole-milk cappuccino. With the sandwich, this duo has nearly the protein of two Egg McMuffins but 20 fewer grams of carbs. 620 calories, 33g protein, 41g carbs (5g fiber), 35g fat
CHIPOTLE BEST DELICIOUS, NUTRITIOUS TACOS
3 CRISPY CORN TORTILLAS Chipotle’s mix-andmatch ordering entrusts you to pick the good stuff. But you can easily go overboard, creating a calorie pileup. So here’s what you can tell the salsa slinger behind the counter: chicken, fajita vegetables, cheese, pinto beans, guacamole, and romaine lettuce. This combo provides 50 percent more protein per taco than Taco Bell’s Crunchy Taco Supreme does. 645 calories, 50g protein, 57g carbs (13g fiber), 26g fat
CHICK-FIL-A / BEST LUNCH COMBO MEAL
GRILLED CHICKEN COOL WR AP, SALAD, ICED TEA
CRACKER BARREL BEST DISH FROM A PLACE YOU’D LEAST EXPECT
Lemon Pepper Rainbow Trout, Turnip Greens, Broccoli Crazy, right? Cracker Barrel’s burgers, sandwiches, and “country fried” anything are nutritional no-gos. But these two fillets carry a massive 43 grams of protein for just 330 calories and hardly a carb in sight. Look at you go, Cracker Barrel! Just stay away from all the crap in the gift shop. 470 calories, 57g protein, 12g carbs (8g fiber), 18g fat
McDONALD’S / BEST DESSERT
Cuties The quickest way to sink a smart order is to tack on a dessert. Of all the menus we analyzed, no dessert could satisfy our rule of keeping a lid on portion size and added sugars—except at one chain (pause for shock): McDonald’s. Eat as many of these mandarin oranges as you want. Just 35 calories a pop!
Food styling: Jamie Kimm, prop styling: Christopher Stone/Halley Resources
Don’t choose a “supersize” option unless you want a supersized waistline. Instead, find combo meals that offer the most good stuff for your calories. Flaxseed flour flatbread, lettuce, red cabbage, and carrots pack 15 grams of fiber in this mighty chicken-and-cheese wrap. The side salad pumps up the produce (go with light balsamic dressing), and the unsweetened tea will push you past the midafternoon slump. 510 calories, 42g protein, 51g carbs (18g fiber), 23g fat
WENDY’S / BEST CHEESEBURGER
Dave’s Single Burger cravings happen. When they do, grab this. It has the best protein-to-carb (including sugar and fiber) balance of the lot. Yes, fanboys, that includes Five Guys. You can even add the value-sized fries and still come out at 800 calories for the meal. A plain baked potato is more nutritious, though. Just saying. 570 calories, 30g protein, 39g carbs (3g fiber), 34g fat
TGI FRIDAYS / BEST SALAD THAT ACTUALLY TASTES GOOD
MILLION DOLLAR COBB SALAD Romaine and kale make the bed. Avocado, tomato, red onion, cucumber, cheddar, bacon, hard-boiled egg, flat iron steak, and blue cheese make things interesting. You could order it with grilled chicken instead, but a man can only eat so many grilled-chicken salads. 790 calories, 50g protein, 29g carbs (8g fiber), 56g fat
SMALL BITES WITH BIG RETURNS
You can trust these addons, apps, and pint-sized portions. Superior Meal RounderOuter Chick-fil-A Superfood Side (small) SMART MOVE TGIF serves the green goddess dressing on the side. This helps you cut extra calories and also keeps the greens from going soggy.
Kale, broccolini, almonds, pecans, walnuts, and dried cherries—from a place known for its fried chicken, no less. It’s so tasty you don’t even need the maple vinaigrette. 140 calories, 3g protein, 16g carbs (2g fiber), 7g fat
Power Appetizer Red Lobster Signature Shrimp Cocktail No matter what restaurant you’re in, front-loading your meal with protein is a good way to fill up faster and avoid junk later in the meal. These plump, meaty shrimp are nearly perfect. 130 calories, 21g protein, 11g carbs (0g fiber), 0g fat
Kid-Friendly Menu Panera PB&J on whole grain with chicken noodle soup will shut up the picky ones. Child-sized Caesar salads and turkey chili will indulge the adventurous types. No cheap toys or creepy clowns either. Plus, stuff adults can eat too! MensHealth.com / December 2017 105
FOUR UNDERDOG CHAINS TO WATCH
Its focus is on nutrientdense, customizable meals—like burritos, wraps, salads, soups, and bowls. The plan is to have 730 locations open by 2020. MENU HIGHLIGHT Steak, Egg, & Cheese Breakfast Burrito
It’s like a Chipotle for bowl-based meals. Pick the base (soup, salad, grains), add the protein, and then choose your toppings. In select states. MENU HIGHLIGHT Grilled Chicken Tortilla Broth Bowl
Plenty of chains pay lip service to ingredient sourcing. This place lists where its food comes from on a big wall. It’ll have 90 locations by 2019. MENU HIGHLIGHTS Fish Taco Bowl, Guacamole Greens Salad
Former NBA star Ray Allen and his wife opened this organic spot in 2016. Both locations are in Florida, with one inside a Walmart, of all places. MENU HIGHLIGHTS Breakfast Salad, Cuban Coffee
SUBWAY / BEST POULTRY PICK
6" RotisserieStyle Chicken This sub has a gut-filling 29 grams of protein, and you can pile on as much produce as you can handle. (Play a round of toppings Jenga with the sandwich artist.) Bonus: In 2016, Subway switched to antibiotic-free chicken in its U.S. locations. That means fewer antibiotic-resistant bacteria in you. ADD THIS Veggie Delite Salad with oil-andvinegar dressing. Otherwise, the 350-calorie sandwich may leave you hungry in a few hours. For both: 680 calories, 32g protein, 56g carbs (9g fiber), 27g fat
OLIVE GARDEN BEST PASTA PICK WITH PERKS
LINGUINE DI MARE
ADD THIS Famous House Salad. Iceberg-based and studded with vegetables, it’s still good even if you order it with half the dressing to cut calories.
STARBUCKS / STRONGEST SIT-AND-EAT DAY STARTER
Eggs & Cheese Protein Box Eating on the run never fills you up quite like planting your butt and chowing. Research bears this out. So pick up this tapas-style breakfast of hard-boiled eggs, apples, grapes, cheddar, multigrain bread, and peanut butter. You’ll net 23 grams of protein and a serving of fruit before noon. Then savor the day. 460 calories, 23g protein, 40g carbs (5g fiber), 24g fat ADD THIS Starbucks Sous Vide Egg Bites: Bacon & Gruyere. Two of these cups provides 19 grams of protein.
THE ELLAPHANT IN THE ROOM (food illustrations), MIGHTY SHORT (napkin illustration and spot illustrations)
It’s tough to find an Italian chain that serves something beyond empty carbs. But this OG entrée tops pasta with highprotein mussels and shrimp, plus a light tomato sauce. 570 calories, 46g protein, 76g carbs (16g fiber), 22g fat
SMART MOVE Olive Garden’s Taste of the Mediterranean menu also has grilled salmon and chicken piccata with zucchini.
HALL OF SHAME Worst Breakfast Burger King BK Ultimate Breakfast Platter 1,190 cal, 27g protein, 123g carbs (5g fiber, 32g sugars), 66g fat
Worst Burger Hardee’s ⅔ lb Monster Thickburger 1,300 cal, 76g protein, 53g carbs (2g fiber, 13g sugars), 90g fat
Worst Lunch Panera Mac & Cheese in a Bread Bowl 1,140 cal, 43g protein, 166g carbs (6g fiber, 8g sugars), 35g fat BOSTON MARKET / OPTIMAL POSTWORKOUT PROTEIN FEED
HALF CHICKEN, POTATOES, VEGETABLES Boston Market is yet another chain that has gone antibiotic-free for its rotisserie chicken. That means you can go face-deep into this feast guilt-free. Skip the cornbread, which is high in sugar, and opt for the steamed vegetables. You can also pick around the chicken skin to cut some calories, but what are you, some kind of Instagram fitness model? 740 calories, 78g protein, 41g carbs (9g fiber), 31g fat RUBY TUESDAY BEST ALL-YOUCAN-EAT OPTION
Garden Bar This chain has updated the so-’80s concept of a salad bar with shredded kale, roasted corn, edamame, beets, wasabi peas, hummus, and spicy roasted broccoli. Wing night isn’t going to offer any of that. Pile your plate till it looks like a silage mound. 450 calories, 20g protein, 40g carbs (13g fiber), 22g fat
SMOOTHIE KING / MOST SATISFYING SMOOTHIE
GLADIATOR CHOCOLATE WITH PB & BANANA, 20 OZ
We’ve seen smoothies that contained as much sugar as three cans of Pepsi. This one’s sane and has micellar casein, “a slower-digesting protein with enough leucine to maximize your body’s protein synthesis,” says Mike Roussell, Ph.D., author of The MetaShred Diet. 550 calories, 56g protein, 34g carbs (7g fiber), 25g fat
Worst Pasta Applebee’s Firecracker Shrimp Cavatappi 1,960 cal, 50g protein, 150g carbs (8g fiber, 20g sugars), 131g fat
Worst Salad The Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad 1,760 cal, 59g protein, 135g carbs (11g fiber, 62g sugars), 110g fat
Worst Vegetarian Quiznos 12" Veggie Guacamole 1,240 cal, 42g protein, 121g carbs (10g fiber, 14g sugars), 67g fat
Worst Dessert Outback Steakhouse Chocolate Thunder from Down Under 1,540 cal, 17g protein, 137g carbs (6g fiber, 119g sugars), 106g fat MensHealth.com / December 2017 107
JUSTICE L E AGU E Adventures in purpose, community, and fitness with a cadre of teachers, artists, and trainers by dayâ€”and crimefighting crusaders by night.
Clockwise from top left: Nyght, Nightingale, Yce, Mr. Xtreme, Midnight Highwayman, Messenger.
Pursuing a bad guy—yes, he calls them bad guys—down an alley behind a nightclub in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood, the selfdescribed masked adventurer found himself dodging bullets being fired by the gunman over his left shoulder as he sprinted. Jones was prepared. He positioned his Baker Batshield, a ballistic armor panel he wears on his back “like a pair of really awesome wings.” The shield complements his custom-made supersuit, which is replete with artificial abs and pecs. “A bullet ricochets off the top of the shield and into my suit but doesn’t penetrate,” says Jones. “I’m panicking. But I keep running. I’m thinking, ‘I want to die running forward into battle.’ And after a while the bad guy stops, drops the gun, and hits the floor. The cops run around the corner. He looks at them and goes, ‘The bullets don’t work! I shot him eight times!’ ” Jones, who is a chiseled 5'11" and weighs 200 pounds, emits a peal of crazy laughter. “He’s been pulling the trigger. I’m flinching—because that’s what you do when someone shoots at you—and I’m not slowing down. He thinks he’s shooting me every time. I’m realizing this guy is a complete idiot!” 110 MensHealth.com / December 2017
Idiots, take heed: Phoenix Jones is hardly the only self-styled superhero out there prepared to take a bullet in the name of all that’s good and right. Across the United States, an estimated 250 otherwise regular Joes and Janes absent any actual superpowers are suiting up as costumed crusaders, putting their personal safety on the line to deter street crime. In the past 20 years, the movement has spread; now they operate out of cities great and small across North America: New York; Atlanta; Tampa; Chicago; Rochester, Minnesota; Vancouver; and Los Angeles. They seek one another out and compare costumes as well as crime-fighting techniques via all the usual, modern-day Bat channels: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and, most comprehensively, reallifesuperheroes.com. They hold day jobs as security officers and club bouncers but also as artists, musicians, teachers, health care workers, and combat sports instructors, and they adopt fanciful names like Crimson Fist, Good Samaritan, and Vigilante Spider. They prowl the night breaking up bar fights, foiling drug deals, and preventing sexual assaults. But they also commit random acts of kindness, such as dispensing first aid, disposing of hypodermic needles, or even just lending a sympathetic ear to the homeless. The police generally find them useful as deterrents and witnesses—but don’t want them getting in the way or getting hurt. You can call these activists vigilantes or weirdos, but each, in his or her own way, operates from a place of moral outrage, working to plug a hole in the system that’s underserved by law enforcement and widened by public apathy toward suffering. “Phoenix Jones is a character who believes in everything I want to be true,” says Ben Fodor, 29, who works with juvenile cancer patients at an area hospital when he’s not on patrol. “Without being Phoenix Jones, I would have gone crazy.” At a time when a new Marvel movie opens seemingly every month, superheroes run rampant in our cultural imagination. At the same time, more people are working mundane jobs and questioning their purpose on the planet. Job satisfaction is
Austin Hargrave/August Images (Phoenix Jones)
at 50.8 percent, down from 61.1 in 1987, according to the Conference Board. Concurrently, fatal police shootings of unarmed people regularly spark massive protests and SUIT UP paroxysms of civil unrest. Hurricanes. Wildfires. Mass “Nyght” wears shootings. Everything is falling apart. 150 pounds of The real-life superhero movement can be seen as a tactical gear while on patrol. direct response to a sense of powerlessness permeating society, says Jamon Halvaksz, Ph.D., who teaches a course at the University of Texas at San Antonio called Anthropology of Superheroes. “People feel isolated, disempowered. Their jobs hold no passion. But as real-life superheroes, they can reclaim some of that power by making connections with others under a different persona. They are able to make a change.” Many of these real-life guys share the bulging muscles of their comic-book heroes. They’re ripped, fighting fit, diesel. They’ve developed workout regimens they claim provide distinct advantages in battling bad guys. “You want to be able to perform at your max potential,” says Nyght, a middle-linebacker-size patrol leader of San Diego’s Xtreme Justice League who resembles John Cena but frequently gets compared to a certain Batman villain. “Our goal is to be a physical, visual deterrent. When you see yoked Bane in a flak jacket and he’s yelling at you to stop fighting in the middle of the street, you want to do that.” Nyght’s day job is in an elementary school; he’s a special education teacher. The San Diego league was founded 11 years ago—a time of high gang activity— by a guy who calls himself Mr. Xtreme. Nowadays, the group is an entrenched presence in the city’s Gaslamp Quarter, a crowded precinct of bars and nightclubs that reeks of stale beer and teems with inebriated tourists, servicemen, and college kids making poor life decisions. Violent crime is down in the area from 129 per 1,000 people in 2006 to 105 per 1,000 people (so far) this year. This is where the
XJL patrols in full hero regalia from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. every weekend. The outfits are not just for cosplay, an XJL member named Nightingale tells me. (She and others in the League asked not to be identified by their real names for fear of retribution by, you know, bad guys.) Eye-catching getups like hers—leather bustier, utility belt filled with medical supplies, and a fishnet mask—can defuse dangerous situations just because they’re so comic-booky. “They act as an immediate de-escalator,” explains Nightingale, who’s a nurse outside the Xtreme Justice League. “You’re angry, you look up, that costume is just enough to break your focus.” A retired Marine who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, Nyght, 36, wears a retrofitted paintball gun mask and 150 pounds of tactical gear, including a bulletproof vest. “I’ve had bottles broken over my head,” he says. “The face mask protects my mouth and nose.” At 6 feet and 221 pounds, Nyght holds black belts in multiple disciplines and leads the Xtreme Justice League’s group workouts. Members must pass a fitness test (see “Build Some Superhero Strength,” page 114) and train together several nights a week in a gym. While the XJL considers fistfighting a last resort, the group also receives free training in the Israeli martial art Krav Maga, courtesy of the San Diego Krav Maga Academy. On patrol one night in San Diego, I meet Xtreme Justice League members Yce (a solemn 19-year-old wearing tactical gear
PHOENIX JONES HEALTH CARE WORKER, PART-TIME PRO MMA FIGHTER SEATTLE, WA
It’s a little past 3 a.m. on a moonless night when the Xtreme Justice League and I return from patrol to their preferred meeting spot, the San Diego Hall of Justice. Everyone is tired, but also energized. It’s been a quiet night by their standards: no fights or assaults, no identifiable crimes prevented. I ask Nyght if he feels relieved or frustrated. “I live with the anxiety of ‘What did I miss?’” he says. “But I get a certain amount of peace knowing I went out and gave it my all.” Officially, San Diego credits community policing strategies with helping to lower its crime rates, but they also praise the efforts of the Xtreme Justice League. “They’ve been good witnesses for us for crimes that have occurred,” says Officer Joshua Hodge of the San Diego Police Department. “I’ve never heard anything bad about them. We don’t want them to put themselves in a situation where they could be hurt. At the same time, if they’re helping out a citizen in need, we’re not going to tell people no.”
THE DARK GUARDIAN MARTIAL ARTS INSTRUCTOR NEW YORK CITY
who intends to enroll in training courses to become a Navy SEAL), Hawt Flash (a woman in a red cape and yellow sunglasses—at night), and a new recruit who calls himself Jedi Cholo (a nightclub bouncer carrying a lightsaber with a canister of pepper spray stashed in his Yoda backpack). We observe a pack of drunken frat boys, one of whom wields a plastic sword, sprint up with seemingly less than the best of intentions. After some trash talk—“What are you guys supposed to be?” “Are you Darth Vader or something?” and “Y’all are like the Super Friends for real!”—one of them takes note of a sewn-on patch in the middle of Nyght’s bulletproof vest that says “F*CK ISIS.” And just as quickly, the bros became chummy, congratulatory even: “Yeah, fuck ISIS! You guys are cool!” Nyght remains guarded, but cordial. “I try not to overreact,” he says. “You never know when the shit’s gonna hit the fan.” He credits the Marines with teaching him to be tactically aware. “You’re in the middle of a 5-mile run and all of a sudden your drill instructor comes up to ask you about general orders. You’re not thinking about that. You’re thinking about your next breath and the fact you’ve got battery acid pumping through your quads. So it’s about thinking clearly through pain and duress. One way to do that is to red-line it during a circuit training session and start naming the 50 states.” 112 MensHealth.com / December 2017
superhero, the Dark Guardian, takes a different tack. He avoids bar areas altogether. “I’m looking out for people who are truly up to no good,” says Chris Pollak (his real name), 33. “I’m going into the projects. My focus is street crime: drugs, prostitution.” The martial arts instructor started calling himself the Dark Guardian 15 years ago. Back then, he wasn’t a member of the Guardian Angels, the beret-wearing crime-prevention crew in New York City that rose to national prominence in the 1970s. But since last year he’s been pulling double duty, running a Guardian Angels chapter on Staten Island and traveling throughout the five boroughs on his own, dressed in his signature red bulletproof vest, leather jacket, and matching red pants. While on patrol, the Dark Guardian also picks up garbage and hands out food to the homeless. “People have flashed guns at me, got in my face, threatened to kill me,” he says. “But if we want a good, safe, strong community, somebody has to do something about it.” The Dark Guardian, a third-degree black belt in Kenpo karate, fights in amateur Muay Thai bouts and trains in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and boxing. He’s also proficient in Eskrima, a martial art of the Philippines that employs knives and sticks, among other tools. He trains three days a week, kicking a heavy bag and sparring. On top of that, he lifts free weights and does extensive calisthenics. “I do 200 pushups and sets of five chinups until I reach 100,” he says. “I’ll do sets of 20 burpees until I reach 100. I do ab exercises a couple of days a week: leg raises, flutter kicks, situps, Russian twists, planks, hip dips. I mix it up.” The Dark Guardian sees himself as a symbol. “I want to inspire people to do something because they care about their community,” says Pollak. “Take notice. Do something.” In the age of litigation, the smartest move is not to shout, “Stop, you’re under citizen’s arrest!” he says. Laws vary from state to state, and often perps will confront you. But you can help stop a crime before the cops show up. This is the Dark Guardian’s protocol.
GIACOMO FORTUNATO (Dark Gaurdian)
AC R O S S TH E C O U NTRY I N G O TH A M , A N O TH E R R E A L- LI F E
STEP ONE Ask yourself: Could your involvement get you or someone else hurt? STEP T WO Call the police. Describe in detail what’s ASSEMBLE going on and the actions you’re taking. If you’re caught in San Diego’s a sticky situation, they’re just around the corner. Xtreme Justice STEP THREE Pull out your smartphone and start filmLeague, out on the town. ing. If you shout, “Hey, the police have been called and you’re on video,” usually the perpetrator will stop whatever he’s doing, because you’ve got the hard evidence right in your hand. STEP FOUR If you must get involved, try to defuse. Talk down the situation, using a noncombative tone. Slowly back the guy into a corner until the police arrive. STEP FIVE Make sure you know your state’s laws; most allow the use of equal force if things get physical. If you throw the first punch, you could run into legal trouble. If he throws the first punch, block it; punch back only if necessary. STEP SIX Should the perp pull a knife or gun, run. The cops should be there by now, but if you weren’t able to call them, wait until you’re at a safe distance to dial 911. STEP SEVEN If the criminal decides to run and your life isn’t in danger, follow from a distance. Make sure he doesn’t notice you trailing him, but jog to keep up if he’s running. (Note: Officer Hodge does not recommend following the criminal). Update the police about the getaway as you go. CONTINUED ON P. 117
People have flashed guns at me. But if we want a safe community, somebody has to do something about it.
BUILD SOME SUPERHERO 1
1-mile run, or 4 laps around a track
Do dead-hang pullups (or chinups) for 1 minute
Finish in under 10 minutes
5 for men, 2 for women
NYGHT’S 2017 TIME
4 CORE POWER
The XJL tests crunches in 1 minute. To protect your back, do hollow-body rocks instead: Lie on your back, legs straight, arms extended overhead, lower back pressed into the floor; rock back and forth. Aim for 30 in 1 minute.
MensHealth.com / December 2017
5 TO QUALIFY
Have a friend lie motionless on the grass. Pick him up under the armpits from behind and drag him backward for 25 yards. Can’t find a volunteer? Use a heavy boxing bag.
Do pushups for 1 minute
50 for men, 30 for women
Try the Xtreme Justice League’s physical fitness test— and don’t underestimate it. Prospective XJL heroes test in combat boots, and XJL leader Nyght routinely trains in his 50-pound flak jacket. He suggests a 30-pound weight vest for this. Rest 5 minutes between exercises.
COMIC COMBAT 101
If you ever find yourself cornered in a dark alley, use the XJL’s blend of Brazilian jiu-jitsu and Krav Maga to defend yourself. (Also, call 911.)
ESCAPE A HEADLOCK
1. Relax your body, and place your left hand on the bad guy’s forearm. Pull his forearm down.
2. Step your right leg outside your opponent’s right leg and drive your right hand upward into his jaw.
3. Push forward with your right hand as you steady your center of gravity and perp falls backward. Cuff him!
ESCAPE A GRAB FROM BEHIND
1. Drop down hard,
2. Grab the bad guy’s
3. Step your left leg
using your weight and gravity. Simultaneously drive your arms up, flaring your elbows to break the guy’s grip.
left arm with your right hand and press it down, while driving your left elbow up toward his head.
around your opponent’s right side, and use your left elbow to knock him down. Utter wisecrack!
COUNTER A ROUNDHOUSE KICK
6 FIREMAN CARRY
Hoist a willing volunteer (not a kid!) onto your shoulders so that his chest is on one side and his legs are on the other side. Run 25 yards.
ILLUSTRATIONS BY BRANDON LOVING
1. Step forward with your left leg. Now lift both of your forearms to chest level in order to absorb the impact of the kick.
2. Hold the villain’s leg with your left hand; then, in one swift move, punch your right hand toward his right armpit.
3. Step your right leg behind his left ankle and yank up with your left hand, tripping him backward. Strike Superman stance!
INSIDE THE ORGASM LAB, FROM P. 101
that you don’t have to count contractions to prove it. (Georgiadis had a finding similar to Prause’s; for many of his female subjects, the anal probe’s signal was “messy,” lacking the clear pattern seen in men.) Even Prause’s male research partner was skeptical. “I think it’s funny that I’m the only woman in this bunch,” Prause says, “and I’m like, ‘Women are terrible at telling orgasms.’” All this made me think about my orgasm in the little room, which felt great—and, yes, was confirmed by anal probe data. But is the release the thing? Maybe the wondrous feeling I’ve been enjoying for 15 years is actually the high-pleasure state and not orgasm at all. Maybe it’s the path to climax we should’ve been pursuing all this time. PRAUSE AND HER PEERS PRACTICE
basic research—collecting first-order physiological data and creating theories to explain their results. But other scientists are in a headier space. Take Adam Safron, Ph.D., a neuroscientist from Northwestern University. According to Safron, the rhythms of sex—the repetitive movement of body, hands, and fingers between partners—can sync brain rhythms through “entrainment,” leading to highly pleasurable focused attention, almost a trancelike state of consciousness. It’s “flow” all over again. In that state, says Safron, “the rhythm is all there is.” When your brain rhythms sync up with an outside stimulus, you can attend to that stimulus more easily. “The more you attend, the more you can be entrained by a rhythm,” Safron told me. “And the more in sync you are, the better you can attend.” This may explain why we can zoom in on rhythmic experiences like music, he says. “They outcompete other things for your attention,” says Safron. “This is part of why people like these experiences: They’re engaging with something highly pleasurable in a very focused manner, and they’re also able to let go of things that are less pleasurable, like thinking about jobs, taxes, or laundry.” Sounds a little like meditation, I point out. “I’d say it’s a lot like meditation,” Safron responds. For Prause, that’s precisely what happens when that off switch flips: You enter entrainment. (Aptly, she’s currently studying whether genital stimulation can offer the same benefits as meditation.) 116 MensHealth.com / December 2017
IF PRAUSE’S WORK SHIFTS THE EMPHASIS AWAY FROM ORGASM AND TOWARD THE JOURNEY, THEN “ENTRAINMENT” BRINGS THAT SHIFT HOME, INTO YOUR BEDROOM.
If Prause’s work shifts the emphasis away from orgasm and toward the journey there, then Safron’s theory takes that shift and brings it home, into your bedroom. Turns out, viewing sex as a form of meditation may actually be a good idea. Meditation is a practice, something you improve at over time, like learning to play a musical instrument—you get better and better at absorption and at letting go of distractions. Imagine sex as a practice (not a performance), and maybe you can relax. Meditation also means staying present: If thoughts arise, you acknowledge them briefly and then let them go. That feels good because you’re not stressing out, you’re not ruminating. Staying present in bed, focusing on your breath or the touch of her skin against yours, also feels good and may help turn off the kind of self-monitoring that can lead to anxiety and sexual dysfunction. All of this can enhance the sexual experience in a powerful way: As you become more in sync with the rhythms, you can tune out distractions more easily, which in turn frees you up to focus on pleasure. This not only makes sex more fun but can also deepen your connection with your partner. “If two people are attending to the same rhythm,” Safron says, “you could get synchronization across their nervous systems.” That can lead to an increased ability to communicate with your partner—like making eye contact across a room and seemingly reading each other’s minds. “You’ll see this in armies marching together, in dance partners, and in musicians who play duets—they all develop this intimacy,” Safron says. “Literally, as a mechanism, their systems might sync up. This allows them to be closer in a variety of ways.” This underlines the sexual importance of rhythms (so don’t go spelling the alphabet with your tongue during cunnilingus; establishing a pleasing rhythm is more effective) and attentiveness to your partner. It also poses sex as a means to an altered state of con-
sciousness. And all this time, you thought it was just about getting off. “People have a bizarre doublethink around sexuality,” Safron told me. “They think of it as both unimportant and so important that it causes terror in them.” A shift in perspective can help you find a middle ground. Think of sex as stimulation and it can get old; consider it a strange trance state and you might find new ways to enjoy it. “Recognize that sex is really weird,” Safron says. “And appreciate that.” I’m here to testify: He’s right. My journey into the world of orgasm research not only changed my mindset but also led to some of the best sex of my life. One night after my return from L.A., my husband joined me in bed. I started kissing him. We kissed for a long time—longer than we ever would have before. To my surprise, he seemed into it. In the past, I might have worried we were spending too long on kissing, but now that fear seemed unfounded and contrary to what I’d learned. Pleasure was something to sink into, not race toward. I resolved to simply enjoy the moment, quiet my expectations, and try not to anticipate his. It was a much slower build than I’d ever experienced, and then something weird happened. The outside world faded away, leaving the two of us behind. I was relaxed and entranced, and I could tell he was too. Entrainment had started to kick in. It led to literally life-changing sex: I enjoyed all of it, not just those last 20 seconds. (Sorry, I mean 21.) Now even between-sex times are more erotically charged. I have a new appreciation for the “welcome home” kiss and for spontaneous touching and making out. And because sex happens more often now, we’re more likely to experiment (like scientists!); a recent evening involved industrial music, some loosely knotted scarves, and a blindfold. It’s not like we’ve become sex maniacs. We still have jobs. But we’re closer now. “I think I love you more since we started having more sex,” he kidded. There was truth in that too.
XTREME JUSTICE LEAGUE, FROM P. 113
For guys like Pollak, the psychological rewards of making an impact outweigh the potential physical risks. “It’s a wonderful feeling to help people,” says Robin Rosenberg, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and the editor of The Psychology of Superheroes. “If you feel frustrated that people are vulnerable, you can relieve some of that frustration and feel like you’re having a direct impact in a way that can protect others.” There’s a self-contained quality shared by almost every real-life superhero I spoke with, an inner composure combined with hard-core physical discipline that gets externalized as a kind of “don’t fuck with me” energy. No one personifies that more than Phoenix Jones, even though his approach is evolving to be more of a crime stopper than fighter. Like every superhero, Phoenix Jones has a compelling origin story. He was inspired to don the supersuit and fight crime after his son slipped and badly cut himself on broken glass from a car break-in. Fodor wanted to prove to his boy that he could impose order in a chaotic world. Fodor’s first years as Phoenix Jones in the early aughts were a comedy of errors. He learned not to stand on top of buildings à la Batman, because it took too long to run down stairs and stop the crimes he observed. And Fodor realized his original costume—a blue spandex bodysuit with a sock cut in half for a mask, topped by a fedora he says made him look like “Darkwing Duck’s black cousin”—was insufficiently protective. This discovery arrived at the exact moment he confronted a serial assailant who had been stabbing homeless people around the Seattle-Tacoma area. “I said, ‘Well, let’s just get to the point then, shall we?’” recalls the hero. “I was still doing catchphrases then. I’m like, ‘Yeah, that’s right bro, I just catchphrased you.’ He just stabs me in the stomach.” Fodor says he knocked the assailant unconscious with a single punch to the face, and then Fodor was taken to the hospital. In the intervening years, though, Fodor has perfected a workout intended to augment his heroic abilities. Every morning, he puts on a 25-pound weight vest and jogs to get breakfast, alternately sprinting for one minute and walking for three, covering
3 miles in all. As he’s doing this, he silently registers random things: car colors, people wearing hats. When he returns home, he consults footage from the GoPro camera that has been on for the duration of his run to see if his memory syncs up with what he saw. He also does MMA training and a lot of weighted carries. “I need to have longterm, short-burst cardio. I need to be able to sprint a bit, take the guy down with my martial arts. I have to be intimidating; a bit of size is helpful. I have to carry 65 pounds of gear on my suit. Out here, I need six or seven hours. It’s a different kind of gas tank.” The creation of Phoenix Jones has helped Fodor deal with his own personality. “I would fight no matter what. I would beat people up no matter what. I have violent tendencies as a person,” he says. “Without the rules that I made, without the mask and without the symbol, I would be a very different person.” Rosenberg, the clinical psychologist, sees it as someone knowing their temperament and trying to channel it in an appropriate way. But his violent approach has earned criticism from other real-life superheroes. After Phoenix Jones was involved in a brawl with rowdy clubgoers and used pepper spray a few years ago, the Seattle police department announced it would restrict superheroes from “interfering with law enforcement operations”—an implicit rebuke to Jones. Now he sees himself as more of a barrier between a criminal and a victim. “My job is to maintain a buffer for five to 15 minutes until police can arrive,” says Fodor. “I don’t necessarily fight crime. I’m an excellent witness. How many dudes have I punched, hands up, and put into a jail cell? Zero. But how many dudes have gone to jail because I have a camera and a really, really good memory? I think it’s 373.” WHERE TO BUY Banana Republic bananarepublic. com Bombas bombas.com Bonobos bonobos.com Burberry us.burberry.com Gap gap.com Luigi Bianchi Mantova lubiam.it
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MEN’S HEALTH Vol. 32, No. 10 (ISSN 1054-4836), is published 10 times per year (monthly except for January and July) by Rodale Inc., 400 South 10th St., Emmaus, PA 18098–0099; (800) 666-2303. Copyright 2017 by Rodale Inc. All rights reserved. In U.S.: Periodicals postage paid at Emmaus, PA, and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster (U.S.): Send address changes to Men’s Health Customer Care, P.O. Box 3064, Harlan, IA 51593-0128. IN CANADA: Postage paid at Gateway, Mississauga, Ontario; Canada Post International Publication Mail (Canadian Distribution) Sales Agreement No. 40063752. Postmaster (Canada): Send returns and address changes to Men’s Health magazine, P.O. Box 927, Stn Main, Markham ON L3P 9Z9 (GST# R122988611). Subscribers: If the postal authorities alert us that your magazine is undeliverable, we have no further obligation unless we receive a corrected address within one year.
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Samsungâ€™s flagship Galaxy smartphone comes with its own pen, a 6.3-inch display, and 12-megapixel rear dual cameras. Plus, you can add up to 256 GB of storage. $930, samsung.com
TECH GUIDE MICROSOF T SURFACE LAPTOP
Impressive specs: a fast i5 or i7 processor, up to 16 GB of RAM, and 14.5-hour battery life. $999, microsoft.com
REGA PLANAR 3
British turntable specialist Rega Research is powering the vinyl revival with sleek, easy-setup rigs that bring your favorite LPs to life. $1,145, planar.co.uk 6
MensHealth.com / December 2017
Prop styling: Christopher Stone/Halley Resources (environmental product photography throughout)
FITBIT IONIC. B U I LT F O R FITNESS. M A D E F O R YO U.
P E R S O N A L R E C O R D S D O N â€™ T S TA N D A C H A N C E W I T H T H E A L L - N E W F I T B I T I O N I C F E AT U R I N G I N D U S T R Y- L E A D I N G G P S , E N H A N C E D H E A R T R AT E S E N S O R , A U T O M AT I C R U N T R A C K I N G A N D A
BA BATTE B ATTE ATT AT A TTE TT T TE T ERY RY L LIF LI IIF FE V VARI VAR VA ARI AR A RIE ES SW WIT WI TH U USE. USE US SE S E.
C U S T O M S T R AVA E X P E R I E N C E .
PERSONALIZED COAC H I N G
I N D U S T R YLEADING GPS
STORE & P L AY 3 0 0 + SONGS
WAT E R R E S I S TA N T TO 50M
PHONEFREE P AY M E N T S
POPULAR U P TO 5 DAY APPS & B AT T E R Y N OT I F I C AT I O N S LIFE
T H E S M A R T WAT C H D E S I G N E D F O R F I T N E S S F I T B I T. C O M / I O N I C
DON’T MISS OUT: GRAB A BARGAIN SECTION
Finally, stuff under $50 that isn’t junk. Here’s a little something for everyone (including you).
KLYMIT PILLOW X
CRAFTSMAN SIDEWINDER 16 FT
Attach this tracker to items the neighbors borrow. Your smartphone will keep ’em honest. $29, milwaukeetool.com
With 15 settings, it’ll trim whatever’s sprouting from your chin, nose, or ears. $50, conair.com
The X design positions and cradles your head for optimal comfort wherever you’re sleeping. $25, klymit.com
A flat design keeps it from toppling over like other tape measures. Simply brilliant. $15, craftsman.com
ARTNATURALS OIL DIFFUSER
OXO 3-IN-1 AVOCADO SLICER
POWERBALL 280 PRO
YETI RAMBLER MUG
Just add water and an essential oil, and let the Bluetooth provide the soothing tunes. $39, artnaturals.com
It pits! It slices! It keeps you from slicing and dicing your palm! If only it could make guacamole. $10, oxo.com
Turn this gyroscopic device to boost your grip, forearm, and shoulder strength. $55, powerballs.com
Hot stuff! Your camp coffee stays steamy and perfect in this 14-ounce stainless steel mug. $25, yeti.com
MOJIHEAT MASSAGE BALL 4"
NOTNEUTRAL VERO GLASSES
GOOGLE HOME MINI
5.11 TAC A2 GLOVES
More hot stuff! This massage device warms up, helping you roll out aches and tension. $40, gomoji.com
Double-duty glassware: These can hold your cortado by day and your bourbon by night. $18, notneutral.com
Your voice-activated assistant streams music, checks weather, and doesn’t argue. $49, store.google.com
Tough and gentle, these synthetic leather gloves have tactile fingertips. $30, 511tactical.com
MensHealth.com / December 2017
INNOVATION THAT HELPS BRING OBSTACLES TO LIGHT.
LEXUS SAFETY SYSTEM+
If you have trouble seeing the deer, we can help. At Lexus, we’re constantly looking out for the driver. That’s why we create advancements—like intelligent high-beam headlamps1—that help shine a light on obstacles in front of you. Better-informed drivers get us closer to our ultimate vision: a world without accidents. See more of our standard comprehensive safety system2 at lexus.com/safety. Experience driver-ﬁrst innovation. Experience Amazing.
lexus.com/safety | #Lexus
Options shown. Illustration is for conceptual purposes only and is not an actual representation of Lexus Safety System+. 1. Intelligent high beams operate at speeds above 25 mph. Factors such as a dirty windshield, weather, lighting and terrain limit effectiveness, requiring driver to manually operate the high beams. See Owner’s Manual for additional limitations and details. 2. Drivers are responsible for their own safe driving. Always pay attention to your surroundings and drive safely. System effectiveness is dependent on many factors including road, weather and vehicle conditions. See Owner’s Manual for additional limitations and details. ©2017 Lexus
P A G E 10
Put away the Parcheesi: With new, advanced drones, e-cars, and other smart playthings, toddlers and tweens have funner stuff to do.
DJI SPARK DRONE
The size of a small bird of prey, it responds to hand gestures and can fly for 16 minutes. It returns home via GPS with 12mp photos and 1080p video. $500, dji.com
MH NINTENDO SWITCH
UBTECH JIMU ROBOT BUILDERBOT
This hybrid console-handheld plays new and retro games. $300, nintendo.com
It comes with servo motors, infrared sensors, and an app you use to program its movements. $99, bestbuy.com TESLA MODEL S BY RADIO FLYER
Toddlers rejoice! Burn corners at a blazing 6 mph for an hour! $499, radioflyer.com
Overtime victories. Delivered to us safely in boxes.
Boxes protect so many of our favorite things as they journey to stores and our front doors. They make electronics easy to transport, protect our food and are some of the most recycled products on the planet. Recycle your boxes so theyâ€™ll be put to more good uses. howlifeunfolds.com
ÂŠ 2017 Paper and Packaging Board.
From the Makers of Paper and Packaging
CAMILA ON TECH TOOLS BAREBONE S LIVING PULASKI AXE
A steel core runs through the beech handle to secure a 3-pound carbon steel head. Use the headâ€™s grub hoe to cut roots, dig trenches, and lever rocks. The base pommel is for hammering. $135, barebonesliving.com
RYOBI 10 IN DUAL BEVEL SLIDING MITER SAW
DEWALT FLEXVOLT 60V MAX CHAIN SAW
Two 18-volt power packs give you all-day cutting from this 34-pound beast. $300, ryobitools.com
The 16-inch bar rips through wood with little kickback, and a charge lasts two hours. $350, dewalt.com
Click-on totes and organizers hold small stuff; the deep ones swallow up the tools. From $30, milwaukee tool.com
TO OLS SECTION
SAM KAPLAN (SOG Baton, Bosch); The Gap tank, Marlies Dekkers bikini bottom, Ambyr Childers jewelry, Dsquared2 boots (opposite page)
Powerful batteries, smart design, and lightweight components make that home-improvement job easier and a helluva lot more enjoyable.
SOG BATON Q3
Soldiers and civilians alike will appreciate this 6-ounce deviceâ€™s 13 tools, especially the pliers and blade. $94, sogknives.com
DYSON V7 CAR+BOAT
BOSCH FLEXICLICK 5-IN-1
With six different cleaning tools, this handheld devours popcorn, confetti, and other evidence. $240, dyson.com
The head pops off so you can click on attachments, like a right-angle tool for awkward spots. $200, boschtools.com
GREAT GEAR ON A BUDGET SECTION
Remember your friends, your family, and yourself: Most of this cool stuff is in the $100 range.
GORE FUSION RUNNING
It’s breathable and lightweight, and the flat seams reduce chafing as you run. $110, goreapparel.com
VELOMACCHI SPEEDWAY ROLL Handy for any tinkerer:
SPARKR FLASHLIGHT & LIGHTER One end houses
a portable kit to stash and carry your essential tools. $75, velomacchi.com
an electric plasma lighter; the other is a flashlight. $60, powerpractical.com
HOKA ONE ONE HUPANA
Finally, an ultralight running shoe that doesn’t cut corners on cushioning. $115, hokaoneone.com
CUISINART PREP EXPRESS
FINEX 15" LEAN GRILL PAN
THE BOLLÉ MESSENGER
TRIGGERPOINT GRID VIBE
No more bloody knuckles: Shred vegetables for salad, stir-fry, and pasta in seconds. $70, cuisinart.com
Spreads the burner’s heat over its surface to sear big cuts like prime rib and rack of lamb. $125, finexusa.com
A light-bulb moment: Introducing a helmet with a builtin LED to keep you visible. From $100, bolle.com
Your muscles will thank you: An onboard battery makes this roller vibrate like crazy. $100, tptherapy.com
REEBOK COMBAT NOBLE
BOSE SOUNDLINK MICRO
BODYBREW B OD EXPERIENCE
TREW DIPPED MERINO T
These hybrid cross-trainers deliver increased ankle stability without excess bulk. $120, reebok.com
Hook this waterproof wireless speaker onto a backpack and blast tunes for up to six hours. $110, bose.com
This hourglass-shaped brewer works like a tea steeper to make diesel cold-brew coffee. $69, bodybrew.com
An 85/15 blend of merino wool and nylon makes this shirt worthy of trail and gym alike. $68, trewgear.com
MensHealth.com / December 2017
THE NEW VENTRIX JACKET RELEASES EXCESS BODY H E AT S O Y O U C A N P E R F O R M A T Y O U R B E S T.
KITCHENAID BLACK TIE STAND MIXER
How Jay-Z whips up his bread dough and homemade pasta. Maybe. $1,000, kitchenaid.com
A grill that marries a charcoal fire with a spit. $TBD, everdure byheston.com
1. SMITH & WOLLENSKY
These burly blades are tough enough to cleave a tomahawk rib eye. $125 for 4, smith andwollensky.com
2. QUALIT Y EATS
3. PERCEVAL 888
They look like slim daggers. Their handles are made from zebrawood. Exotic. $50 for 4, qualityeats.com
Svelte, like a slim pocketknife. For fine dining, not Boy Scout camp. $679 for 2, percevalknives.co.uk
P A G E 16
Donâ€™t mutilate that perfectly seared steak with a low-quality knife. Trust these blades used by butchers and steakhouses.
MIIR 64 OZ GROWLER
Medical-grade stainless steel holds the cold all day (at least). $59, miir.com
BURN SOME OF YOUR BONUS! SECTION
SAM KAPLAN (Roka)
High-performance gear that you’ll still be using for many holidays to come.
NIKE REACT HYPERDUNK
OAKLEY FALL LINE PRIZM
ROKA FALCON TI
ONNIT STAR WARS
A base of Nike’s newest foam offers a springy sensation even if your game isn’t above the rim. $160, nike.com
The rimless design affords better peripheral vision on the mountain and après in the hot tub. $190, oakley.com
Stealth sports shades: Noslip nose pads, Carl Zeiss lenses, featherweight titanium frame. $260, roka.com
Defeat the force (of gravity) with these unique 50-, 60-, and 70-pound kettlebells. From $150, onnit.com
5.11 TACTEC PLATE CARRIER
INSTANT POT ULTRA 10-IN-1
BABOLAT PURE AERO PLAY
Insert weight plates into the vest. CrossFit Games athletes wear the 20-pound version. $200, 511tactical.com
An XXL version of the culinary phenom. Tender short ribs for 20 in under an hour? Done. $150, surlatable.com
A sensor measures your power, stroke, and strike location and connects to an app. $349, babolat.com
Stay dry with this 4.6-ounce weather-resistant shell. It compresses to hacky sack size. $140, arcteryx.com
LEVI’S COMMUTER TRUCKER JACKET WITH JACQUARD BY GOOGLE
Technology woven in. Tap cuff, rock on. $350, levi.com
INOV-8 PARKCLAW 275 GTX
SAMSUNG GEAR ICON X
Never miss a spot with a smart brush that uses an app to track where you’re cleaning. From $230, shop.philips.com
This trail runner has the latest Gore-Tex and an 8mm drop from heel to toe to mimic barefootin’. $150, inov8.com
Bored in the wilderness? Cord-free buds hold 4 GB of music on a six-plus-hour charge. $200, samsung.com MensHealth.com / December 2017
P A G E 18
You name it—speed, ruggedness, style, power—these rides have what you want.
1. FERRARI 488 GTB A 3.9-liter
2. BUICK REGAL TOUR X Sporty
3. GENESIS G80 5.0 Value meets
4. PORSCHE PANAMERA 4S
V8 powers her from zero to 124 in 8.3 seconds. From $351,283, ferrari.com
and stylish, this AWD wagon has a spacious 33-cubicfoot trunk. From $29,995, buick.com
luxury: 420 hp, 5.0-liter V8, leather seats. From $57,000, genesis.com
A four-seater that sprints to 60 in 4 seconds. From $99,900, porsche.com
7. MERCEDE S-AMG
8. CHEVROLET CAMARO ZL1
5. HONDA CIVIC
T YPE R Frontwheel-drive, 306horsepower, sixspeed-manual fun. From $33,900, honda.com
6. McLAREN 570S
SPIDER Blaze to 60 in 3.1 seconds in this 562-horsepower soft-top. From $208,800, cars.mclaren.com
C 43 A handsome sedan with a feral 3-liter V6 that growls and barks. From $53,400, mbusa.com
The ZL1 uses the same 6.2-liter V8 as the Corvette! From $63,795, chevrolet.com
Eddie Bauer shirt, All Saints shorts, Lucky Brand boots
MH JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE TRACKHAWK
A 6.2-liter, 707-horsepower V8 fires this rocket to 60 in 3.5 seconds. From $85,900, jeep.com
THE BEST INNOVATIONS New tech will help you drive faster, farther, and safer. 1. PORSCHE INNODRIVE Itâ€™s a cruise control system that utilizes 3D mapping from car and satellite data to modulate the throttle and brake. 2. CADILLAC SUPER CRUISE This handsfree highway driver aid system uses a camera atop the steering column to track your head position for steering. 3. MERCEDES-BENZ FIT & HEALTHY A cool system of sensors that can customize your cabin experience to keep you calm and pain-free as you drive. 4. BMW GESTURE CONTROL Simple gestures can activate some interface screens, which means less fumbling and more focusing on the road.
CAMILA ON FITNESS
“ Invest in a trainer. You see the progress so quickly, and you push yourself in new ways.”
ORU KAYAK BEACH LT
Fold this 25-pound craft into its carry pack, hike to the water, and paddle on. $1,299, orukayak.com
K2 B.F.C. 100 HEAT
These ski boots are designed to make standing and walking easier. Thermic heat liners and a relaxed “après mode” make them comfortable between runs. $700, k2skis.com
THE NORTH FACE VENTRIX HOODIE
High-sweat zones feature lasercut perforations that expand and contract to regulate your core temperature and sweat output. $220, thenorthface.com
COLE HAAN + MOUNTAIN HARDWEAR GRADEXPLØRE PARKA
When two iconic brands team up, you get extreme weather protection that looks sharp. $700, colehaan.com
This bag has multiple layers that you can add or shed for justright insulation. $229 to $528, kammok.com
When the great outdoors call, how will you answer? Gear up and get out there with the finest pieces of equipment we could find.
Roll to work at 19 mph on this self-balancing 2-horsepower board. As you do, note the world’s jealousy. $1,499, onewheel.com BLACK DIAMOND MOMENTUM CLIMBING SHOES
The comfortable upper breathes as well as you do on a rock face. $90, blackdiamond equipment.com
GMC SIERRA ALL-TERRAIN X
V8, 4WD, and underbody shield? Hell yes. From $67,670, gmc.com DANNER FEATHER LITE 917
The â€™80s classic, made better with Gore-Tex and a rubberized EVA midsole. $240, danner.com MH
Customize your snowboard to your riding style. $1,800, franco snowshapes.com K2 SIMPLE PLEASURES
Lively turns on any terrain. $650, k2snow boarding.com JONES STORM CHASER
Float in powder and enjoy nextlevel carving. $600, jones snowboards.com
TENTSILE STINGRAY TREE TENT
This first-inkind tripod tent sleeps three of your friends suspended above the undesirables down below. $650, tentsile.com 22 MensHealth.com / December 2017
HYPERLITE SUMMIT PACK
The ripstop fabric is lighter than nylon and stronger than Kevlar, and the design is beautifully basic. $175, hyperlite mountaingear.com
SAM KAPLAN (K2); Alexander Wang T-shirt, BDG shorts, Ray-Ban sunglasses, Ambyr Childers jewelry, H&M socks, The North Face boots (previous spread)
FRANCO SNOWSHAPE S
THINK ABOUT WHISPERING TREES. DON’T THINK ABOUT WEATHER PROTECTION. DON’T THINK ABOUT GORE-TEX ® . PRODUCTS
© 2017 W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc. GORE-TEX®, GUARANTEED TO KEEP YOU DRY®, GORE® and designs are trademarks of W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.
Out From Under bodysuit, Vintage Levi’s shorts, Ambyr Childers jewelry, Lucky Brand bandana, Frye boots (opposite page)
New higher-temp magnets in the Z-Force electric motor create 116 lb-ft of torque and 70 horses without a single drop of gas. Now that’s what we call progress. From $15,995, zero motorcycles.com
100% SPEEDCRAF T
Minimalist Scandavian design applied to sunglasses. The nose pads stay grippy and the Carl Zeiss lenses enhance contrast. From $220, pocsports.com
Designed in Cali, made in Italy, and favored by cycling stud Peter Sagan. The lenses refract light away from your eyes so you see every pothole. $220, ride100percent.com
THE MORE WE CARE ABOUT YOU, THE LESS YOU THINK ABOUT US. Nothing protects you like GORE-TE X ® products.
CANYON AEROAD CF SLX DISC 8.0 DI2
High quality at a low price; this German road bike has disc brakes and carbon fiber wheels. From $1,500, canyon.com
The best of a road bike (lightweight frame), cyclocross (wider tires), triathlon (aerodynamic tubes), and mountain bike (seven gears). $4,000, 3t.bike/en
P A G E 25
It’s that time of year—and you’ll soon be working off those holiday pounds. Let these cool new products help you along.
APPLE WATCH SERIE S 3
It gets better still, unleashed from the phone and streaming music. $400, apple.com
GARMIN VIVOACTIVE 3
Speed, distance, and heart rate are presented clearly and are super easy to share. $300, garmin.com
The new model has GPS, a heart-rate monitor, stores music, and tracks your well-earned sleep. $300, fitbit.com
SUUNTO SPARTAN SPORT WRIST HR
This adventure classic now has better GPS and a built-in heartrate monitor. $500, suunto.com
ADIDAS FUTURECRAF T 4D
A process called digital light synthesis creates the funky mesh sole for a firm, responsive ride. $300, adidas.com
RPM COMP JUMP ROPE
The pulsing head is a power tool for your muscles, relaxing tight fibers and tendons. $600, theragun.com
Your fists and wrists are protected by inner foam and splints; the lining KOs bacteria. $100, hayabusafight.com
26 MensHealth.com / December 2017
TAYLORMADE M1 460
Sliding weights adjust the face angle so you can bomb confidently. $500, taylor madegolf.com
SAM KAPLAN (watches, Theragun, Taylormade)
Knurled aluminum handles provide a secure grip so you can focus on your form. $63, rpm training.com
60 YEARS OF ADVENTURE AND DISCOVERY
NEST CAM IQ
The 4K security camera can recognize someone and send you a “familiar face” alert. Answering the door is your call. $299, nest.com
Clip it anywhere that gives you a good view and snap three- to sixsecond motion photos to edit and share. $249, store.google.com
AMAZON ECHO SHOW
LG PROBEAM LASER SMART HOME THEATER PROJECTOR HF80JA
Make video calls, check who’s at your front door, watch streaming video, all via voice command. $230, amazon.com
This little monster blasts a 120-inch picture in full HD 1080p. $1,500, lg.com
SMART HOME Home upgrades can be satisfying—not because they’re so cool (well, there’s that), but because they make your home more fun to live in.
This genius will alert you through an app when it detects toxins and allergens in your space. $199, getawair.com VITAMIX A2500
A food-mashing 2.2-horsepower engine, plus smart sensors that can detect the container size. $520, vitamix.com
A triple threat: a heater, a powerful air purifier, and a cooling fan you can control via an app. $600, dyson.com SAM KAPLAN (Nest, Google, LG); Stella McCartney bikini (opposite page)
AWAIR AIR QUALIT Y TRACKER
DYSON PURE HOT+ COOL LINK
It’s a sleek voice-controlled smartspeaker that has Alexa on board and can play music from most apps, including Spotify and Pandora. Be warned: It could be your gateway device to more powerful and expensive Sonos speakers. $199, sonos.com
CAMILA ON HER HAPPY PLACE
“ The sauna at my gym. I’ll meditate in there for about 20 minutes.”
SM A RT HOM E 101 We tested more than 100 smart-home gadgets to arrive at our ultimate list of MH-approved devices.
Most smart-home solutions are just plain dumb. If you’re not burning hours configuring, rebooting, or troubleshooting, you’re fumbling with your phone when the flip of a switch or turn of a key would’ve been twice as fast. But when a device delivers? Well, you feel like you’ve conjured up modern magic. Here’s the ultimate litmus test for any connected home device, along with the 15 top products in five areas.
IS IT WORTH THE WORK?
EASY Plug, play, and swipe away.
MEDIUM You’ll need a drill or wrench.
HARD You’re basically on the Geek Squad.
Let’s say you change your mind about Alexa or Google Home—or any of the several hubs or standards. Will that fan bolted to your ceiling follow your lead too? Flexibility is key.
Can you pair quickly? Does the app actually do anything other than grab your email for spam barrages? When was it last updated? Any dead ends? Hardware is half the battle.
CAN YOU CHEAT?
DOES THE APP SUCK?
Smart devices shouldn’t just be parlor tricks. Is the ROI there? You shouldn’t spend five hours connecting a bulb, but laying an in-ground cordon to guide a robo mower isn’t bad next to getting baked in the sun all summer.
YOUR ONE-STOP SHOP
HOME & GARDEN
1. NEST CAM IQ INDOOR Unfamiliar faces send a pan-andcapture clip to your phone. $299, nest.com
2. SONOS ONE The gold standard in connected audio, now with Alexa. $199, sonos.com
3. CRAFTSMAN SMART LOCK TOOL STORAGE Approach and it unlocks; keeps logs of access. From $330, craftsman.com
4. MOLEKULE AIR PURIFIER Slays mold and airborne viruses with high-tech filters. $800, molekule.com
5. ANOVA PRECISION COOKER NANO Sous vide is less than $100. If only Wagyu were too. (Due in spring.) $99, anova.com
6. MAXIMUS SMART SECURITY LIGHT A porch lamp with video and intercom. Genius. $180, maximus lighting.com
7. SCREEN INNOVATIONS SOLO Li-Ion powered, remote projection screen. From $1,600, screen innovations.com
8. LUTRON SERENA SHADES W/ CASETA Connected and battery-powered shades with topnotch controls. $460, lutron.com
9. NEST THERMOSTAT E Next-gen learning thermostat, $80 less than the original. $169, nest.com
10. TRAEGER TIMBERLINE 850 This pellet smoker lets you check the meat via an app. $1,700, traeger grills.com
11. KWIKSET OBSIDIAN Touchscreen deadbolt with multiple passcodes. $179, kwikset.com
12. iPORT LAUNCHPORT WALLSTATION A magnetic wall station houses and charges your tablet. $338, iportproducts.com
13. WORX LANDROID ROBOTIC MOWER Sip brews while this guy eats turf. $1,000, worx.com
14. HAIKU LUXE SERIES CEILING FAN Connected blades keep temp low; whir with a word to Alexa. $1,595, haikuhome.com
15. PICOBREW PICO MODEL C Beer here: Plugand-play setup for the aspiring brewmaster. $549, picobrew.com
30 MensHealth.com / December 2017
FOOD & BEVERAGE
ILLUSTRATION BY L-DOPA