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The No.1 Food To Boost Energy P50 MALAYSIA NOVEMBER 2016


100% USEFUL!

4 Steps to Avoid


4 Simple Exercises + 5 Metabolism-Boosting Foods = Your Secret To Success




Peter Davis On getting

back up and living to fight another day


The Most Effective Way to Look Younger ISSN 1675-6932





44 BEAT PROSTATE CANCER What’s good for your heart is also good for... down below.


Save a lot of money and lose a lot of fat in the process.



Become an ultra-athlete with the ketogenic diet.



Upgrade your grooming game with this simple trick!


Live in the present to connect on a deeper level with your wife.



Start enjoying your life to be more productive at the office.


Forge the fitness of a fighter with the model, actor and martial-artist.

80 HOW TO BE AN IRONMAN Our comprehensive guide to finishing a 3.8km swim, 180km bike ride and 42km run – without needing to be an Avenger.

86 FIGHT FAT AND WIN! Equip yourself with all the weapons you need to win the battle of the bulge.






Four ways – and one diet hack – for you to prevent stagnation.




Follow our expert styling tips on the season’s latest looks, so you don’t end up on those fashion fail blogs.

Want more athletic power? Then do these three workouts tonight.







Don’t pick-up a passenger until you read-up on this ride-sharing guide.

We answer the questions you’re too embarrassed to ask your doctor. You’re welcome.



The mountaineer shares his mountain-top advice on how you too can scale the peaks of life.


Prevent yourself from suffering more than necessary.

27 16


16 EASY MUSCLE SNACKS Make high-protein meals in just minutes.



You haven’t lived life until you’ve seen a lion in the wild.



Don’t get drunk on probiotics. Here’s what to eat instead to keep your gut healthy.




No.1: apply oats on your face. Yes, you read that correctly. 6 NOVEMBER 2016

Peter Davis wears Dockers corduroy straight-cut trousers and Mido Multifort Chronograph Adventure watch The reporting in Men’s Health is meant to increase your knowledge of current developments in health. Because everyone is different, the ideas expressed by researchers cannot be used to diagnose or treat individual health problems. A doctor can best guide you.

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CHINA Jonny Guo

MONGOLIA Munkhdelger Tuvshin

SOUTH KOREA Seung Kwan Paik



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PHILIPPINES Allan Madrilejos

THAILAND Chatchawin Unhanun



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POLAND Krzysztof Komar

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GREECE Vasilis Georgakakos

PORTUGAL Pedro Lucas

UKRAINE Dmitry Pribytko



HUNGARY Máté Pásztor

ROMANIA Mihai Ghiduc


INDIA Aroon Purie

RUSSIA Kirill Vishnepolsky


JERRICAN TAN CSCS, ACE, Director, Fitness Innovations Malaysia (FITM)

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This magazine is published by Mongoose Publishing Sdn Bhd (580051-K) under license from Rodale Inc, publisher of Men’s Health in the United States. All rights reserved. Title and trademark Men’s Health©Rodale Inc. The views expressed in the articles, features and listings are not necessarily those of Mongoose Publishing Sdn Bhd (580051-K) or Rodale Inc. While every reasonable care is taken in compiling the magazine, the publisher shall not be held responsible for any omission, error, or inaccuracy. Please notify the publisher in writing of any such omission, error or inaccuracy. Editorial contributions are welcome but unsolicited materials are submitted at the sender’s risk. The publisher cannot accept any responsibility for loss or damage. No part of this publication can be reproduced in any form without the publisher’s permission in writing.

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DR JAMEELA SATHAR MD, MRCP, Senior Consultant Haemotologist, Ampang Hospital DR MOHD HUSNI ADMAD MBBS (Mal), M.S. ORL, Head and Neck Consultant, Gleneagles Hospital DR GEORGE LEE MA MB BChir FRCS (Urol), Clinical Associate Professor at Monash University, Sunway Campus DR IRENE LEE CHEW KEK Consultant Dermatologist Pantai Hospital Cheras

THOMAS LING Certified Sommelier, UK, Certified Specialist of Wine and Spirits, US, Certified Sake Professional –Sake Education Council, Japan DR HARJEET SINGH MBBS (India), MS Ortho (UKM), MRCS (Edinburgh), Consultant Orthopaedic and Sports Injury Specialist, Columbia Asia Hospital YEOH EE LING Dietitian, ACE Personal Trainer Fitness Innovations Malaysia (FITM) A/P DR CHRISTOPHER HO CHEE KONG MD, MS, MRCSEd, MBU (Cert), MFSTEd, AM, FICS (USA), FRCS (Urol) (Glasg), FECSM, FRCSEd Consultant Urologist & Sexual Medicine Physician , Dept of Surgery, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre

DR YAP YEE GUAN BMedSci (Nottm), MBBS (Nottm), MD (Lond), CCT (UK) (Cardiology & Int Medicine), Eur Cardiol (Europe), Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Prince Court Medical Centre DR MARTHA LEE DHS (US), Clinical Sexologist, Eros Coaching DR EUGENE WONG MBBS, MS Ortho (Mal) DipSurgAnat (Melb) AM (Mal), Adult and Pediatric Spine and Orthopaedic Surgeon, Pantai Hospital DR SAM HUNTER Mtech Chiro (RSA), Consultant Chiropractor, Clinic Director, TAGS, Spine and Joint Specialist Clinics, Ampang and Penang


A lot has been said, written and, sad to say, fabricated about our country. I’m not here to contribute or detract from any of that. But here’s one fact that nobody, neither a headline-addicted politician nor a troll blogger, seems to care about: almost half of Malaysians are either obese or overweight. At the beginning of the year, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr. S. Subramaniam said 17.7 percent of us are obese, while 30 percent of us are overweight. Since I read that report, hardly any ink has been spilled about this worrying epidemic. Yes, I’m aware that there are other fights to be fought. But, make no mistake: the more obese Malaysians there are – and, if my math is correct, there are already millions of them – the worse off we as a country are. Which is why, last month, during the “Hari Sukan Negara” festivities, I asked Men’s Health Cover Guy (and Minister of Youth and Sports) Khairy Jamaluddin what his ministry plans to do about this. He acknowledged the severity of the problem, and briefly discussed the joint efforts between his ministry and Subramaniam’s. But, because I’m a deadlines-oriented kinda guy, I was pleasantly surprised when he set a goal for all of us: “Our target is to ensure that, by 2020, more than 50% of our population exercises at least three times a week, with each exercise session lasting more than half an hour,” Jamaluddin said. “If we can get that,

then in the long term, my critical success factor would be seeing the number of people suffering from noncommunicable diseases decrease.” Not sure what non-communicable diseases (or NCDs) are? The World Health Organisation lists the four main types of NCDs as: “cardiovascular diseases (like heart attacks and stroke), cancers, chronic respiratory diseases (such as chronic obstructed pulmonary disease and asthma), and diabetes”. The WHO goes on to say that, “Tobacco use, physical inactivity, the harmful use of alcohol, and unhealthy diets all increase the risk of dying from an NCD.” Just so you know, 17.5 percent of Malaysians suffer from diabetes, while 47.7 percent have high cholesterol levels. Got the message? So let’s make Malaysia great (again). Instead of complaining about the state of the nation on Facebook all the time, let’s log out, get off our asses, and start exercising. The expectations that Jamaluddin set are, if you ask me, downright easy. Whether you prefer to jog around your neighbourhood, or you want to be No.1 on the W.O.T.D. whiteboard, I know you can exercise at least three times a week. Yes, you can! After all: Malaysia boleh! … Kan?

Eugene Phua Editor

Men’s Health Malaysia 10 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6




Make Vision 2020 A Reality


Use Dr Starrett’s tips for staying on your toes without the pitfalls

Everyone is saying I should stand up at work. Are desk jobs really that harmful?

1) TAKE A STEP DOWN Flat shoes – meaning zero differential between toe and heel – make a huge difference. A lot of foot problems could easily be remedied by this: bunions, plantar fasciitis, the lot.

Although the scientific forum likes to plays musical chairs with this debate, we’ll stand firm. Yes, too long idling on your rump could lead to a discounted reservation at the horizontal Hilton. But “sitting is the new smoking” is a glib phrase that needs to stop now. The truth of the matter is, as ever, more nuanced. Prolonged repose is bad. But so is relentless standing – just ask anyone with one of those new-fangled Varidesks how their knees are doing today. “If you’re standing still, that’s slightly better than sitting – but you’re still 12 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

not moving,” says Dr Kelly Starrett, author of Deskbound. So though we wholeheartedly endorse the idea of spending as much time on your feet as your bottom (not least for the reported 46% productivity boost*), a more effective approach is to seek regular movement. After all, much of the trouble that comes with being parked for too long manifests in the form of cardiovascular and blood sugar damage, which researchers in Australia argue is easily combatted with regular two-minute breaks. So sit less, for sure. But more importantly, move more – no matter your position.

2) FIND YOUR FLOW You should be able to go from a walk to a run without awkwardly waddling like a duck. If you have to ‘correct’ your feet to run, practise standing with your feet straight all day. 3) RAISE THE BAR You know that foot rail under the bar at the pub? Putting your foot up takes the load out of your back, so you stand straighter. Try to put your foot up on something at work too.




I think I’m addicted to vaping. That’s fine, right? – PHIL

Where there’s smoke, there’s fire for your lungs. But where there’s vapour... well, we just don’t know yet. If you’ve made the switch from cigarettes then, yes, your lung health will improve. But if you’re still struggling with cravings, things are a little hazy: a recent study in The Lancet suggests vaping could reduce smokers’ odds of quitting for good by 28%. It’s likely you’ve just swapped one fixation for another. Whether or not that’s a cause for celebration, we’ll reserve judgement.


No. The idea that heading to work on an empty stomach is health hara-kiri is one hatched by cereal marketeers. “Your body should always have enough fuel in store to carry you through to lunch,” says nutritionist Dr Mike Roussell. “In fact, I encourage my clients to skip meals every so often, so they learn to deal with hunger. Consider it a willpower workout.” To be clear, a healthy breakfast is a very good thing. But necking a bowl of Froot Loops under duress is considerably worse than nothing.


Repping out your T-shirt muscles is all well and good , but without strong shoulders, you’re just adding masonry to a sand castle. Weak shoulders are sadly common to office workers, with hunched posture and repetitive strain leading to tenseness and poor mobility. The trick is to introduce moves that employ a full range of motion to your workout. And as an Olympic swimmer, Ryan Lochte knows a fair bit about such moves: “To strengthen my shoulders, I do ‘I’, ‘Y’ and ‘T’ raises: three sets of 10. Hold some dumbbells, leaning forward slightly, back straight. Raise your arms straight up [I], at 30 degrees [Y], then out to the sides [T].” Shoulder the burden like a champ.

Will I make You don’t need to know your a good dad? Sigmund Freud to know we’re


all products of our parents. But with University of Maryland research suggesting that, on average, new dads spend a mere seven hours a week with their offspring, your window of influence is tight. Perhaps you have designs on siring a sporting dynasty or child genius. Either way, the secret isn’t finding more time; it’s making better use of the time you have. So…

14 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


You may be sick and tired by your 297th reading of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, but your kids aren’t. And they’ll be better off if you suck it up and get into the story, suggests a Boston Uni study. Reading in an “engaging voice” promotes literacy and language development.


Tucking in the kids at inconsistent times could hamper their cognitive progress. UK researchers tracked nearly 10,000 children and linked irregular bedtimes at age three to lower scores in both maths and reading tests by age seven.


The shallow end of life is brief; after that, things get deep really fast. No wonder a study conducted by Australian scientists found that children who learned to swim at a younger age tended to be more physically and mentally advanced than their peers.


A crammed bookshelf can translate to an intellectual boost – regardless of whether the books have been read. Having 500 or more books in the home has been found to be as great an advantage for a kid as having universityeducated parents.


Is skipping breakfast always a nutritional faux pas?

I’m strong, but rubbish at overhead lifts. What’s up?


The latest news on fitness, health, nutrition, sex and style


You’re in a pinch but want real food. Try these combos:

Small whole wheat flour tortilla + heaping spoonful cinnamonraisin peanut butter + banana =

Large hard-boiled egg, halved + dollop 2% Greek yogurt + little shake of smoked paprika = 7G PROTEIN

Piece of whole wheat toast + coating of cottage cheese + bit o’ honey = 11G PROTEIN

Big piece of beef jerky + hit of guacamole + squeeze of lime juice = 7G PROTEIN

16 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6



BULLETINS Clean Out Your Fat Reserves Could it be that your house is playing havoc with your weight? Tackle the waistline saboteur that lives too close to home

inside your body should be obvious by their name. Previous studies have cited phthalates in plastic food containers as a potential cause of disease, but this is the first piece of evidence directly linking those in soap to the way the body stores fat. Frequent exposure disrupts lipid metabolism, causing you to pile on the pounds while exacerbating issues such as fatty liver disease. You can burst fat’s bubble by ditching your chemical cleaner for one made from natural ingredients. Dudu-Osun African Black Soap ( is chemical-free, helping you stay slim and squeaky-clean. Now wash your hands of those love handles for good.


These are known to contain phthalates. Switch chemical-heavy supermarket brands for a Moso airpurifying bag ( to banish bad smells and health risks alike.


Obesogens even find their way into your synthetic rainwear. A waxed canvas jacket is both chemical-free and a far slicker way to outwit bad weather.


The water you bathe in drags chemicals from PVC pipes with it. Simply installing an inexpensive water filter in your shower and taps should douse your concerns.


The leftover takeaway boxes you tote to and from the office could transfer a payload of BPA to your lunch. Instead, opt for a smarter – in all senses – steel box.


If you’re struggling to tidy up your physique, there may be a culprit in your sink. And we don’t mean the dishes from last night’s cheat meal. Brand new research published in the journal Toxicology in Vitro found soaps and household cleaning products carry chemicals called obesogens. That you don’t want these


Stay clear of these common domestic fat traps

18 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


pp ; ly



FO RI R NG A CO TH M IS TR PL C IM O Te *B rm y a A EN UP s pp I & o Co in N TA O nd tm iti en IN on t o RYN s nl a y G



Remove the probios from your basket, and fill it with fermented superfoods to top up your health pension

Quit Your Bellyaching Over Bacteria


Filling your fridge with “gutfriendly” fromage frais might please the CGI bacteria seen during ad breaks. But your biology tells a different story. The science stating that good gut health lowers your cancer risk and speeds up metabolism is sound. However, yoghurt drinks aimed at mummies and their tummies are bloated with ersatz marketing spiel. In a study from the University of Copenhagen, scientists trialled seven different probiotic supplements and monitored the bacteria found in the participant’s entrails (presumably collected by the lab intern) for changes. And they found none. Nada. Zip. In fact, there’s no evidence these supps 20 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

are any more belly-friendly than a glass of H2O. Which is a real kick in the Yakults, bearing in mind the global probiotic industry is worth RM103 billion. If you want to boost your intestinal health, ignore the misleading ads and return to the scientifically backed basics. Naturally fermented food, such as cheese and gherkins, is packed with the vitamins and enzymes your belly needs for better digestion. Get that right and your immune response, hormone regulation, protein absorption, fatburning rate and, according to the University of Western Ontario, overall mental health will follow. Your stomach’s not just the way to your heart, after all.


The Journal of Science found sauerkraut has all the enzymes your intestines need to absorb the muscle-building nutrients in your next steak.


By supercharging your digestion, a glass of kvass will speed up your post-gym recovery, according to the University of Michigan.


An animal study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the bacteria in Greek yoghurt cuts your risk of colon cancer. Scoop into some now.


Probiotic marketing sharks are feeding on your wages. Go natural for a (real) gut reaction

Eating 100g per day will beat off viruses by boosting your immune system activity by 75%, according to Pusan National University.




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BULLETINS Brain Training On The Road

Going for a run before breakfast is a proven way to jump-start your metabolism. But if your aspirations are to stay mentally fit, then new research suggests a well-timed post-work run is what you need. The connection between body and brain is well established: when you exercise, chemical compounds such as norepinephrine and dopamine are released, stimulating the hippocampus and enhancing your neural activity. It’s probably the reason you stumbled across your last big idea while out running. But now a Current Biology study suggests that, if the time and conditions are right, cardio can help you set a new memory personal best. Wait four hours after a learning task (such as a brainstorming creative session at work) before exercising, and research shows that your hippocampus will glow white-hot with memory-boosting activity. The applications of this are two-fold. In the short term, an evening run can help lock in the main points of the next day’s presentation. In the longer term, regular post-work cardio can help you outrun cognitive decline in later life. Either way, it seems that playing the exercise waiting game is your wisest choice.

For a sharper mind and increased mental performance, cardio is a proven benefactor. But for best results, good timing is everything







Regular coffee boosts memory consolidation, but time it right. Drinking caffeine much after 4pm risks disrupting brainenhancing sleep. Nature Neuroscience

Stress triggers Alzheimer’s, so take the sting out of rush-hour by wearing headphones – it’s proven to make crowds less traumatic. Royal Holloway

A quick call to make plans with pals saves grey matter. Men with active social lives have the slowest rate of memory decline. Harvard School of Public Health

Eating a high-fibre diet rich in nuts and beans reduces the risk of mild cognitive impairment that can lead to Alzheimer’s. Rush University Medical Center

Chewing gum as you warm up raises your heart rate, delivering more oxygen to your brain and enhancing cognitive power. University of Northumbria


22 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6






Maximise your memory in the time between lessons learned and calories burned



Water-resistant and turbopowered, Philips Multigroom Kit QG3380 is a eight-piece set with full metal trimmer, body shaver, body trimmer and adjustable combs with up to 18 length settings that allows you to easily style your face, hair and body.

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You’re familiar with the cucumber-slices-overthe-eyes move? Well, you can replicate that with two chilled spoons, says Men’s Health fashion director Sandra Nygaard. In fact, here’s a secret: anything chilly will most likely have the same effect on your eyes. Just tell your wife you’re into spooning.

Instead of putting your feet up, go look for a dishpan, bucket or other vessel large enough to hold both your feet. Then soak ’em in a solution of one part vinegar to two parts water for 15 minutes on three consecutive days, according to Nygaard. Bonus: you’ll lose the funk along with the fungus.

You’ll need breakfast stuff – oats and yogurt. Some people treat burns and eczema with oats, and oat extract is often in products that target acne. Mix 2 tablespoons oats with 1 to 2 tablespoons plain yogurt. Coat your face, wait 10 minutes, and rinse, Nygaard says. For breakfast, have some eggs instead.

No hot water? No problem. This shampoo doesn’t require any H2O at all. Just grab some baking soda – it’s a natural odour killer. Give your hair a dusting and run the stuff through completely. Then comb it out. Don’t use too much or you’ll look like a powdered doughnut. Not a good look.


Detail foil shaver



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Bust Through Any Plateau New science reveals how to reclaim your body and reach peak performance



frustrated. His biceps weren’t popping, but his belly was. The 38-year-old firefighter was doing everything right, or so he thought. He lifted three or four days a week and watched his food intake, especially carbs. At first it worked – he got leaner and stronger – but he never quite hit the fitness level he was seeking. After a year, flab crept back and his fitness stalled. He tried to bust out of his rut by lifting more and eating less. It backfired. He found himself at a chubby 103kg, feeling strong but out of shape. It didn’t make sense, he says. One night, he Google-ed for answers and stumbled upon trainer Alex Viada and nutritionist Trevor Kashey, a duo with a no-nonsense, science-heavy approach to fitness. They’d gained their expertise in clinical research settings and teamed up because, they said, fit guys are training all wrong. And then they plateau. They get stuck and frustrated, and then start to regress. Montgomery asked the pair for a plan, and their initial demands shocked him: Kashey advised him to eat more food, mainly carbs; meanwhile, Viada suggested he do two 60-minute runs a week at a boringly slow pace to supplement the lifting program. • 27


better at your sport, he says, but only at the highest levels. For the average guy who just wants to be fitter and healthier, tackling a variety of activities leads to improvements across the board, and makes workouts more sustainable. The two men are living proof of that. Viada has deadlifted more than 300kg one day and completed a 100mile ultra-marathon the next. Later the same year he completed a sub-13hour IRONMAN Triathlon at 104kg, and then returned to squatting three times his body weight the very next week. Kashey rides his bike to work every day and holds a strongman axledeadlift record. If you follow Montgomery’s old plan, pay attention – the following tweaks will lead you to a fitness breakthrough.

Train Like This, Look Like That Jonathan Montgomery’s Fitness Tips

28 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


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

1/ Don’t Be a Hero Many guys sacrifice good form for an egoboosting heavy bar. Don’t. Overreaching for that 2.5kg gain can eventually lead to fatigue accumulation, slowing your results.

aesthetic part comes naturally.” YOUR MOVE Make sure you train three days a week minimum; four or five is preferable. Select two or three performance goals and build your training around them. (The programme on page 30 will help you build strength and endurance.) For example, your goals could be to add 20kg to your squat and run a 5K, or complete 20 pull-ups and do a triathlon. Having more than one goal means you’ll improve across the board – in strength, power, and endurance – thereby achieving better overall fitness. And if you face a setback in one area, you can still make gains in others, which will keep you motivated. What’s more, training multiple skills can also reduce your injury risk, because you limit your ability to go too extreme in any one fitness area, Viada says .

2/ Avoid Extras

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

3/ Earn Your Rest

“If you’re not looking forward to your rest days, you’re not giving your training days your all,” Montgomery says. Not gassed by rest day? Then amp up your intensity.


“Their ideas seemed totally counterintuitive,” Montgomery says. “I always thought carbohydrates and jogging just made you fat. But my own approach at the time wasn’t working, so I committed to following through with exactly what Kashey and Viada instructed.” By the time he’d completed six months of four weekly workouts, Montgomery had added 45kg to his gym total (combination of squat, bench, and deadlift), shaved eight minutes off his 5K time, run his first six-minute mile, dropped 14kg, and sculpted a ripped body. Other men who’ve worked with Kashey and Viada have had similar results. The pair’s secret is simple. Kashey and Viada regard fitness and nutrition research with the skepticism of scientific inquiry. That philosophy has helped them see through marketing gimmicks and fitness fads, and focus on what works. For example, many nutritionists advocate slashing carbs because large quantities can make you store more fat. That indeed happens, Kashey says, when you’re eating too many calories overall. But if you train hard and take in enough protein and fat on top of your training, carbs can help your performance, which in turn changes your body composition over time. Viada calls his approach “hybrid training”: it borrows from the best of strength and cardio as well as other disciplines. Too many guys obsess about specialising, he says. They’ll only lift or only run. Yes, specialisation can help you perform




You may have heard that longduration aerobic sessions eat muscle, making you “skinny-fat”. Not true for the average guy, Viada says. Relaxed sweat sessions promote bloodflow, which negates post-workout soreness. They also improve overall endurance so you can recover better and more quickly between weightlifting sets. YOUR MOVE Do one or two half-hour to two-hour cardio sessions a week, whether it’s running, riding, or hiking. Keep your heart rate between 120 and 140 beats per minute. That’s the sweet spot where you’ll see tremendous heart health and general fitness benefits, but won’t hurt your next lifting session.

Guys who cut carbs often fail to take in enough calories, preventing muscle growth. The more you exercise, the more calories you need. “People obsess too much over whether a food is ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’ – like sweet potatoes versus white potatoes, for example – and miss the fact that total calorie intake is most important,” Kashey says. YOUR MOVE Measure your calories by weighing your food or using an app like MyFitnessPal. Once you know how much you typically eat, tweak accordingly: active men looking to be more fit should consume 4 to 9 percent more, while sedentary guys looking to shed fat should cut their intake by 6 to 10 percent.

Most diet and training programmes last two to three months. That’s long enough for you to notice a change but not to maximise your gains. That’s why Viada prefers – and Kashey requires – that clients commit to working with him for at least six months. Many of Kashey’s clients have worked with him for years – and they’re still improving. YOUR MOVE If you want to attain elite fitness, find an expert training and nutrition plan and stick with it for half a year, Viada says. Don’t add or subtract anything. Don’t improvise. Hopping from programme to programme or tweaking expertdesigned plans are two big reasons guys don’t reach the next level.

Do Slow Cardio

Track Your Numbers

Stay the Course

3 Fitness Hacks Ripped Guys Know 1/ Fix Your Lunch

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

2/ Eat the Grilled Chicken Salad


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

My Secret Muscle Fuel: Lucky Charms Cereal

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

3/ Salt Your Water

Replenishing your fluids after a long run or ride is important. Add a pinch or two of salt to a big glass of water to hydrate your body and keep it that way, Kashey suggests. Adequate hydration means better performance and faster progress. 29


A Smarter Way to Get Jacked

1 Pull-up

2 Barbell Squat

5 Barbell Row

6 Bulgarian Split Squat

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

4 Barbell Bench Press

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

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

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

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


This week-long workout plan from Alex Viada fuses new science with proven training strategies. You’ll not only build the best body of your life but also turbocharge your strength and endurance. Follow the programme for up to eight weeks.

Weekly Training Plan

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





3 sets, 1 rep


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

Easy cardio: 30 minutes


6 sets, 3 reps


3 sets, max reps


3 sets, 1 rep


6 sets, 3 reps


6 sets, 3 reps


6 sets, 25 reps



Speed cardio: 35 minutes




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

7 Dumbbell Lateral Raise

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


3 sets, 5 reps


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


10 sets, 3 reps


10 sets, 3 reps


5 sets, 3 reps


3 sets, 5 reps


3 sets, 12 reps


8 sets, 25 reps Easy cardio: 60 minutes


3 Leg Press

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

Trainer: Alex Viada, owner of Complete Human Performance

8 Dumbbell Walking Lunge

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

9 Dimel Deadlift

Stand holding a loaded barbell using an overhand grip. Push your hips back and lower the bar to just below your knees. Explosively thrust your hips forward as you pull the bar back up. 31


Workout Routine Hazwan exercises six times a week and rests on Sundays. MONDAY

Cardio dance classes TUESDAY

Weight training or HIIT WEDNESDAY

Flexibility exercise (yoga or Pilates) THURSDAY

Swimming FRIDAY

Group exercise classes (HIIT) SATURDAY

Weight and cardio dance classes

From Zero To Hero How Hazwan Zainol Abidin lost 35kg and emerged as one of the Fit for Fashion champions WHEN HE WAS AT HIS PEAK WEIGHT

of 113kg, Hazwan Zainol Abidin felt tired and lethargic constantly. “I was always in a bad mood because I never felt good about myself,” he recalls. He loved sports like badminton and swimming, but found that his heft affected his stamina. He also became clumsy and fell easily during physical activities. That’s when Hazwan decided that enough was enough – the weight had to go. At the beginning, despite his best intentions, he was tripped up by two hurdles commonly encountered by workout newbies. The first was not being consistent with his workouts. “My job is pretty demanding, and I found that I couldn’t hit the gym as often as I wanted even though I had it scheduled,” Hazwan says. He was also too quick to give up whenever he hit a plateau. Nonetheless, he persevered and managed to shed a fair few kilos, but something at the back of his mind kept telling him that 32 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

it still wasn’t enough. So he took his workouts to the next level by swimming and practising yoga regularly – two exercises that he readily recommends to anyone who wants to get in shape. “They give me a sense of calm too,” he adds. Apart from cardio dance classes and weight training, working out with his large group of friends who share similar fitness goals has been a major motivating factor. “Being able to laugh at each other’s jokes while doing the hard stuff really helps ease the tension,” he says. “It makes exercising fun.” Naturally, diet has played a huge role in Hazwan’s weight-loss journey. His daily meals consist of a small portion of carbohydrates, two portions of protein and a limitless amount of vegetables. “I reward myself with a cheat meal once a week, which can be ice cream, chocolates, pastries or fast food,” he confesses. “But I am now more focused and energetic. I don’t feel

tired all the time anymore.” After regaining his confidence, Hazwan decided to join Fitness First’s Fit for Fashion challenge – which he won! His sights are now trained on a marathon and the Viper Challenge, but he “aims to gain more muscle and to tone my body with the help of a personal trainer” first. Hazwan might make it all seem like a walk in the park, but he stresses the importance of being prepared to put in the hard work and the time, and always keeping things in perspective: “Do it at your own pace. It won’t be easy, but it’ll all be worth it in the end.” Having goals is great, he adds, but enjoying every step of your weight-loss journey is important too, because it’ll keep you going on those days when you dread dragging yourself to the gym. “If you can’t fly, then run. If you can’t run, then walk or crawl,” he says. “As long as you keep moving forward, you will get to the finish line.”



Diet Regime

Hazwan eats three proper meals a day and snacks on healthy treats. BREAKFAST:

Eggs and bread with peanut butter MID-MORNING SNACK:

Nuts and raisins LUNCH:

Rice and vegetables with meat, chicken or fish AFTERNOON SNACK:

Prunes or nuts DINNER:

Pasta or noodle soup


113kg After:





Counter Point: Rolling Isn’t Worth The Pain

Another benefit of inhibited muscle tension is reduced DOMS. It stands to reason that if you knock out an exhausted muscle, it won’t cause you as much pain. Call me a purist, but that pain, like all pain, is there for a reason. It’s your body telling you it needs time to repair. Muting it not only fast-forwards your injury risk, but ultimately won’t improve your performance anyway 2 . So, should you avoid these deceptive cylinders? Yes – unless you plan on immediately following up your rolling with mobility work. You see, SMR can help you, but only if paired with targeted muscle activation exercises straight after rolling; you should use that time to isolate “underactive synergists”. Sound technical? That’s exactly the point. You’ll learn about these details if and when you need to, i.e. if you are instructed by a professional. If that sounds too nanny-ish for you, feel free to grab your roller after a weights session – just make sure you’re taking the time to capitalise on its effects rather than pushing to get into the shower. Much like the Devil himself, foam rollers come in many guises. But none are worth the guilt you’ve felt passing them on your way to the locker room. And if you need me to tell you foam rollers don’t relieve stress 3 , you’ve probably never used one. If I were you, I’d keep it that way.

Their purported benefits are, at best, a stretch. Here’s why this columnist thinks it’s time to leave the foam roller in the corner



begins warming up with a foam roller. It’s not the best joke in the world, admittedly, but it’s a joke nonetheless. Because your time spent floundering on those sadistic cylinders is time wasted. If you’re not familiar with the apparent benefits of self-myofascial release (SMR), to give foam rolling its proper name, here are the standouts: increased flexibility, subdued delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and, ultimately, better performance. As a form of massage, foam rolling is also hypothesised to relieve stress. In short, it’s currently being pitched as a panacea to all gym ills. Now, my problem with foam rolling is not simply that it hurts like hell. The truth is that, in searching for evidence to back up these claims, you’re met at every turn by conflicting research 1 . I have my personal issues with foam rolling, too. The foremost, as with all self-help tools of this kind, is that they’re prescribed indiscriminately by so-called “experts”. Don’t be fooled by the puff – these are powerful tools that are easily misused. You might like to use them to “work out the knots” in your back. But with that, there’s potential for injury. Without any personal physical assessment, well-meaning men with limited physiological knowledge are being encouraged to take action that could negatively affect undiagnosed conditions, such as an inflamed injury. The headline claim that foam rolling increases flexibility comes from its ability to inhibit tension: apply enough pressure to muscle fibres and you activate a parasympathetic response,


effectively sending the muscle to sleep. Although this does increase your immediate range of motion, a review in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies concluded this is only because your body’s reactive forces have been temporarily subdued. That’s like turning off the suspension in your car and being amazed by how much movement you get when hitting a speed bump.


There is currently no consensus on the efficacy of foam rolling, according to the Int Journal of Sports Physical Therapy.



Rhode Island Uni found that foam rolling before a workout had no positive impact on performance either way.



Foam rolling doesn’t lower cortisol levels any more than lying down, says the Journal of Physical Therapy Science. 33



Drop in your overall cancer risk if you’re highly physically active – and the decrease in risk goes to double digits for liver, lung, kidney, colon, bladder, and breast cancer. Source: JAMA Internal Medicine

Build Your Hustle Muscle Want more athletic power? Then you’ll need to work on your hamstrings

A “60Second Workout” That Actually Works


S T R A I G H T- L E G D E A D L I F T


The higher you go, the harder your hammies work. Do 3 to 5 sets of as many reps as you can; rest 60 seconds between sets. Do It Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet on a box. Squeeze your glutes and raise your hips until your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees. Pause, lower yourself back down, and repeat.

Slow down this classic move to really load your hamstrings when they’re fully stretched. Do 3 to 5 sets of 8 to 12 reps, taking 4 seconds to lower the weight. Do It Hold a barbell at arm’s length. With your knees slightly bent, bend at your hips, and lower your torso as far as you can without rounding your back. Pause, and reverse the move.

This hips-and-knees exercise makes you faster. Do 60 seconds of slides; then rest 60 seconds. That’s 1 round. Do 5. Do It Lie on your back, your arms by your sides and heels on paper plates or Valslides. Press into your heels and raise your hips, sliding your feet toward your butt until your knees are at 90 degrees. Pause, and reverse.

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The Interwebz wasn’t lying: “One minute of intense exercise is just as good as 45 minutes of moderate exercise!” In a test of interval training at McMaster University, sedentary men pedaled all-out on stationary bikes for 20 seconds three times, recovering with 2 minutes of slow pedaling in between. The workout lasted 10 minutes, with just 60 seconds of extreme effort. In 12 weeks, they improved their aerobic capacity, body fat percentage, and blood sugar control as much as those who rode for 45 minutes at a moderate pace.


Beefy hamstrings tell the world that you’re a powerful guy, that you can outrun or out-lift the competition. But there’s another thing: you’ll look great in shorts as well. The problem is, too many men ignore their hamstrings – until they pull one. So don’t be like them. Add these moves to your leg day regime to sculpt supreme hammies.


Be The Greatest Version of Yourself


Inspired by her fierce, competitive drive from a life of playing football (soccer, to her), Tamra Dae is determined to defy sexist stereotypes and inspire everyone to be the best that they can be – on their own terms


USERNAME @tamradae OCCUPATION Model, actress, entrepreneur FOLLOWERS 1.2 million SPECIALITY Strength training 35


TAMRA DAE’S TOP TIP “Be you 100%. Don’t try to be anyone else. It’s pointless. She’ll find out soon enough if you’re faking it. Have confidence in yourself, but don’t be cocky. And if you like her, treat her the way you’d want to be treated, and you’ll get the same in return.”


athlete. I started playing soccer when I was three or four years old. I played with boys until I could join a girls’ league, and I played right up to college. I played all year round, for basically my whole life. Soccer taught me responsibility and accountability, and allowed me to play at a very high competitive level and to vent my frustrations. “But after an injury took me away from soccer, I needed a new outlet. Someone talked me into doing a bodybuilding show, and I thought I could go for my first show and just kill it! But, boy, was I wrong. I knew nothing about that world and, even though I looked great and felt strong, I was not tanned enough, my bikini was too average, and my posing was so off! But I learnt a lot that year and I was determined to compete at a high level. It was a hard year of dieting and training twice a day, which affected my life and those around me. Since then, I’ve competed five more times! “At first, I did all that because I just wanted to get back the body that I had while playing soccer. But then I realised that I wasn’t actually healthy when I played. In fact, I got really sick last year from emotional stress and a weakened immune system – it took me out for about five months. I was

36 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

Gain Elite Strength with Tamra Dae

depressed because I had to continue doing photoshoots, act and work like nothing was wrong. But I was terribly sick and losing weight; on most days, I didn’t want to get out of bed. I was just miserable. “So I started on a journey to be healthy on the inside as well – and my whole world changed. I noticed how much happier I was, my skin was better, and I could maintain my shape much easier. I learnt that the body changes very quickly once you stop training and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, so it was imperative that I kept up a routine, but also allowed myself to live, unlike when I was competing in bodybuilding shows. “Nowadays, I eat fairly clean most of the time, and I allow myself ‘cheat meals’ almost every day... But I don’t like to call it ‘cheating’ because they fit within my macro constraints, and I’m able to maintain my physique easily. I train hard, so I can eat what I want. For example, I just started learning Olympic lifting, so I’m trying to up my strength with certain lifts. It requires me to be focused and to stay on top of my food intake. If I don’t eat enough, I won’t have it in me to lift heavy! “I truly feel better when I’m ‘in shape’, which doesn’t just mean being super lean with a ripped frame; it also means being strong, sturdy and able to perform. I eat well so that my body and mind can perform at their best. With my businesses, I have to stay on top of a lot and I’m always moving around, so it’s essential that I am in peak mental and physical shape. “But I am far from a success story. I’m out grinding on a daily basis for what I want for my life. I spray-tan clients for a living, and I

conduct personal training. I hustle my ass off and put all of my money back into my dreams. I want to be in television and film, so I take lessons and classes, and get involved in entertainment as much as I can. I hope to build my brand – Brick Haus Body – into something that’s synonymous with empowerment, strength and determination. I aspire to be someone that people can look to for motivation when things are tough, and when they have no one else to turn to. I want to push them to be a part of something bigger than themselves. “But remember: everyone is going to be different. You have to find what works for you. My schedule is all over the place, so I can’t say that every day is going to be the same. I have to roll with the punches. I take time to remember to breathe, centre myself, and have moments of reflection where I can be at peace with my surroundings, even if I’m extremely stressed out. “So I say: go after your dreams and work your butt off for them, but be kind to yourself, and be patient. Don’t lose yourself in the process. Results come slowly, but they’re worth every struggle and sacrifice that you make. You don’t want a quick fix that results in you gaining it all back. Take your time to learn what works for your body, and listen to it. Make sure you’re taking care of it internally too. Rest when you need to, and then push yourself beyond what you think you’re capable of. “Be happy with yourself at every stage of your progress. Don’t compare where you are with others. It’s a journey. If you love where you are every day, then you will be able to maintain the new lifestyle forever!”

You don’t need space-age machines to become the strongest version of you. All it takes is one barbell, a couple of dumbbells, and an indomitable will to succeed. This programme by Tamra Dae is a great way for novices to acclimatise to weight training, and is an effective refresher for experienced gym-goers, lest you plateau and stagnate. For each workout, perform as many reps as possible (AMRAP) within 30 seconds, and rest for 30 seconds between workouts. Then, rest for 60 seconds after every circuit. Aim to do six to eight circuits. Want more of a challenge? Increase the AMRAP period to 40 seconds, decrease post-workout rest time to 20 seconds, and reduce post-circuit rest time by 10 seconds after every completed circuit. As Dae says, you’ll be great at “picking heavy s**t up and putting it down!” by the time you’re done with these workouts.

1/ Dumbbell Squat to Press

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand at shoulder height, with palms facing outward. Squat until your thighs are parallel to the ground, while engaging your glutes for power and your core for balance. Return to start and lift the dumbbells towards the sky until your arms are fully extended.

2/ Bent Knee Deadlifts

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, and hold an EZ Bar at shoulder-width. Engage your glutes, and lower the bar until it reaches your shins. Bend your knees slightly at the end of the movement. Do not curve or arch your spine throughout this workout.

3/ Bent-over Row to Lateral Shoulder Rotation

Step your left foot forward, bend both knees, and lower your upper back slightly, keeping your spine neutral. Hold a dumbbell in your right hand and let it hang. Lift the dumbbell towards your hip, pause, and then rotate your arm until the dumbbell is perpendicular to your body. Repeat on the opposite side.

4/ Standing Triceps Press

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold one dumbbell with both hands, behind your head. Lift the dumbbell until both arms are fully extended.

5/ Front Squat to Sumo Squat

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold one dumbbell with both hands, with the dumbbell in front of you and at shoulder height. Squat until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Return to start. Then, hold the dumbbell below your hips, and take a step out wide with both feet. Align your knees with your toes, which should be pointing outwards. Squat until your thighs are parallel to the ground. 37



12 Simple Answers to Weird Questions Exercise shrinks your penis and coffee rouses your bowels. It’s not your imagination. It’s science



brain may be unfathomable, but the superficiality of the male mind is no easier to decipher. Why do we struggle to remember our loved ones’ birthdays yet retain an encyclopaedic knowledge of craft beer and sports stats? Why, after all these years of living in our skin, are we more fascinated with our own bodily functions than preserving the world for future generations? Frankly, we don’t know, but we can certainly explain why you feel like puking when someone else hurls. • 39

Health Health

Why Am I Obsessed with Younger Women?

illo tk

Because you’re a male Homo sapiens. Why Do I Get the Urge to Vomit After Seeing Duh. “In terms of evolution, men Someone Else Doing It? needed to spread their seed for Call it an evolutionary gag reflex. If their genes to survive. And until thousands of years ago, someone in the past 100 years or so, fathering your tribe were vomiting, the reason was probably something besides a slew of kids meant having more helping hands on the farm,” explains drinking too much hooch. “They were either sick or had ingested something Helen Fisher, Ph.D., a biological poisonous,” Strohminger says, “and anthropologist and the author of chances were good you’d eaten some Anatomy of Love. This is why men too. So throwing up helped prevent of all ages are attracted to women you from getting sick.” in their physical prime. It may even explain why, according to a 2014 Pew Research Center survey, 20 percent of us choose a woman at least 10 years younger when we marry a second time.

the same parents or living space, and they pose less of a disease risk – though that may be hard to accept when you have to use the toilet after your brother’s morning dump.

Why Do I Like My Own Body Odours Better Than Everyone Else’s?

40 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

Why Does Coffee Loosen My Bowels?

Research has shown that a good grind gives about a third of people

Why Must I Turn My Head and Cough When the Doc Grabs My Testicles?

When you cough (turning your head is just being polite), you increase pressure in your abdomen. If you have an inguinal hernia, which affects 27 percent of men, the pressure forces fat tissue and parts of the intestine to poke through abdominal wall muscles and possibly down into your scrotum, says surgeon Steven Beanes, M.D. With a hand firmly on your groin, the doctor can feel anything amiss. Detecting groin hernias early lowers the risk of intestinal tissue death, which could lead to bowel-removal surgeries and even threaten your life.

Does the Colour of My Mucus Mean Anything ?

Yes. Yellow or green snot means your immune system is fighting something. Any pigment is a byproduct of mobilised white blood cells in your nasal cavity, says Stanley Chia, M.D., associate chair of otolaryngology at MedStar Washington Hospital Center in Washington D.C. Coloured mucus can occur with viral and bacterial illnesses. Although viral particles in your snot can infect other people, they won’t do you further harm if swallowed. You produce (and unwittingly digest) about a litre of mucus a day when disease-free – and even more when you’re sick.


Survival of the fittest entails avoiding other people’s nastiness. Infectioncausing bacteria on their bodies can be a source of disease. If you were drawn to instead of being repulsed by the unpleasant odours these bacteria sometimes emit, you’d be more susceptible to illness and death. It’s that simple, says Nina Strohminger, Ph.D., author of The Hedonics of Disgust. (What? That’s not in your bathroom library?) Here’s another way to look at it: if you vomited every time you took a dump, you’d be highly irregular. You’re just not genetically designed to feel revolted when you catch a whiff of yourself. And, per an Evolution and Human Behavior study, you don’t find your loved ones’ disgusting acts as gross as a stranger’s. That’s because you share

the urge to go. Within approximately four minutes of ingestion, both regular and decaf coffee stimulate the end of the colon. The timing can vary, but the urge can last 30 minutes or longer. Although the exact compounds behind the effect are unknown, coffee consumption increases your body’s levels of two hormones, gastrin and cholecystokinin, that speed up gut motility and stimulate the liver to secrete digestion-revving bile, explains Kathlynn Caguiat, M.D., a gastroenterologist based in New York City. Plus, drinking your coffee first thing in the morning can trigger what’s called a “gastrocolic reflex”. That’s your body’s tendency to make room when something new comes into the stomach.

Why Would Anyone Choose To Become a Proctologist?

How Many Calories Do I Lose When I Take a Dump?

Ideally, zero – but you do burn a few through muscle effort. Your small intestine is nicely designed to absorb all the calories from the food you consume, after which every calorie is either burned for energy or stored as fat. It’s a very efficient system in which nothing is wasted, according to Dr. Caguiat. However, there is a condition called steatorrhea, in which the body struggles to absorb dietary fat, causing greasy, foul-smelling poop. As a result, hundreds of calories (9 per fat gram, to be exact) go down the toilet. Generally, steatorrhea results from pancreatic conditions, a low level of bile salts, or such weight-loss drugs as Alli. Fat malabsorption can lead to diarrhea and, in some cases (yikes!), anal leakage.

Why Do Old People Smell So Darn Funky?

Certain conditions that tend to be more common among older people, such as kidney and liver disease, can cause toxins to build up in the body or acidity to increase, which can lead to a distinctive, unpleasant smell, according to William Dale,

They come for the RM1 million annual salary (est.) and stay for the huge impact they can have on people’s lives. (Colorectal cancer has up to a 90 percent survival rate if it’s caught early.) And just so you know: they’re no longer called proctologists; they’re colorectal surgeons.

M.D., Ph.D., who teaches geriatrics at the University of Chicago. Also, with diabetes, excess sugar in the blood can cause a sweet smell and result in bad-smelling fungal infections of the skin. Your grandpa may not notice these odours because people’s sense of smell tends to dull with age. So if you suddenly detect something funky (and it’s not Wild Cherry on the oldies station), you may want to diplomatically suggest that he schedule a check-up. Incidentally, humans may be able to determine age ranges based on body odour, a 2012 PLOS One study suggests.

Why Is Popping a Pimple So Satisfying?

Even though dermatologists warn about the risk of infection and scarring, pimples beg to be popped just like Everest beckons to be climbed. Popping rids the skin of acidic pus and eases pressure, says plastic surgeon Julius Few, M.D. And as the pain eases, you get a shot of dopamine, the feel-good brain chemical also linked to sex drive.

Why Does My Penis Shrink When I Exercise?

When you hit it hard in the gym, all of those muscles swell with 15 to 20 times more blood than they have when they’re at rest, says exercise physiologist Mike Nelson, Ph.D., C.S.C.S. The blood has to come from somewhere, so parts of the body not directly involved with the effort give up some of their share – including luxury tissue like your penis. The resulting dip in blood-flow in the area is so dramatic that it can make grown men look prepubescent, says urologist Brian Steixner, M.D. That won’t change much even if a spandex-clad beauty starts doing squats nearby. Adrenaline, which is released during exercise to increase work capacity, blocks dopamine’s efforts to pump blood back into your penis.

If Cleaning My Ears with a Cotton Bud Is So Bad, Why Does It Feel So Wonderful?

The skin covering your ears has lots of extremely sensitive nerve endings, and many of them ultimately connect with internal organs. So getting your Q-tip on sends a cascade of pleasure signals throughout your body’s various sensory tissues and organ systems, says Amber Luong, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor of otorhinolaryngology (which sounds much better than it looks) at the University of Texas McGovern Medical School. Those ultrasensitive nerve endings are one reason why ear kisses (and having sweet nothings whispered into those ears) is such a big turn-on for men as well as women, adds sex therapist Tammy Nelson. 41

Health Health

When Your Doctor Thinks You’re Nuts Your physician should be your greatest health ally. So what do you do when the diagnosis is disbelief?

42 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. A few months later, Dr. Lee temporarily removed a piece of McDonough’s skull, lifted his brain to gain access to the damaged area, and made the repair. McDonough was fortunate to find a doctor who quickly and correctly diagnosed him and knew exactly where to send him for help. Many people suffering from mysterious symptoms aren’t so lucky. They can spend years and their entire savings searching for answers and trying to convince doctors they’re not nuts. Here’s one man’s story: seven years ago, Toby Spencer, a 47-yearold bank network administrator in Maine, developed symptoms similar to McDonough’s. Spencer’s doctor referred him to an ENT who, he says, “looked at me like I had three heads” and diagnosed a vascular disorder. Spencer soldiered on for two years before reading about SCDS on the Internet. With the aid of an openminded ENT, he finally got help. No one knows exactly how many people with bizarre-but-

real medical symptoms are being shuttled from doctor to doctor without finding satisfaction. In the United States, diagnostic errors in outpatient settings hover around 5 percent, or roughly 12 million adults a year, according to a 2014 study. But another study, published in 2013, looked at 25 years’ worth of paid malpractice claims and found diagnostic errors to be the leading cause of claims (29 percent), accounting for the highest proportion (35 percent) of total payments. And an Institute of Medicine report from last year predicted that most Americans would be misdiagnosed at least once in their lifetime. But even these disturbing numbers may not include people whose doctors have simply written them off as delusional. Dr. Lee says he’s seen patients who were on psychiatric medications to treat symptoms he later attributed to SCDS. And there are lots of obscure illnesses like that. For example, at age 18, Chris

Martin, now a 37-year-old school psychologist in Sauquoit, New York, underwent a “successful” turbinectomy. This surgery removes nasal structures (turbinates) that can cause sinus pressure and other difficulties. In the 19 years since the operation, Martin has consulted 13 ENTs and eight immunologists, plus sleep specialists, pulmonologists, and alternative-medicine practitioners in an effort to correct the problems that he says stemmed from the procedure. These include chronic breathlessness, extreme nasal dryness, and gluelike mucus. Martin’s symptoms point to Empty Nose Syndrome (ENS), a controversial condition that can stem from turbinectomy. (One skeptical ENT called it “Empty Head Syndrome” to signal his disbelief that it even exists.) Through online research, Martin found support groups and advice, plus ENSknowledgeable physicians who’ve helped him find some relief. To find relief from what’s ailing you, follow the steps on the next page.



McDonough could hear his eyeballs move. About five years ago while he was golfing in Arizona, McDonough, the new play-by-play announcer for ESPN’s Monday Night Football, bent over to pick up some clubs. The end of the putter tapped him on the back of the head. It wasn’t a hard knock, certainly not enough to raise a lump or leave a bruise – but enough to trigger some strange symptoms. “On the walk from that green to the next tee, my steps were really loud in my head,” McDonough, 54, says. “It was ‘boom, boom’... I thought, ‘What the heck is that?’ I kept waiting for it to go away. But it didn’t.” McDonough flew home to Boston that night and kept hearing bizarre sounds. His voice resounded in his head, even when he spoke so softly that others could hardly hear him. And then there was the swishing of his eyeballs, which he first heard as he was reading the news on his computer. After two days, his curiosity turned into concern. McDonough called his sister, Erin, a vice president at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. Her response: “Come in and I’ll get a doctor to look at you.” McDonough saw an ear, nose, and throat specialist (ENT) who ordered tests and diagnosed a rare condition known as superior canal dehiscence syndrome, or SCDS. It results from a hole or thinning in the temporal bone that separates the inner ear from the brain. McDonough’s putter tap had opened up a tiny hole there, though the bone was already so thin that a strong sneeze could have done it. The specialist referred McDonough to Daniel Lee, M.D., a surgeon at

Believing the Unbelievable An eight-step action plan for convincing a busy and possibly skeptical doctor that you’re not delusional and that the symptoms you’re experiencing are real





Make Sure It’s Not in Your Head

Sum Up the Symptoms

Ask These Five Questions

Keep an Open Mind

Being tired doesn’t necessarily mean you have chronic fatigue syndrome; feeling achy doesn’t always signal Lyme disease. Sometimes, you can rule things out by focusing on symptoms that you can measure (such as a fever, with a thermometer) instead of what you feel (feverish), says David NewmanToker, M.D., Ph.D., an associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins. That said, some conditions don’t present such overt external symptoms, so move on to step 2.

If you’re convinced there’s really something wrong, write a description of it. Stick to facts rather than fears, and be concise. “Develop a clear one-page-or-less description,” says Dr. Newman-Toker, who’s spent more than 16 years researching diagnostic errors. “If you have frequent headaches, describe what a typical one feels like and note how often you have them.” If your doctor accepts email, send it prior to your appointment.

Don’t blindly accept the first diagnosis. Ask: 1. Could this be something else? 2. If you were me, what would worry you? 3. Any other diagnostic tests to consider? 4. How long before we know what this is? 5. What should I watch for as a sign that I need to come back? “If you hear ‘I’ve seen this a million times and there’s nothing else it could be,’ you probably have the wrong doctor,” Dr. Newman-Toker says. “You want someone who’s willing to explain their logic.”

No matter how helpful your doctor is, don’t assume you’re hearing the whole story. Make sure you understand their thinking and what should happen next: the expected progression of the illness, the signs that a treatment is or isn’t working, and the red flags that should prompt another consultation. If you want a second opinion, approach that appointment the same way you did the first, focusing on symptoms, not the previous diagnosis. Don’t skew the doctor’s thinking.





Don’t Be a Jerk

Do Research Online

Don’t Surrender

Share What You Learn

The anxiety of waiting for a diagnosis is understandable, but harassing your doctor with multiple phone calls and emails won’t get you answers any faster. “Give your medical team some time to interpret your testing,” says Dr. Lee, Sean McDonough’s surgeon. “In the end, a face-to-face follow-up visit with your physician is the best way to answer questions about an unusual or complex condition.”

While you cool your heels for those test results or to see if your condition improves, research your symptoms and diagnosis through trustworthy Internet sources. Start with the websites of large hospitals and universities. One of our favoUrites is Mayo Clinic (mayoclinic. org). It offers a Symptom Checker where you can select an overall major symptom and then drill down with more specifics to get to possible causes.

It’s a common thread for folks like Chris Martin and Toby Spencer; they kept seeking a solution and a doctor who was willing to listen. The unfortunate side of this? Insurance coverage. Martin submitted special appeals to his insurer (his care was experimental), and they were eventually approved. For people needing financial help, he suggests asking family, friends, and organisations (like church groups) for support, or setting up an account on

Sean McDonough’s story was featured in USA Today. Not long after it ran, he heard from a woman who’d read it and realised that the misery she’d been dealing with for nearly two decades wasn’t because she was crazy. She had the same thing he had. Her life changed because McDonough shared his story and because she never stopped looking for an answer. Share yours via social media.

4 Commonly Misdiagnosed Conditions Heart Attack

Of every 100 acute myocardial infarction cases, one unlucky victim is sent home from the hospital. why it’s missed Symptoms can be vague, says David Meyers, M.D., of the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine. Indigestion or shoulder pain can mean a heart attack or just musculoskeletal or GI problems. To be safe, ask for an EKG and/or blood test for cardiac markers of a heart attack. Be sure the doctor has used a risk- assessment tool or fully explained why it’s not a heart attack.

Lyme Disease

Tests miss 60 to 70 percent of early-stage Lyme cases. why it’s missed “Most people don’t know they’ve been bitten,” says Dr. Meyers, “and they may never develop the bull’s-eye rash.” That can leave doctors chasing vague aches, pains, and fevers. To make sure you’re in the clear, realise that screenings aren’t always reliable, so if they’re negative, ask about additional tests.


Research suggests that doctors misdiagnose depression at least 60 percent of the time. why it’s missed As with Lyme, the symptoms – such as aches and fatigue – point to various possibilities. Share your concerns with your doctor. One key question to ask: “What else could this be?”


It may be overlooked 13 percent of the time, one study suggests. why it’s missed The classic signs (weakness on one side, vision and speech problems) are recognisable, but others (headache, dizziness) can mislead. Have the doc check your smile. That, plus your gait and ability to raise both arms evenly, can help with diagnosis. If dizziness is your main symptom, ask about an MRI or other tests. 43


5 Prostate Cancer Facts You Need to Get Straight If you fear the letters “P”, “S” & “A”, don’t be. We asked Dr. Ong Teng Aik, associate professor and consultant urologist at University of Malaya, the pressing questions about prostate cancer so that you won’t also fear the finger up your bum



Time for Prostate 101: “The prostate is a small gland, almost as big as a walnut, between your penis and bladder,” Dr. Ong says. “The ejaculatory ducts pass through it, and it secretes fluids that give semen volume.” Fun fact: the prostate also supplies nutrients that keep your swimmers healthy and happy.



The Ministry of Health reports that prostate cancer is the fourth most common cancer among Malaysian guys. “The treatment can be very complex, depending on the stage of the disease,” Dr. Ong says. “At Stage 1, it’s localised and hasn’t spread beyond the prostate. Stage 2 is more locally advanced, while Stage 3 means that it’s a metastatic disease and has spread to the bones and the lymph nodes.”




“Your risk of prostate cancer goes up if you have close relatives like a father or a brother who’s contracted it,” Dr. Ong says. But don’t start panicking if there’s a history of prostate cancer in your family. He adds: “Only about 10% of prostate cancers are hereditary; 90% are sporadic – they just happen.” So get yourself tested the next time you have a check-up. 44 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


Insider secret: you can protect your heart and prostate at the same time. “There’s a saying amongst medical professionals – what’s good for your heart is also good for your prostate,” Dr Ong reveals. “This includes things like exercising more, watching your weight, making smart food choices, and controlling stress levels.” Conclusion: live a healthier lifestyle, and your prostate won’t fail you.


Good news: you can modify your diet to keep your prostate healthy. “People believe that following a more ‘Asian’ diet – something that’s high in fibre, low in meat and protein – is beneficial, and even protects against prostate cancer,” Dr. Ong explains. He cites the Japanese diet (which has plenty of tofu and fresh produce) and tomatoes as especially prostate-friendly.





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Food & Nutrition

THE RM30 30-DAY CHALLENGE You don’t have to spend a fortune on clean and healthy meals. RM30 is more than enough to feed you all day



healthy and clean instantly comes with the fear of our wallets emptying out. That’s common, considering how a clean meal could cost more than three regular ones from the nearest mixed rice stall. But there’s always a solution to any problem. All you have to do is shop smart, eat right and level up your cooking skills. The main reason why I accepted this 30-day challenge goes back to 2012 when I injured my right knee and ankle while dancing and, just like anyone else, I stopped performing to allow myself to recover. It was around the same time that I graduated from university and was job-hunting to start my career in journalism and media. As you can imagine, I packed on the kilos fast. My weight was 58kg before the injury, but it ballooned to 65kg after that. I took my recovery and diet for granted, and that’s the price that I paid. • 47

Food & Nutrition Peer pressure played a huge role in my weight gain, too. According to the survey we ran recently, 29% of us are aware that they’re overweight yet claim they have absolutely no problem with it; 24% have no plans to exercise at all; and 19% refuse to give up their regular not-so-healthy diet. Being part of such a society allowed me to blend in, and that explains my weight gain. The following year, my sports doctor and physiotherapist warned me about my upper body weight: my belly fat was too high and heavy for my lower body to bear; hence, the reason why my right knee and ankle got into trouble. I tried to lose weight, but I wasn’t as successful. I’m now working with Men’s Health Malaysia and, as the name suggests, being and looking healthy is very important. I’d always wanted to adopt a healthy diet and to live a healthier lifestyle, but never received the green light from my bank balance. Also, I was easily distracted by unhealthy fast food and, obviously, I didn’t exercise

at all – though I complained all the time about not being able to fit into my clothes. It was then that my editor offered me a huge helping hand by asking three nutritionists to guide me through this weight-loss journey. Yeoh Ee Ling (Education Manager and Dietitian from Fitness Innovations), Kong Woan Fei (Nutritionist from Columbia Asia) and Celeste Lau Wai Hong (Dietetics Services Manager from Sunway Medical Centre) hopped on board to guide me through this RM30 30-day challenge. EATING OUT WILL ALWAYS COST

more than cooking your meals at home. “Restaurants hike up prices when they say they serve healthy food,” Yeoh says. Just like how the “organic” stamp also means produce will cost five times more as it was planted or bred in a pesticide-free environment: “The production of healthy and organic food has a higher risk compared to usual

food production, thus the higher operation cost will affect the endproduct,” Kong says. The key is to not shop for imported goods. Yes, salmon is great and rich in omega-3s, but so are other local fish such as dory, mackerel and tilapia. Another tip: try not to shop at highend supermarkets like Jaya Grocer, Village Grocer and Cold Storage. Head to Tesco, Aeon and, if you are more adventurous, wet markets. You’ll be amazed with the price difference. You’ll need to put your five senses to good use when choosing fresh meat and other produce from Tesco, though. Try to be there first thing in the morning, when everything is fresh and new; also, check the expiration dates to make sure they are current. I do my marketing and meal prepping every Sunday afternoon. Certain veggies and meat might not last too long in the fridge, so a three-to-five-day limit should be the cut-off point. However, I store two days’ worth of meals (out of five)

HOW TO GET STARTED Keep condiments and salad dressing to a minimum, such as olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. You can add a little flavour to your protein with sesame oil, rice wine, lime, and Italian or Chinese herbs. I cut down on carbohydrates when I’m not exercising. However, I did add some brown rice to my diet if I’m going to the gym in the evening. Keep in mind that you should never skip carbs in the morning. Below are four options that you can try out for 30 days. All menu options cost less than RM20, with one only 30 sen more. As for the extra RM10, treat yourself to some good quality fruit or plain Greek yoghurt.





TOTAL: RM19.24

TOTAL: RM16.51

TOTAL: RM20.32

TOTAL: RM17.76

Breakfast: RM3.49 • Half a can of tuna flakes in water RM3.28 • 2 pieces of wholemeal bread RM0.20 • Black coffee + 1 tablespoon of milk RM0.01 Lunch: RM4.75 • 2 cups of butterhead lettuce RM0.75 • ½ green capsicum RM0.53 • 1 chopped tomato RM0.50 • Baked chicken breast RM2.97 Dinner: RM4.75 • 2 cups of lettuce RM0.75 • ½ red capsicum RM0.53 • 1 chopped carrot RM0.50 • Baked chicken breast RM2.97 Snacks: RM4.25 • Kiwi RM2.50 • Green apple RM1.75 * Condiments to prepare and cook chicken and salad dressing such as olive oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, etc. RM2.00

48 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

Breakfast: RM1.29 • Three half-boiled eggs RM1.08 • 2 pieces of wholemeal bread RM0.20 • Black coffee + 1 tablespoon of milk RM0.01 Lunch: RM4.47 • 1 cup of butterhead lettuce RM0.50 • 1 cup of lettuce RM0.50 • 1 chopped carrot RM0.50 • Baked chicken breast RM2.97 Dinner: RM4.50 • 1 cup of baby romaine lettuce RM0.50 • 1 cup of green coral lettuce RM0.50 • 1 chopped tomato RM0.50 • Baked dory fillet RM3.00 Snacks: RM4.25 • Handful of baked mixed nuts RM2.50 • Green apple RM1.75 * Condiments to prepare and cook chicken and salad dressing such as olive oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, etc. RM2.00

Breakfast: RM3.49 • Half a can of tuna flakes in water RM3.28 • 2 pieces of wholemeal bread RM0.20 • Black coffee + 1 tablespoon of milk RM0.01 Lunch: RM4.78 • 2 cups of butterhead lettuce RM0.75 • ½ green capsicum RM0.53 • 1 chopped tomato RM0.50 • Baked tilapia fillet RM3.00 Dinner: RM6.80 • 2 cups of kai lan vegetables RM1.50 • ¼ cup of shallots, ginger and garlic RM0.30 • Handful of shitake mushrooms RM1.83 • Baked chicken breast RM2.97 • Brown rice RM0.20 Snacks: RM3.25 • Slice of papaya RM1.50 • Green apple RM1.75 * Condiments to prepare and cook chicken and salad dressing such as olive oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, etc. RM2.00

Breakfast: RM2.76 • A bowl of low-sugar cereal RM0.75 • Milk and plain Greek yoghurt RM2.00 • Black coffee + 1 tablespoon of milk RM0.01 Lunch: RM4.78 • 2 cups of butterhead lettuce RM0.75 • ½ green capsicum RM0.53 • 1 chopped tomato RM0.50 • Baked tilapia fillet RM3.00 Dinner: RM4.97 • 2 cups of Chinese kai lan RM1.50 • ¼ cup of shallots, ginger and garlic RM0.30 • Baked chicken breast RM2.97 • Brown rice RM0.20 Snacks: RM3.25 • Slice of papaya RM1.50 • Green apple RM1.75 * Condiments to prepare and cook chicken and salad dressing such as olive oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper, etc. RM2.00

HOW TO DO IT #1: Cut the carbs if they’re unnecessary Forego rice and pasta at noon or in the evening if you are not working out that day – assuming that you are slashing away access body fat. However, you’ll still need carbs in the morning to prepare your mind and body for the hectic day ahead and, of course, before and after you work out. “Always eat carb-rich meals or snacks after your workout for muscle recovery,” Kong advises.



62kg After:


in the freezer to ensure freshness. Food might go stale from the fourth day onwards even when it’s in the chiller, so the freezer is your best bet. “Leftover food or food prepping might have fewer nutrients, and there’s a higher possibility of bacteria contamination, but I won’t call it bad,” Yeoh says. Not only did I lose a significant amount of weight in 30 days, I’ve also learnt that it’s not difficult committing to a diet at all. “It’s all about portion control, and having the discipline to make the right food choices,” Yeoh says. Even when your favourite spicy fried chicken or comforting cottage pie is on the table in front of you, learn to say no. To avoid the dread, always remind yourself the reason why you are doing this challenge in the first place. You want to lose the unhealthy weight; to feel and look better; to fit clothes better; and, of course, to take a smaller chunk out of your wallet.

I lost 6.5kg after 30 days. My diet played a huge role in my weight-loss journey, along with three to four days of exercise a week. My editor got me a gym membership and the classes definitely helped as well. Now that the belly fat is gone and I’ve gained more stamina, I’ve picked up dancing again, because it’s important to keep up the hardcore cardio. The only downside: I can no longer fit into my clothes. Everything is too large now. Guess I’ll have to wait for sales season to arrive. I’M HERE TO PUT AN END TO THE

mindset that eating healthy and clean costs more than any Malaysian could afford. It’ll only cost a bomb if you prefer to eat imported organic products such as chia seeds, salmon and Australian beef. It’ll cost even more if you are going to eat out all the time. “Restaurants need to charge you for all the little things like the comfort of the environment and their effort in

preparing the food for you,” Lau says. Cook at home, shop at your local supermarket or wet market, and grab only local produce. You only have to do this once a week, so a lack of time is not an excuse. Instead of spending more than RM50 a day, you are only forking out RM20 a day – some days, far less than that. Yes, three full meals a day plus snacks for RM20. With the extra RM10, you can treat yourself to a healthy snack, or upsize your meal portions slightly. Try this meal plan for 30 days (see table at left). You will definitely see a difference in your expenses and waistline. It’s a butterfly effect, as planning your meals can also lead to organising your life around work and home more effectively. All it takes is discipline and the willpower to make a change to live a healthier lifestyle. If I can do it after fourand-a-half years, so can you.

#2: Put proteins to great use Consuming a high-protein diet also means you should put it to good use – by exercising. Your body is already all prepped up to repair and strengthen your “injured” tissues and muscles. So get to the gym and rip your muscles apart to look and feel better. Although it’s believed that diet plays a 70% to 80% role in weight loss, exercising is equally as important. “I always believe in 50:50,” Yeoh says. “Both dieting and exercising are equally important.” #3: Source your products from different places Compare product prices from different grocery stores like Tesco, Giant and Aeon. Taking freshness into account is crucial too. “Supermarkets belonging to the same chain might price their products differently, depending on rental and sales turnover,” Lau advises. After a while, you’ll get used to one grocer that you trust. #4: Shop and prep your meals all in one day to save time Buying groceries is easy when you’ve already planned your menu for the week. Cook your meals on the same day, preferable on Sunday, to get it all out of the way. Prepped food usually stays fresh for only three days, so freeze the rest and only thaw it in the morning when needed. “Heat up your food until it’s piping hot to destroy any possible contamination,” Kong advises. #5: Change your mindset and lifestyle Going on a diet after so many years of unhealthy eating and binging wasn’t easy, but my concern about my weight beat that. “The sudden transition might be hard, but it’s all about the determination and the power of your mind,” Yeoh says. I got used to salad and baked chicken breast for lunch and dinner after just five days; I even got rid of my cravings for cake pops and apple turnovers. 49

Food & Nutrition


endurance athlete, sailed through the initial 35 miles of his first ultra-marathon, the 50-mile North Face Endurance Challenge. He was energised and focused. Fifteen more miles – no sweat, he thought. But then came hill after hill, and by the 40th mile Bitter was running on fumes and losing focus. He rounded a corner, started one more long, brutal climb... and bonked. He cursed himself and the race route as he staggered into one of the last aid stations. Soda and sports drinks propped him up the rest of the way towards a less-thansmooth finish. Bitter competed in more ultras, but they always ended the same way: he’d cruise his first 30 to 40 miles and then inevitably reach a point in the race that left him feeling lightheaded and irritable, and struggling to push forward at an even pace. In search of a solution, he scrutinised every aspect of his training and nutrition plan. He did research and asked questions. Then he made a radical change: he axed a ton of carbs from his diet, slashed his protein intake, and ate a lot more fat. After eight weeks on the plan, Bitter’s training intensified while his recovery times fell. In his next race, he didn’t bonk. Soon after, in 2012, he won four ultra-marathons. Then, in 2013, Bitter broke the U.S. 100-mile record with a time of 11:47:21. Two years later he smashed his own record with a 100-mile time of 11:40:55. That’s about 7 minutes per mile – for 100 consecutive miles.

The New Endurance Fuel Some elite athletes are conquering their 50th mile with the same intensity they brought to the first mile. Their secret? Foods they were told to avoid

50 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6



carb, high-fat, and moderate protein – is called a ketogenic diet. It’s not for the faint of heart, and even though it goes against years of “carbs are king” endurance dogma, it’s gaining traction with some elite endurance athletes, who say it helps them go harder for longer and feel just as good on their 50th mile as they did on their first. But how could such a counterintuitive plan work?

Like this: with a typical diet, your body converts glucose (a type of sugar) from the carbs you eat into glycogen. That glycogen is stored in your liver and muscles, where it’s a fast fuel for hard exercise. Unfortunately, however, your body can store only enough glycogen for about two hours of intense exercise. If you do only short events, that’s fine. But if you’re a distance junkie – you prefer IRONMANs to sprint triathlons – it’s a problem. Once you hit hour two without refueling, your glycogen stores are tapped, and your body searches for energy elsewhere. Finding nothing, it crashes. To prevent this, you pound gels, drinks and energy bars as you run, ride or swim to keep glycogen stores high. Eating enough carbs to thwart bonking during an endurance event is impractical if not impossible. The ketogenic diet works by replacing carbohydrates with fat as the primary fuel source. When you shun carbs and limit protein, your body enters a state called ketosis. Eventually it becomes “fat adapted” and resorts to running on fat instead of sugars. That’s ideal

for long endurance events where access to food is a limiting factor – including big wall climbing and mountaineering – because once your body is done burning the fat you eat, it starts to burn the fat on your frame. Even if you’re lean, you have enough body fat to fuel nearly any distance race, which is why you won’t bonk. THE EVIDENCE SUGGESTS THAT

the body adapts. In research from Ohio State Uni, elite ultramarathoners and IRONMAN distance triathletes who consumed very few carbs burned more than twice as much fat during prolonged exercise as high-carb athletes did. “At a very high level, where the smallest edge can mean victory, I’d bet on a ketogenic endurance athlete,” says MH nutrition advisor Mike Roussell, Ph.D. The catch: the diet is demanding. About 80 percent of your calories come from fat, 15 percent from protein, and as little as 5 percent from carbs. If you eat 2,500 calories a day, that’s 220 grams of fat, 90 grams of protein, and 40 grams of

When a triathlete limits carbs and protein, the body learns to power itself on fat, not sugar. carbs. That’s a lot of eggs, butter, avocados and nuts. And you have to eat like this for weeks. Although your body can become fully adapted to burning fat as fuel in four weeks, Roussell advises endurance athletes to follow the diet for eight weeks or longer before competing. According to Roussell, no credible science opposes the diet from a health perspective. However, not everyone’s biochemistry is suited for ketosis. When you’re first forcing your body into ketosis, you might come down with “keto flu”, with symptoms that include fatigue, brain fog, and possibly irritability. And if you follow the diet haphazardly, you may become deficient in certain nutrients.

Unless you’re chasing epic distance, this may be more trouble than it’s worth, and some scientists are still skeptical. “I haven’t yet seen evidence that the ketogenic diet provides a superior approach,” says Louise Burke, Ph.D., of the Australian Sports Commission. But some athletes swear by it. “I believe a ketogenic diet has allowed me to train harder,” Bitter says. Since he started the keto diet, he says he hasn’t had that “emotional roller coaster” feeling where his body feels like it’s shutting down on him. For endurance athletes, that’s the difference between bonking and breaking the tape.



Most meals include a moderate serving of protein (with extra oil or butter) plus a fibre-rich vegetable like spinach or asparagus. For snacks, go with full-fat dairy and nuts BREAKFAST

4 eggs, ½ avocado, 1 to 2 Tbsp olive oil LUNCH

Baked salmon with 1 Tbsp olive oil; asparagus with 1 to 2 Tbsp butter DINNER

80 percent lean ground beef burger (no bun) topped with ¼ cup kimchi; spinach sautéed with 2 Tbsp sesame oil SNACK

2 oz macadamia nuts and ½ cup raspberries

It Enhances Weight Loss

Compared with other diets, a ketogenic plan may help you lose more fat faster, clinical trials suggest. This may be especially true for people with prediabetes or diabetes.

It Helps Fight Cancer

In a preliminary study in the journal Nutrition, the ketogenic diet seemed to slow the growth of certain cancers in patients with the highest levels of ketosis.

It Improves Your Memory

Older people at risk for Alzheimer’s showed memory improvements after eating keto for six weeks, a study in Neurobiology of Aging found. 51


Coming next month

The Big Watch Book 2016 The top watches of 2016 Technical and tactical: the inner workings of Bell & Ross’s BR-X1 watches The return of one of the oldest watchmakers in the world Watch & Learn: Eric Cantona on designing watches Electrical versus mechanical watches, who comes out on top? Birth of the G-Shock


Five Ways to Save Your Skin


A couple dabs of the right stuff can ward off wrinkles and breakouts

These powerful compounds will help you win the war against wrinkles, crow’s feet and crocodile skin The key to feeling younger? Acid. Not dropping it, but wearing it. “People think all acids cause damage or peeling,” says dermatologist Terrence Keaney, M.D. But the truth is, they have a wide range of benefits. Some types of acid are hydrating, while others exfoliate or work on lines and pigmentation. You just have to select the right kind of acid that’s right for your skin. Turn the page for five options that can give you a healthier, younger-looking face. 53

Salicylic Acid

Glycolic Acid

Retinoic Acid

Ferulic Acid

Hyaluronic Acid

BEST FOR Destroying stubborn blackheads as well as preventing blemishes in the first place.

BEST FOR Sloughing away dead skin cells that cause acne and make your face look dull and gray.

BEST FOR Filling in deep wrinkles, eliminating dark spots and acne, and smoothing out bumps.

BEST FOR Fighting off free-radical damage that contributes to cancer and weathered-looking skin.

BEST FOR Adding and retaining moisture deep in your skin and making it smoother and plumper.

Imagine taking a power washer to your face: this popular beta-hydroxy acid, found in most acne cleansers and spot treatments, penetrates deep into your pores to sweep away grime and oil, and to break down the bonds between dead cells. As a result, that clean slate paves the way for other grooming products to work more effectively. Other benefits: salicylic acid promotes new skin growth, which tends to slow down starting around age 30, and it contains anti-inflammatory properties to calm irritated skin. It works for a wide range of skin types, including sensitive skin. Your face can end up feeling parched, though, so apply moisturiser immediately after use.

Glycolic acid molecules are the smallest members of the alpha-hydroxy family, which means they’re sneakily helpful, slipping inside your pores to boost production of elastin and collagen (the glues that hold your face together). They’ll also instantly brighten a blotchy face and help eliminate ingrown hairs. Unlike beady scrubs, glycolic acids exfoliate your skin without being abrasive. A couple times a week, soak a cleansing pad in the acid (usually sold in the form of a peel, toner, or gel) and gently wipe your face with it, suggests dermatologist Cheryl Burgess, M.D.. Just don’t use too much pressure or reapply it too often – doing either can leave your skin feeling raw.

If you were stranded on a desert island, this is the one product you’d want to have besides sunscreen and a case of cold beer. That’s because retinoic acid is the most well-studied and effective anti-aging product on the market – hands down. It smooths your skin while promoting the growth of collagen and elastin, the proteins that keep your face firm and supple, Dr. Burgess says. One hitch: it may leave your face flaky and red during the first few weeks of use if you overdo it, so start with just one or two applications a week, and build up to using it nightly. Some formulas can leave your skin susceptible to UV damage, so apply it at night and use SPF 30 sunscreen during the day.

Ferulic acid works like a bouncer for your skin, keeping cancer-causing particles off the guest list. “Every day, your face is assaulted by pollutants and free radicals, which can damage your DNA,” Dr. Keaney says. Supplementing your skincare arsenal with an antioxidant like ferulic acid will block those free radicals and slow signs of aging. Because this cancerthwarting cocktail is so beneficial, you can use it up to twice daily, Dr. Keaney says. If you do decide to be that vigilant, look for a serum in a dark bottle and store it inside a cabinet; the acid can be deactivated by sunlight. Apply it after your shower but before you put on your daily moisturiser.

Men tend to have thicker skin than women do – and we’re not talking about how they handle hecklers. Because of that thickness, men need a moisturiser that’s lightweight but still able to penetrate their skin. Hyaluronic acid is the answer – a natural lubricant and a crucial component found in the fluid of your joints and eyes. A favourite of dermatologists, this natural acid is a moisture magnet, drawing hydration deeper into the skin. Hyaluronic acid is also an essential ingredient in many hair products, helping reverse UV damage and taming frizzy hair, according to Whitney Bowe, M.D., a professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine.

TRY THIS Vitamin B3 soothes your skin in seconds, while sulfur, a natural antimicrobial, keeps blemish-causing bacteria at bay. (Bonus: the stuff actually smells great!)

TRY THIS The only ingredients you’ll find in these simple cleansing pads are water, glycolic acid and ammonium hydroxide. Expect a slight tingle – that means it’s working.

TRY THIS Apply a few dabs of Roc’s concentrated cream before bed to fight fine lines and other signs of aging. It has no added fragrances, which can be irritating to, well, everyone.

TRY THIS Wrinkle-fighting retinol and licorice root combine to quickly reduce under-eye puffiness. Gently dab it – never wipe – beneath your eyes and on your lids to avoid wrinkles.

TRY THIS Hyaluronic acid teams up with waxy lipid molecules called ceramides to maintain moisture and keep eczema to a minimum. The lightweight formula absorbs quickly.

Kiehl’s Dermatologist Solutions Breakout Control Targeted Acne Spot Treatment

54 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

Malin + Goetz Resurfacing Glycolic Pads malinandgoetz. com

Roc Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream

Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Triple Correction Eye Serum drdennisgross. com


CeraVe Moisturizing Cream



Sex & Relationships

A Skeptic’s Guide to Mindful Marriage You’re there for each other, but are you really there? Learn how to stay in the moment – together



lavender-scented mask. My body sways in a large silk cocoon that’s suspended from the rafters of the room. My mind is supposed to be tranquil and at rest. Yet all I can think about is cardboard boxes. “Noticing your breath, address the sounds coming and going,” says Jes Gale, my meditation instructor, in a calm, sensuous voice. Gale’s bare feet pad across the cool floor. Mountain birds chatter. I hear someone tap a crystal bowl, which emits a low, soothing tone. Then my mind drifts back to cardboard boxes. “What are you experiencing right now, without the use of memory?” Gale asks. Well, Jes, I’m experiencing the fact that here in Arizona, I’m 3,748km away from my current home in Pennsylvania, where several teetering Jenga towers of moving boxes occupy the space that used to be my dining room. In just two weeks, I’ll finish packing up everything I own. Then I’ll be selling my old home and closing on a new one, and moving there with my new wife. 55

Sex & Relationships

up-down-up-down movement of your diaphragm aren’t nonsense. In a 2016 study from the University of Wisconsin, researchers found that people who practised mindfulness every day for at least three years had a lower resting respiratory rate than those who didn’t. That’s because mindfulness may train your brain to experience a positive feedback loop, which in turn helps put your body at ease. An even, steady resting respiration rate can benefit everything from your circulatory system to your metabolism, the study authors say. Science has also shown that mindfulness may help couples communicate better under stress, bolster feelings of security, and boost relationship satisfaction. WHICH IS HOW MY WIFE AND I

My wife! I’ve nearly forgotten that she’s about 2m to my right, swaying in her own silk suspension system. “Experience the experience,” Gale says. And with that phrase, the boxes vanish, and I remember why my wife and I are here. MY WIFE, MEGHAN, HOLDS A

Guinness World Record for running a marathon dressed as a hot dog. She’s fit. She’s funny. She shares my passion for encased meats. So of course I married her. Long before our wedding, however, I noticed that our life as a couple had begun to tilt. It’s a problem familiar to millions of partners. During the exhilarating early days of dating, you share a single purpose: to be together. After the engagement, wedding planning commandeers your existence. After the wedding, searching for and buying a home consumes you. Your dinner dates transition from meandering flirtations to downpayment strategy sessions. In your 56 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

discussions of What’s Happening Next, you feel yourself losing an appreciation for and the ability to pay attention to What’s Happening Right Now. In the lead-up to our nuptials, Meghan and I estimated that we talked about the past and the future 80 percent of the time, and the present only 20 percent. Shouldn’t newlyweds, or any couple in love for however long, experience the opposite? The likely culprit: stress, which works in nefarious ways within a relationship. External stress – the hassles of daily life – can stoke internal stress (the state of joint finances, for example) and lead to lower satisfaction for couples – regardless of age, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. And a 2014 study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that a wife with job stress was more likely to receive support from her spouse than an overworked husband would be if the

tables were turned. “Our minds are extraordinarily well-designed to attend to the immediate,” says Willem Kuyken, Ph.D., director of the U.K.’s Oxford Mindfulness Centre. This served us well as cautious cavemen, he says, but now, with the daily barrage of emails and smartphone alerts appearing as “high priority”, your overwhelmed brain can find it difficult to respond to actual important life events. Although scientists have only begun studying mindfulness and its benefits, Buddhists have been practising it for centuries. In the book Full Catastrophe Living, Jon Kabat-Zinn, founding executive director of the Center for Mindfulness at UMass Medical School, describes mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” Mindfulness might as well be called “breathfulness”, because so much of it involves breathing. The benefits of concentrating on the

ended up swaddled in silk suspension systems at the Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, a luxury hotel that offers instruction on meditation and mindfulness. During our intervention, Meghan and I wanted to learn as much as we could about embracing the present, for better or worse, and then attempt to carry the lessons into our lives during our move into our new home. Granted, being relaxed and aware at Miraval is practically a requirement. Blissed-out clients shuffle around the campus wearing white robes. In fact, tiny stickers with the word “aware” appear on everything from handicap signs to bathroom hand dryers. One morning, we found a message in our room that read, “Love begins in the heart.” From our housekeeper. Despite all this, we couldn’t shake the stress of the move. Our brains, trained for months on a fear-stoked negative feedback loop, were fighting the rewiring process. Walking the cactus-studded grounds of Miraval after meditation,

Mindfulness for Couples in 8 Easy Steps Breathe in Rhythm INDEPENDENTLY

Meghan and I discussed our inability to focus during the many courses we had taken. “It’s amazing how hard it is to do nothing and be okay with it,” I said. “I’m always judging how I’m doing,” Meghan said. “Why am I making relaxation so stressful?” Then again, this was the first time either of us had ever really tried. Like most people, we hadn’t had any practise with practising mindfulness. I’ll admit I was afraid to try. I’m not one to embrace passionflower incense or appreciate the reverb of a well-struck gong. Luckily, our most rewarding moments at Miraval involved little of that paraphernalia. The greatest lessons for us emerged not from silk cocoons but in the humbler moments both during and apart from the resort’s coursework. When we returned home to our boxes, Meghan and I would try to recapture those moments with a 30-day action plan designed to help us be more mindful, appreciate the present, and – for the sake of our sanity – carry us through the move. Some of those lessons we’d practise apart, others together. (See “Mindfulness for Couples in 8 Easy Steps” at right.) DURING THE MONTH AFTER

our getaway, our commitment to mindfulness vacillated. Some days, I would be the only one to do my Miraval homework; other days, only Meghan would do hers. We practised being mindful together – sometimes. Were we perfect? Hell no. But perfection wasn’t the goal. During meditation, thoughts come and go. Sometimes, those thoughts are pleasant. Other times, you think about boxes. But those thoughts, at their centre, are still just thoughts. The phrase we found ourselves repeating from Miraval most often was, “Enter the discomfort.” So often people talk about the past

Start the Day Focused What’s the first thing you think about in the morning? Work? Money? Facebook? “If you commit to being more present in your day, you will be more present in your day,” our meditation instructor, Alysa Volpe, told us. It sounds almost too simple, but the more I woke up and thought, “Today I’ll focus on appreciating what I have,” the more I truly appre­ ciated what I have.

Eat an Apple the Mindful Way Really relish the thing. Chew every bite thoroughly. Concentrate on nothing else except that crunchy apple for the three minutes it takes to finish it. At first you may find this exercise extremely difficult. But after a week of apples, you’ll put down that core with a newfound sense of presence and satisfaction.

One thundercloud­ festooned evening at Miraval Resort, Meghan and I went out for a walk on a nautilus­shaped path with Volpe, who encouraged us to inhale and exhale with our steps. We ended the walk feeling peaceful and serene despite the lightning in the distance. During the month that followed, I counted four steps to one breath as I walked to work, the gym or my boss’s office. Calm always prevailed despite any looming threat of inclement office weather, so to speak.

Practice Meditation All of the above are considered “micro­ practices”. Think of them as upkeep routines, sort of like stretching and foam­rolling for your grey matter. “Meditation, by comparison, is your committed workout,” Volpe said. Disclaimer: do not attempt any meditation after drinking 2½ cups of coffee – advice that my wife learned from experience.

or future to avoid the discomfort of the present. But discomfort is part of the experience of being human and in a relationship. (“The most difficult yoga pose is marriage,” said naturopathic practitioner Tim Frank.) Mindfulness itself brings discomfort. It’s hard work that requires constant upkeep to develop that fuzzy sixth sense. The rewards are squishy and not always immediate. Meghan and I didn’t have sex at Miraval. Prior to the trip, our thinking was that we’d feel more relaxed and therefore in the mood, but that didn’t happen. We did, however, share several deep, intimate discussions. That further cemented our bond and, much later on, led to more in-the-moment sex. “Meditation and mindfulness are


Smooth the Sheets Tim Frank, N.M.D., and Pamela Lancaster are the unofficial prom king and queen of Miraval. They’ve been a couple for 16 years. When asked how they do it, Frank said, “Every morning, no matter what else is going on, we take the time to make the bed. When you do, you’re symbolically straightening out the wrinkles in your relationship.”

But Rumple Them Up Too Spend at least three minutes a day spooning. “But do it without sexual intention,” Frank said. Added Lancaster: “There’s so much more to intimacy than sex and date night.” When you spoon, match each other’s breath. It might feel a bit strange at first, but the resulting comfort is powerful and sustaining.

preventives, not treatments,” said Alysa Volpe, our couples meditation instructor. Within a relationship, these practices reinforce the good instead of repairing the bad. No amount of walking with my breath could diminish the stress I was feeling after I managed to hit a parked car with the U-Haul truck we’d rented for moving. But being present did help us acknowledge and savour special moments more. As we stood in our new home together for the first time, we lingered instead of immediately cleaning everything. We took five minutes to hug in front of our living room’s large window, with tears welling in our eyes. Practising meditation and mindfulness did result in one

During a morning hike through the blooming foothills of Mt. Lemmon, our Miraval guide asked the group to be quiet for a section of the trail. It wasn’t until those moments that I began to notice the Seussian desert trees and the crunch of the gravel under my shoes. Back home, Meghan and I would pick a spot in the distance and walk toward it – silent and, eventually, refreshed.

Rest Easy In the process of planning for moving day, Meghan and I would torture ourselves with checklists, only some of which actually helped. But during a sleep consultation at Miraval, Sheryl Brooks, R.N., helped us streamline our approach with a simple three­step trick: at night, think through the next day and its upcoming events, jot down potential action steps, and then tell yourselves that nothing else needs to be accomplished before bedtime; you deserve to rest easy.

breakthrough in our lives, however. Shortly after our sellers accepted our offer, the word “baby” started popping up in conversation. Because naturally, after “house”, “baby” appears next on the list of What’s Happening Next. One night over dinner in our new home, “baby” came up again. Only this time, I was surprised to hear Meghan say, “Let’s not talk about having a kid right now.” “Really?” I said. “Let’s just enjoy our house, and being married in it, right now.” And with that sentence, I could feel the great accelerator of life ease. I could feel my breath, coming and going. “That sounds fantastic,” I said. After all, we still had boxes to unpack. 57

Sex & Relationships

ASK US NOW Email our regular contributor Elise Low your questions on women, love, dating and sex at

A final word from Elise Low

Fighting on holiday is normal In your fantasy of this holiday, you’ll be doing nothing but frolicking naked in bed, having romantic dinners on a beach, and watching sunsets over mountains. But, in reality, your hotel room’s toilet breaks, your tour guide rips you off, and someone gets food poisoning. If you find yourself getting tense on holiday, don’t worry too much about it. It doesn’t mean you’ve failed as a couple – the truth is, holidays are actually kind of stressful. Just don’t let a little bickering ruin the entire trip.


What are the best kinky places to have sex? – LUCAS

Kinkiness, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. For some people, sex on the kitchen floor might feel naughty and novel enough, while others might try more ambitious (read: public) locations. The most important thing is to check that you and your partner are both into the idea. Trying to be “kinky” just for the sake of it can be a huge turn-off, so don’t feel that you need to play up to something you’re not. Every time I do $#&!#% something wrong she verbally abuses me. Why does she react that way? What should I do?


Verbal abuse is not okay – not from either party in a relationship. Start by drawing attention to what’s happening, and asking her directly why she’s behaving like this. Let her know that it’s making you feel terrible, and ask her how she would feel in your situation. It might be something that you can work through together – if she’s willing to change. But she must be willing to. 58 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

My best friend is going out with a girl who is still in university. The other guys and I don’t approve. How do we tell him? – ZAFRAN

It sounds like you’re worried that your friend is being sleazy by dating a younger girl. This could be the case, especially if this is a pattern of his. However, girls often date older guys because we tend to mature much faster emotionally. So don’t be too hasty to dismiss the relationship – not until you’ve spent more time with them as

Women aren’t always better at talking it out The stereotype goes that women are the emotional, communicative ones and men are buttoned up and gruff when it comes to any talk of feelings. This is far from true. Women can find it just as hard to explain their feelings, and can also use silence as a defence mechanism. So if you have the skills – the invaluable, amazing skills – of being a good listener and an honest speaker, then use them. Don’t assume your partner will tell you what’s wrong – be prepared to ask, and keep asking. Sex is both overrated and underrated a couple. If your friend is dating her because she’s young, then that’s a different matter.

My fiancée told me that she wants to quit her job once we’re married. I don’t think I can support the both of us financially. How do I talk her out of it?


Sex in a relationship is important. But good sex is hard to come by, and it’s okay to keep working at it. Don’t expect to be naturally gifted. Don’t worry that your penis is too small, or that your biceps are insufficiently toned. Learn how to give and receive pleasure, to communicate desire in bed, and to try new things with an open mind. Then, remember that sex isn’t everything; a relationship needs intimacy outside the bedroom too. The warning signs are usually there Sometimes, we really want a relationship to work. We look for all the good things in our partner and we cling to them. Maybe the sex is great, but she won’t introduce you to her friends. Maybe she writes you love songs, but she also throws things at you. Don’t get me wrong – I’m all for working through the bumps in a relationship. But listen to your best friends too, when they tell you that they’re worried. Listen to yourself, telling the same frustrated stories about your fights. A solid relationship is not just about being happy, but also healthy. Say thank you more often It’s the little things that make or break a relationship. It’s way too common to see long-term couples (even the most loving ones) take each other for granted. So make it a habit to look out for the work that your other half puts into your relationship. Whether it’s doing the dishes, or spending the evening with your parents, say thank you. All of these gestures go into making your relationship great, but they can be tiring. They can feel like sacrifices. Acknowledging the effort makes them that much sweeter.

Hold up, my friend. It sounds like you’ve already decided what’s best and just want to persuade your future wife to come round to your opinion. I’m sorry to have to send you back to remedial marriage class. This relationship is a partnership, yet it sounds like you don’t even know why your fiancée wants to quit her job – you’re too busy thinking about your fears. What if your wife wants to run her own business, change career or start a family? These are big questions, and you need to ask them.


Over the past 10 months, I’ve heard your private problems and your burning concerns. It’s been an eye-opening experience for me, and I’d like to thank you for trusting me with your questions. Now, it’s time for a new Girl Next Door to move in. But before I leave you, here are my top five relationship takeaways:

4 Kinds of Compliment She Really Wants to Hear Enough with the halfhearted “you look nice”. The thoughtful man knows exactly how to flatter

Your Wife is Hornier ThanYou Think! PERCEPTION


Your partner’s sex drive is lower than yours, and you’ll just have to live with it – and sigh deeply. YOU R PA R T N E R S H I P





“We were a great team out there.” You’re not just respecting her skills; you’re also talking up your connection and commitment. This is crucial, especially in a new relationship, because being with her makes you better and vice versa, says Robyn Landow, Ph.D., a New York City psychologist.

“I liked how you helped out your friend.” She enjoys hearing that she’s a good person, not just to you but also to the world at large. Tell her this, and you both win: she feels valued, and you’re reminded just how lucky you are to be with her, says psychologist Wendy Walsh, Ph.D., author of The 30-Day Love Detox.

“I was impressed at how you held your ground.” Sometimes women fear that being too strong or coming off as aggressive is a turn-off. Your observation shows her that it’s not – in fact, you love it. This compliment shows that you’re not threatened and that you have her back, Walsh says. Go ahead, call it hot.

“Your arms look really toned in that dress.” Your gut reaction may be, “Dayum, girl, you look hot.” But the eight efficient words above praise her looks, fashion sense, and dedication. Noting something she’s been working on shows you’ve been paying attention, Landow says. Whether you actually were or not.

Men tend to underestimate how often their partner wants sex, a Canadian study shows. Could be that a fear of rejection leads you to not even try, or maybe you think this attitude helps maintain the relationship. Try this: ask her how you can tell when she wants it, what excites her, and how she wants you to initiate. Be positive – instead of saying “I feel like you don’t want me” (defensive!), ask her how you can be a better lover. If she doesn’t know, suggest some research tactics. 59






Guy Skills

Do Less, Get More Done


Step away from your desk to boost your productivity and your mood. Yes, really. In fact, your boss – and coworkers – will thank you for it 1/ Take “Microbreaks” Taking a few minutes now and then can cut work stress while improving your efficiency and mood, according to a recent study. You can relax (“I’m not napping – I’m recharging!”), stimulate your mind (do something that’s not a chore; think Candy Crush, not online banking), or socialise (but don’t complain about work – chat about other topics). You like those Pineapple Pen videos? That’s fine. Just maybe not before lunch.

2/ Don’t Do Email After Hours We get it: you’re a devoted employee. But checking your email after you’ve clocked out can affect your family life and lead to emotional exhaustion, according to new research. Even if you have no emails to read, waiting for that “PING” can bring on something called “anticipatory stress”. So make this an ironclad rule – confirm it with your boss and coworkers – and you’ll enhance your job satisfaction in the long run.

3/ Use Your Vacation Days You’ve heard this before, but evidently it hasn’t sunk in: last year, 55 percent of U.S. employees left vacation time on the table, letting companies keep USD61.4 billion in benefits (which they don’t need). Those who take their vacation days come back refreshed and perform better at work, according to an HR sur vey. Those who don’t just annoy their coworkers by going full martyr about all their unused time off. 61

Guy Skills



Should You be an Uber Driver?

Becoming a ride-share driver with Grab or Uber might seem like one of the easiest ways to earn a fast buck these days, but it’s important to have all the facts and figures before getting behind the wheel. Here’s what you need to know

Qhalis Najmi, our regular motoring contributor, is an experienced automotive journalist and photographer.

which is attractive, especially for first-timers. But Uber also has its benefits, such as a rate based on Travel Time that makes a huge difference in congested cities like Kuala Lumpur.


GrabCar only offers a flat rate, regardless of travel time and traffic. Uber, on the other hand, offers a “Surge” dynamic pricing incentive, where drivers are rewarded based on a multiplier when operating during peak hours. Of course, in addition to that is a “Per Minute Rate” incentive that allows you to earn more, even when you’re stuck in traffic. So Uber would be the obvious choice if you’re working a 9-to-5 job and intend to be a rideshare driver during rush hours.




under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the two most popular ride-sharing services for urban Malaysians: Uber and GrabCar. Their arrival on our shores stirred up a huge debate earlier this year, but now that they’re officially legal, you might be toying with the idea of earning some extra moolah as a part-time driver – and why shouldn’t you? After all, both have earned a hard-won reputation as safe, convenient and affordable transportation alternatives, garnering a positive response among regular users, and leading to growing demand. Plus, being a rideshare driver allows you to be your own boss. You get to decide when you want to work, which means your 62 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

9-to-5 won’t be affected by your new sideline career. But which service is worth your time?


Both franchises don’t just propose fare earnings minus commission. Operating longer hours and/ or during peak hours is when you earn more as a driver, and these incentives are really where the money is at. For example, Uber offers an “Earnings Boost” incentive, where all additional earnings earned based on the multiplier are not subjected to the 25% commision. Meanwhile Grab

GrabCar Economy

offers “Jumbo Peak” incentives from 7am to 9am, from Wednesday to Friday, where drivers could earn RM40 for one job –and stand to earn more, if they fulfill certain criteria. Yes, the structure is a little complicated to grasp at first, and a driver is required to meet certain criteria – such as Driver Ratings, Cancellation Rates and Trip Acceptance Rates – to be eligible for these incentives. Nonetheless, mastering all this can earn you a good supplementary income!


Case study: If you live in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, KL, and work in SS15 Subang Jaya, and would like to make extra cash on the way to the office, take a look at the table below. The total distance per trip is 17.2km with a 40-minute travel time during peak hours. Not forgetting, Uber’s Surge price multiplier and Grab’s Peak rates. Those who drive during peak hours can easily earn between RM2,000 and RM3,000. Add the times when you run around for an additional two to three hours over the weekends or even after work, and being a ride-share driver is indeed a good way to earn extra cash, maybe for that holiday trip that you’ve been thinking about or just to pay off debt. If you’re going in that direction, why not earn your way there too?


GrabCar Economy






Base Fare

Base Fare



Per KM Rate

17.2km x RM1.10 = RM18.92

Per KM Rate



17.2km x RM0.60 = RM10.32

Per Minute Rate



Per Minute Rate

40mins x RM0.25 = RM10.00


Total Earnings Before Commission



Total Earnings After Commission

RM20.30 - 25% = RM15.95

RM22.36 - 20% = RM15.94

2 Trips Per Day for 22 Days

RM15.25 x 2 Trips x 22 Days RM17.80 x 2 Trips x 22 Days = RM701.18 = RM701.80 (before Price Surge multiplier)

Although both franchises provide a similar service, the rates vary significantly at first glance. However, the pay-out is fairly similar in the long run. However, GrabCar offers a better “Per KM” and commission rate,


Save these tips from Khairil Aslan FIGHT FOR A GREATER CAUSE


Your Next Move: UP! Malaysian mountaineer Khairil Aslan gives the lowdown on overcoming any obstacle that life throws at you



there’s always a risk that any expedition that I go on might be my last,” Khairil Aslan says. “But if you let fear and doubt mess with your mind, you’ll never accomplish anything. So you must prepare yourself mentally, emotionally and physically as much as you can. You must focus 200%.” He certainly speaks from experience. Having successfully conquered the three Himalayan peaks of Mera, Lobuche East and Island in December 2015, the Malaysian solo climber is gearing up for his next great adventure: the Seven Summits, which are the highest peaks of the seven continents. Despite his lofty aspirations, he’s cognisant of how quickly it can all go wrong. “I had a near-death experience ascending Island,” he recalls. “There was a drastic change in wind and weather conditions.

The wind began blowing at between speeds of 140kmh and 160kmh. I couldn’t breathe or move, and I began to lose all sensation in my body – my blood stopped flowing.” He was on the brink of losing hope when the impossible occurred: “The weather cleared and we saw the sun. The light warmed me up and I managed to continue to the top.” What Khairil says next echoes a sentiment that’s shared by many world-class adventurers. “Giving up is just not an option for me,” he asserts. “When I decide to do something, I stick to it and see it through – there’s no turning back.” You should always be willing to give things a shot, he adds, because “failing once doesn’t mean that you’ll be a failure forever. Put in the effort and keep trying – until you succeed.” Still not convinced? Consider this: Khairil has conquered 70

mountains across Malaysia, Indonesia and Nepal, despite picking up an ACL and PCL tear on his right leg 11 years ago. “I never underwent surgery because the doctors couldn’t give me a definite guarantee when I asked whether I’d be active again,” he says. He took matters into his own hands and consulted a physiotherapist instead. Over time, his strength returned and his performance improved. Today, the 41-year-old boasts a physical prowess that would put guys half his age to shame. In August, he embarked on the Merdeka 322 Solo Expedition, where he trekked on foot from Bangi to Taiping (a whopping 322km!) while pulling a tyre-sled. “My injury doesn’t hold me back,” he explains. “I only have to keep my right leg stable when I do physical activities. Sometimes, my knee pops even if the floor’s a little slippery, so I just push it back in. I know what to do to help with the recovery now.” According to Khairul, you can only live your best life possible when your goals are in line with what sets your soul alight. “I know the risks involved, but fear has never been an issue because it’s so closely linked to my passion,” he states. “You have to do some soul-searching and uncover what’s troubling you. When you get down to it, a mountain is just a mountain.”

“Find a mission or a cause that’s greater than you. You’ll realise that if you do something just for yourself, your accomplishments will be finite – a definite ‘full stop’ after you achieve your goals. But if you do something for others, you’ll set in motion a positive chain of events that benefits everyone. That’s how you create a legacy.” GET UP AND GIVE BACK

“We need to ask ourselves: ‘How can I contribute to my country?’ Don’t be discouraged by the fact that we’re a small country, and that we’re still on our way. This just means that there are a lot of opportunities for everyone. The reason I’m doing all this is because I want to inspire and unite people.” KICK EXCUSES TO THE CURB

“When you eliminate excuses, you’re left with just one thing: your mission. Think of your goals as similar to exams. It doesn’t matter how lazy or unmotivated you are; on the day itself, you still have to sit for the paper. So the real question is: are you going to do what you can to be prepared?” START YOUR DAY WITH A DETOX

“Try out this recipe at home. Slice a lemon, an orange and half a Japanese cucumber. Bruise one lemongrass stem. Mix everything in a small jug of water and leave in the fridge overnight. Drink the liquid first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach.” 63

Guy Skills

4 Island Resort Hacks TRAVEL

Here, in the sunny tropics, we’re a blessed bunch – an island getaway is often just a short plane ride away. We checked into The Datai Langkawi recently and compiled this checklist of four resort hacks so you can plan your next trip better

The Datai Bay holds bragging rights as one of the National Geographic’s “Top 10 Beaches in the World”. With its picture-perfect sandy coastline and crystal clear waters, it’s not hard to see why. Take this opportunity to embark on an adventure on the high seas by snorkelling, kayaking – or chartering Naga Pelangi, the resort’s 30m traditional wooden junk. Your Move: Invest in sunblock and slather it on at least 30 minutes before heading out. It’ll cut your risk of sunburn, which causes skin cancer and premature ageing.


Nature is literally at your doorstep. Set amidst a lush 10-million-yearold rainforest, you’ve got a great chance of viewing wildlife such as dusky leaf monkeys, flying squirrels and colugos in their natural habitat 64 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6



without trekking too far. Book the resort’s resident naturalist and marine biologist for an informative guided tour. Your Move: Don’t feed the monkeys. In the wild, weaker primates display submission to the alpha by giving up their food, says Irshad Mobarak, The Datai Langkawi’s resident naturalist. Giving food signals that you accept its dominance, which can lead to aggression.


Made the resort a last-resort escape from your 9-to-5 desk-jockey gig? Then it’s time to recharge your batteries with a spa appointment. The Datai Spa offers a range of treatments utilising local rituals and traditional Malay ramuan made with ingredients from the rainforest. Comprising four openair villas by a gentle stream, the Spa

serves as a perfect oasis of calm for you to rejuvenate and reenergise. Your Move: Fear not the full monty. You’ll be handed a pair of sarongprinted boxers to wear.


In addition to its four dining establishments, The Datai Langkawi offers unique culinary journeys that give guests the chance to indulge in some of the globe’s top culinary experiences. To date, it’s hosted three Michelin-starred chef Michel Roux and celebrity chef Will Meyrick, while a showcase with our very own Chef Wan is slated to take place by the end of the year. Your Move: Bump up your total daily activity to rev up your metabolism. “A good way to offset your cheat day is to opt for a leisurely stroll to the resort facilities instead of calling for the buggy service,” says Arnaud Girodon, General Manager of The Datai Langkawi. 65

Guy Skills

The Zambezi River cascades 75m down the Victoria Falls, which lies on the Zimbabwe border with Zambia

Wild about Zimbabwe TRAVEL

Few travel experiences are as exhilarating as spotting animals in the wild, and, no, Taman Negara and Singapore Zoo don’t come close. Join us as we get up, close and personal to the “big five”

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Flying into the Zimbabwe capital of Harare at 5pm meant an overnight stay in the grand Meikles Hotel (www. After a long flight and refreshing ale in The Explorer’s Club – where you almost expect to be greeted by Dr. Livingstone – an early night was essential for our wildlife safari. Zimbabwe has several spectacular wildlife reserves and

exclusive game lodges, with two of the most rewarding locations being Kanga Camp in Mana Pools National Park and Somalisa in Hwange National Park. Covering almost 400,000 sq km (larger than Malaysia), travelling around Zimbabwe isn’t easy, and our travel agent, Asia to Africa Safaris (, booked us on a small Cessna aircraft to access remote areas via laterite airstrips. MH flew from Harare to Manu Pools, then to Hwange and, finally, Victoria

Falls before flying onto Lusaka on a commercial flight for the return sector on Emirates. On one flight, we were the only passenger and was enthralled by the spectacular landscape while flying at low altitudes.


Accommodation at Kanga Camp could be misunderstood: although the tent camps operated by African Bush Camps (www.africanbushcamps.



an African safari, then land-locked Zimbabwe provides a wealth of opportunities in remote and wild settings. This once-in-a-lifetime travel experience also offers one of nature’s greatest wonders: the mighty Victoria Falls. MH travelled to Zimbabwe to experience what’s known as the “big five” – rhino, elephant, lion, leopard and water buffalo – while glamping it up in some truly amazing bush camps.

It’s called an “armchair safari” at Somalisa Lodge – sitting back with a chilled Zambezi beer while the animals come to you

Bathe in the outdoors at Kanga Camp while overlooking a waterhole, where the animals do the same

The cheetah is the fastest animal on the parched plains of Zimbabwe

com) are under canvas, they have luxuriously appointed interiors. The real bonus is that the accommodation and the restaurant overlook a waterhole (or pan) where animals come to drink, and where guests can safely dine and sleep close to them. Guests can sit back on an “armchair safari” with a cold drink while admiring the wildlife. More extensive jeep safaris open up Manu Pools National Park to a wider range of wildlife, with wildebeest, lions, leopards, cheetahs, African painted dogs, and an amazing array of birdlife along the floodplains. Lodge guides skilfully manoeuvre covered safari vehicles close to wild animals that are very nonchalant to humans. The photography is amazing, with a long lens (300mm) being recommended. Our highlights were seeing a pride of lions that had just killed a zebra and a hunting pack of rare and endangered African painted dogs.


The recent shooting of Cecil the Lion

put Hwange National Park in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons and, though tragic, there are still many lions to admire in this vast national park. Somalisa was our camp of choice as it provides a level of luxury quite unexpected in the wilds of Zimbabwe. Chairs surround an open fireplace on an elevated platform above a waterhole to offer another amazing armchair safari opportunity. MH enjoyed pre-dinner drinks around the open fireplace, while elephants drank from the waterhole just metres away. On a safari drive, we witnessed a solitary cheetah, a jackal scavenging on a carcass, a dozen or so lions, giraffes, and the ever-playful impalas. Our guides easily identified where animals were and how best to safely approach them so as not to endanger them or us. Game drives are typically done at sunrise and sunset with the middle of the day devoted to eating, drinking (all-inclusive tariffs include meals and alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages), resting, and swapping travel tales with fellow adventurers.


The Zambezi River cascading 100m over the Victoria Falls into the Zambezi Gorge creates what’s known as the “roaring thunder”. Victoria Falls delineates the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia, with links via rail, road and pedestrian bridge. It’s possible to walk the 2km between countries or ride on the nostalgic

Victoria Falls Steam Train. Victoria Falls is Africa’s water and air sports capital, with bungee jumping (from the bridge), white water rafting, helicopter flights, canoeing and kayaking offered. The best ground view of the falls is from within Victoria Falls Park and Rainforest Reserve. An aerial view is even better, with a 13-minute helicopter flight with “Flight of the Angels” (www.zambezihelicopters. com) being expensive but memorable. Guests at Victoria Falls Safari Lodge ( can relax in luxury while admiring wildlife congregating around a waterhole. Heritage hotel devotees must visit the Victoria Falls Hotel ( to admire its century-old Edwardian ambiance while sipping chilled Zambezi beer on Stanley’s Terrace.


Emirates ( flies to Harare via Dubai and Lusaka

(Zambia). There’s no shortcut to the 21-hour flight, though the airline’s superb in-flight entertainment, food and service make up for the time you’re in the air.


There’s no longer a local currency as it was suspended when inflation had it at trillions of dollars. Now, the US dollar is king, and it’s best to arrive with wads of small notes because tipping is appreciated by the locals, many of whom currently endure economic hardship. ATMs cannot be relied upon and a surcharge will be added for credit card usage.


For more information regarding encounters with Zimbabwe’s wildlife contact Asia to Africa Safaris ( for details on specialised tours throughout Zimbabwe and several other African nations. ADVERTISEMENT


27 August 2016 / Fitness First Gardens Mall

2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré: Sponsors’ Day The 2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré began with the editorial team selecting a long-list of individuals from a pool of hundreds of entries, which were submitted via e-mail and Instagram. The Men’s Health team then interviewed the long-listed individuals to decide who would qualify to be one of the Top 10 Candidates. The Top 10 Candidates gathered at Fitness First Gardens Mall to meet each other for the first time, and to participate in several activities that would challenge them physically and stylistically. The day started with each candidate undergoing Fitness First’s BioScore Test. Each guy exerted maximum 68 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

effort to ace the tests, so they had a short rest for lunch, which was provided by Wokit ( Then, the candidates participated in Philips’ #SaveTheFace Challenge, where grooming experts demonstrated the accuracy and efficiency of Philips Shavers. But it wouldn’t be all pampering for the guys, as Schwarzkopf Professional and Osis+ had a very interesting challenge: the Top 10 Candidates had to groom their own hairstyles using a plethora of products from Schwarzkopf Professional and Osis+, and they would be judged by Jimmy Cheng, a Schwarzkopf Professional Celebrity Ambassador. Some of the guys’ hairstyles needed to be enhanced, while


others barely needed any touchups; in all, Cheng shared plenty of hairstyling tips with the Candidates. Finally, the guys experienced the deep-cleansing power of Men’s Bioré’s latest range of Double Scrub products. Thanks to the latest Japanese technology in the Double Scrub facial cleansers, all 10 Candidates looked confident, fresh and handsome. The Sponsors’ Day ended with an important announcement: who would progress to the next round of the 2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré, and be one of the Top 5 Finalists. They were: Mohd. Yusuf Tony, Vincent Mallang, Ravinash Ratnam, Jon Wong, and Randall Wong. All five of them would reconvene in a week for their cover photoshoot, and a chance to be on the cover of the October 2016 issue. The winner would be revealed at the Finale Party...„ 69


26 September 2016 / Mantra Bar & Lounge

2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré: Finale Party Who’s the man? Who would win the 2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré? To decide, the Men’s Health team asked editors from Men’s Health International, as well as acclaimed art directors from several Malaysian magazines, to provide their opinions on the Top 5 finalists. More than 300 guests converged on Mantra Bar & Lounge, located on the rooftop of Bangsar Village II mall, to find out who would win. But what they didn’t realise was that they’d also get to meet and greet each of the Top 10 Candidates. During the night, each guest was asked to vote for the winner of The Men’s Health Hero Award. All 10 guys only had 45 minutes to meet as many party guests as they could, and to convince them why they deserve to win. 70 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

By 71


26 September 2016 / Mantra Bar & Lounge

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Ultimately, Mohd. Yusuf Tony was the guests’ choice for The Men’s Health Hero Award. Before emcee Sunshine Aileen announced the main winners of the 2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré, she cajoled three men and three women to join her on stage for the Squat Challenge. All the participants had to do was hold a perfect squat the longest, and the winner would win a prize pack worth RM1,000. The male winner and the female winner held perfect squats for an impressive amount of time, as confirmed and judged by Fitness First trainer Wen Ng. Meanwhile, other guests also got to sample Men’s Bioré Double Scrub products at their activity booth. Finally, the moment of truth arrived. The Top 5 candidates were on stage, and Men’s Health Malaysia Editor Eugene Phua held the envelope with the winner’s identity in it. With the guests all howling and screaming to know who won, Phua ripped open the envelope and announced who won: Ravinash Ratnam. We’d like to thank all of our sponsors who helped to make the 2016 Men’s Health Cover Guy Search by Men’s Bioré a success: Fitness First, Philips, The North Face, Schwarzkopf Professional, Osis+, Mantra Bar & Lounge, Nutmeg, Carlsberg and Grey Goose. Thank you also to Imagerom photographers Delvin Xian and Miemie Loh, as well as the Top 10 Candidates and the Top 5 Finalists. Join us next year! THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS 73


LEAP FORWARD In the past 10 years, Peter Davis has seen a lot, done a lot more, and kept on going. Although the achievements and the adoration he’s racked up in that time have made him a star, he explains to MH why he’s ready, capable and hungry to keep fighting for years to come

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Before we address the present, it would be remiss not to recount his oft-repeated origin story: Peter Hugh Davis moved to Malaysia from England 10 years ago, after he lost his job selling mortgages (yes, really). A Malaysian friend told him to give modelling a try in Malaysia,



on the other side of two punching bags, so that he can demonstrate the proper form of a roundhouse kick. He gets into position, readies himself, takes a deep breath, and… BOOM. The bag on the right swings violently the other way. With effortless precision, Davis reverts to his starting stance and kicks the other bag, and again, and again, and again. Boom, boom, BOOM! “Now you try,” Davis tells us. The bags suddenly feel gargantuan, while MH shrinks into a toddler. Just getting into form requires total concentration, let alone repeating the steps. We attempt a first kick… that wouldn’t have killed a mosquito on the bag. We try to kick the other one… and end up hurting our foot. “I’m only at 60% of my fight strength and fitness levels now,” Davis would later tell us at the end of our impromptu workout. If he can already cause such pain in this state, we don’t want to know – let alone be in the same cage – with him when he’s kicking, punching and grappling at full force. But then, why the two recent losses? 75

and what was supposed to be a sixmonth holiday attempting it ended up becoming a 10-year stay and foray into not just modelling, but also acting and martial arts. If you asked him back then if he was ready for all this, he would’ve laughed. “Nothing is expected. I work hard at whatever I’m doing at that particular moment,” Davis, now 35 years old, says. “When I’m acting, I do my best to get into character. If I’m doing a fashion show, I do my best to present the clothes. If I’m scriptwriting, I’ll do my very best to make it as good as possible. If I’m drifting, I’ll do my best to make it the best drift possible. Whatever I’m doing at any given moment, I’ll do my very best.” That’s why, today, you see him pretty much everywhere: on trucks, TV and magazines; in advertisements, runway shows and fitness events; in a car, in a cage, maybe even in real life. It’s why some of the biggest brands in the country want Davis to endorse their brand – not just because of his good looks or cover-worthy body; but also because he does his best to make anything the best that he possibly can. But then… two recent technical knockouts, one of which he suffered in less than a minute?


Davis still winces about them both. “I get distracted,” he says of his loss to Adrian Pang last year. “I do my best to focus, but it’s difficult. It’s really difficult.” Responsibilities to fulfil. Appearances to make. Sponsors to please. Entrance pyrotechnics that could explode. Malicious fans who could injure him when he walks to the cage. Thousands of paying fans, millions more at home, all of whom could become armchair critics the moment the fight ends. A lot of 76 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

external factors can drag you away from your simple mission of beating up the other guy in the cage. And there are internal factors to consider as well – like lingering injuries. “At my last fight with Shannon Wiratchai,” Davis says, “I had a kaleidoscopelike filter on my left eye. I couldn’t hear from my right ear at all. My left eardrum was blown. My sinuses were full of blood. I was suffering from insomnia. I had too much going on in my mind. So, going in, I was at 10 percent of my cardio level.” He admits that he doesn’t feel good about the losses, especially the one to Wiratchai, but he doesn’t lie awake at night torturing himself about them. He gets angry once in a while, but more often than not, he just gets busy. “I’m too busy to dwell on the losses,” Davis says. “It’s lovely to turn up at an event the next day, saying I won my fight. But I’m not that guy. I don’t need or want that. If people tell me that I went out and I did my best, and that they enjoyed watching it – that’s what I want. “I’m at a different stage of my life,” he continues. “I’m just happy to jump in to the promotion of my fights, and if people enjoy them. A little bit of respect is nice, but I don’t need my ego massaged. That’s not what I’m here for.” The funny thing about MMA, though, is that respect is almost always shown contrary to how it would be outside the sport: by challenging your heroes, and then proceeding to pummel them into submission. Davis, who’s been training in martial arts since he was 20, appreciates the offers… but usually declines. “It’s nice when your peers acknowledge that you’ve been here since the beginning,” he says. “I’ve been doing this for a long time, and it’s good that I’ve helped them. And I’ve tried to help move things

forward. Malaysian MMA is not meat to be eaten in the cage anymore. We’re not getting destroyed by our Asian or European counterparts. We’re going from strength to strength. So, as long as I can be remembered as someone that’s been there from the beginning, and as long as I’m an inspiration to others to push on and to get better than me, then I’m very happy.”


Peter Davis has worked up a sweat showing MH each of the workouts in his tailor-made programme (which you can check out on the following pages). He’s now demonstrating how to do a “Push-up to a Sit-up”. He executes 10 in a row to explain how it works, because neither can our fatigued brain fully comprehend the steps nor our exhausted body even attempt them. “Well done!” he charitably offers after we wrap up. Watching from faraway stadium seats, you don’t quite grasp how imposing his 181cm, 78kg physique is in person. But he’s no thug. He’s gracious, affable and all smiles. It’s no wonder why sponsors want to work with him, why movie producers want him in their films, and why swooning fangirls, uh, want him. And they will all still want him for many more years to come – because Peter Davis will always get up, always learn, and always do his best. “It’s been 10 years of moving onwards and upwards,” he says. “A lot of things have happened in my life that have taught me for different reasons. Failures teach you a lot, but none of them stands out. I try not to dwell on problems or issues. I use them to push forward – and I think that’s the best thing for anybody to do. Do you have a problem? Work around it, but make it work for you.”



“Delegation is a good thing, especially when you have people who are good at something specific. People are specialists, so let them be specialists. Together, you can make something amazing. Teamwork is a big part of things, even if you’re already good at doing something solo. It’s good to have a team behind you.”


“Greed is something that you have to knock on the head at an early age, and understand that you can’t have everything and be happy again. As soon as you’re happy, then it’s okay. For example, I’ve got a problem: I like cars. And I need to sell some. But it’s harder to sell things than it is to buy things.”


“Sometimes, it’s best not to go for the best. Sometimes, it’s better to get out on the road and have something that you can use. You don’t need a Formula One car to drive at the best of your abilities. So get what’s suitable for you, and upgrade it as and when. I’ll get what I’m given and I’ll do the best I can with that.”


“Confidence is something you learn and pick up. You learn it from people who are better than you, and when you train or go through trials with people who are more experienced than you. You will inevitably pick up from their experience.” 77

Build A BattleReady Body


Improving stamina, slashing fat and building strength.


Complete the workouts in order, resting 60 seconds between workouts, and aim to complete at least one circuit. Focus on perfect form throughout, because your “sifu” will cane you if you slip up.

You may never have to step inside the cage, but that’s no reason to stop you from forging the fitness of a fighter. Follow Peter Davis’ cardio -busting programme that will turn you into a rock-solid god of war


1/ Total-body warm-up

Do one pull-up [A], three push-ups [B], and five squats [C] without stopping. That’s 1 set. Do 20 sets, resting 10 seconds between each set.





3/ Roundhouse Kicks


2/ Sprint to Bear Crawl

[A] Sprint forward for 10 metres. [B] Bear crawl back. Ensure that your back is flat, and try to go as low to the floor as you can. That’s 1 set. Do 5 sets, resting 10 seconds between each set. 78 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

1. Face two heavy punching bags that are separated by 2 metres. Get into a kicking stance, with your left foot pointed at the left bag. 2. [A] Kick the bag with your right foot as hard as you can by rotating your hips and torso. Strike the bag with the “shoelaces” area of your foot. 3. After kicking, take three steps: (i) right foot lands; (ii) left foot returns to start; (iii) right foot steps towards to face the right bag. 4. [B] Kick the right bag with your left leg; then repeat the three steps above with the opposite foot. Do 50 kicks per leg. No heavy punching bags? Kick the air, and follow through on your kicking motion by rotating completely.



5/ Total Arms Definers

4/ Active rest

Jump rope for 5 minutes, taking quick steps and alternating skipping on each leg.


[A] 1. Get into a punching stance by bending your elbows and keeping your fists near your chin. Point your right foot forward, and place your left foot slightly behind. (Reverse it if your left foot is your favoured foot) 2. Jab forward with your right fist; then cross with your left by rotating your hips and planting your left food into the ground. Do 25 punches per hand. Take it to the next level: hold a 1kg dumbbell (or more) in each hand. [B] 1. Stand with feet hips-width apart. Extend both hands straight until perpendicular with your body. 2. Rotate both shoulders, while keeping both hands straight. Do 50 rotations - 25 forwards, 25 backwards. Take it to the next level: hold a 1kg dumbbell (or more) in each hand. [C] 1. Stand with feet hips-width apart. Clench both hands into fists. 2. Do a standard overhead shoulder press. That’s 1 rep; do 50 reps. Take it to the next level: hold a 1kg dumbbell (or more) in each hand.


6/ Push-up to Sit-up



[A] Do a standard push-up. [B] While returning to start, place your left foot by your left hand. [C] Extend your right foot forward in front of you, while placing your right hand behind you for balance. [D] Sit on your butt, and then lie flat on the floor. Do one sit-up. That’s one rep; do 20 reps. Take it to the next level: while returning to the start of your push-up, lift your feet explosively forward until you’re sitting on your butt. Then, do one sit-up. Do this only on soft or padded floors. 79

Your Road to IRONMAN Ready


The path to IRONMAN is one that’s paved with blood, sweat and tears. Comprising a 3.8km swim, 180km bike ride and 42.2km run, it’s a triathlon that requires superhuman feats out of mere mortals. Read on to find out how you can unleash your demi-god potential and ascend the podium of champs!

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Don’t jump into the IRONMAN right away, especially if you’re a newbie, advises Rupert Chen, coach for Team TIME and one of Malaysia’s top three IRONMAN finishers. “Although it’s possible for an individual with an average level of fitness to be IRONMANready in six months, it will be tough physically and mentally,” Chen explains. “You’ll suffer a lot on race day and your results won’t be great.” Pro Move• Scale back your ambitions and start small, gradually building up mileage and intensity over time. “Give yourself one to two years to attempt the full IRONMAN,” Chen recommends. “Start with a sprint triathlon, then the Olympic distance, and the half IRONMAN [IRONMAN 70.3], before finally graduating to the full IRONMAN.”

Barry Lee


Fact: the more time you have to prepare for a triathlon, the better your results will be. “The key to avoiding injury in IRONMAN – or any sport, for that matter – is to build up slowly,” says Lini Kazim, head coach for Team TIME and fastest Malaysian female at IRONMAN Malaysia, Langkawi, in 2014. “If you have two years to prepare for it, obviously you’re going to do better than someone who’s had only six months.” Pro Move• Use other races to identify and improve your weaknesses. “Even though my main goal is IRONMAN Kona in Hawaii, I’ve actually done some smaller races to see if the training that I’ve been doing is effective, and to see if my speed work is in place too,” says Barry Lee, Malaysian representative to the 2016 IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, and fastest Malaysian male at IRONMAN Malaysia, Langkawi, in 2015.


A common mistake that newcomers to triathlons make is keeping the individual sports segments separate.

“You must condition your body to get used to all the different fields – swimming, cycling and running,” Coach Lini says. “For example, with the IRONMAN, you’ll be swimming for about one hour. When you get to shore, you’re immediately in a vertical position, trying to cycle when the blood flow hasn’t even gone down to the legs yet. That’s why you have to condition your body.” Pro Move• Incorporate cross training segments that involve exercises like running right after cycling to your workout programme. “If you don’t do this in training, you’ll never be able to do it in the race,” Coach Lini points out. “The more you condition your body, the more natural it becomes for you.”


Training for the IRONMAN doesn’t mean you get to skip the gym. “Most triathletes only swim, bike and run, which causes muscle imbalances. Muscle imbalances can result in injuries as the body is not moving the way it’s meant to,” Chen explains. You can counter muscle imbalances with weightlifting

exercises; they also build strength, which translates to more speed and efficiency. “Weights sessions can help with muscular strength and maintaining muscle mass too, as swimming, biking and running are mainly endurance sports,” Nike triathlon coach Sue Teoh says. Pro Move• Don’t neglect gym exercises and do core work as part of your training. “The first thing that gives out for an IRONMAN participant is form, due to a weak core. When that happens, your technique is compromised and you waste precious energy,” Chen says.


Time to unroll the yoga mat! “Yoga helps with flexibility and core stability,” Coach Teoh says, highlighting two key factors that can help boost performance and prevent pesky injuries. Pro Move• Cool down after a workout with some basic yoga moves to improve flexibility for injury prevention in the long term. You can also stay supple by doing some yoga on your days off as a form of active recovery.


The most common injuries that plague triathletes are due to overuse, thanks to repeated repetitions and movements. Even though lower limb problems like shin splits, runner’s knees and plantar fasciitis are common, it’s possible for you to develop rotator cuff injuries from swimming, or a lower back injury from cycling too. “Swimming, cycling and running movements are highly repetitive,” Coach Sue Teoh says, explaining how triathlon training can wear out your body. “Triathletes who log long training hours, and individuals who increase their mileage too quickly and do not recover enough are both highly susceptible to injuries.” Her tip? Don’t overload the volume and the intensity too suddenly. “Your body needs time to adapt,” she explains. “So increase your workload gradually over the course of weeks and months instead.”


Aim to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep every night to ensure adequate rest for recovery. According to Chen, eight hours of shuteye each night is ideal as “that’s when the body will repair itself.” He drives his point further, adding, “We


Ensure that your form for swimming, biking and running is correct by recruiting a coach or someone with experience.

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Go to the gym once a week to sort out muscle imbalances by working on your weak muscles and training your core.


Use the right equipment (i.e. make sure you have the right bike size and fitting) and wear the right gear (i.e. running shoes that match your feet profile).


Increase training volume by 10% every week to ease yourself into the sport gradually.


Utilise alternative training options such as treadmill, grass and aqua running to familiarise yourself with the different terrains – most triathlon injuries are caused by running on the road. You’ll learn to conserve energy better too.


Schedule physiotherapy sessions for physical maintenance.




“The race finishes at the finish line. Anything can happen between the start and the finish, especially during the marathon. Truly anything is possible.” Domenico Passuello

don’t get stronger when we train – we get stronger when the body heals itself after training.” Not convinced? Hear out Coach Teoh’s alternative way of looking at downtime: “Make rest part of your training too. Always listen to your body – if it’s tired and not performing, let it rest.”


Here’s Barry Lee’s rule of thumb for how much sleep you need for optimum recovery: “If I train for four hours in a day, I’ll double up the hours, so that means eight hours [of sleep]. So if you have a long training session that goes up to five hours, you’d need 10 hours of sleep.” You can expect to make decent progress if you slot in some naptime during the day too, he says. Just one thing – don’t fall asleep at your desk, okay?

Domenico Passuello


Here’s a basic ratio for your macronutrients to fuel your training:


Rookie mistake: ignoring pain. “A lot of people who come into the sport don’t take pain and injury seriously,” Coach Lini Kazim says. “You can’t just assume that it’ll go away with time because the reality is, most injuries are there to stay.” But there’s good news: you can minimise your risk of injury by doing some form of intervention at the first signs of trouble – or by incorporating them into your training programme.

Rupert Chen


“A lot of my diet is just common sense. I eat everything, but I try to keep it healthy. Injury prevention has more to do with technique, muscle balance and training smart. For recovery, sleep more, take more protein and consider supplements. There’s no such thing as a ‘magic bullet diet.’” Rupert Chen

1/ CARBOHYDRATES: 1g to 10g per kg of body weight (eat more for longer training session, and vice versa) 2/ PROTEIN: 1.2g to 1.6g per kg of body weight 3/ FAT: 1g per kg of body weight 4/ FLUIDS: 10 to 12 cups of water Note: Always listen to your body – you may require less or more than the figures listed above.




20% Swimming 50%


An average triathlete spends about 20% of the total race on the swim, 50% on cycling and the final 30% on running. Your weekly training should match these ratios approximately too, so do the same number of swim, bike and run workouts. Your Move• Start with a training volume that fits your current fitness level and systematically increase the current workload over the weeks.


Haven’t jumped on the foam-rolling bandwagon yet? Consider this your last notice. Foam rolling eases knots and tension, loosening tight muscles for restored mobility and function, so you perform better come race day. MH Tip: Foam roll twice a day. First, when you wake up. Next, before bed at night. Doing it in the morning sets up your body for more efficient use throughout the day, while your nighttime rolls improve sleep quality.


“It is a long race, a long day. The swim is only a warm-up. The bike will tire you. The marathon is what counts.” Yee Sze Mun, 79

Yee Sze Mun 83


Ready for the complete IRONMAN training programme? Check out Rupert Chen’s workout below. Be warned – it’s not for the faint-hearted!

Warm-up: 500m Drills: 500m Main Set: 3,000m Cool Down: 200m

Cycling 2 hours

Warm-up: 15 mins Main Set: Speed Intervals of 10 sets (3 mins fast + 2 mins recovery) Cool Down: 10 mins

Running* 45 minutes brick run

*Run immediately after jumping off the bike

Swimming 1 hour

Warm-up: 500m Drills: 500m Main Set: 2,000m Cool Down: 200m

Track Interval Run

Warm-up: 10 mins Drills: 10 mins Main Set: 8 sets of 800m with 1 min rest in between Cool Down: 10 mins

Trainer* Cycling 1.25 hours

Warm up: 10 mins Single Leg Drills: 10 mins Main Set: 45 mins of cadence or power intervals Cool Down: 10 mins *Adjust an indoor bike trainer stand to your bicyle or do this exercise at the gym

Swim 1.5 hours

Warm up: 500m Drills: 500m Main Set: 3,000m Cool Down: 200m

Long Group Bike Ride 4 to 6 hours

Weights and Core (See table below)

steps to address your fear,” he points out. “Hopefully, as time goes by, the fear will dissipate too.”

2016 TIME IRONMAN 70.3 Putrajaya



Is the thought of jumping into open waters giving you butterflies instead of fins? Follow these five tips from our experts so you emerge on the other side – no, shore – triumphant:


The first step lies in discovering the root of the problem. Be honest and ask yourself what’s stopping you 84 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

from making the plunge, Rupert Chen suggests. “Is it the fear of putting your face in the water? Fear of sea monsters in open water? Fear of drowning?” he asks, highlighting the list of probable factors that’s causing you anxiety.


Your next move is to find solutions for that specific fear. For example, if you have a fear of immersing your face in water, get someone to hold you during training sessions in a swimming pool and slowly progress from there, Chen suggests. “It’s all about taking baby

Long Run 1.5 to 2 hours

No laughing matter: the unknown can play a big role in elevating fear levels. Your move – find out more about the security measures organisers have in place for all participants. “When you go for open water sessions, find out as much as you can about their safety precautions,” Coach Lini Kazim suggests. “Ask things like what their safety measures are, and even what their ratio of kayaks to swimmers is – is it one to two? Knowing these facts will assure you that you’re in good hands.”


“For you to overcome that fear of swimming, you really have to go out there,” Coach Lini says, highlighting that gradual exposure can help you become better over time. Try her suggestion the next time you’re doing laps at the pool: “Avoid touching the wall at the end when you finish your lap. Try to turn without your foot or arm coming against it. When you know that you’re able to stay afloat in the water for a certain amount of time, it’ll help you build confidence.”


Warm-up (5 minutes easy run) Bench Press (2 sets of 12 reps) Lat Pull Down (2 sets of 12 reps) Lunges (2 sets of 15 reps) Leg Curls (2 sets of 12 reps) Calf Raises (2 sets of 12 reps)


Swiss Ball Planks (2 sets of 1 minute) Side Planks (2 sets of 45 seconds for each side) Back Extensions (2 sets of 15 reps) Leg Raises (2 sets of 10 reps)


Stay far from the madding crowd. “For me, I find being the last or one of the last few to go in the water helps settle my nerves a bit,” says Yee Sze Mun, 79-year-old Malaysian IRONMAN and the first IRONMAN Malaysia Hall of Fame inductee. His rationale behind it is driven by pure logistics. “Don’t rush in and you’ll avoid the stampede of thousands of thrashing limbs fighting for space that isn’t there.”


Swimming 1.5 hours

Fredrik Croneborg


Power on with nutrition hacks from the pros below to ensure a podiumstyle finish for your tournaments!


Ensure that there’s a decent portion of carbohydrates in your diet, as you’ll need the energy. “IRONMAN athletes need a lot of calories from carbs to fuel their training,” Rupert Chen says. “It depends on how much training you’re doing on the day too. If you train more, you should consume more calories so you have sufficient energy to continue. If I know that I’m going to have a heavy session the next day, I’ll eat a bit extra the night before to carb-load too.” Add these top-quality carbs to your diet: potatoes, brown rice, high-fibre bread, and tons of fresh vegetables and fruit.


Keep your fluid levels up and stay hydrated, as you can work up a good sweat just from the training sessions alone, Coach Sue Teoh says. “If you’re not hydrated enough, your

recovery will be hampered and you might not be able to train normally,” she stresses. Fredrik Croneborg, first-place finisher at 2016 IRONMAN 90.3, Bintan, talks about how different climates can affect your food and liquid intake during the tournament, saying: “In hot races like IRONMAN Malaysia, most energy can easily come from sports drinks – they’re easier to digest than solid food and you need to keep hydrated in the heat anyway.”


Avoid oily food and try to eliminate it as much as you can from your diet, says Domenico Passuello, first place finisher at the 2015 IRONMAN, Taiwan. “Anything that’s processed and deep-fried is really bad for athletes,” he notes, adding that they’re harder for the body to digest and can impact energy levels come race day. Take a leaf out of Passuello’s book and make some sacrifices in the days leading up to the competition: “I avoid French fries even though I love them so much.”


Take a break from eating spicy food. “Definitely no curries or anything spicy before your training or races,”

Coach Teoh says. “They take a longer time to digest and can cause stomach discomfort when you train or race.” Marathoner Ow Yong Jin Kuang weighs in by revealing what his diet is like closer to the big day: “I always avoid spicy food as it might upset my stomach and affect my performance too.”


Don’t experiment with untested supplements too close to the tournament and definitely not on race day, Barry Lee advises. “You don’t know how your body will react, and the last thing you want is an upset stomach,” he says. Stick to what’s been tried and tested on your body, so you don’t wreak havoc on your system. Hot tip: bring your own power gels instead of the ones offered at water stations to be safe.


Consider taking supplements such as protein powders, BCAAs and vitamins to help your body recover and improve performance. Training for IRONMAN can take its toll, Passuello says. “I burn through three persons’ worth of nutrients a day, but I can’t eat for three people – that’s difficult and bad for my

Ow Yong Jin Kuang

body. Supplements are important to replenish lost nutrients.” According to Coach Teoh, multivitamins and even vitamin C can help boost your immune system – a vital factor, as it’s important for you to stay healthy so you can keep up with your training programme. 85




NO MAN’S LAND Elite apps that bulk up your workout with military intelligence


REGIME CHANGE Switch to a navy-strength gym session that sorts the specials from the civilians

86 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


F U L L M E TA L BASKET See off shelf-shock and gain maximum impact from a trip to the supermarket


FIELD MARSHAL We track the vitamin-rich natural foods that out-flank and outwit fat 05


M I L I TA R Y COMPOUND Reinforce your weightloss ops with fat-battering supplements

The Battle of Your Bulge isn’t a skirmish but a lifelong campaign. To keep the enemy pinned down – permanently – you’ll need to update your tactics, your arsenal and your intel. Look sharp – it’s time to launch your flab offensive

>> 87


R E C O N : T H E T H E AT R E O F W A R The supermarket is a hostile environment. So adopt the tactical know-how of food writer and activist Michael Pollan to get in and out like a Navy Seal, leaving weight gain behind 01

DUCK AND COVER Brands will often pay a premium to appear at “grab level”, i.e. between waist and chest height – an area filled with highprofit, low-quality goods such as processed cereals. Drop to your haunches and look on the bottom shelf, generally home to healthier rations.


DON’T MILK THE GOODS Just nipping behind enemy lines for a pint of semiskimmed? Stores maximise the distance from door to dairy, forcing you to pass as many items as possible. Counter this by heading straight to the back of the shop, so you can make a beeline for your milky liaison.


SKIRT THE PERIPHERY Intelligence shows that the majority of whole foods, such as vegetables, fish and meat, tend to be on the supermarket’s perimeter. It’s known as “the racetrack”. Try to keep yourself on it, and don’t get ambushed by the offers trying to tempt you into the aisles for easier, treacherous meal options.



KEEP MOVING Research shows that 80% of the time we spend pottering in the aisles is just us drifting. This makes us sitting ducks for offers and gimmicks. Go with a game plan (AKA a shopping list) and an exit strategy: time each mission at 10-15 minutes.





LOCAL KNOWLEDGE Snacks, newspapers and flowers tend to be at the entrance to make the megastore feel like a smaller, friendlier shop. Lower your guard and you’ll be filling your basket with 2-4-1 pizzas. Follow your head, not your gut, and grab heavy, boring goods first to cut down on impulse buying.

88 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


Gain the technological advantage over your love handles with this app-based ordnance 100% ARMY FIT This British Armymade app takes you on the same fitness journey as a real soldier in training. So you get the military-grade strength and cardio exercises without the drill sergeant spraying you with his shouty saliva. (Free on Android and iOS)

FOODPRINT DIET BY NUTRINO Tell the app your goals and foodie preferences, and it devises a realistic food plan to get you there. It’s like having your own nutritionist – one who won’t charge RM300 an hour to discuss your stool samples. (Free on Android and iOS)

LOSE IT! Heavy on features, Lose It! tracks your weight, exercise, nutrient intake, blood pressure and sleep, and packs an info-sharing system for peer-to-peer support. The diary you won’t be ashamed of your mates finding. (Free on iOS, Android and Kindle)

FITOCRACY Burning fat is easier when you share the knowledge of half a million other users. This app helps you to chart your progress, ask advice from others, and challenge them to duels as well. Welcome to crowdsourced fat fighting. (Free on Android and iOS)

MEN’S HEALTH FITNESS TRAINER Waiting a month for the new MH can seem like forever. So we crafted this app, which splits a range of workouts by difficulty and muscle group. Upgrade to the PRO version for 700 exercises with video guides. (Free on iOS)


Weight loss begins in the mind. Use these tricks from psychologist Walter Mischel to beat slumps and shackle cravings 01 04 T ER MIN AT E WITH P R E JUDICE Willpower behaves a lot like a muscle: it can be strengthened, but it’s going to tire out if you ask it to do too much. So don’t go in all guns blazing. For example, if you try to change your diet and quit smoking at the same time, you’ll only fail in both.




K EEP YOUR DISTANCE Describe what’s happening to you in the third person, as if you’re an onlooker: “The soldier is about to capitulate and gobble the doughnut.” Yes, you will look slightly mad to any actual onlookers, but this technique helps to suck out the emotional cues that make you reach for the sugary snack.


DISGUISE THE DANGER Don’t see a currypuff sitting provocatively on the counter. Think of it as a small pool of brown-coloured fat that has been extracted from between your organs. See it for what it isn’t and it will be easier to defuse cravings.

PLAN YOUR DEFENCE The “If, then” rule says that when you encounter temptation, you have a preset choice that you must always commit to. So, “If I see chips on the menu, then I’ll order a side salad.” This will stop you being caught off-guard.


PICTURE THE THRE AT Try putting an imaginary frame around your temptation and see it as a picture. Or imagine it in black-and-white newsreel footage, or in a music video from the ’80s. This distance makes it less real and cuts your physical connections to the food.


CHILL OUT There are two parts of your brain working when you make decisions: a hasty, emotional, greedy part, and a cooler, more analytical part. You can learn to rely more on the cooler part by simply counting to 10 and visualising your end goal: long-term happiness, not a few frenzied moments wrestling a cream cake into submission.

02 89


CHEMICAL WEAPONS Adopting a clean diet is half the battle. Now, equip yourself with these fat-annihilating supplements


SESAMIN This compound, found in the fibres of wheat bran, sesame and flax, might sound about as appetising as soiled undies, but a study last year* discovered it boosts the liver’s ability to process fat and preserves muscle mass.


Grow some real military muscle by following this elite workout from former marine and personal trainer Mark Maycroft


90 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

T YROSINE Shown to aid fat loss by a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, this amino acid’s thermogenic and mood-improving properties mean it’ll help you shed fat and put a smile on your face in the process.


GARCINIA CAMBOGIA Studies have shown this supplement to reduce bodyweight and BMI by more than 5% in just eight weeks. It releases the same compounds as eating does, helping you to feel full, and increases the amount of fat processed. What sets it apart is its power to block citrate lyase – an enzyme used by your body to make fat.



GREEN COFFEE BEAN EXTRACT From the raw berries of a coffee tree, this compound impacts on post-meal blood-sugar levels, keeping you full and banishing energy slumps. A 2011 review linked it to weight loss, and it goes down easier than most canteen crap.


T TA This fatty acid alters the processing and elimination of fats in the body, and boosts the energy usage of your cells’ internal power stations. So, even during well-earned R&R, your body will steam its way through calories.



04 A


B A C B THE ULTIMATE BURPEE 10-15 reps Start with a clap press-up (A), then jump both legs into your chest (B). From this low squat, explode up like a detonating Claymore (C) and do a tuck jump, bringing your knees to your chest. Squat down, kick both legs out and go again.

B THE THRUSTER 10-15 reps Start in the top of a military press, with the barbell held above your head (A). Squat, keeping the bar raised, only lowering it to chest height at the bottom of your squat (B). In an explosive motion, stand back up to full soldierly height, pressing the bar above your head. Don’t call for the medic – this one is going to burn.



PUSH-UP/ BENT-OVER ROW 10-15 reps Hold kettlebells shoulderwidth apart and do a push-up (A&B). Jump your knees in to your chest and stand. Bend at the hips, back straight (C), and bring the kettlebells up to the bottom of your ribs in a rowing motion (D). Lower the weights, stand, then squat, placing the bells back on the floor. Lock your arms and kick your legs back into a push-up. Repeat.


BICEP CURL AND PRESS 15 reps No soldier is battle-ready without some serious lead in his guns. Perform a curl from hip height (A) to your chest with a power bag, dumbbells or even a barbell. Press the object above your head (B), keeping your elbows pointing forward in order to work your triceps and shoulders. Lower the weights and curl like a commando.







C O L D WA R T ACTICS Sometimes, comrade, the best way to burn is to freeze


SIBERIAN SHOWER A study in The New England Journal of Medicine found low temperatures activate your calorie-burning “good” brown fat. Taking a cold shower once a day kick-starts this process, getting rid of your “bad” white fat. Brave the icy water first thing in the morning to feel day-long benefits.


CHILL & CONQUER Freshly cooked starches in pasta, potatoes and rice cause a spike in blood-glucose, but chilling them results in “resistant starch”, feeding your gut’s good bacteria and helping you absorb fewer calories. A BBC study found chilled pasta cut spikes by 50%. Choose lunch accordingly.


COOL RUNNINGS Sports scientist Dr. Dominique Gagnon discovered that running when it’s 0°C uses up fat more readily than it does your natural stores of sugars, saving this energy for later in the jog. Your body targets flab rather than glycogen, burning fat first and helping you run longer.



SOVIET SHIVERS Clicking down the thermostat doesn’t just save you money, but actually increases your calorie burn. Harvard professor Dr. C. Ronald Kahn found that up to 200 extra calories are burned when the dial drops to 16-17°C, even while you sleep. It’s the human fat-burning equivalent of hibernation.

U P D AT E YO U R ARMOURY Your old arsenal of blubber-burning foods is a useful resource, but these upgrades will arm you with next-level fat-fighting power 01



RUNNER BEANS Chillies used to be the vanguard of your attack, but they’ve been outgunned. Packed with vitamins that help your body burn stored energy, runner beans are high in manganese, a trace metal that helps energy metabolism, meaning that you burn more calories during exercising or at rest. Combine the two for an anti-fat WMD.


JAVA T E A Every old soldier has a green-tea story, loaded with heart-protecting antioxidants, of course. Yawn. Upgrade now, because the active ingredients in java tea increase the body’s levels of leptin – the hormone that regulates feelings of satiety – more efficiently than its green cousin ever could.



Don’t let fad diets stab you in the back, says nutritionist Matthew Lambert

THE 5:2 DIET FOE If you’re active, you’ll seriously compromise yourself with this diet. Your brain and body need power to perform; restricting calorie intake two days per week can leave you distracted and anxious. Approach with caution.

THE ATKINS DIET FOE Eliminating processed carbs can cause rapid weight loss, but limiting fruit and vegetables leads to nutritional imbalance and fatigue. You’ll lose energy and water short-term, but not so much fat.

THE PALEO DIET FRIEND Eating only preagricultural foods is a good approach as it includes healthy fats and lean proteins. This diet is great for resistance trainers and dieters looking to chisel their body. Have you ever seen a fat caveman?

THE GI DIET FRIEND Carbs are allowed if they have a low glycemic index rating: carrots good, cornflakes bad. If you learn the low-GI foods that work best for you, this can be a sensible and positive approach to weightloss.

THE DETOX DIET FOE Fasting or cutting out major food groups for even a day or two can lead to fatigue and headaches. Any longer and you risk losing bone density and muscle mass, with no evidence supporting the detox hypothesis in the first place.


PINEAPPLE Cinnamon steadies blood-sugar levels, curbing the urge to binge. Pineapple goes further as it contains an enzyme that slows the development of fat cells, according to a study in the PLOS One journal.

04 O I LY F I S H

CHICKEN LIVER Just 100g of chicken liver contains 62% of your daily requirement of pantothenic acid – the nutrient your body uses when breaking down fats for energy. The same amount of salmon has just 26%.


WATERMELON RIND Cayenne plays its part in burning fat, but you won’t want a teaspoon during a workout. Watermelon’s more rapid results are due to an enzyme that boosts blood flow to the muscle. Eat down to the rind.


04 91


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OUT NOW! Get a copy for the ladies in your life!

Internationally-acclaimed and award-winning title with 28 editions worldwide and a global readership of more than 21 million.







This month, we’re taking you to the flicks. Sit back and enjoy the good, bad and ugly lessons you can learn from big-screen icons 93

Q1/ In Goodfellas’ famous cooking scene, Vinnie is castigated for adding too many onions to the sauce. As it happens, he’s guarding his friends from…

Q4/ Q5/ Which Expendables star swears In From Russia..., Bond spots an by short, intense workouts? A

Jet Li





Dolph Lundgren

Cancer C

Heart attacks



Jason Statham

Joe Pesci A,B&C The skillet stalwarts are packed with antioxidants and compounds for regulating blood sugar. Sadly, even the most pungent bulb will not protect against pintsized Sicilian psychopaths.

Q2/ Match the gym to the movie it features in…


Pumping Iron

B Mick’s



C Gold’s

Out of iii Sight

D Kronk





Yes B


Sylvester Stallone C Stath advocates the hard(man)and-fast approach. And science agrees (well, who’d dare argue?): HIIT triggers 60-80% of fast-twitch fibres that are crucial for growth, rather than the 30% activated by endurance workouts.

B You can’t argue with Connery: red wine’s higher iron content lends fish an unpleasant aftertaste, according to Japanese research. The taste comes from a fatty acid, which breaks down when exposed to the mineral. Double up on iron by ordering steak, and assassinate fatigue at dinner.


How will shouting “Run, Forrest, run!” affect your friend’s race time?


A/ii, B/iv, C/i, D/iii Whether you’re a budding Mr. Universe or bulking up for a kidnapping caper, don’t go it alone. In a Michigan State study, men who exercised with others worked for 11 minutes longer than solo trainers.



Q3/ Skipped the gym? What should you see at the cinema tonight? A


Suicide Squad

Jason Bourne


Sausage Party

C Make Seth Rogen your new personal trainer: just 10 minutes’ laughter burns 50 calories. Stanford Uni researcher Dr William Fry even reported that one minute of mirth could raise his heart rate higher than a full 10 minutes on a rowing machine. 94 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6


Hinder A Get vocal at the sidelines! In a comprehensive analysis carried out by the University of Kent, verbal encouragement was found to be an effective motivator during endurance performance. Singing the theme song from Chariots of Fire while miming in slow-motion is likely to aggravate your buddies, though.



A Gym

imposter when he orders red wine with fish. Pure snobbery?


Twelve pancakes, four pizzas, 21 chocolate brownies… This is all just one cheat-day in the life of which musclebound movie star?

Q9/ In Godfather: Part II, Michael Corleone

rejects weasely brother Fredo’s banana daiquiri for a club soda. How many calories does he save?







B Never trust a man who offers you a drink with a tinned cherry in it. Your second takeaway tip is that sweet, creamy cocktails can harbour as many calories as a dessert. Stick to spirits and sugar-free mixers to save both face and fat gain. A

The Rock B

Hafþór Björnsson

Q10/ Which staple of Hannibal’s diet is rich in mood-lifting L-dopa?




A nice chianti

B A serving of Lecter’s favourite beans provides the building blocks for the “pleasure hormone” dopamine. Combining it with polyphenol-packing red wine and B vit-stuffed liver isn’t a bad shout, but we’d advise getting yours from lamb or calf – not a guy from the census bureau.


John Cena A Dwayne Johnson’s cheat days are the stuff of legend. Of course, most of what The Rock is cooking is very clean (he earned this feast with 150 days of abstinence). Seton Hall Uni research advises staying on course for nine out of 10 meals. A rare indulgence in fats and high-GI carbs can kickstart your metabolism to prevent a weight loss plateau. Just try to control your banana leaf rice binge...



Fava beans

Q8/ Hugh Jackman proved himself just as badass as his alter ego Wolverine by joining the 1,000lb club last year. Which three lifts did he complete?

Q11/ Swearing is proven to relieve stress. Tough day? Watch... A

Wolf of Wall Street B

Scarface C

Nil by Mouth D


A Squat

B Deadlift

C Bench press

D Biceps curl

A,B&C According to Hugh, it’s about going big – at the gym and in the kitchen. “I see people in the corner with the Swiss ball, acting like it’s gonna change their life,” he says. His golden (or is it adamantium?) rule: “Train until you want to throw up, and eat until you want to throw up.” Quite.

D This Canadian comedy holds the record for F-bombs with 935 mentions – though Wolf comes close with a creditable 506. We can only assume Jordan Belfort has studied the medical journal NeuroReport, which published a study demonstrating that swearing reduces the emotional impact of stress and pain. 95


How many minutes do you need to run for in order to burn off a large serving of popcorn?

Q14/ In Commando, Schwarzenegger’s

character “eats Green Berets for breakfast”. But what breakfast staple does the real Arnie decry?









B Arnie is famous for his consumption of sat fats, but is mistrustful of refined foods. And for good reason: the Endocrine Society found that testosterone levels drop after high-sugar meals. Beware the muscle Predators in your kitchen.

Q15/ Watching 28 Days Later can reduce your risk of viral infection… B








A Of the non-zombie kind, at least. According to research from Coventry University, horror films stimulate the production of white blood cells, helping your body fight off infections. “Controlled fear” can also improve your sensitivity to stress. Consider it a practice run for the apocalypse.

Q16/ Which actor shed 27kg of fat to play the role of a Marvel hero? A B

C Popcorn is often billed as the acceptable face of snacking (indeed, Scranton University found it has more antioxidants that many vegetables) – but you’re not meant to eat it out of an industrial container. Some cinemas’ largest offering of popcorn packs 812 calories. Then again, you should be able to make it through even the corniest of movies without popping out for more. Pun intended.

Chris Pratt

Chris Hemsworth


Chris Evans

Q13/ How many calories does the man-eating shark in Jaws consume throughout the movie? A






B The shark eats five people in total, and there are about 80,000 calories in the average human body. Given that water provides 12 times the resistance of air, swimming burns about 600 calories an hour (for humans, that is) – or 14,400 in 24 hours. No wonder he was hungry. 96 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

A Although Hemsworth and Evans were in shape long before donning their super-suits, Pratt weighed in close to 136kg. Classic bodybuilding moves and metabolic conditioning circuits helped him lean out for Guardians of the Galaxy.

Q17/ For Rocky III, Stallone

trained for four hours a day, every day…

Q18/ What surprising ingredient do the dim-

witted bodybuilders of Pain & Gain add to their shakes?



gained the most weight for a film role? A

Robert De Niro


False B Actually it was closer to six. His routine comprised two hours of cardio, two of weight training, plus sparring – which even Sly admits was excessive. Overtraining can cause insomnia and poor immune function. Rest hard if you want to make it to the final round.

Q20/ Which of these actors has



Breast milk




Iron filings

A Mixed with a capful of steroids, it’s described as “the real HGH”. Rather go your own whey? For a less controversial method of increasing human growth hormone, a spoonful of almond butter dishes out the HGH-boosting nutrient l-arginine.


Violent films make you more aggressive…

Russell Crowe C

Jared Leto D

Vincent D’Onofrio D When body transformations go south… De Niro paved the way by gaining 27kg to play Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull, but his record was smashed by the 31kg D’Onofrio gained for Full Metal Jacket. It took him nine months to lose the weight.

Q21/ You should stay off The Green Mile if you’re feeling low… A

True B

False A But only if you have an abrasive personality to begin with. In a study by Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, men with a history of aggression experienced reduced activity in the part of their brain that regulates self-control when watching fight films. They also reported feeling more “inspired” and less anxious compared to pacifists. Just something to keep in mind when choosing a friend to watch Warrior or Fight Club with.

How did you score?

B In the US, counsellors who practise “cathartic cinema therapy” say patients can process their emotions by watching something sad. The key, according to Dr Birgit Wolz, is to acknowledge your responses to themes or characters while watching something that makes you cry. Such as an immortal mouse.




Even if you’re not a film aficionado, you can still benefit from audiovisual aid – so long as you pick something arousing. In a CaliforniaBerkeley study, participants shown an erotic film scored better on a subsequent memory test. Your instincts will be more than basic.

Thumbs up, but your sofa habits are worth critiquing: a hunched sitting posture is linked to heart disease. Hit the floor for a mid-film Superman stretch: face-down, tense to lift your chest, legs and arms. Three reps of 10 seconds will rescue your body from gripping tension.

A true cinema buff. But remember: the book is often better. Late-night viewing increases blood pressure and disrupts your sleep cycle. Pick up a book before lights out. Just six minutes’ reading is enough to slow your heart rate and ease stress, says the University of Sussex. 97

LEGENDS The very best of Autumn/Winter 2017 can take you from has-been to icon. Just follow our guide over the next few pages, and you won’t need a single snowflake to validate your coolness

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GAP T-shirt RM49; TOPMAN bomber jacket RM239; D.D chino shorts (price unavailable). 99

CANADIAN TUXEDO DONE RIGHT Denim-on-denim? Get it right, and you’ll score major points with the ladies. Get it wrong, and you’ll be a laughing stock. “If it’s your first attempt at a denim-on-denim look,” advises stylist Jayen Chow, “break it up with another piece, like a T-shirt or an accessory that can take the focus off the double-denim look.” For example, wear a hat or shoes in starkly different colours, or ensure that one of the denim pieces is in a slightly different hue. And, as always, keep the designs clean and simple. ZARA denim western shirt RM129.90; GUESS acid-washed jeans (price unavailable); PEDRO sandals RM269. 100 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

HATS OFF TO YOU, SIR Love it or hate it, the trend of people wearing sportswear for non-sporting reasons is here to stay. To avoid looking like a slob, ensure that your jogger pants and/or sweats are as fit as you. “Fit is definitely the utmost important factor, so you don’t want sweatpants that are too baggy and long,” Chow says. “Think slim-fit but not too skinny. Never wear a pair that’s too long. It should end just above your ankles.” To elevate your look, wear a jacket or blazer, and put on a pair of decent shoes. T-shirt RM49.90 and track jacket RM199.90, both from BERSHKA; UNIQLO jogger pants, (price unavailable); SUPERDRY trucker cap RM139. 101

BERSHKA plaid shirt RM119.90; jogger pants RM134, and faux leather sneakers RM119, both by H&M. 102 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

STATE YOUR CASE It’s called a “statement piece”: an item in your look – and only one item – that stands out, which makes you stand out too. The bomber jacket is another must-have from this season, and one like this in chrome doesn’t just announce your presence; it screams for attention. “If your statement piece is already very loud, keep the rest of your look neutral,” Chow says. “Opt for muted, earthy tones with white accents, or go all-black with the rest of your look.” Leave your wristbands, chains and other paraphernalia at home, so that focus is on your chrome jacket and, most importantly, on you. D.D T-shirt (price unavailable); ZARA bomber jacket RM399; TOPMAN sweat shorts RM179. 103

COOL HAND LOOKS One of most important – and most stylish – items to wear this season is the plaid shirt. Yours does not need to be as heavy as those worn where it snows, but the patterns still reign supreme. Pair with chinos for a look that won’t get you a warning letter from your boss. TOPMAN plaid shirt RM219; SUPERDRY chino shorts with belt RM269. 104 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 6

WALK THE TALK Still not convinced that you – yes, you – can wear the finest, sharpest, most masculine looks from AW16/17? Don’t sweat it. “First and foremost, you have to know yourself, your personality, your own body,” Chow states. “To carry off any look, subtle or bold, one of the biggest factors is to know what you’re wearing, what suits you, and your personal style. Even if the trends – like chrome and plaid – are big on the runways, but it’s just not your thing, don’t force it on yourself. When you’re comfortable in how you look and what you wear, only then will you walk confidently with your head held high. Nothing says weakness more than slouched shoulders and shuffled feet.” GUESS sherpa-lined denim jacket (price unavailable) 105

21 Decisions You Instantly Regret 4 5

Agreeing to help any male friend over the age of 25 move into a new place.


Figuring that somebody should finally tell your nephew that Santa Claus isn’t real, and it might as well be you.

Deciding to answer the phone anyway when you don’t recognise the number.

Congratulating or acknowledging that any woman is or might be pregnant. Even if she obviously is. Even if you’re in the room while she’s giving birth.

Not voting because it’s a hassle, and besides, what’s the worst that could happen?




Having an answer, any answer at all, when she asks you, “Which one of my friends would you sleep with?”


Starting a conversation with the guy at the next urinal.

Telling any joke that begins with “This may sound sexist, but...”

Opting to not walk over and introduce yourself to that amazing-looking woman at the bar, because hey, the night is young, you’ll get to it eventually, and it’s not like anybody else is talking to her right now.

What’s up, bro? ....


Being the guy at the party who declares to the room, “We should do some shots.”

12 13

Dropping in on your daughter at university.

Going in for a hug seconds before realising your buddy’s going in for a handshake.


Thinking “What happens on vacation stays on vacation” is some kind of law.

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16 17

7 Thinking you can get your ass over that barbed wire with a wide, awkward straddle.

Telling your barber that it’s time to “get creative and try something new”. Thinking to yourself, “I’ll just answer this text real quick” while driving.

6 1


18 19 20

Bringing up politics with an Uber driver. Bringing up politics to anybody, ever.

Setting up one or both parents with a Facebook account so that they can check out all your updates, like all your photos, and be up in your business all the time, and, oh my god, what have you done?


Being the guy in the friendly futsal game with work buddies who decides he’s a warrior and he’s gonna show these punks how this game is played!


Reading something on Twitter that you disagree with, and crafting a thoughtful, measured response that, of course, the other person will take in the spirit of healthy debate.

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