2017: Getting Shit Done

If you look back through some of my posts from the last year, you would think I was the most miserable son of bitch on the face of the Earth.

Honestly, I felt like it. I felt like the world had kicked me down to the ground and kept stomping the fuck out of me. The past two years were an emotional shit show for me. So many things happened, and at the same time, that I was drowning. Only a few close people know about them. My social media presence remained upbeat because I didn’t want anyone asking questions or knowing.

I am sure if you are reading this that you are probably wondering what happened. For several reasons, I cannot go into them in such a public forum (although some of my previous posts allude to parts of it).

To be quite honest, I don’t want to focus on that nightmare anyway. I want to focus on 2017, the year that I am getting shit done for myself and moving past the vaguely mentioned experiences.

Near the end of 2016, those several shitty experiences all came to an end and set the stage for 2017. The things that were seriously plaguing me were finally over. It was like the winds blowing my sails into the Bermuda Triangle decided to just change direction and take my tiny boat to happier days.

And happier days it has been! I got a fresh start and was able to start over. It was at this point that I started to feel that 2017 was going to be great. I was going to make it awesome!

I changed jobs at work in December 2016 and transitioned into a role, that I absolutely love, as a leadership trainer. I loved training Servicing and also training other trainers in the art of training. But there is just something about training leaders.

Jumping into this new role in 2017 pushed me outside of my comfort zone and made me very vulnerable, but I am experiencing so much growth of my own skills because of it. It feels amazing being able to make an impact on leaders, which will in turn trickle down to their team members (the only time trickle down economics actually works). I am part of a newer team and doing what I can to help build us up. I am so happy right now!

Personally, my mind has let out this loud sigh of relief. The past two years pushed me over the edge and I fell into a pit of mental health issues. I was seriously balls deep in Depression and Anxiety. My ADHD was out in full swing. I had to start seeing a therapist and was prescribed something for the ADHD to get myself together. So many nights were spent on being victim to racing thoughts, fear, sadness, and fear and not on sleep. I became so fixated on the negativity because I couldn’t see any light. Not even a damn glimmer of it. Life has an intense way of reminding us that nothing lasts forever though.

Many of the things I was experiencing have started to dissipate. I forced myself to start focusing on the good things, and if I didn’t feel like there were good things happening, I fucking made them happen. I was going to get shit done this year. The shit that I wanted, and needed, to do for myself. No more reasons or putting myself in situations where I can’t do shit for myself.

Shit to do #1: Traveling

One thing I decided was that I needed to travel. My soul is the traveling type and staying stationary has negative effects on me.

So I went back to New York and visited family. I went there first because it was where I was from and the first time I was able to travel anywhere for quite some time. I love to explore and it really did me good to get out and check out new places and hang out with one of my amazing cousins. I even went to the hospital I was born in to take pictures!

This is me in Central Park:

I also took myself out every single night I was in NYC. I either went alone or I met up with another cousin. I went out, had drinks, and socialized. Words cannot express how doing that made me feel. I could almost hear the sound of the top popping off and all my mental BS exploding out of me.

While I was in New York, my sister (who really loves to travel) talked to my mom and booked us three tickets to Mexico.

New York was amazing…but fuck..going to Mexico from Christmas to New Year’s Eve was FUCKING SUPERB!! We stayed in Playa Del Carmen. We were there for 9 days and we rocked out that trip! It was gorgeous every single day! Even when it rained, it only rained for 20 minutes and then the sun came back out.

While in Mexico, we hit up several (it’s impossible to do all of them) bars/restaurants on the main strip in Playa Del Carmen. We also went to Tulum where we did sightseeing of ancient ruins. We also went to Chichen Itza where we saw the amazing ancient ruins there as well as went snorkeling! I mentally needed these adventures!

This is me sightseeing:

If you are ever in an emotional rut, I HIGHLY recommend traveling to a place like Mexico. The country is gorgeous (from the tourist side of it), the people are so friendly and genuine, and the scenery is a feast for the eyes! It’s that tropical vacation you long for, but also super affordable! I promise, if you are really going through something, do this for yourself.

I have also booked a trip to Denver for April! So I am moving and experiencing life! I cannot wait to get into the mountains and just be outside in a new place!

Shit to do #2: Personal Goals 

When Old Deller, my laptop, died several months ago, I never got around to getting a new computer. No wait..not that I didn’t get around to it..I just wanted a Mac and those are WAY more expensive than a PC.

Not having a computer probably wouldn’t be such a huge deal for some people. However, I like to write these ramblings of a mad man and share them on my blog. If I wanted to continue writing and building myself as a writer/blogger, then I needed to have adequate resources, like a computer. I don’t like to use my work computer for personal business. So I actually splurged on a Mac computer today! This thing is fucking magical!

I’ve always loved writing and I think (know) being lost in so much negativity was taking that away from me. In other words, I was fucking myself because I was letting my dreams just waste away. I just laid there and let everything run me over. I am also tired of starting something and not seeing it through because of shit excuses.

I also want to get into the beard oil business. This year I registered my blog as an online store and even got an Employee Identification Number (EIN)! Awesome! I have some other stuff around that to figure out, but I have it on my Shit I Need to Do Right Now list.

Lastly, I grew up speaking Albanian, but since I never really used it where I grew up, I don’t speak it like I used to. I am working on relearning and practicing it some more.

Shit to do #3: Personal Upgrades

I first got glasses when I was in second grade. I have always worn glasses, until I became a teenager. Then I transitioned to contact lenses. After that, I went back and forth between contacts and glasses. I have always had corrective lenses in my life.

The past few years though, I found myself thinking about LASIK and eventually making it a goal. Well I can say that as of March 2017, that is one goal I turned into reality. I got LASIK! I feel like I accomplished a bucket list item, and it feels amazing! I can see great, and as my eyes heal my vision keeps getting better. I tested at 20/20, possibly 20/15.

Earlier this year I also signed up for Warrior Dash with my friends from work. I have always wanted to do a physical challenge like that. I have been working out a lot and put on some intense weight.

Last week I signed up for a 6 week workout program with a place called Michigan Kettlebells. It’s going to be intense, but so worth it. It will help me cut down some of this fat I gained and tone up my gained muscle. It will also get me ready for Warrior Dash! I also want to play rugby so this will help me with the training and conditioning of my body!

My goal is to look like this guy (or a watered down version) at Warrior Dash! I even paid for the kilt so I can really experience the event:

I am so ready to continue smashing through my goals! So fucking ready! It is really easy to lay down and die when life hands you a large glass of “Fuck you.” I am guilty of that more than I care to admit. Especially when the shit gets piled on! However, like I said earlier..the negative shit is gone! That means I only have positive things to focus on!

Seriously, if I find something negative to focus on at this point, I brought it on myself and I am a fucking lunatic!

 

I am excited to share this because I have seriously never felt happier. So many great things happening that I just need to let the sun shine on my face!

 

The Best Testosterone Booster

I have been looking into testosterone boosters for a while because I always hear different things about them. I was taking TestoFuel but a friend of mine told me that it could/would damage my liver. I came across this article from the folks at Reviews.com and read up on it as well as the different ingredients.
TestoFuel still stands as a solid testosterone booster and I am looking forward to continuing using it!

Turns out there’s no such thing

1-3-2017 3-09-58 PM.jpg Amid a sea of acronyms, ingredients like deer antler velvet and horny goat weed, and sensationalist promises to pump up both your muscles and your sex life, T-boosters can feel as much magic potion as dietary supplement. These over-the-counter pills and powders promise to help increase testosterone production in the body and abracadabra: greater muscle mass and power output, improved athletic performance, and elevated mood and libido.

The big question: Do they actually boost?

Not so much. After poring over the labels; reviewing the scientific research; and consulting with doctors, fitness and nutrition experts, and professors of endocrinology and biochemistry, we were tempted to junk the industry entirely. Tenuous projections of vigor and virility aside, the actual contents of many of these supplements pose some health and safety concerns.

But the reality is: Testosterone boosters are legal, accessible, and in demand. So we set out to weed through the questionable ingredients and false claims to find which formulas are the safest to consume and have the best chance at giving you at least someof the results you’re looking for.

Our Picks for the Best Testosterone Booster

Best Overall

Axis Labs Hypertest XTROur top pick packs a wide variety of vitamins, herbs, and minerals into its bright-orange capsules.

With just over 3 grams of D-aspartic acid (2-3 grams per day is recommended) and a bevy of vitamins, herbs, and minerals, Axis Labs Hypertest XTR is a T-booster with benefits. The biggest of those benefits is ZMA, a patented formula combining efficacious levels of zinc (30 mg), magnesium (450 mg), and vitamin B6 (10.5 mg), which work together to help strengthen the immune system, lower blood pressure, and regulate metabolism. Zinc is the cornerstone of that trio. Deficiencies in zinc, which can result from excessive exercise and sweating, are associated with low testosterone; supplementing with high doses (24–40 mg) has beenshown to bring low testosterone levels back up to normal. (There’s a difference between boosting and restoring, which is what zinc can do. Boosting indicates breaking that testosterone axis, the equilibrium that your body regulates, whereas restoring helps your body regain that axis if you’ve overdone it.)

One serving of Axis Labs Hypertest XTS is spread across six distinctly colored capsules.

Also beneficial, particularly for athletes: The herb ashwagandha can increase muscle strength and aid in recovery, while stinging nettle serves as an anti-inflammatory. An added bonus: While longjack doesn’t boost testosterone, it has been shown to increase libido and aid erectile function, albeit by subjective (read: self-reported) measures.

Runner-Up

TestoFuelLook past the gimmicky name and you’ll find solid ingredients like D-aspartic acid and fenugreek.

If we were judging by name alone, TestoFuel would get nothing more than an eye roll. But it really is packed with good stuff: a mix of 2,300 mg of D-aspartic acid and 100 mg of fenugreek, plus tons of vitamins and minerals. Panax ginseng has immune-boosting and antioxidant properties. Vitamin K2 (the natural form of vitamin K that’s made in the body) regulates blood clotting and improves bone density; that works synergistically with vitamin D (included in TestoFuel as vitamin D3, the natural form of vitamin D that your body synthesizes in the sun), which is also good for bone health. Important to note: As with zinc, deficiency in vitamin D can cause low testosterone, and supplements can help restore it to normal levels.

If you want one full serving of TestoFuel, you’re going to have to swallow the red pill — four of them, actually.

Zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6 all show up in TestoFuel as well — although at 10 mg, the zinc is on the low side. TestoFuel’s inclusion of 100 mg of oyster extract makes up for it: Essentially dried oyster meat in powder form, it’s a powerhouse of nutrients, rich in zinc, vitamin B12, iron, magnesium, and calcium.

Best for Libido

Athletic Edge APE LibidoAPE Libido’s ingredients could improve not only athletic performance, but also, yes, libido.

At $1.33 per serving (as opposed to Hypertest XTR’s $1.50 and TestoFuel’s $2.17 per serving), Athletic Edge APE Libido ekes out the best value of our top picks — and it’s the one most likely to improve libido. In addition to 500 mg of T-boosting fenugreek (the amount recommended to see results), it includes high doses of libido amplifiers maca and longjack.

It may be the least flashy capsule among our top picks, but Athletic Edge APE Libido does manage to pack a full serving into just two pills.

On the “athletic edge” side of things, we’ve got vitamin D3, vitamin B6, and zinc, as well as vitamin B12, which plays a role in regulating metabolism, and folic acid, which can reduce muscle pain.

Other Testosterone Boosters to Consider

Pure DAA and fenugreek — Vitamins and minerals are typically a welcome addition to any fitness supplement, but just like you might prefer taking a wheatgrass shot over mixing it into a smoothie, you might be looking for a pure T-booster to fuel your workout.

Each of these DAA supplements has a serving size around 3 grams, which is on the high side of the recommended effective dose of 2–3 grams. The one pure fenugreek supplement on our list has a serving size of 300 mg — slightly lower than the 500 mg shown to be effective.

Product

Serving Size

Total Servings

Price/Serving

Genomyx D-Aspartic Acid

3.1g (DAA)

60

$0.23

PrimaForce DAA

3 g (DAA)

33

$0.39

4 Dimension Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid

3 g (DAA)

67

$0.24

LiveLong Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid

3 g (DAA)

33

$0.51

Prime Nutrition DAA

3 g (DAA)

100

$0.24

Infinite Labs D-Aspartic Acid

3 g (DAA)

30

$0.42

AI Sports Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid (capsules)

3 g (DAA)

7

$1.02

AI Sports Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid Powder

3 g (DAA)

100

$0.22

AllMax Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid

3.12 g (DAA)

32

$0.48

Infinite Labs Fenugreek

300 mg (Fenugreek)

240

$0.08

The DAA options should be, essentially, the exact same product, so we say shop by value. AI Sports Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid Powder, at $0.22 per serving, is your best bet if you are looking for a powder. Prefer pills? AI Sports Nutrition also offers its D-Aspartic Acid line in capsule form. Keep in mind, though, any results you might get are minimal — and temporary. It’s like when you were a little kid and your mom put you in a booster seat. You seemed taller for a little bit during dinner, but once the booster seat went away, you were right back where you started.

In total, 35 testosterone boosters made it through our cuts — they are safe to use and clinically proven to at least maybe work. They just didn’t have as many of the excellent additional ingredients to push them into our top picks.

Viewing 12 of 35

Product Price Unit DAA Fenugreek Buy Now
360CUT 360TEST $30.99 Capsule Yes No
4 Dimension Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid $15.99 Powder Yes No
AI Sports Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid $7.13 Capsule Yes No
AI Sports Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid Powder $21.99 Powder Yes No
AllMax Nutrition D-Aspartic Acid $15.50 Powder Yes No
Athletic Edge APE Dark Night $36.99 Capsule No Yes
Athletic Edge APE Libido $39.99 Capsule No Yes
Axis Labs Hypertest XTR $44.97 Capsule Yes No
Bodybuilding.com Platinum Series ALPHA PROTOCOL $36.69 Capsule Yes Yes
Dynamik Muscle Warbringer $39.98 Capsule No Yes
ErgoGenix ErgoDrive $29.99 Capsule No Yes
EVLUTION NUTRITION EVLTEST $34.99 Tablet Yes Yes

Load More

Did You Know?

“Low T” is a part of getting older — but it can be a sign of something more serious too.

Testosterone levels are at their highest during puberty and early adulthood, and from age 30 on, they decline by about 1 percent a year. While that gradual decline is a natural part of aging, there are a slew of medical conditions that can cause low testosterone in men of any age. Obesity, diabetes, and prostate cancer are a few culprits. Alcoholism and thyroid disorders can also contribute to low levels.

What’s tricky is that symptoms of low testosterone — ranging from decreased sex drive and lower energy levels to infertility and impotence — are associated with so many different root causes. If your libido is low and you feel tired all the time, you could be suffering from depression. Or your body could be failing to produce sufficient amounts of testosterone (hypogonadism). Or something else entirely! Either way, no amount of boosting will be a cure. Only a blood test can determine your actual levels of testosterone. From there, your doctor can help figure out the right next steps.

There are ways to increase testosterone naturally.

Exerciseinduces temporary boosts in testosterone as quickly as 15 minutes after a workout, although the levels recede to their pre-workout baseline within a few hours. Studies show that when you exercise can make a difference too, as testosterone levels vary throughout the day (they’re highest in the morning, lowest in the afternoon). Resistance-training workouts, specifically, have more of an impact on testosterone when completed in the evening. Overtraining can have the opposite effect: drops in testosterone.

Lowering both mental and physical stress, can reduce the body’s release of cortisol, which has a negative correlation with testosterone (one goes up; the other goes down). High levels of stress are also known to have a negative physiological impact on the body, causing many of the same symptoms as low testosterone, such as decreased energy and libido. Keeping your stress levels in check, and not undersleeping or overtraining, might kill two birds with one stone.

What about steroids?

Anabolic steroids are synthetic versions of testosterone that induce supraphysiological levels of testosterone in the blood — meaning they really do “boost.” They are illegal without a doctor’s prescription, and illegal for a doctor to prescribe to improve athletic performance. While they do increase strength and muscle mass, they also cause a whole mess of puzzling, dangerous side effects. People who take them can become manic and super aggressive (we’ve all heard of “‘roid rage”). Men grow breasts and their testicles shrink. Steroids are also known to increase blood pressure, create tumors, and cause liver disease and heart attacks. In short: stay far, far away.

The Bottom Line

DAA and fenugreek are the only agents that have shown any impact on T levels. Still, if you’re looking for a testosterone boost, you’re likely going to be disappointed — your body is just too good at regulating itself. A combination of zinc and vitamin D, though, can help replenish testosterone when there’s a temporary dip.

Take Action

Best Overall

Axis Labs Hypertest XTROur top pick offers a solid mix of beneficial ingredients, including zinc and magnesium.

Start small. Even if T-boosters seem like a quick way to get to beast mode, managing your stress, getting enough sleep, and not overtraining are the real first steps to improving your athletic performance.

Tell your doctor.Testosterone boosters aren’t regulated by the FDA and are largely unstudied. If you start playing with powders and pills, make sure your doctor is in the loop. They’ll be able to let you know if and when you’re taking any unnecessary health risks.

Top

Fitness Update Pics

I love Winter.  Most people find it dreadful or depressing, but I think it’s the best time of year. Why you ask?

For me, there is nothing exciting to do in Winter. That’s a good thing. I hate being cold so I stay indoors and don’t go out much. Instead, I use this “cold” time of year (it’s been a warm summer) and focus on my body and fitness. In the Winter, there aren’t any distractions from the gym like there are in Spring or Summer.

I regularly go to the gym and eat clean. However, the past month or so I’ve been some changes to my workout schedule that have really worked out well for me.

Instead of morning workouts, I now go in the evening after work. I love morning workouts, but they can sometimes mess up my sleep and leave me tired. It also limits my time at the gym (unless I got up incredibly early like 4:00 am).

Going to the gym at night is great for my sleep! I get home around 8:30, shower, have dinner, and wind down for about 2-2.5 hours before going to bed. I can do things like read a book/comic, watch TV shows on Hulu, masturbate, or a blend of all three. It’s usually the latter, ha! I get to bed around 11:00 or 11:30 and sleep until about 6:30 – 7:00.

Speaking of masturbating, moving my workouts to the evening and getting more sleep has really allowed me to have more of that wholesome “me time” before bed. I think the evening lift and energy wakes up everything. It also relieves the stress of the day. Before, I used to be too tired to jerk off before bed.

Focusing on certain muscle groups each workout and doing compound exercises have been a huge help too. This lets me annihilate a targeted muscle group while also using supporting muscle groups every day. I love squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. I do all three of those weekly. My strength is growing from those exercises and I’m mailing multiple muscle groups at once. I also follow them up (sometimes before) with isolated muscle exercises as a compliment. This has been working out great.

The goal after every workout is to be sore the following day or two. To do this, I alter my workouts. Sometimes start low weight/high rep and end high weight/low rep. Other times I drop set down from a high weight/low rep to low weight/high rep. Doing this leaves me in chronic soreness.

I top it off by using Optimum Nutrition: Serious Mass. I cannot gain weight easily. My metabolism incinerates everything I eat. Putting on weight is a huge challenge so that is why I started the Serious Mass. I currently weigh about 180 lbs. This is the most I’ve ever weighed! On average, I weight around 165-170 lbs. I’ve definitely put on a little size.

I’m nowhere near where I’d like to be physically, but I am getting there. I have more muscle to gain and more belly fat to burn. If I stay focused and continue working hard, I’ll smash my goals and start reaching for even higher goals!

This is how I look as of 12-23-2015


  
  

TestoFuel 30 Days

This is my 30 day update using TestoFuel video and pics.

One thing I didn’t mention in my video is that I have something called hydrocele in my testicles. It’s fluid build up that causes swelling in my sack. I can’t say for certain if it was the increase in testosterone, so this is only a theory, but only since I started taking TestoFuel has the swelling started to go down.
  
  

TestoFuel

I recently discovered an all natural testosterone booster called TestoFuel. There was a lot of awesome feedback from several sites and Youtube fitness vloggers. I ordered it a few days ago and just received the package today. What is TestoFuel?

From the website:

TestoFuel is a revolutionary, exhaustively researched muscle building supplement with one very focused aim…to smash down the barriers to growth by opening your testosterone floodgates.

It’s designed to naturally increase your testosterone level, which is the ‘missing link’ essential for building muscle, by providing your body with the nutrients it needs to naturally produce more testosterone.

But it gets better, because accelerated muscle growth isn’t the only thing you’ll benefit from with Testofuel.

I whipped up this quick video stating that I am going to test this. I figure why the fuck not? I have a 90 day guarantee (that hopefully won’t be a nightmare). I am also adding some current pics of my body as of today, July 20, 2015. I will update every 30 days.

Ideally I would like to start losing some of that stubborn belly fat and build more muscle.