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segunda-feira, 26 de dezembro de 2016

4 Men’s Health Cover Guys Tell You How They Got Ripped

Ever look at a Men’s Health cover and wish you had a body like that? 
It’s time to stop daydreaming.
In the February issue of Men’s Health (available on newsstands December 27th and the Apple iTunes Newsstand now), four of our most iconic cover guys show you how to build muscle, lose weight, and look great at any age.
bj gaddour men's health
1/4 JOHN LOOMIS
BJ GADDOUR: YOUR BODY IS YOUR BUSINESS CARD
You might not expect the fitness director of the biggest men’s magazine franchise in the world to be eating at Five Guys. But that’s where you’ll find BJ Gaddour every Friday afternoon after he streams his Facebook Live workout.
“For other people, Wednesday is hump day because they’re one day closer to the weekend,” he says. “But for me it’s Tuesday because I’m one day closer to this.”
Before Gaddour are two lettuce burgers (iceberg leaves instead of buns), medium Cajunstyle fries, medium regular fries, and a large Coke Zero.
From the look on his face, you’d think he was back in Milwaukee eating Mom’s home cooking off a plate that reads “You Are Special.” (“It was a massive plate, and, yes, it really did say that.”)
Back then, at age 17, Gaddour weighed 275 pounds and was softer than a steamed dumpling. But next to the toilet, his dad stashed copies of Men’s Health. Inspired by the guys on the cover, he began to educate and define himself.
He dropped 50 pounds for his senior season of high school football by cutting back on bread and sugary drinks. He gained it back to play Division 3 ball at Amherst College. His weight continued to rollercoaster. 
During a brief stint as a bodybuilder, he says, “I got supershredded for one show and then gained back 35 pounds in five days.” 
Now he prioritizes steady, lifelong gains. Fitness has become a journey for him, not a destination. And at 34 and around 225 pounds, Gaddour is fitter and healthier than ever—but he’s not a freak. 
“I’m really a fat guy faking it as a fit guy,” he says. “I think of each rep as a french fry.” 
And when he’s not making MH workout videos, he’s sprawled on the couch with his wife and two boxers, Stinky and Sweetie, stretching and binge-watching miniseries. 
“I train so I can be as lazy as possible,” he says.
In other words, Gaddour’s a regular guy who made health and fitness a priority and has worked hard to transform himself. That’s why he’s on our cover.
HIS FAVORITE EXERCISES: The Bulgarian split squat and the pullup: “I use them on a biweekly or monthly basis to gauge my progress,” Gaddour says. 
HIS FAVORITE TIP: Get MetaShredded
Gaddour’s new DVD workout series, METASHRED EXTREME, is a five-disc set featuring 11 full workouts and eight finishers. These are arranged in two-week cycles for a six- to 12-week transformation. 
“You can do it at home or on the road because it requires minimal equipment,” he says. “It’s the best way to build muscle and lose fat.”
gregg avedon men's health
2/4 JOHN LOOMIS
GREGG AVEDON: CONSISTENCY IS THE KEY
Gregg Avedon has appeared on a record 16 Men’s Health covers—second only to the bar code. At 52, Avedon has managed to preserve himself better than Ted Williams. 
And his secret, he says, isn’t really a secret at all: “I’ve just been extremely consistent with my training and diet across 35 years,” he says. 
Granted, as a model and personal trainer in South Florida, it’s his job to look as if he found what Ponce de Leon was seeking. But just because Avedon’s office is a gym doesn’t mean he acquired those abs through osmosis.
“Some days you feel great and other days you don’t,” he says. “But if you can walk into the gym every day and meet two goals—to be safe, and to be sore the next day—then no matter what happens, you’ll make progress.”
This advice also applies when you’re traveling, which is where consistency can turn into complacency for most men. When Avedon’s modeling career was at its peak, he logged 3 million flight miles one year. But his training and diet were never delayed.
Before leaving on a trip, even now, Avedon calculates how much protein powder, greens powder, and other supplements he’ll need each day and packs them in individual snack-size bags that lie flat in his luggage. 
For the plane ride, he stashes Quest protein bars in his carry-on. He also checks online to see if his hotel has a suitable gym or if it’s affiliated with one nearby. 
“I need dumbbells up to 50 pounds, a bench, a cable machine, and a treadmill,” he says.
Avedon, author of the former MH column and popular book series Muscle Chow, doesn’t eat out when he’s traveling. Instead he buys yogurt, cans of tuna, or bags of salad at the market and eats in his room. Call it DIY room service.
“I keep everything very simple, and I stay on my plan,” he says. “You want to avoid the gerbil-on-a-wheel thing, constantly cleaning up your diet and getting back in the gym after every trip.”
A typical workout for Avedon starts with 20 to 30 minutes of high-intensity cardio on an elliptical machine or stair stepper, followed by 30 to 40 minutes of resistance training that includes rotating days of chest/shoulders/abs, back/arms/abs, and legs. 
He does this workout five or six days a week; he also walks 4 to 6 miles in the evening to “clear my head and manage stress.”
Avedon has had no major health problems and only two injuries in his career, a hernia and a torn biceps from doing a preacher curl with a straight bar. 
“It took a lot of rehab, but I can lift a piano with that arm now,” he says.
Nonetheless, some effects of aging have crept in. 
“It seems like I’m always battling some kind of little ache or pain,” he admits, “but I don’t let it get me down. I say, ‘Okay, today is not a good day to do this movement because it’s bothering my shoulder, so I’ll do an alternate one.’ I always find a way to work around it.”
HIS FAVORITE EXERCISE: The incline dumbbell bench press. “It’s great for overall chest development while also hitting the delts and triceps,” Avedon says. 
HIS FAVORITE TIP: Strike a Pose
To help his clients stick to their exercise and diet plans, Avedon photographs them with his iPhone. Then he promises to do it again in 90 days. 
Try it: Take shirtless selfies from different angles, share them with a few close friends (notice we said “close”), and vow to transform yourself in three months. With that incentive, you’ll become more consistent—and be on your way to a lifetime of fitness.
owen mckibbin men's health
3/4 DAVID HARRY STEWART
OWEN MCKIBBIN: IN BOD WE TRUST
Suppose you’re dining out with Batman, having a great time, and suddenly he asks you to call an ambulance because he’s having a heart attack. You’d look at him like he was the Joker, right?
Owen McKibbin recently found himself in a similar situation. This MH superhero, who’s been on the cover 13 times, started feeling “clammy” and thought he was going to pass out during a courtroom custody hearing. 
Now this is a man who knows his body better than a Ferrari mechanic understands the F136 engine. 
During the previous few years he had noticed some shortness of breath during workouts and a strange pressure in his chest while lying on his left side. He raised his hand and calmly asked for an ambulance. 
“Everyone was like, ‘For who?’ I said, ‘For me! I think I’m having a heart attack.’” (His father had died of a heart attack at 41.)
Firefighters arrived and peeled off McKibbin’s shirt. 
“I heard one of them say, ‘My god, this guy’s in better shape than all of us combined!’ Then a couple of them recognized me and said, ‘You’re our hero! We do your workouts. You can’t be having a heart attack!’” he explains.
“I actually had to settle everyone down and say, ‘Look, I’m controlling my breathing so you’re not going to see any signs of distress, but I truly believe I have a blocked artery, and you have to get me to a cardiac unit now,’” McKibbin says.
Because his vitals were stable, the firefighters said they couldn’t call an ambulance. McKibbin insisted, saying he’d pay for it himself. When EMTs arrived, they also doubted McKibbin. Again he insisted. 
At the ER, surrounded by skeptical nurses, he convinced a doctor to put a camera into his femoral artery. Yep: His widowmaker artery was significantly blocked.
“The doctor literally dropped his clipboard,” says McKibbin. “He looked at me and said, ‘You just saved your own life.’”
Fast-forward four and a half years: McKibbin, now 53, is fully recovered. In fact, he says he’s in better shape than he was a decade ago, and not far off from his covermodel days. 
He recently opened a fitness studio in Santa Monica called F45. He attributes his enduring fitness to high-intensity zone progression training, or ZPT. To prepare for this photo shoot, he ate a high-protein diet that was high in healthy fats and cut out rice, potatoes, pasta, bread, and sugar for one month. 
That said, he still drinks wine, loves good tequila, and notes “there’s some really good pizza out there.”
A former pro beach volleyball player, McKibbin credits his lifestyle for enabling him to recover fully and quickly from spinal surgery early in his career, four knee operations, and that heart attack. 
“I’ve always been able to push through pain, but it’s also been an Achilles’ heel,” he says. “Thankfully, I trusted my instincts.”
HIS FAVORITE WORKOUT: The philosophy of zone progression training (ZPT) is that you work one area of the body, say chest/arms, and with little or no rest, hit the secondary muscles in that same zone to exhaust the group. 
“Then once a zone is done, you pull that blood into a different zone,” McKibbin says. “It’s the best workout possible in the shortest amount of time.”
HIS FAVORITE TIP: Stand Up Straight
Most men in pursuit of a balanced body divide their strength training equally between pushing and pulling. But McKibbin prefers to do 70 percent pulling and 30 percent pushing. 
“With all the sitting, driving, texting, and computer work we do that hunches us over, we need more movements that open us up,” he says. 
One bonus is better posture. “You can take a guy who’s 5’8”, but if he has perfect posture he’ll look like a 6-footer when he walks into a room,” he says. “Perfect posture is something you rarely see in our society, and it exudes power and confidence.”
jack guy men's health cover
4/4 DAVID HARRY STEWART
JACK GUY: VIEW THE WORLD AS ONE BIG GYM
It’s another perfect day in Malibu, and Jack Guy, another perfect Men’s Health cover model, is paddleboarding. 
Suddenly a pod of dolphins appears and he gives chase, sprinting left and then right as they weave through the waves. When he has to turn back, the dolphins refuse to end the fun.
“They were swimming under my board, rolling over and looking up at me,” he recalls. “It was amazing. When you make your training activity-based, you expose yourself to experiences like this. It doesn’t even feel like work; it feels like you’re just out there enjoying yourself.”
When Guy lived in New York City, he stayed in the gym. But after moving to California to become a photographer, his routine changed dramatically. 
“I’m still in the gym about two days a week, but it’s only for toning,” he says. “The rest of the time I alternate three activities on a daily basis—distance paddleboarding, steep-ascent hiking, and power yoga.”

As evidenced by Guy’s 55-year-old physique, there must be some genius in that. The older you get, the more mind-numbing the same old workout can become. Plus, your body adapts to it. 
Switching to activity-based training has helped Guy stay fresh and fit: Paddleboarding blasts his upper body and core, while steep-ascent hiking works his legs and heart. Power yoga provides stretching, a core workout, and more cardio.
Guy also made a mental shift: He stopped striving to fit into other people’s visions of fitness. 
“I used to diet down to 3 percent body fat,” he says. “I looked great with my shirt off, but in clothes I looked unhealthy. I need a little body fat to look my best.”
He still pushes himself, within reason. “I eat clean, train hard, alternate my activities, and accept where my body ends up,” he says. “It’s not about the weight for me anymore. It’s about how I look and how I feel.”
HIS FAVORITE EXERCISES: The best way to develop abs that pop, Guy says, is to use a combination of strength and endurance moves.

Cable crunches for strength: Do these standing, kneeling, or seated on a Swiss ball, with as much weight as you can safely handle. (Don’t do these at all if you have a bad back.) Guy does 4 heavy sets of 10, and then immediately moves to…
Swiss ball crunches for endurance: Guy heads outdoors and cues up a hard-hitting song that lasts five full minutes. “It’s a great distraction,” he says. “Sometimes I even forget to stop when the song is over.”

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