Warriors of iron from piles of wood

Grok, Guro



Warriors Of Iron From Piles Of Wood Introduction As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. — A proverb Many times I have laughed when friend or foe alike has told me, "I used to have 19 inch arms," or, “I once bench-pressed 400 and such and such pounds.” You see, in my nearly thirty years of coaching varsity level sports and of training as a full-time athlete myself, I have learned how very easy it is to talk big. But the work required to actually accomplish notable things is an entirely different matter. I write this without having accomplished anything which could be called stellar per se. That is to say, I have definitely done some notable and documented things such as a 315 pound bench press in high school at a bodyweight of 185 and the even better feat of parallel-squatting 495 pounds at fifteen years old, but nothing which could be called truly elite in itself. On the other hand, when Arnold Schwarzenegger wrested the Mr. Olympia title from Sergio Oliva in 1968, that was a truly exceptional feat, even considering his use of muscle—enhancing (yet penile-shrinking) anabolic steroids. It's also part of the reason I laugh at those boasting of hee-youge arms, because Oliva edged out The Terminator’s arms by about half an inch, at 22.0 to 21.5. This does not mean that normal humans cannot and do not get arms in the 19-20 inch range, it is simply noted for perspective. And certainly, for the average person with a mesomorph physique, 17 and 18 inch arms are quite possible. We are sort of getting carried away here though with all this worrying about size, because just like with the male sex organ, size is manifestly less important than what you can do with it. In other words, as my great-grandfather in the martial arts Lee Jun Fan (Bruce Lee) noted, form should follow function. Think about it. It does not matter the size of the arm if that arm successfully lands a knock-out blow, no? It does not matter how ugly the side kick, as my father in MMA Cass Magda told me, if that kick knocks the opponent through the plate glass window behind him. It does not matter what size your wanker if it sends your girl into screaming orgasm after screaming orgasm, right? So, let's just keep in mind that what you can do is way more important than what you look like doing it. This is particularly important in the martial context of this article. Some key concepts to keep in mind when and if you decide to heed the exhortation of this article to become a warrior are: 1) Form should follow function, as already noted; 2) Maximize the return on your time and effort when you train physically; 3) Push it, but think, ”Safety first;” 4) Use progressively more challenging tasks and vary them somewhat to get a good training effect. 5) Remember that, in order of importance, these ideas are key to a combat situation: attitude, physical fitness, combat experience, combat training. Finally, we will also cover a few auxiliary yet important things such as diet and recovery. In all, the intention here is to encourage my brothers of my shared European heritage to think straight about physical training and combat readiness. For my guess is that most people are less prepared than they think they are. And I know from experience that the level of ignorance about training is very high, yet much scientific, systematic study has been done on the topic and is available for those with eyes to see and ears to hear. Meine Kameraden im Ketten, bekommen Sie sich Kraft! Key Concepts Firstly is the Issue of Functionality is way More Important Than Form. All that really matters, in our context, is whether or not one can handle himself as well as possible in a violent situation. This author, in this brief article, is not doing any preaching whatsoever on when violence is or is not appropriate. That is up to the reader to decide for himself. The issue here is simply how to most optimally prepare for the time when violence arrives for whatever reason and from whatever direction. When it is time to kick ass, smart preparation can go a long way towards victory. I myself would argue that all of one’s physical training should be geared toward just two things: fornication and fighting. That is to say, make all of your training profit you so that you get physically better at just those two things, and you are generally quite good to go. And to come, no? Get it? Come? Never mind. So, with that thought in mind, laying aside the sex stuff for the moment, all of our training should be to be a better warrior. As a result, you will look and feel better. But the goal is an absolutely excellent and practical functionality of body. And the first thought here should be to get as strong as one can possibly be. This means resistance training. We do not get to use weights, so in here this means smart bodyweight training for strength. We are talking pure strength here, not strength endurance, though strength endurance is also something to consider. The reason to think of training strength first is because the fastest way, by far, to improved combat readiness is the cultivation of power. Think Mike Tyson uppercuts, Mark MacGwire bat-swings, the round kick from Muay Thai, or even the Olympic Snatch movement. That's "Olympic Snatch," not her snatch. Her snatch is for a completely different article. And we train strength first because power is strength times speed, which makes strength training the most optimal route for most of us to increase our power. We should try to improve our speed as well, but it is a bit more difficult to do properly, whereas any knucklehead can start lifting progressively heavier objects and get stronger in days and weeks. And I must also admit my surprise at the general lack of strength, on average, amongst my brothers. There are exceptions, of course. Some of you reading this are, no doubt, very strong, and that is great. You probably are naturally strong, on top of which you have been doing some decent training, and now you are a bit of a beast. That's great, but most of what I have seen leaves me snickering because I understand the great importance of being strong, both for health and longevity, as well as for combat and cunnilingus. So, this Second Key Concept is To Get More Powerful Quickly, Get Stronger. How to do this? First, maximize the return on your investment by training wisely. This means that you should not be wasting your time doing curls when you could be doing the compound (multi- joint) exercise of pull-ups, which trains the biceps and the rest of the pulling musculature (especially the rhomboids and the lats) at the same time. Same with the pushing stuff. Do not waste time on triceps isolation, unless of course you are doing it mindfully (i.e. with a purpose). Instead do dips and push—up variations. Next, it is absolutely critical that you train the legs. Absolutely critical. Virtually all athletic power comes from hip drive which means the hip extensors, the glutes and hamstrings. Also, testosterone production, very important in the ring and in the bed, will be increased by the proper training of the lower body. Anyway, you do not want the California Bodybuilder look, in which the biceps and chest are developed while these hilarious little bird legs are carrying you about. I mock such people. Another way to look at this is that a very wise coach (I can't remember who) once said, ”The muscles on the front of the body are for show, while those on the back of the body are for go.” Said another way, the biceps, pecs, and abs may look cool, but well—developed traps, lats, spinal erectors, glutes, tris, hamstrings, and calves are reliable tools. That was a lame attempt to rhyme it, but you get the picture. Train the whole body, not ever neglecting the lower half. Some bodybuilders, when asked, will tell you that if they had to choose just one exercise, it would be the squat. By far, the three best exercises that I know of that can be done on a prison yard to foster this goal of increased strength are the One—Arm-One—Leg—Push—Up, the Pull—Up, and the Pistol (one-legged squat). No time will be spent here on the specifics of how to do these, as they are quite self-explanatory, and the details are beyond the scope of this article. I will, however, throw out some reasonable standards, suggesting that anyone who cannot do at least five bodyweight pull-ups in proper form (all the way up and down, chin over the bar) is woefully lacking in the strength—to—weight ratio area. Also, five One-Arm-Push-ups and five Pistols too. On the flip side, it is excellent if you can do at least ten of each of those. Just for general reference, anyway. Recapping, our Third Key Concept is Maximize Return on Investment With Compound Exercises. The wise warrior understands the value of being healthy and injury-free. Injuries are nothing but setbacks that keep one from training and being as ready as possible for the difficulties of life. But one must train in order to improve, and this of course means that short-term injury risk will increase. In other words, as warriors and athletes, we must push it while always keeping in mind our Fourth Key Concept of Safety First. This is particularly true in a martial arts context where the training can be quite dangerous by its very nature. I have had the pleasure of participating in much full-contact stick fighting at The Magda Institute, and I assure you that the broken fingers, black bruises, and general lumps are par for the course. So, we must find for ourselves the proper training intensity that is allowing us to make progress while leaving us free of injury. There is some truth to the old adage, ”No Pain, No Gain.” But we also do not want to be featured in the next Jackass movie either. So, think about pushing yourself without going too far. Use your mind and be your own guide using common sense. The thing about injuries related to training is this: of course you could get hurt from training. If you sit in your cell masturbating, you are unlikely to pull any muscles, but you will not improve your physique much from that form of exercise. In fact, your long—term risk of injury will decrease from proper training, even while your short-term risk increases. In the long-run, the goal is to be made of dense bone, thick muscles, and high-tensile-strength sinews. Like a MoFo lion, or gorilla, or rhinoceros, depending o your body shape. Regarding conditioning, there is no more practical exercise to prepare for combat than doing rounds on the heavy bag. Dudes have been training for their fights that way for at least a few centuries. It is sorta self-explanatory, but this author will warn you that it is a very good idea to wrap the hands, and especially the wrists, if you are gonna go lay into the bag properly, by which I mean, of course, beat the shit out of it. Form is still less important than function here, so swing away, but a little knowledge goes a long way too. It is mostly beyond the scope of this article, but suffice it to say that your hands should stay up, your footwork should keep you reasonably balanced, and your blows should be distinct. They call them straights and hooks and uppercuts and such for a reason, ya know. The second best sort of conditioning work for incarcerated types is various forms of bodyweight exercise, including especially burpees. A fight, a riot, a melee, a rumble, a brawl, they all have lots of fast and vigorous and varied movements in them, as do burpees. And since the training effect is specific to the exercises performed, it makes excellent sense to do full-body movements like the burpee. While there are different protocols for conditioning the body's cardio systems, we do not need to overthink the matter. Sometimes do them HIIT-style (super intense periods alternated with rests in between) and at other times do them more continuous at a medium pace. Hands-on situations can most assuredly have varied periods of intensity, so get out there and mix it up. I, Guro Grok, can think of no more ridiculous activity than jogging. So strongly do I know that jogging is the greatest fucking waste of time in human history that I just used the F—word. The only thing at all that could be said positive about this silly activity is that it burns more calories than one burns while at rest. But that does not make it worthwhile in any way. It has no appreciable training effect whatsoever. No one jogs to catch the about-to-depart bus nor to escape from a pissed-off grizzly bear robbed of her cubs. No one jogs in a fight nor to escape from a ridiculously unfair one. Worse still is that jogging is actually worse than nothing in that one is likely just causing the body to produce the hormone known as cortisol which tends to cause the body to store fat and eat up its lean muscle tissue. Further, the immune system is negatively affected via this hormonal situation. Plus, one is much more likely to get overuse injuries from jogging as opposed to doing sprint-type training. Think about it for a second. Look at the bodies of distance runners compared to the sprinters. The sprinters look awesome while the distance runners look sickly and pasty. No thanks on the jogging, I say. You could be doing so many productive things rather than jogging. You could be masturbating, studying a new language, learning a new skill, reading philosophy or poetry, working on a degree, or even just joking with your bros. If you are seeking a calorie deficit, simply cut back a bit on the calories rather than mindlessly plodding around the track. In order to improve in life, one must do progressively more challenging tasks. Warrior training is no different. As you rest between your training sessions, the body adapts to the stimulus of ”overdoing it a bit.” This concept is called Adaptation. Just as a musician gets better over time from the repetitive nature of his music practice, so an athlete ”gets used to” his training. He gets stronger, faster, more skilled, etc. over time. This is common sense and we have all experienced it. It simply must be stated that a good training plan must include progressive overload, i.e. more intense workouts over time, to ensure upward and forward progress. There is so much which could be written about this concept, but that is beyond the scope of this brief article. Suffice it to say that a Warrior-in-Training should be pushing himself to improve, getting stronger and more powerful, more skilled and better conditioned, while avoiding hindering injuries. So, the Fifth Key Concept is Use Progressively More Challenging Exercises. A Few Auxilliary Concepts for My Brethren In Chains Perhaps we should have begun our discussion with the topic of nutrition, as after all, one cannot build a castle without bricks, mortar, timbers, and such. That is to say, your body is made up of matter, and if it is not provided with the building blocks which it needs, then you will certainly fail to build a worthy physique. Certainly. There is simply no getting around this. The Laws of Thermodynamics cannot be broken, you cannot make something out of nothing, so consider putting the highest quality nutrients available into your body. The body is sometimes referred to as one’s temple and I like this thinking because it conveys the idea of a worship and reverence for one’s physical body. If you keep this thinking at least partly in mind, then you will not defile yourself with a diet of nothing but bullshit foods like processed carbs and such. Sadly, the state provides a diet dominated by cheap industrially-processed carbohydrate foods like breads, overcooked pastas, and various "breakfast pastries." It must be stated that the easiest, surest way to improve your health and subsequently your physique, is to drastically cut back on the amount of ridiculous food that you eat. Think candy, honey buns, waffles, and the like. My brothers, that food is completely unworthy of you and your body. It is messing up your hormone profile by trying to turn you into a woman via the estrogen pathway. It is giving you chronic inflammation with attendant diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. It is overtaxing your adrenals and your immune system, making you sick and tired. It is like taking natural food, removing most of the micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, and co-factors), adding chemicals to make it taste better and have a shelf—life measured in years (to increase Kraft and ConAgra profits), putting it in pretty packaging, and then serving it to unsuspecting consumers. Man, I'm starting to get pissed thinking about this contentious issue as I watch people getting sicker and sicker. No, my comrades, reject that notion of food. Think of eating natural foods, or at least as close to natural as possible, with minimal processing. You must also reject much of the conventional government "wisdom" out there. The FDA does not care about you and does not know shit. For real. The government is a joke. Take your health into your own hands, rejecting their advice and their ”medicine.” Those little mother-freakin’ Eskimos eat almost entirely a diet of sea mammal meat and blubber and they are a ridiculously hardy folk. They do not get any of the dreaded diseases of civilization that I mentioned. Well, I should mention that they do start to get them when they move to Anchorage and start eating at McJack In The Bell. Also, be careful not to fall into the erroneous thinking on the other side, that vegetarianism and worse, veganism is healthy and natural for you. Animal foods are highly nutritious, as expected, as the animals are also alive and naturally eat the things that bring them thriving health. It is, of course, best to try to get animal products which are naturally raised, slaughtered, and processed. We are not being served that in CDCR, but some nutritious foods are available through the canteen and package companies. Among the most nutritious foods available to you are: eggs, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and meats. Egg yolk is one of the most nutritious foods to be found on planet earth. I remember this sucker at county jail who used to trade me his yolks for my whites. He was just getting some protein, while he was giving me what I like to call "nature's multi-vitamin." What a sucker he was. Anyway, in a very real sense, you are what you eat, so get quality foods, as best you can. You must also reject the hilarious bullshit about saturated fat that has been taught to us for decades now. Saturated fat is not bad for you, but rather is highly nutritious, loaded with many micronutrients including vitamins A and D, both of which are important for protein synthesis and muscle-building. The dude Ancel Keys (may he rest in grease) was either an idiot or a liar. I'm going with the latter, guessing that someone bought him off to skew and pervert the results of his studies. I, your friend Guro Grok, will not do so dastardly. I speak the truth to you based on many of hundreds of hours of study, etc. Try it for yourself and you will see. You'll get healthier if you eat like me. Fat, protein, plants, these three. For big muscles and a stout weenie. Sorry. . . started rhyming there. Here is an optimized (for all the major variables) eating plan, simplified for general use: One day each weak, eat nothing at all (you can do this, you are not a total wussy); five days eat a diet that is very low in carbs and high in fat and protein (pork rinds, fish, meat, cheese, eggs, nuts - not deez nuts, and veggies and a little fruit); one day eat whatever the hell you have been missing, whatever makes you happy, whatever makes you feel fat and satisfied. The result of this eating is that you will tweak your hormones such that you will have high testosterone and growth hormone, lower insulin and cortisol levels, while avoiding the extremes of the appetite hormones of ghrelin and leptin. Like I said: big muscles, stout cock and balls, bye bye man boobs, hello abdominals. Fun stuff. A word on the fasting thing. It is very good for your overall health to take a day off from eating. This lets the digestive system spend some time in rest and repair mode. Remember that like your muscular system, the digestive system is made up of organs which can benefit from some down time. I will inspire you with the story of Paul Bragg, noted author of The Miracle of Fasting. He was in fabulous health into his nineties, so much so that he died by drowning while he was surfing, when his surfboard conked him in the head and knocked him unconscious. This, my friends, is vibrant health. And no doubt he could have fucked up most of his fellow nonagenarians. And if he was surfing, then he was most assuredly still dancing. And if he was dancing, then he was most assuredly still doing the horizontal mambo. Fuckin’ guy. Make certain that you are eating enough protein, without going crazy about it. The typical body-builder advice to eat a gram per pound of body weight is a bit overboard. The body will of course need more protein if one is active and physically training, but anywhere from 100 to 150 grams daily is more than enough. It is the supplement companies, trying to sell you tablets, that are the cause of these high numbers. Your body cannot store proteins, unlike how it can store some carbs and plenty of fat, so if you are eating more than you need, two main things will happen. First, the body will break it down into sugars for use as energy, and second, the excess will be excreted in your now~expensive piss. That reminds me of how bad—ass are the liver and kidneys, which accomplish all those things and more, even while you sleep. Take care of your vital organs, fellas, and they will take care of you. By far the cheapest, most optimal source of protein (and attendant fat) is pork skins. Yes, those old chicharrones are, by far, the easiest form of quality animal protein that you can get in CDCR. I mean, that five ounce bag for a couple of bucks has some ninety grams of quality protein. If you do the math on the various supplements available, the whey or soy (yuck) tablets, you will see what I mean. Mmmm. Tasty pig skin. From the poor boar’s back straight to your deltoids. Other excellent (though way more costly) sources include fish and cheese. Do not get too excited about the peanut butter. It is not the worst nor the best thing you could be eating. The protein is vegetable (incomplete), the added fat is trans fat, and there is some concern about aflatoxin as well. If you cannot afford meat, then cross your peanut butter with some other veggie proteins like grains and nuts, etc. Finally, the milk we get is non-fat, which sucks in more ways than one. But, it does have protein, so that can be a source for you. It must be restated that those who are in the know eat every single egg that they can get their MoFo hands on. It is the best because it has lots of protein, few calories, and fat—soluble vitamins galore. There is the classic story of the fifty year old doctor who was kidnapped in South America while working for one of those charitable organizations. During captivity he was fed exactly one boiled egg per day. After some months, he was released, and when he came out he said that he felt like he was eighteen again. He was ripped, muscular and lean, full of youthful energy and vigor, etc. Sounds like we should all be eating more eggs, no? Some thoughts on water. We have all been reminded ad nauseum that the body is like 70 % water and stuff, and that therefore we must stay hydrated. Most of the constant talk of drinking eight 8-ounce glasses per day comes, as far as I can tell, from a study done decades ago in which the authors were attempting to estimate the fluid needs of the body. Somehow, one of their main points was missed by virtually everyone who later read their work. They state plainly that the food we eat is made up of much water and that that is to be included in their guesstimation of half a gallon per day. Keep in mind that they were just giving general guidelines. A sedentary person in cool whether obviously will not need as much as an active person in the heat. Also, too much can be a bad thing. Your kidneys do the filtering and can be overtaxed like any other organ of your body. Plus, if you drink too much agua and do not get the electrolytes along with it, you can mess up your body's ability to regulate a whole bunch of things. It is called hyponatremia, and those of you with some knowledge might recognize the linguistic roots meaning low sodium (hyponatremia). Just use your heads (the big one and the little one). If you know that you are gonna be active, drink some more water. If you are peeing out the little head too much or too little, adjust accordingly. You have a thirst mechanism, given by either Odin, Jesus Christ, or Evolution (or some other real or imagined deity), and certainly provided to you by nature, so rely mostly on that. It is ridiculous thinking that one is dehydrated before one feels thirsty. No animals could survive with such faulty wiring. No, my brethren, they drink when they get thirsty. "As the deer pants for the water...,” . . . never mind. Obey your thirst, though not with Gatorade which is just sugar water and a few electrolytes. But, all fluids count, even coffees and teas, though caffeinated and called "diurectics." That just means they make you pee, but nonetheless, they are 99% or more water, so count them. Really, don't overthink it, and don't worry about it. A little common sense goes a long way. Also, the sweetener called Aspartame, and found in the CDCR kool-aid and sold in the blue box at canteen, is ridiculously toxic shit. And get this, though it has no calories, it will actually hinder your fat loss and physique goals. It tends to mess with the body's fat metabolism and such. it is arguably the most toxic thing in the world which is labeled "food.” Avoid it like the plague for improved health, mental and physical. Another topic worthy of brief discussion is the issue of sunlight. Your body produces vitamin D, an extremely important nutrient and one that is important for protein synthesis (like for getting bigger, stronger guns), when sunlight strikes cholesterols in and on your skin. If you are not eating a lot of fish or fatty meats, you are quite probably deficient in this micronutrient. It is essential that you get a reasonable amount of sunlight, without of course getting burnt by the sun. The goal is to strike a balance between getting lots of sunshine on your skin, but never so much all at once that you redden and burn. Think healthy tan. Like a caveman. Best and easiest to get sunshine on the torso which means that you should get over yourself, even if you're pudgy, and take off your shirt while you walk, train, or shoot the shit. A final topic is state of mind and attitude. Bruce Lee said that the most important thing in a fight is attitude. Down the list come physical fitness, fight experience, and martial training. While that is the opinion of just one man, he was definitely a deep thinker, and his words make sense. Regarding becoming and actually being a warrior, state of mind is key. One must decide to be so. One must decide to take on the proper mindset of training for war and hard times, while seeking peace and prosperity. You too can decide to be a warrior right now. Study and physical training, these two practices alone, can make you much more combat ready for the challenges of life. Even just a half hour per day can make you strong and knowledgeable in a short period of time. Conclusion Remember that the Greek Philosophers noted that the unexamined life is not worth living. They meant that it is a good idea to examine your life for ways to improve it, and even for ways to improve your thinking. I will state plainly that it requires self-discipline to accomplish anything notable that is worth doing. But l will state that you are a man, no more, no less. This means that you have been given, by the powers of the Universe that be, a mind and a body. It means further that you have enormous potential, much of it untapped. My brethren, make your life what you want it to be, even in a CDCR shithole such as ours. Now is the time of doing; today is the day of awakening. Get a body and a mind of top notch function, via "man's precious possession, diligence.” Oh yeah. And to arms, Comrades! Eighteen inch arms! Strength and Health, Wisdom and Wealth, to you. - Guro Grok This is my nickname, nom de plume, nom de guerre, and alter ego.

Author: Grok, Guro

Author Location: California

Date: February 12, 2018

Genre: Essay

Extent: 4 pages

If this is your essay and you would like it removed from or changed on this site, refer to our Takedown and Changes policy.

Takedown and Changes Policy
Browse More Essays