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Stuff We Like #1

Saltwater floating, crazy blenders, and The “Fck It” Workout

Making the transition from scrawny to brawny isn’t just about building muscle or becoming more athletic — it’s also about becoming a better man and living a bigger life.

And part of that is sharing cool things, experiences, gadgets, and ideas with like-minded guys. Because if you think something is awesome, chances are we’ll think it’s awesome, too.

So this is a list of stuff we like that’s currently making our lives just a little bit better.

We think it’ll make your life better too.

Saltwater Floating

Floating is exactly what it sounds like. Well, kind of.

You get in your bathing suit, enter a weird-looking tank, and float on top oftwo-feet-deep water that’s been mixed with over 850 pounds of Epsom salt.

Oh, and you’re alone in complete darkness and silence. For 90 minutes.

Why, you ask, would anyone want to do that?
 A few reasons.

First, the act of floating is a completely relaxing experience on your body. Since you’re floating on top of salt water, there’s no pressure on any of your joints.

Your body has a chance to completely decompress. (We had our lower backs, knees, ankles, and necks pop without physically moving them. Definitely weird.)

Second, you’re in a small, private tank in total darkness with no light or sound coming in. This sensory deprivation helps your sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) calm down and allows your parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest) to take over.

That means your muscles, joints, and ligaments all take a break and your body reverts to healing and repairing.

Sounds kinda like hippie new-agey mumbo-jumbo, huh? We hear you. That’s how we felt too. But while we didn’t “see God” or have crazy hallucinations, you better believe it was relaxing.

A photo we swiped from our local float place website.

The Ninja Blender

With it’s shiny multiple blades, the Ninja blender looks like a hand-held torture device. It also makes incredible Super Shakes and smoothies.

And when you make as many as we do, you need a blender that can handle the large amount of food and ice.

Blades of death.

Another cool thing: Unlike the Vitamix Grandaddy Of All Blenders, this one won’t set you back a few hundred bucks. We picked up ours for $100.

A very simple Super Shake recipe:

  1. Throw in a blender: One cup unsweetened almond milk, two tablespoons coconut milk, handful of spinach, handful of mixed frozen berries, one tablespoon almond butter, and two scoops vanilla protein powder.
  2. Blend the hell out of it.
  3. Enjoy.

The “Fck It!” Workout

For whatever reason, when most guys hear “circuit workout” they think of Richard Simmons or old-people workouts on machines.

Not us.

Although we normally follow a progressive workout program, there are just some days — mostly when we’re traveling — when we say, “Fck it. Let’s just do some stuff.”

It’s a good way to have some fun in the gym and try some exercises you wouldn’t normally do.

On a recent trip to Portland, OR to work with Nike athletes, JB and I stopped by the Elemental Fitness Lab and did this workout:

Warm-up circuit – 2x through

  • Valslide hamstring curl x 10
  • Kettlebell swing x 10
  • Single-leg hip extension x 10

Workout circuit – 5x through

  • Sled push down and back
  • Turkish Get-up with 70-pound sandbag
  • Rope slams
  • Neutral-grip chin-ups with weighted vest
  • Monkey bar trip around the gym

Here’s JB doing finishing his last circuit of the day. (It got a whole heck of a lot harder after a few rounds.)

Your Turn

What kind of stuff is currently rocking your world? Any gadgets, workouts, or other cool recommendations? Hit us up in the comments with a couple.

 

About the Author: Nate Green is the Program Director for Scrawny To Brawny. You can find him on Facebook or Google+.

18 Responses to Stuff We Like #1

  1. That salt water floating looks awesome. Putting that on my to do list. Seems great for recovery, especially since I’m a huge nervous system nerd as I’ve written about it’s important for many articles across the web, T-Nation included. 

    As for things rocking my world, I’ll keep it simple: Rooibos Chia Tea. 

  2. Joe Rogan absolutely swears by the sensory tanks. He says it helps him develop and expand his mind. He also smokes cannabis though! I panic in closed spaces so I don’t know how I’d be in it though.

  3. Conor says:

    Love the saltwater floating…that looks so cool.  Rockin my world is my chocolate peanut butter smoothie every morning!

  4. You guys are so much fun!  Love the Ninja Blender – power tools really excite me and this is something I’ll use every day.  Currently rocking my world this week are 
    1.  Baby Fiddle Greens (these little things have a flavor profile that resembles a green trilogy of asparagus, green beans and artichokes).  THEY ROCK!
    2.  Back flips (courtesy of Anthony) – only took 32 reps in 15 minutes – INTENSE!
    3.  Taking time to refine my guiding principles…it’s been 3 years in the making now and Roman’s latest post inspired me to keep going (thanks Roman)

  5. You guys are so much fun!  Love the Ninja Blender – power tools really excite me and this is something I’ll use every day.  Currently rocking my world this week are 1.  Baby Fiddle Greens (these little things have a flavor profile that resembles a green trilogy of asparagus, green beans and artichokes).  THEY ROCK!2.  Back flips (courtesy of Anthony) – only took 32 reps in 15 minutes – INTENSE!3.  Taking time to refine my guiding principles…it’s been 3 years in the making now and Roman’s latest post inspired me to keep going (thanks Roman)

  6. JHays says:

    I tried saltwater floating at a spa in Amsterdam a couple years ago, although they called it an “isolation tank” I think…they also had underwater speakers that played meditation music-it was a super cool experience.  I walked outta there totally balanced and zen’d out.  My tolerance level for the chaotic streets was def a couple notches higher.  

    Mychal- Good call on the Rooibos Tea..stuff is amazing, you cant over steep it, it is naturally de-caffeinated, and tastes awesome with lemon or mint..

    Salmon burgers are “rockin my world” at the moment.  So easy, go to whole foods pick up a can, throw in an egg or two and some cooked spinach or kale, squirt in some mustard, form into patty, throw on grill.  Call it lunch, snack, dinner or all three…I cant get enough 

  7. Sal Jumat says:

    Awesome Blog Nate. Love the Ninja Blenders!

  8. Jimmy Lamour says:

    The tiger tail myofasical release stick and rotator reliever have been great additions to our warm-up. They have been a great boost to our recovery which have led to more challenging workouts. I recommend both to any fitness student. Thanks.

  9. Greg DiVilbiss says:

    Floating is awesome, I have been going when I can find a place since about 1986. Great to float followed up with a massage.

  10. VancoD says:

    lol – do I hear JB drop an F-bomb on that last ring???  Priceless.

  11. Aaron says:

    Element looks like loads of fun. Isn’t it interesting when a buddy is finishing up a very – humbling shall we say – circuit, the person watching gets this almost evil laugh? My clients always comment that I’m enjoying a their misery a bit too much.

    Rocking my world…Ben Bruno put up this “Power of 3” workout on T-Nation a few months ago. So I’m giving that a go. Definitely getting stronger. But simultaneously doing Lean Gains IF.

  12. Sean Tomaszewski says:

    Admit it, you got salt water floating from Daredevil didn’t you?

  13. Reece Groves says:

    Need to get in the habit of making me some super smoothies, with this mean looking blender ;)

  14. Joe. Eh ! says:

    Training is rocking my world. I’ve officially entered my first ever Powerlifting contest. It’s taken my training up a whole ‘nother notch. Especially since I’m not currently as strong as the guys who normally compete in my weight class (93kgs).

    Also, chocolate peanut butter supershakes. They always rock my world.

  15. Eric Smith says:

    Rockin my world right now is Jack3d, gives me that extra bit of juice in the gym when I’m feelin’ a little sluggish.  And Banana Creme Monster Milk, best tasting protein ever!

  16. The salt water floating is great. Only been once. I was concerned I would get restless since your in complete silence and isolated in a fairly small space, but it was just the opposite. 

    For food the Cruddessence recipe book for raw food is amazing. It’s only sold in French at the moment, but the recipes are amazing. For all you Paleo’s out there don’t think it’s just for vegans, all the raw possibilities of meals is amazing to get your fiber and anti-oxidants. Plus the dessert section has recipes that are equivalent to making your own energy bars. Carrot cake minus any type of flour and still tastes great!

  17. Chris.nxc says:

    Cool recommendation: Check out this Ted talk about evolution..
    http://www.ted.com/talks/juan_enriquez_will_our_kids_be_a_different_species.html