I Don’t Accommodate Uncontrolled Men

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It’s summer! Time for all the the ladies to start posting articles about why it’s not a woman’s responsibility to prevent a man from lusting and all the gentlemen to start posting comments about why it’s not a woman’s responsibility, but she sure can help.

I’ve been encouraged to see the pushback, by women, even women in more conservative circles, against the toxic idea that a woman’s clothing choices can cause men to stumble.

But this pushback gets halted when a guy stands up and comfortably announces that while this personal responsibility thing all sounds great, the reality is that normal, healthy guys like him struggle, so women should still cover up. And the ladies go a little silent, unable to argue with this universal battle against sexual temptation that women never face.

The pushback against purity culture dies right then and there, because no woman wants to challenge…

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carbed up vegan muscle!

justin morgan’s story 

HC : what made you decide you needed to change your life?

A lot of people become vegans and vegetarians because they have a deep love and connection to animals.  This is not me.  I did not feel a connection to animals, but at the same time I didn’t want to kill them either.  After being a vegan for a couple years my wife and I took our kids to a petting zoo and I actually did feel like I had an emotional connection to the animals that I was petting.  Not that I would feel that way with every animal, because some animals are just jerks, but the cows especially at the petting zoo just loved me.  I loved them too.  For that one day I was known as the cow whisperer.

As a lifter I started out in my parents garage just a few years ago in May 2012.  I had brief stints of going to the gym before that, but never really seemed to stick with it.  For the first 9 months of lifting I just went and had a lower body day and an upper body day every week.  So I only lifted two times a week for most of that first year.  After I got a gym membership I really started to explore more progressive methods and concepts of lifting.

HC: what steps did you take to improve your life?

After becoming a vegan I had to consider what vegan eat.  I could have just quite easily traded out meats, cheeses, etc for vegan fake meats and cheeses which would have likely been healthier than what I was consuming previously, though I most certainly wouldn’t call that healthy.  Not every food I eat is a health food.  I don’t drink Dark chocolate almond milk for instance because it’s health, I drink it because it tastes good.  It isn’t a horrible food to eat, but I most certainly isn’t as healthy as it’s whole food counterpart almonds.  Having said all that the best change I’ve made to improve my quality of life is to rely primarily on whole foods.  So i eat fruit, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts/seeds.  Whole grains currently  being my primary calorie source with legumes and fruit following closely behind.  Fruit has been a major calorie source for me in the past.

HC: what motivates you keep on this path?

I love being a vegan.  I am saddened and feel pity for people that devalue life to the extent that consuming animal flesh is just a matter of preference to them.  in terms of being a (competitive) lifter and strongman competitor I am motivated by all my haters…  Seriously, everyone that’s ever said, “imagine how strong you would be if you ate meat,” has ignited a fire in me to train smarter, and to never miss a planned training session.  I feel that being a vegan makes me stronger because I compete with the desire to inspire others to not think of meat as foods that make them strong, but instead to think of protecting the life of the innocent animals as what makes them strong.

As a lifter I have competitive goals and aspirations.  Some of those are just lifts that I want to accomplish.  For 2014 I wanted to deadlift 500 lbs, and I did.  I also have certain competitions that I would like to qualify for in the upcoming years.

HC: what are you most proud of going thru this journey?

Many of the people that are close to me have tried becoming a vegan or vegetarian at some point, even if only for a short time.  Some of my church family has attempted to at least go meatless.  My wife and I host church activities at our home, and even though I never asked anyone to not bring meat into my house, they make meatless dishes out of respect for me which I appreciate.

As a strongman I’ve loaded a 290 pound atlas stone many times to the platform in my strongman gym.  But the very first time I did it, I went to war with the stone.  I probably spent almost 30 seconds fighting that stone on to the platform, and i had other guys behind me yelling and getting excited.  That’s probably my proudest moment as a lifter.  Not that i completed the lift, but that I had my friends behind me.

HC : what futures goals do you have ?

As a lifter I’ll be competing with the Plantbuilt powerlifting team in Austin, TX in June this year (2015), and of course I have goals to make good lifts and compete at my very best for that.  But beyond that I would like to win my counties strongman competition in 2016, and qualify and compete in the Arnold classic as a powerlifter in 2017.

HC: if you could share any advice or words of encouragement what would they be?

Set goals for yourself, and hold yourself to the highest caliber.  I never compare myself to the guy down the street, or the people at a local competition.  I compare myself to the top lifters in the world.  I’m too old, have too many kids, too many responsibilities, etc…   but I still hold myself in all those area’s to the high caliber that I can in each area.
And hopefully I’ll find way’s to do things that nobody else has done before.

HC: where can people get in touch with you?(contact info,social media sites)

I’m on youtube and instagram at “CarbedUpVeganMuscle”.  And I have personal facebook account, Justin Morgan

before

high school

wedding day

after 

competition squat

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Keg pic

Yoke

thank you for sharing your story justin .if you know of anyone that has a story to share.have them email me at bigtymer32@gmail.com or contact me on my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/hotchocolatefitness

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from at risk to bikini queen!

Taryn Cios story 

HC : What made you decide that you needed to change your life?
TC: During my pregnancy with my second son I was gestational diabetes; the doctors told me if I wasn’t careful I had a 50% chance of becoming diabetic within 5 years of having my son. When my son was six months old I was 170 pounds and very unhappy with my body. With the risk of possibly developing diabetes and being physically insecure I decided to join the gym, and I slowly lost about 20 pounds. I felt better and looked better (in clothes anyways). About a year ago I was on bodybuilding.com reading transformation stories and at that time is when I decided I wanted to take myself to the next level; I decided at that point that I wanted to compete in bikini competitions. I knew I needed a lot of work before I could ever step foot on a stage, but I was willing to do it! These transformation stories inspired me and I wanted to be able to inspire others, especially mothers.

HC : What steps did you take to improve your life?
TC: The first step I took was I joined the gym. I made sure that I went at least 4 days per week. I started to eat a little healthier, but looking back now what I thought was healthy then wasn’t all that healthy. It worked though and got me down 20 pounds, but I eventually hit a plateau. When I decided I wanted to compete I started researching a lot on bodybuilding.com. I would follow all of their “clean” recipes, and I learned a lot of different workouts. I knew I needed a coach, but I couldn’t afford one. I had no clue where to start when it came to competing. I was very fortunate to meet a girl in the gym, by the name of Jannan Parms, who eventually became my coach and a very dear friend. I knew she competed by the way she worked out, and how her physic was constructed, and sure enough when we actually spoke I found out she did. She competes in the figure division, and she was also a personal trainer. I was blessed because she began training me for free since I was her first client that wanted to compete; she kind of used me as walking advertisement. She made me a customized meal plan, told me what supplements to take, and made a customized workout plan for me. I was so grateful and began seeing immediate results.

HC : What motivates you to keep you on this path?
TC: The biggest thing that motivates me to continue this path is the fact that I inspire others. When I get an email, or a private message, or a comment on a photo or video that I post and women are telling me that I inspire them it pushes me to keep going. I’m human so there are days when I just want to say I don’t care anymore, or I get in funky mood, but I’m constantly telling people not to get discouraged and not to give up, so I need to follow my own advice. I also take a lot of progress pictures. When I see the progress I have made, it motivates me to keep going forward. I never want to go back to when I was unhappy and insecure.

HC : What are you most proud of going through this journey?
TC : I’m most proud of completing my goal of competing in my first bikini competition, while being a mommy and working a full time job. People always say they don’t have time to work out or do what I do, but those are all excuses. I don’t have time either, but I make time and sacrifices. Just like anything in life, if you really want it you will make it happen. It’s funny because during the last couple weeks of my prep I said I was never going to do another competition, and as soon as I got off stage I asked when my next competition was! I’m now prepping for my second bikini competition coming up May 26th at Venice Beach!

HC : What future goals do you have?
TC : My future goals are to compete in the NPC and eventually get my pro card. I also want to become a personal trainer and help others reach their fitness goals.

HC : If you could share any advice or words of encouragement what would they be?
TC : I always tell everyone I talk to that this lifestyle is all mental. You have to change your way of thinking. For instance I don’t eat for pleasure much anymore; I eat because in my mind food is fuel for my body to perform. I also encourage people to take a lot of progress pictures. It’s so easy to get discouraged, especially when you’re not seeing the results you want. When you look at yourself everyday you’re not going to see much change, but if you put progress pictures side by side you will see the changes. It will keep you motivated to stay on track. Most people want immediate gratification, but they need to know that your body didn’t get where it’s at overnight so it won’t change overnight! If you just stay consistent and committed to a healthier lifestyle the change will come. Also, we all have bad days, weeks, and even months, but don’t allow that to knock you off your path. I read somewhere that if you quit something because you have one bad day, that’s like having one flat tire and slashing the other three. It’s so true though, don’t be so hard on yourself if you miss the gym one day, or fall off your diet one day; just get back up the next day and start over. Don’t stress the small stuff.

HC : Where can people get in touch with you?
TC : If you want to get in touch with me for any questions or advice you can email me at tcios83@gmail.com  

Instagram @PHIRM_Fitness

Facebook : Taryn Morgan Cios. 

BEFORE/AFTER 

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thank you for sharing your story Taryn.if you know of anyone that has a story to share.have them email me at bigtymer32@gmail.com or contact me on my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/hotchocolatefitness

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twitter: bigtymer32

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