Tag Archives: gym

MDJ vs. The Man-Boobs

Those would look awful even on a chick.

Even worse than love handles, the most painful part of being an XL Dude like me are the man-boobs.

Man-boobs, or “moobs,” as they’re popularly (or unpopularly) called, are the unfortunate fat deposits that form over your pectoral muscles and inevitably lose the battle with gravity, causing a dude to look like a Baywatch star, and I’m not talking David Hasselhoff.

Sir Isaac Newton – 1, XL Dudes – 0.

Obviously, the best way to lose fat is to burn it, so part 1 of winning the Manboob Battle is to have a light salad once in a while, and do 25-40 minutes of good cardio 3-4 times a week.

But have you ever seen how a balloon looks when you let all the air out of it? It’s saggy, droopy, and all stretched out. That’s exactly what happens when you lose your pectoral fat, but don’t invest a bit of effort into shaping the underlying muscle.

That’s where lifting weights can help.

This is the chest workout I’m using to burn off my giant, gelatinous manboobs.


1. Incline Bench Press

This exercise targets the upper pectoral muscles – roughly the area between your collarbone, and halfway down to your nipple. Building this area allows you to “cheat” having a great chest, especially when you’re in a t-shirt – it creates a “cliff” for the fabric to hang off of, giving the impression of mass and shape.

Normally, people like doing these towards the middle part of the workout, but given my terrible manboob affliction, I’ve decided to put it up front, so I can work my upper pecs hard and heavy, while I’m still fresh.

I normally do a quick warm-up set of 18-25 reps with a very light weight, then do three sets of 12-10-8 reps, adding additional weight each set (or, as Joe Weider calls it, “pyramiding”), working to fatigue each time. On my last set, as my upper pecs fatigue, I quickly drop off 5-kilograms on each side to be able to pump out more reps, then keep on progressively dropping more plates as fatigue hits, until I’m sweating and grunting for my 25th repetition with a naked bar.

It gives a fabulous burn, and makes you feel like a Greek god when you pull on your Spider-Man t-shirt afterwards.

You can do this with dumbbells too – it’s a bit trickier because you have to balance both sides individually, but gives a great stretch.


2. Flat Bench Press

This is the bread and butter of any half-decent bodybuilder, and helps give overall fullness and mass to the total chest area, with a bit of impact on your front deltoids and triceps.

There really isn’t much to this exercise other than to just go for it.

I’ve seen a lot of dudes cheat on this exercise, not even letting the barbell all the way down for the sake of looking like they have a big bench. Don’t fall for that macho alpha male poser fluff – if it isn’t a weight you can’t comfortably allow to descend all the way to a finger’s width of your sternum, it’s too heavy.

One tip that helps me get through my final reps on each set, as I feel my pecs faltering is to squeeze the bar as hard I can. I read somewhere this recruits more muscles to help you keep pumping out the last few reps, and I’ve found it to be extremely effective.

I don’t do a warm-up set for this anymore, since I’m still pumped from the incline bench press, but still stick to the 12-10-8 pyramid sets.


3. Decline Machine Press

It’s hard to find a gym that has a decline bench, so I’m stuck doing machine presses by default. But I think that works better for me, since I’ve always felt a bit awkward and wobbly doing barbell presses on a decline bench.

This is a really delicious exercise to be doing, since the machine guides the motion, so you can really just savor the push of each rep, and getting a really amazing squeeze at the peak of your press.

I like to go really, really slow on the decline machine press – each push lasts about 2 seconds, the squeeze on top lasts about a second, and I really slow down the descent to 3 seconds, just feeling the resistance pushing against my muscles.

Most dudes ignore any movements that target the lower chest, but I strongly advise against that. A well-developed lower chest is what gives separation and fullness from your ribcage, just like a WWE wrestler.


4. Incline Chest Fly’s

This is the only sculpting exercise I do on my chest, since I feel that detailing moves like cable fly’s won’t do me much good until I’ve lost a significant enough amount of fat for the striations and veins to pop out form my chest. This particular motion gives an extra pump to the part of your chest connecting to your shoulders and armpit, and is probably my all-time favorite chest exercise.

I tend to go light with this exercise, partly because my chest is just on fire by this point, and partly because I like to get a really good spread at the bottom. I want to be able to control the weight all throughout, so I don’t tear up my rotator cuffs or anything.

I’ve seen guys struggle with this exercise, doing it completely wrong – they turn it into a press (pushing upwards motion), instead of a fly (sweeping squeezing motion). The best tip I read says that to perform this exercise properly is to imagine yourself hugging a giant tree.

I make sure not to clang the dumbbells at the top, too – that relieves your muscles of tension (which is not the point of working out!), and the momentum might cause you to go too fast on your downward motion and rip your arm off. Instead, I bring them within a millimeter of each other, and give one good squeeze before the descent.


I hope to have some decent pictures of my chest to post in a couple of months. My manboobs aren’t exactly fit for public consumption just yet.

“M” is for “Manboobs,” apparently.

Got any other anti-manboob exercises you’d like to share?

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If You Want To Be Sexy, You Have To Sweat A Little (Not To Mention Grunt, Groan, and Cry Once In A While)

I have a new physical trainer at my new gym, Gold’s Gym Alabang. His name is Froiland.

He looks something like this, only not as pleasant.


He’s brutal, ripped, and unusually cruel – he makes me do painful, unusual things on machines with such strange names as a “treadmill” and a “stationary bike.”

He’s also brutally frank, and took my vital statistics to prove a point. I’m obviously not in the best of shape, as I’m shaped more like a Coke can than a Coke bottle. (In the meantime, let’s not debate on why a rugged, manly dude such as myself would want to shape like a Coke bottle, to begin with…)

Vital Stats

I’m extremely lopsided, based on these numbers. My right side outmeasures my left side by half an inch for most bodyparts.. no wonder my clothes fit funny.

Froiland has his heart set on turning me into the second coming of Ravishing Rick Rude. He says it’s for my health, but I think he just likes the thought of “accidentally” teabagging me as he spots me on my bench press…

My workout is divided into three days. Here’s how Day One (Shoulders & Legs) looks.

Day 1

He expects me to finish all of these in an hour-and-a-half. Right.

Day Two (Back & Biceps) is slightly easier, but is still a pain to get through. I’ve always had a strong back and biceps though, so I expect I’ll be able to just breeze through this day.

Day 2

Day 3 is for Chest & Triceps, and looks like the most fun.

Day 3

The one thing I don’t like from this program (apart from all the cardio, which I really do, but hate every step of the way!) is the little addendum he tacked on at the end. He says I have to do this too, on top of the 3-day split:

Day 4

I swear to God, it’s a joke asking MDJ Superstar to do such undignified, un-cool things as freaking abdominal crunches. I don’t think I’ve done those in years. But alas, I must obey, despite the unglamorous side effects of doing crunches, such as grunting, groaning, sobbing a little bit inside, and just overall sounding like “a cow with intestinal gas” (based on feedback heard from innocent bystanders).

I no longer want to argue with people that I am in shape – the caveat being that round certainly counts as a shape.

I no longer want to insist that I am just “big-boned” – with the caveat this time being that my stomach simply has a big tummy bone.

I want to be fit, I want to be ripped, and most importantly I want to be loved and wanted for my body more than for my mind.

Because at the end of the day, that’s what being a Superstar is really all about.

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