How I Lost 10kgs! 

Towards the end of January I set out a 28-day challenge to carry me through the upcoming month. (Click here to read about the challenge and rules I set myself). I was so happy with the results I extended it into March. By the first week of March was a total of 10KG down!

In retrospect I would like to outline the things that worked, and what I had to adjust to maintain the momentum throughout the month.

Due to strict (yet enjoyable) eating and consistent training I comfortably and safely lost 1kg per week. Reducing carbs meant I sometimes turn on autopilot by the time its 7pm but it was manageable. I’ve spent the last two years eating at sporadic timing and running on unnecessary carbs (combine that with minimal training and disaster writes itself). With that being said, it is reasonable for my mind and body to retaliate, and I just had to let fatigue take its course. My friends who visit Bossy Kitchen for dinner would tease me for being so quiet sometimes, but with time I regained my footing and my body managed to run efficiently with what I was fueling it with.

Secondly, my taste pallet changed for the better. I enjoyed more relaxed flavors and was happy just fueling my body with basic lean proteins and simple carbs like rice. Fortunately I live in a household and operate in an industry that allows me to experiment and spice things up without the need to add calories, therefore flavor and the satisfaction of crunch never had to be sacrificed. I honestly enjoyed my food baked, and if needed, crumbed in gluten free ingredients (even with quinoa).

With my physical condition, training becomes tricky, and what I originally set out to do was hindered by shoulder and knee flare ups (although the knee behaved rather well throughout). I had to cut out many training sessions that involved lifting (2 weeks in between, and the final week). I was able to surpass this by remaining consistent with my low impact cardio. I made sure I continually burned calories by power walking regardless of how busy my schedule was or any body alignments. Just because my shoulder was flared up, doesn’t mean that I cant sweat it out on the treadmill right?

After this program, I have decided to live a mostly gluten free and dairy free lifestyle. I miss bread sometimes, but the GF options are satisfactory, and surprisingly I don’t miss dairy at all!

Here are my 5 tips that I learned from this process

  • No need to sacrifice flavor. There are simple and clean alterations you can make to basic dishes that will enhance the experience so you don’t have the need to even go for a cheat meal or even worse binge in retaliation later.
  • Don’t let injury or workload be an excuse. This was a big issue for me and I had to learn that just because I couldn’t train at 7am, doesn’t mean that I cant sneak in a quick power walk before lunch, and just because my shoulder hurts, doesn’t mean I cant go for cardio instead of scraping the entire workout for the day or even coming days. Don’t fall into that lethargic trap!
  • Go through the motions. Your mind and body will retaliate. Heck people around you will do too! They will push dishes without you that you aren’t supposed to be eating during your weight loss period. If you have spent years accumulating bad habits don’t expect a single detox or kale salad to undo everything. You aren’t going to feel fresh out of a Gilette Ad on day one, so buckle up and let it run its course.
  • Understand your mind and body. Don’t go jump into crossfit just because its whats in. Once you lose your joint cartilage it ain’t coming back. I am living proof of the daily pain felt even at a young age, when you don’t carefully understand the biomechanics of your body. Go see a physiotherapist, do blood work.
  • You and only you are responsible for the outcome of your eating habits and training. Stop blaming your friends outings, or not being able to ‘afford’ a healthy lifestyle or gym membership. My mother always used to tell me “During electrical outages, some people would take their books and study under a street light if they had to.” It’s all about perspective. You can’t buy a 2bd salad, but you would gladly spend 2 bd on a supersized coke at the cinema, or an expensive latte with your name misspelled on it.  
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Just Cause 3 – The Art of Destruction

Video games have evolved from 8-bit dotted pixels to movie-like realism, forcing your eyes to question the difference between the virtual realm and our very own reality. We can no longer deny its current state as both a work of art and a source of escapism to millions spanning the globe. Behind the gamer scores lies layers of provocative storylines and emotional relevance to several areas we find applicable to our lives (See Halo, The Last of Us, Bioshock, heck even the story mode of Call of Duty). – and if you think gamers are a bunch of nerds, just look at the 6 digit paychecks offered to E-Sport Gamers, and you might justify that look that someone just relived themselves in your coffee mug.

Due to my busy schedule I’ve skipped many open world adventures (Sorry Skyrim) and opt for linear games for the majority of the time. At times, I’ve forced myself to make time for stellar experiences such as The Mass Effect Trilogy (let’s not discuss the ending), however while juggling my business, fitness and personal responsibilities I don’t have the luxury to traverse the vast digital landscapes that demand I dedicate my time and soul to reap its benefits (Open World Fatigue Dude?).
Behind my fitness and entrepreneurship drive, lies a sincere admiration towards all art forms from poetry, music, film production to, yes…video games. To push and broaden the spectrum of my writing I would love to discuss other ventures and topics from time to time. A disclaimer though, my aim is not to review media or give a numbered score. In my opinion each experience is different, and I admire all developers and artists that dedicate their years and life to create products we enjoy and are inspired from*. Therefore when I discuss anything, I would like to keep it story-driven similar to my fitness articles, and how I’ve applied the given art medium towards my life.
With that said, I’d love to discuss my experience with Just Cause 3. Don’t worry I haven’t applied arson to my life, however it is an open world experience (reader awkwardly stares at Mo).

*Kanye West is not included in this statement.

Summary:
Having played Just Cause 2 previously on the Xbox 360 (although I skipped the original iteration of the series) I knew what to expect from the game. Chaos. You can grapple into anything imaginable. Human, Cow, Plane. Imagine ejecting from an exploding plane, latching on to an enemy airplane with the option to take it over, latch it on to a neighbouirng pilot watching them spin towards each other before gracing your way down to earth and falling perfectly on a bike to make a get away. Think 80’s/90’s movie action casting you as the director.

The story revolves around your character Rico who is a rebel determined to liberate both his homeland and his peeps from the hands of an evil-yet-hilarious dictator. The dialogue is perpisouly cheesy to match the over-the-top action.

Although some missions were repetative (even the dialogue makes fun of a recurring ‘Follow the pipes’ mission, it didnt stop me from enjoying the game. As I mentioned earlier I don’t have time to pledge alligance to a given open world realm ( yeah they remember, especially after you contradicted yourself a paragraph later and decided to talk about this open world game) – fair enough, but this game was seperated into 3 Acts with 8 missions making up each one. I allowed myself to play a mission a day on the days where I had 40 minutes or so to spare (6am before the gym and work). Between certain missions you are asked to liberate certain areas to access the next part of the story. When I was short on time I was annoyed that I had to side track and free a city to proceed however as I got into the high octane action I starter enjoying this part of the game even more then the missions.

Favorite Achievement: …without bullets! 

Destroy every Chaos Object in a Military Base without weapons, grenades, or planted explosives.

I enjoyed this one because I had to liberate an entire army base without using a single bullet or vehicle. By the time I looked up achievements to do, I had already liberated the easy camps. Trying to latch on to vital base facilities and pull them apart without the help of ammo, while being gunned down by army personnel, tanks and copters is a hell of a story to tell the kids. (What do you mean my kids arn’t going to be gamers) #forevernerdy

Win a Free Island!:

Another cool thing about this game is you can enter to win a real life Free Island!! The person with the highest Chaos Score on the leaderboard three months after the games release takes home the prize! However the studio warns that they dont offer transport to the island or insure its habitability! Nice one Square Enix, come back to me when you can offer a date with Lara Croft – I’ll be first on that leaderboard, and probably end up sleeping on the couch as a result.
@nervebullet

Thanks for taking the time to read this. Im trying to push my writing to cover my life spectrum and the things that move me, from fitness, entrepreneurship to all forms of creativity (including gaming, music, filming and poetry/writing).

Feel free to write me on nervebullet@gmail.com / or stalk me on my social media feeds

Instagram/Twitter/Snapchat: @nervebullet

Xbox Live Gamertag: Nervebullet

Click Here for my Facebook!

Tales From The Treadmill: My Fitness Diary #2

This diary entry covers week 2 & 3 from my February  Challange (February 8-21).

If you’ve kept up to date with my blog or instagram/facebook fitness feed you’ll know I strained my shoulder towards the end of the first week whilst doing ‘Seated Decline Chest Press’. The machine I was using doesn’t have a release leaver to push the handles forward, so even before doing the manuver my entire shoulder is already under akward and uncesssaery strain. Mr.Ironman himself, Ahmed Jamsheer told me later on that in the absence of a release lever we should push the handles out before sitting down to do the press. I was over ambitious with my rep count for this program, and at this time swallowed my pride and dropped the exercise when I felt what my gut telling m as a ‘bad kind of burn’. Lucky for me the next two days were Active rest so I only had to do Cardio. I figured my shoulder would chillax during that time and I’d be back for more gym murder on Monday right? WRONG! My shoulder felt worse with time, and panic coarsed its way across my entire body. 

“I just got back into the groove of trainint and now THIS?”

“What if my body is fragile due to my premature birth and now my shoulder cartlidge has the same fate as my knee?”

To make matters worse, my Physiotherapist was out of Bahrain (funny enough at shoulder surgery in Paris, probably enjoying croissants afterwards).  

I didn’t let this stop me. I continued with Cardio for the second week and after seeing Dr.Malhota for my final Knee shot, he confirmed a strain and told me to only do bicep workouts for now. I decided to skip weights for the whole week (including biceps) to prevent any risk of further injury.

Week 3 saw me upping Cardio, and slowly introducing weights (Biceps) mid week. During the weekend I targeted each muscle to warm up my entire body back into lifting, in hopes of permently reintroducing weights into my training by week 4 (at the time of writing this I’m lifting again so YAY!) < dude!! Spoiler alert! 

Here are highlights from my eating habits, best moments and cravings during Week 2 & 3

Clean Cheats (technically not supposed to have these, but did to keep my sanity).

  • 1 x Pad Thai: kind of let it pass because it was rice noodles
  • 1 x Coke Zero: I had it once, only steep to this soda when Im super stressed. It also has to be in a plastic bottle for some reason. (Weirdo).
  • 2x Popcorn: End of week reward, put some sodium free herbs on it for flavour and shared my portions. This felt like such a treat
  • 1x Chicken Tikka: This is bad because its takeout so added oil for sure. I was starving after work on Thursday and the Protien shake wasnt enough! Bonus points for eating it plain with greens and no bread (oh Gluten how I miss thee)

Cravings (kept as cravings havn’t had them yet)

  • Bread
  • Bread
  • Burgers (No Cheese)
  • Baked White Potato Fries
  • Strawberry Shortcake/Vanilla Bean Ice cream with crushed Grahm Crackers. 
  • Chocolate, any chocolate (Kinder maybe?)

Weight Update 

During the 2nd week I feel as though I gained 1kg due to eating some carbs later on the day (and I stopped counting the grams although portions were small). During the 3rd week I killed the cardio sessions and regained momentum losing the Kilo I gained and then some! 

Total Weight Lost: 7.8kg

Highlight Moment 

I was emotinally affected during week 2 and skipped some cardio sessions, however I really enjoyed the feeling of regaining momentum in Week 3 with successful cardio sessions and hitting the weights again. My knee feels like its on my side for once! 

Changes?

Yes. Due to a pressing work schedule I can no longer split cardio into AM and PM sessions, so I’ve changed my cardio to a longer AM session instead. 

From the Ground up…

Nervebullet 

PS: want to join my weightloss journey? Contact me through my social media feeds or email nervebullet@gmail.com

Thank you as always for supporting my humble little fitness feed. I hope I motivate you as much as you motivate me. 

  

You are the Preworkout

You are the Pre workout: finding your resilience when betrayed by the comforting lie of instant-gratification.

When faced with a calamity, its natural for negating words to ricochet across the vessel of our thoughts. This is evident when scaling trying business environments through testing relationships, fighting medical ailments or dietary trauma arraying from obesity to anorexia.

Regardless of the degree of how vocal we may be towards our own coming of age, sooner or later we all look inwards and are forced to critique ourselves, be it against society’s measuring stick or our own (Unless your a Disney pop star gone rouge, Miley whats good?). Nobody is immune to this, and evidently so it becomes more and more difficult to duck away from the gunfire of doubt. Our beloved parents might try to clothe us with bullet proof vests in our young age, however with time, the material will eventually allow something through.

The evolution of communication and social media has shifted the provision of content from air-mail and telegraphs, to same day shipping and instant snapchats of where and what anybody is doing at a given second. We now expect and demand instant gratification when our business is tanking or when we suddenly realize we are carrying more weight than we should, either from witnessing the diminishing of our selves or through the glorification of business moguls and six pack abs, maybe both at the same time.

There is nothing wrong with the ‘instant’ processes. Many situations require immediate attention. However we have become so accustomed to this that we expect it to be relevant towards every whim as soon as it flickers on our mind.

When Im working on getting applications approved for work, the new e-government facilities have spoiled me. 80% of the process can be completed from the comfort of my office. It’s all groovy until a bored inspector rejects it 8 times (even though your no stranger to the process and understand the process), however that’s besides the point. Viewing my work through this lens is enough to make me walk around with a silver spoon towards any situation, expecting things like my weight to drop just as fast.

The process of opening Bossy Kitchen was completely new to both my wife and myself. We both had business and financial backgrounds, and a cumulative eight-year corporate experience, however the approval process from the ministry of health to municipality to civil defense departments let alone constructing the facility from scratch took us a grueling night months. No degree, work experience or feasibility study would ever be enough armor for our entrepreneurial ascendency.

The process tested our mettle and humbled us along the way. The same rang true for my Genu Valgum (Bone Deformity). I realized how fragile my own mind and body can be (good luck getting a Leo to admit such thing). I am extremely fortunate to grow up in a household that loves me and supported my academic career above and beyond what I can imagine. However I was not babied around or patted on the back for any jobs well done (don’t confuse this to be lack of emotional support, I received plenty, and its vital in my opinion). After any shattering achievement (in my eyes), my beloved father would always say to me “Whats next?”. His own athleticism and unrelenting work ethic has kept him healthy and hungry to this day. While I pursued rigorous training from running my own boot-camps, to 6am tennis court drills that justified my 6-month shoe insole warranty, my father would swim come rain, shine or freezing weather and fish during season (all before getting dressed and arriving at his office by 6:30am). My mother nurtured me from premature birth and remained beside me to pick up the pieces whenever I fell apart. My own sister coached me towards eventually securing two championships and a 7-month win streak until my surgery. My wife took a broken man both emotionally and physically and inspired me to amplify my life and dreams when my previous work environment and physical health took me to the brink of self-disbelief and crippling doubt. There is no way I would be where I am without my family and friends who show up at my humble matches, and support my initiatives time and time again.

Slogans such as “Get a beach body by summer” or “Own the car or your dreams Today!” can take advantage of our vulnerable situation and mind set. Heck after all my research in fitness I still do a double take at the counter when I see “Green Tea Weight Loss” or the “Hey look I’m Gluten Free, Vegan and loaded with Protein” bar. The FDA laws require that ingredients be written starting with the greatest quantity. Both of the above products have Sugar as #1. The Green Tea and other miracle components hide behind the protected “proprietary blend” writing, so you could be getting 0.000001 green tea and the rest is just sugar! – Dr.Jim Stoppani’s supplements shook the fitness world when he listed the exact quantity of each ingredient instead of hiding behind the proprietary blend label and exposing filler ingredients others use. – For this I completely commend the guy.

Way too often many put unbelievable dependency on supplements and max out their credit card on supplies even before setting foot in the gym. The Amino acids your ingesting aren’t going to lift the weights for you or justify the 300 BD investment you threw away at the gym, only to visit it once a month. Oh well Mohammed, the protein sure tastes good here on the sofa.

A support system is necessary; don’t give me this lone wolf facade. This by no mean negates the hard work you need to put in using your own two hands. Supplements are not compulsory. The effort you put in is the basis of your results. Nothing you drink or take will bring you towards your greatness. During your career, within your relationships or in training, you are – and will remain to be mother-natures pre workout. Whether you don’t say it or believe it. You are resilient, and have resilience within you. It is within our humanity to be resilient. You can’t learn it, and it may not be apparent. A given situation may appear to break you, however if you look within yourself you will experience your breakthrough and find your own resilience. No lack of knee cartilage or rejected applications should never stop you. From the ground up…

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Tales from the Treadmill: My Fitness Diary 1

Welcome to my weekly fitness update! I will discuss my food and workout routine (What worked/What didn’t) alongside my mental/physical/emotional state, in full transparency in hopes to motivate and inspire you as well as myself. Enjoy!

February 1st marked the first day of my intense 28 day food and fitness routine. I aimed to reduce carbs every passing week, and introduce high rep drop sets into my workouts. I would dedicate four days to lifting and three to active rest days involving cardio almost every single day. This is not something I plan on doing for the long run (you will understand once you see the restricted food intake), however I felt it was necessary to help kick myself back to former glory. Outside other blog posts, I will have a dedicated weekly write up to my fitness progress summarizing what worked, what didn’t, and any alterations I am planning on making to the plan.

My planned workout schedule

  • Monday: Back/Biceps/Cardio
  • Tuesday: Delts/Triceps/Cardio
  • Wednesday: Active Rest (Cardio)
  • Thursday: Legs/Cardio
  • Friday: Chest/Calves/Cardio
  • Saturday: Active Rest (Cardio)
  • Sunday: Active Rest (Cardio)

 

My dietary restrictions (don’t shoot)

  • No Fats
  • Lean Proteins Only (Grilled Chicken, Prawn, Egg Whites, Fish)
  • No Beef
  • No Dairy
  • No Soda
  • No Gluten, No Wheat (Pasta,Bread, White rice are all No)
  • No Ketchup
  • Brown Rice, Oatmeal, Quinioa, Sweet Potato are allowed
  • Basically Complex Carbs only, and mostly all by lunch time.
  • Supplements include Whey/Casein Protein Mix , Fish Oil, Vitamins
  • Turmeric Powder, Ginger, Cayenne and Black Pepper for anti-inflamatory properties.
  • Green, Oolong, Lapsang Teas

IMG_6227

A screenshot from my snapchat, where I share my food intake during the day and before and after my training sessions. Hopefully a source to give you ideas on what to eat to get or stay healthy. 

Week 1 update (Feb 1- Feb 7)

Weight loss tracker 

(2kg’s Down. Total Kg’s lost so far in 2016 = 7kg).

What Worked

My work schedule this week was so packed I actually never had the chance to stop and think how my stomach felt! I was going from one thing to another, driving all over Bahrain (Seef, Manama, Jau, Riffa) rinse and repeat for almost the entire week that I never realized the reduced intake. The only day I felt tired and craving carbs (bread specifically) was on the 5th day (Friday) at night. However after drinking my shake I felt satisfied. The feeling of triumph amplified when I weighed myself on the next Monday and noticed two kilos off the number.

What Didn’t Work

During my Chest and Calves day, I felt like the Rep count and drop set routine was over kill. I tried to adapt this from Chris Gethin’s * recommended technique. I normally wouldn’t follow his programs because the guy focuses on gaining mass and lifting super heavy, but I took the recommended high rep/drop sets to torch some serious calories. Specifically with the decline chest press (on a seated machine) I felt some serious burn on my right shoulder blade, and not the good kind. Luckily Saturday and Sunday marked active rest days where I have to do cardio sessions, so I didn’t really need my ailing shoulder. I didn’t let ego get the better of me, and reduced the weights and rep count, but at the time of typing this I still feel dull aches. Part of me is concerned that I may have irritated my scar tissue from tearing my sub-scapulares during one of  the best matches of my tennis career in 2013. Moving forward I will mostly only do 3 Sets with a rep count that will not exceed 15-20.

*dude has a funny name, especially if you google and see how big this guy actually is. Dude probably can eat my entire restaurant for his post-workout meal. 

 

Highlight of the Week: I got my 2nd Knee shot on Wednesday, and felt able to do my Leg workouts by Thursday. Although I’m limited with what I can do on Leg day (Abductors, Leg Press mostly) I left the gym so pumped that I was able to continue with my schedule regardless of having taken my shot! Lots of ice, and my knee behaved for the entire week thankfully!

If you would like to join my workout journey I will be more then happy to share my entire schedule for both my workouts and food intake via email.  Remember that I am not a nutritionist or instructor, so what I am doing might not work for you but it’s basic enough for anybody to get to (depending on how strict you are willing to be). You are more then welcome to email me on nervebullet@gmail.com

I hope this post was beneficial and motivational to you. More blog posts coming up, and a weekly update similar to this God-willing.

 

From the Ground Up (I’m taking you with me)

 

Mohammed

PS: This is are my social media links and what I use them for

My website: www.nervebullet.com for detailed blog posts regarding my health and fitness journey and other things I am passionate about including entrepreneurship, video games, music and poetry.

My instagram: Daily posts from the gym at work and everything in between. A brief look at my life as a fitness enthusist and an entrepreneur

My Snapchat: @nervebullet I mostly post my food intake on this, so you can see what I am eating during the day, and before and after my training sessions. Live accountability!

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My Twitter: @nervebullet My live thoughts mostly before and after workouts to pump you and myself up! I also post music from my playlist to share the tunes that fire me up before and after my workout. Expect anything from Heavy Metal to Pop (Sevendust, Bury Tomorrow, Lupe fiasco, Tori Kelly (WTH BRO DO YOU EVEN LIFT?).

My Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/nervebullet Updated more then my twitter, and also more detailed status updates on health and fitness. A great place to get links to my latest blog posts as soon as they publish.

 

Late Night Shift-ing

The first year or operating a full fledged restaruant (having no prior expertise in such thing) has been the most exeushiating and exilirating experience I’ve ever experince (ohh look a juxtapusition, cliche much?). Hey will you let me get on with my blog please?! (Okay fine, you may proceed). Thank you Brackets Mo. ( Your welcome buddy). 
Okay now that we have finally discussed the elephant in the room (Brackets Mo) we may continue this article after a word from our sponsers. 
“Jason Durulo” – Jason Durolo 
(Thats actually two words, and we arn’t sponsored by Mr.Durulo in any shape or form). 
Okay unecessary tangent aside, I focused so much on my entreprunerial side, I completely neglected my personal health and fitness (Blasphamy! You founded and work at a Health Urban Eatery! For shame you contradicting beard man you!) 
I used my business and Monica Belucci right knee as an excuse. (Reference to anatomic age, and NOT having hairless lady legs) (also a call back to my previous article for my previois readers – at least I know I have one from New York *shout out to COSMOS*).
During the starting months of operation, my Wife and I (even to this day sometimes) would jointly run every aspect or Bossy Kitchen. Breads first thing in oven when we wake up, Administrative side (emails, visits and meetings to government entities spanning Bahrain – Ministry of Health, EWA, LMRA, XYZ corp, Barbra Stresand), visiting the butcher, farm and all markets personally, meeting the staff, arranging the daily menu, posting on our social media feeds, turning the Xbox on for a software update then switching it off), Consolidating our accounting, prepping the food and drinks from scratch (Whatever we make from cold pressed drinks, hand rolled gnoochi, salads, mains, desserts etc. are all made to be served on the same day – whatever is not sold is shared amongst staff or given to the poor). By the time 6pm rolls over we open our doors and personally attend to and happily serve each customer with a smile on our face. Some customers stay late, and we wait for the entire store and kitchen to take its nightly shower. By this time its well passed midnight and after being unable to eat since noon sometimes even longer, Id gauge on whatever I can find! Two big mistakes here
– even though most of our foods are healthy, the time that I am eating it and the amount is certently not, especially that Ill KO the moment I reach home. Repeat this for a year and you can see the viscious cycle turn into this drastic weight gain. 
Another issue was I kept trying to fit my workouts in lik e a square where my life became a circle. By this I mean that during my fitness prime I would be at the gym in the US by 5am and in Bahrain id hit the gym or tennis court as early as 6am. Even with a corporate job in 2010/2013 I still worked out. Conference in Dubai or Chicago? Still hit the circuit before suiting up. No time zone or comittment got in my way from keeping my body impenetrable, until my Genu Valgum, Plica Syndrome and Stage 3 Chondromalacia flipped my world upside down. 
The knee deformity crippled me physically and mentally. Add the weight of the entire restaurnt on my shoulder and you wouldn’t blame my meniscus (menisci?) packing their bags and leaving me for a richer body with a Bentley made of Type 1 Cartlidge. 
I felt inadeqate to motivate which may explain my lacadasical posting rythem (lets leave this for anoter post). Its important to understand the reasons behind the nature of yor weight gain. Im not excusing myself for puttint on 25kgs (half of which might be beard weight?) but I dont fully regret dedicating my time for my business to flourish. Im now at a vital point in my life where I need to rebalance my life and reclaim my athleticism before I age with weak muscles such as my quads that are vital for comensating for the lack of cartlidge and bone deformity. I dont like to say something can ever be too late, but I am aware in my case it might actually be true.
With time and after successfully delegating and sharing responsibilities Ive happily reached at a point where I can comfortably dedicate an hour of workout in the morning and schedule my food well in advance. This may explain the consistent posting (2 blogs days apart, and daily instagram/facebook updates). This is a totally different journey then my 2008 weight loss, however I seem to have conquered the crippling mental fear of permenent injury, and also beliving that I can attain my fitness goals, and continue to motivate everybody around me.
I can say it again with confidence, from the ground up, Im taking you with me.

  

Palette Pending

When I got bronchitis in late December all I could eat was soft bread. I hardly ate, but over-carbing and some binging at the end caused a 5kg weight gain. Im down 5kg now and enjoying serious momentum. Ive been craving Pad Thai like crazy (either the one from Banana Leaf or the one we made at Bossy during Thai Nights). Ive been consistent with cutting carbs for dinner (sans Veggies, Leafy Greens). However the pings for Pad Thai was real strong. I even looked up the numbers for take out, because we didnt have any rice noodles in the kitchen to make my own. However I quickly heated left over lunches twice and enjoyed lean protein, a shake, and greens repeatedly. In the end I felt that I have control over my cravings again, felt fully satisfied with what I ate, and adequately fueled towards regaining my athleticism. Might reward myself with Pad Thai during tomorrows Brunch, but I feel strong enough to opt for a cleaner carb source. 

Don’t expect your palette to change overnight. Especially if you’ve spoilt your tastebuds rotten with unnecessary fats and sugar and salt. I know its hard. Ive gone through weight loss before, Ive experienced a spectrum of emotional eating and abstinence throughout my life (obesity,anorexia etc). You need to condition your mind more then your stomach or your muscle. There is no short cut. My biggest issue has been crippling fear ever since I had surgery and discovered my bone deformity (amongst other issues since being born three months premature) back in 2012. 

2016 will InshAllah/God-willing be the year of further reform and change within myself. 

   

Reboot

I’ll attempt to reintroduce my blog without using any references to Adele’s latest single. (But you just did by mentioning that you won’t use it (and there you go again using brackets to let people know you’re talking to yourself (dude this is too much inception in one blog post))). My first blog post came out towards the tail end of 2012, and I had originally hoped that I would have started back in 2008 to document my first genuine journey towards weight loss. Well be careful what you wish for Mo, because congratulations its 2015 and you’ve gained 20 kilos.

When I started posting back in 2012 I planned to be committed to providing worthy content for fitness and health enthusiasts to read however what I had hoped to be a weekly fitness ‘dramady’ update branched out to becoming BBC’s Sherlock, providing you with three episodes a year, and leaving you with a cliff hanger and a fist at the screen.

As I attempt to pull a Lara-Croft-esque reboot on my blog I will discuss why I stopped writing, why I’m starting again, and what’s different this time around. After all its 2015, and Ms.Croft looks rather dashing. (And we both thought I’d never use the D word).

Why I Stopped Writing?

Honestly speaking, my Chondromalacia flare-ups frightened me to my core. I always felt like I was one move away from being unable to continue pursuing fitness. My worst flare up since surgery took place last September, and left me unable to drive for over a month and a half. The first time I got in the passenger seat mid-October I felt like I just got my license.

I am a firm believer in the ‘no excuses’ way of living, where you do the best you can with the cards you are dealt with, and if you there is something you really want, you focus on it until it becomes a reality (or you learn from the situation, tweak your ideas and keep growing as an individual). Well I spent my time focused on the risk of quieting my stable job and setting up my own business with my wife. My emphasis on my entrepreneurial career sacrificed my ability to push hard at the gym (especially when I have to be twice as careful to avoid knee flare ups, not to mention the extra care it takes to build and maintain the area around my near cartilage-less knee). Now I know what your thinking, balance dude balance! Well as much as I love to think of myself as a fitness machine (or was one previously) my life changed way too much, and I tried to keep injecting fitness sessions here and there but it fell apart, evident by the rapid weight gain. Responsibilities were over the roof as there was hardly any room or budget for delegation as a start up. My previous job was taxing, and including weekend work and traveling, however it never hindered my morning workout routine. However after quitting, and even before officially opening Bossy Kitchen, the task of researching, negotiating, hiring, training, purchasing, budgeting, designing, building, cooking, tasting, pricing, selling, servicing, marketing and hosting made its mark on me. Previously I would have my gym clothes folded and ready before I go to sleep by 9:30pm NO MATTER WHAT. Now I would be lucky if I was home from work before midnight.

I am not promoting weight gain in what I am about to say, but usually you hear people complaining when they stop working out, and the ill effects of being overweight. But its more then just that. I am totally aware of what I did wrong, but other parts of my life flourished due to my dedication at work. Being able to truly communicate with the community on a personal level daily, and working with my very own team made it all worth awhile. I’m not going to tell you its okay to keep gaining weight, especially with my knee condition, but I accepted and understood the situation and plan to move forward. Its been an intimidating year, however I took my drive from tennis and training and applied it in the business world. I now feel that I am ready to put some of my focus into working out and re-balancing my life again. Hence why I feel comfortable towards committing to my blog again.

Why I’m starting again.

With all the weight gain and injuries I do feel like It is a true reboot to my fitness life, and although I am treading on familiar ground, it has been almost eight years since my initial weight loss. My life is different, my body is different, Im still in my twenties but I’ve aged (my knee is probably the same age as Monica Bellucci right now (Hi Monica!)) . – Totally makes you think I’ve recently watched 007:Spectre. Answer is yes. I did.

The inherit need to motivate you lot is still inside me, and I feel it’s the perfect time to showcase my unfiltered fitness journey. Way too much vanity involved in social media, so I would love to input something a bit more realistic. I’m not out to carve serious abs and do handstand push-ups inside the Kitchen*.

*Ministry of Health if you are reading this, I swear no such thing takes place at work**

**if it did, I promise I use gloves.

I’ll be honest about what I do and what I don’t do. If I mess up you’ll see it. If I manage to balance myself and lose weight you’ll see it. I am not a fitness expert, but I’m a fitness enthusiast at heart. It’s changed my life in the past, and I hope I can use it to do so again. I am going to do my best to enjoy my workouts, my food and everything in between. I hope you stay with me during the process, and I’ll do my best to share as much as I can from this experience, and hope to benefit you as well as myself. I will not push a certain ideology (gluten free, crossfit etc.), as I love to experiment. For example although my diet is mostly Pescataerian based, I am not that vocal about it, because its something that works for me but won’t necessarily work for everybody. And just because I have a certain regiment doesn’t mean it is the one and only way. I appreciate and support the amazing abundance of workout varieties and dietary lifestyles and choices people make spanning the globe. If I attempt any, I will be sure to include it in my fitness diary, however that doesn’t mean that I will endorse any form over the other adamantly.

What’s Different?

There’s another reason why I stopped writing *plot twist*. Whenever I write something that I feel truly took a lot out of me in the past to do so, especially when I pour my heart out. Local readership has been somewhat scarce. Now I know I don’t have the best duck face or get my name misspelled at Starbucks to post on my instagram, however my stats show that most of my readers come out of Bahrain (US,UK, shout out to Brazil and Spain too!). In the past this would get me upset and discourage me to keep writing, as I felt that my efforts were not being encouraged. I’ve struggled in a similar way with my business life (attempting to take on business giants in one of the world’s most demanding and punishing industries), so as I close out the first year of being an entrepreneur its left me with greater understanding and thicker skin (I wish it gave me more cartilage though). I feel like I can finally write freely,

 

In     any     form

 

That

 

I

Want.

 

See what I mean? I no longer feel shackled to fit in a box. Some have told me to write shorter posts (something about attention span), however I feel that It won’t get my point across if I did so. I told myself I would do three paragraphes with this article and then just post it, and look at how it ended up all Lord-of-the-Rings on you. (side note: never read the books or watched the movie, please don’t plot my murder Thanks. (oh while we are on the honest train, I havn’t seen most of the Star Wars films or any The God Father). (Nervebullet Boycott in 3… 2….1.)

Now, in case you are still reading (congratulations, most readers have not made it past my Adele joke back in the first paragraph), I really hope to push my writing as much as I do my fitness. I feel in order to do so, I’d also like to write about other things I am passionate about. I wont keep this solely for fitness. I’d love to share my poems, or thoughts on other things like music and video games. Im all about the melodies that touch your soul, and/or shake your spine (from Um Kalthoom, or Tracy Chapman to Bury Tomorrow and Sevendust. Oh and speaking of Video games, it has certainly turned into an interactive art form (I’m big on Tomb Raider, Bioshock and Last of Us.) so expect me throw in discussions about the current video game culture amidst other things!

Thanks for taking the time to read this. Look out for my next post October 2016 (jk jk, see you next week!)

Try to visit my blog like you do Friday family lunch. and Heres hoping you visit your family once a week.

From the ground up,

Mohammed

For daily posts check out my instagram @nervebullet.

Currently (NOT) Listening to: Hello by Adelle

Currently Playing: Need for Speed (2015)

Sevendust Part 1: Discovering the Field of Solitude

Introduction

To celebrate Sevendust’s 10th electric record ‘Kill the Flaw’ (releasing this Friday October 2nd 2015), I am penning a three part blog series, encompassing my discovery of the band back in 2001, my relationship with their music, meeting them through a series of interactions that have spanned 15 years of brutal melody and honest lyrics.

Discovering the Field of Solitude 

Remember those CRT computer monitors. Strong enough to poke your eye out, but you were on it everyday. Back in high school you were on the computer right after school, chatting with your friends on msn or aol, slaving through an essay with only your music to keep you company. During my avid ‘study breaks’ I’d jump online looking for new music to add to my collection. I don’t remember which band I was looking up (or maybe I do but I’m to embarrassed to disclose) and as I was hovering across the ‘similar artist’ section a picture of a pale kid with a green apple on his head catches my attention. The only song you could sample was ‘Trust’ and it was lasted a mere 15 seconds but it was enough to put Lajon’s vocals front and center

“When I hold my head down to the ground and I wish you were here with me”

That was enough. That was all I needed (pun intended if you know the song). I franticly rushed on to Amazon to order Animosity. Back in the day kids, we didn’t have iTunes, and since I live on the tiny island of Bahrain, it was an antagonizing wait for the album to be shipped from the UK or US. The album stayed in my Portable CD Player for the most part until Seasons came out in 2003. Looking back I love each of their albums in their own way, but nothing will ever shake me the way Animosity did.

Every crevice on that record is etched into my mind for various reasons. Live Again was my anthem, Angel’s son was dear to both my sister and me, ever since we lost our grandmother a year later, T.O.A.B. ignited my love for double bass.  The album was so diverse and ahead of its time. If I play it today 14 years later, I still get chills.

Being a fanatic was an understatement. My email ID became sevendust95@hotmail.com (the year they formed), I wouldn’t stop talking about the band until my friends cemented it in the year book in the ’10 years later’ section. It was something about taking them around the world until they became number one. If that wasn’t enough I traversed online stores until I collected every version of every album they’ve released (Japanese, UK Imports you name it.). Seasons had a Japan exclusive track ‘Number One The Ballad’ which to me is also one of their greatest tracks so tracking these down was worth it. Now its click and it’s yours in an instant. Back in the early 2000’s you were waiting for it as bad as Eid or Christmas. There was a record store I would frequent in downtown Manama that imported new CDs (unfortunately its closed now). I remember a bunch of CD’s including Chimaira’s album arriving at the same time as Seasons, but was kept in their wrapping for a while as Seasons ran its course (enough Puns man). I remember sending a CD to DJ Krazy Kevin on our local radio station highlighting the songs with explicits so he wouldn’t play them. On one fine morning he played ‘Broken Down’ on my way to school. When I arrived I heard many kids talking about it, some loving it, but what I remember most was two girls complaining  ‘God they played Sevendust today, it was so loud’. I laughed as it was one of their most melodic singles, if only they heard something off Home!

Listening to them through headphones will always be something I hold dear to me. All of this was about to change after I found out I was going to see them live for the first time.

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60 Days of Bossy Kitchen!

Nervebullet: Listen I can explain, please don’t hang up on me.

Blog Reader: Who is she, and why haven’t you been answering (posting) for the past year.

Nervebullet: Listen baby, I can change. First off, she’s my wife, and we were both determined to take Bossy Kitchen from a home based business to a full fledged restaurant, so I needed some time to focus on that. But now its all you I promise. It’s always been you.

Blog Reader: Wait a minute, did you just call me baby? I could be a guy for all you know.

Nervebullet: Um… lets get back to blogging shall we?

I’ll make a post explaining my absence and going through the highlights of the life changing 2014 but for now lets start dust this website off and get back to business eh?

For the next 60 Days I will be eating strictly healthy home cooked meals from Bossy Kitchen. It could be anything from the current menu available to the public, or prototype dishes that could be served in the future. I’ve taken my weight, full body measurements and body fat %age, caliper measurements. They are safely stored in my office drawer and I will compare them with my new results in 60 days.

As I write this I am currently on day 3 and things are going great so far! I will be posting regular updates of my eating habits and workouts on instagram @nervebullet . Also feel free to follow me on my fitness pal were I tag EVERY SINGLE thing that goes into my body and EVERY SINGLE workout for the next 60 days! If I cheat you will see it. I will provide a weekly summery on my blog to share how things are going.

The house rules are listed below:

  • No Dairy
  • No Red meat
  • No Refined carbs
  • No Soda
  • Clean carbs during breakfast and less during lunch
  • No fruits after lunch
  • Dinner: Leans & Greens only
  • Supplements: Fish Oil, Turmeric
  • WATER WATER WATER
  • STRETCH STRETCH STRETCH
  • Workouts + Phsyio NO MATTER WHAT
  • One rest day a week
  • Cheat meal once every 10 days.
  • NO EXCEPTIONS
  • NO EXCUSES
  • NOW OR NEVER!

I want to keep this post brief, so I will go through these rules, alongside insight behind my actions and decisions in form of daily updates on instagram.

Here goes nothing!

Mohammed

PS: Feel free to reach out to me via email, instagram, twitter to the comments box below and let me know which areas you areas interest you more during the 60 days (food, workout, supplements etc.) and share your thoughts and ideas! I need you to communicate with me throughout all this so I can provide you with meaningful feedback and useful posts!

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