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Dream Reps by Justin Manning

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"If you don't use it, you lose it".

And it's easy to "lose it" in the Winter.

Because of this, winter weather is god's gift and curse to the gym rats. 

Gym rats view the gym as a sanctuary; a testament to  better ourselves. No matter the weather condition; the gym is home to enhancing muscles, perserverance , steel, and of course, bigger dreams. 

The gym is ours.

But, now it's 2016. And the New Year begins....

"New Years" people flock to the gym in droves. And each year, "New Years" people come with their amateur habits. They often fail to re-stack their weights, skip set rotations, and forget to wipe their sweat off the bench. 

It's a catastrophe!

And it's entertaining to watch them curl in a squat rack. No seriously, go to YouTube and search "Gym Fails". I dare you not to laugh. 

Personally, I go early in the morning(5am) at least 3 times a week to avoid that gym crowd. Why? Because It is quiet. Us gym rats are left to a conversation with our barbells and treadmills. 

If I'm between sets, I don't mind assisting "New Years" people who struggle with chest extensions or a squat rack. Sometimes I'll offer advice for free. And that's what I love about the gym most: Coaching. 

In a weird way, the "New Years" people have made me into a better coach. I've grown more patient, improved my technique, and I have built great relationships.

But not everyone is coach-able. And without proper training, people eventually quit.

Everyone has dreams, but achieving these dreams require physical and mental consistency for the changes we desire. We simply must practice our dreams daily.

I call this process, "Dream Reps".

In the gym, our muscles must be used to grow! Every rep counts. Different angles, grips, and exercises ensure that we exceed our plateaus. On the contrary, once we lose that muscle both laziness and complacency make a return to the gym undesirable. And worse, you've lost gains.

I believe the same applies to our dreams.

Try to workout and seek assistance to stay focused on that weight management goal. Without proper assistance the dream becomes derailed. And a dream without action becomes little more than a wish....

In the beginning, I hadn't had any training. I learned by watching and overhearing conversation from the gym rats. And these guys were intimidating! But these "guys-with-no-lives" knew what they were doing. The fact is: they earned their results. So, I asked questions, I watched, I learned. And I wasn't afraid to make mistakes. But I was hardheaded and learned humility the hard way.

I started with Tri-cep extensions at fifty (50) pounds. Couldn't do it. Dream deferred.

Let's try back extensions at 100 pounds. 1 rep. Dream discouraged.

Let's try the treadmill. Stopped the treadmill at 5 minutes. Dream destroyed.

But every-time when I wanted to give up, something told me to keep at it. Maybe I was motivated when I started seeing muscle growth, or maybe because I knew I was cheating myself. So I kept going.... Dream reps.

3 years later, my dream reps have begun to payoff. My muscle size has grown. I am inspiring others to pursue a healthy lifestyle. I have led classes. And in hindsight I am glad that I continued to "dream rep".

Tri-cep extensions have exceeded 100 pounds(on a good day).

My Back extension weight has doubled.

And the treadmill? Let's just say that I completed my first half-marathon in 2:02:18. 

Never stop dreaming. Build your dream reps.

FOLLOW JUSTIN 

@MEDALADDICT

@BROOKLYNIT3

Watch Stereotype Co's very own athlete on BRIC TV

This video is from BRIC TV- the first 24/7 television channel created by, for, and about Brooklyn. It is the borough's source for local news, Brooklyn culture, civic affairs, music, arts, sports, and technology. BRIC TV features programming produced and curated by BRIC, an arts and media nonprofit located in Downtown Brooklyn, NYC.

8 Awesome Photos of Dreamers Wearing Stereotype Co Hats #ThatHatThough

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1- @UnicornEmpress Zebra USA Snapback

Photo by Matty J

2- @MayaMille_ wearing Peace in Roses Photo by Clark Photography

3- @BrooklynIt3 wearing Luxorious Gold Tut

Photo by Adam Smith

4- @ErinKelli_K  wearing Tiger vs Dragon 5 Panel

Photo by Nicky Monji

5- @ARStylez wearing 3D Black Snapback

Photo by Nicky Monji

6- @DWattsWords wearing Black Flag Snapback

Photo by Travis Magee

7- @WhiskeyBurrito wearing Cheetah Cross

Photo by Matty J

8- @Mz_Pretty_Ewwp wearing Black Flag

Photo by Chris Kellz

 

Got a photo that should be on the list?

Tag us #StereotypeCo #StereotypeFam and

We'll share our favorites!

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your next purchase!



I Pity the Fool Who Doesn't Follow Their Dreams by Justin Manning

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Rocky movies have inspired generations of new and old fans to chase their dreams and to persevere through hardwork and discipline. But what good is a story without a good villain? One of those villains was 'CLUBBER Lang'. You may remember CLUBBER Lang from Rocky III, acted by Hollywood star Mr. T. CLUBBER Lang brought Pain. 

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Fit Your Stereotype [Healthy Mindset]

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8,500... 8,550.....8,551....

I flick my wrist to see my FitBit Charge HR stats and  I'm struggling. And I realize I am not getting faster. I'll either embrace the cold weather or continue fantasizing about the last 11,000 steps. 

I prefer to run during the summer time. Grab a pair of shorts, sneakers, and have a dope playlist on deck.  The next hour goes by in a flash. 

But here I was in Marine Park, Brooklyn  at 7:12am in October. Heading out the door was not as easy as during the summer because I had to worry about layering my clothing to accomadate the drop in temperature. Five miles down, two more miles to go.

I was training for the Men's Health Urbanatholon Classic (10 mile) Obstacle Race in Queens. It's a sprinters course. Having run the entire stadium at a Spartan Race, I knew endurance was key to finishing in under 2 hours. 

9,222....9,223....

I absolutely despise cold weather but training NEVER stops. In this case, I have to prepare for the cold concrete, the chill of an open scrape in 50 degree weather or worse-- risk more scrapes on my body than usual.

I'm almost there.

But now I'm desperate, and the finish line feels so near but yet so far. I begin daydreaming, hallucinating even. Why was I doing all of this? My OCR 2016 goals of standing on podiums while collecting more medals flashed before my eyes. I began envisioning starting my own profitable obstacle course and a sponsorship program to help finance my fellow racers 

Soon, I wasn't consumed with the amount of steps I had left. I embraced being lost in this dream for my own salvation. Before I knew it, my timer went off. I completed my goal. I stopped to take the ceremonial picture with my Fitbit app to document my training session. When I looked at the picture, suprisingly my eyes passed over my stats and onto my attire. I wore a hat to combat the chilly weather and a sweatshirt. 

My sweatshirt from StereoTypeCo read, "If you're reading this it is not too late to start dreaming."

It's never too late indeed. 

Follow Justin's fitness journey 

@Brooklynit3 @MedalAddict

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