Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Sorrentino‘s Situation

Robert Downes - January 10th, 2011
Sorrentino’s Situation
There was a shirtless photo of Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino of MTV’s
Jersey Shore in last week’s edition of Entertainment Weekly. The
Situation, of course, is world-famous for his abs, and looks to be ‘cut’
about as deep as the Grand Canyon.
Anyone who’s ever trained for a body building competition, a black
belt, or for their first marathon, can appreciate the kind of effort
that goes into Sorrentino’s level of fitness. But as any fitness junkie
knows, getting there is one thing -- staying there is another.
We‘re a bit of an ‘abs obsessed’ society, with gadgets such as the
Coaster Abs and Abs Circuit machines advertised on TV as ways to tone
your tummy. And has there ever been an issue of Men’s Health magazine
in its 24 years of publication that didn’t have a front page story
along the lines of this week’s “Strip Away Belly Fat”?
Some of the people in the infomercials look like they’ve taken obsession
with their abdominal muscles to the brink of madness. But for those
whose six-pack tends to be in the refrigerator rather than above the
belt loops, Sorrentino notes that there’s no easy route to a washboard
Sorrentino reportedly does 3-4 abdominal exercises every other day,
along with lower back exercises to complement the force of his ab
muscles. He reports on various websites that he does a half-hour cardio
workout in the gym 5-6 days each week along the lines of running,
swimming or cycling.
He also avoids sugary foods, cake, cookies, salty snacks, Coca-Cola and
other counter-productive junk foods. He favors clean-burning veggies and
protein, avoiding high-carb foods. He smokes cigarettes, but that’s a
prerequisite for Jersey Shore lounge lizards.
“I also do three or four very, very difficult exercises,” he tells Us
magazine. “They’re very, very difficult, done over months of time to
get used to it,” he adds for emphasis, noting that these may involve
hanging upside down. “It looks like I’m doing gymnastics.”
Sounds pretty tough. It makes you wonder though, Sorrentino is a
28-year-old former fitness trainer. What will he look like 10, 20, 30
years from now?
Pretty good if he keeps it up, but that -- as any Weight Watchers
success story can tell you -- is the tough part.
Persevering is the devil’s bargain in fitness. You might be able to
chisel your gut into something resembling Sorrentino’s belly. You might
knock yourself silly to achieve a sub-40-minute 10k. You might lose 300
lbs. and win The Biggest Loser’s grand prize. But holding on to that
peak moment of fitness or dietary denial -- that’s the hard part.
Staying motivated long past the chipper hard-body days of your 20s and
30s is the price of the fitness lifestyle. Will Sorrentino continue
with his “very, very difficult” abs workout for years on end, hanging
upside down like a fruit bat five times a week and doing endless
vertical crunches and hanging lifts? Or will he get bored silly by the
time he hits 40 and start that flabby slide into what passes for
normality in America? That’s ‘the situation’ faced by every lifetime
devotee to fitness.
Studies claim that muscle mass begins to decrease in a big way after
the age of 40. By one estimate, your skeletal muscle mass decreases by
up to 40% by the time you reach the age of 80.
But it doesn’t have to be so. According to the American College of
Sports Medicine, strength training twice a week on top of 20-30 minutes
of cardio each day can counteract a decline in muscle mass. This is why
you sometimes see weight trainers, yoga practitioners, runners and
cyclists in their 60s who still have the strength of people 30 years
younger; they’re locked into a lifestyle and their workouts and never
quit long enough to waste away.
It all gets back to persevering with a daily exercise plan and mixing
it up with different modalities: yoga, swimming, weight training,
pilates, walking/running, skiing, etc., when the same old grind gets to
be too much to endure.
So get moving and good luck -- your abs are counting on you. Who knows?
By this time next year your stomach may even be mistaken for that of
Mike Sorrentino‘s.

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