Thursday, September 20, 2007

Day 316: Man Vs. Machine Revisited - Real Time Accountability With Tom Venuto


I had a killer HIIT cardio workout today!

Once again I felt I was re-connecting with my "former self" in my earlier Mission 1 battles against the granddaddy of all cardio equipment...the treadmill!

The Point Of No Return!

As I was midway through the last 16 km/h interval covered in a pool of sweat I reached the point of no return. It is times like these where you have to put the pain, agony and discomfort aside and remember (every single second!) why you are doing this.

Even though I am feeling the pain in real-time my mind does start to wander strangely enough. I start to focus my mind on the bigger picture and visualize how I'm gonna feel on Day 365 when it comes time to take my final M3 pictures.

Driven By A 128KB Picture

As great as the pain is in that moment the pain I would feel if I missed my six-pack goal by Day 365 is infinitely greater.

Believe it or not I am also driven by that 128KB picture that will be placed over the question mark in my header graphic on Day 365!

Nothing would please me more than to be able to place a "shredded six-pack" in that space that far exceeds my M2 final picture.

This would probably not surprise many people because as you can see I'm a very visually orientated person. Tracking my progress through daily pictures not only keeps me accountable every single day but also allows me to create a self-fulfilling prophecy of physique transformation when I see constant progress.

Real-Time Accountability With Tom Venuto!

Another factor that drives me are the regular progress picture updates I place in Tom Venuto's Burn The Fat Inner Circle Photo Gallery. Just knowing that Tom himself actually checks these pictures is a massive motivation for me.

Actually, I posted an entry in the Cardio Forum of the Inner Circle titled Man Vs. Machine back on January 13, 2007 (originally written on Day 38) as I entered the final "shred phase" of Mission 1.

Tom actually replied to my post! I can't describe how motivating that was for me at that time.

I really "hit the hammer" hard after that exchange!

Below is a transcript of that exchange between me and Tom.

Man Vs Machine: My Definition Of Cardio Intensity

Posted by


I thought I would post something I wrote on Day 38 of my blog. I am by no means a "HIIT cardio guru." I just thought it might be relevant for people who struggle with intensity and how hard you need to push yourself to see results. Here it is below.

Day 38 of 84

Status - Round 4: Phase 2: Day 1

Today was a titanic struggle, it was literally man versus machine. No, I wasn't squaring off against the Terminator, the machine I am talking about is far more lethal. Can you guess what it is? One word...Treadmill. Yes I know, it may look harmless to the unitiated but once you start a high intensity workout on it there's no going back baby!

It all started at 9.30 am this morning. When I woke up I felt queasy just thinking about it. I was going for my personal best - 4 cycles of 6, 12, 14, and 16 km/h at 1 minute intervals BUT the last cycle had to be 2 minutes and 5 seconds.

I hit 2 minutes at 16 km/h on Tuesday this week, now it was time to up the ante to 2 minutes and 5 seconds. Five extra seconds may not sound like much but let me tell was pure torture. As I entered the final minute I was already feeling nauseous, my stomach was churning, my calves were aching.

The final 15 seconds felt like 15 minutes. This is living life in the moment, right here right now. Will you fulfill the most important promise you can make? You know...the ones you make to yourself. Of course I did, do you know why?

Because, no matter how hard it is I always know in the back of my mind that these are the moments that define success or failure. The only way you can dramatically transform your physique in a short period of time is to continually raise your standards.

You have to break through new barriers every single workout. If you stay stagnant even for one workout you will not progress, simple as that. The great thing is that you can apply these intense experiences to other areas of your life. Are you living in the moment? Do you cherish what you already have? Do you respect yourself and others enough to keep the promises you make?

I have discovered over the course of the last 38 days that changing your body shape is a great metaphor for life changes. I already feel more confident and secure in myself. I also notice that the people around me are reacting to me differently, in a positive way. The changes in me are now becoming obvious, almost daily I am stopped by someone I know. They tell me how great I am looking, they also notice my new-found confidence.

So yes, I can safely say that those extra 5 seconds don't just make a little bit of difference...they make ALL the difference. Until next time that is, when it will be those extra 10 seconds. I can already feel it now...

Adam Waters
Inner Circle Contributor


Posted by

Jan 13,2007
3:27 PM

G'day Rhez,

You hit the nail on the head. It really is those extra 5 or 10 seconds that make all the difference. Here's a 'funny thing' I go through during these intense moments. While my lungs, legs and calves are screaming for mercy I actually ask myself this question "What is pain?", "Is this pain?" The answer I always come up with is "No, this is pleasure, this is living life 'to the max"

Once you do finish there is no better feeling knowing that you achieved your goal for that day coupled with the endorphin rush!



Posted by

Jan 13,2007
4:19 PM

"Hit the nail on the head" is right

ALL the growth happens outside the comfort zone.

I've experienced changes in my body happen so fast it is almost too hard to believe... if and only if I push beyond the comfort zone.... Its astonishing how you could put in hours and hours of training a week and get very little additional progress... but its usually because those hours consist of what you've already done before.

when you push intensity beyond that, the effect is so pronounced that I can only describe it as a threshold effect... before the threshold, almost nothing - you only maintain, even if you are putting in a lot of time..

but one tiny step over the threshold, which can be minutes or even just seconds as adam says, and the progress starts coming EXPONENTIALLY faster


Posted by

Jan 13,2007
4:44 PM

I couldn't agree more Tom. You said it best in your "Burn The Fat Show" episode 1.

Just above your regular pain threshold is where all growth occurs. It may only be "5 seconds" or "one more rep" at that moment in time, but taken over 12 week period (for example) the growth you get is exponential. It seems to me to be some kind of "law of the universe" that you have to respect and practice in order to see results.


Can you see how motivating that is?

Just imagine having the fat loss guru himself, Tom Venuto keeping you accountable to your goals in real-time through the Photo Gallery and Forums.

The great news is that you can! Go to Burn The Fat Inner Circle to learn how the Internet's premiere fat loss community can help you achieve the body of your dreams, as it has done for me.

Alternatively, you can read more about my experience with the Inner Circle from Day 202: Breaking News...I Am Now An Official Contributor to The Inner Circle

Until tomorrow...

Eat Clean,
Shred Hard,
Think BIG!

Adam Waters, NESTA-CPT

P.S. Below are Day 316 pics for September 20, 2007: Mission 3 Phase 2 - Day 22 of 70


Rayden said...

Wow, Tom replying to your message is a sure inspirer. That guy is simply inspiring, and I bet that you're trying to aim for 6-pack abs like he has - those never cease to fascinate me. For me however, it is a totally different story. My body is irritatingly fantastic at getting used to whatever I throw at it, no matter how much I practically kill myself. Since I'm very overweight, I feel afraid to go overboard on the treadmill (meaning beyond 11kmph), that too HIIT. But while I've been torturing myself with those 5 seconds extra, or that last "round" figure on the distance meter, the body just fails to move ahead. I'm wondering whether it makes sense to try those fat-burners for a month and see how that works out. What do you suggest sir?

Adam Waters said...

Hi Rayden,

Great to hear from you mate. You are right about Tom, he has been practicing what he preaches for 20 years.

In regards to HIIT you may benefit more from a hybrid style cardio program (like what I used in Mission 2). I remember when I started the long climb back from 105Kg's at 27% bodyfat I incorporated 4 different styles of cardio (treadmill, bike, skipping and boxing).

This will add variety, prevent adaption to running (ie, a "runners's body") and prevent injury (particularly to the knees and ankles from too much running).

For more info on my "Hybrid Cardio" plan go to my Day 105 post:

I trust this helps you mate.

Adam Waters

Adam Waters said...

One more thing, regarding "fat burners" I'd save your money. I haven't used them since I started Mission 1, they may give you an "extra 3%" edge but 97% of your results will come down to your mindset, nutrition and training.

Adam Waters