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  #1  
Old 11-10-2003, 09:11 PM
Carnac the Magnificent! Carnac the Magnificent! is offline
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How do Hollywood stars get so buff, so quickly?

Over the years, I've heard many Hollywood celebrities say that, in preparation for a movie role: "I had to get ripped/in great shape/really buff really fast."

I've heard Hollywood trainers say the same thing: that their jobs were to get stars looking really buff in just 2-3 months. A few such claims I might write off as the machinations of a publicity agent, but I've heard lots of male stars make this claim and they seem credible.

So, what's the secret? I always thought that whether you spend 1 hour in the gym or five hours three times a week, the results are basically that you can't rush muscle development and toning.
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  #2  
Old 11-10-2003, 09:30 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
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I think your assumption that more time in the gym doesn't equal faster muscle development is flawed. I notice that I get fit and buff much more quickly when I excersize 2 or 3 hours a day than I do when I only get in 5 hours a week. I bet that a professionally managed routine would be even more effective.

If only I could spend that much time regularly!
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  #3  
Old 11-10-2003, 09:32 PM
AskNott AskNott is offline
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In an interview, Charlie Sheen (I think that's his name) said he had to get suddenly buff for Hot Shots, Part (French word for 2.) He worked with a personal trainer for several weeks. He said he packed a lifetime of pain into those few weeks. He also said the pumped look went away just as fast when he stopped working out.
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  #4  
Old 11-10-2003, 09:49 PM
Reader99 Reader99 is offline
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I suspect that a lot of these people keep themselves in better shape to start with than most of us. As actors, their bodies are their livelihood, and as successful actors, they have more time and money than most people to take care of themselves (also to indulge themselves, but that's a different issue). You think Tom Cruise/Sean Penn/John Travolta/Denzel Washington etc. are ever as out of condition as the average office worker? Maybe they get in shape faster because they have a shorter road to travel.
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  #5  
Old 11-11-2003, 02:41 AM
Titan2 Titan2 is offline
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I'd imagine an actor's chore is no different than a boxer's (top echelon) in between bouts.

For those few months they're probably on a complete exercise/nutritional plan.That means NO big macs or other junk food plus regular hours.

The average Joe can't do it because he doesn't have the time or possibly resources to watch every single habit for months.Steady employment tends to get in the way.
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  #6  
Old 11-11-2003, 03:13 AM
Markxxx Markxxx is offline
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I can tell you there is no way Charlie Sheen got that buff that quickly without help of steriods. It doesn't happen.

Look at people like Governor Arnold and even the Hulk denied using them. But they later admitted it.

Steroids is the answer you are looking for. I tell you what. Usually on ESPN2 they have the MR Natural Bodybuilding Contest. Look at these guys. Buff, yes but they are not even as well built as some of your Hollywood stars.

I can go into my gym right now on any given day and pick out 10 guys with better bodies than these Natural Bodybuilders. Why? The guys in the gym use steriods.

These Natural Bodybuilders do this as a living for years and yet people try to convince me that the guys in my gym that go three times a week for two month and have better bodies than these Natural Bodybuilders don't use steroids.

Charlie Sheen was always a scrawny runt. Even now in his new TV show he is scrawny. You don't go that quickly without help.
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  #7  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:15 AM
RickJay RickJay is offline
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But Charlie Sheen wasn't as buff as Arnold or Lou Ferrigno, so that's not a valid comparison. He was buff, but not that massive. And frankly, he's not a scrawny runt at all; he's a fairly big guy. If he didn't work out I suspect he'd be portly, like his Dad, not scrawny. I'm basically the same size as Charlie Sheen and I went from about 150 pounds to 175 during ten weeks of Army basic, virtually all of it muscle, no steroids. you can do it if you are properly motivated and have the time to do nothing else.

Hollywood actors can get all toned, but you don't see them getting monstrously mesomorphic, like Lou Ferrigno. Look at Brad Pitt in "Fight Club." He's ripped, but he's not BIG - he just looks, frankly, like he dieted like crazy and worked out for a couple of months. If you're putting in 5 hours a day and eating a supervised diet I see no reason why you can't look pretty damned good in a couple of months.
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  #8  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:28 AM
pravnik pravnik is online now
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I'm with RickJay; I think it comes down more to resources and motivation. Looking a particular way is basically an actor's job...well, that and acting. If you have the time and money to put into it you can speed the process of toning up or down up a good deal over us average joes who have pesky 9 to 5 jobs interfering with our workout schedules, would rather not shell out for a trainer, and won't get canned for not having a six pack.
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  #9  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:34 AM
handy handy is offline
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They show it on Extreme Makeover often. Try watching that show, its on thur night at 9.

BTW, alot of times they use a body double.
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  #10  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:57 AM
jk1245 jk1245 is offline
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It's easy and you can do it too.

All you need to do is:

* hire a personal trainer who will come to your house whenever
you are available (not you going to the gym when they are
available)
* Buy a room full of the best eqiuipment money can buy (much
easier to stick to a program if you don't even have to leave your
house)
* Hire a nutritionist to plan every meal for you according to your
health goals
* Hire a personal chef to prepare those meals for you
* quit your job so you can have 3-4 hours a day to work out
* get cosmetic surgery for any needed touchups

In other words celebs can do it because they have lots of extra money and lots of extra time. Also, as others have noted, they are likely not starting from as out of shape as others may be. Someone morbidly obese could not get into movie star shape in 2-3 months, but if all you need to is lose 10-20 pounds and tone a few areas, that's not difficult at all.
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  #11  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:58 AM
Intaglio Intaglio is offline
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Well, for one thing most of these Hollywood Actors/Actresses are in great shape to begin with, it's there job. And when they have to get super buff for a role, they get a trainer, nutritionist, personal chef that alters there eating and up there workouts significantly.

They have money, it's not like they are working at a 9 to 5 job, all day then have errands to run after work and household stuff to do. They can concentrate on the transformation that they have to do, plus if I was getting paid 10-20 mil, to get in super-buff great shape, that might motivate me to do the work-outs.
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  #12  
Old 11-11-2003, 09:11 AM
jimdigritz jimdigritz is offline
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Let me just put one old myth to rest.

More time in the gym does not equal more muscle mass gains. Most non-genetic freaks gain best on an abbreviated, high intensity weights program of less than 2 hours a week. If your mum and dad gave you the genetics of Schwarzenegger then you may gain muscle training 6 hours a day whilst eating nothing but ice cream.. otherwise you are wasting your time.

I believe that most of the stars 'buffness' is actually just water and fat loss, which can be done in weeks, just like the boxer analogy (or college wrestler). As Reader99 pointed out most stars are in pretty good shape all year round.

Of course a supervised course of steroids will increase hypertrophy for the term of the course, just dont expect to keep the gains once the course has finished.

/rant on/
If one more person uses the meaningless term 'toning up' I will scream.
/rant off/
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  #13  
Old 11-11-2003, 12:16 PM
ralph124c ralph124c is offline
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I tend to believe that steroids are a big part of this..look at Arnold Schwarznegger in his nude posing days-versus after he dropped the steroid use. The difference is like night and day. And,like Arnold, steroid use can damage your heart-stay away from these drugs!
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  #14  
Old 11-11-2003, 12:37 PM
Charlie Tan Charlie Tan is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by jimdigritz
/rant on/
If one more person uses the meaningless term 'toning up' I will scream.
/rant off/
'Toning up'

:listening:


IIRC, when Demi Moore was on Letterman, promoting that POS 'Striptease' she claimed to have worked out 1200 hours to get in shape. That's 150 full workdays.

jk1245 is right on target. When Tom Cruise gets $20 million to do a movie, and a year to prep, the money and motivation is big enough, so it won't be a problem. Many actors are also in the Hollywood biz b/c of their inflated egos and really want to look great.

If you want to see someone naturally buff, check out som old flicks with Burt Lancaster. The guy was 6'2" and worked as an acrobat in a circus before becomming an actor. Those muscles are real, not inflated by steroids and Nautilus™ machinery.
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  #15  
Old 11-11-2003, 01:17 PM
moriah moriah is offline
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And... muscle definition can be enhanced by application of cosmetics, anywhere from darkening muscle shadows to application of latex muscles.

And if the movie really needed to establish fitness (such as in Spiderman, though, I'm not saying whether Toby's definition was au natural or not), then body doubles (as mentioned) and even digital enhancement can be used.

Peace.
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  #16  
Old 11-11-2003, 03:36 PM
xvxdarkknightxvx xvxdarkknightxvx is offline
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I'm pretty sure the Spidey suit had built in muscle definition. He also used a body double (pretty sure of this). He worked out a lot, too.
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  #17  
Old 11-11-2003, 03:55 PM
Telemark Telemark is online now
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Gov Arnold is a lot smaller now not because of stopping steroids (though he did use them) but because he doesn't need to be big. He stopped working out nearly as much and ate less. It's hard to maintain that much muscle mass, but if you change your diet there's no reason why he wouldn't get smaller yet stay fit.

And he won a libel lawsuit against someone who said he had heart surgery due to steroid abuse. Link to libel story It was a congenital heart defect.

However much the steriods contributed to his physique in his bodybuilder days, he needed a different body shape for his roles as an action film actor. Changes in diet and exercise account for the majority of that, not changes in steroid use.
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  #18  
Old 11-11-2003, 04:10 PM
handy handy is offline
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"but if you change your diet there's no reason why he wouldn't get smaller yet stay fit."

I saw a picture of him without a top on recently on tv & Arnold looks more like a balloon you took the air out of. He doesn't look fit at all.
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  #19  
Old 11-11-2003, 06:32 PM
gcarroll gcarroll is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by handy
"but if you change your diet there's no reason why he wouldn't get smaller yet stay fit."

I saw a picture of him without a top on recently on tv & Arnold looks more like a balloon you took the air out of. He doesn't look fit at all.
Paraphrasing Yoda: “Look as good when YOU are almost 60 you will not, eh?”
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  #20  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:05 PM
cdhostage cdhostage is offline
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Basic Training. While the aim isn't to improve a body's appearance but rather to break and remold a person, the physique of soldiers several months after induction is close to perfect. You can't help but gain muscle when properly fed and burning 6000 or more calories a day. The physical appearance must improve even more with proper sleep, which recruits don't get but an actor would.

Then, of course, there's the stage presence thing - a professional performer, paying attention, will always look better than an ordinary-job twin.
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  #21  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:05 PM
MrWhy MrWhy is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by jimdigritz
Most non-genetic freaks gain best on an abbreviated, high intensity weights program of less than 2 hours a week.
Do you have a cite for this? From a legitimate peer reviewed scientific journal or similar type of respected source please, not a muscle magazine or fitness website without references.
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  #22  
Old 11-11-2003, 08:47 PM
ultrafilter ultrafilter is online now
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Quote:
Originally posted by MrWhy
Do you have a cite for this? From a legitimate peer reviewed scientific journal or similar type of respected source please, not a muscle magazine or fitness website without references.
You're not going to find one. The notion that any one training program is the best all the time is antiquated and not supported by evidence.
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  #23  
Old 11-12-2003, 07:17 AM
Jurph Jurph is offline
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I've followed jk1245's plan, but in a slightly different way; your tax dollars at work!

Quote:
Originally posted by jk1245
It's easy and you can do it too.

All you need to do is:

* hire a personal trainer who will come to your house whenever
you are available (not you going to the gym when they are
available)
That would be Technical Sergeant Mendoza, and Major Jacobs. They decided that I would be available starting at 0500 Monday through Saturday, and 0700 on Sundays.

Quote:

* Buy a room full of the best eqiuipment money can buy (much
easier to stick to a program if you don't even have to leave your house)
They would march me and my three hundred closest friends in the world out onto the parade ground as the July sun rose over San Antonio, and lead us in a rousing aerobic exercise routine combining pushups, situps, and more pushups. To break the monotony, we would go on long marches or runs.

Quote:

* Hire a nutritionist to plan every meal for you according to your
health goals
* Hire a personal chef to prepare those meals for you
Meals took about a half hour, eight minutes of which were spent eating. The meals were well-balanced, and prepared according to some arcane military text on what a "good meal" is. With only eight minutes to eat each meal, one's body chooses which foods to take from the buffet based on what one needs.

Quote:

* quit your job so you can have 3-4 hours a day to work out
For 30 days, this was my job. I had to meet certain baseline requirements just to get to field training, but by the end of it, I had nearly zero body-fat (I would sink in salt water) and was in the best shape of my life. The seven pounds I lost during the second week came back almost exactly two weeks after I stopped training.

I saw people in worse shape than I come out looking as good as I did. Thirty days is more than enough time to take someone who is trim, but not necessarily buff, and make them look like a musclebound hunk.
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  #24  
Old 11-12-2003, 07:47 AM
Carnac the Magnificent! Carnac the Magnificent! is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by ultrafilter
You're not going to find one. The notion that any one training program is the best all the time is antiquated and not supported by evidence.
You're previous posts on fitness have been uniformally excellent. I'd be interested in your views on my original question.

The old weightlifting chestnut is that a man can gain, on average, no more than 5 pounds of muscle per year, the rest being fat. I'm not sure if I believe that.

While you're at it, can you discuss what I would call muscle rebound--that is, lifting weights, gaining muscle mass, laying off lifting for a year or two, then hitting the weights again and experiencing accelerated muscular development. (This might help explain the Hollywood phenomena.)
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  #25  
Old 11-12-2003, 08:00 AM
Wesley Clark Wesley Clark is online now
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i'd say steroids, most likely. Its not unnatural for someone who has never used steroids before to gain 25 lbs of muscle in 8 weeks with them.

Secondly, it would take 2-3 years minimum of very intense exercise/diet/drug use to look like arnold did. People don't just look like that because they do steroids for a few weeks.
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  #26  
Old 11-12-2003, 08:14 AM
phreesh phreesh is offline
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To defend Toby Maguire for no reason at all, production was shut down for a period of time (sorry, no cite) while he got himself into shape. He was not huge in the movie, so I would discredit the steriods speculation.
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  #27  
Old 11-12-2003, 08:32 AM
handy handy is offline
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"“Look as good when YOU are almost 60 you will not, eh?”

I just saw Arnie in T3. No way is that his body or his hair, it's made up.

Body doubles give people the impression they are fit.
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  #28  
Old 11-12-2003, 09:29 AM
ultrafilter ultrafilter is online now
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Quote:
Originally posted by Carnac the Magnificent!
You're previous posts on fitness have been uniformally excellent. I'd be interested in your views on my original question.
Thanks, I'll do what I can.

Quote:
The old weightlifting chestnut is that a man can gain, on average, no more than 5 pounds of muscle per year, the rest being fat. I'm not sure if I believe that.
Gaining new muscle is a slow process, and the older you get, the slower it becomes. Most advanced trainees would crawl through broken glass to add 5 lbs. of muscle a year. Newer trainees can put on more, but it's tough.

But regaining old muscle is not the same as gaining new muscle, which leads nicely to your next paragraph....

Quote:
While you're at it, can you discuss what I would call muscle rebound--that is, lifting weights, gaining muscle mass, laying off lifting for a year or two, then hitting the weights again and experiencing accelerated muscular development. (This might help explain the Hollywood phenomena.)
This is exactly what I think is going on. These people have been in good shape before, which makes a huge difference in how easy it is to get in shape. Is it because of some arcane physiology? Or is it just because it's easier to visualize your goals when you've been there before? No one knows yet.

That their jobs depend on their looks and that they have the time and money to train a lot has a big impact too.

Just for fun, I'll throw in an article written by a strength coach who went from 18% bodyfat to 5% in 14 weeks (and put on some muscle too). I think his story is relevant here.
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  #29  
Old 11-12-2003, 10:01 AM
critter42 critter42 is offline
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I, too, was on Jurph's fitness plan. My particular plan was an 8 week course provided by the United States Navy.

I'm 5' 6" in stocking feet

Start of training:
Weight: 200 lbs
Waist: 40 in
Body Fat: 25%
(BMI wasn't measured when I was in, just Body Fat % guesstimate)

End of training:
Weight: 152 lbs
Waist: 30 in
Body Fat: 9%

I was not able to pass the mid-training physical fitness test - my abdominal and back muscles were very week from years of being a spare tire, and I could not complete the sit-up requirements - so I was put on a special regimen for a week to specifically focus on and strengthen those muscles, and was eventually able to max out the points you could get from situps during the test.

Anecdotal as it may be, with the right diet and excercise routine and the right motivation (and a Drill Instructor (called Company Commanders in Navy boot camp) screaming in your ear is excellent motivation ), a lot can be accomplished in two months

critter42
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  #30  
Old 11-12-2003, 10:38 AM
Futile Gesture Futile Gesture is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by phreesh
To defend Toby Maguire for no reason at all, production was shut down for a period of time (sorry, no cite) while he got himself into shape.
Yeah, but he still used computer effects for all the skyscraper hopping, so he couldn't have been that fit.
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  #31  
Old 11-13-2003, 06:05 AM
jimdigritz jimdigritz is offline
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MrWhy,

as someone else stated, you would be surprised at the lack of scientific research into this area.

Here is one cite from the Scientific American journal:

http://www.sciam.com/askexpert_quest...000&topic_id=3

Jim
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  #32  
Old 11-13-2003, 08:19 AM
Airman Doors, USAF Airman Doors, USAF is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jurph
I've followed jk1245's plan, but in a slightly different way; your tax dollars at work!


That would be Technical Sergeant Mendoza, and Major Jacobs. They decided that I would be available starting at 0500 Monday through Saturday, and 0700 on Sundays.


They would march me and my three hundred closest friends in the world out onto the parade ground as the July sun rose over San Antonio, and lead us in a rousing aerobic exercise routine combining pushups, situps, and more pushups. To break the monotony, we would go on long marches or runs.


Meals took about a half hour, eight minutes of which were spent eating. The meals were well-balanced, and prepared according to some arcane military text on what a "good meal" is. With only eight minutes to eat each meal, one's body chooses which foods to take from the buffet based on what one needs.



For 30 days, this was my job. I had to meet certain baseline requirements just to get to field training, but by the end of it, I had nearly zero body-fat (I would sink in salt water) and was in the best shape of my life. The seven pounds I lost during the second week came back almost exactly two weeks after I stopped training.

I saw people in worse shape than I come out looking as good as I did. Thirty days is more than enough time to take someone who is trim, but not necessarily buff, and make them look like a musclebound hunk.
Mendoza, eh? Were you in the 323d Training Squadron, by any chance? Because I had a Master Sergeant Mendoza that beat the living hell out of me during PC, to the tune of 22 pounds and 7% body fat.

Boy, do I need someone like that to beat me into shape now.
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  #33  
Old 11-13-2003, 09:05 AM
Jurph Jurph is offline
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I'm pretty sure that's the same guy; like all MTIs, he was sharp as a knife, and way too good at trapping you in your own words. I don't doubt for a second that he made MSgt. He and Technical Sergeant Orosco (along with Senior Master Sergeant Gallifarro) were the cadre who scared me into shape. The funny thing is, now that I'm commissioned, I could totally sit down and have a beer with any of the officers who were there (were I the type to sit down and have a beer with anyone). I still don't think I could talk to those NCO's at anything other than the position of attention.

My apologies for the hijack.
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