Just Max Fitness Nutrition Blog

Journey to the 2016 Paralympic Trials and Much More

Joshua Myers 2016 Paralympic Journey

2016 Paralympic Journey Update of Joshua Myers, Founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition. Plus, JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com Celebrates 1 Year with an 11% Savings Discount Code!

Last year, right after JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com went live and I also launched this GoFundMe campaign, I wrote a blog post that chronicled my 2015 Paralympic season and the experience of placing first and winning the Shot Put National Championship in Minneapolis, Minnesota at Hamline University.

This time around, I wanted to do things a little differently and let my supporters know how my season has gone, prior to the end of it, while also taking the opportunity to thank everyone who makes this journey as excellent as it has been.

As of June 15, 2016, right around the time that JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com also celebrates one year from launch, I have completed two of three scheduled meets and this year’s third (invitational) meet happens to be very special and impactful to my journey of becoming a Shot Put Paralympian.


Looking back at the first event of the season, the Desert Challenge Games held in Tempe, AZ, is always my favorite event of the year. The Desert Challenge Games plays host to the IPC (International Paralympic Committee) Athletics Grand Prix, the only place it is ever held in the United States. Here, I get to go back to where I started throwing shot put and also get to see so many friends and great people from my time as an Arizona resident.

On that note, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank a few supporters and "believers" who made my trip to Arizona and my chance to enter the track and field landscape possible by being added to the world ranking list.

Hats off to Dr. Gary Johnson, II, Au.D with Advanced Hearing Group, and his wonderful wife Vikki -- your continued sponsorship and support of my efforts is paramount to my success! Big thanks also to my JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com main-digital-marketing-man Ricky Arconti (who has done much to help this website grow) along with his family, including Meghan Zeller, who brought a big crew of supporters to the event in Tempe! 


At the Desert Games, I finished first in my division by a considerable margin with a throw of 5.73m (18 feet, 9 inches) and currently rank 16th on the World Rankings List. However, this was not a personal best, which was rather disappointed.

Although I did not throw as far as I had trained for and envisioned, I have learned that throwing the shot put is as much about technique as it is about strength.

I have stayed motivated with my workouts in the gym and found a way to simulate the throwing technique using my lat-pull machine plus a D-ring, when I'm unable to throw outdoors.

I have also reconnected with my old powerlifting coach, Big Dave from the Beyond Fitness days (my first time with a coach and experience in a real health club)! He has been devising new strength programs that will turn me into a champ.

At the start of June '16, I completed my second meet in Lake Forest Illinois, competing in the Adult National Open and Great Lakes Regional Games (GLASA). This event was an excellent one, which served as an additional warm-up to the team trails. It was a close commute to my home state of Wisconsin and I had one of my best friends as travel companion and coach for the weekend.

This year's third meet is the capstone as it is the 2016 Paralympic Team Trials, which will be held at Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina. The competition runs from June 29th to July 3rd, with subsequent Paralympic Team selections being made on July 3rd!

The schedule-makers have me charted to throw Shot Put the evening of June 30th -- so if you could send positive vibes my way that evening, that would be great!

This event also serves as our National Championships, so I will also be aiming to defend my title and capture a second straight Championship!

Leading up to this Paralympic Team Trial, as I continue to work on my technique, getting faster and stronger - I want to thank a few more folks who have supported and contributed in some way along my journey:

To customer's across the country who have purchased JMFN t-shirts and discount nutritional supplements from JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com this past year, I thank you and appreciate you choosing JMFN to meet your fitness and nutrition needs.

Please know that your purchases allow me to live my entrepreneurial dream to provide you with online nutritional supplements at a great price. Even though there are many stores on the web that sell sports nutrition supplements and fitness products, how many of them have a founder with an inspiring story and mission like this one?

As always, if you would like to support my journey while shopping for a product that you can't find on this website, please check out my "believers" page, or click on the Amazon link here - or any Amazon banner displayed on this site - anytime before you shop on Amazon.com, as I will receive a small percentage of the sale of any purchase you make to help offset the costs of Paralympic training and event expenses, at no additional cost to you. 

In recognition of all JMFN customers and in celebration of JustMaxFitnessNutrition.com's one year anniversary, please apply discount code, 'JMFNONE' at checkout to save 11% off your next purchase in the month of June!


To the many who have contributed to my still active GoFundMe (GFM) campaign most recently: Kyle from KarateMart.com, Brooke, Jessica, Michael, and Richard D. Arconti). I cannot thank you enough!

To the folks who have donated to my GFM campaign in exchange for personalized workout plans: Chris, Shannon and Brieanna, I look forward to helping you reach beyond your fitness goals!

Even though I am currently short of my fundraising goals to fully fund my upcoming Paralympic Trial in Charlotte, including flight and traveling with my throwing chair, transportation and hotel accommodations, I am hopeful that with your help I will be able to reach my fundraising goal this month!

Are you willing to help me reach my goal? Click here to see what it takes to help me reach my goal!


Joshua Myers GoFundMe

Additionally, I would like to thank Josh for being the best wing man in the game; to my old powerlifting coach Big Dave for coming up with new strength programs and refueling my desire to power lift; to Steve for being my new pseudo throwing coach and the best adopted father a 14 year old kid could ask for some 22 years ago. I am forever grateful!

To the countless family and friends, who continue to show their support through social media likes, comments and shares of my updates. You might not know it, but your words and kind gestures keep me fueled up! Your Facebook post/comments and morale support are often the most motivation and encouraging feedback I receive! 

And a thank you goes out beyond measure to my mom for raising me the way that she did, as I know that she is proud of me every day, even when I don't reach my own expectations for myself. And to my wife, aka my spotter in the gym, and my boys, Dylan & Dominic, I love you and I couldn’t do what I do without you.

If I forgot to thank anyone in this massive shout out, it was surely unintentional. 

Thanks in advance for leaving a quick comment in the Facebook box below and for continuing to encourage me, my fellow adaptive athletes, and anyone who has their heart set on achieving their fitness goals!


Joshua Myers, Founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition

Which is the Best Whey Protein Powder? R1 Protein by Rule 1 vs Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard: "Olympics of Whey Protein Powders" Review

 

 

Best whey protein powder: Optimum Nutrition vs Rule 1

Which Whey Protein Powder is Really the Best on the Market? Rule 1 R1 Protein vs ON Gold Standard Review


A quick Google search of “Top 10 Proteins on Amazon” and you can see that Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard is far and away the number one selling product on the largest e-tailer on the internet.

It is also #1 on the second largest e-tailer (and JMFN's largest competitor), Bodybuilding.com.

You can go on any number of fitness nutrition websites, or protein review websites, to find ON Gold Standard Protein and see that it is number one on those websites too. On its own site, Optimum Nutrition claims that it is the number one selling protein in the world. This is probably true, but have you ever questioned why ON protein is so highly touted?

I believe it is simply because they were the first premium whey protein manufacturer to brand their protein powder as “Gold Standard” and have done a great job marketing this message to fitness industry.

In any instance, when I have asked someone why they chose ON 100% Whey Gold Standard over another sports nutrition supplement brand, more often than not I simply hear “They are the gold standard of protein powder”, not because they're searching for the cheapest whey protein for sale on the market, the best tasting, or even the best quality protein.

Of course the top medal to win in the Olympics or any sporting competition where medals are handed out is obviously the Gold Medal. As you may know I am striving for the Gold in 2024, but just because I tell you I am training to be the best doesn’t mean I am automatically the best and that I will win the Gold in Tokyo, right?

I need to work hard and prove that I am the best. So why should I assume it to be so for my whey protein powder -- just because the brand tells me so?

As I did some research, I found that there are quite a few protein powder brands on the market that rival 100% Whey Gold Standard in quality.

If I were to hold a Protein Powder Olympics - Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard could win the bronze, maybe even the silver. But they wouldn’t get the gold at my games. The gold would be crowned on the makers of R1 Protein by Rule 1. Therefore, the remainder of this blog post is dedicated to anyone looking for an in-depth Rule 1 protein reviews.

Rule One Proteins was founded in 2014 under the parent company Nutrivo, LLC – the brain trust of Tony Costello Sr. and his son,Tony Costello Jr. Tony Sr is one of the two founders of what is now known as Optimum Nutrition; yes I typed that right, the same company that used to have the best protein on the market.

Brothers Mike and Tony Costello (Sr.), sold Optimum Nutrition to Glanbia Nutritionals in 2008 for $315 million. They both had intentions of walking away from the sports nutrition supplements industry entirely, but when Tony Sr had the opportunity to start Rule One, and create Rule 1 protein powder, it was something he couldn't pass up.

So in creating the number one fitness supplement brand over 22 years, if they were starting over certainly they thought they could create a better version of protein then Optimum Gold Standard Whey.

Would you want to create a better #1 seller than the version you just left? The answer to that question is a resounding YES! But don’t take my word for it. Take a look at the numbers in my product description and this comparison chart:

Protein_Review_Highlights

(click the image to check Gold Standard ingredients)

In comparing the contents of these whey powder products, both Rule 1 protein powder and Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard are gluten free, have similar consistency and similar flavoring which is good because I think they both taste great.

Being gluten free and having similar consistency are both very important to me as well, but that is where the comparison ends.

In all other major metrics that we should be looking at in determining the quality of our protein powders; like protein per serving, additional BCAAs per serving (super important if you are using your shake as an immediate post-workout recovery drink), and the macro make-up of the powder such as fat and carbohydrates (sugar).

In these "Olympics of Whey Protein Powders", R1 Protein by Rule 1 receives the gold without question. 

 

My Rule 1 Protein is currently sold out. You can still help out the Just Max Fitness mission by ordering it through my Amazon Affiliate link HERE

 

 

So, which protein powder do you think is truly the gold standard of whey protein in your rankings of Rule 1 vs Gold Standard?


Let me know which whey protein powder is your favorite in the blog comments below!

 


Joshua Myers, Founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition

2015 Paralympic National Championships & What’s Next for Joshua Myers

My Experience at the 2015 Paralympic Track and Field Championships at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota




Last month I competed in my first Paralympic National Championship meet in St. Paul Minnesota at Hamline University. I was able to win the National Championship in my class of F33, (athletes are separated into classes by level of disability) with a throw of 5.64m (18.5 feet).

Although I did not reach my personal goal of 6m (19 feet, 8 inches) I was the #1 ranked thrower in my class for the entire throwing season by a considerable margin ...

(There is another gentleman who belongs on this list that competed at Nationals with a throw of 3.69m)

I competed in two events this year and I thought that my throws of 5.83m at the Desert Challenge Games in Tempe, AZ and 5.64m at the National Championships in St. Paul, MN were going to get me into the Para Pan American games this August.  With a Minimum throwing standard of 5.5m and being meters, and over a meter ahead of the rest of our Nation I thought I was headed to Toronto!




However when Team USA was announced on July 6th, I was not on it.  I was really disappointed that was not on the team and frankly, as National Champion I couldn’t understand why.  Don’t they want their National Champion to represent at a big event like the Para Pan-Am Games?  I certainly wanted to represent my country in a event that boasts 1600+ participants, representing 28 countries with competition in 15 sports.

All I’ve ever wanted to do since my high school wrestling days was represent my country in a sporting event because I am not able to defend my own freedom in the military. (I once represented Team USA in the CP-ISRA World Games in Nottingham England, 2001 as part of the Cerebral Palsy powerlifting team. I would love to compete in that event again for another chance at placing but it appears that they have removed powerlifting from the offered sports).

I did a little research to try and find reason why I wasn’t selected to the team and this is what I found. In the sport of Track and Field the USOC sets a number of different standards that an athlete must reach and although I met the standard to qualify for the Para Pan-Am Games, there are a number of standards that I have not met in accordance with the USOC. There is a 6m standard for World Team B and emerging athletes, 7m for the World Championships (I was hoping to have a chance at reaching this distance in Toronto), National Team B is 10m, and National Team A 10.42m. I don’t know what all these standards mean but I know if I reach the National Team A Standard, I would be on any team heading where Track and Field goes and that may be the case with the National Team B Standard also the only difference being the level of support an athlete gets from the USOC. 

As a nation the US has never had a strong shot puter in my class, the last representative in the Paralympics was in 2000 at the Sydney Paralympics and I currently throw further than the marks he listed back then. The current National Record for my F33 classification is only 5.9m and I plan on crushing the record next year (and each year after that).

At this point you might be asking yourself, “So if he was only 7cm off a National Record, why would he not get to go?” I know I was, and then I figured it out.  What is the basis for the majority of decisions in the world today? Money! (That is why I attempt to raise my own money via JustMaxFitnessNutrion.com) Why does the USA set such a high National Team standard?  If you were to look at the current National Team B Standard of 10m and the current world ranking list an athlete would be firmly solidified in the second spot, a silver medal (I have currently fallen to 17th in the world).   The US isn’t paying for an athlete to travel in a sport the nation isn't strong in if he or she isn't going to medal.

Although I don’t agree with this philosophy, I do understand it. I don’t want to go to the Paralympics and finish in last place. I compete to be the best and want to win Gold. I do see a bit of a double standard though; the USOC has talked about wanting to increase Cerebral Palsy participation in the Paralympics, and here I am! Why not let me compete in Toronto and get that international exposure? The National Standards are so high that many young athletes quit before they even get started. I talked to a number of athletes at nationals who felt this way. 

If anyone took a look at that same world ranking list again and focused on the countries competing at the Para Pan Am Games, I would finish in 3rd out of 5 athletes. A bronze medal certainly isn’t what I train for but it gives me international experience and a chance at a bronze medal to keep me motivated during the long process of the next 4 years.

joshua-myers-national-championship-photo

So What is Next?

I am disappointed that my throwing season ended a few months shorter than planned but in a way it has motivated me. I truly thought I had done enough, was good enough to be selected to Toronto and then the additional time between meets would have enabled me to get to 7m and qualify for the World Championships in Doha, Qatar, leaving me a long shot for the 2016 Paralympics, but it was not meant to be.

Before he passed, legendary fitness model Greg Plitt said “The the thing about good enough is we don’t know if it’s enough until the nth hour.  And if we come up short doesn’t that suck!?” Whether it be because of work, family, or just an over all lack of energy I fell into that trap too many times saying “training has been good enough this week” and sure enough, coming up short sucks! He goes on to say “If today you never say good enough, tomorrow you will have enough.”

I vow over the next 4 year cycle to never say “good enough” in my training cycle. I was feeling down for a little over a week about not being selected, but my good friend played some Greg Plitt off YouTube and told me to get off my ass! I have a 10.42m mark to hit!

My first goal is certainly to get that 6m mark and keep setting National records, steadily increasing to 10.42m before the next world championships in 2017.  I have revamped both my training and my diet, working on core and flexibly while trying to perfect the throwing form.

I talked to my sponsor, Advanced Hearing Group of Mesa, AZ and they will be sponsoring me for the 2016 Desert Challenge Games, May 18-22.  I have $400 left from the Go Fund Me account that I created for the 2015 season (this will remain open for the 2016 season if you wish to support). 

For the 2016 Track & Field season plan on attending (scheduling and funding permitted):

Lastly, I want to thank my group of supporters. I may not be a part of a team in WI, but I don’t train alone. Thank you to those who come to the Body Basement and train, Advanced Hearing Group of Mesa, AZ for their monetary investment in JMFN, to my good buddy Ricky who built this site and gives countless pro-bono hours to help me create a successful web presence, to the dozens who donated on Go Fund Me, to my followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, to the customers of Just Max Fitness Nutrition, to my wife who makes sure my throwing chair is set up properly in the backyard before each practice, and to my boys – you are the reason I do what I do, to show you the only limits in life are the ones you place on yourself.

“If you don’t take life to the max, you’ll never get the max out of life.” –Greg Plitt

greg-plitt-remembered

 

Thank You

Joshua Myers, Founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition

Arnold Sports Festival

Arnold Sports Festival: How Meeting These 8 Bodybuilders and Fitness Fanatics Inspired Me to Greatness!




Each year, the Columbus Convention Center (Columbus, Ohio) holds one of the fitness industry’s most expansive expos, The Arnold Sports Festival (ASF), which is named after the godfather-of-modern-bodybuilding, Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The ASF began in 1989 as the ‘Arnold Classic’, a bodybuilding contest showcasing the top physical specimens in the world. Today the Arnold Sports Festival hold contests for more than 50 sports, including international events in Australia, Brazil, and Spain. The Arnold Sports Fest is now the second most prestigious bodybuilding show behind only the Olympia, known as the “Super Bowl” of bodybuilding.

As the founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition, a lifelong fan of bodybuilding, a proponent of powerlifting and a 2016 Paralympic-hopeful, I couldn't resist the opportunity to see what sort of adventures the ASF had in store. Hoping that we wouldn't run into any serious snowstorms during the drive from Wisconsin, my best friend and I (also named Josh) embarked on the 8.5-hour road trip to Columbus, OH.




Little did we know, this would be like no other road trip we have experienced together before!

Daydreaming of what could be, I came up with a list of eight names of bodybuilders and fitness-celebs that I most looked forward to meeting. I explained to my buddy Josh, who each of these guys were, why they were significant to me, and that if we were given the opportunity to meet them, that I would really like to have my picture taken with each one of them and maybe snag an autograph or two.

In the beginning, I was hoping to get four of the eight, I was in fact able to get all 8! Here is a brief description of each encounter I had with my favorite world class body-builders, professional wrestler, and fitness celebrity.

Victor MartinezVictor Martinez (Facebook | twitter @IFBBVicMartinez) was the first bodybuilder that I had the pleasure of meeting. A winner of the Arnold Classic in 2007, Victor is certainly world-class. I have always seen Mr. Martinez in MHP ads in all the muscle magazines that I purchase. And although JFMN doesn’t yet carry the MHP, I did speak with representatives of the company and am trying my best to bring them on board! Anyhow, I became an even bigger fan of Victor's after the release of Generation Iron. In that incredible documentary film, I learned to relate to the ups and downs he has been through and was inspired to know that he stays toward the top of his profession regardless of any setbacks life has thrown his way. To an adaptive athlete like myself, Victor is proof that one can overcome adversity and succeed regardless of perceived limitations. MHP has not yet been added to my web-store yet, but I was able to make connections at the ASF, look for that soon.

Kai GreeneKai Greene (Facebook | twitter @KaiGreene) aka ‘The Predator’, was an ASF winner in 2009 and 2010 and has been known as the world's top-contending bodybuilder for the past 3 years. On a sidenote, MHP and Muscle Meds (the company that sponsors Kai) are actually owned by the same larger company, so Muscle Meds should also be added to the JMFN site with any luck as well. On a personal level, in any aspect of sport competition, I have always been labeled as the "underdog", so naturally I have gravitated towards following the Predator to see if he can dethrone Phil Heath, the current king-of-bodybuilding. Does Kai have what it takes to bring home the Sandow in 2015?

CT Fletcher ISYMFCT Fletcher (Facebook | twitter @CTFletcherISYMF) is a former bench press and arm curl world champion that is best known today as a YouTube sensation for his brash personality and his acronym "ISYMFS". Although he may come off as too brash for some (even for me sometimes), I am drawn to him because of the fact that he is a "real" person. Regardless of how much money may be gain from the supplement industry, he won't change his image just to make a buck. In a world where PEDs and steroids are commonplace, CT also challenges anyone who ever wants to drug test him to do “come on down to his gym”. He is 100% drug free, 100% of the time! And that is what I am too. Keep being you and command your arms to grow by force of will, CT!

Hulk HoganHulk Hogan (Facebook | twitter @HulkHogan) is the reason I found my way into the world of fitness in the first place. What can I say, I know that professional wrestling is, well, fake, but as a young Hulkamaniac the guys of the WWE were the original athletes with comic book-superhero bodies that I most looked up to. The Hulk hasn't wrestled in some time, he is still an icon, not only in wrestling but in this industry as well. I am glad that Funnbar (who knew that there was protein packed chewy candy?) brought him by the ASF. I have been trying to meet this guy and get this photo for close to 30 years! Thank you to the ASF and Funnbar for giving me the opportunity. Say your prayers, eat your vitamins, and keep training and you can be anything that you want to be! Believe!


Ronnie ColemanRonnie Coleman
(Facebook | twitter  @BigRon08) Wow! Who doesn't look to meet Ronnie Coleman when they go to a bodybuilding show / fitness expo? At 50 year old, the 8-time Mr. Olympia is still an absolute beast! His iconic catch phrases of, "Yeah Buddy" and, "Lightweight baby -- ain’t nothing but a peanut!", have endured long beyond his reign in the world of bodybuilding. Ronnie was also one of the nicer guys at the ASF and took the time to sign this picture on Saturday after having it blown up to a 16X20 poster the night before. Thank you Mr. Coleman!

Phill Heath Current Mr. OPhil Heath (Facebook | twitter & @PhilHeath) how could I not search out an opportunity to have my picture taken with the 4x (and current) Mr. Olympia? What an awesome opportunity! He’s made it known that he wants to be the first bodybuilder to reach 10 Olympia titles. Let that one sink in for a minute. Mr. Heath has competition like Kai Green and other young up and coming bodybuilders to contend with; will he have the drive to remain at the mountaintop?  Phil also took the time to meet with me a second time and sign my poster photo! He’s got heart!

Mr O Jay CutlerJay Cutler (Facebook | twitter @MrOJayCutler)  4x Mr. Olympia was pretty much the coolest and most surprising meet and greet of the weekend! The picture you see here is a photo that Jay's social media team posted on Jay's Official Fan Page - this photo received more than 60,000 likes and hundreds of positive comments! That’s a record for me. Thank you for the amazing photo opportunity. Mr. Cutler truly is a class act!

Arnold SchwarzenaggerArnold Schwarzenegger (Facebook | twitter @Schwarzenegger) aka, Mr. Universe, Mr. Olympia, Conan the Barbarian, the Terminator, and the Governor! It seemed like every one of the 200,000+ people that attended the Arnold Sports Festival tried to catch a glimpse, get a photo opportunity, an autograph, or even a chance to chat with the legend. Thanks to my buddy's extra ticket to Arnold's annual symposium at the ASF, I was able to get this photo. Although it was extremely brief I feel honored to have gotten my picture with the man of so many talents, many to consider Arnold to be the holy-grail-of-celebrity-autographs and if you're into fitness at any level, you may agree.

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Overall, the weekend was more incredible than I could I have ever imaged. Aiming to get 4 of the 8 bodybuilders and fitness celebrities on my list, I went 8-for-8. As the founder and operator of JMFN, I made some key connections to expand product offerings to my clients!

This cast of bodybuilding and fitness fanatics was nicer and more approachable then you might have imagined! Beyond these interactions, I left the AFS feeling more motivated to get bigger and stronger than ever! I truly believe I will push toward my goals with more drive than ever.

As always, thank you for shopping with JFMN and checking out our affiliates and sponsors for great fitness and nutrition deals!

Have you ever met one of these bodybuilders, fitness celebrities or anyone else in this industry who inspired you to greatness? Share your interactions and / or photos in the comment section below!  

Joshua Myers, Founder of Just Max Fitness Nutrition

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