This therapist costs $6/hr.

“Call it what you want to call it, I’m a f****ing alcoholic…” Remember Xzibit? What is that guy up to, I wonder. Pimping out rides and rocking tiny braids? I felt truly devoted to that show, by the way. I even had a dream when my white Mazda 626 started to break down that X came to my house to pimp my ride. I was beyond thrilled. I woke up devastated that I didn’t have a fish bowl as my center console, a Red Bull suspended from the roof or turntables magically tucked into the trunk. Don’t forget: Lifestyle Engineer at The BodyLab Tyler Corbett is down to pimp your life (that was weak, I know, just roll with it…). If you ask him a question about fitness ( you 1. Get entered to win a free week at BodyLab, including nutrition analysis and three workouts with Tyler, plus a body fat and fit test and 2. You get your question answered. A two-for! See below.

But, let’s circle back to the booze (if I had a dime for every time I said those words–nay, for every time I felt that sentiment…) If I’m a freshman in The School of Sweat Hot, then the Study of Booze Sciences is an upper class-men course.  I think in order to get the hang of it, you have to just dive right in, ya know? Really drink it up–try different spirits and see how you do. Drink in the morning; see how you do. Drink upside down, with food, without it, in a pool, in a house, in a tree… Psych! (Look at all these memories I’m bringing back.) The truth is, I know what to do with booze, mostly. We all know that a vodka-soda with lime (extra lime if you like’em LJ-style) is about as good as you can get calorie-wise. Wine’s alright and tequila ain’t half bad, neither. Although, some people straight lose their minds on tequila, which is one of my favorite things about it. Anyway, except for when mimosas are involved, I tend to make good booze decisions.

If only booze started and stopped with just making the right choice about what to drink. Alas, nothing in life is that easy. Here’s where I’m at: Lately, due to some added stress, I have felt an actual compulsion to drink. I’m not going to split hairs about whether or not that means I have a “problem” or go into the many reasons why I should or shouldn’t use a brown bottle as my therapist, but I do and I am. This tick for me truly isn’t the issue (seriously–I’m not drinking that much). My problem is that my decision-making skills become exponentially worse with every drink. Breaking news, right? This just in: Decision-making skills are worse in direct relation to alcohol consumption. Duh. I mean, sometimes the only reason I have for drinking is the hope of making some bad decisions. But, I wish those bad choices didn’t have anything to do with my mouth (yes, I’m going to leave that as a blanket statement). I will eat crazy shit when I’m drunk (fried pickles, chocolate cake). Shit that makes no sense or that I mostly do not want. When I’m sober, I have the ability to resist; when I have a few cocktails, I no longer do. So, I think it’s time for a three drink maximum for Miss Laura Standley until she can learn to master her deluded mind.

Matt on the stairmaster drinking a Guinness. For real.

A year ago, I could take or leave booze. It wasn’t that important to me. But, now it is. It’s funny how that works, right? I thought that I had mastered alcohol, when really I had just abandoned it. This is why I love The BodyLab. They don’t tell me not to drink–especially not Matt D’Amico. In fact, if you get one on one with that guy, he might give you some advice that your mama wouldn’t care for–but your body will look smoking hot and you won’t have to make “silly” decisions like whether or not to have cocktails. And, he even organizes happy hours–like the one last Friday–where we all drink together, as a family. I bet the bartenders thought it was strange that, despite the diversity of the group, an inordinate number of vodka sodas were about. Don’t even get me started about St. Patrick’s Day. Holy shit–chugging a Guinness and a shot of Jame-o is not foreign territory for me. But, your trainer placing them next to you will you thrash your abs (we don’t talk like that at The Lab, FYI) after a killer bis and tris workout with splashes of hard core cardio (read: I can’t fucking breathe, Matt) and insisting that the moment the workout is complete you slam this duo as fast as possible (and throw the remnants to the ground, goddammit!!!) is a whole new world. People were doing that at 5 am–doctors, lawyers, chiropractors. And yes, many of them went back to work after. Maybe performed surgery on your dad’s heart. Maybe offered you legal advice. And, I think we’re all the better for it.

That’s just irresponsible–despite the fact that I did it, too. I don’t actually believe there was a choice. But, these A-types, swarming around a box of Guinness…I mean, this is where we have the most fun–when faced with condoned rule-breaking. The Lab’s Lifestyle Engineers encourage me to drink in a way that allows me to meet my goals. What I mean is, despite the fact that my goal is to lose weight, the ultimate goal is to be able to control myself, to handle myself, to handle my life, to have fun, to live. Not without changes, not without evolution, not without intention of eventually becoming a different person. The moment I become satisfied in any part of my life–in or out of The Lab–is the moment of my biggest failure. I will always strive–and in my lifestyle choices, it’s really no different.

Ha! See that? For once in my life, booze has made something so much clearer. Click here to learn about where I’m working out.


This is Tyler.

Q: How do I get that line down the middle of my stomach? I keep doing ab exercises, but there’s no line or really any discernible stomach muscles. – Terri Sanchez
A: Diet, diet, diet. You build your body in the gym, but you show it off in the kitchen. Keep doing those ab exercises, step up the cardio a bit and really watch what you’re putting into your body, food wise. Stay away from refined sugars and white flour. No bread or pasta during a lean down phase (you must lean down to show off those abs). You can do sit-ups until you’re blue in the face, but if you’re not eating right, it will be to no avail.

Q: I’m really frail and am happy with my body. How can I work out to be healthy, but neither lose weight nor become Mrs. Hulk?- Sue Fletchling
A: Make sure you’re performing exercises focused on muscular endurance rather than muscular hypertrophy (fancy word for gaining size). High-intensity, lots of reps, lower weight with minimal rest is what you should be going for.

Q: As a guy, I want my body to be proportional. How do I achieve this? – Adam Weston
A: Avoid the “jail house” workouts. All upper body and no legs makes one disproportional. It always cracks me up when I see guys who can’t touch their hands together because of the size of their chest but they’re walking around on chicken legs that look like they will snap any second. Make sure you’re hitting your legs just as much as your upper body (i.e. squats, lunges, presses, split jumps, etc.)




Matt: This next movement is so beautiful, I was in tears when I was doing it this morning. I’ll try to keep myself together now. (I have to say, it was really beautiful).

Ryan: Let the beat of the smooth techno music take you to the enchanted exercise forest.

Ryan: Do you know how to clamp your ass together?

Matt: If you were wondering if you could use this rag [that a lot of people touched with their sweaty hands] to wipe your mouth, the answer’s yes. Okay?

Laura Standley has been the editor in chief of 303 Magazine since 2007. She’s been blogging about fitness since January 2011.