Lightning on my Body: My LIB Diet & Training

magicmtn mtnevan lib front flexing

Veins = lightning bolts zigzagging on your body.

I’ve had a few people asking what my diet and training is like since I started putting up pics from Lightning in a Bottle. You’ll be surprised how simple it is. A lot of this is about what I DON’T do.

First, I’m going to lay it out for you, so you can see how surprisingly simple it is. Then, I’ll expand on each of the points further down.


  1. I get at least 80g of protein per day, usually close to 100g.
  2. I don’t worry about other macros.
  3. I don’t count calories.
  4. When I’m bulking, I eat as much as I can until I’m very full, but not until I’m stuffed.
  5. When I’m cutting, I eat as little as I can until I’m a bit hungry, but not until I’m starved.
  6. I have milk and a big meal after my workouts. Otherwise, I don’t follow a meal timing or frequency plan. I eat when I wanna.
  7. I take 3 supplements: Vitamin D, Creatine, and ZMA. I’m mindful of Omega-3, but I eat fish and eggs rather than supplements.

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Copy Paste: How to Journal Easily

I don't actually write with a flower-petal pen nor drink out of tea cups... I just picked the least intimidating photo of journaling I could find.

I don’t actually write with a flower-petal pen, nor drink out of tea cups… I just picked the least intimidating photo of journaling I could find. ( pc: Carli Jean / Unsplash )

I’m here to share a really easy way to start a journaling habit. It’s literally Copy Paste. But first, have you heard about the benefits of journaling? Continue reading

What Unites Us?

10487291_10102452144858874_859587779772567736_nUnited by sexiness cheesiness? =P

Back in December, my friend Alice and I had one of those awesome late-night talks. One of the things that I remember most was what she said about her relationship with Evan, her boyfriend of many years. While explaining the thought process behind some big decisions she had to make soon, she said…

“Evan and I are united by our pursuit of truth.”

I thought that was beautiful. I’ve been asking that question, “What unites you?” to many people ever since. Continue reading

Stories: A Simple Way to Manage Complicated Emotions

Emotions. As wild, mysterious, and unpredictable as the seas. Sometimes, they seem impossible to understand…

But you know what’s easy to understand? Stories. In fact, our brains use stories primarily to help us understand. And that’s pretty great for us, because emotions are stories.

Okay, that’s a bit bold. Let’s try this: Without a story, there is no emotion.


Few people are better than boy bands at getting people emotional. Also, good song! #Relevant

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My First Talk About Business

I titled this, “Asian-American Accountant, Barefoot Business Beast.” Other potential titles could be:

  • “How to Start a Shoe Company with $7K, While Working Full-Time.”
  • “Mental Barriers to Entrepreneurship, & Why They Didn’t Stop a Schmuck Like Me”
  • and “The Most You Can Learn About Mountain in 30 Minutes.” Just kidding. (Kidding about this being a potential title. Otherwise, I do think this is the most you can learn about me in just 30 minutes.)

This talk is nearly a year old now. So much has happened since then–the big thing being that we are now a real business sending real products to real customers for real money (see But everything I said in the video still remains true. Thank you Multi-Asian Student Association for having me back

Don’t Tell Yourself “I Deserve This”



One of the most commonly used self-affirmations in personal development goes along the lines of,

“I’m a great person. I’m awesome. I deserve this.”

I really dislike sayings like these. For starters, I don’t think we deserve shit. Everything is either given or earned. Given by chance, given by others, earned by you, or any combinations thereof.

When you tell yourself “I deserve this,” only 2 things could happen.

1: You don’t do anything. You just wait for it to show up, via fate.

2: You do too much. Way past the point when you should have stopped. You get possessive of this goal. You attach to it. You hurt when you don’t achieve it. You shut your eyes and become unable to see that this goal might not be worthy, nor even possible.

Rather than swinging between “I don’t deserve this” and “I deserve this,” try something else: Find genuine interest.

Don’t say, “I deserve this.”

Try saying, “This looks worthwhile. Let’s give it an earnest shot. If it works, that’s awesome! But even if it doesn’t work out, I at least enjoyed the process and learned a couple things.”

Notice I completely left out any self-judgment?

If you say “I’m awesome, I deserve this,” then does that mean you’re not awesome if you fail? Hell no. You can still be awesome. What I’m saying is, in terms of doing things in your life, it doesn’t matter if you’re awesome or not. There’s no point in tying your self-esteem to your goals at all! Better yet, don’t even have goals. Do things because you want to.

Here it is again:

“This looks worthwhile. Let’s give it an earnest shot. If it works, that’s awesome! But even if it doesn’t work out, I at least enjoyed the process and learned a couple things.”

No attachment, and therefore no suffering. Open eyes to see, open mind to learn. And above all… joy =)

No Second Chances

Last Friday, I settled in for what I thought would be 2 hours of mindless action by watching Pain & Gain, not knowing it was about to take me one deeper. In the opening scenes, we’re introduced to Don Lugo, played by Mark Wahlberg. He’s acing an interview for a personal trainer position at a gym, when he reveals that he has a criminal record for running a Ponzi scheme. There is a flashback to him pleading his case to the judge:

paingain1 Continue reading

I Killed an Animal

It was a chicken. The first warm-blooded life I had taken directly.

It wasn’t for fun (and it certainly wasn’t fun). It was for nourishment…and for a much-needed education. As much as we would like to forget, and have been allowed to forget, via the modern industrialized food chain, we are all bound to nature as participants in the eternal cycle of life and death. We all have the blood of animals on our hands. Vegetarians and vegans not excepted.

So for the first time in my life, 

I took personal responsibility for taking a life,

an act necessary for the continuation of our own life. Continue reading

Becoming a State Champion Powerlifter, part 3: Lessons and What’s Next

On February 11, 2012, I competed in my first powerlifting meet and became a state champion and current record holder in my division. This is a 3-part series on my adventures in powerlifting from Feb 2009 – Feb 2012. The first post talks about how I got into the sport. The second post covers more details on training and the day of the meet. The third post is on lessons learned and what’s next.

Lesson 8. Find synergies. (Photo: Ryan Chang)

The cool thing about these lessons is that they have carryover into all other parts of life. I’ll keep it short, but each one can probably be a post all by itself. Continue reading