Buying an Aluminum Awning

Are you in the market for a patio cover or a carport awning? Aluminum awnings offer many advantages over other types of construction. Aluminum is essentially maintenance free and will stay looking like new for many years. There are some terms you should learn about before buying an aluminum awning.

The many different components that make up an awning all contribute to the overall strength of the installed structure. If you are in an area that requires a permit a lot of these factors will be determined for you. It is still a good idea to know exactly what you are getting before you place your order.

Aluminum awning panels are made in several thicknesses. The thickness is referred to as gauge. The most common gauges are 20, 25, 32 and 40. A 40 gauge panel is the thickest and is used only when the highest wind factor or snow load ratings are required. Because of there thickness these panels can be difficult to work with and are not used very often.

A 20 gauge panel is used mostly on awnings with 8 ', 9' or 10 'projections. Awnings that span 12 'or greater should be using 25 or 32 gauge.

A term you will read about in your permit requirements is a tributary width. That would be the longest distance the panels have to span without support. An example would be a 20 'awning with an I-beam set in the center. The beam would leave a 10 'span on either side. You may have a 20 'projection awning but your panel thickness requirement would be for that of a 10' awning.

The next largest factor in awning strength is the material used to make the gutter, side fascia and hanger. The better quality awnings use extruded aluminum for all of these. The less expensive option is roll form. Many of the cheaper awning kits sold online use roll form gutter, hanger and side fascias. Some awning companies will use an inexpensive roll form hanger in place of the stronger extruded one any time they think they can get away with it. Be sure you have it in writing that the frame will be all extruded aluminum.

The awning posts are another option you will need to consider. Scroll posts are the least expensive and are usually offered in a starter package. You may want to pass on these. They are made with roll form tubes held together with scrolls. They were fine for many years, your grandma may still have them on her awning. They are just way out of fashion. Why not spend a few extra dollars and get the 3 "square posts? They are much stronger and give an aluminum awning a modern look.

The 3 posts are available in aluminum or steel. Steel posts will probably save you a few dollars. The cost of aluminum is high and the steel posts are actually a little stronger. Posts are also available in different lengths. They can be ordered as 8 ', 9', 10 'or 12' posts. Like the framework, make sure you see in writing exactly what posts you will be getting.

Another option you will have is the color trim that snaps into your extruded gutter and side fascias. You may have a few color choices or you may have dozens. These 2 "strips are used to match the awning to your home.

Your city permit application will talk about live loads and snow loads. These are obtained by a combination of post type and thickness, gutter type and panel style and gauge. There are a few other factors, like distance allowed between posts, but this is all detailed in the manufactures engineering specifications.

It is very likely you will need to have the engineering mailed to you before you purchase the awning. The engineering will be needed to obtain a permit. Do not buy an awning until you have the right, if you need one. A reputable company will gladly send the needed paperwork so that you can get you permit. When you order the awning make sure you are getting the same material highlighted in their engineering.

Do some research and use some common sense. Most aluminum awnings are custom made. A lot of work goes into putting together an awning package and getting it delivered to your home. A lot of work and whole lot of expense. One mistake could take away any profit the dealer may have and could wind up costing you weeks of time to get it corrected. Do everything on your end to make sure the order is exactly what you want.

You Do not Have To Be A Genius To Write A Love Poem

Love poems are a wonderfully romantic gesture and can often express your thoughts far more eloquently than verbal communication.

If you have some talent with words, why not take a few moments and try your hand at writing a poem for your lover? Just sit down and list all the reasons why you think they're special. Then put those thoughts into some kind of free verse format: a column of lines, roughly the same length, which may rhyme but do not need to.

Take some time to read over what you've written and you'll get a few ideas on how to improve a line or phrase. The point is to express your feelings as honestly and clearly as possible. Simplicity is the key. And if you're really motivated, you can spend half an hour of prep time reading some classical romantic poems to get your brain into that 'groove'.

Even if your poem will not win any literary prizes, the person you present it to will most likely treasure it as if it were composed by one of the great Romantic poets. People tend to value a personalized gift far more than one that's purchased. What they're really appreciating is the time and effort invested on their behalf.

I'd like to share a story of the first time I received a love poem.

When I was twelve years old I had a crush on Robert, the new boy in my class at school, and he had very generously decided that I was "cute". One afternoon we were waiting with some classmates at the bus stop when he announced that he did not like me anymore. He was now in love with my best friend, Julie.

I was so incensed by this betrayal that I lunged at him and chashed him down the street. He swerved into the gutter and I bolted after him just as the bus slipped in. It hit me from behind and I went down. The bus then ran over my right foot.

A short time later, the ambulance arrived and the paramedic driver examined me. He decided that I did not need hospitalization so he bulldozed me home with instructions to spend the next six weeks in bed. Meanwhile, a distorted Robert was blaming himself for the accident. He asked the other children at the bus stop where I lived, then walked the two miles to my house. Then he sat across the street on the pavement, wondering if my father would strangle him if he knocked at the front door.

A couple of hours later he worked up the courage to confront my father, which turned out to be something of an anti-climax because my father had no idea about Robert's part in the drama. Robert tiptoed into my room and handed me a sheet of paper; he had written a poem for me as he sat across the street from my house. I remember how thrilled I was that someone would do such a thing. It was like something out of a novel or a movie.

I kept that poem, which ran to one and a half legal pages, for a number of years, until it disappeared when we moved house a decade later. But I still remember the first four lines:

Her name is Marguerite
I very much like that girl
She means much more to me
Than any gem or pearl

That was a lifetime ago and yet those words remain in my memory.

As for the boy himself, by the time I got back to school Robert had moved on to greener pastures (he now liked my best friend's new best friend). But that severely mattered as I was now a minor celebrity because I got hit by a bus while chasing a boy. The nuns had a field day praying for my soul, which was not the last time they'd engage in that futile exercise.

My right foot is still a little flatter than my left but it was worth it for the notoriety. And hey, Robert, where you are, thanks for the memory.

Using Other People's Love Poems

If you do not have Robert's literary talent, there is another option. Find an existing poem that best expresses how you feel and present it to your lover inside a greeting card or gift. Or have it framed and present it with a bouquet of flowers.

There are a number of sites online that offer love poems. You can find a list on our web site or use one of the search engines.

Getting Rid of That Bump on Your Nose

A hump or bump on the nose, which many patients would like fixed, relates to a dorsum that is too high. (bridge of the nose or upper third of the nose) When the dorsum is high relative to the rest of the nose, the dorsal line (line from the bridge of the nose to the tip) is not straight which is unpleasing in profile. More pertinently, patients do not like it because they intuitively know that the upper part of the nose is out of balance to the lower part of the nose … it looks too big and thick.

Hump ​​or bump reduction of the nose is one of the most frequently requested reasons that patients want rhinoplasty surgery. Removing a nasal hump often involves more than just trimming down the bone. What makes up most humps of the nose is a combination of bone and cartilage as the hump occurs where the bone of the nose stops and the cartilage of the nose begins. This may seem like a trivial anatomic point but reducing this area involves removing both. Doing so requires a special instrument that levels out the hump but often leaves a flat plateau across the bridge of the nose, known in plastic surgery as an 'open roof' deformity. This is because the bridge of the nose is like the roof line on your house. Trimming off the apex of your roof line will leave the sides of the roof standing where they originally were …. with an open top. To make that open roof close down again and remake a narrow bridge, the sides of the roof must be cut low so they will fall back in together. This is exactly what osteotomizing the nasal bones does, also known as 'breaking or cutting the nose bones'. It is also the rhinoplasty maneuver that may leave you with blacks eyes after. The nasal bones are cut down low and then pushed in to close the open roof.

Not every rhinoplasty requires breaking the bones even if there is a hump. Small humps may be able to be filed or rasped down which will cause no bruising under the eyes after surgery. For this to be effective, the hump on the nose be fairly small being no more than 1 to 2 mms high.

"It's Not Fair" – A School Assembly Idea

Ask the pupils to consider this situation in an assembly –

Imagine you're a PE teacher and been helping Simone who has been working hard to get ready for a dance competition. She is one of the youngger entrants. At the festival she performs very well but she is nervous and does not shine. She leaves, sad and upset, without any recognition.

Which one of the following things would be the best to say to her?

You think she danced better than anyone there.
The judges should have made allowance for her age.
Dancing is not all that important
She is a talented dancer and will win next time.
She did not do well enough to win and can improve.

The correct answer would be the last one. Out of context it looks harsh, but it is the one that leads to improvement. The others would not help Simone learn and improve. However some might worry that it would knock her self esteem.

Psychologists Albert Bandura, and later Carol Dweck, have shown that it is resilience in young people and not self esteem that makes for better learners. The resilient do not fear making mistakes and equate hard work with results.

In one of Dweck's experiments two groups of pupils were taught the same maths curriculum yet one group out performed the other. The only difference between the control group and the test group were two lessons, a total of 50 minutes spent teaching not maths but a single idea: that the brain is a bit like muscle, giving it a harder workout makes you smarter. That alone improved their math scores.

Educators need to praise the effort, not the end result or the innate skill. This can be easier sometimes than others – you do not hear, "Well done you're tall!" echoing from school gym when the PE staff are doing basketball lessons. But it's hard not to say, "well done you're good at drawing to a primary school age child". Praise is important, but it has to be the right praise. ie "You've taken care and spent a lot of time on that – well done."

Dweck showed that if young people believe that it is innate natural talent alone that determines their success then when the fail they believe that they do not have enough of this talent and more likely to give up.

Sometimes Life is not fair – Young people need resilience to cope with it, just make you do not act like Sue Sylvester from Glee to develop it.

How to Improve the Performance of Your HDMI Cables

There are some useful guidelines to improve your HDMI cables performance.

Use signal boosters. Depending on quality, most HDMI wires lost their signal in roughly 10 to 50 feet. With these devices, power is enhanced making them to continue on remaining powerful even on long cable runs. There are, however, HDMI cables which run for 75 feet and have already a built-in signal booster inside the cable.

Use signal equalizers. This is another device which can maintain the signal’s quality and strength even with longer cable runs. It can also be called a signal enhancer. Aside from enhancing the signal, it can also eliminate any superfluous noise disturbance. Losing the dynamics of the HD technology is not something to worry about as the device does not remove it.

Use signal extenders. It helps by extending the signal down the extent of the cable subsequent to receiving the signal.

Use signal restorers. They are minute gadgets where weak signals are re-harmonized to reach their HDMI quality to the fullest. It expands the distance to have the signal trek even for over a hundred feet.

Use fibre Optic Cable. This is the best but the most expensive alternative. Fibre optic cables are normally utilized after a maximum of 150 feet run length was attained. Likewise, HDMI cables can reach a maximum of 1,649 feet efficient run with its fibre optic.

The quality of the raw materials used dictates the maximum run length and efficiency of the cables. Thicker copper wires in twisted pairs are usually on the category of higher value cables, but spell add-on expense on the part of the consumer but still with no guarantee of efficiency. Even high quality HDMI cables strive to transmit better signals for more than a distance of 50 feet.

You still need to invest in other add-on devices to enhance the signal of your HDMI cable over long distance.

Hammer the Competition – The Single Best Volleyball Workout Drill to Help You Destroy the Opposition

Volleyball training workouts should focus on increasing your athleticism by improving your volleyball condition and improving your vertical jump. A smart strength and conditioning program can be made by including the following single exercise here that I know will significantly improve your game!

In order for you to destroy the opposition you must include the overhead kettlebell snatch into your volleyball training workouts. By now you may be familiar with the ancient kettlebell and understand that this strength and conditioning device is second to nothing when it comes down to developing superior athletic bodies for optimum performance. Kettlebells have molded some of the greatest strongmen and athletes for over three centuries! This is an ancient art form that is here to stay my friend. The single arm overhead snatch is a single lift that you can incorporate into your personal program to give you unbelievable core strength, hip power, explosive leg power, and shoulder stability for a long healthy volleyball career. This particular lift basically involves you having to forcefully and vertically pull the kettlebell from either between your legs or from the floor up to a held position above your head. This is done by you having to learn a technique known as the hip snap. The hip snap is done by you constantly and forcefully flexing and then extending at both your hips and knees to generate the force to lift the kettlebell to a high pull position where it elevates laterally to your head. Once the bell is at this position lateral to your head then you must vertically punch your palm to the sky. By doing this you will lock both your elbow and shoulder into place with the bell making a smooth transition over the back of your forearm.

This lift will add significant inches to your vertical leap and allow you to spike and hammer the ball on your competition all day long! If you have not gotten acquainted with kettlebells by now then I will further challenge you by asking you to access the rest of my articles on the matter for free. Remember that anyone can train hard, but only champions train smart my friend!

Bricklaying Basics

Although I spent many years bricklaying, I'll probably find it strange to write about it, instead of actually doing it. It's said that patience is a value, and I must say that a fair amount of it is needed when you lay bricks for the first time. Remember that accuracy is essential, especially with your first course. Make sure that your concrete foundation has hardened, and that it's level. Do not try to do things fast at the beginning. This will come with practice – you probably will not notice it, but in time things will slot into place, and you will be laying the bricks at a faster pace.

You will need a bricklayer's trowel, bolster chisel, club hammer, spirit level, one meter long preferably, small spirit level, builder's line and pins, builder's square (remember 3: 4: 5) for any right-angled corners, gauge rod, mortar board, and a pointing trowel.

For the mortar, use sand to cement in a measure of 3: 1.You can use plasticiser, which makes the mortar easier to use – follow the instructions. Do not be tempted to skimp on the cement. Do not allow the mix to become sloppy – use just enough water in it so that the bricks can be press down on to it without spilling out and making a mess of the brick face. Cut off a slice of mortar with the edge of the trowel, slide the trowel underneath it – it should just about cover the trowel blade. A bit of practice is definitely needed for this. Hold the trowel above the brickwork; turn it halfway, while pulling it sharply backwards. The mortar should slide the easy on to the bricks. You should be able to cover 2 or 3 bricks at a time. You will notice that the bricks have a recess on one side – this is the top side. Press the brick into the mortar. Use your small spirit level to check the first couple of bricks, both vertically and horizontally. Lift a small amount of mortar and scrape it on to the end of the brick, ready to make a bond with the next one. After a while, you'll get used to it that you'll be able to slap the mortar on to the brick. Take another brick, and push it towards the end of the first one to form what's called the joint between them. Scrape any excess mortar off the sides.

Lay 4 bricks, then use the long spirit level to check them horizontally – if they are uneven, tap them lightly with the trowel handle. For the second course, you will need to start with a half brick, so that you will have a half bond wall. You cut a brick using the bolster chisel – mark it well on every side, then give it a sharp tap. It's advisable to do this with the brick sitting on a shower bed of sand, so that it will not shatter in the wrong place. If you have a right-angled corner at an end, you will not have to cut a brick. The brick in the second course faces a different way from the one benefit. As the end of the brick is half the size of the length, this creates you half bond. As you go higher, you can keep the horizontal joints, or beds, to a constant size by using your gauge rod. One of them is easily made by marking a length of timber with the brick height plus the thickness of the bed. Once you've set up a few courses at one end of the wall, carry out the same procedure at the other end. Insert a builder's pin into a joint at both ends, with the line running between them, ensuring that it's tight. If you follow this as you lay the bricks, the wall should be straight, and level.

French Neo-Impressionist & Pointillist Painter – Paul Signac

Paul Victor Jules Signac or Paul Signac, one of the most admired French 'Neo-Impressionist' painter and the co-originator of 'Pointillism' or 'Divisionism,' was born into an affluent bourgeois family in Paris, on November 11, 1863. Paul was a revolutionary artist who was also fond of sea and sailing. His first boat was a canoe that he named Manet Zola Wagner. The name hinted at his youthful fervor for avant-garde & unconventional artist, while simultaneously staying indecisive about his occupation.

At the age of eighteen, while pursuing a course in architecture, Paul Signac set eyes on Claude Monet's paintings, exhibited at the offices of La Vie, in June 1880. This triggered his interest in painting. Paul never undertook a formal training in arts. Whatever knowledge he had was a result of the self-study of the works of Manet, Monet, Degas, and Caillebotte. By 1882, the artist produced his first series of vibrantly colored studies & human figures, with his companion Berthe Robles, as his model. Paul's early works characterize an evident taste for frontals, geometric arrangements, and a predilection for colors.

Signac met Monet and Georges Seurat in 1884. Seurat's methodical working & his theory of colors floored Paul, and he instantly becomes a devoted follower of Seurat. Under Seurat's influence, Signac drifted away from the short brushstrokes of 'Impressionism' to experiment with 'Pointillism,' a technique where small dots of pure colors are skillfully put adjacently, with an intention to create a visual blend of colors in a viewer's eyes more than on the canvass. "Two Milliners" (1885) was the artist's first 'Neo-Impressionist' or 'Pointillist' piece of work. Seurat started his iconic huge painting, 'A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte,' in 1884, but Paul reworked on it in 1885, to incorporate the 'Division' technique, on Seurat's recommendation.

Signac participated in the first Salon des Artistes Independents in 1884, and continued to contribute annually. He was the first non-Belgian associate of avant-garde Brussels Société des XX. The same year he met Armand Guillaumin and a year later met Camille Pissarro. The year 1885 was Signac's signature year with his paintings exposited at a major exhibition, the Ecole des Beaux Arts, while also featuring in Alfred Robaut's first catalog. The artist even exhibited along with Seurat and Van Gogh in Paris in 1887, at the Le Théatre Libre.

In 1890, Paul's journalist friend, Felix Fénéon, covered an article, 'Les Hommes d'Aujourd'Hui,' mentioning about the artist's works. In 1899, Signac authored, "From Eugene Delacroix to Neo-Impressionism," where he talks about the various art ideas, theories, methodologies, and movements he experienced and was a part of. Following Seurat's death in 1891, Signac helped with listing and classifying his works. The artist perceives himself as the new leader of the 'Neo-Impressionism.' He organized 'Neo-Impressionist' group and memorial shows for Van Gogh and Seurat, in 1891 and 1892 respectively. He married Berther Robles on November 7, 1892.

By 1900, Signac stirred away from 'Pointillism,' as he never restricted himself to one medium. He experimented with oil paintings, watercolors, etchings, lithographs, and pen-and-ink sketches. Signac was the President of the annual Salon des Independants from 1908, until his death. He was an inspiration particularly to Henri Matisse, André Derian, and to many other amateur artists, as he encouraged them to exhibit the controversial works of the 'Fauves' and the 'Cubists,' thereby also leveraging the evolution of Fauvism. Paul started a live in relationship with Jeanne Selmersheim-Desgrange in September 1913. The couple was blessed with a daughter in October 1913.

Throughout his life, the artist created several watercolor paintings of European seascapes, landscapes, and French cities. Signac's celebrated masterpieces are "The Bonaventure Pine in Saint Tropez," (1893), "Port St. Tropez," (1899), "View of the Port of Marseilles" (1905), and "The Blessing of the Tuna Fleet at Groix "(1923). Paul Signac died on August 15, 1935, in Paris, from septicemia. He was buried at the Père Lachaise Cemetery.

How to Buy a Chandelier

Having a chandelier in your home can add quite a bit of style to any room, but they do not usually give off a lot of light. Buying a chandelier to match your home and the lighting you need can be difficult so learning how to buy a chandelier can help you quite a bit.

When you are deciding on a chandelier, find one that will sit perfectly above the room wherever above a table or as a centerpiece within your room. You want a chandelier that will sit perfectly above not being too low or too high. When choosing your chandelier you will want to consider the location of it as well as the lighting of the room.

There are many different designs for chandeliers making the option quite difficult. You will want a chandelier that will match the design of your home and other items through your home so that it does not look like a random piece in your home. They are generally used as a decoration instead of an actual lighting fixture, but there are some that are designed to be used as a lighting fixture you just need to find these ones.

Usually you will see chandeliers placed within a dining room or a front entrance of a home. This will generally depend on your home and the layout. If you have high ceilings within your home make sure that you do not place the chandelier too high up as it will look odd and not seem to fit right.

Buying a chandelier can be much more of a difficult task then you think at first but it can be a great investment for those wanting to have an item that makes a great centerpiece to any room. When you first begin searching for that right chandelier you will want to consider everything imaginable. Contemplate the design of your chandelier and see if it will work with the room and its surroundings. When you have a very unique chandelier that does not go with the rest of your home it will stick out instead of blend in and usually you want a chandelier that will get noticed but not be a huge piece that takes away from the rest of the room.

As a home owner there are many things you are going to buy and if you consider purchasing a chandelier make sure you know how to buy a chandelier so you can get it first the first time and be proud of the beautiful addition to your home.

A Review on Adam Sandler's "Grown Ups" – Coming Soon to Theaters

What's NOT to like about this movie?

Even though Zohan sucked, Adam Sandler's upcoming movie Grown Ups was actually really funny, and yet light-hearted enough to maybe bring your kids too see (maybe). Although the comedy was punchy with testosterone-filled jokes, everyone could really appreciate the humor conjured up by comedic geniuses like Sandler, David Spade, Chris Rock, Kevin James and Rob Schneider.

Picture this:

– Chris Rock as a house husband / Mr. Mom
– Sandler not undertaking a crazy, weird persona, and playing a good average dad
– David Spade as a womanizing bachelor who wants to nail Rob Schneider's daughters
– Schneider as a sensitive soul who has an old lady wife and two daughters so gorgeous no one believes he's the father

Although the comedy was punchy with testosterone-filled jokes, everyone could really appreciate the humor

The plot: mediocre; the jokes themselves: funny. The pace of the movie: slower. The rating I forsee: PG-13 (Did I mention the amount of times Maria Bello whips out her booby to feed her four-year old son?)

This movie may not be as racy a comedy as it could have been, but I believe the point was to make it tasteful enough for everyone in the family to see. Kids under ten will not get the perverted references anyway, unless your eleven year old son has Playboys stashed under his bed already. Even so, when this movie does release for everyone to see, YOU SHOULD GO SEE IT.

Grown Ups is a testament to us adults that fun and games are not just for children. I would, and will, see it again.

Shoveling Snow Off the Roof: Basic Safety

Snowfall could be a roof's worst type of foe. The weight of inches or sometimes feet of snow on even the sturdiest roof could cause structural harm or leakage issues. One of the largest issues will be when the snow melts a little and then re-freezes. This kind of melting and re-freezing will cause ice to form on the top of the snow pack, generating more weight. Unless you remove the heavy weight from the snow off a flatter roof prior to melting and freezing takes place, you may wind up having your own roof along with the ice in your living room. While it is very important to remove the snow off the roof, it is just as important to do it in a safe manner.

Basic safety First

Prior to deciding to get out the ladder or possibly climb out the windows onto the roof, examine the situation. If the roof is steep, slick or angled even somewhat, it is best to not get out on to it. Your household would much instead replace a roof which has caved in than to replace you. Should you determine that your roof is safe and flat and you feel safe enough walking out onto it, follow the actions below.

Proper Apparel

Generate no oversight, the air is going to be chilly and the snow is going to be even colder when you climb out upon your own roof. Wear, thick-soled insulated boots with gripping soles, and comfy clothing which keeps you dry, but that in addition provides you with a wide range of motion. You do not want to end up out there on the roof and do not have the ability to get around without difficulty. Gloves, a scarf plus a hat are also a must.

Safety Rope

You could feel a little ridiculous strapping a safety harness to your clothing and the interior of the house, but you'll be ever so grateful that you had it. A safety rope, just like many people use in rock climbing, is actually ideal. Attach the rope to a safety harness or safety belt that you may buy from any significant outside backpacking dealer. Connect the opposite end to something very heavy, permanent or even another person inside the house.


With a light-weight shovel with a telescoping handle, shovel the snow from the roof gently. You by no means want shovel all the way down to the roof's surface area, because it is simple to knick or scratch the roof's coating. Shovel down to within an inch of the surface area for best results. In case you are worried about the remaining snow, use a rigid broom to clean it off. Whenever tossing snow off the roof, watch for power lines and shrubs. Once the roof is cleaned off, carefully make your way back indoors or to the yard.

Shoveling snow from the roof is a hazardous job. A roof rake is a great option, as it permits the homeowner to remain on the ground and rake the snow from a slanted roof. Apply your best judgment and common sense when clearing off your roof.

Grand Junction Builders

Massive Bench Press – The Countdown Bench Press Workout

Bench Press Countdown Workout

This is a bench press workout that my training partner and I employed prior to the 2008 British Bench Press Championship where I benched 225kg raw. This was my biggest ever raw benchand I proved to myself that my training principles worked.

The workout consists of four workouts in a ten day period. The individual sessions alternate as follows:

  1. Heavybench press and assistance.
  2. Heavy squat and speed deadlift.
  3. Speed bench press and assistance.
  4. Speed squat and heavy deadlift.

The 10 day cycle is a mini cycle of workouts within a larger cycle that runs for 30 days and this larger cycle is part of an even larger cycle that runs for 90 days. Once in the 30 day period a single 1 rep maximum press was attempted to calculate progress. Each 30 day cycle concentrates on a specific bench assistance piece of equipment e.g bands or chains. Prior to starting this training schedule my training partner and I both benched our 1 rep max so we could calculate weight percentages. My 1 rep maximum was 195kg. We trained three days a week on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Shoulders were trained hard and heavy on the speed day.

The workouts are as follows:


  • Under the column weight I have written the % of my 1 rep max for the flat benchonly. This figure is approximate and is rounded up to the nearest 5 or 10 kilogram jump.
  • On the days not mentioned e.g. the Wednesday of the first 10 day cycle I am training squat and deadlift.
  • All close grip presses are lowered to a 3 board height.
  • On heavy bench day I always do close grip press as well.
  • Warm up properly prior to exercise including warming up on the specific exercise.
  • All workouts are done using wrist wraps only.

First 30 Day Cycle

Monday Flat Bench Press 5 sets 5 reps @ 160kg (80%) Friday Speed Bench Press 8 sets 3 reps @ 100kg (50%) Wednesday Flat Bench Press 8 sets 3 reps @ 175kg (90%) Monday Speed Bench Press 12 sets 2 reps @ 100kg (50%) Friday Flat Bench Press 3 sets 1rep @ 200kg MAX. Wednesday Speed Bench Press 12 sets 2 reps @ 100kg (50%)

On the heavy bench training day I complete 2 chest assistance exercises and 3 tricep assistance exercises. The exercises are from the following lists but the list isn’t exhaustive and other exercises can be added:

Bench Assistance Incline Press Decline Press Flat, Incline, Decline Flyes Pec Dec Flye Floor Press

Tricep Assistance Close Grip Press Skull Crushers / Kettlebell / Barbell Tricep Pressdown Dips Rack Lockouts

This cycle is now repeated for the second 30 day cycle only now instead of just plainpressing I introduced BANDS. I used medium blue woody bands which add approximately 20kg onto the bar weight at the top of the movement meaning an ’empty’ bar now weighed 40kg. My 1 rep max had now increased to 200kg so all calculations now have to be worked out on this new weight, however, due to the introduction of the bands I actually reduced the bar weight by 10kg! Bands were used for both speed and heavy days.

At the end of the second 30 day cycle we again tested our 1 rep max bench in order to calculate what bar weight we needed for our third and final cycle. My 1 rep max had now increased to 205kg and I was feeling very strong and happy I had broken the 200kg barrier.

The third cycle repeated the previous two only instead of bands we introduced CHAINS. To each side of the bar I added 17.5kg in chain weight meaning an ’empty’ bar now weighted 55kg. My 1 rep max had now increased to 205kg so I had to recalculate my workout percentages to take this into account. Chains were used for both speed and heavy days.

Finally, at the end of this cycle I tested my 1 rep max again and managed to bench 210kg. The most I had ever managed without wearing a specialist equipment. I was obviously delighted with the result and both my training partner and I had never felt stronger. I now rested fully for 2 weeks, not training even once during this period. Then on the Saturday I competed in the British Championship and benched 225kg which surprised me as this was 15kg over my previous best which shows how important rest and nutrition is within a training routine.

Conclusion Bands and chains look confusing and are often difficult to control but persistence can offer great gains in return. Explosive power off the chest is greatly increased driving you through previous sticking points. Training only ‘heavy’ once every 10 days allowed the muscles to completely recover and I felt fresh for every workout. Speed training increased the explosive power even more and allowed me to bench press quicker even on the heavy days.

For more information on bench pressing, bench press tips, bench press videos and bench press workouts please visit my website at

Life in an Elevator

Scientists in the States have recently published their findings about people’s behavior in an elevator.

The personal dynamics and the quest to maximise personal body space becomes a battle and the cultural background of the people in the elevator is the catalyst. The spark that starts the internal and external war between the bodies in the elevator is the number of people.

As the number increases so does a person’s desire for body space and comfort.

They studied western people and how they interact in an elevator. If there is 1 person in the lift they will stand near the controls. OK that is normal. I get that and agree with that.

If there are 2 people, then they will maximise the space between themselves. That is to say they will be on the diagonal. Yes I like this too.

Three people inside and they will form a triangle.

Again maximizing body space. I like it!!!! Yay!!!

Four people will occupy the corners and the fifth person will stand in the middle.

Body space; a wonderful, beautiful, comforting cultural anomaly.

Person number six and each subsequent person will endeavor to occupy as little space as they can muster. Thus the body space structures remain in place until critical mass is reached and then you have to hope and pray you are stood behind the person without the flatulence and beside the person who has great personal hygiene.

But in Korea, as in many non western nations the concept of body space has not been endorsed. There is a common acceptance that if you are in an enclosed space; an elevator, a train, a bus or a plane; as the number of people increases, your right to space decreases.

Let us all touch each other and stand as close to each other as we can. Touch me, tease me, feel me.

Here is the lowdown on Korean elevator etiquette.

One person in the elevator usually stands in the middle of the doorway awaiting to alight as quickly as is possible. But they fail to realize that other people have to squeeze past them. Both into and from the elevator.

Two people will invariably stand side by side creating a wall behind the doors. When the doors open one is greeted by people unwilling to move.

A third person squeezes in behind. So we now have 3 people occupying the doorway with a completely empty elevator behind them. Each subsequent traveler in the lift will move through the human wall until the elevator cannot take any more people.

Well that is technically not true. People will squeeze into the elevator until the overload alarm sounds and usually the last in will get off.

But sometimes, just sometimes the last person will feign ignorance or maybe arrogance and someone younger feels compelled to alight in their stead. This is the hierarchical society at work on a daily basis.

In a company, this attitude towards a more senior person is amplified and if you happen to be with that more senior figure, you automatically get treated as the same.

This is all very confusing and off-putting for the liberal Westerner!!!

Ahhh. The joys of being a sardine in Korea.

The subway is another eye-opener. But I will save that for another day.

Automated License Plate Scanning and Recognition Devices

This past Spring, I was on my way home from the office and, out of the blue, I was pushed over by a municipal police officer. I had not been speeding and had not done anything else wrong for that matter. The officer approached my vehicle asked for my license, registration and proof of insurance and I quietly complied.

He returned a few minutes later and asked how I had gotten my registration and updated sticker for my tag. At this time, I had an out-of-state tag on my vehicle. So told him, truthfully, that the DMV had sent me a bill, I paid the bill and they filled me the registration and sticker.

He responded that, "Well, your tag came up as expired. With that, he handed me my documents back and went on his way.

This encounter was my first experience with an LPR. LPR is short for Automated License Plate Scanning and Recognition Devices. This is new technology, which scans the license plates of all passing vehicles, checks the license plates against a database which includes expired tags (obviously), stolen vehicles, and vehicles associated with people who have active warranties out for their arrest. This data is fed into the LPR database by the Georgia Bureau of Investigations, the FBI, Georgia's DMV and, apparently, out-of-state state agencies as well.

When there is a "hit", the system immediately alters the officer. He then springs into action to rescue the public from those dangerous citizens who failed to pay their annual car tax. This explains my out-of-the-blue detention by this particular cop. For some reason, my former state's agency had fed incorrect information into the database and I was wrongfully owed for it.

Now this brings up some interesting questions. What if this officer had found marijuana sitting on my passenger seat during the stop? Seeing as the stop was based on incorrect data, would not my detention have been unlawful? Therefore, evidence of other crimes discovered during that detention would have been fruit of the poison tree, right?

Well, the Georgia Court of Appeals has already taken this issue up in two separate cases.

First off, the State need not put on evidence of the reliability of the equipment or database to justify the stop. This is different than evidence necessary to sustain a conviction for, let's say, DUI Per Se, where the State would have to establish that the Intoxilyzer 5000 was in good working order etc. etc.

So even if the warrant (for example) has been withdrawn or the information is wholly inaccurate (as in my case), the officer is still justified in conducting the stop. The State need not even show that protocols exist to ensure its accuracy.

The State has been slowly converting its roads to Fourth-Amendment-Free-Zones for years. This is just another step toward the Orwellian future people rightfully fear. The State is wholly unaccountable for the accuracy of its work. It, therefore, has every incentive to promote inaccuracy. Look for this incentive to be exploited as more and more "law enforcement" agencies adopt the technology.

– Jason Carnell

Whitfield Pellet Stoves

Whitfield Pellet Stoves are a part of the Lennox International which has been established since 1895, Lennox Hearth products was established in 1996 and are located in Orange, CA. They have many Hearth Products ranging from fireplaces, fireplace inserts, stoves and log sets.

If your home has an existing masonry or metal fireplace, there are easy and attractive ways t- spark new life int- it. Wood-, gas- and pellet-burning fireplace inserts from Lennox Hearth Products fit int- almost any traditional fireplace opening t- instantly transform it int- a warm and entertaining centerpiece.

Whitfield Products can be broken down int0 Pellet Burning Insert's and Pellet Stoves Inserts

* Profile INS -Attractive bay window design and FastFire (TM) self-igniter deliver a decorative, easy-to-use and efficient heating choice
– Heating Capacity 800-1,900sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

* Winslow – Powerful, efficient pellet heating and customizable style options combine t- create ideal warmth and timeless beauty
– Heating Capacity 900-2,000 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

Pellet Stoves

* Winslow- Powerful, fully automatic pellet heating, advanced technical features and customizable style options combine t- create reliable warmth and timeless beauty.
– Heating Capacity 900-2,000 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

* Montage – Dependable comfort, customizable options and economic burning make this stove a requirement for cozy heating.
– Heating Capacity 800-1,900 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

* Cascade – Classic styling and convenience features are matched with affordable high-efficiency heating for charm and warmth
– Heating Capacity 500-1,500 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

* Profile -Bay-view stove features FastFire (TM) ignition, high-efficiency combustion and exceptional fuel capacity
– Heating Capacity 800-1,900 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent

* T300P-2-Traditional cast-iron stove updates modern heating technology and a variety of convenience features and color options
– Heating Capacity 800-1,900 sq. ft.
– 33 Pellet Vent