Yesterday johnstonefitness.com once again saw record-breaking traffic: over 129,000 unique visitors, nearly 10,000,000 hits and almost 250 GBs of bandwidth. This traffic data does not include the forum, which saw near record-breaking traffic.
Considering the incredible demand, I think the servers have been doing an admirable job, but I know things have been frustratingly slow much of the time this week. I apologize for that, and I am doing everything I can to keep things under control. As a temporary measure, the pictures section of this site is disabled whenever the database server becomes overwhelmed. Again, I’m very sorry for any inconvenience!
This morning I’d like to address some of the most common comments/questions that I’ve seen over the past few days. A lot of these things are covered in my FAQ, but I’ll talk about those things again here.
A lot of people who are not familiar with weight training and how to add muscle automatically assume I’m using/have used steroids when they see my pictures. I have never, ever used steroids, growth hormones, pro hormones or anything else of the sort. As I’ve always said, anyone who wants to pay for a drug test is more than welcome to step up at any time. I’ll even put $5,000.00 of my own money on the table. I have absolutely nothing to hide. I do not use any drugs. My progress has come from hard work and a sound diet, and my number one priority is health. I would never do anything to jeopardize my health. I eat a very healthy, all-natural diet. All the supplements I’m using are things like amino acids and essential fatty acids. These are all-natural supplements, but people who are not familiar with them often tend to assume the worst.
One of the most amusing things I’ve seen are comments in the same thread that are 180 degrees apart: “Gross! He’s using steroids!”, which is often followed by another user’s comment, “Four years? His progress sucks!” I’ve always maintained that my progress is nothing extraordinary. Everything I’ve done is 100% obtainable by anyone who wants to work for it.
The reason I look big and bloated in the Winter pictures is because during the Winter I eat like a horse while training very hard in the gym. This is called “bulking”, and is done to add muscle. At the end of a bulk, I “cut”, which is just a fancy way of saying I lose any fat that I put on during my bulk. I’m very “carb-sensitive”, so I bloat up pretty bad while eating a very high carb diet. Also, I admit that I did put on too much fat last Winter. I’m far from perfect, but I try to learn from my mistakes. As you can see from the April 3, 2007 picture (below), I’m getting back into “beach shape”, and I think I’m doing pretty well!
Many people think I’m too big, and many people think I’m too small. It’s interesting to read the drastically different opinions. I have no desire to be a huge body builder. I also don’t want to be skinny like I was in the summer of 2003. I was quite big this past Winter (almost 240 pounds), but in a couple of months I will be below 200 pounds again. I am aiming for a very lean, but muscular, body. This is the look I like. I think many of the people who think I’m too big would be surprised if they saw me in real life. I’m not scrawny, but I don’t look anything like a “typical” bodybuilder.
Weaknesses: I’m well aware of them! It cracks me up when I read comments from people who declare that my rear delts are lagging and that I have no height to my traps, as if I had no idea. I’ve been working really hard to bring these weaknesses up, but those changes doesn’t happen overnight. Muscle development takes years and years of hard work – especially for a natural trainee.
I don’t stand with my arms puffed out normally! I only stand that way in my monthly photos so I can see my lat development. The monthly pictures are not a very good representation of how I look: they are very unnaturally posed and are used purely as a tool for tracking my progress.
My pictures are not altered/photoshopped. Most of the people who make those kinds of comments are not very familiar with this site or body recomposition in general. They see the changes in the monthly photos posted on a web site somewhere and don’t think it’s possible. Well, it is possible. Heck, it’s not even that uncommon amongst those people who take the time to learn and then apply what they’ve learned. That’s what this site is all about! I’ve posted thousands of pictures here, I’ve posted videos, I’ve met dozens of people in real life and I’ve documented my journey in great detail from day one. The cynics and critics are just doing the only thing they know how to do. Ignore them, and believe in yourself.
In 2003 I bleached my hair. I know it looked horrible. Oh well! That was four years ago. Let’s move on.
I don’t use any fake tan products, and I don’t go to a tanning salon. I live in Florida, and I don’t wear a shirt much of the time, so I get tan. The monthly pictures make me look much darker than I really am – seriously!
Years ago many of the comments like those I’ve read over the past few days really got to me. I had pretty low self-esteem back then, and there were times that I came very close to taking the site down. It was really hard for me to understand the vitriol because I was very proud of what I’d done. I couldn’t wrap my head around why people were often so critical and downright nasty. I can honestly say that these kinds of comments don’t get to me any more, and I only address them here because I want people to know that everything on this site is real, factual, honest and 100% achievable. I want YOU to succeed.