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“Let the GAINZ begin!”


The two words I hate more than any others when said paired together: “You’re lucky.”

I hear it all the time at the gym. Fellow Taiwanese gym-goers, small and skinny by nature, approach the 77kg me and say, “I wish I’d been born with that body.”

If only they knew. If only they could see the whole picture.

I used to be just like them. One time when I took my shirt off at basketball practice, a fellow teammate said I looked like I’d just survived the Holocaust. My whole life, all I knew was that emaciated frame as seen below.


Then in 2012 I moved to Taiwan. I picked up my first weight right after New Year’s, if only by default, as I’d learned early on in Taiwan that playing basketball with Asians (authentic) wasn’t viable if one wanted to keep his sanity.

At first the weights and I didn’t mesh. There was no seamlessness about my trying to slap 5kg onto the bench and press it up 10 times, 3 sets. Not with my 65kg frame. Who would’ve approached me in JAN 2012 and said those horrible words in conjunction, “You’re lucky”?

But I kept showing up. Four to five times a week. Four months in, I could already see some gainz. I was lifting more. I’d upped my weight a bit. My form was no longer atrocious.

I kept showing up some more. Four to five times a week. A year in, now I was seeing Gainz, capital “G.” From a 30kg-bench I’d spiraled up to 75kg. My weight had finally scraped the 70kg mark. I’d purchased my first tub of protein. I was starting to show hints of looking like a real gym-goer.

And still I kept showing up even more. Four to six times a week. A year and nine months in, now I was seeing GAINZ, all caps. From a 75kg-bench I’d willed my way to a 100kg press. I’d long ago confronted and extinguished my fear of squatting—and with good form to boot! My new favorite workout was the deadlift, an excercise I’d refused to touch my entire first year in the gym. I’d surpassed my 77kg goal, plateaued to a meaty 80kg, and dieted back down to a healthier, better-looking 77kg. I’d kept on with the protein, and also added creatine to the mix. Here’s when all the “You’re lucky’s” started pouring in.

They’d thought it was easy. They still do.


This blog is for the GAINERZ. Not those that want to dream it up a pipe or say, “I want that” to a TV screen. There’s no other way around it, especially if you have Asian genetics: you’ve got to work hard, you’ve got to work smart.

Recently I’ve been getting approached by more and more Taiwanese guys that want me to give them tips, or even train them on my free time. I’d love to be a part-time trainer, if only for the fulfillment it’d bring me to help those that want to help themselves–those that look at big-time GAINERZ and refuse to acknowledge, not even for a second, the existence of those two terrible words: “You’re lucky.”

Fuck luck.

You accept right now you’re at the root of it all. Then we can start.

Or in other words, let the GAINZ begin!


This man knows.

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