In this week’s New York’s Sunday Spotlight, we hit up Dick Talens – the co-founder of Fitocracy, the revolutionary fitness social network – for some fitness tips for the summer and for awesome date ideas in New York.
If you have not heard of Fitocracy by now, you don’t know what you are missing out. Two pictures are worth a 1,000 words: Fitocracy transformed Dick from here to up there. He looks so good now, he makes Jared Fogle’s transformation laughable (OK, we exaggreate a bit).
Once a fat, video-game obessed geek (a cute one nevertheless), Dick says he used pure geekery to train himself – visualizing himself as a video game character while spending many hours nerding out on nutrition and exercise. His experience training together with his fellow nerd and best friend from college, Brian Wang, was the basis for their company Fitocracy, which they founded together in 2010.
To keep up with his latest & greatest, follow Dick on twitter @DickTalens
1. It’s the summer & I need a quick way to get in shape! Any tangible advice/recommended routine? Please tell us it’s possible…
“When you say “get in shape for the summer”, I’m going to assume like 99% of people, you mean “look good naked”. There is only one effective way to do that (and no, it does not involve running):
I. Focus on your diet. If you’re trying to lose fat, figure out how many calories you need in a day and eat a few hundred calories below that. Keep protein high to maximize satiety, increase your caloric expenditure, and build lean mass.
II. Focus on compound exercises, namely squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. These exercises will make you build your ideal body faster than anything on the planet. For the ladies, don’t worry, you won’t get bulky from lifting. In fact, the opposite is true. A beginners program like Starting Strength is pretty good.”
2. What is the best healthy yet yummy food spot you like to go to in NYC?
“One of my favorite restaurants is Mooncake Foods in Soho. It’s a bit hole-in-the-wall-y, but that’s probably the reason that it’s the best bang for your buck. It’s cheap, has a good amount of protein, delicious, and most of all it’s a healthy crapton of food in every order.
3. Where is the best place to work out & also meet cool people? (OK you can say Fitocracy)
“Ummm, definitely Fitocracy. Well, you can’t work out physically on Fitocracy, but you can meet the coolest, most inspirational people on there when it comes to fitness. We’ve got guys who’ve lost hundreds of pounds, 70-year-olds who lift, an amputee who deadlifts twice his body weight, and even the reigning Miss New York (who used Fitocracy to get in shape for her pageant) is on there.”
4. What is your idea of the best Sunday date in NYC?
“Bottomless brunch on Arte Cafe on the Upper West Side. Going to Crumbs for cupcakes afterwards. Then, people watching in Central Park and counting how many dogs look eerily similar to their owners (if you haven’t tried this, you’re missing out). Finally, an intense lifting session at the gym finishing with post-workout sushi.”