Archive for the ‘sports’ category


February 4, 2011

Erle Frayne D. Argonza


Magandang araw sa kapamilyang global! Good day to global community fellows!


This year 2011 will mark the 21st year that this analyst (sociologist, economist, political analyst) and self-development guru has been practicing powerlifting as a regular physical regimen. Being a former competitive athlete in national powerlifting Class A (equivalent to ‘professional’) in Ph, I will dedicate this note to the Zest Fitness Gym, the topgun powerlifing gym that made me into a national athlete and consistent gym weight burner.


This is the narrative of my physical history, fellows. I’ve been doing gym weight training for 21 years now, with no signs that I’d be dropping off powerlifting as my regular physical regimen. I owe it to the Zest gym this love for weight training and the scientific rigor that goes with that training.


I used to jog and swim for eight (8) years prior to my plunge into weight training in 1990. In 1982 I almost lost my life, neglectful as I was then for two (2) straight years of living an active professional and civil life but without a physical program. I contracted falciparum malaria along the way and almost died of it, and so the decision came to me never again to be remiss in my physical fitness programming.


Within a week I would jog for a day or two, and then in between jogging I would swim for at least a day or two in a week. I would jog for around 30-45 minutes, and swam 20 laps in the Olympic pool. My exercises were largely survival training types or non-competitive. I began to pump some weights in ‘86 through ‘89 to give some firmer shapes to my muscles while I continued with the jog & swim regimen.


Then in 1990 I decided to go straight gym or indoor workouts. I simply scorned the days when I couldn’t jog or swim due to heavy rains or inclement weather as the rains restrained me from getting exposed to the elements. So in 1990 I decided to go regular gym workouts, since I can do the workouts even if the stormy day is already whistling Signal No. 2 typhoon beacons.


I was then residing in Cubao, Quezon City, and from there I took a ride to University of the Philippines (Diliman) to do workouts at the PRO Gym. Barely just six (6) months in weight training then, I stumbled into the Zest gym just near my residential area. I was surprised that there was one gym there where topgun powerlifters trained, and it was just around 12 minutes walk from my home.


The gym got me curious about powerlifting, as I was then doing the typical body-building program. An orientation chat with Ramon ‘Mon’ Dabuque, owner and chief trainor of Zest, convinced me sufficiently to try out with the program. Powerlifting builds mass, power and agility, and that was enough to make me try it and linger on with it till now.


Sports science provided the core ‘best practices’ to the Zest weight training, a fact that fascinated me a lot. Being a former weightlifter at the University of the Philippines and a national athlete, Mon Dabuque was very meticulous in doing research and testing the applications of certain programmed practices. Even our diet regimen had to pass the rigors of R & D tested regimen for athletes.


It was through Zest, with its bounty of sports science magazines and literature, that informed me highly about the combinations of macrobiotics (65% carbo, 20% protein, 15% fats), sufficient microbiotic supplements (vitamins, minerals), and catalytic boosters. That knowledge was to be added to my arsenal of knowledge packages about health & wellness, at a time when I was already an advocate of alternative health paradigms.


The program for us athletes then was a combination of the Bulgarian program, Hawaiian program, regular (generic) powerlifting basics, and Mon Dabuque’s innovative experimental program. Scientific and very rigorous, couples of weakling types dropped out of the regimen, while couples of others, myself included, proceeded to take the challenge of winning head on via the rigorous and disciplined regimen.


The beauty with scientific programming is that even if the trainee doesn’t possess ‘muscular genetics’ (low muscular intelligence), the trainee can still be transformed into a topgun powerlifting athlete. Sports science is the cutting edge, and I am witness to the power of scientific training under a brilliant trainor/instructor. Many of us athltetes, myself included, possessed sloppy frail body types with no muscular genetics and yet made it to the top as national-level athletes while just new into powerlifting.


In less than a year of powerlifting training, I decided to try it out in the National Powerlifting Novice Competitions in 1991, and wondrously landed as Bronze Medalist on the Lightweight division. Emboldened by the victories of our Zest Team and the medal I won, I worked hard for a year to qualify for the National Class A Powerlifting Competitions in 1992, and landed as Silver Medalist in the Middleweight division.


During both competitions, I was witness to how the Zest Team lionized the greatest number of medals and bested all other gyms in the total Team scores. PH’s topgun powerlifters—Mon Dabuque, Tony Taguibao, Eddie Torres, Allan Paje, Erlina Pecante—whom we can correctly classify as ‘world class’ athletes today, are from Zest.


To be able to qualify as a national-to-international class athlete, one has to carry a total of over 7 X his/her body weight, by adding altogether his/her performance in Squat, Deadlift, and Bench Press. On my last competition, with body weight at around 68 kilograms, my Deadlift was 210 kg, Squat at 167 kg, and Bench Press at 92 kg. I was near that mark just barely 18 months or so into powerlifting, thanks to scientific training.


I also became a member of 200 Club, comprising those who can carry a load of over 200 kilograms in any event—I did it in deadlift. Later, I would learn that Eddie Torres and Mon Dabuque became members of the 300 Club, enabled as they were to carry a load breaching 300 kilograms in their deadlift and/or squat. I was truly ecstatic at my own feat, just 18 months into powerlifting then, and felt edified to have been a Team Mate with the topguns who also became my friends.


I was about to train for the Asian Powerlifting in 1993 when PH was entitled to send a double team (meaning two athletes per weight division). Unfortunately, I was knocked out cold by lingering tonsillitis, decidedly had to undergo surgery, and eventually led to the huge drop in my performance. Late that year, after surgery, I decided to retire from competitive sports, and focus instead on using power training as my regular physical fitness regimen.


Twenty-one years later, I still am a consummate gym worker amid my advancing age. Let me express herewith my gratitude to Zest gym and its core trainor Mon Dabuque, and my continuing appreciation and admiration of topguns Mon Dabuque, Eddie Torres, Erlina Pecante, Tony Taguibao, Allan Paje, and my other Team Mates.


To Zest Gym, Mabuhay!


[Philippines, 01 February 2011]




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December 22, 2010


A pleasant day and Happy Holidays to fellow global citizens!

Yuletide season is now at our doors, and the spirit of fellowship has been harboring glad tidings of good news as Prof. Erle Frayne Argonza, a social analyst and self-development guru from Manila, has been continuing to gain mileage in his magnanimous efforts to enlighten humanity about the current social and cosmic issues. To date, dozens of online newspapers and magazines across the globe have featured Prof. Argonza’s writings on their very own websites.

Another very warming development most recently was the conferment by the Philippine Blog Awards of FINALIST-BEST SOCIETY, POLITICS & HISTORY BLOG on Prof. Argonza’s Ikonoklast. Thus, Prof. Argonza is indubitably among the Philippines’ top bloggers today, buttressing the earlier recognitions of him as one of the world’s top sociology bloggers.

For your reads and exchange of notes about Prof. Argonza’s blogs, please visit:


BrightWorld: Cosmicbuhay:


Join now the growing numbers of global citizens who find Light in Prof. Argonza’s englightening blogs!

Argonza & Associates Consulting
December 2010





November 16, 2010

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

Pacquiao just won his latest fight versus Margarito Teves. Kudos to our grand global champ!

What can I say of Manny Pacquiao, I can but think of a plethora of accolades for this humble fighter-turned-global athlete. Not only that, today he is also a legislator of the House of Representatives of the Philippine Republic or RP, where he is expected to champion advocacies for the marginal classes where he came from.

The fight was really a predictable one. Like Pacman’s fight with Clottey, analysts and sports forecasters were of the opinion that Pacquiao will take the throne for his 150-lb class, though the victory will be more of a decision win rather than a knockout.

Even before the fight began, I was already in a mood to pity the Mexican boxer, hoping that he won’t ever get whacked so bad in the head that can tragically take him down the canvass. I knew that he would become a veritable punching bag like most of Pacman’s past title adversaries, which indeed happened as forecast.

As to what was the key factor behind Pacman’s victories, this latest one included, let me re-echo what I’ve stated in previous articles about him: sports science was the cutting edge factor. Freddie Roach constituted a Team of experts, with him at the helm, who ensured a highly studied and calibrated training for Pacman.

Such a training is indubitably state-of-the-art, which is parallel to those trainings in other sports that are science inclined. Sports science calibrates everything, from nutrition/diet to the fight kinetics. I am very keen on this myself being a one-time competitive powerlifter, and I know the discipline needed to win in a competition.

Pacquiao at the commencement of his career was a “bara-bara” fighter whose training was more of a physical education or P.E. format. It took quite some time before he shifted his format, with the help of his trainer F. Roach who would become his permanent trainer and career counselor as well.

Pacman incidentally possessed a high level of emotional intelligence marked by excellent learning attitude. High E.Q. plus high physico-kinetic intelligence are his core inner traits that would match with the rigorous coaching and scientific training from Roach & Team Pacquiao.

Without doubt, Manny Pacquiao is the best boxer of all time, as he won world champ in a total of eight (8) divisions. His agility and acumen will be remembered for all time and will be the subject of boxing pre-fight studies in the future.

He is a much better boxer than Muhammad Ali, to my very own surprise and glee. Surprise because I’d never imagine a fellow Filipino gaining global prowess as he did. Glee since he makes me so proud of him and of my being a Filipino.

His career marks a turning point in Filipino sports trainings, demonstrating thus the enormous power of sports science as a cutting edge tool for winning. His ascent to global quality fighter has inspired many Filipino boxers to go his path to global fame too, a reality that undercut the Mexicans and Thais as the top contributors to world class boxers.

So prestigious has the Filipino boxer become that even in Mexico any top-ranked Filipino boxer is revered as a hero. And that, my friends, is another surprise phenomenon for me and my compatriots. Knowing how patronizing the Mexicans are toward their compatriot athletes, I really could hardly figure out how they’ve come to openly revere Filipino boxers who are welcomed to their places like heroic kings.

Conclusively, Pacman will end up as a man for all seasons. He will be well studied in sports science institutes and universities. Biographies after biographies of him will be writ by enthused writers. Even long after he’s gone, the tots who comprise his global fans today will be narrating Pacman’s feats to their great grand children. Gurus of success, the likes of John Maxwell, will also be discoursing on him as an exemplar of career and financial success.

Mabuhay si Manny Pacquiao! Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!

[Philippines, 15 November 2010]


October 5, 2010


Erle Frayne D. Argonza

Magandang gabi sa mga ka-global citizen! Good evening to fellow global citizens!

It’s now night time as I compose this piece, which is a sequel to the article written earlier titled “Fitness Program & Capacity-Building.” From capacity-building impact I now move to incapacitation as a most likely effect of a neglect of fitness program.

You see, if you really wish to find out about the incapacity that results from fitness program neglect, just visit a hospital and inquire from the epidemiology department whether those who frequent hospitalization have a great deal to do with the lack of fitness regimen. Fix the age limits to those past 30 years old. Chances are that you’ll get the same answer as you verify the matter from one hospital to another: neglect of fitness results to health risks and frequent hospitalization.

Now, go out to a shopping mall and let your eyes scan the people inside the building. Make finger counts as to how many overweight persons there are for every ten (10) shoppers and/or mall visitors. Go up and down the mall, turn your eyes to the left and right, in front of you and behind you, and you’d truly get the shock of your life to find out the fact that overweight is a deadweight reality in today’s fast-paced urban life.

When I visited the USA in 2000, ‘01 & ‘02, I got the shocker of my life for witnessing a humungous quantity of warm bodies afflicted with obesity. My eyes just couldn’t believe how appalling the lifestyles of people are in America, with as much as 2/3 of people in a mall, transport hub or office building manifesting obesity. If only the late Pitirim Sorokin were alive today, he’d faint with disbelief that he could have missed out on obesity as among the indicators of the Crisis of our Age (his classic book).

How appalling indeed urban life and the rat race have made out of today’s habitués across the world, with the USA seemingly taking the lead. My own country, the Philippines, has an incidence of 25% obesity and that could be under-estimated as the figure is moving rapidly to 30% (per Department of Health reports).

The Department of Health technocrats in Manila have already raised the alarm bells in the media over the rising obesity incidence. But alas! No one seems to be paying attention to the experts, as the peoples’ eyes are made to focus on the hunger incidence which afflicts around 20% of the population (poor folks largely). Contrast the hunger of 20% to the obesity of past 25% and you know which figure is indubitably larger.

The absence of a fitness program is truly debilitating, as per my own experience. So dedicated to my grassroots development work in 1981-82, I neglected my physical program and resorted to every kind of rationalization for that neglect. Along the way, I contracted falciparum malaria while doing the rounds of program monitoring of small towns for my employer (Ministry of Human Settlements).

The malaria could have gotten into my veins as early as 1981 yet, but since I was still fresh out of college then (I jogged and walked a lot till graduation time in Oct. 1980) the effects of my previous regimen were still working on my system. Then, came August of 1982, a deadly fever struck me cold turkey that rendered me pathetically bedridden for over three (3) weeks. I almost died from that ailment, which was diagnosed as malaria falciparum.

I had repetitive attacks of the malaria fevers for many months to come, and so I had to be armed with quinine pills at all times. At one time, in early ’84 (I was already beginning graduate school), the fever was so high that it knocked me out unconscious while taking a pee in our apartment’s toilet. I was so lucky then that my friends and siblings, with whom I shared the apartment unit in Manila’s suburbs, were around, so they quickly plucked me out from the toilet (I was still unconscious) and rushed me to the nearest hospital.

Do reckon that I was already beginning with a renewed fitness regimen since late 82 yet, but to no avail! See what inroads of a degenerative disease can do that it can knock you out even if you’re back in the trails of fitness programs. It took some three (3) more years before my body stabilized completely, and no more malaria attack came since then.

But the parasite is with me forever, and I easily chill when the temperature radically drops in any environment (e.g. airconditioned hall). And I can no longer donate blood to those in need, since donating would mean transferring the parasite to the recipient.

My chilly cryptic experience was my own teacher that wakened me up from my physical lethargy. I have since mutated into a wellness buff and lifestyle guru sort-of, even as I continue to re-echo wellness themes whenever the opportunity permits.

To add the cryptic facet to that experience, a first cousin of mine, Eroll Argonza, who was my kababata (childhood playmate) and of identical age, also suffered from a debilitating disease (typhoid) simultaneous with my own malaria attack. My cousin tragically failed to make it, died while struggling in the hospital bed, and was buried when I was just recovering from my own malaria ailment.

The death of my cousin, who was a young bank professional then and had a family of his own (he fathered an only girl child who later graduated from the University of the Philippines and is happily married to a maritime engineer), sent shuddering tectonics and shockwaves for years to come on our entire family lineages. His sad travail was an added teacher to me, mentoring me with the ‘stick’ in hand to never again be remiss on my fitness regimen.

To end this note, let me re-echo the challenge that each and every working man and woman build and sustain a fitness regimen. The overall goal is to capacitate the person. No one forces fitness regimen unto those emotional morons who are indifferent to it, fitness is just a mere choice really. Those among us who are attitudinally smarter should just go ahead and make ourselves physically smarter and serve as exemplars of smartness by doing instead of talking.

[Philippines, 18 September 2010]







September 26, 2010


Prof. Erle Frayne D. Argonza / Guru Ra

Felicitous greetings to you all!

I hereby extend my most heartfelt gratitude to enthused readers and fellow writers who appreciated my notes about social life, wisdom and arts.

Just about three (3) years ago, there was very little information about my person on cyberspace. Today, as I’ve spread my messages of Light and hope to all of the corners of the globe via the blogs and social networks, many enthused souls responded through reading, exchanges of notes, and citations of my works. Finally, after your appreciation and support of my cyber-crusade, information about me on cyberspace increased by gigantic strides.

Special thanks to the following online news, magazines and portals for citing my notes as among the top blogs on cyberspace:

Thanks too to the following sites that have cited, discussed and debated on various notes of mine about a diversity of topics and themes:

Maraming salamat! Thank you very much! Love & Light!

September 2010


September 23, 2010


Good day to all endeared readers, friends, fellow global citizens!

A truly gladdening news has been breaking the cybersphere of late. Prof. Erle Frayne Argonza, a social analyst and self-development guru from Manila, has been continuing to gain mileage in his magnanimous efforts to enlighten humanity about the current social and cosmic issues.

To date, dozens of online newspapers and magazines across the globe have featured Prof. Argonza’s writings on their very own websites. Championing the causes of peace and global cooperation, Prof. Argonza has continued to reach out to enthused readers, writers and spiritual seekers. The latter contributed to the upsurge in the numbers of citations of Argonza’s writings aimed at accelerating awareness-raising.

For your reads and exchange of notes about Prof. Argonza’s blogs, please visit:




Join now the growing numbers of global citizens who find Light in Prof. Argonza’s englightening blogs!

Argonza & Associates Consulting

September 2010




July 12, 2010

Erle Frayne D. Argonza

Happy World Cup Season to everyone!

The entire planet is glued on the world soccer games at this moment, indicating an ever growing sense of one family sort of planet. We may all experience both euphoria and pain while we watch the events, but one thing is sure about the matter: the World Cup is a banner event that can rally our planetary citizens towards peace and cooperation.

That the present world cup season was held in South Africa, a country of the South (it used to be North when it was White-dominated), signals what could be an emerging phenomenon: of world games being held for consecutive times in the South states. Just like the Olympics, there may never be World Cup up North again or later.

I am myself highly appreciative of the holding of the games in South Africa, enchanted as I am with the magnificent architectural designs of the games’ venues. An unsolicited advice would go for the organizers of the games: “let’s have some more games held in South Africa in the future to maximize the use of those marvelous stadium facilities.”

And, I wish that my own country, the Philippines, can catch up on the soccer fever. We seem to be stuck up here with the love for basketball, thanks but no thanks to our colonization by the U.S.A., which explains the older generations’ luke warm attitude towards the World Cup.

I’m happy at least that the youth of my country has been catching up on the World Soccer hysterics. Around my neighborhood area in the suburban boondocks, soccer watchers scream to the highest heavens at wee hours as a cathartic way of appreciating the games.

How about my continent Asia? Where goes my fellow Asians after the games? How far can Asia forge ahead strong teams that can reach the final rounds at least? Of course, the better it is that at least one Asian team that will “bring home the bacon.” We Asians just can’t be let down by sobs and blues over our poor performing teams, can we?

Overall ratings for developing countries remain to be seen yet. Brazil was already badly mauled as of the latest rounds versus the North countries (trounced by the Dutch). But Brazil has consistently shown enormous firepower in soccer, ditto for its neighbor Argentina.

We peoples of the South can proudly say that, no matter how sluggish our development efforts have been, we can at least out-perform the North soccer-wise. Soccer is an instance where we’re able to ‘level the playing field’ and humiliate neo-Nazi skinheads for misplaced White supremacist arrogance.

The World Cup has been an excellent platform for us peoples of the South to regain our damaged self-esteem—damaged by 500 years of Northern imperialism and enslavement—and recoup lost grace. Instead of avenging our impoverishment by declaring a world war versus our Northern ex-enslavers, let us forge stronger World Soccer teams and overpower them in the playing fields.

What say you, fellows of the South? friends from the North?

[Philippines, 05 July 2010]