Muscle for life

Cool Stuff of the Week: Nest Thermostat, Exercise Cards, Sycamore Row, and More…

Cool Stuff of the Week: Nest Thermostat, Exercise Cards, Sycamore Row, and More…

I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m kind of a sucker for cool stuff. I like nifty gadgets, quirky decoration pieces, nice clothes (and shoes!), good books, and fun games.

In this series of weekly posts, I share whatever currently has my fancy. Maybe some of it will catch yours as well!



Wow this dude takes finger snapping to a whole other level…



If you want to start exercising but are short on time and unsure where to even begin, then Workoutlab’s Exercise Cards is for you.

Here’s a quick summary of why I like them:

  • The cards feature professional and clear illustrations that show correct form and movement
  • There are 50 exercise cards and 5 workout routines in the decks
  • They will be printed by the US Playing Card Company on the Bicycle® playing card paper so they can withstand ware better than traditional digital printers’ products
  • The decks will come in Men’s and Women’s versions
  • They have a 110% money back guarantee on pre-orders (if you don’t love the deck when you get it, they refund 110% of your money and you get to keep the deck(s)



samurai umbrella


Fight rain with honor and resolve with your very own samurai…umbrella!

Yeah, it’s kinda kitschy, but it’s an umbrella with an awesome samurai handle and scabbard!




The Nest Thermostat is a pretty, intelligent little gadget that learns from your heating and cooling habits and, using sensors to know whether you’re home or not, and a Wi-Fi connection to get up-to-date weather information, programs itself to help you save energy and money.

You can also pre-set a heating and cooling schedule and even control the device via a Web, iOS, and Android app.

I’ve had mine for about 8 months now and am very happy with it. It’s brought my electricity bill down, and the scheduling is particularly nice. I’ve had it bug out on me a couple of times, but the customer support team was great and helped me fix the issue within 10 – 15 minutes.







Sycamore Row is Grisham’s latest novel, and it’s a sequel (of sorts) to A Time to Kill,  which is widely considered one of the best–if not the best–legal thrillers ever written (and I agree).

In this book, Jake Brigance is back and caught up in the legal affairs of Seth Hubbard, a secretive, rich man that, before killing himself, cut his family out of his will and named his black maid the beneficiary. A lawyer dogpile quickly ensues, and Brigance has to find out why Hubbard would do such a thing, and how it all ties into a piece of land known as Sycamore Row.

I’m not a huge Grisham fan (I couldn’t even finish a few of his novels), but Sycamore Row, like A Time to Kill and The Brokerproves his mastery of storytelling. 

Once you start reading, you won’t be able to stop–you’ll laugh, you’ll cry (or come close to it), and the ending is one of those “holy shit” moments that are oh-so-enjoyable.

What do you think of this week’s picks? Have anything you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below!

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I'm Mike and I'm the creator of Muscle for Life and Legion Athletics, and I believe that EVERYONE can achieve the body of their dreams.

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  • marshall5686

    The NEST is pretty cool. Kind of like the first iPod – it works the way you’d expect it to. And the energy savings, about 20% in my case, pays for itself over time.

    • Michael Matthews

      Yeah, I like it.

  • Brian

    I like those workout cards – very neat idea. I will probably be ordering some when they are in stock. Hopefully the price will go down a little bit though.

    • Michael Matthews

      Nice! I’m not sure what his plan is on the price.

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