Friday, December 31, 2010

The Wonder of Wow in Sports and Life

Over the Christmas holiday I was able to go see one of the Cirque De Shows with my wife.  It was here in Grand Rapids, MI at the Devos Center in conjunction with our local symphony.  If you have never seen a Cirque De Show, I highly recommend it.  It got me thinking about how many times in life you really just say Wow!  Like genuinely, unconsciously just go wow.  The Cirque shows do just that.  They do some physical things that you don't think the human body is capable of doing.

It got me thinking about sports and why they are so popular and how the salaries seem out of proportion and all that is good and bad about sports.  I think one of the reasons we watch sports is that on those rare occasions an athlete does something so extraordinary, it makes us go wow.  Deep down, I think we crave that wow, that little bit of wonder that seeps into you and makes life just feel better.  If an athlete does this enough we call them superstars (think MJ, Barry, Nadal, Usain,) and know them on a first name basis and yea, they get paid a ton.

I'm the first to agree that most athletes are way overpaid, but I also think those rare athletes that can make you go wow on an above average basis are paid what they deserve.  If they can make the multimillion's that watch them go wow and feel the wonder, then that is a truly special gift and deserves to be rewarded.

This lead me to think about my own impact, other peoples impact.  Have you made someone go wow in your job?  You don't need to be an athlete, it can be the service you provide that overwhelms them from what they expect or what they are used to receiving.  You can be your own wow as well I think, set a goal so high, that when you look back on it, you go wow, that was awesome. Either way, the more wows you can give and receive the more life will be filled with wonder.  Here is to ending the last week of 2010 and bringing in 2011.  If I can suggest just one goal for 2011.  Experience more wow.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Zinc, Magnesium and Fibromyalgia

I try to read as much about nutritional research as I can as I really believe it's the missing block in many peoples training and recovery.  People spend hours creating the perfect training program for the week and then spend hours training, then spend like ten minutes thinking of the nutrition that should be paired with their different endeavours.

Do you take more protein on days you lift weights?  More carbs on days you cycle for two hours?  Do you even need to?  Do you do peri-workout shake?  Do you still think training on an empty stomach is going to make you burn fat?  Are you spending money on gadget after gadget, but not on what you put in your body?  Quality food, quality supplements.   What your ingesting is repairing your body, what your ingesting is allowing you to get quality sleep, what your ingesting is allowing you to get stronger and faster.  What minerals are you missing?

The latest study I came across was with Fibromyalgia.  While I think to many people are diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, I think there is a lot the everyday person and athlete can learn from the research that is being done.  For example this study was done looking at serum level of different elements in people that have been diagnosed as having Fibromyalgia and a normal healthy control group.  What they found was the the Fibromyalgia group had lower levels in both zinc and magnesium. The more zinc was lower the more tender points the patients had.  The more magnesium was lower the more fatigue the patient had.

I've talked previously about the importance of magnesium and zinc.  Zinc is for repair, Growth Hormone levels, magnesium is for muscle relaxation/energy/oxygen to the muscles.  So the results make a lot of sense.

As an athlete the take away is this.  If you find yourself, more sore then you have in the past, your zinc levels are probably low.  If the energy is low and your fatigue is high, chances are your magnesium levels may be low.  Magnesium is one of the few supplements I actually sell in our office here in Grand Rapids.  That's how important I think it is.  Your supplement needs to end in -ate as well.  The second word Magnesium  (  )ate. If it doesn't it's cheap and your not absorbing it.

If you know of someone that is always sore and tired clue them in.  Pay attention to what you eat and how you feel.  Pay attention to how your body feels after each workout.  Pay attention.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

I'm Training for an Ironman

I take care of a lot of triathletes. Many of whom are training for their first Ironman. This is a pretty funny video in the fact that it's true. There are a few swear words, so be warned. Enjoy.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Trip to West Michigan Coopertive-Where do you get your Food?

With the rebirth of the local movement and the whole idea of being green, food has taken on a whole new perspective for many people.  There is the food that's organic, food that's local,  food that's treated humanely (think open pasteurs, grass fed cows and free range chickens, not stuck in a pen), there is supporting the local business and local community.  Ever since I read Michael Pollans, "Omnivores Dilema." (AN AMAZING BOOK) I've been much more interested in getting local.  

Sustainable, organic, healthy, green, profitable, local, all are words I've seen describe food.  Recently I have been looking for grass fed beef.  If you don't know, grass fed beef is one of the super foods.  It usually has as much omega 3 fatty acids as wild salmon.  Great protein source.  Awesome.  So I came across West Michigan Coopertive a few weeks ago.

West Michigan Co-Op brings local farmers and vendors together with the public, essentially eliminating the middle man.  You get a chance to get great food.  The farmers get to sell you their product direct.  The first week of every month you go the WMCo-Op website and place your order.  The last Wed of the month you pick it up at the corner of Godfrey and Hall in Grand Rapids, MI.  I was able to talk to the founder tonight and he says it has been going for about 4 years.  They add a few new vendors a year, but they must pass some strict guidelines that a committee looks into.  This year a Seafood Vendor was added.

Today was my first pickup.  It was a great experience.  The people that volunteer to run it were helpful, very well organized, and the prices are great.  I bought 3lbs grass fed ground beef.  Some grass fed burgers, Cajun beef jerky, 100% cocoa powder and a lb of lamb.  I'm looking forward to some great meals.  If you're a West Michigan resident, I highly recommend you check it out.   Those outside the area, get involved in your farmers market and find your local co-op.  You will get better, healthier food, and support your local economy.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Tim Ferriss: The Four Hour Body, Glute Activation and Active Release Technique

I've been reading through the The Four Hour Body by Tim Ferriss.  So far have found it very interesting.  I came across this little video excerpt of Tim going over a great Glute Activation Exercise.  He also talks a little about Active Release Technique.  Enjoy.





Monday, December 20, 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010

New Favorite Workout Smoothie

So I've started having a new favorite post workout smoothie.  Cup of frozen spinach (super food), cup of frozen blueberries (super food)  raw cow milk (super food in my opinion) banana, scoop of Pure Whey Basics  protein powder(super food) and a two teaspoons of cinnamon (awesome insulin properties).  Blend and enjoy.  Try it post workout and let me know what you think.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

UTI's in the Elderly

So I was working with a patient the other day and we got to talking about stress and what kinds of stressors she was dealing with and part of the conversation turned into urinary tract infections in the elderly.  Pretty random but interesting as I had never heard the information before.

While normal UTI's will have warning signs of burning with urination, frequent urination and sometimes the inability to fully empty the bladder.  In the elderly, you don't necessarily have any of those symptoms, what you can get is sudden change in behavior.  They won't be able to do tasks that just yesterday seemed easy.  They might not recognize you or think you're someone else.  Basically, a lot of mental dementia type symptoms.

 I had never heard this before and thought it was worth spreading the word.  With lot's of peoples parents getting up in age, just something to keep in the back of your minds.  

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Interesting Video from Tim Ferris on the Human Body and Health Care

I have to admit I'm falling for all the marketing hype.  I've already ordered my copy from Amazon.  Anyways here is an interesting video interview Tim did for Tech TV.  If you've never heard of Mr. Ferris he is the author of "The Four Hour Workweek."  It's not exactly about working four hours so don't let it fool you.  It's about being productive and getting rid of unessential clutter and how to do it.  Very good read.

Anyways his new book is called "The Four Hour Body."  Like I said before, I haven't read it yet, but the hype seems interesting and I like the idea of doing mini experiments on your body.   In Wired magazine he did an interview where he supposedly manipulated his testosterone (raise3x)  dropped his Cholesterol and some other cool stuff.  Here is Tim talking about it.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Variables in Lifting for Testosterone and Big Muscles

Most people lift for a specific reason.  Athletes train to get better at their particular sport.  Bodybuilders train to achieve a symmetry rarely found in the human form.  (Although lately, to me, it seems it's just to get as freaky big as possible!)  Powerlifters train to lift more in the big 3, squat, bench and deadlift.  I think most guys you see in the gym don't fall in any of these categories.  They lift because they want some bigger muscles.  Pretty simple.  But they don't do the simple things correctly.

Lifting is a stimulus you do to create a desired effect.  If bigger muscles are the goal, you have to lift to stimulate the correct hormonal response.  Hormones drive the car being built.

In a paper called the Salivary Testosterone and Cortisol Response to Three Loading Schemes.   Three methods were tested using weight trained males in the squat.

1.  8 sets of 6 reps @ 45% of their 1 rep max.  3 minutes of rest.  Weights were lifted ballistically (FAST)

2.  10 sets of 10 reps @ 75% of their 1 rep max.  2 minutes of rest.  Weights were lifted under control.

3.  6 sets of 4 reps @ 88% of their 1 rep max.  4 minutes of rest.  Weights were lifted with explosive intent.

Time of each workouts were kept to pretty much the same.  Salivary Testosterone and Cortisol were both elevated following the 10x10 workout.  No endocrine (hormonal response)  was seen in the 8x6 or 6x4 rep schemes.

So, from the data of this study it looks to be that the big variable you must manipulate to get bigger muscles (hypertrophy)  volume .  Charles Poliquin calls his version the German Volume Training method. I just have to warn you, 10 x10 @ 75% with 2 minutes rest is one HARD workout.  But, that's probably why not every guys walking down the street is jacked!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Monday Motivation: LXD

If you have never heard of LXD, it stands for League of Extraordinary Dancers. It's an online story with different episodes revolving around the theme good vs evil. It showcases some amazing dancing. These guys can sometimes do things that make you sit back in wonder that the human body can actually do this. The body control, strength, awareness are at time mind blowing. Olympic gymnasts would be impressed. Be amazed at what the human body can create and do.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Monday Motivation: Nike Commercial "Ordinary People" w/ Tidiani Sokoba

Are you collecting hours? Malcom Gladwell has researched that it takes about 10,000 hours to accumulate the necessary time to reach greatness in your given endeavor. If you haven't read his book Outliers, I highly recommend it. Go earn your hours this week.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Age is just a number: Olga Kotelko, 91 Years Old Track Star

More and more science is learning from real life that age may just be a number, not a reason.  I've written in the past about how some athletes that should in theory be past there prime continue to dominate and be the best in their sport.  Here is another remarkable example.  The full story is at the NY TIMES.  

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Shoveling Snow 101: Don't Get Hurt

So we had the first snow of the year today in Grand Rapids, MI.  I can pretty much guarantee someone will come into my office next week with a sore back from improper shoveling.

First lets look at what we know to be true about the lumbar spine.  Flexion repeatedly isn't all that great.  Rotation repeatedly isn't all that great.  Flexion + Rotation = Disc Injury.  Disc's are more susceptible to injury in the morning because they hold more water and are thus less supported.  (You are actually a little taller in the morning because your discs are slightly larger.)  It requires more core strength when you have center of mass further away from your body, ie a shovel with snow on it.

Now, most people shovel in the morning.  Strike one.  Most people shovel by flexing forward and then throwing it off to the side, rotation,  in one continuous movement.  Strike two.  Most people don't even think about bracing there core.  Strike three.  You're down for the count with back pain.

Keep your back straight.  Bend from your knees and hips.  Stand up after you get a shovel full of snow and then use your hips to toss the snow to the side.  Two distinct motions. Don't pick up more snow then you can handle.  After you get snow in your shovel.  Slide your hand closer to the blade before you throw it.  This will decrease the center of mass and require less core strength.  Get an ergonomic handle if you can.  Better  yet....get a snow blower.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Outside Athlete Magazine Article: Bouldering

Here is a link to the latest Outdoor Athlete Magazine article I wrote for November. It's about the sport of Bouldering and how it can help your athletic development. Enjoy!

Getting Ready to Boulder

Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday Motivation: I still have a soul (HBO Boxing)

You have won, when you don't give up, regardless of results. Don't give into circumstance. Create the circumstance you wish to achieve. Probably the best video I've ever seen in showing an example of this. Enjoy.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Ice and Injury 101: Knowing When and Why

One of the most common questions I get is whether to use of ice or heat for an injury.  Hopefully this will fill you in on when, but more importantly this will help you with the why.

Acute injuries are those that just happened and you are within 48 hours of that initial injury.  This is an icing situation.

1.  Never apply ice directly to skin.  Apply a moist towel between your skin and the ice.  This will transmit it better.  You can actually get frost bite if applied directly.

2.  Don't ice more then 15 min.  The literature is a little vague, so I cut it short for safety.  After a certain point, the longer you ice, a reflex reaction takes place (Hunting effect) where the opposite of your goal happens.  The blood vessels dilate and more blood is pumped into the injured tissue.  This will create more swelling and or bleeding.  The exact opposite of what you want.  So don't lay on an ice pack for an hour.

3.  After 48 hours, I like to switch to ice massage.  Make an ice cup and apply massaging strokes to the injury.  This will keep the inflammation down, but help to flush out any remaining swelling.  This will actually get a little deeper into soft tissue, so the time needed is shorter.  Shoot for 5-7 minutes.

4.  Shoot to ice once every hour and half.  You need to let the tissue warm back up, before icing again.

5. Ice will have a numbing effect on tissue, decreasing the pain threshold.  Don't move excessively after icing as you can have a false sense of well being.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Motivation: Words for Today

I found this on a file in my computer.  I can't remember where I picked it up. But I've always liked it.


every day

every day lose something.  Lose a fear, a prejudice, an assumption.  Lose yourself in a task.  Lose yourself in a moment.  Lose yourself to something that is bigger then yourself.  Lose the gut.  Lose the lazy mind.  Lose the apathetic spirit.  

every day find something.  Find the courage, the desire, the compassion.  Find something worthy to spend your life on.  Find a moment that you love.  Find laughter.  Find the faith.

every day break something.  Break a habit. Break a barrier.  Break the silence.  Break whatever keeps you from leaping, from flying, from soaring.  Break through.  

every day create something.  Create art.  Create a new way.  Create the person you would like to be.  Create a wish.  Create a smile.  Create something that has never existed and will never exsist if you don't act.  Create.

every day be something.  Be a person that can be relied on.  Be someone's anchor.  Be someone's sail.  Be a friend.  Be a student and a teacher.  Be something you never thought you could be. Be less.  Be more.  Be yourself. 

every day.  

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Product Review: Fat Gripz

I bought a pair of Fat Gripz a few weeks ago and have really enjoyed using them.  I always think of a great product as one that is simple, effective and makes me wish I had invented it.  These fit the bill perfectly.

There are a lot of great reasons to develop grip strength.  As your grip strength improves, your upper body strength will follow.  Using a larger diameter bar or dumbell for exercises will help keep your elbows and shoulders healthy.  It forces irradiation, by making you squeeze everything to lift the weight.  

Perhaps an even more important reason, it has been shown that guys with stronger grip have less chance of disability as they grow older.  Here is the link to the study from Pubmed.

I've put them on barbells, my old school globe dumbells, chin up bar in the squat rack, I've even put them around jump stretch bands to do some cool stuff with them.  These things work great.  I highly recommend them.  

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Zinc and Magnesium in the Athlete's Body

Zinc and Magnesium are two of the most frequently diminished vitamins in the athletes body. In the 90's, ZMA was one of the most successful supplements on the market, because wonder of wonders, it actually worked!

Without getting into the soil of today vs the soil of our grand parents, thus making today's produce less vitamin loaded. Lets just look at the facts, today's athletes have been shown to be zinc and magnesium deficient.

This is why it's important.

Zinc is needed for about 70 different enzymatic reactions in the body that we know of. Two of the ones that really pop out are the productions of Growth Hormone and insulin like growth factor (IGF-1). These are big time important for physical growth.

Magnesium has over 300 different functions in the body. Deficiency can result in decreased physical output. It has been shown to increase oxygen consumption 15% in intense training athletes with the athlete increasing his/her heart rate 9 bpm. Think about that for a second.

Athletes that supplement with magnesium have been shown to increase training times, decrease white blood cell count, lower cortisol levels and report overall physiological stress go down.

One of the cool side effects of athletes that supplemented with zinc/magnesium, was their sleep was much deeper. This makes sense as magnesium deficiency leads to insomnia.

Magnesium is being researched right now for how it can help migraines. Both magnesium and zinc have been shown to be low in people that are under a lot of stress. Physical or emotional.

There is the rundown on how zinc/mag can be harmful to your health and training. Now you know and like every GI JOE cartoon ended when I was a kid, knowing is half the battle.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday Motivation: "Your Moment of Decision" from Paul Cummings' Winning Words Workshop

I never heard of this guy, but his message seems correct. He's talking to some car salesman, but the overall picture can be applied to whatever you do.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Recovery 101: What You Need to Know

Whatever you train for, whatever goal you have, whatever your interest is, there is one key to success.  Recovery.  You can bust your butt in the gym, lifting heavy weight, rep after rep, or get on the track and run sprint after sprint, but the key to progress is recovery.

When I write workout programs, I start with the finish product, the goal, then fill in the days of recovery working backwards.  You don't get stronger lifting weights, you get stronger recovering from the lifting weights.

Stimulate, don't annihilate, recover.  Repeat.

Here are the keys to Recovery.
1.  Sleep.  Get 7-9 hours of it every night.
2.  Nap, when you can.
3.  Post workout meal  (get some carbs/protein 4-1 ratio)  If you're trying to lose weight, cut some carbs)
4.  Pre workout meal.  A little bit of protein.
5.  Stay hydrated.  Drink more water, then drink some more.
6.  Lot of fruits and vegetables.  What's a lot.  More then you're eating now.
7.  Foam roll.  Everything but the low back and neck.  Spend at least 8 minutes a day.
8.  Quality soft tissue work.  Pay for it, or eventually hurt.
9.  Supplement  (extra whey protein, creatine, rhodiola rosea, multi vitamin, zma)
10.  Compression.  I am testing some compression socks this week.  But we had a lot of bobsledders use recovery tights and like them.  I have had a few runners in the past month say they work.

This doesn't really talk about meditation or breathing.  While both these things can be of great benefit, I don't really have a great grasp or practice with them, so don't feel very qualified to talk about them.  But a few yoga practitioners I know, swear that breathing helps recovery.

Implement these ten things and it will help maximize your recovery, which in turn, maximizes your training.  Reach your goal.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Core Exercise in Super Stiffness called Stir the Pot

This is an excellent core exercise. It teaches you to really keep your whole body tight while controlling movement. The whole time, glutes are tight, lats tight, I like to have the palms squeezing together and put pressure into the ball. Don't let the back sag and learn to breathe while you're doing all the rest. Try to make smooth circles, the less jerky the better. One clockwise, then counterclockwise. Enjoy!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday Motivation: Quote for the week

You will be what you will to be;

Let failure find its false content

In that poor word, "environment,"

But spirit scorns it, and is free.


It masters time, it conquers space;

It cows that boastful trickster, Chance,

And bids the tyrant Circumstance

Uncrown, and fill a servant's place.


The human Will, that force unseen,

The offspring of a deathless Soul,

Can hew a way to any goal,

Though walls of granite intervene.


Be not impatient in delay,

But wait as one who understands;

When spirit rises and commands,

The gods are ready to obey.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Hamstring Training for Runners

Runners as a group have weak hamstrings. Most don't run fast enough to really strengthen them. How many times have you went into a weight room and seen a long distance athlete train hamstrings or posterior chain work? I can tell you, hardly ever. I have seen some elite distance runners living in Chula Vista, CA Olympic Training Center train them. But, that type of attention to detail is one of the reasons they are there.

Sprinters can sometimes run to fast and strain them. They have the opposite problem. They may train them, but train them improperly, or think they have trained them enough to run mid 10's in the 100m.

The hamstrings are made up of three muscles, semitendinosis, semimembranosis and the biceps femoris. The biceps femoris is actually two muscles, long and short and actually have two different nerve innervation's. The adductor magnus, a huge muscle, is often times referred to as the fourth hamstring and should be trained as such.

Charles Poliquin believes that the hamstrings are mostly fast twitch and should be trained with 3-6 type reps. His take on coming back from a hamstring injury are first rate in my opinion. Usually you do a lot of reps so that fatigue doesn't come into play. He reasons that it is the fast twitch fibers that get strained. As such it is these fibers that need to be strengthened using heavier weights and lower reps.

Franz Bosch, a biomechanist, wrote the book Running: Biomechanics and Exercise Physiology in Practice. This is a great book! I highly recommend you own it if you work with runners and sprinters.
He believes before weights or reps are thought about, coordination is obtained. This simply means the exercise is done technically perfect, correct tension is maintained on the hamstrings at all times, control over the speed when reactive work is done, and any synergistic muscles that work with the hamstrings are working correctly. The big take away is the hips and knees must be working together correctly. He believes that that the majority of exercises should be done standing knees extended with the weight shifting though the hips as this stresses the hamstrings the best.

As a general rule, if your standing on two legs doing an exercise it is the dorsal muscles (erectors) that are the limiting factor, when you switch to one leg, it becomes the hamstrings. So one legged variations are a big theme if you want to attack the hamstrings. Just try a single leg back extension. You will feel the difference.

Here is Oregon Strength Coach Jim Radcliffe demonstrating one of these qualified exercises. I read Jim say he once got on a plane and took the red eye back just to hear Franz Bosch present for an hour. Anyone that has seen Oregon play football this year, knows that his athletes are fast and explosive.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Pulse Training for Core Strength

Training the ability to contract everything and then let everything relax is an important element for athletes to train. Here is an example of what Stuart McGill calls pulse training. It is a tremendous core exercise, alls you need is a med ball with rope. Try it out.



Monday, November 1, 2010

Monday Motivation: Will's Wisdom

This is about ten minutes, but well worth the time. It is no surprise that Will Smith has been such a successful person. Enjoy.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What is Umami and the Importance in Food Choices

Umami is a Japanese word meaning good flavor.  It is made from glutamate and ribonucleotide.  It is found in some things such as meat, dairy and seaweed.  Umami is subtle and blends with other tastes to expand on them and increase other flavors.  Most of us would not even know it is present, we would just say this is delicious.

The other flavors that are considered primary are:  sweet, bitter, sour and salty.  It wasn't until recently that umami has started to claim the fifth spot.  It was originally discovered as glutamate found in seaweed that the umami theory took hold.

From this finding the invention of Mono sodium Glutamate came to exist.  MSG.  MSG is umami.   It enhances the sweet, bitter, sour and salty.  Where do we get all these in the perfect combination?  When we combine  sugar, salt and fat.  The combination is literally addictive.  If the umami is added it becomes even more addictive.  The combination becomes like brain candy.  One of the foods most researched in terms of having all the qualities that humans enjoy.  Doritos.  You can't eat just one!

In terms of what can I do with this information, I would want you to take away this.  Look at the food labels.  Does it have sugar, salt, fat or MSG or anything that says glutamate?  Realize that you will probably love it.  Realize you will want more.  Go in knowing.  Just don't let it take you by surprise.  You will be surprised at how much less you eat of it.

Example:  Potato Chips.  (pretty much any kind)  Made with russet potatoes most likely.  The carbs in a potato are sugar molecules.  Fried in oil, which is fat.  Seasoned with salt and sometimes some flavored powder, glutamate.   Now you know.  

Free Single Leg Training Video by Mike Robertson

I had a chance to hear Mike Robertson speak a few times about training.  I try to make it a point to make it to every Indy Performance Seminar.  Mikes gym IFAST was named a top ten gym in the US by Mens health.  Mike just put up a chance to watch his single leg training presentation on his blog for free!  I drove down to Indy and payed money to watch.  So while it's up on his sight for free, I suggest you go over and give it a watch.  Mike is one of the top Strength Coaches in the US.  Not only have I talked with him, one of my best friends trained under him while he competed.  So I've got the inside and outside scoop so to speak.  He'g good.  Learn from him.  Here is Mikes blog and the link you can watch the free video.
Single Leg Training.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Intravenous Multiple Vitamin Usage in Grand Rapids

A few weeks ago I tried out a IV of a multi vitamin in a health clinic here in Grand Rapids.  They were selling it as a way to boost the immune system.  I've always wanted to try this since reading about how David Boston use to receive IV multi after workouts.  Supposedly it helped speed recovery.  We all know he was on the special sauce too, so can't go by that.  But still, it's an interesting concept.  For athletes its pretty interesting.  I definitely think it would be a better option then regular vitamins if you can afford it.  The cost prohibits it from being an everyday use though.  For Olympic athletes it is illegal to receive an IV unless you are in a life threatening situation.

My cocktail consisted of:

B5  750mg
B6  200mg
B12  1000mcg
Magnesium Sulfate  1.5g
Vit C 1500mg
B Complex 150mg
Calcium Gluconate  300mg

It was quite an interesting feeling, you can actually feel it enter your bloodstream.  You get a certain taste in your mouth.  I didn't come in with a cold or feel tired, so I can't say if it helped or not.  Dealing with stressful situation or knowing your coming down with something, this may be a helpful prevention strategy.  I think this is where the big benefit might lay.  If you are training months for a run or race and feel a cold coming down, besides doing some smart things like, hydrate, sleep, garlic, getting an IV of Multi Vitamins may indeed be a smart choice.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Muscle and Ageing: Retire Strong

As you grow up and become an adult one of the things people talk a lot about is retirement, IRAs and 401k's, social security and things of that nature.  Money.  There is a commercial out there called "what's your number."  The meaning is if you have this number, you can retire comfortably.

My question is this, "How much muscle have you put away?"  You start to produce less growth hormone as you age.  Given.  After the age of 50 you start to lose muscle mass if you don't work at it.  Muscle mass is your insurance as you age.  Chance are if you've accumulated enough, your risk of osteoporosis is nill.  Muscle mass improves your chances that if you fall, nothing will break.  Chances are better that you won't fall.   If you've done the work to get the muscles, chances are you've maintained that strength.  

Your immunity will be stronger.  Your insulin sensitivity will be better.  Muscle mass calls for extra blood vessels.  Extra blood vessels means more circulation, more oxygen, less hypertension. Better body temperature regulation.  The list could go on.

There have been countless studies done showing that strength training in an elderly population is invaluable.  But I'm saying is don't stop if you train now.  Build up your muscular retirement plan.  If you train senior citizens I hope you have read this amazing study.  I've blogged on it before, but here is an article discussing it.  SENIOR CITIZENS.  

They were able to change genetic expression.  Mitochondrial dysfunction, thought to cause muscle loss, was reversed and brought back to normal baselines.  This was through 6 months of 2x a week lifting.  

This should be everywhere!  Lift, get strong, gain muscle.  But unlike money retirement, it's never to late to start.  So tell Grandma and Grandpa to pick up some iron.  If you already picked it up, don't put it down.  

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Barefoot running, Vibrams, Born to Run and being a Caveman

First, for the record, I like barefoot running, I own a pair of Vibrams (for three years), my favorite book of two years ago was Born to Run and I buy some of the caveman ideas (like doing my best to eat paleo).

When I was dealing with achillies problems heading into our Olympic training year as a push athlete I had severe achillies tendonosis on my left side.  We did everything to try to get it better, soft tissue, ultrasound, taping, foot strengthening drills.  Finally I just decided to do a few barefoot runs.  Not sure why.  I guess it's an example of listening to that inner voice.  It hurt at first and then just got better.  I did 8x60 meters.  Each one a bit faster then the previous.  It worked......for me.  Sample size of N=1.

OK. Now lets dive into the negatives.  First the caveman idea.  I'm going to go out on a limb and say, no cavemen or cavewomen were overweight.  I think they were lean and mean and always moving.  No one had a spare tire or as my friend calls it "middle heavy."

I doubt if any of them did things repeatedly for aesthetics.  Hitting bench press every Monday.  So what I'm saying is, I'm betting there were not a lot of muscle imbalances.  Also, food for thought, no one ran on concrete or asphalt.

I see to many people with weak hips, if your hips are weak, you will lose your arch in the foot.  Loss of arch means more pronation.  Pushing off a pronated foot is a calf problem waiting to happen.  Can you stand barefoot on one foot for 30 seconds without falling?  Can you do a clean lunge?  First strengthen your hips.

I've heard the arguments.  So and so does it.  One of the most powerful, dangerous and easy things, is the comparison with someone that is doing it.  Recently in Runners magazine a guy ran a marathon in like 2:27 barefoot.  Or the Kenyans run barefoot growing up.  (ever notice they don't run barefoot anymore).  Look if they are running that fast, they are a gifted runner.   They were put together biomechanically efficient.  Compare yourself to you.

The first big barefoot boom was the Nike Free's that Nike put out after talking to the Stanford Cross Country coach.  They noticed he had his athletes run 100 meter repeats barefoot in the pristine grass after some workouts to strengthen there feet.  Nike saw dollar signs.  Pay attention.  These were elite college cross country runners.  They had a gift and were only running 100 meter repeats a few times a week.  Not there running workouts.

Does everyone need an orthotic, absolutely not.  But if a factory guy has sore feet every day and works 10-12 hours per day.  They may be a lifesaver for him.

Like all things fitness, the pendulum usually swings in one direction to hard such as the 150 dollar running shoe with posts/arch support/extra cushioning and then swings equally far in the other direction. Running in nothing.  The answer usually lies in the middle.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Uloric: New Drug for Gout

I was watching TV this morning and was struck by a new prescription drug ad I had never seen.  Uloric, for gout.  Gout is a build up of uric acid crystals in the big toe joint.  As you can imagine, pain in the big toe is a big pain.  Some common things to do with gout is to avoid purine rich foods as this can be a catalyst.  What struck me about Uloric though were the symptoms.  Increased risk of heart disease.  Well, if you have Gout you're already at an increase for heart disease, so no brainer.  But death also was.  This was the reason the FDA didn't approve the drug in the first place in the first two trials.  Then in the 3rd trial they were able to show that this drug didn't increase your odds of dying anymore then another Gout drug on the market.  Read again.  Not anymore then the other drug.  It doesn't say no risk, just not anymore then the other drug.  But you know what, the side effect that got me the most was joint pain.  Joint pain was why your taking the drug to begin with!  It just seems crazy to me.  Ok, I'm off my soap box.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Asymmetries in Athletes Predicts Injuries

This video link below is a tremendous explanation of some of things I try to do at Train Out Pain Chiropractic here in Grand Rapids.  I've become a big believer in locating the asymmetry to improve performance and prevent injury.  The asymmetry creates compensation and over and under worked muscles.  It is the old wear on the tread metaphor. You can't be a high performance machine with unbalanced tires.  Find your asymmetries and fix them.

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid271548429?bctid=594976987001

Monday, October 11, 2010

Motivation through Education: Chiropractic Care for Maurice Jones Drew

Chiropractic care is in every major sports team in America. Every pro golfer uses one. They travel with every Olympic team. Lance travelled with one on every Tour. What do people that count on their bodies count on? If you want to be successful, follow what successful people do. There's a reason they seek out Chiropractic care. From Prevention, so you don't get hurt, to faster recovery if you are, chiropractic care can and will make you feel better.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Milk Study for Women: Gain Muscle and Lose Fat

Recently read a research article where the women took part in heavy resistance training for 12 weeks.  No food or drink for two hours prior to the workout.  1/2 were given 500ml of non fat milk after training and half were given an carbohydrate  drink (sports drink).  One hour later another glass of each was drunk.  The women who drank milk gained muscle and lost fat.  The carbohydrate group gained muscle only with no net fat loss.  I couldn't find out if this study was sponsored by the American Dairy Association.  Here is the link to the abstract.  http://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/Abstract/2010/06000/Body_Composition_and_Strength_Changes_in_Women.11.aspx

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Modified Bridge for Glute and Hip Strength, exercise for runners

I'm always on the lookout for new glute exercises that can help keep that pelvis in alignment. I had a chance to talk to Evan about a month ago down at the Indianapolis Performance seminar. Really bright guy. Fellow Palmer College grad. I actually bought one of his manuals and have been reading through it. Very good stuff. He has a clinic in Chicago and practices somewhat similar to how I do, which I don't find very often. So it's nice to be able to bounce ideas off someone or ask how they approach some situations that I find unique. Give this exercise a shot. I liked it.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

A Test for Runners: Assessment for the Body and Mind

I treat a lot of runners.  Most come in with some sort of repetitive overuse injury.  They have "pushed though" something and usually "pushed through" something after that.  To say that most have big compensations would be an understatement.  They have built up movement dysfunction over the months/years.

Question, do you think it's normal that you start out in pain, but "after I warm up and get a few miles in, the pain goes away."

Question, do you think it's smart that you know it hurts, but "I have to get the miles in?"

Question, do you think it's OK that it only hurts when I'm done, but by my next run it usually feels pretty good?

If you answered Yes to any of these hypothetical questions, my simple statement is this.  You are destroying your body.  No punches pulled.  Maybe it's cartilage (that medical science can't replace), a stress fracture, tendonosis (degenerative tendon changes),  osteoarthritis (something is moving to much, because something else isn't moving), something.

Train Smart, don't "gut it out."  Get help, get a therapist, a coach, someone to help you get back on track.

Test yourself for asymmetrical flexibilities.  Is one hamstring tighter then the other?  Quadriceps?  Hips?  Inflexibility is one thing.  Asymmetrical flexibility is a surefire way to injury.

Touching your toes isn't a hamstring stretch.  Quit doing it.  It's an assessment.  A real flexibility test I use for runners is this.  Lie on your back.  Have someone bend your leg and press your thigh to your chest.  Does your other leg stay still?  If it does you pass.  If it doesn't you have work to do or your going to be overworking.  Overworking = Injury.

If you really love running.  Do the work it takes to run healthy.  The body is beautifully and wonderfully made.  It's made to last, not wear out.  Most importantly, you will never get a new one.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Statin Drugs: Are Your Joints Sore?

Statin drug prescription is being used by over 20 million Americans according to some research I was reading. One of the most common side effects of the statin drug is muscle and joint pain. This is one of the reasons you really want to know what meds your patients or clients are taking. If they start a new drug or up the dosage and start having muscle and joint pain, you may start to chase the pain and get pretty frustrated.

Statins have also been known to cause neuropathy. Neuropathy is any kind of numbness, tingling or burning sensation that is usually felt in the extremities. Usually when someone comes in with neuropathy, my first thought is what nerve is being compressed or compromised. Now, after some frustrating experience, my first question is, "Any additional medication changes in the past month?" No use in chasing symptoms.

Tendons also seem to have a predisposition to statin caused pain. Here is an article from Pubmed.  While I never advocate giving drug advice.  It's smart to know the side effects to let your patient or athlete know that what their feeling could have a good chance of being caused by a statin drug.  Don't forget that if they are on statins, Coenzyme Q-10 is probably in short supply. This is super important for optimal function of the Krebs Cycle.

Don't chase pain.  Ask good questions.  Eliminate the unknown.  

Thursday, September 30, 2010

EPO 101: Crash Course in Pro Cheating

Pro Cycling and dirty racing again made headlines yesterday with Alberto Contador, 3 time Tour de France winner testing positive for Clenbuterol.  It seems it's never ending.  No one really seemed surprised.  It seems cycling has been dirty longer then it has been clean.  Back in the day, the drug of choice was Erythropoieiten  (EPO).  It was very common in the 80's and 90's.  A test came out in 2000 to check for some forms of EPO, but as recently as 2007 some big name pro cyclists have been caught using EPO.  Chances are there will always be new versions and new ways of using it.  Recently they were micro cycling EPO, small amounts that wouldn't be picked up in a urine test, but gradually, very slowly brings the levels up.

EPO is a chemical form of blood doping that increases the number of red blood cells.  Our kidneys make the natural erythropoieten, a hormone that makes red blood cells.  If you have more red blood cells, you will pick up more oxygen from your lungs to transport from the blood into the muscles.  The more oxygen you have, the longer, harder your workouts can be.   You can see the appeal.

Anemics would have low levels of this hormone.  When you take the synthetic drug, since your red blood cells go up, your blood is thicker.  This could be dangerous as it could lead to strokes and heart attacks.

There is a short synopsis of what EPO is, so the next time you hear someone got busted for EPO, and you will, you will know exactly what they risked their life and reputation for.

The Cori Cycle and What it Means for Fat Loss

So the last post explained the Cori Cycle in hopefully easy enough terms to understand  what's going on.  Now let me explain on why this is important.

Everyone wants to lose fat.  Hey guess what, if you haven't heard, long slow distance isn't the answer.  We all know at this point that intervals do a much better job.  Here's why.

When you fill yourself with lactate, which means working hard, the Cori Cycle kicks in.  Read again, with an emphasis on hard.  Now the main time the Cori Cycle will be prevalent is at rest.  So your resting and the Cori Cycle is working full bore.  Now it takes more energy to run the Cori Cycle then the energy the Cori Cycle produces.  You are creating a negative energy balance.  Whats that mean?  You are burning calories by resting.

Hows that for cool fat burning.   Key points, work hard enough to get lactate into the body.  Flood yourself with lactic acid.  Rest.  Repeat.  Burn energy, lose fat.  Thank the Cori Cycle.  

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Cori Cycle Explained

High intensity exercise will mostly get it's energy or ATP from the pathway of the glycolitic system.  Less intense activity will receive its energy or ATP from the aerobic pathway utilizing the Krebs cycle.  When utilizing the glycolitic system, cycle after cycle, lactate will start to build up.  Lactate from the glycolitic system will diffuse from the muscles into the bloodstream.  It will then be transported into the liver.  In the liver it is converted from lactate back to pyruvate back to glucose, which is then available to the muscles again for energy, this is called gluconeogenesis.  The whole process is called the Cori Cycle.  The more you train with high intensity exercise, the more capable the enzymes and transporters become that are needed for the Cori Cycle.  Your liver gets better at using the lactate, not more efficient (it still needs the same amount of ATP to run the Cori Cycle)  but it will do the cycle faster.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Monday Motivation

I took this picture on the University of Washingtons shoreline where their rowing teams compete and practice every day. I think it pretty much sums up a lot. Apply it this week.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Your Office Chair is Killing You!

How's that for a headline,  patterned it after the evening news in about every city in America.  Sell Fear. Make a astounding claim to keep you riveted at your seat.  The problem is, physiologists may be proving that keeping you in your seat, may indeed be really, really bad for your health.  

Physiologists have been studying obesity, diabetes and heart disease and have linked sitting to shutting down the enzyme lipase.  Lipase is a big fat absorber.  Simply put, standing engages muscles and turns on the enzyme lipase (puts it in your system) regardless of exercise, to process fat and cholesterol.  Standing up also uses blood glucose.  No brainer there, muscles are used more in standing then sitting, they need energy from somewhere.  

Dr. Marc Hamilton, Ph.D., a professor of biomedical sciences at the University of Missouri in Columbia, states that heart disease, obesity and diabetes are 2-3x higher in people that sit a lot.  
He goes on to say that standing increases lipase and so fat is absorbed by the muscles and when we sit it virtually shuts down allowing the fat to circulate in the blood stream and be deposited as body fat or go and clog arteries. 

People who sat also reduced their good cholesterol levels by 22%.  His advice, chose to stand in every activity that you can and take frequent breaks from the chair.

I know here in Grand Rapids, MI that Herman Miller the furniture manufacturer has made a stand up work station that is actually has treadmill that you walk on while working.  Pretty interesting.  The evidence is in, stand up for your health, literally.  

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tire Core Grip Combo

Here is another way to make use of a tire. Attach a jump stretch band for some extra resistance and now you're really working the grip, full body tension and core.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Monday Motivation: Jerry Rice Talks About "the Hill"

There are a lot of lessons to be learned from Jerry Rice. They say if you want to be successful, copy successful people. Do what they did. Come early, stay late, work harder then anyone, be prepared.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Introduction to Cyclocross in Grand Rapids

Cyclocross was born in Belgium, by road bikers looking to extend their season come fall and early winter.  It's done with a typical road frame with knobby tires like you would find on a mountain bike.  That's where the similarities end for me.

I've done both road rides and mountain biking.  I love to hit some of the great trails in the Grand Rapids area.  (Outside Magazine rated us #1)  Cyclocross was definitely unique.  In Grand Rapids the series is known as KissCross.  Keep it simple, stupid.  You don't have to have a licence to race, just show up and pay your 20 dollars.  There is no chip for timing, you count your own laps.  Beginner category is 30min.  Intermediate or B riders are 45min and Expert or A riders are 60 min.

One of the unique attributes about cyclocross is that every lap there are usually a few barriers about 2 ft tall that you have to dismount your bike and jump over them.  This requires a lot of practice and skill.  If you don't practice and just stop your bike, jump off and then hop on your bike, you will lose a lot of time.  I found that out pretty quick.

I raced in the Beginner category which required you doing 5 laps.  At lap 3 I wasn't sure if this was that fun.  Lap 4 I thought I might puke in my mouth.  Lap 5 I actually felt the blinders closing in.  But it was awesome!

How did I do?  Well, lets just say I can only improve!  OK, I got passed by everyone, I actually thought I got last, but the results say I beat another person.  Maybe he dropped out.

Cyclocross is a pain fest, you are at your redline thresh hold the whole time.  But the people I met were really friendly.  It's spectator friendly, since you do laps, you can usually see the whole race from one spot.  It's also one of the fastest growing amateur sports in America.  You don't need a cyclocross bike, if you race beginner you can use your mountain bike.  I used my single speed 29er.  All you need is an enjoyment of pain and 20 bucks.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My notes on the movie "FOOD MATTERS"

These are my notes for the movie Food Matters.  I was going to put my notes in some type of order.  But in actuality, I think the best thing to do is just watch the movie and make your own impressions.  Here are the notes I took on the fly.  I recommend watching the movie.

let thy food be thy medicine, thy medicine be thy food
  hypocrites

he believed the human body had an innate capacity for self healing.  (funny same thing as chiropractors)

First, do no harm.  It is still the hippocratic oath taken by modern doctors

Modern doctors have little to no nutritional education.

Modern medicine revolves around a "pill for every ill"

Sickness industry.

Financial industry says the biggest way to save money is to get healthy stay healthy.

39,000 people die due to unnecessary surgery and other errors in hospitals.

80,000 people die due to other infections in hospitals.

106,000 people die due to adverse drug reactions

The message, you are what you eat!

Pesticides, herbacides, larvacide, fungicides,  We're putting chemicals on everything!  ..big problem is the soil.  No nutrients in it anymore.   average distance of our food is 1500-2000 miles away.  week old food, how much nutritional value are we losing?

Soils become the new dessert when crops aren't rotated or just used up.

Fertalisers,  NPK  (nitrogen, phosphorous, potasium)  problem is the soil needs 52 minerals.

Soil is deficient, plants are deficient and weak.  Bugs can attack and destroy, so you reach for the pesticide.

Live enzymes in raw food, that help with body digestion.  When you cook your food, even steaming, you start to kill the live enzymes.

when you cook food the immune system acts to it as a toxin, digestive leukocytosis is the process
starts to generate white cell activity against the cooked food you've just eaten.

Dr. Paul Kouchakoff  showed that your immune system acts with cooked food over 51%, under 50% you will not show white cell activity.   The study was done in 1930.

Think of it as chronic malnutrition.

Leads to the discover of superfoods.

Spirulina is the highest protein content food in the world.  Was consumed for 5000 years in Mexico.
50% of protein is destroyed by heat.  So the future liquid protein will be important.  Spirulina is 75% protein.  A steak after cooking will get 25%.

Cacao beans stack up against anything in the world in terms of minerals.  It's the highest natural source of magnesium.  Highest natural source of chromium.  Very likely the highest natural source of iron.  Very likely the highest manganese.  One of the highest contents of zinc.  One of the highest in copper. One of the highest in Vit C, but chocolate has none, because heat destroys Vitamin C.
ALL THE COFACTORS NEEDED FOR METABOLISM  is in the cacao bean.

Big idea is that we have inverted what we pay for, what we value. Pay for rent and cars but won't pay for food.

You can take vitamins to stay healthy, you can take vitamins to treat illness.  Why don't you hear of this?
How can that be?  News reports say you shouldn't take too much.  (wheres evidence)  Not belief but facts.  Over the last 23 years, according to poison control, there have been 10 deaths attributed to vitamin consumption.    Lists some of the evidence vs the "negative propoganda" that is being thrown around.
No evidence for vitamin C and kidney stone.  MYTH

Less then 6% of graduating physicians in the USA receive any formal training in nutrition.

Reading papers by WIlliam J McCormack, Frederick Rober Klenner, they were curing viral conditions with high dose Vit C in the 1940's.

Linus Pauling the first to suggest that vit C could be useful to fight colds.

Problem is one nutrient is good at many things??  Vit E.  Good for heart disease, good for healing burns, good for epilepsy.  Pretty diverse.
Vit C:  anti-toxin, anti-histamine, anti-viral, blood sugar regulation, mood elevator,
Why can one thing be so important, because one deficiency can cause so many different things.  There are only about two dozen nutrients, but in the body there are countless thousands of chemical reactions.

You cannot heal selectively, if you truly heal, everything heals.

When you take vitamins, the vitamins aren't healing you, the body is healing you, they enable to the body to do it, to heal itself.

"its the doctors duty to activate and reactivate the body's own healing mechanism"  Max Gershon,  Founder of Gershon therapy.

We've tried many models.  How about healthy boost!

Problems with many vitamin studies is they are very low dose,  so you get conflicting results, one says vit help a little, others say vit doesn't help

The RDA is the recommended daily allowance so that you don't get a disease such as rickets.
If you have High Stress job you're need for vit c goes up, you are producing more adrenaline, therefor your vit C levels are going way down.  Cardiovascular system is under attack.  Link between stress and heart attack.

Cardiovascular disease is a disease of civilization.  Not eating the right things or doing the right things.
Modern medicine says cardiovascular disease is irriversable.

Dr Dean Ornish has gotten amazing results with people with cardio disease.  He puts them on a strict diet which is basically a vegetarian diet. Plant based, high fiber, loaded with vit, minerals.  He also has them do a stress reduction.

1/2 of cardiovascular disease the first symptom is death.

Enter drug therapy.  In the UK about 10,000 people die from adverse drug reactions.  3,300 from motor vehicle accidents.  Prostate cancer 9000

Pharmaceutical companies aren't designed to make drugs, they are to designed to make money.
Drug companies actually are the ones that pay the drug regulators and those that control the drug research.

Some research articles that show high dosage of vitamins cures disease have been black listed.

There is no money in health.

For a drug to get approved it has to shown to be more effective than a placebo in two trials.  That doesn't mean it can't run several several trials until it gets what it wants.  It doesn't have to show the regulators that we ran 100 trials, 98 were worse, but these two were better.


Drugs: Short term, life saving perfectly fine.  The problem is the long term drug prescription.  These are the problems that they don't really work great for.

B3 (3000mg)  niacin has shown to help depression.  Alcholics Annonymous.

Two handfuls of cashews give you the therapeutic equivalent of one dosage of prozoc.

Whatever is going on in the mind, can be influenced by what goes on in the body.

Drink 1 liter of water first thing in the morning.  Must detoxify.  Get the stuff out, to get the good stuff in.

Paradigm shift.  Tumor is not the cancer.  Medicine is still attacking the wrong thing.  Cancer cure isn't around the corner.

Gershon in the 1940's fought cancer with fresh fruit, vegetable juice.  He had about 50% success with terminal cancer.

Shows some impressive before and after photos of fighting cancer with foods.

They (drug companies) have manipulated the statistics.  They have changed the word survivor.  Survivor now means 5 years.  If you die from cancer 5 years 6 months after treatment.  You are still considered a cancer survivor!

It is illegal in most countries to treat cancer with nutritional therapies.  The only legal treatments in these countries are surgery, radiation therapy and chemo therapy.

One of the supreme choices you have is what you will or will not eat.

Gives examples of high dose vit C intravenously 30-100,000mg a day.  Vit C selectively kills cancer cells.
If this were so good how come no one does it?  No one knows about it?  Where is it?

Orthomolecular is nutritional medicine.

Thoughts of my own.  Cacao is something that should be added to my diet.  Stick more with my vitamin regiment.  Drink more water.  Going to try drinking 20 ounces of water on waking.  I got a sweet new juicer from my wife as a present and should use it a heck of a lot more.  I too have had a backward view of the cost of food.  I have been willing to pay for the best computer (apple) but I will pass on blueberries when they get to be 3.00 a pint, or will have no problem forking over 4.00 for my cappucino.  I too have to shift my food priorities.  Health is priceless.  You are what you eat.  Cells are made from food.  You are made of cells.  What are you using as building blocks?

I recommend this movie for the simple fact that maybe it will inspire one more good habit.  It will cause you to think.  I think the bad thing is that sometime you can become paralized with information.  Is this food local? organic? what was the soil like?  ect.  Pick a few good habits and go after them.

Like Dave Ramsey and his snow ball debt effect, look at your health as the same thing.  Start with one habit and go after it, then the next one.  Don't try to do everything at once.  Good luck.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Exercise is Cement?

Habits are at first cobwebs, then cables.
     Spanish Proverb

This quotation can sum up many things but in this case I want to talk about exercise.  Many patients after getting treated want to jump into an aggressive exercise program.  I don't give them anything.  This surprises many as I am big on exercise, lifting and corrective movements.  But even after getting treated and being out of pain, doesn't mean they will move correctly.

If you give these patients or athletes exercises, most likely, they will revert to their old habits, their old way of moving.  So they are going to end up taking a step back in their rehabilitation process.  In this case exercise will be cementing dysfunction.

When you change the movement pattern through chiropractic adjustments, soft tissue work, muscle activation, stretching, foam rolling, then you can use exercise to cement function.

Exercise should always answer a question.  Why is this important for my health, why is this important to my performance.  Will it increase one or both.  Don't jump ahead in the process of recovery.  Don't cement dysfunction, cement function.  Then habits that are cables work for you, not against you.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Monday Motivation: What Drives Us?

This is a great little explanation of some surprising information that was studied about what really motivates us.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Product Review for September: Gymboss

I had been hesitant for awhile to order the Gymboss, for the simple fact that I have a digital watch and I wear it constantly when I work out. But, a few weeks ago, I went ahead an bought it for 20 bucks. It was worth it. It's amazing how much more on point my metabolic workouts have become. That beep that you hear, for however long you set it for, keeps you brutally honest. Was that really 20 seconds already? It has to be at least in the 4th round right? It just removes excuses. Do x amount of work, rest x amount. Repeat x times. Just work and don't worry about the time. I full heartedly endorse it.  It was much smaller then what I thought it would be for some reason.  Here's a link to get yours if you find yourself so inclined.  Gymboss   My favorite uses are 10 seconds on the airdyne, 20 sec rest.  Repeat 8x.  20 seconds with the battling ropes, 10 seconds rest.  Repeat 8x.  Kettlebell swings.  20 seconds on, 20 seconds rest.  Repeat for 5 minutes.  Enjoy

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Y Raise with a sled indoors

Here is a way you can use a sled indoors. I like the way a sled feels for exercises like the Y raise, vs using dumbells. I do like the trx for this exercise, but this loads it slightly better in my opinion.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Monday Motivation: Football is Here Again

If you have played this game, you will understand. If you never played, it will give you a glimpse into why this is the greatest game. Hope you all have a great Labor Day.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Train Out Pain Chiropractic Patients Making Headlines

Congratulations to T.O.P.  athlete Danielle Musto for winning the 24 hours Salsa race in Minnesota this past weekend.  24 hours on a bike.  Seems crazy to me.  But how she rides for Salsa, so that's pretty cool to win a big race in front of your sponsor!  We had two other patients go down to the Ironman in Louisville, KY.  They came back with each having qualified for the Kona Ironman in early October.  The interesting kicker, they were a mother/son duo.  You read that right, mother and son.  How awesome is that?  

Whatever your goal is, go after it.  If we can help in any fashion, let us know!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Recap of Performance Enhancement Seminar Indianapolis 2010

This past weekend I was down in Indianapolis for the 3rd annual Performance Enhancement Seminar. I was there for the first one and out of the country for the second. I was a little disappointed in the fact that I thought it would be held at the IFAST gym, but was held in the Hilton. Mens Health ranked it a top 10 gym in the country recently.

First up was Mike Robertson with a topic about Single leg training. Mike broke down single leg training, some progressions that you can employ and also explained why you still need to do double leg training, ie. don't give up your deads and squats. Truth is everyone should be doing some type of single leg work. Your stabilizers will never get as strong as they can without them and it's also a valuable tool in balancing out strength discrepancies in each leg.

2nd up was Lee Taft. Lee is a speed coach and presented a topic on lateral conditioning. Proper form, looking at different cues for your athletes to use. His favorite saying is "load to explode." Simply put, proper foot and ankle will load the knee, which loads the hip, which propels the athlete. He has some interesting low box (4ich) drills. I'm not completely sold on the carryover aspect for actual sport. I think much of what he talks about would have application for combine testing, 40 yard dash, pro shuttle. Where you practice over and over exact steps to maximize performance. But in a chaos situation, an actual game, I'm not sure.

3rd was Evan Osar. Evan is a really smart chiropractor and trainer out of Chicago. I don't buy a lot of peoples products, but I bought Evan's Lower Extremity Conditioning manual. He had some really interesting information on the hip. His topic covered bracing the corset, top of diaphragm to pelvic floor, to free up the hips. His views were stabilize the lumbar spine and the hips free up. A little opposite of working so much on hip mobility to achieve lumbar stability.

4th was Pat Rigbsy. Pat is a business guy and had a few pointers on how to get better coin for your time. Bootcamps, networking group training. The one thing I took away was spend your time doing what your good at.

5th was Bill Hartman. I thought this was the most interesting talk of the day. Bill has been called the smartest man in Fitness. His talk was on energy development for field athletes. He had some really controversial points that makes you stop and think. One was slow twitch hypertrophy will help explosive athletes. Hmmm....never thought of that. The other was incorporating some training in the sub 120bpm training. Glycolitic training can be reached in around 3 weeks. Tabatta isn't as effective as you think, and went on to break down the original tabatta study. Overall an awesome presentation.

Last was Brent Jones. Brent is a kettlebell guy. The one thing I took away was an arm bar for mobility. I will try to get a video posted up of this exercise as I think it will be helpful for glenohumeral stability and thoracic mobility. He also reawoken my desire to get better with my Indian clubs. I bought some 1890 original Spaulding Indian clubs when I was in chiropractic school. They are some of the first "weights" and they train using circular patterns. Pretty cool stuff.

Overall, this was a pretty good seminar. I look at things this way. Did I learn at least one thing that will change the way I treat patients? Did I learn one thing that will change the way I train athletes? If I did, my tool box got bigger, which means I get better, which means it was a success.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Weekend Plans

Hope everyone has a great weekend.  I will be heading down to Indianapolis for the Performance Enhancement Seminar.  I will give a full report on all the presenters and hopefully the interesting nuggets of information I can gleam from each presenter.  Should be good, Mike Robertson, Bill Hartman, Even Osar and a few others.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Quadratus Lumborum training with Unilateral Work

Stuart McGill is doing some amazing research out in Canada about the mechanics of the low back, low back pain, improving low back function and back performance.  His latest study is pretty cool looking at the strongest guys on the planet.  Professional strongmen.  He was looking at analysing the strong man yoke carry.  He also test the hip abductor strength on each athlete.  What he found was that none of the athletes hips were strong enough in theory to stabilize the pelvis and move the leg under the loads they were lifting in competition.  So where was the strength and stability coming from?

McGill tested more and came out that the quadratus lumborum was indeed helping and bridging the gap in the performance.  The QL was indeed a big performance muscle.

To train the QL you have to be doing some unilateral carry type work.  Single arm farmers walk, single arm waiters walk, suitcase deadlifts ect.  If you're not doing any single arm weighted work, add it in and watch performance and in theory back pain improve.

Here is the exact article.  Stuart McGill Article.