Hydrate with Water

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Hydrate

Hydrate

In the past few years there have been too many stories of athletes exercising in the heat and getting extremely sick.

But why does this happen?

With prolonged exercise in the heat, sweat losses making up just 2% of your body weight can impair athletic performance and temperature regulation.sweating

Staying hydrated is extremely important for many reasons; one important part is that it helps regulate body temperature. As for working out, you won’t be able to exercise as hard or as long if you’re dehydrated.

Its really easy to downplay the importance and necessity of water since its free and abundant in most places (in Western society).

You should be drinking 14 – 22 (~2-3 glasses) ounces of fluid about 2 hours before exercise. And also drinking 6 – 12 ounces (~1 glass) every 15 – 20 minutes during exercise to replace sweat losses.

Also, drink 24 ounces of fluid for every pound of bodyweight lost after exercise. If you will be exercising in hot conditions, its wise to weigh yourself (with minimal clothing) before exercise and then again after exercise, and then re-hydrate using your post-exercise weight and the guidelines above.

Hydrate in cold weather too. The way our body conserves heat during cold weather training leaves us open to dehydration.

The human body has developed through millions of years of evolution, but its not a perfect machine. When our body needs water we wont feel it immediately, which is why you should drink water according to a time schedule rather than how thirsty you feel.

So hydrate yourself. And bring water everywhere.drinking water

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

The Turkish Get-Up: A Highly Effective Exercise

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The Turkish Get-Up

The Turkish Get-Up

The Turkish Get-Up is a highly functional movement that requires all the muscles of the body working together in order to get from a lying down position to a standing position and back down again, in a safe manner.

This exercise works on: Core strength and stability, hip mobility and strength, shoulder strength and stability, body awareness, and more.

Here are some points to focus on: your breathing should match up with the steps outlined below, keep your wrists straight, use no weight/light weight to start, keep your eyes on the weight the entire time, try this exercise without shoes (it will make your feet work too!).

Alright, these instructions are long but necessary. Take this exercise slow and make sure you can do each position with perfect form.fitness

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Getting into the starting position: This is a commonly overlooked aspect of the Turkish Get-Up exercise. Begin by lying down on your right side, with your right knee bent, your left leg straight, your right elbow bent and underneath your body, and your right hand gripping the weight as close to your body as possible. This puts your arm in an extremely strong position. Now, roll over so that you’re on your back, keeping your hand (and the weight) close to your body. Press the weight up, straightening your right elbow above you.

 

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You should now be lying on your back face up, with the weight in your right hand and above you, with your elbow straight, your shoulder back and down, making your arm perpendicular to the floor. Your right knee should be bent with your foot close to your butt, your left leg should be straight and your left arm should be out away from your body.

 

 

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The first step is going to be multiple actions in one. Breathe out while you move the weight up, slightly forward and to the left by punching your fist upwards, pressing through your right heel, and rotating your torso to the left. You’re going to stabilize the weight and your bodyweight on your left forearm and your left leg.

 

 

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The next move is to get from your left forearm to your hand. Breathe out, and using more rotation through your torso, another small punch from your right arm, a little power from your hip, and strength from your left arm, bring your left hand underneath you.

The next steps are going to work on stabilization and its going to be easy to want to rush through these parts, but I want you to slow down and make sure you have control.

 

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Breathe out and drive your right heel into the ground, creating a bridge-like position with your right foot, your left foot, and your left hand. You should feel this motion in your butt since this is the main muscle group that extends your hips.

 

 

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The next portion of the Turkish Get-Up is one of the trickier parts. You need to sweep your left leg underneath your body, softly positioning your left knee underneath your hip. The rest of your body should remain stable, keeping your chest out and eyes focused on the weight to keep coordination.

 

 

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Pivot your left leg and torso so that your body is facing the same direction, with your hips and shoulders all facing the same direction. Your right arm should be by your ear; keeping it close to your body and directly over your hip and knee directs the forces straight down and keeps your body in its strongest positioning. This is probably the easiest part of the move.

 

 

photo (8)

 

Now, stand-up! Keep your right foot flat on the ground, eyes focused on the weight above you, chest out, breathe out and perform a forward lung to get yourself and the weight up to a standing position.

Congratulations, you’re half way through the Turkish Get-Up!

Now, perform the exact opposite motion to get the weight back down to the starting position. And take your time!

Try out 3 reps on each side of your body for the Turkish Get-Up. It takes some time, but there are so many great things about this exercise. If you’re able to perform the Turkish Get-Up, start making it part of your routine.

Be safe. Have fun.dancing banana

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

 

Shoulder Tap Core Strength

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Core Strength/Anti-Rotation

Core Strength/Anti-Rotation

 

How’re you at the Plank?

Its easy, you say? You’re at Master Level? boring

Well, lets take it up a notch.

In the Plank exercise, you’re working on the strength, stability and endurance of your Core (back & deep ab) muscles.

In the Shoulder Taps exercise, there are some key differences from the normal Plank exercise.

This Core exercise is not just considered a stabilizing or strengthening exercise, but its also known as an anti-rotation exercise.

Anti-Rotation exercises are those that make you fight to keep your midsection (abs, low-back, hips) from rotating. And, anti-rotation exercises are great for your body because it gives you better control and strength from the places that need it (Core & hips).

The Shoulder Tap exercise is going to make your midsection fight against the rotation of your own bodyweight, its going to burn calories, its going to create real Core strength, and you’re gonna know you’re working hard because this exercise is difficult.

Getting into the correct position isn’t tough, especially if you’re already good at the Plank. Checkout my Plank exercise checklist here.

Start in a Plank position. While maintaining all the points mentioned in my Plank article, take one hand and in a slow and controlled movement and bring it to your opposite shoulder as shown in the above picture. Bring it back down to the starting position. And repeat.

If you want to make this exercise even harder, place an object in front of you just inside your longest reach. Instead of bringing your arm back down to the starting position, try and do 10 reps of touching your opposite shoulder and then touching this object.  And keep the movement slow and controlled.

The goal through the Shoulder Tap Core Strength exercise is for you shoulders, torso, hips, knees, and ankles to not rotate at all.

Test out this killer Core exercise and lemme know if you have any questions!

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

Spot Reduce Fat

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Spot Reduce Myth

Spot Reduce Myth

Can you spot reduce fatty areas?

In short….no.

Machines and products that target abs, the back of the arms, or inner thighs, as well as “toning” workouts may be effective strengthening exercises to build muscle in those areas, but they wont get to the fat that you’re aiming for.  The small muscles that are the main focus in these areas will burn calories, but it will be a small amount of calories.

Lots of “toning” programs like to focus on the little muscles, but these burn little calories. Large movements use large muscles, and they burn larger calories. So if you want to burn more calories, sticking to larger movements such as the squat, push up, and overhead press, are the movements that are going to help out the most.

Also, when working these big movements, you will be using the smaller muscles that you were probably trying to hit with machine exercises anyways.

These large movements (a.k.a. multi-joint exercises) are linked with the greatest muscle formation and metabolic after-burn (post-exercise calorie burn).

Further, high volume, low-rest exercise programs stimulate higher releases of growth hormone and testosterone, which is great for building muscle (which burns calories throughout the day)!party

Overall body fat must be reduced to lose fat in any particular area. Fat storage (how and where you personally hold your fat) is dependent on genetics, sex (hormones), and age.

So how do you lose fat weight?

In short, you lose body fat by decreasing your calories.

That can either be from a decrease in calories taken in (decreasing the amount you’re eating and drinking) or from increasing calories expended (exercising more using big movements as listed above). If you want faster results, decrease the amount of calories you take in and exercise more.

If you want to lose weight, intake less calories and exercise more with big movements.

If you have any questions or comments lemme know.

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

The Plank

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Tall Plank

Tall Plank

You see this exercise in every gym, but what’re people actually working out? And are they doing it correctly?

The Plank is a standard exercise for increasing core stabilization.

Have you known people to have a 6 pack but still have back problems? Are you on a program that has you doing 500 crunches a week?

Well stop!stop emoji

Exercises like the Plank will increase the strength of your deep core muscles (the muscles that help with posture, keep you breathing well and are the more important muscles in determining torso stability/strength/power).

I want you all to have a strong core. I hate hearing about lower back injuries and then hear that clients are only doing crunches. injured emojiIt honestly hurts my heart.

Lemme break down this exercise:

Start by lying down on your stomach and have your hands underneath your shoulders. You should be on the balls of your feet with a 90 degree angle at your ankle. Press through the balls of your feet to straighten out your legs and have your butt engaged (squeeze your butt). Draw in your belly button towards your spine (this engages your deep core muscles), and straighten your elbows so that your arms are straight, and hold this position. Make sure that your shoulders stay away from your ears and focus on slow controlled breathing, spending 3 seconds each on the inhale and exhale. Have your weight evenly distributed between your two feet and both of your hands.

 

The Plank

The Plank

Because this is a stabilization exercise, it’s important to maintain stability and not allow your body to tilt, hike, or rotate at the shoulders, torso, hips, or feet. Also, keep your head, mid-back, and low-back all in a straight line. This means that if I take a PVC pipe and lay it on your back, it will touch these 3 points and should be able to rest on your back through the entire Plank exercise.

 

Try to perform 3 sets of this exercise, holding each plank for up to 1 minute each time. BUT, only perform this exercise for as long as you can keep perfect form. If you’re feeling pain in your lower back please stop. You either need to regress the exercise or readjust your positioning.

Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. I want to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your workouts. Staying pain free is a high priority for everyone, so make sure you’re doing exercises that are good for your body.

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before.

 

Exercise With A Twist

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Twist Primal Movement

Twist Primal Movement

The exercise that I am highlighting today is an example of a Primal Movement Pattern (Lunge, Squat, Push, Pull, Bend, Gait & Twist), which are movements that we should all perform on a normal basis. It falls under the twisting category and is a very valuable exercise in any fitness regimen.

We are focusing on the Dynamic Bodyweight Side Lunge with a Chop.

Yes, its a long name. sorry

There are a lot of small components that go into this exercise, which makes it more for the experienced exerciser. But, I’m going to make it easy; especially since I already outlined how to do a Side Lunge 2 days ago!

This exercise is great for increasing the strength of the spinal rotators and the hip.

Alright, here we go:

Start with your feet shoulder width apart. Clasp your hands together, one in a fist and the other hand holding your fist. Start with your hands together and lifted above your head at a 45 degree angle on your right side.

Draw your belly button in toward your spine and initiate the movement by moving your lower body into a side lunge, pushing away from your right leg and rotating your trunk towards your left side while simultaneously pulling your hands downward across your body.

The movement ends when your hands are just above or slightly outside your left foot. Exhale through pursed lips as you bring your arms down and across your body. Inhale as you go back to the starting position.

Make sure to: muscles

1)      Keep your spine  in a straight line (low-back, mid-back and head in a line). This is the hard part because you’re twisting your torso too!

2)      Breath out on the way down; breath in on the way up

3)      Keep 70% of your bodyweight on the leg that moves and 30% on the static leg

 

Have fun twisting.

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

Childhood Fitness Report

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Childhood Fitness

Childhood Fitness

At a recent science convention in Texas, Dr. Tomkinson from the University of South Australia’s School of Health Sciences gave some disturbing information about a worldwide health trend.

Tomkinson et al found that kids today are 15% less aerobically fit than their parents were at their age.

“If a young person is generally unfit now, then they are more likely to develop conditions like heart disease later in life” states Tomkinson. Its troubling because cardiovascularly fit adults are less likely to have heart attacks and strokes. We are allowing our young generation to learn these bad habits and they are being setup for a life of disease and physical hardship.

 

What did the study show?

The research team reviewed 50 running fitness studies that spanned from 1964 to 2010, covering 28 countries and incorporating over 25 million kids ages 9 to 17. They found that children today take about 90 seconds longer to run a mile than their parents’ generation.suprised

Childhood obesity has dramatically increased in Western and some Asian countries.  And the team has found that a country’s fitness and obesity rates go hand-in-hand.

 

So what’s the cause?

Tomkinson has suggests a wide range of possibilities, with “about 30% to 60%” of the answer coming from “increases in fat mass” in children.

Another cause is an increase in sedentary lifestyles. There has been in increase in households with TVs, internet access and video games. Children are also less likely to walk, bike or skate to school than they were in the 1970s, at least in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the U.K.

 

U.S. Health authorities insist that children should be getting 60 minutes of active play a day, but only 1/3 are getting that. Schools have cut P.E. programs and have left children to get exercise during recess or after school.

If you are a parent or relative of a child, motivate them to go outside and play. Go and play with them. Run around, get sweaty, and show them that exercise is fun.

My little niece is 2 years old and I want her to have a long and healthy life. Obesity and decreased aerobic capacity can cause many problems, and I wouldn’t wish that on my niece or anybody else. Please educate those around you, especially children.

 

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

Side Lunge

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Bodyweight Side Lunge

Bodyweight Side Lunge

THIS IS A GREAT EXERCISE FOR YOUR HIPS, LEGS AND BUTT

The lunge is another Primal Movement that’s seen in activities of daily living and sport, and like the squat, uses triple extension (hip, knee, and ankle extension).

This means it’s a highly recommended exercise!dancing emoji

 

Start with your feet shoulder width apart and your hands on your hips. Draw your belly button in and step out to the side, either at a 3 or 9 o’clock position (stepping to the left or to the right). Exhale while you keep both feet facing forward and bend the leg you’re stepping with. Keep the knee of the trailing leg straight, the leg that’s staying still, during the motion. Your hips will shift backwards as your torso falls slightly forward. Inhale as you step back up to the starting position.

Yup, its that simple. cool

 

Make sure you:

1)      Keep your spine in a straight line (low-back, mid-back, head)

2)      Keep your belly button drawn in

3)      Keep your shoulders back and down

4)      Breath out on the way down; breath in on the way up

5)      Don’t let your torso twist

6)      Your torso should be positioned at a 60 degree angle when you’re in the lowest position

 

Have fun with the side lunge!

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before

Better Than Steroids

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CoreControl Glove

CoreControl Glove

About a year ago I read an article that came from Stanford lauding a new product they made. In the press released, one of the inventors, Dr. Heller, spoke of how his product could help in a gym setting. When testing a subject on pull-ups, in “six weeks he went from doing 180 pull-ups total to over 620”.

620! Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?! Crazy.crazy

How is this possible?

“Our major heat exchange surfaces are our palms of our hands, the soles of our feet, and our face” says Dr. Heller.

The body works best in a specific temperature range. When the body gets overheated, for example when working out really hard or being in a hot environment, your system shuts down certain functions to keep you safe. sweating

In the case of pull ups, after a certain amount the enzyme that regulates muscle function will shut off the ability to do more pull ups because your body got overheated. With this new product, the CoreControl Glove, that specific muscle enzyme will keep the muscle working safely.

Have you heard of athletes going into ice baths after practice? Well, this is a more focused and controlled version of that, with the science finally backing up the process.

How does it work?

The glove wraps around one hand and wrist, creates a suction which brings your blood to the surface of the skin, and flows cool water through tubes in the glove to cool down your body temperature.

In the year that I’ve been following this story the CoreControl Glove has gone from over $3,000 to $995. The price is still a bit high, especially for commercial use, but if you want to increase performance without the use of steroids, than this is the way to go.

By the way, the San Francisco 49ers, the Oakland Raiders, and Manchester United Soccer club have all started incorporating this device into their programs.

I’ll keep you posted on any updates for this product.

And remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before 

Bodyweight Squat

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Squat Front Profile

Squat Front Profile

Squatting is a very dynamic exercise and has many components that are often overlooked. Squats are great for most people, from the beginner to the seasoned gym vet. As shown above, start off with the bodyweight squat, meaning you’re just using your own bodyweight with no additional weight. Trust me, doing this exercise completely correct is no easy task.

Lets break it down.

In the squat, your starting position is a tall standing position with your feet shoulder width apart, hands either on your hips or crossed on your shoulders as shown above. Bring your body down while observing the rules below, and then bring your body back up to a standing position. That’s it!!you rock gif

 

Things to look for:

  1. Knees stay behind toes throughout the motion
  2. Feet stay flat on the ground
  3. Keep your toes pointed forward (ankles, knees and hips should be shoulder width apart and in a line)
  4. Draw-in your belly button towards your spine
  5. Breath in when lowering your body & breath out when standing back up
  6. Make sure that your spine stays in a straight line (this means your head doesn’t stay parallel to the ground at the lowest position)**
  7. Only go as low as you can while maintaining perfect form
  8. Make sure both your legs are working equally and there’s no weight shifting
  9. When descending, have your eyes shift downwards; when ascending, have your vision shit upwards
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Squat Side Profile

**This is one of the more overlooked aspects of the squat. As shown in the ‘Squat Side Profile’ picture above, you can see that my low-back, mid-back, and head are all in a straight line. If I put a PVC pipe (an often used/cheap tool in Personal Training) on my back, it would maintain this perfect line, meaning that I’m maintaining good spine alignment while exercising. An easy way to do this, especially if you don’t have a PVC pipe lying around, is to bring your shoulders back and bring your chest forward**

If you can complete this exercise while following these rules, then you can progress it to make it harder. If you can’t do this exercise than you need to regress the exercise. If you have questions on how to progress or regress the squat, lemme know. I am more than happy to help you.

Remember:

In order to achieve something you’ve never done before, you must be willing to become somebody you’ve never been before