Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Lean Eating Contest (final update)

Good afternoon-

The release of the first edition of my PC Conditioning newsletter for 2010 is just around the corner. Until then, I wanted to follow up one last time about the Lean Eating contest my nutrition affiliate, Precision Nutrition, is hosting. I've previously shared with you two blog posts in which Dr John Berardi talks about losing body weight (and body fat). The first one talks about how important incentives are for changing your body. And it goes on to incentivize you with a whopping $40,000 in prize money.

Could The Chance To Win $10,000 Help You Get In Shape?

The second one shows you how to coerce yourself into sticking to the plan, even when the motivation wanes.

Enter "the best kept secret in weight loss."

Finally, today, I have one last post to share.

In this one, Dr Berardi talks about how you can actually vaccinate yourself against body fat. Hint: it doesn't involve needles!

Learn how to vaccinate yourself against body fat

Happy New Year!


Monday, December 28, 2009

One Last Binge

I've talked with a few people this week about their approach toward a successful 2010 and a couple people said things that essentially told me there's a good chance they won't succeed with their weight loss goals. They both said, in effect, "I'm gonna have one last binge with fast food to get it out of my system." With a puzzled look, I said "History is not on your side." I just have never seen people succeed with that approach. Why wait until next week? Why not just start making small changes this week to progress into the New Year?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to take a moment to say Merry Christmas to those celebrating today. May you have a peaceful and healthy holiday. I was thrilled to read how well the Globe Santa charity has done this year (donations exceeded $1 million). It is one of four charities I work with every year. Check out the story here:

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Healthy Eating

I found this fantastic quote from my colleague Alwyn Cosgrove that was perfect to read this time of year: "And remember -- it doesn't matter what you eat or how you exercise between Christmas and New Years..... But it matters how you eat and exercise between New Year's and Christmas!"

Lean Eating Contest (part 2 of 3)

The other day I sent out an email link to a video of Dr John Berardi talking about his two latest programs - Lean Eating For Men and Lean Eating For Women.

Far and away, the most frequent questions had to do with his $40,000 is prize money. $10,000 to the top female winner and $10,000 to the top male winner. Plus, 5k to each of a few runners up.

Click here to check out the blog post announcing this amazing prize:

Now, today, I want to share with you a post covering the flip side of the 10K prize. In other words, if the prize is the carrot, today's video talks about the stick.

You see, Dr. Berardi's a coaching expert. In fact, he's probably the most successful nutrition coach in the health and fitness business.

And after speaking with him, I realized that there's something powerful to this idea.

You see, the biggest transformations - body transformations or otherwise - are accomplished when people have big incentives.

And I'd say 10 thousand bucks qualifies as a big incentive all right. But big inspiring goals also need some potential punishment.
Or, some risk.

And in today's video, Dr Berardi shows you how to coerce yourself into sticking to the plan, even when the motivation wanes.

Enter "the best kept secret in weight loss."

So, if you're REALLY interested in changing your body and you'd like a little extra incentive for doing so, this is definitely a program you should consider checking out.

To your health,

Paul J. Connolly, B.S., NSCA-CPT
Founder: PC Conditioning Personal Training Services
Blog: *updated*
Newsletter Archive:

Monday, December 21, 2009

Beantown Jumpers

I was at Boston University's Case Gym to watch the Marist/BU women's basketball game last weekend. The halftime entertainment was a group of boys and girls, more of the latter, who performed double dutch for the crowd. The name of their group was The Beantown Jumpers. They label themselves on their web site as "...a competitive Double Dutch team from Boston, Quincy and Pembroke. Our team members include girls & boys who are in Grade 2 to Grade 5."

It was just nice to see kids getting some non-competitive quality exercise. The leaders of the group clearly encouraged teamwork and simply having fun. I'm so used to seeing young kids grow up in over-competitive sports and this was a nice change. If you have a child grade 2 to 5, check out their web site:

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Performance Mouthpieces

Regardless of level, exercise enthusiasts seem to be on an endless search for the latest gadget that will improve their performance. The fitness term for this is "ergogenic aid." In essence, what mode can they insert in their training that will not only improve performance/expedite recovery, but what may even "de-stress" their workout. Enter the performance mouth guard. Under Armour has a patent on one, as do other companies. A client of mine started wearing one a few months ago (not the Under Armour model) and has noticed a significant change in his cycling performance.

The New York Times ran a good article this past week on these mouth guards. Check it out here and let me know your thoughts:

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

$40,000 Nutrition Contest Announced Today!

You probably are aware by now of The Precision Nutrition program that I have recommended before ( It remains my top pick as far as nutrition manuals goes. If you haven't checked it out yet, click that link and let me know what you think. I've had a few clients try it and they love it, particularly for the nutrition recipes and information on nutrition plans based on body type ("somatotype" nutrition programming).

I got a notification from PN's president Dr. John Berardi last week with the subject line: "Could the chance to win $10,000 help you get in shape?" I was skeptical of course as it sounded a little too gimmicky, but after reading through, I liked the idea. I did admittedly think at first that the guy lost his mind. Now, don't get me wrong. I respect Dr Berardi. He's recognized as one of the top nutrition coaches in the world. And his programs get people results. Fast. However, when I watched this video he sent over, and learned that he's giving away $40,000 of his own money, he definitely got my attention. Check out this blog post for yourself:

So, if you're interested in finding out exactly how to eat to get in the best shape of your life, click the link below. 10 grand may be waiting for you on the other side. I'd love to see a few of my clients in the contest. As Dr. Berardi says, worst case scenario is you walk away with the best body of your life. Best case scenario being the same thing, plus you'd have a little change in your pocket :-)

To your health,

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Great job Danvers!

I just finished up teaching 2 group ex. classes in Danvers last week. I split the class up into a warm-up and conditioning portion, a strength-based portion, and a core & mobility portion. The participants did a great job and wrote some wonderful feedback on their evaluation forms. I hope to see you guys again in the future. Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Superlative Time

As I continue to tell my clients and those who are curious, the best piece of cardiovascular equipment is the Schwinn Air Dyne bike. It's that simple. They are SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than treadmills, are non-impact, and allow you to work your upper and lower body simultaneously. They also require minimal maintenance and are super resilient. Click the link below for more information:

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Combatting Plantarfasciitis

Plantarfasciitis is inflammation of the plantarfascia on the bottom of your feet. It is a very common, sometimes quite painful issue for many Americans- including a couple past and present clients. I had a bad bout of it last summer and recently off and on as well. I blogged about it a while back too ( One "trick" I have clients do that works wonders is rolling their foot on a tennis ball to stretch the fascia on the underside of their feet. Check out the video above to see what I mean.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Food and Mood

There's been some solid evidence surrounding "food and mood" lately that I find very intriguing. I'm planning an article for an upcoming newsletter about it, but for now I just wanted to leave you with one example- blueberries. This favorite berry of mine contains antioxidants whose benefits have been linked to improvement in mood and the ability to stay focused.

I use blueberries in my Greek Yogurt just about every day. I'll also put them in smoothies as my fruit source. Stay tuned for my future article...

Friday, December 04, 2009

What the heck is Broccolini?

That was my initial reaction when I was reading a recent nutrition article online. Essentially, broccolini is a mix between Chinese kale and broccoli. Introduced to the United States in 1998 by Mann Packing Company, broccolini is loaded with Vitamins A & C. It's been in the U.S. for 11 years and I haven't tried it. Looks like I have another new food to try. If you've had it, let me know how it was and how you cooked it. I've read 12-15 minutes @ 450 degrees on a cookie sheet tossed with a little lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil works best.

Part 2 of last week's article

Last Saturday, I posted part 1 of a 2-part article on ways to improve strength and stability. As promised, here is part 2:

Ditch the Excessive Crunches- The latest scientific research has provided evidence of excessive crunching with disc herniations. I engage my clients in core stabilization exercises. Specifically, we typically strengthen the mid-section, lower back, hips, and glutes with exercises that prevent rotation rather than initiate it. This eliminates repetitive stress to your spine while improving your mid-section strength. As always, feel free to contact me ( if you have any questions.

Moral of the story: eliminate the exercise pictured above and incorporate more exercise that induce core stability like prone planks (pictured below):

Thursday, December 03, 2009

A True Ironman

A True Ironman (continued...)

Completing a triathlon remains the most challenging event I think an individual can put themselves through. Now try literally getting run over by a bus, THEN completing one! I HIGHLY recommend you check out the latest installment of HBO's Award-Winning "Real Sports." It features a story on Matthew Long (see video in blog post above), a New York City firefighter who was at the World Trade Center on 9/11 who was run over by a New York City bus in 2005. Long is not only an Ironman, but a true hero to many.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Pink Gloves Video

It all started when a medical supply company created a new line of hospital gloves- in pink. Medline Industries Inc. created these pink medical gloves and they are now seen in the new You Tube video that is sweeping the nation. Between Nov. 13th and Nov. 30th, the video has been viewed over 1.6 million times! Employees of the Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland, Oregon posted the video, and now Medline Industries is stepping up. They have agreed to donate a portion of the profits from the pink gloves to fund mammograms for women who otherwise would not get them. As the son of a breast cancer survivor, I love reading wonderful stories like this- particularly around the holidays.

To Count or Not to Count?

Is counting calories a waste of time? I'll admit I rarely count calories or advocate clients do so. I've historically used an approach of simply eliminating the junk and replacing it with higher quality foods. This seems to solve the majority of many nutritional dilemmas. That being said, here's a piece from Web MD on Calorie Counting:

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

More Good News for Sleep

I am always on my clients to get more rest and recovery, and here is more information to back me up:

It further confirms what I preach in that that being more physically active can lead to better sleep. Now go take a nap! :-)

Hoops on the NY Times Best Seller List

Being a hoops addict, it's nice to see 2 incredible basketball books on the New York Times Best Seller List ( They are "The Book of Basketball" by Bill Simmons and "When the Game Was Ours" by Jackie MacMullan. I have not read them yet, but have heard great things about them.

Monday, November 30, 2009

I Almost Went to New York Today!

I drove out to Lee, Massachusetts (see map above as I had no idea where it was either) today to conduct a workshop on strength training and flexibility. It was a great time. We had about 20 city employees attend and they all did an excellent job!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

2-part Fitness Article Released

I wrote a brief 2-piece article for a local health club this week about optimizing strength and stability. Here is part 1:

I’m back this month to talk about 2 simple methods to incorporate into your training to improve strength and stability. They aren’t overly complicated, apply to all levels, and induce great results!

1. Implement Unilateral Lower Body Exercises- You know by now I’m not a fan of most machines, so it’s time you consider engaging in bodyweight and free-weight exercises working one leg at a time. Most of our activities in everyday life are performed one leg at a time (walking/running, climbing stairs, etc…) so we should train one leg at a time with variations of squats, lunges, and dead-lifts (see lateral lunge in the pic above). Both are typically done with poor form, so please contact me if this is something you’d like to learn how to do correctly- particularly if you play a sport and need to improve single-leg power.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Hi everyone-

Just wanted to wish you a very Happy & Healthy Thanksgiving!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

More Vitamin D chat

I had one of those "A-Ha" moments this morning as I read an article on the hottest Vitamin right now- Vitamin D. I'm not a big "supplement guy," but I do think certain substances have their merit. Personally, I take 1,000 IU of Vitamin D. It's inexpensive and effective.

With respect to my "A-Ha" moment, it was the notion of African Americans needing more Vitamin D. The article put it best: "Melanin protects the skin against ultraviolet light. But by blocking the sun’s rays, melanin affects the skin’s ability to activate pre-vitamin D. So the darker the skin, the less vitamin D you produce. In the scientific literature, the difference is striking."

Now you know :-)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Distance Traveled in a Basketball Game

I've often wondered how much distance a basketball player travels during a 40-minute (NCAA) game. Ironically, I came upon an article in a recent issue of the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (JSCR). The article stated as follows: " a 40-minute game, a basketball player covers a total distance of 4500 to 6000 m."

Translating this to miles, a player during a 40-minute covers between 2.8-3.7 miles. I was surprised and would've guessed more.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Just finished reading a nutrition article that talked about an exciting study starting in January, 2010 through Harvard University. The goal of the study is to find out if Vitamin D-3 (2,000 IU/day) and EPA plus DHA (1,000 mg/day) can lower the risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, and other illnesses. Here's hoping my two favorite supplements can shed some more positive light on the world of preventive medicine...

Optimizing Back Health

Just wanted to say thanks to the kind folks in Wakefield for coming to my presentation on Optimizing Back Health this morning. Everyone was attentive during the lecture portion, and did great with the exercises and stretches we reviewed after.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Pollan Talks Obesity

UC-Berkely's Michael Pollan is someone whose work I love reading. I recommend his books/articles to many of my clients and colleagues. He wrote a fantastic article for the New York Times recently on obesity and it's tie-in to President Obama's new health care proposal. Some of the highlights of the article I enjoyed were the following that I bolded:
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three-quarters of health care spending now goes to treat “preventable chronic diseases.” Not all of these diseases are linked to diet — there’s smoking, for instance — but many, if not most, of them are.

  • We’re spending $147 billion to treat obesity, $116 billion to treat diabetes, and hundreds of billions more to treat cardiovascular disease and the many types of cancer that have been linked to the so-called Western diet. One recent study estimated that 30 percent of the increase in health care spending over the past 20 years could be attributed to the soaring rate of obesity, a condition that now accounts for nearly a tenth of all spending on health care.

  • There’s lots of money to be made selling fast food and then treating the diseases that fast food causes. One of the leading products of the American food industry has become patients for the American health care industry.

  • As things stand, the health care industry finds it more profitable to treat chronic diseases than to prevent them. There’s more money in amputating the limbs of diabetics than in counseling them on diet and exercise.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Food Libel Laws

Like many others, I have never heard of food libel laws. This changed when I watched the film, Food, Inc. Food libel laws make it easier for food producers to sue their critics for slander. Full a complete breakdown, check out the following URL:

Friday, November 13, 2009

The "Wellness" Belt

What the hell were our neighbors to the North thinking?!?!
Good at hockey-yes, but constructing exercise equipment? Yikes!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Top "Vegetables" consumed in the United States

Excellent (alarming) statistic from one of the nutrition books I'm currently reading:

"Unbelievable as it may seem, one-third of all vegetables consumed in the United States comes from just three sources: french fries, potato chips, and iceberg lettuce."

Additionally, "people who eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables daily seem to have half the cancer risk of people who eat only two servings."

Monday, November 09, 2009

Vitamin D deficiency

100 MILLION Americans are Vitamin D deficient? Geez! Check out what Dr. Oz has to say here:

Recommended DVD

For my 500th blog post, I wanted to recommend a DVD I'll be featuring in my upcoming December newsletter. Check out a preview below...

Director Robert Kenner was also featured in an interview I enjoyed. Check that out here:

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Optimal Pregnancy Weight Gain

As a personal trainer who works with various populations, I have had the privilege of working with prenatal clients over the years. Often the question the clients pose to me (and their Dr. of course) is: "how much weight should I gain?" The Institute of Medicine recently made the following recommendations in May with regard to optimal weight gain during pregnancy:
  • Underweight women (BMI <18.5)= 28-40 lbs.
  • "Normal Weight" women (BMI 18.5-24.9)= 25-35 lbs.
  • Overweight women (BMI 25-29.9)= 15-25 lbs.
  • Obese women (BMI 30+)= 11-20 lbs.

Now you know :-)


I was speaking to a client recently about the importance of focus. Too often, people start their workout routines with excessive ambiguity. Their goals aren't defined and they typically lack focus on what they're striving to accomplish. It got me thinking of a good Anthony Robbins quote on focus: “It's not what's happening to you now or what has happened in your past that determines who you become. Rather, it's your decisions about what to focus on, what things mean to you, and what you're going to do about them that will determine your ultimate destiny.”

Sometimes we need to kind of step away from everyone else and think about what it is that will truly make us better. How will we go about this and what plan of attack have we set forth?

Friday, November 06, 2009

The Biggest Loser

I've been asked a lot over the years my thoughts on the infamous TV program, "The Biggest Loser." All in all, I'm not a fan but I did find a really good article written by Dr. Chris Mohr that I wanted to share with you:

Asics Gets the Nod

I'm a huge fan of Consumer Reports, reading every edition as I use that as a guide before I buy something. The latest edition recently crowned the Asics GEL 150TR as the top overall sneaker for both men and women. It's a running shoe that obviously is also good for walking. The reviews on confirm it's comfort, quality, etc... I haven't tried Asics in a while. I'm a big advocate of New Balance and Nike, but I'm going to give these a shot. If you own them, let me know what you think so I can share your feedback with my readers.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Lowering Your LDL

Possessing High LDL ("bad cholestrol") is an issue for far too many in this country. Many people fail to recognize that there ARE ways to LOWER your LDL. Incorporating specific foods into your diet help do the trick (i.e. oat bran and barley).
Unfortunately, our diets are often filled with saturated fats, thus INCREASING our LDL. Check out the full scoop here:

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

NOV Fitness Tips

I wrote this article for a local health club this week. Enjoy...

November, 2009 Fitness Corner

“3 Methods to Improve Your Workouts”

With the holidays aright around the corner, it’s time to examine your workouts. Specifically, you need to determine if you really are on your way to reaching your goals. This month, I’d like to suggest 3 basic, yet very effective ways to enhance your workouts:

1. Decrease your rest periods (stop wasting time!)- Too often, I see people simply sitting down on a machine/piece of equipment after a set. Instead of staring at the TV or off into space, get up and work an opposing muscle group (“antagonist”). For example, pair a set of push-ups with split squats instead of watching TV for 5 minutes after completing the push-ups.
2. Journal your progress- Write down/type up your workouts, meals, and snacks. It’s been proven through research that people who keep a written track of their exercise and nutritional habits see better permanent results.
3. Variety, Variety, Variety- You need to make progressive changes to your workout routine- and food and beverage intake-to obtain optimum physical AND psychological results. Simply put, it gets boring doing the same thing over and over again.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Organic Apples

I was out @ Trader Joe's today and picked up some organic apples. As I've mentioned, I recommend "going organic" with produce that has skin you eat (i.e. peaches, apples, and grapes). In these tough economic times, I understand it's challening to pay more, but I don't mind paying a little more if it means lower level of pesticide ingestion.

One of my "go to snacks" has always been a sliced apple with natural peanut butter. So yummy! Nothing like pairing fibrous carbohydrates with GOOD fat.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Breakfast Covered

I just came across a great recipe for Peanut Butter & Banana Nut Oatmeal. As with anything, you can tweak the ingredients/portion sizes to adjust for relative caloric intake.

Check it out here:

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Interview Quotes

I was reading a really good article by Chris Shugart this week as he interviewed Strength Coach Chad Waterbury. I highlighted a few points Chad made that I wanted to share with you:
  • "A workout that consists of nothing but exercises that target your weaknesses would be the most boring — and beneficial — workout you'd ever do."

  • "The best fat loss training tool you'll ever find is the jump rope. So if you want to design a kick-ass fat burning workout, just put three minutes of rope jumping where those three- minute rest periods used to be."

  • "When it comes to football, the bench press maximum rep test is the most inane measure of physical prowess that I can think of. Hell, a max rep sit-up test would tell you more about the capabilities of a football player because core endurance is grossly underrated. But that test sucks, too."

  • "I learn something valuable from every article I read. I can almost always take away a point or two that'll benefit my clients. Sometimes an article is a complete train wreck, but it helps me better explain why I do what I do."

  • "It's funny how people think they have the right to tell you how you should look."

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Off-Season Golf Strength & Conditioning

Here in New England, golfers are winding down their seasons and are looking for other modes of exercise to keep them busy. Many of them will still flock to indoor driving ranges to work on their power game. Others will focus more on their putting/short game. My best advice- put more focus on improving total body strength and emphasize fixing muscular imbalances. Stop ignoring the hip, back, and knee pain and prepare your body for next season.

I've had many golfers over the years report they do ZERO resistance training. I like to remind them that Tiger Woods, one of the greatest golfers in history, wouldn't be as dominant without a quality strength & conditioning program. I know when one thinks of golf they don't always associate strength, but have you seen Tiger's "gun show" lately (see pic above)? Moral of the story: get in the gym and work on hip mobility, shoulder stability, core endurance, and weight management.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Anti-Rotary "Movements"

I was preaching to a client the other day- and subsequently thought I should write about it- about the benefits of Anti-rotary exercises. The focus in someone's "core" (not sure that I like that word anymore) routine is sadly things like crunches. The latest research, particularly by lower-back specialist Dr. Stuart McGill, is proving more and more that we simply don't need to twist or induce flexion in throughout our torso. It seems that the long-term result of excessive "crunch" style exercises is a herniated disc. Obviously we don't want that happening, so what do we do do effectively work our "core." It's simple, engage in movements that resist rotation or flexion.

One exercise I do with a lot of my clients are "Cable Belly Presses" (see video below). All you need to do is line up next to a cable column with a single "D-grip" handle. Wrap one hand over the other and extend out from your mid-section to a point where your arms are fully extended. The torque of the cable wants to pull back to the column, but you simply holding still resists this rotation and very effectively strengthens your mid-section/obliques. Most importantly, it reduces and spinal stress.

Simply put, we don't need to keep twisting and crunching to work our middles. We need to eat right (nutrition comes first!), engage in adequate conditioning ("cardio), and strength train. Try the cable presses and let me know how you do.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Pre-hab/Cool-down song

I had this going the other day as a cool-down song. Also threw in some rotator cuff pre-hab work with it. Relaxing song to me. MJB is my fav. female R&B singer...

Why Train Slow to Move Slow?


I had a good chat this week with a colleague about the SPEED at which people train. Specifically, we were talking about how quickly the concentric phase of a repetition should be performed. I was reviewing a bench step-up exercise with him (see pics above). He pointed out something to me that I sometimes fail to emphasize with clients: there is NO REASON why you should be training slow. Training slowly yields moving slowly.

The exercise above is a bodyweight bench step-up performed by Boston University Asst. Coach of Strength & Conditioning, Darcy Gould (learn more about Coach Gould here: Her goal is to push through the heel/mid-foot of the foot that is on the bench as hard as she can. She brings her leg that starts on the ground in the air as quickly (powerfully) as possible, as long as she displays perfect technique. She recruits what we call “fast twitch” muscle fibers. These are the fibers that diminish with age. Their decrease in quantity is often the chief reason elderly persons experience falls. Their presence correlates with adequate reaction timing.

Moral of the story: when performing an exercise, make sure the concentric phase is performed explosively. Never sacrifice good technique at the same time. Leave a comment if you have any questions so others can see as well.

Air Jordan (Junior) refusing to wear Adidas

Not sure if you've been following the story, but Michael Jordan's son Marcus is refusing to wear Adidas sneakers. His Dad's ties with Nike obviously play a role in his decision, but form your own opinion. Check out the full story here:

One of the blogs I follow recently had thoughts on solving the issues. Check out this quote: "Simple solution, why can’t the kid wear Adidas during games and just rock his dad’s shoes off the court? Plus, I’m surprised this issue didn't come up during the recruiting process."

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Upcoming Newsletter Info.

I finished editing November's newsletter this week. I've got a brief follow-up interview with Coach Glenn Harris of Boston University. We chatted for a bit and went through a few exercises from a pre-season basketball routine he developed to assist with my training regimen (see Sled Pull picture above).

Monday, October 19, 2009

5 Stupid Ideas

1. Not warming up
2. Skipping breakfast
3. Not emphasizing the ‘weak links” in your kinetic chain
4. Not getting enough sleep every night
5. Getting a tattoo on your face

Are dogfighting and football really any different?

Fantastic author Malcolm Gladwell wrote an article this week for The New Yorker. It is an incredible piece on the dangers football and other sports pose to the brain. Looking back, I'm even happier now I decided never to play football.
Check out the full article here ( and email me ( your comments.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Investigate (Don't Just Read) Labels

The trend continues of potentially dangerous ingredients being injected into various "bodybuilding" supplements. People need to investigate and understand what they are putting in their bodies. For more info, check out the article here:

Local Colleges Shrink Portions

Fantastic article in today's Boston Globe about local colleges providing healthier options for students (

Some schools (Tufts & UMASS-Amherst) are shrinking portions, while others (Merrimack College) are shrinking plate sizes. There will undoubtedly be complaints about the various programs, but at least these schools are taking important steps to combat our country's obesity problem.

Follow-up on Circuit Training Exercise

I had a few people last week ask me about an article I wrote for a local health club. I had written a circuit training workout for people to do when they are strapped for time, and one of the exercises I suggested was "Mountain Climbers." As a means of demonstration, check out the video above for a description.

If you're curious, here is the article I wrote:

October, 2009 Fitness Tip
-Paul Connolly, NSCA-CPT

It’s that time of year again when “back to school” mode is in the rear-view mirror and we look for efficient workout programs to implement. Many clients I work with who are always looking for a quick and effective workout, particularly if they know they can’t get to the gym. Here’s one I’ve used with clients that engages all major muscle groups, requires no equipment, and takes a maximum of 10 measly minutes:

Jumping Jacks (15 sec)
Push-ups (15 sec)
Mountain Climbers (15 sec)
Bodyweight Squats (15 sec)

Perform the above 5x at a good pace, resting 30-60 seconds between circuits)

What's the Deal With That Funky Tape on Athletes?

"Kinesio" Tape is becoming very popular among athletes. Many NBA teams are now using it. Essentially, Kinesio Taping provides stability to an area without restricting blood flow. Kinesio taping lifts the skin and allows for more blood and lymph flow which will speed up recovery and reduce pain in the area. You can wear the tape on any part of your body from the shoulder to the ankle and everything in between.

I've had kinesio taping on my shoulder in the past and it felt ok. I'd have to experience it more than once or twice to notice a real difference, perhaps. You see a lot of the athletes getting creative with different colors. I can see many pro organizations putting a limit on what colors are used, based on the team's colors. Some of the Celtics' players (Ray Allen & Kevin Garnett) have used black. That goes well with their green/white uniforms. We'll see what the future holds for Kinesio taping and what other teams implement this method.