Friday, January 30, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Today I wanted to take a moment to congratulate Larry B. (no, not Larry Bird) on achieving a goal I haven't come across in all my years of training. While we all try to get in all our scheduled workouts, Larry has done something few, if any, have. He has completed his daily exercise routine for 2 years (735+ days) straight. I know you're probably thinking that some of the days were a quick 15 minutes here or there, but no. Larry starts his day (at around 3 or 4 AM, mind you) with 2 hours of exercise. I've never encountered anyone who pushes it as hard as he does, while maintaining a quality social, family, and work life. Admittedly, I think he does too much, but the workouts keep him grounded and relieve stress.
Great job Larry! Maybe you'll finally take a day off like I've been asking you to do all this time :-)
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Saturday, January 24, 2009
There are many principles of fitness that yield quality results, but if I was pressed to list one rule that MUST be followed it is that of "Progressive Overload." This is a fancy fitness term that simply means to meet your goals, you MUST apply an increased training stimulus to your workout routine. Progressive Overload should be applied both to your strength training AND conditioning routines.
Practically speaking, simply increasing the weight you do on a given exercise 2-5 lbs/week is a simple, yet effective approach. Additionally, increasing the # of intervals you perform on the cycling workout you perform in your conditioning routine by 1-3 is another effective method.
For example, a strength and conditioning 3-week sample progression would look as follows applying progressive overload to each:
- CONDITIONING: Stationary Bike: (Week 1: 6 sets of 20 sec. sprints with 60 sec. recovery; Week 2: 7 sets of 20 sprints; Week 3: 8 sets)
- LIFT: Push-ups (Week 1: 10 push-ups; Week 2: 12 push-ups; Week 3: 14 push-ups)
Bear in mind the above progression can be modified based on an individual's current strength & conditioning abilities. The length of a bike sprint and the # of push-ups can initially be modified.
In summary, applying progressive overload to your workout routine is something you must do if you want to see continued results and prevent training plateaus.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
- Today’s youth could live shorter and less healthy lives than their parents.
- Childhood diabetes has increased 10-fold in the past 20 years.
- Up to 30 percent of U.S. children are overweight, and childhood obesity has more than doubled in the past 25 years.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
- Increase fruit & vegetable consumption
- Reduce intake of the "bad" fats: trans fats and saturated fats
- Increase omega 3 consumption (i.e. salmon, walnuts)
Thursday, January 15, 2009
I'm fortunate enough to train in the varsity weight room at a local D-1 university (see above pics) surrounded by some great athletes, but more importantly great people. From helpful strength and conditioning coaches, great music, and a close proximity to my home, I wouldn't trade it for the world. It's a thrill to look around between sets and see how hard some of the athletes- and coaches- push themselves in their workouts. What belief I hold dearly is that hard work is contagious. Watching others work their tails off makes me push myself harder. This may be why I can't train at a commercial gym. Whether it's too much dilly-dallying or the horrendous choice in music, it just doesn't work.
What I want you to walk away from this blog post with is knowing that where and how you train means everything. If you don't train hard and you don't train around people who bust their butts and expect the same from you, you won't succeed. Surround yourself with positive people, great mentors, and of course good music (my favorite), and good things will happen. Don't be afraid to change venues if things aren't working out at your current facility. Don't be afraid to travel farther if it means better workouts. It'll be well worth your while in the long run.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Unfortunately, the typical diet of the western world is too high in refined carbohydrates, saturated fat and animal foods, and calories. It is too low in fiber, nutrient-rich carbohydrates like fruits and vegetables, and whole grains. Making a shift towards an optimal way of eating takes several steps. To simplify this, let's use a traditional dish and …"build a better pizza".
Current Western world diet: Order a large combination pizza (with sausage, pepperoni, cheese, and a small amount of vegetables like olives, onions). Eat 1/2 or more of the pizza yourself, and wash it down with a liter of soda pop or beer.
Better: Order a large combination pizza. Eat 2 pieces. Have a green salad with low calorie dressing, and wash it down with no sugar ice tea, diet soda, or better yet, skim milk.
Still Better: Order a large pizza with mostly vegetables, maybe some chicken, but no processed, cured meats. Ask that 1/2 of the cheese be omitted. Eat 2 pieces. Have the salad with low calorie dressing and low calorie beverage.
Best!: Order a small pizza [whole wheat crust] with extra vegetables, half the cheese (low fat cheese if possible), and no meat. Eat 1 or 2 pieces. Eat a larger green salad with various vegetables, beans and seeds, with low calorie dressing. Choose a no sugar beverage, preferably water or skim milk.
After your pizza has properly digested, take a brisk walk, run, or whatever exercise you enjoy doing. Take the dog, too - he probably got some of your pizza scraps and could use the exercise!
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Thursday, January 08, 2009
As I often do, I took notes of my favorite points in the book and thought I'd share them with you:
- Ellis Myles, Louisville's 2005 center from Compton, is now their assistant strength and conditioning coach. He was given the position by Coach Pitino in 2007 as a means of working his way up the ladder towards becoming a full-time assistant coach. Their current Head S&C coach, Ray Ganong, is in his 22nd year with the team.
- Jerry Rice, one of my favorite players in NFL history, divulges his off-season workout. See pages 102-103 for the full details. It's 6 days/week of fury. You owe it to yourself to read that portion of the book alone- simply amazing.
- John Wooden quote on page 128 reads "Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are."
- Concept of "Real Net Worth:" page 185 reads..."Real net worth is far more likely to come from what you do for others, as opposed to what you do for yourself."
- Page 199 has my favorite line in the book: "The key to achieving greatness is not so much what you accomplish, but what others accomplish with your assistance."
Coach Pitino's book can be purchased by clicking the following link:
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
- Broiled scrod
- Steamed broccoli
- Quinoa salad (black beans, quinoa, salsa, organic soy cheese, cilantro)