Friday, December 31, 2010

Three Keys to Successful Health & Fitness Resolutions

I read an interesting article today about fitness resolutions on Core Performance and wanted to share it with you:

Many people will make resolutions this holiday season, hoping the new year will bring the power and leverage (or at least the willingness) to replace bad habits with positive behaviors.

Most New Year’s resolutions fail, of course, but not for the reasons you might think. According to Dr. Roy Sugarman, the Director of Applied Neuroscience at Athletes’ Performance, the key to keeping resolutions is a three-pronged approach of importance, confidence, and readiness.

1. Importance

Most resolution makers never take the time to ponder why their resolutions are important. Take a few quiet moments to write down reasons why you want to implement these new behaviors. All valid contracts are in writing, after all, and this exercise not only makes things official; it gives you the leverage to change.

Change is difficult for creatures of habit, which we all are after millions of years of programming that tells us that change is dangerous and we should resist it.

“By making resolutions, you’re alerting your instincts that say, ‘Don’t do it,’” Sugarman says. “You have to be able to override that and recognize that this is good and it’s going to have a good outcome down the road. A successful person can override that negativity bias consciously. They overcome the emotions that say, ‘You lost a million dollars last time’ and keep investing or starting businesses, for example.”

2. Confidence

This comes not from cocksure swagger or positive thinking but from the momentum of small successes. While it’s good to sign up for a marathon four months out to set a goal in motion, the confidence comes from starting on a training program of short distances that builds gradually to the goal of finishing 26.2 miles.

That’s why it’s often easier to quit smoking by decreasing the number of cigarettes each day than by going cold turkey.

“If we’ve failed many times before, our brains get engaged and push back when we try again,” Sugarman says. “You’re setting yourself up for failure because emotions are so powerful. The idea is to reprogram your brain.”

Sugarman draws an analogy between smoking cigarettes and walking along a cliff. We don’t get too close to the edge of a cliff because we know it’s dangerous. A smoker’s brain, however, has been programmed to think of cigarettes in terms of pleasure and not health risk.

“The brain doesn’t distinguish between giving up smoking or walking along the cliff,” Sugarman says. “To stop smoking is risky because it has adapted to nicotine and it fears change. Now you’re telling it we’re going to withdraw the nicotine. But if we take just one cigarette a day away, it doesn’t notice. Baby steps build confidence.”

3. Readiness

One of Mark Verstegen’s recurring messages in the Core Performance booksis that adapting a high-performance lifestyle is much easier when you recognize that you’re doing it for those most important to you. Only when you take care of yourself first will you create the energy and actions to raise the lives of others.

It’s easier to slack off on a goal when you think it’s just about you

“Readiness is when you look at that resolution and say, ‘I’m going to do this now because a year from now I want my spouse and kids to be happier as a result,” Sugarman says. “Not only that, I’ll be able to look back and feel that great sense of accomplishment.”

PC Conditioning Team Member Excels in New York


I just wanted to take a moment to congratulate PC Conditioning team member Ephraim McDowell. I had the pleasure of working with Ephraim the summer before his freshman year @ Hamilton College in New York. I can honestly say that no one I've trained to date has matched his work ethic and dedication. The fact he's a fellow hoops junkie and that we play the same position definitely made our training sessions that much more enjoyable.

Here's a great piece The Boston Globe ran on him in today's paper:

Basketball arc is now ‘complete’
Ephraim McDowell, a graduate of Beaver Country Day School in Newton, has become a “complete player’’ as a junior guard on the Hamilton College men’s basketball team, according to head coach Tobin Anderson.

“He will always be a tremendous shooter, but his relentless work ethic has made him very good at every facet of the game,’’ said Anderson, whose team was 5-2 overall at semester break. “He’s become a strong leader and he is a fun guy to coach.’’

The 5-foot-11 captain, whose teammates include sophomore forward Eric Benvenuti of Concord (Concord Academy), was selected to the Liberty League’s Team of the Week for the second straight week on Dec. 13 after averaging 18.5 points in a two-game span.

A resident of Boston, McDowell ranks second in the league in scoring at 17 points per game, second in free-throw percentage at 88.9 percent, fourth in 3-point field goal percentage at 47.2, and leads the league with 25 3-pointers.

At Beaver, McDowell was the school’s second all-time leading scorer with more than 1,700 points and was a two-time Eastern Independent League all-star. A two-year captain, he also set a school record for 3-point field goals and was a McDonald’s All-American nominee his senior year.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Did Santa bring you "The Ab Circle" this Christmas?

I was reading a research study this morning that compared abdominal musculature activation between 3 traditional exercises (Quadruped, Abdominal Crunch, and Side Bridge) against "The Ab Circle," an "As Seen on TV" product that promises to shed the "love handles." Long story short: save yourself some time and money and stick to the bodyweight core exercises that work better than this foolish device.

I'll report specifics in my February, 2011 newsletter. Stay tuned...

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all those celebrating this year!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Shannon Sharpe workout

Shannon Sharpe is a former NFL player whose dedication to his body both in and out of the weight room is hard to match. The Wall Street Journal ran a fantastic article in today's paper about his current workout routine and nutrition plan. Check out the full article here:

Friday, December 17, 2010

Female Strength Levels

I found a really good chart posted by strength coach Brett Contreras today that I wanted to share with you. He based it on the hundreds of female clients he's worked with over the years. One goal I have for all of my female clients is strength improvements and many often ask me, "Paul, do you think I'm strong?" Well, check the chart and we'll see:

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

SUPER Motivating!

STILL one of the most motivating videos I use to inspire my clients- and me! (start @ 4:14)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Youth Sports May Not Offer Enough Exercise

A recent article from The Wall Street Journal cited a study that said the majority of children participating in organized team-sports don't meet the federal recommendation of one hour a day of moderate-to-vigorous exercise. A physiologist from San Diego State suggested cutting inactive time during practices as one of the easiest ways to help ensure children meet physical-activity guidelines on a given day.

Embracing Discomfort

Girl Sweating After Workout
As the New Year draws closer, I've been doing a lot of thinking about many of my clients wishing to improve their body compositions. That is, they are seeking to lose body fat, yet gain or maintain lean muscle mass. This is the case of the majority of so many exercise enthusiasts. I was reading a piece by best-selling author Bill Phillips where he listed out suggestions for achieving body transformations and one in particular stuck out to me: "You must be ready and willing to experience a certain level of discomfort as you move toward your goal."

I truly believe embracing temporary discomfort during training sessions is one of, if the not THE KEY, to achieving body transformation success. Of course nutrition plays the most important role, but people- many of my clients and pretty much EVERYONE I encounter at the gym- need to embrace this cardinal rule.

Rebuilding the food pyramid

This month, the 2010 dietary guidelines will be released by the federal departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services. The current food pyramid (pictured above) is what American dietitians typically refer to when providing nutrition advice. The Boston Globe recently ran an article on the upcoming pyramid. You can check out the article by clicking the following link:

Friday, December 10, 2010

Why You Can't Lose Weight

I was reading a column by
Brandon Alleman recently about why people can't lose weight. It was rather interesting and I wanted to share a few of my favorite points from it:

Poor nutrition-
You will never out-train bad nutrition! Stop cutting calories, stop skipping meals, stop eating processed foods, and seek the services of someone, like yours truly, who can coach you on how to determine how you should be eating. Basically, stop eating C.R.A.P. Yes, that is actually an acronym (courtesy of Dr. Sherri Rogers) which stands for C = caffeine, cola, and corn. I actually added corn to the C list. In my experience, a large percentage of people are intolerant to corn when tested accurately with blood tests. Corn is universally contaminated in the U.S. and is almost completely genetically modified at this point and is nutritionally bankrupt. It is also the most highly subsidized crop in the world. You can find corn in batteries and diapers – yes, I am serious. How ridiculous is that?! R = Refined food and white rice; A = additives and alcohol; and P = processed foods and pasteurized dairy. All of these foods will serve to make you fatter and I do not care how much exercise or cardio you do – you cannot out train bad nutrition.

You are cutting calories or skipping meals-
Consider this when using calorie cutting to achieve your weight loss goals: Within 24 hours of going on a low calorie diet, which is defined as eating less than 2000 calories per day (according to the World Health Organization), you immediately deplete your brain chemistry and have been shown to increase fat storing (lipogenic) enzymes in the body. This is particularly important for females who already have 3 times the amount of fat storing (lipolytic) enzymes as fat burning ones. Any changes in brain chemistry will lead to cravings, usually for sugary food items. Low calorie dieting is especially damaging for anyone with a history of depression, anxiety, eating disorders or alcoholism. Remember, all of this occurs after a single day. In many cases I can run Functional Lab assessments to determine how nutritionally depleted my clients are. Anyone with a history of chronic yo-yo dieting, calorie restriction, or long-term use of most medications is likely to have severe nutritional deficiencies.

Hormonal Imbalances-
Forget about losing weight in the presence of hormonal issues. It simply will not happen.

Poor Sleep-
The body handles its physical and neurogenic/psychogenic repair during the hours between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Poor and disrupted sleep can lead to issues in virtually any physiological system in the body. Poor sleep can also lead to over consumption of carbohydrates, stimulant (caffeine, sugar, etc.) cravings, fatigue, and poor mood to name a few. These will all sabotage your weight loss efforts.

You have no purpose-
It has been my observation that those individuals who view their life as connected to the world as a whole and view their life as one with meaning and purpose have a much easier time losing weight when given the correct advice for accomplishing that task. If you do not have a clearly defined purpose for the use of your life’s energy, you will be dealing with chronic stress everyday -even if you think you are not! That stressor can easily sabotage weight loss efforts.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Being Successful

Coach Bob Knight was interviewed for a book on leadership and coaching a few years back and was asked to describe what makes someone successful as his/her profession. Here is a quote that stuck out with me as it's how I run my life and business, not worrying about what others say/care:
"Do what’s right and do what you think you have to do, and don’t worry about what somebody says. That would be about as simply put as my philosophy could be."

Steve Cotter is amazing!

I've seen some incredible feats of athleticism in my life, but this remains my favorite. Check out Kettlebell expert Steve Cotter above, performing "pistols" in Germany.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Vitamin D Research

A long-awaited report from the Institute of Medicine to be released Tuesday triples the recommended amount of vitamin D most Americans should take every day to 600 international units from 200 IUs set in 1997. Personally, I take 1,000IU in addition to my multi-vitamin every day. Check out the full article here:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Aging Gracefully

I came across a good article last week in The Boston Globe that discussed aging gracefully. I wanted to highlight a few of the tips the article provided, as they are ones they I am constantly preaching to clients, family, and friends:
  • Exercise is Essential- 'nuff said
  • Eat Food, Not Pills- this is something I adopted from Michael Pollan
  • Get Mental Health in Order- eliminating/reducing all potential stressors in your life works WONDERS
  • Sleep Early and Often- my favorite in the whole list as it's the challenge I tackle regularly, and will continue to battle.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Todd Durkin e-mail

I was reading an email I got today from one of my mentors, Todd Durkin. In it, he talked about taking action, yet accepting imperfection. It was such a great email I wanted to share a piece of it with you, as it certainly motivated me! Check it out here:

"And while I prefer to do my daily 'To Do' List the night before, you get the idea of the importance of taking ACTION on the most important things on your list FIRST. Accept that you will be busy, but stay focused on what's most important. First, give priority to your workouts and eating right. This will help fight the stress and anxiety associated with the many other items you must complete. That's great advice as we continue to march toward the holiday season and year-end. For now, permit yourself to be imperfect, slow down, and enjoy this wonderful time of the year. And if you continue to find yourself busy: Be busy doing the right things!"

Littleton, MA Back Care

I had the opportunity to head out to Littleton, MA today to speak to a group of 40 town workers about back health. Bear in mind these are ALL men, many of who admittedly don't care for their bodies the way they should. I gave a 30 min. lecture/slide show presentation on back care (preventing and combatting back pain). After the lecture, I put them all through a series of stretches and strengthening exercises to improve posture, increase back strength, induce him mobility, and teach proper ergonomics both during exercise and at work every day.

One of the exercises we covered that engages the glutes, and helps to reduce back pain is the supine hip bridge. See the video below for instruction. This is a fantastic exercise to add in your repertoire regularly as all of my clients do:

Monday, November 08, 2010

A "Sustainable" Thanksgiving

So I've been reading a bit lately about pasture-raised turkeys and am considering one this year for Thanksgiving. I've recently befriended a local farmer and am in the midst of trying some of her products. I've also been following the literary work of a few nutritionists in Baltimore, and found a piece I wanted to share on the definition of "Sustainable" and how to follow this path for Thanksgiving. Check it out here:

Nutritionist Mindy Athas (pictured) weighs in on the benefits of eating green.

"Sustainable is about eating in season with foods grown naturally and raised humanely, ideally within a 100-mile radius of your home. Health benefits come with choosing locally-grown, in-season foods. Without the need for long transportation, fruits and veggies can be eaten just-picked, at the peak of ripeness, ensuring freshness and maximum nutritional value. Organic, pesticide-free produce may also be higher in antioxidants. Antioxidants scavenge free radicals and protect the body's cells from oxidative stress, assisting in disease prevention. Buying from a local farm also fosters a relationship between consumers and their food. See"

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Problems with Conventional Medicine

Dr. Andrew Weil, whose work I often follow, explains the problems with conventional medicine in America in the above video.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Article Published in Today's Newspaper!

I co-authored an article that appears in today's edition of
The Watertown Tab. The full article reads as follows:

Make a fun and friendly 5K part of your Thanksgiving tradition

Watertown, MA - Watertown TAB & Press

WATERTOWN — Before guests, before football, and before the feast, run or trot your way to making a difference. Choosing a local Turkey Trot run is a great way to spend time with friends and family and kick-start a healthier and happier you. Follow this 5-week plan to get you to the finish line. What better way to start off your day that will later be filled with cranberry sauce, turkey, and pumpkin pie! You will have earned it.

The training plan WEEK 1 Monday: Run; Walk 2 min. Run 3 min. Follow this sequence for 20 min. Tuesday: Run 15 min. on a flat to gently rolling course. Wednesday: Rest Thursday: Run 10 min. warm up.4 x 30 sec. strides. Rest 60 sec. Count the number of steps taken by 1 foot. 5 min. cool down. Friday: Cross train Saturday: Run 20 min. Sunday: Rest


Monday: Run; walk 1 min. Run 5 min. Follow this sequence for 25 min.

Tuesday: Run15 min. on a flat to gently rolling course.

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: Run 10 min. warm up.6 x 20 sec. strides. Rest 90 sec. Focus on technique – cadence, paw back, foot lift, etc.5 min. cool down.

Friday: Cross train Saturday: Run 20 min. Sunday: Rest


Monday: Run; Walk 3 min. Run 10 min. Follow this sequence for 30 min.

Tuesday: Run 15 min. on a rolling course.

Wednesday: Rest

Thursday: Run 15 min. warm up.6 x 20 sec. on a moderate grade hill. Walk back to start. Use your arms to drive your legs powerfully.5 min. cool down.

Friday: Cross train Saturday: Run 25 min. Sunday: Rest


Recommend Page 1 of 3

Make a fun and friendly 5K part of your Thanksgiving tradition - Watertown, MA - Watertown TAB & Press 10/28/10 11:48 PM

Monday: Run 2 x 15 min. at an easy pace with high turnover. Don’t over stride. Walk 3 min. between sets. Tuesday: Run 15 min. on a rolling course. Wednesday: Rest Thursday: Run 20 min. EZ3 x 60-yard strides after your run. Full recovery after each.

Saturday: Run30 min. Sunday: Rest


Monday: Run 15 min. Start EZ & gradually increase the pace throughout the run finishing hard like you’re racing somebody to the finish line

Tuesday: Rest Wednesday: Run; Personal race day routine. 10-15 min. run with strides. 5K Thursday: RACE

Optimum nutrition

Ask any successful athlete for tips on enhancing performance and he/she will undoubtedly mention healthy eating and adequate hydration. All exercise enthusiasts recognize that a healthy intake of good calories is analogous to fuel for a car. Without the right type- and amount- of food and beverages, your body will not respond to the demands of your athletic endeavor. While running a 5K road race is not considered a very lengthy event as far as miles go, preparing your body for the event will ensure that your energy demands are met both during the preparatory phase (the weeks leading up to the 5K) and most importantly, the day of the race.

Since the majority of races are typically held during morning hours, the nutritional focus of this article will lean towards breakfast- related macronutrient options. Ironically, breakfast is arguably the most important meal of the day (outside of a post-workout meal/snack) due to the glycogen stores in your liver being significantly depleted. Breakfast enhances both your mental and physical energy, regulates your metabolism, and helps you to maintain a proper body weight.

So what exactly should one eat for breakfast as they train for their annual Turkey Trot? A healthy breakfast is one that provides sufficient calories in the form of complex carbohydrates, lean protein, and good fats. A sound balance of the aforementioned macronutrients will yield the energy you seek that will allow you to sustain energy during your preparatory runs. In addition, adequate hydration in the form of water (sugary sports drinks are unnecessary for this type of event due to the short duration of the race) is crucial to transport nutrients throughout your body and regulate body temperature. Now let’s a take a look at three sample breakfast options that we advise for our training clients:

· Greek Yogurt topped with raspberries, blueberries, and granola – Now accessible in most major supermarkets, Greek Yogurt is a protein powerhouse. Choosing the “plain” variety and mixing in your own fresh berries (organic, if possible) will ensure a proper blend of protein, carbohydrates, and fat.

· Veggie Omelet – Eggs have been referred to by nutritionist Jonny Bowden as “nature’s most perfect food.” They truly are one of the best- and least expensive- sources of protein on the planet! I suggest an omelet as a way to sneak in some veggies (mushrooms, red peppers, broccoli, onions, spinach and kale) as most of us don’t ingest nearly as many servings as we should.

· Oatmeal – Considered by some dieticians as a “Super Food,” oatmeal (the right kinds) is a fantastic source of fiber. Look at the label and select those brands highest in “soluble” fiber. This is the type of fiber known for lowering your LDL (“lousy”) cholesterol. For a delicious and nutritious fat source, top your oatmeal with walnuts. They’re wonderful for lowering triglycerides (fats in the blood) and boosting your mood.

Other 5K Nutrition Notes

Digestion- During the weeks as you prepare for your 5K event, try and understand your body’s “digestive patterns.” Specifically, see what timeframe your body needs to allow your food to digest properly to avoid cramping, dehydration, and other potential gastrointestinal issues. Typically 60-120 minutes is an appropriate timeframe to allow after breakfast before you begin your training runs.

· Stick to the Program – Stay with what works nutritionally. Don’t attempt some new concoction the morning of the race and then find out it exceeded what your digestive system could tolerate. Leave that black bean burrito for another day!

· Hydration – As mentioned earlier, commercial sports drinks typically aren’t necessary for events like a 5K. Reserve those beverages for more vigorous events lasting over an hour in duration. Sufficient water throughout your training will surely do the trick.

All in all, following a training program like the one we’ve suggested and implementing a nutrition plan like the one we’ve outlined will ensure your body is more than ready to hit the pavement running. Make this year’s race your fastest time yet and please make sure to email us to let us know how your training is going and how you did in your race. Most importantly, have fun, stay healthy, and do your best to enjoy every training session!

Paul J. Connolly is the founder/owner of PC Conditioning, LLC, a Watertown-based personal training and nutrition consulting

Friday: Cross train

Paul J. Connolly is the founder/owner of PC Conditioning, LLC, a Watertown-based personal training and nutrition consulting service. A lifelong Watertown resident, he is a Certified Personal Trainer through the National Strength and Conditioning Association. His updated blog is located at the following: Paul can be reached

Vic Brown is an Assistant Coach for Boston Performance Coaching, a triathlon and endurance athlete coaching service located in Kenmore Square. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist by the National Strength and ConditioningAssociation and holds his Level 1 certification from USA Triathlon. Vic can be reached at

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Oldest Man in the World Commentary

I thought this was a nice video to share with my readers today. Note how Mr. Breuning mentions the importance of nutrition and exercise!

Taunton, MA Recap

I had the opportunity to head down to Taunton, MA last week to conduct an exercise workshop. I lectured about exercise barriers and ways to overcome them. I also went through a hands-on demonstration of resistance bands and flexibility exercises. The group did a great job and I hope to check in with them in the future.

Great job Taunton!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Interesting piece of Info.

One of the most well regarded voices representing the medical community, the
Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA), included a recent article by Barbara Starfield, M.D., stating that physician error, medication error, and adverse events from drugs or surgery kill 225,400 people per year. That makes our health care system the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind only cancer and heart disease.

Real Food Should Decompose

I had a friend send me a fantastic article on how Happy Meals do not decompose, even after a considerable amount of time passes. Check out the full article here:

What Kind of Person Are you?

I was reading an article tonight written by one of my mentors, Alwyn Cosgrove ( He discussed the power teachers can have on students, both positively and negatively. Having family members who are teachers and training so many of them over the years, I found it really hit home. Check it out here...

When I was in high school in Livingston I was in an advanced mathematics class. I have no idea how I got there as I was clearly the dumbest kid in the class.

Sat next to me in the class was a guy (Keith Wilson) who spent his spare time (at 14 years old) working for a company converting the program code for an arcade computer game to a home version. He used to hand in his homework on a floppy disk…

Me? I was drawing sharks on the back of my notebook…

So while studying quadratic equations, (something that has been oh-so-useful in my life…) it was clear that I didn’t understand it. I asked the teacher to go over it again. He sighed an exasperated sigh – but he went over it again.

I still didn’t get it.

So I asked again. The teacher sighed loudly and said “Okay – the rest of you take a five minute break while I go over this again for Alwyn’s benefit …..” and then mumbled “for whatever goodthat will do”

Obviously I felt pretty small at that point. And of course the whole class heard him and laughed.
And I still didn’t get it.
And I never asked a question to this teacher again.
And I failed the exam for the class.

This teacher was a man who had a chance to make a kid feel better and help him, or put him down and make him feel worthless. He chose the latter. Why? Just because he could. That’s the kind of person he was.

Another person in my life was my Taekwon-do instructor – Derek Campbell. My Dad was made unemployed and we could no longer afford lessons. I went to my instructor and told him that we just couldn’t afford lessons anymore and I’d be back when my Dad got a job.

He told me to show up early for the next class and become his assistant – teaching beginners. He would pay me with free lessons.

I went on to become a fourth degree black belt, and seven time UK national champion as a result.

This teacher was also a man who had a chance to make a kid feel better and help him, or put him down and make him feel worthless. He chose the former. Why? Just because he could. That’s the kind of person he was.

One person changed a kids life and made it worse. One person changed a kid’s life and made it better. I remember both of them.

We have all had, and remember these people in our lives – the only question to ask is …

What kind of person are you?

How Has Weight Training Saved Your Life?

I was reading a fantastic article today that featured many big names in the Strength & Conditioning World. These are people I look up to and it was interesting hearing them speak about how weight training saved their lives, all in varying ways. Personally, strength training has increased my confidence both in sports and life. I started when I was 16 and I will never forget how much I've enjoyed it since that summer I started.

A few quotes from the article stood out, and I wanted to take a minute to share some powerful words with you. Enjoy...

"The most successful people work hardest in the gym."

"The weight room is a place where the trials never end. It is the place where we test ourselves continuously — we struggle to reach one goal, and, as soon as we reach it, there is another and more difficult one to meet."

"Training hard makes you physically tougher, but the fact that it makes you mentally tougher is what's most important. Dragging yourself through a demanding workout makes you embrace the idea of facing a challenging task in business. There's definitely a direct correlation between pushing yourself in the weight room and pushing yourself in life."

Monday, October 04, 2010

Feedback on the New Website

I just wanted to say how great it has been receiving all the positive feedback from the new web site ( People are continuing to use adjectives like "fresh, crisp, clean, informative," etc... That is exactly what I was after. I want people to receive high quality, right to the point information. I don't know if I have a "favorite section" yet, but I will say the Shining Stars page came out pretty damn good. So nice to see my clients on there. Many of their family and friends have written to them and are blown away with the results they've obtained from training with me. That's the kind of stuff that truly makes me love what I do.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Obesity Hurts Your Wallet Too!

It's obvious that obesity hurts our health, but a "quantitative wake-up call" has finally alarmed many of us. Researchers at George Washington University have recently concluded that obesity costs more for women than men. Specifically, the annual cost of being obese is $4,879 for a woman and $2,646 for a man.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Hip Strengthening to Alleviate Hip Pain

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) researchers have shown that a general hip strengthening program can reduce/eliminate patellofemoral (knee) pain in female runners. They hypothesized that strengthening a runner's hips would "remedy the mechanical flaws" that lead to knee pain. The exercises included single-leg squats and general resistance band work. The results were presented at the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) conference in June. This is GREAT news for female runners who experience knee pain.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

What He Said...

I received an email last week that outlined a lot of the beliefs/viewpoints of one of my mentors, Coach Mike Boyle. Several of the bullet points mirror much of what I believe in. A lot of what I believe is what Coach Boyle said, hence the "What He Said" title of this post. They include the following:
  • Right now we've got training experts who don't train anyone and
    strength coaches who've never competed in anything. Would you
    take business advice from someone who doesn't have a business
    or isn't making any money?
  • I think personal training is much more difficult than working with
    athletes. We've got 2 hours per week to counteract the other 166
    hours of the week. It's not a good ratio to try and make changes.
  • The trap-bar deadlift is probably the best lower-body exercise.
    I think it's clearly the best bilateral exercise, since you're engaging
    your erectors and your traps much more than in a squat.
  • And another thing: stretching doesn't have to take that long. You
    don't need to go to a yoga class. Just stretch your major muscle
    groups like your hamstrings, groin, hip
    flexors, lasts, and pecs.
    Shouldn't take more than ten minutes. When you realize later
    on that all the injuries you're going to get are because certain
    muscles get too tight or get knocked out of alignment, you'll thank