Archive for the ‘Weight Training’ Category
Here are links to some interesting articles I have come across recently:
The Hindu Push Up – a variation on the old classic
Eating quickly is associated with overeating – and overeating associated with…
The human body is built for distance – on a hot day a human can outrun a horse over a marathon
Moderate amounts of protein best for building muscle – over 30g may be a waste of your time
Baseball – head first slide is quicker – and more likely to result in your head hitting baseman’s/catcher’s knees!
Here are 17 home truths according to DietBlog.
I particularly agree with #7:
Don’t ask me about intermittent fasting, macro-patterning, cyclical ketogenic diets or meal replacements if you aren’t eating enough vegetables.
You won’t likely be able to out-exercise a poor diet.
Everything you know about muscle is wrong. A informative article on soft tissue.
A recent Swedish study showed elite Volleyball players were less injured and performed better when they completed resistance workouts under supervision.
Not really a ground breaking result, but it is good to have some confirmation for what most trainers anecdotally believe.
Thought provoking quote from The Ultra Marathon Man:
To most non-runners, running is at best boring and at worst terribly painful and senseless
I think this holds true for many things in life that people are passionate about, and especially so sports. After sitting in on a few lectures of a solo round the world sailer a few years ago, I could not for the life of me imagine how someone would find pleasure in completing that task. To me it sounded at best miserable, and at worst a serious risk of life.
Undoubtedly even the most motivated, dedicated athletes sometimes have self-doubt, or struggle for motivation, but generally are driven towards the greater goal because they love what they are doing.
I think this comes from people not understanding that everyone is stimulated by different things. How could someone who goes to church every Sunday morning possibly understand why someone would want to spend the same time fishing many kilometers off the coast, or cycling through the hills? Next time you are driving to church past a group of cyclists and think to yourself “why the hell would someone want to dress up in that ridiculous skin tight lycra, sit on a uncomfortalbe seat and cycle for a few hours out in the cold”, you should accept that they could also be asking some similar questions of you!
An interesting antidote in a book I just finished by John Will who is reminiscing of the habits of a guy he used to run with:
Patre would do the run with a plastic over-suit on top of his uniform. For some reason he figured the more he sweated, the fitter he would become.
Now without diving into all the silly ideas and assumptions this guy had around sweat rate and its correlation to fitness I think it is not such a completely ridiculous idea that it first seems.
The reason: this guy is simply applying a principle of overload during his runs. It may be that he was a quite fit, and given he would be running with training partners (whom he was faster than) wanted to challenge himself. Undoubtedly he achieved this with his suit (and accompanying sweat that would accumulate) – but could have achieved it by carrying a weighted pack of some kind, or simply running ahead by himself.
Ideally when designing a training program you should look at fundamentally what is your goal and how much time you have. A classic example is someone doing shoulder presses whilst sitting on a Swiss Ball. The premise is that you are working your ‘core’ whilst working your shoulders. This is true, but why not challenge the shoulders more, and then the core more?
Well if your goal is to lift things overhead whilst not completely stable (like a line-out lifter in Rugby) then great, but if it is to look good in the beach then you are probably better doing them separately.
Applying overload is a time efficient way to train, and brings other social benefits, such as training effectively – and mutually beneficially, with people of different levels. For example a grappler may not use one arm when training with a novice partner, or a cyclist may always take the front when cycling into the wind with a partner.
One of the downsides to Personal Training in New Zealand is the climate. Being able to get outside more often -especially in winter - adds not only enjoyment, but crucial variety, fresh air, and vitamin D.
But it is not only the (winter) climate, there is also a lack of equipment. It is real a downer for people wanting to exercise in the outdoors by themselves, as you find yourself having to use children playgrounds (and getting very strange, angry looks from parents).
Group training sessions have proved to be a good society-wide health initiative. Unfortunately due to the climate I doubt they would pass the “Wet Wednesday Test” in New Zealand – ie if it was a cold, wet Wednesday would you go to an outside free training session?
Cities should build workout areas/circuits in popular exercising areas. I am not talking about building Muscle Beach, but rather a few pieces of equipment spread around popular exercising areas that are totally free to use. It would be interesting to see any studies on the cost/benefit of building such circuits, like I recently saw in Aotea Lagoon. I would imagine they are positive.
What is the best type of exercise?
It depends on your goals, right? Well, yeah… kind of.
There is one type of exercise that is appropriate, and best, for almost everyone: High Intensity.
Whether your goal is fat loss, sporting success, or gaining health then high intensity exercise is critical (perhaps literally when it comes to ‘health’ goal-orientated people).
Of course there are some obvious exceptions: Ultra-endurance athletes, high-risk cardiac patients etc, however high intensity exercise should be the key aspect of your most peoples training program.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) has been shown in numerous scientifically controlled studies to benefit endurance training. No longer is long slow running/cycling/swimming the cornerstone of training that it once was. Something top coaches have been practicing for years are slowly making their way into general use: Intervals such as 6-10*3min, or 4-6*4min, or 6-8*5min efforts have become the ‘secret’ weapon of the weekend warrior.
In terms of weight loss HIIT consistently outperforms other type of exercise. There are a few reasons for this, but one often sighted is raised metabolism from HIIT that ‘burns’ calories long after the exercise stops – compared to post-aerobic exercise that raises metabolism only mildly, and for not as long.
And just out this week – 3mins of high intensity exercise each day is a good prevention from developing diabetes.
When it comes to HIIT one of the barriers to the average weekend warrior is being ‘fit’ enough to complete the training. It is a real chicken and the egg situation: HIIT is the best way to increase fitness, and yet you need to be fit to complete HIIT.
Well, it needn’t be that way. My recommendation is to start as many intervals as you can at the ‘desired’ intensity ie an intensity that will enable you to meet your performance goal once you are able to complete a full session. As you gradually adapt to this you will be able to complete more and more intervals, and get the associated benefits.