Monday, August 31, 2015

Whittingham’s intense workout routine inspires, befuddles his players

Below is a great article about how a busy, high profile professional still makes time to make fitness a priority. I was already graduated from BYU when Kyle was there as a player, but I knew his father, Fred, who was also a great example of maintaining a high level of fitness. As a coach, he looked every bit the part of an NFL player, which he was for 9 years. He often worked out with players and pushed them to excel. I admire many things about the Utah program and pull for them except when they are playing BYU.

An unusual part of covering Utah football is that you're often asked about the secret to Kyle Whittingham's bulging calf muscles.

Utah will host Michigan on Sept. 3 and plays in one of the nation's most competitive conferences, in that conference's most competitive division.

But, really, fans say: Tell us about the calves.

The owner of the famed calves responds to this information with a strained laugh.

Do people ever ask him, like, to his face?

He sighs. "On rare occasion, I guess. Yeah."

Whittingham, 55, would rather discuss his players than his workout routine. He makes that clear. But even his players love to discuss his workout routine.

Says senior wideout Kenneth Scott: "It's something a man of his age shouldn't do. I'd be eating ice cream, sitting on the couch and watching TV."

Offers senior linebacker Jared Norris, smiling and shaking his head: "Whatever you need to get through the day, I guess, but he's crazy with the workouts."

It's probably fitting that Utah has one of the nation's most fitness-crazed head coaches. The Utes went 5-2 last season in games decided by one score or less, and they're known for their brutality and relentlessness in the trenches — at high altitude, no less. In an end-of-summer combine, six Utes benched at least 425 pounds and three squatted 800 or more.

Motivation is easy to find in Utah's gym.

If the coach can do it ...

"He's the foundation of our football team," says junior center Hiva Lutui, who has benched 30 reps at 225 pounds and draws inspiration from Whittingham's "24/7" presence at the facility. "Him working hard every day is how our team functions."

Whittingham jokes that he inherited the "workout fanatic" gene from his father, Fred Whittingham Sr., and says he began lifting around seventh grade after begging his dad for a weight set.

Fred Sr. "never prodded me or tried to get me to do it," he says. "It was just something that I enjoyed."

His consistency waned during his first few years as Utah's head coach, and while he can't recall the exact circumstances, he knows that on July 1, 2008, "I'd missed a workout or two and was feeling kind of lousy about it."

He said to himself that day: "You know what? I'm going to see how long I can go without missing."

He's still going.

Fifty-two weeks a year, six days a week — with Sundays off — he hasn't skipped since.

It's "become an obsession," he says. "Maybe an illness."

Whittingham focuses on aerobic work, core work and stretching, and he doesn't lift very often anymore — about 30-40 minutes per week.

"It's more of a Jane Fonda workout," he says.

But that's not how players see it. More than one tried to describe the crunches he does on the pull-up bars, using elastic bands, and ended up invoking a scene from Cirque du Soleil.

"I don't know how he does it," Scott says. "The dude is, like, ridiculously strong."

Players say Whittingham uses the step machine — "either reading the newspaper or doing a crossword puzzle, one of those two," Scott says, miming the action — for up to an hour straight.

(He does try to multitask whenever possible, answering emails, thinking about schemes or watching cut-ups on his laptop, Whittingham said, and doesn't simply lose himself in AC/DC.)

He's also given his team the impression that he works out two to three times per day.

"He's always got a towel on him and he's sweating or something," Norris says.

Adds senior running back Devontae Booker: "He works out more than us. Like, literally."

But it all counts as one workout to Whittingham, who explains: "Sometimes you've gotta do the aerobic at one part of the day and you've got to come back and do your core or your stretching, or whatever it is you've got left."

He doesn't time his workouts so his players see him, but he doesn't mind if they do, he says. Every coach on his staff works out, and he likes that players know that. "I think it sends a good message."

In the offseason, he spends as much time as he can spare mountain biking, road biking, skiing, water skiing, playing tennis and golfing.

He doesn't have a trainer, or seek advice, or talk about it with many people. It's a personal subject for him.

It's his release.

Scott says he's struck by that level of dedication from a guy who has won BCS bowl games and stands to have earned nearly $25 million as Utah's head coach by the time his contract expires in 2018.

"He has everything. Like, literally, everything he could ask for, with the money and everything, and he's still working [out] for the team."

Booker agrees: "It's just motivating for us, just to see him going, as old as he is — "

He catches himself.

"I mean, he ain't that old. I don't want to make it seem like he's that old!"

And oh, about his secret?

You might not like it.

"You've got to make it a priority, and you've got to find time," Whittingham said.

"Bottom line, if it's important to you, you'll find time to do it, whether you've got to get up at 4 in the morning or get a workout in at 10 at night, there's always an opportunity if it's a priority."


Three generations of Whittingham football fans (Whittingham family)
3 Generations of the Whittingham family.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Four Deadly SIns of Weak Wannabes

Dmitry Klokov doesn't mess with the Four Deadly Errors

Below is a good article that points out some common mistakes I see young people making.
Strength doesn't just happen. Like anything worth having, it takes concentrated effort, patience, dedication, and a determination of steel.

Getting strong involves a lot of trial and error though it's true many of us spend much more time in the error stage, wondering if progress will ever come. We change up our exercises, our reps, our methods, our pre-workout rituals—"What if I clap my hands three times instead of four before I try to hit 315?" But nothing seems to work.

In this article Tim Heinriques points out four errors — deadly errors, apparently — that will serve as your proverbial shovel to dig yourself out of your strength rut.

But while Heinriques can hand you the shovel, it's up to you to put that sucker in the dirt and start digging.

It's time to get dirty.

by Tim Henriques
Mistake #1: Listening to weak people.
No, we're not judging character. But most of the guys who are teaching other guys how to get strong are weak as kittens, and that just ain't right. Sure, they may know what proper form is, how to manipulate a diet, or how to be fit, but it's not the same as knowing how to create a proper program with the purpose of developing maximal strength.

There's simply too much that must be learned if you want to get someone strong, and I don't think you can learn it all without doing a lot of trial and error on yourself. If a coach won't share at least some of their personal records with you, it should be a warning sign. Now, I'm not saying every coach must be Ed Coan but they should at least be good at the stuff they're trying to coach you on.

One of my favorite quotes sums up my feelings nicely:

"Don't spend much time listening to someone talk about something they have never done."

Mistake #2: Program hopping.

The good news is if you fix the first mistake, it'll usually take care of the second. Find a coach who knows what they're talking about, who walks the walk, and whose general philosophy sits right with you (Poliquin, Thibaudeau, Cressey, Gallagher, Hatfield, and Bostrom are just a few that come to mind) and follow their programs if you're not making progress on your own.

But here's the thing: you can't change too much right away. Follow their programs as written, at least for a while (several months if not more) before you start to tinker with them to meet your individual needs. Too many people change too many variables too often.

Program hopping often leads to a kind of "starting over" where you perform the first couple of weeks of a program (which is usually an introduction or foundation-building period) and then switch over to something else before the real progress occurs. Changing programs also makes progressive overload more difficult to implement and measure.

Progressive overload, when combined with the principle of specificity, is the single most important element in a program designed to increase muscular strength. The goal is not to do 50 different exercises over the course of a month, but to pick five to ten key exercises and work on them repeatedly to improve strength.

Mistake #3: You don't know why you're doing what you're doing.

Yeah, this sounds stupid, but a lot of people don't really know why something is in their program; they just put it in because it looks good or they think they're supposed to do it.

Here's an example: one legged squats (pistols as they are sometimes called) don't do jack to increase maximal strength or muscle size; if you grow from doing them then you'd probably grow from doing almost any hard leg work. Why do we know this is true?

Because there are lots of people that weigh 135 pounds soaking wet that can do five good pistols, but if you were to ask them to get under the bar with 275 pounds on their back they'd get buried. And to the best of my knowledge, most of the really good squatters (Anderson, Karworski, Coan, Hamman, Hatfield) never attributed their squatting prowess to a lot of work on one-legged squats. So does this mean that one-legged squats are a waste of time? Not exactly. But they're not for building strength.

What usually happens is a coach thinks that one-legged squats will be good for their athlete to do. So they exaggerate the effect of the exercise and tell them that one-legged squats will make the athlete huge and jacked and help them get laid.

So the athlete spends some time doing them, gets a little better at them, but their actual squat doesn't go up and their legs don't change in size. (Plus they don't do any better with the ladies.) The end result is they think the coach is an idiot and they stop doing the one-legged squats.

I think it would be much better if coaches were just honest about what an exercise does. A one-legged squat can be good for your ankles, knees, and hips and can help keep you healthy and mobile. But that's it.

I also believe that if you know why you're doing something you can focus on the purpose of what it's supposed to achieve. If you think one-legged squats are for getting huge, you'll naturally push yourself and try to use more weight, perhaps at the expense of form. If you think their purpose is to keep you healthy and injury free, then you'll start to focus on technique, hip angle, and knee drift, which, most likely, will be more effective.

I recently started doing more one-armed push-ups. I'm not doing them because I think they'll make my chest huge or because I'll instantly add fifty pounds to my bench. I'm doing them to increase my shoulder stability, which might keep me healthy and may yield a better bench press.

Knowing the purpose of an exercise can help you decide if you should do it, how to program it, and if it's giving you the results you want. That can only help you in the long run.

Mistake #4: You don't understand your body.

You can't have a heart to heart talk with your body, but the saying "know thyself" fits best here. As a lifter in the pursuit of strength, at some point you have to start figuring out how your body responds to exercise so you can modify or create programs to meet your goals.

If you're still relatively new to the strength training world (less than five years) I wouldn't fret about this too much; the knowledge will come as long as you're paying attention to what you're doing.

To facilitate the learning, I want you to make a list of ten exercises that you believe, deep in your heart, make you strong. Not what you think other people will say, or what the experts say, but ten exercises that you honestly believe will get you strong. Now look at your program. All of those ten exercises should be what that program is built around.

If you can avoid making these common mistakes and combine that with intense training, progressive overload, and good exercise selection, you may just find yourself stronger than you ever thought possible.

He steamrolls over them

Monday, August 24, 2015

The Best Exercise Advice I Ever Received

Rigert in his prime

Well, maybe not the very best, but some pretty good advice.
Below are some good pieces of advice that I found in an article last week. I, too, have found these concepts useful in training. If you are in it for the long haul, these are essential.

The Best Exercise Advice I Ever Received
August 17, 2015
From lack of motivation to imperfect form, most people will face some sort of challenge, at one point in their lives, when it comes to exercise. With so many different schools of thought, deciding which fitness trends to follow can be a workout in and of itself. We sought out expert advice from industry professionals, and here’s what they told us about the best exercise advice they have ever received.

1. Set a goal
Have a goal. Assess and reassess. Adjust and readjust. First off, we all need a goal or objective when it comes to fitness and exercise, otherwise we end up wandering aimlessly and are significantly more likely to become complacent and quit. Assessments and reassessments are the method in which we measure our progress towards the goal. It’s one thing to have a goal, but regular assessment keeps us honest and focused on the goal. Adjustments are sometimes necessary. Things happen all of the time and it’s important that our goals have some level of plasticity. If we need to modify our goals, it’s fine, as long as we remain focused on the new goal.

Ryan George, fitness professional and host of the GymWits Podcast

2. Engage your core
I remember when I first started doing fitness, I was told to always engage my abs even while focusing on or isolating other muscles. It made me think a lot about the way people move when they exercise. Having strong core strength prevents injury and gives us so much more freedom and strength in our movements. In my own Body Conceptions method, integrating everything with the core has become a central part of everything we do. And I can thank that great advice for planting the seeds to make that happen!

Mahri Relin, fitness expert and trainer, founder and creator of popular NYC-based fitness method Body Conceptions

3. Personalize your workout style
The best fitness advice I’ve received is ‘It depends,’ from Dr. Stuart McGill.

This seems almost like a non-answer, but, in trying to sift through the over-abundance of information out there on the internet, this can be one of the best mindsets to have to start to filter information effectively.

Almost everything out there on blogs, forums, websites, and magazines is there because it worked for someone at some point. However, there is massive variation in individuals based upon their training age, their genetic potential, and what their goals are. Just because something worked for an Olympian doesn’t mean that someone getting into training for the first time should be doing it. A basketball player shouldn’t train like a Navy SEAL.

Understanding that ‘it depends’ enables a coach or an athlete to try to filter information with the goal of figuring out what will work for a specific person in a specific situation.

Todd Nief, owner and director of training at South Loop Strength & Conditioning – The Home of South Loop CrossFit in downtown Chicago

4. Bulging biceps are good, but a healthy heart is better
The best fitness advice that I’ve ever received was from a college professor of mine while at Elon. He said, ‘People don’t die from weak biceps, they die from weak hearts and lungs.’ That has resonated with me since then. What he meant was the importance of exercising your heart and pulmonary muscles. Yes, having nice looking, developed bicep muscles can be beneficial, but not at the expense of having a weak heart and lungs. So, cardiorespiratory training is just as important as resistance training.

Maurice D. Williams, MS, CSCS, NASM-Master Trainer, PES, CES, WLS, SFS, FNS, CPTOwner, Move Well Fitness, LLC in Bethesda, Md.

5. Rest your body

The best workout advice I have ever received is to rest my body! Sometimes we believe that we have to work out every day just to achieve our fitness goals; however, that is not the case. We need to let our bodies rest to have enough energy and strength to be even better for the next workout.

John Cantu, head trainer at Orange Theory Fitness

6. Spend your time wisely, because we become best at the things we do the most
The best exercise (and lifestyle) advice I ever got is that your body will always adapt to its conditions, based on a little-known scientific principle called Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demand. Essentially, we get good at the things we do most often. If we lift weights frequently, we grow stronger muscles. If we sit in a chair the remaining 23 hours a day, we’ll be chair-shaped (tight hip flexors, hunched posture, and so on). Like it or not, our bodies reflect our choices and behaviors. This little principle is responsible for all of our gains, and all of our aches and pains. We’d better pay attention to it.

Chandler Stevens, “The No-Pain Trainer”

7. Make exercise a habit
There’s no such thing as motivation. There is only routine. Discipline and routines are reliable, whereas motivation is short-lived. Thinking about going to the gym consumes zero calories. Don’t overthink things!

James Butler, Fitness Expert at Protein Hunter

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Developing Usable Power With the Quick Lifts

Deezbaa in the BYU weight room.

This is my little sister's (Deezbaa) Olympic Lifting instructional video that she put together for a movie production class. It is a very good representation of how the lifts should be performed as she is a very qualified instructor (she also throws on the BYU women's team). The Olympic Lifts or "Quick" lifts as they are sometimes called, require a great deal of flexibility, body awareness, quickness, and whole body strength. As such they are an excellent base for any athletic training program where the development of power generation and these listed qualities are needed.

                                       Using that power!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Trophies for Showing Up?

James Harrison does not support participation trophies.
I'll tell you what you can do with your trophies!!

Gotta love this. As a teacher and coach I have seen the results of this "No child left behind" attitude. Everybody should have the opportunity to be a winner. I believe that everyone has it in them to be a winner in something. Finding that something and taking advantage of opportunities, even making your own opportunities at times, is the great challenge of life. Nice to see someone with credibility just saying enough is enough.There is no shame in not coming in first place. It just makes more opportunities for improvement and growth. Making everyone a winner effectively means that no one is a winner.

James Harrison has had to earn everything he has achieved as an NFL linebacker, and he wasn’t keen on his sons receiving participation trophies, so he sent them back.

The Steelers veteran posted a picture on Facebook of the two trophies his sons brought home with a scathing caption underneath.

Here is the message Harrison included:

“I came home to find out that my boys received two trophies for nothing, participation trophies! While I am very proud of my boys for everything they do and will encourage them till the day I die, these trophies will be given back until they EARN a real trophy. I’m sorry I’m not sorry for believing that everything in life should be earned and I’m not about to raise to boys to be men by making them believe that they are entitled to something just because they tried their best…cause sometimes your best is not enough, and that should drive you to want to do better…not cry and whine until somebody gives you something to shut u up and keep you happy. #harrisonfamilyvalues“

Harrison entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent in 2002 and ended up getting cut more than once before finally bursting onto the scene as a playmaker for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2007. That was the first year he earned a permanent starting role, and as we know, he made the most of his opportunity.

He has since made it to five Pro Bowls and was named to the NFL’s First-Team All-Pro squad two times, logging 67.5 sacks along the way after tallying just four during his first five years in the league.

Therefore it isn’t surprising that Harrison isn’t happy about his sons bringing home trophies that weren't won or earned with standout play. He, and many others, believe that young athletes need to learn the value of earning everything they get, rather than being patted on the back for just showing up.

Do you think that Chinese lifters are awarded participation trophies?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Five Habits of Successful Lifters

Bob Bednarski, American lifting legend circa 1968 or 69.

A few common denominators from the best athletes to help bring out the best in you,

by Charles Poliquin

The tip-off could have been the huge cash withdrawal from the socialite’s bank account before the murder of her husband; or maybe it was the pool man’s fingerprints found by the forensic team in the bedroom; or maybe it was the frugal butler who suddenly decided to purchase first-class tickets to France. Whatever the evidence, there’s simply no such thing as a perfect crime – every evil deed has its own “smoking gun.” It’s the same way with good things, like success: It doesn’t just happen; there are always clues.

Over the last 27 years in my profession as a strength coach, I have met many strong athletes. Some have overcome tremendous obstacles to achieve their success, while others have great genetics or seem to have found a fast track to super strength. Regardless of how these athletes became so strong, in my experience they almost always have five traits in common:

1. They value rest. Recently I had dinner with Ed Coan, a legendary world powerlifting champion who set the bar, literally, for his peers. How good was he? He became world powerlifting champion at age 21 in the 181-pound bodyweight division, winning by 138 pounds. In 1991, at 220, he totaled 2,402 (962 squat, 545 bench, 901 deadlift), and to this day his deadlift record has yet to be beat. When lifters faced Ed Coan, the only questions asked were what record he would break and who would take second.

While magazine interviews with such champions often focus on the athletes’ intensity level, the secret that Ed shared with me concerns the exact opposite. Coan says that one of the crucial parts of his training was plenty of rest, including a daily nap. He didn’t offer any peer-reviewed scientific papers to support his contention – although interesting theories are being presented about the value of a daily siesta; it was only common sense: “You don’t recover, you don’t grow!”

2. They do what works for them. I have seen many athletes of comparable Herculean strength develop their abilities with different approaches. Some would swear by short training cycles, and others liked lengthy cycles. For some, such as the Bulgarian weightlifters who often defeated the Big Red Machine from Russia, the way to their super strength was by pyramiding up and down their weights in a single workout, a method called wave loading. Others preferred a series of several sets at peak weights. Despite these radical training differences, there is one trait that all these athletes had in common: body intelligence.

Now, ordinarily, to do things in the same manner as the next guy and yet expect different results is just plain nuts. But lifters like these are “body smart”: If one training method doesn’t work, they try another, until they find the system that works best for them. In effect they learn, mostly through trial and error, the most effective ways to adhere to the principle of overload.

3. They all choose a mentor. Actually one of the bits of advice used by Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) disciples such as motivational speaker Anthony Robbins is to find someone who is successful and copy what they do. If you want to be a champion powerlifter, seek out the advice of a powerlifting guru such as Louie Simmons and find out how he trains his world record holders. If you want to be a top strongman, then seek out a top strongman coach such as Art McDermott. And if you can’t visit mentors in person and train under them, at least read their books!

Ed Coan’s mentor was Bill Seno, a former Mr. America in the ’60s who also competed in Olympic weightlifting, a cross-training activity rarely seen today. Seno was as strong as he looked and reportedly bench-pressed 573 pounds, quite an accomplishment in his era! Bill Kazmaier was a former world record holder in powerlifting who dominated the strongman scene for many years. His mentor was powerlifting legend Tony Fitton. Seno and Fitton were individuals who helped Coan and Kazmaier, like many other successful lifters, take the guesswork out of their training.

4. They constantly experiment. Once an athlete’s mentor led them to the right path, every single one of the athletes I’m talking about tried many things to get stronger. This natural curiosity and willingness to experiment and take risks are important concepts.

There’s no such thing as a single, perfect workout for everyone – every system has some effect, and some work better than others. This experimentation with variety is simply part of the training process. I find it frustrating to see so many coaches or organizations claiming that they have the perfect workout system; or to read research studies that compare one set-rep system to another, such as comparing 10x3 to 5x5, which leads readers to conclude that the system in question is the best. In fact, some of the single-set systems in such studies produced results not necessarily because they were superior, but because the athletes using them were overtrained and the lower volume allowed them to rest – a principle called Fatigue masks fitness.

5. They all are great stress managers. In case of unfortunate events or obstacles, successful athletes can see the opportunity in them, instead of the curse. They all have had setbacks, which they used to make themselves even stronger. One obvious case is Lance Armstrong and his victory over cancer and his multiple victories in the Tour de France; there are also many cases of weightlifters who have overcome obstacles.

Bob Bednarski was a US lifter who competed in the ’60s and ’70s, and Yuri Zakharevich from Russia lifted in the ’70s and ’80s. Near the peak of their careers both athletes broke world records, but then both suffered elbow dislocations that many experts thought would end their careers, especially considering the nature of surgery and sports medicine then compared to now. But both men recovered to break numerous world records. Bednarski clean and jerked 486.5 in the 1968 National Championships weighing 247 pounds, and the following year he jerked 525 pounds off the rack. Zakharevich snatched 463 pounds in the 1988 Olympic Games weighing 242 pounds, a lift only a few super heavyweight lifters since then have exceeded. In the words of Friedrich Nietzsche, “What does not destroy me makes me stronger.”

In summary, the common motto for all successful lifters is simple: Be yourself. Variety is the spice of everyday life, and this is just as true in weight training. Discover the traits that make you unique, embrace them, and then find those training methods and ideas that enable you to achieve physical superiority and fulfill your individual potential.

Ed Coan in Top Form

Monday, August 10, 2015


Some things are classics. Like one of my early mentors, Tony Fratto, squatting at the 1973 World Championships. Tony was a triple threat who competed in Weightlifting, Powerlifting, and Physique.

Here is an article we posted in 2009 with some nutritional advice from Charles Poliquin that is as relevant today as it was then. Eat good food and keep supplementation simple and basic.

by Charles Poliquin

In many seminars, I always get asked which supplements are best to gain mass. My answers will surprise many of you.

Here they are:

1. Fish Oil

What? Fish oil? That is not cool, avant-garde, sexy, or exotic. Fish oil?

Yes. Fish oil. You cannot be anabolic without enough Omega 3s. For example, I was once training a first-round pick for the NFL. He put on 29 lbs of lean body mass in one month once I jacked his fish oil intake to 45 grams a day. If you want to put muscle on and lose fat, take at least 30 grams of fish oil a day.

Additional reasons for using fish oil include:

* It reduces inflammation.
* It improves insulin sensitivity: makes glucose and amino acids get better in your starved muscle cells.

Taking fish oil in a liquid form is the most economical way of doing it. But taking them every meal works best. I always recommend a combination of liquid and capsules - Liquid for home meals, and capsules for away from home meals.

2. Primal Greens:

What? Ground veggies? Yes, indeed.

The more alkaline you are, the more anti-catabolic you are. Cortisol puts the body in an acidified status; Primal Greens alkalizes you and reverses that state in no time.

A Primal Green drink with 40 BCAA tablets post-workout will put you immediately in an anabolic state. Primal Greens are rapidly becoming a staple recovery in the U.K. in both football and rugby circles. Some athletes like to alternate between Primal Reds and Primal Greens to get a broader base of micro-nutrients.

3. Whey Stronger:

This product is great for the following reasons:

* It is low-heat processed. All of the important proteins like immunoglobulins are not denatured. It is the same proteins you would find in organic milk.
* The milk comes from grass-fed cows. Therefore, it is rich in CLA, another well acknowledged anti-catabolic nutrient.
* It is rich in BCAAs and glutamine, important anti-catabolic factors.
* It is a better precursor for glutathione, therefore a more anti-oxidant protein.

In order to maximize the benefits of Whey Stronger, use 0.25 g per pound of bodyweight, first thing in the morning with 1 tablespoon of glutamine. Use it again, 0.25 g per pound of bodyweight, post-workout.

4. Carbohydrate Powder:

My philosophy on any nutrient is that if you want the best results, get the best stuff.

There are a lot of carb powders out there to chose from but my favorite is unflavored QuadriCarb ultra-soluble powder. It reloads glycogen the fastest.

QuadriCarb is a better choice because of it leaves the stomach faster, delivering glucose more quickly to the blood, and potentiating insulin release to a greater extent, compared to plain old malto-dextrin. It contains 4 different types of sugars with different glycemic curves that permit greater glycogen synthesis for an extended period of time.

These three metabolic attributes translate into faster muscle glycogen repletion after intense workouts (or competition), and an increased ability to drive the transport of anabolic/anti-catabolic nutrients like branched chain amino acids, creatine, and even carnitine.

Carnitine does not accumulate or "load" in muscle unless accompanied by high insulin concentrations, explaining why virtually all carnitine studies have NOT shown increases in muscle carnitine after oral or even intravenous dosing in multi-gram doses. Additionally, very recent research indicates that the exceptional potentiating effects of QuadriCarb on insulin release may switch off" muscle protein breakdown in human muscle. Together, QuadriCarb can speed recovery and muscle refueling, drive nutrient transport, and foster an environment in muscle that supports gains in lean mass, both as carbohydrate/glycogen and muscle proteins.

5. Multi-Intense:

A single nutrient deficiency can halt muscle growth altogether. After running countless Comprehensive Metabolic Profiles, it has become obvious that overcoming deficiencies has often blasted plateaus in strength and muscle mass gains.

For example, many baseball pitchers and track throwers were shown to be deficient in taurine and magnesium, because of all of their high velocity throws. Restoring those two vital nutrients brought about immediate increases in performance in the gym.

In order to maximize the benefits of this nutritional solution, take 2 tablets, 3 times a day, in the middle of meals. That regimen should cover your nutritional bases.

Every person has different nutritional needs, but the above five are the best for everyone based on my experience. Use all of the above on a daily basis and you will have the foundation you need to achieve your goals.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

It's Not Obesity We Should Worry About, It's Inactivity

The title of this post is somewhat misleading. It sounds as if obesity is not a problem. Of course we know it is. We also know that inactivity and obesity go hand in hand. That is the point of the article. The author suggests that since inactivity is the root of obesity, that we focus on increasing activity rather than focus on calorie intake. I have to agree. To paraphrase scripture "exercise covereth a multitude of (nutritional) sins". The ideal is to move a lot and eat good food. But in my humble opinion and experience, eating even great food without physical activity can still lead to obesity and related problems. On the other hand, a really, really poor diet and way too much of the wrong stuff cannot just be exercised away. A wise person will give consideration to both sides of the equation, eating and exercising, but I tend to agree with the author that lack of activity in our modern world is even a bigger epidemic than poor food choices. The Warrior lifestyle means making time to move everyday and choosing activity over inactivity. It also means teaching our children good exercise habits and teaching and encouraging physical activity. The best way to show your children that you love them is to spend time with them doing physical things. They will just think that it's fun now, but years from now they will be most grateful for the heritage of health.

The world is in the grip of an obesity epidemic. And yet obesity is not the biggest problem. Evidence suggests that it is not the calories we consume that we should be really worried about, it’s our inactivity.

Globally, the number of people who are obese has more than doubled in the past 30 years. The World Health Organisation estimates that 1.9 billion adults are overweight, 600 million of them obese.

In the U.S., 36 states have obesity rates of 25% or more and one in three adults are obese.

It’s not just adults. The WHO estimates 42 million children under five are overweight or obese. And nor is it a rich country problem: obesity is on the rise in low and middle-income countries too.

Obesity is a serious threat to health. It is a major cause of cardiovascular disease – heart disease and stroke – itself the biggest cause of death worldwide. It is also a risk factor for diabetes, musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoarthritis and some cancers. More people worldwide die from being overweight than through being underweight.

But it is not obesity that should be a biggest concern, it is the lack of physical activity, and it is schools that are on the frontline.

Increasing urbanisation, desk-bound jobs and a sedentary lifestyle all mean we are getting much less exercise than we used to, despite our gym memberships. And the problem starts in childhood.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that young people aged six to 17 take part in at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day, but a 2013 survey found that only just over a quarter met this target, and 15% did not manage an hour of activity on any of the preceding seven days.

In the U.K., only half of seven-year-olds are active for 60 minutes or more, while half are sedentary for 6.4 hours or more each day. Worryingly, almost a quarter think playing a computer game with friends counts as exercise, according to a survey from the Youth Sport Trust.

And the hoped-for legacy of the 2012 London Olympics has not borne fruit, with falling sports participation.

This lack of exercise comes despite the Academy of Royal Medical Colleges describing physical activity as a “miracle cure” able to treat or prevent a range of conditions, from cancer to dementia.

It is clear that the decline of sport in schools is a key factor in this epidemic of inactivity.

More than a quarter of teachers in primary schools in the U.K., which teach children aged four to 11, do not feel qualified to teach sport, according to a recent survey by Virgin Active.

The survey also found that teachers thought two in five pupils left school with a negative view of sport and without the movement skills to effectively engage in physical activity.

The results have prompted a year-long program to help teachers improve the state of sport in schools. The Active Inspiration campaign, which unites academics with gym operators Virgin Active, aims to show teachers how sport can be taught to inspire a love of physical activity.

Schools cannot do this on their own. Parents must be on board to encourage their children put down their tablets and get active. But schools have a crucial role in instilling a love of sport and developing active habits that could last a lifetime.

It is clear there is a long way to go. And in case the obesity/inactivity nexus could appear to be a chicken-and-egg situation, a recent study published in the International Journal of Obesity suggests otherwise.

Researchers found that children’s BMI had actually fallen from the levels recorded in 1998. This should have meant today’s children are fitter than the previous generation, but in fact their fitness – measured using shuttle runs – had fallen markedly.

Depressingly, the researchers concluded that the least fit 10-year-old in the class in 1998 would be among one of the five fittest in a class today.

In fact, studies also show that we have been getting fatter while the amount of calories we consume has been on the decline.

The hysteria over obesity has concealed the real problem, which is that we are less active than ever before. We have been so worried about getting fat that we have forgotten to get fit.

Don't contribute to the fast food/ inactivity epidemic.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Blast from the past- Train LIke a Warrior

We have been keeping this site going for nearly six years now, with over 650 different posts in our archives. I imagine that there are maybe a few of you who have been with us from the beginning in 2009 and many more who have found us sometime after that. We will continue to post new material as we find inspiration in the world around us. We will also repost some of our earlier material which contains some pretty good stuff (we think) but has been buried in the archives. Over the years we have commented on a wide range of topics ranging from hard core training for competition to nutrition, to the mental aspects of training and competing, to general health and fitness and commentary on the state of the "fitness and wellness" here in the U.S.A. and around the world. Below was our first post which is a reminder of our roots and what we are about.
Best wishes to those who have stayed with us and to those who are joining us now in our efforts to reclaim the Warrior culture.

Oliver Whaley in a strongman competition.

Haske is a Navajo Indian word that refers to a war leader or a warrior.

Before the time of reservations and government care, the Navajo Indians were a very self-reliant, courageous, strong and healthy people. They took pride in taking care of their bodies as it reflected an inner strength that they carried with them. They could look any man in the eye with self respect and confidence. It was a warrior spirit and it was only by having this spirit that they would be able to survive the sometimes harsh conditions and circumstances they would face. They raised their children this way. Waking them up before the sun would rise to run, or rolling them in the snow during the winter, and squatting while they ate so they would be ready to run if enemies came and attacked. They knew it was the only way they could protect their children from sickness, disease, and different enemies. They had to be strong, they had to be warriors.

But somewhere between nineteenth century history and American influence, the Haske spirit has died. Diabetes, obesity, and heart disease are now a rampant part of Navajo culture.

The goal of Haske is to bring back this warrior spirit not only to the Navajo people, but to all people. By promoting a lifestyle that reflects the strength and courage of the human body, mind and spirit.