Do This Now and Get Strong(er)

Ever wonder what key factor accounts for most of your results?

Results are caused by one thing…

…unfortunately most people are very confused about what that one thing is.

I certainly was!  In fact for nearly 6 years of my life I worked out hard, but never seemed to hit my goal.

Heck, I actually made myself WORSE. I put myself into pain and was taking 1 to 1.5 hours of warm-ups in the gym just to lift.

I now warm up with weights I was using then and do very little warm-up work.

And I rarely have pain!

Why am I telling you this?

Because I know how much it sucks to be stuck there!

You may be stuck right now.

Stuck in that rut – working out more and more, but getting farther away from your goal.

That’s because more-exercise rarely, if ever, gets you the results you’re after.

I know that goes against what you may have been told by all those fitness guru’s – but most people believe that hard-work is defined by the amount of motion they have in their life…

Here’s what motion looks like: you read books, then you hit the gym and do what the book said to do.

You read a few diet tips then get rock’n on that stuff

You see where I’m going here?

You’re in a flurry of activity, and it sure feels like you’re doing stuff.

But in the end you just don’t see great results in the mirror and on the bar.

It’s that person you see in the gym every day but their shape never seems to change from year to year.

I know, as I was stuck there too once!

When you’re trying to build the body of your dreams it’s easy to confuse ‘movement’ with ‘moving in the right direction’.

I’ve been helping people just like you to make a few minor changes in their daily actions that result in HUGE changes.

One small change that can boost the QUALITY of their exercise and easily adding 250% to their overall strength in record time.

Sound insane?

Don’t believe me?

I will tell you what it is now, so don’t have to just take my word for it.

Heck, I WANT you to try it.

Try This

If you are not testing your exercises currently, you are just guessing at the quality of them.

Every exercise you do either makes you better or worse.

Pick better each time.

Better quality of exercises.

How would you know?  Test it!

Here is how

1) Stand up tall and do a flexed forward bend “toe touch” exercise

2) Note–STOP at the FIRST sign of ANY tension (this is NOT a contest)

3) Note where you are (example, just at the tops of your knees)

4) Do an exercise (say, a push up)

5) Repeat the test

6) If your range of motion (the distance you went before any tension) was greater = good exercise

7) If it was worse, then try something else as the quality was low

The goal is to do high QUALITY exercises that test well.

This one tip alone will make a MASSIVE change in strength, muscle and pain.

My clients focus on a few quality exercises, and they always look and feel great.

But I want you to try it.  Take action!

Starting today – commit to testing your exercises.

By giving priority to those that will transform your body the fastest (the ones that test well), you’ll begin to get better and better results – results that everyone around you will notice 🙂

BTW:  I’ll personally help you – but you have to take the first step and show me that you want my help.

***********************************************

Sign up for my next E-class   <— you WILL succeed

***********************************************

Rock on

Mike N

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Metabolic Flexibility Basics For Faster Fat Loss

I’ve been fascinated since 2006 about how the body is able to switch from burning fat to burning carbs. I was so interested in this concept of metabolic flexibility  that it became the topic of my PhD thesis.

 

Check out the very short video below I created for you to help you with the basics

 

Remember, better metabolic flexibility equates to burning more fat and still being able to perform in the gym or on the field.

Posted in fat loss, Metabolic Flexibility | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Kettlebell Juggling for Fun, Strength and Fat Loss

I know you are like me and always looking for the best way to get leaner and stronger, but don’t want to be bored out of your skull in the process.

Is is possible to do all 3 at once?

Yep!

Sounds insane and impossible, I know, but it can be done!

How? Find out below
Leaner, Stronger, and Have Fun? <–find out how

I’ve been doing this for 3.5 years now and it is my go to when I feel like I am a in a bit of funk and just don’t want to do anything.

Even after the first few reps, 95% of the time I feel much much
better.

My clients love it too and I was just talking to one of them about it this past Saturday night – I know, I know, I am geek and talk training on a Sat night, but I did get out to a concert that night still which was fun.

Ok, where was I now. Oh yeah, fun!

This type of exercise is tons of fun.

What is this fun exercise for crazy results you speak of?
Fun Exercise For Crazy Results <—find out here

I highly encourage you to give kettlebell juggling a go. A source that got me started is from my good friend Logan Christopher.

He is offering The Definitive Guide to Kettlebell Juggling 2.0 at a
crazy low price.

How low?

How about $1

Yep, 1 George Washington

What is the catch?

After Tuesday Nov 13 at midnight, the doors close for several months and the crazy $1 offer will also disappear for good (just like any boredom you had with exercise before).

Go here Crazy Results at a Crazy Price! <–this is crazy

This is a no brainer and George Washington approves. I heard
him say it. Really I did! Ok, so maybe my ears are still ringing a bit
from the concert.

Rock on
Mike T Nelson

PS -Why not have fun while getting in the best shape of your life?

You get all 21 Modules on Kettlebell Juggling.

You get the Kettlebell Games.

You get the Crush the Rankings Videos.

You get access to the Private Kettlebell Juggling Community.

You get the bonus interviews

You get the Workout Guide.

All for only $1, so start today!

Seriously, I love me some KB juggling and have holes in my front
lawn to prove it 🙂

Crazy Results at a Crazy Price! <–ends very soon!

Posted in fat loss | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Personal Updates on Lifting and Life

I’ve had several questions about what I am doing in my own training, so I thought I would drop a short update here.

Keep in mind, this is geared toward MY goals, and your training will probably look different since you have different goals, and that is the way it should work.

As you know, my schedule is nuts late due to teaching 2 classes at the University of St Thomas and teaching 2 different classes for Globe University, work, training and nutrition consulting for clients (who are the best ever and doing awesome) and research. Trying as hard as I can to get this crazy PhD wrapped up, but the data is not working out. It will be finished though and I am did not invest 6+ years and literal blood, sweat and tears into it to stop now. I will finish it!

In short, I dad to drop a few sessions more than I wanted due to lack of sleep and literally no time as many days I was up at 5:50am teaching, work, train, prep for the next day, fall into bed, rinse and repeat!

Sounds like I am complaining but I am not and just trying to be more realistic with my stress levels and what I can recover from. Opted to nap in my car for 40 min instead of training a few times–heresy I know to most hardcore people but I’ve realized that I can’t solve every issue with more coffee and metal music Still tracking recovery metrics such as AM heart rate, AM weight, Heart Rate Variability (HRV), protein intake, caffeine intake, and sleep (quality and quantity) and a few other new things.

Having said all of that, most times I get in 5 days per week still training.

Recent PRs

Main goal: Farmers Walks 200 lbs per hand for 200 feet at once

Getting close, but weather has been an issue lately here in MN with rain and friggin snow!

I found that doing farmers walks on even wet asphalt is harder than I though!

Still got 175 per hand x 200 feet, many repeats at 100 feet too. Working to bring my grip up to hold on to them for the entire time (about 45 seconds to do 200 feet).

Farmers Bar Deadlifts

490 lbs (total) for a single last week.

April 1 it was 390 lbs x 1, so pretty happy with that, even though I only trained them a handful of times. I guess carrying weight for distance has a nice positive transfer to picking up heavy shit. Go figure!

Dinne Stone Training
Took about 2 months off from direct training on it to work on grip and overall
“core strength” via farmers walks. Figured it should have a nice positive transfer to Dinnies and I was right. Pulled 555 lbs x 2 (300 lb front and 255 lbs rear)

Other random stuff

Working on more ring work and can finally go inverted on a daily basis without feeling like the world is spinning for minutes after

Jefferson DL w Eagle Loops at 615 x 1
Even though I was not directly working on it, I will take it

Posted in Strength | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Motivational Video – Hard Work Beats Talent

Posted in motivation, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Omega-3 and Fish Oil Media Madness (11 More Ways the Media Got It Wrong)

I have a great guest blog for you today. Recently, the media seems to have jumped all aboard the anti fish oil bandwagon full stop. A recent study [1] stated that perhaps fish oil is not that good, and the media is already foaming at the mouth ready starting the finger shaking and say that all those supplement are truly evil.
But, it is true? I doubt it and to back me up I asked my good buddy Dr. Hector Lopez to shed some light on this topic. Look for a geeky academic book chapter due out early next year from both of us on the topic of “Effects of Dietary Fat on Health and Performance” along with our friend Dr. Doug Bibus.
In the meantime, here is the video from ABC News
(NOTE TO VA—here is the code to embed the video from http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/fish-oil-lifesaver-study-finds/story?id=17211288#.UFOC4o1lQf4)
Unfortunately your browser does not support IFrames.

Source ABC News (VA—link to http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/fish-oil-lifesaver-study-finds/story?id=17211288#.UFOC4o1lQf4 and use small heading 4)
Take it away Dr. Hector. —Mike T Nelson
I have been asked for my professional opinion on the recent attention drawn to the September 2012 systematic review and meta-analysis published in the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) by Rizos EC et al [1].
As you can imagine, the last couple of days have been very busy answering emails/calls from various stakeholders in the dietary supplement and omega-3 fish oil industries. The stakeholders range from friends and family to fellow scientists and colleagues, to high-level executives and principals of client companies. I have a few things to say about the manner (at times disingenuous) in which the meta-analysis has been misrepresented.
Multiple video segments from major media outlets have had even quoted some of their experts as saying,
“they would rather the public spend their money elsewhere as the proof is in with this study.”
Perhaps they would feel more at ease suggesting the consumption of another box of “whole-grain” yet low fiber, highly processed cereal, “natural fruit juice”, or better yet, “linoleate-rich vegetable oils full of omega-6 fatty acids” (hey they are polyunsaturated too, right)?

Better Than Fish Oil?
I don’t mind that the media shares their opinion, but at the very least, do what is possible to educate the very audience that they are obviously trying to persuade.
I find it hard to believe the public would not be interested in some other material facts to allow consumers to make an informed decision, so here are my top 11 facts that the media ignored.
1) Out of over 3600 clinical studies and citations retrieved, ONLY 20 were used in this “analysis.”
2) The absence of statistically significant association in these 20 studies between omega-3 and CVD (cardiovascular disease) endpoints does not prove that a significant diminution of CVD with omega-3 does not occur.

Fish Oil
3) These 20 studies were on a diseased population, that were already using multiple cardiovascular drugs such as beta-blockers, statins, niacin, fibrates, resins, and anti-thrombotics…all of which clearly confound outcomes/ endpoints of interest to dilute and washout effects of LC-omega-3 PUFA. Fish oil at this low dose was likely “too little, too late” to show any statistically significant benefit.
4) A similar meta-analysis was published earlier this year on secondary prevention [2]…clearly, the older studies showed benefit as these patients were likely not on as many cardio-protective medications.  Hence, their was less of a “washout” in effect size.

Don’t Eat Me?
5) A mean dose of less than 1.4g of EPA + DHA was used in all 20 studies. This dose is typically far too low to compensate for the overabundance of omega-6 PUFA and imbalance in omega-6:omega-3 consumption in standard western diets. It’s no surprise that previous studies showing benefit of omega-3 fish oil in heart disease have utilized at least 2g of EPA + DHA. Future studies should also take this into consideration. In addition, future studies should attempt to carry out prospective data collection beyond 2 years.
6) No mention, consideration or control for background dietary intake of EPA/DHA or tissue FA profiles. The researchers did not control for this important variable within each individual study included in this meta-analysis, and as a result there is no way to determine if placebo groups already had sufficient levels of omega-3 in their diet or tissue making it harder to demonstrate treatment effects of fish oil.
7) Clearly, these 20 studies were not adequately powered to detect changes in the CVD endpoints with omega-3 LC-PUFA, even if they were in fact present.

The Evil Fish Oil Capsule
8 ) Despite all these flaws, based on the Confidence Interval data (Mike’s note – geek speak for a way to use stats to determine a “real” event or not), there was still a “trend” toward cardioprotection via (sudden death, myocardial infarction aka heart attack, cardiac and all-cause mortality).
Translation Doc?
In English, the data in this article still trended toward decreased risk of various cardiovascular disease outcomes. However, headlines wouldn’t be juicy enough though.
9) Sure, most Americans should eat more fish (in their whole food diet), but honestly, how many actually do?  Where is the press coverage or meta-analyses looking at PCB/ Dioxin/ Persistent Organic Pollutants/ and Heavy Metal exposure? I suppose when this omega-3 story dies down, the environmental toxin exposure story can quickly fill that void.
10) The findings of this selective meta-analysis are in direct conflict with the totality of the scientific evidence that demonstrates a cardiovascular benefit from EPA and DHA in healthy populations, as well as in many of the populations with pre-existing CVD [3-10].
Consumers and health care providers alike continue to feel confident in the use of high-quality omega-3 fish oil for not only cardiovascular benefit, but also for supporting the health of just about every organ system in the body. The long chain omega-3 essential fatty acids found in fish oil are critical for everything from the cardiovascular system to the brain and nervous system, immune system, skin, joint and musculoskeletal tissues, to carbohydrate and lipid metabolism and beyond [11-19].
11) Finally, there is the issue of the potential mega-misrepresentation created by meta-analyses. It is evident that study selection criteria, as well as data extraction/synthesis may allow researchers to make assumptions of consistency in the design individual studies included in the meta-analysis.
As such, these assumptions may lead the authors –or worse, the less discerning media– to drawing erroneous conclusions.
Translation? They got it wrong!
These erroneous conclusions then get virally disseminated throughout the general public. Doesn’t this string of events sound eerily familiar?
Thanks
Hector Lopez, MD, CSCS, FAAPMR

Bio: Dr. Lopez is recognized for applying his uniquely diverse expertise in spine and sports medicine, endocrinology and metabolism, nutrition & exercise science, and clinical research to improving not only the health and quality of life in his patients, but also athletic performance in recreational and elite athletes. Dr. Lopez received his specialty training at the world-renowned Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine-Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. He is currently a principal & the Chief Medical Officer of the Center for Applied Health Sciences- a multidisciplinary Clinical Research Organization in Ohio, and Supplement Safety Solutions- a Nutravigilance, Quality Assurance/Safety and Regulatory consulting company focused on dietary supplement/nutraceutical industry. He is an international speaker, author of popular press and peer-reviewed scientific journal articles, product developer, and consultant for the nutritional supplement industry, as well as to professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and Martial Arts. Get more from him at Twitter:@DrHectorLopez www.drhectorlopez.com

REFERENCES:

Rizos EC, Ntzani EE, Bika E, Kostapanos MS, and Elisaf MS. Association Between Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation and Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease Events. A systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA. 2012; 308(10):1024-1033.
Kwak SM, Myung SK, Lee YJ, Seo HG; Korean Meta-analysis Study Group. Efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid supplements (eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid) in the secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease: a meta-analysis of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials. Arch Intern Med. 2012 May 14;172(9):686-94.
Yokoyama M, Origasa H, et al. JELIS Investigators. Effects of eicosapentaenoic acid on cardiovascular events in Japanese patients with hypercholesterolemia: rationale, design, and baseline characteristics of the Japan EPA Lipid Intervention Study (JELIS). Am Heart J. 2003;146:613-620.
Kris-Etherton PM, Harris WS, Appel LJ. The Nutrition Committee. AHA Scientific Statement. Fish consumption, fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids, and cardiovascular disease. Circulation. 2002;106:2747-2757
von Schacky C. n-3 Fatty acids and the prevention of coronary atherosclerosis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2000;71:224S-227S.
Daviglus ML, Stamler J, Orencia AJ, Dyer AR, Liu K, Greenland P, Walsh MK, Morris D, Shekelle RB. N Engl J Med. 1997;336:1046-1053.
Burr ML, Fehily AM, Gilbert JF, et al. Effects of changes in fat, fish and fibre intakes on death and myocardial reinfarction: Diet and Reinfarction Trail (DART). Lancet. 1989;2:757-761.
Albert CM, Hennekens CH, O’Donnell CJ, Ajani UA, Carey VJ, Willett WC, Ruskin JN, Manson JE. Fish consumption and risk of sudden cardiac death. JAMA. 1998;279(1):23-28.
Mozaffarian D, Wu JH. Omega-3 fatty acids and cardiovascular disease: effects on risk factors, molecular pathways, and clinical events. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2011. 58(20):2047-67.
Marchioli R, Levantesi G, Macchia A, et al. GISSI-Prevenzione Investigators. Antiarrhythmic mechanisms of n-3 PUFA and the results of the GISSI-Prevenzione trial. J Membr Biol. 2005 Jul;206(2):117-28.
Simopoulos AP. Omega 3 fatty acids in health and disease and in growth and development. Am J Clin Nutr. 1991;54:438-463.
Belluzzi A, Boschi S, Brignola C, Munarini A, Cariani G, Miglio F. Polyunsaturated fatty acids and inflammatory bowel disease. Am J Clin Nutr. 2000;71:339S-342S.
Mills JD, Hadley K, Bailes JE. Dietary supplementation with the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid in traumatic brain injury. Neurosurgery. 2011. Feb;68(2):474-81.
Black KL, Culp BR, Randall OS, Lands WEM. The protective effects of dietary fish oil and focal cerebral infarction. Prostaglandins. 1979;3:257-268.
Milte CM, Sinn N, Street SJ, Buckley JD, Coates AM, Howe PR. Erythrocyte polyunsaturated fatty acid status, memory, cognition and mood in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and healthy controls. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2011 May-Jun;84(5-6):153-61.
Kremer JM. Effects of modulation of inflammatory and immune parameters in patients with rheumatic and inflammatory disease receiving dietary supplementation of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids. Lipids. 1996;31:243S-247S.
Smith GI, Atherton P, Reeds DN, Mohammed BS, Rankin D, Rennie MJ, Mittendorfer B. Dietary omega-3 fatty acid supplementation increases the rate of muscle protein synthesis in older adults: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Feb;93(2):402-12.
Rodacki CL, Rodacki AL, Pereira G, et al. Fish-oil supplementation enhances the effects of strength training in elderly women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Feb;95(2):428-36.
Sinn N, Milte CM, Street SJ, et al. Effects of n-3 fatty acids, EPA v. DHA, on depressive symptoms, quality of life, memory and executive function in older adults with mild cognitive impairment: a 6-month randomised controlled trial. Br J Nutr. 2011 Sep 20:1-12.

Comments?

A huge thanks to Dr. Hector Lopez for his commentary.

What do you think? Post up in the comments below!

Rock on
Mike T Nelson

Posted in nutrition | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

I have a great guest blog for you today. Recently, the media seems to have jumped all aboard the anti fish oil bandwagon full stop. A recent study [1] stated that perhaps fish oil is not that good, and the media is already foaming at the mouth ready starting the finger shaking and say that all those supplement are truly evil.
But, it is true? I doubt it and to back me up I asked my good buddy Dr. Hector Lopez to shed some light on this topic. Look for a geeky academic book chapter due out early next year from both of us on the topic of “Effects of Dietary Fat on Health and Performance” along with our friend Dr. Doug Bibus.

In the meantime, here is the video from ABC News

Unfortunately your browser does not support IFrames.

Source ABC News

Take it away Dr. Hector. —Mike T Nelson

I have been asked for my professional opinion on the recent attention drawn to the September 2012 systematic review and meta-analysis published in the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) by Rizos EC et al [1].

As you can imagine, the last couple of days have been very busy answering emails/calls from various stakeholders in the dietary supplement and omega-3 fish oil industries. The stakeholders range from friends and family to fellow scientists and colleagues, to high-level executives and principals of client companies. I have a few things to say about the manner (at times disingenuous) in which the meta-analysis has been misrepresented.

Multiple video segments from major media outlets have had even quoted some of their experts as saying,

“they would rather the public spend their money elsewhere as the proof is in with this study.”

Perhaps they would feel more at ease suggesting the consumption of another box of “whole-grain” yet low fiber, highly processed cereal, “natural fruit juice”, or better yet, “linoleate-rich vegetable oils full of omega-6 fatty acids” (hey they are polyunsaturated too, right)?

Better Than Fish Oil?

Better Than Fish Oil?

I don’t mind that the media shares their opinion, but at the very least, do what is possible to educate the very audience that they are obviously trying to persuade.

I find it hard to believe the public would not be interested in some other material facts to allow consumers to make an informed decision, so here are my top 11 facts that the media ignored.

1) Out of over 3600 clinical studies and citations retrieved, ONLY 20 were used in this “analysis.”

2) The absence of statistically significant association in these 20 studies between omega-3 and CVD (cardiovascular disease) endpoints does not prove that a significant diminution of CVD with omega-3 does not occur.

Fish Oil

Fish Oil

3) These 20 studies were on a diseased population, that were already using multiple cardiovascular drugs such as beta-blockers, statins, niacin, fibrates, resins, and anti-thrombotics…all of which clearly confound outcomes/ endpoints of interest to dilute and washout effects of LC-omega-3 PUFA. Fish oil at this low dose was likely “too little, too late” to show any statistically significant benefit.

4) A similar meta-analysis was published earlier this year on secondary prevention [2]…clearly, the older studies showed benefit as these patients were likely not on as many cardio-protective medications.  Hence, their was less of a “washout” in effect size.

Don’t Eat Me?

5) A mean dose of less than 1.4g of EPA + DHA was used in all 20 studies. This dose is typically far too low to compensate for the overabundance of omega-6 PUFA and imbalance in omega-6:omega-3 consumption in standard western diets. It’s no surprise that previous studies showing benefit of omega-3 fish oil in heart disease have utilized at least 2g of EPA + DHA. Future studies should also take this into consideration. In addition, future studies should attempt to carry out prospective data collection beyond 2 years.

6) No mention, consideration or control for background dietary intake of EPA/DHA or tissue FA profiles. The researchers did not control for this important variable within each individual study included in this meta-analysis, and as a result there is no way to determine if placebo groups already had sufficient levels of omega-3 in their diet or tissue making it harder to demonstrate treatment effects of fish oil.

7) Clearly, these 20 studies were not adequately powered to detect changes in the CVD endpoints with omega-3 LC-PUFA, even if they were in fact present.

The Evil Fish Oil Capsule

8 ) Despite all these flaws, based on the Confidence Interval data (Mike’s note – geek speak for a way to use stats to determine a “real” event or not), there was still a “trend” toward cardioprotection via (sudden death, myocardial infarction aka heart attack, cardiac and all-cause mortality).

Translation Doc?

In English, the data in this article still trended toward decreased risk of various cardiovascular disease outcomes. However, headlines wouldn’t be juicy enough though.

9) Sure, most Americans should eat more fish (in their whole food diet), but honestly, how many actually do?  Where is the press coverage or meta-analyses looking at PCB/ Dioxin/ Persistent Organic Pollutants/ and Heavy Metal exposure? I suppose when this omega-3 story dies down, the environmental toxin exposure story can quickly fill that void.

10) The findings of this selective meta-analysis are in direct conflict with the totality of the scientific evidence that demonstrates a cardiovascular benefit from EPA and DHA in healthy populations, as well as in many of the populations with pre-existing CVD [3-10].
Consumers and health care providers alike continue to feel confident in the use of high-quality omega-3 fish oil for not only cardiovascular benefit, but also for supporting the health of just about every organ system in the body. The long chain omega-3 essential fatty acids found in fish oil are critical for everything from the cardiovascular system to the brain and nervous system, immune system, skin, joint and musculoskeletal tissues, to carbohydrate and lipid metabolism and beyond [11-19].

11) Finally, there is the issue of the potential mega-misrepresentation created by meta-analyses. It is evident that study selection criteria, as well as data extraction/synthesis may allow researchers to make assumptions of consistency in the design individual studies included in the meta-analysis.
As such, these assumptions may lead the authors –or worse, the less discerning media– to drawing erroneous conclusions.

Translation? They got it wrong!

These erroneous conclusions then get virally disseminated throughout the general public. Doesn’t this string of events sound eerily familiar?

Thanks
Hector Lopez, MD, CSCS, FAAPMR

Bio: Dr. Lopez is recognized for applying his uniquely diverse expertise in spine and sports medicine, endocrinology and metabolism, nutrition & exercise science, and clinical research to improving not only the health and quality of life in his patients, but also athletic performance in recreational and elite athletes. Dr. Lopez received his specialty training at the world-renowned Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine-Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. He is currently a principal & the Chief Medical Officer of the Center for Applied Health Sciences- a multidisciplinary Clinical Research Organization in Ohio, and Supplement Safety Solutions- a Nutravigilance, Quality Assurance/Safety and Regulatory consulting company focused on dietary supplement/nutraceutical industry. He is an international speaker, author of popular press and peer-reviewed scientific journal articles, product developer, and consultant for the nutritional supplement industry, as well as to professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and Martial Arts. Get more from him at Twitter:@DrHectorLopez www.drhectorlopez.com

REFERENCES:

Rizos EC, Ntzani EE, Bika E, Kostapanos MS, and Elisaf MS. Association Between Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation and Risk of Major Cardiovascular Disease Events. A systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA. 2012; 308(10):1024-1033.
Kwak SM, Myung SK, Lee YJ, Seo HG; Korean Meta-analysis Study Group. Efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid supplements (eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid) in the secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease: a meta-analysis of randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials. Arch Intern Med. 2012 May 14;172(9):686-94.
Yokoyama M, Origasa H, et al. JELIS Investigators. Effects of eicosapentaenoic acid on cardiovascular events in Japanese patients with hypercholesterolemia: rationale, design, and baseline characteristics of the Japan EPA Lipid Intervention Study (JELIS). Am Heart J. 2003;146:613-620.
Kris-Etherton PM, Harris WS, Appel LJ. The Nutrition Committee. AHA Scientific Statement. Fish consumption, fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids, and cardiovascular disease. Circulation. 2002;106:2747-2757
von Schacky C. n-3 Fatty acids and the prevention of coronary atherosclerosis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2000;71:224S-227S.
Daviglus ML, Stamler J, Orencia AJ, Dyer AR, Liu K, Greenland P, Walsh MK, Morris D, Shekelle RB. N Engl J Med. 1997;336:1046-1053.
Burr ML, Fehily AM, Gilbert JF, et al. Effects of changes in fat, fish and fibre intakes on death and myocardial reinfarction: Diet and Reinfarction Trail (DART). Lancet. 1989;2:757-761.
Albert CM, Hennekens CH, O’Donnell CJ, Ajani UA, Carey VJ, Willett WC, Ruskin JN, Manson JE. Fish consumption and risk of sudden cardiac death. JAMA. 1998;279(1):23-28.
Mozaffarian D, Wu JH. Omega-3 fatty acids and cardiovascular disease: effects on risk factors, molecular pathways, and clinical events. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2011. 58(20):2047-67.
Marchioli R, Levantesi G, Macchia A, et al. GISSI-Prevenzione Investigators. Antiarrhythmic mechanisms of n-3 PUFA and the results of the GISSI-Prevenzione trial. J Membr Biol. 2005 Jul;206(2):117-28.
Simopoulos AP. Omega 3 fatty acids in health and disease and in growth and development. Am J Clin Nutr. 1991;54:438-463.
Belluzzi A, Boschi S, Brignola C, Munarini A, Cariani G, Miglio F. Polyunsaturated fatty acids and inflammatory bowel disease. Am J Clin Nutr. 2000;71:339S-342S.
Mills JD, Hadley K, Bailes JE. Dietary supplementation with the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid in traumatic brain injury. Neurosurgery. 2011. Feb;68(2):474-81.
Black KL, Culp BR, Randall OS, Lands WEM. The protective effects of dietary fish oil and focal cerebral infarction. Prostaglandins. 1979;3:257-268.
Milte CM, Sinn N, Street SJ, Buckley JD, Coates AM, Howe PR. Erythrocyte polyunsaturated fatty acid status, memory, cognition and mood in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and healthy controls. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2011 May-Jun;84(5-6):153-61.
Kremer JM. Effects of modulation of inflammatory and immune parameters in patients with rheumatic and inflammatory disease receiving dietary supplementation of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids. Lipids. 1996;31:243S-247S.
Smith GI, Atherton P, Reeds DN, Mohammed BS, Rankin D, Rennie MJ, Mittendorfer B. Dietary omega-3 fatty acid supplementation increases the rate of muscle protein synthesis in older adults: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Feb;93(2):402-12.
Rodacki CL, Rodacki AL, Pereira G, et al. Fish-oil supplementation enhances the effects of strength training in elderly women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Feb;95(2):428-36.
Sinn N, Milte CM, Street SJ, et al. Effects of n-3 fatty acids, EPA v. DHA, on depressive symptoms, quality of life, memory and executive function in older adults with mild cognitive impairment: a 6-month randomised controlled trial. Br J Nutr. 2011 Sep 20:1-12.

Comments?

A huge thanks to Dr. Hector Lopez for his commentary.

What do you think? Post up in the comments below!

Rock on
Mike T Nelson

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Contrarian Fitness (Why I hate foam rollers)

My inbox has been blowing up lately about a post coach Mike Boyle did entitled “Is Foam Rolling Bad For You?” (VA link title to http://strengthcoachblog.com/2012/04/12/is-foam-rolling-bad-for-you/)
In it, coach Boyle referenced an article I wrote about 4 years ago about why I did not like the error erasing properties of the amazing  foam roller.
(VA link an article I wrote about 4 years ago  to http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-foam-roller/   above)
“Don’t be fooled by internet writers looking to take a contrarian stance to get site hits.   Focus on results.” Coach Boyle
It seems I am the contrarian and not the results fitness guy now.  I guess with the following articles did not help my contrarian case.
Corrective Exercise http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-corrective-exercise-bandwagon-the-end-of-all-corrective-exercise/
Foam Rolling  http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-foam-roller/
Get Off the Treadmill http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-treadmill/
Static stretching http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/the-4s-rule-static-stretching-still-sucks/
Intermittent Fasting for Fat Loss http://www.miketnelson.com/mike_t_nelson_articles/fasting_for_weight_loss.php
Keep in mind that I have 567 entries in the blog, so while they are not the main articles, they are up there in number.
Foam Rolling: The Early Years (H3)
However, I started out with quite the different view of each of those topics above.   If you looked back at a program I wrote for a client in 2005 it started with foam rolling and treadmill work!  Eeek.
Over time, while the foam roller seems to help in the session, it did not do anything long term to reduce his pain.  Each time he came back, I was having him roll his ITB.  He was yelping in pain and I would proclaim
“Ha!  See, it is painful, so it must be good.  That whole area is tight and needs to be rolled out.”
Hmmm, if that was so true, why was he still doing it with the EXACT same response 6 months later?
Broken To Better (H3)
It was around this time that I was so broken (by my own free will) that it took me almost an hour to lift anything in the gym!
I was foam rolling  while thinking that all those other goons in the gym don’t know anything since they are not using this amazing piece of equipment and I know what is going on!  Keep in mind this was around 2005 when I was much younger and knew everything.   Haha.
After foam rolling I would do some static stretching, dynamic mobility drills, joint mobility work and THEN start very light to progress on to my working sets over the next 20 minutes.   Yep, almost 1.5 hours into a training session before I would do my first working set.   Seems totally insane now, but at the time I thought this was the best it could get!
All of this to pull 345 lbs in competition and wake up with horrible pain so bad I could barely bend down to wash my face in the morning.   It was a great tripod maneuver to spread my feet wide enough and slowly get my left hand on the counter so I could get my face about 3 feet from water.   I don’t fault anyone for this, as I did it entirely to myself!  I was foam rolling like white on rice, in the morning, in the evening and some times during the day.  I even started to include dynamic and mobility drills then too.
My clients at the time (circa 2005) were getting stronger, but they still had nagging pains too.
The Breaking Point (H3)
All of it came to a head when I was at Z-Health certification in AZ that Fall.  I remember taking a hot bath that night trying to get my back to relax, wondering what the hell I was doing to myself.
Was I really going to be the next Benni and deadlift over 1,000 pounds?  Was Any Bolton laying in his warm bed in the UK all worried that I was going to come up from nowhere and steal his current world record in the deadlift at that time?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9P_yYBtkBs
Benni Destroying Some Weight!
http://youtu.be/JAiUTF6DC8M
Andy Bolton’s World Record Deadlift in 2006
Hell no!
There was high school girls lifting more than I was I’m sure.
http://youtu.be/1UESU1EBFi0
High School Girls Powerlifting
Why was I so bent on doing a certain number?  Why did I not realize HOW I was doing it was the source of my issues?
Blame My Injuries (H3)
Sure, I could blame it on all sorts of past injuries from a completely ripped out right shoulder (broomball accident), grade 2 separated shoulder (AC joint), busted right ankle (snowboard accident), sprained wrists (windsurfing), pulled groin/hip flexors on both sides (deadlifts), misaligned thoracic spine (thoracotomy when I was 4.5 to repair a congenital atrial septal defect, ASD, in my heart), a misaligned right eye that causes my whole body to twist so I walk straight, blah blah blah.
The reality was that I was attempting to load a chassis that was screwed up.   Dropping a V-8 into a pinto is not a good idea (er, in my case a V-6).
(VA Insert photo here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ford_Pinto.jpg )
Laying there in hot water trying to fix my back so I could make it through 3 more days of the certification, I decided that I was going to destroy my ego before it destroyed me.  In hindsight it was one of the best decisions I ever made.  I called up my buddy Brad “No Relation” Nelson to get his help and vowed to do whatever it took.  If that meant I did not even LOOK at a deadlift for 5 months, fine.  If I could only use 135 pounds for months at a time, fine.   At least 135 lbs was more than the 95 lbs I started at with deadlifts back in 1996, so that was improvement, right.  I was sick and tired of being in pain.
Happy Ending? (H3)
Now I can deadlift without pain (although it is still not the best lift for me) and even on my worst day I can pull 345 lbs without any warm up (no, I don’t recommend you do that).   My warm ups are about 5-10 minutes on my worst day.
My current goal for this year is to pull 600 lbs on my Dinnie Stone Trainers for a single deadlift and lift the Dinnies in Scotland 3 years from now.   Most would say that is a screwed up lift since it is more of a heavy partial, done from a rotated spinal position, with an offset load (the load on the back hand below is about 75 lbs less), so the torque across your body gets pretty nuts.   Stu McGill fans run in horror, but it does not bother me (then again I am not normal in any sense of the word).
http://youtu.be/AAjaPwt4GVk
Dinnie Stone Trainer Deadlift Recent PR
Foam Rollers? (H3)
My whole point with that part of the rant is that everyone’s person journey will change how they perceive events.  If coach Boyle see success with his athletes (which he does, otherwise nobody would pay him and he would do something different), and he has them foam roll beforehand, his brain will associate foam rolling (to some degree) with success.
A Better Way? (H3)
Could there be even better success around the corner without foam rolling?  I would say yes, but it would have to be tested.
Testing can be scary since you may not find what you WANT to find.   It is hard to test all aspects of programming I know.
But what things are you willing to question?
Former Foam Roller Dealer (H3)
Perhaps I am a contrarian for fitness, but I did not start out that way.  I used to even buy foam rollers for my clients to make sure they had one.  I had them start on the treadmill, static stretch, eat their meals every 2-3 hours (going without protein for 5 hours was a huge sin), do their corrective exercise drills, but I was wise enough then to look at the results.
If the results did not match what I thought they could be, I would try something different and re-measure again. I would seek to understand why things should or should not work.  If that did not match, I would really have to ask myself why I was still doing them?
After years of testing, I had them stop doing treadmill work, stop static stretching, get off the foam roller, do FEWER warm ups, employ intermittent fasting at times, and they got even BETTER results.
Of course they got results before.  I would not stay in business if they did not get result, but they are now even better.
Contrarian or Results Fitness (H3)
Over time though, they got better and faster results by REMOVING things from the program instead of adding them.
“Maybe all the fitness people need to clean out their garage instead of adding more tools” –Adam Glass
I call it the “Adam Glass Corollary”  the more certifications and information a trainer has, the worse then tend to perform over time.
At first, learning more dramatically helps.  However, once you reach a base level, adding more knowledge by itself is not helpful.  It starts to go the other way.
The reason is that you are starting to de couple knowledge + action.     Too much knowledge and not enough action.    Just like a fat kid on a sew saw, it is skewed too far one direction only.
“More knowledge without action will lead to brain damage” –Frankie Faires
Clean Out Your Fitness Garage (H3)
It is time to clean out your fitness garage.
Take each item, look at it, test it, keep ONLY what is useful.
Nothing is exempt.   There is nothing scared.   It is either making you (or your athletes/clients) better or worse.  It is really that simple.
Are You Up To The Challenge? (H3
Are you willing to do it?   It is not easy.   It is really really hard.    Few do it.
I can guarantee that your results will be even better.
You owe it to yourself and your clients.
Summary (aka How To Still Love Your Foam Roller)  (H3)
More knowledge is not the answer.
More action is better.
Applied knowledge is the key
Are you willing to question and test what you think you know?
This includes foam rollers.  They are not exempt.
If you have tested them and can show they help performance, by all means keep doing it.
But if they do not help, are you willing to take them out?
In the end I would rather be known as the results guy instead of the contrarian fitness guy; but I will take whichever makes people better.  I really like better.
I agree with coach Boyle when he says “Focus on results.”  Since that is what matters and is why all of us are here.
Rock on
Mike T Nelson
PS—If you love results as much as I do, no matter how you exercise right now, you could have bigger, stronger muscles, go HERE : Video Training for Muscle and Strength FREE (VA link bold text to http://www.extremehumanperformance.com/home.php)
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Contrarian Fitness (Why I hate foam rollers)

My inbox has been blowing up lately about a post coach Mike Boyle did entitled “Is Foam Rolling Bad For You?”

In it, coach Boyle referenced an article I wrote about 4 years ago about why I did not like the error erasing properties of the amazing  foam roller.
(VA link an article I wrote about 4 years ago  to http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-foam-roller/   above)
“Don’t be fooled by internet writers looking to take a contrarian stance to get site hits.   Focus on results.” Coach Boyle
It seems I am the contrarian and not the results fitness guy now.  I guess with the following articles did not help my contrarian case.
Corrective Exercise http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-corrective-exercise-bandwagon-the-end-of-all-corrective-exercise/
Foam Rolling  http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-foam-roller/
Get Off the Treadmill http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-treadmill/
Static stretching http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/the-4s-rule-static-stretching-still-sucks/
Intermittent Fasting for Fat Loss http://www.miketnelson.com/mike_t_nelson_articles/fasting_for_weight_loss.php
Keep in mind that I have 567 entries in the blog, so while they are not the main articles, they are up there in number.
Foam Rolling: The Early Years (H3)
However, I started out with quite the different view of each of those topics above.   If you looked back at a program I wrote for a client in 2005 it started with foam rolling and treadmill work!  Eeek.
Over time, while the foam roller seems to help in the session, it did not do anything long term to reduce his pain.  Each time he came back, I was having him roll his ITB.  He was yelping in pain and I would proclaim
“Ha!  See, it is painful, so it must be good.  That whole area is tight and needs to be rolled out.”
Hmmm, if that was so true, why was he still doing it with the EXACT same response 6 months later?
Broken To Better (H3)
It was around this time that I was so broken (by my own free will) that it took me almost an hour to lift anything in the gym!
I was foam rolling  while thinking that all those other goons in the gym don’t know anything since they are not using this amazing piece of equipment and I know what is going on!  Keep in mind this was around 2005 when I was much younger and knew everything.   Haha.
After foam rolling I would do some static stretching, dynamic mobility drills, joint mobility work and THEN start very light to progress on to my working sets over the next 20 minutes.   Yep, almost 1.5 hours into a training session before I would do my first working set.   Seems totally insane now, but at the time I thought this was the best it could get!
All of this to pull 345 lbs in competition and wake up with horrible pain so bad I could barely bend down to wash my face in the morning.   It was a great tripod maneuver to spread my feet wide enough and slowly get my left hand on the counter so I could get my face about 3 feet from water.   I don’t fault anyone for this, as I did it entirely to myself!  I was foam rolling like white on rice, in the morning, in the evening and some times during the day.  I even started to include dynamic and mobility drills then too.
My clients at the time (circa 2005) were getting stronger, but they still had nagging pains too.
The Breaking Point (H3)
All of it came to a head when I was at Z-Health certification in AZ that Fall.  I remember taking a hot bath that night trying to get my back to relax, wondering what the hell I was doing to myself.
Was I really going to be the next Benni and deadlift over 1,000 pounds?  Was Any Bolton laying in his warm bed in the UK all worried that I was going to come up from nowhere and steal his current world record in the deadlift at that time?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9P_yYBtkBs
Benni Destroying Some Weight!
http://youtu.be/JAiUTF6DC8M
Andy Bolton’s World Record Deadlift in 2006
Hell no!
There was high school girls lifting more than I was I’m sure.
http://youtu.be/1UESU1EBFi0
High School Girls Powerlifting
Why was I so bent on doing a certain number?  Why did I not realize HOW I was doing it was the source of my issues?
Blame My Injuries (H3)
Sure, I could blame it on all sorts of past injuries from a completely ripped out right shoulder (broomball accident), grade 2 separated shoulder (AC joint), busted right ankle (snowboard accident), sprained wrists (windsurfing), pulled groin/hip flexors on both sides (deadlifts), misaligned thoracic spine (thoracotomy when I was 4.5 to repair a congenital atrial septal defect, ASD, in my heart), a misaligned right eye that causes my whole body to twist so I walk straight, blah blah blah.
The reality was that I was attempting to load a chassis that was screwed up.   Dropping a V-8 into a pinto is not a good idea (er, in my case a V-6).
(VA Insert photo here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ford_Pinto.jpg )
Laying there in hot water trying to fix my back so I could make it through 3 more days of the certification, I decided that I was going to destroy my ego before it destroyed me.  In hindsight it was one of the best decisions I ever made.  I called up my buddy Brad “No Relation” Nelson to get his help and vowed to do whatever it took.  If that meant I did not even LOOK at a deadlift for 5 months, fine.  If I could only use 135 pounds for months at a time, fine.   At least 135 lbs was more than the 95 lbs I started at with deadlifts back in 1996, so that was improvement, right.  I was sick and tired of being in pain.
Happy Ending? (H3)
Now I can deadlift without pain (although it is still not the best lift for me) and even on my worst day I can pull 345 lbs without any warm up (no, I don’t recommend you do that).   My warm ups are about 5-10 minutes on my worst day.
My current goal for this year is to pull 600 lbs on my Dinnie Stone Trainers for a single deadlift and lift the Dinnies in Scotland 3 years from now.   Most would say that is a screwed up lift since it is more of a heavy partial, done from a rotated spinal position, with an offset load (the load on the back hand below is about 75 lbs less), so the torque across your body gets pretty nuts.   Stu McGill fans run in horror, but it does not bother me (then again I am not normal in any sense of the word).
http://youtu.be/AAjaPwt4GVk
Dinnie Stone Trainer Deadlift Recent PR
Foam Rollers? (H3)
My whole point with that part of the rant is that everyone’s person journey will change how they perceive events.  If coach Boyle see success with his athletes (which he does, otherwise nobody would pay him and he would do something different), and he has them foam roll beforehand, his brain will associate foam rolling (to some degree) with success.
A Better Way? (H3)
Could there be even better success around the corner without foam rolling?  I would say yes, but it would have to be tested.
Testing can be scary since you may not find what you WANT to find.   It is hard to test all aspects of programming I know.
But what things are you willing to question?
Former Foam Roller Dealer (H3)
Perhaps I am a contrarian for fitness, but I did not start out that way.  I used to even buy foam rollers for my clients to make sure they had one.  I had them start on the treadmill, static stretch, eat their meals every 2-3 hours (going without protein for 5 hours was a huge sin), do their corrective exercise drills, but I was wise enough then to look at the results.
If the results did not match what I thought they could be, I would try something different and re-measure again. I would seek to understand why things should or should not work.  If that did not match, I would really have to ask myself why I was still doing them?
After years of testing, I had them stop doing treadmill work, stop static stretching, get off the foam roller, do FEWER warm ups, employ intermittent fasting at times, and they got even BETTER results.
Of course they got results before.  I would not stay in business if they did not get result, but they are now even better.
Contrarian or Results Fitness (H3)
Over time though, they got better and faster results by REMOVING things from the program instead of adding them.
“Maybe all the fitness people need to clean out their garage instead of adding more tools” –Adam Glass
I call it the “Adam Glass Corollary”  the more certifications and information a trainer has, the worse then tend to perform over time.
At first, learning more dramatically helps.  However, once you reach a base level, adding more knowledge by itself is not helpful.  It starts to go the other way.
The reason is that you are starting to de couple knowledge + action.     Too much knowledge and not enough action.    Just like a fat kid on a sew saw, it is skewed too far one direction only.
“More knowledge without action will lead to brain damage” –Frankie Faires
Clean Out Your Fitness Garage (H3)
It is time to clean out your fitness garage.
Take each item, look at it, test it, keep ONLY what is useful.
Nothing is exempt.   There is nothing scared.   It is either making you (or your athletes/clients) better or worse.  It is really that simple.
Are You Up To The Challenge? (H3
Are you willing to do it?   It is not easy.   It is really really hard.    Few do it.
I can guarantee that your results will be even better.
You owe it to yourself and your clients.
Summary (aka How To Still Love Your Foam Roller)  (H3)
More knowledge is not the answer.
More action is better.
Applied knowledge is the key
Are you willing to question and test what you think you know?
This includes foam rollers.  They are not exempt.
If you have tested them and can show they help performance, by all means keep doing it.
But if they do not help, are you willing to take them out?
In the end I would rather be known as the results guy instead of the contrarian fitness guy; but I will take whichever makes people better.  I really like better.
I agree with coach Boyle when he says “Focus on results.”  Since that is what matters and is why all of us are here.
Rock on
Mike T Nelson
PS—If you love results as much as I do, no matter how you exercise right now, you could have bigger, stronger muscles, go HERE : Video Training for Muscle and Strength FREE (VA link bold text to http://www.extremehumanperformance.com/home.php)

In it, coach Boyle referenced an article I wrote about 4 years ago about why I did not like the error erasing properties of the amazing  foam roller.

“Don’t be fooled by internet writers looking to take a contrarian stance to get site hits.   Focus on results.” Coach Boyle

It seems I am the contrarian and not the results fitness guy now.  I guess with the following articles did not help my contrarian case.

Corrective Exercise http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-corrective-exercise-bandwagon-the-end-of-all-corrective-exercise/

Foam Rolling  http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-foam-roller/

Get Off the Treadmill http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/get-off-the-treadmill/

Static stretching http://extremehumanperformance.com/blog/the-4s-rule-static-stretching-still-sucks/

Intermittent Fasting for Fat Loss http://www.miketnelson.com/mike_t_nelson_articles/fasting_for_weight_loss.php

Keep in mind that I have 567 entries in the blog, so while they are not the main articles, they are up there in number.

Foam Rolling: The Early Years

However, I started out with quite the different view of each of those topics above.   If you looked back at a program I wrote for a client in 2005 it started with foam rolling and treadmill work!  Eeek.

Over time, while the foam roller seems to help in the session, it did not do anything long term to reduce his pain.  Each time he came back, I was having him roll his ITB.  He was yelping in pain and I would proclaim

“Ha!  See, it is painful, so it must be good.  That whole area is tight and needs to be rolled out.”

Hmmm, if that was so true, why was he still doing it with the EXACT same response 6 months later?

Broken To Better

It was around this time that I was so broken (by my own free will) that it took me almost an hour to lift anything in the gym!

I was foam rolling  while thinking that all those other goons in the gym don’t know anything since they are not using this amazing piece of equipment and I know what is going on!  Keep in mind this was around 2005 when I was much younger and knew everything.   Haha.

After foam rolling I would do some static stretching, dynamic mobility drills, joint mobility work and THEN start very light to progress on to my working sets over the next 20 minutes.   Yep, almost 1.5 hours into a training session before I would do my first working set.   Seems totally insane now, but at the time I thought this was the best it could get!

All of this to pull 345 lbs in competition and wake up with horrible pain so bad I could barely bend down to wash my face in the morning.   It was a great tripod maneuver to spread my feet wide enough and slowly get my left hand on the counter so I could get my face about 3 feet from water.   I don’t fault anyone for this, as I did it entirely to myself!  I was foam rolling like white on rice, in the morning, in the evening and some times during the day.  I even started to include dynamic and mobility drills then too.

My clients at the time (circa 2005) were getting stronger, but they still had nagging pains too.

The Breaking Point

All of it came to a head when I was at Z-Health certification in AZ that Fall.  I remember taking a hot bath that night trying to get my back to relax, wondering what the hell I was doing to myself.

Was I really going to be the next Benni and deadlift over 1,000 pounds?  Was Any Bolton laying in his warm bed in the UK all worried that I was going to come up from nowhere and steal his current world record in the deadlift at that time?

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/Y9P_yYBtkBs” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Benni Destroying Some Weight!

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/JAiUTF6DC8M” frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

Andy Bolton’s World Record Deadlift in 2006

Hell no!

There was high school girls lifting more than I was I’m sure.

<iframe width=”420″ height=”315″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/1UESU1EBFi0″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

High School Girls Powerlifting

Why was I so bent on doing a certain number?  Why did I not realize HOW I was doing it was the source of my issues?

Blame My Injuries

Sure, I could blame it on all sorts of past injuries from a completely ripped out right shoulder (broomball accident), grade 2 separated shoulder (AC joint), busted right ankle (snowboard accident), sprained wrists (windsurfing), pulled groin/hip flexors on both sides (deadlifts), misaligned thoracic spine (thoracotomy when I was 4.5 to repair a congenital atrial septal defect, ASD, in my heart), a misaligned right eye that causes my whole body to twist so I walk straight, blah blah blah.

The reality was that I was attempting to load a chassis that was screwed up.   Dropping a V-8 into a pinto is not a good idea (er, in my case a V-6).

Laying there in hot water trying to fix my back so I could make it through 3 more days of the certification, I decided that I was going to destroy my ego before it destroyed me.  In hindsight it was one of the best decisions I ever made.  I called up my buddy Brad “No Relation” Nelson to get his help and vowed to do whatever it took.  If that meant I did not even LOOK at a deadlift for 5 months, fine.  If I could only use 135 pounds for months at a time, fine.   At least 135 lbs was more than the 95 lbs I started at with deadlifts back in 1996, so that was improvement, right.  I was sick and tired of being in pain.

Happy Ending? (H3)

Now I can deadlift without pain (although it is still not the best lift for me) and even on my worst day I can pull 345 lbs without any warm up (no, I don’t recommend you do that).   My warm ups are about 5-10 minutes on my worst day.

My current goal for this year is to pull 600 lbs on my Dinnie Stone Trainers for a single deadlift and lift the Dinnies in Scotland 3 years from now.   Most would say that is a screwed up lift since it is more of a heavy partial, done from a rotated spinal position, with an offset load (the load on the back hand below is about 75 lbs less), so the torque across your body gets pretty nuts.   Stu McGill fans run in horror, but it does not bother me (then again I am not normal in any sense of the word).

Dinnie Stone Trainer Deadlift Recent PR

Foam Rollers? (H3)

My whole point with that part of the rant is that everyone’s person journey will change how they perceive events.  If coach Boyle see success with his athletes (which he does, otherwise nobody would pay him and he would do something different), and he has them foam roll beforehand, his brain will associate foam rolling (to some degree) with success.

A Better Way? (H3)

Could there be even better success around the corner without foam rolling?  I would say yes, but it would have to be tested.

Testing can be scary since you may not find what you WANT to find.   It is hard to test all aspects of programming I know.

But what things are you willing to question?

Former Foam Roller Dealer (H3)

Perhaps I am a contrarian for fitness, but I did not start out that way.  I used to even buy foam rollers for my clients to make sure they had one.  I had them start on the treadmill, static stretch, eat their meals every 2-3 hours (going without protein for 5 hours was a huge sin), do their corrective exercise drills, but I was wise enough then to look at the results.

If the results did not match what I thought they could be, I would try something different and re-measure again. I would seek to understand why things should or should not work.  If that did not match, I would really have to ask myself why I was still doing them?

After years of testing, I had them stop doing treadmill work, stop static stretching, get off the foam roller, do FEWER warm ups, employ intermittent fasting at times, and they got even BETTER results.

Of course they got results before.  I would not stay in business if they did not get result, but they are now even better.

Contrarian or Results Fitness (H3)

Over time though, they got better and faster results by REMOVING things from the program instead of adding them.

“Maybe all the fitness people need to clean out their garage instead of adding more tools” –Adam Glass

I call it the “Adam Glass Corollary”  the more certifications and information a trainer has, the worse then tend to perform over time.

At first, learning more dramatically helps.  However, once you reach a base level, adding more knowledge by itself is not helpful.  It starts to go the other way.

The reason is that you are starting to de couple knowledge + action.     Too much knowledge and not enough action.    Just like a fat kid on a sew saw, it is skewed too far one direction only.

“More knowledge without action will lead to brain damage” –Frankie Faires

Clean Out Your Fitness Garage (H3)

It is time to clean out your fitness garage.

Take each item, look at it, test it, keep ONLY what is useful.

Nothing is exempt.   There is nothing scared.   It is either making you (or your athletes/clients) better or worse.  It is really that simple.

Are You Up To The Challenge? (H3

Are you willing to do it?   It is not easy.   It is really really hard.    Few do it.

I can guarantee that your results will be even better.

You owe it to yourself and your clients.

Summary (aka How To Still Love Your Foam Roller)  (H3)

More knowledge is not the answer.

More action is better.

Applied knowledge is the key

Are you willing to question and test what you think you know?

This includes foam rollers.  They are not exempt.

If you have tested them and can show they help performance, by all means keep doing it.

But if they do not help, are you willing to take them out?

In the end I would rather be known as the results guy instead of the contrarian fitness guy; but I will take whichever makes people better.  I really like better.

I agree with coach Boyle when he says “Focus on results.”  Since that is what matters and is why all of us are here.

Rock on

Mike T Nelson

PS—If you love results as much as I do, no matter how you exercise right now, you could have bigger, stronger muscles, go HERE : Video Training for Muscle and Strength FREE (VA link bold text to http://www.extremehumanperformance.com/home.php)

Posted in corrective exercise | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

body weight, Danavir Sarria, exercise, handstand, handstand pushup, push up, pushup

Danavir Sarria

One thing I have been working on over the past several months is more body weight training and this includes hand stand push ups. When I started, even putting my head down caused me to be dizzy and feel horrible. Now I can do elevated partial hand stand push ups and getting closer to a full handstand and then a full hand stand push up.

Today I have a guest article from Danavir Sarria on this very topic. Take it away……

How To Do Your First Handstand Pushup by Danavir Sarria

There aren’t many things that will make you look any more athletic than standing on your hands and repping out a couple of pushups with the grace of a gymnast.

The problem with handstands pushups are that their hard, extremely hard. For a lot of people it will take months to get your first handstand pushup down. Personally, it took me about 3-4 months to get my first full rep with my feet against the wall. I was so excited that I attempted a second rep.

I made it to about a quarter way down before I had to bail. This was a couple of months ago and eventually I got to 5 full reps before stopping all handstand training once I couldn’t use my same old space to do it.

Now I’m here to tell you how I did it.

It’s all about progressing to a harder version to build strength, stability, getting used to the movement as it takes time getting used to the blood rushing to your head and above all staying safe as one thing you will have to get over is the fear of staying in such a position for an extended period of time, so here we go.

Pike Pushups – Work Up To 3 X 12

Start with the Pike Pushup. This position will introduce you to the vertical push movement while having your head in a good position to handle the blood rushing through. Keep progressing from workout to workout until you’re able to complete 3 set of 12.

Elevated Pike Pushups – Work Up To 3 X 12

Once you can complete the Pike Pushups, elevate your legs to put more weight on your arms and again help you handle the blood rushing. Work up to 3 sets of 12 as before.

Walk Up Wall Handstand Hold – Work Up To 2 X 1 Minute

Now it’s time to get on the wall. As every time I have to get someone to just do a regular handstand against a wall, they always get scared so I always tell them to start by walking up against the wall to get into position and practice doing that first. Do the same and hold that position for 2 sets of 1 minute each.

Wall Handstand Hold – Work Up To 2 X 2 Minutes

This time around, you want to do a regular handstand. It takes courage for some people to do this so take your time but eventually you will have to get over it and just do it. Hold it for 2 sets of 2 minutes. It’s going to suck but it will help you get ready for the next one. (Mike’s note, some people find a good transfer from holds and some do better with moving into the position and out and then on to the next step at even ¼ instead of ½)

Wall ½ Handstand Pushups – Work Up To 2-3 X 5

Now let’s add some handstand pushups going halfway down. You’re going to be glad you did all those handstand holds because it’s going to be tough. Work up to 2 or even 3 sets of 5 reps.

Wall Handstand Pushups – Work Up To 1 X 1

After everything, you will be more than ready to get your first full rep in. It won’t be easy and it’s going to feel like a LONG way down after doing partials for so long but you will get it in. Just try it out once. If you can do it, keep working on it and if you can’t, work again on some partials and try it again later when you feel ready.

Couple of Programming Points

Danavir Sarria1

Practice Often

Handstands and other forms of bodyweight training is gymnastics. It is as much about strength as it is about skill. Just like with other sports, you need to practice hard and practice often. If you want to get better at basketball, do you play once a week or do you try to go out as much as possible and work on your shot? Even if you’re not good, you’ll eventually get something out of it due to sheer perseverance.

Perform When You’re Fresh

Always perform your most important and hardest exercises at the beginning of your workout. After your warmup, go straight to whatever variation you’re working on at the time. If you leave it at the end of your workout, then you’ll never be strong enough to progress.

Never Max Out

There is no need to max out unless you’re testing for something specific and on my recommendations; it doesn’t happen until you test if you can do a full handstand pushup. With handstand training and just about anything else, always opt for sub-maximal loads or loads where you can do 2-3 perfect reps or higher.

Now How To Bail

Practice getting into and OUT of each position safely. This will allow you to relax more in the position and decreases the risk of injury.

Conclusion: How To Do A Handstand Push Up

It’s going to take a long time before you do your first full and explosive handstand pushup, but with perseverance and a smart program you’ll get there. Once you get it down you’re going to be the biggest bad ass on your block.
Danavir Sarria2

Bio: Trainer of the warriors, Danavir is a writer, trainer, consultant and martial artist who loves everything performance or regular fitness training. He writes over at www.DanavirSarria.com. Head over if you want no B.S training information and bring out “the warrior from within”.

Posted in corrective exercise | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment