So there I was, my muscles frozen from cramps, my stomach in knots, my vision blurred... and I still had 5 more hours of running! Worlds Toughest Mudder in 2015 was a huge disaster. It was my first 24 hour endurance race and my nutrition was completely wrong, and I was feeling it. Strong headed and unprepared, my will got me through but I learned a valuable lesson from the other racers on the course who were smashing pizza, and pickles and Coke the entire race... Salt is your friend. Since then I have paid way more attention to the quality of Sodium levels in my blood and my athletic performance. Lets dive in on why you should be paying closer attention to Sodium levels if you want to become the best athletic version of yourself.
Without going any further.... Which would you be? Flexible? OR Mobile? As an athlete and Gym owner I hear the two Terms Flexibility and Mobility used with very little regard for differences. But there IS a huge difference and today I am going to shed light on this so YOU can change the way you think about your daily training. This under appreciated distinction is literally the linchpin of athletic performance. Have I peaked your interest? Lets get bendy today and develop a greater understanding of what it actually means to be a functional athlete.
If you are like me, the hunt is always on for the 1 whole food supplement that can capture all the benefits without shaking up multiple concoctions or swallowing heaps of pills. The Vital Proteins Brand has consistently been a brand that I use because of #1 the Collagen and #2 the Beef Liver. Well I now have a #3... The Sports Greens. Today on the 5 reasons WHY, we are going to deconstruct this killer supplement and show you why you need to keep it on your counter.
Twice per year I do a check in. It is not to be confused with a Check up in the sense that I would check my blood pressure or my back squat, the Check In is more profound and re-connects me with what I have called my "3 P's for Success" . Principles, Purpose and Persistence. There is no exact date for this intraspection but simply a feeling or natural wave of sentiment that draws me back to it. Today I want to brush you all up on the 3 P's and give you the simple answer to the problem that vexes all humans... How to live Peacefully.
Did you know that at the 2012 Olympic games the most sought after medical consultation by athletes, after Musculoskeletal repair, was Dental Checkups and treatments? !! In a Continuing Quest to have everyone of you think before eating, I wanted to talk a bit today about the importance of your Mouth... Yes that place where your food comes into contact with the body first... Lets dive in on a couple proven facts about how the health of your mouth can effect your performance in the gym and competition.
Question of the day... What is your favorite Summertime beverage or food? Chances are, you are thinking of something cold. A iced tea, ice cream, or a cold salad... Probably not a hot tea or spicy lamb curry. The intuitive sense of cooling your body off with cold foods is truly something that Americans take as the surest way of relief. But... (you know there has to be a but) what if I told you that the real physiological relief comes in the way of herbs?! Lets take a look at the common misconceptions of icing your body down and the natural way your body can beat the heat.
It never ceases to amaze me when I travel around this great land of ours; Humans feeding themselves the worst possible nutrition and then reacting in negative ways to themselves and others. Well the prescription for a happier society, a happy existence depends almost exclusively on the food choices you make! I plead with you, you few conscious activists in the world, to help spread the message that FOOD IS FUEL and FUELING THE MIND BRINGS GOOD VIBES!
The Short answer is yes. Yes you should be concerned about the amount of Zinc you are taking in on a daily basis, yes you should supplement your diet with it and YES Zinc has a lot to do with your ability to fight illness and cognitive decline. But Zinc? Really.... Though it may be a the bottom of the list when it comes to lining out all the necessary nutrients in your body, there is surprising evidence that this mineral plays a much bigger role than once thought.
As you settle down in from of your computer to read the latest and greatest Fitness and Nutrition blogs from your truly, there is a high probability you have already done a bit of fitness today. You have exercised to relieve stress, clear out the pent up energy and generally feel good about your life. The combination of Mind, Body and Spirit in your daily practice are essential , I agree. Well what if I told you that there is some new science out that shows Moderate Drinking can actually be a part of your daily exercise routine?! Its all physiology baby! In the same way we spark our metabolism to cleanse the body, a little drinking can actually do the same for the mind.
There is a Antioxidant inside each cell in your body that has more to do with your overall health and wellbeing than any other. Your Protein choice has a lot to do with how well this antioxidant functions and how much is readily available. I want you to question the marketing and claims that are on the packaging of your brand and look deeper and move towards better health . Glutathione and Whey Protein, an introspective look at refueling.
Winter Time is over so that means enough with the BBQ Hot dogs and Hamburgers. Winter Time indulgence tapers off as we settle in for great summer veggies and a fresh look at our Nutritional foundation. If you are not looking at Nutrition as seasonal then now is the time to wake up to this very primal tendency. Here are the top 5 foods you should incorporate into your diet for optimal heart Health this Summer.
Each morning as part of my daily Nutrition routine I eat a handful of Nuts with my coffee. To some that may sound quite out of the ordinary but starting the day with a good amount of fat allows me to 'break-my-fast' and get fuel my brain and body for morning training. As most of us, I am blessed with choices. Choosing which nut to fuel my morning with is sometimes a question so I thought I would dig into it a little bit more this week. Do I go with the walnut? A nut that I literally grew up on, coming from Linden CA where we lived on 12 acres of walnuts. Or the Almond? The creamy and dense nut that my grandfather and uncles grow and tend to be the kale of the burgeoning Nut business! Lets find out.
Ill be honest with you, if you didn't start building you beach body a few months ago you are playing catch up at this point. Fat Loss and performance are built over the course of months and not weeks. But there is hope to get your body dialed outside of instilling a proper nutrition plan into your lifestyle. It is going to take work, the pain face may come out a lot but I promise the following Cardio/Strength training tips will work 100% of the time. So throw out your ideas on what you should be doing and listen to what you ought to be doing!
How often are you questioning Normalcy? Do you look at your life, your routine, and truly examine how it can be given a boost? Not surprisingly, the benefits begin with your nutrition. There is a class of vegetables you should be eating daily called "Crucirferous" (cru-sif-erous) vegetables that can do more to detoxify your organs, and reduce the oxidative stress associated with training and lifestyle. These vegetables are ones that your probably pass by in the store because its not potatoes, or spinach but I am encouraging you to do a double take and do your health a favor. As Ill explain you can be creating big hedge against cancer and the silent killer, Dementia. Lets get into it!
Traveling is the most prized wealth that we have as mobile and capable humans. This week I find myself traversing the deep blue waters and craggy seasides of Greece. I am stricken with an innate curiosity that has me researching and analyzing everything as it passes through my consciousness . And so there is food... The nourishing fuel that here in Greece is almost a prehistoric routine. Greek eating has spawned many trends in food culture but none more popularized than the "Mediterranean diet". Now I think diets are bullshit but I will dig in today on a few key aspects of this lifestyle which align well with healthy living, longevity and performance.
Are you savvy with the term 'being plastic'? This malleable substance is used to shape, bend, and form to anything that is asked of it. The goal of a a thoughtful yearly program design is to maintain plasticity throughout your meso cycles of Hypertrophy (muscle growth) as well as optimizing your Central Nervous System adaptations and recovery. To achieve the desired plasticity I have employed scientifically based formulas for building, peaking and tapering through the seasons. All focusing on intensity, load, and recovery.
There are few things that get me more excited than learning something new. My dorky excitement is elevated when new findings occur right in front of my eyes, on products and nutrients that I may be taking for granted. Well my friends, this is exactly what has happened when I simply turned one of my supplement bottles over and looked closer at the contents! Magnesium has just stoked me out and today we are going to dive in on 2 little known facts about this VITAL mineral.
Kindness, Selflessness, Altruism... high concepts that are touted in self help books, on the big screen, and of course in all manner of religious dogma. It is said that you should 'treat others like you would like to be treated'. So is this kindness to others really just a "bank" that we get to fill to hold our own self esteem at a certain level? Or is there really something to actually being KIND to others? What do acts of Altruism do for our health? Im interested and today will dig in on the concepts that surround the Kindness to others.
As I write this now, I am sitting in JFK in New York City. This airport Is a microcosm of a greater craziness that is the world we live in right now. The constant hustle, the environmental pollution, and our daily training grind all has an effect on our overall longevity. The analogy of burning both ends of the candle is absolutely the truth for many of us. A byproduct of all this is adrenal fatigue and cognitive decline we could be slowly getting sick because of it. Well I have a ancient strategy to keep you living longer, training harder and thinking clearer.
If you grew up in the 90's like myself, you probably remember the incredible amount of commercials touting the benefits of Sports Drinks like Gatorade and Powerade to replenish the electrolytes lost during exercise. These drinks became synonymous with winning.. and now 2 decades later they are probably the most reviled products in the Whole Foods movement. new science is out on electrolytes and food. It turns out that for the casual exerciser like you and me, we are better off relying on our nutrition to prepare our bodies before training and replenish ourselves after a clang and bang session. Here are 10 Foods that are easy solutions for electrolyte replacement.
We all want it. The lean muscle, the trim midline, and to be smashing in the gym. As we have discussed extensively, its not all made in the training environment or the competition floor, its built in the kitchen. Protein intake has a huge impact on the body composition you want and the performance you deserve. But the question always arises, "How much do I need?" & "When should I eat it?". In the pursuit of greatness, science has devoted a lot of time to optimizing the amount and timing of your protein intake. I have deciphered many studies and have come to 3 easy to follow strategies for Protein consumption.
Awareness is control. Your Best self is realized when actions are completed with purpose, without self doubt, and in a state of present being. And if this is true, then living without purpose, doubting our abilities, and not being present during performance is keeping us from truly excelling. An athletes mentality is just as important as their physical ability, therefore we must learn to harness the power of our consciousness. The following tips are easy to implement and have helped me keep reality in perspective and goals in sight. While the development of increased consciousness and awareness is a HUGE topic, the first step is always understanding and then small interventions. YOU CAN ACHIEVE INCREASED CONSCIOUSNESS!
Take a moment right now and place your hand just below the diaphragm. Inhale deeply, exhale and take a moment to thank your Liver. This little guy has been working hard for you all your life, a thankless job but one that is essential for your life as you know it. No matter what you have thrown at it, the Liver works hard to keep you on track. If you are like me, you and your liver could share some stories! Well today we are going to give thanks to our livers and Im going to give you 5 EASY DETOXIFYING TIPS to help you keep your Liver at Peak levels and boost your performance as an athlete. Given all that you two have been through, its time.. and probably overdue.
What was that old Lucky Charms Commercial tag line... "Taste the Rainbow".. Well instead of crushing your GUT microbiome with inflammatory processed grains, lets talk about the rainbow of colors that your vegetables provide and the associated health benefits of each. Our Mother Nature is incredibly diverse and in this diversity we have the ability to fill the entire spectrum of daily nutritional needs. The color of our veggies tell us what phytochecmicals lie inside and peeling this information back, we can target our menu to help us become the healthiest possible version of ourselves.
Living in the Ketone zone is much more than just restricting your carbohydrate intake and crossing your fingers. Ketosis, the bodys ability to burn fat as energy, can help you achieve goals from decreased inflammation to fighting cancer but for many its about shedding weight. The process can be tough both mentally and physically. The high rate of failure in implementing a Ketone Lifestyle is because the recipe is not as simple as many people try and make it. Today we are going to focus on key ways to help you keep your sanity and burn fat at the same time . Goals are certainly achievable, dedication to the process is necessary, but using the following pro tips will speed up your results without halting your performance.
For as long as I can remember I have said, "it isn't about how you are performing, its about how you are recovering". I have studied this 'chicken or the egg' conundrum in training for years. The debate about what we as coaches should put an emphasis on, expectations in the gym or expectations of the immune system. There is growing evidence from some of the best science minds in the world that your immune system is the key to athletic performance. As the focus shifts, so does the nutrition. And for this, we surprisingly find mushrooms hold treasures that have been yielding gold medal results for millennia.
I woke up this morning with the 1997 movie, Grosse Point Blank on my mind. If you are old enough to remember it, the scene Im thinking of is right before the High School reunion and John Cusack is stewing in his hotel room. In an anxious panic John picks up the phone and calls his Psychoanalyst and asks for help. His analyst (Alan Arkin) gives him the mantra to recite, "I am home in the ME, I am Rooted in the ME, This is ME Breathing...". Well, this classic centering mantra got me thinking about the concept of SELF DOUBT. This very human feeling is a hinderance that 99% of us have and if we can conquer it, the world will literally open up before us and goals can be met with force! Today lets dive in on understanding and moving past SELF DOUBT.
Every 2 years we get a glimpse into something uniquely Human, Sport and Competition. The Olympic Games are undoubtedly the greatest sports event on the planet. Athletes and Nations emerge from the secret training centers and obscure competitive environments, thrust into the worlds living rooms. For a brief while we get to engross ourselves with the struggle and triumph of the human experience, coming away with a deeper understanding of ourselves and our neighbors.
So much is stressed upon the casual exerciser about the importance of Protein intake. Marketing and profit really drive this as well as some very sound science. The missing link and what can potentially get you the muscle gains and fat loss you have been desiring could actually be a little more carbs in your Post workout regimen! And Im about to blow your mind... HIGH GLYCEMIC CARBOHYDRATES at that!! OHH, no he didn't.... Just as so much falls upon protein for making gains, so does the Hormone Insulin and its ability to jive with your cells to take in the good and fight the bad. Sweet ass carbs are your answer. Let me show you.
What a weird concept.... Foods, when taken together, help your performance and health. As athletes we strive to find the best possible way to increase oxygen to our muscles during training. More oxygen getting to our muscles allows us to work longer under strain. The mechanics are simple, you prime your motor with foods (and certain supplements) that open up blood vessels and allow oxygen rich blood to flush the muscles and tissues beating back Lactic Acid build up and fatigue. The answer my friends is Nitric Oxide and I will make a claim that certain foods will help you find that extra gear in your performance.