Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Help me, mighty Omega-3!


Help me, mighty Omega-3!

Fish oil might be a great addition to your daily self-care because of the omega-3 fatty acids.  Another method is to avoid supplementation and clean up your diet (more to come about this topic).  Getting the right amount of omega-3s and limiting omega-6s can help reduce inflammation and bring along myriad other health benefits.  As with all dietary changes, and particularly supplementation, I encourage you to do your own research and decide what is best for you.
Here is some information about omega-3s, excerpted from
There are the two main types of omega-3 fatty acids:
  • Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids are EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). These are plentiful in fish and shellfish. Algae often provides only DHA.
  • Short-chain omega-3 fatty acids are ALA (alpha-linolenic acid). These are found in plants, such as flaxseed. Though beneficial, ALA omega-3 fatty acids have less potent health benefits than EPA and DHA. You’d have to eat a lot to gain the same benefits as you do from fish.
Hundreds of studies suggest that omega-3s may provide some benefits to a wide range of diseases: cancer, asthma, depression, cardiovascular disease, ADHD, and autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis.
How could fatty acids be so beneficial for so many different conditions?
“All these diseases have a common genesis in inflammation,” says Joseph C. Maroon, MD, professor and vice chairman of the department of neurological surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Co-author of Fish Oil: The Natural Anti-Inflammatory, Maroon says that in large enough amounts omega-3′s reduce the inflammatory process that leads to many chronic conditions.
And here is but a small section lifted from a Robb Wolf post dated 1o/5/11 (emphasis added by me).  Please read the entire article when you have the time!

So, what should I do?

1-LIMIT linoleic acid!! You’d think after I jumped up and down about his for the past 1500 words that it would be obvious, but I just wanted to make sure we are clear on this. Nuts, seeds, corn, safflower, sunflower and similar seed oils are “no bueno.”
2-Limit linolenic acid from things like flax, hemp, chia etc. I’d prefer you get the bulk of your N-3’s in the ready made forms of EPA/DHA and your N-6’s as aracidonic acid.  The conversion of linolenic acid to EPA/DHA is inefficient and overall exposes up to a greater oxidative potential as you must consume MORE total polyunsaturated fats to get the goods. I know there are some folks that recommend these short chain fats. Do whatever you like but this is what makes sense to me.
3-Try to get the bulk of your EFA’s (both N-3 and N-6) from grass fed meat, and perhaps pastured dairy in the form of butter. BUT that’s expensive!! I know Buttercup, I know. Do your best. Sardines, mackerel and similar fish are also great sources.
4-Supplement with 2-4 grams of EPA/DHA heavy oils from fish oil, fermented cod liver oil (god help me…that stuff is NASTY, but Chris Kresser loves the stuff) or vegetarian sourced DHA from algae. The DHA can retro-convert to EPA, so no problems there. Which should it be, 2 or 4 grams? If you are “big” take 4. If you are little, take 2. If you do not know if you are big or little, please disavow all knowledge or the paleo diet and adopt veganism. Please.
At the end of the day I think these recommendations support our best understanding of the science and it seems to reflect clinical findings. It also simplifies things to a great degree. Many a client has balked at the high-dose fish oil that has been part of my and other folks recommendations. I think there are some great supplements for specific purposes (adaptogens, creatine and a few other goodies) but where food is concerned, food seems to be best. Shocker. Similarly, there are no shortcuts to health and wellness, just better information and feedback so we can make better decisions.
  • Warm up
  • Clean & Jerk
    If proficient, work up to heavy single rep
  • “SQT”
    3 RFT:
    10 Ground to Overhead (GTO) (Rx: 95/65)
    200m Shuttle run (2 x 50m down and back)
  • Cool/stretch

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Strict Muscle Up Progression

Muscle ups in gymnastics are nothing more than a means to get from hanging position with your body below the rings to a support position with your body above the rings.

We teach the false grip because it is the gymnastics method and puts your hands in the proper position for the bottom of the dip. In other words, this is what you should be doing if you’re working toward a strict muscle up. The other option is a kipping muscle up without a false grip, and if you’re a Games athlete you should have these in your tool box. These should be viewed as two distinctly different movements for different purposes just like the dead hang pull up and kipping pull up.

Check out this video with an excellent coach and explanation:

In this video, Carl breaks down the key positions and angles for you to get your strict Muscle Up, along with emphazing the important of using the false grip and pulling to your rib cage or lower.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Semper Fidelis

From :


Semper Fidelis.  It’s the motto of the United States Marine Corps and it means “always faithful.”  Tomorrow, November 10, is the birthday of the USMC.  Marines all over the world will gather to celebrate and honor the brotherhood that has done so much for our country.  The Corps turns 237 tomorrow and we’ll show our respect today with a birthday WOD. 
If you want to see how you would stack up, come try the Marine Corps Physical Fitness Test (PFT)tomorrow.  It’s free and open to anyone willing to give it a try!  Be at the gym by 0730.
**REMINDER:  The gym will be closed on Monday, November 12, in honor of Veterans Day**
Click here to watch the Commandant’s Marine Corps Birthday Message for 2012
Q: What is the mission of a Marine Corps rifle squad? scroll down for answer…
A: To locate, close with, and destroy the enemy through fire and maneuver, and to repel the enemy assault through fire and close combat.
  • Warm up
  • 237 Squats for time
  • “S.E.M.P.E.R. F.I.”
    20 Minutes AMRAP:
    Snatch balance (Rx: 45lbs) x 12
    Elbows to knees x 40
    Man makers (Rx: 20/15) x 5
    Push press (Rx: 65/45) x 30
    Eccentric pull up x 10
    Rotated push up x 5
    Front squat (Rx: 65/45) x 15
    Inchworm (with push up) x 5 meters
  • Cool/stretch
More details and info visit:

Monday, November 5, 2012

Burpee. How to do burpees properly.

Burpees Exercise is the best body training

If you are very busy and could not go to the gym, maybe burpees can be one of the best exercises for you, burpees are very effective and requires no tools or time consuming you.
If done correctly, Burpees will work on almost all the muscles of your body, begin chest,shoulder, legs, buttocks and triceps, and the more intense burpees also serves as a cardioworkout that will be able to keep the weight even burn body fat with a very fast.

Before starting the burpees exercise, remember this is really important that you are able to do so. If you have long never exercise, jogging or the gym, it is highly recommended that you start with the first walk up to your fitness level up and you are ready to do thisexercise. Also, burpees are high-impact sport, so do not try if you suffer from weak bones or muscles.

The burpees exercise consists of the following steps:

1. Stand straight, feet at shoulder width.
2. Go down to a squat position very quickly.
3. As soon as you reach the squat position, quickly thrust out your legs and bring your arms down so you’re in a pushup / pressup position.
4. (Optional) Do a pushup/ pressup.
5. Quickly bring your legs back in and get back into the squat position.
6. Jump as high as you can, and once you land, get back into a squat position and repeat the steps above.
7. Do this until you reach failure (struggle to do any more with proper technique). Finish now if you want, or rest 1-2 mnutes and then do them again.

To do this exercise at the right moves, I attach the following related video that I took from youtube:

CrossFit Burpee with variations

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Why Cheat Meals are good for your Metabolism

As a serious and strict competitive dieter and athlete you probably follow a very strict dietary regimen. Ninety-nine percent of the time this is what you want to do in order to achieve great results with your body. For athlete and competition dieting you have to be ultra-strict and follow your plan. However, I know that having planned cheats in your prep process can have tremendous value. Here are several reasons why:
  • Metabolic boost.
  • Fueling up your glycogen from a depleted body.
As a human being, your metabolism will always try and adapt to what you are doing to your body. If your calories drop each week then your body will eventually learn to live on less. This is why we are still walking this planet. Our bodies have this wonderful ability to adapt and move toward homeostasis, always striving to stay alive and create some kind of balance. As you get four, five and six weeks into a dieting plan, your body is now starting to try and figure out what you are doing most of the time. So throwing in a planned cheat each week can go along ways into tricking your body and your metabolism into thinking that you are getting more calories and nutrients than it really is regularly. The net result is that a good cheat meal can, in these times, help bump up your metabolism. You can tell this is happening actually as you eat your cheat meal. Most people during this phase of dieting will notice that as  they eat their cheat meals they break out in a sweat and get real hot. As a flood of nutrients hit your body’s energy systems, your body reacts quickly and can now regulate temperature better. Often times, your core temperature goes up enough, releasing more heat than normal and you sweat. This is your metabolism kicking up to accommodate for the extra calories.

The key to a great cheat meal is that it still has some sort of quality carbohydrate or protein in it. Sure, a bowl of ice cream or something like that is all fine and dandy. But if you are looking to get the most out of your cheat meal, you should consume something high in carbohydrates and protein. Something like 2-3 slices of sausage pizza is a great example of this.

Let me first break down some different types of cheat meals/days people have them and go from there…

The Two Most Common Types of Cheats:

• The One Meal Cheat – This is the cheat meal where someone only cheats for one meal only. This would be my recommended way to have a cheat meal. You don’t want to get into the habit of cheating too often. It can cause a domino effect and possibly throw away all of your hard work from the previous week!

• The All Day Cheat – This is usually done less often, but it is where for an entire day you are allowed to become a pig. Most people who use this as a cheat make sure to have cheat days less often. This is actually something I am fine with, as long as you have only one of these every 2-3 months. I still would prefer that you stick to one cheat meal every couple of weeks though.

When Should I Use Cheat Meals?

Cheat meals should be used when you want to re-carb up and refill your glycogen stores. This is especially important for athletes. Honestly, the best time to do it is directly after a competition or your biggest training day of the week. The reason is because all of your focus and energy went into that. So, you’re not necessarily entitled to a cheat meal, but it is a good time to take a little break from the grind of your diet.

Another great time to utilize a cheat meal is when you have had multiple bad workouts in a row. This doesn’t seem logical though, does it? I have 3-4 bad workouts in a row and you WANT me to eat junk food? Chances are that your body is pretty depleted and/or starving for some vital nutrients. This doesn’t mean that you can blame every bad workout on being too disciplined. You are most likely a serious athlete and should use your absolute best judgment when you are legitimately rundown and when you just had an off day.

The Science Behind It

Implementing a cheat meal also ensures that you keep your metabolism up running on full blast. It can “reboot” your metabolism or give your metabolism a big kick-start. The key to all of this is a hormone called Leptin. Leptin plays a key role in energy expenditure and regulating energy intake. Leptin is actually an anti-starvation hormone, so we can use it to our advantage! Numerous studies have shown that fasting (or following a very low calorie diet) lowers leptin levels. 
If we don’t cheat every so often in our diet, our leptin levels will continue to rise. This is most likely going to cause us to go on a huge binge anyway. As you can see, there is a big relationship between lowered leptin levels and increased food intake. The key to my Cheat Meal Program is to make sure your leptin levels are low BEFORE you cheat. That way, you can cause a spike in your leptin levels AFTER your cheat meal.


Pearson, Owen. (October, 2011). Importance of Cheat Meals in a Diet.

Burton, Ray. Keep A Cheat Day From Being A Binge Day.

Smith, Jimmy. (April, 2010). Cheat Your Heart Out: Eat What You Want And Lose Fat.

The Science Behind Obesity.