Tuesday, January 17, 2012

23 1/2 Hours

Do you think it's possible to limit your sitting and standing to 23 1/2 hours per day? This is the question that was posed by Dr. Mike Evans, an associate professor of family medicine and public health at the University of Toronto.

Dr. Evans makes a convincing point to walk at least 30 minutes per day and staying active. He cites numerous studies that depict walking as "natures best medicine". For example, in one study he discusses how Japanese researchers found workers who walked to work decreased their likelihood of of developing high blood pressure for every 10 minutes walked.

Check out this cool video that illustrates Dr. Mike Evans' short discussion on the question above. It's educational  and entertaining - especially if you're a sucker for whiteboard illustrations like I am.

Sit back, learn and enjoy!


Thursday, January 5, 2012

The 27 Rules of Conquering the Gym

So here we are - 2012!  A brand new year with hopes and aspirations to improve some quality of our lives. For some, that improvement pertains to financial growth. Others, more time freedom to do the things we love to do. From a health & fitness perspective, "getting in shape" seems to be the popular choice.

It's funny as I enter my 20th something year of being in the fitness business, I find myself being very direct and telling like it is - no sugar coating anything. I must admit when I was a 'newbie' trainer years ago, I was saying the things that people wanted to hear - "nice work", "great job", "way to go", etc., depsite the fact that these folks had the crappiest form & work ethic....EVER!! 

Now I find myself saying things that give more constructive criticism and feed back to help the people and clients I work with get better and understand what they're doing wrong or not doing at all - "Quit being a wuss and crank up the intensity!", "You better go faster!", "This isn't a library, put that book down and get to work!", "When you're done lifting those Christmas tree ornaments, come see me about lifting some real weight!", things as such!

Simply put, I'm at a point in my life where I don't have any time to waste on people who are not willing to learn, push themselves, strive for bigger and better things, put in awesome quality work, establish good work ethic, and are afraid to take their training to the next level.

The time has come to stop the non-sense bulls*#t in making people better when they don't do jack crap to do just that! You want to drop body fat, reduce your weight, lose inches, "tone up" and feel better about yourself, then you better start lifting heavy weights, crank out some high-intensity intervals, quit doing boring, steady state cardio, clean up your eating and eat like a champion, improve your sleep habits and get your mind right! 

With that being said, below is a copy from an article in the Wall Street Journal that a friend of mine sent me today that I want to share with you. I hope that the majority of you will resonate with the honest and humorous truth about "The 27 Rules of Conquering the Gym". It's to the point and tells it like it is! I find it refreshing and bare bones honesty at it's finest.


This is the time of year when even people who hate the gym think about going to the gym. Many of us are still digesting whole floors of gingerbread houses, and jeans that fit comfortably in October are now a denim humiliation.

Sweating is a good way to begin 2012. Exercise, like dark chocolate and office meetings that suddenly get canceled, is a proven pathway to nirvana. But if you're going to join a gym - or returning to the gym after a long hibernation - consider the following:

1. A gym is not designed to make you feel instantly better about yourself. If a gym wanted to make you feel instantly better about yourself, it would be a bar.

2. Give yourself a goal. Maybe you want to lose 10 pounds. Maybe you want to quarterback the New York Jets into the playoffs. But be warned: Losing 10 pounds is hard.

3. Develop a gym routine. Try to go at least three times a week. Do a mix of strength training and cardiovascular conditioning. After the third week, stop carrying around that satchel of fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies.

4. No one in the history of gyms has ever lost a pound while reading "The New Yorker" and slowly pedaling a recumbent bicycle. No one!

5. Bring your iPod. Don't borrow the disgusting gym headphones, or use the sad plastic radio attachment on the treadmill, which always sounds like it's playing Kenny Loggins from a sewer.

6. Don't fall for gimmicks. The only tried-and-true method to lose 10 pounds in 48 hours is food poisoning.

7. Yes, every gym has an overenthusiastic spinning instructor who hasn't bought a record since "Walking on Sunshine."

8. There's also the Strange Guy Who is Always at the Gym. Just when you think he isn't here today...there he is, lurking by the barbells.

9. "Great job!" is trainer-speak for "It's not polite for me to laugh at you." (This is so true!) 

10. Beware a hip gym with a Wilco step class.

11. Gyms have two types of members: Members who wipe down the machines after using them, and the worst people in the universe.

12. Nope, that's not a "recovery energy bar with antioxidant dark chocolate." That's a chocolate bar!

13. Avoid Unsolicited Advice Guy, who, for the small fee of boring you to death, will explain the proper method for any exercise in 45 minutes or longer.

14. You can take 10 Minute Abs, 20 Minute Abs, and 30 Minute Abs. There is also Stop Eating Pizza and Eating Sheet Cake Abs - but that's super tough!

15. If you're motivated to buy an expensive home exercise machine, consider a "wooden coat rack". It costs $40, uses no electricity and does the exact same thing.

16. There's the yoga instructor everyone loves, and the yoga instructor everyone hates. Memorize who they are.

17. If you see an indoor rock climbing wall, you're either in a really cool gym or a romantic comedy starring Kate Hudson.

18. Be cautious about any class with the words "sunrise," "hell," or "Moby."

19. If a gym class is going to be effective, it's hard. If you're relaxed and enjoying yourself, you're at brunch.

20. If you need to bring your children, just let them loose in the silent meditation class. Nobody minds, and kids love candles.

21. Don't buy $150 sneakers, $100 yoga pants, and $4 water. Muscle shirts are for people with muscles, and rhythm guitarists.

22. Fancy gyms can be seductive, but once you get past the modern couches and fresh flowers and the water with lemon slices, you're basically paying for a boutique hotel with B.O.

23. Everyone sees you secretly racing the old people in the pool.

24. If you're at the point where you've bought biking shoes for the spinning class, you may as well go ahead and buy an actual bike. It's way more fun and it doesn't make you listen to C+C Music Factory.

25. Fact: Thinking about going to the gym burns between 0 and 0 calories. (Very true)

26. A successful gym membership is like a marriage: If it's good, you show up committed and ready for hard work. If it's not good, you show up in sweatpants and watch a lot of bad TV.

27. There is no secret. Exercise and lay off the fries! The end.


*Source: www.online.wsj.com