Autor: markyoung

~ 30/08/10

For those who don’t know, Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar during which practicing Muslims typically fast from dawn until sunset.  Absolutely no food or drink is consumed during this time.  This year I have a client who is observing Ramadan which means that he’ll be following this fast daily for an entire month.  And since Ramadan falls in the summer this year, the days without food and water can be longer than they would be in the shorter, darker winter months.

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I figured that since I’ve had to devise a plan to work with this client to improve his body composition during this time, I’d share the general layout with you so you can see what my thought process looks like in this instance.

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Note that most of my nutrition recommendations are rule based and I don’t typically ask clients to count calories or macronutrients very often unless it is warranted by the situation (i.e., getting extremely lean).  Since this client is a relative novice, adjustments are usually primarily based on portions and food selections to maximize fat loss and spare as much muscle as possible.  Generally speaking, it would be fair to say that I’m aiming for at 1 gram of protein per pound of target weight, but this is emphasized by food choices and portions instead of having him count grams.

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Wake 4:30 AM – Meal containing protein, starchy carbs, fruit and/or vegetable

Target = 60-65 grams of protein

Scrambled egg omlete with peppers, onions

Cottage Cheese with mixed berries

Two slices whole grain toast

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Training 6:30PM – Whole Body Workout

Day 1

Foam rolling, mobility work, activation/motor control exercises

A1: Horizontal Pull #1 (1 x 6-8 warm up, 3 x 10)

A2: Horizontal Push #1 (1 x 6-8 warm up, 3 x 10).

B1: Horizontal Pull #2 (3 x 10)

B2: Horizontal Push #2 (3 x 10)

C1: Lower Body Single Leg Quad Dominant (4 x 10)

C2: Anterior Core Progression - Plank Variation (4 x As long as possible to 1 min max).

Post workout stretching

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Day 2

Foam rolling, mobility work, activation/motor control exercises

A1: Vertical Pull #1 (1 x 6-8 warm up, 3 x 10)

A2: Vertical Push #1 (1 x 6-8 warm up, 3 x 10).

B1: Vertical Pull #2 (3 x 10)

B2: Vertical Push #2 (3 x 10)

C1: Lower Body Single Leg Hip Dominant (Single Leg) (4 x 10)

C2: Lateral/Rotational Core Progression - Side Plank or Pallof Press Variation (4 x As long as possible to 30 second max).

Post workout stretching

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Dinner 8:30 PM – Meal containing protein, starchy carbs, fruit and/or vegetable

Target = 60-65 grams of protein

Meat, rice, salad  (Actual foods subject to cultural habits.  Selections and portions are instructed.)

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Late Meal – Midnight – Protein shake & fruit/vegetable

Target = 60-65 grams of protein

Milk, protein powder, banana

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A few things worth noting….

There is no cardio/conditioning/energy systems work in these workouts because my client is not only fasting without food, but also without water during this time.  Ideally we would meet to train after his dinner, but neither of our schedules allow for this.  My primary goal with training is to spare lean mass during the fast.

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You’ll note that all leg training is unilateral as well.  This is in part because bilateral lifts were too taxing when we tried them early in the fast and also because he lacks the requisite mobility to adequately perform squatting or deadlift patterns.  Given that we’ve had a lot of time to work on hip mobility during the fast and practice the hip hinge I assume he’ll be able to kill these movements next month when the fast has ended.

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Nutritionally, I’m obviously aiming to keep protein intake to levels that will sustain lean mass and I’m not afraid to put in carbohydrates as they’ll obviously be used post-training.  On non-training days I do emphasize that he decrease, but not eliminate, the starchy carb portion at the dinner meal.

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All in all, I don’t think it is rocket science, but I figured I’d just throw it out there so you can check it out.

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What do you think?  Would you do it differently?  Leave a comment and let me know.

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Autor: markyoung

~ 27/08/10

 

This past week I had the chance to review Nick Tumminello’s Joint Friendly Strength Training DVDs and I wanted to drop a review to let you all know what I thought.  Before I say anything though, I also want to state that Nick Tumminello is a total class act in this industry and I wish more guys and gals were like him.

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He not only takes in the theoretical information, but then transforms it into great exercises and programs leaving me (and probably a lot of others) scratching our heads and saying “why didn’t I think of that”.  He is a true innovator and a model representative for what I think this profession should be.  That said, I would never endorse a product that I didn’t have faith in so you can rest assured that my opinion of this product is 100% legit.

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This first DVD starts off with Nick talking a little bit about why he created the joint friendly training philisophy which highlights the fact that the exercise variations presented in the 2 DVD set are not geared towards correcting joint pain, but to allowing you to continue gaining power, strength, and size while working around specific joint issues.  You can obviously still be working to improve joint issues (in fact, you probably should), but this product is aimed at those who still want a kick ass workout while dealing with nagging aches and pains.

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After the brief into I pretty much expected the DVD to go into a scripted narration of each exercise (which is fine by me), but instead Nick stays center frame and continues to demonstrate exercises one after one almost as though he’s having a conversation with you.  It truth, it reminds me very much of times when I’m training a client and I’m saying “That hurts?  Let’s try this.  That hurts too?  Let’s do this instead.”  In essence, Nick walks you through a serious of exercise options for each potential joint issue that you could possibly have as though he was actually training you around an injury.

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The exercises themselves are broken up into sections for knee pain, back pain, shoulder pain, wrist pain, and so on.  I especially liked that Nick broke down the exercises for dealing with back pain into sub categories for flexion, extension, and rotation intolerant people so you’ll pretty much know which ones are most apt to work in a given situation.  I also liked the stuff for dealing with wrists as this is a limitation that happens with athletes or those who work with their hands quite often (as well as those with carpal tunnell from being a desk jockey).  This breakdown by body part would also be cool if you’re only looking for exercises for an injury you have and don’t want to watch the whole 2 hours of video.

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All in all, I have to say that I really enjoyed the relatively unscripted (or at least seemingly relaxed) style of the DVDs.  This surprised me because I’m usually one for structure and letting someone just run through categories of exercises could result in a disasterous product for many.  In Nick’s case, I think it was actually one of the strengths.  I was watching and thinking “holy crap dude, slow down with the ideas” as I scribbled on my note pad.  It made it feel like Nick was in my livingroom bombarding me with exercies options and progressions.

 

My final analysis is that if you’re a trainee suffering from nagging joint injuries then Nick’s product is definitely worth having so you can continue getting bigger, stronger, and leaner (yep…there is a conditioning section too) while dealing with your injuries.  Moreover, if you’re a coach or trainer I think this product is equally as valuable as it will give you loads (I wrote two pages front and back) of exercises for working with clients with various issues so you can continue to bring the results.  Note that I’m not saying you shouldn’t address the issues themselves, but Nick’s product will definitely allow you to maintain the training stimulus while you do.

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In the end, I have to agree with Kanye.  Nick’s product is top notch and I definitely give it two hypertrophied thumbs up.  If you’re interested you can pick it up HERE

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(Note that the link above is not an affiliate link and I don’t make a dime off of this product)

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Autor: markyoung

~ 26/08/10

 

Recently I’ve undertaken the task of reviewing some of the research on the very popular Functional Movement Screen.  Previously I’ve reviewed the Interrater Reliability of the Functional Movement Screen and Core strength: A New Model for Injury Prediction and Prevention.

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Today I’ll be taking on the 3rd of 4 studies I hope to review.  After the final review I’ll talk a little bit more about my overall impression of the FMS and how I believe it should be used.

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Can Serious Injury in Professional Football be Predicted by a Preseason Functional Movement Screen?

Kiesel K, et al.  North American Journal of Sports Physical Therapy Aug 27, 2:3

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Background

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Risk factors for injuries in high school and collegiate football include previous injury, body mass index, body fat percentage, playing experience, femoral intercondylar notch width, cleat design, playing surface, muscle flexibility, ligamentous laxity, and foot biomechanics.  However, injury risk is likely a combination of many of the above.

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Further, evaluation of isolated risk factors does not take into consideration how the athlete performs functional movement patterns required for sport.  The goal of this study was to examine functional movement scores (assessed by the FMS) and to determine the relationship between professional football players’ score on the FMS and the likelihood of serious injury.

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Methods

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FMS scores were obtained prior to the start of the season for 46 professional football players.  A receiveroperator characteristic curve the FMS score was used to predict injury during one complete football season.  For the sake of this study, injury was defined as membership on the injured reserve for at least 3 weeks.

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A dependent t-test was used to determine if a difference existed between of the FMS scores of those who were injured versus those who were not.

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Sidebar – Definitions

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To have a clear understanding of the methods and the results of this study a brief discussion is needed to definte sensitivity, specificity, and how these are used to create a ROC curve (receiveroperator characteristic curve).

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Sensitivity is basically the power to detect a true positive.  For example, if you were to go through a scanner at the airport to detect for metal it would be very sensitive to decrease the likelihood that someone were able to slip onto an airplane with a weapon.  On the other hand, the scanner doesn’t have very high specificity in that it will sound for almost any piece of metal not just weapons.  In this case, a high sensitivity is most important because it is important that weapons do not sneak aboard the aircraft.

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A dog trained to sniff for narcotics would have a high specificity since only those carrying drugs would need to be stopped.  If the dog didn’t have a high specificity for a specific substance, but was highly sensitive it would possibly alert people needlessly to any scent and make the purpose of having the dog useless (since every bag would have to be checked anyway).

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In a perfect world every test would have 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity (i.e., identifying every weapon at the airport without going off for every other piece of metal), but this is rarely the case.  There is usually a tradeoff between one and the other and the ROC curve plots sensitivity against specificity to determine the ideal cutoff number to use to maximize both.

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With the FMS the the cutoff was chosen using the ROC curve such that the test correctly identifies the greatest number of athletes at risk of injury (true positives) while minimizing incorrectly identifying athletes not at risk of injury (false positives).

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Results

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A score of 14 or less on the FMS was able to predict injury with specificity of 0.91 and sensitivity of 0.54. 

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The test had a very high specificity indicating that the majority of people with a score below 14 had a greater chance of injury.

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Those with a score under 14 that got an injury = 7

Those with a score under 14 that didn’t get an injury = 3

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Unfortunately, the test had a only a moderate sensitivity so it did not detect those with a score over 14 who did experience an injury.

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Those with a score over 14 that got an injury = 6

Those with a score over 14 that didn’t get an injury = 30

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In other words, the bulk of the people with an FMS score over 14 did not get an injury and the bulk of those with a score under 14 did.  Using something called an odds ratio the authors determined that the likelihood of injury was 11 times more likely if the player had a score below 14 on the FMS.

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However, 6 people that did have a score higher than 14 did end up getting injured.  These ones were missed by the screen.  In fact, it failed to identify almost as many people as it did identify as being at risk.

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Funding

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None declared, but I believe at least two of the authors have affiliation with the FMS.  (Not that there is anything wrong with that, but I would declare this as a possible conflict of interest.)

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My Thoughts

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All in all I think that the FMS did a great job of determining that those with a score less than 14 were at risk for injury.  In terms of practical application, these players could have been flagged for specific work with a fitness/rehab professional.  On the other hand, the test wasn’t sensitive enough to detect risk of injury such that 6 athletes slipped through the cracks and ended up being injured without this being detected by the screen.

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Unfortunately, there was no differentiation between the types of injuries that landed people on the reserve list so it is possible that some of the injured athletes suffered from contact injuries that could not have been predicted by any test or screen.  Perhaps if contact injuries were ruled out (since you can’t really test for these) the FMS would have proven to be more sensitive.  Then again, maybe some of those with a score below 14 suffered contact injuries as well.  It would have been interesting to see if the results were different if these types of injuries were excluded.

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It is also possible that one reason the FMS predicted injuries so well below the score cutoff of 14 with this group is because it is the same group whose results were used to create the cutoff in the first place.  Only future research will tell if this pass/fail cutoff is equally as effective for other groups.

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Summing Up

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The FMS indicated correctly that those with a score less than 14 were more prone to injury.  However, the results of the present study indicate that the FMS may also miss equally as many people as it detected (which may be the reason why the pass/fail score for the FMS when it is typically used is actually lower than this).

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It would also have been interesting to see which of the individual scores within the FMS were most related in injury.  Since the FMS typically suggests that side to side imbalances are most important to address, it would have been nice to see this data to see if this hypothesis holds true.

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In the end though, the FMS does appear to effectively predict injury in this below a value of 14 in the group studied.  It does not catch all injuries and as such is not a perfect screen, but effective at picking out some who are at risk.  And since the results are those of professional football players, we should be careful when generalizing them to other populations.

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What do you think?

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Autor: markyoung

~ 23/08/10

 

Last week I had a guest blog posted on the blog of Bret Contreras talking about the growth hormone myth only to find out that my friend Anoop Balachandran had already review this HERE.  More to the point research hound Anthony Colpo takes us to school reviewing the phenomenon extensively in a two part article HERE and HERE.

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However, the point of this blog isn’t to rehash the same point over and over (although this might be of benefit if didn’t hit home the first time), but to let you know if an incredible article the I discovered on Anthony Colpo’s site that I think is a MUST READ for any fitness professional. 

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How to Become an Easily-Brainwashed Sucker in 5 Easy Steps summarizes several very important points I think that we all need to understand when learning and sharing information.  If you read nothing else today, make sure you check out Anthony’s great article HERE.

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Autor: markyoung

~ 18/08/10

 

Recently I came across this poem by Portia Nelson.  It is sometimes given to those recovering from alcoholism and other addictions, but I though it would be really relevant to anyone who has gone through (or is currently going through) a life change.  If you’re struggling to become healthy, gain muscle, lose fat, or get strong you might relate.

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Chapter One
I walk down the street
There’s a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in
I’m lost. . . I’m helpless
It isn’t my fault
It takes me forever to find a way out

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Chapter 2
I walk down the same street
There’s a deep hole in the sidewalk
I pretend I don’t see it
I fall in again
I can’t believe I’m in the same place
But it isn’t my fault
It still takes a long time to get out

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Chapter 3
I walk down the same street
There’s a deep hole in the sidewalk
I see it there
I still fall in. . . it’s a habit
My eyes are open
I know where I am
It is my fault
I get out immediately

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Chapter 4
I walk down the same street
There’s a deep hole in the sidewalk
I walk around it

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Chapter 5
I walk down another street

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