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Archive for April, 2011

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April 30, 2011 Leave a comment

I hate not being able to workout because of an injury. That said, Tuesday morning I injured my right hand. As a result, my workouts this week have been somewhat less intense than normal. I’m still doing pull ups, but ever so carefully. Today I did chest, and despite my injury, I was able to hit 50 consecutive push ups. Hooray!! (I started this routine back in February.) My hand is about 60% healed so I’m eagerly awaiting to get back to 100%. In the meantime, I’ve reverted back to really super duper slow workouts. It feels good — it’s a nice way to keep the intensity high when you’re hurt.

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Omega-3 may increase risk of prostate cancer in men?

April 28, 2011 Leave a comment

This is one of those studies that invites more questions than it does answers. A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, found that men with the highest blood percentages of DHA — an omega-3 fatty acid commonly found in fatty fish such as salmon — have 2.5 times the risk of developing aggressive, high-grade prostate cancer compared to men with the lowest DHA levels. In other words, there’s an association between the two. (It’s not certain that x leads to y. Just an association at the moment.)

Omegas-3s are highly beneficial for cardiovascular health, so this study throws everything for a loop. Now, there are some holes in the story which invite more questions. Was the fish they ate farmed? What other details do we know about the men who developed prostate cancer, in particular about their lifestyle? If anything, this study reminds us that moderation is really the key to any healthy lifestyle.

Is it worth changing your diet because of this? Most definitely not. I’d continue eating as much fatty fish as possible. Afterall, heart disease is the real killer in this country.

LATimes

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Afterburners

April 26, 2011 Leave a comment

There’s an interesting study in the New York Time today that looks at the effects a high-intensity workout has on your body after your workout has finished. In particular, the study looked at how many calories the body continued burning long after said workout was done.

The answer: for a high-intensity workout that burned 420 calories, 190 additional calories were burned over the following 14 hours. Pretty impressive if you ask me. Of course there are studies that will say this number is way off the charts, but I believe there are definitely positive aftereffects that come from an intense workout. (Not even counting the cardiovascular benefits.)

NYT

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High intensity interval training

April 18, 2011 Leave a comment

The New York Times published an interesting story on Friday on H.I.T., high intensity interval training. It looked at the major exercises — swimming, running, squats, and burpees — in an attempt to find out which has the best impact on your health. Naturally, there was no “right” answer, but the story makes a strong case for H.I.T. Here’s the part that intrigued me the most:

“To be effective, H.I.T. must hurt. But a study published last month found that when a group of recreational runners practiced H.I.T. on the track, they enjoyed the workout more than a second group of runners who jogged continuously for 50 minutes. The H.I.T. runners, the study‚Äôs authors suspect, were less bored.”

I agree with that 100%. 30 minutes of straight running (with no sprints or hills) to me is a tad boring. I’d do it, but at the end I’d feel like I cheated. That’s why I constantly switch up my cardio routines. It’s twisted, but I love that split second in your run when you can barely breathe and feel like your lungs are going to explode. It’s a rush. That feeling, to me, is the essence of being alive. That is exercising. Otherwise, you’re just doing motions. That said, what’s your ultimate exercise?

Treadmill Running Routines

April 13, 2011 Leave a comment

A lot of people find running on the treadmill to be boring. I can sympathize with that, but I hate running in the winter and/or when it’s too cold. So until New York City hits a full week of 70-degree weather, I’ll be running on an indoor treadmill. That said, below are the different “runs” I do every time I do cardio. You see, the trick is to constantly switch up your “running routine.” That way you don’t get bored, you train your body for all sorts of different scenarios, and you keep your heart rate nice and high. Here are my “routines” along with a new routine I just added this Monday:

Hill Interval
2 minutes at 6 speed and 5 incline
2 minutes at 6 speed and 0 incline
repeat entire cycle for 30 consecutive minutes

Speed & Hill Interval
2 minutes at 6 speed and 0 incline
2 minutes at 7 speed and 3 incline
repeat entire cycle for 30 consecutive minutes

Manual
3 minutes at 6 speed and 0 incline
27 minutes at a minimum 6 speed and a minimum of 3 incline

Crazy Hills (new routine)
1 minutes at 6 speed and 3 incline
3 minutes at 6 speed and 3.5 incline
repeat entire cycle for 30 consecutive minutes

That last routine is challenging, but not impossible. I completed it for the first time this Monday. Throughout the run my heart rate was between 169 and 175, maxing out at 180. Needless to say, I loved it! The point of any run is to challenge your body to something new. If you’re not huffing and puffing, you’re not running hard/fast enough.

Health benefits of ginger root

April 9, 2011 Leave a comment

This week I’ve been spicing up my homemade juices with a little bit of ginger root. I personally love the heat that ginger provides and while I realize it’s somewhat of an acquired taste, here are a few more reasons you should give ginger a shot:

* it has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-tumor effects on cells
* it’s very effective in preventing motion sickness or nausea
* it lessens (arthritis) pain and swelling
* it induces cell death in ovarian cancer cells
* it boosts your immune system

via WHFoods

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Post-workout Nutrition: Take 2

April 6, 2011 2 comments

I mentioned last month that I’m trying to watch what I eat after my workouts. It’s something that I’ve never really focused on before. Well, here’s another article (courtesy of my gym, Equinox) that helps give you an idea of what you should eat after and before each workout.

Personally, I’ve been eating either fruit (an apple and a banana), or a serving of Greek yogurt (I personally love Chobani because it’s low in sodium and has no cholesterol), or if it’s an evening workout — I’ll have fish and vegetables. My new way of thinking is: Intense workout + proper post workout nutrition + sleep/rest = win!

Equinox