Monday 151116

Workout
8/6/4 and 2 of:
135/95 lbs Clean and Jerk
GI Janes
rest 2:00

8/6/4 and 2 of:
115/75 lbs Clean and Jerk
Burpees over the bar
rest 2:00

8/6/4 and 2 of:
95/65 lbs Clean and Jerk
Burpee

From The Huffington Post

Hollywood’s Top Trainer Thinks You Should Eat Whatever You Want*

*For Thanksgiving.

DAVE KING VIA GETTY IMAGES

Perhaps it’s fitting that our dysfunctional notions about food and feasting are ratcheted up a notch during the holiday season.

Alongside sumptuous recipe features are stories about how to host a “healthy Thanksgiving” or a “thinner Thanksgiving.” HuffPost has even published tips in the past on how to avoidThanksgiving weight gain or resist foods on the table. But this year, we’re here to say, jeez, people, live a little!

Preparing customary Turkey Day foods (or your zany takes on them) is a fun and accessible way to pass on family traditions, and the whole thing is supposed to fill you with warm fuzzies about what you’re grateful for and celebrating. And you can’t do any of that if you’re fretting about calorie counts, portion control and macronutrient proportions.

Not only are you torturing yourself, you’re also setting yourself up for weight gain pitfalls down the road, according to personal trainer and nutrition expert Harley Pasternak, whose more recognizable clients include Seth Rogen, Meghan Fox, Halle Berry, Rihanna, Kanye West and Alicia Keys, to name a few.

But Pasternak’s simple, common sense approach to nutrition is also immensely appealing to us mere mortals here at HuffPost. He’s a down-to-earth dude who celebrates TWO Thanksgivings a year (originally from Canada, he indulges in culinary traditions like Tim Horton’s coffee and putting maple syrup on everything).

We may not preparing our bodies for an action film franchise, but we all have lives to live and people to be happy and healthy for. That means eating well, moving regularly and getting rest, but it also means celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays — with food. A lot of good food. Here are five tips from Pasternak to make sure this Thanksgiving meal is the most guilt-free yet. And here’s to trainers who get it! 

1. It’s one out of about 1,095 meals you’re going to have this year.

MARTIN MOOS VIA GETTY IMAGES

People who struggle with weight issues may hesitate to embrace Thanksgiving because of its huge emphasis on traditional foods and, well, gorging. But over-indulging in one meal can’t undo the months (or years) you’ve spent eating well and exercising, said Pasternak.

“Life is all about balance, and there are certain times of the year — birthday, anniversary, holidays — that are meant to be enjoyed without guilt,” the trainer told HuffPost. “That being said, Thanksgiving is a meal — it’s not a Thanksgiving day, and it’s not a Thanksgiving week.”

Practically, this means treating Turkey Thursday like any other day. Wake up, eat your normal breakfast, mid-morning snack, lunch, and even mid-afternoon snack, depending on what time the main event starts. Eating at normal intervals keeps your blood sugar level, and it ensures you eat normal-sized (or only slightly larger than normal-sized) portions of turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and pumpkin pie.

2. Don’t try to cancel out the effects of a big meal with more exercise.

WAVEBREAKMEDIA LTD VIA GETTY IMAGES

To make up for those extra Thanksgiving calories, Turkey trots and two-a-day Turkey Burn spin sessions are a growing trend. But in fact, trying to exercise harder to “make up” for an excessive meal could actually backfire, as vigorous exercise leaves you feeling weak and hungry, said Pasternak.

You cannot out-exercise a bad diet.

“You cannot out-exercise a bad diet,” he said. “And not only that, you’re going to end up increasing your appetite.”

Research shows that exercise makes you hungry, either by raising hormone levels that increase hunger pangs or because people who put themselves through something physical subconsciously want to “treat” themselves for the effort.

So just stick to your normal exercise routine on Thursday, or, if you want to get a little touch football going with the family, eat some healthy snacks afterward to cut down on bingeing at the main event. Engage in exercise for fun, not because you’re trying to outrun the turkey you ate.

3. Saving your appetite for Thanksgiving dinner is a recipe for disaster.

TOMML VIA GETTY IMAGES

Instead of stocking up on exercise, some folks may think that saving all of their calories for the main event will help cushion the blow of all that rich holiday food. But the truth is, starving yourself to make caloric space for second servings of pumpkin pie will only prep you for a night of overeating and blood sugar havoc — what Pasternak calls “setting yourself up for a very bad situation.”

It only takes about a few hours of fasting for your body to start feeling the first signs of starvation. In that state, you’re hangry, your hands may tremble and because your blood sugar level is low, you begin to feel tired. And when you’re finally presented with that food, you’re more likely to go a little crazy. Researchers from Cornell University have found that people who were just fasting tend to choose more starchy foods to break their fast and eat more than they normally would if they weren’t just starving. Consider yourself warned.

4. Thanksgiving season also happens to coincide with the best weather for outdoor activity.

ARIEL SKELLEY VIA GETTY IMAGES

After the meal is over, it’s tempting to just lay back and slip into a food coma, or watch football for the rest of the long weekend. But that would mean missing out on what’s pretty much the best weather we can ask for when it comes to outdoor activity. You’re home, not at work (hopefully), which means there’s more time for leisurely walks after meals or even a little yard work.

“It’s probably the best time of the year to be active outside,” said Pasternak. “Don’t just sit there for hours a day watching other people exercise.” And by exercise, Pasternak simply means movement — not fancy gym memberships or fitness moves that need equipment.

For research for his 2010 book The Five Factor World Diet, Pasternak observed a few key things that separate the U.S. (one of the most unhealthy nations in the developed world) from lean nations like Japan, France and Israel. One observation was that people in those countries walk a lot more than the average American does, and that this activity means that exercise is a constant part of everyone’s whole day. Pasternak is a huge fan of the “movement.”

“They’re not going to the gym, they’re not going to SoulCycle,” he said. “They’re just walking a lot, and that’s what makes them healthier and live longer.”

5. “Cleansing” is pretty much the worst thing you can do after a big holiday season.

JILL GIARDINO VIA GETTY IMAGES

After it’s all over, you might look at any extra pounds on the scale and be tempted to embark on a so-called “cleanse,” in which otherwise rational and sane adult humans replace all their meals with various fruit and vegetable juices of questionable nutritional quality.

There is no such thing as a healthy cleanse.

But in fact, stripping vegetables and fruits of their fiber while concentrating their sugars into easily-quaffable juice form will actually make you gain weight in the long run. It spikes your blood sugar (because you’re drinking sugar from 10 carrots as opposed to munching on just one), which causes your body to release more of the hormone insulin. Over time, this repeated pattern could lead to insulin resistance, which paves the way for Type 2 diabetes.

Sure, you might lose some water weight if you stick with it, but once you return to your old eating habits, all that weight will come back — and then some.

“There is no such thing as a healthy cleanse,” he concluded. “It’s the worst thing you can do for your body.”

Monday 141110

Workout

FSquat – 80% x5 x5

MetCon

10-1
Cleans 95/65
GI Janes

From The Atlantic

Masters of Love

Science says lasting relationships come down to—you guessed it—kindness and generosity.

lead

sketchblog/flickr

Every day in June, the most popular wedding month of the year, about 13,000 American couples will say “I do,” committing to a lifelong relationship that will be full of friendship, joy, and love that will carry them forward to their final days on this earth.

Except, of course, it doesn’t work out that way for most people. The majority of marriages fail, either ending in divorce and separation or devolving into bitterness and dysfunction. Of all the people who get married, only three in ten remain in healthy, happy marriages, as psychologist Ty Tashiro points out in his book The Science of Happily Ever After, which was published earlier this year.

Social scientists first started studying marriages by observing them in action in the 1970s in response to a crisis: Married couples were divorcing at unprecedented rates. Worried about the impact these divorces would have on the children of the broken marriages, psychologists decided to cast their scientific net on couples, bringing them into the lab to observe them and determine what the ingredients of a healthy, lasting relationship were. Was each unhappy family unhappy in its own way, as Tolstoy claimed, or did the miserable marriages all share something toxic in common?

Psychologist John Gottman was one of those researchers. For the past four decades, he has studied thousands of couples in a quest to figure out what makes relationships work. I recently had the chance to interview Gottman and his wife Julie, also a psychologist, in New York City. Together, the renowned experts on marital stability run The Gottman Institute, which is devoted to helping couples build and maintain loving, healthy relationships based on scientific studies.

John Gottman began gathering his most critical findings in 1986, when he set up “The Love Lab” with his colleague Robert Levenson at the University of Washington. Gottman and Levenson brought newlyweds into the lab and watched them interact with each other. With a team of researchers, they hooked the couples up to electrodes and asked the couples to speak about their relationship, like how they met, a major conflict they were facing together, and a positive memory they had. As they spoke, the electrodes measured the subjects’ blood flow, heart rates, and how much they sweat they produced. Then the researchers sent the couples home and followed up with them six years later to see if they were still together.

From the data they gathered, Gottman separated the couples into two major groups: the masters and the disasters. The masters were still happily together after six years. The disasters had either broken up or were chronically unhappy in their marriages. When the researchers analyzed the data they gathered on the couples, they saw clear differences between the masters and disasters. The disasters looked calm during the interviews, but their physiology, measured by the electrodes, told a different story. Their heart rates were quick, their sweat glands were active, and their blood flow was fast. Following thousands of couples longitudinally, Gottman found that the more physiologically active the couples were in the lab, the quicker their relationships deteriorated over time.

But what does physiology have to do with anything? The problem was that the disasters showed all the signs of arousal—of being in fight-or-flight mode—in their relationships. Having a conversation sitting next to their spouse was, to their bodies, like facing off with a saber-toothed tiger. Even when they were talking about pleasant or mundane facets of their relationships, they were prepared to attack and be attacked. This sent their heart rates soaring and made them more aggressive toward each other. For example, each member of a couple could be talking about how their days had gone, and a highly aroused husband might say to his wife, “Why don’t you start talking about your day. It won’t take you very long.”

The masters, by contrast, showed low physiological arousal. They felt calm and connected together, which translated into warm and affectionate behavior, even when they fought. It’s not that the masters had, by default, a better physiological make-up than the disasters; it’s that masters had created a climate of trust and intimacy that made both of them more emotionally and thus physically comfortable.

Gottman wanted to know more about how the masters created that culture of love and intimacy, and how the disasters squashed it. In a follow-up study in 1990, he designed a lab on the University of Washington campus to look like a beautiful bed and breakfast retreat. He invited 130 newlywed couples to spend the day at this retreat and watched them as they did what couples normally do on vacation: cook, clean, listen to music, eat, chat, and hang out. And Gottman made a critical discovery in this study—one that gets at the heart of why some relationships thrive while others languish.

Throughout the day, partners would make requests for connection, what Gottman calls “bids.” For example, say that the husband is a bird enthusiast and notices a goldfinch fly across the yard. He might say to his wife, “Look at that beautiful bird outside!” He’s not just commenting on the bird here: he’s requesting a response from his wife—a sign of interest or support—hoping they’ll connect, however momentarily, over the bird.

The wife now has a choice. She can respond by either “turning toward” or “turning away” from her husband, as Gottman puts it. Though the bird-bid might seem minor and silly, it can actually reveal a lot about the health of the relationship. The husband thought the bird was important enough to bring it up in conversation and the question is whether his wife recognizes and respects that.

People who turned toward their partners in the study responded by engaging the bidder, showing interest and support in the bid. Those who didn’t—those who turned away—would not respond or respond minimally and continue doing whatever they were doing, like watching TV or reading the paper. Sometimes they would respond with overt hostility, saying something like, “Stop interrupting me, I’m reading.”

These bidding interactions had profound effects on marital well-being. Couples who had divorced after a six-year follow up had “turn-toward bids” 33 percent of the time. Only three in ten of their bids for emotional connection were met with intimacy. The couples who were still together after six years had “turn-toward bids” 87 percent of the time. Nine times out of ten, they were meeting their partner’s emotional needs. Read more Monday 141110

Monday 140217

Workout

4x
4:00 AMRAP of:
3-GI Janes
6-Pistols (3 per leg, alternating)
9-Step-ups
Rest 2:00

From The LA Times

As marijuana laws change, health risks of pot use are weighed

As more states relax marijuana laws, studies support the belief that pot is less harmful than alcohol and tobacco. But that’s a low bar, some health experts say.

 Greater use of marijuana
By Chris Woolston February 14, 2014, 2:30 p.m.

Now that people in Colorado (and, soon, Washington state) can buy marijuana about as easily as they can pick up a 12-pack of Bud Light, it’s a good time to ask: How risky is it to turn to pot?

President Obama has already shared his opinion, telling the New Yorker magazine, “I don’t think [marijuana] is more dangerous than alcohol.” The president’s opinion stands in stark contrast with official federal policy that still classifies marijuana as a Schedule 1 drug, putting it in the same class as heroin and LSD.

In this case, the president seems to be more correct than the government, says Richard Miller, professor of pharmacology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. “No question about it,” Miller says. “It’s absolutely clear that marijuana is much less dangerous than alcohol.”

According to Miller, marijuana is the safer choice whether you’re using it for a single night or a lifetime. “When people drink alcohol, they often get out of control and get violent. They crash their cars and beat their wives. But when people smoke marijuana, they get very relaxed and mellow.”

Roughly 10% of people who try marijuana will eventually run into trouble, says Dr. Christian Hopfer, associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Aurora. That’s about the same odds that a drinker will abuse alcohol, he says, but there’s a big difference: Alcoholism causes far more physical and emotional devastation.

The signs of marijuana addiction are subtle, he says. Adults who smoke heavily — as in four or five time a day, every day — tend to have trouble learning, remembering and dealing with complicated tasks. “They’re definitely impaired,” Hopfer says. “They organize their lives around using.”

Fortunately, the habit is breakable. “A lot of people who use marijuana heavily in their 20s eventually quit on their own,” he says. “It’s probably easier than stopping [tobacco] smoking.”

The toll seems to be worse for young brains. According to Hopfer, adolescents who smoke a lot of marijuana can expect to lose about 8 points from their IQ. Young users also seem to be more likely to become psychotic in later years, although the risk is still small. “About one user in a thousand will end up with a psychotic illness that they wouldn’t have had otherwise,” he says.

As reported in November in Current Psychiatric Reports, marijuana can threaten physical health too, although the dangers appear to be mostly small and unpredictable. After summing up studies over the last 15 years, researchers at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs found evidence linking marijuana to lung disease, heart disease and other ailments, but the actual risks were hard to pin down. For example, one study suggested that smoking a single joint increases the odds of a heart attack within the next hour, but other studies have failed to find any sign that marijuana users are more likely than non-users to suffer a heart attack over the long term.

The report also noted some growing but inconclusive evidence that long-term marijuana use could increase the risk of cancer in the lungs, bladder, head and neck. The authors noted, however, that marijuana doesn’t seem to be in the same league as tobacco when it comes to the potential to cause cancer — another comparison that was practically guaranteed to cast marijuana in a positive light.

A 2013 study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine suggests that even heavy marijuana users aren’t necessarily a sickly bunch. The study looked at nearly 600 primary-care patients who had tested positive for marijuana or another illicit drug. Chronic marijuana smokers were just as healthy as occasional smokers and weren’t any more likely to have had a recent stint in the ER or a hospital bed.

The president’s pot analysis may have been accurate, but it wasn’t necessarily helpful, says Dr. Timothy Naimi, an associate professor of medicine and community health sciences at Boston University School of Medicine.

“Saying marijuana’s safer than alcohol sets an incredibly low bar,” Naimi says, adding that alcohol kills about 80,000 people a year. “Marijuana can still be a dangerous substance.”

While the risks of marijuana may be relatively small for each individual user, Naimi believes problems are likely to grow with access to the drug. “It’s five times more potent than the pot I grew up with. We’ve lowered the price and increased the supply. I’m not for or against legalization, but those are red flags.”

Supporters of legalization often say marijuana should be as freely available as beer or whiskey. But Naimi says the nation’s experience with alcohol isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement of lax regulations and easy access to mind-altering substances. Instead, he says, the toll of alcohol should “give pause” to anyone hoping to bring marijuana to the masses.

Wednesday 140205

Workout

15 minutes of:

First 5:00 – 5-95 lbs Power Snatch
Middle 5:00 – 5-95 lbs Power Clean and Jerk
Last 5:00 – 5-95 lbs Thrusters

Get some Burpees…Rut and Grant already have 300+

TitanFit Trainers WOD…Dustin’s choice

10x
250m row
10-GI Janes

From CrossFit

TRADING POSING FOR PERFORMANCE

“If you’re too concerned with being successful, and you never test yourself, you’ll never get better.”

Photos courtesy of Ken Snow.

While watching Rich Froning’s symmetry, Dan Bailey’s muscularity and Scott Panchik’s definition at the 2013 Central East Regional, it hit him.

“The best bodybuilders in the world aren’t bodybuilding anymore,” professional bodybuilder Rich Lauro realized. “They’re (doing CrossFit.)”

Lauro dabbled in CrossFit before attending the Regional as a spectator, but after Read more Wednesday 140205

Monday 130812

Workout

3x
20-95 lbs Front Squats
20-20 inch Box Jumps
20-GI Janes

I know CrossFit penned to following just to get people talking.  My vote is for any current Top 10 Decathlete.

Uninvited guests: the top 10 (or so) athletes we’d love to see compete in the CrossFit Games.

11. LeBron James

Hail to the king?

Forget about Jordan vs. LeBron; the real match-up is LeBron vs. Froning. The 6’8”, 250-lb. Boy Who Would Be King makes for compelling TV. The guy is a legit athlete, no doubt, drafted right out of high school. Would that translate to CrossFit? Let’s see if a salary 76 times Rich Froning’s 2012 Games prize translates into fitness.

Strengths

  • James has a standing reach of almost 9 feet, and wall-balls are his…
  • Rope climbs would be reduced to jump-and-reach.
  • James was also a standout football player; his athleticism would help him adapt to challenging movements.

Weaknesses

  • Endurance events are rougher than a sandpaper enema for mammoth people who weigh a deuce-and-a-half.
  • Needs a custom-built pull-up rig so he doesn’t smash his dome.
  • The prize money at the Games doesn’t have enough digits to register on the James economic scale.

10. Hope Solo

Camille who?

Why we have Hope: the two-time Olympic gold medalist soccer goalkeeper has a physique that would fit right in at the CrossFit Games. We know that because she posed nude for ESPN the Magazine’s body issue in 2011. Camille who?

Strengths

  • Hand-eye coordination that makes Luke Skywalker jealous. Look for her to dominate in a skills test, especially if it requires lateral movement.
  • Solo is relatively tall at 5’9” so she’d take to rowing like a midfielder to diving.
  • Whatever she’s doing, she, ahem, looks good doing it.

Weaknesses

  • Being a goalkeeper, the longer events might hurt her. Short, explosive bursts might be more her thing.
  • Ultra-tacky goalie gloves definitely not allowed on pull-up bar.
  • Games do not stop and allow rest when someone fakes injury.

9. Dmitry Klokov

Humans breaking metal things make for compelling media.

Klokov is that guy that you see, then elbow your buddy in the ribs and say, “Dude.” He’s a human trapezius muscle and has no need for silliness like PVC pipes, or a neck. His freakish strength is well documented on YouTube. Could the big Russian hang in a burpee/400-meter run couplet? We’d like to see it. Sure, it’s possible he gets owned like a comatose guy in a chess match at anything without a barbell. But who doesn’t want to see this monster run a barbell ladder like it’s a warm-up and ask for more weight?

Strengths

  • This dude is stronger than the Incredible Hulk under the care of Lance Armstrong’s “doctors.”
  • Klokov would destroy strength events like Super Bowls destroyed the Buffalo Bills in the early 90s.
  • Barbells.
  • Weights.

Weaknesses

  • Klokov would probably struggle with Camp Pendleton, the Beach Event, and anything longer than two minutes.
  • Might ruin equipment; i.e., sending wall-balls into low Earth orbit.

8. Serena Williams

Serena Williams

Would she be at home in the tennis stadium?

Williams has performed on the court at the StubHub Center before, but with a racquet. She’s regarded as the best women’s tennis player of all time. Could she translate that awesome core-to-extremity power to a barbell? She’s got four gold medals and 31 Grand Slams, and seeing her stack up with similar-sized athletes such as Becca Voigt and Elisabeth Akinwale would be a collision of disciplines not unlike Dale Earnhardt Jr. fighting Georges St. Pierre.

Strengths

  • Have you seen her play tennis? Pure intimidation.
  • She’s well versed in core-to-extremity principles: her serves have been clocked at 128.6 mph and make racquets cry.
  • Williams’ tennis training could transfer well to intense, “sprinty” workouts.

Weaknesses

  • Composure. She’s blown up over calls on the court, taking a page out of the John McEnroe tennis manual. Something tells me Dave Castro isn’t going to put up with that shit. Call it a hunch.
  • The Games are not as quiet and proper as Wimbledon, so the infamous tennis grunt might not be audible, unless she was mic’d up. Read more Monday 130812