Friday, September 12, 2014

Hill Sprints

Hill Sprints
We begin to lose skeletal muscle mass in our mid-20s. But it turns out this loss is mostly confined to our faster (speed and strength) muscle fibers, with our slow-twitch (endurance) fibers resistant to atrophy. Since faster fibers power our race stride, the result is reduced stride length and a slower pace. But faster muscle fiber loss is not a fait accompli. This is a case of use it or lose it. Unfortunately, most masters runners don’t “use it.” That’s because workouts like distance runs and tempo barely touch faster fibers. To recruit 100 percent of your available faster (and slower) muscle fibers—and to teach your nervous system to use them simultaneously and efficiently—you’re going to have to include sprint workouts. And no sprint workout is more effective than hill sprints.

The workout: Find a hill that’s steep, but not so steep that you can’t manage an approximation of your normal stride. Sprint uphill for 6-10 seconds at 95% effort, then walk slowly down the hill for recovery. Do 4-8 reps. Next, sprint downhill for 8-15 seconds at a controlled 85-90 percent effort, walking slowly up the hill for recovery. Do 4-6 reps.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Stop Googling your health questions. Use these sites instead.

Welcome to Burden of Proof, a regular column in which Julia Belluz (a journalist) and Steven Hoffman (an academic) join forces to tackle the most pressing health issues of our time — especially bugs, drugs, and pseudoscience thugs — and uncover the best science behind them. Have suggestions or comments? Email Belluz and Hoffman or Tweet us @juliaoftoronto and @shoffmania. You can see previous columns here.  Read More at

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Japanese study finds: "Over 60% of diabetic subjects are not obese (BMI < 25)"


Not obese, but sick! The cardiometabolic markers were higher in diabetic subjects than in non-diabetic subjects in both obese and non-obese subjects. But hey, the real news is still that non-obese individuals comprise more than half of all persons with diabetes in population of 17,098 men and 17,199 women who participated in a voluntary health checkup program between 1998 and 2006 conducted in Japan.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Vitamin C supplements

Vitamin C supplements dosed at ONLY 250mg of vitamin C has beneficial effect on the aerobic capacity of footballer children
Before and after 10 days of the use of ascorbic acid, the mean and standard deviation of the aerobic capacity of the experimental group were respectively 3.59± 0.38 and 4.23 ± 0.77 and of the control group were 3.7 ± 0.40 and 3.7± 0.53, respectively. Therefore, there was a significant relationship between the use of ascorbic acid and placebo in terms of aerobic capacity (p ≤ 0.5)

Friday, September 5, 2014

Warm Foot Baths


One of the joys of my work is being able to share information about little known healing options. My exuberance only increases when the remedies I write about are inexpensive, non-toxic and widely accessible. So today is a very happy day for me! The following is positive research on a humble, traditional remedy that could help me, you and many people we know.
Several studies presented in peer-reviewed, scientific journals reveal that warm foot baths (WFB) can be powerful medicine. For starters, they acutely reduce arterial stiffness and promote improved blood flow to the heart. These effects have been documented in healthy adults and in those with coronary artery disease. WFBs also improve the quality of life of cancer patients by decreasing sympathetic activity (stress) while providing natural pain relief. Additionally, one trial found that warm foot bathing reduces fatigue and insomnia in those undergoing chemotherapy. In short, WFBs benefit those with or without serious medical conditions. What’s more, these benefits can be applied quite easily. All that’s called for is to submerge your feet and lower legs in water for about 20 – 30 minutes. However, longer dunks may afford additional benefits, such as regulating skin temperature in seniors with compromised circulation. The water temperature used in most of the published research ranges from approximately 104°F – 109 °F. In comparison, a hot tub or jacuzzi typically maintains a water temperature of about 104°F. So, perhaps they should be renamed “hot body baths”? And, now if you’ll excuse me, my (hot) foot bath awaits!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Strength and Conditioning in the Aging Athlete

by: Judah Boulet

Enhancing Longevity and sustainability in training

  1. Sleep: First and foremost, you want to have more optimal hormone levels, recover faster, achieve optimal health, live longer, etc, you need to sleep uninterrupted for 7-8 hours.
  2. Focus on eating a Nutrient Dense Diet of non-processed foods. Perfect place to start is with a Paleo diet, and then use that as a template.
  3. Consumption of enough calories to sustain training levels along with consumption of enough individual macronutrients to sustain the type of training/exercise you are performing (This is an individualized thing based on type of training, fitness goals, etc)
  4. Adaptability! Listen to your body. If you are feeling tired, beat up, etc, take it easy. If you are feeling full of piss and vinegar, get after it. Be able to adapt your training program (individually or through a coach) from day to day based on how you are feeling. A potentially more accurate way to listen to your body with what is going on physiologically with you is through monitoring your Heart Rate Variability (HRV). You need a heart rate monitor which can easily hook up to an app on your smartphone, such as Joel Jamison’s BioForce HRV or iThlete. If your HRV score is Red, and you have a killer session planned, adjustment of your training program for that day is needed. Utilization of a personal coach, whether remotely or in person, is extremely useful in this regard.
  5. Supplement wisely. This also is highly individualized based on training, goals, diet, etc.