Army Combat Fitness Test commentary

2 Comments

https://warontherocks.com/2018/10/dumb-and-dumber-the-armys-new-pt-test/

A couple of staff writers from a blog that have never taken the Army Combat Fitness Test saw fit to spew their opinions about it.

A disappointing and ignorant commentary.
More

Advertisements

Doctors: Acute and Chronic Conditions

Leave a comment

Dr. Austin Baraki is a medical doctor, strength coach, and competitive powerlifter. Here are his thoughts on dealing with tweaks, pains, strains, and other issues.

[During a routine barbell training session], I had programmed myself to work up to one heavy set of 5 on beltless pause squats. I worked up to 500×5 without any issues, and decent technique (other than too-short pauses).

However, after the set I began to feel significant low back pain, similar to prior “strains” and “tweaks” I’ve experienced. It persisted through the evening, overnight during sleep, and through the next day.

I didn’t panic, agonize over what could have happened, how I could have prevented it, or when I’m ever going to be able to lift again. I knew that sometimes these things just happen, maintained confidence that there wasn’t anything seriously wrong, and knew that it would improve on its own.

The next day, I began warming up for my 1.5” deficit deadlifts normally. I gradually worked up to this PR set of 5 with minimal symptoms during the set and no significant exacerbation afterwards.

Fear and Expectation have HUGE influence on symptoms and outcomes in people experiencing pain. One of the strongest predictors of who will improve the most/fastest are those who have the best expectations… NOT whether it’s your “SI” or “QL”, what type of manual therapy, stretching routine, or even what exercise program you do.

For someone experiencing pain, fear, and negative expectations (like expecting their pain to “flare up” in the gym), working them through a process like this under close guidance and reassurance shows them that they CAN, in fact, move without severe symptom exacerbation. This is known as Expectancy Violation, and is a useful tool in altering expectations and facilitating better outcomes.

Think back on your own experience: what thought processes/patterns do you have that might be influencing your symptoms and outcomes? Try to take control of them!

– Dr. Austin Baraki

View this post on Instagram

1.5” Deficit Deadlift PR: 560×5 😈 • On Thursday of this week’s training, I had programmed myself to work up to one heavy set of 5 on beltless pause squats (shown in second video). I worked up to 500×5 without any issues, and decent technique (other than too-short pauses). • However, after the set I began to feel significant low back pain, similar to prior “strains” and “tweaks” I’ve experienced. It persisted through the evening, overnight during sleep, and through the next day. • I didn’t panic, agonize over what could have happened, how I could have prevented it, or when I’m ever going to be able to lift again. I knew that sometimes these things just happen, maintained confidence that there wasn’t anything seriously wrong, and knew that it would improve on its own. • Fear and Expectation have HUGE influence on symptoms and outcomes in people experiencing pain. One of the strongest predictors of who will improve the most/fastest are those who have the best expectations … NOT whether it’s your “SI” or “QL”, what type of manual therapy, stretching routine, or even what exercise program you do. • The next day (today), I began warming up for my 1.5” deficit deadlifts normally. I gradually worked up to this PR set of 5 with minimal symptoms during the set and no significant exacerbation afterwards. • For someone experiencing pain, fear, and negative expectations (like expecting their pain to “flare up” in the gym), working them through a process like this under close guidance and reassurance shows them that they CAN, in fact, move without severe symptom exacerbation. This is known as Expectancy Violation, and is a useful tool in altering expectations and facilitating better outcomes. • Think back on your own experience: what thought processes/patterns do you have that might be influencing your symptoms and outcomes? Try to take control of them!

A post shared by Austin Baraki, MD (@austin_barbellmedicine) on

I don’t know if it’s meme-based medicine, a need to always have an answer when a patient asks, or ego that says they MUST know regardless of actual knowledge that causes this.

The medical profession overall is wonderful at dealing with trauma and medication-based solutions, and god-fucking-awful at dealing with chronic conditions – including aging – that aren’t readily routed around with a pill or injection.

There are a phenomenal number of doctors who have little knowledge of either weight training or nutrition and yet authoritatively opine to their patients complete nonsense on both topics rather than using that magical phrase “I don’t know.”

– Steve Klein

Army Combat Fitness/Readiness Test complaints

Leave a comment

Here is all you need to understand about the Army’s new ACRT/ACFT: Motivated and intelligent personnel that know how to train effectively will continue to get very good scores, just as before. Malingerers will complain and do poorly or fail, just as before.

Consider what the test is asking personnel to do. Here are the proposed standards as of July 31 2018: July 2018 proposed standards

The ACFT Field Testing Manual explains the standards.
https://www.military.com/sites/default/files/2018-09/Field%20testing%20manual.pdf
More

Why Weight Training Is Ridiculously Good For You

Leave a comment

Experts say it’s well past time to discard those antiquated notions of what resistance training can do for your physique and health. Modern exercise science shows that working with weights may be the best exercise for lifelong physical function and fitness.

“To me, resistance training is the most important form of training for overall health and wellness,” says Brad Schoenfeld, an assistant professor of exercise science at New York City’s Lehman College. During the past decade, Schoenfeld has published more than 30 academic papers on every aspect of resistance training—from the biomechanics of the push-up to the body’s nutrient needs following a hard lift. Many people think of weight training as exercise that augments muscle size and strength, which is certainly true. But Schoenfeld says the “load” that this form of training puts on bones and their supporting muscles, tendons and ligaments is probably a bigger deal when it comes to health and physical function.

“We talk about bone resorption, which is a decrease in bone tissue over time,” he says. When you’re young, bone resorption is balanced and in some cases exceeded by new bone tissue generation. But later in life, bone tissue losses accelerate and outpace the creation of new bone. That acceleration is especially pronounced among people who are sedentary and women who have reached or passed menopause, Schoenfeld says. This loss of bone tissue leads to the weakness and postural problems that plague many older adults.

Resistance training counteracts all those bone losses and postural deficits,” he says. Through a process known as bone remodeling, strength training stimulates the development of bone osteoblasts: cells that build bones back up. While you can achieve some of these bone benefits through aerobic exercise, especially in your lower body, resistance training is really the best way to maintain and enhance total-body bone strength.

More research links resistance training with improved insulin sensitivity among people with diabetes and prediabetes. One study published in the journal Diabetes Care found that twice-weekly training sessions helped control insulin swings (and body weight) among older men with type-2 diabetes. “Muscle is very metabolically active, and it uses glucose, or blood sugar, for energy,” says Mark Peterson, an assistant professor of physical medicine at the University of Michigan.

During a bout of resistance training, your muscles are rapidly using glucose, and this energy consumption continues even after you’ve finished exercising, Peterson says. For anyone at risk for metabolic conditions—type-2 diabetes, but also high blood pressure, unhealthy cholesterol levels and other symptoms of metabolic syndrome—strength training is among the most-effective remedies, he says.

Strength training also seems to be a potent antidote to inflammation, a major risk factor for heart disease and other conditions, says Schoenfeld. A 2010 study from the University of Connecticut linked regular resistance training with inflammation-quelling shifts in the body’s levels of cytokines, a type of immune system protein. Another study from Mayo Clinic found that when overweight women did twice-weekly resistance training sessions, they had significant drops in several markers of inflammation.

More research has linked strength training to improved focus and cognitive function, better balance, less anxiety and greater well-being.

If all that isn’t convincing enough to turn you onto weights, perhaps this is: maintaining strength later in life “seems to be one of the best predictors of survival,” says Peterson. “When we add strength…almost every health outcome improves.”“It used to be we thought of strength training as something for athletes,” he adds, “but now we recognize it as a seminal part of general health and well-being at all ages.”

Read more:
http://time.com/4803697/bodybuilding-strength-training/

http://threestormfitness.com/evidence-based-answers-to-fitness-and-nutrition-faqs/

Running Fast and Injury Free

Leave a comment

Running Fast and Injury Free
by Gordon Pirie

Gordon Pirie was a British long distance runner most famous for his silver medal at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics in the 5000 meters. The 1998 edition of the Guinness Book of Records lists Gordon Pirie under the Greatest Mileage entry, stating that he had run a total distance of 347,600 km (216,000 miles) in 40 years to 1981. That’s over 100 miles (160 km) a week every week for 40 years! The irony of this is Pirie gives three reasons why runners get injured, and one of them is too much “long slow distance” (LSD) mileage! In all fairness, he does believe in a balance of various types of running and to include strength training as a component.

Running Fast and Injury Free is partly biographical and partly an outline of Pirie’s training approach. From the introduction:

“In the last 45 years, I have participated in three Olympic Games (winning a Silver Medal in the 5,000 metre race at the 1956 Melbourne Games), and have set five official world records (and a dozen or so more unofficial world bests). I have faced and beaten most of the greatest athletes of my time, and have run to date nearly a quarter of a million miles. Along the way, I have coached several of Great Britain and New Zealand’s best runners some of whom have set their own world records. In addition, I aided the late Adolf (Adi) Dassler (founder of Adidas) in developing spiked racing shoes, on which most of today’s good designs are based. This brief list of some of my accomplishments is presented in order to lend credibility to what follows”.

Pirie lists what he considered the three biggest causes of injury among runners. First, few runners know how to run correctly. Improper technique puts undue strain on the feet, ankles, knees, back and hips, and makes injury inevitable. Second, most running shoes today are designed and constructed that make correct technique impossible (and therefore cause chronic injuries) due to a misconception that a runner should land on his or her heels and then roll forward to the front of the foot with each stride. In designing their shoes, most shoe companies fall prey to this incorrect assumption. Third , is an over-emphasis on mileage in training, especially “long slow distance” (LSD). Without the constant maintenance of a proper balance in training including sprinting, interval training, weights, hills and long-running – a runner’s body simply will not adapt to the stresses it encounters on a day to day basis.

His recommendations on strength training are especially interesting. He devoted an entire chapter to weight training.

A race is an all-out effort over a short period of minutes or seconds. The aim of weight training for runners is to simulate as closely as possible the movements used in running their special event, and hence the demands which racing makes on the body. In this way, the body’s strength can be developed, with an emphasis on ensuring that the body is balanced in strength, and not lopsided with one side stronger than the other, as commonly occurs because most people are either right- or left-handed. A runner should be equally strong in both sides of the body – left and right – and have balanced strength between the front and back of the body… Many of the runners who decry the positive effects of weight training have gained their superior strength with the assistance of a good Doctor or Chemist. Others – like Sebastian Coe and Steve Scott – are open about the significant role that weight training has played in their training… You should aim to work to at least two-thirds or more of your body weight with bar-bells. The ultimate test is to be able to lift the equivalent of your own body weight over your head. When you can do this, you will be strong enough for running events.

Before I began weight training, I was a long distance and cross country runner who could grind it out with anyone, but a constant loser in a sprint. A diet of hard weights, however, turned me
into a complete competitor, one who could pour on the pace and still sprint madly at the finish.

Before getting onto the specifics of an effective weight-training protocol, here are some general guidelines about fitting weights into your overall programme:

How often should one do weight-training?
Every second or third day is about right, along with a full running programme (curtail your weights several days before a race). Your weight training should also continue through the height of the racing season. Do not give away all the good training you have done just when you need the greatest amount of strength.

How hard should the weight-training be?
There are two types of weight sessions: (1) a full-out session in which you do all and every exercise as hard as you can; and (2) an easier session with half-dosages of fewer exercises. It is not uncommon for a tired runner to feel much fitter after a moderate session with the weights. These sessions seem to flush out your muscles. On the other hand, the full-out, go-for-it, maximum sessions tend to put the body down a bit, and numb it for a while; so those sessions should never be attempted near to a race day (say within six days). The body does cope easily with easy routines, however, and I sometimes even find that a few exercises with strong weights before a three-hour running session can bring fantastic strength into the running, making it feel much easier. I have always found my best running fitness – when I was able to set world records and finish races in stunning fashion – to be absolutely tied in with my best form with the weights. The stronger I was at grappling with the weights (combined with a lot of hard running), the better I was on race day.

Pirie is basically describing a HLM (Heavy-Light-Medium) template, 2-3 times per week, recommending to warm up light and then ramp up to a weight you can handle with good form for about six repetitions and then increase in each session in a steady, programmed manner from there. Free weights are ideal and lifts specifically recommended include presses (working up to pressing a barbell loaded to bodyweight over head), rows (using 2/3 bodyweight and increasing from there), cleans, deadlifts (starting at bodyweight and increasing from there), and chin ups. This is very similar to the advice given by noted strength coach and competitive lifter, Bill Starr.

Running Fast and Injury Free
by Gordon Pirie
Free download:
https://www.scribd.com/document/13695/Gordon-Pirie-s-Running-Fast-and-Injury-Free/

https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-5k-not-the-marathon-is-the-ideal-race/

Endurance Race: Safety and Participation

Leave a comment

About 2,500 Boston Marathon runners receive medical treatment

Boston Globe, April 16, 2018
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2018/04/16/marathon-runners-treated-for-injuries-wellesley/JhQbVspqLwJEy4XFKjvULI/story.html

The food, drinks, coffee, and roaring fire in the building’s front room took on a more serious purpose as more than 50 injured competitors streamed in, many suffering from symptoms of hypothermia.

“It’s just become this impromptu shelter for running refugees,” said associate pastor Ashley Murphy, who lives nearby and had already raided her pantry and linen closet for food, towels, and dry clothes.

More than 2,500 runners, including 25 elite athletes, received medical treatment, race organizers said. Eighty-one runners were taken to the hospital.

Given 29,978 runners registered for the 2018 Boston Marathon (and they had to pre-qualify to be accepted), this is more than a 8.3% casualty rate. Contrast this to the injury rates common at shooting or strength sport events, which are comparatively non-existant.

So why do endurance sports enjoy positive attention? The stats continue to show why non-shooting events receive attention while shooting events do not.
https://firearmusernetwork.com/tag/participation-rates/

29,978 runners registered for the 2018 Boston Marathon, supported by 9,500 volunteers, over 500,000 spectators, and $830,500 in prizes. There were another 10,000 participants at the BAA 5K around the Boston Common held just before.
The 2018 Boston Marathon: By The Numbers by Kurt Badenhausen, Forbes Magazine
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kurtbadenhausen/2018/04/16/the-boston-marathon-2018-by-the-numbers/#7ccf034b31d6

Contrast this to participation rates at shooting or strength sport events and you’ll have your answer.

Businesses That Prefer You Don’t Return

Leave a comment

Serious athletes and others genuinely interested in and committed to improved physical performance focus on improving fundamentals. The basic, boring – but difficult – things that make people better. That’s why most commercial gyms specifically focus on not catering to them.

Low-priced gyms are the most extreme example of this. Planet Fitness, which charges between $10 and $20 per month, has, on average, 6,500 members per gym. Most of its gyms can hold around 300 people. Planet Fitness can do this because it knows that members won’t show up.

A gym with people truly interested in getting strong would look more like this:

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2014/12/17/371463435/episode-590-the-planet-money-workout

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2014/12/30/373996649/why-we-sign-up-for-gym-memberships-but-don-t-go-to-the-gym

Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: