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  1. #1
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    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise

    Outdoor workouts left women in a better mood and kept them exercising longer than counterparts who exercised indoors


    Older Women Who Exercise Outdoors More Likely to Stick with It - Scientific American


    This was also interesting too: Running may reverse aging in certain ways while walking does not

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/1...ay-young/?_r=2
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    Good stuff. Running/jogging makes a good cross-train in the winter as well. Certainly makes me feel younger than my strength-only coworkers
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    I've only tried a few times in my life to do indoor exercise, and they were pretty much dismal failures for me. There's something about being out there in touch with the weather and environment that feels great and is habit-forming.

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    Fresh air, sunshine, sensory stimulation.... makes sense why outdoors is better
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  5. #5
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    Exactly. I fix gym equipment all day but will not have an indoor membership because I ride outside.
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    Don't mind me interloping in the lounge. I think the mental stimulation aspect can't be overlooked. In a gym you workout, but you're brain does not. It impacts (I think) the quality of your workout and doesn't provide any mental relaxation or stimulation. I get pumped up for work on my ride in and use the ride home to switch gears so I can be present for my family. Just one opinion.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    Don't mind me interloping in the lounge. I think the mental stimulation aspect can't be overlooked. In a gym you workout, but you're brain does not. It impacts (I think) the quality of your workout and doesn't provide any mental relaxation or stimulation. I get pumped up for work on my ride in and use the ride home to switch gears so I can be present for my family. Just one opinion.
    If you are doing an exercise correctly... thinking through the movements and you are pushing yourself accordingly it does require good concentration. Visualization of the movement or activity is a form of stimulation.

    And on that note: Exercise will help cognitively in the long run.

    Data show just how much exercise can lower Alzheimer?s risk - The Globe and Mail

    I'm a firm believer that exercise will improve cognition and QoL because I've seen improvement in patient's where dementias like Alzheimer slows down when exercise (as simple as pole walking takes balance and physical mental coordination) is introduced I want to keep riding or do some other form of exercise for as long as possible
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    Going to the gym just usually puts me in a worse mood than I was before I got there lol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    If you are doing an exercise correctly... thinking through the movements and you are pushing yourself accordingly it does require good concentration. Visualization of the movement or activity is a form of stimulation.

    And on that note: Exercise will help cognitively in the long run.

    Data show just how much exercise can lower Alzheimer?s risk - The Globe and Mail

    I'm a firm believer that exercise will improve cognition and QoL because I've seen improvement in patient's where dementias like Alzheimer slows down when exercise (as simple as pole walking takes balance and physical mental coordination) is introduced I want to keep riding or do some other form of exercise for as long as possible
    I should probably write more specifically the first go round. Not suggesting that the mind is idle in the Gym, just that there are fewer surprises and less changing sensory stimuli (differing sights, sounds, smells...) inside than out. I do think pushing the same pace on a stationary bike or treadmill requires much higher total concentration than riding or running outdoors. Not sure why, but it's easier for me to lose focus on my workout goal inside than out.

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    I think running on a treadmill is harder than natural running because it is more reactive and less momentum feel than real running. Not less workout but a different control regime that takes an art to master.

    One type of treadmill I saw a while ago(I see a lot of them) actually had a speed calibrated visual on the screen in front of you for a choice of your "running environment' like city or farmland or beach. Even pictured pedestrians and cars. Novel.
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    I agree with mtbexplorer - I just cannot get myself motivated to go to the gym. I've tried but I just get bored and I would use any excuse available not to go. But, even when I'm sick and it's bitter cold outside, I still want to be out on my bike. I love the fresh air and the challenge and solitude.
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    Quote Originally Posted by petey15 View Post
    I agree with mtbexplorer - I just cannot get myself motivated to go to the gym. I've tried but I just get bored and I would use any excuse available not to go. But, even when I'm sick and it's bitter cold outside, I still want to be out on my bike. I love the fresh air and the challenge and solitude.
    biking with out other exercise will lead to some pretty severe muscle imbalances. These imbalances will result in some very painful conditions. To alleviate these imbalances specific exercises are required. Normally more than three times a week.

    I encourage all serious bikers to engage in a serious strengthing program.

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    Anyway who has ever done a Sufferfest vid will know that it takes intense concentration and mental exercise to get through it.

    I'm not a gym fan either, or didn't used to be, until I found a program/class that I really connected with. It's changed up all the time, it's fun, it's challenging, it makes me stronger for all my other sports and in a lot of cases takes less time than getting out to a trail ride. No, it's not Crossfit.

    Balance is good.

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    Re: Some recent studies about fitness and exercise

    Quote Originally Posted by jeffscott View Post
    biking with out other exercise will lead to some pretty severe muscle imbalances. These imbalances will result in some very painful conditions. To alleviate these imbalances specific exercises are required. Normally more than three times a week.

    I encourage all serious bikers to engage in a serious strengthing program.
    +1
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    Quote Originally Posted by supersedona View Post
    I think running on a treadmill is harder than natural running because it is more reactive and less momentum feel than real running. Not less workout but a different control regime that takes an art to master.

    One type of treadmill I saw a while ago(I see a lot of them) actually had a speed calibrated visual on the screen in front of you for a choice of your "running environment' like city or farmland or beach. Even pictured pedestrians and cars. Novel.
    I agree running on a treadmill is harder... it's mind numbingly boring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kinsler View Post
    I agree running on a treadmill is harder... it's mind numbingly boring.
    This!
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    After a getting off my dirt bike (Motorcross) in a very bad way the therapy at the YMCA fixed me up. I stuck with it for a year, the people were nice but everyone was plugged into something and most never said a word. So many just wen't through the motions and got no where.

    Had a stationary bike once, hated it, it's gone.

    Outside, Intense, point of failure workouts test my metal and help me fight off the grave without putting me to sleep :P
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    I bought myself a membership to the YMCA thinking that the spin classes was where I would spend my time in the winter months. I realized that I get plenty of "spin time" on my bike, even some days in the winter when the weather is pleasant. So I mostly attend classes like "Boot Camp" and "Athletic Conditioning" and Yoga that offer workouts that focus on working the whole body. Classes are where it's at for me- exercising with a group and mixing it up keeps the boredom away. If I just went to the gym to walk on the treadmill or used the weight machines I would never be able to force myself to go.
    But I put my membership on hold this summer, because if the weather is nice I am outside hiking or biking.
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    Quote Originally Posted by catsruletn View Post
    Going to the gym just usually puts me in a worse mood than I was before I got there lol.
    Just yesterday, my trainer and I were talking about how awful the other local gym is.

    I work with her in a very tiny, but very clean facility with big windows, and we get outside a lot during training sessions. Usually it's just the two of us. Makes a huge difference. I think I'd feel the same way (worse mood after) if I went to any of the other gyms around here.

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    I saw a group of women (mostly pregnant) pushing strollers walking fast down a local street and stop at the corner and do a full stretch routine and then continue on. I was struck by the ability of these women to put this social group together to support their desire for fitness. It gets harder as you age to develop this relationship that allows you to be active as a group. When you are young, almost everyone is active to some degree, but as your group becomes more time constrained or fragile it seems like you can't find anyone to ride/hike/climb/ski with. Forums are a good way to take care of that problem. Cheers
    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Outdoor workouts left women in a better mood and kept them exercising longer than counterparts who exercised indoors


    Older Women Who Exercise Outdoors More Likely to Stick with It - Scientific American


    This was also interesting too: Running may reverse aging in certain ways while walking does not

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/1...ay-young/?_r=2

  21. #21
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    Good read about the importance of balance...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/07/op...=fb-share&_r=0

    Some significance:

    Improving coordination, agility and balance aka “gross motor skills” —you also enhance cognitive performance because it rewires your brain in ways that are fundamentally different from straightforward aerobic activity or strength training.
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  22. #22
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    ^^Interesting article, cyclelicious, thanks for sharing. I was pretty surprised by the results of the small study involving xc skiers.

  23. #23
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    FWIW I use the gym in shoulder seasons/bad weather to work on stuff that doesn't get as much work during bike season, like upper bod and leg adductor/abductor exercises. May as well make lemonade....

    Ideally I'm XC skiing in the winter, but this year in the NW we really didn't have winter. So it was all gym or rollers for months. It really sucked not having snow but I think being a little worried I overcompensated to some degree and I'm having a pretty strong season this year so far.

    Anyway, I notice in a lot of these examples you've got groups of people exercising together. Bluntly: I HATE that. Working out is my alonetherapy, be it in the gym or on skis or on my bike, and I feel profoundly refreshed after breathing hard with only my own brain's frantic flail slowly whittling down to 60 cycle hum to keep me company. So... as usual, YMMV.
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    I can not do indoor gyms they bore me and I don't fit in with the people that use them. Outdoor activities are the best by far. When I am MTB, Climbing, or snowboarding I am only thinking about what is going on NOW living in the NOW. It's a really good way to destress.

    Even Yoga is better done outside. Eating an apple is better outside. Life is better spent outside.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffscott View Post
    biking with out other exercise will lead to some pretty severe muscle imbalances. These imbalances will result in some very painful conditions. To alleviate these imbalances specific exercises are required. Normally more than three times a week.

    I encourage all serious bikers to engage in a serious strengthening program.
    I'm 66 and started weight training in February, with a trainer. He's been lifting for over 30 years, is a massage therapist and teaches anatomy. It has been a slow, steady progression. No injuries, total emphasis on correct form and knowing how to keep this correct form while transitioning to harder moves and heavier weights and WHEN to move to the harder moves and heavier weights -- because he has an amazing knowledge of how the body works.

    I can't even imagine where I would be if I'd tried this on my own.

    I tried running on a treadmill once. When I felt my soul attempting to leave my body after about 30 seconds, I knew it wasn't for me.
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  26. #26
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    More proof that physical activity as you age is a very good thing

    Can Everyday Biking Keep Us Young? | Momentum Mag
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    Recent article on how to succeed at interval training


    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-29well_physed-tmagarticle.jpg

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/0..._1=177284&_r=0
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Recent article on how to succeed at interval training

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/0..._1=177284&_r=0
    Good article!

    However, imma be laughing at that while I'm toiling up the local ridge system. Interspersed 25-30% grades = 'natural intervals'.
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  29. #29
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    Fitter legs are linked to fitter brain .

    Researchers at King's College London have found that muscle fitness as measured by power in the legs is strongly associated with an improved rate of aging in the brain.


    Fitter legs linked to a 'fitter' brain

    The tl;dr version

    Generally, the twin who had more leg power at the start of the study sustained their cognition better and had fewer brain changes associated with aging measured after ten years.

    Previous studies have shown that physical activity can have a beneficial effect on the aging of the brain with animal studies showing that exercising muscles releases hormones that can encourage nerve cells to grow.

    More studies are needed to better understand the relationships between measures of fitness such as leg power or aerobic capacity and brain changes, and the specific cause-and-effect of physical activity on brain structure and cognition.
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  30. #30
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    Thanks for the artical! My brain needs all the help it can get...lol!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzle View Post
    Thanks for the artical! My brain needs all the help it can get...lol!
    I hear you! I totally wrote my most in-depth post on MTBR after a strenuous crossfit class then going for a good bike ride. If I continue with the training maybe my posts will become more and more in depth until I spend more time posting then living. eek!
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    Good stuff, cyclicious! Visited my 84yo Dad last week, he's doing well but having some memory issues, so this one interested me.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Recent article on how to succeed at interval training


    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	29well_physed-tmagArticle.jpg 
Views:	74 
Size:	32.0 KB 
ID:	1009926

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/0..._1=177284&_r=0
    Thank you! So much awesomeness in that article! Even tho I don't have dogs, I loved this:
    You can undertake the program solo, too, or, as I have, with dogs. They are likely to be enthusiasts. This is how they always have run.
    We don't really have too much relentless winter in Texas, but I'm going to add this workout into my ride or on my trainer on rainy days.

    I also had a Chris Carmichael video that came with my Cycle Ops trainer, maybe 13 years ago and I really loved to do this workout on the exercise bike at the gym. It was designed for mountain bike racers, to simulate those max efforts where you don't quite get full recovery.

    The first part is a 5-4-3-2-1 cycle. So to start, 5 minutes, alternating each 30 seconds with heavy effort, then 30 seconds of lighter effort, but harder than a recovery effort, then one minute easy spin recovery.

    Then 4 minutes alternating 30 seconds hard effort with 30 seconds of relatively lighter effort, then 1 minute easy recovery spin and so on for 3 minutes, then 2 minutes, then one minute.

    Then take about two minutes (or more) easy spin for a nice recovery.

    Part 2 is 2 minutes hard effort and 2 minutes relatively easier effort, but slightly harder than a recovery effort. I think there were 5 of those efforts, but the total workout time for the whole thing was between 50 and 60 minutes. At the end, easy recovery spin for however long it takes to get your hard rate low.

    Harder effort and greater than recovery effort is determined by being able to complete the workout. If you go out too hard at the beginning, you won't be able to sustain when called on for hard efforts through out the workout, so I had to work on finding what level of hard effort I could sustain when called on to do so throughout the workout.

    There are various ways to tweak this workout. You might want to use higher RPMs, lower RPMs or however you want to use it.


    The point of the workout is to stimulate the hard efforts in mountain biking when you don't really get recovery afterwards. This is typical in racing efforts but true as well for a day on the trail.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Now, just to fix the bloody diet..
    Stripes, MyFitnessPal.com and done. Tracks calories and exercise.
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    Quote Originally Posted by June Bug View Post
    Stripes, MyFitnessPal.com and done. Tracks calories and exercise.
    yep.
    I was amazed at what I found out about what I thought was my "healthy" diet.

  36. #36
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    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise

    Well sure it's not going to offer healthy alternatives. All it gives is data. But if you are trying to learn how to eat better you are armed with information. How much protein am I eating ? What is my salt intake? What is my fat intake? If one can see that your diet is 40% fat, one has that info to do something with.
    My gym had a little class on nutrition and fitness. I came out of it with a lot of simple guidelines on fat, carbs, proteins with tips on how to eat before and after working out. I could then take that info and directly correlate it into the info from MFP.

    The app is not going to tell me when I make bad choices. It's up to me to evaluate portion size and nutritional value. It will just tell me that the bowl of ice cream with hot fudge sauce (or a turkey and cheese sandwich on whole wheat) may blow my daily desired intakes out of the water -with numbers.

    And just because I earned an extra 3500 calories with a 70 mile road ride doesn't mean I should pig out at dinner, either.
    Last edited by formica; 12-04-2015 at 11:09 PM.

  37. #37
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    Leg Cramps

    A leg cramp (or any cramp for that matter) can be caused by a variety of internal issues. They are not caused by an outside force, unlike cuts and bruises.

    There are cases when leg cramps can only indicate that one needs more water or certain nutrients. However, there are situations when these indicate some more serious problems, like a kidney infection. What is important to consider is that although cramping happens to everyone, all of our bodies are different, so in case of frequent cramps, you should consult your doctor.

    People engaged in moderate or intense activities for long periods of time are simply dehydrated, and can avoid cramps by simply drinking some warm water. Warm water is recommended because its temperature closely resembles the temperature of our blood, and can be absorbed into dehydrated muscles much quicker the cold water.

    Moreover, if one experiences frequent leg cramps, the consumption of an increased amount of electrolytes is recommended. Electrolytes give almost immediate results. Namely, they are like mini masseuses in the body that work with warm water to loosen up tight muscles.

    How to Prevent Leg Cramps

    Hydration can be a great start in cases of cramps, but sometimes our bodies need more than just water. The body requires specific nutrients and minerals that cannot be provided by water and electrolytes.

    Leg cramps that are caused by dehydration are usually a result of low potassium or high sodium. Potassium is a mineral that is great for preventing cramps, for it interacts with sodium in the body to direct and control liquids. Apart from being able to protect you from cramps, potassium can also act as a cramp relieving agent.

    The consumption of foods that are rich in potassium while your leg (or any part of your body) is cramping, can provide a quick relief. When potassium enters the digestive system it helps by directing the fluids to the affected area.

    In addition, one of the best minerals for preventing leg cramps is magnesium. If electrolytes are the masseuse, then magnesium is the massage oil. One should consume about 250-300 milligrams of magnesium a day to avoid cramps, for the human body uses magnesium rapidly.

    Fish, quinoa, dark chocolate, spinach, molasses, nuts, lentils, pumpkin seeds and prepared potatoes, are all foods high in magnesium.


    Sauce: How To Prevent Leg Cramps, And How To Never Get Leg Cramps Again - Healthy Food House
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  38. #38
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    I run between 5 to 10km in total per week (weather permitting). On average, my runs are relatively short but usually intense so this article about recent studies peaked my interest.

    Ask Well: How Many Miles a Week Should I Run?

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/1...ntlAudDev&_r=0
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    Why Doing Squats Might be Good for Your Brain

    WEDNESDAY, Nov. 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Having powerful legs might empower your brain as you grow older, researchers report.

    A 10-year British study concluded that leg strength is strongly linked with healthier brain aging. Also, the King’s College London team said the findings suggest that simply walking more to improve leg force and speed could help maintain brain function as you age.

    The study included 324 healthy female twins, aged 43 to 73, in the United Kingdom. Their thinking, learning and memory were tested at the start and end of the study.

    The researchers found that leg strength was a better predictor of brain health than any other lifestyle factor looked at in the study. Generally, the twin with more leg strength at the start of the study maintained her mental abilities better and had fewer age-related brain changes than the twin with weaker legs, the study found.

    “Everyone wants to know how best to keep their brain fit as they age. Identical twins are a useful comparison, as they share many factors, such as genetics and early life, which we can’t change in adulthood,” study lead author Claire Steves, a senior lecturer in twin research, said in a college news release.

    “It’s compelling to see such differences in cognition [thinking] and brain structure in identical twins, who had different leg power 10 years before,” Steves added. “It suggests that simple lifestyle changes to boost our physical activity may help to keep us both mentally and physically healthy.”

    The results were published Nov. 9 in the journal Gerontology.

    Previous research has shown that physical activity can help brain health as people get older. And, animal studies have found that exercise releases hormones that can encourage nerve cell growth, the study authors noted.

    The mechanisms behind this association aren’t clear and could involve other factors such as age-related changes in immune function, blood circulation or nerve signaling, the researchers said.

    Also, the research did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship between leg strength and brain health.

    Further studies are needed to learn more about the potential link between leg strength and healthy brain aging, and to determine if the findings also apply to men, Steves said.

    Why Doing Squats Might be Good for Your Brain - Health News and Views - Health.com

  40. #40
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    Over all, Dr. Lavie says, the best advice based on the latest science is that for most of us, “running for 20 to 30 minutes, or about a mile-and-a-half to three miles, twice per week would appear to be perfect.”
    What is "running"? Anyone want to tell me the where "running" turns to "jogging" turns to "walking" event horizon is? No experiential BS, just minutes per mile (and maybe your total body mass).
    I probably fit the "crawling" definition! but a "fit" crawling like the pub run specialists. Try to run a 6 minute mile with 5 pints of ale aboard.
    Same with squats. How many honest squats/period with % of body mass? I don't understand how you can do publish a study and not include that empirical data.
    Twin studies are over rated. i recently read an article whereby identical twins separated early grew in different environments to become a fascist and a communist.
    who dove thunk it?

  41. #41
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    i think jumping is the key, even with a squat or lunge movement.
    They should do a study of dancing and non-dancing twins!

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Great! I'll keep squatting. Even body weight squats are awesome If you want a challenge, hold your squat at the bottom for 5 seconds and then see how many body weight ones you can do (trust me, that will change it).

    It's my go to leg exercise since the leg press hurts my back, and it's something I can do anywhere with limited space.

    Lunges are good too, but I really suck at those. So split squats (a variation on the squat) is another good one for those who want some variety for leg exercises.

    And all these help with power for mountain biking.
    I spend a lot of time in hotel rooms, and body weight squats are a great part of a hotel room workout. And burpies.

    I'm the opposite. When squats are in my workout, I figure its a matter of time before I tweak my back. After it's tweaked, I go to leg presses, which I can do even with a hurt back.

  43. #43
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    Squats use almost the entire body.

    The muscles engaged in squats are mainly:
    Gluteus Maximus (glutes), Quadriceps (quads), Hamstrings
    Secondary Muscles (Synergists/Stabilizers)
    Erector Spinae, Transverse Abdominus, Gluteus medius/minimus (Abductors), Adductors, Soleus, Gastrocnemius

    For back squats, holding a heavy bar in place on your shoulders will engage almost every muscle in your arms to keep it steady. ... Back squats, don't work the chest much, but isometric contraction of the upper back, shoulders and lats are required to hold the bar in place. Shrug the weight when you stand up. You will engage the chest and shoulders.

    Front squats engage the core more. Make sure elbows are up, and the bar stays high on your rack. Go deep

    I've been doing a lot of squat variation exercises while recovering from severe injuries. The overall results are remarkable and as I'm getting closer to my pre-injury PRs (C&J, snatch, deadlifts, etc) My form, core strength, balance etc have improved
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  44. #44
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    When squats are in my workout, I figure its a matter of time before I tweak my back. After it's tweaked, I go to leg presses, which I can do even with a hurt back.
    If you are tweaking your back with squats -
    you are overdoing it or
    you need to be lots more core work or
    you are doing them wrong.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by formica View Post
    If you are tweaking your back with squats -
    you are overdoing it or
    you need to be lots more core work or
    you are doing them wrong.
    Or I'm too old.

    I was a competitive powerlifter for a long time. Now I'm 55. I'm still strong, but my spine isn't keeping up with my muscles any more. So I guess you could call that over doing it.

  46. #46
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    I'm 55. I regularly do supersets/pyramids (1-10-1) of body weight squats, burpees, pushups, and other stuff. I typically don't hurt myself. The trick is to quit before you hurt. No, I'm not a crossfitter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smilinsteve View Post
    Or I'm too old.

    I was a competitive powerlifter for a long time. Now I'm 55. I'm still strong, but my spine isn't keeping up with my muscles any more. So I guess you could call that over doing it.

    Probably lack of core strength...specifically the erector spinae and the abs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Not everyone's joints can handle the impact from jumping.
    I fall into this category. I have super bad knees. That's why honestly cycling is my only sport because it doesn't hurt my knees. I do do some core work and body weight squats for those other muscles that aren't involved in cycling. But definitely no jumping. 8 years of gymnastics and alpine skiing did my knees in.

  49. #49
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    For those who run, or crosstrain and run


    How many miles a week should I run? Surprisingly few, according to a new review of studies related to running and health, jogging. The studies found five or six miles per week ( 8 to 10 km) could substantially improve someone’s health.

    One study Effects of Running on Chronic Diseases and Cardiovascular and All-Cause Mortality. - PubMed - NCBI Over all, Dr. Lavie says, the best advice based on the latest science is that for most of us, “running for 20 to 30 minutes, or about a mile-and-a-half to three miles, twice per week would appear to be perfect.”

    NewYorkTimes sauce: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/1...ntlAudDev&_r=0
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  50. #50
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    Not research per se... but a simple nifty, info graph (click to enlarge if necessary) showing what happens to your body when you ride

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-onehourcycling.jpg
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    On a somewhat more scientific level

    http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/sgr/pdf/chap3.pdf

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffscott View Post
    On a somewhat more scientific level

    http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/sgr/pdf/chap3.pdf
    Ew, look at the chart on pg 75! I always thought puberty was an enormous ripoff, glad someone has scientifically proven that I was right! :P

  53. #53
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    Is Your Workout Not Working? Maybe You’re a Non-Responder

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-03responder-exercise-master768.jpg

    Is your workout getting you nowhere?

    Research and lived experience indicate that many people who begin a new Exercise program see little if any improvement in their health and fitness even after weeks of studiously sticking with their new routine.

    Among fitness scientists, these people are known as “nonresponders.” Their bodies simply don’t respond to the exercise they are doing. And once discouraged, they often return to being nonexercisers.

    But an inspiring and timely new study suggests that nonresponders to one form of exercise can probably switch to another exercise regimen to which their body will respond. And a simple test you can do at home will help you determine how well your workout is working for you.

    One of the first major studies to report the phenomenon of nonresponders appeared in 2001, when researchers parsed data from dozens of previously published studies of running, cycling and other endurance exercise.


    The studies showed that, on aggregate, endurance training increased people’s endurance. But when the researchers examined individual outcomes, the variations were staggering. Some people had improved their endurance by as much as 100 percent, while others had actually become less fit, even though they were following the same workout routine.

    Age, sex and ethnicity had not mattered, the researchers noted. Young people and old had been outliers, as had women and men, black volunteers and white. Interestingly, nonresponse to endurance training ran in families, the researchers discovered, suggesting that genetics probably plays a significant role in how people’s bodies react to exercise.

    Since then, other researchers have found that people can have extremely erratic reactions to weight training regimens, with some packing on power and mass and others losing both.

    And a studypublished last year concentrating on brief bouts of intense interval training concluded that some people barely gained endurance with this type of workout, while others flourished, greatly augmenting their fitness.

    These studies, however, were not generally designed to tell us whether someone who failed to benefit from one form of exercise might do well with another.

    So for the new experiment, which was published in December in the journal PLOS One, researchers from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, and the University of Ottawa decided to focus intently on whether a nonresponder to one form of exercise could benefit by switching to another.

    They began by gathering 21 healthy men and women and determining their VO2 max, a measure of how much oxygen the lungs can deliver to the muscles; heart rates; and other physiological parameters related to aerobic fitness.

    Then they had each volunteer complete two very different types of workouts. Each training regimen lasted three weeks, and the researchers waited several months before starting the next regimen, so that volunteers could return to their baseline fitness.

    One three-week routine involved typical endurance training: riding a stationary bicycle four times a week for 30 minutes at a moderately strenuous pace.

    The second type of exercise revolved around high-intensity intervals. Each volunteer completed eight 20-second intervals of very hard pedaling on a stationary bicycle, with 10 seconds of rest after each bout. The intervals were brutal but brief.

    At the end of each three-week session, the researchers again checked each volunteer’s VO2 max and other fitness measures.

    As a group, they had gained admirable amounts of fitness from both workouts and to about the same extent.

    But individually, the responses varied considerably.

    About a third of the people had failed to show much if any improvement in one of the measures of fitness after three weeks of endurance training. Similarly, about a third had not improved their fitness much with interval training. And after each type of workout, some participants were found to be in worse shape.

    A majority of the participants, in other words, had failed to respond as expected after one of the workouts.

    But, importantly, no one had failed to respond at all. Every man and woman had measurably improved his or her fitness in some way after one of the sessions, if not the other.

    Those who had shown little response to endurance training generally showed a robust improvement after the interval sessions, and vice versa.

    These data suggest that “there is no one-size-fits-all approach to exercise,” says Brendon Gurd, an associate professor of kinesiology at Queen’s University who oversaw the study. “But it does seem as if there is some size that fits everyone.”

    The question is how to determine which form of exercise best fits you.

    The answer, Dr. Gurd says, is simple trial and error.

    Before beginning a new exercise routine, he says, measure your fitness. You can do this by briskly walking up several flights of stairs or quickly stepping onto and off a box three or four times. Then check your pulse. This is your baseline number.

    Now start working out. Walk. Jog. Attend interval training or spin classes.

    After about a month, Dr. Gurd says, repeat the stair or step test. Your pulse rate should be slower now. Your workout sessions should also be feeling easier.

    If not, you may be a nonresponder to your current exercise routine.

    In that case, switch things up, Dr. Gurd recommends. If you have primarily been walking, maybe try sprinting up a few flights of stairs and walking back down, which is a simple form of interval training.

    Or if you have been exercising with intervals and feeling no fitter, perhaps jog for a month or two.

    The message he hopes people will glean from his and other studies of exercise nonresponders “is not that you shouldn’t bother exercising because exercise might not help you,” Dr. Gurd says. “It does help everyone, once you find your own best exercise.”


    If you have access to NewYorkTimes or subscription here's the link including comments
    Sauce:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/03/we...responder.html
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  54. #54
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    Great article, cyclelicious!
    "...Some local fiend had built it with his own three hands..."

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    At the risk of seeming like I'm hanging out at the women's lounge: With men it's not being a non-responder it's a mainly being a beer aficionado that gets in the way.

  56. #56
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    Think about the children


    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-firstbike-june2011-istockphoto.jpg

    For children, exercise may help stave off depression

    One more reason to make your kids put down screens and go play outside.

    Multiple studies have found a link between physical activity and lower rates of depression in adults and teens. Now, researchers have shown the same correlation exists for children as young as 6.

    In a study published in this month’s journal Pediatrics, researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology tracked nearly 800 children for two years, beginning when they were six years old.

    The children’s parents were interviewed about their children’s mental health. Accelerometers were used to measure each child’s physical activity.

    Consistent with previous studies of adults and teenagers, the researchers found that two years later, the physically active kids had fewer symptoms of depression.

    “This is important to know, because it may suggest that physical activity can be used to prevent and treat depression already in childhood,” Silje Steinsbekk, associate professor in the Norwegian University of Science and Technology department of psychology, said in a release. While physical activity that makes a kid sweaty or out of breath was linked with a decreased likelihood of showing depressive symptoms, the researchers found no evidence to suggest that having signs of depressive symptoms leads to inactivity.

    The conclusion parents should draw from the study is clear, the researchers say: don’t only limit a kid’s screen time. They need to be getting moderate to vigorous physical activity.

    In Canada, the more reasons there are to encourage kids to play, and to give caregivers an extra nudge to get them out the door, the better.

    Clearly, the message isn’t resonating for a majority of children across the country, despite the fact that there is already ample evidence for the many benefits of physical activity, from lowering the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes to boosting their self-esteem.

    A mere 9 per cent of Canadian kids between the ages of 5 and 17 get the recommended one hour of heart-pumping physical activity each day, according to ParticipAction’s latest report card on physical activity for children and youth. Although this new study from Norway was only able to prove a correlation between physical activity and depression, not causation, it is still one more reason on a long and growing list of why we should all be doing our best to make sure children spend more time playing.

    Sauce: For children, exercise may help stave off depression - The Globe and Mail
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  57. #57
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    National Public Radio just had an article about how working at a computer all day used sugar from the bloodstream making people hungry constantly. That effect can be offset by walking vigorously on a regular basis (causing the body to convert more sugar for use by the brain). Since most work places are not set up for this, I suspect the health trend in offices won’t change any time soon.

  58. #58
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    Exercise Proves Key to Preventing Breast Cancer Recurrence

    (Physical activity can reduce the risk by 40 percent, new research shows)

    This is great news. As a breast cancer survivor , myself, this research supports my efforts to heal, recover and stay active and healthy. I was diagnosed and treated at Sunnybrook Hospital and participated in a few research studies so naturally I strongly believe and trust in this research

    It’s safe to say that any breast cancer survivor who’s been through treatment wants to avoid having to go through it again. The risk of breast cancer recurrence is highly individual and varies according to the type and the stage of breast cancer you had. But a new research review published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, or CMAJ, sheds light on how various lifestyle changes may be able to improve anyone’s odds of preventing a breast cancer recurrence.

    The most important one: exercise. The review authors found it can reduce a breast cancer recurrence by 40 percent. According to the study authors, "physical activity has the most robust effect of all lifestyle factors on reducing breast cancer recurrence."

    “Exercise has a benefit that’s separate from weight control. It regulates hormone levels, improves insulin resistance, and reduces inflammation,” says study co-author Ellen Warner, M.D., a professor of medicine at the University of Toronto and a medical oncologist at Toronto’s Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre.

    Exercise can also help the depression, fatigue, lymphedema (swelling in the arm caused by removing lymph nodes), and stress that might accompany diagnosis and treatment, according to Susan Gilchrist, M.D., an associate professor of clinical cancer prevention and cardiology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

    How Much, How Often?
    In the study, the researchers say that breast cancer survivors should be encouraged to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise (brisk walking, cycling, running, or aerobic classes) in addition to at least two strength-training sessions weekly. That's the same amount of exercise the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services guidelines recommended for all of us.

    Always get your doctor’s clearance before you begin an exercise program, especially if you’ve had breast surgery. Work with a physical therapist at first to make sure your workout is appropriate for your range of motion, Gilchrist advises.

    Walking, says Gilchrist, is a great place to start for most breast cancer patients. (You can find a personal trainer who’s certified to work with cancer patients at the American College of Sports Medicine website.) The study authors also point out that many hospitals and cancer-care centers now offer exercise programs for breast cancer survivors, so check with your doctor.

    Other Key Moves
    The study authors found that keeping your weight steady is important. Unfortunately, most breast cancer survivors do put on pounds.

    “There are a variety of factors at play, but there is something about breast cancer that makes patients more likely to gain weight,” says Warner. “Plus, chemotherapy slows the metabolism. If you eat and exercise the same way you always have, you will get heavier.”

    "On average, a woman will gain 10 to 12 pounds,” Gilchrist says. Exercise will help, she says, but you might need to do 200 minutes or more per week.

    Dietary changes (such as following the Mediterranean diet) didn’t seem to make a difference in breast cancer recurrence rates, according to the researchers, although eating foods high in saturated fat was related to an increased risk of dying from breast cancer.

    In addition, the researchers found that eating soy products was not linked to breast cancer recurrence. There is also some preliminary evidence that low blood levels of vitamin D might increase death rates and that getting more vitamin C could help prevent breast cancer recurrence, but the authors note more research is needed.

    Sauce:Prevent Breast Cancer Recurrence - Consumer Reports
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  59. #59
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    I wasn't sure where to post this... not a research study per se but more a helpful guidelines for all us badass women




    15 Things All Badass, Fearless Alpha-Women Do Differently from Other Types of Women

    1. They make maximizing enjoyment in life a top priority

    No matter if they are single, engaged, or married; alpha-women will keep up shaping the situation to their own liking. They are open to new ideas, new trips, new courses, and new opportunities.

    2. They’re open and assertive

    They are open and self-confident, always ready to introduce themselves or ask for thing they think they deserve. Simply put, they rarely hesitate about things and never approach indirectly.

    3. They’re confident in their character

    They are extremely self-confident and value themselves despite their imperfections. Anyways, no one is perfect.

    4. They’re happy single but open to a relationship which will make them even happier

    While they have plenty of people, interests, and hobbies in their lives, they are more than willing to cut certain things out to make space for new people and things which will make them happier.

    5. They learn from the past but don’t dwell on it


    While they learn from the past and past mistakes, they don’t dwell on it. What they do is focusing on the ways in which they can change their lives to the better.

    6. They set and maintain boundaries

    They don’t let others violate their beliefs, body, or space.

    7. They’re not afraid to walk away in some situations

    When a family relationship or a romantic relationship doesn’t go well, alpha-women are well aware of the pros and cons, and once it becomes clear that it is not worth it, they leave and move on.

    8. They demand physical relationships

    Calling, texting, or video massaging is simply not enough! They know what they deserve and will demand it from their partners.

    9. They’re opportunistic


    They are fully aware of the fact that putting out in the real world is essential to finding the better opportunities, so online networking doesn’t do the trick for them.

    10. They aren’t overly dramatic

    They are truly genuine though…

    11. They aren’t celebrity worshippers.

    They worship life and the real world surrounding them.

    12. They’re always themselves

    They are considerate and understanding of others and they always choose what is best for themselves, their family members, and their friends.

    13. They “just do it.”

    These women don’t have plenty of regrets, simply because when they are hesitant about doing something, they end up doing it more frequently.

    14. They won’t be victimized


    They never dwell on the past or re-live negative past events. Combined with their self-control and control over their emotions and actions, it`s no wonder that they won`t be victimized.

    15. They realize their bodies and their minds are investments


    They are fully aware of the fact that their bodies and minds are investments, so they never stop learning more in order to be more successful, smarter, and happier.

    sauce: http://seizepositivity.com/badass-fe...ampaign=buffer
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  60. #60
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    Lots of good rules for healthy living.

    Meanwhile, on the ACL recovery front, I've lost 8# of muscle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by formica View Post
    Lots of good rules for healthy living.

    Meanwhile, on the ACL recovery front, I've lost 8# of muscle.
    I have no doubt you'll get your strength back... and you'll be stronger than before
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    Quote Originally Posted by formica View Post
    Lots of good rules for healthy living.

    Meanwhile, on the ACL recovery front, I've lost 8# of muscle.
    I have no doubt you'll get your strength back... and you'll be stronger than before
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    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise

    Quote Originally Posted by formica View Post
    Lots of good rules for healthy living.

    Meanwhile, on the ACL recovery front, I've lost 8# of muscle.
    You’ll get it back. Keep pedaling as much as you can. It took me 10 months post op to get back the muscle.

    Also when you get into PT, work on hips as much as you can. The one mistake I made is I didnt put in as much hip work has I should have post op and I’m undoing that now (6 years later after my ACL replacement).
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    Lordy, how I hate running. Always have. Wish I could get into it, but it's just not going to happen, especially since where I live, I'd have to drive some distance to find a safe, non-concrete/asphalt running surface (or join a gym, which is expensive and oppressive). So I ride and downhill ski use elliptical--although I gather that doesn't count--and try to keep moving as often and as much as I can. I *hope* that'll do the trick for me.

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    This is an interesting study. The sample is small and needs to be replicated for validity, but the results are significant, that regular exercise (and diet) maintains weight loss.



    A Lesson From the Biggest Losers: Exercise Keeps Off the Weight

    It is a question that plagues all who struggle with weight: Why do some of us manage to keep off lost pounds, while others regain them?

    Now, a study of 14 participants from the “Biggest Loser” television show provides an answer: physical activity — and much more of it than public health guidelines suggest.

    On average, those who managed to maintain a significant weight loss had 80 minutes a day of moderate activity, like walking, or 35 minutes a day of vigorous exercise, like running.

    The researchers conducting the new study did not distinguish between purposeful exercise, like going to the gym and working out, and exercise done over the course of the day, like walking to work or taking the stairs.

    Guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, by comparison, call for at least 150 minutes a week of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes a week of vigorous exercise for healthy adults.

    The study was published on Tuesday in the journal Obesity. The lead author, Kevin Hall, chief of the Integrative Physiology Section at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, and his colleagues also presented their work at the Obesity Society’s annual meeting.

    Although the study is very small and must be replicated, Dr. Hall said, it is the first to assess obese people years after they lost weight with state-of-the-art methods to measure the calories they had consumed and the amount of exercise they had done.

    The researchers did their measurements when the contestants were chosen, and again at six weeks, 30 weeks and six years after the contest began.

    "The findings here are important,” said Rena Wing, a psychiatry professor at Brown University and a founder of the National Weight Control Registry, which includes more than 10,000 people.

    The food eaten “is the key determinant of initial weight loss. And physical activity is the key to maintenance,” she said.

    The study also helps explain why that might be. One consequence of weight loss among the “Biggest Loser” participants was a greatly slowed metabolism.

    The subjects were burning an average of 500 fewer calories a day than would be expected, Dr. Hall and his colleagues found. In essence, their bodies were fighting against weight loss.

    Those who kept the weight off “are countering the drop in metabolism with physical activity,” Dr. Hall said.

    During the initial weight loss, the equation was different. Then, the difference between how much weight “Biggest Loser” contestants lost could be explained by the number of calories they cut from their diets. The amount of exercise did not distinguish those who lost more from those who lost less.

    The contestants competed for six months to see who could lose the most weight. Participants followed a grueling diet and an exhausting exercise program.

    Contestants’ average weight at the start of the show was 329 pounds. At the end, it was 200 pounds, a 129-pound loss. But six years after the study ended, their average weight rebounded to 290 pounds, just 38 pounds less than when they started.

    That average, though, hid wide variations.

    To learn more, Dr. Hall and his colleagues divided the group of 14 into two. There were the “regainers,” the seven participants who ended up after six years weighing five pounds more on average than they had at the start.

    And there were the “maintainers,” the seven who maintained an average weight loss of 81 pounds.

    To measure the number of calories the contestants burned, the researchers asked the subjects to drink “doubly labeled water,” in which hydrogen and oxygen atoms are at least partially replaced by stable isotopes, which have a different atomic mass.

    The oxygen isotopes appear in carbon dioxide exhaled by subjects, which allowed the researchers to estimate the average amount exhaled each day. The more calories burned, the more carbon dioxide exhaled.

    Some “Biggest Loser” contestants — including the first author, Dr. Jennifer Kerns, now an obesity specialist at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington — said the conclusions of the new study confirmed their own experiences.

    Dr. Kerns, a contestant in Season 3 of the show, says she has managed to keep off 100 pounds only by tracking everything she eats and by exercising on an elliptical cross-trainer for 35 to 40 minutes a day. In addition, her job requires her to walk around the hospital seeing patients.

    She has learned that she cannot relax this regimen if she wants to maintain her weight. “My natural tendency is to regain,” she said.

    Erinn Egbert was a candidate for Season 8 of the “Biggest Loser” but ultimately did not make the cut. So she went home “to figure it out on my own.”

    She hired two trainers and followed a diet and exercise program while she finished her senior year at Ohio State University. She weighed 237 pounds when the show began and lost about 120 pounds.

    She has maintained a weight that is just eight pounds more. She does it with rigid portion control and regular, intense exercise — 45 minutes to an hour a day, Monday through Saturday, doing the Beachbody programs, a challenging combination of strength training and cardiovascular exercise.

    Ms. Egbert, who is 30 and lives in Lexington, Ky., says she learned the importance of working consistently to stay thin, even with a slowed metabolism.

    “You have got to keep at it every single day,” she said.

    It’s a difficult task for virtually anyone, Dr. Kerns said: “The amount of time and dedication it takes to manage one’s food intake and prioritize exercise every day can be an untenable burden for many people.”

    “It’s totally unfair to judge those who can’t do it,” she added.

    Dr. Hall agreed. “The idea that people who regain lost weight are necessarily slothful and gluttonous is an unfortunate stigmatization that is not based in fact,” he said.

    Danny Cahill, who is 47 and lives in Tulsa, Okla., is among those who found it increasingly difficult to keep up the sort of regimen he needed to avoid gaining weight.

    He won the “Biggest Loser” competition in Season 8. He weighed 430 pounds when the show began, and lost 239 of them.

    For the four years after the show, he exercised more than two and a half hours a day and gained back just 40 pounds.

    Then the injuries began, forcing him to cut back his workouts to one and a half hours a day. His weight crept up to 235 pounds.

    The next year, “my body just started breaking down,” he said. “I had a foot injury, a wrist injury. I couldn’t keep it up.” And he was exhausted.

    His weight went up to 300 pounds. For the last two years, his weight has remained stable at about 340 to 350 pounds, “but only because I am eating as very little as I can,” he said.

    “That’s the disheartening part,” Mr. Cahill said. Losing the pounds is one thing. Keeping them off?

    “I am still struggling with it,” he said.



    Sauce: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/31/h...ev&subid1=TAFI


    Some takeaways relevant to this article:

    1) New fat cells do not go away, they shrink, and they forever release hormones asking to be filled up again.

    2) Our bodies adjust to whatever amount of calories we eat vs what we burn. In order to lose weight, we have to keep decreasing caloric intake and increasing caloric output. To maintain weight loss, we have to maintain roughly the intake/output that got us to our goal weight.

    3) Find something that is worth the time and discipline required to lose weight, and it becomes so much easier to stay consistent and focused. Obviously it won't be running, crossfit and / or riding for everyone, (or becoming vegan ) but something will likely do it for you. Find it! It's not enough to want to avoid something - I found I needed to be moving towards something.
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  66. #66
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    I saw an Ars Technica article on this the other day. Kind of depressing to realize some of us are just naturally gonna be more padded than others, but at least I enjoy the exercise I do. Recently I decided to up my weekly average time to 7-8+ hrs/week and keep more regular weight lifting in the mix*, which with my schedule typically requires twice a day workouts at least a couple weekdays. I feel like I'm finally starting to climb out of a permanent exhaustion hole after ~6 weeks to better strength... Yay?

    * I do upper body focused lifting up until XC skiing becomes a regular thing. The dumb ideas I execute on the boards take care of that just fine, lol.
    "...Some local fiend had built it with his own three hands..."

  67. #67
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    Even a Tiny Bit of Exercise Will Help You Not Die, Study Says


    The two women who sit across from me at work are similar in many ways. They're both young, whip smart, and wicked chic, but they couldn't be less alike when it comes to their personal philosophies on healthy living. While Callie has told her colleagues time and again how she happily subsists on cheesy potatoes and loathes the notion of aerobics, Gabby has become something of a health goddess, addicted not to cheese but boiled eggs and the stairclimber at her gym. Gabby is certain to outlive us all, but the workout-averse could save themselves from heart attacks, too. A new study suggests that even the most mild of physical movements could keep your body from killing you.


    A study titled "Frequency, Type, and Volume of Leisure-Time Physical Activity and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Young Women" was recently published in the Circulation medical journal. It followed more than 97,000 women between the ages of 27 and 44 for twenty years. These women were pulled from the Nurses' Health Study II, an ongoing research project looking at chronic illness in women. A biannual survey including questions about physical activity was used to determine the effect of exercise on young women's heart health.

    In an interview with Broadly, head researcher Andrea Chomistek of Indiana University explains that, while fewer women over the age of 55 have died of heart disease in recent decades, these rates have seen a minimal decline among younger women. "Given the prevalence of risk factors for heart disease, young women need to start taking steps now to lower their risk of experiencing a heart attack," Chomistek says. "Compared to those who are active, individuals who are inactive have adverse levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, blood pressure, and glucose control, all of which are cardiovascular risk factors." Chomistek saw this represented in the population of women she studied.

    Scary tales about the eroding health of young women are rather depressing, particularly for those who can't imagine exercising outside of the hikes they take in Skyrim or World of Warcraft. Gratefully, Chomistek's study found that you don't need to work out a lot in order to help your health. "Moderate intensity exercise was associated with lower heart disease risk, not just vigorous exercise," Chomistek says. "In particular, we found that brisk walking was very beneficial. Thus, women who are inactive don't have to necessarily join a gym or run a marathon... just go out for a walk."


    According to the Center for Disease Control, "cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States," a sobering reality for young women who think that because they're not suffering the consequences of an inactive lifestyle in the short term that they'll be okay later on. Erin D. Michos is a professor of medicine and epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University. She wrote an article about Chomistek's study for Circulation.

    In an interview with Broadly, Michos explains that you can curb the risk of developing cardiovascular disease if you manage to reach middle age without developing any of the associated risk factors; this is something one can accomplish simply by maintaining healthy levels of cholesterol and normal blood pressure. Women who are able to do this have "substantially lower lifetime risks of subsequent cardiovascular disease and markedly longer survival compared to women who already have developed one or more risk factors by age of 45," Michos says.

    It's good to move throughout the day. Michos likes to say that "sitting is the new smoking," because of the ill effects of a sedentary life. This can be countered by standing up from your desk every once in awhile. But moderate intensity exercises are most helpful. "Moderate-intensity activities include brisk walking, recreational swimming and cycling, moderate yard work and housework, and dancing, and may be much more accessible to initiate," Chomistek says. "Brisk walking in particular has a low-rate of musculoskeletal injury and no known excess risk of severe cardiac events; it is an activity that can be initiated by almost all sedentary adults."


    Callie told me that she fills her kiddie-pool by hand with buckets of water every weekend. "I can't figure out to work the hose," she says. To her, this is an intensive exercise. It certainly seems as if it should qualify at least as "moderate yard and housework." Michos says that you're ideally going to have at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week, and though Callie told me it takes her on average 25 buckets of water to fill her kiddie-pool, I doubt it takes more than half an hour at most.

    Michos says that some women may be anti-exercise because of the way that athleticism and physical activity have been marketed to men as an aspect of masculinity. "Young girls [were] given the message not to get sweaty and [to] 'play house,'" Michos says. "We have made progress in society in promoting activity to children and young adults of both genders, but it is not enough yet, we still need to encourage girls and young women that they can be as active as—or even more active than—boys and young men the same age."

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-26229892_2041288502782257_7214392206951775530_n.jpg

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-26114249_2039067129671061_5669942149727309265_n.jpg

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-25446396_2031721753738932_785547098681561821_n.jpg

    Sauce: https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/artic...ource=vicefbuk
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  68. #68
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    ^^Holy smokes that looks heavy! Bada**!

  69. #69
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    Get out there! Go ride your bike, run, lift something heavy... and don't eat crap

    Anxiety and Stress Are Messing With Your Good Looks

    Your worries can lead to weight gain and rapid aging.

    The research is clear: Stress does ugly things to us. For example, one study found that women who experience high stress are 11 times more likely to experience hair loss than women with moderate or low stress. Work stress, too, is associated with weight gain over five years. And 74 percent of acne patients say that stress exacerbates their condition. We see the same sorts of effects in animals: Anxious dogs grey earlier, and stressed mice age faster.



    But how does stress actually affect physical appearance? There are two big ways.

    First, when we're stressed we do things that hurt how we look. For example, we furrow our brows or purse our lips, which can cause wrinkles over time. Or we anxiously, absentmindedly pick our skin or bite our nails. Lots of stress often means too little time, so we also tend to make hasty, unwise eating decisions and gain weight. "You're busy, so you might rely on preprepared foods, which tend to be high in sugar and fat," says Susan Torres, an Australian researcher who studies the relationship between mental health and dietary intake. In short, stress can incite self-sabotage.

    The other way stress affects appearance is more complicated and systemic. When stress hormones like cortisol interact with other hormones and neurotransmitters, physiological changes occur that sometimes manifest externally.

    For instance, stress hastens our hair's natural growth cycle, which can expedite hair loss, and prolongs the hair-loss stage in the cycle. It can also cause premature greying, since each hair follicle has a finite amount of pigment; when our hair cycle speeds up due to stress, the pigment drains sooner. Alternatively, sometimes stress signals the hair follicles to stop producing color, which can make hair duller and finer.

    In contrast, stress slows the skin's monthly cell renewal process. Wrinkles, dry skin and delayed healing of acne scars can result. Meanwhile, excess cortisol sets off a hormonal chain reaction that stimulates excess oil production and can instigate, or at least exacerbate, breakouts. Indeed, in one study, increased stressed levels during college exams were significantly associated with increased acne severity. Perhaps most alarmingly, stress may impede digestion, thereby inhibiting absorption of vitamins that are essential for healthy teeth, skin, and hair.

    Chronic life stress is also causally linked to weight gain. When we're stressed, our bodies release cortisol, which then interacts with two hormones called neuropeptide Y and leptin to stimulate our appetite for high sugar and high fat food. Moreover, when we're stressed, good food stimulates an opioid release—your body's natural version of heroin. An addicting reward cycle ensues: We get stressed, and comfort food quite literally, physiologically, comforts us, and then we indulge in it to alleviate our stress. Stress "increases the reward value of highly palatable food," one study explains. The more stressed we get, the more we crave and love high sugar, high fat food, and the more weight we gain. Stress also affects a stress response system called the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis, which may promote fat storage particularly in the abdominal region.

    Stress can even trigger premature aging on a cellular level. Research suggests that stress is associated with shorter telomere length. Telomeres are those little pieces of DNA on the ends of chromosomes, which effectively tell researchers how old a cell is. Shorter telomeres are associated with, among other things, reduced lifespan, decreased physical capacity to recover from stresses like wounds and reduced skin elasticity. In one study, women with the highest perceived stress had telomeres the same lengths as women who were a decade older. In other words, stress ages us not just psychologically but also biologically.

    Finally, stress affects our attractiveness in subliminal, instinctual ways. In one Finnish study, men judged the faces of women who had higher levels of cortisol to be less attractive than women with lower levels. Stress plays a critical role in this phenomenon: High cortisol levels make individuals appear less fertile, thereby reducing their attractiveness. This makes sense, says the study's lead researcher, Markus Rantala. Stress inhibits sex hormones, and sex hormones influence physical attractiveness.

    There are better reasons to avoid stress than pure aesthetics. But the point is our bodies don't wait for us to "just get through this" or "learn to manage." In manifest ways, our bodies begin to degrade. Perhaps, once we notice these superficial effects, we'll realize the whole of what we sacrifice to stress.

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-28168477_2067775516800222_8642038952187709036_n.jpg


    sauce: https://tonic.vice.com/en_us/article...our-good-looks
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  70. #70
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    Women Cyclists Prone to Common Gynecologic Issues But Not Serious Urinary Dysfunction
    Some Female Bikers May Have Better Sex than Non-Cyclists

    https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2018/03/41...serious-sexual

    NOTE: Rude comments will be deleted and the poster subject to suspension

  71. #71
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    BTW I somehow stumbled into this website yesterday and wound up spending hours reading various articles... just a great approach on darn near every aspect of everything fitness related. Lots of love here for us Mere Mortals™ who have to search for kid shoes and clean dog barf off the floor when we'd planned on doing something else after work.

    https://www.niashanks.com/
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  72. #72
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    I started strength training barefoot. Holy cow—it changed everything.
    Guerrilla Gravity BAMF, Colorado Front Range
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  73. #73
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    Are Female Athletes More Prone to Sports Injury Than Males?

    On a positive note, women are tougher I believe females have a higher pain threshold and are much more likely to work through pain and injury. Plus add in the cultural aspect that a female athlete does not want to let her teammates and coaches down.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclelicious View Post
    Are Female Athletes More Prone to Sports Injury Than Males?

    On a positive note, women are tougher I believe females have a higher pain threshold and are much more likely to work through pain and injury. Plus add in the cultural aspect that a female athlete does not want to let her teammates and coaches down.
    I think recent of research for women deploying into direct support roles overseas will provide a lot of insite into this issue. When I worked at the VA I noticed that Female Veterans who worked in environments where they carried a combat load and especially when they were deployed to mountainous terrain had an extremely high rate of hip and knee issues after deployment. In addition to the steps mentioned in the article, I think getting the best possible footwear and properly fitting gear (for any sport) is super inportant. Additionally, I think it's important to scale the loads we place on our bodies. If a 200# individual carries a 60# load, they're carrying an additional 30%, for a 120# individual that load is an extra 50% of body mass. Ignoring that fact with the other physiological issues compounds the problem and likelihood of injury. Sorry for the intrusion, i'll get out of the lounge now.

  75. #75
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    Exercise beats genetics in determining amount of body fat

    With obesity now a global epidemic, there is increased focus on risk factors that contribute to weight gain, especially in postmenopausal women. Although many women may blame genetics for their expanding waistlines, a new study shows that as women age they are more likely to overcome genetic predisposition to obesity through exercise. Study results are published online today in Menopause, the journal of The North American Menopause Society (NAMS).

    Previous studies have suggested that the genetic influence on body mass index (BMI) increases from childhood to early adulthood. However, there has been little research on the effect of obesity genes later in life and whether they can be overcome through lifestyle modification, including exercise. In the article "Physical activity modifies genetic susceptibility to obesity in postmenopausal women," results are published from the linear regression analysis of more than 8,200 women from the Women's Health Initiative. Those results suggest that physical activity reduces the influence of genetic predisposition to obesity, and this effect is more significant in the oldest age group (women aged 70 years and older).

    These findings additionally support guidelines for promoting and maintaining healthy behaviors, especially in older adults, to maximize quality and longevity of life.

    "We are born with our genes, but this study suggests that we can improve our lives and health with exercise, regardless of genetics," says Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton, NAMS executive director. "As women age, exercise has been shown to improve muscle mass, balance, and bone strength. It also invigorates brain cells, is associated with less arthritic pain, and improves mood, concentration, and cognition. Regardless of age, genes, and amount of abdominal fat or BMI, regular exercise can improve health."
    sauce https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0516102300.htm


    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-32948661_2110083959236044_4120130206855856128_n.jpg

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-32775961_2110085289235911_8269088504785403904_n.jpg
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  76. #76
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    Thanks for the reminder! I've somewhat lost my ability to jump and will be adding it in at the gym. It's an important skill while hiking; leaping across small streams and whatnot! I'm blown away by people who can jump up four feet or more. It's like levitation and they make it look effortless, as do you!
    The best defense against bullsh*t is vigilance. If you smell something, say something.
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  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by stripes View Post
    I started strength training barefoot. Holy cow—it changed everything.
    I go to two gyms. I get a Gold's Gym membership through my health insurance and the trainer I work with works at an old school gym, with a high funk factor and some serious heavy lifters. At Gold's, ya gotta wear closed toe shoes. At the other gym, you wear whatever you want. I noticed some of the people lifting heavy wear relatively minimal foot wear.
    The best defense against bullsh*t is vigilance. If you smell something, say something.
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  78. #78
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    This question often comes up

    I Have A Cold: Should I Work Out?

    A recent study sponsored by the American College of Sports Medicine indicates that exercising moderately while you have a common cold doesn't affect the severity or duration of the symptoms.

    It's a widely accepted notion that exercising and keeping in shape will reduce your risk of getting sick, but nothing has been previously documented to demonstrate whether working out while suffering from a cold would reduce or intensify the symptoms.

    The Common Cold
    The common cold affects us all, with the average American getting sick up to six times a year, but will exercising when you're not feeling well, increase or decrease your ability to battle the illness, and reduce symptoms?

    The study, headed by Thomas G. Weidner, Ph.D., Ball State University in Munice Indiana, involved 50 moderately fit student volunteers, who were divided randomly into two groups: exercising and non-exercising.

    Each volunteer was injected with the cold germs, and tracked for a ten-day period.

    The subjects all kept a daily log of physical activity. The exercise group worked out either by running, biking or using a step machine for 40 minutes every day, at no more than seventy percent of their maximum capacity (measured by heart rate reserve).

    Upon completion of the study and after analysis of exercise data, symptom severity, and actual mucous weight measurements, there was shown to be no significant difference in symptom severity or duration in the exercise group or in their inactive counterparts.

    The study revealed that exercising at a moderate intensity level does not intensify cold symptoms or compromise the immune system. It seems that a moderate level of intensity is not enough to alter immune response.

    Reader beware, high intensity exercise such as heavy weight lifting or high intensity aerobic training has been shown to have a negative impact on the immune system during a cold or any respiratory infection.

    Symptom To Exercise Guidelines
    If you have a:

    Runny nose
    Sneezing
    Scratchy throat only then:
    It is safe to exercise at low intensity levels.

    If you have a:

    Fever
    Dry cough
    Sore muscles
    Vomiting
    Diarhrea then:
    Exercise not recommended, resume more intense physical activity when cold, or infection is gone.

    sauce: https://www.bodybuilding.com/content...ntent_training

    My general rule is: if symptoms are above the neck... it's ok
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  79. #79
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    F*ck Cancer

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    ^^ Good stuff, thanks for sharing.

  81. #81
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    In sum" Stay hydrated after a workout"

    f you've spent any time learning about how to maximize your workout, you've probably heard about the anabolic window. This is the idea that you must consume the right amounts of carbs and proteins within 45 minutes of finishing a workout. According to the theory, if you miss this window you can kiss your gains goodbye.

    Thanks to research published over the past few years, that concept has been debunked. But, other research has shown that post-workout hydration plays a major role in helping you retain your hard-won gains.

    As part of a research project described in the Journal of Applied Physiology, seven healthy, resistance-trained men in their 20s did three identical workouts in three different states of hydration. For the first workout, they were all properly hydrated. A week later, they exercised while dehydrated by 2.5 percent of their bodyweight. After another week, they were dehydrated by 5 percent.

    The purpose of the study was not to look at the most obvious symptoms of dehydration, like muscle cramping, dizziness, or constipation. Instead, the researchers wanted to know what was happening to the chemicals inside the athletes' bodies.

    They found that inadequate hydration after a workout "strongly increased cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, the primary stress hormones."

    Any time your body is under stress, whether mental or physical, it reacts by releasing stress hormones into your system. For a body that has just completed a vigorous physical workout, the stress can come from inadequate hydration, causing the body's core temperature to rise. The body reacts by releasing cortisol, which helps break down muscle tissue to access the energy it needs to survive the stress.

    Working out puts your body under stress—a state of catabolism during which your body breaks down muscle tissue. When you stop your workout, you enter a state of anabolism, when your body starts building new—and more—muscle tissue.

    If your goal is to build muscle, you want to control the amount of catabolic hormones, including cortisol, in your system. When you finish your workout, you want to reduce the amount of cortisol in your body so you can move quickly from catabolism to anabolism and start building new muscle. The way you do that is by making sure you finish your workout in a fully hydrated state.
    sauce https://www.bodybuilding.com/content...tent_nutrition
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  82. #82
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    Good to know!

    How to Properly Warm Up Prior To Exercise: Static vs. Dynamic Stretching

    People all too often continue to warm up prior to exercise, or an athletic competition, with static stretching. Static stretching means that you hold a stretch for a prolonged period of time, such as 30 to 60 seconds. In past decades, it was believed that static stretching prior to exercise was necessary in order to help prevent injury and improve performance. However, research over the past 20 years has demonstrated that this prior belief was incorrect and that a dynamic warm-up, or dynamic stretching, is necessary in both preventing injury as well as improving performance.



    A common warm-up utilizing static stretching includes a brief period of low-intensity aerobic activity (such as riding a bike) and static stretching. Low-intensity aerobic activity may elevate muscle and core temperature, decrease stiffness to muscle tissue and increase metabolism, blood circulation and nerve conduction. The purpose of static stretching is to improve flexibility, which has been indicated as an injury risk factor for athletes with decreased flexibility. While long-term flexibility training is important to maintain healthy muscle tissue length and reduce injury risk for specific individuals, there is no evidence that static stretching, immediately before activity, will significantly reduce muscle injury rates. Multiple studies, in fact, have no effect on performance and may actually cause performance deficits by decreasing strength, power; balance, reaction and movement time; vertical jump height; and sprint performance.



    A dynamic warm-up utilizes dynamic stretching and jump training which involves specific movements that will be used throughout the exercise session. A combination of these techniques prepares the body for performance by improving core and muscle temperature, enhancing function of the nervous system, and using similar movements that occur during subsequent exercise. Research has concluded that dynamic warm-up can significantly improve power and agility, sprinting performance, vertical jump, and long jump.



    It is important to incorporate up to date research in athletics and fitness if we want to get the best results and it is clearly stated, multiple times, that a dynamic warm-up has significance in decreasing the risk of injury with performance, while also improving overall performance. Instead of using static stretching to warm up, use it after exercise when cooling down or in any setting other than a warm-up for exercise. If you do not know how to properly incorporate a dynamic warm-up, you should seek instruction from a qualified professional such as a physical therapist, athletic trainer or certified personal trainer.


    sauce https://liftbigeatbig.com/how-to-pro...Be9_V8yb4WV0NM
    F*ck Cancer

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  83. #83
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    Exercise really does seem to help with depression

    Question: Does physical activity have a potential causal role in reducing risk for depression?


    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-50000503_2291133177797787_5827771700091027456_n.jpg

    Scientists and the public alike have long suspected that exercise can reduce depression, but the problem with proving it is the same as with many long-held general associations: it’s just an association. Researchers have shown repeatedly that people who move more tend to have fewer depressive symptoms—but what if people who are less depressed have more motivations to get up and move? Or what if the people who have enough time to stay active tend to have lifestyles less prone to triggering depression?

    Questions like these have plagued research on physical activity and depression for years, but now we’re starting to have tools that can help us tease out this complex relationship. One new study, published in JAMA Psychiatry on Wednesday, suggests that there really is a causal relationship: Exercising helps alleviate depression.

    To figure this out, researchers working for the Major Depressive Disorder Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium used a clever new method called Mendelian randomization, which allows us to understand causal relationships between modifiable behaviors, such as exercise, and health outcomes. The basic idea goes something like this:

    It’s hard to know whether exercise influences depression or whether depression influences exercise (or both!) because there are lots of other factors associated with each that could influence the other. People who exercise more might have higher incomes, for instance, and be better able to access therapy and medication. Those with worse depression might be less motivated to move around, or they might have physical pain associated with their depression that makes exercising less appealing. It could even be reverse causation—getting less exercise could make you more prone to depression. These extra associations muddy the picture. But your genes are a lot less prone to these problems. They’re assigned to you before birth in a relatively random way, which mitigates some environmental associations (like having a higher socioeconomic status) as well as eliminating the reverse causation issue.

    That means we can use natural genetic variation as an experimental tool. We know that some gene variants make you more likely to exercise, so if physical activity is causing a decrease in depression it follows that people with those variants should be less prone to depression since they’ll tend to exercise more.

    Of course, that’s assuming that those genes don’t influence anything else. As an editorial accompanying this study points out, this is an important caveat for all Mendelian randomization studies. “For example,” psychiatrist Adam Chekroud writes, “if the exercise gene variants also relate to low energy, and low energy relates to depression, this relationship would represent another path through which exercise gene variants might affect depression risk.” But he goes on to note that the study authors were aware of this potential misstep and did everything they could to minimize it. Even after removing genes associated with traits like body mass index or education level from the equation, their finding still held.

    According to their study, for every one standard deviation increase in physical activity, depressive symptoms reduced by 26 percent. “One standard deviation” is an unhelpful measure of exercise, and though it’s difficult to draw direct parallels the researchers note that it’s approximately equal to one hour of moderate activity like walking, or replacing 15 minutes of sedentary behavior with vigorous exercise like running.

    They also decided to measure subjects' activity level using accelerometers (on top of asking them to report their own activity levels). By looking at how much actual exercise differed from reported exercise, they could figure out whether self-reporting is reliable. And perhaps unsurprisingly, it’s not. The reduction in depressive symptoms—that 26 percent number—only held true for people who actually exercised more.

    The study authors themselves note that this is just one piece of evidence supporting a causal role. More research is always going to help strengthen the hypothesis. But in his editorial, Chekroud makes an interesting note: “The reality is that more findings linking exercise and mental health offer diminishing marginal returns. Given that exercise is beneficial, the key clinical question is how we increase the uptake and adherence to exercise and help individuals to measure and monitor their mental health alongside their exercise efforts.”

    In other words, we already have a lot of evidence that exercise seems to improve depression (and helps a whole host of other health issues, from obesity to cancer)—enough that researchers suggest we prescribe it as a way to alleviates the symptoms. What we don’t have are many great ways to help people exercise more. Roughly 80 percent of Americans don’t get enough physical activity. That means pretty much everyone could benefit from working out a little more. And as the study authors note, people at risk for developing depression would be doubly helped by getting started on an exercise program early.

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-49696298_2287084081536030_7080662287953952768_n.jpg

    Summary: Findings strengthen empirical support for physical activity as an effective prevention strategy for depression.

    sauce https://www.popsci.com/exercise-depr...2_0BmcYwarKRHk
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    A nice summary of the results of a recent published study on the effects of artificially sweetened drinks.


    What we know about diet soda's connection to heart disease, stroke, and early death

    Since the introduction of Diet Coke in 1982, artificially sweetened drinks have become increasingly ubiquitous in the American diet. In fact, according to a 2018 consumer survey, more than half of all Americans age 18 to 49 drank at least one Diet Coke at some point in the past four weeks. So it's hardly surprising that epidemiologists are studying the effects the zero-calorie sweeteners have on our health. The most recent study, published this week in the journal Stroke, drew conclusions that sound worrying: In postmenopausal women, drinking two or more of these beverages a day were linked to an earlier risk of stroke, heart disease, and early death.

    The study collected diet and health information from more than 80,000 women between the ages of 50 and 79 as part of the Women’s Health Initiative, a longitudinal health study created in 1991 by the National Institutes of Health. The authors looked specifically for a connection between the consumption of diet sodas and other artificially sweetened beverages (like Snapple, Vitamin Water, or Crystal Light) and stroke, heart disease, and overall mortality.

    First things first: the authors did take confounding factors into account. That means the conclusions are after considering the characteristics we already know influence a person’s chances of having a stroke or heart disease, like smoking, poor nutrition, hypertension, diabetes status, and age. Once those elements were controlled for, the authors found that women who consumed two or more artificially sweetened beverages each day were 31 percent more likely to have a stroke, 29 percent more likely to have heart disease, and 16 percent more likely for premature death than the women who either drank one artificially sweetened beverages per week or less.

    However, the authors caution that neither this study, nor ones like it, prove that drinking diet soda causes these diseases. “The most important thing with all prospective studies like this is that you can’t establish causality. Perhaps people who drink diet soda have some other characteristic that is related to stroke that we don’t yet know about,” says Sylvia Wassertheil-Smoller, the study's senior author and an epidemiologist at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

    She notes that its impossible to prove with certainty artificial sweeteners cause detrimental health effects without doing a clinical trial, which would involve giving an excessive amount of artificial sweeteners to a group of people. Beyond that, scientists use the best research tools they have, including longitudinal health studies with data drawn from large pools of people from diverse areas of the country—which is what this study does.

    This isn’t the first study to look into the connections between artificial sweeteners and long-term health consequences. In a study published in 2017, also in the journal Stroke, people who consumed diet sodas every day were three times more likely to have a stroke or develop dementia when compared to people who consumed the drinks once a week or less. Again, though, the results are correlative, meaning there isn't enough evidence (or science on the mechanisms) to say artificial sweeteners caused those people to develop dementia or have a stroke.

    And, crucially, a recent meta analysis published last month in the British Medical Journal, which looked at data from 35 observational studies (like the two mentioned in Stroke) and 21 controlled studies, researchers found no statistically significant connection between artificial sweeteners and cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, cancer, or cognition.

    Wassertheil-Smoller says sporadic diet soda drinkers should not be particularly concerned. “We didn’t begin to see this relationship until people got up to drinking diet soda daily or more than two times a day.” Further, she said, the study questionnaire only asked the participants if they drank two or more drinks per day—not a specific number—so it could be that those at highest risk are drinking far more than two drinks per day. “[Diet soda] warrants continued study and investigation," says Wassertheil-Smoller.

    Research has been done to try to determine how artificial sweeteners affect the body, including many recent studies, mostly in mice, on how the sweeteners affect the composition of bacteria in the gut, which play a role in our health. Other factors might be at play, too. Wassertheil-Smoller says identifying potential genetic factors, for example, could reveal new mechanisms.

    The science on the connection between diet sodas and weight loss is also unclear. Studies done on that connection are inconclusive, though some suggest that consuming artificial sugar tricks your brain into craving more sugar.

    Her biggest piece of advice for people concerned about potential detrimental effects of drinking diet soda: “Almost nothing you do, with the exception of extreme things like bungee jumping, will be a serious detriment to your health if you do it occasionally.”

    https://www.popsci.com/diet-sodas-st...EU9QudI#page-2
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    Sharing this article from The Economist (due to it's paywall)

    What Caster Semenya’s case means for women’s sport

    Few athletes have been as blessed and cursed as Caster Semenya. All that the 28-year-old South African has ever done is run as fast as her legs could carry her—fast enough to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals over 800 metres. But her remarkable body has also drawn ridicule, speculation and a decade of investigation.

    In 2009, when she breezed to a World Championship title, the International Association of Athletics Federations (iaaf), the sport’s governing body, began examining whether she might be intersex—an umbrella term for people with developmental conditions affecting the genitalia and gonads. To protect her privacy, the findings are unpublished. The iaaf has since been in a regulatory tussle about whether Ms Semenya must adjust her testosterone levels to compete as a woman. On May 1st the Court of Arbitration for Sport (cas), an international court for sports, ruled against her. Its decision covers only athletes with one of a group of syndromes known as 46,xy, which means that a person with a male y chromosome and high testosterone does not develop male genitalia. The ruling has implications far beyond Ms Semenya’s sport—and indeed, beyond sport itself.

    cas allowed the iaaf to impose a limit of 5 nanomoles of testosterone per litre of blood (nmol/l) on runners with 46,xy conditions. This threshold is far below the normal male range of 8-30nmol/l, but well above the normal female range of 0.1-1.8nmol/l. The ruling covers women’s races between 400 metres and a mile. To continue racing over 800 metres, Ms Semenya would have to undergo hormone therapy, which may have nasty side-effects, such as an increased risk of blood clots.

    Testing the limits
    Ms Semenya has endured hormone therapy before, when the iaaf in 2011 introduced a testosterone limit of 10nmol/l for women in all track-and-field events. cas suspended that rule in 2015, when Dutee Chand, an Indian sprinter with abnormally high testosterone levels, disputed that there was any proof that women like her received an unfair advantage in all athletic events.

    After a decade of gathering data on the question, the results the iaaf presented showed that women with high levels of testosterone did disproportionately well in middle-distance races—but no evidence of any effect in most other events. Ms Semenya is one of a handful of runners affected by the ruling. Rather than again submitting to hormone therapy, which added about 4% to her 800-metre time, she could switch to the 5,000-metre race, which is not covered by the new rules.

    The precedent cas has set could affect every sport. What makes it even more contentious is that testosterone limits also apply to transgender women, who were born male but identify as women. The International Olympic Committee (ioc) already introduced a testosterone cap of 10nmol/l for trans women in all sports in 2016, replacing its previous requirement for athletes to have undergone genital-reconstruction surgery—a procedure few trans people undertake. cas’s ruling makes the ioc’s policy likely to stand up in court, although it is now considering cutting its limit to 5 nmol/L. Not a single openly trans athlete has yet competed in the Olympics.

    The requirement for trans women to undergo hormone therapy to compete in women’s events could face legal challenges. Several Western countries are weighing laws that allow people to categorise their own gender. In America the Equality Act, a bill proposed by Democrats, would mean that sports officials could no longer discriminate between athletes using biological sex, explains Doriane Lambelet Coleman, a legal scholar at Duke University who is a former international 800metre runner. It could force Team usa to select trans women who have had no hormone treatment—even though the ioc would bar them from international events.

    At some levels of sport, self-identified gender is in many places already becoming the norm. Since September Canadian university athletes have been able to compete in the category of their choice, without hormone treatment. American high-school students in 18 states and Washington, dc, could already make that decision. In Connecticut trans girls finished first and second in the 100 metres at last year’s junior state championships.

    The binary code
    The underlying problem is a basic one: sports bodies still have no satisfactory way to distinguish between men and women. The most obvious route—to pick a binary characteristic, such as having testes or a y chromosome—fails in a few cases. Between 1968 and 1996 officials at the Olympics verified athletes’ sex through chromosome testing. But some women’s performances are not enhanced by having y chromosomes and testes. Maria José Martínez-Patiño, a Spanish hurdler with a 46,xy condition, was kicked off the national team after a test in 1985. Geneticists later proved that her body was insensitive to testosterone, so her condition conferred no athletic advantage. The iaaf subsequently stopped chromosome testing.

    Just one in 20,000 people is affected by 46,xy conditions. But an unusually high number of intersex women take part in elite sport. By one estimate, 8.5% of championship medals in women’s middle-distance races in the past 25 years have been won by 46,xy people—1,700 times their share of the general population. Over time, governing bodies have decided not to exclude such people if their conditions neither raise doubts about their biological sex nor confer a sporting advantage.

    This has led them to a second option: picking a characteristic that exists on a spectrum. Scientists generally agree that testosterone is the best candidate. From puberty, the hormone drives the development of male traits, such as bigger muscles, sturdier bones and less fat. The gap between boys’ and girls’ running times widens during adolescence (see chart). The fastest men run about 10% faster than women. The discrepancy is even wider for jumping events. As a result, artificial testosterone is a banned substance.

    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-20190511_irc878.png

    However, using testosterone as a marker also has its flaws. People’s bodies respond to the hormone differently. It had no measurable effect on Ms Patiño. And once officials pick a testosterone threshold for intersex athletes, it is likely also to apply to trans women, who can use hormone therapy to fall below it.

    The success of intersex athletes in middle-distance running and the 4% decline in Ms Semenya’s performance after hormone therapy show that testosterone matters. But a couple of studies among small samples of elite women have found no statistical relationship between testosterone levels and performance in certain sports. The analysis that the iaaf presented in Ms Semenya’s case is of this type: in most events it looked at, it found no correlation at all.

    However, Ross Tucker, a sports scientist, points out, such studies are limited to people who perform at a similar level. A study of professional basketball players is unlikely to find a link between height and proficiency—the short, bad ones have already been filtered out. Among female athletes overall, the range of testosterone levels is quite large, but the average elite sportswoman has a higher one than an average woman (just as the typical basketball star bumps ceilings). The iaaf’s data had other flaws. Three independent researchers found them riddled with errors, such as athletes who had been double-counted.

    The iaaf’s decision to cap intersex middle-distance athletes at 5nmol/l is based on estimating the maximum level that a non-intersex woman could naturally reach. Critics argue that this is no different from, say, penalising basketball players for their height. But others counter it is a price worth paying, for protecting women’s sport. (Nobody is agitating for a short-person’s basketball league.)

    The guesswork around testosterone becomes even sketchier for contact sports, because measuring the ability of a wrestler or rugby player is harder than timing a runner, and their bone structure matters more. Anyone who develops a stronger skeleton at puberty has a permanent advantage.

    Such advantages affect many trans athletes as well as intersex ones, sparking controversy. Fallon Fox, an American mixed-martial-arts fighter, was pilloried when she revealed in 2013 that she was a male who had undergone gender-reassignment surgery. Hannah Mouncey, a trans woman who had represented the Australian men’s handball team before undergoing hormone therapy and switching to the women’s team, was barred from the women’s Australian Football League in 2017.

    Good data for trans women are as scarce as for intersex ones. Joanna Harper, a scientist and trans runner, has conducted one of the few studies, of eight non-elite female endurance runners who had earlier competed as men. Their slower times after hormone therapy put them in much the same relative positions in women’s races as they had achieved in men’s. But the data are too scant to say that this holds for all athletes. Whereas chromosome tests discriminated against a small number of women with unusual conditions, the new rules could disadvantage a large number of women by allowing some stronger and faster intersex and trans women to compete against them.

    The law of comparative advantage
    Ms Harper points out that there has been no deluge of trans women gaming the system. The trans athlete who has come closest to dominating an individual sport is Laurel Hubbard, a New Zealander who held junior national weightlifting records as a man, became an international contender as a woman and in 2017 finished second in the World Championships.

    International sporting bodies are unlikely ever to accept self-identified gender as the basis for admitting trans women to women’s competitions. Even so, many women still worry that the testosterone threshold could allow some fairly good male competitors to become all-conquering female ones. Some trans women call such fears scaremongering. The court’s ruling on Ms Semenya is not going to settle that argument.
    Sauce https://www.economist.com/internatio...r-womens-sport
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  86. #86
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    I knew it! And this makes me happy


    Exercise makes you happier than money, according to Yale and Oxford research


    It's clear exercise has health benefits both physical and mental. But what if we could show it was more important to your mental health than your economic status?

    According to a study from researchers at Yale and Oxford, we may have done just that.

    In the study, published in The Lancet, scientists collected data about the physical behavior and mental mood of more than 1.2 million Americans.

    Participants were asked to answer the following question: "How many times have you felt mentally unwell in the past 30 days, for example, due to stress, depression, or emotional problems?"


    The participants were also asked about their income and physical activities. They were able to choose from 75 types of physical activity — from mowing the lawn, taking care of children, and doing housework to weight lifting, cycling, and running.

    People who stay active tend to be happier
    The scientists found that while those who exercised regularly tended to feel bad for 35 days a year, nonactive participants felt bad for 18 days more, on average.

    In addition, the researchers found that physically active people feel just as good as those who don't do sports but who earn about $25,000 more a year. Essentially, you'd have to earn a lot more to get you the same happiness-boosting effect that sport has.

    But it doesn't mean the more sport you do the happier you are.

    Too much exercise can be detrimental to your mental health
    Exercise is clearly good for you, but how much is too much?

    "The relationship between sport duration and mental load is U-shaped," said study author Adam Chekroud of Yale University in an interview with Die Welt. The study found that physical activity contributes to better mental well-being only when it falls within a certain time frame.

    According to the study, three to five training sessions, each lasting between 30 to 60 minutes, are ideal per week. The mental health of those participants who exercised for longer than three hours a day suffered more than that of those who weren't particularly physically active.

    The scientists also noticed that certain sports that involve socializing — such as team sports — can have more of a positive effect on your mental health than others.

    Despite the fact that neither cycling nor aerobics and fitness technically counts as team sports, these activities can also have a considerable positive effect on your mental health.

    sauce https://www.businessinsider.com/exer...UJAStCzATiueac


    Some recent studies about fitness and exercise-67811783_2437433219834448_5072067385406521344_n.jpg
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  87. #87
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    Interesting BBC article about women rocking the ultra endurance scene:

    Are women better ultra-endurance athletes than men?

    <snip>
    "One of the reasons why women tend to be able to compete with men and sometimes outperform them, is that the greater maximal capacities exhibited by men aren't as important in an ultra-endurance event," Dr Tiller, who is also an ultra-marathon runner, said.

    He said that in ultra-endurance races, athletes are never working close to their maximum capacity. It is much more about peripheral conditioning, oxygen efficiency and mental toughness.
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  88. #88
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    4 Mind-Boggling Ways Fitness Whips Your Brain Into Shape


    It's not uncommon today for many people to believe that exercise can affect things like their mood, their feelings of happiness, and their ability to take tests and perform other intellectual tasks. What has been missing, though, is evidence that this interrelationship is any more than just that—a belief, without any basis in fact.

    New research into the relationship between the mind and the body is revealing the actual physical mechanisms by which the body affects the brain. After more than seven million years of evolution, almost half of the physical structure of the human brain is now devoted to the actions of the body, leaving the other half responsible for perceptions of the outside world. With so much of the brain focused on the physical body, it makes sense that the body, and what we do with it, would have a profound impact on our brains.

    The brain dictates every thought and belief we have, every physical action we take, and every decision we make. But what about the opposite: How does the body dictate the functioning of the brain? It should come as no surprise that the way the brain determines these nonphysical parts of life is closely correlated with physical activity.

    Exercise: Fertilizer For Your Brain
    Our brains function through the activity of networks, each composed of single brain areas and their connections. It was once believed that these complex networks were fixed or static once we entered adulthood. We now know that our brain structures remain "plastic" throughout our lives, capable of being shaped by learning, experience, and—as we now understand—by exercise. This ability of the brain to change its shape is known as neuroplasticity.

    Research has shown that physical exercise has both short-term and long-term effects on neuroplasticity, enabling the brain to rewire itself to improve mood and happiness, scholastic performance in children, executive control in adults, and even the speed at which the brain itself processes information.

    Physical activity also seems to improve the body's ability to create new brain cells, called neurons. It was previously thought that humans were born with all of the brain cells they would ever have. So if someone suffered an injury or illness that killed neurons, their body would never replace them.

    We now know this isn't true. In certain areas of the brain—particularly those involved in motor and cognitive control, learning and memory, and reward—the body is perfectly capable of growing completely new neurons, a process known as neurogenesis. This is due to the effect exercise has on a particular brain hormone, brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF). BDNF has been likened to fertilizer for the brain. Several studies have clearly demonstrated that exercise significantly increases BDNF production. It has been shown in animal models that the more BDNF the brain can create, the greater the capacity to remember, learn new information, improve mood, and improve "inhibitory control."

    Inhibitory control, related to self-control, refers to our ability to delay gratification. Exercise improves our inhibitory control, which then improves our ability to change a habit or a learned behavior. This, in turn, enables us to refocus ourselves to complete goals that lead to better long-term outcomes. It may be as simple as developing more willpower to start your day with a workout rather than delaying it until after work, which may not always happen.

    The Impact Of Various Forms Of Exercise On Brain Function
    Research has examined the role that four kinds of exercise play in neuroplasticity and neurogenesis. In each case, results underscore new insights that exercise has a very direct—and very physical—impact on the brain itself.

    Cardiovascular Exercise: All forms of exercise seem to have a positive impact on the brain, but cardiovascular exercise in particular has a profound impact on blood flow to key areas. A study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience found that women with a higher level of fitness (as measured by VO2 max) scored better on measures of executive brain function.In particular, researchers found that these women had more cerebral blood flow to the prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain involved in decision making, future planning, goal-directed behavior, and emotions.

    Resistance Training: A study published in the journal Neuroscience Letters suggests that regular resistance training can have a positive impact on brain health in women. Researchers found that women who engaged in strength training at least once per week exhibited significantly greater blood flow to the brain compared to women who did not. Declines in blood flow that occur with normal aging are linked to detriments in both physical and mental health, including fatigue, stroke, depression, and declines in cognitive function.

    Yoga: A study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice reviewed multiple studies examining the impact of yoga on brain activity and structural changes.The review concluded that yoga and postural-based exercises significantly increased brain activity. The authors suggested this may improve mood, focus, and overall sense of well-being.

    HIIT Training: Additionally, emerging research suggests that short bursts of vigorous activity, known as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), may improve blood flow in the brain, which can provide more nourishment to neurons, resulting in improved brain activity.

    Many of the studies cited above are preliminary and come from a relatively new field of brain research. Even so, researchers are now discovering many of the very real, very tangible physical changes that take place on a cellular level within our brains when we engage in physical activity. While more research needs to be done, what was once thought to be no more than a belief is becoming accepted science.

    sauce https://www.bodybuilding.com/content...ruPqj4sj7h1kzs
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  89. #89
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    ^^ Nice! I believe it!

  90. #90
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    Is there a limit to human endurance? Science says yes

    From the Ironman triathlon to the Tour de France, some competitions test the limits of even the toughest endurance athletes. Now, a new study of energy expenditure during some of the world's longest, most grueling sporting events suggests that no matter what the activity, everyone hits the same metabolic limit—a maximum possible level of exertion that humans can sustain in the long term.

    When it comes to physical activities lasting days, weeks and months, the researchers found, humans can only burn calories at 2.5 times their resting metabolic rate.

    Not even the world's fastest ultra-marathoners managed to surpass that limit, the researchers found.

    "This defines the realm of what's possible for humans," said study co-author Herman Pontzer, an associate professor of evolutionary anthropology at Duke University.

    Beyond the threshold of 2.5 times a person's resting metabolic rate, researchers found, the body starts to break down its own tissues to make up for the caloric deficit.

    One explanation for this limit may be the digestive tract's ability to break down food, said team leaders Pontzer and John Speakman of Scotland's University of Aberdeen and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

    In other words, eating more won't necessarily help someone make Iditarod history. "There's just a limit to how many calories our guts can effectively absorb per day," Pontzer said.

    The results will appear online June 5 in the journal Science Advances.

    For the study, the team measured daily calories burned by a group of athletes who ran six marathons a week for five months as part of the 2015 Race Across the USA, a 3,000-mile race from California to Washington, D.C. The team also considered other feats of human endurance, including punishing 100-mile trail races and pregnancy.

    When they plotted the data over time, they found an L-shaped curve. The athletes' energy expenditure started out relatively high, but inevitably plunged and flattened out at 2.5 times their basal metabolic rate for the remainder of the event.

    Co-author Caitlin Thurber analyzed urine samples collected during the first and final legs of Race Across the USA. After 20 weeks of running back-to-back marathons, the athletes were burning 600 fewer calories a day than expected based on their mileage. The findings suggest that the body can "downshift" its metabolism to help stay within sustainable levels.

    "It's a great example of constrained energy expenditure, where the body is limited in its ability to maintain extremely high levels of energy expenditure for an extended period of time," Thurber said.

    "You can sprint for 100 meters, but you can jog for miles, right? That's also true here," Pontzer said.

    All the endurance events followed the same L-shaped curve, whether the athletes were hauling 500-pound sleds across Antarctica for days in sub-freezing temperatures, or cycling the Tour de France in summer. That finding challenges the idea, proposed by previous researchers, that human endurance is linked to the ability to regulate body temperature.

    One limiting factor for endurance events, researchers found, lies in the digestive process—the body's ability to process food and absorb calories and nutrients to fuel bodily processes.

    Interestingly, the maximum sustainable energy expenditure found among endurance athletes was only slightly higher than the metabolic rates women sustain during pregnancy. This suggests that the same physiological limits that keep, say, Ironman triathletes from shattering speed records may also constrain other aspects of life too, such as how big babies can grow in the womb.

    As far as the researchers know, no one's ever sustained levels beyond this limit. "So I guess it's a challenge to elite endurance athletes," Pontzer said. "Science works when you're proven wrong. Maybe someone will break through that ceiling some day and show us what we're missing."


    sauce https://phys.org/news/2019-06-limit-...y-6MxDwYnZLjjg
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    ^^Interesting, thanks for sharing. If they are right, it sounds like the key will be easily absorbable nutrition during these endurance events.

  92. #92
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    Want to create a healthier country? Start by creating fitter cities

    Every January, people resolve to lose weight, eat healthy and be more active. Yet, by the end of the month, most people who started the year with the best of intentions have given up, usually having failed in the behaviour changes they had planned to make.

    At the same time, provincial health-care budgets across the country have been rapidly rising because of our current non-communicable disease (NCD) epidemics such as diabetes, cancers, cardiovascular diseases and mental-health issues. Childhood obesity has risen even more rapidly and we are now seeing chronic diseases previously unseen until middle and old ages, conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, in children and young adults. Complications such as heart disease and strokes, blindness, kidney failure requiring transplants or dialysis, now likely await these children in early adulthood. Rapidly rising health-care costs across Canada are increasingly affecting available budgets for other critical provincial areas such as education and municipal infrastructure. Aging populations and air pollution also affect rates, complications and mortality from these diseases.

    Much has been done around health education. But the epidemics of obesity and diabetes in Canada – and the health-care and societal costs from them – continue to rise. The need for solutions is dire.

    The good news is there are solutions.

    Indeed, there are jurisdictions that can serve as examples of what can be done, places that have managed to reverse their childhood obesity epidemics and improve chronic disease outcomes. New York during Michael Bloomberg’s administration is one such case study. During a mere 12 years of his tenure, decades-long rising childhood obesity trends were reversed and life expectancy in the city grew to 2.2 years longer than the rest of the country in large part because of improved chronic disease outcomes.

    How did New York do it and what can we in Canada learn from its example? As it turns out, many of the solutions to our health epidemics and costs lie not just within our health-care system, but outside of it.

    The solutions to creating fitter individuals and health-care systems today lie in creating “fit cities.” When I arrived in New York in 2006 from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the city was in the midst of an obesity and diabetes epidemic.

    Policy and environmental work to decrease smoking was already focused on creating smoke-free workplaces and public spaces, increasing tobacco taxes, restricting access for youth and increasing access to free nicotine replacement therapies. Previously stagnant smoking rates were declining.

    In contrast, obesity and diabetes were the two health conditions getting worse. With scientific evidence growing for the importance of supportive environments to accompany individual efforts, and inspired by its own successes in tobacco reduction, the city’s health department embarked on a policy and environmental approach to healthier diets and active living.

    Among the interventions were: daycare regulations for healthier food and beverages; imposing a maximum TV-allowed time and a minimum 60-minutes daily physical activity; improving school foods and beverages as well as physical activity time and increased spaces for children’s physical education and recess; and introducing labelling on restaurant menus so people could have calorie information, among many other initiatives.

    We in Canada are learning from examples such as this. In 2018, the Public Health Agency of Canada approved a grant to the University of Alberta called Housing for Health where more than 100 partners from different departments of government, private sector, non-profit and community sectors, and the academic sector are working together to create healthier housing developments and surrounding neighbourhoods.

    But more is needed across Canadian jurisdictions to support people in their attempts to be healthy and to sustain our highly valued healthcare system for future generations.

    sauce https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opin...fitter-cities/
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