Fear: “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.”
Fear controls many aspects of our day-to-day lives. Whether you like it or not, you base your actions and those around you off of some extent of fear and rationality. While this may be of some benefit for survival, many of these thoughts are often improbable and irrational.
The FEAR acronym confronts the fears of failure and dissatisfaction in your life by sidestepping fear altogether. How is this possible? Well, rather than basing our lives off of fear and the approval of others, we are going to base it off a support network of success and accountability.
This acronym may work forwards and backwards, in or out of sequence. While this may be true as life throws many curve balls, it is best to try and start from the beginning and work your way letter by letter.
Fruit is possibly the least excepted word to follow the first letter of FEAR. Many would expect exciting words such as “fortitude” “forward” or “fulfilment.” The word “fruit” is subtle and vague but it has the most important meaning of all the letters.
We must examine the lives that we are leading, physically, mentally and spiritually. The outpouring or “fruit” of our lives are made evident in every aspect we live. Whatever life you live, will be evident by your actions and the words that you say to one another.
Live a life full of quality fruit that is proven worthy upon examination. Examine the strengths and weaknesses in your life and work on them. The dedication to bettering yourself will has positive impacts in your life and those around you. Set a standard for yourself and know why. Set attainable goals.
We all struggle in life, some more than others. We all have different struggles, strengths and weaknesses. Be willing to get out of your comfort zone and be positive. This is very difficult sometimes as we may be struggling with positivity ourselves. However difficult, be the light during someone else's dark situation and help point them to the light. Through the encouragement of a brother of sister, many have been able to accomplish things that were once thought improbable or impossible.
Attempt to rid your vocabulary of negativity and replace them with positivity. Bring out the best in others. Know that just because it is not of your direct interest or ability to achieve something does not mean other cannot.
The dreaded word “accountability” is feared across society. Why do we fear such a thing? If we have made our actions clear, should they be not be held to such a standard? Did we just utter those words to please those around us? Whatever the reasoning may be, be open to accountability partner(s).
Accountability is much like a knife and a sharpening stone. The dull knife thinks it is totally capable of completing the tasks at hand, yet the sharpening stone knows that there is some work to be done. The process of sharpening the blade may be painful at times, but the end results are worth it. The sharpening process may take longer than expected.
Remember to keep each other accountable with positivity and a relative sense based upon their self-expectations. Be open to accountability and adhering to the standards that you have set for yourself. Do not evoke a spirit of fear through accountability, but of love and brotherhood. Be patient and willing to devote oneself to accountability over a long period of time.
Whether fruit examination, encouragement, accountability or whatever may be promoting you: do it. Hollow words and actions are meaningless. We often forget the things that people get for us but remember the way people make us feel.
Be humble in the process. Being humble is a daily reset that we must make despite our achievements. Responding positively to encouragement and accountability may be difficult at times, but this is what growth is all about. Chastisement is often not without purpose.
Keeping a humble and forward-thinking mind will help you to response better to the goals you set for yourself and those around you. Be moldable, malleable.
Fear may drive many of our actions throughout our lives today, but let us put away those feelings for tomorrow. I want to encourage you to find a network of people that have a similar mindset and set of goals. To set your mind on things that are pure and worthy, benefitting every aspect of your life.
Developing a strong network of trust and dependability is a life-changing process. Be strong today, for tomorrow.
Fruit: Matthew 7:15-20, Encourage: 1Thessalonians 5:11, Accountability: Proverbs 27:17
Response: James 1:22
"Our bodies show our lifestyles"
"Your body is a reflection of your lifestyle"
"You are what you eat"
There is a great correlation to the shape of our bodies and the shape of our lifestyles. Society has began to embrace larger statures and sedentary lifestyles like no time before. It is easier to be lazy and eat unhealthy and have no direct penalties or consequences for years of neglect. Medications and easy access to larger clothes help to reinforce our poor decisions year-after-year.
Before we go any further, let's examine the front line that helps to protect our society, Police and Fire. There is a reasonable expectation that those on the units protecting the citizens of the local jurisdictions are able to keep a state of physical preparedness no matter the incident that awaits them. What if I told you that roughly 25% of any agency at any time is unable to perform their job(s) as efficiently as expected? Should this worry you? Why? After all, its the lifestyle that America has embraced.
Being overweight and out of shape has nothing to do with the joy and exuberance of one's personality. It does however have everything to do with the likelihood of that person developing early-onset comorbidities. This strains not only the person's body experiencing the comorbidities, but the families and the health system. Unhealthy lifestyles impact many more people than just the person participating in the unhealthy choices.
We should begin to embrace the thinking that long-term solutions require short-term goals. This means changing the way we do life. Subtle changes bring around the best results for long term adherence. Embracing a healthier lifestyle doesn't mean a total 180˚ overnight but rather an integration of healthier habits over the next 6-12 months.
Skip the desert for 4 nights a week this month. Make it 5 the next month...6 a few months from that. Drink more water. Eat more vegetables. Make a conscious effort to go on a walk. There are many ways to embrace a healthier lifestyle. If things are taken in moderation, your life can be completely changed one year from today. In the big picture of things, it is absolutely worth it.
Expect more from yourself. You are capable and worthy! Life has its up's and down's but we must be overcomers and be more than conquerors.
Time: About Half of Americans Say They're Trying to Lose Weight
NCBI:Obesity and its comorbid conditions
The Simple & Healthy Food Relationship: A Basic Nutrition Guide
Crossfit Stockholm Syndrome, Do You Have It?
By Brian Vernetti
Back in 2008, my Fire Academy used Crossfit as a hybrid to help get us in shape. They didn’t use the “Crossfit” name lest they be subject to paying the affiliation costs- regardless, my lead PT instructor Steve had my academy class perform countless burpees and other similar HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) exercises that one may now associate with Crossfit.
From that point on I wanted to be a Crossfit instructor, whatever that meant. After we graduated, I went up to Steve and asked what I could do to be a Crossfit instructor. He kindly told me to skip the Crossfit certification and get a real personal training certificate. Wait, what? What did he mean? After all, he never openly said that we were doing “Crossfit workouts,” but just wore a black Crossfit hoody with a burning skull on the back. I associated that skull with the pain I felt during his workouts. I figured with the workouts that we went through it was the end-all be-all. Little did I know, I was terribly mistaken. He only used some of the Crossfit training modalities during academy. His outside research other other training credentials were able to aid in a well-rounded PT program, that we thoroughly regretted 2-3 times a day during the six month academy.
Fast forward two years, hundreds of exercise sessions later, plenty of academic reading and an ACSM Personal Training certification, Steve was 100% right. The Crossfit training method is something that can be highly effective but it often negates the medical and personal training side of things; perhaps two of the most important aspects of exercise. Don’t forget about Crossfit's renowned reputation for high repetitions with heavy weights and advanced movements.
Since its founding in 2000, Crossfit has become an international phenomenon. It has gained popularity by touting highly difficult and advanced workouts that emphasize the nitty gritty side of exercise. The elite athletes, both male and female, are physical specimens able to push themselves beyond what is expected for any exercise regimen up to this point in fitness history. The workout difficulty and group atmosphere is quite a fantastic marketing campaign. If you struggle with the workout, you struggle with the rest of your fraternity/sorority. So what is not to like?
With such a surge in Crossfit memberships across the country in the past 18 years, the upper echelon of Crossfit (mainly Greg Glasman- who by the way, is a very poor representation of a 100+ million fitness business) have sought after organizations like the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association to delegitimize their accreditation processes. Ironically, those PT certifications should be replaced with Crossfit training certifications. Strangely beneficial for the Crossfit corporation. The boost in Crossfit level certifications have narrowed the training modalities down to what Crossfit approves of and doesn’t approve of. This type of in-house credentialing is attempting to streamline the type of training across the world but is simply resulting in a narrow-minded incestuous fitness business.
This close-minded philosophy of training is hard to debate based on the success of the company. However, despite the success, one must begin looking beyond what the public sees during the Crossfit Games or during the Regional competitions. The various Crossfit gyms (Crossfit Box, aka "Box") across the world have continuously prescribed advanced workouts (WODs, Workout of The Day) that the “average Joe” attempts to work at. The workouts are so difficult, that they are often modified to allow for completion by changing the movement patterns, repetitions and weight.
Week after week, newcomers join the local box and are ironically taught advanced lifts such as the snatch and clean and jerk. I have witnessed this with my own eyes when mid-40’s to late 50’s + males and females were being taught the basics of the snatch. As a quick aside- the snatch is an olympic lift that is perhaps the most technically advanced and dynamic lift there is. The participants were willing, but their range of motion, conditioning and everything else were no where close to where is should be to perform this movement. It is not that this lift or similar ones should be absent from the training regimen,they should just be pushed months back to allow for proper physiological and physical adaptation and strengthening. This goes hand-in-hand with medical, metabolic or skeletal issues that are avoided altogether when training programs are compiled. Unfortunately, the physical screening process for Crossfit is often limited or absent altogether. Rare instances across the country will have Physical Therapists or Doctors at their box who are actually working there.
Every Crossfit box has their own workouts they put together, but are often guided by the Crossfit HQ. The workouts that are prescribed by the Crossfit HQ on their website are the “gold standard.” However, when these workouts are dissected may be highly detrimental to the average exercise enthusiast. Emphasis is placed on repetitions, rather than form. Form usually breaks down, but as long as you can complete the workout, that’s all that matters and you get a pat on the back from your fellow buddy. This is true until you can’t move the next day, you get injured or the intensity is simply just too high to sustain for a long-term workout program. Most of this is because your box hasn’t adequately prepared your body for the advanced movements and intensity. Injuries abound in Crossfit not because of the exercises that are prescribed, but how they are prescribed. Much of the exercise programming is formed around a "wow factor" rather than longevity and safety. Take for instance, Brooke Ence (fractured spine), Camille Bazinet (torn labrum) and Julie Foucher (torn achilles) are a few athletes with Crossfit-related injuries. That is just the beginning of the list.
The adoption of such advanced and difficult movements/exercises on a constant basis, with such a high risk of injury, is nothing more than a case of Stockholm syndrome. Crossfitters are embracing the difficulty of workouts without the acknowledgement of their danger. If the danger is present, it is quickly forgotten about because they simply just aren’t physically "fit" enough to perform the prescribed WOD. Forget the one-on-one personal training and medical screenings, that isn’t Crossfit. Forget the countless other exercises that you should be doing to prevent daily pains and flaring medical issues- no, you joined a box to "be apart of something bigger than yourself."
What you really need, is to take a step back, reevaluate your goals and not be wooed by corporate Crossfit. After all, is it truly beneficial to have a 70+ year old or morbidly obese individual attempting to perform a highly modified version of a workout, just to "complete" it- absolutely not. The gross adaptation of Crossfit WODs for the untrained is neglect and absence of a better training program.
Many people need the group training atmosphere, absolutely. However, what many people actually need is training that will work on their weaknesses first and not stick to a workout program that is set from the higher powers of the Crossfit HQ. This would hurt their bottom line and take away business. People are falling in love with the corporation who has taken them hostage and is treating their bodies poorly, rather than provide a solid program that is dedicated to aiding the individual and not the corporation.
Personal training, Physical Therapy, and uniquely crafted programs based upon your own goals/needs should be the driving force of any fitness establishment. Anything else should make you suspicious.
The 2018 racing season is upon us. The question is, have you been preparing for the races in the right way?
Cardio, burpees, HIIT training (basically all of the exercises here on Interval Athlete) will help you get ready for the upcoming challenges that await you- BUT, one of the most overlooked aspects of training for an obstacle course is grip strength. Grip strength is a great measurement of fitness and transitions into all walks of life. So how good is your grip strength? Let's find out.
Here are 5 grip strength exercises to help you rock the upcoming races and power through some of the harder obstacles. A new challenge will be added each week!
The challenges will get harder with each week, so stay tuned!
Week 1 Challenge and Intro Video
Week 2 Challenge
Week 3 Challenge
Society's health issues are getting worse every year. If you or a loved one has any of these issues listed below, it is a good idea to try and deal with them accordingly as soon as possible. Having three of the following findings below is extremely dangerous and puts you at a high risk for cardiovascular disease. Heart disease is the number one killer in the United States- time to get things in check!
Make an appointment with your doctor and get an appointment with a dietician or nutritionist!
"What is metabolic syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of metabolic disorders. When a patient presents with these conditions together, the chances for future cardiovascular disease is greater than any one factor presenting alone.
For example, high blood pressure alone is a serious condition, but when a patient has high blood pressure along with high fasting glucose levels and abdominal obesity, this patient may be diagnosed with metabolic syndrome. There is a greater chance this patient will have cardiovascular problems because of the combination of risk factors.
Metabolic syndrome is a serious health condition that affects about 23 percent of adults and places them at higher risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, stroke and diseases related to fatty buildups in artery walls. The underlying causes of metabolic syndrome include overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, genetic factors and getting older.
Metabolic syndrome occurs when a person has three or more of the following measurements:
Although metabolic syndrome is a serious condition, you can reduce your risks significantly by reducing your weight; increasing your physical activity; eating a heart-healthy diet that's rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and fish; and working with your healthcare provider to monitor and manage blood glucose, blood cholesterol, and blood pressure." - American Heart Association
1 Repetition Maximum (RM) TESTING PROTOCOL
By The National Strength and Conditioning Association
If the athlete failed, provide a 2- to 4-minute rest period, then decrease the load by subtracting 5 to 10 pounds (2-4 kg) or 2.5% to 5% for upper body exercise or 15 to 20 pounds (7-9 kg) or 5% to 10% for lower body exercise AND then go back to step 8.
Continue increasing or decreasing the load until the athlete can complete one repetition with proper exercise technique. Ideally, the athlete’s 1RM will be measured within three to five testing sets.
Before assigning training loads, the strength and conditioning professional should understand this relationship between loads and repetitions.
Load is commonly described as either a certain percent- age of a 1-repetition maximum (1RM)—the greatest amount of weight that can be lifted with proper technique for only one repetition—or the most weight lifted for a specified number of repetitions, a repetition maximum (RM) (19).
For instance, if an athlete can perform 10 repetitions with 60 kg in the back squat exercise, her 10RM is 60 kg. It is assumed that the athlete provided a maximal effort; if she had stopped at nine repetitions but could have performed one more, she would not have achieved a 10RM. Likewise, if she lifted 55 kg for 10 repetitions (but could have performed more), her true 10RM was not accurately assessed because she possibly could have lifted 60 kg for 10 repetitions
High Intensity Interval Training aka H.I.I.T. isn't going anywhere. Study after study reveals the benefits of HIIT and there seems to be no end in sight to the benefits. Less time exercising with as good if not better results.
A recent study reveals that HIIT improves the circulation around the heart and other vasculature in the body. This is very important because as the body ages, arteries typically becoming narrower (stenosis and/or aortic stenosis) and become hardened and less flexible (arteriosclerosis). When anything interrupts the flow of blood in your body, it is really important to get that fixed sooner than later.
High Intensity Interval Training doesn't need to be intimidating like it sounds. You can still train "hard" by changing up your rest periods and exercises that you perform on a regular basis. You don't need to aspire to be like an Olympian or professional athlete by any means. If you are over 50 years old, it is imperative to take the steps necessary to fortify your body against the upcoming years!
If you aren't elderly or close to it, then you have no excuse- get out and get moving!
If you need help with a custom program, give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org
High-Intensity Exercise Enhances Conduit Artery Vascular Function in Older Adults
IWAMOTO, ERIKA1,2; BOCK, JOSHUA M.1; CASEY, DARREN P.1,3,4
Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: January 2018 - Volume 50 - Issue 1 - p 124–130
"Purpose Modulation of vascular function follows an exercise intensity–dependent pattern in young adults. This study aimed to investigate the potential intensity–dependent effects of an acute bout of exercise on conduit and resistance artery function in healthy older adults.
Methods Eleven healthy older adults (five males/six females, 66 ± 1 yr) completed 30 min of recumbent cycling at 50%–55% (low intensity) and 75%–80% (high intensity) of their age-predicted HRmax on two separate study visits. Doppler ultrasound measures of brachial artery flow-mediated dilation (FMD) and reactive hyperemia were taken at baseline, 10 min postexercise, and 1 h postexercise. In addition, cardiovascular hemodynamics and brachial shear rate were measured every 5 min during exercise.
Results Brachial artery FMD was enhanced 10 min after high-intensity exercise (4.8% ± 0.2% to 9.1% ± 0.3%, P< 0.01), but not low-intensity (4.7% ± 0.2% to 6.2% ± 0.3%, P = 0.54) exercise. Peak and total (area under the curve) blood flow during reactive hyperemia (measures of resistance artery function) were enhanced 10 min postexercise for both intensities (peak low intensity, 372 ± 31 to 444 ± 37 mL·min−1; peak high intensity, 391 ± 30 to 455 ± 28 mL·min−1; total low intensity, 142 ± 16 to 205 ± 20 mL; total high intensity, 158 ± 14 to 240 ± 25 mL; main effect of time for both, P < 0.05). However, the magnitude of change in peak and the total blood flow were not different between exercise intensities (interaction effect; P = 0.56 and P = 0.97, respectively). Independent of exercise intensity, FMD returned to baseline 1 h after exercise (high, 5.9% ± 0.3%; low, 5.1% ± 0.1%; both P > 0.05).
Conclusion Our data indicate that high-intensity exercise acutely enhances conduit artery function in healthy older adults. In addition, an acute bout of exercise enhances resistance artery function independent of intensity."
Below is an excerpt from the Journal of Fitness and Healthy by the American College of Sports Medicine detailing the upcoming fitness trends of 2018! I may be a little partial to interval training :) but it is listed as the number 1 rated trend for this upcoming year! Get ready for some awesome workouts!
"The first step in the survey analysis was to collate the responses and then to rank order them from highest (most popular trend) to lowest (least popular trend). Only the top 20 for 2018 are described in this report. After rank ordering the responses, four internationally recognized experts representing the CREP partnership commented on the findings. Their analysis and commentary are included at the end of this report. For a comparison of the top 10 trends from the past 11 years’ surveys (1–11), please see the comprehensive comparison table available online at http://links.lww.com/FIT/A74.
The 2018 survey results (Table 2) seem to reinforce the findings of previous years, which was expected when tracking trends and not fads. New to the top 20 trends identified for 2018 are licensure for fitness professionals, core training, and sport-specific training. Out of the top 20 trends for 2018 are worksite health promotion (number 16 in the 2017 survey), smartphone exercise apps (number 17 in the 2017 survey), and outcomes measures (number 18 in last year’s survey).
What is the perfect exercise?
Many of your reading this may start to think about complex movements such as burpees, the back squat, the deadlift, l-sit pull-ups, kettlebell swings or any other compound movement that you fancy. However, the answer is unexpectedly- walking. Although this may be anticlimactic for some, it is a relief for many others. Walking is free, requires no equipment and may accomplished at any age. The benefits of cardiovascular exercise are numerous and to save you the time and effort of looking up the positive benefits of cardio, here is a fantastic list developed by The American College of Sports Medicine.
The data explains itself. We need to be moving more every single day. Our bodies were made to move and not doing so is becoming more a detriment than we could ever have imagined.
Check out this link from Medical News Today-
PLEASE SHARE THIS ARTICLE!
This may help others more than you realize!
We would love to hear what motivates you to keep moving in the comment section below-
What Is Stroke?
A stroke is a "brain attack". It can happen to anyone at any time. It occurs when blood flow to an area of brain is cut off. When this happens, brain cells are deprived of oxygen and begin to die. When brain cells die during a stroke, abilities controlled by that area of the brain such as memory and muscle control are lost.
How a person is affected by their stroke depends on where the stroke occurs in the brain and how much the brain is damaged. For example, someone who had a small stroke may only have minor problems such as temporary weakness of an arm or leg. People who have larger strokes may be permanently paralyzed on one side of their body or lose their ability to speak. Some people recover completely from strokes, but more than 2/3 of survivors will have some type of disability.
Stroke By The Numbers
A brain aneurysm burst or a weakened blood vessel leak (hemorrhagic) is one of two types of stroke. While the least common of the two types of stroke it most often results in death.
A blood vessel carrying blood to the brain is blocked by a blood clot (ischemic) is one type of stroke. Learn more about the types of ischemic stroke.
WHAT IS TIA?
When blood flow to part of the brain stops for a short period of time, also called transient ischemic attack (TIA), it can mimic stroke-like symptoms. These appear and last less than 24 hours before disappearing. Learn more about the signs, your risk, and TIA management.
Above text thanks to:
Some contributing factors to stroke are:
High Blood Pressure
Tobacco Use / Smoking
Quality Nutrition = Quality Training
Eating smart not only makes your feel better and exercise more efficiently but aids in a lifestyle that is less prone to disease and other health complications.