Here’s a recap of the best health and fitness articles I’ve read over the past week. I’ve been doing a lot of reading recently, so my update is bit long. I hope you can make some time to at least check out a few of these.
Most Vitamins Are a Waste of Money
Great post on why we need to research the supplements we take before taking them. The author of this article mentions one of my favorite supplement researchers, which is ConsumerLab.com. Most of my supplement decisions have come from the research they’ve done.
Five Ways to Fix Your Deadlift Today
If you want some tips on doing the deadlift from a coach who knows real weight training and physiology, this is a post for you. This post explains a little about fixing hip hinge, performing rack pulls to perfect form, improving hip mobility, improving spine mobility and learning how to breathe properly. I need to work on every single one of these things.
Hips Don’t Lie: 3 Drills To Nail The Hip Hinge
Just as I was reading about the hip hinge in the article above, I came across this. The hip hinge is something I’ve never tried to work on, although I wouldn’t doubt if it needs some adjusting.
Build Your Own Self-Watering Planter – Step by Step
Garden season is right around the corner and now is the time to start getting everything together. A planter box is nice, but a self-watering planter is even better. I don’t have the money to build one of these this year, but I really wish I did.
Yoga For Starters Infographic
I knew there were several yoga styles but I didn’t realize there were as many as are listed on this infographic. This handy chart tells you which types of yoga are best for things like stress relief, energy, meditation, and even vegetarians. I don’t know how they determine which type of yoga is best for vegetarians, but I guess I’ll just have to trust them.
The Cortisol Challenge
DH Kiefer suggests working out at night when cortisol levels are low and skipping breakfast, since early morning is when cortisol levels are high. According to this article, cortisol levels are highest around 6-8 a.m and begin to drop from 8-11 a.m., so you probably want to hold off eating your first meal as close to 11 a.m as you can. I can do the skipping breakfast part, but I just can’t stick to a routine when I try to workout at night. If I don’t workout in the morning, I don’t workout at all.
It’s getting science-y in here: Everything you need to know about sugar
This really is the all-you-need-to-know guide to sugars and sweeteners. Get the rundown on the best and worst sweeteners around and how they effect our bodies. Looks like the safest sugar is xylitol, which is actually what I use most based on Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof diet.
So You Want to Start Sprinting?
I wanted to incorporate sprinting into my routine last year, but I never did. I’m definitely going to do it this year and I’m starting with the information here. The foam rolling drills and mobility exercises are great too, and not just for sprinting.
Dynamic Effort Training: BS or Legit?
Ready to geek out on exercise science? This one is about determining whether speed work is beneficial towards powerlifting efforts. The topic remains up for debate but according to the original author of the article, powerlifter Mike Tuscherer, from which this article from Bret Contreras stems, it sounds like speed work is best for beginners to lifting. Bret doesn’t provide an opinion on the matter but does go into some science that could help you make a decision on whether you should be doing speed work or not.
Kettlebell Training Manifesto: A Beginner’s Guide to Kettlebell Training
This article provides a short history lesson of the kettlebell, a basic understanding of how kettlebells work, the different types of grips, and some exercises you can do. This is a great guide and goes into quite a bit of detail. Very well put together.
An Alternative to Willpower for Losing Weight
Alex Lickerman, MD is a physician that has found a way to get his patients to stick with the slow-carb diet, despite the fact that most people who go on diets and successfully lose weight, end up gaining a lot of it back later. The key is psychology. Check out Dr. Lickerman’s seven point plan to not only remove bad foods from your diet, but any other vice you might have.
7 Ways to Fix Weak Hamstrings
I just started working on my hamstrings about 4 months ago after reading an article similar to this one, explaining all the reasons why strong hamstrings are important. I haven’t incorporated a whole lot into my routine that focuses on the hamstrings but I probably will now.
11 Reasons to Ditch Processed Foods
This is everything I’ve been learning from the book, Rich Food Poor Food. Here are just a few takeaways – dont eat foods with phosphates as an ingredient, don’t consume foods containing dyes and be careful of foods labeled as “natural.” The FDA has far too many loopholes for food manufacturers and destructive businesses like Monsanto. If you don’t want to poison your body or pass down busted genes to your children, avoid GMO and buy organic.