Random Monday Thoughts (Except It’s Almost Tuesday)

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1. So I read last week that Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps eats upwards of 12,000 calories per day.

Michael Phelps

Until you start training five hours per day, six days per week, don’t get any crazy ideas.

2. Why are you not reading my training log over at t-nation.com? I’m pretty sure it’s been voted the most kick-ass training log this side of awesome.*

3. We have a female athlete who has been training with us for a few weeks now, and for the past two weeks she has been saying her back has been bothering her. Upon digging a little more into the matter, she mentioned that her back bothers her pretty much everyday. Guess what I see her doing after she was done training? This:

Low Back Stretch

Ahhhhhhhh. The lumbar spine isn’t meant for excessive range of motion. In looking at the research (specifically by that of Porterfield and DeRosa, and even moreso by the work of Shirley Sahrmann), it’s clear that there’s roughly five to seven degrees of “acceptable” rotation between S1-L5, and one degree of rotation (each), from L4-L1; for a grand total of roughly 13 degrees of rotation. Yet, watch many people “stretch” their backs, and they’re getting way more than that and thinking it’s healthy (thank you ADA!). Isn’t it quite coincidental that a vast percentage of lower back issues arise in S1-L5, yet this is the area that people stretch the most? Hmmmmmm.

Needless to say, I really wish people would get away from thinking that lumbar range of motion is indicative of overall spinal health. It’s not! Certainly there are exceptions to the rule, but I feel that the vast majority of people who suffer from low back pain would be wise to stop stretching their lumbar spine and start focusing more on spinal stability.

4. I’m moving this week, yet again. On one hand I’m sad to leave my current apartment (for what it represented), but I know this is what I need to do, and well, I’m looking forward to turning the page in my life and see where fate leads me.

Dear Fate,

If you do exist, can the next page in my life lead to, I don’t know, the breasts of Megan Fox? Pretty please, with chocolate covered cherries on top? I’ll totally be your BFF forever.

Megan Fox

5. Just wanted to give a shout out to CP client Danny Verna, who benched 300 lbs for the first time in his life last week. And he did it without anyone yelling, “all you, all you, all you.” What made it even more sick, was the fact that he did it with what was essentially a close grip. And even though he went to a John Mayer concert in New York today and most likely lip synced to Your Body’s a Wonderland, he’s still cool in my book. I can’t hate on Danny for admiring a guy who has hooked up with the likes of Jennifer Love Hewitt, Minka Kelly, Jessica Simpson, and most recently, Jennifer Aniston. Not only is he a champ at playing the guitar, but he’s a champ at hooking up with hot chicks, which I’m pretty sure is grounds for being nominated for the Medal of Honor or something

6. Also wanted to let everyone know, that my good friend, Jonathan Fass co-hosted The Fitcast this week. Check it out.

7. Life without television is great. Sure, I miss my SportsCenter highlights and lets be honest, Skin-a-Max. But in the grand scheme of things, I just feel less paranoid that the world’s going to end now that I’m not inundated with stories of death, murder, war, economic woes, escalating gas prices, politics, and updates on Angelina Jolie’s uterus.

8. Know what I hate? When people say that all you have to do to train your core is perform squats and deadlifts. While there’s no doubt that in doing so, you will train your core, I still think it’s a bit simplistic and shortsighted (not to mention stupid). I feel rather strongly, that people need some form of dedicated “core” work in their programming. And while I won’t go off on a tangent here (I’ve talked about this ad nauseam in the past), some great articles to read would be Mike Robertson’s High Performance Core Training and Mike Boyle’s The Real “Core” Exercise. Additionally, for those that are masochists, you can check out Jim Smith’s Combat Core Training. A nice resource to have for those looking for unique ways to train their core.

* n=1 (me)

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Plus, get a copy of Tony’s Pick Things Up, a quick-tip guide to everything deadlift-related. See his butt? Yeah. It’s good. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good.

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