Thursday, September 6, 2012

Beware Fitness Magazines

I used to follow Muscle&Fitness Hers and Oxygen religiously when I was in college. Looking through now I can see why I might have looked great, but had terrible form when I made the transition over to CrossFit.

So the other day while waiting for a prescription at Walgreens (allergies, yo!) I picked one up and thought I'd just see what the current state of fitness was outside of CrossFit and competition training. I first come across this lovely advice column:

Wow. I guess Monique hasn't kept up on her studies since getting all those letters behind her name. There is a reason coconut oil has become all the rage lately, those medium chain tryglycerides are an excellent source of energy anytime of day. There is a reason that The Bulletproof Executive suggests putting grassfed butter and coconut oil into a pre-workout coffee. Energy, fools! And an excellent source of fat soluble vitamins.

Then my eyes were assaulted with this lady:

Let's all arch our back and get on our toes to pick up weights. I think that's a great message to send out to the masses of people who sit down most of the day and give themselves knee and back problems before they even step into a gym.

Throughout the entire magazine, you see lots of people "squatting", but no one really squatting:
The glare blocks out the above parallel squat, thankfully. 
I won't be buying another one of these again, that's for sure. I'll stick with my NSCA journals and reliable lifting bloggers.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Fav Posts This Week:

Welcome back to my favorite posts for last week!

1) Biggest Loser vs. Real Life Personal Training

In this interview with a participant from the UK's version of The Biggest Loser, some of what happens in the background and off screen has light thrown on it. There are two sides to the story as I see it:

First of all, from the athlete/client side, they see these amazing transformations happen in the course of a season. And along side it they see the trainers yelling and pushing and going ape shit. Then they wonder why they don't see this same transformation in their own lives. (I'm lucky to have intelligent clients that get it's about more than their 2-4 hours a week with me.)

Then from the trainer end, you get criticism about how hard these contestants get pushed, and then to go back to their clients and have them do their lateral raises balanced on a bosu ball to better fire their stabalizers (cough, cough, bullshit work).

2) Toe Angle and Squatting 

Most people have shitty ankle mobility. So when I initially teach a squat, I say that I'd like their toes forward, but they can turn them out 15-20 degrees for comfort if they need to. Otherwise, you get the knee issues that are touched upon in this article and video series. And that leads me to:

3) Is it your hips or ankles making your squat suck?

It's a little test for what is holding you back. For most, particularly if you have a desk job, it's probably both.

4) Kiefer Knowledge Bombs

These is a great myth busting article. And as with most Kiefer articles, every claim he makes is referenced, and you can go to those references at the end of the article. None of the references will be Wikipedia, either.

5) Heavy Duty Cholesterol Primer

Mark Sisson lays down some heavy, geek-boner worthy information on cholesterol, debunking myths about dietary cholesterol, explaining what artery plaques are really about, so on and so forth. You'll need some serious time and attention for this one, but totally worth it.