08 Oct 2012
My inbox runithover, so when I received a copy of Sarah’s latest release I gave it one of my favorite Paleo cooks, coach and head of the household Kelley Colby.
Kelley leads one of my groups 5 times a week at 5:00 am and still manages to prepare healthy meals for her family. I knew I would like the book but I wanted a review from a mom working the frontline. Thanks Kelley !
by Kelley Colby
I have both of Sarah Fragoso’s Everyday Paleo cookbooks. She has tackled the somewhat overwhelming idea of changing your family’s eating habits. She is living it and now shares her experience in a simple and straight forward plan for families.
Sarah begins with The Basics explaining Paleo eating and follows up with Getting Started. The Getting Started section is my favorite for families. I think it is always helpful to be reminded to slow down and simplify. We all go go go and what many young families need is time together.
The next few chapters from Understanding Kids to the One-Week Meal Plan and Budget Guide make eating Paleo a reality for any family determined to live a healthier lifestyle. This book is an amazing resource and inspiration.
I have tried several recipes and can’t wait to try more. The sauce section alone is a reason to buy this book! The recipes are easy to follow and modify if needed…I usually leave some particular spice out for a picky kid. Each page offers insightful tips in the Something Extra box with suggestions for meal planning or recipe variations.
15 Mar 2012
I was so hoping that I could help pen this post but the guy just likes to type. Enjoy this story because it’s so heartfelt and he is such a great guy. I call him “2 Tech” because he reminded me of a space eater from my football coaching days… but far more athletic. I know you will enjoy his transformation story.
Dr. Brian Petroff is a gym member you rarely see unless you are in the gym at an off hour. Brian is a research physician currently looking at cancer and how different variables impact it’s growth or recession. This includes various lifestyle and supplement routines.
As a boy scientist, I bend his ear whenever I can to learn more. I got Brian to answer a few questions on current items of interest.
Q: Tell our readers about your current role ?
The disclaimer provides that information above is merely information – not advice. If readers need medical advice, they should consult a doctor or other appropriate medical professional. The disclaimer also provides that no warranties are give in relation to the medical information supplied on the website, and that no liability will accrue to the website owner in the event that a user suffers loss as a result of reliance upon the information.
29 Dec 2011
Do one thing every day that scares you.Eleanor Roosevelt
A big part of what we do in our practice is to push folks out of their comfort zone. Very little positive occurs when you just go with the flow. We strive to make the exercise experience challenging physically but also mentally. Improvements and growth only occur with pressure. Set the bar high.. BE better. Here are some suggestions to improve, grow or get outside your comfort zone in 2012.
1. Wear A Rubber Band and Snap it ! ~ This is a practice advocated by sport psychologist Jack Singer. Dr. Singer was ask to work with a college quarterback. It seems that the quarterback who was otherwise perfect, had a nasty habit of letting negative thoughts and pressure get to him during games. After conversing with the youngster, Dr. Singer discovered that the player was sliding into a pattern of negative thinking when the game got close. Together they created a way to change the course of his thinking. Dr. Singer placed a rubber band on the players wrist and whenever a negative (self defeating) thought pattern started to drift into his mind he would snap the band on his wrist and start to visualize positive images of what he wanted to have happen. Problem solved! So next time you are about to down a bottle of wine when you should have a glass or a pint of Ben and Jerry’s at the end of the evening just snap it ! I’ll even provide the rubber band.
2. 30 Days of eliminate ~ I used to be from the school of subtle change..be gradual. Two years ago I did a 180. Subtle didn’t work so I adopted the all in total immersion approach. If you need to clean up your act take a 30 day pledge to change. A few ideas include, no alcohol, no grains, no dairy (or all of the these) 30 days of workout, 30 days of 8 hours of sleep. The list goes on. If you really want over site and results you should join our PR12 program. Best hurry ! The winter addition begins next week.
3. Sign Up, Register, Enroll~ Some of the best leverage you can have over your training and lifestyle behavior is to pay the entry for a competitive event. Paying the money to participate in anything from a benefit walk to a Tough Mudder will keep you on track with your training program. Remember to tell your 5,000 best friends on Facebook too. They will hold your accountable. We have a schedule of events that we will be supporting. Plan on attending our kick off gathering on 1/18/2011 to learn how our methods can get you event ready on less effort !
4. Brain Trainer ~ Your brain like muscle needs to be stressed. Reading, doing crossword puzzle and dedicated brain trainer exercises is critical to neural function. Daily brain training can strengthen willpower and promote healthy lifestyle choices. A University of Amsterdam study found that problem drinkers who followed challenging cognitive training regimens drank less than a control group who did only the easiest regimens. Morever, improvements endured one month later.Two on line options I like are My Brain Trainer and Lumosity.
5. Work on your balance ~ In assisted living communities they like to monitor the aging process with balance assessments. A decline in balance equates to rapid aging. With that in mind each day perform a mundane task while standing on a single leg. Brush your teeth or unload the dishwasher while standing on one leg. If this becomes boring find a firm pillow to stand on and do the same. Ever wonder why we perform so many single leg moves? Well now you know.
6. Walk when you could ride or drive ~ N.E.P.A. stands for non exercise physical activity. This is the non schedule exercise you get from parking further from the front door, the office entrance or the designed walk to the market instead of driving the grocery getter. Adding these extra measures can add up quickly to improved health and opportunities to get some sunshine and vitamin D. So next time your on the way home from the movies ask to be let out several blocks from home and hike on home.
7. Wednesday Benchmark~ Every Wednesday get out the measuring stick. This can be a weigh in, measuring the waist, charting food consumption, or a fitness yardstick like push ups. This keeps you in check over the long haul. Weight is NOT a great metric and BMI is an even worse idea. The point is to keep 1 pound change a one pound change and not wake up in 12 months 15 pounds out of range. If you really are bold you can get a Twitter account and tweet your weight. Got questions just ask me.
8. Dump 4 Pints ~ When you donate blood it’s a double win. You save a life and you rid yourself of old blood. Some evidence points to the positive benefit of donating to reduce toxic build up and accumulation of minerals. So in 2012 donate once a quarter
10. Mess-O-Greens ~ While I’ve been accused of being a low carb Nazi ~ thank you. I am in fact a vegetable advocate. I typically eat one meal each day that includes a large vegetable serving. My favorite is a tossed salad. I look to include red, orange, yellow and green matter in my salad. (ROY Green) I toss it with olive oil and it’s good to go. Eat a mess-o-greens like me and feel the benefits.
11. Get Lab Work ~ Unless you have a specific issue, when you go to your GP he/she is going to focus on your blood lipids for the most part. I suggesting that you also start monitoring more. Look at hormones as well. You may get some push back if you ask for it from your physician. If you don’t want to deal with your GP you can purchase lab work al a carte from Privatemdlabs.com ( Reading the results is a different thing but reference ranges will be provided with your results) Once you have the results plug them into a spreadsheet and plan to look at them again at five year intervals. (I have a strong concern for the future of the homo sapnien male but that is a post for another time.)
There you have it. Ten things to push you out of your comfort zone now get you list organized.
10 Sep 2011
I promised last time a real life story on how correcting your sleep can optimize body composition levels and lead to fat loss. Sleeping in the 5-6 hour range will yield sub optimal performance and typically a nice fat deposit right at the waistline . Evan has so generously agreed to share his results. I am very pleased and happy for him. Share this with your fluffy sleep deprived friends.
You had asked me to give you some thoughts on my recent experiences with more sleep. As you know, I have been coming to CrossFit Kansas City for the last year, starting with two months in the bootcamp class, and the last ten months on the advanced side. Over that period, I have seen good progress in all of my benchmark workouts, strength, endurance, etc. As all of my advanced class friends and coaches can attest, I’m certainly not at the top of the class, but from where I started, the progress has been substantial. My weight when I showed up last year was 227, give or take. Six weeks later, it was 215. Then over the next couple of months, it climbed back to 222 ish, which is where I stayed until recently. I did not pay much attention to that weight gain because in my opinion (and there is probably some truth to this) the 222 six months in was a whole world different than the 227 when I showed up. With that said, the scale didn’t budge for months.
Up until about two months ago, I have been fairly dedicated to the 5:00 a.m. class. As a young attorney, my schedule is a bit unpredictable, and 5:00 a.m. seemed to be the time of day that was least likely to be interfered with. The benefit was that I was able to sustain attendance in the 3-4 time per week range (good for me, believe me). The only drawback was that even going to bed at 10:00, which is not the easiest thing to accomplish, I still had to get up at 4:30, which left me at 6.5 hours of sleep approximately 4 days per week.
While I was definitely more energized from getting into a regular fitness routine, I also was struggling a bit with feeling sluggish throughout the day. This was most noticeable come Friday night at about 7:00 when, after a long week of 4:30 wake-ups and workouts added to a hectic work schedule, I would frequently find myself passed out on the couch. Most work days around 2:30 I would also hit a wall. I wrote this off as the price you pay for trying to balance fitness and other obligations.
About two months ago, I was given the opportunity to transition within my law firm from one office to another. This meant a number of good things for me professionally, but also meant a chance to create a new work schedule. I jumped at that opportunity, and started swapping out some 5:00 a.m. classes for some 5:45 p.m. classes. When it became apparent that I might be able to sustain that schedule, I made a full-time switch to the 5:45 p.m. class, sprinkled with an occasional 5:00 a.m. class when I know I have something else scheduled that would make it impossible for me to attend in the evening. Those four nights a week that used to be 6.5 hours of sleep are now a solid 8-8.5.
Since making the switch I have noticed two things that have been very good for me. First, the days of 222 appear to have waived goodbye to me, as I have noticed a very steady change in my weight. My new baseline seems to be about 213, a good 9 pounds lighter. There’s no science* behind this next part, but I believe that weight came mostly out of the belly region given that I have had to make my belts 1 to 2 notches tighter than they used to be. Another great benefit has been that my days are SUBSTANTIALLY more productive than they used to be. I no longer feel tired throughout the day, and I show up at 5:45 pm ready to go for my workouts.
In any event, this is just my anecdotal look at your philosophy on sleep. By adding about 8 hours per week, I lost some dead weight and feel a lot better during the rest of my life. All in all, it’s a big win for me.
*There is actually very good science to predict accumulation of fat precisely in this spot.
06 Sep 2011
Since 2004 I’ve been harping on the value of sleep. Two important books and a few years under my belt brought me to this point.
(I’ve talked about sleep here in the past but I can’t help it. It’s needs the focus.)
Sleep is an interesting challenge as a health and fitness practitioner. Some people require less and others more. Additionally, it’s difficult in a large setting to qualify and quantify how it all gets factored into the result. The tendency in my industry to focus on food (diet is such a bad word) and fitness and to give cursory attention to sleep and other lifestyle issues. It’s our default setting. So as a rule sleep is the red headed step child to programming and eating.
While improved sleep will help with anything from mental issues to a reduction in inflammation and cardiovascular events, they don’t appear sexy enough to get folks attention.
BUT, if you mention fat loss you will tend to catch an ear.
Sleep deprivation will absolutely train wreck your fat loss goals. Burning the candle at both ends stretches your reserves and puts your sympathetic nervous system into overdrive. To over simplify things, your body is thinking fight. A craving for carbohydrates and sugars occur and fat burning is turned down. The net result is the body holding on to fat as a survival response. (A poor training program nets the same result but that’s another topic.)
For males, running low on sleeps typically nets a reduction in testosterone levels which creates a whole new subset of issues. Get that macho man? Less sleep = less manly.
Part 2 of this post will include my first fat loss story solely as a result of more sleep. Stay tuned kids.