marathon


The other problem is one of ignorance and tradition. Women are simply trained like “girls.” This is unacceptable. Even when female athletes are trained, coaches often use a hodge-podge of techniques driven by “that’s what I did when I was on the team.” Many are taught to be weak. Way too often, sports coaches just throw excessive endurance training at their athletes in the form of long distance running because they simply do not understand the energy system requirements of their sport. They don’t actually know what to do so they just dismiss it as “running far builds endurance.” Unfortunately, it is rarely the type of endurance required unless you happen to be a track or cross country athlete involved in the sport of distance running. Most often you only get bored, fatigued, overheated athletes with overuse injuries and muscles that are too worn out to perform the explosive elements required in most sports.

Things don’t get any better in the weight room. Everyday I fight the notion that “I can’t do that; I’ll get bulky.” Many women have absolutely no idea of the wonderful things they are capable of obtaining in the gym. Those who are involved in sports are often mistreated and under coached. My dream is for everyone who trains to use the same science and the same care and attention regardless of gender and regardless of how many advertising dollars their pro career will be worth. I want to see athletes trained like athletes, plain and simple.

One of the first things I do with all of my athletes, male or female, is to teach them to squat correctly. Just the simple neurological programming of learning to squat with the posterior chain while pushing the hips back gives females a better choice of technique to use in landing. Women tend to decelerate a landing with their quads, which is the opposite of the male tendency to use the hamstrings/glutes to decelerate. I always ask people if they have ever seen a toddler deep-squatting to play with some toys on the floor. Watch them. Head up, chest up, hips back, and the knees are over the ankles. We spend our lives unlearning what is a very natural squatting position. I want all of my athletes/clients to relearn it.

Once people learn to use the posterior chain properly and strengthen it to previously unconceivable levels then landing and decelerating with it become natural. With the exception of the squat/deadlift and its variations, the all time best weapon against knee injuries is the hamstring bulletproofing movement know as the Glute-Ham-Gastroc raise. Many people, even the strong ones, cannot do a single rep at the beginning with the footplate set on its easiest position. This shows you right away how grossly under trained the hamstrings are.

In my years of coaching athletes, I’ve encountered many people with tremendous quad strength, weak hams, and, of course, knee pain. Once they bring up their posterior strength, the knee pain usually disappears. The posterior chain is engaged in this exercise from the bottom of the toes all the way to the back of the head. The large calf muscles cross the knee joint along with the hamstrings from the other direction, and a stronger muscle-tendon junction here would help with increased knee stability.

Training should come at knee stability from other angles as well. Knee valgus, or being knock-kneed, is fairly common and dangerous to the medial collateral ligament. One of the best ways to shore up the knee and prevent, or even potentially alleviate this condition, is to strengthen the muscles on the upper/outer side of the hip. Specifically this would be the gluteus medius/minimus, tensor fasciae latae, and the I.T. band (iliotibial). There are several great athletic movements to help these muscles. No angle should be ignored. The structure of the knee demands that it be strong in all directions. This means making all of the muscles of the lower body strong and ready for action.

One of the biggest things differentiating my training from others is that I don’t consider women to be second-class athletes. They are different, to be sure, but are capable of unbelievable heroics, athletic grace, and beauty. I’m lucky in that I get to see women doing amazing things in the gym and on the field all of the time. I’m not interested in hearing about estrogen and menstrual excuses for knee problems. Furthermore, there have been differences noted in landing technique between male and female athletes. These can be addresses by proper training and are therefore not a huge issue.

I’ve often said that female athletes use brains and heart to accomplish things that testosterone makes much easier. Smarter training will prevail. The real issue lies in the lack of proper coaching. People need to be educated. Our little girls deserve it. Our moms deserve it.

Bob Jodoin is an ISSA master trainer, a New York strength master trainer, a NBFE fellow, and a former director of strength and conditioning at Total Performance Sports. He is now a strength and conditioning coach as well as a personal trainer in sunny Orlando, Florida. Bob serves as a strength and conditioning advisor for youth sports to the Winter Springs Pop Warner Midgets, the Wild AAU 13U baseball, and M-PACT Sports. He can be reached at bobjnys@aol.com.

Elite Fitness Systems strives to be a recognized leader in the strength training industry by providing the highest quality strength training products and services while providing the highest level of customer service in the industry. For the best training equipment, information, and accessories visit us at http://www.EliteFTS.com.

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Being a father of 3 one boy athlete and two young female athletes, this article is probably my most favorite of all time.  I will break this into two sections so follow along.

“Girls are stronger. Boys are stinky” This is what my 6-year-old little girl says when asked who is stronger. I want her to understand from a young age that women are not second-class athletes. My baby girl is never going to be sent over to the pink dumbbell rack and the treadmill and told to lift light while the boys are overtraining the squat. She’ll be under the bar with the boys, and if they give her a hard time, she will only have to say, “Don’t make me call my Dad!”

Sports opportunities are on the rise, and female athletes keep gaining more recognition. It isn’t near enough, but it’s slowly getting better. There are many incredible role models out there. Female athletes are my heroes because they do things with their brains and heart that the males need testosterone to do. They are fierce! This is all a good thing.

The bad thing is that female athletes are tearing up their anterior cruciate ligaments at an alarming and epidemic rate. This is sad, wrong, and most likely preventable, at least to a much greater degree than what is currently happening. Any sport where female athletes need to decelerate and change direction on their feet shows an ACL injury rate some eight times more than in male athletes.

The whole issue really came home to me when a good friend of mine, Dr. Jack Barnathan, DC (ISSA director of fitness sciences), gave his talk on female ACL injuries. I found the problem to be absolutely outrageous, especially when I learned what the medical community was doing about it.

I’m going to do something about it. I’m doing something about it right now. My strength does not lie in the lab or in the halls of academia. I do my work in the gym. I teach women how to squat.

First, I want to identify one of the problems. Bodybuilding is a sport. I give my iron brothers and sisters respect because they work hard and are more dedicated to diets than probably any other group of athletes. There are techniques used in bodybuilding that serve a special purpose for correcting issues of symmetry and proportion. Their primary goal is isolation. However, these techniques typically have no place in athletics. The human body is not meant to work in isolation but is rather a remarkable machine that does its best work when working in concert with different aspects of itself.

One of the biggest demons rears its ugly head in the name of isolating the quadriceps muscle group. This is the sinister and malevolent creature known as the leg extension machine. Since the predominant media force comes from the bodybuilding magazines, the public has learned all of its technique and terminology from them. Unfortunately, this includes our athletic and fitness community.

The bodybuilder, when posing in the mirror, is very concerned about the biceps, quads, rectus abdominus, and the pectorals. These muscles are not, however, the most important for athletic human movement. The more important muscles are those of the posterior chain, the ones that you cannot see in the mirror. The posterior chain starts at the heel and continues up the back of the leg right into the muscles of the lower back. As a group, they are under trained. This is one problem.

Bob Jodoin is an ISSA master trainer, a New York strength master trainer, a NBFE fellow, and a former director of strength and conditioning at Total Performance Sports. He is now a strength and conditioning coach as well as a personal trainer in sunny Orlando, Florida. Bob serves as a strength and conditioning advisor for youth sports to the Winter Springs Pop Warner Midgets, the Wild AAU 13U baseball, and M-PACT Sports.

Elite Fitness Systems strives to be a recognized leader in the strength training industry by providing the highest quality strength training products and services while providing the highest level of customer service in the industry. For the best training equipment, information, and accessories visit us at http://www.EliteFTS.com.

Wow!  Taking any amount of time off will make a person feel like they are completely out of touch with what’s going on anywhere. 

That’s exactly what I have done over the past few days.  I’ve posted but I’ve had these last couple posts in my Manage file for several weeks. 

Due to the effects of my surgery I haven’t trained in 2 weeks and I’ve lost 5 pounds as a result, which doesn’t make me happy. 

I have not had any contact with any of the people I train.  Which really seems like it puts me out of touch.  I may not be, but I feel that way. 

I haven’t read anyone else’s entries, which, now I’m behind.

 I guess the reason I am writing this is because life changes on a daily basis and unless I am up on current events in my life and others’ I can miss some very important information. 

Oh well, I hope you all are still on the correct path to your goals and didn’t allow the distraction of yet, another holiday, foil your plans.

LIFT HARD!  TRAIN HARD!

rjo0631l.jpg 

It’s all good, I think!   

After going through the glycemic index with a friend of mine and explaining how it works, what foods to stay away from, then adding a post on the subject, today I get an email with an attachment.  Don’t get me wrong my friend wasn’t questioning anything we discussed, however, the article was extremely confusing and could have raised concern and credibility issues if she didn’t fully trust me.  Earlier in the day, I receive an adverse comment to my glycemic-index post, and what made that so bad was this person was missing the entire point of my article.  Here’s the comment.  Did I mention I got up at 5:30 this morning.  🙂

Imagine how many people have read this article and had questions regarding this misinformation.  The title itself will give a person a preconceived judgement of the entire article, not to mention, it is somewhat difficult to follow.  Articles like these are the reasons why people are confused and do not know who to trust in the weight-loss industry.  Understand how the media has misguided people into believing what they want you to believe.  It’s amazing, and it’s the reason why I will not post inaccurate information.  

This post is not about the glycemic index, just a quick tutorial in regards to processed foods. 

LIFT HARD!  TRAIN HARD!

www.fitnessgenerator.com/mcgheetraining

I have been inspired to write this post from a person I don’t even know who told me I was wrong in my thinking on myths.  There is no way I am wrong because if you notice at the bottom Joe D. is the author.  Occasionally I will use other sources to add other reliable information to my blog.  However, I always acknowledge where these articles come from.  I will start out by saying that not only is Joe D. correct, I am also correct or I would have never posted his myth. 

Let me first explain that in order to do any type of aerobic conditioning (plyometrics) you have to have some sort of muscle development.  For example, think of the time you or a person you know broke a leg and had a cast put on it.  What happens to the muscle?  The muscle begins to atrophy (loses muscle), right!  Depending on how long the cast was on or how long a person has gone without using this damaged limb, will determine what a person can or cannot do after the removal of this cast.  Let’s say the cast was on for 8-weeks.  Who does a doctor send you to after the removal of this cast?  A physical therapist right! (Which most people fail to follow through on).  Does a physical therapist have you go out and jog (plyometrics) a mile before they have you do resistance training to rebuild the muscle.  Of course not, even though the bone is healed (and in most cases stronger than before, due to the calcification around the break area), you must develop a level of strength to engage in any high impact plyometrics (running).  We have all seen the knees buckle on a baby that is learing to walk and using the coffee table to hold themselves up? 

Knee pain, joint pain, and lower leg muscle tension is a common concern for most runners, especially if you haven’t developed any level of strength (not in all cases).  Now, take into consideration that both legs have been inactive for a prolonged period of time and are weak in comparison to a person’s overall bodyweight.  Please consider, if you’re overweight or just beginning a fitness program, beware of any type of high impact plyometrics (especially running off/on concrete) before building a solid foundation of strength.   

 LIFT HARD!  TRAIN HARD!

www.fitnessgenerator.com/mcgheetraining

women-lifting-weights.jpg  What are your views on aging? Is fatigue and joint discomfort the inevitable result of growing older? If so, do you believe that the elderly should take it easy when they are tired and suffering from mild aches?

The fact is that many age-associated declines occur not because of the aging process itself, but as a result of our lifestyle habits, including exercise. In our sedentary society, many muscle and joint problems are the result of weakness and inflexibility. By increasing your strength and flexibility, you can prevent injury and slow the age-associated loss of muscle function. This means that some of those old cliches turn out to be true…”use it or lose it” and “you’re as old as you feel”.

Inactive people become more frail than active people and are more likely to sustain a serious fall that could lead to hospitalization, permanent disability, dependence and even death. According to the federal government., Americans live an average of 73.7 years, but spend their last 11.7 years in “dysfunctional life”, which is marked by disease and impairment. Reducing the number of years lost to restricted physical activity has become a national priority.

Exercise itself, can slow and even reverse many components of the aging process. It’s probably the single most effective way to lengthen life. Proper exercise can rejuvenate you and take years off your chronological age- it’s the closest thing to an anti-aging pill. In other words, exercise can add years to your life and life to your years. The U.S. National Center for Health Statistics, claims that a 50 yr. old today can expect to live, on average, to over 79. This is a lot of time spent in the “golden years”. Instead of believing that over 50 means “over the hill and declining”, you should view it as “over the hill and picking up speed!”

It was once thought that aerobic capacity and muscular strength decreased dramatically as one grew older: Studies revealed that a sedentary 65 yr. old has only 60% of the aerobic capacity as a young sedentary adult, and that after the age of 30, people not engaged in strength training lose muscle mass amounting to about six to seven pound of muscle each decade. Remember that these declines apply to sedentary adults.

A 25-year study on runners performed at Ball State University found that many of the runners who continued to train had aerobic capacities similar to what they had 20 years ago. A ten year study from the Center for Exercise Science at the University of Florida found that runners who took up resistance (strength) training were able to maintain their muscle over the ten years. Those who did not, continued to loss muscle mass. The results of these studies apply to everyone, not just athletes.

Each person over the age of 55 who I have trained has found that they have marked increases in their muscle tone, strength and aerobic capacity: they have become more fit and vigorous then ever before.

One of the things that happens when you begin strength training is that connective tissue, such as ligaments and tendons, gets stronger along with your muscles. This helps to protect your joints from injury and makes everyday tasks easier, such as walking up stairs, carrying groceries and keeping up with grandchildren.

There are community programs available to help older adults stay active. Many wellness programs include low-impact aerobics and strength training. Bowling, and croquet leagues are also a fun way to stay in shape. Whatever form of exercises you choose to do, you should include ones that employ a mixture of endurance, strength, balance and flexibility exercises.

Before starting, check with your doctor to see if there are any medical concerns. Appropriate exercise can reduce frailty in old age thus helping to make a person’s last few years be filled with active participation instead of the bedridden existence that too many elderly people now experience.

We were designed to be active..don’t rust out before you wear out because you aren’t putting your body to proper use. If you want to stay strong and mobile, look and feel well, and continue to live independently instead of ending up in the care of others,then you better START MOVING!!    Deborah L. Mullen, CSCS

LIFT HARD!  TRAIN HARD!

www.fitnessgenerator.com/mcgheetraining

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