Sorry I've been on radio silence for so long. You'd think vacation would be a good time to catch up on things, but I wound up working so much at my day job to make sure my boss wouldn't be swamped that I haven't had nearly as much time or energy as I'd like. So, finally, here's a bunch of good reads. Oh, and happy anniversary to my awesome, beautiful, loving wife Jackie!
Five Tips for Leaning Out: If you're looking to cut a few pounds or just reduce your body-fat percentage a little bit, this is a common-sense must read. You can learn a lot about flexible dieting, but for my money, the best point is Bret Contreras's first one: You need to maintain enough energy to work out hard.
Workout of the Week: Special Ks: Competitor Running has the answer if you're bored with your track intervals -- try some 1k intervals. Here are a few combinations you might like.
Four Sneaky Things That Can Make You Overeat: Time also offers some solutions to the problems, but IMO, it really comes down to being vaguely cognizant of your calories and macros. Which brings us to...
The Importance of Tracking Your Macros: Russ Howe makes a pretty good argument that it's a lot easier and a lot less tedious to track your macros -- protein, carbs and fat -- instead of your calories. At the end of the day, it's all math, but if you know three of the four variables, the fourth one falls right into place.
Outrun Your Fork and Gain Muscle: Dr. Spencer Nadolsky backs up what I've been saying for a long time -- but he has, you know, science on his side. Steady-state cardio isn't an inhibitor to muscle-building. The issue is more about how much time you have to devote to exercise. And if you have the time both to lift and to run, you can lean out, get cut and eat pretty much anything you want.
Do We Really Need Slow, Long-Distance Aerobic Work for Optimal Fitness: Short answer: No, you don't need it. But it also depends on your goals and what areas you are weak in now.
Obese People Almost Never Attain Normal Weight: The authors of this study are careful not to draw conclusions not specifically supported by their evidence, but I will. There's way too much BS out there, and people who lose weight generally do it in ways that aren't sustainable.
How Much Water Should You Drink Every Day to Stay Hydrated? Not as much as you might think. Of course, it depends on how much you sweat, but four to six glasses of water a day should do it. Simplest thing is to look at your pee -- if it's pale yellow, you're in good shape. If it's dark, you're dehydrated.
A Drill Sergeant Who Called Overweight People "Repulsive" in a Video Has Gone Viral: Another iteration of the argument over where the line is between concern for public health and fat shaming. You'd think this guy is just an a-hole, but give a click first.
Be Audacious - High Fives and Runner Waves: Hey, be friendly out there on the road or the trail. A little encouragement goes a long, long way!
Is Overdistance Training Beneficial for Runners? For up to the half-marathon distance, yes. If you're training for 26.2, no.
Biggest Weight-Loss Myth Revealed: A linked to this on the Facebook page when I first saw it, and a number of people were talking about it. The author argues that you actually need to create a 7000-calorie deficit to lose a pound. I say NFW.
It's Not Obesity We Should Worry About, It's Inactivity: Forbes drops some science on us to back up the claim that our sedentary lifestyles are the biggest public health threat.
Steady-State Vs. Interval Training: Which One Is Best for Your Clients? This one is aimed at professional trainers, but you can learn from it, too. I like this article because it's even-handed and lays out both the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Race Your Best With Periodization: This article is aimed at runners, particularly ultra-marathoners, but there's a valuable kernel of wisdom here: You will never realize your full potential if you're always trying to train close to max effort. You need some down periods.
Leave Your Headphones at Home: You know the old adage: Nothing new on race day. But you don't want to miss out on the full experience of a race -- the spectators cheering, the encouragement from your fellow runners, and even the sounds of nature. So try a few long runs without the tunes -- that way, you'll be prepared to ditch the headphones when you hit the starting line.