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Train / Eat / Sleep

IN THE GYM,

You Train, you Work Hard, you go home… right?

Unfortunately that is not how it works for most of us who are not professional athletes.

The difference between being a ‘professional’ versus being a ‘high-level athlete’ is that high-level athletes still have to go to work! Whereas Pro’s job is to Train / Eat / Sleep + Perform.

Top Professionals have as much control over their Sleep and Nutrition as they do their movement. High-level athletes don’t/can’t because Life often gets in the way!

All that is to say is – pay more attention to your Sleep and Nutritional QUALITY – and you will notice an improvement in Performance.

I appreciate that this is easier said than done.

Start with limiting your training sessions to 3 days a week but adding in one important extra little thing …

MOVE MORE THROUGHOUT THE DAY
ok this isn’t a ‘little’ thing, its huge. Most of us sit all day and don’t walk enough.

  • the negative effects of sitting for hours cannot be undone by any amount of exercise.
  • walking / running is the most primal type of human movement and is one of the most effective exercise for maintaining general health.

Another General Rule:
you need almost twice as much “Non Exercise Activity” as you do training in the gym.

HOW!?!?!
here are a few ways of adding more movement into your daily life

  • Morning Movement Routine
  • Pre / Post – Meal Walks
  • Set up a “courage corner” / workout station and practice “Grease the Groove

This is not the place to explain the GTG protocol.

Suffice it to say – Grease The Groove is the most effective way to Build Strength and Skill while helping to maintain a Healthy Body Composition.

That brings us back to the question of Exercise Selection and what you should be focusing on when it comes to Movement Quality.

…. More on that next time

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‘MEDs’ 4 Nutrition

MINIMAL EFFECTIVE DOSES that will keep you healthy and happy

1. Movement

2. Nutrition

3. Mindfulness


NUTRITION

  1. Eat as organic as possible, as local as possible and as in season as possible.
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  2. Eat 3 servings of cold-water fish a week.
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  3. Don’t eat more than 3 servings of red meat a week.
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  4. Eat 4 cups of 4 different vegetables 4 times a week.
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  5. Eat for your Gut Health
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Before we get to the topic of “Nutrition for maintaining a healthy body weight” let’s first take a look at the science of habit formation.

… Ever heard the statement that it takes 21 days to form a habit?

Unfortunately, this statement is slightly misleading… In general people overestimate what they can accomplish in one year and underestimate what they can do in 5 years.

In fact, this research states that it ranges between 18 and 254  days to form a habit! (depending on one’s motivation / and how pleasurable the habit you are trying to form is) An expert in motivation and habit formation, James Clear, references this very study. He states it takes about 66 days to form a new habit.

 

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The first thing you have to know about nutrition is that it is extremely variable

– it varies from person to person and is age dependent.

Here are two things you need to consider when searching for an ideal diet:

  1. Your Genes
  2. Your Microbiome

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  1. Genetics

You are right in believing that your DNA is inherited from your parents, however the environment has a huge influence on how your DNA is ‘expressed’.

When chemicals are introduced into the body some may attach to, or alter how your DNA is expressed. Altered gene expression can change how you respond to certain stimuli. This can include how you use and metabolize food!

What Can You Do About This?

  • Know That, what works for you might not work for others. What worked for you in the past may not work for you in the future.
  • Eating Local, Organic and In-season food can reduce the amount of harmful chemicals your DNA comes in contact with.
  • Do not follow a fad diet blindly. One way of determining if you are on the right track is if you actuallyfeel’ healthy.
    • Analysis of this study shows that self-rated health is a valuable way of predicting “subsequent mortality.”

If a certain food makes you feel crappy, avoid it most of the time.

If a food makes you feel great, consume in moderation.

  1. Microbiome

The human body is made up of trillions of bacteria that interact with each other and the environment (food) in just as many different ways – all of which directly affect our health.

In fact, There may (or may not) be ‘gut types’ which would allow us to tailor medicines and diets at an individual level.

Microbiologist Zhao Liping, found that adding certain fermented poebiotics into his diet allowed him to lose 20 kilograms in 2 years. (I have some issues with this study but it proves the point!)

The takeaway:

  • Eat For Your Gut Health & Play The Field – try out as many fermented, preserved and probiotic foods as possible. Just make sure they have not been processed, pasteurized or are full of sugar.

 

Here are a few gut health ‘MEDs’ that can help improve your waistline:

  1. Eat as organic as possible, as local as possible and as in season as possible.

  2. Eat 3 servings of cold-water fish a week.

  3. Don’t eat more than 3 servings of red meat a week.

  4. Eat 4 cups of 4 different vegetables 4 times a week.

 

Obviously you want to be consuming healthy fats, however that does not mean you should be eating spoonfuls of grass fed butter all day – Your microbiome can produce beneficial fats as a byproduct of breaking down oligosaccharides found in certain vegetables.

However, if you are prone to bloating / irritable bowel – consider an anti-inflammatory or FODMAP diet. Those types of vegetables mentioned above can have a irritable effect on some individuals – like I said, the best diet is extremely variable from person to person.

 

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Interested in learning more about ‘How your microbiome can help you burn fat’?

This book will point you in the right direction.

Here are 2 companies that have cornered the market on providing individualized diet and lifestyle suggestions:

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Before we finish,

One last thing on habit formation:

Habits have 3 parts:

  1. Reminder / trigger

  2. Routine / the habit itself

  3. Reward (every habit requires a reward for it to stick)

In fact, up to 40% of our daily activities are done habitually. They are context dependent and occur at the level of our subconscious – that means we cannot tell if we are in a habit loop until we stop and really think about it.

If you want to understand more about habits and how they affect our daily life check out this book by Charles Duhigg: The Power of Habit

  • Here is an interview with the author.

Keep in mind,

I AM NOT a doctor. However your health (and your waistline) begins with knowing, but knowledge is only power if you act on it!

If you have questions about this information, set up a consultation with me,  I would be grateful to help straighten out your habits.


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Martin Colangelo : “The Better Movement Specialist”

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Principle Based Training

This article is about what I do as “The Better Movements Specialist”

This article will be as much about my training philosophy and coaching style –

as it is about the end goal / vision of my business.


 

“The Socrates of Training”

Sometimes it is better to ‘Work In’ than it is to ‘Work Out’.

In today’s stressful epoch it is hard to tell if what we are doing is helping us, or harming us, in the long run.

Everyone has a different capacity for stress – a different tolerance – different defense mechanisms – and different standards for they think is ‘normal’.

Not to sound like a broken record but really, what is normal.

The best way I can describe it from a physiological point of view, normal is when the two branches of your nervous system are in balance.

‘Working In’ is anything that activate your parasympathetic nervous system. I.E. anything that calms down your “monkey brain” and allows you to rest, recover, digest and play.

‘Working Out’ is the opposite, it activates the fight or flight centres of the brain, and if one is not careful they can get stuck in this zone. If this happens a training session that would have stimulated a hormetic response in fact digs you deeper into fight or flight.

It’s this ‘getting stuck’ that is the big problem.

I have seen people stuck in either end of the spectrum. An individual stuck in the parasympathetic zone can’t handle stress. The individual stuck in the sympathetic zone will not be able to relax.

Why can’t we have both?

The truth is, we can.

This is what the ‘Socratic method’ of training is all about…

It is about figuring out at what level an individual is at –

  • their Strength level
  • their Endurance level
  • their Movement functionality / economy
  • their dominant nervous system
  • there are many,many others…

– and then working them up from their unique, individual level – to the next one. and then the next, and the next etc…

The KEY to success however is that the individual must figuring it out FOR THEMSELVES.

Yes a good coach can help show the way, but they cannot do the work for you.

No that is not a cop-out, if you don’t want to think about how you move or spend the necessary time needed to figure out where you are in the spectrum, then you will never be … ‘normal’….


Results that LAST

For sure there are other methodologies that can get you to your goals, they may even get you stronger and faster sooner and more completely.

However, only if you train mindfully will you have access to your body’s abilities when you need them the most. not only that but you will be able to maintain a higher level of strength and endurance for longer – that is you will be able to maintain your ‘fitness’ levels well into old age.

There is no point in looking for ‘one-hit-wonders.’

I want to create a balance individual who can perform, even dominate, for long periods of time.

I want to build you up to Gretzky level, Jordan level, Ali, Pavel, Brady, Armstrong (without doping!) – you get the idea.

And this is how….


Principle Based Training

  1. Mobility Principles
  2. Training Principles
  3. Strength Principles

FIRST AND FOREMOST – you have to be ready to ‘work out’ – or as described above; ‘normal.’

How can you tell if you are ready to Work Out, or if you should be Working In?

  • check you breathing
  • check your mind

The body and mind mirror each other, especially the heart rate and breathing rate. When you are stressed both heart rate and breathing rate are elevated.

Therefore you will need a baseline of both.

  • check both, ideally when you wake up from 8 hours of sleep
  • check them 2 or 3 days in a row, and then use the average

If this is the first time you have spelt for 8 hours 3 days in a row then this article has already made an impact on your life – you will feel so much better after sleeping enough.

Finally, but definitely not last – POSTURE

  • if your posture is not ideal, you should work on mobility until you can lay comfortably on the ground for 10-15 minutes without any props.
  • that is to say, you should be able to sleep without any pillows.

If this seem like too much of a challenge simply to start working out, keep in mind this article is written to be as generic as possible – I can not prescribe anything to anyone without meeting them first.

Contact me at colangelo.mart@gmail.com -or- info@latsontraining.com for a consultation. Lets chat about your unique situation (online or offline).


 

1) Mobility Principles

  • refers to the ability of your body to use full ranges of motion.

I.E. Bending without breaking.

  1. Relaxation
  2. Breathing
  3. Patience
  4. Use your Strength
  5. Create Space
  6. Share the load

2) Training Principles

  • refers to the organization of our workout.

If you follow this order of increasing and then decreasing neurological intensity you will cover all your bases for strength and endurance

  1. Mobility
  2. Reactivity
  3. Speed / Power
  4. Strength
  5. Endurance
  6. Recovery

3) Strength Principles

  • refers to the fact that strength has a greater purpose

This is because strength makes everything else possible, it is a skill that can be taught, its about doing something properly and doing it well.

  1. Safety First
  2. Tension is Strength
  3. Relaxation is Strength
  4. Perfect Technique
  5. Long Rest
  6. Simple
  7. Sinister

*stay tuned for explanations in upcoming posts


This bring me to the last point,

The Overall Vision

My business is called LatsOn

The ‘Lats’ span more joints in the body than any other muscle.

The Lats are strong and mobile and uniquely awesome in what they do.

Most importantly the Lats support your posture, that is to say you head.

I.e. Lats support you life.

Humans are social creatures, and require a balance of 3 major aspects to ensure or a high standard of living:

  1. Home / Family
  2. Work
  3. Hobbies (includes sports)

LatsOn supports these 3 things through the following strategies:

  1. Movement
  2. Nutrition
  3. Mindfulness

These strategies are based on a ‘Minimal Effective Dose’ modality – that is to say the least amount of _____ for the greatest amount of return.

Each of the above points interact and support each other in such a way that when balanced properly, optimizes the quality of your life.

Currently our movement systems are based on 4 modalities

  1. Strength and Conditioning
  2. Powerlifting
  3. Kettbell Skills
  4. Restorative / Corrective movement

Each of which are again, based on a Minimal Effective Dose approach.

My business partner Tyler Lees-Schmut and I provide Group and Private instruction in all of these areas, specifically supporting (but not limited to) these demographics:

  • Youth (athletes or not)
  • Adults in recreational sports
  • Front Line Workers / First Responders

Quick note on Hobbies (including sports) – everyone has a hobby, or at least should have one for a healthy balanced life, and every hobby requires a movement practice to support it.

Yes that means even if your hobby is reading a book, or collecting stamps or playing with a train set – you still require bodily functions to perform these tasks. As stated before, the body and the mind mirror each other; so as your physical capabilities decline so do you mental capabilities (and vice versa).

This is called aging.

Why not age gracefully and functionally.

Did you know your eyes are controlled by muscles? Makes sense doesn’t it. So why don’t you ‘Work Out’ your eye muscles like you would any other? this would allow you to see your books, stamps, train, grandchildren’s children – whatever.

Whatever your goals, whatever your age or ‘fitness’ level, despite what kind of life you lead – LatsOn can help!




Martin Colangelo

“The Better Movement Specialist”

Stay Strong my friends!

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Questions from Clients: Glycemic Load


Hello There!

Tyler (author of this post) and Martin (humble editor) earnestly desire to help YOU sort through the’ loads’ of ambiguous information found online and offline – and then present this info in an easy to read, no BS way.

We do this because 1) we care 2) we want you to be able to make intelligent and well informed decisions when it comes to your health and ‘fitness’ (an ambiguous term in itself) – and –

Reason d’etre (3) – to provide those in our sphere of influence the ability to create change in the areas that matter to them/you MOST.

> this is why we encourage questions > this post is a response to one of our clients – if this individual is pondering this topic, so are 20 others…. So here it goes – Hope it helps!


The Glycemic Load,

“…. of our meals affects our hormones and not just the hormones that regulate blood sugar like insulin but also those that help regulate our overall stress tolerance like adrenaline and cortisol. The endocrine system, which is 0ur hormonal system, resides in a delicate balance, so even a few months of abuse will easily tip the scales out of balance.”

Now imagine what years of sugar binges, many moons of late nights and early mornings and a couple double double coffees a week are going to do to you…

Not only to our insulin levels, but also to our adrenal glands.The short answer is =

STRESS

Stress on the body is equal to stress on the mind (and vice versa). High glycemic diets stress both the mind and body by abusing insulin, adrenalin and cortisol. These guys are very powerful chemicals.

The worst part is, you can actually get addicted to the way they make us feel.

For the most part, foods that are highly refined and/or high in sugar and lacking in fibre, fats and proteins – will be higher on the glycemic index.

These foods cause blood sugar levels to spike, insulin levels to spike, as well as adrenaline and cortisol to be over-used. All of this will cause strain to the entire endocrine system.

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HOWEVER,

when we eat lower glycemic foods – those that are rich in deliciously healthy fats, fibre, protein (and are in their most complete form) – then we are getting out of the way of nature. That is to say, you will begin to let nature run its coarse; things repair themselves and the body is able to recover.

Eating lower glycemic foods will put less strain and abuse on the various organs and hormones of the endocrine system, as well as support balanced and more regular hormonal cycles.

That is why diet and lifestyle are so imperative in maintaining hormonal health.

If weight loss or change in body composition is one of your main goals, stay away from high GI foods.

Although,

there is a point when the body needs them I.E. after hard physical work…..This is because post-exercise there is a flood of cortisol and adrenaline. As we know now these are our body’s stress hormones and they cannot differentiate between types of stress > I.E. > If we are experiencing stress (physical or mental) they get released into our bloodstream.

A hard workout is no exception. In order to grow and repair efficiently we need to stem the tide of these stress hormones with a strong insulin response. The higher GI foods (along with a good protein source) will do this for us. The absorption is way faster but it needs to be specifically at this point – as our tissues are depleted of energy – in order for proper metabolic recovery.

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In general: avoid high GI foods, but also know that these same foods (as long as they have good, naturally occurring protein and fibre)  are BENEFICIAL depending on the TIMING of their consumption.

p.s. things like donuts do not count…. eat unrefined, and unprocessed naturally occurring foods whenever possible. Full Stop.

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Once again, I hope this helps. If you have any questions – do not hesitate to contact us or leave a comment.

If you did find this valuable, please share it with your friends or on your social media of choice 🙂

Thanks,

Stay strong all!

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TYLER LEES-SCHMUT

Co-Owner / Instructor / Author @

Contact us Now for a Consultation*

 

 

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(almost) Everything You Need To Know About ‘the Anabolic Window’…


Editors note:

This article will address a specific question, and – at times (as Tyler’s style dictates) can get a bit wordy and possibly confusing.

The question involves the physical state of ‘Anabolism’.

You will read about numerous applications for enhancing muscle growth and repair as well as  some ‘myth-debunking.’ So stay tuned!

Tyler’s question is not “what is the Anabolic Window?” – but one that goes beyond simply defining the term. The information provided plums the depth of this subject.

> so what is this question? …


 

“Is the Anabolic Window Real?”

If you’re well informed in the fitness industry, you’ve likely heard of the anabolic window and know the old saying; “nutrient timing is everything, if you want to build muscle!

However you’ve likely also learned that more recent research has somewhat debunked this “anabolic window” theory – in favour of simply meeting total daily nutrient requirements.

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TRUTH:

If you’re not optimizing your post-workout nutrition properly, you may very well be missing out on some potential ‘gains’.

If you really want to know the truth about the “anabolic window” and post-exercise nutrition, you want to read this article…

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Consuming adequate nutrients; macro and micro nutrients, proteins, fats and carbohydrates etc – are essential to optimize muscle growth.

This much is undisputed.

The data is very clear on the benefits of enhanced protein synthesis, attenuating protein breakdown, and ultimately contributing to muscle growth and repair. However it is the timing of ingestion that has been a topic of heated debate. In some cases, the timing of nutrient ingestion is thought to be more important than the nutrients…

In a nutshell, proper nutrient timing means: ‘optimizing the delivery of nutrients to the muscle during a time when the muscle is primed to use them most effectively.’

 

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Nutrients and Exercise

Resistance exercise training is a reference point commonly used as a basis for the timing of nutrient ingestion due to the metabolic effects of exercise.

The time frame immediately prior to and during exercise is the phase primarily devoted to the use of the body’s energy to improve the quality of the workout. However, this period of time is not consistently associated with enhancing muscle growth after exercise – but it should be –

During exercise and immediately after exercise, the body is in a Catabolic state.

  • Blood insulin is low, while cortisol and other catabolic hormones are high.
  • Liver glycogen levels are reduced, or in some cases depleted.
  • The rates of muscle protein breakdown is at it’s highest.

While resistance exercise itself is known to be an activator for protein synthesis, the absence of any post-exercise nutrition will leave the body in a net catabolic state.

This is because any increase in protein synthesis (creation) is offset by the high rates of protein breakdown (catabolism). This catabolic state can prevail for many hours until nutrients are consumed. Therefore, exercise without any post-exercise nutrition is not a favorable situation for muscle growth.

The consumption of protein and carbohydrates initiates a shift to anabolism by simultaneously reducing all the catabolic factors and amplifying the effects of protein synthesis.

One possible mechanism is that muscle is particularly sensitive to insulin post-exercise, which ensures:

  • the rapid transport of glucose and amino acids into muscle.
  • promotes muscle glycogen synthesis and protein synthesis.
  • inhibits the pathways governing protein breakdown.

Since insulin sensitivity declines with time, the effectiveness of nutrient intervention will also decline along with it.

Although the muscle sensitivity is known to be elevated for up to 48 hours post-exercise, muscle sensitivity is greatest within the first 3 hours and then progressively declines.

 

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Protein Post-exercise

The ingestion of protein post-exercise primarily serves to augment the rates of protein synthesis – but only plays a minor role in stopping the effect of protein breakdown.

Surprisingly, there are very few studies that have analyzed the protein synthetic response of various time-points post-exercise. The general consensus is that there is a clear additive effect of protein synthesis when protein is ingested within the first few hours post-exercise.

Thinking logically however, the sooner the muscles transition from catabolism to anabolism, the greater the potential for muscle growth.

For this reason, while there may not be a clear narrow window when nutrient ingestion is required, most exercise studies clearly support protein supplementation sooner rather than later for the optimal stimulation of protein synthesis. 

 

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Carbohydrate Post-exercise

Most weight-lifting athletes primarily focus on protein supplementation post-exercise, with concern mostly on protein synthesis, and with little regard to the need for carbohydrates.

As previously mentioned, protein supplementation focuses on pathways to stimulate protein synthesis and does not have a major affect on protein breakdown. However, the ingestion of carbohydrates post-exercise has a major impact on the effectiveness of the cellular pathways that involve protein breakdown.

Including carbohydrates during post-exercise nutrition plays a prominent role in the transition from muscle catabolism to anabolism.

Glycogen levels in muscle influences the activity of a number of metabolic activities including glucose transport and protein metabolism. That means the restoration of muscle glycogen is paramount in the exercise recovery process.

The combination of carbohydrates with protein results in greater gains in muscle hypertrophy after resistance training when compared with a protein-only supplement.

Timing of carbohydrate supplementation appears to be more stringent than it is for protein.

Post-exercise muscle glycogen synthesis occurs more rapidly when carbohydrates are consumed immediately after exercise as opposed to waiting several hours.

In fact, delaying supplementation for two hours can reduce the rate of muscle glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis by half.

If carbohydrates are not adequately supplied post-exercise, the rate of muscle glycogen synthesis can be extremely low despite normal increases in blood glucose and insulin levels later in the day.

 

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Conclusion

Protein and carbohydrate supplementation post-exercise is a vital component to optimizing post-exercise muscle recovery.

This includes not only maximizing muscle hypertrophy, but also minimizing muscle soreness and optimizing muscle recovery time.

The combination of these nutrients increases the efficiency of muscle recovery when compared to either carbohydrates or protein alone.

Any delay in supplementation post exercise is not recommended, as the muscle remains in a catabolic state until nutrients are delivered to them.

Furthermore, the sensitivity of muscle is highest soon after exercise. Therefore, if getting the most out of a workout is crucial, then consuming nutrients soon after exercise should be considered equally as important.

So as you can see, most of the myth-busting about the anabolic window focuses on protein supplementation alone for post-exercise and that’s where most people get it wrong.

As you read above, carbohydrates post-exercise are perhaps even more important for muscle recovery and growth. 

 

This is for you to stay informed, for your health’s sake!

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TYLER LEES-SCHMUT

Co-Owner / Instructor / Author @

Contact us Now for a Free Consultation*