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Fitness Articles

Troubleshooting Weight Gain

A couple of years back I wrote an article series on troubleshooting weight loss that was quite popular with my clients who were struggling with identifying the reason they’re weight loss efforts had stalled.

I have been meaning to write a companion article for some time now on the other side of the coin–weight gain, for my hardgainer athletes who find themselves in plateaus on the other end of the spectrum: where they feel like they should be gaining weight but are either maintaining weight, or even losing weight.

I unfortunately got distracted by other obligations but now I am getting this article out there once and for all.

When I talked about the issues with weight loss plateaus, they mainly centered around unwittingly eliminating the calorie deficit that weight loss requires through one or more factors.

These same factors are typically responsible for stalls in weight gain for those looking to put on size, so it behooves us to review them, but from the perspective of someone desiring to add mass rather than reduce it. Continue Reading Troubleshooting Weight Gain »

Body Rehabilitation for Hair Stylists, Pt. 2

Last week I discussed a brief overview of the most common postural issues that is a common pattern amongst folks in the hair industry, as well as the reasons why it’s so prevalent in this particular demographic.

I can hear you saying, “Alright dude, I get it, I’m screwed up. But what the hell can I actually DO about it?” Well, let’s get into that…

What Can I Do About It?

I’m going to break up your rehab regimen into 4 categories: foam rolling/trigger release, stretches, strengthening exercises and occupational/lifestyle changes. I’ve put them into more or less “chronological order” in that you should perform the foam rolling first, then the stretches and then the strengthening exercises (and in general, make the occupational and lifestyle changes as well).

For best results, you should perform the following exercises in each category every day—with the exception of the strengthening exercises, which you should perform 2-4 times per week. Continue Reading Body Rehabilitation for Hair Stylists, Pt. 2 »

Body Rehabilitation for Hair Stylists, Pt. 1

Welcome to the first of a two-part series I will be doing on the topic of postural distortion patterns (in layman terms, bad posture that causes pain) that are commonly seen in hair stylists (part 1) and what to do about them (part 2).

Why am I singling out hair stylists? To be honest, I just happen to know a lot of them, and because I am a coach by trade, I tend to notice people’s posture as we’re interacting. I have seen significant similarities in the postures of most, if not all, of the hair stylists that I know, and others who I’ve observed at the salons I’ve gotten my hair cut at.

The truth is, while this information is being geared towards hair stylists in particular, anyone with postural issues can implement the advice in this series to help reduce pain, while also improving what they look like and how they move. Continue Reading Body Rehabilitation for Hair Stylists, Pt. 1 »

Lifting Weights Causes Breast Shrinkage: True or False?

“Am I going to lose my breasts by lifting weights?” This is a very common question that enters women’s minds when they first begin considering weight training. After all, most of the photos we see online of really fit women show either relatively flat chests, or breast augmentation, so it’s understandable that one would assume this was the case.

This concern has scared many women away from incorporating weight lifting into their workout regimen as a part of achieving their dream body. It is pretty clear that media doesn’t help this, as it continually promotes weight lifting with images of extremely-muscular women on stage strutting their “stuff” with no natural breast tissue to speak of. Continue Reading Lifting Weights Causes Breast Shrinkage: True or False? »

Why “Functional Training” is a Meaningless Term

Spark a conversation about training philosophy with a group of personal trainers these days and you’re bound to run into at least one that espouses the claim that “functional exercise” is a vastly-superior method of training for any trainee, regardless of their goal or circumstance.

Such proponents often argue that functional training methods provide “real world strength”–the idea that the skills learned in training will transfer directly to the skills needed in life–and that other forms of training (particularly, typical bodybuilding methods) will provide no similar carryover of benefits.

While these arguments can be convincing and might contain some good points, the underlying concept is flawed for one simple reason: “functionality” is a relative term. Continue Reading Why “Functional Training” is a Meaningless Term »

How Do I Get Rid Of Cellulite?

Cellulite is every girl’s nightmare. It is mostly seen among women, although some men have it as well. You don’t have to be obese or overweight to have cellulite; even “skinny” people can have it. Because of the impact that cellulite has on us—mostly our appearance—countless companies have been coming up with solutions to get rid of it, from creams to skinny wraps… I’ve seen it all.

The truth is that all those creams and treatments don’t work. Cellulite cannot be erased; its appearance can only be minimized. But, before I get into the how and why, let’s figure out what the condition really IS and how it forms. Continue Reading How Do I Get Rid Of Cellulite? »

Will Lifting Weights Make Me Bulky?

This is one question that will always come up when the topic of lifting weights comes up in a discussion involving women. This is a hard concept for women to understand because there is such a misunderstanding on the effect weight training has on the female physique.

We have been fed images of the enormously-muscular, veiny male body-builders holding weights or being featured on articles about lifting weights for years, so it’s understandable that this connection would be made. It doesn’t help that some unscrupulous folks in the fitness industry promote the idea that traditional weight training leads to a “bulky” body in an effort to steer consumers to their fad programs.

The weight room is also traditionally seen as the “men’s room”, while the cardio area is where most women spend their time. To feed into this mindset, many gyms even have a “women’s area” that is filled with tiny little weights and even more cardio equipment to underline this concept that women should not lift heavy weights. Continue Reading Will Lifting Weights Make Me Bulky? »

Perfect Posture Series: Protracted Shoulder Girdle

Look around you at the gym, or in any public place and you will see a common trait shared by the vast majority: forward-slumped shoulders with a closed-off chest cavity. This posture is so prevalent that people don’t even recognize it when they see it… it just looks like normal posture to them.

The issue is, of course, that it’s not a healthy position to be in for a number of reasons that I am going to outline for you today. Before I get into the reasons why I feel that this postural abnormality needs to be addressed, let me explain what exactly is going on when someone has a protracted shoulder girdle. Continue Reading Perfect Posture Series: Protracted Shoulder Girdle »

Why I Hate the “Women Only” Section

Time to work out. You walk into the gym, and are immediately met with the intense smell of sweat, dirty socks and rubber flooring. All around you, angry meat-heads are violently slamming weights, screaming (in a manner you’re not sure is caused by intense pain or some kind of primitive, primal rage), and storming through the gym with a look on their face that says, “Get in my way, even for a second and I will END.YOUR.LIFE.”

You’re already sweating in anticipation of the awkward, frightening experience you will have in the weight room. You start listening to the voice in your head telling you to come back later to work out, no big deal. No, you say, I’m here, I’m going to do it.

You fumble for your membership key card, which you timidly hand to the front desk attendant who is looking at you with a raised eyebrow, probably wondering why you’re sweating so much even though you haven’t yet started your workout.

After procrastinating for as long as you can in the locker room, you finally take a deep breath and prepare yourself for what lies ahead. Just as you’re about to enter the lion’s den, you notice an inviting sign at the opposite end of the locker room. “Women-Only Weights Room” it says. Continue Reading Why I Hate the “Women Only” Section »

There is No Secret Program

“Hey brah, what program are you on?” This is a common question I see asked of my athletes when they’re posting progress photos or just general updates on Facebook regarding the good results they’re getting while coaching with me.

Often these posts will be littered with friends and acquaintances asking the athlete to provide their “program” so that these people can benefit equally in their own fitness efforts (minus the investment, of course). Continue Reading There is No Secret Program »