Category Archives: Reviews

Excessive “cardio” exercise may damage your heart?

Came across a few people linking to some research in the European Heart Journal about heart damaged caused by running a marathon. Continue reading

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What I’ve Been Reading Lately…

Here’s a look at a few of the articles I’ve been reading lately…

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A Must Read

I don’t even have anything awesome to say in comparison to this article by Martin Rooney…  just click the link. Continue reading

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Is “cardio” making women fat???

Came across an awesome article today on Elitfts.com.  It looks into the SCIENCE (not how we want the body to work) behind steady state cardio making women fat (and guys too). Continue reading

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Perform Better Hangover

I know, I’ve been pretty lazy on the blog lately… since like April.  But I’ve been inspired by a trip to Providence, RI for my first Functional Fitness Summit.  It was the boost I needed to get back online and write about what I’m seeing in the wide world of sports training and fitness. Continue reading

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Book Review: New Rules of Lifting for Abs

So I’m finally getting around to reviewing a book I read awhile ago called the New Rules of Lifting for Abs by Lou Schuler.

My take:  It was a good read.  That’s pretty much it.  I think it’s tough with fitness books because the industry changes so rapidly.  By the time the book gets published the information is a few years old.  A lot changes in a few years.  I embarrassed to say what I was doing a couple years ago.  (think biceps curls and ridiculous abs routines!)  But it’s a good thing that it changes, that’s a sign of progressing.  Any trainer doing the same things he was doing in 1991 probably isn’t a very good trainer.  Actually I can guarantee they suck.

Even with pants like that I can’t guarantee he knows what he’s doing

But back to the book.

I think it was sold as a book co-written by Alwyn Cosgrove (owner of Results Fitness, one of America’s top gyms, and a leader in the fat loss training community), but there was actually no words written by Alwyn in the whole book.  It was just Lou, which is fine.  He’s a good writer, but he’s very Men’s Health.  Good magazine, but they have  a certain style of writing that is too obvious they are trying to cater towards their market.

He does a good job of explaining that new fangled way of training (almost exactly how we train here at CP).  I can see where a book like that would be an eye opener to your typical Men’s Health reader.  As a strength coach keeping up with the industry trends on a daily basis, it was nothing I had not seen before.  That’s ok though, not all books need to be written with me in mind.  So if you’re still that guy or girl at the gym doing a shoulder day or a biceps day, go ahead and pick this book up.  It will change your life.  If you’re already enlightened and don’t train like a juiced up bodybuilder full of injuries you’re probably better off saving some money for other reads.  All the information in this book and more is easily available online in blogs and articles by guys like Boyle, Cressey, Gentilcore, Dan John, ME, etc.

Also, the title is confusing and he has to spend the whole book explaining it.  It has “abs” in the title, but really that’s just to sell the book.  He’s 100% correct in this however.  People only want to hear about how to get abs.  He would never sell a book called New Rules of Reasonable Training to Feel Better and Probably Look Better too as Long as You Control your Diet.  Except to me, but we’ve already established that I’m not a great target market.  Single guy’s in their 30s are a lot more lucrative!

Hopefully I can keep my reading going and get out another review soon!

-Hunter

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Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat from a Deficit

So I’ve been reading a lot about a variation on one of my favorite exercises, the Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat.  The variation is doing it from a deficit to give you a greater range of motion and be able to load the exercise without putting a bar on your back.  I decided to give it a try today the best way I know how, doing as much weight as I could find laying around the gym.  (We have way too much free time on Friday afternoons.)

Before letting clients do an exercise we usually try to test them out ourselves and (to quote Captain Ron) figured if anything’s gonna happen it’s gonna happen out there. (with a ton of weight on my back)

A must see

Anyways, here is my attempt to keep good form as I give this exercise a try.

*

Overall I think it’s a good variation.  I was definitely way lower than a traditional RFESS.  My only concern is loading up the weight gets tough from our setup we tried.  Since we don’t have a shorter step we had to use our 12 inch plyo box, which is just too high.  So we made the back foot even higher by putting an airex pad on the bench I was using.  This wasn’t as stable as I had hoped and led to a little slipping around, but not too bad.  Physically getting into that position with the weight isn’t exactly easy either.  (it involved a dangerous 100lb. dumbbell rear foot elevated clean and catch until I finally asked Brendan for help on my last set, which meant he was involving the camera.)

My recommendation would be to use a smaller step for this exercise and not take it to really high weights.  The risk reward just isn’t there, if you get strong enough to use a weight you’re uncomfortable carrying into that position, just do them traditionally with a bar on your back to increase the load in a safer way.

 

-Hunter

*I totally did like 25 more reps on that same leg after the camera cut off…

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