I found this video, of an island muscle head, Alcindo Soares on a beach in Santa Maria, Cape Verde. He is a construction worker on the island, who has built this gym on the beach with scraps collected out of the ocean. That is impressive by itself, but what struck me as so cool was the effort the gym users were putting forth on this salvaged gym. In the U.S. we think that new and shiny is best, but there is something to be said for putting forth effort with what you have, not looking for the newest trend. Hard work trumps everything else eventually.
Pre-Game: – Pre-Game Meal: • 4-6 hours before game • High Complex/Low GI** foods (whole wheat bread or pasta, sweet potatoes, oatmeal); low protein and fat • Hydrate well: fruit juices, sports drinks (gatorade/powerade), water
– 2-3 Hours before game • Moderately-sized snack: more low GI foods; low protein and fat • Continue to hydrate • No caffeine*
– 1 Hour before game • Small snack: easily digestible foods (fruit, pretzels), sports bars and sports drinks (like Gatorade or Powerade – NO “Energy Drinks” (Red Bull, etc.) • Continue to hydrate • No caffeine*
– 30 minutes before game • “Top off the tank” • High-GI** carbs that will absorb quickly and deliver glucose rapidly to working muscles • Sports drink, sports gels • No caffeine*
*Caffeine has major dehydrating effects, can make you jumpy, and raises your heart rate and blood pressure – all things you should avoid on game day!
Post-Game Recovery – VITAL PERIOD
– First 30-60 minutes after competition • Replace every pound of weight lost through sweating with 20-24 ounces of fluid • Best concentration is 4:1 ratio carb: protein blend drink – better than water
– 60-90 minutes after competition • Continue to hydrate • Recovery snack, shake or bar with 4:1 carb: protein ratio
– Within 3 hours after competition • Mixed Meal – combination of protein, carbs and fat • Continue to hydrate • NO soda, alcohol, caffeine – Bus Ride Home • Athletes should be hydrating constantly • If you are not going to the bathroom at least once every hour you are not drinking enough
• Within 24 hours after competition Strictly Limit: – Alcohol, Soda, Caffeine in any form • Dehydration, lack of sleep, and lack of nutrients are not the keys to recovery
Youth Sport Conditioning Facts!
Myth: Weight Training Stunts growth
Truth: No Clinical record showing correlations between heavy weight training and bone damage. In fact bone density increases!
Myth: Strength Training is ineffectual at producing strength at younger ages because of their hormonal profile is not adequate
Truth: High intensity programs have been shown to increase strength in preadolescences in 6 weeks or less (Wescott 1979, Mersch 1989, Nielsen 1980, Ozmun 1991)
Myth: Injury rates with weight training are a continual source of concern and have been proposed as one of the major rationale for precluding children’s training with weights.
Truths: Injury rates are lower in weight lifting than in other sporting activities (Stone 1990)
Weight training programs are safe with athletes as young as 7 (Pierce et al, 1999)
Weight lifting can reduce the likelihood of injury in other sporting activities (Faigenbaum&Schram, 2004)
Despite the previously held belief that strength training was unsafe and ineffective for children, health organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine, The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Strength and Conditioning Association now support children’s participation in appropriately designed and competently supervised strength training programs. (John A Bergfeld M.D.)
Sprint training is a multi phase training process. All phases of training must be addresses to produce optimal results.
The basic formula for a faster athlete is:
Power=(Mass x Acceleration) x (^Distance/^Time) or:
small mass (lighter body weight)
big force (stronger body)
all body parts going in the right direction
all components of the body firing in a short amount of time
The less the athlete weighs the faster he/she is going to be. The bigger the athlete the stronger they have to be to produce more force.
It is a fact that 200 pound male athlete that squats 400 pounds is going to be faster than a 200 pound athlete that squats 200 pounds. Period. There is a reason world class sprinters (male and female) have muscles. The stronger/more powerful and lighter the athlete is, the faster they will be.
During sprinting the Ground reaction force is 5 times body-weight! Ground reactive force is the force the body exerts on the ground. Muscle forces, or the force due to the action of muscles can be up to 7 times body-weight! So for a 200 pound football player that can be upwards of 1400 pounds of stress in the muscles in the body during a sprint. All the ladder drills in the world alone aren’t going to prepare you adequately for these kinds of forces
All Body parts going in the right direction
Sprint mechanics. Broken into Back-side and Front-side mechanics, it is the ability to properly position your torso, arms and legs to produce the proper stride length as well full use of all of the power being produced by the body. The key here is the ability to efficiently use all the force produced by the athlete to propel them forward.
All components of the body firing in a short amount of time
Better sprinters have shorter ground contact times.
World class sprint coach Charlie Francis was quoted as saying, “To go fast you need more force, the more force you apply to the ground the greater the displacement.”
Bottom line: Sprint mechanics play a part, but ultimately a lighter+stronger+ ground reactive athlete is going to be faster on the field. By far the most trainable aspect of sprint training is to increase the athlete’s strength and power levels!
Every program is built around the following proven training principles:
1. Individualized Sport-specific Training
Every athlete has unique training needs- based on training age, injury history,
body size, sport and positional demands, and hundreds of other variables. We
distinguish ourselves by providing individualized programming to meet every
athlete wherever they may be. Likewise, we provide programming designed to
maximize transfer to the field of play by developing the specific movement
skills and energy systems of each sport.
2. Multi-Joint Movements
No single muscle works in isolation in sport. Rather, the body works
synergistically to produce complex movements. Running, jumping, kicking,
shooting and throwing all require multiple joint actions timed in a
synchronized recruitment pattern. This can only by enhanced through
movement-oriented training, which develops the musculoskeletal (muscles,
joints, connective tissue) and neuromuscular systems (brain) simultaneously.
3. Multi-Plane Movements
Movement in sport occurs in three planes- sagital (forward-backward), frontal
(side-to-side) and transverse (rotational), and combinations of all three.
Resistance training should incorporate exercises and movement patterns that
develop strength and speed in each plane. Movement training should
emphasize acceleration (force production), deceleration (force reduction) and
agility (change of direction skills) since these have the greatest impact on sport
4. Ground-Based Movements
Most sport skills are initiated by applying force in to the ground, on one leg or
two, or transferring force to an implement (stick, club, bat, ball). The more
force an athlete applies against the ground, the faster they will accelerate and
the higher they will jump. The more force they can transfer from the ground
(through the core) and out to the implement the harder they will hit, kick or
shoot. Weight training exercises should be chosen that enhance this ability to
generate and transfer force with the feet on the ground. Specifically, intensive
core training (on stable and unstable surfaces), combined with squats (single
and double-leg), lunges, and Olympic lifting is critical. Plyometrics and sport specific
agility drills can also be very effective.
5. Explosive Training
The ability to generate force at high rates of speed (power) is crucial in sport.
Power output is the result of motor unit recruitment by the central nervous
system. There are two types of motor units- fast and slow- that vary greatly in
their ability to generate force. Training explosively, using ground-based,
multiple joint movements trains the body to recruit fast motor units at high
rates of speed. This, in turn, improves performance potential.
Performance gains will eventually plateau and even diminish if the same
training prescription is continually followed. Periodization is a scientifically
proven model that uses different combinations of volume, load (intensity),
tempo, rest and specificity to progressively overload the body and bring about
specific training adaptations.
No training program can be successful without a commitment to nutrition, rest
and a healthy lifestyle. Decrements in performance can often be traced to a
poor diet, poor sleep habits, and/or lack of recovery time. It is essential that
athletes understand and apply regeneration techniques that accelerate recovery.
Becoming the best possible athlete requires more than talent, consistent
training and a commitment to nutrition. A foundation that includes resolve,
discipline, courage, perseverance and selflessness is essential for true success.
These attributes must be emphasized, developed and rewarded during training.
The Nuts and Bolts of Exercise for Weight Loss
Individualized Heart Rated Driven Interval Training
Individualized and Scaled Interval Weight Training (all movements chosen to coincide with your individual fitness level)
EPOC Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (which means you burn more calories during your workout and more calories long after the workout is over)
Because we measure your personal heart rate in real time, there is never an plateau of your results. As you get fitter, the program is changed to accommodate your progress!
Here is an example of how we view a pretty good day of nutrition for one of our athletes. This is for a competitive athlete, and the amounts of food would need to be adjusted to the goals of the athlete.
7:15-7:30 AM: BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS (FEEDING #1)
1-2 cup(s) Whole Grain (high fiber, low sugar) Cereal or Oatmeal,
1 cup Skim or Soy Milk, 2 Tbsp. Flax-seed oil, 1 cup Fresh or Frozen Blueberries, 2-4
2-4 Hard-boiled Omega-3 enriched Egg Whites
8-16oz Water, Multivitamin + 1-2×1000mg capsule Fish Oil
9:30-10:00AM: MORNING / PRE-WORKOUT SNACK (FEEDING #2)
1 Apple with 2 Tbsp. Natural Peanut Butter OR 1 Builder’s Bar, 16oz. Water
10:30-11:30: WORKOUT (FEEDING #3)
Sip Gatorade mixed with 1/2 scoop whey protein isolate (shake well)
11:30-12:00PM: POST-WORKOUT SHAKE (FEEDING #4)
16 oz. low-fat Chocolate Milk OR Gatorade Recovery Shake, 1 piece fruit,
1-2×1000mg capsule Fish Oil
1:00-1:30PM: LUNCH (FEEDING #5)
Large Spinach or Romaine Salad with 2-3 fists* of protein (chicken, turkey, fish, beans,
Whole-wheat wrap filled with veggies & 2-3 fists* of protein (tuna, turkey, grilled
chicken, hummus etc.), 16 oz. Water or Green Tea
*1 fist= 1 serving
3:30-4:00PM: AFTERNOON / SNACK (FEEDING #6)
1 Apple with 2 Tbsp. Natural Peanut Butter OR 1 Builder’s Bar, 16oz. Water
6:00PM: DINNER (FEEDING #7)
2-4 fists Grilled Chicken, Fish or Steak Fajitas with Grilled Veggies, 1-2 cups Black
beans, Salsa, Cheese, Guacamole, 1-3 whole wheat tortillas
8:30-9:00: EVENING SNACK (FEEDING #8)
1-2 cups Low-fat Greek Yogurt with 1 Handful of Chopped Walnuts or Almonds, 16oz.