I just read what I think could be close to the dumbest thing I have ever seen on the internet…

…and it wasn’t in this blog.

I was just reading some posts in a forum….and it had a link to t-nation….which as I said the other day…is basically like a training comic book. I used to read it a lot…myself and the the soon to be BOM (Business and Operations Manager) of Informed Performance even wrote for the site…obviously under our own names…I mean…we do have our reputations to think of. Now in fairness…the site isn’t all bad…it’s just mostly bad. I really don’t have too much of a problem with it…like I said….I think it is pretty funny…the problem is…it isn’t actually supposed to be. The only problem I have with it is that people actually take it seriously…people bring me or send me programs from this site all the time asking for my opinion.

Let me give you a little taste of the idiocy that is t-nation and then you can judge for yourself…you read the italicised statement below…just go ahead and set you facial expression to stunned…it will save time.

Remember the first time you took creatine, and your weight and strength went up quicker than ever? Multiply that by two or three, and you get a rough idea of what you could expect by taking steroids.

Now I know you probably just read that 2 or 3 times….this is the sort of quality information that t-nation provides…

Anabolic Steroids = Creatine multiplied by 2 or 3.

That in all honesty is the dumbest thing I have ever seen on the internet…so be warned….don’t ever bring me another program written by a guy on t-nation or I will cut off your creatine supply.

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This blog really stinks

I can’t wait till the BOM (Business and Operations Manager) for the new and improved Informed Performance gets here to Ireland because the reason that I wanted a BOM is because I hate all the business and operations stuff…I mean I really hate it…I’m a coach…the reason that I got into coaching was to avoid ever having to get a real job or ever having to do any real work. Yet all I seem to be doing currently when I’m not coaching is doing business and operations type ‘stuff’ for the new business…and the only thing that stinks worse than this blog…is all the other crap that is going on in the background to facilitate me being able to continue on in to the future without ever having to do an honest days work.

I’m going to cover a few things in this post…all of which will be less interesting and informative than the one before…but I’m sure you’ll read it anyway.

Sports Technology Demonstration
If you are coaching and training and are interested in what is the latest in sports technology come along to the gym tomorrow at 11am. All the information is here.

Moronic things I have read this week
Charles Poliquin is a Canadian strength and conditioning coach who gets brought to my attention at least once every month….as a strength and conditioning coach the guy is absolutely moronic….as a marketer…he’s pure genius. I am going to put a collection here of all of Charles Poliquin’s greatest lines of bullshit and I welcome anyone who wants to send me some to either email me directly or just post them in the comments section and I will transfer them here.

Charles has a near cult like following here in Ireland which is actually surprising because the Irish are usually quite sharp and sceptical….some people here are actually paying thousands to this guy and are completely sucked in.

Here’s a gem that I read this week:
“I can take a 200-pound guy with 20% body fat down to 6% in 8 weeks, with no change in body weight.”
That equates to this 200lb (90kg) guy losing 12.7kg of fat and putting on 12.7kg of muscle in 8 weeks….does that make sense to anyone? I know a lot of athletes and coaches read this blog…has anyone seen a 90kg guy lose 12.7kg of fat in 8 weeks? What about any 90kg guys putting on 12.7kg in 8 weeks. Has anyone ever seen those 2 things happen simultaneously? I’m not saying that I doubt this is possible….I’m saying that it is impossible. This guy is an outright liar.

One of my older favourites:
“I tell people who get certified by me that if they can’t get a female to do 12 chin-ups in 12 weeks, then they don’t know how to train. That’s how you can evaluate a good trainer. If he can get a female to do 12 chins, he’s a good trainer. If he doesn’t know how to do it, then he doesn’t know training. Period.”

This again is moronic…I’ve had 3 female athletes in my lifetime that could do 12 plus chin ups ever….and have probably seen with my own eyes less that 17 female athletes ever do 12 or more chin ups and all those were gymnasts at the AIS.

I know that there are a few Poliquin trainers here in Ireland that read the blog…I’d be happy for any of those that consider themselves ‘good trainers’ to contact me because I will pay for a female athlete…not just any girl off the street…but a current national level athlete…to train with them for 12 weeks and we’ll see how many chins they can do before and after. I’ll do this on the proviso that if they don’t do 12 chin ups that not only repay my money but that you come and clean my gym for free once a month for a year. For the rest of you….don’t hold your breath waiting for this to happen because even these trainers know Poliquin is full of shit.

So instead of emailing me with you ‘Poliquin Program’ asking me what I think of it…I suggest you email Joe DeFranco or Alwyn Cosgrove and ask them….they are both Poliquin certified so they should know….while you are at it…ask them why they would never mention the fact that they are Polquin certified? I’ll take a guess for you…it’s because any strength and conditioning coach worth his himalyan sea salt will tell you that Poliquin is an absolute joke in the industry as far as strength and conditioning goes….but as a marketer…he’s a role model….because very few people in the industry have pushed the envelope regarding getting people to swallow such gigantic mounds of bullshit as Charles has.

Nobody is perfect

Never truer words have been spoken. This is particularly the case when it comes to athletes. I warn you right from the start…this is going to be one of those posts that won’t make sense unless you are reading it 6 weeks from now when I’ve edited it a dozen times to get what is in my head down in writing here on the interweb.

Let me begin by adding to my ‘Things I know’ list:
6. No athlete is perfect…as in no athlete has nothing wrong with them. If they think they are problem free and you think they are problem free then they haven’t pushed themselves hard enough and or you haven’t looked hard enough.

Now this is not to say that you should be looking to make problems for yourself or your athletes just that you need to be aware that everyone has some restrictions. Athletes all move differently and even athletes that perform similarly are often getting the job done in different ways.

Often it is dependent on how hard you push them or they push themselves as to when you will find the ‘weak link’ in the chain but eventually if they are pushed hard enough and or often enough it will come.

Let me give you some general examples of this. I have athletes come to me and they’ve no problems at all…’apparently’. They test and all seems fine, you screen them and they appear to have no problems…all is good right? Then they start training…doing a simple balanced program…all is still good….so you start increasing the frequency or the volume or the intensity and then little things start popping up…groin pain, lower back pain, shoulder pain…any number of things. I like it when this happens because the sooner it happens almost the better. Because the sooner that it happens the sooner it can be assessed and the sooner we can get to work on fixing it. To give you another very general example…I was involved with team where all the athletes were screened…part of that screening involved a test to examine the strength ratios in the quadriceps and hamstrings. Now it was no real surprise that at the end of the season that nearly all of the players identified in the screening as having an ‘issue’..as in a poor hamstrings to quadriceps ratio who didn’t work to correct this imbalance were the ones that presented with hamstring injury over the course of the season.

Now, I am over simplifying here…this ratio isn’t the sole determining factor…but I definitely think it is a major contributing factor. Just like players push up to inverted row ration ‘tends’ do be a factor in chronic shoulder issues…now it can be argued which comes first….as in…is the ratio a result of the problem or the cause of it….what I can tell you though is that when athletes work to close that ratio a lot of issues resolve themselves. This is usually because to close this ratio and improve their inverted row scores they inevitably end up doing a lot of shoulder mobility and stability work along with all their regular strength work. The same applies to much of the hip and back mobility and stability work I generally integrate into athletes warm ups. By doing these they serve several functions…1. If you don’t have any problems or any issues they are just a good warm up…you do them and move on. 2. If you do have issues but don’t even know it doing them and getting better at them ensures that it never becomes an issue and they are a good warm up…you do them and move on. 3. If you have an issue and know it then it is always apparent when you are doing them…you can hear people moaning, groaning and complaining about their backs, hips, groins or all of the above all the way through them…however over time the restrictions go away…they get better at them…they are a good warm up…you do them and move on.

Every single person in the gym will be able to tell you a story about ‘over’s and under’s’ and athletes that I almost had to stop from doing them for fear that they were going to smash the rack or bend the bar by repeatedly striking them with the heads, feet, backs or other body parts…people who over time and without ever noticing suddenly are fine with the drill. Everyone gets better at it…they get better at it without ever having to be conscious of what or how they are stretching…they just do it and get better…mainly because they get sick of cracking their heads or shins against steel.

Here’s one of the first video’s I ever posted…skip forward to the 50 second or so mark and have a look at the difference in technique between someone who had been doing them for a little while and someone just starting out.

As always…I’ve ran out of time but I will come back to this over the weekend and start giving specific examples. As per usual I haven’t even got to the point of this post yet. What I really want to discuss is identifying issues and resolving them in the midst of an ongoing strength and conditioning program.

So what the hell was I talking about again?
I told you this post was going to be a nightmare…if you are reading this for the first time then you won’t know what I’m talking about…suffice to say this post has been edited and added to on 5 or 6 occasions now. I don’t really care how annoying it is…it’s my blog and I’ll annoy you in whatever way I see fit.

I said I’d give you some specific examples…so here we go.
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So…we’ve two athletes…I get asked all the time about flexibility training and mobility drills and more specifically…’How much flexibility do I need?’. Well we can’t cover every joint and every sport but I thought hamstring flexibility would be something easy to discuss. I think being able to get your leg perpendicular to the ground and both legs having the same range is a pretty good start. I might add that those picks of Paul (the bottom two) were taken after we had done some specific flexibility work. The other point that I think needs making is that you need to understand how all the pieces work together before you start messing around too much. Paul has more issues than just a lack of hamstring flexibility.

Have a look at his hips

Have a look at his hips


Have a look at his hips…or more particularly the tilt…this is Paul trying to sit up straight.
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Have a look at Denise’s hips by way of comparison when doing the same stretch…or David’s in the following photo.
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So? I hear you asking…so Paul is still performing…and doing so at a high level…he’s also from memory depending on the test…the fastest or second fastest player in his squad. The fact is he’s doing so with some major imbalances and major mobility issues and restrictions. He didn’t have any huge issues…well none that he knew of until he started training with me. Like I said previously…I don’t go looking for problems but you have to fix the obvious stuff. With Paul more ‘niggles’ came to the fore once we upped the volume of his training. So what we are doing now is continuing on with his training, minimising its effects on his ‘issues’ and simulaneously working our arses off fixing them. The way we are doing that is by continuing with his mobility work….and doing a bit more that others do who don’t share his problems and I do a lot more partner assisted stretching with him. I’ll make sure I post more details of his progress as time passes.

Just quickly on other matters
Denise took me for half my net worth last night…I’m sorry to say the new gym opening will be delayed a month due to Denise fleecing me like the sucker I am.

I’m sorry I didn’t keep recording it’s just that I really was totally sick with grief and disgust at being taken in. The worst bit is that at about half way she was behind schedule and was looking like she was going to redecorate the place with the insides of her stomach and if I had just said ‘Oh well don’t worry about it’ or ‘stop you are going to be sick’ she probably would have stopped…the problem is that the fat whale of a cow doesn’t know when she’s beaten and just dug deep and made probably the greatest comeback since Lasse Viren fell in the Olympic 10,000m final only to get up and win gold in a world record time in Munich, on the 31st August 1972. From now on people will forever talk about 23rd of April when Denise Fox was at 10 minutes and 53 second at the 5km mark and came home to take the €50 in 19 minutes and 59 seconds.

Later the same evening…
I am on the laptop tonight away from my mother ship computer so I don’t have all the stuff that I wanted to post regarding the topic above but I did check my email and have a few good ones…one of which was bemoaning the fact that there are so few good strength and conditioning coaches in Ireland…I don’t know if people realise this but we also have a good few less people as well…maybe it would be better to compare the number of good coaches in Kentucky…a state of about the same population as Ireland…or maybe Brisbane…a city in Australia of around the same population…all those people pissing and moaning about the lack of great strength and conditioning coaches in Ireland can perhaps name all the world famous coaches from Kentucky and Brisbane that trip off the top of peoples tongues….now I suppose that it’s true to a certain extent in that people think we are lacking in ‘internet famous’ strength and conditioning coaches but with regard to a lack of good strength and conditioning coaches at all? I think that is a bit harsh. It seems to me to be getting less and less true all the time anyway. I know a good few strength and conditioning coaches doing what in my opinion is great work…a lot of it with youngsters which unfortunately doesn’t get you a lot of column inches or internet airtime. I also know a good few coaches who I don’t think are lighting the world up coaching wise that still get huge praise and a lot of column inches. I can think of a recent example of a strength and conditioning coach who got an incredible amount of praise and huge amount of column inches which when you know the facts…was absolutely ridiculous. Now I happen to think this guy is an excellent coach and athletes that I know that have worked with him rate him very highly…the thing is…I know a lot more of the story than what appeared in the papers and on the intertoobs. Don’t believe everything you read…especially on the interweb.

Another of these mails was along similar lines…pointing out that according to the internet ‘that I’m crap compared to Joe DeFranco or Eric Cressey’…as an aside…I think it’s hysterical that these are the only two guys that ever get mentioned in this type of conversation…so any way they sent me a link. I had a look at the link and it didn’t actually say I was crap compared to Joe DeFranco and Eric Cressey…but it was sort of along those lines. Now, in all fairness it may be true…maybe I am crap compared to Joe and Eric but we won’t actually know because I’m working with my guys and they are working with theirs so we won’t ever really be able to compare. I happen to know Joe and Eric and I don’t think either of them would think that I was crap in comparison to them. I’ll tell you want really cracks me up about this whole discussion/argument…I need some help from my US based readers here….just as an example….how many players get drafted into the NFL every year? How many get drafted into MLB? Now I know that Joe works mainly in Football and I think Eric is mainly involved in Baseball…so I want to know how many players are signed in both sports and maybe the Joe and Eric aficionados can tell me exactly how many of these guys were coached by Joe and Eric respectively? Can you see where I am going with this? I’ll wait till someone posts all the respective numbers and I will come back to this…I just hope to the heavens it is not 100 in each and that Joe and Eric coached 80+ of them!

Thank God For Americans
Well maybe not for all Americans but the American that sent me this article and let me know that 220-240 players are drafted every year. Now Joe’s obviously not producing all of them so that leads me to suspect that there must be some other coaches out there doing a reasonable job? I have a feeling that it might be the fact that they don’t have websites and aren’t writing articles might be holding them back? Now, I’ve read it twice and I didn’t see Joe DeFranco or Eric Cressey’s name in it anywhere. Like I said before…I am not trying to run Joe or Eric down but people in Ireland really need to pull their heads out of the holes. Joe and Eric are not the be all and end all of strength and conditioning. I for one if I was going to be a cheerleader for anyone would want to know more about what’s going on at Long Beach Poly where 16 NFL draft picks since 1988 have gone to school.

In my own defence when athletes actually do what I tell them…I mean really do what I tell them…they generally get the results that we wanted. I would actually be happy for any of the athletes that I coach who didn’t get the results that we agreed when I was coaching them to post here and remind me because I can’t think of any. A lot of my athletes are still at the stage in their careers or of the age where they actually think they know more than me…and I’m fine with that…if athletes want to do their own thing and I don’t think they are doing any damage to themselves I am happy to let them do that…I have more than enough athletes who do want to be coached to look after.

Jonny has done what he’s told…and he’s done it when he was told it. This is his training bench tonight…training bench as in grip inside the rings…he didn’t know what he was doing this evening…he just walked into the gym and I had him do a max training bench…no peaking for it, no cycle of training leading up to it…just walk in and do what you can do tonight. According to the internet and some message boards here in Ireland kids are doing this in gyms all over the country…I just don’t see that in my experience…maybe I need to get out more. I don’t know what Joe and Eric have their young lads doing but I’m more than happy to muddle along as ineptly as I apparently am with mine.

Lyle McDonald’s – Applied Sports Nutrition – Seminar Summary

I thought I would do a bit of a summary of what I got out of Lyle’s presentation. I am going to skip over all the basic stuff because what I really want to get to the ‘take home’ material. I want to spend more time on the stuff that I really want to use.

Module 1: The Basics of Human Nutrition
I am not going to go into things in detail here because most of the stuff covered here were all the really basic foundation information on sports nutrition that you can get anywhere.

Lyle essentially covered all the basics of protein, carbohydrate and fats and their roles in nutrition and where and how you get these macronutrients in your diet. He also went over the difference between glycemic index, glycemic load as well as vitamins and minerals.

Module 2: Overall Nutritional Requirements for Athletes
I loved Lyle’s little hierarchy of nutrition pyramid….mainly because I did something similar myself previously.

I want to say something myself here…it isn’t something that Lyle said but hopefully he’ll chime in if he thinks I’m wrong. I get asked questions all the time about nutrition…and 90% of the time the questions are completely pointless. That is actually probably an under exaggeration if there is such a thing…and I’ll tell you why. People worry about all the dumb crap…they worry about creatine, they worry about ‘fat burners’, they worry about what is better…whey concentrate, whey isolate or whey hydrolysate. Yet you ask them how much protein they are getting daily…something as simple as that and they don’t have a clue. I’ll tell you what I KNOW about sports nutrition…I’ll tell you what I think is the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of sports nutrition. If you are an athlete and you don’t know how much protein you are getting in your diet you’re an idiot to worry about anything else. The way that people go on about sports nutrition is absolutely retarded…it is like planning your ‘taper’ for your training in detail but just turning up everyday and doing whatever takes your fancy everyday in the gym in the 6 months leading up to your taper. It is just plain stupid. So if nothing else…get your basics right before you worry about the almost inconsequential things.

Now I’m going to go completely off track here…but it is my blog and I can do whatever I want. Two things that I really got out of the seminar were as follows:
1. One size fits all nutrition doesn’t fit anybody
2. Sports Nutrition is really as much about Sports Psychology as it is about anything else in that everyone knows the basics…it is the application that is the problem…and it sort of overlaps with the first point. In relation to myself I tend to be an ‘all or nothing’ type of person when it comes to sports nutrition and training…if I have a goal, something to train for I just sort of ‘flick a switch’ and go onto auto pilot and do it. If I don’t have a goal or something to train for…well lets just say…I don’t really ‘do’ moderation. Everyone is different and everyone needs to find a strategy that works for them…intermittent fasting works for some people not because it is the ‘answer’ but because it suits some people perfectly. I know others that need to weigh every gram of food and count every calorie…it works for them because it suits their personality. OK…I just thought of another thing I got from the seminar…
3. There is no magic…it doesn’t matter what bullshit you’ve heard…there is no magic formula…no magic supplement…no magic combination of macronutrients…if you want to lose weight you can eat less or exercise more or preferably for most people do a little of both.

Anyway back to the seminar summary.

Lyle broke down sports into 3 basic categories.
1. Strength/Power – power lifting, oly lifting and throwers.
2. Mixed Sports – field sports and games.
3. Endurance – running, cycling and swimming.

He then covered the training, adaptation responses and nutritional tendencies amongst these different categories.

I will actually come back and detail the some of the specifics…I want to cover the generalities of the seminar and if people bother reading this far and stuff that they are particularly interested in then let me know.

We covered all the macronutrient recommendations for the various categories and went into them in some detail.

In this module he also covered general supplement use as well as micronutrients and general deficiencies.

I am just looking at my notes here…so far we are 30 or so slides into what was an 83 slide seminar and the really sexy bit is the next module on around workout nutrition…unfortunately for you…but fortunately for me I have to head back to work. I will try to finish of this module this evening when I get home and then finish the rest up tomorrow in my lunch break.

Module 3: Around Workout Nutrition
This was the real nuts and bolts of what I wanted Lyle to go over as this is the stuff that was really important to me. I don’t really read research…I don’t mean to say that I don’t read research on nutrition…I don’t read ANY research. It is a philosophy that I’d recommend to a lot of trainers and coaches out there….if they read less and actually worked more they wouldn’t be so crap at their job…but that’s another story. My point is…I trust people like Lyle to read all the stuff I couldn’t be bothered reading. I want guidelines…I want stuff that I can use. I’m not saying that I take everything everyone tells me at face value…I take advice…I put it into practice and I see what works. If I was to listen to some people I’d be telling athletes to go to the Dominican Republic and getting them to eat organic food and they’d put on over 1kg of lean muscle mass a day…(don’t laugh…there’s actually a coach who expects people to believe that…although the guy is basically Canada’s answer to Tony Quinn so too much shouldn’t be expected from him but that’s another story)…I would naturally love that to be true…unfortunately it’s not. So what I rely on is people like Lyle to tell me what I ACTUALLY need to know…so here it is.

Goals of Around Workout Nutrition
1. Improve training quality.
2. Decrease fatigue.
3. Reduce muscle damage.
4. Promote optimal adaptations.
5. Improve recovery
6. Protect immune system function

Now you have to admit…these are pretty important goals when it comes to training?

I have to tell you here…Lyle did a whole bit on fatigue…which was apparently excellent…I pretty much day dreamed through it all…the bit that most interests me about fatigue is the bit where I get to induce it…if people are really interested in this let me know and I’ll actually summarise it…but I don’t think the background information on it is as important as the take home points.

Phases of Around Workout Nutrition
Phase 1 – 1 to 4 hours before workout
What you should know…the reason you are doing it is to top off liver and muscle glycogen. It shouldn’t be skipped unless you are a weight class athlete, you’re doing technical workouts (no huge nutrient requirement), or an athlete who train first thing in the morning or have insufficient time for full meal. The size of the meal depends on the size of athlete, type of sport, type of workout (volume/intensity) and the time between meal and training. Ideally it should be a mixed meal.

Phase 2 – 0 to 30 minutes before workout

What you should know…the reason you are doing it is to ensure appropriate blood glucose levels and hydration and to make sure you are ready for action some amino acids may also improve post workout adaptation. The rebound blood sugar could be a concern but waiting till the start of your warm up may blunt insulin response. Liquids at this stage are probably better than solids as they will also help with hydration. Fast acting carbs are best (dextrose, glucose, maltodextrin, sports drinks) along with some rapidly digesting proteins (whey/soy) but fats and fibre should be avoided and you can throw in some creatine for the win.

Phase 3 – During workout
I’m not going to bother with this….see my note at the end of this section.

Phase 4 – Immediately after to 1-2 hours after workouts
This is where you are looking to improve glycogen resynthesis and to initiate and improve long-term adaptations to training along with enhancing recovery in preparation for your next training session. The whole ‘post workout’ window thing is something I’ve always considered to be blown out of proportion…I’ve seen athletes go on as if their muscles would fall off if they didn’t consume their post workout shake within seconds of finishing blasting their biceps. If you are training soon after…as in later that day…it’s probably important to get something in as soon as possible. If you are training in 24 to 48 hours later…it’s probably not so important.

Let me tell you what I got out of this and what I am going to be telling athletes.
1. Have something to eat in the 4 hours before training…that could be a meal or a snack…if it is close to training…try to avoid too much fat and fibre.
2. Start drinking a carb+protein beverage when they commence training and consume it throughout training. What I am going to do is to get a sports drink, empty it into my shaker and stick a scoop of plain whey protein in it along with a teaspoon of creatine.
3. After training I am going to chug a litre of milk and another scoop of whey protein and another scoop of creatine.

Supplements
Creatine is not the devil…it doesn’t give you rage issues, it doesn’t shrink you testicles, it doesn’t turn muscle to fat when you stop training. I’m not going to even bother to try to talk people around…if you don’t want to take it don’t…take a teaspoon or two a day…I can promise you…it won’t make your kidneys explode either.

Lyle went into bunch of supplements…I’m not summarising these either. Look after the basics first….99% of the athletes I work with barely do that…when they do…I’ll get into the supplements in more detail.

Module 4: Modifications for Different Goals
There are essentially three things that athletes are looking to do…improve performance at a given weight, increase their lean muscle mass or decrease their body fat.

Improving performance at a given weight

  • Generally requires a small surplus on training days to support adaptation
  • Depends on type of adaptation (e.g. neural vs. muscular)
  • Best made with around workout nutrition
  • Small surplus around training sufficient
  • Maintenance calories on non-training or light training days
  • Many athletes (e.g. lifters) train slightly above optimal weight and drop down to make weight for competition

Increasing lean muscle mass

  • Requires a surplus of calories AND building blocks
  • Can’t make muscle out of thin air and wishful thinking
  • Proper training program: sufficient volume and frequency
  • Surplus around weight training workouts
  • Actual rate of muscle mass gains is slow
    • 1 kg/month for males
    • 0.5 kg/month for females
  • 1200-2400 calories per pound muscle (300-500 cal/day surplus)
  • Calories beyond what is needed for growth will just make the athlete fa

Fat loss

  • Requires a caloric deficit
  • How much fat is the athlete carrying
    • Fatter can lose faster than leaner
  • May be better to gradually increase metabolic type work (extensive tempo, bodyweight circuits) while keeping calories static

Then there is the holy grail of body recomposition…this is where you gain muscle, lose fat and improve performance…personally…I’ve rarely seen this happen…I’ve heard stories of people gaining 26kg in under a year and doing so at 6% bodyfat but like stories of athletes having fillings removed and gaining 12kg of lean muscle in a month and of strength coaches that can train any female athlete to 12 pull ups in 12 weeks I’ve generally considered these to absolute bullshit.

What I generally do with athletes looking to make recomposition changes is to basically cycle mass gain and fat loss cycles as long as is needed.

Module 5: This was a wrap up and all other matters section

Keeping your immune system primed is important…eat well, get some probiotics and zinc and you can take glutamine and vitamin C when you feel yourself getting sick.

To make sure your bones and connective tissue are tip top…all of the above…as well as calcium, glucosamine (1500mg) and chondroitin (1200 mg)…the only thing that I actually learned in the whole seminar is that pinapple also hepls…more specifically bromelain and papain.

Also…sleep is good…it’s 2.47am…and it’s what I should actually be doing.


A great weekend…eating muffins and drinking coffee

Mainly because I did little to no work…which was excellent…going to start trying to do nothing far more often.

Lyle’s seminar was on Sunday and I know I got a lot out of it…not because I learnt anything new…but mainly because I got to hear different opinions and ask questions. I get asked a lot of questions myself and as with questions related to training when questions are asked about sports nutrition the answer is almost always prefaced with the word…depends.

I think I’ve said here on the blog before…and if I haven’t said it before I’ll say it now…I think the 3 areas for growth in regards to improvements in sports performance are in improving recovery modalities, sports psychology and sports nutrition. It was excellent to spend the day covering a lot of the stuff that I knew the generalities of but had wanted specifics on.

I am going to put up a ‘seminar synopsis’ here and then I am going to post up what I got out of it…but work comes first…real work that is…not internet work.

For those that attended I will put all the presentation slides on a PDF and email them out to you.

My idiocy

This is completely irrelevant to all but about 30 of you…but in my post yesterday I said the seminar on Sunday was kicking off at 11am…don’t go and look because I’ve fixed it. It is actually going to kick off at 10am. If you are coming and have the time and inclination bring your training gear as we’ll be getting a session in after the seminar…a training session that is. You can also bring your clothes that you wore to mass that morning because we’ll be going out for something to eat afterwards as well and you’d be most welcome to tag along. As anyone who has ever been to a seminar knows….all the good and interesting stuff actually happens before, at lunch and after the seminars are done so you surely don’t want to miss out on that.

So anyone that wants to come…Sunday…10am at St Mary’s Rugby Club, Templeville Rd Tempelogue….and don’t forget to bring €55…it’s not really for the seminar…more for the coffee and muffins.

It’s all about the bench

Here’s Barry’s warm up set from today. We sorta kinda did a testing session.

I wasn’t going to test him today but he picked up a little niggle in his hip training on the mat last night so decided to take it easy today and let it settle over the weekend. I was thinking of just doing a heavy bench session with a view to doing his testing next week…but once we got started I thought we might as well test today so as to not waste another days training next week.

So we benched…last testing session he got 60kg….went for 80kg and got stapled to the bench…he didn’t even get close to moving it off his chest…today he did his first proper warm up set at 60kg for a triple, 70kg easy for a double, 80kg for an easy single….missed 85kg and this is why I need a cameraman…I did my whole coaching thing…I’ll let Barry tell you how complex and detailed my coaching points were and next time he got 85kg easy. His technique is really unrefined…but that is basically because he really hasn’t benched since he’s been training with me…it is way down on my priority list…his imbalances in his back was a much bigger issue as far as I was concerned and injury minimisation has been one of my major priorities. If we focused on it there’d be another 5-10kg there fairly readily and if we made it a priority he’d get a 100kg bench I’d say pretty confidently.

Then we did his inverted rows…like I said I wasn’t going to do a full test…just wanted to see how he’d go…he got 6 reps in 60 seconds last time. That isn’t a fantastic score. Well today he got 30 reps…that on the other hand is a great score.

I figured at this stage we might as well finish testing…he got 39 push ups, 8 pull ups and 170kg on the trap bar deadlift. So all in all I’m pretty pleased with his progress…a lot done and yet more to do.

The Seminar
The money is already rolling for Lyle’s Seminar on the 5th of April and the first of the names are on the list. Lyle obviously has much better drawing power than I have…but I suppose that’s a given…. after all Lyle’s American and that’s where Lindsay Lohan was invented so he must also be fantastic. I’ll be working out the capacity for the venue this week and putting a cap on the numbers attending. I’m secretly hoping that we’ll hit the number before hand just so I can tell the people who turn up and think they’ll be able to just pay on the day to attend to piss off. I’ve worked out that if I can sell another 36358 places than Lyle and I will both be millionaires…I have counted the chairs…but it may be pushing it.
So if you want to go be sure to send me an email and arrange to get the money to me soon and make sure you get your name on the guest list.

I saw this gem of advice from Lyle just then:
Originally Posted by Lyle McDonald
If you check the macros on a standard donut, it’s actually not that bad. At about 250 calories, like 8 grams of fat and the rest carbs. Two donuts plus 30-40 grams of protein will be about the same as a clean meal macro wise. And taste better. And leave you hungry again in 20 minutes which facilitates the eating needed to get huge.

How could you not want to come and get advice from a genius like that?