Happy Halloween! Get ready for the truth about caffeine, some Men’s Health fitness challenges, and more!

I’m now back from shooting guns and driving cars in the desert with the “Safehouse” crew in Tucson, Arizona. It was an awesome experience, hanging out with a real life A-Team and also with NY Times best-seller, Tim Ferriss, author of the 4-hour workweek and the upcoming “4-Hour Body”. I’ll be interviewing him soon.

Lots of great research and some cool fitness tests from MH this week…plus, I’ll soon be announcing the finalists for the 6-week TT Transformation Contest…part of Contest #9.

Congrats to everyone who is finishing up.

By the way, I encourage everyone to get rid of the Halloween Candy that is piling up unspoken for in your homes. Don’t eat your kid’s candy.

Try radical approaches if candy is a problem:

1)    Throw it ALL out.
2)    Give it ALL away.
3)    For every piece you eat, toss another in the garbage (assuming you aren’t a garbage eater, like George Costanza from Seinfeld)

Click here to listen to the call…

Now let’s get into the TT Workout and tips…

Monday – Nov 1st

Transformation Tip of the Week

You can enjoy the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. Your choice. And once you choose, no complaining. Now get out there and set a personal best in your workouts.

Kekich Credo #58. “You are responsible for exactly who, what, and where you are in life. That will be just as true this time next year. Situations aren’t important. How you react to them is.”

For the workout portion, we’re going to look at some Men’s Health Fitness Challenges from the November 2010 issue.

According to the magazine, you are “Men’s Health fit” if you can do 10 chinups and 45 shoulder width pushups (with a 1-second pause at the bottom of EVERY rep)

Here are 3 simple steps to improve your score on these tests:

  1. Lose excess body fat
  2. Practice the events (practice the pause in your pushups)
  3. Read this article on how to do more chinups

Tuesday
•    Get 30 minutes of fun activity – now grab a Green Tea and do this week’s research review.

Reference:
Effect of a Free Prepared Meal and Incentivized Weight Loss Program on Weight Loss and Weight Loss Maintenance in Obese and Overweight Women A Randomized Controlled Trial. JAMA.

From the Journal of the American Medical Association comes a study reviewing the effectiveness of commercial weight loss programs for Americans.

442 overweight or obese women aged 18 to 69 years were studied for 2 years under one of these conditions

A)    in-person center-based one-to-one weight loss counseling

B)    telephone-based one-to-one weight loss counseling

C) Control group received 2 individualized weight loss counseling sessions with a dietetics professional and monthly contacts.

407 women (92.1%) finished the program – very good! Usually more people drop out.

Results:

In-person center = 7.4 kg weight loss or 7.9% of initial weight
Telephone = 6.2 kg or 6.8%
Control = 2.0 kg

Conclusion
Compared with usual care, this structured weight loss program resulted in greater weight loss over 2 years.

This isn’t really surprising…supports social support and accountability to a professional.

Bottom line: You need a team…you can’t go it alone.

Wednesday

Workout Tip Wednesday

If you are really busy, change your workouts to the “TT Depletion-style”, moving from 3 workout days to 2.  You can use the pre-done tt depletion programs or modify the workouts.

And today’s MH Fitness Challenge asks you to measure your standing broad jump. If you can do more than 8 feet, you are MH Fit.

To improve your score:

  1. Practice your technique – jumping is a skill
  2. Get stronger
  3. Do some jumping – but don’t overdo it
  4. Always do a big warm-up

Thursday
•    Do 30 minutes of fun activity…

And I’m starting a new feature, moving the Facebook Q’n’A to Friday, and announcing the start of “Personal Training Thursday”. I’ll be giving a technical or business tip for trainers every Thursday. Today…

Get ONE important thing done early in the day before you get sucked into putting out fires. Get up earlier if you have to. Remember…”You’re not measured by how much you undertake but by what you finally accomplish.” – Trump

Facebook Friday

This week’s question was posted in response to one of my motivational quotes.

Q: What to do when you are tired and don’t want to workout?

Answer:
Well first, you can dig down, suck it up, and get it done.

To help with this, develop rituals around your workout, and “design your life” to make sure you mentally prepared for your workout time. If you are too tired after work, get up earlier. Sacrifices will be necessary, but you can do it, because you will NEVER, ever, EVER give up! Right?

And now for today’s MH Fit Challenge – Men’s Health believes you should be able to run a 6 min mile. (I can’t do this…probably closer to 6:45).

How can you accomplish this?

  1. Lose excess body fat.
  2. Use TT interval training
  3. Train smart so you don’t get an overuse injury.

Social Support Saturday!
•    30 minutes of fun activity…

I want to spend the next few weeks sharing with you the best books I’ve read in 2010. Today, mindset books…starting with a quote from the most recent book I’ve read:

“Never – NEVER – sell yourself short.” – Dr. David Schwartz, The Magic of Thinking Big

5 motivational books I’ve read this year

  1. Magic of Thinking Big
  2. Acres of Diamonds – Richard Cronwell
  3. Richest man in babylon – George Clason
  4. 59 Seconds –  Richard Wiseman
  5. The Dan Sullivan Question – Dan Sullivan

Sunday – Plan, Shop & Prepare
•    30 minutes activity and plan, shop, & prepare

And now for another research review…this time on the worlds favorite drug – here is the positive truth about caffeine.

Reference:

Nutrition Volume 26, Issue 10, October 2010, Pages 932-938. “Caffeine—Not just a stimulant”

The beneficial effects of human caffeine consumption deserve clarification, and so researchers did an extensive literature review, and found moderate caffeine intake causes the following benefits:
1) increases energy availability
2) increases daily energy expenditure
3) decreases fatigue
4) decreases the sense of effort associated with physical activity
5) enhances physical performance
6) enhances motor performance
7) enhances cognitive performance
8) increases alertness, wakefulness, and feelings of “energy”
9) decreases mental fatigue
10) quickens reactions
11) increases the accuracy of reactions
12) increases the ability to concentrate and focus attention
13) enhances short-term memory
14) increases the ability to solve problems requiring reasoning
15) increases the ability to make correct decisions
16) enhances cognitive functioning capabilities and neuromuscular coordination
17) in otherwise healthy non-pregnant adults is safe

HOWEVER, the biggest problems with caffeine are
– tremors/upset stomach
– insomnia
– anxiety

Use it wisely.

Next week!
•    TT Workout – Bench Press Boosting Tips
•    Research Review – The Scary Truth About Inactivity
•    FB QnA – The Best Supplement for Fat Loss
•    Nutrition – Krill oil vs Fish oil
•    Books – The Classics I’ve read in 2010

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Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne is the author of The Perfect Day Formula: How to Own the Day and Control Your Life. Craig has been a contributor to Men's Health magazine for over 17 years. Today he teaches his gift to high-performing entrepreneurs how to squeeze more out of their days, increase their income, and make more quality time for their families in his Perfect Life Workshop and Work-Life Mastery programs. Craig used his own advice to overcome crippling anxiety attacks in 2006, and he'll teach you his 5 Pillars of Success so you can increase your income, decrease your work time, and live the life of your dreams. Learn more about Craig at craigballantyne.com

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