Another week of links. I wrote this while in a really bad mood about how much of a mess my country is in, so please take my vitriol with a pinch of salt (only a small pinch of salt, though, you wouldn’t want to get hypertension)…
Pure and unadulterated lifting
- Too skint to buy a decent squat rack? Check out this DIY version. Just don’t blame me if you get pinned under 180kg and your rack breaks (but please send me the photos afterwards)…
- Apparently, front squats will not help your cleaning ability. I guess that’s why my kitchen is always in a mess…
- Matt Metzgar argues in favour of hitting heavy singles from an evolutionary perspective. I don’t really need any encouragement to test my one-rep max but I’ll take it anyway…
- The Goliath Project (sounds like something from Area 51, which is probably not far from the truth) is back in the swing of things, as this consideration of what constitutes proper squat depth illustrates…
Diet, paleo diet and evolutionary adaptations
- Sugar is evil. I don’t know how many times we have to say it. While the rest of the world goes around sucking down cola by the pint, chewing on chocolate-flavoured candy and warning us to limit our egg consumption (!!!), we get labelled as weird for eating eggs by the dozen and meat by the pound. Because, obviously, cavemen had really bad trouble with artherosclerosis caused by eating eggs and meat all the time (sarcasm).
- Saturated fat is fine. According to EurekAlert, “for the past three decades, saturated fat has been considered a major culprit of cardiovascular disease and as a result dietary advice persists in recommending reduced consumption of this macronutrient. However, new evidence shows that saturated fat intake has only a very limited impact on cardiovascular disease risk, causing many to rethink the “saturated fat is bad” paradigm.” I like the indication that “many” are rethinking the paradigm, suggesting that some people are still choosing to ignore the evidence.
- Dr Michael Eades tells the story of how we came to demonise cholesterol. He starts with a quote from the 1977 Time Magazine article that kicked everything off. “For decades, researchers have been trying to prove conclusively that cholesterol is a major villain in this epidemic [heart disease]. It has not been easy.” Wow. As Dr Eades notes, have you ever seen a better example of the confirmation bias at work? And he concludes soberly that millions of people’s lives have potentially been lost or worsened because of this rubbish.
- Standard dietary recommendations are rubbish. But don’t take my word for it, read the attached article published in Nutrition.
- It’s the same for dinosaurs. Let’s all hate the herbivore.
- Functional Strength reminds us of a great old Berardi post about the seven rules of good nutrition.
- And finally, is Aspartame a good thing or a bad thing?
Health and mobility
- I found myself (again) in a good-natured discussion with a work colleague the other day. He had knee pain. His doctor had referred him to a specialist (what a surprise). I asked whether he had ever been recommended physiotherapy or rehabilitative resistance training. He said not. Now, my beliefs might ultimately be erroneous but what galls me is that for the sake of a couple of hours of time with a (cheap!) sports massage therapist to see whether things could be improved, thousands of pounds are wasted on medical costs and someone’s health is risked by the invasive and dangerous application of surgery. I am just so cross that the medical profession in the UK appears to go around with pharmacy in one hand and a scalpel in the other. For a similar story, see Seth Roberts on his tiny hernia that didn’t need seing to.
- And here’s Seth again on the medical profession getting shirty with very little data to back them up.
- I liked the idea of a self-limiting exercise as described by Alwyn Cosgrove.
- I have seen this T-shirt before but is is awesome so here it is again.
Other interesting stuff
- Another nice little post from Alwyn Cosgrove and one that resonates very powerfully with me: a tale of two people. This is a story of how two people had two completely different impacts on his life. One, a teacher at his school, produced a very negative effect and the other, a local martial arts instructor, had a very positive effect. I have to say that I relate to this completely. Almost every single teacher I had at school had a negative effect on me, while all my university professors and sports coaches were awesome. I guess if you’re doing something you love doing, it shows.
Hope you enjoyed the links. There’ll be more next week…