Father Andrew's Hot Body Gym

January 18, 2010

Pics from the afternoon crew

Filed under: pics — Tags: , , , — Mara @ 9:35 pm

Click on a picture to view

November 4, 2009

The Efficacy of Exercise: Another Perspective

Filed under: real talk — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , — Mara @ 3:32 pm
treadmill

Enter the "fat-burning zone"

Andrew stumbled upon this article on the NY Times’ website today that captured our attention. Micah already wrote one post, but I thought I’d add another, as I had already vented my frustrations in print format.

The article begins, “For some time, researchers have been finding that people who exercise don’t necessarily lose weight.”

It continues, “It is well known physiologically that, while high-intensity exercise demands mostly carbohydrate calories (since carbohydrates can quickly reach the bloodstream and, from there, laboring muscles), low-intensity exercise prompts the body to burn at least some stored fat.”

Their point is that exercise at the intensity they recommend for “fat burning” (low intensity) does not burn enough calories to significantly impact weightloss.

However, what they are referring to as “high intensity” is actually med-high intensity – what we call “chronic cardio“. That is when you are performing aerobic exercise at over 50% of your max but not pushing into the next level where things become anaerobic and you reach your output threshhold. That is how you get the “afterburn” – increased metabolic rate for an extended period after exercise – that this writer says doesn’t exist.

Low level cardio and med-high level cardio are not the only kinds of exercises out there. False dichotomy alert!!! It is such a destructive myth that there is this magical “fat-burning zone” that causes you to burn more fat if you workout at an easy pace than if you work out more intensely. This is how you end up with miles of eliptical machines churned by overweight, frustrated, burnt-out cardio queens.

At least at the end of the article they allow that exercise can change something in people’s metabolic pathways that enables them to keep the fat off. If only they had researched the effects of actual high-intensity anaerobic exercise on metabolic pathways – hello change!

Ultimately, this article starts out with a truth – exercise alone produces only very limited weightloss – but then does a horrible job of researching (not to mention articulating) everything that follows. Diet changes are extremely important, perhaps more important than exercise if your goals are simply to lose fat, but that doesn’t mean that exercise has no impact or that a kind of exercise (maybe not cardio-based???) might show more of an impact.

Furthermore, losing fat should NEVER be anyone’s sole health or fitness goal. Our longevity and other indicators of health increase in proportion to our percentage of lean muscle mass to total weight, so our goal should always be to increase muscle while decreasing fat.

So yes, if you just want to be thin, then stop that cardio and just make your diet tighter than a deadlifter’s bum cheeks. You will probably lose fat. And you will probably be miserable. But if you want to be healthy – strong, energetic, happy, AND thin – then go out for some tabata sprints, lift some heavy weights, AND trim the unsightly edges off your diet.

At least one thing is clear, by either of our standards: chronic cardio is POINTLESS!

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October 10, 2009

Goals Revisited

Filed under: real talk, workouts — Tags: , , , , , , , , — joshuaeller @ 10:33 pm

deadlift

Today was the first of hopefully many gymnastic tutorial sessions at FAHBG.  There’s more to come about the amazing work of Matt Baker, but today was also a time of reflection on our goals as a gym and as individuals.  As an individual, I’ve decided to publicly announce my personal goals – prompted by the fabulous Mrs Abby Vandegrift.  So, here we go.  (Hopefully, this isn’t an exercise in pure narcissistic pleasure.  Members of FAHBG – UNITE!  Post your goals for the world to see and thereby hold yourself accountable!)

By January 1st:

1 – Deadlift twice my body weight, which is currently hovering around 185 lbs, so 370 lbs.  I’ve already made progress here.  Thanks to Graham Wooden, I set a new PR today of 320 lbs.  Just 50 more to go by January 1. Yikes.

2 – Clean and Jerk my body weight, which is currently hovering around 185 lbs.  I’ve jerked 155, and I set a new clean record today of 165 – also due to Graham Wooden.  So just 30 more pounds to go.  Yikes.

3 – Perform 30 Muscle ups for time.  I just want to do them in one setting.  I don’t care how fast it happens.  Completion here is the goal.  Yikes.

Ok, team.  I need your help.  Get me to the finish line.  All by January 1st.  And post your goals on here.  Let’s hold each other accountable.  That’s what friendship and FAHBG is all about.

-Ps- in a somewhat unusual move for fahbg, I’m going to post something on here potentially ‘political’ – actually economic, but potential controversial.  Oh, dear…

1. Greg Mankiw of Harvard on the potential effects of the Baucus healthcare bill (note: you cannot ignore incentives) http://gregmankiw.blogspot.com/2009/10/marginal-tax-rates-from-health-reform.html

2. And Jeff Miron, also of Harvard, on housing policy: http://jeffreymiron.blogspot.com/2009/10/perpetuating-bad-housing-policy.html

My issue with Miron – can’t homeowners who receive a reprieve on their mortgage respond to these incentives in such a way that they acquire the ability to make their mortgage payment due to the extra time they receive to make the adjustment?  Isn’t that something akin to a firm’s short run response?  I know I would, but maybe I’m not everyone.  Any thoughts?

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September 14, 2009

Workouts for the week of September 13

Filed under: workouts — Tags: , , — joshuaeller @ 12:13 am

WOD 1 – Tuesday

As Many Rounds As Possible in 12 minutes of:

50 m lunges with overhead weight (45lb/25lb)
10 push ups

WOD 2 – Wednesday
“Diane”

21-15-9 reps of:
225 pound Deadlift / Handstand push-ups

If handstand push ups are not an option for you, kick up into a handstand and hold for 60 seconds.

Start time for group 1 = 6am. 15 minute max for the round.

WOD 3 – Friday

Push Jerk 3-3-3-3-3 reps
4 rounds of max rep Pull-ups after completing pushjerks
Those who are able need to start each pull up round with a kettlebell on their foot. Do as many weighted pull ups as possible, then drop the kbell and keep pulling up until you’ve reached your max.

WOD 4 – Saturday

‘Burpee Challenge’

Burpee around the track for 400 meters for time. Wear gloves.

Handstand practice afterwards, cause it’s Saturday!

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