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HPRC Blog

Welcome to the HPRC Blog. We've got lots of information here, from quick tips to in-depth posts about detailed human performance optimization topics.

HPRC Fitness Arena: Physical Fitness

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Military medical researchers develop blood for screening concussions or mild traumatic brain injury

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Can a blood test detect a concussion or TBI?

MRI of Head

CNN.com is reporting that military medical researchers have developed a blood test that can detect if someone has suffered a concussion or a mild traumatic brain injury.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a big concern for the military, particularly milder forms, because unlike TBI, milder injuries cannot be seen on X-rays, CT scans or MRIs. Having this test would be useful not only for the military but for civilians as well.

Read the full article here.

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Stand more often to become leaner

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Are you sitting down?

Rather than sitting during the day, stand when possible. During your next phone conversation, stand up. Standing burns more calories by engaging more muscles and prevents inactivation of fat burning enzymes. It uses more blood glucose which may prevent adult onset diabetes. According to this article, simply standing can improve your cholesterol and overall health – an amazingly simple strategy to improve fitness!

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Overweight recruits make it tough to fill military ranks

HPRC Fitness Arena:
There have been a rash of articles in the news recently focusing on soldier fitness (or lack thereof).

KENS Channel 5 in San Antonio, TX has posted an article on their website that reports that, according to the military, the number of prospective recruits are just too fat to enlist, which is making it difficult to fill their ranks.

The article cites a non-profit group called Mission Readiness, made up of retired senior military leaders, who feel there is a solution to the problem.

The group has a three-point approach that would solve the obesity problem for prospective recruits:

  1. Get the junk food and high-calorie beverages out of our schools.
  2. Increase funding for the school lunch program.
  3. Support the development, testing and deployment of proven public-health interventions.

Read the full article here.

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Army recruit goes from couch potato to Warfighter

HPRC Fitness Arena:
A former couch potato turned disciplined army recruit gets into fighting shape.

Runner's legs

The October 14 edition of the Recordnet.com (Stockton, CA) has an interesting piece showing how one army recruit (as well as a self-described former couch potato ) was able to loose 50 pounds in order to get ready to report for duty at Fort Benning, GA.

Read the full article here.

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Studies look at the effect of running has on your knees

HPRC Fitness Arena:
The October 13, 2010 Health section of the New York Times has an article discussing recent research on knees, arthritis and vigorous exercise.

Man with radiating knee pain

The October 13, 2010 Health section of the New York Times has an article discussing recent research on knees, arthritis, and vigorous exercise.

There's no question that physical activity over time takes its toll; however, your body is capable of adapting to it. The question is whether this adaptation is healthy.

Read the full article here.

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High-intensity versus long, steady workouts for losing weight

HPRC Fitness Arena:
The Montreal Gazette examines this burning question.

Woman running on treadmill

The October 12, 2010 edition of the Montreal Gazette examines the science of fat burning and asks the question - is there a workout guaranteed for  weight loss and fat burning?

Read the full article here

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Who wants to wear "toe shoes"?

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Vibram’s line of FiveFingers shoes, or VFFs (also known as toe shoes), has become the most controversial item in military running.

Vibram’s line of FiveFingers shoes, or VFFs (also known as toe shoes), has become the most controversial item in military running.  Army officials have banned them from the PT test over worries they might give some soldiers an unfair advantage. The Navy has also nixed them while Air Force and Marine Corps leaders have given the OK for them to be used. A recent article in Army Times.com take a closer look at the toe shoe controversy and provides current policy stands for the service branches.

Read the full article here.

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Avoiding the "weekend-warrior" injury syndrome

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Are you putting yourself at risk by training too hard on the weekends?

Man with cast on his leg

Each day, more than 10,000 Americans visit emergency rooms for sports and exercise-related injuries, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Many of those who get injured are getting hurt due to being inactive and then suddenly taking on a major exercise program, such as training for a half-marathon – hence the weekend-warrior syndrome. Physorg.com has an article that provides common sense tips for avoiding the weekend-warrior pitfall of doing too much, too fast, too soon.

Read the full article here.

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Keeping fit while deployed at sea

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Marines and sailors rely on creativity and enthusiasm to keep fit while at sea.

Aircraft carrier close up

Keeping physically fit is an important part of a military career. Aboard the USS Kearsarge Marines and sailors merge creativity and enthusiasm to push their physical fitness to even higher peaks. The October 05, 2010 edition of Military Health System News has an article on how Marines and sailors aboard the USS Kearsarge find ways to supplement their physical training while at sea.

Read the full article here.

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Which is better: 30 minutes of swimming or running?

HPRC Fitness Arena:
The Globe and Mail (Toronto) has an interesting piece on which activity is better for you – swimming or running?

Athletic man swimming

The Globe and Mail (Toronto) has an interesting piece on which activity is better for you - swimming or running? The conclusion, according to the article, is that swimming is good for muscles, joints and some (but not all) cardiovascular risk factors. But to get the full benefits from aerobic activity, include some land-based exercise in your routine at least once or twice a week.

Read the full article here.