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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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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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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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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.

 

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Study indicates better results by periodically alternating training program

HPRC Fitness Arena:
It has been known to trainers that alternating higher intensity and lower intensity training sessions is the most effective means for conditioning athletes. As reported in the September 20, 2010 edition of the Tauton Daily Gazzette (Tauton, MA), recent research indicates that it is not necessary to train at high-effort levels every exercise session.

It has been known to trainers that alternating higher intensity and lower intensity training sessions is the most effective means for conditioning athletes.

As reported in the September 20, 2010 edition of the Tauton Daily Gazzette (Tauton, MA),  recent research indicates that it is not necessary to train at high-effort levels every exercise session. In other words, a combination of higher intensity and lower intensity exercise is recommended for a sensible and successful fitness program. The full article can be accessed here.

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Soldiers speak out in support of CrossFit

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Last week, Wired Magazine ran an article on high intensity fitness programs that are being studied and evaluated in a review of high-intensity fitness programs by the Consortium for Health and Military Performance, or CHAMP, at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.

Last week, Wired Magazine ran an article on high intensity fitness programs that  are  being studied and evaluated in a review of high-intensity fitness programs by the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, MD.

In response, Wired has published a follow up article that offers a view of CrossFit from a soldier's perspective.

 

 


Functional Movement screening might be a better assessment of total fitness.

HPRC Fitness Arena:
When you’re in the military, being fit is part of the job – that has never changed. Neither, it seems, has the Physical Readiness (PRT) Test.

Are PRTs still accurate assessments of physical fitness levels?  The days of calisthenics and running several miles for exercise are gone. Comfort Zones and gyms on- or off-base are filled with exercise toys such as cable cross machines, Roman benches, kettlebells, and miles of cardiovascular equipment. Most military personnel are exercising with the latest technology, or at least with free weights. Shouldn’t PRTs utilize the most current knowledge of functional exercise and movement?

“Functional movement” is defined as real-world biomechanics of body movement. Sit-ups and push-ups are not functional; they show strength and/or flexibility, but not true overall fitness.

Gray Cook’s Functional Movement Screening (FMS), however, assesses the quality of seven functional movements to determine a persons’ symmetry, grading each movement (21 being a perfect score). FMS might be a better assessment in terms of a person’s total fitness level. Most studies using FMS have evaluated the prediction of injury rates based on the level of symmetry (for example: Military Joe shows rotary stability in the left shoulder but not in the right – the asymmetry of his shoulders most likely predicts injury when climbing walls in theater).

An unpublished study by COL Francis O’Connor, MD on injury prediction in Marine Corps Officer candidates (MC) found that those who scored 14 or higher (out of 21) had a lower injury rate. A study on NFL players also had similar findings.

Should the military re-evaluate its PRTs in terms of functional movement or should it stay with its current program? Contact us here at the HPRC if you have thoughts to share.

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Go to “workout hour!”

HPRC Fitness Arena:
Hanging out with your friends doesn't have to be unhealthy.

Hanging out with friends may include habits that oppose your health goals. Instead of skipping out on quality time with them, invite them to participate in an activity like a group cycling class that will get everyone moving. A healthy social life contributes to good health, so get the group moving!

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