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In Season Training Tips To Prevent Injury

In season training is so important to on field performance, we all know that. One of the most overlooked aspects of training hard during the season is it recoups the muscle fibers you break down during competition. Athletes who do not take in season training seriously are subject to an increase of one thing, injury!

There is a direct correlation between athletes who don’t train hard during the season and their increase risk of injury! Football being a collision sport, injuries are very common. Below are three ideas to keep you off the training table and on the field.

Split Squats ;The most important lift in the book. At SST this is a day one deal, we’ve been doing this with our athletes for over 20 years and for good reason. One of the most common injuries in football is a knee injury, most commonly an ACL tear. Doing split squats all year will improve your range of motion and will allow you to be strong in the knee over toe position. Performing the split squat is also a very effective way to train the VMO, which is a very important muscle to have a strong health knee.

Pulling Lifts; I’ve been around football so long and later in the season  athletes start to get banged up backs and shoulders, because of all the collisions that happen on a daily basis. This happens very easily because, young athletes that don’t have proper training knowledge think that they need to be benching and pressing to stay strong in the upper body. There is some merit to this being that football is a sport where a lot of “press action” happens but, to stay strong and healthy the posterior chain in the upper body needs to be taken care of. My favorite one would be a simple as a chin up or any type of row. This will keep your back strong and your spine protected!

Conditioning;  Football is a multi direction sport! Way to often we condition just going straight! IT IS MADNESS!!!! When conditioning athletes make sure that you are doing different things, such as shuffles, cross overs and change of direction. For example, a running back (RB) in football spend most of his time going forward in a game, rarely does he go back wards. During the season condition him going backwards so when it happens during a game, his body is used to it! BIGGEST CONDITIONING TIP! Make your guys back pedal, it’s way harder to pull something going backwards in a back pedal than it is going forwards!

Hopefully these three tips help you stay strong during the season, but more importantly help you stay on the field!

Email us at SST@SSTCANADA.COM to schedule your free demo today!

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Squat Depth: How low should I go?

The squat is one of the most well known, if not the most well-known exercise for developing lower body strength. One of the age-old questions in the athletic community and strength and conditioning world is how low should I go? This post aims to delve into this topic and provide insight into how low one should go when squatting.

            Early research into the squat suggested that with increased knee bend there was increased stress on the knee joint and while this is partially true (as tibiofemoral and patellofemoral compression increases with increasing knee angle), the maximal mean peak shear forces reported are much lower than the patellar and quadriceps tendons can withstand, and therefore while these forces increase with squat depth, they are within ranges that would tend not to significantly damage these tissues in an healthy individual. Furthermore, peak anterior shear forces occur from 0 – 60 degrees of knee flexion, making the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) most susceptible at this range, and these forces decrease with increased squat depth. Posterior shear force begins at 30 degrees flexion, with peak forces reported at 90 degrees of knee flexion and decreasing below 90 degrees of flexion. Therefore, while it is true higher forces exist at greater knee flexion, deep squats decrease stress on the ACL and PCL compared to partial squats of 90 degrees knee flexion or less.

            While the knee joint is the most commonly addressed joint when talking about squat depth, the loading mechanics of the spine also come into question. It has been shown that with increased forward lean, forces on the lumbar spine are increased. Furthermore, in lumbar flexion or excessive lumbar extension we also see these forces increase with the squat. In terms of the effect of squat depth on the spine, if a neutral lumbar spine and forward gaze can be maintained this is more important than squat depth itself. Furthermore, it appears front squats and low bar back squats provide less stress on the spine than high bar back squats.

            When we look at muscle activation, deep squats tend to activate hip musculature more than partial squats, so if we are trying to maximize the strength of our hip musculature (including our most powerful hip extensor gluteus maximus) deep squats with a wider stance and feet slightly turned out (anatomical position) are preferred, as partial squats up to 90 degrees maximize quadricep activation.

Overall there are many benefits to deep squats, but this is only if we can perform deep squats with proper form and technique. Likewise, there may be some scenarios where deep squats are contraindicated such as those with previous PCL injuries or patellofemoral disorders. Furthermore, squat depth should be consistent with individual goals and proper technique and execution needs to be maintained. Individuals should seek advice of an exercise professional on squat technique and should have an assessment done to find what is right for them in their exercise program. However, if you can squat to depth below 90 degrees it seems to be beneficial to athletic development and may even be less stressful on supporting structures.

Note – Information in this article is based off the brief review titled “Squat Kinematics and Kinetics and Their Application to Exercise Performance” Brad J. Schoenfeld published in 2013 the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. Access this article here: https://journals.lww.com/nsca-jscr/Fulltext/2010/12000/Squatting_Kinematics_and_Kinetics_and_Their.40.asp

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Maxfit 44 program

Get lean and fit or face accelerated aging, weight gain, diminished sex drive, declining energy, chronic diseases like osteoarthritis, chronic low back pain, diabetes, and other problems.

If you’re a man over the age of 40, your body is issuing you an ultimatum:

Get lean and fit or face accelerated aging, weight gain, diminished sex drive, declining energy, chronic diseases like osteoarthritis, chronic low back pain, diabetes, and other problems.

Ever notice that most elite athletes retire from competitive sports in their late 30s? There’s a reason for this, the male body starts to age more quickly. But you can reverse the aging process with nutrition and strength training.

Part of the reason for this accelerated process is the diminished production of our hormones Testosterone and Growth hormone. Testosterone is the hormone that makes us men. It gives us our strength, our drive, and our character.

However testosterone production declines with age in men. This results in decreased serum levels of total and bioavailable testosterone, leading to a decrease in energy, muscle mass, and bone mass. This also leads to an increase in body fat levels, depression, and a variety of disease. Growth Hormone is the hormone that stimulates growth and cell division. The average bodily decline in growth hormone production is 1.25% per year, or 14% per decade for a man of normal body weight. If we add in the elevated body fat levels the growth hormone production is further compounded because body fat itself tends to decrease HGH secretion.

However it does not have to be this way, with a properly designed strength and nutrition program we can halt or even reverse this process, to become the strong virile man we used to be.

MaxFit 44 offers you an opportunity to answer the ultimatum your body is issuing.

We provide a customized nutrition plan and strength training program that will allow you to meet your fitness goals. Based on cutting edge scientific research and accurate assessment of your body composition we will design a program for weight loss, improved vitality, and enhanced sports performance (other goals?).

This is not your normal group exercise program. There are no dance moves to learn, no irritating music and no endless boring cardio exercises.

We offer low instructor, client ratios and select only exercises that will make you stronger and more powerful.

Why would you choose a group exercise program vs. individualized training or working out in isolation? Cost and results. Working out in a group setting is less expensive than working out with a trainer in a one on one basis but with the shared benefits of group accountability. Studies indicate that people work harder when they believe that others are watching them. This increase of intensity when paired with proper exercise selection and movement form will yield results that are up to 80% better in half the time.

When you factor in the nutritional program, you have an unbeatable approach that is going to make you look and feel better than you ever have in your life. Better yet is that by learning WHAT and HOW to eat, you will be able to stay lean and keep your muscular appearance while the rest of your friends continue their age related decline. Discover the benefits of MY BLUEPRINT NUTRITION

You can’t stop your body from aging but you can control how it looks as it ages. Get back in the drivers seat and recapture the vitality of your youth.

MaxFit 44 will change the way you look, feel and think about your health for the rest of your life. You deserve to be the best you can be.

ACT NOW!

JOIN OUR NEXT 12 WEEK PROGRAM!

Come in for a free demo class.

Bulgar stuffed sweet peppers.

Bulgar Stuffed sweet peppers

These take a little bit of time to make,
but they are sooooo worth it! Hearty and delicious. Serve with a side salad and you are good to go!

Course Dinner
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup bulgar
  • 4 sweet red peppers
  • 4 cups Mushrooms
  • 2 cloves Fresh garlic
  • 2 Diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp Lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp freshly chopped sage
  • 1/4 cup Freshly chopped parsley
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1/2 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • 1/4 cup toasted almond slivers
  • 1 tbsp Salt and pepper or to taste

Instructions

  1. In large bowl, pour
    1 1/3 cups boiling water over bulgur; cover and let stand for 15 minutes.  Drain and press out moisture; return to dry
    bowl.

    Meanwhile, slice
    tops off red peppers leaving 2-inch high sides; core and scrape out seeds.  Dice tops and set aside.

    In food processor
    or by hand, finely chop mushrooms.  In
    large nonstick skillet, heat half of the oil over medium-high heat; fry diced
    peppers, mushrooms, onion, garlic, sage and ½ tsp each of the salt and pepper
    until liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes. 
    Add to bulgur along with cheese, toasted almonds and parsley; toss to
    combine.

    Spoon bulgur
    mixture into peppers, mounding if necessary. 
    Place peppers, stuffed side up, in a 8-inch square glass baking
    dish.  Drizzle with lemon juice and
    remaining oil; top with tomatoes. 
    Sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper.


    Cover with foil;
    bake in 350◦ oven until peppers are almost tender about 1 hour.  Uncover and bake until tips are crusty, about
    30 minutes.

Acceptance of a problem – Are you coachable?

I personally think that any athlete can come into the gym, pick up some weights and lift. That is truly not hard to do, if you are the least bit dedicated to your craft. Where I find the difference lies in traning an athlete is there ability to be coached and listen to the advice that they are given. There is a reason professional athletes have a training staff, because they not only need direction but they want to be told how to get better! There is one trait I can see in every great athlete…. the desire to be coached! Below you will find my key point on being coachable!

  1. Acceptance of a Problem – The only way to truly fix something, is to first admit that it is broken. You as an athlete are training because you are trying to get better. Don’t act like you have everything accomplished already!
  2. Reaction to Criticism – When your being coached, there is nothing worse than arguing when your doing something wrong! If you don’t agree with something, that is fine but there is a certain way to ask the question of why is this or that being done.
  3. Changing of Mindset – The biggest tool any athlete has is their brain! If it is used in the right way. You need to allow coaching to happen, take the criticism and ask yourself questions! This is the true definition of an athlete, someone that can process information about their body, good or bad! Having a clear mindset of always understand why your doing something and how to do it is so undervalued!
  4. Performance – The reason why you are being coached is so that you get better at your craft. One of key points of being coachable is using the tools that we have given you to become a better athlete. Most importantly not going back to your ‘old ways’ before you made changes.
  5. Desire – Training at a high level is not easy. Especially if you are constantly trying to get better, it is an uphill battle that never stop! If you are an elite competitor you will never hit the peak of your game, because you will always want more. The only way this is possible is with high level coaching and letting people help you!

Having a coach is just like having a mechanic you trust, you’re always going to listen to their advice even if it is something that you don’t want to hear! People who are afraid of criticism never make it to the top, because they think they are the best and they simply aren’t! Elite people get better at what people say they are deficient in and make that a strength! If you can take one thing from reading this blog; just listen to the people who are trying to help you! Even if you don’t agree, it will make you a better person and athlete!

If you want to be Coached by Coach Jamie, CLICK HERE to sign up for his upcoming Big man camp!

Not feeling on top of your game?

A human body produces vitamin D as a response to sun exposure. A person can also boost their vitamin D intake through certain foods or supplements.Vitamin D is essential for several reasons, including maintaining healthy bones and teeth. It may also protect against a range of diseases and conditions, such as type 1 diabetes.

Despite its name, vitamin D is not a vitamin, but a prohormone, or precursor of a hormone. Vitamins are nutrients that the body cannot create, and so a person must consume them in the diet. However, the body can produce vitamin D however in places with less sun exposure all year round we should be consuming enough through diet or supplements to ensure we don’t have a deficiency.

Vitamin D play a few vital roles in the body;

Bones; It’s well-documented that vitamin D is essential for the proper absorption of calcium, and it’s been shown to greatly reduce fracture risk in two ways. First, it helps with the formation of stronger bones; second, Vitamin D helps improve balance and prevent falls by enhancing muscle contraction.

Mood; When it comes to being happy, the scientific evidence is clear, lower vitamin D levels have long been associated with a higher incidence of depression. Interestingly, when vitamin D3 supplements were compared to anti-depressants in a 2014 study, the positive effect of vitamin D3 on mood was comparable to the effects of the anti-depressants. When a new immigrant from a sunny country arrives to canada, often Dr.s will recommend they take a supplement to make up for the difference in climate.

Muscles; One of the byproducts of vitamin D’s breakdown, called 1,25(OH)2D, enters muscle cells and affects the nucleus. Once there, the vitamin D metabolite enhances the cell’s contraction ability. Since muscles work by contraction and relaxation, a muscle’s ability to contract is essential to its strength and response to outside forces. Vitamin D, then, makes muscles stronger in a very direct way.

Lungs; As many studies indicate, vitamin D plays a role in keeping our lungs healthy due to vitamin D possessing a range of anti-inflammatory properties – with greater concentrations of vitamin D resulting in greater lung health benefits.

Heart; Research has demonstrated an inverse relationship between vitamin D levels in the blood and high blood pressure (HBP or hypertension). In other words, the lower the vitamin D, the higher the blood pressure. The excess strain and resulting damage from high blood pressure causes the coronary arteries serving the heart to slowly narrow and harden, greatly increasing the risk of a heart attack.

Kidneys; Because vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, it helps to regulate kidney function and plays a very beneficial role in treating kidney disease.

Weight Loss; When you don’t have enough vitamin D, you feel hungry all the time, no matter how much you eat. That is because low levels of vitamin D interfere with the effectiveness of leptin, the appetite hormone that tells you when you are full. When vitamin D is replenished and back to normal levels, leptin’s actions are restored, thus creating feelings of satiety and aiding in weight loss.

Cognitive Function; In the past few years, many studies have linked shortage of vitamin D with cognitive impairment in older men and women. Research has demonstrated that vitamin D has a variety of neuroprotective roles, including helping to rid the brain of beta-amyloid, an abnormal protein that is believed to be a major cause of Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, an international study (the largest to date) shows that seniors with very low levels of vitamin D are at twice the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Deficiency; Although the body can create vitamin D, a deficiency can occur for many reasons.

Skin type; Darker skin reduces the body’s ability to absorb the ultraviolet radiation B (UVB) rays from the sun. Absorbing sunlight is essential for the skin to produce vitamin D.

Sunscreen; A sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 can reduce the body’s ability to synthesize the vitamin by 95% or more. Covering the skin with clothing can inhibit vitamin D production also.

Geographical location; People who live in northern latitudes or areas of high pollution, work night shifts, or are homebound should aim to consume vitamin D from food sources whenever possible.

Breastfeeding; Infants who exclusively breastfeed need a vitamin D supplement, especially if they have dark skin or have minimal sun exposure. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that all breastfed infants receive 400 international units (IU) per day of oral vitamin D.

Although people can take vitamin D supplements, it is best to obtain any vitamins or minerals through natural sources wherever possible.Getting sufficient sunlight is the best way to help the body produce enough vitamin D. Plentiful food sources of vitamin D include:

fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna, egg yolks, cheese, beef liver, mushrooms, fortified milk

Dosage should be discussed with your doctor however sensible sun exposure on bare skin for 5–10 minutes, 2–3 times per week, allows most people to produce sufficient vitamin D. However, vitamin D breaks down quite quickly, meaning that stores can run low, especially in winter.

If someone is taking supplements, they should choose their brand carefully, as the FDA do not monitor the safety or purity of supplements.

Even though there are a selection of vitamin D supplements available, It is the total diet and eating pattern that is most important in disease prevention and good health. It is better to eat a diet with a variety of nutrients than to concentrate on one nutrient as the key to good health.

Email Bskinner@sstcanada.com to schedule a Nutrition session with SST to make sure you are on the healthiest path possible!

What do you need to gain mass?

Here at SST a lot of athletes come into our facility wanting to put on size and gain strength and ask for our advice to help get them there. While what we do in the gym is a HUGE part of helping them achieve this goal, what we preach to our athletes is that what they do with the 23 other hours they aren’t in our facility are just as if not more important if they want to gain size and strength.


The most common misconception with ‘bulking’ or the pursuit gaining muscle mass is that you can just go on the see-food diet (eat any food in sight) and you will put on mass. While this is true if you are in a caloric surplus (eating more calories than you are burning), it doesn’t mean you are going to the athletic size we want you to gain. You should have a professional help you to calculate your caloric needs to identify #1 if you are eating enough for your activity level and if so if we need to add more calories to your current regime to help you gain some healthy muscle mass. This is ESSENTIAL if speed and/or power is important for an athlete’s sport as if we are looking to put on size, we need to be cognisant of how this may affect their speed. We want to gain size and strength the right way to promote speed development, keeping our body fat levels in a good range for us to perform for our sport.


For this to happen you need to be eating adequate protein. A good rule of thumb is that you should be eating AT LEAST 1 gram of protein per pound of body mass and it is best to space this protein out throughout the day to keep us on the positive side of protein synthesis/degradation. While individual needs will vary for sport and training period this is a good rule of thumb to follow. Another way to think of this is to try and eat 40 grams of protein per meal, or the equivalent amount of two decks of cards of a high-quality protein source, as protein is the key macronutrient for muscle building. If we are wanting to put on size and to make sure we are eating enough, another simple trick we can use is to try and eat 3 meals before 3pm, and 5 meals before 9pm. If you follow these simple rules of thumb it should go a long way in helping you put on some healthy mass.


We also focus on our athletes avoiding highly processed foods and protein sources. The more nutrition we can get from unprocessed, home-prepared meals the better. Focusing on eating lots of vegetables (hitting all colours of the rainbow), adequate carbohydrates for specific goals and activity level, healthy unsaturated fat sources such as fatty-fish, olive oil, avocados, almonds, etc. and protein sources that used to run, swim, or fly is a great place to start. We need to know where our next meal is coming from, and if we are prepared and have meals ready-to-go then we are less likely to hit the drive-thru window. While supplements have their place in athlete nutrition, forming this foundation is key for preparing our athletes for the demands of their sport and our training programs and to create life-long healthy relationship with food.


Also don’t forget to sleep! Hitting at least 8 hours of sleep per night is essential for muscle recovery and regeneration. It is important to make sure this is un-broken sleep as well as this is when our best muscle-building takes place. Making sure our sleep hygiene is in check can go a long way to help us get those 8 hours, such as avoiding screen time before bed and getting to bed at the same time every night to name a few. Also making sure we are adequately hydrated can help with sleep, but also everything else. Most of our athletes who come in aren’t drinking enough water and this affects not only their performance in sport, but everything else as well.
While this article only starts to scratch the surface on what things we should be doing when we are wanting to put pack on some healthy mass, it should go a long way into helping lay a strong foundation!

Email Bskinner@sscanada.com to schedule a complimentary demo session!

Know your stance!

There is an old adage, “if you start wrong, you’ll finish wrong.” This is the truth! In all sports not just football everything starts with your stance. Think about this without a proper stance a sprinter cannot get out of the blocks properly, without a proper stance a baseball player cannot hit for power. The same argument can be made for and OL having some sort of blocking responsibility, without a proper stance you are going to sacrifice speed and power off the LOS.

Here are a few tips that I will give you to have a better stance that will help you be more efficent getting off the ball, and strike you opponent with more speed and power!

Width of Base 

The width of your base is dependant on the frame work of your body. Someone who is really tall will have a wider base, than someone who is shorter, it’s just simple math. My basic rule of thumb is this, as long as you dont go more than 3 inches on either side of your shoulder structure, you are most likely in the green zone. This will allow you to be ‘wide’ enough to play with power, but also give you coil in your legs to change direction.

Angle of Feet

The angle of your feet in your stance is so darn important, this is the step most young kids dont understand. When you watch pop-warner and see young OL coaches teach “stance” they often tell thier kids to have thier feet pointing “north-south.” For the pop warner level this works, but when you get older and have to change direction with power this will not work. I like to use the hands of a clock as a coaching point for my guys. If we were coaching up a right handed stance, the Left foot our post foot would be tunred to abotu 10:30. Our right foot would be turned out a little more at about 2:00. Have your feet turned out ever so slightly will open your hips up, and it will allow you to play lower and with more power and speed.

Upper Body Posture

The posture in our upper body is just as important as that in our feet and legs. You want to be rigged through the core, but lose at the shoudlers. You chest needs to be up, with your head ever so slightly back. This upper body posture is so imporant because it will allow you to have an airplane take off effect, giving you thrust and power up and through your opponent!

At the beginning of the blog we had a picture of Quenton Nelson; arguably the best OL in the NFL right now and his pre snap set up has all three of the features that I just talked about! There is a reason why the NFL guys set up like this! Come to the Big Man Camp, and I will teach you why!

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR THE BIG MAN CAMP!

Did DK Metcalf stunt his growth?

I am just watching the NFC Wild card game and DK Metcalf’s record day. 

Metcalf is a 6’4 220 lb chiseled wr whose father had him start lifting at the age of 6!!  Yes you read that correctly.  6 years old and lifting weights…did it stunt his growth…NO!  In fact research shows that 77% of people who lift weights at a young age are the tallest in their family

2.  Young athletes who train with weights are hurt much less then kids who don’t lift weights

3. Strength training is safe for kids as long as it is personalized and supervised

4. Strength training wil increase a young athletes mobility

5. Will strength training guarantee you a scholarship or play pro….no but I can assure you if you don’t you will have much less of an opportunity!

Now be like DK Metcalf and squat 100bs at the age of 6!!

If you want to get jacked try my 8 week speed /strength football program

DAWGMODE!

Coach Larry Jusdanis

SST BURLINGTON

To read more on this subject … CLICK HERE!

To sign up for our upcoming winter speed and skills camp (peewee and Bantam ages) CLICK HERE!

7 Tips For Achieving Your New Years Resolutions.

Most people set resolutions and most people unfortunately don’t achieve them. So, we thought we could help with that. Failure has nothing to do with willpower or lack of effort. It has to do with things that you can readily change in how you approach resolutions.

  1. Set intentions instead of “musts.”. Resolutions tend to come with a “have to,” and we naturally rebel against that type of thinking. That way an intention is an aim or direction in which we are moving and therefore we have steps to take instead of being push forward.
  2. Connect with your “why.” When we have an intention that is a deep desire and we can identify and stay connected to that WHY, it makes for meaningful and achievable resolutions that create happiness in our lives. This may be anything from losing weight to quitting smoking, I few don’t see why, then it’s easier to abandon the goal.
  3. Get out of your own way. Just setting an intention isn’t enough if deep down you don’t think you can accomplish it in the first place, according to John Duffy, Ph.D, clinical psychologist, “Perhaps the biggest misconception is that a good intention can overcome lifelong habits of thought and behavior.” This means “clearing up any negative thought patterns we carry about ourselves, or our capacity for change.”

So how can you get out of your own way?

First, according to John Duffy, it’s important to understand how negative thoughts “drive our beliefs and behaviors.” To do this, keep a journal of both your negative and positive thoughts throughout the day along with the behavior that followed. “We typically find that positive, internal ‘self-talk’ drives positive behavior, and that the opposite is true for negative self-talk,” he said.

Then, replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Negative thoughts are rarely accurate and only serve to sabotage us. Duffy helps his clients either to embrace positive thoughts or to “fake it ‘til they make it,” as he puts it. He also suggested Dyer’s Excuses Begone! to help readers with changing their thoughts. If you’re still struggling, consider seeing a cognitive-behavioral therapist or life coach, Duffy said.

Everyone’s perception is their own reality and its important we take care of our thoughts to ensure our perception isn’t skewed by self-doubt or other negative thoughts we collect in our minds eye.

4. Set goals that are in line with your values. A “strong resolution with a solid chance for success bridges that gap between values and action,” according to Duffy. So first identify your core values, he said. Take your top five and use them to create a personal mission statement. Then set your New Year’s goals based on that statement.

An example: “To participate in enjoyable physical activities three times weekly in order to feel strong, boost my mood and improve my overall sense of health and wellbeing.”

5.Ditch deprivation. People tend to approach New Year’s resolutions from a place of deprivation, restriction and punishment. The quintessential example is wanting to lose weight. People turn to diets or difficult-to-maintain intense exercise schedules — both of which are the antithesis of lasting habits. Changes to our eating and exercise habits will always require effort and dedication, however we also shouldn’t make it harder for ourselves than it already is!

6. Chop up each goal. Big goals are overwhelming, so sit down and consider the “ridiculously easy mini-steps” that you can take, Jordan said. Make sure they’re “reasonable and attainable,” Duffy said.

Check in with yourself and set weekly intentions, then asses them at the end of each week. When you are making your assessments, be as kind and compassionate with yourself as you would allow for others. Acknowledge what went wrong but also celebrate your success. Then set your next week’s intentions.

7.Create a goal-friendly environment. A common hurdle in accomplishing our goals is creating the settings and circumstances that cultivate them, according to Duffy, who also explained that “a resolution that results in real change requires a shift in priorities.” In other words, if your want to be healthier, stronger and have e better sense of wellness, then you need to prioritize self-care, do the prep work to set yourself up for success (like meal planning and buying groceries to avoid eating out) or even making sure someone is home to take care of the kids while you go to the gym.

New Year’s goals get a bad rap mostly because we set restrictive resolutions that don’t honor our values or ourselves. We set resolutions hastily, minutes before the ball drops, without considering what we truly want. This year let the above tips help you create nourishing, positive and lasting goals.

References:

Tartakovsky, M. (2018). 10 Tips for Setting Successful Resolutions That Stick. Psych Central. https://psychcentral.com/lib/10-tips-for-setting-successful-resolutions-that-stick/

Safe Strength & Conditioning Training For Young Athletes!

Parents often have many questions about strength and conditioning for their children, which mainly stem around their concerns about whether it is safe for their child to undergo this type of training. Some common questions are:

  1. Is it safe for my child to resistance / strength train?
  2. My child won’t be lifting heavy weights, will they?
  3. I’ve heard resistance training can stunt my child’s growth, is this true?

Here at SST Burlington we like to educate our parents on the misconceptions surrounding strength training for youth and point them in the direction of resources that address their concerns. The National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) has recently released a position statement on resistance training for youth. This position states 7 Key elements regarding resistance training for youth:

1. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program is relatively safe for youth.

2. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can enhance the muscular strength and power of youth.

3. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can improve the cardiovascular risk profile of youth.

  • A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can improve motor skill performance and may contribute to enhanced sports performance of youth.

5. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can increase a young athlete’s resistance to sports related injuries.

6. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can help improve the psychosocial well-being of youth.

7. A properly designed and supervised resistance training program can help promote and develop exercise habits during childhood and adolescence.

While the key element in all of the benefits that youth can gain in resistance training are accompanied with a properly designed and supervised resistance training program by a trained professional, the NSCA largely dispels a lot of our parents concerns around resistance training for youth and states a lot of the associated benefits that can come from resistance training.

Programming for youth athletes should be done by a qualified professional, who understands pediatric exercise physiology, and the program needs to be tailored to the individual youth athletes needs, based on an assessment of their movement competencies. Focus should also be on movement and proper lifting technique, where proper and age appropriate progressions are followed.  

If you are still wondering after the NSCA’s position statements (along with 7 other worldwide associations who have published position statements advocating for the benefits and safety of resistance training for youth) if it will stunt your child’s growth, the answer is no, as long as the above criteria are met.

A properly designed and appropriate program will help to build bone density and structure, along with building the neuromuscular system. In development, youth is actually a great time to build bone density and structure, and the fears that resistance training would injure growth plates of youth is not supported by any scientific papers or clinical observations. Furthermore, when discussing injuries, resistance training is a lot safer (in terms of injury rates) than the sports are youth participate in and is a great way to help prevent injuries that occur in sport, by learning movement and gaining strength.

Let’s go over some of our common questions and concerns again:

  1. Is it safe for my child to resistance / strength train?

YES! Provided they are following a supervised, age-appropriate program, designed by a professional with experience training youth.

  • My child won’t be lifting heavy weights, will they?

POSSIBLY! If it is age appropriate for the youth, and they have followed proper progressions and have technically sound form… remember bodyweight is a key form of resistance that all our youth athlete learn how to handle before we add any external resistance. Resistance does also not always mean heavy barbells and weights. Resistance can be medicine balls, pulling sleds, appropriately sized machine weights etc.


  • I’ve heard resistance training can stunt my child’s growth, is this true?
    NO! There is no evidence to support this claim, provided again the program is designed by a professional with understanding of pediatric exercise physiology. This is actually a great time to help our youth build strong bones and get other benefits of resistance training including preventing injuries and improving sport performance.

If you still have concerns regarding resistance training for youth I urge you to checkout and educate yourself by reading the NSCA’s position statement on resistance training for youth or likewise come into our SST Burlington location to talk to one of our qualified coaches you can ease your concerns and talk to you more about the benefits of resistance training for youth.

Click Here to request a complimentary demo session and see how we prepare our young athletes for peak sports performance.

References:

  1. Faigenbaum, A. D., Kraemer, W. J., Blimkie, C. J., Jeffreys, I., Micheli, L. J., Nitka, M., & Rowland, T. W. (2009). Youth resistance training: updated position statement paper from the national strength and conditioning association. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 23, S60-S79.

Do you want to look like an athlete?

Everyone wants a body like an athlete, and yet don’t eat or train like an athlete!? Training like an athlete is important because athletes can move their bodies like no one else can. Your body is meant to be mobile, versatile, and freely moving – so why not train it to be like that, isn’t that why we exercise? To look feel good and look good?

Eating like an athlete is just as if not more important as training like an athlete. Our 1hr a day we spend working out is only 4% of your day. What you choose to do and eat the rest of it is what can make or break the training goals you have set for yourself. Here are 3 reasons why training and eating like an athlete is important;

1. Better Mobility Athletes need to have more mobility in order to achieve the best performance in their respective sports. Can you imagine a hockey player who can’t do a skate cross-over? Transitioning to your reality…with better mobility comes a better quality of life. Mobility allows you to move more freely while easily doing the simple things in life which a lot of people take for granted. climbing up an uneven step, lift a laundry basket or reach into the backseat for a bag…mobility helps with all of that, not to mention all the fun things we like to do like playing with our kids, going swimming on vacation or taking the dog on a hike etc. We all should be mobile and yes even into “old age”.

2. Better Looking Body; For the most part, athletes generally look really fit and athletic. They have put in the hard work and it seems as though their efforts have paid off. We all know that most people would like a better looking body, but are you willing to put the work in for it? I am not saying you have to put in 10 years or 10,000 hours like an athlete, but a 1 hour workout about 3-5 days a week will do the trick. As a trainer that struggles with their weight, I know the feeling of the extra wobble you want to just go away and I can promise you that if you are willing to put in the time for yourself, you will feel 100 times better the next time you put on a pair of shorts in the summer!

3. Better Nutrition; Athletes keep their nutrition in check a lot more than the general population. This is because their sport demands it. Empty calories and processed foods do not help fuel performance in their respective sports. I’m not saying you can’t enjoy a treat occasionally, (careful), but athletes keep their macro-nutrients in check. This means getting an adequate amount of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Athletes also make sure to consume their micro-nutrients as well like; iron, zinc, selenium while getting their essential vitamins too. Eat like an athlete, not only will you be healthier, your digestion, skin and mood will better!

So why do we look at athletes and want what they have so badly but instead of doing a scaled down version of what they do, we drink laxative teas, eat fake food, do mostly cardio or lesser work outs. Stop taking advise from your friends, they are not qualified and please watch out for companies that promise fast results with little change to eating or exercise habits.

CLICK HERE to find out more about how we train our clients to be more mobile, stronger and healthier!

Grilled Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Balsamic

Grilled Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Balsamic

You should eat your vegetables – especially if they’re grilled, covered in bacon, and drizzled with a balsamic vinegar reduction.
Course Side Dish
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lb fresh Brussels sprouts
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup good quality aged balsamic vinegar
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon cooked and crumbled

Instructions

  1. 1.Preheat oven to 400°F. If using a grill, preheat it to medium-high. Discard the outer leaves of the Brussels sprouts and trim the bottom of the stems. Slice them in half and lay them in a single layer on a non-stick or lined baking sheet. Drizzle a couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over the sprouts, sprinkle with some salt and freshly ground black pepper, and toss to evenly coat.

  2. 2.Place the baking sheet on the top oven rack and roast for 16-20 minutes or until nicely browned. If using a grill, place the Brussels sprouts on a grill rack and grill for 8-10 minutes on each side.

  3. 3.While the Brussels sprouts are roasting, place the balsamic vinegar in a very small saucepan and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes or until it is thickened and lightly coats a spoon.

  4. 4.Arrange the Brussels sprouts on a serving platter, drizzle with the balsamic vinegar reduction and sprinkle with the crumbled bacon. Serve immediately.