Home Posts tagged "Newsletters" (Page 9)

Newsletter #47

In light of the fact that I was delayed nine hours in the snow at Reagan Airport in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, this week's newsletter will be a quick one.  Fortunately, all that downtime gave me an opportunity to reflect on a few things and organize my thoughts for this newsletter!

Mid-Atlantic Strength Symposium Wrap-up

I wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who came out on Saturday for the seminar at George Mason; it was great to meet all of you. For those who couldn't make it, here's an interesting aside.  I evaluated six people at the seminar who had various aches and pains in their lower body, and of the six, four were severely lacking in ankle mobility.  Coincidence?  I think not.  Get to training more barefoot and doing more ankle mobility work while taping your ankles less and getting rid of your high-top sneakers, high-heels, and any other shoe that dramatically elevates your heels.  You'll feel like a million bucks in no time.

A Great Read

The bright side of my delay in D.C. was that I got a chance to read over Kelly Baggett's Ultimate No-Bull Speed Development Manual.  I'd glanced it over when Kelly sent it to me, but only now got the chance to give it the time it deserves.  To say that I am impressed would be an understatement; Kelly really has a knack for making the complex seem simple - and telling people how it is rather than just telling them what they want to hear. This is a fantastic product for anyone who works with athletes; I would highly recommend checking it out: The Ultimate No-Bull Speed Development Manual

New Article

For those who missed it, I had a new article published at T-Nation last week; check it out: The Ten Rules of Corrective Lifting That's all for this week.  We'll be back next week with all new content. All the Best, EC
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Golf and Unstable Surfaces

Q&A rant that deserves a newsletter of its own...

Q: I have received a golf fitness program designed specifically for my injury history.  This program came from the <Insert Noteworthy Golf Trainer’s Name Here>.  I have concerns about this program. Some of the exercises I am concerned about involve: 1. mimicking my golf swing on an unstable surface 2. performing one legged golf stance with my eyes closed 3. hollow my stomach for 30 second holds 4. upright rows Correct me if I'm wrong but your advice on various T-Nation articles and your #6 Newsletter go against these practices.  Should I look elsewhere for my golf fitness program? A: Where do I even begin?  That's simply atrocious! I've "fixed" a lot of golfers and trained some to high levels, and we've never done any of that namby-pamby junk. In a nutshell... 1. I did my Master's thesis on unstable surface training, and it will be featured in the August issue of the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.   Let’s just say that if the ground ever moves on YOU instead of you moving on the ground, you have bigger things to worry about than your golf conditioning; you’re in the middle of an earthquake! 2. There is considerable anecdotal evidence to support the assertion that attempting to replicate sporting tasks on unstable surfaces actually IMPAIRS the learning of the actual skill (think of competing motor learning demands).  In a technical sport like golf, this is absolutely unacceptable. 3. Eyes closed, fine - but first show me that you can be stable with your eyes open!  Most golfers are so hopelessly deconditioned that they can’t even brush their teeth on one foot (sadly, I’m not joking). 4. Abdominal hollowing is "five years ago" and has been completely debunked. Whoever wrote this program (or copied and pasted it from when they gave it to 5,000 other people) ought to read some of Stuart McGill's work - and actually start to train so that he/she gets a frame of reference. I’m sorry to say that you got ripped off.  The fact of the matter is the overwhelming majority of golfers are either too lazy to condition, or too scared that it’ll mess up their swing mechanics (might be the silliest assumption in the world of sports).  So, said “Performance Institute” (and I use the word “performance” very loosely) puts out programs that won’t intimidate the Average Joe or his 80-year-old recreational golfer grandmother.  For the record, Gram, I would never let you do this program, either (or Gramp, for that matter).  On a semi-related note, Happy 85th Birthday, Gramp! In short, I’m a firm believer in building the athlete first and the golfer later – and many golfers are so unathletic and untrained that it isn’t even funny.  Do your mobility/activation to improve your efficiency, and then apply that efficiency and stability throughout a full range of motion to a solid strength training program that develops reactive ability, rate of force development, maximal strength, and speed-strength.  Leave the unstable surface training, Body Blade frolicking, and four-exercise 3x10 band circuits for the suckers in the crowd. Yours Cynically, EC
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Lifting for Lymphoma

Before we get going with this week’s newsletter, I want to extend my thanks to everyone who made it out for the seminar at Mike Boyle’s facility last weekend.  I know I can speak for John Pallof, Brijesh Patel, and Mike when I say that we appreciate the large and enthusiastic crowd.

Lifting for Lymphoma

For those of you who haven’t heard already, my good friend Alwyn Cosgrove has compiled an incredible resource for a tremendous cause.  Over the past few months, Alwyn has pulled together 57 of the brightest minds in the industry to each write a section for this manual, which will be released March 1st.  All of the proceeds will go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. I exchanged emails with Alwyn yesterday, and he informed me that this project has surpassed 700 pages of material.  Considering it’s priced at $30 and will benefit a tremendous cause, I would hope that nobody on this newsletter list would even hesitate to pick up a copy.  I, for one, was honored to be included, and thrilled to be able to write for charity.  As Dave Tate wrote last week, “The material is worth 100 times the price, but is not where the REAL value is.” Start saving a dollar a day for the next few weeks, and you’ll be in a good position to help a great cause.

EricCressey.com Exclusive Q&A

Q: I am an undergraduate student and was hoping for your input on one thing. I am fond of corrective training, training to prevent injury, mobility/activation training, body weight workouts, using bands/power metrics and would love to focus more so on these types of training than anything else. I really want to specialize in training people with the least amount of weights as possible, nothing against weight training, but I want to be the guy that people go to prior to commencing a weight training program/lifestyle to make sure that they are as strong as they can be/as prepared as possible prior to ever picking up any weights.  My passion is really centered on training kids (middle school/high school) and is why all this injury preventive/corrective training appeals to me so much. I highly enjoy reading your articles on injury prevention/mobility and feel that any recommendations that you could provide as to what my educational focus should be most on would be invaluable.  I am currently considering exercise biomechanics/physiology to be the two main areas that I should be focusing on. Is there a field that would better accommodate my aspirations in sports training? Or is exercise biomechanics and physiology what I need to be focusing on? A: Thanks for your email.  While your enthusiasm is certainly admirable, your logic is flawed. Think of modern physical therapy; the exercise component is largely based on resistance training with some sort of external load.  While there is a lot to be gained from training with body weight only and doing so properly, you have to load people (especially if you consider the bone density benefits of structural exercises). So, in a nutshell, you have to resistance train to prepare to resistance train! And, in an athletic population, realize that you’re going to have to train people with both open- and closed-chain movements for optimal functional carryover.  Body weight only stuff is only useful for the latter – and most of those require significant external loading sooner than later. I think you're in the right line of thought with your education, but remember that it's experiences and interactions with others that will facilitate success more than regular ol' book smarts. Q: I saw you write somewhere recently that subscapularis dysfunction was generally associated with posterior capsule tightness?  Is there a causal relationship? A: The subscapularis, infraspinatus, and teres minor work together to depress the humeral head during dynamic shoulder activities. The subscapularis posteriorly pulls the humeral head in the joint (counteracts pectoralis major), while the other two anteriorly pull it (counteract posterior deltoid). So, they're antagonists and synergists at the same time. If subscapularis shuts down, infraspinatus and teres minor fire overtime as depressors - but you don't get subscapularis’ posterior humeral head pull.  Tightness kicks in with the posterior capsule, and you can also get anterior humeral glide issues.  This is a big no-no in overhead throwing, as they’ll look to the elbow to get range of motion – and that’s when you start to see ulnar collateral ligament ruptures, ulnar nerve compression, etc. Q: For the sake of the sport of rowing, what's your take on off-season training?  I own your Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual, and though I agree with cutting back on metabolic work during the off season for most sports, I'm wondering if it'd be different for rowing, since it's still quite demanding metabolically (more so than most sports in the black hole), and in my opinion, too much to just let go. That said, my guess is that we shouldn't stop metabolic conditioning, just scale it back a whole lot, properly planning the harder interval or high tempo work on the same days as hard training, to keep whole days of recovery.  What's your take? A: I would do more short sprints (interval work) and anaerobic threshold work in the 20-25 minute range (at most) above race pace.  Only do longer slow stuff below 70% of max heart rate, and only every 7-10 days (view it more as recovery work that maintains aerobic adaptations).  Build strength, power, and anaerobic threshold, and add volume as the late off-season approaches. It's also a good idea to cross-train a bit.  Get them off the rowers/out of the boat and do some other modalities. Until next week, train hard and have fun! All the Best, EC
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Building the Efficient Athlete Review

Building the Efficient Athlete Feedback

It’s been just almost three weeks since our 8-DVD set was released, and I thought you’d be interested to hear what one customer had to say about the set:

Each year I try to expand my knowledge with everything from functional anatomy, program design, rehabilitation, regeneration techniques, nutrition, and business – anything to make me better at what I do.  Each time Eric Cressey and Mike Robertson come out with a new article, product, whatever, I am blown away by how little I truly know and how much I have yet to learn. Eric and Mike are quickly raising the standard in this industry.  From Eric’s Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual, Mike and Bill Hartman’s Inside-Out: The Ultimate Upper Body Warm-up DVD, to both Eric and Mike’s Magnificent Mobility DVD, these guys are quickly changing the landscape of how we train the human body for ultimate performance. Now, enter the Building the Efficient Athlete DVD set.  Eric and Mike have once again raised the bar.  I don’t recommend you think about getting this DVD set; you need it.  If you’re an athlete, trainer, strength coach, or a weekend warrior, you can’t go wrong with the loads of information Eric and Mike packed into this 2-day seminar.   Eric and Mike covered everything from functional anatomy, assessing posture and movement, exercise technique, common errors and how to correct them.  This is one of the most comprehensive training products on the market. In an era when the fitness industry is watered down with hundreds of certifications and an overall lack of professionalism, Eric and Mike keep it afloat by putting out top-notch resources that should be required for anybody currently training athletes and clients or looking to enter the fitness industry! I just spent the last week viewing all eight DVDs and each day this week I implemented something new with the athletes and clients I train and in my own training.  The Building the Efficient Athlete DVD set is the real deal. Aaron Schwenzfeier Performance Fitness Systems Alexandria, Minnesota What are you waiting for? www.BuildingTheEfficientAthlete.com

New Article at Perform Better

For those who don’t subscribe to Perform Better’s newsletter, I had an article published there yesterday.  It’s hard to believe that a powerlifter like me actually knows a thing or two about training endurance athletes, huh? Five Resistance Training Myths in the Running World A special thanks goes out to everyone who donated to Steph Holland-Brodney's Boston Marathon fundraising efforts last week.  For those who may have missed it, you can catch up on back reading HERE.  We’ll be back next week with some all new content.  Until then, train hard and have fun! All the Best, EC
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Newsletter #43

Last day for WorkoutPass bonuses!

Just a reminder that Tuesday is the last day that you can take advantage of 74 free bonuses at WorkoutPass.com. Feedback on the site has been great so far, and it should come as no surprise, given the big names Ryan Lee has brought on board. Check it out for yourself: WorkoutPass.com. I’ll soon be uploading another month of programming – including 16 total training sessions – geared toward building maximal strength.

New Interview with EC

It’s been really busy up here with lots of projects and upcoming seminars on top of my normal workload, but fortunately, Myles Kantor recently interviewed me with a specific focus on the deadlift; the interview was just published by John Berardi at Precision Nutrition to give you some great content for this week. Check it out: Defending the Deadlift: An Interview with Coach and Powerlifter Eric Cressey Until next week, train hard and have fun! All the Best, EC
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Workout Pass Deal

It was a tough loss for the Patriots last night, and everyone in Boston is pretty down today, but the show must go on!  Only a month or so until spring training kicks off for the Red Sox, so the stormy clouds are parting already.  And, of course, the updates at EricCressey.com roll on...

Thousands of Training Programs at your Fingertips!

Tomorrow, Ryan Lee's newest venture, Workout Pass, will officially launched.  It was an honor when Ryan contacted me last fall to contribute to this project, as it put me in some great  company, including Alwyn Cosgrove, Mike Boyle, Craig Ballantyne, and several more bright minds from the industry.  For a very reasonable monthly fee, you can get access to thousands of the actual programs we've used with our clients and athletes in our respective specialities.  My programs will focus on maximal strength development and improving athletic performance.  I've already uploaded 32 training sessions plus complete warm-ups for those interested in taking their strength to the next level - and there is plenty more to come. As an added bonus, Ryan is giving away 73 bonus special reports and e-books valued at $1,681 to those who sign-up prior to tomorrow's 9AM launch.  This is going to be huge, and I'm psyched to be a part of it.  Check it out for yourself: Workout Pass

Early Registration Deadlines Fast Approaching

Time is running out to sign up at the early-registration rate for the two seminars at which I'll be speaking in February - one in Winchester, MA (2/10), and one in Fairfax, VA (2/24).  Check out my Schedule page for information. Now Available: Powerlifting: A FitCast Insider Exclusive Interview with Eric Cressey About two months ago, I did a two-part interview with Kevin Larrabee for the FitCast Insider, and you can now pick up a copy for just $4.99.  The discussion covers several topics, including nutrition for relative strength athletes, fluctuation of training stress, and deloading strategies prior to competition.  You can find out more HERE.

EricCressey.com Subscriber-only Q&A

I get a ton of email inquiries on a weekly basis, so every so often, I like to make a Q&A out of some of the more detailed dialogues.  Enjoy! Q: I am a first year physical therapy student in college, and I have a real passion for strength and conditioning.  I have been reading some of your articles and they are great.  The reason I am contacting you is to ask a question about having athletes warm up barefoot, as you recommended in your last article.  I understand your reason for doing this, but if we are so focused on doing things “functionally,” why barefoot?  Most athletes compete in some form of shoe, so shouldn't we have them perform exercises in shoes?  I am really into orthopedics, so the foot and ankle joints are really of interest to me.  Thank you for taking the time to answer my question. A: Thanks for your email and the kind words.  I think the response is that the functional movement craze goes a bit too far in some instances.  In this case, the addition of inappropriate footwear has actually created a weakness in the smaller muscles of the foot and lower leg.  And, barefoot is as functional as you get, if you consider the way we "should" have evolved.  I don't like the idea of altogether ignoring a glaring weakness; we lose a ton of dexterity in our feet as we age. As an aside, most Americans sit on their fat a**es all day, yet we advocate doing as much training as possible standing up because it's more "functional."  Acting counterintuitively isn’t always a bad thing.  Food for thought! Q: I used to do both front and back squats with my athletes, and have found since eliminating back squats our complaints of lower back pain are fewer. Although I don't hear it much, I am getting complaints of pain on release of the bar back to the rack across the scapular-thoracic area sometimes shooting to the front of the chest. They literally put the bar back and then stand there for a second for the pain to pass. I tested the last two kids with an inverted row and neither one could touch their chest to the bar. Am I looking at weak scapular stabilizers? Do you have any thoughts on this? Their form looks good. A: Have you checked for regular ol' acromioclavicular joint pathology?  Front squats can really destroy athletes who have irritated AC joints - both acute and chronic. A lot of times, you'll see a humeral anterior glide syndrome with posterior capsule stiffness, subscap shutdown, and levator tightness – and this will lead to the AC joint problems.  The tricky thing is that it can also be linked to pain posteriorly as you've described. Additionally, you have some guys who just lack the scapular stability to rack the bar correctly.  Believe it or not, I RARELY use the clean-grip with athletes; it's usually the cross-face or straps version on front squats.  I'm training athletes, not O-lifters, and I find that thoracic posture is much better with a cross-face set-up.  This is especially important when I'm dealing with athletes in grip-intensive sports; I'm not going to do anything to jeopardize their wrists. Q: What is your opinion of front versus back squat? I question with my football players whether I should be doing back squat with some of my older kids; they all go off to college and do them.  Recently I've run into a problem with kids going to the gyms to do back squat because we're not doing them at the school. I struggle between sticking to my guns and continuing to educate the kids on why we do front squat and feeling like If their going to back squat I'd rather have them lifting with me under supervision. Can you offer any guidance on this? A: I don't do any full Olympic back squats anymore.  All our quad dominant squatting is either front squats or Anderson front squats.  When we're looking for more posterior chain emphasis while squatting, I will box squat them.  Box squats get crucified by a lot of coaches simply because they don't know how to teach them - or they've watched someone else teach them poorly. I'm an accomplished powerlifter who has been around them long enough to know how to teach them very well, so they're a mainstay in my program.  We go regular box squats, box squats with a front squat grip (awesome exercise), and safety squat bar box squats.  The concerns with forward lean isn't as bad when you're only squatting to slightly below parallel and not giving the kid wiggle room to good morning the weight up out of the hole. Q: Do you consider the DB snatch to be an "overhead" lift?  I use it with my baseball players because of the "pulling" action, the eccentric lowering and the stabilization they get on the catch. So far, I've never had an injury to any of my pitchers as a result of the DB snatch. A: Yes, I consider it one.  You have to remember that many shoulder injuries are the result of cumulative trauma (e.g., bone spurs on the acromion process that take years to develop - which is why we see more impingement in older populations).  Additionally, kids are very resilient; you can basically get away with anything with high school kids - often because the joints are so lax.  Just because you can get away with it doesn't mean that it might not be contributing to long-term problems - especially in an overhead athlete scenario.  There are much better ways to develop power safely in these populations, so I'd leave it out. That'll do it for this week.  Don't forget: our Building the Efficient Athlete DVD set won't be around at the introductory price forever; pick up a copy today!  Until next week, train hard and have fun! All the Best, EC
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Newsletter #41

It’s been an exciting few days thanks to my weekend trip to Atlanta, yesterday’s Building the Efficient Athlete release, some soon-to-be-announced surprises I’ve got in store for EricCressey.com subscribers and, for now, update #41. Let’s get to it!

A Follow-up to Perform Better – Atlanta

I just wanted to take a quick moment to thank everyone who came out to this past weekend’s Perform Better seminar in Atlanta. I know I can speak for Alwyn, Mike, Chuck, and the entire Perform Better crew when I say that we really appreciate you not only attending, but also bringing a ton of enthusiasm.

First Annual Mike Boyle Strength & Conditioning Winter Summit

While we’re on the topic of seminars, I just got word from Mike Boyle that we’ve already sold out over half the seats for the February 10th seminar we’re putting on at his facility in Winchester, Massachusetts. If you’re planning on attending, don’t hesitate to sign up; spaces are going fast!

Rave Reviews for The Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual and Magnificent Mobility

Last week, Jonathan Wong reviewed both products at his website; check them out: The Ultimate Off-Season Training Manual Magnificent Mobility As a reminder, you can get 30% off Magnificent Mobility with the purchase of our just-released Building the Efficient Athlete DVD set – which is also for sale at an outstanding, limited-time introductory price.

New Article Update

On Thursday, I had a new article published at T-Nation. Check it out: What I Learned in 2006

EricCressey.com Exclusive Interview: Mike Roussell

Mike Roussel is one of my few "go-to" guys in the world of nutrition, and you can count on hearing a lot more from him in the months and years to come.  Mike is very unique in his academic background, real-world experience, and - perhaps most importantly - the passion he brings to the industry.  Last week, I was a guest on his show (www.MaxOutRadio.com), so it seems only fitting that he gets to drop some knowledge bombs on my readers this week with an interview in our newsletter. EC: Hi Mike, thanks for taking the time to be with us today.  I know quite a bit about you, but I'm sure our readers would like to hear a bit more about where you are, where you've been, and where you're going.  Tell us your life story. MR: Okay, this will probably bore everyone except my mother and my wife, but here I go. I played just about every sport growing up and eventually blew out my knee in high school. I picked up Muscle & Fitness one day while in rehab and the rest is history. I have a B.S. in biochemistry and have spent a good deal of time doing organic chemistry synthesis. After college, I went to medical school, but halfway through my first year I knew it wasn’t for me and that wanted to pursue nutrition full time. So I left medical school and got a job in a biochemistry lab along with a position that allowed me to actually develop the nutrition curriculum for first year medical students at University of Vermont. During this time, I applied to nutrition graduate schools. I’m now at Penn State studying to receive my PhD in Nutrition. During this whole academic journey, I have always been busy working with people and their nutrition, body composition, and performance goals. That’s what I love. I love seeing people succeed - helping them achieve their best body. There is no feeling better than when a client shares with you a story about how someone noticed changes in their body. You can see it in the client’s face and hear it in their voice how great it made them feel. It is special to be able to help people with that. I’m lucky. EC: All our readers can insert the obligatory “awwww” as if there were playing with a puppy. I, on the other hand, will start right off with a tough question. I just wrote a two-part article about what I learned/did differently in 2006; what were a few of your “epiphanies” last year? MR: 1. Butter is good. I realized that I don’t eat enough saturated fat. Chances are that you might not either. I’m big on olive oil, nuts, and avocados – all of which are great, but they weren’t giving me enough saturated fat. I was down at around 4% of total calories from saturated fat. I’ve doubled that now that I use butter on a regular basis. Plus, it makes food taste so good. 2. Alwyn Cosgrove is a sadist. I realized this after doing six weeks of his Afterburn II program. 3. It is important to write your goals in the present tense and keep them at the front of your mind. 4. It is really important not to blindly believe the things that you believe. I’m a big fan of fish oil and no matter how much I believe that fish oil is anti-inflammatory, we really have no idea how it works its anti-inflammatory magic. I was really stuck on the traditional way of thinking about fish oil’s mode of action, but the research says the opposite and there are a lot of people out there that refuse to see this. 5. It is better to embrace reality than fight it. Chances are you already know the answer to a problem with which you are struggling, but you don’t like it, so you are waiting for a new one. Let’s take diet, for example. Many people eat like crap on the weekends and it kills their progress. They know they don’t stick to their meal plan over the weekend, but they continue to look for the new diet, supplement, or guru that will allow them to achieve their goal. Just clean up how you eat on the weekends, and you’ll be amazed at the results. 6. You can never read too many books especially, in areas about which you know nothing. EC: I managed to escape academia, but you’re still up to your neck in it. What’s new in the lab? Have you won your Nobel Prize yet? MR: Well, over winter break, I just finished a review article on lifestyle interventions that affect HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol). It is going to come out in the first edition of a new journal called the Journal of Clinical Lipidology. Basically, the best way to increase your good cholesterol is to have 1-2 alcoholic drinks per day. This will increase HDL-C by about 7%. Exercise only increases HDL-C by about 4%, and when you lose weight, your HDL-C actually goes down! However, once your weight loss stabilizes, your HDL-C will increase by about 4% from where it was before the weight loss. I’m also working on a grant for the USDA that involves giving people fish oil and monitoring various biomarkers – but I won’t bore your readers with the details. One more thing: there is a really cool type of compound called Resolvins that are created in the body when you take aspirin and fish oil together. It could be the responsible for the anti-inflammatory actions of fish oil (that means we’ve all been wrong about fish oil’s mechanism of action). There has been essentially no work in humans with these compounds, so I have some plans to do some work with Resolvins and humans subjects this spring – again, really cool stuff (in a serious science nerd way). So, as you can see, I am definitely up to my neck in academia! EC: Where are most people missing the boat when it comes to nutrition in terms of: a) general health b) physique improvements c) performance enhancement? MR: Overall, people are missing the boat with compliance and not sticking to their plan. Generally, they eat too many starches – and at the wrong times. a) General Health – Not taking high quality fish oil or getting enough of a variety of fruits and vegetables. b) Physique Improvements – Undereating. This crashes your metabolism and makes fat loss really tough. The same goes for building lean tissue. If you aren’t growing even though you “eat a lot,” you need to eat more. c) Performance Enhancement – Under recovery. Performance athletes really beat up their bodies. This places unique metabolic stressors on their system that proper nutrition can almost erase. Protein and carbs during and after a workout is a must. Total calories are also very important, but they need to be good calories. It drives me nuts when athletes put tons of effort into training but the guy behind the counter at McDonald’s knows them by name! EC: As I’ve done in previous newsletter interviews, I’m going to ask you to give me your top five training/nutrition resources for people looking to take their knowledge to the next level. MR: Here are my top five not in any particular order. I’ve actually read all of these books several times. 1. Enter the Zone, by Barry Sears – This book lays a great foundation of the effects of different macronutrients and the power of food. 2. The Anabolic Diet (now called The Anabolic Solution) – This book is a classic and definitely the most popular low carb diet in the weight lifting world. 3. Nutrient Timing by Drs. Ivy & Portman – This is a great resource on the biggest breakthrough in sports nutrition. 4. Precision Nutrition by John Berardi – John does a great job of laying out how you should structure your nutritional approach. I currently use this will all my clients. 5. Naked Nutrition or Results Driven Nutrition – This is the nutrition manual that I’m working on at the moment. Those are the two titles I’m currently tossing around. If your readers have an opinion, they can shoot me an email at mike@muscleandcuts.com EC: Sounds interesting; can you tell our readers a bit more about it? MR: Here’s the thing: personally, I do not enjoy writing out meal plans. I love doing phone consults and working with people, but making meal plans isn’t any fun. So, I decided to put the entire step-by-step system that I use to develop meal plans for people into a manual. I also go into great detail about how to adjust your meal plan depending on your goals; that is the heart of the manual. I also lay out my “Six Pillars of Proper Nutrition,” how to maximize nutrient timing, how to prioritize and plan supplementation depending on goals, and a bunch more (including two DVDs). EC: Sounds like a definite winner and something that’s really needed. Be sure to keep us posted on its release! Where can our readers find out more about you? MR: I’ll definitely make sure your readers have the opportunity to take advantage of the presale savings. Currently, my biggest ongoing project is my radio show, Max-Out Radio (www.MaxOutRadio.com), on which you were just a guest. I have a nutrition blog that I update a couple times a week at www.StreetSmartNutrition.com. Finally I have a main website, www.MuscleandCuts.com, where I host my newsletter, product reviews, articles, and my nutrition coaching. You can also find my articles at T-Nation or Bodybuilding.com. I think that’s about everything. EC: Great stuff, Mike; thanks for taking the time. That’ll do it for this week. Have a great week! EC
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Newsletter #40

I'll be in Atlanta this weekend for the Perform Better One-Day Learn-by-Doing Summit; if you're in attendance, be sure to introduce yourself!  Now, though, it's time to get to the good stuff.

A Special Offer from Zach Even-Esh

Last night, I did two phone interviews with Zach Even-Esh for his great website, UndergroundStrengthCoach.com.  Zach brings a ton of enthusiasm to the table, and his Underground Strength Kit is a fantastic product that brings to light a lot of ways to make great gains training without fancy gym equipment - a theme that resounds with his website.  At the end of the interview, Zach mentioned to me that he was offering a awesome deal: a one-week trial membership at UndergroundStrengthCoach.com for only $1.  This is not something you want to miss, as you've got virtually nothing to lose; check it out now HERE!

New Article

On Friday, I had a new article published at EliteFTS.com.  In case you missed it, check out Pressing and the Overhead Athlete.

Last, but not least...EC on Max-Out Radio

Last week, I sat down and chatted with Mike Roussell of Max-Out Radio about corrective exercise, training for athletic performance, lifting heavy stuff, the meaning of life, and the age-old question, "Where does a lap go when you stand up?"  Before I digress too much, check it out: www.MaxOutRadio.com Expect to see an interview with Mike here in the not-so-distant future, too; he's a really bright guy with a ton to offer (one more reason to check out the rest of his site). When I return from Atlanta, I'll be putting the finishing touches on a special compilation to celebrate the one-year anniversary of EricCressey.com.  This sweet (and completely free) resource will only be available to our newsletter subscribers.  Until next week, train hard and have fun! All the Best, EC
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Dieting Disasters Review

Happy New Year, everyone.  I hope that 2006 was a great year for you, and that 2007 brings you nothing but the best.  We've got lots of exciting things in store here at EricCressey.com in the new year, so without further ado, let's get to the first of them: Newsletter 39!

Building the Efficient Athlete Update

Mike Robertson and I expect that our Building the Efficient Athlete DVD series will be available for sale within 7-10 days.  Due to factors outside our control, the editing and production process has taken a lot longer than we expected, but we’re confident that the finished product will be as beneficial to those of you at home as it was for those in attendance.  We’ve got some sweet bonuses lined up for this product as well. This truly might be the first product that appeals to everyone in the industry – regardless of training experience.  Day 1 is packed with functional anatomy and static and dynamic assessment protocols.  Day 2 kicks off with an outline of our approaches to corrective exercise, and much of the rest of the day is devoted to troubleshooting common resistance training techniques.  So, if you’ve ever had questions about your deadlift, squat, lunge, bench press, or seated row form (among many others), this DVD set is for you.  In great detail, we discuss common problems, compensation patterns, and most importantly, how to fix them! The 8-DVD set will be available at a substantial, exclusive, introductory discount to our newsletter subscribers, so stay tuned...


If you haven't seen it already, I would encourage you all to check out Tony Gentilcore's article that was published yesterday at T-Nation; it's absolutely fantastic.  I know I'll be printing it off for several of my clients! Dieting Disasters

Contributor's Corner: John Cowell

This week,  we have a submission from John Cowell, a great trainer based in Raleigh, North Carolina.  Check out Needs Assessment and Results. That does it for this week's update.  Again, Happy New Year! All the Best, EC
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Online/Distance Training

With the holidays fast approaching, it’s a busy time up here in Boston.  We’ll get right to the meat and potatoes this week!

Perform Better – Atlanta

For those of you in the Southeast US, I’ll be speaking at the Perform Better one-day seminar in Atlanta on January 13.  The other speakers will be Mike Boyle, Alwyn Cosgrove, and Chuck Wolf.  For more information, check out Perform Better’s website.  Hope to see you there!

Updates to the Recommended Resources Page

It’s been a while since I updated the recommended resources page, but that’s not to say that I haven’t been doing a ton of reading (as always).  Be sure to check it out:


An Interview with EC by Mind & Muscle

This week, the guys at Mind & Muscle ran an interview with me; you can check it out HERE.


Q: What is your opinion of online or distance education masters degrees in human kinetics/kinesiology? Do you know of any good distance education programs? I want to further my education, but I already have a good full time training job and client base that I don't want to leave to do a master’s degree at one of the local universities.

A: To be honest, I'm not too fond of the online master's degrees in THIS field.  Exercise Science really is a hands-on discipline; a large portion of the master's degree should be about experiencing things.  When I look back at my time at the University of Connecticut, I'd say that about 90% of what I took away (which was a lot) was experience-based between strength and conditioning and the human performance laboratory – not to mention just interacting with labmates, fellow coaches, and the faculty – while only about 10% was classroom-based.

Are you close enough to any universities to go part-time over an extended period of time?  You have to look at this as an INVESTMENT, not an expense.

With all that said, there are a lot of great coaches out there who don’t have Master’s degrees – but they’ve picked up the slack with tons of reading, building huge networks, and interning under other coaches who have gone before them.  So, at the very least, put yourself on academic quarantine as often as possible to get some reading done, and seek out those who are doing what you’d like to do – and doing it well.

Q:  I injured my back on the lowering phase of doing deadlifts. I am thinking it was because my form was not good on my last set and my back muscles did all the work. I was wondering if what you would recommend for recovery from this injury.

A: Prevention: Don't squat the weight down; this is a portion of the movement that gives more people trouble than the actual lift. Push the hips back, keep your spine neutral and abs braced, and don't break your knees until the bar has passed them.  Breaking the knees too early is the biggest mistake I see.

Fixing it: First off, see a qualified professional in your area; there is only so much I can help you with over the internet, especially with so little information.  The solution will most likely be rest, but after the fact, you’re going to need to leave your pride at the door, drop the weights a bit, and work to establish good form and proper lumbo-pelvic rhythm. Get a video of your form to critique yourself, and also check out our Magnificent Mobility DVD to get your hip-lower back issues headed in the right direction.

Happy Holidays,


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  • Avoid the most common deadlifting mistakes
  • 9 - minute instructional video
  • 3 part follow up series