Random Thoughts


I recently purchased an issue of Fitness Rx for Women.  I was waiting in line at the store when I picked it up to see what training expert reality show star Jackie Warner had to say about training.  What caught my eye a couple of pages in were two short research summaries toward the beginning of the magazine.  One from the Strength and Conditioning Journal that says muscles don’t work in isolation and training the core shouldn’t be any different and should include muscles all around the pelvis, low back, hips etc.  The other tidbit mentioned a study that showed unstable surface training my not be effective for building muscles of the core.  In the study the researchers only compared conventional deadlifts to deadlifts done on a BOSU but I’ll take it.  So, this information I was happy to see might be slowly getting to the masses and is the reason I decided to buy.  However, as I read on to further pages I came across an article about ab training.  Now while it did include rollouts and various planks, which is great, it emphasized that the Swiss Ball, an unstable surface, was great for building your core and crunches were included in the workout.  Some contradictions, but as a whole, probably some good info for a mainstream magazine.

  • Side note:  I don’t know if there are women out there who think the men in any of the guys magazines are attractive but the women’s magazines are full of fitness and figure competitors.  It may not be the right message for the women reading but it’s the right message for me.


I’m almost embarrassed to say this but I’ve been playing hockey for probably 24 years and I still play once a week in what I call “the old man beer league”.  (No, I’m not embarrassed by that)  For years I’ve known that I have some hip internal rotation deficit on my left side and I consistently try to mobilize it etc, but there might be some stiffness from time to time.  Fast forward to 2 weeks ago when I, someone who harps about movement quality and asymmetry, blah, blah, blah, for the first time ever realize that its likely I have jumped over the boards on and off the ice for 24 years the same way every time!  Hundreds of thousands of times over the years and I finally realize that just maybe all those reps to one side quite possibly could have contributed to how my hip has been for as long as I can remember.  I’m sad to say this revelation took so long but I will be making a conscious effort to lead with my left leg from here on out and not continue the pattern.


I just started reading Convict Conditioning.  I’m only a few pages in but I’m already enjoying the history lesson.  By that I mean the beginning of the book is a look at physical culture from very early on and that men from over a hundred years were able to attain great strength through just moving their bodies and being athletic.  They worked very hard to achieve this but it makes me appreciate training as something that a) doesn’t have to take place in a machine filled gym with a sleeveless t-shirt b) takes skill and focus, and c) can be fun.  Learning how to move your body and be athletic can be more like play than what has become the drudgery of the modern trainee.


– Mike Baltren



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