16-Year Old Girl Totally Shatters The Plank World Record

Watch This 16-Year Old Girl, Gabi Ury, DOUBLE The Guinness World Record For The Plank Exercise: Learn How She Did It, Why She Did It, And What YOU Can Learn From This Special Young Lady

There are people who break world records. Sure. They may be few and far between, but they’re out there. Then again, there are people who absolutely shatter a world record – even doubling it – and all the while making it look easy. Gabi Ury is one of those people.

A few weeks ago, 16-year old Gabi Ury broke the Guinness World Record for the longest time spent in the abdominal plank position (female). To get right to it, she held a plank for a mind-boggling 1 hour, 20 minutes, and 2 seconds. And get this. She only spent six months preparing for it. But it gets better. Not only did she achieve this incredible athletic feat, but she also managed to raise over $50,000 for a local charity – a children’s hospital that has helped her all her life.

You see, Gabi was born with some special needs, including a severe case of scoliosis, and a condition called VATER syndrome, which affects her spine, limbs, and muscles in various ways. In fact, she is completely missing her calf muscles, glute muscles, and some of her abs, too. On her website, you’ll learn that even at just 16 years of age, she’s had 14 major surgeries to date – just to “live a healthy, happy life.” Her first was a spinal surgery at four months old.

But this young lady didn’t let any of that stop her from breaking a Guinness World Record by leaps and bounds. She held a plank for double the previous record (set by Eva Bulzomi at 40 minutes, 1 second), and Gabi did it as part of her 16th birthday celebration.

You can learn more about her journey to the world record in the video below.


Continue reading 16-Year Old Girl Totally Shatters The Plank World Record

15 Lessons I’ve Learned From 15+ Years of Fitness About What Really MATTERS (Do This Stuff to Succeed)

male handstand walk Today, I’m going to share 15 things that 15 years of fitness has taught me about what really matters when it comes to physical training, among other things. I think that this will be a nice change from the endless argumentation and bickering over mostly insignificant or otherwise inconsequential issues that is so rampant in the realm of health, fitness, and weight loss.

Now, some of these points may appear overly simplistic, but don’t overlook the immense value of the hidden truths they contain. If we could only internalize, practice, and embody these ideas to the point of forming a new identity, we would amaze ourselves at what we can achieve.

So, without further adieu, here are 15 things that really matter when it comes to your health, fitness, and quality of life.

What doesn’t matter: how many pushups, pull-ups, or sit-ups (etc.) you can do.
What DOES matter: that you push yourself every time you train to do and be better.

What doesn’t matter: whether you can qualify for the Boston marathon, or run a marathon at all.
What DOES matter: that you get out there and run because you want to and because you can. Period.
Continue reading 15 Lessons I’ve Learned From 15+ Years of Fitness About What Really MATTERS (Do This Stuff to Succeed)

Finally, A Logical Explanation For Why 50-75% Of Runners Get Injured + The 7 Building Blocks of Becoming a Strong, Resilient Runner

The question has been posed in many different ways and from several different angles. Is running a dangerous and destructive activity that recklessly creates problems and injuries in the human body or could running actually be considered the fountain of youth? Well, you’re about to discover a compelling argument for why running does not cause injuries and shouldn’t hurt. Period. Despite the fact that an estimated 50-75% of runners are reported to experience injuries.

So, if you want to stay injury-free so that you can become a healthy, strong, and resilient runner who joyfully experiences all that running has to offer, then study the seven all-too-common mistakes that runners make contained in the article below and keep your mind’s eye open to the deeper lesson contained in this article. It’s true that running has been given a bad name because it’s often been associated with high injury risk, but it’s also true that every single runner can dramatically improve their health, performance, and results using new evolving training methods that are rapidly becoming more available today. Just one idea from this article has the potential to be the key you need to be one of them.


Continue reading Finally, A Logical Explanation For Why 50-75% Of Runners Get Injured + The 7 Building Blocks of Becoming a Strong, Resilient Runner

No More Sugar-Coating The Truth

I’ll be honest. I’m guilty of sugar-coating the truth from time to time, too. I’ve bent it ever-so-slightly to try and convince people that it won’t be that hard to make positive changes in their lives – in hopes that they would be inspired to take one small step in the right direction. But people need to stop kidding themselves by avoiding the real problem. What people need to do is swallow the truth whole and then get to WORK.

So, if you want to improve your health, fitness, conditioning, and quality of life, here are some hard truths for you…

  1. You’re going to have to change things about the way you live your life.
  2. Change is hard. Accept it and move on.
  3. You will have to use your body – vigorously and regularly.
  4. You’ll have to show up every single day.
  5. Showing up is only the beginning.
  6. What you do today should always be more difficult than what you did yesterday. That’s how growth happens.
  7. You are in a constant flux of always training, always recovering. You cannot stop this process. Ignore it at your own peril.
  8. There are no days off, and there should be no easy days on. Period.
  9. Sometimes, it will hurt, and you’ll have to keep going anyways.
  10. What and how you eat is just as important as how you train (ie critically, vitally, unavoidably important). So, you’re going to have to eat good food that supports your goals. Yes, you will probably need to do some research. Yes, you will need to plan some meals. Yes, you will need to try some new recipes. Yes, you will need to do the shopping yourself. Yes, you will need to buy the best foods and ingredients that you can afford. Yes, it may even cost more. Yes, you will need to prepare it yourself. Yes, you’ll get to eat it yourself (yay!). And yes, it will take time. Yes, yes yes. Stop making excuses and stop ignoring the elephant in the room. Buck up and get with the program. Your life depends on it, and we’re counting on you.
  11. You are capable of more than you can imagine.
  12. You’re going to have to find time or make time for the important stuff – just like everyone else does.
  13. The details do matter.
  14. You’re going to have to give up some of the things you love.
  15. It won’t be easy. Let me repeat that in case it didn’t sink in. It will NOT be easy. Another way of saying that is that it will be hard – very hard if you actually plan on succeeding. So, if you’re not willing to work hard, or if you’re the type who gives up easily, then do yourself a favor and don’t even try. You’ll just let yourself down like you always have.

But if you do go through with it. If you actually do the work, then know this: it will always, always be worth it. And don’t you EVER forget about number 11 on that list. Sifferman, out!

Believe you can and you’re halfway there. Theodore Roosevelt

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100 Lessons I’ve Learned From 10 Years of Running

John

Just yesterday, I ran across a a newspaper story about a cross country race I did in high school (pictured above) Don’t tell me! I know. I’m so photogenic. Both of those skinny lads ended up beating me, but I remember that race well and can honestly say that I gave it my all. While I was reminiscing, it dawned on me that while I’ve been running for most of my life, I’ve only been a runner for just over 10 years now, but you’d think it’d have been much longer considering all the lessons running has taught me.

As I reflect back on all those miles run at all times of day and night, in summer and winter, in the sun and the rain, on the roads, the trails, and the track, I realized that the more I give to running, the more it gives back to me. And so, to celebrate the gift of running, I want to pay some of those lessons forward to you.
Continue reading 100 Lessons I’ve Learned From 10 Years of Running

10 Things Your Genetics Won’t Do For You

Few comments make my blood boil more than when someone tells me:

You must have great genetics.

As if my accomplishments are merely the result of a lottery-winning DNA!

Discipline, hard work, clarity of purpose, consistency – these things certainly wouldn’t have anything to do with it.

Well, I’ve got news for you. Here are 10 things that your genetics won’t do for you…

  1. Genetics won’t get you up at 5 in the morning to do your training.
  2. Genetics won’t plan your meals, do your grocery shopping, or cook for you.
  3. Genetics won’t help you say no to the chocolate cake during the holidays, or the birthdays, or the company parties, or the…
  4. Genetics won’t help you quit smoking, alcohol, sugar, or other addictive behavior.
  5. Genetics won’t help you set specific, measurable goals and pursue them passionately under a deadline.
  6. Genetics won’t get you out for a run or a hike or a bike ride when it’s pouring rain outside.
  7. Genetics won’t help you push through discomfort to score just one more rep than you thought you could.
  8. Genetics won’t drive you to the gym when you’re exhausted after work or get you into your home gym after the kids are finally asleep.
  9. Genetics definitely won’t help you when your heart is pounding, you’re huffing and puffing, barely standing, and still have to keep going – with good technique.
  10. Genetics won’t help you do it all again tomorrow, and the next day, and the next.

Genetics are like excuses. Everybody’s got them, but some people don’t let that stop them from pursuing success anyways. So, don’t be weak. Choose strength. You are strong. Listen to what I’m saying. YOU are strong. So, be strong.

“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” – From the poem “Invictus” by William Henry

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CST Coach, CST-KS
Health-First Fitness Coach

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8 Strategies to Maximize Your Results From Your Cardio Workouts

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/sportsandsocial/

So many people get lost in the confusion and misinformation surrounding the world of cardio training. And I don’t blame them. It seems that every day, I read yet another article from some so-called weight loss “guru” that shares a different opinion on this issue. Should you do high intensity interval training (ie HIIT) or slow, steady-state cardio? How about both? Or, should you do your cardio first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, or should you get some nutrition flowing through your system first? These and so many other questions plague the minds of would-be fat burners who just want to get a good workout in and get back to their life.

Speaking of which…

Since the blog has been a little quiet this month, I wanted to post a quick announcement today that I had a guest article published at the highly-esteemed Burn The Fat Blog by Tom Venuto. I’ve written a lot of articles for Tom’s fat loss support community, the Burn The Fat Inner Circle, but this is the first time I’ve landed a spot on the blog, and I’m pretty excited! My article is titled 8 Reasons Your Cardio Workouts Aren’t Working, and you can read the full text here.

Here’s how it starts…

So, you’ve started doing cardio workouts to burn some fat, tighten up, and get in shape. Perhaps you’ve started going for a walk each morning or a run on your lunch break. Or, maybe you began using the elliptical, stairclimber, or rower at the gym. Maybe you’ve joined a class. But no matter what you do, you’re not seeing the results you want, and you’re not sure why. Well, here are eight reasons why your cardio workouts may not be working and what you should do about it. – John Sifferman, Source.

In my experience, things are much simpler than we make them out to be, especially when you base your training off of principles instead of the next fad – or some weird trick or secret training strategy that gets passed around the Internet from time to time.

So, if you’re the type of person who likes to base your exercise program off of logic, reason, and science, instead of being swayed by the latest popular opinion, AND you want to make sure you’re not making any big mistakes with your cardio training, then you can read my article about the eight strategies to maximize the effectiveness of your cardio workouts at the Burn The Fat blog here: 8 Reasons Your Cardio Workouts Aren’t Working.

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“What Supplements Should I Take For _____?”

Introducing the Examine.com Supplement Stack Guides: The Definitive Answer to the Question “What Supplements Should I Take For…?”

What supplements should I take for...?

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/veo/

“What supplements should I take for _____?”

  • Fat Loss
  • Muscle Gain & Exercise Performance
  • Heart Health
  • Testosterone Enhancement
  • Mood and Depression
  • Sleep Quality
  • Insulin Sensitivity
  • Libido and Sexual Enhancement
  • Allergies and Immunity
  • Joint Health

That’s one question that I get all the time, and am almost never able to answer because it’s an extremely complicated subject. And I’m not exactly a nutritionist or dietician either! But today, I’m going to give you a definitive answer from the people who know. Because the truth is, most of the time when it comes to supplements, I just don’t know. But fortunately, the people at Examine.com do. And the good news is that not only do they know the facts on supplements (check up on their 33,000 references to scientific papers for proof), but they’re also legit. You see, most of the “good guys” in our industry trust Examine.com, and it’s not just because of their amazing work in the research realm, but it’s because they don’t sell any supplements themselves. They’re the only unbiased supplement research organization that I know of.

note: if you’d like to learn more about the crew behind Examine.com and how they’re the premier evidence-based, supplement research organization, then check out my interview with one of the founder’s here: Never Waste a Dime on Supplements Again.

And today, I want to talk to you about the new Examine.com Supplement Stack Guides, which are arguably the simplest and easiest resources for getting started with any kind of supplementation plan or refining your current plan for better results.
Continue reading “What Supplements Should I Take For _____?”

How to Break a Fitness Plateau by Building Strength-Endurance

Solving the Strength-Endurance Conundrum: Why Strength is More Important Than Endurance For Building Strength-Endurance (How to Build Strength-Endurance for Pull-ups and Chin-ups)

Kettlebell sport and timed sets, in general, are an example of strength-endurance in action. Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ambernussbaum/

I was having a little chat with Jeff Kuhland about pull-up training and something we discussed was that many intermediate trainees completely ignore their strength capacity when trying to build endurance in this exercise. They get stuck in this perpetual cycle, thinking that if they need more endurance, then the best thing to do is to only train endurance. But that’s not exactly true, and it could be a big mistake if your actual goal is to increase your strength-endurance.

strength-endurance: the ability to apply strength via muscular contractions over a sustained or prolonged period of time.

Obviously, this is a subjective term, and different people use it to describe different things. But when it comes to actually applying training methods to build strength-endurance, it seems that most people just don’t get it, especially outside of the realm of weightlifting.

So, today, I’m going to remind you that if you want to build your strength-endurance, then much of your focus should probably be on strength training.

Allow me to explain with an example.

Which of These Identical Twins Has More Strength-Endurance?

Let’s say that we have two identical twins. They are the same height, weight, body composition, and they even have the same exact birthday. Plus, they’re both from New England and say, “wicked smaht” a whole lot.

Now, for example purposes, let’s assume that these twins are exactly the same in every way, except for one critical difference. Twin A can deadlift 405 pounds for a single (i.e., his one-rep max). Whereas, Twin B can only deadlift 315 pounds (i.e., his one-rep max). In other words, Twin A can deadlift 90 pounds more than Twin B, and is stronger than Twin B, at least in this particular lift.

So, here’s the question of the hour: which one of them likely has more strength-endurance? In other words, if we loaded up a barbell with 225 pounds, who do you think could deadlift it for more reps?
Continue reading How to Break a Fitness Plateau by Building Strength-Endurance

The Complete Six Degree Flow Review – First Impressions

Six Degree Flow Review - Banner

Scott Sonnon’s new Six Degree Flow program is a comprehensive, plug-and-play, bodyweight training system that will help you burn stubborn body fat, build functional muscle, heal aches and pains, prevent injuries, and improve your fitness using a variety of unconventional movement skills and exercises that were specifically created to increase the amount of flow in your life and help you feel and perform at your best.

But what is the REAL TRUTH behind this program – apart from all of the hype? Does it work and is it worth it? And most importantly, who would Six Degree Flow be best-suited for? This review is going to answer all of those questions and more.
Continue reading The Complete Six Degree Flow Review – First Impressions

Interview with Jeff Kuhland about Pull-up Training

Break Your Pull-up Training Plateau and Work Your Way up to Doing Sets of 20-30+ Pull-ups Using These Tips From Jeff “50+ Pull-ups” Kuhland

Jeff Kuhland

Jeff Kuhland – NSCA-CSCS, MovNat Trainer, Pull-up Training Expert

I got a chance to train with Jeff Kuhland at a 5-day MovNat retreat back in 2009, and have kept in touch with him off and on ever since. Jeff is not only a wealth of training knowledge, but he is also a humble coach, too. I actually interviewed him last year all about his approach to training, and about MovNat, in particular (click here to check out the first interview). So, I won’t rehash his long list of accomplishments and credentials today.

Now, in this interview, our topic was strictly pull-ups and chin-ups. You see, I read an article that Jeff wrote for BreakingMuscle.com all about his unique approach to pull-up training. He shared some really good tips and a few interesting ideas in that article, but what really caught my attention was one of his responses to a comment on that page. Someone was asking for advice on breaking through a pull-up training plateau, and Jeff replied…

Jeff Kuhland - pull-ups comment

Naturally, this piqued my curiosity, not only because of Jeff’s impressive accomplishment, but also because of the distinction between training for pull-up strength versus training for endurance – and how the strength training needs of an athlete change as they start building their numbers. This is an approach that I’ve used myself, but is rarely shared in detail online. And I wanted to get to the bottom of it from someone who knows.
Continue reading Interview with Jeff Kuhland about Pull-up Training

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