Monday, August 30, 2010

Mobility WOD, Post-OPT, and Screwing Up Your Clock With Booze

First off, one of the coolest things to happen on the internet since, well, the internet.  Enter Kelly Starrett, owner of San Fransisco Crossfit.  Dr. Starrett (Physiotherapy), aka KStar, has started a daily blog of mobility "WODS", which usually ends up being 5 minutes packed full of cool information interspersed with hilarity.  If nutrition is the base of your athletic pyramid, mobility is it's equal.

Trust me, you're going to want to watch this EVERYDAY.

Optimum Performance Training CCP Nutrition, Post-Incident Analysis

This was probably one of the most information-packed seminars I've ever attended; it was a no-frills event, just sit down, listen, and learn.

Day One was all Dr. Mathieu Lalonde, PhD in organic chem from Harvard.  Mat presented all the science on why we should eat what we should eat, and why we SHOULDN'T eat what most folks eat.  Needless to say, his grasp of the science and charismatic delivery was impeccable.  Mat doesn't subscribe to a single "diet", such as Paleo/Atkins/Zone/ etc etc---he looks at the history of what we ate, and the science of how the food affects our system.

But no means am I tooting my own horn, but I'm damn glad I spend the time I do on nutrition and have the background I have.  The material presented was extremely heavy on the "science" end, for lack of a better description, and the volume was huge.  Needless to say, there were a few deer-in-the-headlights looks over the weekend.

Day Two was about implementation, presented by James "OPT" Fitzgerald.  This was my first time meeting James, and I clearly understand why he is considered an icon in the strength and conditioning community.  The man is a wealth of information, even when he gets off on a tangent from the topic at hand.

Throughout the day we went over nutrition implementation strategies, broke down client food logs, discussed pre/peri/post workout nutrition, and went over a plethora of case studies.  We touched on everything, and everyone, from your typical hard-wired Crossfit athlete to sedentary middle-aged clients to endurance athletes to teens.

I had the fortune of having breakfast with Mat Sunday morning; I'd have to agree with him, the science is easier to deal with than implementation.  Science is just facts; athletes are the furthest thing from, with about a million different variables per individual that are changing all the time.  Just another reason I consider nutrition so dynamic!

I have 20 client nutrition profiles to do over the next few months; I already have a few folks started, and even more "in the cue" (you know who you are).  I'll be hunting down a few more lucky victims over the next few days. :)

Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2010 Aug 24. [Epub ahead of print]

Reduced Expression of Circadian Clock Genes in Male Alcoholic Patients.

Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.


Background: There are clear interactions between chronic alcohol consumption and circadian rhythmicity that is regulated by several circadian clock genes. The altered expressions of these genes have been mainly described in animals. The mammalian master clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei orchestrates the biological rhythms in peripheral tissues. As peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) are the most accessible tissue clinically, we assessed the mRNA levels of these genes in patients with alcohol dependence (AD) undergoing alcohol-withdrawal (AW) treatment. Methods: Twenty-two male patients fulfilled the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria of AD, and 12 comparison healthy control subjects were recruited. The patients with AD were further divided by the presence of delirium tremens (DTs), the most severe form of AW syndrome, into DT group and non-DT group. All the participants received blood withdrawal at 9 am, while the patients with AD had blood collection twice: on the next morning of admission (baseline) and on the seventh day. PBMCs were isolated from whole blood, and the mRNA expression profiles of hClock1, hBmal1, hPer1, hPer2, hCry1, and hCry2 were determined by quantitative real-time PCR. Results: The baseline mRNA levels of the target circadian clock genes were markedly lower in patients with AD than in control subjects. After 1 week of alcohol detoxification, there were very limited restorations of discrete circadian gene expressions. DT group did not differ in the expression patterns of circadian clock genes from non-DT group. Conclusions: This is the first study demonstrating the overall lowering of circadian clock genes among patients with AD. The expression pattern is comparable between patients with and without DTs. Although preliminary with data at only one single time point, the observation of strikingly reduced mRNA levels supports the association between circadian clock gene dysregulation and chronic alcohol intake.

My Thoughts: While I've rambled and posted in the past on moderate alcohol intake and it's (proven) health benefits, I think it's prudent to understand the flip side, especially the effects on sleep and circadian rhythm.  Alcohol is commonly thought to "induce" sleep; this would be it's CNS (central nervous system) depressing effects.  What isn't so commonly known is that alcohol disrupts various stages of sleep, like SWS (slow wave sleep) and REM (rapid eye movement), both essential to optimal hormonal secretion, growth, and recovery.  And now that we know that alcohol directly affects circadian rhythm AND gene expression, where does one draw the line?

 I'm still of the opinion that moderate alcohol intake has more pros than cons, although timing and quantity mean everything.  A glass of red wine a dinner is a completely different animal than 3-4 drinks (or more?  ha!) right before crashing to bed.  Performance = No Alcohol, Health + Longevity = Mod to Low Alcohol.  That's my thoughts.

Various Training
Monday, Aug 23rd, CFLA, 1PM
Squat Clean
95#x3x2, 135#x3x2, 165#x3x2
185#x1, 1,1
215#x1.  Tied my PR from a few months ago; happy with this, as my 225# goal should be easily attainable.

AMRAP 15min:
6 Pullups
12 KBS (53#)
7 rounds +3+6+2.  Almost 8, lotsa breaks between movements.  Only had to fractionate the KTE.

Tuesday, Aug 24th, CFLA, 1PM
Pushups, SDLHP (95#), Ring Dips
7:01.  Tough back-to-back movements of ring dips + pushups.

1000m row, 3:27.  PR of 3:20, so not far off, being pre-fatigued.

Thursday, Aug 26th, Firehall #1
Kickboxing, 3x3min rounds + 6min round
a stupid busy day, and only had time for a quick pad session with KH.