Daily Hypertension Cocktail

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Some medical studies point to Beet Juice reducing blood pressure.

Some medical studies point to Hibiscus Tea reducing blood pressure.

In addition to pursuing the DASH diet each morning I am also drinking what I call my Hypertension Cocktail.  The ingredients are as follows:

8 ounces of Beet Juice

8 ounces of Wild Berry Hibiscus Tea

8 ounces of Water

I mix the above into a travel coffee cup before I go to bed and put it into the refrigerator overnight.  In the morning it is the first thing I consume upon waking.

The results?

I don’t know yet.  I will post more after a month or so.  I can say at this point that drinking my Hypertension Cocktail every morning makes me feel better than drinking coffee ever did.

 

 

 

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Half Marathons & Hypertension

The InfoVisual.info site uses images to explain objects.

The night before the half marathon my right foot began hurting so much it took my breath away.  When I woke up the next morning the pain was still there so I skipped the race.  The Doctor declared a sprained tarsometatarsal.  While I didn’t get to run the race it turns out my last long run before the half marathon was 14 miles so mentally I checked the block for my goals this summer.

While at the Doctor’s office my blood pressure was extremely high, around 153/92.  I have taken it two more times this week and it is at this level or slightly lower.  In response I am pursuing the DASH diet.  As I scoured my blog and workout notebook I found this post that I had forgotten about.  In it I note a correlation between my weight lifting, specifically using barbells, and lowering of blood pressure.  Based upon all of the above it looks it’s time to get back under the bar.  See below for my next template.

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Bicep Tendonitis and the Scapular Plane

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I annoyed by bicep tendon again.  This time it is my left one.

I sugested to my Doctor and he agreed after an assessment that the cause was likely strict overhead pressing a 28kg kettlebell at an angle outside of the scapular plane.

What is the scapular plane?

Click on this article by Scott Iardella at Strong First to find out.

The article is also available here in PDF format:  The 3 Key Distinctions of the Kettlebell Press – StrongFirst

Bottom Line:  Staying within the scapular plane when pressing overhead is safer than not.

Question arising from this situation thus far are:

Is barbell strict overhead pressing safer than the same exercise with a kettlebell since a kettlebell can naturally drift out of the scapular plane easier than a barbell?

Is there a substantial difference in performance gains when utilizing equal resting weight and pressing weight as compared to light resting weight and heavier pressing resistance?

Example…

When I stand with a kettlebell in the racked position I feel weight.  When I strict press it overhead I feel weight.  When I stand with one or more Iron Woody Resistance Bands looped over my Ross Enamait do-it-yourself resistance band handles I feel little to no weight.  When I strict press overhead I feel resistance.

More to follow once I know more.  For now it is a cortisone shot and six to eight weeks of physical therapy.

Carbohydrates & Minimum Effective Dose

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Last October I did an experiment based upon a modification of Dan John’s Meat, Leaves, and Berries eating plan.  You can read about it HERE.

While it worked quite well, it was not sustainable for me.

Why?

Because by the time dinner rolled around I was craving carbohydrates like a madman.  It took a lot of work to restrain my inner grump.

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So my new experiment, as a scientific sample of one, revolves around trying to figure out what is the Minimum Effective Dose (MED) of carbohydrates that I need at dinner to ensure I am a happier version of me.

So…  For the next 30-ish days I am going to do the same thing I did last October, but I am going to add one cup of basmati rice to my dinner.

Stay tuned!

MED

 

 

 

 

 

After Action of Dan John’s Meat, Leaves, and Berries

Dan John

Dan John

In this article Dan John spoke of eating only meat, leaves, and berries.

The plan as written would not work for me.  I need my morning coffee with cream and sugar and also need my Friday night pizza and popcorn with my family.  Based upon this I executed as follows:

  • Eat as much meat and as many leaves and fruits and berries as I want to.
  • No eating after 7pm (Except on Friday).
  • Cream and sugar are allowed in my morning coffee.
  • On Fridays I eat pizza and popcorn with my family.
  • Walk for 45 minutes upon waking Monday through Friday prior to consuming anything with a caloric value.
  • Do 100 two-handed kettlebell swings with a 24kg kettlebell following the walk.  I did this by four sets of 25 repetitions.

Thirty days later I have:

  • Lost 14 pounds.
  • Feel more energized and less sluggish in almost everything I do.
  • Sleep much better.

All of the above has led to an improved quality of life.  Due to the quantity of food I consumed I never felt hungry but still burned fat.  I suggest you give this a try for 30 days and see where you end up.  Note that this was all I did for 30 days.  I think the key to this being sustainable was that I wasn’t doing a lot of activities that increased my appetite.

Weight Gain and Perceptions of Health

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Abs and Drop Two Sizes — Yay!

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Abs and Gain Muscle / Lose Pounds — Yay!

 

Society tells us running a lot and being skinny and having six-pack abs indicates health.

Doctors tell us that an appropriate mix of resting heart rate, blood pressure, and body composition indicates health.

I am six feet tall.

One year ago today I weighed 175lbs, nearly had four pack abs, looked good at the pool, did just enough cardio to negatively impact my kettlebell work, and my blood pressure was in the pre-hypertension range of with a systolic pressure from 120 to 139 mm Hg or a diastolic pressure from 80 to 89 mm Hg, and my resting heart rate was 62.

Today I weight 202lbs.  I have two pack abs, more love handle than I would like, my back and shoulders are the only parts of me that look good at the pool, do virtually no cardio, my blood pressure is 110 over 72, and my resting heart rate is 57.

What does this mean?

For me, as a scientific sample of one, a structured strength template has made me less healthy according to society, more healthy according to Doctors, stronger than I have ever been in my life, and greatly improved my overall quality of life.

 

Heart OHP

The only thing that would make this picture better was if the heart was doing a military press.

 

 

AAR — First Strength Training Injury

If you recall I injured my shoulder, specifically a swollen long-head bicep tendon, via improper bench press form due to lack of scapular retraction and bringing the bar down significantly above my nipple line.  I spoke of it here CLICK.

Last week I had my final two sessions at physical therapy and a follow-up with my doctor.  I have no more pain.  I have the full range of motion.  I am relived.  The biggest thing I learned on this journey is to work smarter not harder and avoid injury.

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What Shoulder Pain Looks Like To You

In addition to working smarter not harder is that everyone should accept and respect the level of complication involved with shoulder injuries.  Throughout my physical therapy I did exercises that I assessed as random, not well thought out, and even stupid.  In reality these exercises were doing just what my Physical Therapist wanted and they worked.  In my representative sample of one shoulder rehabilitation isn’t A+B=C but is more like A+9=V (V for Victory!  Hooray! 🙂 ).

The shoulder and the Z-Cube are similar in that the number of solutions are roughly 19.5 duoquinquagintillion on the short scale.

Shoulder Pain Reality — The shoulder and the Z-Cube are similar in that the number of solutions are roughly 19.5 duoquinquagintillion on the short scale.

Based upon discussions with my Physical Therapist, knowledgeable friends, Dr. Quinn Henoch of Darkside Strength CLICK, reviews of shoulder literature and noting what worked best for me in physical therapy I designed a program to sustain my shoulder.  This program is not specifically  focused on the long-head bicep tendon but involves overall shoulder health and flexibility.

Shoulder health and programs to sustain said health are highly individualized and what works for me may not work for you.  I am providing this Frankenstein-style PDF full of random internet images to show you what works best for me.  Please be careful. If you use my program you do so at your own risk.

Disclaimer horse beaten!

Disclaimer horse beaten!

 

Download Here Shoulder Rehab Thingy (CLICK)