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Eat More Before and During Your Workout!

Crossfitters need to eat more during workouts! I believe this is a problem with many athletes at every level.

As long as I can remember my nutrition has centered around performance and health. I’m not new to strength training and competitive athletics. A Masters-category athlete, active in CrossFit and strength training and a little bit of cycling, I’ve used every diet and nutritional strategy you’ve ever heard of. And more.

A few years ago I began to realize there were some holes in the nutritional practices common to CrossFit. The accepted Paleo-Zone dogma wasn’t working for me any longer. I was running out of gas during lengthy metabolic sessions. My muscle is hard-earned, I can’t afford to lose any, and I want to be able to charge through workouts, not just survive them (injuries permitting). And that was happening.

The last few years I’ve often been going to morning workouts with coffee and a protein shake in me, maybe mixed with some BCAA and a partial packet of some pre-workout. No fats. When my workout was later in the day I’d always have eggs, bacon, possibly some white rice or potatoes, but most of the time my pre-workout food was protein and fat only.

Mid-workout I was running out of gas, and even when I didn’t, I wondered why more energy or strength wasn’t available. 

I was neglecting much of what I’d learned and practiced during decades of working in gyms, educating myself and competing. 

Eating before and during workouts and competition is critical, I realized (and remembered)! How could I have gotten away from the practice?

Change took place, right away. In the 1990s and 2000’s I was consistently using generic  maltodextrin after gym sessions; later I moved to Waxy Maize. Species Carbolyze was my favorite.I experimented with (and enjoyed) Gaspari Nutrition's Glycofuse. I think that's a good product. About three years ago I began to incorporate Vitargo into my post-workout shakes. Felt it was nutritionally superior to Waxy Maize, loved the taste, disliked the texture and clumping. Digging it out of the steel ball in my Blender Bottles was annoying and wasteful.

The lesson learned is that a good supply of easily-absorbed carbs, just before your workout, during, and of course right away afterwards, sets you up for optimal performance. Attack that WOD; lift more weight. You’ll grow muscle (rather than stripping your hard-earned lean tissue), recovery fully and more quickly, and have increased energy for your next workout. Isn’t this what performance-minded nutrition is all about?

The need for a carb-only powder, one comprised of healthy ingredients, easy to mix in a Blender Bottle and good tasting, was needed. Progenex brought Build to market, filling the need of every athlete hoisting weight and thrashing themselves metabolically. Sustainable energy is the name of the game, not just for CrossFit athletes but everyone who lifts weights and taxes themselves metabolically. Tri-athletes, tennis players, golfers (yes!), baseball and football and basketball competitors all benefit from the advantage Build provides.

Progenex utilizes Fenugreek actives and dairy peptides to swiftly clear blood sugar from the carb source to the muscles. Then another peptide takes over, optimizing blood glucose to be used for energy and replacing muscle glycogen. These peptides help glucose clear the bloodstream quickly, resulting in a longer lasting energy curve, helping support your workout.

Build is simple and for real; it’s comprised of honey and sweet potato powder. I imagine everyone reading this is well aware of the benefits of the sweet potato; Build is simple that. Your system absorbs it efficiently and quickly, putting it to good and proper use.

In the shaker, Build blends well with other supplements. I’ve mixed it with every flavor of Recovery made by Progenex, and Force and More Muscle, as well. Several brands of BCAA powder and creatine have made their way to my shakers, and they always mix nicely in the Blender Bottle with Build.

Each time I go to the gym, I’ve a scoop of Build, one scoop of Recovery, and one packet of Force in my shaker as I’m heading out. I’ll sip it during mobility and warmup. When the shaker is partly empty I add more water. And keep sipping throughout the entire session. 

Of course, before I leave the gym after working out, I’m getting two scoops of Build, and two scoops of Recovery, some more BCAA and creatine, into that shaker

Don’t leave home without Build in your shaker. Combined with Force, it’s my secret weapon! 

#progenex #build @progenex @Sambuca720


Wine, Wine, Wine...

Shadows in the Vineyard: The True Story of the Plot to Poison the World’s Greatest Wine by Maxmillian Potter

Reverse Wine Snob: How to Buy and Drink Great Wine Without Breaking the Bank by Jon Thorsen

True Taste: The Seven Essential Wine Words by Matt Kramer

 Who knew only seven words could be adopted to consistently, and accurately, bring the taste of wine to mind? Matt Kramer, long-time Wine Spectator columnist, knows how to judge wine (and flavor). He envisioned True Taste, I want to believe, as enjoyable reading in a comfortable chair, a nice glass of red at hand, rolling these seven words over the tongue and through the imagination. Kramer’s presentation is excellent, original, and compelling. True Taste makes me think differently about wine. 

@cidermillpress  #mattkramer

Jon Thorsen performs valuable service with the Reverse Wine Snob site. His mission is to assist everyone in finding the nicest wines under $20 retail. In itself, a worthy goal. For most of us, I bet that’s a high ceiling. I find even more useful his periodic concentration on Trader Joe’s and Costco. Nobody sells more wine at retail than Costco; I rarely walk out of a Trader Joe’s without wine.

I found author Thorsen's insights into the pricing and markup strategies of Costco interesting. With one of these mega-stores opening in my area in a couple of months, I want to arm myself with all the shopping knowledge possible, and Reverse Wine Snob contains the real deal. Identifying marked-down wine, understanding Costco's labeling, alone is worth the price of this book if you ever plan on buying wine there.

Over the years I've bought much wine from Trader Joe's, and been happy with most of it. The extensive section on their wine in these pages is compelling; I'm ready to drive an hour and a half to the closest store just to shop! What better knowledge could a passionate wine drinker (and buyer) arm himself with?  Of course Reverse Wine Snob costs only $17.99, right in the retail ballpark of many of the wines touted by Thorsen. Buy this book, find his site, sign up for the email newsletter, and get informed (and entertained). 

@skyhorsepublishing  #jonthorsen  @reversewinesnob

The paperback edition of the gripping Shadows in the Vineyard reminded me how crazy and desperate this crime of a few years ago was. The small vineyard in France producing the most expensive wines in the world was threatened with destruction of their vines unless one million euro’s in ransom was paid. Aubert de Villaine, head of the vineyard in question, thought this a bad joke, setting in motion events culminating in the main suspect’s suicide, and nation-wide headlines as the world of wine reeled from the destruction that ensued. Shadows in the Vineyard relates a true story but the plot to destroy the vines of La Romanee-Conti, regarded as the finest Burgundy, reads like a detective novel. 

@twelvebooks  #shadowsinthevineyard #maximillianpotter


new edition of Hemingway's Green Hills of Africa

 Scribner does it again with this handsome Hemingway Library Edition of the classic 1935 Green Hills of Africa. Much like we've become accustomed to with musical box sets, this new edition of Green Hills of Africa also contaiins Pauline Pfeiffer's safari journal (from their Africa trip in 1933), and a slew of photographs, illustrations, and even drafts and deleted passages. Patrick Hemingway wrote the forward to this edition of his father's book; it's special.

Everything about this new edition is classy and top-shelf. 

@scribnerbooks  #hemingway  #greenhillsofafrica


Haley Reinhart turns Radiohead into wonderful, emotional Jazz

 I get chills when I listen to Reinhart sing. The gimmick is this is Radiohead's "Creep", a well-known song by the band. Reinhart turns the song inside out. It's wonderful. Find her version of "House of the Rising Sun" too. It's great. And subscribe to Postmodern Jukebox on YouTube.



Fast After 50: How to Race Strong For the Rest of Your Life by Joe Friel  

Joe Friel is probably unknown to most people in the CrossFit world. Read Fast After 50 and prepare to learn from one of the brilliant coaching minds from the world of cycling and endurance sports. Yes, CrossFit is primarily high-intensity, shorter duration workouts, but there is much to learn about optimal human performance from Friel.

Where Fast After 50 truly gets interesting is for it’s target audience. Today there are countless “older” athletes competing in every sport. Clearly, the definition of what constitutes older has changed. Friel recognizes that for the first time in organized sport there are athletes in their 50s, 60s and 70s who have continually trained and followed healthy nutritional practices throughout their lifetimes. Today, rather than a few exceptional people competing after 50, now there are entire race populations in many sports from these age groups. Fast After 50 is poised to become a guidebook for many coaches and athletes.

Forget about how Friel’s book is oriented towards cyclists, skiers, runners, swimmers and triathletes. Most of us have trained and competed in those sports (I’m 60 years old, with competitive backgrounds in strength training, triathlons, cycling and now the last five years, CrossFit), but believe me, CrossFit athletes will find a wealth of useful training and nutritional advice in Fast After 50.

Friel and his other authors destroy the “aging myth.” Endurance exercise and your heart is an important chapter. Part II of the book presents what I found to be the most compelling areas - high performance for senior athletes, high-intensity training and the aging athlete, discussion about body-fat and menopause, hormones (including testosterone levels), and plenty of nutritional enlightenment. So many important areas are examined and clarified in the context of the over-50 athlete, including compression clothing, insulin resistance, glycemic loads, the true nutritional content of foods, protein absorption, arthritis and injuries.

Friel is fully onboard with immediate post-workout shakes. His formula incorporates plenty of high-glycemic carbs in that window right after the workout, an area I constantly preach about to the CrossFit world. In my mind, pre-and intra-workout nutrition is an often ignored aspect of performance, and all the more critical for everyone over the age of 50.

Learn how to adapt your training to your age; avoid overtraining; shed body-fat and maintain or even increase your performance as you age. Train and live smarter, for the rest of your life, with the assistance of Joe Friel and Fast After 50.   @velopress  #fastafter50  @jfriel