Thursday, September 28, 2006

Diet, Exercise, and your Kid's Grades

This was slated to be a tip in our newsletter, got a little long, then was buried in a very long newsletter. Since I've gotten some good feedback, think it's important, and don't think many of you saw it I'll add a link to it here.

Diet, Exercise, and Your Kid's Grades

And here are a few more related articles:

Further reading in the Beachbody Newsletter Archive:

Appleton Central Alternative High School featured in the article "We Are What We Eat"

Interview with Ken Reed, PE4life's Director of Marketing and Director of the Center for the Advancement of Physical Education, in "Just Say No to Dodgeball (Curing Childhood Obesity), Part I"

Interview with Ken Reed continued in "Just Say No to Dodgeball, Part II"

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Mindless Banter On Training And Cycling

I haven't been blogging and I've had stuff to blog about--mybad. I've got some articles to critique but, first, I've had some very good--if not a bit crazy--training days to comment on. This week, for some reason, I'm racing all the time. Anyway, rather than talk about me I'll just post an email response from me to some of my friends, along with a translation at the end so you won't need the earlier emails. I'll be back to more serious blogging as soon as my next article is off to the editor. For now, hope you enjoy some silliness.

Reed, you need some money?

Reed has a copy in stock. I've read it. Great stuff. Am partial to The Day The Big Men Cried myself. "Hey, baby. You look just like an angel."

A reference to Bob Roll's book on bike racing titled Bobke, written years ago, that's now become a bit of a cult classic and is selling for 150 clams on ebay.

I'd also like to try Bobke's training program sometime. Currently, I've too much work but perhaps I could figure a way to do it next spring when I'm racing again. Actually, I raced twice on Sat (crit and a trail running race), and tonight (crit), will race Thursday (time trial), Friday (cyclocross), and Sat (the "Widowmaker" hill climb mtn bike race in Snowbird). But I digress. His program, as I recall, consists of eating very little but burgers, drinking beer and whiskey and coffee, riding 100 miles per day and sleeping a lot. Apparently if you try it you're guaranteed to "rip everybody's legs off."

Great thing about Utah is that there seems to be after-work races almost every day of the week. Since I haven't raced all year, it seemed like a good idea to race every day of the week, most of them in different diciplines. And, yes, I will try the Bobke program at some point.

Ahh, the LA Tri meetings. Lots of very tan girls with beautiful legs and heaps of free stuff. I won more at those meetings than all my primes combined. A new wet suit, even. Maybe I should just come back for the meetings.

Nahhh, Utah's great. Okay, so there are less women. But there are WAY less people, and this is good. Plus, there are mountains, everywhere. And so much stuff to do it's insane. I can't imagine how being bored is even possible, unless I get injured. Y'all should visit.

Thanks for the vids. And, oh, you can watch the World's finish on eurosport. Samuel Sanchez put in a monster attack to isolate his guy who couldn't pull it off. Amazing ride by Sanchez. Can't feel bad for Valverde, sheesh. He's just getting started. Either of the other two would have made me happy. Though I felt bad for Zabel, it's good to see the Cricket get Valverde's number anyway as his days as the best single day rider in the world are numbered. Shit, with Valverde's talent everyone's days to win races may be numbered. Now he might not dope. He doesn't even train properly (just races his friends to telephone poles). And this is nothing but good for the sport. He gets himself a scientist and the sport will become boring.

True, this years world championships was extremely exciting. Weird, but in the wake of all this doping stuff we've had some of the best bike racing in memory. Go watch the highlights at And, oh, Alejandro Valverde really doesn't train scientifically and he's still winning the Pro Tour. Yikes.


Cyril Guimard is a former director sportif who knows more about cycling than, I dunno, probably anyone.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Greatest Stage Ever?

What a year for bike racing. Okay, most of the press is bad but, as if the sport knows it's in trouble and needs to make a statement, we're getting some of the best bike racing I've ever seen, or even read about.

Today's stage in the Vuelta was absolutely unbelievable (I realized I've used this word a lot this year). In the battle for the GC, two of the best--and most interesting--riders in the peloton have been waging a cat and mouse war for the last few weeks--maybe a shark attack war is a better metaphor, actually, as it's been attack, attack, attack to see who will crack. Alexandre Vinokourav is probably the most aggressive rider in the sport. Alejandro Valverde is probably the most talented. After failing to crack Valverde on any climb or even in the time trial, which up until this year was Valverde's only weakness, it's looked as though Vino would have to settle for second. But after failing to gap him on yesterday's final climb, and then watching helplessly as Valverde outsprinted him for more bonus seconds (Valverde is by far the best sprinter of any racer who can climb at all), Vino issued this statement:

Nothing is Over

So what happens when you can't out climb, out sprint, or out time trial someone? You either lose or, what the hell, attack on a descent. Today, Vino attacked on the final climb--again--only to, once again, have Valverde bring him back by the summit prior to a 20k plunge to the finish line. So he attacked on the descent and, somehow, gained over a minute and a half of time to take the race lead. It's truly the craziest thing I've ever seen happen in a major bike race. sounded like they agreed, using language in their live report such as "descending like a demon," and, then, "descending like a looney."

Unfortunately, because I live in the USA I can't watch this, which I could if I lived almost anywhere else. I guess our hundreds of channels don't have room for one of the most difficult sporting events on the planet so we can bring you more shopping, dysfunctional family talk shows, bass fishing, and NASCAR.

Anyway, if you like bike racing, attempt to track this down. And if you find it, make sure and let me know.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Interesting Stuff on Doping in Cycling

I may not be writing much but I'm still reading. Two interesting pieces that may be positive for the sport in the long run. First off, David Millar has won a stage and claims to be clean coming off a two-year suspension for using EPO. Millar is a supremely talented cyclist, former world champion, and I would think may be clean (although his bread and water statement must be hyperbole so...). Since a single win, sans dope, isn't really that big a deal from someone this talented the true test of this story will be over time, where doping has a more obvious effect over the body's ability to recuperate.

"It's Possible To Win Clean"

The next is the recent confession by two of Lance Armstrong's teammates that they used EPO to help him win. There's a lot of condemming circumstantial evidence in this story but what's most interesting is that Andreau seems to have confessed to clear his own conscious and "help the sport," which revelations like the ones that seem to be happening daily must do, because it's either that or kill it. Certainly, track and field, as well as cycling, and probably even more sports, are at a crossroads over performance enhancing drugs and medical intervention.

Postal Teammates Confessions

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Funny Utah Story

I recently bought a house in Utah and have been busy in transition, which is affecting my blogging. I'll be settled soon enough but, for now, I'll have to be content with pasting in little tidbits once my other work is finished.

Things happening in the world include the Vuelta a Espana, or the Tour of Spain. So far, only one person has been ejected for doping and, otherwise, the race is spectacular. I've got a big doping post in the works as well as an article for the end of the month.

Yesterday, I saw two "shocking" headlines. The first, that greenhouse gasses were at the highest levels in at least 800,000 years and the other, that "American's don't eat enough fruits and vegetables" should both be in the section of the paper titled "Duh".

Today, I found this on goji berries, which you'll be hearing a lot about in the coming months, for sure. As is often the case with readers of my own articles, people tend to skip reading ALL of a piece and, instead, tend to focus on the bullets, headlines, or numbers. So for this piece I'll tell you now to focus on the part where they tell you that no matter how great goji berries may be, they are still only a part of your diet and won't make up for excesses in calories and junk foods in other areas. Of course, this warning is pretty much ubiquitous for all foods and, frankly, just isn't what the public wants to hear. Just don't say I haven't warned you about it.

Anyway, Utah seems sublime, so far. Not sure if it was the skiing, biking, or climbing that caused Brigham Young to utter his "this is the place" statement but, as far as the USA is concerned, I think he nailed it. My goal is to train every single day in Utah and, so far, I'm on it 100%. Of course, I've only spent a couple of weeks there and am currenlty in CA, so maybe today I'll just work. But I'm not about to run out of recreational options near my new home, at least for the next dozen years or so, and am psyched to check em out.

First funny Utah story:

Everyone seems to love Salt Lake--at least the people I run across, who are usually outside doin' stuff. So far, I've only run into one exception. I went to get a haircut and the woman hears I'm from California and asks what I think of SLC. When she hears I love it, she erupts into a tirade that lasts until I leave. Some highlights include:

"You sure do look like them, riding in on that bike and all healthy and shit."

"I hate it here. Everyone does stuff all the time. All I want to do is go back to California and sit on the beach and not move."

"I tried to ski once. Oh, my, God! I thought I was going to have a heart attack."

"I'm an inside girl. The only reason I ever want to leave my house is to shop."

She was, incidentally, originally from Anaheim.

Yep, I think Utah is the place.