-“Research Summaries”
-“Improve Your Training by Keeping a Log Book”
-“Split-squats: The Modified Forward Lunge”
-“Nutrition: The Coffee Shop Menu”





“Diurnal variation in strength & endurance among resistance trained males”

Gintichin L.D. and J.L. Mayhew. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 30(5): s115, 1998.


22 males were allocated to train at 6am or 5pm (3x’s/week for 6 months). Both groups were then tested for bench press strength & endurance at 6am and 5pm (in random order). No differences in strength or endurance occurred due to the time of measurement.

Therefore, despite the general belief that strength varies depending on the time of day, this research study did not show any differences in performance.


“Pre-exercise carbohydrate ingestion: effect of the glycemic index on endurance exercise performance

Sparks, M.J., S.S. Selig, and M.A. Febbraio. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 30(6): 844-849,



8 males consumed a placebo, a high-glycemic carbohydrate, OR a low-glycemic carbohydrate meal 45-minutes prior to a 50-minute session of moderate-intensity cycling. The high-glycemic carbohydrate meal caused hypoglycemia (low-blood sugar) and increased the use of carbohydrate for fuel (rather than using fat). The low-glycemic diet had a lower rate of carbohydrate use but there were no differences in performance.

Avoid high-glycemic carbohydrates before exercise, save them for your post-exercise recovery meal, in combination with a whey protein source.


“Effects of hydration changes on bioelectrical impedance in endurance trained persons” 

Saunders, M.J., J.E. Blevins, and C.E. Broeder. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 30: 885-892,



15 males were assessed for body composition using bioelectrical impedance (BI) under 4 hydration conditions: normal, hypo-hydrated, re-hydrated, and super-hydrated states. The super-hydrated and hypo-hydrated conditions were significantly different from the normal hydrated condition body composition measured by +/- 3%. The results indicate the state of body hydration can greatly influence BI body-fat measures. Therefore, the reliability of BI measures may be low if the hydration state is not standardized.

Don’t trust BI machines in gyms, they are likely not as accurate as the one tested in this study. What is your best bet for body fat measurements at the gym? Get an experienced personal trainer to do skinfold measurements. Always have the same trainer do your measures and get this done once every 6-8 weeks to track your progress.


“Weight training increases fat-free mass and strength in untrained young women” 

Cullinen, K. and M. Caldwell. J. Amer. Dietetic Assoc. 98: 414-418, 1998.


20 females participated in a weight-training program to determine the effects of training on resting metabolic rate, fat-free mass, strength, and dietary intake. 10 subjects trained for 12-weeks (2 total-body workouts/week; 6 exercises X 3 sets X 10 reps) program and ten subjects were controls. The results indicated a low-volume of moderate-intensity resistance training increased strength and decreased body fat without a concurrent restriction in food intake.

Everyone should incorporate resistance training in their fitness regimens, especially young women seeking improvements in their body composition. Furthermore, the total time commitment for an improvement in body composition was only 2 hours per week, making it a time efficient training method.


“Muscle performance and enzymatic adaptations to sprint interval training”  MacDougall, J.D., A.L. Hicks, J.R. MacDonald, R.S. McKelvie, H.J. Green, and K.M.

Smith.  J. Appl. Physiol. 84: 2138-2142, 1998.


12 males performed sprint-cycling interval training for 7 weeks. Muscle enzyme activity, peak power output, total work (over repeated efforts), and VO2max were measured. In week 1, subjects did 4 maximum intensity sprints (30-seconds) with 4-minutes recovery and progressed to 10 intervals with 2.5-minutes recovery by week 7. Training increased peak power output, total work, VO2, and maximal enzyme activity. Therefore, even brief intense sprints can increase oxidative capacity and oxygen consumption (aerobic capacity and exercise recovery ability).

Athletes involved in stop-and-start sports may want to increase their sprint training and decrease their general endurance training. This study shows improvements in sport-specific metabolic conditioning as well as general endurance after a program of sprint intervals.





Outlining and planning programs helps fight off the temptation to skip training sessions and removes the burden of having to decide what to do immediately before a workout. The plan should include all the exercises, sets, and repetitions required in the workout. All of these should be recorded during the workout along with any additional forced repetitions or eccentric (negative) repetitions.


Document any injuries OR illnesses and the circumstances in which they occurred. Noting your mood OR the training environment (i.e. crowded gym, sore hamstring, etc.) will also help to determine your optimal training time and conditions. Long- and short-term goals should be written somewhere in the log to increase commitment and maintain motivation. Always re-evaluate your goals after a sufficient time-interval and re-evaluate your training methods and progress.





The difference between a split squat and a lunge is that during the concentric portion of a lunge, you explode back to an upright position. With the split squat, you use a stationary stance where you go up and down working the forward leg.


Starting Position Setup

• Stand in the squat rack and place a loaded bar on the thick area of the trapezius muscle.

• Focus your head forward in order to maintain proper neck alignment.

• Keep your feet should be shoulder-width apart.

• Take a big step forward with your weaker leg to reach the initial starting position. Always work your weaker leg first in single leg exercises. This has been termed the “weak-side” rule.



• Lower the hips keeping the back as erect as possible and the chest up. Essentially you will be performing a single-leg squat (using the back leg for balance).

• Lower yourself under control until the lead leg is bent 90 degrees.

• By keeping your elbows under the bar throughout the movement you will ensure that the load is kept as close as possible over the center of gravity.

• Inhale through the mouth throughout the descent.



• Keep the torso as perpendicular to the floor as possible, particularly at the sticking point (the hardest part of the movement). Extend at the knee and the hips by contracting the quadriceps and glutes respectively.

• The athlete should exhale throughout the ascent.


Safety Concerns

• Keep the eccentric lowering under control & do not allow the torso to lean forward.



• To change the resistance curve on this movement, you can hold dumbbells; position the barbell on the traps; keep the barbell on the clavicles using a front squat grip; or hold a single handle hooked to a low pulley using the contra-lateral hand (opposite).

• Not only do these exercises develop the glutes, they also provide plenty of growth stimulus for the quadriceps, adductors, and hamstrings.





For any American readers, Tim Horton’s is the most popular doughnut franchise in Ontario. This menu will help you decide your fate when and if you are ever forced into snacking at this type of venue.


ITEM                                          CALORIES (g of PROTEIN & %TOTAL FAT)



Apple fritter                          = 341 (6g & 40%)

Dutchie                                = 306 (5g & 38%)

Chocolate glaze                     = 374 (4g & 53%)

Boston cream                        = 257 (4g & 28%)

Jelly-filled                             = 275 (4g & 26%)

Timbit                                  = 41 (1g & 44%)



Apple OR Cherry pie                = 490 (6g & 41%)

Black Forest cake                   = 324 (4g & 36%)

Butter tart                            = 348 (4g & 39%)

Croissant                              = 220 (5g & 50%)

Peanut butter cookie              = 150 (3g & 50%)



Chocolate chip                     = 425 (5g & 34%)

Blueberry                            = 320 (5g & 32%)

Low-fat cranberry                = 280 (5g & 7%)



Bagel                               = 300 (11g & 8%)

Cream cheese (1.5 oz)          = 140 (2g & 84%) ---Watch out!

Cream cheese light (1.5 oz)     = 102 (3g & 70%) --- Not much better!

Chili (10 oz)                          = 275 (17g & 33%)

Chicken noodle soup (10 oz)    = 150 (9g & 20%)

Cream of mushroom (10 oz)     = 223 (6g & 36%)


Basically, a doughnut is no more excessive in calories or fat in comparison to a regular muffin, 6 Timbits, a piece of pie, a bagel smothered in cream cheese, OR a croissant.





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