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Creatine is one of those things that works best the first time you use it. It's like sex: You remember it more the first time.
I still believe in the loading protocol. Many of those who suggest against loading are basing their suggestions on studies that used very wimpy training programs. These wimp programs didn't need a creatine loading program.
The advanced trainer should take a small dose (5 grams) of creatine pre-workout and a small dose post-workout.
By the way, most of the so-called "side effects" of creatine, like gut upset, were caused by using cheap forms of creatine that contained heavy metals. For example, some of the Chinese creatines were analyzed and shown to be 97% creatine and 3% heavy metals.
I've never seen cramping, bloating, diarrhea etc. from a good quality creatine (unless of course you take way too much.) I've used the Biotest brand of German creatine for years with no problems.
Something else to keep in mind: Creatine has other functions besides increasing strength and size, like the prevention of brain aging and for the alkalization of the body. Good stuff.
What we like about the incline version of the lateral raise is that you absolutely can't cheat, which is a plus, but you can also get a better deltoid stretch at the bottom of the movement which helps with fast-twitch motor unit recruitment.
The downside is that, although it's a lateral head dominant exercise, the anterior portion of the deltoid will also be involved quite a bit due to the angle of the trunk. Note that you should make an effort to keep the back end of the dumbbell at least as high as the front end to maximize lateral head recruitment.
According to most all-knowing, all-seeing nutritionists and dieticians, I should be getting between 20 and 80 grams of protein per day instead of the 200 grams I typically consume.
Really, that's what they say: 20 to 80 grams a day, sometimes accompanied by the stern warning that more than 20 grams a day could be fatal. I'm not kidding, this is the level of idiocy that's out there among some "experts."
Well, the U.S. government's "experts" say I should be eating 3.5 cups of vegetables and 2.5 cups of fruit per day. That's actually quite a lot of vegetables and fruits, and honestly, I don't always get that much. In fact, until a few years ago, I probably didn't eat that many fruits and vegetables in a week.
Now, if the experts are underestimating protein needs, can we also assume that they're underestimating the amount of vegetables and fruits we should be getting? After all, we don't want to eat just enough to stay alive, we want to eat enough to thrive, to excel, to go beyond merely adequate.
The truth is, certain veggies, fruits, berries, and teas can have enormous, pharmaceutical-like benefits. Get enough and you can guarantee a longer, healthier life. But as you may have guessed, it takes a lot more than 3.5 cups of vegetables a day to reap these benefits. Yep, the "experts" have once again underestimated.
Problem is, much like the healthy fats found in fish, it's practically impossible to consume that many fruits and veggies in one day. Even if you had a serving of veggies with every meal for six meals a day, you'd only be just scratching the surface of their potential life-extending benefits.
In the case of omega-3s and fish, we know we need to supplement to get enough of the good stuff, because none of us can (or should, given today's toxic mercury levels) consume that much marine life. So what do we do in the case of vegetables, fruits, berries, and teas? Simple: we supplement.