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15
May

What Supplements?

What Supplements?

If you have been exercising for any extended period of time the same question seems to always present itself, “what supplements should I be taking?”.  I myself have asked this question numerous times.  Let’s first start by saying that supplementation is just that, supplementing.  Whether your goal is aesthetics, performance or just general health it all comes down to what you put on your plate.  Without a proper and appropriate nutritional plan there is no firm foundation to build upon and everything will fall.  

Now that the disclaimer is out of the way let’s get to the fun stuff!  I assume that if you are reading this that your primary mode of fitness transportation is CrossFit.  Why do we CrossFit?  One, to lose weight and look great naked.  Two, to compete with others to push ourselves to the next level, and look great naked!  To some degree we are all a little vain, don’t worry its human nature.  We strive to be the strongest of the pack to assert dominance.  What better way to assert dominance without physical harm to others than simply looking like you could destroy them!  Having said that, I have chosen what I believe to be the best 3 supplements that have an effect on both performance and body composition.

Number 1:  Whey Protein Powder

I know, I know.  You probably thought the number 1 supplement would be some crazy herb from South East Asia that increases testosterone, cuts body fat in half and does your taxes.  Nope, good old fashioned Whey protein takes the cake.  This has been a staple in performance enhancement for the better part of a century and continues to this day.  When: Within 30 minutes of finishing up a WOD is the best time for recovery.  If you are concerned with getting in enough full meals in the day to meet your calorie and protein needs you can throw in a shake to round out the day.  Dosage:  Rule of thumb is between 0.5 and 1.2 grams per pound of bodyweight.  Too broad?  Get with a coach and they can help you out on what would be best for you.

Number 2:  Fish Oil

The wonderful world of scaring people away with fishy burps awaits you!  Only kidding, if you choose a quality fish oil.  Fish oil has tons of benefits for the body most importantly supporting healthy cholesterol levels, maintaining strong bones, and aiding in central nervous system function.  There are a wide variety of fish oils on the market, so do your homework.  When:  In general between 2-3 servings per day is typical for most products out there.  I would suggest timing these in a way that keeps a dosage from falling right after or right before a workout due to possible gastrointestinal distress.  Dosage: The recommended dosing for general health ranges as low as 250-500mg of a combined EPA and DHA total.  While this is fine for general health, higher activity level individuals can require upwards of 3-5grams per day.  I would not recommend jumping right into the large dosages as just mentioned, but definitely adding this supplement to your diet is a must.

Number 3: Melatonin

This one was a hard choice.  While I can make a very strong argument for BCAA’s, Creatine, Caffeine, HMB, Beta-alanine, and a laundry list of others, melatonin stands alone in one regard.  When we consider exercise most of the time we think with a go-go, 110% effort, run through brick walls attitude.  That is totally fine and honestly will get you to great places.  However, what happens when the workout ends?  The Incredible Hulk isn’t always incredible!  He has to turn back into Bruce Banner and recover before he goes completely crazy in another fight.  Our bodies have to be able to recover, and do so quickly because the next workout is only 24 hours away!  This is where sleep is the winner.  We recover best while in a state of sleep called REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.  The faster your body can get into this state of sleep the better you can recover.  This is where melatonin comes in.  I have heard people say before that they take melatonin and don’t get tired.  Well it isn’t a horse tranquilizer it’s a sleep aid.  This hormone is naturally produced in the pineal gland and helps with regulation of sleep patterns.  We fluctuate in and out of deep sleep and this is the hormone responsible for those fluctuations.  The regulation of how much melatonin we produce is light dependent.  In our culture it is not out of the ordinary to have every light and television on in the house up until the point we get in bed.  Even at that point we are still bombarding our eyes with light from those tiny screens on our phones.  In an ideal world the lights would be out an hour before we actually fall asleep which would allow our bodies to produce enough of the hormone to push us into deep sleep.  Since that world does not exist, an exogenous form of the hormone can help us out.  When: typically 30 minutes before bedtime.  Dosage:  for adults it varies widely between 0.2 mg to 20mg in most supplements.  Just like with most supplements it is dependent on the person so start light and work your way up.

 

Conclusion:

There are thousands upon thousands of supplements out there for you to try.  I based my choices off what I find to be the best for me and provide the most bang for the buck.  If you are interested in trying out any supplements there is years of experience at your disposable between your coaches at BayWay CrossFit.  One of the benefits of CrossFit is having a coaching staff and community that wants you to be the best possible you that you can be.  We are all here for you and will help guide you in any way possible.        

 

 

Asa Basco

M.E., CF-L1

7
May

Athlete Spotlight: Kasi B

Athlete Spotlight

First Name & Last Initial

Kasi B.

Home Town

Baytown

Age

29 (at the time of this survey!)

Occupation

College and Career Specialist

When did you first start CrossFitting?

February 2015

When did you first start training at BayWay CrossFit?

February 2015

Favorite WOD

Anything with body weight movements such as push ups, pullups, handstand pushups, etc. I also like light weight power snatches!

Least Favorite WOD

Anything with thrusters, and more recently, the assault bike!

Tell us about your sports & fitness background?

Before discovering crossfit, I had always worked out in the typical gym atmosphere; running on the treadmill until I got bored, wandering over to the stair climber, then lifting some weights, then going home. There was never any consistent structure or programming to my workouts.

How did you first get exposed to CrossFit? Take us back to your first WOD…what was it, and how did it feel?

I was tired of the same gym routine and ready to try something new. My friend Laura and I tried out BayWay for the first time together. My first weightlifting experience was the clean and jerk! I had never done that type of weightlifting before, only the typical gym machines and dumbbells. I am VERY uncoordinated but Coach Asa was really patient with me. I remember him helping me while Coach Richard instructed the class and then moving us to the back of the room so he could teach us one on one. No one ever got frustrated with us. All of the coaches were very encouraging!

What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting CrossFit? (before/after)

I wish I would have taken Coach Richard’s advice when he said to take a picture of myself the day I signed up! I didn’t because, honestly, I didn’t think I would stick with it long enough to see any significant changes. 2 years later, I look back at older BayWay pictures and videos that I am in and can definitely tell a difference in how lean I have become. Everyone compliments me on my back now (and my traps!) so I guess that is the biggest difference!

What sort of changes in your life have you experienced out of taking on something like CrossFit that were totally unexpected?

I have always enjoyed working out but Crossfit has become a natural stress reliever for me that I make time for. No matter how stressful my day is or how much I have going on, for the one hour that I am at BayWay I completely forget about everything.

Please share with us any favorite CrossFit/BayWay CrossFit moments?

Everyone is like family! We joke with one another but also encourage each other. Although I may not hang out with everyone outside of the gym, I truly feel like I have a genuine friend in each member of BayWay Crossfit.

Any advice for people just getting started?

If you are hesitant to try out crossfit, remember that we have all been in your shoes! We were all beginners at one point or another. Don’t let the insecurities of not being the best, not knowing the movements, or not being in shape hold you back from achieving your health and fitness goals. One of my favorite quotes is “A year from now you will wish you had started today.” Come, try it out and then stay consistent. I began BayWay only coming two days a week and maybe a Saturday workout here and there. Before I knew it, I was an unlimited member working out 6 days a week! You won’t know what BayWay Crossfit can do for you unless you try it out.

What are your hobbies, interests and/or talents outside of CrossFit?

Outside of BayWay Crossfit, I enjoy spending time with my husband and my 2 dogs. Additionally, I am working on my Master’s degree so that keeps me pretty busy!
2
May

Achieving Wellness with a Hectic Work Schedule

Achieving wellness and health with a hectic lifestyle

There are 24 hours in a day and in this day and age it seems like every second is precious. With today’s crazy and fast moving life, you have to balance a career, social life, family, and daily chores which has made exercise at the bottom of our societies list. It is often hard to make time to exercise and get at least 30-45 minutes of a decent workout. Some people are fortunate enough to work 9-5 jobs in various fields, but for others, they have to adapt and adjust to ever changing schedules that go along with shift work. These hectic shift work schedules lead to inconsistent sleep schedules, making it nearly impossible to find time to work out and lead a healthy lifestyle… One good quote that I try to stress to people is, “Most people work hard and spend their health trying to achieve wealth. Then they retire and spend their wealth trying to get back their health.”   

​Speaking from personal experience, I had to make a drastic change in my exercise and diet in order to function and perform well with my hectic and ever shifting schedule. Sacrifices had to be made and strict schedules had to be enforced. The first and probably most important thing that had to be changed was my diet. You have to have a good, healthy, balanced diet in order to succeed at any exercise goals. Doing shift work, this is not an easy task; the biggest change I made was I had to start meal prepping every week and plan what/when I was going to eat to ensure I made healthy choices and met my macros. Some people would say, “But Matt, I don’t have enough time in the day to meal prep,” when really what I hear is, “but Matt, preparing food and meal prepping ahead of time isn’t a priority for me.” A good way to plan a meal prep is to find a recipe that is easy to make and relatively quick. A good example of this is a healthy stir fry; veggies, rice, and chicken or a lean meat. This is an easy meal to make in less than half an hour and can be made in bulk and kept all week. Another example for a breakfast meal prep is just as simple as a spinach and scrambled egg sandwich on a sprouted grain bread.

​Now for the exercise and sleep part. Staying active every day can increase your quality of life and can give you a sense of control and normalcy, which the shift worker desperately needs. Routine exercise along with getting an adequate amount of sleep everyday are always a top priority of mine. I try to have at least 1 hour to work out every day and aim to sleep at least 7 hours a night. With that being said, to reach this goal, some days I must make sacrifices in other areas of my life. For example, I rarely watch television or go out with my friends on work days, and save my extracurricular activities for my off days. Shift workers work hard and sacrifice a normal schedule so that they can provide for themselves and their families. Don’t sacrifice your health for your job though, don’t let your career become an excuse to not lead a healthy lifestyle. What they found was that moderate physical training can increase the physical fitness of female shift workers, and reduces work dependent fatigue and musculoskeletal symptoms. I have a strict sleeping schedule that I enforce upon myself; for example, when I am working a day shift, I am in bed no later than 8pm and I wake up around 3:30-4am. When I am working nights, I hit the bed as soon as I get home around 4:30-5am and wake up around 12:30/1pm. I have to be strict with this in order to function and to recovery properly. I have a fit bit that tracks my sleep cycle and sleep schedule which helps me ensure I am getting enough and quality sleep. Get a regular sleep cycle and try to stick to it as best as you can. The thing that worked best for me was investing in blackout curtains, which really helps my get to sleep during night shifts especially.

                ​Your health needs to be something that becomes a priority, and that starts with adequate nutrition, sleep, and exercise that even the shift worker can achieve. Find some time every day to workout, whether it be when you wake up before work or right after you get off work. It’s not a one size fits all, everyone is going to have their own preference of when they want to work out. You just have to find what works best for you, but make it a priority to get to the gym at least 4-5 times a week. Dedicate a day, once a week, to meal prep your food. This can be a fun thing to do with your family that makes life so much easier and leads to less temptation to go out and get fast food when you’re too tired after work. Like I said, you have to find your own way and do what works best for best for you. It’s time to start prioritizing your health and wellbeing, don’t let shift work be an excuse any more.
 

 

Matthew Neid, M.S.

CF Level 1
8
Apr

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20
Mar

Fitness & Life – Jamie Tolleson

Being a parent is tough.  Being a parent and working is tougher.  Being a parent, working, and keeping fit seems next to impossible.  I think all of us get so engrossed in the hustle and bustle of our lives that making changes to them fills us with dread even if the change is something we know will make our lives better.  Making the decision to live a healthier lifestyle came, for me, at a time when my kids were little.  I needed more energy.  I needed to move around better.  I needed to preemptively cut off the family history of lifestyle cancers, heart disease, and diabetes, SO I decided it was time to take my fitness into my own hands.

First, I had to decide I was ready for the change.  I mean, really, truly, ready.  No fooling myself.  I wasn’t going to do this “my way” or tell myself “this isn’t working for me”.  I was going to ignore that little voice inside my head that was trying to sabotage me by telling me “One little bite won’t hurt” or “Everybody is staring” or “Just give up.  It’s not going to work.  It hasn’t before.”  I was going to do my research and trust the process.  No matter what happens, JUST KEEP GOING! Say to yourself “It’s not a priority” instead of saying “I don’t have time for that” when deciding if something was worth doing.  So instead of saying “I don’t have time to eat healthy and exercise” say “Eating healthy and exercising is not a priority”.  I’m definitely not comfortable with the latter sentence.  Kinda puts things into perspective, huh?

At the time I found Bayway Crossfit, I had a 4 year-old and a 1 year-old.  I was a high school science teacher with 3 preps working 10-12 hours per day and commuting at least an hour to and from work every day.  I KNEW it was going to be tough, but this had to work.  I started with a 3 day per week membership.  I would sit down on Sunday nights and plan every evening. (Cossfit Monday, grocery shopping Tuesday, Crossfit Wednesday, soccer practice Thursday, Crossfit Friday).  That was my life.  On the weeks I didn’t plan, life was so much more difficult.  I heard someone say one time that “Failing to plan is planning to fail”.  It stuck with me. They were right.  Some days I was so exhausted, it was hard to stay with it.  I would think “I don’t have time/energy/focus for the gym, so let’s stay home and order pizza instead”.  The next day I’d feel so disappointed in myself for giving in, but I had made a promise to myself to JUST KEEP GOING!  Today was a new day, and I would not let yesterday be the new normal.

At the same time I was getting used to this new routine, I was learning how to eat healthy (because sometimes going all in is necessary).  Most people don’t even know what proper nutrition looks like.  It’s no wonder people give up so easily!  Diets don’t work.  At least that’s what Weight Watchers told me, and heck if they weren’t right.  Learning how to eat properly every day while still allowing yourself to enjoy eating?  That’s the ticket.  I loved Weight Watchers.  I loved that I lost 50 lbs with them, but what I’m truly thankful for, is learning how to enjoy food healthily.  It is a lesson I will continue to use every day for the rest of my life.  I still have moments of weakness (omg, cake!), but I don’t let it keep me away from my path.  JUST KEEP GOING!

I hope sharing my story will help some people struggling to figure out how their healthy lifestyle fits in with their family life.  It’s NOT impossible; tough, maybe, but not impossible.  Anybody can do it, as long as you make the decision to take charge of your health and vow to let nothing get in your way.  Your family will thank you, your coworkers will notice, and most importantly, you’ll gain the self-confidence you never thought was possible.  Is fitness your priority?