All Posts tagged strength training

Push-up Exercise & Cardiovascular Disease risk

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the leading cause of death worldwide. In a 2019 study by Yang, MD et al. they studied male firefighters aged 21 to 66 years old and followed them up for 10 years. The average age of the men was 39.6 years old. The participants able to complete more than 40 push-ups were associated with a significant reduction (lower risk of CVD events) in incident cardiovascular disease compared with those completing fewer than 10 push-ups.

CONCLUSIONS: Participants able to complete more than 40 push-ups had a 96% reduction in CVD events compared with those completing fewer than 10 push-ups. Complete at least 40 push-ups and know you are in the lower incidence group of CVD events. Make it a health priority to complete at least 40 push-ups in a row and never lose the ability as you age.

This test is a simple, needs no equipment, no cost, takes 2 minutes and is very easily understood. Make push-ups part of your healthspan program.

If you are like me and curious to know what else to do to maintain good health and pain free, call my office for an appointment at 310-444-9393.    


Weight Loss Program

Dr. Jeffrey Tucker’s “ Weight Control” Program Addresses:

  • Making healthy food choices
  • Preventing chronic disease formation
  • Improving body composition
  • Reducing body fat storage
  • Increasing lean muscle mass
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Improving blood sugar management
  • Reducing hyperinsulinemia and hyperglycemia
  • Increasing exercise & physical activity = gentle movement therapy & strength training


Weekly Sessions With Dr. Tucker

1. The Initial Health Consultation: Forms/Assessment/BIA

A. Objective Data Collection

B. BIA and vitals

C. Review of Findings

D. Begin Education and Health Coaching

E. Exercise recommendations

2. Meal plan/supplement recommendations

3. ‘Functional Movement Screen’ to develop personalized exercise program

4. Private Exercise session – begin free weights or kettlebell training

5. Education/exercise/BIA

6. Private Exercise session

7. Private Exercise session

8. Private Exercsie session

9. Retest FMS/BIA

10. Private Exercise session

11. Retest FMS/BIA

12. Re-evaluate goals with Dr. Tucker

FMS = Functional Movement Screen

BIA = Bioimpedance Analysis

 Charging for Programs

  • Determine what method of payment will work best for patients.
  • Determine cost of services.
  • Supplements are charged for separately.

 Insurance billing: Dr. Tucker’s office will bill your insurance company for the following:  the office visits and exercise sessions.  This will include:

Bioimpedance Analysis (BIA)

  • A4556 BIA Electrodes (2 sets @ 15 each)
  • $30
  • Provides: Body composition, fluid distribution, phase angle
  • This test can be performed as often as necessary to document changes in body fat and lean muscle mass.

 To contact Dr. Tucker, call 310-473-2911.  Call for an appointment and take the first step to a slender, fit, healthy body.


Exercise & Pain

If we all agree that exercise is vital to health, then let’s figure out the best routine. The right mix of exercise can: Reduce the risk of premature death, reduce the risk of heart disease,  reduce high blood pressure, reduce high cholesterol, reduce the risks of many cancers, including colon and breast cancer, reduce the risk of developing diabetes, reduce fat and optimize body weight,  build and maintain healthy muscles, bones, and joints,  reduce depression and anxiety,  enhance performance in work and sport. 

Believe it or not, running every day, won’t cut it. Going to the gym every day and working out with weights every day won’t cut it. The ideal exercise program includes cardio/aerobic exercise, strength training, weight-bearing exercise, stretching, breathing, and balance.

Cardio/aerobic exercise. This has to be some movement that is brisk enough that requires the heart and lungs to work harder to meet the body’s increased oxygen demand. Basically you are forcing the heart and lungs to work harder, and yet of low enough intensity to facilitate adequate oxygen transfer to the muscle cells so that no buildup of lactic acid is observed. Think repetitive movement of the arms, legs, and hips.     Take your pick from running, jogging, and fast walking. Biking (either road or mountain), and swimming are also good. If you belong to a gym or have home equipment, there are treadmills, elliptical trainers, spin cycles, and rebounders. 

Strength Training involves the use of free weights, kettlebells, weight machines, resistance bands or some other form of resistance to build muscle and increase strength. Its benefits include: Increased muscle strength, increased tendon and ligament strength, reduced body fat and increased muscle mass,  better balance,  lower blood cholesterol, improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity.  The key to strength training is to choose one you can do easily and are willing to do regularly.

Every patient of mine that wants to lose weight, I make sure that they are  doing  circuit weight training.  Strength training builds muscle which increases your resting metabolic rate. 

Weight bearing  exercise is actually a subset of certain aerobic and strength training exercises. It helps slow down the rate of bone loss and osteoporosis. It is exercise in which you force your body to support weight (your own included) while exercising.  The best weight bearing exercises are: weight-lifting, jogging, hiking with a back pack, stair-climbing, step aerobics, racquet sports, and other activities that require your muscles to work against gravity. Swimming and simple walking don’t do the trick. One exceptionally useful form of weight bearing exercise is rebounding. The act of rebounding makes use of g-forces, just like astronauts training in a centrifuge. 

Stretching is the most over-looked area of fitness I have seen lately. Stretching reduces muscle tension and increases range of movement in the joints. I see tremendous tightness and restrictions in most clients bodies from a lack of variety of movement.  Tightness and constriction cause a reduced blood flow to the muscles and soft tissues, this leads to a lack of oxygen to the tissues and this is a very painful situation. Yoga  has become one of my pewrsonal favorites for stretching. Pilates works well too. If nothing else, just do 5-10 minutes of simple stretching after your daily exercise routine as part of your cool down time. 

Proper breathing is often over-looked as much as stretching. The concept is simple: putting a device in your mouth that restricts (in a controlled manner) your inhalations and exhalations, which forces your lungs to work harder. This, in turn, strengthens the muscles that makes your lungs work and increases their capacity.  

The last area  is Balance. Balance diminishes with age unless we consciously exercise it. If you fall down and break your hip or wrist, the odds are you will have  a long-slow recovery, if you fully recover. 

The most simple balance exercise is to practice standing on one leg. If you need to hold on to a chair for support, with one hand, that’s fine. Slightly bend one leg so that  the foot of the bent leg is projected out behind you. Get used to balancing on the one leg holding a chair or wall. Then take the hands off the chair and balance with one eye closed. Build up to balancing with your eyes closed for 30 seconds. 

Please remember that you can not exercise your your way out of a bad diet. Increase your quality protein to build the muscles you are exercising.  Avoid sugar but enjoy high quality fats such as Omega-3s.


Pure strength training

The program I find myself using for most clients is a typical Macrocycle and Microcycle of training  using the NSCA standards and guidelines: 
The first thing I do is the assessments – I use the Functional Movement Screen (FMS).
My first concern and goal with people is to fix any imbalance and asymmetry of the body. This is done in the first phase of working out. I usually start with foam roll training, stretches,  body weight exercises and I have clients perform body weight exercises for a count of 15-20 reps.  It’s also the  muscle endurance phase, so when I switch them to using free weights I use 12-15 reps per exercise. A beginner would only perform a little of each muscle group in a workout day until they are ready to progress into more of a split routine. Once I feel the person has muscle endurance, form, posture, and muscle balances they can move on to the hypertrophy phase.

During hypertophy I simply add some weight and perform 6-12 reps. The first few weeks is about 10-12 reps and then it progresses to 8-10 followed by 6-8 at the end of the phase. The sets may also increase along with the weight. The split routine also may change to cause overload as well. During this phase muscle mass should be gained as well as some strength. Once certain goals are obtained the client should be ready for the strength phase.

Strength is 1-5 reps with 2-5 minutes rest because it is mainly using testosterone in the phospogen system. Fat loss and whatnot is not much a concern in this phase but only pure strength. It is wise to be patient and wait for ATP and Creatine stores to recover rather than perform another set before that. I mainly perform 1-5 reps for the large multi-joint exercises such as bench press, squat, and dead-lift. As for some shoulders, arms, calves, etc I perform 6-8 reps. You do not want to do 3 rep bicep curls. This phase may last about 6 weeks. I do about 5 sets of 5 the first week, 5 sets of 4 week two, 5 sets of 3 week 3, and then I start mixing it on week 2. I am gradually aiming to get my highest max possible on week 5-6. During this phase I also look for weaknesses such as unilateral strength, eccentric strength, and stopping points. After the strength phase I go right to Power Training which is also the same reps and recovery as Strength Training however it is explosive.

The warm up for each  phase consists of  Core muscle work. I like clients to perform planks, side bridges, and glut bridges in all phases. For a new client I focus on plank form and endurance in the endurance phase. During hypertophy I have the client perform a plank for 30-60 seconds with weight on the low back.

Even though there is a system, each client gets a personal program.

Strength Training Tips

When is the best time to workout?  A study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research reports that men make equal gains in muscle and strength whether they work out in the morning or in the evening. Bottom line: be consistent.

Anything new about Protease? A stomach enzyme could make you stronger. Protease, a digestive enzyme that helps your body break down proteins, appears to lessen muscle inflammation that occurs after resistance training, say Baylor University researchers. Faster recovery means you can lift more weight on subsequent trips to the gym. Study participants experienced benefits within 3 weeks of taking daily protease supplements.

While in training, how much protein should I ingest at each meal? University of Texas Medical Branch scientists found that eating 30 grams of protein at one meal helps muscle growth as much as taking in 90 grams does. Try smaller meals (3 to 4 hours apart) for a more efficient approach to repairing your muscles.

What’s the latest on creatine? According to researchers at the University of Tulsa, creatine monohydrate is still the best form of this popular muscle builder. Creatine ethyl ester (CEE), a more expensive and supposedly more effective product, doesn’t live up to its claims, the scientists say. “Once it’s in the bloodstream, CEE completely breaks down into creatine and alcohol in less than 10 minutes,” says study author Gordon Purser, Ph.D. “This chemical instability limits the amount of creatine that actually makes its way to your muscles.”

What about protein shakes? Drinking an UltraMeal protein shake by Metagenics before, during, or after weight training  speeds fat loss. I find that clients who drink an UltraMeal shake lose more fat and gain more lean body mass than those who do not drink a shake.

What’s the best reps and sets to use? For the fastest results, change the number of reps you perform every time you hit the gym. In a Brazilian study, people who alternated upper- and lower-body training days gained more strength when they rotated among 4, 10, and 15 repetitions each workout. They outperformed those who did the same number of reps every session or even shifted rep counts weekly. That’s because changing the load recruits different muscle fibers, which lets you train your muscles completely, the researchers say.

Anything new for soreness? Researchers at the University of Georgia discovered that ginger supplements may reduce muscle soreness. The best part? Less discomfort improves range of motion, which helps you pack on more muscle. A change was noticed within 11 days using 2 grams of ground ginger each day.