02-02-2022 WEDNESDAY
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You had questions, and today, we have answers. We’ve said this before, but all of our content is for the health and well-being of you, the reader, so please continue to reach out, or feel free to do so if you haven’t yet. Every single person who has ever gotten really fit, strong, or healthy has done so by asking questions, and when those questions get answered, asking more questions.

So let’s start a conversation…

You asked, We answered
Gif from Giphy

Session Plan: 

The Warm-Up - Should I be eating the skin of my favorite foods?
Heavy Sets - Should I learn how to Olympic lift?
Water Break  - Is my favorite fitness influencer on steroids?
Finisher - What is the thoracic spine and why is it so important?
Cool Down - And finally, watch a man plank for almost 10 hours non-stop.

Happy Wednesday!

The Warm-Up

Benefits of eating the skin of fruits and vegetables
Photo from healthline

Nutrition Section

Question: Is there a benefit to not eating the skin of fruits and vegetables? I’ve heard it’s healthy to do so normally, but there are certain foods that I enjoy much more when peeled.

Answer: Did a toddler steal your phone to ask this question? Eat the peels!

Moving on from picky eater-shaming, there is, as you mentioned, an incredible health benefit to most fruits and vegetables when it comes to enjoying the skin, or peel, or whatever you must call it. Unpeeled produce contains drastically more vitamins and minerals than peeled produce, and after all, isn’t that why we eat fruits and veggies in the first place?  If you need extra motivation, Healthline has a full rundown on why this is so important.

Blanket statement time - the only time you shouldn’t be eating the peels of your grown produce are when it is obvious (melons, citrus, bananas, etc.) or when heavy pesticides are being used. In this second situation, I’d urge you to look into the sourcing background of what you’re buying (if possible), and always make an effort to clean and wash all of your groceries to help avoid this.


Heavy Sets 

olympic weight-lifting
Photo from Globalnews

Movement Section

Question: Should I learn to incorporate Olympic-style lifting in my workouts if I want to be more athletic and explosive?

Answer: Olympic weightlifting, which competitively includes the snatch and the clean and jerk, and non-competitively can include all of those lifts' training variations, is enjoyed by many as the peak synergy of strength, speed, technique, coordination, and mobility with a barbell. These lifts can also be incredibly challenging to do correctly, especially if you are trying to pick them up after watching a five-minute YouTube video.

Squats, deadlifts, presses, rows and pulls, and most core work are all relatively easy to learn and, when programmed correctly, can take 99% of people 99% of the way towards his or her fitness or strength goal. Learning the Olympic lifts as a beginner can take years before you hit a proficiency with them that allow you to see a return on your investment, and even then, the risk of aches and injuries is ever relevant given the nature of these lifts.

If you’re solely focused on building athleticism and explosiveness, there are a bunch of ways to do that WITHOUT having to touch an Olympic lift. Sprint more, jump higher, do kettlebell swings, cleans, and snatches, and build absolute strength. If you can add 50 pounds to your squat while maintaining the same bodyweight, you had better believe that will have carryover towards athleticism and explosiveness.


Water Break  

performance enhance drugs
Photo by SHVETS production from Pexels

Weekly Recommendations

Question: How can I tell if the fitness-people I follow on Instagram are using steroids or other performance enhancing drugs?

Answer: This is tough. Because for every fitness buff who will come out and admit to drug use, there are ten who will remain silent on the matter, or worse yet, lie and claim a “natural” status. What’s tougher yet is that there are plenty of non-steroid performance enhancers that the average person wouldn’t come close to touching. There’s a lot of grey area here.

It would be dangerous, pessimistic, and wrong to say that you should go into any fitness community expecting that the default setting is steroid-use. Does it happen? Yes. Can it be incredibly misleading when someone builds an Instagram following of 400k on the back of heavy testosterone injections and SARMS? Incredibly so.

There are certain visual signs that can indicate steroid use, and there are a lot of resources out there focused on fitness folk who are confirmed natural. I’d urge you to look for people who focus on education, sharing ideas, and answering questions with his or her platform. Your question is impossible to answer for certain, but these people are typically a good place to start.



thoracic spine
Photo from verywellhealth

Senior Section

Question: What is the thoracic spine? Why have I been hearing about it more and more recently? Why is it important and how do I strengthen it?

Answer: The thoracic spine is the middle of your spine, between your lumbar spine (think lower back) and cervical spine (think neck). Simply put, your thoracic spine is your mid and upper-back. A majority of the muscles in your back and shoulders attach at the thoracic spine, it is critical for breathing, and it provides stability for most upper body functions.

Your thoracic spine is important from the day you are born until the day you die, but for many, the fact is that we don’t start thinking about the t-spine until later in life (Hence why this is popping up in the Senior Section!)

After decades of sitting at a desk, internally rotating one’s shoulders, or carrying bad posture, our T-spine loses a lot of it’s mobility, and shoulder, low back, and neck issues plague us non-stop. So the thoracic spine question is an important one, and even more important is asking it before it is too late.

Since the entire spinal column is skeletal in nature, you cannot necessarily train to strengthen it. Calcium leads to strong bones, but your focus instead would be on training the muscles surrounding the thoracic spine (lats, deltoids, rhomboids, rotator cuffs). However, you can focus on drills that maintain the mobility of the thoracic spine, and the regular implementation of these practices can help with pain-free movement and aging for all people.


Cool Down

Top 50 fittest
Photo from Instagram

Quick Hitters and Weekly Wrap-Up

Got 10 Hours? If you do, you could break Daniel Scali’s World Record Plank of 9 hours, 30 minutes, and 1 second

Healthy Cocktails aren’t two words you often hear used together, and let’s face it, an alcoholic drink can never be that great for you, but you can at least focus on low-sugar cocktail recipes.

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Have questions about your own fitness routine you’d like us to address? Or feedback about what you’d like to see more or less of? Shoot us an email - today@thefreshsqueeze.com, we’d love to hear from you!


Until Next week,

Mickey at TheFreshSqueeze

Presented and Edited By: Mickey Adams & Lizzie DeVito

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