03-23-2022 WEDNESDAY
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Is there anyone out there with a March Madness bracket still intact after the first weekend of games? If so, please reach out - I have some questions for you. For everyone else, we have a new diet, a good read, and much more in today’s edition of The Fresh Squeeze. Here goes nothing…

All about sleep
Gif from creativepool

Session Plan: 

The Warm-Up - Eat like a Swede with the Nordic diet.
Heavy Sets - How often should I be changing up my exercise routine?
Water Break  - Read James Hamblin’s If Our Bodies Could Talk
Finisher - Anti-Core training to protect the lower back
Cool Down - Is America’s newest tea obsession here to stay?

Happy Wednesday!

The Warm-Up

the nordic diet
Photo from verywellfit

Nutrition Section

Nordic nations are some of the most developed, most educated, and safest countries in the world…as they say, there must be something in the water over there. Or perhaps it’s their diet?

The Nordic diet is a very wholesome, planet-friendly way to eat. It focuses on whole grains, berries, fruits, vegetables, fish, and low-fat dairy products, while discouraging heavily processed foods and added sugars. The general consensus is that the Nordic diet is one of the most heart-friendly you can find, and countries like Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Finland, and Denmark have some of the lowest rates of coronary heart disease in the world (Japan, South Korea, and France are the leaders in this regard, if you were interested.)

It is also not a crazy-restrictive diet. There is nothing by way of specific meal timing. It’s focused on whole foods, mindfulness, and communal eating. Given the millions of successful case studies from those countries listed above, it might be worth checking out.


Heavy Sets 

Switch up your routine
Photo from Gifer

Movement Section

Question: How often should I be changing up [the types of exercises] that I’m doing during my workouts?

If you want to be really good at anything, you have to work at it repeatedly. Working out is no different. If you want to run a marathon, the best way to train for that is by running. If you want to squat more weight, you need to train for that by squatting. Specificity is oftentimes the easiest way to build a program and make progress in the gym. Specificity is also the antithesis of longevity for many people, and thus our dilemma. The answer to your question is that there is no right answer - it’s all about finding what’s right for you and finding balance.

General advice recommends changing up your exercise routine every 6-8 weeks, but note that these numbers are just a ballpark as certain athletes adapt at different rates to different types of stimuli. And change doesn’t necessarily have to mean a full-scale overhaul. You can still run, but maybe focus on different distances and intervals. You can still squat, but maybe focus on different rep ranges and rest times. Try to find what gives you the most bang for your buck and overall enjoyment when working out, and try to do that for as long and as well as you possibly can. Use the rest of your time working on imbalances, weak areas, and injury prevention so you can keep doing those things you love at a high level for a long time.


Water Break  

highly recommended read
Photo from Amazon

Weekly Recommendations

Back in 2014, James Hamblin launched a series of videos titled “If Our Bodies Could Talk.” More recently, he has moved to book format, as he tackles a number of common health questions that “tend to be mischaracterized and oversimplified by marketing and news media.”

Hamblin hits the mark in many ways, but none more so than in his writing style. He takes topics like anatomy, diet and nutrition, exercise physiology, all of which can be terribly boring and dry, and he writes in a way that is accessible, light, and even funny at times. Despite this, he never loses the seriousness of his convictions, and comes across as well-researched (he was and still is a doctor), open-minded, and informed.

If Our Bodies Could Talk is a 10/10, Highly Recommended Read.



the anti-core
Photo from Barbend

Senior Section

The human core serves two main functions - the first is to assist in the transfer of energy and movement between the upper and lower body, and the second is to protect the spine. We protect our spine by avoiding unnecessary spinal movement, and thus, “anti-core” training exists. These four types of training are anti-flexion (bending), anti-extension (the opposite of bending), anti-rotation (twisting), and anti-lateral flexion (bending to the side).

The spine is not meant to be a rigid structure that never moves - quite on the contrary actually - but the unexpected and untrained flexion, extension, rotation, or lateral flexion of the spine can lead to a number of back problems. Let’s, for the sake of simplicity, call these things “bad.” And since they’re “bad”, let’s train to avoid them.

These anti-core exercises are useful tools for the functional strengthening of the core and lower-back injury prevention for young athletes and older populations alike. If your entire understanding of core training is crunches or sit-ups (the repeated, and oftentimes uncontrolled flexion (bending) of the spine), this is probably worth a read.


Cool Down

Best Fitness Gadgets
Photo from marthastewart

Quick Hitters and Weekly Wrap-Up

America’s Tea Obsession with Herbalife has spiked through social media campaigns, but these drinks may not be as health-focused as you think.

Spring into Savings and re-stock your kitchen with up to 50% off Le Creuset, Staub, and All-Clad products.

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Until Next week,

Mickey at TheFreshSqueeze

Presented and Edited By: Mickey Adams & Lizzie DeVito

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