GS-Fitness/CORE Boot Camp: Sun Exposure and The Vitamin D-ilemma.

Vitamin D deficiency has become the most common health condition worldwide. It is associated with the cause of rickets in children, decreased bone health in adults and decreased cognitive function in the elderly. Every tissue in the human body has a vitamin D receptor because vitamin D plays a major role in so many physiological functions that aid in the prevention of common diseases such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension and many illnesses that effect the elderly. Here are ten things to know about vitamin D and how to obtain the recommended daily allowance (RDA).

How does body make D from sun? Let’s start by having a better understanding of the science behind how the body obtains vitamin D from the sun. When the ultra violet radiation (UVB) rays hit your skin it sets off a chemical reaction that converts a prohormone in the skin into vitamin D. Once you make vitamin D in your skin it goes to the liver and then the kidneys to get activated.

How much vitamin D is necessary on a daily basis? 600 IU per day for humans aged 1 year up to age 70. 700-800 IU for people 70 years of age and over.

Vitamin D is rare in foods. Dairy contains 100 IU per serving, which means an adult would need to drink six glasses of milk per day. Cod liver oil by far has the highest vitamin D content. Salmon, mackerel, and herring are close seconds. Farm raised fish has next to no vitamin D content at all. Wild caught fish is a much richer source of vitamin D. Mushrooms that have been exposed to UVB rays are also a great source.

You can never make too much D from sun exposure. If you’re exposed to sunlight, your body will make vitamin D and it will stay with you 2x longer than any diet source.

When is best time to be out in sun? 10am-3pm is best time to absorb vitamin d. Almost all vitamin D rays are being absorbed by the ozone layer before the hours of 10 Am and after the hours of 3 pm.

How great is the risk of melanoma from sun exposure? Most melanomas occur on the least sun exposed areas. Occupational sun exposure reduces risk for melanoma. In 1915 research found that indoor workers had eight times more chance of dying from cancer. 1941 people living in the northeast had a higher risk of cancer death than people living in Florida or Georgia. Activated vitamin D inhibits cancer cell growth.

How does the use of sunscreen impact vitamin D production? Sunscreen with SPF 30 reduces ability make vitamin D from sun exposure by 95-98%. Going out into to sun to the extent of skin obtaining a light pink tint = 20,000 IU vitamin D
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Does skin color impact how much vitamin D is or can be made? African Americans need 4-10X the sun exposure than a Caucasian to produce the right amount of vitamin D for their bodies. It’s known that African Americans have a higher incidence of heart disease, diabetes, cancers, and infectious diseases. A conclusion can be drawn that vitamin D deficiency is at least a factor in the cause.

How much exposure is a healthy amount to promote vitamin D production? 5 to 15 minutes 2-3x/week. Protect the face. Get the 5-15 minutes of exposure on arms and legs to elicit vitamin D production in skin and body, then apply sunscreen.

Does a person’s body size impact how much vitamin D is needed? Obese people need 2-5x more vitamin D in order to prevent vitamin D deficiency and any disease related to D deficiency.

How can you tell how much vitamin D you are making from the sun? There is a mobile application. http://dminder.info. This app will tell you how much vitamin D can be made from your location at the current time. Enter in your skin type and the app can tell you how much can be made.


Resources:
1. Michael F. Holick –“ The D-Lightful Vitamin D for Good Health.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lvogqa3BWVE.
2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. National Institute of Health. “ Vitamin D Fact Sheet for Health Professionals.” Ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/

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GS-FITNESS / CORE BOOT CAMP: 3 SLED CONDITIONING EXERCISES FOR FAT LOSS.

The outdoor season is upon us here in Newton, Ma.  That means one thing for the participants in the CORE Boot Camp program, it’s sledding season!  Here are three great sled conditioning exercises that are great leg and glute shapers ladies, as well as being a great exercise for fat loss conditioning.

The sled push is one of the leg and glute shapers I was talking about ladies.  The biomechanics of this exercise put the emphasis on the hamstrings and glutes.  Also if done in a set of 6-10 reps with 60-90 recovery it is by far one of the best fat loss exercises a person can do.

The sled drag is similar to the push.  This version allows for more power developed from the contra-lateral arm swing needed.  Like the push, when done at maximum effort for 6-10 reps there is no better way to boost metabolic rate and burn fat.

Last but certainly not least is the bear crawl/sled drag combination.  A miserably effective exercise for lower body strengthening and shaping and fat loss.

If you’re into summer sledding and fitness, we’ve got you covered at CORE Boot Camp in Newton, Ma.  Sign up for two free classes to try it out and start your journey to the best physical condition of your life today!

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GS-FITNESS / CORE BOOT CAMP: COLLEGE STUDENT SPECIAL!

If you’re a college student and home for the summer and like outdoor exercise look no further than the CORE Boot Camp in Newton, Ma.  There are two locations:

1.  69 Tyler Terrace in Newton CTR.

2.  545 Grove Street Newton Lower Falls, Ma.

Come from Memorial Day to Labor Day three times per week for just $120.00.  A deal that cannot be beaten.

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GS-FITNESS/CORE BOOT CAMP: 4 WAYS HEALTH SUFFERS WHEN YOU STOP WORKING OUT.

Massacusetts residents have spent a lot of time indoors the past 3-4 weeks.  This is an understatement.  Record amounts of snowfalls have cancelled work, closed downs stores and fitness centers leaving people to their own means fo multiple days in a row.  Excuses for not getting out to the gym are easy to come up with if the thermometer reads in the negative numbers and parking bans are in effect.  Nobody says you have to go to a gym to get your workout in.  Staying active and preventing a slump is vital to your health.  Here are four ways health is compromised when not workng out.

1.  Blood pressure rises – this is instant effect.  Blood pressure is lower on days you exercise ( afterwards) than days you don’t.  Within a month of not exercising hardenening arteries and veins will raise blood pressure back to your pre exercise state.  To the point where it will seem like you never started exercising to begin with.  Don’t let this happen!

2.  Blood sugar increases – After just five days of not exercising post meal blood glucose levels remain elevated.  When active, muscle tissue and energy systems will utilize blood glucose for muslce and energy system repair.  If there are no muscles or systems to repair the blood glucose will remain in the bloodstream.  This can lead to badthings such as diabetes.

3.  Muscles atrophy – nothing being written here is earth shattering news, but these are easy things to forget.  Strength will stay longer than endurance, but after 2 weeks of complete rest muscles will start to atrophy leading to lower strength and higher body fat percentage.

4.  Brain suffers – one very important organ that doesn’t look good in a bathing suit is the brain.  Yet it is still very important to keep it in shape through exercise.  Two weeks of inactivity have shown to leave regualar exercisers tired and grumpy.  Rat studies presented at a recent Society for Neuroscience Conference suggests animals that stop moving for a week grow fewer new brain cells and do worse on maze tests than those that adhere to a steady wheel running routine.(1)

 

Resources:

1.  Men’s Health:  6 Ways Your Health Suffers When You Stop Working Out.

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GS-FITNESS: HEALTHY VERSION OF THE SHAMROCK SHAKE.

St. Patrick’s day is Tuesday March 17th and that means two beverages will be on the top of Bostonian’s list:

1.  Guiness.

1.  McDonald’s shamrock shake.

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Unfortunately for both, they contain at least one ingredient that is cause for health concern.  The list of harmful ingredients is much longer for the annual McDonald’s beverage.  The McDonald’s shamrock shake has fifty four ingredients in it.  This may not be too alarming on the surface, until the layers are peeled back and it is more visible what each main ingredient is composed of.  You can see the full list of ingredients on the McDonald’s website.

Main ingredients in Shamrock Shake:

*Reduced fat vanilla ice cream. ( contains carrageenan)

*Shamrock syrup. ( Contains two ingredients that are banned in Norway, Finland, Austria and Belgium, Yellow #5 and Blue #1)

* Whipped cream.

* Maraschino cherry.

One ingredient in particular found in the reduced fat vanilla ice cream, carrageenan, has been recognized as potentially hazardous to consumer’s health.  In an article review done by Joanne Tobacman in 2001 at the University of Iowa College of Medicine titled ” Review of Harmful Gastrointestinal Effects From Carageenan in Experiments with Animals”, Tobacman found that in 1982 The International Agency for Research on Cancer cited enough evidence that consumption of foods containing carageenan posed a carcinogenic risk to humans potentially leading to gastric ulcerations and/or neoplasms. Are we still ” Lovin it ?” Even with the findings from IARC carrageenan is still widely used as a substitute in many foods in the United States.  Consumption of any of the other additives and preservatives in the recipe are still very much a concern.  Processed foods aren’t natural and are harder for the human body to process.  Extra work for the digestive system will take a toll over a life time.  Tobacman’s review of research found that exposure to carrageenan is a possible factor in contracting inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer.  The review does cite that the higher the exposure the more likely the incidence of contracting a disease.  Clearly the occasional ice cream sundae or shamrock shake won’t instantly kill anybody.  It is wise to seek alternative foods whenever possible wth fewer harmful ingredients.

Least we overlook the quantity of calories that are in a large shake.  A 190 lb male would have to run at 6 MPH for over 60 minutes in order to burn off the 820 calories that would get consumed in under ten minutes.  Doesn’t sound like a smart or fair trade off.

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Calorie breakdown in a large:  

820 calories

23 grams of fat

15 grams of saturated fat (73% of RDA)

1 gram on trans fat

115 grams of sugar ( Over 3x amount the AHA recommends consuming per day)

High fructose corn syrup, which may be the biggest nutrition villain of them all currently, is a main ingredient in the whipped cream that tops the shamrock shake.  HFCS’s rap sheet is long to say the least.  It’s biggest crime is being linked to the obesity epeidemic.  In an article from 2004 titled ” Consumption of high fructose corn syrup in beverages may play a role in the obesity epidemic,”  The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition states that the increase of HFCS consumption coincides with the outbreak of the obesity epidemic, and indicate a direct correlation with calorically sweetened beverages with HFCS.

The list of unhealthy ingredients goes on but rather than vilify McDonald’s turning attention to healthy alternatives is a much more ” fruitful” pursuit.  Consumers have the power to make choices every day what to put in their bodies and the mouths of their children.  It goes without saying making a home made and healthier version of this cult classic beverage can go along way towards preserving health.  Indulging in a beverage similar to the shamrock shake every once in a long while won’t bury anybody.  Regular consumption of the above mentioned ingredients and other preservatives in the shamrock shake will lead to inflammatory responses in the digestive system.  Inflammation is the cause of many health issues in the body including acne, ADHD, blood sugar imbalances and many more.  Now, let’s turn the focus from unhealthy to healthy with a homemade nutritious and delicious alternative to the McDonald’s shamrock shake.

Recipe courtesy of Chocolate Covered Katie.

* 1 large, frozen banana

* 1 palm full of cacoa nibs or chocolate chips

* 1/8-1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract

* 2/3 cup – 1 cup milk of choice.  If dairy free then full fat coconut will make a nice think smoothie consistency.  The fats from coconut are medium chained digested easier and more readily available to be used as an energy source for the body.  Almond milk is also an option. ( Homemade almond milk is very easy to make.)

* 1/4 cup frozen spinach

* Optional:  2-3 slices of an avocado go well with the  almond milk version

Blend until smooth and enjoy without having to run 6 MPH for over an hour.  Vanila whey protein can also be added and serve as a very good post workout drink.  Wellcoin users can earn Wellcoins two ways after reading this post.

1.  Using a healthy recipe.

2.  Choosing a healthy beverage.

Resources

1.  Huffington Post article.  ” The Shamrock Shake.  What’s Really In McDonald’s St. Paddy’s Day Drink?” Posted 3/15/2013 by Chris Spurlock.

2.  College of Medicine University of Iowa, Iowa City.  Review of Harmful Gastrointentinal Effects of Carrageenan in Animals by Joanne K Tobacman.  Volume 109, number 10 October 2001.

3.  American Heart Association, www.heart.org, Sugars 101.

4.  www.mcdonalds.com.

5.  The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.  ”  Consumption of High Fructose Corn Syrup in Beverages May Play a Role in the Obesity Epidemic.  George A Bray, Samara J Nielsen, and Barry M. Popkin.  October 2003.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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GS-FITNESS/CORE BOOT CAMP: 3 GREAT HEALTH BENEFITS TO EATING SOUP.

Living in the northeastern part of the country has been no picnic this winter. Record amounts of snow fall have kept people inside and off of their regular health routine. It’s easy to waste a snow day on the couch munching on Doritio’s and processed snacks alike. Don’t let this happen. Soup is not just a warm, comfort food option; it’s got many health benefits as well. Here are 3 big reasons you should drop the Doritio’s and fire up the stove tops to heat up some soup.

1. Vegetables – Almost all soups have some vegetables in them. If it’s a canned soup that doesn’t, you can always add your own to boost it’s nutrient density. Soups can be made with as many vegetables as possible, almost any vegetable lends itself to use in soup.

2. Nutrients – to elaborate further on the above point about vegetables and nutrients, soups with lean proteins and beans are a great way to get all the macronutrients needed in one food option. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene ( an antioxidant that might help reduce the risk of cancer ). Vegetable based soups contain vitamins A and C, creamy based soups supply calcium and vitamin D.

3. Filling – because soup contains so much liquid it fills the stomach with fewer calories. A chicken and rice soup can provide a feeling if satuety equal to a meal containing chicken, potatoes and any other sides only with fewer calories.

Resources:
1. American Heart Association: About Fruits and Vegetables.
2. Kansas State University: January is National Soup Month.

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EXCESSIVE ENDURANCE TRAINING MORE LIKELY TO CAUSE SLEEP DISTURBANCES THAN STRENGTH TRAINING.

The last post discussed the importance of getting as much good, quality sleep as possible in general and specifically for active adults.  Better sleeping patterns are a result of an effective fitness and wellness program.  One big reason is muscle and energy system recovery occur during the nocturnal hours, when the exerciser is asleep. Lack of sleep will result in a lack of recovery, therefore leading to counterproductive workouts week in and week out.  Which modality of training yields a better impact on sleep quality, endurance or strength training?  Beginner exercisers will increase their exercise adherence by focusing on strength training and using aerobic training as an addendum, no matter what their goals are.

As discussed in the last post excessive endurance exercise can wreak havoc on the human body.  One major negative response is sleep pattern disruptions.  In an article published in July 2007 by the American Family Physician Organization titled ” Common Problems In Endurance Athletes,” they stated that running more than 20 miles per week is a regimen that can lead to sleep disturbances.(1).  That doesn’t sound like excessive, it all depends on the individual performing the running.  An elite level runner who has efficient biomechanics can perform high volume of exercise with far less stress on the body than the average runner.  It can be derived that doing less than 20 miles per week would be an adequate volume to elicit a healthy sleep response from running.  Once again fitness level and biomechanics will play a major role in just what kind of a response is elicited.  Exercise is very much a test and evaluate endeavor.

Generally speaking, leading a more physical lifestyle will lead to better sleeping patterns.  Falling alseep faster, longer duration in a deeper sleep and more.  Where many novice exercisers get tripped up is how much exercise is too much.  For the beginner exerciser strength training by design is less about duration and more about increasing intensity, or weights.  Strength training in itself is less likely to lead an exerciser into overexercising due to it’s nature.  The goal is to increase strength by increasing weights.  Not by doing longer strength training sessions.  In contrast for novice exercisers the goal is to increase duration of aerobic exercise.  The tendancy for aerobic exercise to be misused by a beginner exerciser is greater than that of strength training by their design.

The saying ” less is more” hasn’t quite beeen adapted by anybody in the fitness industry as of yet.  The lightning fast rise of CrossFit facilities and the Spartan Races won’t help any either.  CrossFit is based on alot of different concepts, but the one major concept is pushing yourself harder than you did the day or the week before.  To an extreme in alot of cases, but certainly to a degree where overtraining syndrome can be obtained.  One major sign of overtraining is interrupted and low quality sleep.  In an article from the New York Times from September of 2007 titled ” Sleep After Hard Workouts?  You Must Be Dreaming?” the author cites the two major factors to sleep disturbances from exercise are increasing duration and instensity.  Dr. Chedniak is the president of The American Academy Of Sleep Medicine and he points out that increasing duration and intensity can lead to the release two cytokines(proteins) that make people drowsy and increase time they are asleep.(2).  CrossFit is a philosophy based on ” more is better.”  Exercise to failiure and exhaustion is expected and success isn’t recognized unless that point is reached.  Many of their facilities offer 3,4 even 5 time per week workout package options for their members.  The average person looking to lose weight with above average hopes for success and without an extensive exercise background is at a big risk to end up in an overtraining state.  The Center For Disease Control recognizes the sleep benefits from strength training on their website  stating in an article titled, ” “Growing Stronger, Strength Training For Older Adults”.  “As with depression, the sleep benefits obtained from strength training are comparable to treatment with medication without the side effects or expense.”(3)   The article refers to older adults suffering from depression and ways to mitigate that and the aging process in general.

To conclude, the potential is there to overexercise with strength training.  There is a greater risk with aerobic exercise due the ease of increasing duration and the accessibility to aerobic exercise modalities.  Walkers, runners and cyclists are able to step out of the house and perform a long duration workout without the inconveneince of driving to a facility to use equipment.  The ” more is better” mantra with exercise is a major component to most of the current exercise trends, leading to overtraining and very poor nocturnal habits for those who participate.

1.  American Family Physician.  2007 July 15;76(2)237-244.

2.  New York Times article.  ” Sleep After a Hard Workout?  You Must Be Dreaming.” Gina Kolata, September 13, 2007.

3.  Center For Disease Control.    ” Growing Stronger Strength Training For Adults.” February 24, 2011.

 

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GS-FITNESS/CORE BOOT CAMP: WEAR PINK TO SUPPORT BREAST CANCER ON SATURDAYS

I will donate $5 per person with a pink article of clothing on.  Shirt, shorts, pants, skort, socks, hat.  Has to be an article of clothing and not a little stripe or dot here and there.  Come support the cause and get a great workout in on Saturday morning at 7 am at 69 Tyler Terrace in Newton CTR.

 

www.newtonmabootcamp.com

 

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GS-FITNESS: QUALITY OF SLEEP A MAJOR COMPONENT OF HEALTH THAT IS OVERLOOKED.

Quality sleep ranks right up there with flexibility as the top two most overlooked components of health and fitness, from my experience working with adults.   Harvard Health lists their six reasons on why sleep is important in an article written in 2006.  In it’s article Harvard Health Publications highlights weight gain and chronic elevation of stress hormones as an effect of chronic sleep deprivation.(1) If  a wellness regimen causes sleep deprivation, is it a wellness regimen?   For most motivated exercisers the wellness components would line up similar to the following list, in order of most important to least important.

1.  Exercise - making sure sets, reps, weights and/or distance prescribed for that week of training is achieved.

2.  Nutrition – ensure protein is in post workout meal or shake, healthy fats are consumed, may fall off the wagon over the weekends but all in all stay on track during the week with overall fitness goals.

3.  Flexibility – if time for stretching will fit it in after.

4.  Warm up – rarely warm up.

5.  Sleep - not overly concerned about it.  Don’t recognize how training regimen impacts it, or just ignore it unless it is a big problem.

6.  Psychoscocial/emotionally well being - not on the map for most people.

The above list is a pretty accurate depiction of most people’s outlook on the compeonents of wellness in order of importance and general thought process about each one.  The major problem with the above outlook is not recognizing how one compenent effects the other in the big picture of a healthy lifestyle.

Wellness needs to be described as a chain reaction or domino effect moreso than the more commonly used phrase of ” holistic approach.”  The holistic approach mindset indicates being somewhat conscious of all components leads to a healthy lifestyle, which is inaccurate.  Overexercise can still be a problem if emotional wellbeing and flexibility are downplayed, or if the domino effect mentality isn’t used, which is the idea that exercise will effect emotional well being and sleep.  The amount of, the intensity level  and the frequency of exercise performed all cause a chain reaction on the human body impacting flexibility, emotional well being and sleep patterns.

In an article written in 2007, The American Family Physican Organization indicates a condition called the ” overtraining syndrome ” can lead to increase illness and injury resulting from poor sleep patterns stemming from overexercising.  This is a condition found in long duration enduarnce athletes.  Recreational athletes aren’t exempt from the ” overtraining syndrome.”(2)  Overexercising often will lead to a tunnel visioned exerciser feeling sluggish, sleep deprived and frustrated from not reaching goals.

In a New York Times article published in September of 2007 Dr. Alex Chediak of the American Academy os Sleep Medicine cites exercise releases bundless of small proteins (cytokines) responsible for ” making people feel drowsy and responsible for prolonging the time they are sleeping.”(3)  Also cited were the major factors for increasing the release of these cytokines is an increase in duration and intensity of exercise.(4)  Adding miles, minutes or laps to your current workouts will eventually lead to a chronically fatigued physical state.

Any wellness or program that emphasizes exercise without acknowledging how it will impact the body on a long term basis isn’t a wellness program.  Sleep is a big piece of the wellness pie that has to be recognized and tracked just like workouts and meal plans.  Wellness is a chain reaction, how you handle one component of it will absolutely have an impact on all the others.

Resources

1.  Harvard Health Publications January 2006.  ”  Importance of Sleep:  6 Reasons Not To Scrimp On Sleep.”

2.  American Family Physician.  July 15;76(2): 237-244.  ” Common Problems In Endurance Athletes.”

3.  New York Times article in Fitness & Nutrition section.  ” Sleep After Hard Workouts?  You Must Be Dreaming.”  Published September 2007.  Author Gina Kolata.

4.  New York Times article in Fitness & Nutrition section. ” Sleep After Hard Workouts? You Must Be Dreaming.” Published September 2007. Author Gina Kolata.

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GS-FITNESS / 3 REASONS CORE CAMP IN NEWTON MA. IS THE BEST PROGRAM TO PREP FOR SPARTAN FENWAY.

One of the great benesfits of the CORE Boot Camp program in Newton, Ma. is that it is built (unintentionally at first) to prepare anyone for an obstacle course race.  The energy system and muscular demands of both the race and the CORE Boot Camp program are similar.  This makes this program one of the best in the Boston area for preparing for Spartan Fenway, and any Spartan or obstacle course race now offered on the circuit.

Participants preparing for an obstacle course race, specifically a Spartan Race who are using running as their primary training modality are in for a big surprise.  What makes the explosion in popularity of obstacle course races is the variety each race offers.  Traditional road races can be boring for many and boredom can lead to a higher drop out rate in participation for certain personalities and populations of exercisers.  A variety in the actual race and from a fitness standpoint the variety in energy systems and muscles worked are what some need to stay interested enough to continuously participate.  Running a 5k will use the same muscular and joint movement pattern over and over.  An obstacle course race will train the body in many more different planes of motion than a traditional 5k.  The CORE Boot Camp program was designed to train muscles in all of the major movement planes.

*  Sagittal plane – straight ahead movements ( i.e running a road race).

* Frontal plane – lateral movements.

* Transverse plane – rotational movements.

Total body strength and grip strength are two components that are essential for successful completion of an obstacle course race.  Add anaerobic energy system challenges and it is clear why traditional running isn’t enough to prepare for a Spartan Race.

1.  Outdoors – CORE Boot Camp in Newton, Ma. is an outdoor program.  The program will run outdoors until daylight allows it to.  In the fall the entire workout is held outdoors rain or shine until the end of September.  Once October rolls around the start of the workout moves indoors, but the workout will transition outdoors once the sun rises.  Spartan Fenway is in the month of November, so being acclimated to exercising outdoors is important when preparing to participate in an outdoor event like this.

2.  Heavy carrying exercises – CORE Boot Camp utilizes a lot of heavy carrying exercises such as the farmer’s carry and variations there of.   Heavy dumb bells, sand bags, barbells, buckets filled with bricks all have been used to train both grip strength and anaerobic energy system.  Most obstacle course races, including Spartan, involve a minimum of one heavy carry for distance.  The Spartan Race can have a log, sand bag, bucket of rocks or even a 5 gallon water jug carry in it’s course design.  The more specific the training the better prepared for successful completion.  Many racers focus on running and burpees when training; which are important but there is so much more to an obstacle course race than cardiovascular endurance.

3.  Dynamic core stability is trained – the plank is arguably a ” good ” exercise to train torso stability.  But, in the realm of preparing for an event such as the Spartan Race series it is critical that dynamic torso (or core) stability is trained.  What is dynamic torso stability?  A plank is a stabilizing exercise where there is no movement of the body at all.  This is great in very few applications in the real world or for performance.  At no time during a Spartan Race or any race will you ever be completely still in a plank like position.  Beginners are started in the traditional plank exercise position but once the ability to demonstrate good stability through the torso they are quickly progressed up to plank exercises while the body is moving.  For example, the TRX front roll out.  The bear crawl exercise which is very Spartan race specific.  This exercise requires keeping steady through the midsection while traveling forward on all fours, hands and knees.  One of the staple Spartan obstacles is a low crawl of some kind whether it be under barbed wire or another barrier.

In conclusion, if you are registered for the Spartan Fenway race and are primarily running on the street to prepare, please sign up for a one workout trial on our homepage to get the race specific training your body needs to conquer the great challenge that is a Spartan Race.

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