NYTimes: Milk and Other Surprising Ways to Stay Hydrated


A new “beverage hydration index” provides evidence-based suggestions for how to most efficiently hydrate.

“If I am not for myself, who is for me? But if I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now when?”Hillel (Jewish sage)

How to Maximize Your Mitochondria | Runner’s World

A recent post of mine talked about mitochondria, here’s an outside sourced piece on that subject.


“If I am not for myself, who is for me? But if I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now when?”Hillel (Jewish sage)

NYTimes: No, You Do Not Have to Drink 8 Glasses of Water a Day

I keep having this same discussion/argument with Family, friends, and clients. No one wants to believe me, since I don’t have a medical degree, and internists and GP doctors are actually quite terrible (in general, not all of them) at dissemination of actual nutritional information. Doctors spend less than 3 hours of study on nutrition in medical school, on average, and they are no different from the general population when it comes to media manipulation and marketing. But some doctors and researchers actually specialize in this aspect of health. Here it is. Keep in mind as you read this piece from 2015 that two issues later a staff writer probably wrote a piece about how dehydrated most Americans are, using studies put out by Nestle (the largest bottler and distributed of bottles water in the world). So I don’t really blame you for getting confused. Just try to spend 10 minutes thinking about the topic critically and you’ll realize the truth. Ask yourself what did humans do before the invention of modern plumbing? Before faucets? Do you think they were running to the nearest stream every hour or that their wells were bottomless supplies of clean water? Was every Native American in the year 1710 dehydrated? Use your critical thinking caps and stop being so easily manipulated.


There is no science behind a formal, one-size-fits-all requirement of daily water consumption.

“Science is the acceptance of what works and the rejection of what does not. That needs more courage than we might think.” Jacob Bronowski, 1908-1974



We all hit these points, these ruts. Lack of motivation has many causes. Some are easy to identify, like work or personal stress, being over tired mentally, emotionally, physically, or all of the above. Some reasons are less obvious. Perhaps you’ve been working out for a fairly long period of time, been consistent with your workouts, but no real progress has occurred as far as your fitness goals are concerned. Perhaps you aren’t getting the support at home from family and/or friends, who keep undermining your determination. Perhaps your just bored, or situations in your life cause you to question the point of it all.

The reasons can be as shallow or deep as anything else in life, but it tends to leave you in the same situation: you’re unmotivated. The irony is that when in this state of mind the easiest cure, at least symptomatically, is to exercise: getting all that oxygenated blood pumping furiously through your body can clear your thoughts, improve your mood, and change your perspective of whatever shit you’re dealing with, no matter how deep your shit is.

Just getting your butt in the gym can fix a lot of things, but I know as well as anyone how tough it can be. I know as well as anyone that sometimes the thought: why bother; can be overwhelming. The longest I’ve ever gone without working out at all, as an adult, was 12 months. There have also been long periods of time where my workouts were decidedly underwhelming efforts, barely holding onto my level of fitness, and even allowing my overall fitness to drop dramatically, but getting into the gym at all can make a huge difference to your outlook.

I know the struggle. If this struggle is something you are going through, or have gone through, remember this: everyone goes through it. If you know someone who hasn’t ever hit this kind of rut, they will. Everyone goes through it eventually. More than once. Remember it’s normal. Remember to try to get in the gym anyway. All things pass.

1 Minute Workouts…uh…no.

repeat after me: there is no such thing as magic…no such thing as magic…no such thing as magic…no such thing a magic.

Before you work out for 1 intense minute, the study had the participants warm up for 12 minutes at 60% intensity, and then cool down for 12 minutes until they dropped back to 60% intensity. Compared to the standard model of warming up for 5 minutes getting to 60%, hovering between 70-75% for 20 minutes, then cooling down for 5 minutes. Do the math. The workouts are actually statistically almost identical, and the proof is the fact they they achieved identical results in all the participants, who were all young males that were very out of shape to begin with. All 30 of them. 

Yeah, those are results we can extrapolate out to 300,000,000 Amercians. Sure they are. Please don’t be stupid. Remember, the NYT can’t help it. If they don’t publish something to get your attention, they will go out of business. So they’ll publish pretty much anything, same for medical journals and science journals, and television stations. But that’s not how science works. You want an amusing and disturbing explanation for what’s going on with the media and scientific journalism? Click the following link. It’s an entertaining and frustratingly accurate 20 minute segment well worth your time.

John Oliver explains scientific studies and the media.

Where it all begins…Mitochondria


This is going to be a heavy post. It will require paying attention. It might be confusing. If you make it to the last paragraph you’ll learn how to work out in a way that will supercharge your physical power in almost every aspect of your life. 

There is so much crap. On the web…in magazines…in books. You have no good way to to figure out the good information from the bad, the legitimate experts from that hucksters and charlatans. If you have very clear fitness goals like I want to body build or I want to run the NYC marathon it’s all actually pretty simple. You don’t need to know that much. You don’t need to understand that much. You can easily find workout programs online to build you up or get you moving mile after mile. Those sites and programs will likely even tell you how to eat, what to eat, how much to eat. And you’ll get to wherever you want to get…up to a point. You’ll be able to complete a marathon, but probably won’t get skinny, or finish it in an impressive time. You’ll be able to pack on muscle, building strength and size in your quadroceps and pecs and lats and deltoids. Up to a point. You probably won’t get ripped. Or as big and strong as you hoped.

You’ll either settle for what you get in that first year and plug away trying futilely to maintain your early improvements or you’ll gradually lose motivation and quit. Or you can keep reading. Learn what’s happening to you, deep drilling into the chemistry of life. And along the way, you may even learn how to spot bullshit when you see and hear it.
MitochondriaThink back to your high school or college biology. I know, most of us tried our best to forget this stuff as soon as the tests were over, but this is kind of important. If you want to give yourself a headache click on the word for an in depth scientific description of what it is and what it does. But I’ll keep it much simpler and specific to its role in exercise.

Mitochondria is a part of almost all human cells. It is where cellular energy is made. It is where ATP-PC (adenosine triphosphate – phosphocreatine ) is synthesized. There are many mitochondria in the cells where mitochondria are present; up to 2000 mitochondria in every heart cell! And mitochondria can replicate. The more mitochondria present in a cell, the more ATP energy that cell can create. And mitochondria replication occurs as a result of regular intense exercise, and most commonly as a result of intense aerobic exercise  or extreme high intensity anaerobic training. This is the true fuel of life and movement and human power. Everything you do is, ultimately, dependent on ATP, and almost every cell in your body is designed to synthesize this stuff for you to use. In terms of stored human energy, it is the high octane super charged turbo injected rocket fuel of the human body. When confronted with a fight of flight life threatening situation, ATP is what’s gonna get you thru whichever choice you make. It is the first source of energy your body will tap into for any physical activity, and part of a grand conveyor belt of energy that your body utilizes to keep your heart beating, your lungs breathing, your brain thinking, and your muscles moving.

Roughly speaking, our body’s energy systems flow like this: ATP-glycogen (muscle & liver)-Body Fat. This is referred to as the ATP-PC/Glycolitic/Oxidative (or Aerobic) systems (http://www.ideafit.com/fitness-library/the-three-metabolic-energy-systems).  

The human body can tap into other sources of energy in emergencies, most notably proteins (muscle tissue) and calcium (bone mass), but this is always undesirable unless you’re at risk of starvation. This can occur in extreme endurance athletes like ultra distance runners and cyclists who log hundreds of miles a week in training. It’s also why sports nutritionists recommend marathon runners, iron men competitors, and their even more extreme ultra brethren consume the highest amounts of protein; on par with power lifters, body builders, and strength athletes; some experts claiming that  2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight is needed to help protect their bodies from the muscle wasting effects of their activities. Keep in mind, that athletic activities at these extremes are not about enhancing health. These are tests of the human condition, and pushing to these limits repeatedly almost always come with long term, physically debilitating, consequences. Yes, there are examples of individuals who can perform at the extremes almost to the day they die. Do not bet you are one of those. You will likely lose and finding out if you are a member of that exclusive 1% of the top 1% physically is probably not worth it to you. If it were, you wouldn’t be reading this and would be ignoring everyone else’s advice, regardless. 

Body builders and Power Lifters like to imagine they need the most protein, but that scrawny marathon runner who runs 10-20 miles every day needs practically as much. Even the somewhat conservative nutritional dietary establishment supports large amounts of protein for this reason: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Another interesting fact about mitochondria is that they can multiply through fission. This is both good and bad, in a way. Give yourself another headache and click on this, and pay attention to the third paragraph for the bad news. In a nutshell, as mitochondria reproduce through fission, the risk of genetic mutations in new cells goes up and causing the formation of free radicals (some evidence suggests free radicals are bad, as I’m sure you’ve heard, though the science is actually quite sketchy in reality). The good news is that the more mitochondria your body possess, the more ATP-CP you have available, and the more efficiently your body replenished depleted stores of ATP-CP. More mitochondria mean you can ultimately train longer, harder, and more frequently.

So now we come to my opinions. If you’re under 60 years old and your worried about free radicals possibly causing cancer you are being stupid, thru no fault of your own. The media has sent you so many confusing and contradictory messages it’s largely impossible to discern good information from bad. For instance, you probably believe there is an epidemic of Cancer and cardiovascular (heart) disease in the USA. But you’re wrong. There are no such epidemics. If there were an epidemic of cancer (really cancers since there are thousands of completely different kinds of cancers unrelated to any other except for one basic characteristic they all share: harmful cellular multiplication), we would see young people dying by the hundreds of thousands every year of this or that cancer. If heart disease were an epidemic we’d be seeing 12-30 years old dying by the hundreds of thousands every year of heart disease. We do not see this.  What we have an epidemic of is old people! People living into their 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and beyond is the epidemic, and something will, eventually, kill us all. Medical science, good nutrition, and basic hygiene, are great at extending our lifespans, but the longer we live the greater the probability that something will go wrong mechanically or on a cellular level.  That’s, unironically, life. So, do you wanna grow old like this:

Or spend your last years living in this like that:

It’s an easy choice for me. More mitochondria please!!!!

Food is not the enemy

It’s been awhile, I know. Not the best way to grow a blog or a business, but even the best of us can get into funks and I’m far from the best. The past is the past, so let’s move on.

Food is energy and life. It is not the enemy. Sugar is good. Fat is good. Even saturated fat is good. Protein is good. Even protein from red meat is good. Eating meat is good. Not eating meat is conditionally good, but much more complicated and some people simply cannot live healthily on a vegan diet. For the moment I’m not concerned with ethics. I’m not concerned with sustainability. Those issues are beyond the scope of this piece.

Food is not the enemy…You are. You want to behave like a child and eat and drink without thinking about the consequences. You want to consume all the junk foods and dessert foods you want; that your parents wouldn’t let you have before dinner; and you want to eat as much as you want because you’re an adult now and no one can tell you what to do.

Now your fat. You have high blood pressure and diabetes and can’t walk up a flight of stairs without getting out of breath or needing to rest half way up. You’ve crippled yourself. It’s your fault. Not McDonald’s fault. Not Coca Cola’s fault. Not Nabisco or Entenmann’s fault. Yours. Yes the media puts out a lot of confusing messages; this or that food or calorie source is bad or good for you, and the pharmaceutical companies are always looking for a new marketing gimmick that our medical community is ill equipped to understand or combat. Your doctor is not a medical researcher. They are told what medicines to use to treat whatever conditions, and they are even told what conditions they are supposed to treat. That’s how a woman’s monthly cycle; the most natural experience a human female can have; gets turned into a treatable medical condition. It’s why we have viagra. Old man can’t get an erection? Is it possible he’s actually just to damn old? This is fundamental biology. So’s eating and drinking. Fundamental. Biology.

Eat too much and you gain weight. Lift heavy weights and eat too much and you gain muscle weight. Eat too much and sit on the couch you gain fat weight. Eat too much and run 10-15 miles/day every day and…well…you can’t really eat too much if you’re running 10-15 miles a day every day. 

As far as weight management is concerned, a calorie is a calorie. Forget the media. Forget what passes as common knowledge. A calorie is a calorie and if you eat too many of them you will gain weight. If you eat too few you will lose weight. Eat way too few and you will also lose a lot of energy which can have a negative effect on your ability to exercise effectively. Exercise less, or less effectively, and the amount of calories you can eat without gaining unwanted weight goes down. 

Sugar is not bad. Consuming sugary snacks and drinks sitting on the couch for 4 hours is terrible. Fat, any fat, is not bad. Consuming lots of fatty foods; regardless of whether they are saturated or unsaturated or whatever other terms the media and medical establishment applies to them (linoleic, oleic blah blah) while sitting on the couch for 4 hours is bad. Animal based proteins are not bad. As a matter of fact, they are superior. But just eating lots of protein while sitting on the couch for 4 hours is terrible.

Sitting on the couch for 4 hours is not bad. Watch a good movie, cuddling with a loved one, spouse, lover, dog or cat, is wonderful and de-stressing. Just don’t shovel calories into your mouth like a black hole devouring a solar system.

Use your common sense. Accept the consequences of your own decisions. Wake the fuck up and pay attention to yourself. If you catch yourself  in the middle of an unconscious eating and drinking frenzy, stop it. The more you practice stopping, the better you’ll get at stoping until you never unconsciously start. 

This actually works in all aspects of life, not just with food and exercise. No ones perfect. And anyone who knows me personally knows I suck at it in almost every way. Except with food and exercise. And if you see me, you know it works.

Good luck.

NYTimes: No, You Do Not Have to Drink 8 Glasses of Water a Day

But no one will listen. Everyone wants to believe in magic, even when the magic is funded by the bottled water industry. This lack of critical thinking by the public leads to so many contradictory ideas.


There is no science behind a formal, one-size-fits-all requirement of daily water consumption.

“ Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see. ” – Arthur Schopenhauer