In today's June 1, 2009 newsletter . . .

  • Male PMS (Pectoral Madness Syndrome)

  • Fish Oil & Omega-3

  • Discovering Fat-Burning Secrets from Sled Dogs

  • A Trip to the Nation's Fittest City

Male PMS (Pectoral Madness Syndrome)

I have never understood the current obsession with pectorals. I’m talking to guys now. I think it all got started when we began measuring a man's worth by how much he can bench press. I just don't get it. Of course, I don't get covering one’s body with tattoos, either. And that's also popular. I'm an ancient.

Maybe you don't think, as I do, that pectorals have become an obsession. Well, a recent article in the Sunday papers told about the large number of men actually getting chest implants. It makes you wonder. But don't get me wrong. A strong, well developed chest is fine as part of an athletic body. But paste a set of massive pectorals on guys who are otherwise either too skinny or they're fat and flabby and you've got some pretty strange looking people.

Guess I'm way out of step. I also think bench pressing is over-rated, even if it is the honest road to pectoral nirvana. For too many people it raises hell with their shoulders and they end up with chronic aches and pains. Moderation, of course, is the answer. But try preaching that message to guys with male PMS. It's weird. To me anyway. Still, not nearly as weird as getting implants.

Fish Oil & Omega-3

The value claims about some vitamins, minerals, and food sources have been called into question recently. However, there seems to be little debate in the medical field about the value of eating wild cold-water fish, or, if you don’t like fish, supplementing your diet with high quality fish oil.

In fact, health authorities worldwide recommend fatty fish and fish oil to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Moreover, the benefits don’t stop there. Fish oil and its omega-3 are beneficial to joints, hair, skin ... and the list goes on.

I take a fish oil supplement. So does my wife, Patty. And we give it to our dog, Tyra, on the recommendation of her veterinarian.

But we don't take just any fish oil. We want to be certain the fish oil we take is pure and mercury free. We learned that several very well-known physicians take the Vital Choice brand and recommend it to their patients. So we buy ours from Vital Choice too. Their fish oil comes from wild Sockeye Salmon from pristine Alaskan waters.

If you aren’t eating wild, cold-water fish regularly, ask your physician about supplementing your diet with fish oil capsules. To learn more about Vital Choice and fish oil benefits, click on the line below. They publish excellent science-backed dietary information.

Click for more info

Fat-Burning Secrets from Sled Dogs

I’m with Ben Stein when he says he has "an insane love of dogs." Since childhood, its been that way with me, too. Discover a good dog fact or story and I want to read it. And the following is a really good one.

Sled dogs, such as those in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, are under study. If you are an endurance athlete, a fitness buff, or a bodybuilder — you should find it interesting. In fact fascinating.

Sled dogs are the world’s greatest endurance athletes. Hands down. It seems they have a an innate, unique ability to flip an internal switch that acutely changes how they burn fat calories, allowing them to keep going and going and going with no obvious pain.

Figuring out how that mechanism works may have implications for human diabetics, those battling obesity, and, of course, human athletes. As I said, it’s fascinating information. But let Scientific American tell the story. They can do it far better than I could. It's a "must read." Go here.

A Trip to the Nation’s Fittest City

Would you have guessed that Washington D.C. is the fittest city in the U.S.? I wouldn’t have. Yet, according to a report from the American College of Sports Medicine, our nation’s capitol is number one. The list is based on personal factors, including . . .

  • the percentage of residents who smoke
  • are obese
  • get regular physical activity
  • eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day
  • have conditions such as diabetes and heart disease
. . . and on local resources, such as parks, farmers' markets, number of primary health care providers, and crime rates.

Data came from sources including the Centers for Disease Controls, U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the nonprofit Trust for the Public Land.

Next week, my wife, Patty, and three other teachers are taking a group of students to our nation’s fittest city to visit the Capitol, the Smithsonian, and the many historical landmarks and monuments.

So Patty will be away from our familiar gym. Of course, she could find a D.C. health club and pay a drop-in fee. But she doesn’t want to have to spend time going to and from a place to workout when there is so much they want to see and do.

What we did is work up a combo bodyweight/resistance band routine that is both effective and super-efficient. And her entire resistance band “gym” fits into a neat little carry-on bag, measuring approximately 12 x 12 inches.

These bands aren’t the flimsy little tube bands that offer little resistance to speak of. Instead, there are several sturdy bands offering varying degrees of difficulty. Combined with a few solid bodyweight exercises, she can get one heck of good workout. The bands work well anywhere. But for travel, they’re terrific!

See the ad below . . .

Click to see this amazing compact gym system

The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter is a free publication sent twice monthly to our subscribers. Our purpose is to provide honest and realistic fitness information for people age 50 and above.

Always consult with your physician before making dietary changes or starting an exercise program.

Your comments or questions are always appreciated.


Logan Franklin
The Gray Iron Fitness Newsletter