Estrogen In Plants; Not So Bad After All?

The information hi-way is a busy place with a lot of turns and dead ends. Sometimes the more you know the less you come to understand. On the subject of estrogen and how to either block it or avoid it in the foods we eat it appears the more you travel the road, murkier things become.

In a post titled blah blah, I had discussed some interesting things that I had found and posted it. I later came across even more info and decided to go back to the post and add this info in. I put the new info in red while keeping the original in white so the reader can see for themselves.

Well, now I have found even more info and I’m afraid that this info is in contradiction to the older info I posted. This really is a can of worms that I have gotten myself into here. I found this new info to be pretty interesting so I will proceed with  providing it

Why does the phytoestrogen from plants that we eat get the esteemed privlieg of getting first dibbs on the estrogen receptor sites in our bodies while the estrogen that our own body naturally produces gets the boot?? This article doesn’t explain that and I don’t think they even ever thought of this detail. Shouldn’t our own bodies be more willing on allowing the natural estrogen to bind readily with the receptor site before it allows some plant based estrogens from binding?

Digging deeper I found this info:

How do phytoestrogens act in the body?

There are many different ways that phytoestrogens may work in the body. The chemical structure of phytoestrogens is similar to estrogen, and they may act as mimics (copies) of estrogen. On the other hand, phytoestrogens also have effects that are different from those of estrogen.

Working as estrogen mimics, phytoestrogens may either have the same effects as estrogen or block estrogen’s effects. Which effect the phytoestrogen produces can depend on the dose of the phytoestrogen. The phytoestrogen can act like estrogen at low doses but block estrogen at high doses. Estrogen activates a family of proteins called estrogen receptors. Recent studies have shown that phytoestrogens interact more with some members of the estrogen receptor family, but more information is needed about how these receptors work, especially in breast cancer. Finally, phytoestrogens acting as estrogen mimics may affect the production and/or the breakdown of estrogen by the body, as well as the levels of estrogen carried in the bloodstream.

Phytoestrogens – acting differently from estrogen – may affect communication pathways between cells, prevent the formation of blood vessels to tumors or alter processes involved in the processing of DNA for cell multiplication. Which of these effects occur is unknown. It is very possible that more than one of them may be working. Also, the effects in various parts of the body may be different.

Hardcore Thought of The Day

  • Find your Energy, Explore your Strengths, Discover your Passion, Expand your Perspective, Understand your Beliefs, Choose your Attitude, Align your Behaviors, Challenge your Perception, Define your Success, Live your Value, State your Mission, Proclaim your Purpose, Think beyond mediocrity and think HARDCORE!

Kelcie Gahley

IFBB pro Kelcie Gahley is the 1st place winner of the 2013 NPC Emerald Cup. She came in 2nd place last year and 1st place in the NPC Vancouver USA Natural and Tanji Johnson Classic. She has become the youngest at 20 years old to go pro with this big win.



How to stretch and warm up for Deadlifts and Squats

Reblogged from

How to stretch and warm up for Deadlifts and Squats

It’s CRUCIAL to warm up and stretch properly before and after heavy compound lifts like deadlifts and squats.

Deadlifting without proper warm up and stretching WILL make you more prone to injury and also reduce your dynamic flexibility. Why is flexibility improtant for lifting heavy ass weight? Because a tight muscle may lead to bad mobility, which can lead to bad form, which can lead to lifting less weight than you should and also make it easier to injure yourself.

Cardio Warmup

Before deadlifting and before any strenuous workout, you should ALWAYS do 5-15 minutes of moderate cardio to get your blood flowing, your muscles loosened up and your joints lubricated. A light jog, a brisk walk with the treadmill slightly elevated, a bit on the elliptical or even the stationary bike will do the job. No need to be out of breath at the end!

Dynamic Stretching vs Static Stretching

You always want to do DYNAMIC stretching pre-workout and STATIC stretching post-workout. So forget what you learned in gym class because studies have shown that static stretching pre-workout can actually decrease your strength, muscle stability and increase your risk of injury.

Some weight lifters prefer not to stretch at all before lifting but the general consensus is you SHOULD stretch before lifting heavy.

Dynamic Stretches (also called Mobility Drills)

Check out Joe DeFranco’s Agile 8 for a great lower body  mobility drill. It contains both static and dynamic drills to improve lower body and hamstring flexibility.
Here are the dynamic drills you should do before lifting:

Correct way to do Static Stretches

  1. Always post work out.
  2. Only when your body is warmed up
  3. Foam Roll two to three times a week prior to static stretching. (  How to Foam Roll )
  4. Gradually apply stretch, hold for 30 seconds, slowly release stretch

The  main muscles you need to stretch:

  • Hamstrings (crucial for deadlifting)
  • Quads & Hip Flexors
  • Chest
  • Calves
  • Glutes
  • Biceps and Triceps (if they feel tight)

Most people who sit often have tight hamstrings. Deadlifting can make them even tighter. How do you tell if your hamstrings are too tight? Lie flat on your back and raise one leg straight up towards the ceiling without bending your knee while keeping the other leg flat on the ground. If your leg is not at near a 90 degree angle to the floor (ie., it’s not perpendicular to the ground), your hamstrings are too tight.

Weight Pyramiding

When working with heavy weights for any lift (Squat, bench press, deadlift, etc), as a beginner you always want to slowly build up your weight while you decrease your reps. This helps prepare your nervous system and your joints for the stress of lifting heavy weights. Going for your 1 rep max right after walking into the gym is a recipe for disaster.

A basic pyramid for someone who maxes out at 225lbs:
135lbs x 5. Rest 1-3 minutes.
155lbs x 4. Rest 1-3 minutes.
175 x 3. Rest 1-3 minutes
195 x 2. Rest 1-3 minutes.

Taylor a pyramid to your strengths and weaknesses. Obviously if your one rep max is 400 lbs you don’t need to be going up by 20 lbs each time. Also keep in mind the above is a very simple,  deadlift routine. Certain programs like Starting Strength or Strong Lifts advocate doing only one set of deadlifts a workout because in those programs you’re also doing squats on the same day and there is a lot of overlap in the muscles used. What your pyramid is like depends on your program and goals.
Some lifters like pyramid down as well. After lifting your 1RM, do a few reps of something like 80% of your 1RM and then lots of reps of 60%, or maybe even do it till exhaustion.


What applies to the professional bodybuilders, powerlifters and strongmen may not apply to you. The pros don’t always do everything by the book because they are extremely aware of their body and their abilities. For instance some deadlifters round their thoracic spine(upper back) during Deadlifting, this helps them keep the weight closer to their body when they lift it up. Should an amateur be doing that? No. Be careful with the mindset “he’s big, so I have to do what he does.”

Sweet Poison

LifeREACH Mind Body Fitness



Sugar is not only considered a highly addictive drug, but it is also a poison.  The dictionary defines as poison as “a substance, that when introduced into or absorbed by a living organism, causes death or injury, especially one that kills by rapid action even in a small quantity.”

Refined sugar is completely depleted of any and all nutrition, so it is dead and lacking vitamins and minerals.  It takes approximately three feet of sugar cane to make only one tablespoon of white sugar!  That means three feet of nutrients and fiber are lost to create one tablespoon of pure, refined carbohydrates or empty calories.

Before you sweeten your coffee or your homemade chocolate chip cookies with this dead, white poison, consider these seven points on how sugar wreaks havoc on your body.

1. Sugar Starves Your Cells of Oxygen

Without the presence of the depleted…

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What is the kneeling squat?

So what is the kneeling squat?


Set up:

I thought the best way to set up for the kneeling squat was to put the barbell in my Power Rack at around shoulder level from an upright kneeling position. I set the safety bars at the appropriate height and put a thick towel on the floor to support my knees. I crawled forward and loaded the bar on to my back. At heavier weights, I had a spotter (my wife) help put the bar on my back as the starting position is a bit awkward.


You sit on your knees, put the barbell on to your back, and squat so that your hamstrings make contact with your calves. You then explode back up and return to an upright kneeling position.

What is the kneeling squat used for?

It’s an assistance exercise thought to improve your squat and deadlift, by teaching aggressive hip extension and to help with glute activation. Many people nowadays have poor glute activation, due to the dominance of sedentary lifestyles (sitting at desks all day!). If you sit a lot, you probably have poor glute drive.

Beneficial to Olympic lifting?

If you’re an Olympic lifter, then I’m sure the kneeling squat may be very beneficial in improving your hip drive. Since the snatch and clean and jerk require explosive hip power, the kneeling squat mimics the full extension of those lifts.


Since I’ve only just started doing them, I don’t know what impact they’ll have on my lifts but I’m going to continue doing them for a few weeks and see what happens. If you’ve tried the kneeling squat exercise, I’d love to know how you find it?

Spinach and Coconut Noodles

The Kitchen Antics

Easily one of the simplest yet tasy meals around! I used frozen spinach, 2/3 chopped with cream and 1/3 plain spinach leaves, because that is what I had in the freezer this morning. Full leaves work too, but chop them before cooking otherwise you wont get a nice creamy texture. And I used rice noodles becaue they’re gluten free, but this would also probably work nicely with brown rice.

Spinach and Coconut Noodles

  • 150g frozen spinach
  • 80g rice noodle, medium size
  • 3tbsp coconut cream powder
  • 1tsp curry powder
  • salt to taste

Melt the spinach in a pot (with water if it is spinach leaves, without if it is spinach & cream). Put the coconut cream powder in another pot, add water, and cook the noodles in it. When everything is cooked, drain the noodles (and the spinach if you had added water) mix the two, add the salt and curry powder and…

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Powerlifting, a Review of it’s great history

History of Powerlifting

In the late 19th century, when weightlifting was just beginning to develop as a sport, there was a wide range of lifts. Many of them were novelties performed by the professional strong men who performed with circuses in Europe, in music halls in Great Britain, and on the vaudeville circuit in America.

The back press evolved into the bench press.

Other lifts were used primarily for training, but were sometimes included in competitions. Among them were the dead lift, the supine or back press, the deep knee bend, the belly toss, the wrestler’s bridge, the barbell curl, the one-arm swing, the upright row, the bent press, and the behind the neck press.

At the 1904 Olympics in St. Louis, there was an all-around dumbbell event in which competitors had to perform nine one-arm lifts, a single two-arm lift, and an optional lift. When the British Amateur Weight Lifting Association was founded in 1911, it listed 42 official lifts for which it would approve records.

During the 1920s, there were two national weightlifting organizations in the United States, the American Continental Weight-Lifter’s Association (ACWLA) and the Association Of Bar Bell Men (ABBM). They both recognized records for a wide variety of lifts, although some of them were relegated to exhibitions, not competitive events.

Beginning in 1920, though, Olympic weightlifting was limited to three lifts, the snatch, the press, and the clean and jerk. The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) became the national governing body for the sport in 1928 and began emphasizing only the Olympic lifts. All the others were lumped together as “odd lifts.”

Although banished from major competition, several of those odd lifts were important training tools for bodybuilders. They became generally known as strength lifts or powerlifts. Among them were the squat, the deadlift, and the back lift. As bodybuilding contests proliferated after World War II, they often included exhibitions of powerlifts. Those exhibitions sometimes turned into informal competitions. Occasionally, there were also challenge matches at a particular lift.

The AAU Takes Over

During the 1950s, Olympic weightlifting declined in the United States, while bodybuilding and powerlifting gained many new followers. As a result, the AAU began to reconsider its position. It took some time, though. In 1958, the AAU’s National Weightlifting Committee decided to begin recognizing records for odd lifts, provided they were made at sanctioned AAU meets.

A national powerlifting championship was tentatively scheduled for 1959, but it never happened. Instead, the first genuine national meet was held in September 1964 under the auspices of the York Barbell Company, Ironically, Bob Hoffman, the owner of York Barbell, had been a long-time adversary of powerlifting. But his company was now making powerlifting equipment to make up for the sales it had lost on Olympic-style equipment.

The AAU finally staged its first national championship in September of 1965. After several fits and starts, the bench press, squat, and deadlift had been selected as the championship powerlifts. The bench press and squat were relatively new versions of older lifts, the back or supine press and deep knee bend, respectively.

This early version of the squat used two wooden stanchions.

The back press had several variations. In essence, the lifter lay on his back and pressed the weight to arm’s length above the chest. There were various methods of getting the weight off the floor. The simplest was to rest the weight on a box so the lifter could reach over his head, grab the weight, and bring it to the chest before the upward press.

During the 1950s, the bench replaced the floor and, finally, a rack replaced the box. Now the lifter lay on the bench, took the weight from the rack and lowered it to his chest, paused, then pressed upward. The weight could then be placed back on the rack. This new technique was called the bench press.

The deep knee bend had become the squat, partly because of concerns that the knees could be seriously damaged. Originally, the lifter did an actual deep knee bend, until the buttocks nearly touched the floor. There were often repetitions involved. For example, in 1939 Harry Fields set an unofficial world record by doing 15 deep knee bends with 400 pounds of weight.

As with the back press, there was a problem with getting the weight off the floor, in this case onto the lifter’s shoulders and behind the neck.

Again, a rack came into use to hold the weight at a suitable level. For competition, the rules were changed to require only that the lifter lower the body until the top surface of the legs, at the hip joint, is lower than the top of the knees. With those changes, the deep knee bend had become the squat.

The dead lift, on the other hand, is a relatively simple move that required no changes. The lifter picks up the weight from the floor and stands erect, with knees straight. In competition, the weight must also be returned to the floor on a signal from the referee.

Modern Powerlifting

Led by the United States and Great Britain, the International Powerlifting Federation (IPF) was founded in 1973 and held the first world championships that year. That spurred the establishment of the European Powerlifting Federation in 1974.

In one form of the deadlift, the heels had to be kept together.

Since powerlifting is closely associated with bodybuilding and women had been competing as bodybuilders for years, the new sport was opened to them very quickly. The first U. S. national championships for women were held in 1978 and the IPF added women’s competition in 1979.

The Amateur Sports Act of 1978 required that each Olympic or potential Olympic sport must have its own national governing body by November of 1980. As a result, the AAU lost control of virtually every amateur sport, including powerlifting. The U. S. Powerlifting Federation was founded in 1980 as the new national governing body.

Powerlifting, like Olympic weightlifting, has long been associated with the use of anabolic steroids. During the 1980s, several other sanctioning bodies were established with an emphasis on drug-free competition.

Among those still in existence are the World Drug Free Powerlifting Federation (WDFPF); the World Powerlifting Congress (WPC); the Amateur World Powerlifting Congress (AWPC), which is the amateur wing of the WPC; the American Powerlifting Federation (APF), the U. S. affiliate of the WPC; the World Association of Benchers and Dead Lifters (WABDL), which sanctions single-lift competitions; the World Powerlifting Alliance (WPA); the Natural Athlete Strength Association (NASA); the World Powerlifting League (WPL); the World Powerlifting Organization (WPO); the USA Powerlifting Federation (USAPL); and the World Natural Powerlifting Federation (WNPF).

The IPF remains the major international governing body and is affiliated with the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Although not yet an Olympic sport, powerlifting is an official sport of the Paralympics, and the IPF is bound to follow the IOC’s drug testing procedures. Currently, the IFP has more than 70 member countries, while something over 20 countries belong to the WPC.