The efficacy of intermitting fasting for weight loss by Chris Graham

[Chris Graham is a graduate student at The University of Texas at Tyler and is currently studying Kinesiology. He is currently a sport performance intern at Athletic Lab.] Intermittent fasting (IF) has been popularized in the recent years as a method of weight loss and there are many people who claim to have found success using this method. What exactly is IF, and is it an effective and sustainable method to achieve weight loss? First off, IF is the practice of not consuming food for an extended period of time (typically 12+ hours) which is called your “fasting” time. This is followed by a “feast” time where you can eat ad libitum. There are a variety of ways to accomplish this, but one of the most common is to alternate fast and feast days for an extended period (3-8 weeks). In a recent review comparing IF and caloric restriction in overweight and obese individuals, Varaday (2011) found that both diets had similar results on weight loss 4-8% from IF and 5-8% from caloric restriction. However, in the IF studies 10% of the weight loss was from fat free mass compared to 25% in the caloric restriction studies (Varaday, p. e599). This retention of more fat free mass compared to regular caloric restriction proved to be more beneficial in improving body composition, and may be a result of average HGH increases of 1,300% in women, and nearly 2,000% in men during a 24-hour fast (Intermountain Medical Center, 2011). This spike of HGH protects your current muscle mass while also stimulating the breakdown of fat cells. In a separate study examining the effects of IF in resistance trained individuals, one group was assigned a “time restricted feeding [...]

By | February 16th, 2017|Nutrition Info|0 Comments

Mike Young presents at 3rd Annual SMI Strength & Conditioning Symposium

Athletic Lab's Dr. Mike Young presented on "Developing Physical Capacities for Speed and Power" at the 3rd Annual SMI Strength & Conditioning Symposium. The symposium was hosted by Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC and featured presenters from UNC Charlotte, Strong Rock Christian School, Wofford College and Newbury College. If you are interested in having Dr. Young or any other member of the Athletic Lab staff speak privately or at an event please contact us for details.

By | February 16th, 2017|News|0 Comments

Common Injuries in CrossFit and Methods of Prevention by Brandon Gremillion

[Brandon is a student at the University of Mount Olive majoring in Exercise Science. He is currently an Athletic Development Intern at Athletic Lab.] CrossFit is an exercise phenomenon that has sparked interest in many people and gyms across the nation. CrossFit was designed with the goal to, “build a program that would best prepare trainees for any physical contingency-prepare them not only for the unknown but for the unknowable as well” (Glassman, 2007). This sounds pretty good, right? It gets even better with the fact that CrossFit offers competitions on a reginal, national, world scale, and of course on a personal scale. As with any form of exercise there will be some downsides to a program; for CrossFit this is the gained reputation for its tendency to cause injuries. The reasons for injury in CrossFit are often a combination of poor technique combined with heavy loading. The overuse of a muscle can also lead directly to injury in an individual. Common injuries include but are not limited to the following: shoulder, low back injuries, knees, wrist, elbow, neck, chest, and foot injuries (Weisenthal, Beck, Maloney, DeHaven, & Giordano, 2014). Shoulder and low back injuries consume the majority of CrossFit related injuries. The common injuries of the shoulder include subacromial impingement, labrum tears, and rotator cuff tears (see Figure 1, 2, & 3 for common injury sites). The shoulders are mostly injured due to a result of a gymnastic movements performed during training (Weisenthal, Beck, Maloney, DeHaven, & Giordano, 2014). Examples of gymnastic movements commonly seen in CrossFit would be muscle ups and pull ups. A technique commonly performed during muscle ups and pull ups is “kipping” which if done incorrectly can severely damage the upper [...]

By | February 15th, 2017|Training Info|0 Comments

Low Bar vs. High Bar Squat by Zach Chokr

[Zachary Chokr is a senior at North Carolina State University majoring in Psychology, minoring in Sports Science, and a Certified Personal Trainer under the National Academy of Sports Medicine. He is currently an Athletic Development Intern at Athletic Lab.] The squat has biomechanical and neuromuscular similarities to a wide range of athletic movements. Thus, it is one of the most frequently used exercises in the field of strength and conditioning; and is a core exercise designed to enhance athletic performance. In addition, it is an indispensable component of competitive weightlifting and powerlifting that is regarded as a cardinal test of lower-body strength (Schoenfeld, 2010, p. 3497). For some reason, the first question ‘gym bros’ always seem to address is how much someone can bench press, but is that really defiant of your strength? There is no greater love-hate relationship than that of leg day; waking up in the morning with your legs so sore that you are forced to waddle helplessly like a penguin. But hey, on the bright side it shows you’re working hard and I commend you for that. I promise, the more you do it, the easier it becomes. On the more technical side, once you are familiar with the back squat, there are variations that can be performed to adjust the angles and torques placed on the joints that affect the force applied to the low back, legs, and hip musculature by shifting the location of the bar on the back which can provide specific advantages to your personal goals. By changing the location of where the bar sits on your back, you are also changing the bar’s center of gravity and where the load is placed through the body which [...]

By | February 14th, 2017|Training Info|0 Comments

Lab Rats: Date Night Edition

Have you and your significant other been wanting to go out with just the two of you or get together with some friends for a night out? Use this Lab Rats get-together as an opportunity to know that your kids are getting in some activity, a quality snack, and a movie with friends. The Lab Rats program offers kids the opportunity to develop basic physical competencies and general fitness in a fun and engaging environment. The goal is to empower children and promote a healthy lifestyle with physical activity. The class is designed to be challenging and fun with just the right amount of competitiveness. Here are a few important details: When: Friday February 24th @ 6:30 - 9:00pm Duration: 60 minutes of activity; 90 minutes of movies Ages: 4-9 years old Cost: $20 for the first child in the family; $12 for each additional child. A maximum of 12 children will be allowed to attend. We will provide a healthy snack after the activity for each child. Contact a staff member if you're interested in having your children attend.  

By | February 13th, 2017|News|0 Comments

Athletic Lab supports Special Olympics NC

For the fifth consecutive year, Athletic Lab will support local Special Olympics athletes in their quest for success in sports. Athletic Lab has provided training and facility access for the athletes of Special Olympics North Carolina (SONC) as well as fund raised for the organization. This year, Athletic Lab will host SONC on Fridays at 3pm from March 17 through May 26th. The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.

By | February 13th, 2017|News|0 Comments

Save Big with Athletic Lab’s Family Plan

Effective immediately, Athletic Lab is pleased to offer a new and updated Family Plan. The plan is designed to provide an affordable way for entire families to train at Athletic Lab and take advantage of all our group service offerings. This membership allows adults to attend Performance Fitness (including Cary CrossFit) classes. Youth and high school athletes will have access to Scholastic group training classes. Children will have access to our Lab Rats program. The family plan purchases 36 total sessions that can be divided across as many as 4 individuals over the course of the month. For a family of 2 parents and 2 children this plan is as much as 40% off the combined cost of individual plans. Here are the details of the membership: $399.95 / month with a 3 month commitment An additional 10 sessions (and one family member) may be added to the membership for $74.95 / month Individuals may be any combination of adults and / or kids living under the same household (proof of residency may be required) Membership entitles the family to 36 total visits each month These sessions can be used / distributed between as many as 4 people at the discretion of the family Children in grades 2 through 6 may join the Lab Rats program Youth in grades 7 through 12 may join our Scholastic Sports Performance group training classes Adults may join any of our Performance Fitness classes (including Cary CrossFit) Unused sessions do not roll over to subsequent months No refunds or accounts holds will be granted Payment must be made automatically by bank draft Your account will be billed monthly No additional discounts may be applied If you’re interested in taking advantage of this amazing offer please contact [...]

By | February 8th, 2017|News|0 Comments

Setting Realistic Goals: Yo-Yo Dieting and Post-Starvation Obesity by Carlyn Waffa

[Carlyn Waffa is a senior at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is majoring in Exercise and Sport Science, and a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer. She is currently an Athletic Development Intern at Athletic Lab.] An athlete’s metabolism, or their physiological capacity to transform chemical energy in food (kcal) to other types of usable energy in the body, is an adaptable mechanism that adjusts based on substrate availability and imposed physical demands. In athletes, weight cycling is a common phenomenon. Just like a yo-yo oscillates up and down, an athlete’s weight may go up and down in the same fashion, as an athlete’s weight frequently fluctuates between “in-season” and “off-season” training schedules. Weight loss phases are achieved from a caloric deficit, which may be the result of increased exercise or caloric restriction – or a combination of the two. Nonetheless, quick-fix, short-term methods of weight-loss are not employed without consequence. Recent research suggests a causal link between the number of times an athlete cyclically loses and regains weight and a higher percentage of body fat later in life (Saarni, 2006). Oscillating weight loss and gain wreaks havoc on an athlete’s metabolism, and the success rate of long-term weight loss from yo-yo dieting is painfully low. In fact, while dieting may work for an athlete to “make weight” in the short term, cyclical weight loss and regain is detrimental to weight control in the long term – and may even predispose an athlete to obesity later in life (Saarni, 2006). Dieting can create a caloric deficit, or a negative energy balance, within the body. This is a less-than ideal situation from a biological perspective, as the human body naturally [...]

By | February 8th, 2017|Nutrition Info|2 Comments

The Importance of Isometrics in Preventing Injury by Brandon Gremillion

[Brandon is a student at the University of Mount Olive majoring in Exercise Science. He is currently an Athletic Development Intern at Athletic Lab.] It appears now that eccentric training is thought to be most effective in reducing the risk of injury to athletes. In a study of hamstring strains it is stated that “biomechanical observations suggest that eccentric contraction is a necessary condition for a hamstring strain injury during running and this claim is strengthened by the lack of strain injuries in concentrically biased sports, such as swimming and cycling” (Opar, Williams, and shield, 2012). Eccentric training improves the amount of force that a muscle can absorb which makes it a clear benefit to preventing injuries in athletes. If you have heard of Cal Dietz method to tri-phasic training you will know that every muscle action has three phases: eccentric, isometric, and concentric. An eccentric action occurs when the “proximal and distal muscle attachments move away from one another” (Verkhoshansky & Siff, 2009). An isometric action occurs when the “proximal and distal muscle attachments do not move relative to each other” (Verkhoshansky & Siff, 2009). A concentric action occurs when the “proximal and distal muscle attachments move towards each other” (Verkhoshansky & Siff, 2009). Training a muscle through a full range of motion is typically the best way to see improvement throughout the entire muscle. This just makes sense because if you are using the entire muscle then the entire muscle will become stronger. However there may still be a need to focus on each phase of the muscle action during workouts. “Most muscle strains occur in an eccentric contraction and are affected by muscle strength and contraction velocity” (Liu, Garrett, Moorman, & Yu, 2012). [...]

By | February 7th, 2017|Training Info|0 Comments

Early AM Senza & Open Gym Added to Schedule

Athletic Lab is happy to announce we will be adding 2 new Senza Classes to our Performance Fitness schedule. Senza is our 45 minute twist on traditional bootcamp training. Senza is an Italian word that translates to 'without' which is fitting for the simplistic and non-threatening format of the class. Sessions focus on bodyweight, medicine ball and light kettlebell exercises without touching a barbell, doing complicated weightlifting exercises or training in the competitive atmosphere that many of our other Performance Fitness classes have. Senza classes will be added on Tuesday and Thursday at 5:15 am beginning February 21st. Open gym will also be available during this new time slot. Class: Senza & Open Gym Start Date: February 21 Days: Tuesdays & Thursdays Time: 5:15-6 am Accompanying our new Senza class times is the new option to purchase Senza only punchcard memberships. Senza punchcards can now be purchased in 10 ($94.95) and 20 ($169.95) use packages.  

By | February 7th, 2017|News|0 Comments