An innovative fitness blog helping people over 40 years of age to look & feel their best!
“I started this blog back in 2009 with the thought that what is popular and trendy in health and fitness is not always correct. In fact, a good percentage of the time individuals are just following the crowd and getting frustrated by not getting the results they want. “ – Mike Cola
The goal of this blog is to figure out what are the most advanced innovative ways to: improve your health, build a strong flexible body and maintain an optimal weight. Mike utilizes his 30 years of fitness training experience along with analyzing the latest research, to sift through the noise and find out what really works.
We will be uploading videos, writing articles and podcasting on a weekly basis. Make sure you Subscribe to Fitness Contrarian so you don’t miss anything. If you are new to this blog, start by reading Mike’s Ten Fitness Principals
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With all the bodybuilding and sport supplements on the market for the last 25 years, the only one that really works and does what it says it can do is creatine. I have read numerous studies over the years from the National Strength and Conditioning Association along with many other sources of research that has proven creatine to be a real enhancer of muscular strength and endurance.
It’s somewhat old news to be still talking about it but I have never come across a supplement that quickly makes you stronger and more muscular looking in a matter of days (…)
There are so many reasons why we should not shovel snow but sometimes you just have to. If you have tennis elbow or a bad back you need to be particularly careful when shoveling snow. I have had tennis elbow over the years and have hurt my back a number of times participating in extreme sports so I have learned how to move the snow without hurting myself.
How to Shovel Snow Pain Free:
First you need a good quality, lightweight snow shovel that fits your body. Go to the local hardware store and see what feels best for you. One of the worst things you can do is try to shovel your driveway with a small or digging shovel(…)
Finding high quality sources of protein does not have to be expensive. We all need at least .89 grams of protein per pound of lean muscle mass. If you are 150 pounds of lean muscle you need to eat 133 grams of protein per day. More protein may be needed if you’re an athlete or a bodybuilder training every day. For people on a budget; however, getting enough can be expensive if you don’t know the top sources of cheap protein.
Top 5 Affordable Sources of Protein
1- Whole eggs are first on my list. With 7 to 8 grams of protein per egg you can get 25 to 30 grams for less than a $1.50 (…)
Dieting and exercising over the holidays can be very challenging. I find the last two weeks of December to be the likeliest two weeks of the year to gain weight. Most people will gain about five pounds or more over the holiday season. We are all so busy and off our normal schedules. Eating right and finding the time to exercise is almost impossible for a number of us; therefore, this year follow my two-week holiday diet and exercise plan to avoid gaining weight over the holidays.
This plan will let you enjoy your favorite foods at holiday parties while eliminating calories at other times of the day so you won’t gain weight. You will be exercising for short periods first thing in the morning (…)
With all the joy and happiness the holidays can bring, it is also a very stressful time. Reducing stress during the holidays can be challenging. There are so many additional things to do such as shopping, hosting parties, going to parties, etc. Just being thrown off your normal schedule can be overwhelming.
How to Reduce Stress During the Holidays (…)
You have to cut down on sodium to have a healthy diet. Most people in America eat an average of 3,400 mg of sodium a day while the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) is less than 2,400 mg which is just about a teaspoon of table salt. I recommend you limit your sodium to no more than 1,500 mg per day and even less, if you have high blood pressure. I try to eat less than 1,000 mg of sodium per day.
Research has shown that reducing your sodium to less than 1,300 mg per day can reduce artery stiffness by up to 46 percent in just two weeks (…)
Finding the right gift for someone is never easy. To help you out this holiday season I decided to make up a list of my top 6 health and fitness gift ideas for the fitness enthusiast and athlete. Everything on the list I have personally used and recommend.
Top 6 Fitness Gift Ideas:
1-Bowflex Dumbbells are top on my list. A number of my personal training clients have them and they work great. One stack of weights go from 2.5 pounds up to 52 pounds while not taking up too much room. The exact model I recommend is the Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells. I looked around for the best price and found it on Amazon. In addition, I recommend you purchase the matching stand that goes with the dumbbells which is the Bowflex SelectTech 552 / 1090 Dumbbell Stand. Likewise, if you want to go all out, get the bench as well. The Bowflex SelectTech Adjustable Bench Series 3.1 is a good value. Anyone who is into resistance training will love this set up (…)
As a personal trainer I get calls all the time from women who say “I need to get skinny quick” or how can I “lose weight fast”. While I think it’s Ok to jump start your weight loss program and try to lose 10 pounds quickly by doing extreme things (like overly exercising) for the short term, I don’t recommend using this approach every time you need to reduce your weight. If you keep on gaining all the weight back that you just lost, you have to find a lifelong strategy to keep yourself lean and fit permanently.
Most adults know themselves and their relationship with food. Anyone who has been struggling with their weight over the years has tried a number of different approaches where some have worked but they always seem to keep gaining the weight back (…)
Resistance Band Exercises are a great way to workout at home, in the gym or when you’re on vacation. They are inexpensive, don’t take up any room in your suitcase or home and can be used in any room in your house, office or hotel. In some ways resistance bands can be more effective than free weights or machines for creating the optimal amount of resistance which is why I use them at the gym all the time instead of the more expensive popular equipment.
What makes the bands more effective then other forms of resistance to achieve a specific goal has to do with the properties of the elastic band. When the bands are stretched or elongated they produce more resistance (…)
Kids in school that consume food that was purchased from vending machines have a greater chance of having a lower quality diet. This can lead to being overweight, obese and more having health problems such as diabetes, and heart disease, according to a study from the University of Michigan Medical School.
The study also compared the USDA lunch program to school food stores (…)
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This is the strategy I teach my clients to have a 20-something body, regardless of their age. Plus get additional fitness tips via email!