Dan John: Wandering Weights, Issue # 291
Our Epic Journey Through All Things Heavy, Issue # 291
I hope you are safe and healthy. I am also hoping that this little weekly newsletter brings you some comfort and insights as we walk forward together.
For the past few weeks, I have been overdoing the Olympic lifts, especially the snatch. My warmup snatch complex is:
Hang Snatch (I hit the bottom of the squat to catch it)
Doing this for eights is 24 reps per round of squats. That adds up. Moreover, the positions as I land are not that perfect. So…my knees started barking at me. I had the same feeling I used to get with too many stadium steps, too many training miles and too many O lifts back in the 1970s.
But I NEED my complexes. So, I invented a new one.
Barking Knees Complex:
Snatch Grip RDL
Snatch Grip High Pull
Hang Power Snatch
I use the snatch grip and do sets of eights or fives. It is easy on the first round. Everything, I have noticed, that I have ever written is easy on paper.
I also did something my daughter, Lindsay, showed me. I took my results from 23andme and loaded up on to this website and got some interesting diet recommendations. Nothing crazy, but here is little Danny John’s best food for his DNA profile from the company, Genopalate:
Berries, avocados, bananas
Squash, pumpkins, peppers
Spinach, romaine, bok choy
Mint, parsley, bay leaves
Steaks, turkey bacon, chicken liver
Sardines, salmon, trout, oysters
Sweet potatoes, quinoa, peas
No options I would consider (Rice Pasta???)
Nuts and Seeds
Sunflower, walnut, chia
Sunflower, walnut, most oils
White beans, navy beans, lentils
Cottage, Swiss, others
No options I would consider (Chocolate soy milk?…C’mon, man!)
All the sugar free varieties
In addition, I discovered that I have the following things in my DNA:
Fast caffeine metabolizer
Slow alcohol metabolizer
Gluten sensitive (no shock there)
Again, I could have told you most of this information. Lindsay and I had a nice discussion about her issues with acne and a few other things and we both noted that, yup, certain foods make a lot of problems worse.
So, I shouldn’t eat those foods that bother me. I should focus on those that send me on my journey toward health and fitness. Remember, this information is for me. I have a lot of Neanderthal; I am a fast twitch monster with the asparagus pee smelling gene and my earlobes are not connected to my head.
Is this valuable? Anything that gets me to dial in my exercise, diet, recovery and life is worth it to me. I have far more yesterdays than tomorrows and I want to enjoy things. So, for me…yes.
This week on danjohnuniversity.com:
The Dardick, Maffetone, and DeVany workshop was so popular, Dan decided to do one on Dick Notmeyer as well. If you enjoy learning about Dan’s history, this is a great one.
Here’s the link to Episode 46 of the podcast.
Dan tells me there are some new essays on the way, so be sure to check the site regularly for updates. We’ll keep the content coming!
Have a great week!
Pat and I had a fascinating talk about “what if you woke up fat?” It was a good discussion with some interesting insights. Enjoy.
Zipping around the internet this week, I found a lot of things about the relationship between diet and life issues. This seems to be a common thing recently. This article would not be a surprise to most readers of WW.
Inflammatory molecules, called cytokines, that are produced by body fat can spark inflammation elsewhere in the body. Inflammation increases the risk of depression and other diseases by harming the lining of the blood vessels. Meanwhile, healthy fats increase the production of proteins called neurotrophins, which “act like manure to the brain as they promote the growth of new brain cells in the hippocampus,” Jacka says. “There is a strong link between the quality of people’s diets and the size of their hippocampus.”
Cryan says these studies point to the growing recognition of the importance of diet—along with the other old standbys, exercise and sleep—in regulating mood. In fact, despite feeling cautious about the early nature of this line of research, he says he would recommend depressed people try eating better to see if it helps.
Indeed, the real connection between diet and mental health might be closer to the work of a different 19th-century figure: The French lawyer Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, who wrote, in 1825, “Dis-moi ce que tu manges, je te dirai ce que tu es.”
Translation: Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.
I have more and more respect for walking (rucking, hiking, whatever) as a total body fat loss demon. I have discovered, with my group, that lifting before walking makes things even better. This is a simple two points on optimizing walking for weight loss.
When are the best times to walk for fat loss?
In the morning before your first meal.
After lifting weights -or- weights and HIIT.
Sleep is the best recovery tool. Sadly, with the events of the world, many of us are struggling lately. This is a great article on sleep. I do several of these…including this one.
Turn on White Noise
I’ve had this little machine in my bedroom for years, but I only use it sporadically if noise from outside is bothering me. But for this week, I committed to turning it on (volume on high!) every night. Research shows that the whirring noise can help improve your quality of sleep by providing a sort of “anti-noise” that drowns out other sounds.
Buy. One. Now. After a few nights, I was addicted to the soothing hum, and now I can’t imagine sleeping without it. You don’t need to spring for the pricey machine either—you can just download this White Noise App, which is also a godsend when you travel. (I recommend the “Airplane Noise” mode, unless the sound of a thunderstorm or cat purring is particularly soothing for you.)
In the past few months, I have really begun to understand the appeal of canned seafood. This is an interesting article: This is Summer’s Most Unexpected, Underrated Ingredient
When it comes to the warmer months, eating healthy typically tends to fall top of mind—and with the abundance of fresh produce available, it can be fairly easy to do so. But when we find ourselves in the dog days of summer and unappeased with the idea of spending hours perched in front of the stove, a lighter and less effort-inducing meal is one we can definitely get behind.
Enter sardines: An arguably elusive fare that is often (sadly) overlooked—their close, and inaccurate, association to anchovies may be one reason for this, the questionability of how to consume them, another. That is where we come in, with a handful of easy recipes and tips that will help elevate the canned staple.
That should be enough for this week. Stay safe and keep walking forward. And, until, next week, keep on lifting and learning.
For your quick access link, here’s Dan’s full OTP page, including all of his articles, books, lectures and videos, all in one place.
The Sword in the Stone, Part 144
“Owls usually prefer to sit down every hundred yards.”
The Wart copied Archimedes in zooming up toward the branch which they had chosen. He began to fall just as they were above it, clutched it with his furry feet at the last moment, swayed backward and forward twice, and found that he had landed successfully. He folded up his wings.
While the Wart sat still and admired the view, his friend proceeded to give him a lecture about flight in birds. He told how, although the swift was so fine a flyer that he could sleep on the wing all night, and although the Wart himself had claimed to admire the way in which rooks enjoyed their flights, the real aeronaut of the lower strata—which cut out the swift—was the plover. He explained how plovers indulged in aerobatics, and would actually do such stunts as spins, stall turns and even rolls for the mere grace of the thing. They were the only birds which made a practice of slipping off height to land—except occasionally the oldest, gayest and most beautiful of all the conscious aeronauts, the raven. Wart paid little or no attention to the lecture, but got his eyes accustomed to the strange tones of light instead, and watched Archimedes from the corner of one of them. For Archimedes, while he was talking, was absent-mindedly spying for his dinner. This spying was an odd performance.
A spinning top which is beginning to lose its spin slowly describes circles with its highest point before falling down. The leg of the top remains in the same place, but the apex makes circles which get bigger and bigger toward the end. This is what Archimedes was absent-mindedly doing. His feet remained stationary, but he moved the upper part of his body round and round, like somebody trying to see from behind a fat lady at a cinema, and uncertain which side of her gave the best view. As he could also turn his head almost completely round on his shoulders, you may imagine that his antics were worth watching.
“What are you doing?” asked the Wart.
Wart seems to be a better student during hands-on work than listening to lectures. Archimedes is continuing the discussion of flying and, well, Wart is spinning his head around.
Archimedes is picking up on the topic we had been listening to in Merlyn’s room. It’s interesting about flying; pilots, in my experience, can’t talk about it enough. Now that our characters are taking a break from flying, the conversation turns back to the art of flying.
Of course, Wart’s head is spinning. Literally.
Archimedes is looking for something. What he finds is going to give us an interesting moral discussion. This discussion is going to take us deep into the entire Canon and world that T. H. White has built for us.
DanWandering Weights is published each Wednesday by On Target Publications
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