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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Which Comes First, Cardio or Weights?

Do you find it confusing to make sense of all the health information floating around out there?

If so, don't feel bad, there's a good reason for that. First, the information changes quickly, second, the media often does a poor job of interpreting research accurately. Even the most intelligent, well-read individuals can end up having serious misconceptions about fitness and nutrition facts.

Take my own mother, for instance, who happens to be one of the smartest persons I know. She often has slightly inaccurate beliefs about this stuff, like when she recently told me she's almost completely given up eating rice because it is so high in calories and replaced it with quinoa.

Huh? I tried to explain to her that rice and quinoa have comparable caloric values. Quinoa is higher in protein, but replacing rice with quinoa is not going to change anything from an energy intake perspective unless one finds quinoa more filling, and therefore eats less.

But I am sure she is not the only one who holds misconceptions about fitness, nutrition and health.

Fortunately, if you are looking for a source of information that will cut through the confusion and tell it to you straight, do I have the book for you! Written by Alex Hutchinson, PhD, who also writes a great weekly column for the Globe & Mail, Which Comes First, Cardio or Weights? is perfect for fitness/nutrition newbies and seasoned athletes alike.

The book contains chapters on:

1. Getting started in an exercise regime
2. Fitness gear
3. Exercise physiology
4. Cardio
5. Strength and power
6. Flexibility and core strength
7. Injuries and recovery
8. Exercise and aging
9. Weight management
10. Nutrition and hydration
11. Mind and body
12. The competitive edge

Alex does an excellent job of clearly explaining the latest research findings. He debunks many common myths about fitness and nutrition and provides a lot of useful information.

The book is available through Amazon.ca and Amazon.com and I highly recommend it for anyone interested in improving their knowledge about fitness and/or their health and physical performance.