So sick of products claiming to be healthy, when they clearly are not

I saw a commercial yesterday where two trim ladies walk into an apartment owned by one of them. Both in workout gear and acting exhausted as it was apparent they just got back from a tough workout of some sort. The owner goes to the fridge and gets two bowls of strawberries while the other lays down on the floor….apparently still suffering from the workout. The one getting the strawberries puts some whip cream on top – Reddi Whip – and serves. The one on the floor is shocked! How could you ruin your workout with whip cream?! The other tells her there is only 15 calories per serving. All is good in the world – belly up!

First, according to Reddi Whip’s website there are 15 calories per two tablespoons of cream and the amount they put on those strawberries in the commercial is more than two tablespoons.

Second, what’s actually in it. We all know – or you SHOULD KNOW – that calories are not the most important thing on the label, the ingredients are the most important thing. When looking at the Reddi Whip website for ingredients the first thing I found was this:

Product formulations and packaging may change. For the most current information regarding a particular product, please refer to the product package.

That doesn’t give me a sense of relief. I read this to mean that at any point in time you might get a bottle of Reddi Whip and it might have different ingredients versus the last bottle I purchased. Who knows what is in it?? Who cares?! It tastes good and only has 15 calories!! On the front page of their website it does have a picture of ingredients and it is highlighting that the first ingredient is cream, which is good. But the third ingredient is sugar and so is the fourth (corn syrup). It also contains something called “Mono- and diglycerides carrageenan”. That doesn’t sound like food.

Why not just eat the strawberries and call it good? I will never forget the story told in It Starts with Food when the Hartwig’s recall a seminar in which someone asked if they could put a sugar substitute on their strawberries to make them sweeter. What’s sweeter in nature than strawberries?! Strawberries are about as sweet as anything in this world, outside of pure sugar. If you eat a bowl of strawberries and think you need to sweeten them up with something your palate is gone and you need a serious re-education on food and what is good for you.

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Next up is my boss. He is trying to lose 10 or 15 pounds. He isn’t a big man by any means and I am guessing he can’t lose much more than 10 or 15 pounds, but he is too concerned about avoiding fat. I have tried to educate him in round about ways over the past year or so, but he continually brings in junk that he thinks is healthy, but it isn’t.

Yesterday was the kicker. He brought these into work and was happy because they were “fish” and had “zero fat”.

Again, what’s in them? This proved to be difficult for this product. The website doesn’t have the information and searching on Google took more work than most products – a lot more. If you can’t find the ingredients online then the manufacturer is definitely trying to hide something. ABORT!! ABORT!!! AVOID!!! ABORT!!

According to Wikipedia:

Crab sticks (imitation crab meat, seafood sticks, krab) are a form of kamaboko, a processed seafood made of finely pulverized white fish flesh (surimi), shaped and cured to resemble leg meat of snow crab or Japanese spider crab.[1]

So it isn’t crab? It’s just white fish? Then why is it pink? They must add something to it. I can’t find any ingredient information on what is in these things. I did find an article on sfgate.com about if they are healthy are not. The article leads off with:

Imitation crab is made with a type of fish called surimi. Manufacturers add fillers, flavoring and color to surimi to mimic the taste, texture and color of real crab legs. Imitation crab meat is a versatile ingredient that costs far less than the real thing. The meat can be used in many dishes and contains certain nutrients that are essential in a healthy diet. However, imitation crab does have nutritional drawbacks that decrease its overall nutritional value.

But then in the second paragraph goes on to say:

Imitation crab is low in calories and fat, which makes it an appropriate addition to your diet if you are watching your weight or trying to shed excess pounds. Choosing low-calorie and low-fat foods is also a healthy way to protect yourself from chronic illnesses such as heart disease.

I stopped reading. The author obviously still thinks the food pyramid is valid.

I wouldn’t eat a “food” that doesn’t list it’s ingredients anywhere on the internet. It isn’t just crab, that much is obvious, so what’s in it? I’m not willing to find out.

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Can anything be taken from the big competitions?

2015 OC Throwdown Female Podium

I’m so freaking excited for the CrossFit Open…then Regionals and then the Games. Can. Not. Wait. Thankfully, to tide me over a bit, there are a LOT of big competitions involving big name CrossFit athletes this month.

Two weekends ago the OC Throwdown happened (along with more bad press for the programmers).
Just this past weekend the Wodapolooza in Miami went down.
And this coming weekend the East Coast Championship will take place.

Here are some of the names who competed (these are just the names I recognize from watching Regionals and the Games the past few years):

OCT: Gerald Sasser, Brent Fikowski, Jon Pera, Kenny Leverich, Lindsey Valenzuela, Mandi Janowitz, Amanda Goodman, Alessandra Pichelli and Kris Clever competing individually with names like Neal Maddox, Amanda Allen, Chyna Cho, Andrea Ager and Becky Conzelman on teams.

Wodapalooza: EZ Muhammad, Matt Chan (first time competing since the 2013 Games), Garret Fisher, Jeff Evans, Will Moorad, Daniel Tyminski, Spencer Hendel, Cole Sager, Jordan Troyan, Noah Olsen, Gretchen Kittelberger, Ager, Dnaielle Sidell, Dani Horan, Natalie Newhart, Margaux Alvarez, Lauren Fisher, Emily Bridgers, Katrin Davidsottir and Sam Briggs. On the teams there was Wes Piatt, Pera, Nick Urankar, Ben Garard, Sasser, Adrian Conway, Brennan Fjord, Marcus Hendren, Graham Holmberg, Ben Smith, Maddox and on the girls teams we had Janowitz, Tiffany Hendrickson, Miranda Oldroyd, Katy Hogan, Clever and Stacie Tovar….whew! That’s a LOT of great CrossFitters.

This weekend the athletes scheduled to attend ECC are: Julie Foucher, Fisher (Garrett and Lauren), Dan Bailey, Scott Panchik, Kittelberger, Davidsdottir, Paul Tremblay, Tommy Hackenbruck, Muhammad, Lauren Brooks, Hogan, Talayna Fortunato (although I think she has a broken finger), Valenzuela, Olsen, Tovar, Tyminkski, Hendel, Christy Adkins, Bridgers, Clever, Austin Malleolo, Sager, James Hobart, Annie Thorisdottir, Val Vobril, Briggs, Mat Fraser, Alvarez, Evans, Becca Voigt, Leverich, Elisabeth Akinwale and Michelle Letendre. Another HUGE list of names. …oh and two guys named Chris Spealler and Rich Froning.

Between Wodapalooza and the ECC we have to have most of the top 10 finishers from the Games last year.

With all of these big names competing – and competing against each other – is there anything we can use to predict the 2015 CrossFit Games season? I would like to present a few things. First up, the ladies: Continue reading

CrossFit wins again – Broken Skull Challenge

Tommy Hackenbruck, 2014 individual Games competitor, 2012 and 2013 team Games winner on Hack’s Pack (and I’m pretty sure he competed at the Games as an individual in 2011 and prior years) won the Broken Skull Challenge last season on the Country Music Channel.

This might be old news to some as this was last season, but I just found out about it so I’m blogging about it. The obstacle course at the end screams CrossFit and it showed. Here is the link: http://www.cmt.com/videos/steve-austins-broken-skull-challenge-109-last-man-standing/1730484/full-episode.jhtml

Pretty refreshing to see how humble he is, especially if you watch a lot of the episodes as there egotistical jackasses on the show (men and women). Hackenbruck just went about his business and won. Class.

About 9 months of following OPT/OPEX – improvement?

I started following the Being programming from OPT (now known at OPEX) on April 21st, 2014. Now that it has been a solid 10+ months of following OPT I thought it would be fun (for me) to see if I have gotten better and stronger.

On April 21st I found my 1 rep max front squat – 250 pounds
I just did 245×3 and 255×2 two days ago. My max front squat was set at 280 on November 6th
30 pound gain

On April 22nd I found my max push press – 225 pounds
According to my records it’s been since June 12th since I went for a max push press and it was 230
5 pound gain
(Tested my PP last night and got 235)

On April 25th I found my max close-grip bench press – 240 pounds
On January 8th I did 265×4 for close grip bench press. I have 300 pounds as my max from July 22nd
60 pound gain
(Tested CGBP this morning and got 315)

On April 28th I found my max clean and jerk – 195 pounds
I set a new C&J PR on December 20th at 235 pounds
40 pound gain

On May 2nd I found my max power clean – 210 pounds
I just power cleaned 230 this morning and my PR is now 235…and have been close a few times with 240
25 pound gain

On May 22nd I found my max weighted pullup – 55 pounds
It has been a long time since I did these, I feel like I could get 60+ pounds
Unsure
(Tested weighted pullup last night and got 75)

On May 24th I found my max split jerk – 225 pounds
On December 23rd I found a new PR at 250 pounds
25 pound gain

On June 3rd I found my max back squat – 260 pounds
On August 8th I squatted 300, but it’s been a while since I have done that much, but I got 275 just last week
40 pound gain

On June 6th I found my max press – 195 pounds
On June 19th I pressed 205
10 pound gain

On June 14th I found my max snatch – 170 pounds
My max snatch on record is 185 now and I just did 170 for a double this week
15 pound gain

On April 26th I did 3 rounds for time of 15 deadlift at 185 pounds, 15 ring dips and 20 box jumps (24 inch box) and that took me 8:45
I retested this on January 3rd and completed in 7:11

On May 31st I had a WOD with C2B and I noted that if I could link C2B I would have completed it faster
This week I did 9 C2B unbroken and that was after doing 1, 2, 3…7, 8 unbroken first

Since ever I haven’t been able to do a muscle-up
I finally got one this weekend and have done at least a few every day since

I have set PR’s in Fran (4:18), Helen (10:24), Jackie (8:03) and Grace (1:49) in the past 10 months.

I would call this a successful program. Now that I did this I need to test my press, push press, weighted pullup and close-grip bench press tonight.