Unknown Tool To Improve Your Strength, Muscles and Overall Recovery: Orthostatic Testing

Orthostatic testing  is the difference between the heart rates at supine rest and at standing position. For example, if the average heart rate in a lying position is 56 and at standing 80, the orthostatic heart rate is 24 bpm.

More info at: https://www.polar.com/en/smart-coaching/orthostatic-test

Athletes are often under a lot of pressure to perform well regularly. This pressure can result in the athlete overtraining and/or becoming stressed. The Orthostatic Heart Rate Test is used to monitor the athlete’s state of health.

Required Resources
To perform the Orthostatic Heart Rate Test, you require

Stopwatch
Assistant

How to conduct the test
The athlete lies down and rests for at least 15 minutes
The assistant records the athlete’s pulse rate (bpm) – R1
The athlete stands up
15 seconds later the assistant records the athlete’s pulse rate (bpm) – R2
The assistant records the difference between R1 and R2

Assessment
To obtain your Orthostatic Heart Rate please enter R1 and R2 and then select the calculate button.

If the difference is greater than 15 to 20 beats then it is probable that the athlete has not recovered from the previous days training, is under stress or the onset of a possible cold. The athlete should consider adjusting their training to allow the body to recover.

Alternative Approach
Perform the test as above over 14 days and record your OHR for each day. Review the 14 values and determine a typical range.

Example: An athlete’s 14 OHR values are: 7, 7, 9, 8, 9, 8, 9, 7, 7, 9, 8, 8, 10, 8

7 – 4 off
8 – 5 off
9 – 4 off
10 -1 off
A typical range for this athlete’s OHR is 7 to 9 bpm. If the athlete finds the OHR for a specific day is greater than 9 then review the planned day’s training and consider reducing the load and/or volume of work.

A value above the typical range could indicate the onset of a cold or the body has not recovered from the previous day’s training. Other factors may cause a raised OHR, like a disturbed night, so review the previous 24 hours and see if there was something else that might have contributed to the raised OHR.

Analysis
Analysis of the result is by comparing it with the results of previous tests. It is expected that, with appropriate recovery between each test, the analysis would indicate an improvement.

Target Group
This test is suitable for anyone but not for individuals where the test would be contraindicated.

Reliability
Test reliability refers to the degree to which a test is consistent and stable in measuring what it is intended to measure. Reliability will depend upon how strict the test is conducted and the individual’s level of motivation to perform the test. The following link provides a variety of factors that may influence the results and therefore the test reliability.

Validity
Test validity refers to the degree to which the test measures what it claims to measure and the extent to which inferences, conclusions, and decisions made based on test scores are appropriate and meaningful. This test provides a means to monitor the effect of training on the athlete’s physical development.

Advantages
Minimal equipment required
Simple to set up and conduct
Can be conducted almost anywhere
Disadvantages
Assistant required to administer the test

Source: https://www.brianmac.co.uk/hrtest.htm

I remember reading in a Flex magazine years ago as an 11 or 12 year old about the importance of checking the heart rate when you first wake after a nights rest.  A higher heart rate might actually be someone moving toward a state of overtraining.  That stuck with me for years and years.

First, I recommend that you establish a baseline that you can compare against over time. Pick a week when you will not be pushing yourself very hard, when you are feeling good, and have a limited amount of stress.

Every morning for one week do the following:

Before getting out of bed, take a 60 second reading of your heart rate either with a heart rate monitor or by taking your pulse.
Stand up and wait 15 seconds.
Measure your standing heart rate for 60 seconds.
Record all three measurements: Prone, standing, and the difference between the two (orthostatic).
This is your baseline.

Next, I suggest that you take a few more measurements – measure the morning after a particularly difficult training session, and then again the next day.

Most importantly, take some daily measurements if you are feeling the effects of a prolonged series of training sessions with little time for recovery, especially if you are showing some of the signs of overtraining.

Soul food

While I understand that the intrinsically motivated person is what many of use clamor for it really is misunderstood. In the same way we need to eat to fuel the body we MUST fuel the soul.

I laughed reading a well meaning post posturing about his disdain for those needing to be motivated to workout. Meanwhile he reps a pre-work out company. 😆 I guess quotes and videos are bad but a drink he gets a kickback for are ok.

Yes there are those that just do their thing. Nothing needed for fuel. Just them. Awesome. And there are those that love eating up quotes, articles and videos that they see as a valuable.

“Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
Marcus Aurelius

If your spirit is stirred up and the product is a desired results, don’t question it. Use it.

#bloodsweatchalk

This young woman called Holly Butcher posted her advice to the world, 24 hours before she died of cancer

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This was her message…

“It’s a strange thing to realise and accept your mortality at 26 years young. It’s just one of those things you ignore. The days tick by and you just expect they will keep on coming; Until the unexpected happens. I always imagined myself growing old, wrinkled and grey- most likely caused by the beautiful family (lots of kiddies) I planned on building with the love of my life. I want that so bad it hurts.

That’s the thing about life; It is fragile, precious and unpredictable and each day is a gift, not a given right.

I’m 27 now. I don’t want to go. I love my life. I am happy.. I owe that to my loved ones. But the control is out of my hands.

I haven’t started this ‘note before I die’ so that death is feared – I like the fact that we are mostly ignorant to it’s inevitability.. Except when I want to talk about it and it is treated like a ‘taboo’ topic that will never happen to any of us.. That’s been a bit tough. I just want people to stop worrying so much about the small, meaningless stresses in life and try to remember that we all have the same fate after it all so do what you can to make your time feel worthy and great, minus the bullshit.

I have dropped lots of my thoughts below as I have had a lot of time to ponder life these last few months. Of course it’s the middle of the night when these random things pop in my head most!

1) Those times you are whinging about ridiculous things (something I have noticed so much these past few months), just think about someone who is really facing a problem. Be grateful for your minor issue and get over it. It’s okay to acknowledge that something is annoying but try not to carry on about it and negatively effect other people’s days.

2) Once you do that, get out there and take a freaking big breath of that fresh Aussie air deep in your lungs, look at how blue the sky is and how green the trees are; It is so beautiful. Think how lucky you are to be able to do just that – breathe.

3) You might have got caught in bad traffic today, or had a bad sleep because your beautiful babies kept you awake, or your hairdresser cut your hair too short. Your new fake nails might have got a chip, your boobs are too small, or you have cellulite on your arse and your belly is wobbling.

Let all that shit go.. I swear you will not be thinking of those things when it is your turn to go. It is all SO insignificant when you look at life as a whole. I’m watching my body waste away right before my eyes with nothing I can do about it and all I wish for now is that I could have just one more Birthday or Christmas with my family, or just one more day with my partner and dog. Just one more.

4) I hear people complaining about how terrible work is or about how hard it is to exercise – Be grateful you are physically able to. Work and exercise may seem like such trivial things … until your body doesn’t allow you to do either of them.

I tried to live a healthy life, in fact, that was probably my major passion. Appreciate your good health and functioning body- even if it isn’t your ideal size. Look after it and embrace how amazing it is. Move it and nourish it with fresh food. Don’t obsess over it.

5) Remember there are more aspects to good health than the physical body.. work just as hard on finding your mental, emotional and spiritual happiness too. That way you might realise just how insignificant and unimportant having this stupidly portrayed perfect social media body really is.. While on this topic, delete any account that pops up on your news feeds that gives you any sense of feeling shit about yourself. Friend or not.. Be ruthless for your own well-being.

6) Be grateful for each day you don’t have pain and even the days where you are unwell with man flu, a sore back or a sprained ankle, accept it is shit but be thankful it isn’t life threatening and will go away.

7) Whinge less, people! .. And help each other more.

😎 Give, give, give. It is true that you gain more happiness doing things for others than doing them for yourself. I wish I did this more. Since I have been sick, I have met the most incredibly giving and kind people and been the receiver of the most thoughtful and loving words and support from my family, friends and strangers; More than I could I ever give in return. I will never forget this and will be forever grateful to all of these people.

9) It is a weird thing having money to spend at the end.. when you’re dying. It’s not a time you go out and buy material things that you usually would, like a new dress. It makes you think how silly it is that we think it is worth spending so much money on new clothes and ‘things’ in our lives.

Buy your friend something kind instead of another dress, beauty product or jewellery for that next wedding. 1. No-one cares if you wear the same thing twice 2. It feels good. Take them out for a meal, or better yet, cook them a meal. Shout their coffee. Give/ buy them a plant, a massage or a candle and tell them you love them when you give it to them.

10) Value other people’s time. Don’t keep them waiting because you are shit at being on time. Get ready earlier if you are one of those people and appreciate that your friends want to share their time with you, not sit by themselves, waiting on a mate. You will gain respect too! Amen sister.

11) This year, our family agreed to do no presents and despite the tree looking rather sad and empty (I nearly cracked Christmas Eve!), it was so nice because people didn’t have the pressure of shopping and the effort went into writing a nice card for each other. Plus imagine my family trying to buy me a present knowing they would probably end up with it themselves.. strange! It might seem lame but those cards mean more to me than any impulse purchase could. Mind you, it was also easier to do in our house because we had no little kiddies there. Anyway, moral of the story- presents are not needed for a meaningful Christmas. Moving on.

12) Use your money on experiences.. Or at least don’t miss out on experiences because you spent all your money on material shit.

13) Put in the effort to do that day trip to the beach you keep putting off. Dip your feet in the water and dig your toes in the sand. Wet your face with salt water.

14) Get amongst nature.

15) Try just enjoying and being in moments rather than capturing them through the screen of your phone. Life isn’t meant to be lived through a screen nor is it about getting the perfect photo.. enjoy the bloody moment, people! Stop trying to capture it for everyone else.

Random rhetorical question. Are those several hours you spend doing your hair and make up each day or to go out for one night really worth it? I’ve never understood this about females

🤔.

16) Get up early sometimes and listen to the birds while you watch the beautiful colours the sun makes as it rises.

17) Listen to music.. really listen. Music is therapy. Old is best.

18) Cuddle your dog. Far out, I will miss that.

19) Talk to your friends. Put down your phone. Are they doing okay?

20) Travel if it’s your desire, don’t if it’s not.

21) Work to live, don’t live to work.

Seriously, do what makes your heart feel happy.

22) Eat the cake. Zero guilt.

23) Say no to things you really don’t want to do.

24) Don’t feel pressured to do what other people might think is a fulfilling life.. you might want a mediocre life and that is so okay.

25) Tell your loved ones you love them every time you get the chance and love them with everything you have.

26) Also, remember if something is making you miserable, you do have the power to change it – in work or love or whatever it may be. Have the guts to change. You don’t know how much time you’ve got on this earth so don’t waste it being miserable. I know that is said all the time but it couldn’t be more true.

Anyway, that’s just this one young gals life advice. Take it or leave it, I don’t mind!

Oh and one last thing, if you can, do a good deed for humanity (and myself) and start regularly donating blood. It will make you feel good with the added bonus of saving lives. I feel like it is something that is so overlooked considering every donation can save 3 lives! That is a massive impact each person can have and the process really is so simple.

Blood donation (more bags than I could keep up with counting) helped keep me alive for an extra year – a year I will be forever grateful that I got to spend it here on Earth with my family, friends and dog. A year I had some of the greatest times of my life.

..’Til we meet again.

Hol

Xoxo”

Essentials in competing and training

 

Singlets
Make sure the singlets are within the rules of the federation you compete in. Please don’t just assume especially because of regional event let you wear it and then someone that is actually enforcing the rules says “No. You can’t wear that to compete in.” I have seen it happen ALOT. Know the rules!

https://inzernet.com/collections/singlets/products/singlet
Amazon is always an option where I purchased before.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AS13NOG/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_re7bDbE4FB0DV

Belts
10 or 13mm refers to the thickness of the belt.  A beginner especially female will be fine with a 10mm. If they company has in stock that is great but some take a while to have made so plan ahead. All belts will need to be 4″ in height. It is standard.  Also Velcro is generally a no go…and poor quality anyway.
https://www.andersonpowerlifting.com/powerlifting-belts-toro-texas-s/1833.htm

Knee sleeves
SBD is great and the long lasting standard. Are they essential? No. Great for training and keep the joints warm. Know the rules for your federation that you compete in. Is one federation ok while another isnt BUT you plan on competing in a couple of different feds? Cross reference and see what will make the most sense financially. Keep it simple in the end.
https://www.sbd-usa.com/

Wrist wraps
YES! USE THEM! Notice I said wraps not straps. Protect the wrists as much as possible please. Benching and yes squatting can beat your wrists up. You don’t want to be some old hip replaced, has-been with wrist issues because he didn’t use enough preventative care…I have heard.

Wraps can be softer material or very stiff which for some is distracting and uncomfortable. If you have the option start with a softer wrap and go from there. Again find out the rules for the length of wrap you are allowed to have in competition.


Additional tools I recommend:
Chalk
https://www.handarmorchalk.com/
Bands
https://www.elitefts.com/shop/accessories/bands-1.html
Having bands up to an average band for most is pretty fantastic if financially affordable

Bench Blokz
Great to have the 1/2 board all the way to 5 board. Saves on the shoulders and let’s you do overload work.
https://www.amazon.com/stores/node/13204798011?_encoding=UTF8&field-lbr_brands_browse-bin=BenchBlokz&ref_=bl_dp_s_web_13204798011
ProLoc Collars
http://proloccollars.com/
https://www.roguefitness.com/rogue-proloc-collars
Fat grips
Standard blue is perfect!
https://www.amazon.com/stores/page/219A4664-5B04-463F-93A4-BFE99DB15683?store_ref=storeRecs_Instant_13204798011
Tourniquets (blood flow restriction training)
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GYLLHG3/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_RB7bDbH4KCH7F
Lacrosse balls or “peanuts” are great to always have for self care.

“But wait! You didn’t mention shoes Shawn.”

No I didn’t. I have watched the industry capitalize on the shoe “need” for lifters. In general, your squat sucks because you are weak in some capacity. That can be fixed. Adding a shoe isn’t the issue. The fractional differences isn’t worth addressing. Wear a firm stable shoe. Leave it at that.

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