...try a new exercise

From The Cooper Institute and Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas

When you've got something to prove, there's nothing greater than a challenge. - Terry Bradshaw


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Written by July 2, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

If you watch television, you might have seen and heard a “non-attorney spokesperson” plead with persons who have been prescribed statin drugs to call the number provided due to the “dramatic increase in cases of type 2 diabetes caused by statin drugs.” Statin drugs are commonly used to decrease blood levels of LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, and have been shown to significantly decrease the risk of cardiovascular morbidity (illness) and mortality (death). In an earlier blog, Do Statin Drugs Increase the Risk of Diabetes?, we found that the benefits of reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease by taking a statin were

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Written by June 25, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

It’s pretty much accepted far and wide that regular aerobic exercise is good for you. From the earliest studies by Drs. Jeremy Morris and Ralph Paffenbarger in the 1950s up to the present time, there have been thousands of publications documenting the beneficial effects of regular aerobic exercise on health and well-being. A partial list of these benefits (from our Personal Training education course) can be found in Table 1. Current public health guidelines for aerobic activity recommend a minimum of 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity, or a minimum of 75 minutes per week at a vigorous

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Written by June 18, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

For well over a century, a cornerstone for middle distance and endurance competitors has been long slow distance (LSD) training. In addition to performing LSD, these individuals also perform interval training (IT) on a regular basis. IT is best described as alternating high intensity work periods (intervals) with low intensity work periods (recovery) within the same workout. The pace that the intervals are done at is usually slightly faster than or at goal race pace. There are an infinite number of variations for interval training workouts. The distance covered as well as the time for each interval, the number of intervals

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Written by June 11, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

Data from the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study1, as well as from other large databases worldwide have shown conclusively that a low level of cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) significantly increases the risk of all-cause, cardiovascular disease, and cancer mortality. As you may know, CRF is defined as the maximal ability to utilize oxygen at the cell level, and is sometimes referred to as ‘cardiovascular fitness’ or ‘aerobic power’. CRF can be measured in a clinical setting via a maximal treadmill exercise test, or in a field setting via the 1.5 mile run or 1 mile walk tests. You may have taken one

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Written by June 4, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

Over the past few years, a number of claims have been made regarding the benefits of dietary coconut oil (DCO). Weight loss and improved heart health are among the most commonly purported health benefits of DCO. Because I’m a big proponent of the old adage ‘if it seems too good to be true, it probably is’, let’s take an objective look at what the science says. First off, while dietary saturated fats tend to increase blood levels of LDL-cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), not all saturated fatty acids are exactly alike. Dietary saturated fatty acids fall in two categories based on

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Written by May 21, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

Most of us who are very active know how important it is to consume fluids, carbohydrate, and electrolytes (salts) during endurance exercise. Doing so helps to prevent dehydration and hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), which in turn helps to delay fatigue. The scientific literature is chock full of studies regarding the beneficial effect of sports drinks during long-term exercise. However, less is known about post-exercise nutrition. For endurance athletes who are training on a daily basis, what and when they consume foods and beverages post-exercise has become a hot topic in the exercise science research world over the past few years.

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Written by April 9, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

An earlier blog, Should You Eat Like a Caveman?, covered the rationale behind the Paleo Diet as well as benefits and concerns with this approach. A major emphasis of the Paleo Diet is to avoid grains, including whole grains. Although there is no scientific evidence to support their opinion, Paleo enthusiasts claim that grains ‘cause inflammation’, which leads to an increased risk of chronic disease and early death. Before we take a look at what the science says, let’s review a little bit. All grains contain 3 parts: the bran, germ, and endosperm. A whole grain uses all 3 parts

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Written by March 5, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is defined as the body’s maximal ability to transport and utilize oxygen at the tissue level. Results from the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study (CCLS)1 and other large studies, have consistently shown that individuals with low CRF have higher all-cause, cardiovascular disease, and cancer mortality (death) rates than those with moderate CRF, and that the risk continues to decrease when we look at those with high CRF (Figure 1). In the CCLS, low CRF is defined as a treadmill stress test performance in the bottom 20% compared to others of the same age group and gender. This is

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Written by February 19, 2015

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

If you pay attention to what the media or public says or writes, you would think that dietary high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is the worst villain since Attila the Hun. Although HFCS has been branded by many as a major culprit in the U.S. obesity epidemic, does science really support this view? Let’s take an objective look. HFCS is a liquid sweetener that is used in many foods and beverages, and is often used as an alternative to sucrose (table sugar). The use of HFCS in foods and beverages began in the late 1960s and its use has increased substantially

Overweight
Written by December 18, 2014

Steve Farrell, PhD, FACSM

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

Comments 0

If you are under the age of 40 or so, you might not understand the Dr. Seuss reference in the title of this article. I just couldn’t help myself. Many years ago, it was assumed not only that all fat cells were alike, but also that fat cells were simply storage facilities for fat; and not active metabolically. More recently, we have learned that nothing could be further from the truth. Everybody’s probably familiar with white fat because that’s the type of fat cell we find ~98% of the time in the human body.  It’s also the type of fat

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