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Daily Archives: June 4, 2012

Fit Tax Pt Two – A Good Argument Against It…

I wrote the other day about the possibility of a looming new tax on fit people should politicians get the bright idea…and I found the ultimate argument against it while reasearching for my last post:

If you can, do more than that. For additional and more extensive health benefits, increase your aerobic physical activity. Every week aim for 300 minutes (5 hours) of moderate-intensity or 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent mix of moderate- and vigorous-intensity activity. ”

So that covers just about any athlete I can think of, including most Triathletes.  Be prepared, should the topic ever come up in your neck of the woods.  This is how the convesation should go with your representative:

Hello, my name is ______________.  I was calling to find out if [Insert Your Rep. Here] supports the tax on bikes, running shoes and fitness of all types.  (If the answer is yes):  Are you aware that the Department of Health and Human Services (US) recommends 5 hours of exercise a week to avoid problems associated with arthritis?  Why does [Insert Rep. Here] support financially penalizing those who choose to exercise in the recommended amounts to stave off the effects of arthritis?  Is [Insert Rep. Here] actually advocating for our seniors, those who can least afford yet another tax, to suffer with arthritis if they can’t afford the fee associated with exercise?

Then the next thing you have to ask yourself will be why you support politicians (of any stripe) that want to expand your government.

Fighting Arthritis Pain

I heard a commercial about a website that is advocating exercise, not surprisingly, as a combatant against arthritis pain.

I have written about this many times, but let’s look at what the site says:

“Scientists are very interested in this question and actively investigating the effects of exercise on OA-afflicted joints. A few things about exercise are known. Exercise strengthens the muscles around joints and keeps them flexible. Strong, flexible muscles do a better job supporting and stabilizing joints than weak muscles. Strong muscles also relieve pain and prevent the pain from activity. Exercise also loosens stiff joints, preserving their ease and range of movement. Finally, exercise that revs up your heart and breathing releases brain chemicals that reduce pain and make you feel good while helping to make or keep you fit.

But, there may be even more that exercise does to help people with OA. One theory is that exercise somehow protects joints from the damaging effects of the disease. In a review of 28 studies of knee OA, exercise was found to be associated with an increased amount of cartilage within knee joints and fewer cartilage defects. Another study discovered a surge of anti-inflammatory activity within the knee joints of women with knee OA immediately after performing intensive quadriceps (thigh muscle) strengthening exercises. While these findings are exciting, further research is needed to fully understand the effects of exercise on joints affected by OA.

Here’s what I wrote:  “Joints are, in fact, strengthened and modified by exercise“.  According to that first link, the exact opposite [of the original statement, that running is bad for the knees] is true…  Only 20% of runners developed arthritic knees while 32% of the control group did over the long haul.

And this in April:  “I have written detailed posts on this before – studies show that stress on your joints is necessary.  Our knee cartilage contains cells that sense the impact and repair/build more – without the impact, knees can actually deteriorate faster.  As proof, scientists tracked distance runners for decades and found they developed knee arthritis at a lesser rate (30%) than their control group that didn’t run.  In addition, the impact triggers the brain to increase bone mass density – without that trigger, bones can deteriorate – and even worse, if all of the cardio and strength training is low to no impact, they become brittle.  The low/no impact myth is only used to sell stuff you don’t need nowadays.  Now, if you’ve had an injury that changes how your legs perform the task of running, as in Carl’s case (in the commercial), then you do need the low impact – but that’s hardly what the commercial suggests”.

Earlier, in March, I quoted an article that said this:  ““Articular cartilage actually has its own feedback mechanism to respond to exercise. Chondrocytes, the living cells that make up just 1% of cartilage, sense the loading of articular cartilage and regulate the production of matrix components to repair and remodel the tissue in response to stress”.  What this means in layman’s terms is that 1% of your cartilage is made up of cells that sense and respond to loading on the cartilage and that causes the production of more of the cells which repair the tissue in response to the loading.  To break it down further, your body is made for this stuff – even your knees”.

If you happen to know someone with arthritis, please pass the information along.  One can only hope that it will help someone get off the couch.

From Bigdaddy’s Grill: Chicken Alfredo

Mrs. BgddyJim and I have gone through several incarnations of Fettuchini Alfredo with chicken in the last ten or so years, till we’ve finally come close to perfecting it.

My version comes with a caveat – I don’t make the sauce from scratch.  I let Paul Newman do it for me.  For the chicken, my girls don’t exactly appreciate grilled chicken like my wife and I do so I had to come up with a way to grill chicken that would keep it from looking, well, grilled. I simply wrap the chicken in aluminum foil, add in a little olive oil and some Italian seasoning (thanks Emiril) and a couple pinches of salt and drop it on the grill.  This goes on the grill a couple of minutes before the uncovered chicken…

For the regular grilled chicken, I like something with a little kick so I use two seasonings:  McCormick’s Montreal Chicken and Weber’s Kickin’ Chicken.  Be careful with the seasoning – too much and it overpowers the chicken (and the fettuchini alfredo):

For cooking time, I’m I good grill chef but I’m not so good at the “instructions” part – I go by look and feel rather than a set time.  The best I can offer is is 5 minutes a side and then a few more minutes to make sure it’s good ‘n done (oh, and the thick part of the chicken breast goes on the hottest part of the grill).


The Weber’s Kickin’ Chicken really does pack a punch – if you don’t like spicy, stick with just the Montreal Chicken.

This is one of my favorite dinners.