Archive for January, 2013

Andy Pettitte, Russell Martin, Joba Chamberlain, Larry Rothschild

“We can’t get good at something solely by reading about it. And we’ll never make giant leaps in any endeavor by treating it like a snack food that we munch on whenever we’re getting bored. You get good at something by doing it repeatedly. And by listening to specific criticism from people who are already good at what you do. And by a dedication to getting better, even when it’s inconvenient and may not involve a handy bulleted list.” Merlin Mann

It’s getting to be that time of year again. The report date for pitchers and catchers is rapidly approaching. Pro guys are tightening things up to go and compete for jobs, college players are getting game ready to start their seasons, and high school/youth players are transitioning from their winter sports to get ready for their spring baseball schedule.

For pitchers, now is about the time when you’ll see a bunch of work on the mound, or in baseball terms, a “bullpen session.” As a pitcher myself, it’s always so exciting to get back up on the hill where I belong, and see my work from the previous months of throwing and training pay off.

Looking back at all the bullpen sessions I’ve thrown and seen in my career as a professional baseball player, there are a couple of things I can point out that jump to my mind.

1.) When I was an amateur, I had the arm strength, talent and pitch quality to throw a pro level bullpen, but I didn’t have the knowledge, feel of my mechanics, or idea about where to dedicate my efforts for the duration of a particular session.

2.) I quickly learned and observed that high level professional pitchers, big leaguers in particular, for the most part, have a precise idea of what they want to accomplish each time they get on the mound to practice. Throwing is something they did in their backyard with their dad.  Pitching and executing was what they did to feed their families.

After spending tons of time studying theses guys, asking them questions, and implementing some of their ideas into my own game, I began to see a much steadier increase in development. It wasn’t until I used this precious time on the mound for dedicated focus on my weaknesses, and not to just get an arm workout, that I finally realized what separated the amateurs from the professionals and the professionals from the great ones.

Here are 5 things I’ve picked up that will help you have a productive practice session on the mound each and every time.

1.) BE COMPLETELY AND PROPERLY WARMED UP EVERY TIME YOU GET ON THE MOUND, NO EXCUSES- This one is near and dear to my heart, because I’ve not only injured myself on a couple occasions from being improperly warmed up, I’ve seen other pitchers get injured or perform poorly due to sucky warmups or no warmups at all. It doesn’t take much, just get the right muscles firing and woken up, get a sweat going, and you’re all set. Here are a couple of variations that I’ve used and had success with. They are both quick, to the point, and able to be performed anywhere.

a.) 5 Moves To Get Ready In A Hurry

b.) Warmup in a hurry by Roger Lawson

2. HAVE ONE WEAKNESS TO WORK ON AND A CERTAIN NUMBER OF PITCHES TO DO IT IN It’s very easy to fall into the trap of pitching to your strengths in practice, because it gives us confidence. The great ones, however, know what their good at, but also know that bullpens are times to dedicate their efforts into something they might not be comfortable with. They won’t throw their signature pitch, because they know in order to develop another one, it takes time and precise focus on weakness. It is also easy to get caught up and lose track of how many pitches you’ve thrown. Set a number based on where you are at in your offseason or seasonal throwing program and stick to it give or take 2 or 3 pitches.

3. GET LONG AND BRING IT BACK IN HARD- I’ve always had success with long tossing before a bullpen session or even a game if I’m starting. I feel myself not only getting physically loose, but when I long toss correctly and stay on top and through the baseball, it will normally translate to faster hand speed when I bring it back in to 60 feet. Once I get to a distance where I feel I’m giving close to full effort WITHOUT compromising my mechanics, I’ll start bringing the catcher back in slowly to 60 feet. (For me, it’s usually right around 200 feet. Sometimes I’ll go longer or shorter based on how I’m feeling. My main goal is not to see how far I can throw it, it’s to get my effort level, hand speed, and mechanics to sync up to get ready for my mound session.)

Once my catcher comes back to about the 90 feet mark, I do two things. 1.) I really start to let it rip. 2.) I throw my change-up at full speed to make sure I’m staying on top and keeping the same arm speed. Staying ontop and through the baseball to create that hard tight backspin is my goal here at 90ft.

Now, my catcher comes in to 60 feet. I’ll get him down and simulate a few of each of my pitches before we take the mound.

4. ALWAYS ESTABLISH YOUR FASTBALL ABOVE ANYTHING ELSE. THE ONLY EXCEPTION IS IF YOU ARE A KNUCKLEBALLER. If you get nothing more out of your bullpen other than gaining a solid command of your fastball, I can always count that as a productive session. This is the number one pitch in baseball. A good one can get players to make their high school team, get into and play in college, get drafted, and even make it to the major leagues, so it must be our number one priority. Without a fastball, you’re nothing….Unless your name is R.A. Dickey, Tim Wakefield, or Phil Niekro!

My suggestion would be to throw about 5 fastballs for strikes in the middle of the plate to start you bullpen off. This will calibrate your release point, give you some confidence that you are driving down the right line, and set you up for moving the ball in and out. After you’ve got a grip on the middle of the plate, move the catcher to the glove half of the plate. <<Notice I said half. Many pitchers make the mistake of trying to be too fine and precise, too early. Throwing the ball to your glove side for consistent strikes ensures you are getting through the baseball correctly. If you are flying open with that front hip, shoulder, and glove, there’s no chance that you establish this part of the plate as your own. Drive the ball with your lower half to that side, don’t try and rip it open to get there.

GLOVE SIDE (GREEN) ARM SIDE (PINK)

GLOVE SIDE (GREEN) ARM SIDE (PINK)

5.) FINSH WITH ONE OR TWO SIMULATED HITTERS- This is at the end of your bullpen session. At this point you should at minimum have made progress on your weaknesses and established your fastball down in the strike zone to both sides of the plate. It’s a bonus if we have full command of everything, and we should strive to do so, but it just won’t always happen.

Ideally, now you have a hitter step in and take a few pitches, but if not, have your catcher call a sequence of pitches to simulate a lefty and a righty batter. Throw all your pitches. Execute your pitches. Call it a day.

In closing, remember that every time you pick up a ball it’s to become a better baseball player. Have a plan about what weaknesses to attack in that particular session. If you just go out and sling it around without a purpose, I promise you wont be in the game very long. Everytime you take the mound whether it be in practice or a game… it is a privilege. So be warmed up properly, have an idea about what you want to work on, long toss a bit before, gain command of your fastball first thing, and end with a hitter or two to simulate a game situation.

We hope you found this helpful! Leave a reply or questions in the comments section. Follow us here. Like us here.

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Now is the time of the year where people begin to fade from their New Year’s’ Resolutions, if they haven’t slipped already. I heard someone at the crowded gym in the first week of January say, “I can’t wait until all of these people fall off of their resolutions so I can get my gym space back.” Sadly, it’s pretty true but hopefully, all of you faithful Show Me Strength readers have been able to draw inspiration from our posts thus far and have stayed true to yourselves and new goals for the year. In case you feel yourself slipping, or need a kick in the butt as a reminder that it’s never to late to get back in gear, we are sure these reads and video will pick you up and keep you going strong!

David Goggins: The Toughest Athlete on the Planet?

“He’s in bed no earlier than midnight most nights. Don’t bother re-reading to check your math: It really does add up to only three hours of sleep a night. When people ask if he uses supplements to help him train, he says that he takes a giant suck-it-up pill every morning and washes it down with a refreshing can of hard. This isn’t boasting. It’s military-speak for the hardest part of Goggins’ daily regimen: getting out of bed.”

This is honestly one of the most badass articles that either Chad and I have ever read. If this doesn’t get you fired up for greatness, you should check your pulse!  This guy is the real deal, as I’ve heard from a couple of my friends, one who had him as his Navy Seal instructor during an Olympic Rowing training day, and another Air Force Para-rescue friend who heard him speak. And if that is not enough to convince you, the author of one of the most inspiring books we’ve ever read, Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10 tweeted this just last week:

Make sure to check out David’s blog as well: Show No Weakness .

You Have To Workout To Get A Workout

On the topic of New Year’s Resolutions, this article could not be more on point with a little, or maybe a lot, of tough love some people need to hear. I’m proud to say that my girlfriend found this article, loved it, and passed it on to me.  It’s now my gift to you. Disclaimer: There is some colorful, yet necessary, language.

“Breaking news, friend: you are not the boss. If truth be told, you are the exact opposite of the boss. You are the servant. You serve the needs of your body. You don’t tell your body to be hardcore. Your body tells you what it needs in order to be hardcore. It needs workouts. Long, hard, painful workouts—for weeks, and months, and years. Purposeful, planned, powerful workouts, that are structured to place your body under the proper amounts of stress in order to achieve the desired adaptations.”

whatisthisshit

And finally, here is a good reminder we all need that has been floating around the web recently. The language is quite different that the previous two articles, but the message still remains! Great message to get up, get moving, and get better!

“This is life people. You got air coming through your nose. You got heartbeat.  That means it’s time to do something!”

spacejam“What if Michael Jordan had quit when he didn’t make the team? There would be no SpaceJam! And I love SpaceJam. What will be your SpaceJam? What will you create to make the world awesome? Nothing if you keep sitting there that’s why I’m talking to you today!”

“Don’t Stop Believin’, unless your dream is stupid. And then you need a better dream.”

“What if there really were two paths? I want to be on the one that leads to awesome!”

“Give the world a reason to dance! Get to it!”

Show us some of your strength this week! Post your feats of strength on our Facebook page or tweet @ShowMeStrength! SHOW US STRENGTH!

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A Day In The Life Of My Stomach by Chad Rodgers

Posted: January 18, 2013 by cmrodgers100 in General

Header of Show Me Strength

As the mantra goes, “You can’t outrain a bad diet,” Matt and I here at Show Me Strength, truly take those words to heart. Matt wrote about what he eats on a daily basis here, and in this post, I will show you every meal that I eat over the course of a normal day and the ingredients that bring these delicious and nutritious feasts together.

Whether it be for sport or for life, eating foods that have a positive effect on my health is my number once priority. I treat my body as the high performance vehicle that will carry me through not only my career as a professional athlete, but through the awesome adventures that I plan on having throughout my existence.

If I want to be a strong, powerful, healthy, and happy human being, it’s an obvious choice for me that I not only have to train hard, but I have to eat incredibly well.

Unfortunately today, we don’t live in a healthy society. Obesity, diabetes, and other diseases brought on by poor health choices have only gotten worse. More than ever, food that is convenient, easy to make, and often made from animal byproducts to save on costs have made us fatter and sicker.

Here are some current stats and predictions.

As of right now 37.5 percent of americans have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater. This means that 37.5 percent of United States citizens are obese. Experts predict that this number is on track to reach 50 percent by the year 2030.

These are astounding numbers that mean one thing to a person who wants to be healthy, strong, and capable. It means you must not take the easiest and most traveled route. You must take the way that will forge an unbreakable body, mind, and spirit. One of the biggest pieces to that puzzle is an incredibly nutritious diet.

Here is what I eat on a daily basis to give me the energy, strength, stamina, and health to do all the things I love to my full capabilities.

NOTE- My current weight is 220 lbs at a height of 6’3″. I want to remain at the weight I am at while continuing to get stronger. I am not on a bulking diet. This way of eating has been successful with these personal goals in mind. I recommend taking your own physique, sport, performance, or weight gain/loss goals into consideration before designing any sort of meal plan. This doesn’t, however, stop you from making health conscience food choices.

Testosterone Protocol- In a society where men are gradually becoming less and less manly and more and more soft, I believe it’s important to not only hold on tight to the virtues that make great men manly, but also eat in a way that promotes optimal testosterone (manly) levels. I’ve taken it a step further and started to implement a protocol from Tim Ferriss’ book, The 4-hour body (An uncommon guide to rapid fat loss, incredible sex, and becoming superhuman). With the all natural foods and supplements below paired with a stellar manly diet, I have assured myself from a nutrition standpoint, optimum T levels.

BENEFITS OF OPTIMAL TESTOSTERONE

– healthy brain function

– stronger bones

– increased muscle mass

– decreased fat

– healthy cardiac function

– increased sex drive and sexual performance

– increased energy, confidence, awesomeness

PROTOCOL- 2 organic cage free raw eggs, 3 fish oil capsules, 5000IU vitamin D, 500mg vitamin C, 50mg zinc, 2 brazil nuts for selenium. I have all of this on an empty stomach when I wake up, and then right before I goto bed. I also wash it down with heaping tablespoon of the delicious athletic greens mixed with a full glass of water, which are optimized on an empty stomach first thing after waking.

test. prot

BREAKFAST- 5 cage free whole eggs, a couple cups of cage free egg whites, and mixed veggies all cooked together in a tablespoon of coconut oil.

– No starchy carbs or fruit, just a good amount of protein, healthy fats, and fresh veggies.

pre breakfast ingredientsBreakfast finished with condiments

While cooking I like to add a little bit of garlic, then when on the plate I’ll add guacamole, salsa, turmeric, and salt/pepper

Health Note- The spice turmeric has been shown to reduce inflammation targets in the body among several other positive health benefits. It is also very tasty on meat and eggs.

DURING TRAINING– 13 BCAA Capsules, 5g creatine monohydrate, water

-BCAA’s or branched chained amino acids help to trigger fat loss and help the synthesis of proteins that aid in muscle-building. Creatine has many benefits, but during training it helps my work capacity increase.

bcaabiotest_creatine

POST WORKOUT SHAKE- Coconut milk, vanilla whey/casein protein powder, 5g creatine, berries, rolled oats, almonds, pecans, walnuts, raw pumpkin, greek yogurt, cinnamon, peanut butter, flaxseed, cacao nibs, chia seeds.

-Health note- I will only have oats and fruit in my shake post training, not pre bed. My muscles are depleted of glycogen and glucose at this point and can use the carbohydrates/fructose.

shake ingredients Magic Bullet shake

LUNCH- 2 free range chicken breasts marinated in balsamic vinaigrette, garlic, and turmeric with sides of brown rice and mixed steamed veggies.

– Since this meal will be within the hour after training, I add some carbohydrates in with the rice. This will help the muscle rebuilding process after a strenuous workout. I’m also getting plenty of protein with the chicken as well as key vitamins and minerals with the veggies.

Lunch Steamed rice veg chick pre lunch marinade

DINNER- This recipe, made famous by our friend, and precision nutrition expert, Brian St. Pierre, is mind-bogglingly delicious and incredibly dense in muscle-building nutrients. The recipe below is with the measurements I use for a week’s worth of chili.

For dinner I’ll have a huge bowl of this along with a glass of Pino Noir.

5 pounds of grass feed ground beef, 2 onions, 2 green peppers, 2 cans of stewed tomatoes, 2 cans of tomato sauce, 1 can of light red kidney beans, 1 can of dark red kidney beans, 1 can of garbanzo beans, 1 can of black beans, 1 small can of minced garlic, 3 tablespoons of turmeric, 3 tablespoons of chili powder, 3 tablespoons of pepper.

Dinner Chili

PRE BED SHAKE- Almond milk, vanilla whey/casein protein powder, almonds, pecans, walnuts, raw pumpkin, greek yogurt, cinnamon, peanut butter, flaxseed, cacao nibs, chia seeds.

– The only differences between this one and my post workout shake are the base (almond milk vs coconut milk) and the absence of berries and oats.

TESTOSTERONE PROTOCOL- 2 organic cage free raw eggs, 3 fish oil capsules, 5000IU vitamin D, 500mg vitamin C, 50mg zinc, 2 brazil nuts for selenium. I have all of this with a heaping tablespoon of athletic greens in water.

eat like a chamipion

As you can see, I don’t really f*** around. I want to be strong. I want to be healthy. I want to have energy. I want to look great with my clothes on and with my clothes off. I want to perform on the field and in life. To me if I work hard in the gym, on the field, and in the kitchen, all of these wants of mine will be fulfilled.

This is a typical day in the life of my stomach. I mix it up with other recipes often, but this is a normal day of eating for me. Consuming amazingly healthy foods as you can see can also be super delicious. It just takes a little creativity and preparation to design a meal schedule like this one that will allow you to fire on all your cylinders all the time.

I hope you enjoyed this post and found it helpful. Leave a comment or questions below and follow us here. Like us here.

*As always, please consult your physician or other nutrition health professional before modifying your diet. We offer these posts to share our own successful experiences through our own experimentation; however, we do not yet have our medical or nutritional certifications.

Monday Motivational Reads (Videos & Quotes Edition!)

Posted: January 14, 2013 by cmrodgers100 in General

Too tired

Every so often its important to make sure we aren’t succumbing to resistance. If you haven’t been reading our articles consistently, there’s a chance that you may have missed some of my references to Steven Pressfield and his take on a force in our lives called resistance. Here is his definition.

Resistance – “An energy field radiating from a work-in-potential. It’s a repelling force. It’s negative. It’s aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.”

Unfortunately we are all victims to resistance from time to time, whether it be putting off a project that’s due at school to watch a game on tv, or skipping a workout because you have a bit of a sniffle. Whatever it may be, we are all good at coming up with what seems to be at the time, excellent excuses.

The blunt fact though is we are just putting off our work because it might be uncomfortable, tough, or challenging.

The good news is that resistance can be defeated. We can get to the gym, make our meals healthy, get to bed on time, and finish our work. Our potential as humans will most likely never see the day when we hit our full capability or limit, because that is self-imposed and resistance has made us “comfortable.” Here are a few questions, inspired from the photo above, to ask yourself from an athletic perspective, if resistance is creeping into your life without you even knowing…

Even though you got a sufficient amount of sleep, do you lay in bed for an extra hour because you think it’s still to early to get out of bed? Could this be preventing you from getting an amazing breakfast and a good amount of work accomplished? This is resistance.

Did you promise yourself to go for a run this morning, but it was 30 degrees outside and you deemed it too cold? This is resistance.

Did you dominate yesterdays leg lift, wake up sore today, and skip your training sessions until you feel recovered? This is resistance.

Were you up late last night talking to your girlfriend or boyfriend, sleep in till noon, therefore skipping an important meal? This is resistance.

We’ve all been there, but not all of us have realized that it’s crushing our potential. Everyone of us succumb to it from time to time, but we must to fight it back hard and get our shit done. Here are some inspiring videos and quotes taken from them that have helped us kill resistance. We hope that it will do the same for you.

 

“Respect is earned. Respect ain’t given to no damn body” RL

“We get one opportunity in life. One chance in life … to do whatever you’re gonna do. To lay your foundation. To make whatever mark you’re gonna make. To leave whatever legacy you’re gonna leave. Leave your legacy. And it’s found through effort. Wins and losses come a dime a dozen. But effort? Nobody can judge effort. Effort is between you and you. Effort aint got nothing to do with nobody else. So that team that think they ready to seen you? They think what they seen on film. They ain’t saw what film shows. Because every day is a new day. Every moment is a new moment. So now you got to go out and show them that you a different creature now than I was five minutes ago. CAUSE IM PISSED OFF FOR GREATNESS. Because if you ain’t pissed off for greatness, that means you’re OK with being mediocre. ” RL

 

“Listen to me: pain is temporary. It may last for a minute, or an hour, or a day, or even a year. But eventually it will subside, and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it will last forever.” Eric Thomas

“I’m not eating like I eat at home. That’s why you’re going to go to the next level, because if you ate like you ate at home, you’re going to remain a boy or a girl. Its time to become men and women.” Eric Thomas

“But I’m exactly where I want to be because I got to commit my entire being to this thing. I got to breath it, sleep it, eat it. Until you get there, you’ll never be successful in life. But once you get there, I guarantee you the world is yours. So work hard and you can have whatever it is that you want.” Eric Thomas

 

 

“Along the way you might fall down, . .. sometimes in life, you might fall down and can’t find the strength to get back up… do you think you have hope? Because I tell you, I’m down here and I have no arms and no legs, … It should be impossible for me to get up, but it’s not” Nick Vujicic

“I will try one hundred times to get up, and if I fail one hundred times. If I fail and I give up, will I ever get up? No! If I fail I’ll try again, and again and again. But I want to tell you it’s not the end.” 
– Nick Vujicic

Inspiration is everywhere you look, as you can see from some of these awesome videos. At the end of the day though, its us that must rise out of bed with a fire burning inside. Its us that needs to make our mind up to be great.

Have you made up your mind yet to be awesome?

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Show Me Strength’s Reads Of The Week (Ladies Edition!)

Posted: January 13, 2013 by cmrodgers100 in General

Reading Meme

Well the end of the week should mark something. I believe it should mark a pretty significant change in each of our lives. Instead of going through the motions just praying to make it to the weekend, shouldn’t we be living the life we dream of having? If we aren’t doing that quite yet, don’t you believe we could be actively working toward  and not away from the health, career, relationships, and life that we want? It’s just some food for thought. I hope I didn’t depress anyone. We all have work to do, and I hope each of your weeks were brilliantly productive.

In this edition of best reads, we have a few true pros in the female fitness world. Check out their awesome content, ladies!

1.) 3 Steps To Getting Your Girl To Train By Joy Victoria- This post will most definitely be one that changes some lives out there. Although all of us, women included, know the benefits of weight training are surely positive, females often have to overcome some different challenges in the weight room both physically and socially to adapt. Joy does an absolutely incredible job of showing guys how to make the transition for girls into the world of strength a more easier and fun experience. Great read for everyone works or wants to work with the female population.

Check out Joy here

2.) Everything (And Nothing) In Moderation by Neghar Fonooni- If every girl in the world would take Neghar’s training, nutrition, and lifestyle advice to heart, the world would be a sexier, fitter, healthier, and more awesome place to live in for us guys. So much of the female population is afraid to train heavy and get after it in the weight room for a variety of reasons, but Neghar, who is a goto expert in the fitness industry, is truly helping the cause for women everywhere to pursue a more healthy and more badass life. I really think highly of her work, and hope you girls out there will take a look at her stuff and implement some of her ideas into your lifestyle.

Follow Neghar here

3.) Eat & Train To Thrive By Alli Mckee- This is a fantastic read for the girls who are looking to learn more about some of the added benefits that come from strength training, conditioning, and healthy eating, but mostly the eating side of things. The good-looking body is only one awesome side effect. Alli, another amazing and highly respected female fitness expert, put it wonderfully in one of her last sentences.

“To me, eating to be lean is important but eating to promote the best hormonal responses, digestion, sleep patterns, daily energy levels, disease prevention, anti-inflammation and more.. Now that’s Eating to THRIVE.”

These words should be enough to stick with an awesome eating plan. Even someone in as great of shape as Alli will have a cheat meal or cheat day once in a while. You gotta live life. The thing is though, when you are very consistent with your healthy lifestyle habits, you can afford these splurges. To be so in tune with your body is such an amazing feeling. This is a wonderful article that clears the air on what ladies as fit as Alli eat regularly. No tricks. No BS. No shortcuts. Just clean living.

Follow Alli here

So what did we learn? These girls are obviously in tremendous shape. They are all very successful at helping others become more sexy and confident in their own skin. They all understand there are no shortcuts, no fad diets, no starving themselves to fit into a dress, no hours upon hours on the elliptical.

These women are models for the girls looking to get healthy, strong, sexy, and happy. These are the traits that are truly attractive to us men. Do yourself a huge favor and read some of their work. You’ll be better for it.

strong is sexy

As RGIII and Coach Shanahan learned this past weekend, Dr. James Andrews’ advice is not something that you often want to ignore- even in the football world.

andrews told ya so

That being said, for this week’s installment of “Baseball Research Review,” we highlight one of the more poignant baseball research papers by Dr. Andrews’ group, “Risk Factors for Shoulder and Elbow Injuries in Adolescent Baseball Pitchers.” As part of the newly opened MGH Sports Performance Center, I attended a recent Mass General Orthopedics Journal Club where the Orthopedic Surgeons, Residents, Interns, Physical Therapists and a group of related baseball strength and performance specialists reviewed a few of the important articles in the field. This article highlighted the selection as one of those articles with an important message all of those in the baseball field should be readily familiar with to pass on to inquiring athletes, parents and other specialists.

Risk Factors for Shoulder and Elbow Injuries in Adolescent Baseball Pitchers
The American Journal of Sports Medicine, Volume 34, No. 6
Samuel J. Olsen II, MD, Glenn S. Fleisig,* PhD, Shouchen Dun, MS, Jeremy Loftice, and James R. Andrews, MD
From the American Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham, Alabama

Methods
In an attempt to quantify the risk factors associated with an observed 4-fold increase in elbow surgeries performed by Dr. James Andrews from 2000-2004 versus 1994-1999 along with a 6-fold increase for high school pitchers, 90 adolescent pitchers who had elbow or shoulder surgery were surveyed and statistically compared to the results of another 45 adolescent pitchers with no such history of elbow or shoulder surgery. Survey questions included queries about injury history, playing history, preventative measures taken, and competitive habits.

Results
In comparing the non-injured and injured subgroups, the authors found that pitchers who threw more innings, games, and months were more likely to be injured. In fact, they found that those who pitched more than 8 months were 5 times more likely to be injured. Specifically, they found that individuals who pitched greater than 8 months during the year were 5 times more likely to be injured. There was a 4 time greater risk of injury for those pitching more than 80 pitches per game. Pitching despite arm fatigue yielded the greatest increase in injury rate, at a 36 times rate. Not surprisingly, pitching at 85 miles per hour or higher also increased the injury rate 2.58 times.

Authors Conclusions
Taking into account the findings of their study, the authors developed some recommendations when dealing with adolescent pitchers. The main pieces of advice they had were:
1) avoid pitching with arm fatigue
2) avoid pitching with arm pain
3) avoid pitching too much- meaning limit pitching to less than 8 months out of the year, limiting it to less than 80 pitches per game, and limit multiple showcases

Limitations
The main limitation to this study, as mentioned by the authors, is that the survey relied on the recollection of these adolescent pitchers. The numbers provide a good guide; however, I’m not sure how accurately you can predict based on rememberences from youth pitchers almost a year past. Additionally, there most definitely will be some memory bias for those who are retrospectively asked how much discomfort or pain they may have pitched through, especially if they later underwent surgery. I don’t know about you, but I can barely remember the number of pitches I threw in a given warm up a year ago, let alone trust some of these adolescent pitchers to recall despite worrying about prom dates, drivers license tests, and college applications, just to name a few. Still, the finding provide a framework to further discuss and elucidate risky pitching practices.

Show Me Strength’s Commentary

As coaches ourselves, we often get questions from parents concerned about their child’s participation, or more usually, lack there-of, in showcase type events during the “off-season” months. Parents worry that if their child does not participate in said showcase, then they will be at a severe disadvantage when it comes to college or professional recruiting. What I tell the parents, and Chad would agree, that it is way more important to stay healthy than to head down to a showcase and blow your arm out. Not only is the player not in mid-season shape when they head down to a place where the temptation to try to “light up the gun” is great, but also, they waste precious time for recuperation, recovery, and building a strength foundation for the upcoming full season. If you are good enough to be recruited by a college or drafted, more likely than not the scouts will have plenty of time to find you during your regular high school or summer season. The risk/reward is just too high. As evidenced directly by this research, participation in throwing activities for the whole year puts the athlete at a significantly increased risk of injury.

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Monday Motivational Reads!

Posted: January 7, 2013 by cmrodgers100 in General

Tyler Durdin

17 Ways to Rise Above by Chris Mccombs– This was one of the most thorough yet simple motivational pieces I’ve seen in a long time. Chris does a tremendous job of driving home some of the necessary traits that we must possess to live an incredible life. A funny, no BS, straight forward look into how awesomeness can be achieved is what this article is all about. Do yourself a favor and take some of these pointers to heart.

Follow Chris on Twitter here

What’s Your 20 Mile March by Art of Manliness– Is being ultra successful in business, training, sports, or life about a big break or huge moments defined by crazy risk and constant highs and lows? Or is it about methodically putting in consistent, quality, and precise work? This article explains that those of us who separate ourselves from the pack are often the people who are so ridiculously consistent with their work that success is just a formality.

Follow Art of Manliness on Twitter here

How to Make 2013 the Happiest Year Of Your Life by Chris “The Kiwi” Ashenden- It’s an amazing feeling once you’ve made up your mind to be eternally happy during your time here on earth. Sometimes it takes some stumbles, obstacles, or a kick in the ass to realize your happiness potential, but it is attainable for all of us. My friend Chris here has dedicated his professional life to helping people discover the ultimate happiness from both a physical and mental standpoint. Here is a fantastic article from the co-founder of Athletic Greens. Enjoy.

Follow Chris on Twitter here

“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.” Groucho Marx

Training Song Of The Week

Show Me Strength’s Reads of the Week, 12/30-1/5

Posted: January 6, 2013 by showmestrength in General
Tags: , , ,

Reads of the Week to Make Your Head Explode

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This weeks reads of the week will hopefully make your brain explode, but in a good way, unlike the poor recipient of the above Clowney massacre of 2013. As 2013 commences, we want to help you focus your continuing education with some great reads of the week. Our goal, as always, is to continue to learn day in and day out. Please share our list widely and feel free to send in suggestions to showmestrength@gmail.com, tweet us @showmestrength or post it on our facebook page! We are always looking to learn more!

The Real Rules of Assessment by Tony Gentilcore
Here Tony does a great job rationalizing the thought process behind his assessments and those used at Cressey Performance. It is interesting to see how he draws from a wide range of the many assessment systems out there. In the end, it is all about being able to properly determine the level of your athlete to best design a properly challenging progression for their development.

You can follow Tony on twitter here

Using Resistance Bands: Why Heavier Isn’t Always Better by Nick Tumminello
Resistance bands are a great tool; however, many people, including us at times, get carried away in thinking that we are getting a better training effect by using that extra thick band. This eye opening article talks about the proper use of resistance bands, shows the scientific breakdown of the band resistance strength/stretch comparisons, and offers some helpful tips on how to maximize your training when implementing resistance bands.

You can follow Nick on twitter here

Hip Extension and Rotation in the Baseball Swing by Jeff Albert through EricCresssey.com
As evidenced by the start of our “Baseball Research Review” series, we are a big fan of articles which blend the science and performance aspects of baseball and quantifiably demonstrate how to improve one’s game. In this article, Jeff does a great job of explaining and showing how hip extension and rotation are key components of the baseball swing. Additionally, he reminds athletes when performing exercises in the weight room to think about training movements which can correlate to the action for which you are training, in this case a powerful swing.

You can follow Jeff on twitter here

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Motivational Reads! New Year Edition!

Posted: January 2, 2013 by cmrodgers100 in General

turning pro and the war of art

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Robert Frost

And miles to go before I sleep. And miles to go before I sleep. How true. Today, January 1, 2013, marks a fresh start, a clean slate, an opprotunity to feed the person you know is inside you and you truly want to be.

This week you will surely…

-Hear people talk about a new workout program they are starting. Vow to treat training as a lifestyle that you will embody until death.

-Hear people talk about a new diet that they will use to try and lose weight. Vow to treat your food as fuel for the machine that will carry you through the awesome life that you will have.

-Hear people talk about how much money they want to make this year. Vow to do what you love each and every day, knowing that money is just a byproduct of the amazing difference you are making in the world.

-Hear people talk about relationships they wish to rekindle with their family, friends, or significant others. Vow to reach out to someone close to you whom you havent spoken with each day. But also vow to invest in yourself, making those around you proud of the man or woman you are becoming.

Time is ticking, as we learned from the Memento Mori. It’s time to start living and stop going through the motions.

Here are some motivational and inspirational pieces that should get your mind right!

1.) Overcome Procrastination- Steven Pressfield’s top 12 tips- The books at the top of the page are written by the amazing Steven Pressfield. Along with some incredible fiction works like Gates of Fire, Steven also has some non-fiction works that have really helped me get more shit done. He calls “resistance” the evil force in all of us that keeps us from being who we are capable of being. His book The War of Art has really been a game changer for me. It has helped me understand that resistance to excellence exists, but is vulnerable when we sit down and do the work we need to do.

2.) What If Money Were No Object- Chad Howse posted this to his blog earlier this week. Very hard-hitting stuff.

 

3.) How Forrest Gump Will Help You Make 2013 A Success by Chad Howse- Even though this is a fiction movie, imagine if you could really master some of Forrest’s qualities like kindness, focus, and simple living. Well the good news is we can. You just can’t simply snap your fingers and improve though, you must work…hard. Just like an amazing body, amazing traits are created through persistence of kicking the crap out of your bad ones.

4. On Living Well. My Own Way By My Own Rules by Jonathan Goodman- Nobody should have the same goals, guidelines to live by, value system, or habits. We can, however, learn from what others are doing well to create a plan for ourselves. Jon lists some “musts” for each area of his life. Take a look and see what you can learn from and apply for yourself.

The bottom line is we must not hope for this year to be great, we must make this year great. Great things won’t just fall on your lap, you must work for what you truly want.

Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account. – Oscar Wilde

The work we must put in is worth it. We will face crippling resistance at times, as Pressfield describes, but we must do the work. The stars won’t align, there will be no perfect day for you to start working toward your ideal life. You must start now, and never..ever…stop.

Here’s to a fantastic 2013 and becoming who we know we are capable of becoming!