SPARTAN PERFORMANCE                                  CROSSFIT SUFFOLK


Five rounds for time of:
Run 400 meters
185 pound Deadlift, 21 reps


WOD Demo with CrossFit Vengeance – video [wmv] [mov](Courtesy of CrossFit.com)




Reaching Your Potential In the Big 3   "But what separates a guy who can do those things with 300 pounds and a guy who can do them with 700 pounds isn't just slabs of muscle and time spent under the bar, but also every little link contributing harmoniously to a successful lift and a healthy, balanced body."Lee Boyce and Todd Bumgardner for TNation.com


Miracle-Gro For The Brain: Exercise, BDNF, and Learning   "Not long ago, a mention of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) would have elicited a blank stare from all but neuroscientists. Dr. John J. Ratey, a clinical professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, changed that in a big way with the publication of his book SPARK: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain (Little, Brown, 2008). In SPARK, Ratey termed BDNF “Miracle-Gro for the brain.” A massive amount of research, Ratey explained, has shown that BDNF “nourishes neurons [brain cells] like fertilizer.” When researchers sprinkle BDNF onto neurons in the lab, the cells spontaneously sprout new branches, producing the same structural growth required for learning—causing Ratey to think of BDNF as Miracle-Gro for the brain. 

What really sparked Ratey’s interest, however, was a report that, in mice, exercise elevates BDNF throughout the brain. “[That finding] laid the foundation for proving that exercise strengthens the cellular machinery of learning,” Ratey wrote. “BDNF gives the synapses the tools they need to take in information, process it, remember it, and put it in context.” (For more details, see Reboot Your Brain with Exercise in our Aerobic Exercise category.)

More recently, an article by Gretchen Reynolds in The New York Times on exercise and BDNF (November 30, 2011) triggered a flurry of comment. Reynolds related four cutting-edge studies, published in 2011, revealing how exercise stimulates BDNF—and brain function. The new studies involve humans as well as rodents and come from around the world: Ireland, Brazil, and two from the USA."–-Clarence Bass, Ripped


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