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The Giant Killer

By Two-Time 212 Olympia Champion Shaun Clarida

Sponsored by MUTANT

Q: I see on your videos that you use a Smith machine for some basic movements like squats, stiff-leg deadlifts, and barbell rows. Can you explain why these are better options for you than the barbell versions?

A: Barbells are excellent tools, but once you get to a certain level of strength, I do feel there is a higher risk of tearing a muscle using them. For instance, in almost every case I know of when someone has torn his pec, he was doing either the flat or incline barbell press, most of the time it was on a flat bench. An injury like that would obviously be devastating for me. But more so for me, the Smith machine is safer for me because I train by myself. If I had a training partner, I would still do the incline barbell press, but definitely not the flat bench. The Smith machine version of it is much safer for me personally. Also, I’ve always liked the Smith machine because I don’t have to utilize my stabilizers. I just find the right path and go up and down. I do believe dumbbells are good for building those stabilizer muscles and I still use them for pressing, especially inclines on chest day. You might have seen me with the 200s! But being over 40 now and training by myself, the Smith machine allows me to be more stable and safer. If I can’t get the last rep, I can just rack it quickly. If you’re in that position by yourself with a heavy barbell over your neck, you’re screwed! I’ve always been a big fan of the Smith machine. To those who say it’s not effective, I’ve gotten significantly bigger and denser over the last few years, and I’ve done a lot of work on the Smith machine.

Leg Training: Give It All You’ve Got

Q: You posted that every bodybuilder has a love/hate relationship with leg training. How would you describe that in your case? What do you love, what do you hate?

A: I love when it’s done! But seriously, I still get anxiety before leg days. I think if you really train hard and push your limits, you will have anxiety starting the day before. Then you wake up that morning thinking about it. You get that first meal in, and you’re driving to the gym thinking about what you’re going to do in the workout, visualizing the weights, the reps, the whole thing. Once I get a few sets into the workout, maybe doing some leg extensions or squats, my mind switches to another mode. At that point it’s all about effort and intensity and seeing how hard I can go. I’m already looking forward to the aftermath of the workout where I have to crawl out of the gym because I blasted my legs so well. My legs will still be throbbing the next morning getting out of bed. Legs are the biggest body part, so you have to throw everything at it. Like yesterday, I squatted, then I did leg presses, and I finished with Bulgarian squats. With legs, you really do have to give it everything you’ve got if you want them to grow and improve. Sometimes it can be scary or intimidating to get under a bar or a leg press sled loaded up with hundreds of pounds, but I always say, “It’s me or the machine, and the machine isn’t going to win today.” I never get under that weight and think about how it might hurt me. You just have to get under it and get your reps, then walk away and be done with it.

Don’t Listen to Haters

Q: Just curious, the night you turned pro at the 2012 Nationals, someone told you that your career was over. You would never be big enough to do well as a pro, you would never win a pro show, you were wasting your time and should quit. Did that person ever admit later on just how wrong he was?

A: No, he didn’t. But the last time I saw him, he told me how proud he was of me and congratulated me on all my success; but he has never said he was wrong. It was tough at that time years ago when he said that. I was on this high after just earning my pro card, and then he just took the wind right out of my sails. It didn’t bother me for long, because I knew I was going to get to where I wanted to get to regardless of whether people believed in me and supported my dream. I could have easily listened to what he said and took it to heart and given up that very night. But I said, hey, I got this far. I turned pro. Who’s to say I can’t be a good pro, win a pro show, get to the Olympia, and maybe even win that? I knew I was going to need to add a lot more size to make those crazy dreams a reality, so I put my head down and did the work. People love to tell you what you won’t ever be able to do. It’s up to you whether you listen to them and accept their predictions. Here I am now with two Olympia titles and multiple pro wins, one of them in an Open show at only 174 pounds against guys who were 260-280 pounds. It’s a good thing I didn’t listen to that guy and quit or none of that would have happened!

People love to tell you what you won’t ever be able to do. It’s up to you whether you listen to them and accept their predictions.

Instagram @shaunclarida

YouTube: Shaun Clarida

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The post Smith Machine Better Than Barbells? appeared first on FitnessRX for Men.

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By: Team FitRx
Title: Smith Machine Better Than Barbells?
Sourced From: www.fitnessrxformen.com/interviews/smith-machine-better-than-barbells/
Published Date: Fri, 20 Oct 2023 14:52:00 +0000

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Mens Health

Podcast #984: Why Your Memory Seems Bad (It’s Not Just Age)

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Do you sometimes walk to another room in your house to get something, but then can’t remember what it was you wanted? Do you sometimes forget about an appointment or struggle to remember someone’s name?

You may have chalked these lapses in memory up to getting older. And age can indeed play a role in the diminishing power of memory. But as my guest will tell us, there are other factors at play as well.

Charan Ranganath is a neuroscientist, a psychologist, and the author of Why We Remember: Unlocking Memory’s Power to Hold on to What Matters. Today on the show, Charan explains how factors like how we direct our attention, take photos, and move through something called “event boundaries” all affect our memory, and how our current context in life impacts which memories we’re able to recall from the past. We also talk about how to reverse engineer these factors to improve your memory.

Resources Related to the Podcast

  • AoM Article: 10 Ways to Improve Your Memory
  • AoM Podcast #546: How to Get a Memory Like a Steel Trap
  • AoM Podcast #750: The Surprising Benefits of Forgetting
  • Reminiscence bump

Connect With Charan Ranganath

  • Charan’s website
  • Charan on IG
  • Charan’s faculty page

Book cover titled "Why We Remember" by Charan Ranganath, PhD, featuring a white cloud on a clear blue background, symbolizing memory retention and the impact of age on memory.

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By: Brett & Kate McKay
Title: Podcast #984: Why Your Memory Seems Bad (It’s Not Just Age)
Sourced From: www.artofmanliness.com/health-fitness/health/podcast-984-why-your-memory-seems-bad-its-not-just-age/
Published Date: Mon, 22 Apr 2024 14:31:56 +0000

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Mens Health

The Future of Men’s Mental Health

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Photo by drew_hays / Unsplash.com

Part 1 — Men and Mental Health, What Are We Missing?

I have been interested in men’s mental, emotional, and relational health for a long time. When I was five years old my mid-life father became increasingly irritable, angry, and depressed because he felt he couldn’t support our family, my mother and me, doing the work he loved. In desperation he took an overdose of sleeping pills to stop the pain. Fortunately, he didn’t die, but our lives were never the same. He was committed to Camarillo State Mental Hospital.

My father had been an actor in New York and moved to California with the hopes of working in the emerging movie and television industry. But like many creative artists of the period he ran into the “red scare,” was blacklisted, and couldn’t find work. His time in the mental hospital only made him worse. I grew up wondering what happened to my father, when it would happen to me, and how I could prevent it from happening to other families.

After graduating from college I was accepted into U.C. San Francisco Medical School with hopes of becoming a psychiatrist. I hoped to learn and develop the skills to help men like my father as well as the families who love them. However, medicine, at the time, was too restrictive for me and I transferred to U.C. Berkeley where I earned my Master of Social Work Degree. My initial interest focused on addiction medicine, but I soon expanded my work to include Gender-Specific Medicine and men’s health. I later returned to school and earned a PhD in International Health. My dissertation research was published as a book: Male vs. Female Depression: Why Men Act Out and Women Act In.

Following the birth of our first son, Jemal, in 1969 and daughter, Angela, in 1972, I launched MenAlive.com as my window to the world to house my books, articles, and on-line programs. I’ve had seventeen books published including international best-sellers Male Menopause and The Irritable Male Syndrome: Understanding and Managing the 4 Key Causes of Depression and Aggression, as well as trend-setting books including Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places: Overcoming Romantic and Sexual Addictions, The Warrior’s Journey Home: Healing Men, Healing the Planet, Stress Relief for Men, and Long Live Men! The Moonshot Mission to Heal Men, Close the Lifespan Gap, and Offer Hope to Humanity.

The field of gender-specific healing and men’s mental health has grown considerably since I began in 1972. I estimate that there are now at least a thousand organizations that focus on various aspects of men’s health. In 2021, I invited several colleagues who were doing great work to join me in what I called my Moonshot Mission for Mankind and Humanity. We began meeting monthly to get to know each other, share ideas, and create an on-line hub to bring individuals and organizations together to help men live fully healthy lives.

            With the help and support of one of our founding members, Joe Conrad, Founder and CEO of Man Therapy, we developed a website and introductory film at MoonshotforMankind.com.  I believe that men are both the “canaries in the coalmine” alerting us to the problems faced by humanity and also they are the key players in solving the problems that undermine the health of all. The Moonshot site shares our vision and call to connect:

“The journey to heal humanity has begun.”

Our Moonshot vision can be summarized simply:

“We believe man’s mental, emotional, and relational health is the key to empowering men to live long and well. Our mission is to help men live healthier, happier, more cooperative lives—fulfilling lives of purpose and productivity, where men are supported and valued as they make positive contributions to their families, friends, and communities. When that happens, families grow stronger, communities prosper, and humanity takes its next leap forward.”

Men and Mental Health: What Are We Missing?

            According to report by Derek M. Griffith, PhD, Ayo Ogunbiyi, MPH, and Emily Jaeger, MPH at Georgetown University’s Center for Men’s Health Equity,

Men aren’t the problem. The way that we — society as a whole and health care providers specifically — treat them is.”

In an April 2, 2024 article titled “Men and mental health: What are we missing?,” they detail a number of important issues that we often fail to address including the following:

  • It is time that primary care physicians, mental health service providers, and policymakers look critically at the accuracy and utility of their assumptions and explanations for men’s rates of depression, anxiety, burnout, substance abuse, and other common mental health conditions.
  • 40% of men with a reported mental illness received mental health care services in the past year, compared with 52% of women with a reported mental illness, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the crisis of men’s mental health.
  • The uncertainty of the pandemic, loneliness from social distancing, financial stresses, relationship challenges, and other contextual factors contributed to increased rates of men having difficulty sleeping, alcohol and substance use, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms.
  • Traditionally, men are socialized to define their worth by their ability to contribute economically to a household. However, as the labor market has shifted away from traditionally male-dominated jobs, men must now redefine their worth outside of their employment, income, and home.
  • The notion of “precarious manhood,” which is the belief that manhood is an achieved social status that must be earned and constantly defended, means that men may feel it is their character — rather than their behavior — being judged during more tumultuous economic times.
  • Even when men seek care, that care often falls short. Data from Canada and the United States found that more than 60% of men who died by suicide had accessed mental health care services within the previous year.
  • When men do seek mental health care services, it is not uncommon for them to feel that providers mislabel and underestimate their needs, and that these providers do not seem to have a genuine interest in their problems.
  • The fact that men are diagnosed with depression at lower rates than women, despite their higher rates of suicide, substance use, and violent behavior, suggests that more could be done to improve the tools used to diagnose men with depression.
  • While some mental health care service providers may be gender sensitive and recognize the ways that aggressiveness, alcohol use, and risky behavior are part of the presenting symptoms men with depression may exhibit, there are few courses and trainings that focus on gender differences in mental health, potentially leading to mental health care service providers being less equipped to serve and offer gender-sensitive resources to men.

We need a new approach for addressing men’s mental health issues. In the second part of this series, I will address the reality that men’s mental health issues don’t just impact men. They impact everyone. If you’d like to read more articles like these, please visit me at MenAlive.com and receive our free newsletter with new articles and tools you can use to improve your mental, emotional, and relational health.

The post The Future of Men’s Mental Health appeared first on MenAlive.

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By: Jed Diamond
Title: The Future of Men’s Mental Health
Sourced From: menalive.com/the-future-of-mens-mental-health/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=the-future-of-mens-mental-health
Published Date: Wed, 17 Apr 2024 23:33:29 +0000

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Mens Health

Podcast #983: Grid-Down Medicine — A Guide for When Help Is NOT on the Way

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If you read most first aid guides, the last step in treating someone who’s gotten injured or sick is always: get the victim to professional medical help.

But what if you found yourself in a situation where hospitals were overcrowded, inaccessible, or non-functional? What if you found yourself in a grid-down, long-term disaster, and you were the highest medical resource available?

Dr. Joe Alton is an expert in what would come after the step where most first aid guides leave off. He’s a retired surgeon and the co-author of The Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Help is NOT on the Way. Today on the show, Joe argues that every family should have a medical asset and how to prepare to be a civilian medic. We discuss the different levels of first aid kits to consider creating, from an individual kit all the way up to a community field hospital. And we talk about the health-related skills you might need in a long-term grid-down disaster, from burying a dead body, to closing a wound with super glue, to making an improvised dental filling, to even protecting yourself from the radiation of nuclear fallout.

Resources Related to the Podcast

  • AoM Article: How to Use a Tourniquet to Control Major Bleeding
  • AoM Article: The Complete Guide to Making a DIY First Aid Kit
  • AoM Article: How to Suture a Wound
  • AoM Article: What Every Man Should Keep in His Car
  • AoM Article: Improvised Ways to Close a Wound
  • AoM Podcast #869: The Survival Myths That Can Get You Killed With Alone Winner Jim Baird

Connect With Joe Alton

  • Doom and Bloom website
  • Doom and Bloom on YouTube
  • Doom and Bloom on FB

Cover of "the survival medicine handbook," featuring a red first aid kit on a road under a stormy sky, by Joseph Alton MD and Amy Alton APRN.

Listen to the Podcast! (And don’t forget to leave us a review!)

Apple Podcast.

Overcast.

Spotify.

 

Listen to the episode on a separate page.

Download this episode.

Subscribe to the podcast in the media player of your choice.

Transcript Coming Soon

Help support independent publishing. Make a donation to The Art of Manliness! Thanks for the support!

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By: Brett & Kate McKay
Title: Podcast #983: Grid-Down Medicine — A Guide for When Help Is NOT on the Way
Sourced From: www.artofmanliness.com/health-fitness/health/podcast-983-grid-down-medicine-a-guide-for-when-help-is-not-on-the-way/
Published Date: Wed, 17 Apr 2024 12:37:37 +0000

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