fighter

This One's a Fighter

"The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?" --Psalm 27:1

Read: Psalm 27

With Boston still so fresh, it's difficult to think about anything else. The stories of heroism flood our minds. Spectating doctors dashing into danger, runners rushing to give blood.

Oh my friends, who's feeling grateful today?

Who's mindful for the health they have? Who reading this sentence today will run, walk, lift, stretch or otherwise in honor of those less fortunate? Share this entry if you're an overcomer. Share this entry if the enemy is whispering, "This one's a fighter."

--Jimmy Peña

Question: What will you do today to honor the Lord, your health and those who have lost theirs due to this senseless act of terror?

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Make Believe

"So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing." --1 Corinthians 9:26

Read: 1 Corinthians 9

As I was leaving Gio's Boxing Gym in Burbank (Calif.), amid the familiar cadence of speed bags and jump ropes, something a cornerman yelled to his boxer caught my attention. "Stop trying to look like a fighter and be a fighter!" he said. I literally stopped in my tracks. What a powerful statement. Just how powerful, I'd realize just moments later.

Walking toward my truck, I came upon a film crew about to shoot a documentary -- a boxing documentary, no doubt. Lights, cameras and make-up. I stood for what seemed like years and watched a make-up artist applying shades of purple, black and blue to an actor's face and under his eyes. Boxing gloves? Check. Legitimate shorts? Those too. But he wasn't dressed for - nor returning from - a real battle. "Stop trying to look like a fighter and be a fighter," ironically echoed in my head.

I wonder about my faith. And maybe you wonder about yours. Am I a make-believer in life? Or do I help make believers with my life? Like the verse above, I don't want to shadowbox. I want purpose. Give me somethin' to hit.

--Jimmy Peña

Question: In what area of your life, spiritually or physically, do you need to stand to fight? How can the Prayfit community pray for you? List your battles below or simply list them as "unspoken request(s)".

REPORT: CHILDREN OBESITY SPILLING INTO MANUFACTURING

A CNN report recently called attention to the latest casualty in the childhood obesity epidemic: school furniture manufacturers. Because of the expanding waistlines of children -- a full 15 to 17% of all kids are over 95th percentile for obesity -- manufacturers are forced to develop desks that can accommodate them. Child car seat manufacturers are also having to adjust with new designs to keep heavier kids safe.

"Childhood obesity affects their safety in matters beyond child seats and ill-fitting school furniture," the report says. "Obese kids are more likely to get heart disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure and are more prone to diabetes, bone and joint problems. Their health problems are also more likely to follow into adulthood."

>> For the full report from CNN, click here.

ACTION PLAN: Let's be part of the solution. Today, take stock of how much activity your children are getting each day, taking physical education at school and organized sports into account as well. Discuss the importance of regular activity with your child and make today the first day of a scheduled family “workout,” where you spend 15-20 minutes exercising, walking or playing together.

CORNERMAN

April 5, 2011Read: Matthew 11

"Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened and I'll give you rest." --Matthew 11:28

We've all heard the phrase "God is in your corner." Sounds comforting, no? But if you've ever seen a cornerman at work (like you will this Saturday when Robert Guerrero steps into the ring), the phrase takes on new meaning. If you compare what he does to what we know of God, the similarities are striking.

Let's see:

He has his fighter's best interest in mind.

He knows what he can handle.

He never takes his eyes off his fighter.

He knows his strengths and weaknesses.

He knows the opponent's strengths and weaknesses.

He treats his fighter's wounds.

He gives wise advice on how to win the fight.

He knows when his fighter's had enough.

Win or lose, he's always there to pick him up.

Now, compare all that to what a cornerman does.

Come to think of it, have you ever seen a fighter avoid his corner between rounds? Me neither.

IN HIS CORNER

This weekend (Saturday, April 9), boxer and PrayFit endorser Robert Guerrero steps into the ring against Michael Katsidis on the highly touted "Action Heroes" fight card on HBO Pay-Per-View. Guerrero, a loving husband and father of two, will be wearing PrayFit.com on the back of his trunks as he looks to capture the interim lightweight (135-pound) titles for the WBA and WBO. For more on this weekend's fight, visit HBO Boxing. For ordering information, contact your local cable provider.

>> GEAR UP! As you cozy up in front of the flat screen this weekend before the big fight, make sure you're geared up right. Click here to purchase our newly designed PrayFit hats and shirts.

CORNERMAN

July 28, 2010Read: Matthew 11

"Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened and I'll give you rest." --Matthew 11:28

We've all heard the phrase "God is in your corner." Sounds comforting, no? But if you've ever seen a cornerman at work, the phrase takes on new meaning. Especially if you compare what he does to what we know of God, the similarities are striking.

Let's see: He has his fighter's best interest in mind. He knows what his fighter can handle. He never takes his eyes off his fighter. He knows his fighter's strengths and weaknesses. He knows the opponent's strengths and weaknesses. He treats his fighter's wounds. He gives wise advice on how to win the fight. He knows when his fighter's had enough. Win or lose, he's always there to pick him up.

(Now, compare all that to what a cornerman does.)

Come to think of it, have you ever seen a fighter avoid his corner between rounds? Me neither.

--J.P.

PRAYFIT TIP: THE TIMING OF IT ALL You need your abs and core fresh during your entire training session, especially during bent-over moves like Romanian or stiff-legged deadlifts, and during all types of squatting moves. And that goes for both men and women!

Many of you might be working with a trainer who has you going from an abs move into a bent-over move or squat-type of exercise in superset fashion, and I realize he or she is doing it to keep your heart rate up, to keep it fun with lots of variety, etc. But realize that you could be putting yourself at risk of injury by doing so.

During squatting moves or bent-over moves, your core and abs work to stabilize your spine -- think of them as an inner weightlifting belt -- but if they’re weak and fatigued, you won’t be able to generate the necessary pressure inside to hold your spine in perfect alignment. The result: a weaker lift and a more unstable core.

Please don’t buy into the notion that you “fire up” the abs and core by training them first. That makes no sense and it won’t help you achieve your goals and, it bears repeating, could be promoting injury.

Finally, why put anything in a situation where you won’t be at your very best? By sacrificing your strength on multi-joint lifts that involve more muscle, you are working with less strength and building less muscle. You can always fatigue your abs last, when the need to have a stable core is not imperative.

>> CORE QUESTIONS?: Drop your thoughts and questions on core training in our forums by clicking here.