Round Back Deadlifting – Episode 177

Performance Menu: Journal of Health & Athletic Excellence

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  1. [6:52] Freeze The Fat, and Transdermal Patches
  2. [11:06] Histidine Supplementation for Inflammation and Fat Loss
  3. [13:10] Donating Plasma
  4. [16:27] Liver AST and ALT
  5. [19:36] Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis
  6. [22:52] Sudden Aversion to Meat
  7. [25:22] Working Out For Catabolism and Getting Skinny
  8. [27:54] Science Behind Deadlift Form
  9. [35:12] Effects of Shifted Sleep Pattern



1. Paleo Snopes

Mike says:
Dear Greg Rob Scrotchy,

There are some mysteries that need solving out here in LALA land. I also think that your listeners would love hearing you debunk or validate these things as we in listener land  either 1) respect your opinion 2) find it very entertaining.

Question 1:
‘Freez the Fat’.  I’ve been seeing billboards for this all over the place in Los Angeles.  I’ve heard you talk about lipo being better than the lazer treatment as it oxidizes fat.  Was curious if you thought at that freezing fat would work and if it did was it harmful? are these folks just bilking the public?

Question 2:
‘Transdermal Patches’.   There is a company called Age Force that sells patches for HGH, Testosterone, and Fat Burning among others. I was curious what your thought was on this sort of treatment versus oral supplements? Are people just buying expensive self adhesive stickers?


2. Histidine for reduced inflammation and fat loss?

Tom says:
Robb and Greg and Squatchy,

Thanks for all the time and energy you guys put into this show. It’s the highlight of my week. (and the podcast drops on garbage day, so it’s my reminder to pull the bin out to the curb. Thanks!)

I just read an article on where Adele Mousa, the resident science guy for Superhuman Radio, detailed the potential anti-inflammatory, gut calming, and fat-loss properties of Histidine. I won’t rehash the entire article, as there’s a link below. I’m interested in your thoughts, especially as it pertains to supplementation in people who tolerate histidine-containing foods well.

Thanks for everything, and I’m really looking forward to the nutrition cert!


3. Donating Plasma = Donating my hard earned hormones

Barrett says:
Greg and Rob,

A friend of mine recently brought me onto the idea of donating plasma for some extra cash.  Up until know I have been donating red blood for free, just out of the goodness of my heart.  But now that I know I can earn money from helping others out, I am all for it!  My questions are this.
1.      Since plasma is a primary source for transporting proteins, including beneficial hormones for the body, should I be donating 1, 2, 3 times a week?…or will this degrade my hormonal panel?  I like my state of health but do not feel like donating my hard earned hormones to someone who could give a shit about their sleep, food, or exercise?

2.      Is it detrimental to donate my red blood every 3-4 months, and my plasma weekly.  Feel free to disregard this questions, if you feel that donating plasma is making me less manly.


4. Liver AST & ALT Levels high?

Matthew says:
Hi Robb,

I’ve been eating a paleo diet for over 14 months now. For the past 8 months I’ve been regularly getting blood work to be sure I’m on the right track. 8 months ago my AST and ALT levels were high, 65 and 86 respectively. My doctor, also paleo, suggested I reduce my alcohol and tylenol intake. I do not take any tylenol and my alcohol consumption is a glass of wine about every evening. I watched my alcohol intake for one month and the numbers dropped to 21 & 32. 6 months later, after going back to my “regular” alcohol consumption, AST & ALT are back up to 70 and 44. What are you thoughts on the liver markers, AST and ALT? Should I be worried? Do I really need to cut out my love of good wine? What do you suggest? Cheers, Matthew.


5. Primary sclerosing cholangitis

Darren says:
Hi Robb,

Firstly, thanks for the book, I am finding it very informative and inspirational with respect to what I can do to improve my health.

Anyway, a few weeks ago I was diagnosed Primary sclerosing cholangitis, an auto-immune disease of the liver which apparently leads to liver failure.  Right now my symptoms are a slight dialation of the billiary duct as seen by MRI and elevated liver enzymes (specifically Alkalie Phosphatase but also AST and ALT) at about 1.5 x Normal.  The advice I was given by my doctors was stop drinking alcohol and we will monitor you – that was it.  No diet change no excercise… nothing else! I don’t want to sit and wait for liver failure!

I want to start Paleo, I have already stopped drinking alcohol, eating sugar and I am pretty much gluten free.  However, I am wondering if I should have any concerns about Paleo relating to load on the liver or bile production.  I am an engineer but I have no medical background so while I can understand the technical arguments in your book I’m not really sure about extrapolating them to my condition.

I would really appreciate any comments you may have with respect to my situation and I would be very curious if you have ever worked with anyone who has/had PSC.

PS.  Prior to the diagnosis I was a little overweight and a lot like the Charlie character in your book.  I’m also caucasian/Australian and 46 years old living in the US.


6. Paleo for over a year, now can’t stand meat.

Edward says:

I’ve been eating Paleo for over a year and have found success in my goals to effectively lose weight.

So now, over a year in, a strange turn of events has happened… I’ve stopped being able to stomach most meat.  Seafood is OK, but beef, chicken and pork are causing me much disgust.  When I’m eating meat no, I’m so repulsed that I throw up.  When i go to the meat counter, I’m having a hard time stomaching it.  So now, I’ve moved to a more vegatable based diet.  Any idea why the sudden change of heart for meat??  I’ve always been a big fan… I love meat, I crave it.  Now It’s repulsing me.


7. When catabolism is the goal…

Brain says:
Hi Robb and Greg,

My wife is an actress who is currently doing her best to break into the film industry in Los Angeles. She’s feeling confident and has landed some decent roles in a few independent and short films so far (only been out in LA for 8 months). However, one thing she is concerned with is the sad fact that actresses need to be as thin as possible, as the camera adds 10 lbs. She needs to lose about 10 lbs, without adding any noticeable muscle. So, what would you recommend for a training protocol? She says she would be fine with even losing some muscle in the process. I realize that could potentially hurt her metabolism, but losing the muscle (especially in her quads) would not be a negative in her book. She has an athletic build, 5 ft. 6, 130 lbs currently. Any insights would be much appreciated. Thanks so much.


8. Research on deadlift form?

Eric says:
Okay, so this may be unconventional and heretical; Greg may even spit in my face.. but what’s the deal with rounded back deadlifting, and deadlift form?

All I’ve read from form warriors is “rounded back, bad!”, with no real science behind it. The best I’ll get is conjecture or anecdotes on how the body works, which you know.. is great science. When I actually look into the literature I can’t find anything besides some on bio-mechanical differences between squat/dead, and conventional/sumo pulls. Some say upper arch is fine (like konstantinov) if it feels good and you train for it, but pretty much everyone says lower back arching is bad.

Another thing I’ll read is that roundbacker injuries grossly out-number those with normal form, but where are these numbers coming from? Also, where is the differentiation between training habits? Rounder backers might be more aggressive in pushing the pounds (and thus unintentionally round-backing), rather than being conservative.

Can I get anything on this besides hearsay and dogma, and what the ‘experts’ say? This feels like the low-fat craze all over again. I ask this because my form (lower) degenerated on a 100% max lift today, but I felt totally fine. As a climber and grip enthusiast, I’ve had my fair share of falls, breaks, snaps, etc. I’m confident in knowing what is bad and good in terms of injuries — This doesn’t feel bad to me in low dosages and volume (and of course, a healthy body).

Be right back, gotta get my anti-shit flinging armor on.


9. Question about sleep…

Cal says:
G’day Robb and Greg.

I’ll forgo the proverbial ass-kissing (pretend it’s right here) and dive straight into my question.

Does it really matter which times of day you sleep? I’m aware I should be aiming for 8-9 hours per night, but I’ve fallen into the hideous habit of bedtime around 3am and waking up at midday. I’m only 22. I have the habits of a teenager. Yeah, I never grew up. Stop judging me.

So while I get the requisite 8-9 hours of sleep, does it matter that my sleeping pattern is completely fucked up? Or would I be healthier and more successful with fat burning if I was in bed before midnight? Oh yeah I am looking to lean out and lose fat and shit.

I’ve never really found a concrete answer on this. Love to hear your thoughts.

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  1. Mike Noyes says

    Biomechanical Analysis of the Deadlift
    Studies by Horn (1988) suggest that electromyographic activity in the spinal erector muscles were twice as active in conventional lifters when compared with sumo technique. Cholewicki et al (1991) studied the lumbar spine load of both sumo and conventional technique. No significant difference was found in disc compression force at L4/L5 regions using both techniques. There were significantly greater L4/L5 moments and load shear forces in the conventional technique. This may suggest that the greater forward lean of round back technique may further increase L4/L5 moments and shear forces indicating that much caution must be taken when considering this method for athletes as for the increased risk of injury to the lower back region.

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