5 Exciting Gifts To Give The Outdoorsman

If you want to make an outdoorsman’s birthday more special, consider giving him a gift like fishing paraphernalia, something to enhance his camping trips, a chartered helicopter ride, sports gear, or something he can use for gardening.
Turning 50 years old is a meaningful occasion which you can honor in several ways. Some ideas for 50th birthday gifts are a simple but sentimental CD recording of birthday wishes or you can go for a grand party. Searching for a birthday gift for the outdoorsman in your life will prove to be fun and exciting as well. Consider the following gift ideas:
Fishing paraphernalia
It seems like fishermen are always in need of fishing supplies and accessories. A brand new fishing rod may be an ideal gift for the old-school fisherman who loves quiet fishing trips. You can instead give him accessories for fishing or various types of lures, if he already has numerous fishing rods. There are more sophisticated fishing devices like a digital fish finder which fishermen can use on their boats.
Something that can make his camping trips more enjoyable
If the celebrant loves camping trips; consider giving him something that can make his camping experience more comfortable. Consider buying an air mattress that he can easily tuck in a backpack and sleep comfortably on while camping out or a set of portable recliners that he can sit and relax on at his campsite. Alternatively, you can buy him a camp stove he can use to prepare hearty meals even when he is away from home. You can also get him a pair of binoculars so he can enjoy viewing various wildlife on his trips.
Outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers will surely enjoy something as exciting and unique as a helicopter ride. Some sightseeing companies offer helicopter tours over cities and different landmarks. Make reservations for the birthday boy and include his family and friends as his guests so they can all marvel at the scenery. Depending on the tour itineraries, scenic helicopter rides last from 10 to up to 40 minutes but every minute of the whole experience is sure to be exciting.
Sporting merchandise
Most outdoorsmen enjoy physical excursions and sports. If he is a collector of sports memorabilia, find something he’ll prize as an addition to his collection. If he enjoys playing golf, think about buying him a new club, bag or clothing he can wear for playing. Brand new basketball shoes can be great for a basketball fan. Should you be uncertain as to which sports he prefers, a gift certificate from a sporting goods outlet would be a good alternative.
Gardening tools
Older outdoor-lovers may be interested in stress-relieving hobbies such as gardening. Give him gardening tools to support his interests. Give him a gardening hat or gardening equipment like shovels, hoes and spades. If he already has those, you can go the extra mile and give him a fountain to enhance his garden landscape. If it is already planting season, why not include new plants that he can add to his garden.
Just remember to put extra thought and effort into whatever birthday gift you are giving.

Afterglow – Biorhythm Sports Supplements

What is Afterglow and what does it do?

Afterglow is the flagship sports supplement from BioRhythm Nutrition. It comes in a choice of three delicious flavours and two sizes, a 16 and a 32 serving size tub. To take it you mix 2 scoops in water immediately following a workout.

Afterglow is a best of breed, high function, exercise recovery supplement. After exercise the body is in a state of breaking muscle tissue down and its energy reserves within muscle tissue and the liver are very much reduced. Afterglow rapidly gets you out of this position by flooding the body with nutrients that trigger the repair and rebuild mechanisms within the body. Furthermore it supplies nutrients to restore the energy levels in your muscle tissue.

How important is a recovery supplement, and will I notice anything using Afterglow?

The single most important supplement you’ll ever use is a recovery supplement. If you’ve never used one before, you’ll be amazed at how much difference it makes to your feelings of energy after training.

Within a couple of weeks of using Afterglow you should notice significant steps forward in your progress, both in performance and in changes in your physique. You will probably make faster progress than you’ve made since the early days of your training.

How does Afterglow work?

During resistance exercise the body uses muscle and liver glycogen as its primary energy stores. Within a short time frame, this energy store starts to deplete and you start to produce certain hormones that begin to break down muscle tissue to free amino acids to generate more energy.

After exercise this process, called catabolism, continues and will persist for several hours. In fact it will continue until sufficient nutrients are available to reverse this activity.

Immediately after training, the body also produces high levels of an enzyme called glycogen synthaise which enables large levels of nutrients to be transported into muscle and liver cells. After 2 hours these levels start to fall, and at the 4 hour point are pretty much back to normal.

By ingesting carbohydrates and proteins, the glycogen synthaise will help shuttle high levels of these nutrients into muscle and liver cells.

Now the problem arises because even if you eat a well balanced solid food meal immediately after training, it can take 2 hours for this to get into your blood stream, and the reality is that it will probably take you at least an hour to get a solid food meal anyway, taking it to at least 3 hours before you get vital nutrients into your blood stream.

Afterglow contains a substantial level of simple carbohydrates and rapidly absorbed proteins. These nutrients are so easy to absorb that within 20 minutes of drinking Afterglow, the nutrients are within the bloodstream.

This means that nutrients are made available far more rapidly and you exit the catabolic state far sooner.

Furthermore, you can follow Afterglow 90-120 minutes later with a solid food meal which will still hit your bloodstream whilst glycogen synthaise levels are elevated.

Studies on this type of eating and supplementation pattern have shown that it is possible to get the same amount of nutrients into the body in 4 hours as would take up to 48 hours to achieve with normal eating patterns. Now that’s a staggering difference, and it makes a staggering difference in the amount of muscle tissue you can build !

How long do I need to use Afterglow, should I cycle it, and how do I use it?

Afterglow is designed for long term usage, but for use only after a workout. For most people, who do resistance training 3-4 times per week, you would simply use it after each workout, so you’d use 3-4 servings per week. There is no need to ‘come off’ Afterglow as all the ingredients are nutrients that can be used in the diet long term.

Afterglow is designed at 2 scoops per serving, which provides a measured dose of protein and carbohydrates ideal to restore anabolic process in the body and to prime your hormonal system for a carbohydrate and protein rich meal 90-120 minutes later.

Therefore, the ideal way to use Afterglow is to take 2 scoops in water immediately after your workout (within 10 minutes is ideal) and then 90-120 minutes later follow it with about 25% of your daily carbohydrates and about 15-20% of your daily carbohydrates. This ensures maximum carbohydrate storage in muscle tissue and a maximum level of muscle repair and growth.

For athletes that follow mixed training programs, ie a mix of cardio and resistance training, it is most important to use it following your resistance training. If you do several hours training a day, then you can use up to 2 servings in a day.

For athletes that are well above average size, you can take a larger serving size. However, be aware that the temptation to use a double sized serving to increase the protein content is likely to impair its effectiveness and not increase it, as an excess may detract from your ability to rapidly absorb the nutrients and may reduce your desire to eat a further meal 90-120 minutes later, so increase portion size with care.

If you follow a typical athletes 6 meals a day plan, then Afterglow would not class as one of your daily meals. Its too low in calories and doesn’t contain the balance of nutrients an athletes meal would require.

There are a lot of post workout and recovery drinks on the market, in fact I’ve been told to just eat a couple of bananas. What’s right and why is Afterglow different to any of the other hundreds of recovery products I could buy?

The initial research into exercise recovery showed the importance carbohydrates play in the process. This is because resistance training severely depletes muscle and liver glycogen and whilst these levels remain suppressed you stay in a catabolic state with the 2 main anabolic hormones (insulin and testosterone) being significantly lower than normal.

Once you eat sufficient carbohydrates to restore liver glycogen, the body starts to trigger a rise in insulin and testosterone, enabling muscle repair and growth to start.

Recent studies, and lots of them, have concluded that adding protein to the mix, in the right ratio, not only increases muscle and liver glycogen storage, but also provides the raw materials (amino acids from protein) the body needs to repair and build muscle tissue.

So clearly Afterglow, and in fact any other recovery drink with a mix of carbs and protein, will massively outperform a carbohydrate only snack. So sorry, but no, a banana will not do the trick.

Afterglow goes far further than this. It has the most comprehensive list of added nutrients, all at optimal effective levels, of any recovery product on the market. It contains ingredients such as PS which reduces cortisol (a catabolic hormone) as well as containing ingredients that increase protein uptake, accelerate glycogen storage, increase cell water storage, increase energy levels and support muscle cell volume.

Not only that, but Afterglow tastes fantastic. Its so easy to take after a workout, you’ll really look forward to using it!

Is there anything I should be doing to get the most out of using Afterglow?

Afterglow will enhance recovery well beyond your normal levels. This means that you recover faster, you can train harder, and you can build more muscle tissue. To make this deliver real world results for you there are a few factors you can focus on.

Follow a good athletes diet, as outlined elsewhere on our site, that consists of 6 meals a day 7 days a week, with a good balance of proteins and carbohydrates at each meal.

Make sure to train consistently and progressively. Each workout should be a little bit more demanding than the last by either increasing the weight by the smallest amount or adding 1 rep to your maximum set.

Ensure you take Afterglow into the gym with you in a shaker at every workout. Add water straight after your workout and drink it immediately – even before you hit the shower. Treat it as the last exercise in your workout.

Other than that, Afterglow is an easy to use supplement and not much will detract from its effectiveness, so there is little you need to concern yourself with when using it.

I already use a protein drink, can’t I just use this after my workout instead. I use a whey isolate, surely this is all recovery drinks use?

Yes, you can use a whey protein as a recovery drink, which is far better than doing nothing. However its only a fraction of what you need to do. Much of the protein is broken down into carbohydrates to provide energy for the liver, so the amount of protein available for repair and building is tiny compared to the amount taken.

Carbohydrates are the highest priority after training – not protein. Afterglow gets the right balance between carbs and protein for maximum recovery.

The protein source used in Afterglow is a premium grade whey. Not only does it use whey isolate, which is rapidly absorbed, but it also contains a form of broken down whey protein, where the protein exists in small clusters of amino acids. These can be absorbed, in the right circumstances, even faster than whey isolate.

There are so many other factors related to recovery that are not appropriate to include in a general purpose protein powder, that no protein powder can compare to Afterglow as a recovery supplement. Similarly though, Afterglow cannot be used as a general purpose protein powder.

Five Marijuana Smoking Sports Stars Who Faced Scandal And Survived

The cliché of the marijuana smoker is that of a couch potato, a student or an aging hippy, but like most clichés this one has little substance to it. Marijuana seed growers and smokers have long known that fans of marijuana come from all walks of life – even including a surprising number of champion sports players.

Gold medal swimmer Michael Phelps has been dragged over the coals for his recent exposure as a marijuana smoker, but he joins a long line of top level sportsmen and women who have undergone a highly public encounter with the substance. Here are five sportsmen and women (including Phelps) who have been outed as smokers and lived to tell the tale…

Michael Phelps

The Scandal: Michael Phelps is the latest sports star to fall foul of a paparazzo’s snapping camera. Having won a record breaking 8 gold medals at the Beijing Olympics, he faced widespread criticism when the News of the World released pictures of him smoking a marijuana bong. He wasn’t in training at the time the photo was taken, but his standing as an All American hero combined with his marijuana use has ignited fierce debate over what kind of punishment he should face, if any.

The Recovery: Too soon to say what the long term damage to his career and reputation will be. He has been banned from competition for three months, and Kelloggs have withdrawn their sponsorship (and have put themselves on a pot smoker’s boycott list – stay away from those corn flakes while high!) but it doesn’t look like he’ll be facing a serious long term ban. I don’t suppose he’ll be touching so much as a marijuana seed for a good long while!

Jennifer Capriati

The Scandal: Tennis prodigy Jennifer Capriati, who won an Olympic Gold Medal and a raft of singles titles before turning 18, went off the rails spectacularly in 1994. Arrested for shoplifting and marijuana possession, she then did not play for almost two years, fuelling speculation that her professional career was over before she had even turned 20.

The Recovery: Capriati took her time to recover but eventually managed to return in style, becoming world number 1 in 2001 and winning three Grand Slams along the way. Now plagued by injury, her future is uncertain, but she is firmly established a legacy as one of the top female players of recent years.

Shinichi Suzukawa AKA Wakakirin

The Scandal: Sumo has been rocked by a number of scandals in recent years, from match fixing to doping, but the latest scandal involves a Japanese wrestler who fights under the ring name Wakakirin. Wakakirin (real name Shinichi Suzukawa) has recently been permanently barred from competing after being arrested for marijuana possession. While the drug isn’t classed as a performance enhancer, sumo wrestlers are expected to dress and live in an austere and ritualised fashion, and the incident has scandalised the sumo wrestling administration.

Speculation that marijuana fuelled munchies may have played a part in crafting Wakakirin’s sumo physique are, at the time of writing, unproven….

The Recovery: Unfortunately for Wakakirin, a recovery doesn’t look likely. He has been dismissed from the sport, and barring some kind of miracle recall, it doesn’t look like he will wrestle professionally again. On the bright side, he hasn’t been expelled (which would have denied him retirement pay)…which is a recovery of sorts…

Ross Rebagliati

The Scandal: Canadian snowboarder Ross Rebagliati had to suffer the ultimate indignation that can be experienced by a sports star – after winning Olympic Gold at the 1998 Winter Olympics he was stripped of his medal when marijuana was discovered in his system.

The Recovery: Interestingly, the ruling was quickly overturned and the medal returned Rebagliati to on the grounds that marijuana a) wasn’t on the list of banned substances and b) wasn’t classed as a performance enhancing drug. Indeed, someone who can win Olympic Gold whilst in any way under the influence of marijuana probably deserves another medal of a different kind!

Damon Stroudamire

The Scandal: Skilled basketball player Damon Stroudamire, nicknamed “Mighty Mouse”, kept hitting the headlines for various marijuana related incidents whilst playing for the Portland Trail Blazers (who unfortunately became know as the Jail Blazers when Stroudamire was playing for them, due to numerous discipline and drug issues.) After his third arrest for marijuana possession in 2003, he was fined a quarter of a million dollars and banned for three months.

The Recovery: Stroudamire went through a 90 day rehabilitation program after his suspension. He also struck a deal with a journalist, that he would provide a urine sample at any point in the season that the journalist nominated. He went on to have one of his best ever seasons, and took the journalist’s test half way through to negative results.

So, unless you are a Japanese sumo wrestler, it seems that marijuana isn’t too damaging in the long term to your career – and that it is more widespread in the sporting world than anyone would normally think…

Sports Science Fair Projects

When students think of all the topics they could choose for their projects at the science fair, most would consider biology, environmental issues, chemistry, physics and related ideas. Most students would be surprised to learn that they have a common interest with the other students who are out on the football field! The basketball and baseball players also have things in common with the students who participate in science fairs. This commonality is sports science fair projects. While the two topics seem unrelated, nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is that everything we do and everything we see, touch, smell, taste and hear has a scientific component to it. Science is literally everywhere you look including in the world of sports. Sports science fair projects are increasing in numbers as students are exposed to the fact that sports itself is a science.

Sports science fair projects are the perfect topic for those students who either participate in organized sports or simply enjoy some type of physical activity. Sports science fair projects are not limited to the team sports arena and can be applied to individual activities. Some of these topics include gymnastics, swimming, track and field, and even the martial arts. Sports science fair projects can be conducted on the science of hiking, bicycling and even skydiving. There is no sporting activity that a student can think of that would not lend itself to being a topic for sports science fair projects.

Students who are devoted athletes often choose this as a major in college. They then proceed on with their education to post graduate work in kinesiology. This is the study of movement as it applies to the human body, and it is a popular topic for sports science fair projects. After all, every sporting activity involves the movement of the human body in some manner. These sports science fair projects are a perfect fit for examining the intricacies of kinesiology. Students also can use their sports science fair projects to study physical rehabilitation. This is a biologically based study that fits perfectly with this particular science topic. The fields of biology and chemistry are both applicable to every sport in some form or fashion, which gives the students a very wide range of topics to choose for their sports science fair projects.