Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. Kathi Salatino and her team are doing remarkable work at the Ryan Ferns Healthplex in Benwood, West Virginia. Check out how they are using nutrition and CrossFit to help people put their diabetes in remission. Today:
The healing power of nutrition and exercise.
The German Throwdown announces that it won’t host a livestream.
Editor-in-Chief, Justin LoFranco, on why we publish Op-Eds.
“We are indeed much more than what we eat, but what we eat can nevertheless help us to be much more than what we are.” — Adelle Davis
Meet the Gym that Helped 20 People Come off their Diabetes Medication in 2019
A year-and-a-half ago, Gigi Bauer and her husband Roy Bauer, both Type 2 diabetics, were taking more medication than they can remember.
Roy, now 58, gave himself two injections of Byetta, a diabetes drug, each day and popped another 10 pills or so to regulate his blood sugar, blood pressure and kidney function.
Gigi, now 57, injected herself with Trulicity, another diabetes drug, each day, and took various meds for high blood pressure, cholesterol and for her thyroid.
At its highest, Ron’s A1C — average blood glucose level — was 12.5, while Gigi’s was 8.5. An A1C of 6.5 or above is considered diabetic.
“I thought I was going to be on medication for the rest of my life,” Gigi said. Roy thought the same.
Why Would Either of Them have Thought Any Differently?
They had been told by their doctors they needed to take medication to manage their disease. So they continued to eat as much fruit as they wanted, and ate pizza multiple times a week, because they were on medication that would do its magic to control their sugar levels, Gigi explained.
“I thought I could eat whatever I wanted because I was on diabetic medication to keep my blood sugar down,” Gigi said.
Roy added: “Every time I went back to the doctor, they’d put me on another medication…It was almost like I expected it. Like it was acceptable. I had been a diabetic for 10 or 12 years, I think, and they just kept adding medication.”
Then in May 2018, Gigi received a letter from her doctor about a fitness and nutrition program at the Ryan Ferns Healthplex in Benwood, West Virginia, for Type 2 diabetics. Two weeks later, Roy received the same letter.
Though their expectations were low, something told Gigi to sign up.
The Prescription for Preventative Medicine
The program was a pilot project, where the team at the Ryan Ferns Healthplex — a team made up of physical therapists, CrossFit and fitness coaches and nutritionist Kathi Salatino — had teamed up with a local health insurance company. The health insurance company agreed to pay for their Type 2 diabetic clients to participate in the program in the hope that the company would save money in the long term if these clients improved their health through lifestyle changes, and maybe even put their diabetes into remission.
Gigi and Roy started the program in July 2018.
The first step was a functional movement screening. After that, Gigi began working with a physical therapist to improve her movement patterns and balance, while Roy began personal training. Soon, Gigi joined Roy in personal training, and today both attend group classes five days a week. They also both started working with Salatino on their nutrition.
The CrossFit German Throwdown, in an Instagram post on Monday, announced that it will not have a livestream for its Sanctional event in Berlin, March 28-29. The announcement makes it the third Sanctional of the 2019-2020 CrossFit Games season, joining the Australian CrossFit Championship and Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge, not offering a livestream to viewers.
The German Throwdown has emphasized that the competition is and should be a community event. The organizers will instead concentrate their efforts on making their event more enjoyable for those in attendance by increasing the size and number of vendors and providing a workout area for spectators.
The Morning Chalk Up will be in attendance at the German Throwdown as well as the Australian CrossFit Championship as part of our media partnership with both events. We will be providing recaps, analysis, videos and exclusive access.
The fittest athletes on earth joined the beam team. And so can you with this $25 sample pack.
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For just $25, this is officially the best way to beam.
Catching Up with Laura Horvath After a Solid Season Start
Tommy Marquez sat down with Laura Horvath last week in Barcelona at the Freakest Challenge and talked about her season last year vs. this year after winning Strength in Depth. Horvath: “Last year didn’t really play out how I would have wanted it, so it was a good start for 2020.”
Ice Age Meals are delivered frozen and ready when you are. Contrary to popular belief, frozen foods retain their vitamins and minerals, plus there’s no change to the carbohydrate, protein or fat content. So, with frozen you still getting the nutrients and macros you need and you get to eat them whenever it’s convenient for you. Shop now and use the code “IAMFROZEN20” for 20% off your order.
In this episode of Open Gym, sponsored by Ice Age Meals, Patrick Cummings talks with Spencer Nix who opened CrossFit Dallas Central over a decade ago. In 2018, he asked himself a simple question: “Are we really helping people?” Here’s how his gym has begun working toward an answer to that question.
Salt and Pepper Fish
A new take on a traditional Chinese dish, this salt and pepper fish is pan-seared in hot oil, but still gets plenty of texture and flavor from ginger, caramelized scallions, and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Serve with white rice for a simple weeknight dinner.
Ebba Degerstam does a hang power clean + 2 hang cleans at 170.5 pounds.
The Times (London) Asks “Is Mat Fraser the Fittest Man on Earth”?
Over the weekend, The Times(paywall) published a profile on four-time Fittest Man on Earth, Mat Fraser. The writer, Tom Whipple, who interviewed Fraser after his win at Strength in Depth, waffles and never fully declares that he is in fact “the fittest,” but instead offers an in-depth look at his rise to CrossFit stardom and dominance. Here are a few key takeaways and quotes from Fraser:
Whipple: “It is impossible, then, to say definitively that Fraser, 30, is the fittest man in the world. But — after watching endless videos of him lifting weights while saying rugged things such as, ‘I don’t care if you’re running towards your goal or on your knees crawling, stay pointing in that direction’ — that is not the point. The point is, no one would consider you an idiot for doing so.”
On his prospects ten years ago, Fraser: “If you were to tell me that in the future I would make a living by working out, I would have told you, ‘You’re crazy,’ he says. ‘It’s a pretty sweet gig.'”
On his late-teen years, Fraser: “I realized that not every time I was drinking I got in trouble, but every time I was in trouble I’d been drinking. Alcoholism runs in the family.”
On sobriety, Fraser: “Sometimes you start thinking, ‘Man, wait, was I really an alcoholic or was I just a dumb teenager?’… Even if there’s a 99 percent chance that today I could go out and drink like a normal person, I’m not taking that chance.”
On his education, Fraser: “I learned early on that I need to point my addictive personality in a direction that has a very positive side effect. I got one degree in engineering and one in business. If one degree is good, surely two degrees are better?”
On his future, Fraser: “I will compete as long as I’m happy and healthy. But after that, I have no idea. I guess I’ll find something else I’m passionate about and apply my work ethic to it.”