The Pulse

Jun 1, 2005
Outside Magazine
Java Fit

fitness advice

Athletes can now find synergy in their morning cup of joe. Fort Lauderdale, Florida–based Javalution Coffee Company has blended an array of herbal supplements into its JavaFit beans. Additives range from green-tea extract to a jolt of extra caffeine.

DON'T shorten the stroke by pulling your hands out of the water too early. You'll waste energy.

DO finish the stroke when your thumb passes alongside your thigh.

DON'T lift your entire face out of the water to breathe.

DO turn your head so that one eye is above the surface and one eye below. This will keep your body in a straight and more efficient line.

SOURCE: Bob Bowman, coach of eight-time Olympic medal winner Michael Phelps

Ever thought being left-handed was a disadvantage when it comes to facing the predominantly right-handed world? Turns out it's just the opposite: Right-handers are so conditioned to compete against other righties that a southpaw's angle of attack comes as more of a surprise. While this has been documented in sports such as baseball, where a left-hander's chances of victory are better than average, until now no one realized that it also partially explains why lefties still exist. Last year, French researchers Charlotte Faurie and Michel Raymond, of the Institute of Evolutionary Sciences at the University of Montpellier, studied why the left-handed—roughly 10 percent of the population in the West—haven't been naturally selected out over millennia, given that lefties suffer from higher incidences of weakened immune systems than right-handers. The duo tracked homicide rates in primitive societies in which hand-to-hand combat is the primary form of conflict and discovered that right-handed opponents are being killed off at a disproportionate rate—one tribe had 17 percent more lefties than the Western norm. The next time you face off against a lefty in a tennis match or bar brawl, you might want to keep this in mind.

Pick up a ProBar energy bar and the oversize Mylar wrapper may leave you thinking the company's selling you short. But there's a reason for the large stay-fresh pouch: It allows you to take a bite, rewrap the goods, and stow the rest for later. "The big wrapper was a simple solution to a request from pro cyclists who didn't want to eat a bar all at once," says Art Eggertsen, ProBar's founder. "They wanted an easy way to take a few nibbles at a time, a strategy that lets them maintain their energy levels over the course of a long ride." $3;

Help is now here for busy travelers trying to stay in shape, thanks to the Hilton hotel chain. The company offers guests access to certified personal trainers. For $55 to $75 an hour, a fitness coach will meet you at any Hilton nationwide and design a workout that's matched to your health goals.

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