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Thread: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

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    Member Jpup's Avatar
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    Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    http://www.muscleandfitness.com/feature/116



    It's snowing in St. Louis. Though dozens of hotels can be found within a stone's throw of the world-famous Gateway Arch, the streets are quiet, the sidewalks bare. The digital temperature readout on a nearby building reads a face-tightening 12 degrees (yes, Fahrenheit) at 9:15 in the morning.

    But somewhere in the frigid, snaking bowels of dormant Busch Stadium, 27-year-old Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols is just getting warmed up - dialing himself in one swing, one rep at a time for the coming season. See, for Albert, there really is no time for winter. He's got a ring to defend, pitchers to terrorize and accolades to win, February chill be damned. Last year, he hit .331 with 49 home runs (bringing his career total to 250) for the world champs, but all he sees is room for improvement.

    While the rest of the league is simply getting ready for spring training, Albert is getting better and - here's the scary part - stronger. Then again, that's to be expected when you're pulling two-a-days at the gym, sometimes completing more than 36 sets worth of exercises in a single session. As it turns out, the game's most feared batsman is also pretty skilled with the iron. Though at times he seems more machine than man, Albert's power, speed and agility are born of sweat, sacrifice and the types of gym poundages that would make even the most accomplished lifter proud. For this ballplayer, the weight room is every bit as sacred as the batting cage, regardless of the season.

    SEASON OF STRENGTH

    At 6'3" and 240 pounds, Albert looks more like a football strong safety than a first baseman. Sporting a sleeveless T and shorts for his shoot with M&F, he speaks on his weight training as knowledgeably as he might on hitting. But like many ballplayers, he was initially reluctant to subscribe completely to a regular weight-training program, fearing that he might get too tight or that his swing might suffer. "I grew up in the Dominican [Republic], but I never lifted weights there," he says. "I didn't do anything crazy until I started working with Chris Mihlfeld in 1998, when I was 18."

    Mihlfeld, now Albert's full-time personal trainer (and training partner), remembers a young player with more potential than presence. "He was around 205 pounds, long, lanky, but a little soft around the middle with some baby fat," says Mihlfeld, who coached Albert for a short time at Maple Woods Community College in Kansas City, Missouri. "He had good natural strength in his hands and forearms, but he didn't have any weight-training experience at all." That changed in 1999 when Albert was signed in the free-agent draft and contacted Mihlfeld to help him get stronger for The Show. "We took small steps," Mihlfeld says. "He wasn't very strong with the weights at first, but in the last three years, we've really started to go heavy. In the beginning, he was doing dumbbell bench presses with 35s and 40s. Now, he's throwing around 100s like cupcakes."
    of course, we knew this about his trainer last summer:

    http://www.deadspin.com/sports/baseb...mes-179400.php

    Grimsley says that a former employee of [redacted] and personal fitness trainer to several Major League Baseball players once referred him to an amphetamine source. Later, this source -- not the trainer -- provided him with "amphetamines, anabolic steroids and human growth hormone." This trainer? His name is Chris Mihlfeld, a Kansas City-based "strength and conditioning guru." (And former Strength And Conditioning Coordinator for the Royals.)

    Does Mihlfeld's name sound familiar? If it doesn't, he -- and we assure you, this gives us no pleasure to write this -- has been Albert Pujols' personal trainer since before Pujols was drafted by the Cardinals in the 13th round of the 1999 draft. We have no confirmation that Pujols' name is in the affidavit ... but Mihlfeld's is. If you read the document, it doesn't say the trainer/Mihlfeld supplied all the HGH and what-not; it just says the trainer was the referrer.
    "My mission is to be the ray of hope, the guy who stands out there on that beautiful field and owns up to his mistakes and lets people know it's never completely hopeless, no matter how bad it seems at the time. I have a platform and a message, and now I go to bed at night, sober and happy, praying I can be a good messenger." -Josh Hamilton

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    Member cincrazy's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    I have a hard time believing anything I see nowadays. Anyone that looks like Pujols and puts up his kind of number's after appearing from out of nowhere makes me extremely suspicious. I wish that wasn't the case... but until there's a reliable test for HGH, I suppose I'll always be that way.

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    Box of Frogs edabbs44's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Location: Future Senate hearing

    Question from US Senator: Mr Pujols, please explain the following quote:

    "I didn't do anything crazy until I started working with Chris Mihlfeld in 1998, when I was 18.

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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    While we're on the subject of HGH:

    http://www.sabernomics.com/sabernomi...er-should-you/

    I Don’t Worry about HGH in Baseball, and Neither Should You

    Last week, I happened across an article by Daniel Engber entitled “The Growth Hormone Myth,” and I was a bit shocked by its contents. According to Engber, Human Growth Hormone (HGH or GH) has little to no performance enhancing-benefits.

    What’s the difference between steroids and HGH? For starters, we know that a baseball player can beef up on steroids and improve his athletic performance. But most clinical studies suggest that HGH won’t help an athlete at all….So far, no one has been able to connect the increase in lean body tissue caused by HGH with enhancement of athletic performance. Unlike steroids, growth hormone hasn’t been shown to increase weight-lifting ability; in the lab, it has a greater effect on muscle definition than muscle strength. And it doesn’t seem to help much with cardiovascular fitness, either.

    I was intrigued. Engber is a credible source, and his documentation solid; however, I remained skeptical. I closely follow media coverage of performance-enhancing drugs yet I was not aware of the dubious benefits. Did I miss something? Then I realized that I didn’t have to take Engber’s word for it or go do a lit review in research out of my field. I have the benefit of working down the hall from several exercise physiologists.

    I forwarded the article to my colleague, John McLester, with whom I have had numerous steroid discussions. He showed up at my office door a few minutes later, and our conversation went something like this.

    Me: What do you think of this argument?
    John: Oh yeah, I agree with him. This isn’t even controversial in exercise physiology.
    Me: Why haven’t I heard about this in the media?
    John: I guess no one has asked anyone in the profession to comment. People think andro works, and that is laughable.
    Me: How does HGH work?
    John: Unlike anabolic steroids, growth hormone doesn’t target muscle, everything grows. You will get bigger muscles, but you’ll also do things like enlarge your organs. In an adult who has finished growing, it’s going to result in acromegaly. Remember Andre the Giant’s gut? That wasn’t fat. That’s where his organs had to go because there wasn’t room in his chest cavity.
    Me: But, doesn’t the subject benefit from bigger muscles.
    John: There is no evidence of this. It seems that the muscle that is developed is abnormal and not mature. I’ll point you to some studies (see below).
    Me: Wow. So you think there are no performance-enhancing benefits to using HGH?
    John: Little to none, especially in baseball. An offensive lineman in football might benefit just from gaining mass, but there are probably easier and cheaper ways to gain mass—HGH is very expensive. If I were to use PEDs, I’d take steroids and there is no way I’d even touch HGH. If benefits to taking HGH exist they are tiny, and the health consequences are not pretty.

    After several more conversations with John and following up on his leads I believe that there are no performance-enhancing benefits from using HGH in baseball. There is no documented evidence that HGH improves performance. While studies are sparse due to ethical limits, what studies have been done show that while growth hormone may promote muscle growth that it does not increase strength. This is quite different from anabolic steroids for which there exists evidence of improved strength. Of course, future research may change this, but right now I see little reason to contradict what is out there.

    Here is some documentation.

    Mary Lee Vance, New England Journal of Medicine, 2/27/2003.

    A recent double-blind, placebo-controlled study involving 27 women and 34 men, 68 to 88 years of age, who were given growth hormone or placebo for 6.5 months confirmed the effects of growth hormone on body composition; there was no change in muscle strength or maximal oxygen uptake during exercise in either group. This study corroborated the findings of a study by Papadakis et al. involving 52 healthy men, 70 to 85 years of age, who were given placebo or growth hormone for six months. Not mentioned on the “antiaging” Web sites is a study of 18 healthy men, 65 to 82 years of age, who underwent progressive strength training for 14 weeks, followed by an additional 10 weeks of strength training plus either growth hormone or placebo. In that study, resistance exercise training increased muscle strength significantly; the addition of growth hormone did not result in any further improvement.

    Karl E. Friedl, “Performance-Enhancing Substances,” in Baechle and Earle (eds.) Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 2e, p. 219, . (Textbook)

    There is no evidence that supplemental growth hormone produces effects of the same magnitude [as growth hormone deficiency] (it may not even produce normal muscle) or enhance athletic performance in a normal man or woman….Apparently, few athletes are actually using this hormone, which suggests that they may well be aware that the substance probably does little to enhance performance, carries risks, and is very expensive.

    With MLB’s adoption of mandatory testing for steroids, many thought that home run rates would drop dramatically. They didn’t, and many felt that the lack of a test for HGH could be part of the explanation. Well, it’s time for the scientists working on such a test to start something else more important. Even if players are taking HGH, the drug no more effective than ionized bracelets, magnets in your shoes, or jumping over the foul lines. The impact of HGH on home runs in today’s game is zero. If a player is dumb enough to take this stuff, let him go right ahead.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    The only negative i can take from the article is that he uses a trainer named in by Grimsley. From the pictures in the article, I would have expected him to be leaner, especially if he was on HGH. I personally thought he could loose 15 pounds. I truely hope that Pujols is clean and doesn't get implicated in anything b/c I would like for him to break the home run record and get it away from Bonds after he passes Aaron.

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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Quote Originally Posted by steig View Post
    The only negative i can take from the article is that he uses a trainer named in by Grimsley. From the pictures in the article, I would have expected him to be leaner, especially if he was on HGH. I personally thought he could loose 15 pounds.
    Meh.

    Not everyone trains in order to look good nekkid. Take a look at olymipic level weightlifters and powerlifters and you'll see plenty of excess bodyfat. That doesn't mean that they (a) aren't strong as a freaking ox or (b) don't know what they are doing. It just means that their objective for training is to maximize their power output rather than look good in their underwear.

    There are plenty of fantastic trainers out there with backgrounds in olympic lifting and/or powerlifting who are downright fat. Don't let the cover fool you ... it is what is inside the book that is important.

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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    nm
    Last edited by Steve4192; 04-16-2007 at 01:04 PM.

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    Member Strikes Out Looking's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Where there's smoke, there's fire.
    Win the Division

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    My clutch is broken RichRed's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainHook View Post
    Meh.

    Not everyone trains in order to look good nekkid. Take a look at olymipic level weightlifters and powerlifters and you'll see plenty of excess bodyfat. That doesn't mean that they (a) aren't strong as a freaking ox or (b) don't know what they are doing. It just means that their objective for training is to maximize their power output rather than look good in their underwear.

    There are plenty of fantastic trainers out there with backgrounds in olympic lifting and/or powerlifting who are downright fat. Don't let the cover fool you ... it is what is inside the book that is important.
    Besides, he doesn't look that bad for a 45-year-old.
    "I can make all the stadiums rock."
    -Air Supply

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    Senor Votto Degenerate39's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Wasn't Bonds in Muscle & Fitness before?
    Most Vottomatic Player

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    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Jpup, are the bolded parts your emphasis or the article's?
    There is no such thing as a pitching prospect.

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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainHook View Post
    Meh.

    Not everyone trains in order to look good nekkid. Take a look at olymipic level weightlifters and powerlifters and you'll see plenty of excess bodyfat. That doesn't mean that they (a) aren't strong as a freaking ox or (b) don't know what they are doing. It just means that their objective for training is to maximize their power output rather than look good in their underwear.

    There are plenty of fantastic trainers out there with backgrounds in olympic lifting and/or powerlifting who are downright fat. Don't let the cover fool you ... it is what is inside the book that is important.
    I train as a powerlifter and am very familar with the different training methods from powerlifting, athletic, bodybuilding, olympic lifting, etc. I could care less about aesthetics from lifting. It was just my opinion that if there was a hint that he may be using illegal substances, I believed he was not as lean as he would be. I've seen a lot of guys who train for powerlifting and olympic lifting stay lean largely from the use of extra substances. Like I said it was just my opinion but I'm not an idiot about training theory.

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    Member Jpup's Avatar
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    Re: Pujols in Muscle & Fitness

    Quote Originally Posted by vaticanplum View Post
    Jpup, are the bolded parts your emphasis or the article's?
    mine, sorry for that.
    "My mission is to be the ray of hope, the guy who stands out there on that beautiful field and owns up to his mistakes and lets people know it's never completely hopeless, no matter how bad it seems at the time. I have a platform and a message, and now I go to bed at night, sober and happy, praying I can be a good messenger." -Josh Hamilton


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