Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Health Blogarithm, December 30th 2009
Christine and I were out driving this aternoon and my left arm started to itch.

I scratched it but it got worse. I almost stratched a hole in my arm.

We went to a cafe and had a cup of coffee and I asked for some butter to rub on it.

It sort of settled down but then Christine went and got a small tube of paw paw salve.

That calmed it right down.

Amazing stuff paw paw salve.

I've used it a bit over the last few months for irritations and I'd recommend it.

On the trackDid a quiet 15 minutes on the treadmill at 7 kph this morning and then another 20 minutes later in the day at 8kph.

Achilles holding up well but I would have spent about a couple of hours with my legs up against the wall, legs on the bolster and using a belt to pull back the toe of my right foot.

I think it's getting better, as I get back into alignment.

in the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and remember to pack some paw paw salve in your wetpack when you go away.

John Miller


Health Blogarithm 29th December 2009

Medicines Australia, the barking dog of the drug industry picked on a slow day in the media calendar to put pressure on the Commonwealth Government to provide more incentives for the industry to bolster its research efforts and export more drugs.

They’re dreaming. They’re a pack of shysters.

This is one of the most protected industries in Australia. The Government forks out $6B a year in subsidies for people prescribed medicines by their doctor.

A high proportion of these drugs are junk medications, designed to mask the symptoms of metabolic, musculo-skeletal and psychological dysfunction and not restore poor function to good.

Whenever a junk medicine is prescribed you know it’s the wrong prescription. The members of Medicines Australia don't give two hoots. They're laughing all the way to the bank – and they want more.

A high proportion of the money the industry receives goes into marketing of these junk medications to doctors, by way of silver-service dinners and junkets.

A high proportion of the research efforts are aimed at producing drugs that are no more efficacious than drugs that have been around for donkey’s years.

Like performing dogs, and masquerading as research institutes, the sheltered workshops for the academically gifted are addicted to the milk and honey that flows from soft-touch drug industry tits, playing the game of mixing government money with drug industry money to do more junk research on more junk drugs.

The research industry plays a pivotal role in supplying the drug industry with credibility in the form of research papers, seminars and professional development activities for the prescribers of those drugs. It’s an industry that turns on government money to perform all manner of back scratching, head patting and brown-nosing activities.

On the trackSpent a cautious 15 minutes on the treadmill, followed up by a 60 minute walk along the beach. Got sunburnt. Should have kept my shirt on.

Achilles holding up well. Spending more time on my back with my legs in the air.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, very few people got fitter or healthier in a chemist’s shop.

John Miller

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Health Blogarithm 28th December 2009

I’ve had chronic Achilles tendonitis for nearly a year. It's a real bastard. It gives me the shits. It’s the second time this has happened. Five or six years ago when it happened it took over a year to go away. It really stuffed up my fitness program.

I had it for a year on one Achilles and just as that one came good, bugger me it went to the other Achilles.

Running aggravates it. The stepper is a bit less so and I’ve had to take up walking – for god’s sake.

I’ve taken advice from all sorts of people.

- Stretch your calf muscles before you run. Every man and his dog tells me this, but it’s a well nigh useless piece of advice because the problem is not a tight calf muscle. I’ve tried it and it doesn’t work

- Strengthen your calves. One fitness trainer of an elite level rugby club said, ‘If you can’t do 40 heel raises (heel going up and down on a step) on the trot your calf muscles are too weak.’ I can only do about 20 and heaven knows how I’ve tried. As anyone who’s done heal raises will attest, it burns like hell after about ten.

- Get orthotics – but at $800 a throw I’m reluctant to make the move. Plus I’m more interested in knowing what the cause of the problem is. It is not a lack of orthotic!

Nine months ago I was at a chiropractic stand at the FILEX fitness convention in Sydney and stood on two scales, left leg on one and right leg on the other. The weight on the right scale was 6 Kg heavier than the weight on the left scale.

So, I gave the chiros the benefit of the doubt and went to a local chiro for a few sessions. But all he had to offer was the pea-shooter treatment and a bit of bullshit new-age muscle testing. Another couple of hundred bucks down the drain. He didn’t even give me a decent crunch.

I thought it might have been a tight left buttock, believing, as I do that the cause of the pain is rarely at the site of the pain, and that the tight buttock muscle was twisting the pelvis, placing pressure on the right Achilles. I find it harder to sit up straight when I’ve got my right leg under my left than vice versa.

So I’ve been doing one of my buttock stretches much more regularly. It doesn’t seem to have helped

BUT, I picked up Pete Egoscue’s book ‘Pain Free’ again yesterday to see what he had to say about the matter. (I brought the book away on holidays, just in case I found time to read it. I made time.)

Of course, the cause is not at the site of the pain, and as I suspected it’s driven by a pelvis that’s out of alignment, not by the tight left buttock muscles but by some other muscle(s).

I wouldn’t have a clue which muscles they are, and I don’t think it matters much.

The advice Egoscue gives is to do a particular exercise, feet up against the wall – bottom in as close as you can get.

Well yesterday I spent a couple of hours doing this exercise – with a couple of variations – reading a book and dozing off.

At the beginning of the day my calves were so tight I was hanging out of a calf massage. The first few steps when I got up were painful. Earlier in the week Christine and I had been to the Australian Institute of Sport for the ice and heat treatment. The heat treatment comes from the very hot spa out there, with very powerful jets. It’s the cheapest physical therapy in Canberra.

It felt good at the time; didn’t work.

Bingo! Today after yesterday’s session doing the wall exercise it felt a lot better. The first few steps didn’t hurt, the pressure was off. So I did 15 minutes slow jogging on the treadmill in the hotel before breakfast and another 15 minutes before tea.

I’m happy to report it feels OK, in fact better than OK, it’s the best it’s felt for over a year.

Now, I know that a single swallow does not s summer make, but I’m optimistic.

I’ll continue doing the exercise and report back.

But I’m not going to go at it like a bull at a gate. I’m going to take it easy, some very light jogging, mixed with walking.

If I wasn’t on holidays I’d provide you with a copy of the exercise in this post.

Half rat power
I’ve made a decision, from now on, any exercise with the heart rate less than 100 bpm is exercising at half rat power, so from now on any walking only gets half a point per minute on the aerabyte scale.

Today’s aerabytes: jogging with heart rate just over 110 for 30 minutes equates to 60 aerabytes. Big deal, But I’m on an Achilles rehab program while I’m on holidays, down here at the Novotel in Wollongong.

Still it’s holidays, we’re only having breakfast and tea – and missing out on lunch.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and read Pete Egoscue’s book, 'Pain Free’ available from

John Miller

Sunday, December 27, 2009


Health blogarithm for December December 27th 2009

Heard a report on the news tonight that researchers a the Alfred Hospital research centre have discovered that fat women are at greater risk of breast cancer than thin women, the reaon being that fat women produce more eostrogen – which somehow stimulates the breast cancer.

Of course this it not new news, but it was dressed up as though it were.

Then came the punch line. The researchers have discovered that the risk of breast cancer in fat women is lowered by taking the diabeteds drug, Metformin.

So there you go. Just more junk research coming out of one of the sheltered workshops for the academically gifted.

And what the hell is a hospital doing employing people to do junk research. A hospital is they to cater for sick people. No wonder they’re going broke. No wonder there are waiting lists. they're employing researchers not doctors and nurses.

But when it’s all boiled down the research just proves what we’ve known for a longtime, that it’s easier to give someone a drug than inspire and motivate them to get themselves into exceptionally good nick. Do that and the risk of all the metabolic dysfunctions goes down exponentially.

It’s easier to provide someone with a drug for another body system dysfunction than it is it to improve their fitness.

I’m quickly forming the opinion that cancer is just one more symptom of metabolic dysfunction. it’s not a disease at all, just a symptom, and when somneone is more than 20Kg over weight you can be pretty certain that they haven’t been out on the track for a long time.

Thinner women and more likely to be fitter women. They are less risk of all the metabolic dysfunctions, period.

You don't have to be a rocket surgeon to work that one out - or drag money out of the NH&MRC to prove the obvious.

There are of course exceptions. Fit and healthy young women get breast cancer. But that seems to be an anomaly.

The test of metabolic dysunction is the 20m run test of aerobic fitness.

I doubt the Junk researchers measured how fit these wpmen were, juts how fat they were.

I’d also lay London to a brick that somewhere lurking in the back ground were the manufactureres of Metformin. The drug companies are always casting around for a new dysfunction to sell more drugs, even though the drug was designed for another dysfunction.

I’d also lay London to a brick they don’t carefully monitor the side-effects. The cure may be worse than the dysfunction.

Finally I’d also lay London to a brick that the statistics are loaded and don’t refer to the number to treat. The last time I read a report like this it would have taken 10,000 people taking the drug for 10 years to save half a dozen lives.

On the track
Went down to the hotel gym tonight and spent 40 minutes cruising along on the bike watching TV.

Sandy, if you read this one: my backside feels like it belongs to an orangutang.

I don’t think I brought the heart rate monitor strap, but I’ll give myself 80 aerabytes for the session.

In the meantime stay tuned, bhighly tuned and don't take any notive of junk medical research; just train harder.

Saturday, December 26, 2009


Health blogarithm for 26th December 2009

Christine's daughter Alison was going to give me a hair cut yesterday, but it just didn't work out that way. Anyway, to cut a long story short she arrived on the doorstep at 7.30am this morning ready to get on with the job.

I got a terrific haircut and a head massage to boot.

Anyway that sort of put an end to the session I'd planned for the stepper, because today, yippee we're off for a five night holiday to the Novotel in Wollongong.

I completed the cleaning of my office - something I was meant to do on Christmas eve, Rang my daughter Jo in America and wishes her and her husband Chris a very merry Christmas. As luck would have it they're in Bethlehem - Pennsylvania with his brother and his family.

Then it was in the car and off to Wollongong.

After a bit of fart-arsing around I decided to go down to the gym. It's 7pm and it's meant to be open until 10pm, but there is a notice on the door saying 'Gym closed'.

I go and complain at the front desk and find out that it's been closed because one of the machines is broken. I say, 'Well put up a sign on the machine and let me in.'

The woman behind the desk says they can't because children go in there and because the machine is broken it's dangerous. I say 'children shouldn't be in the gym without their parents. Let me in I'm an adult.'

They give me the glazed look. 'I'm sorry it's closed.'

I keep arguing. She refuses to let me in and then comes back with a counter offer and offers me free breakfasts for the rest for out stay.

I say 'I don't want free breakfasts, I just want to go to the gym.'

It's like arguing with a wall.

I end up with the free breakfasts.

So I walked along the beach for 10 minutes than then came back to the room and got ready for tea - which I might say was very nice but a rip off.

The Heart Foundation reckons you can get fit by going for a walk for 10 minutes a day.

So there you go. Conscience salved by the Heart Foundation.

10 aerabytes for the day. You beaudy.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and send off your donation to the bleeding Heart Foundation.

John Miller

Thursday, December 24, 2009


Health Blogarithm 25th December 2009

I'm belting away on the stepper and I'm thinking what is my goal. Then it came to me.

Christine and I were in England for my daughter Lisa's wedding in August 2003. I weighted about 77 Kg at that stage and bought a couple of pairs of casual khaki slacks in Oxford St.

They were a bit on the tighter side when I tried them on, but I thought that once I got home I'd trim off a couple of kilos and they'd fit like a glove.

Well dang me, I've never worn them. They're stuck away in the wardrobe smelling of camphor. Since then I've brought several pairs of slacks to cope with an expanding gut. They're the fat pants.

My goal; to step into the thin pants, particularly my jeans and then the Oxford bags. I'll have to be around 76 Kg to slip into them comfortably.

On the track
60 minutes at heart rate just over 130 bpm. 240 aerabytes, 966 steps and 738 calories. That's cool. Weighed the same as yesterday, 84.8 Kg. Blood pressure 120/66 - that's very cool. Body fat, 26%.

The fat bloke came and distributed his largess. Had a nice lunch and a doze, reading Robert Ingersol's book, 'Some Mistakes of Moses' given to me by daughter Jo and on the recommendation of Don Ardell, the wellness guru.

In the mean time stay tuned and be kind to yourself on Christmas day.

John Miller


Health Blogarithm for 24th December 2009

Straight to the track
Phew, the metabolic defrag has definitely kicked in. Spent 60 minutes on the stepper, all over 140 BPM and registered 1052 steps. That's better. But I'm looking through my training diary and note that on the

21st of August 2004 I did 1273 steps, which is a bit over level 8 all the way.

The best I can see was 1386 on the 27th of April 2003. That would have been level 10 for an hour.

And I can see 40 minutes at level 10 all the way on 26th April 2003 for 964 steps.

25th May, 2003: 451 steps in 20 minutes - so that would have all been 10 or more resistance level.

2nd of October 2004, 90 minutes on the stepper to record 1470 steps and 1058 calories.

On the 11th of December 2006 I did 1244 steps which is level 8 for an hour.

Any way it all goes to show that once you turn 60 and you stop training so hard, things go pear-shaped. Which is what this blogarithm, is all about, changing the shape and getting fitter.

After the step did situps and pressups and sat for a while in the meditation chair and took my blood pressure. It's usually a bit 'uppish' but today was the lowest I've ever seen, 107/63. I think there must be something wrong with my machine or the defrag is going nuts.

Anyway, we'll see what tomorrow brings.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and hope that the fat bloke in the red tracksuit can fit down your chimney.

John Miller


Health Blogarithm for the 23rd of December 2009

I'm reading a book about hydrogen peroxide therapy. It sounds plausible but I suspect there's a 101 reasons to register some caution.

But I'm on the stepper and I'm thining, 'This is oxygen therapy.'

How long do I have to stand here stepping with my heart rate over 140 BPM for me to get enough oxygen into my body to do some good?

I don't think any one really knows.

I visited the International Diabetes Institute a few times to see whether they would be interested in joining me in a research project to see how many aerobytes a day someone needed to kick-start a buggered pancreas back into life.

Not interested, but they're into weight lifting, not the real thing of course, just a bastardized version for people who've never lifted a weight in their life.

The other branches of the medical research community are only interested in junk medicine. The drug companies are a soft touch. It enables them to keep the sceintists on a short leash. They can let them off to charm doctors at silver service dinners.

So, there you have it, you're on your own. Do the aerabyte study yourself. See how many you need to get in a week to stimulate the metabolic defrag process. For more information go to

On the track
Phew, the defrag has kicked in. 40 minutes at level 8 on the stepper, that's 819 steps (and 626 calories burnt) and the best result for a year or so.

I know when I can last 40 minutes at resistance level 8 that I'm getting back into shape. 40 minutes all over 140 bpm means 200 aerabytes for the session. That, I think might be the metabolic defrag gold standard. Bronze would be 120 bpm and silver 130 bpm.

Of course if you did it with your heart rate just over 100 bpm it would take you 3 hours and 20 minutes, but I think 100 bpm isn't going to defrag much at all.

Weight 85.6 Kg.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, just because you feel tired one day doesn't mean you can't come back like the Flying Scotsman the next.

John Miller

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Health Blogarithm for Tuesday 22nd of December

I've felt tired the last couple of days from the training last week, particularly the longer sessions on Saturday and Sunday.

Appreciated the post from the mad cyclist, Sandy. Buy the book. He's a legend.

Today I was rushed for time and only spent 20 minutes on the stepper, with heart rate over 140BPM. That's a measly 100 aerabytes, but it certainly felt better than yesterday when, as I said the tank was bone empty.

But what's happening is a metabolic defrag. Just as you can defrag your computer, so, I believe you can defrag your own body.

The metabolic dysfunctions are telling you that you need a defrag.

That's all for today. Rushed, it's only one more sleep until the fat man sings!

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and remember to be nice to fat men wearing red suits and sporting large white beards.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Health Blogarithm for 20th of December 2009

You can't train hard all the time.

I was tired today. Could only manage 30 minutes on the stepper with the heart rate just over 100 - hardly tricking over, but after the two previous day's workouts of 140BPM for over and hour each day, there wasn't much left in the tank.

Coupled with the 40 minute walk all up a miserly 70 Aerabytes.

Good news though. We had a street party at our place and recruited two new blokes for the morning walk, another Peter and Noel.

Didn't over do it in the horses douvers: weight 85.6Kg

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned, and keep in mind your body needs a rest now and then.

John Miller

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Health Blogarithm 20th December 2009

A couple of weeks ago Kate Moss got a right royal bollocking for saying 'Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.'

The anorexic foundations of the world went off their head.

I can see their point, anorexia is a terrible thing - but when more than half the people in the western world are more than 10 Kg over weight and a huge number of more than 20Kg over weight, it doesn't hurt to have the occasional reminder that it's time to trim down.

The backside of the western world
I heard the saying years ago and have always thought it quite apt. How does one stop oneself from getting fatter and fatter? Stopping eating is one of them.

The woman who started Weight Watchers said 'The problem with fat people is they don't eat enough, of the right food at the right time.'

We're hosting a street party tonight. I'm a notorious glutton so I'll report back on my behaviour tomorrow.

It all started, I think when my Dad went overseas on business for a couple of months when I was 12. Mum got a burst appendix and ended up in hospital for a month. Us four boys were farmed out. That's when I started eating 4 double cut rolls for lunch. I was always hungry. Later I stole money to buy hot chips to eat before tea, and feed a chocolate addiction. These addictions are still lurking in the back ground, like roaring lions ...

Maybe I need to get some professional help to help solve the problem of the inner hunger. It could be a worthwhile journey.

A physically active way of life has kept some of the demons in the box, but they've been creeping out and now, thanks to people like Kate Moss I'm working hard to get them back in the box.

On the track.
The week has finished off well. 60 minutes on the stepper this morning with heart rate over 130, so that's 240 aerabytes, for a total of 1380 for the week. The rule of thumb is 400 a week is good, 600 is better and 800 is best.

I'm trying to get the diabetes researchers to take an interest in prescribing aerabytes but they're not interested. Couldn't care less. More money in drug research!

In fact I reckon there ought to be an aerabyte rating for most of the metabolic dysfunctions. For instance, got diabetes in the early stages, you need 200 aerabytes a day to keep it under control. You can choose how you're going to get them.

Don't sleep well. Try 100 aerabytes a day.

Total time for the week 6 hours and 30 minutes which isn't all that bad when you consider there are 168 hours in every week. Still 161 and a half hours to fit in everything else.

Weight this morning: 85.0Kg so that's good too. Being on the stepper for an hour means that a lot of the weight loss is water, but heck ...

I've got a set of Tanita scales and I bestrode them this morning. At 85Kg I'm 27% fat. Phew, too high. It should be around 18.

The session this morning was hard. Two 60 Minute workouts one after the other and less food takes it out of me.

But I'll be back.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, nothing tastes as good a thin feels.

John Miller


Health Blogarithm for 19th of December

I referred in yesterday's blog how the boffins at Exeter University found out that people lie about how much activity they do when their activity habits are surveyed.

The gof Australia used to publish activity surveys and pat themselves on the back about how active people were. I don't know if they still do it but, based on the Exeter survey the results of surveys like this are useless.

I suggested that the Exeter study should have measured how fit the 15,000 people in the survey were, not ask them how much activtiy they did. That would have sorted out the doers from the gunnas.

There is another way.

You can now purchase a heart rate monitor that can measure the duration of your exercise, its frequency and the actual heart rate. The results can be downloaded into a computer.

When I'm on the stepper I wear the heart rate monitor strap around my chest and the signal is picked up by the stepper and shows on the display. It takes me about 10 - 15 minutes of hard stepping to get my heart rate over 140Bpm. Because it's hard work I count that time as having a heart rate over 140BPM

Then for the rest of the time I'm stepping I regulate the resistance so that I just keep the heart rate over 140. Gradually I can reduce the resistance to make the session easier, but still keep the heart rate over 140BPM. Easy.

I don't bother to download anything onto the computer, just record my scores on my personal Fitness Tracka. I'm preparing a copy of the Fitness tracka for sale. Watch this space.

If you want the aerobic fitness prescription go to

On the track
60 minutes on the stepper over 140BPM. That's 300 aerabytes. Haven't done that since September, so things are looking up.

Weight 85.8. Same as yesterday.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and get yourself a heart rate monitor.

John Miller


Health Blogarithm for 18th of December

I read in the paper today a report from the Exeter University that most people exaggerate the amount of physical activity they do. To put is bluntly they lie.

15,000 people were asked to recall how much activity they had done in the previous month. The results showed that 39% of men and 29% of women claimed to have met the Government guidelines of 30 minutes of necessary level physical activity on at least 5 days of the week.

When 3300 of the people were then monitored for a further week during which they wore accelerometers, only 6% of men and 4% of women met the guidelines.

The moral, when it comes to aerobic fitness activity, perception and reality are two different things.

For starters 30 minutes of minimum activity is like my walk three mornings week. Unless your heart rate gets over 120 BPM it's not something you'd really call aerobic fitness activity. It's a health walk. I give it 1 point per minute for aerobic fitness. I don't know how people can get fit doing that. I'm sure it has some benefits. You feel better. It wakes you up, gets a bit more oxygen into your body, stimulates the bowel, releases a few endorphins so you feel better, all that sort of stuff. Maybe it contributes to metabolic health, but fitness, that's a different animal.

Anyway the boffins at the University asked the wrong question. It's just more useless junk research. What have they found out? That people lie! Duh!

The question should have been, how fit are you? How many 20m laps can you walk, shuffle, jog or run in 5 minutes?

This is the most basic of measure of good health. The lowest level of aerobic fitness I've seen is 9 laps. The best 60. If you can do 40 laps you're not in bad shape, 45 is better and 50 pretty good. It means you're training. You don't have to ask, just measure the output, not ask questions about the input. Just watch people doing the test.

There aren't many people who can bluff their way through a fitness test.

It's ironic that aerobic fitness is never measured by a doctor, and yet it is the most fundamental measure of good health. They take your blood pressure and send you off to the pathologist to check your cholesterol and glucose (both of which can be done for less than $10 in the surgery) . They don't take you out the back and see how fit your are.

The good thing is that it can get better.

A couple of years ago a member of Fit and Healthy, (my fitness centre at the time) Patricia, completed 23 laps in 5 minutes. ( 9 months later and after she'd lost well over 20 Kg she reached 37 laps. How's that? She was one of the best and most consistent trainers in the gym.

On the track
Got in a quick 30 minutes on the stepper before the 30 minute walk with Peter and Frank. Heart rate over 140 so that's 150 aerabytes. Weight; 85.8 Kg. That's better.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and don't fool yourself. Do the 20 minute run test and report back.

John Miller

Friday, December 18, 2009


Blogarithm for 16th of December 2009

They say that people who exercise in the morning are more likely to stick to the habit.

I think that's true.

How many times have you thought, 'I'll go for a run or something after work', and by the time you get home its late and your tired and hungry and you don't do it?

I'm upping my exercise at the moment so I got in 40 minutes on the stepper before 7.30am.

Track report
40 minutes at 140BPM. 200 aerabytes. Weight 86.2.

In the meantime stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, you don't have to do extraordinary things to achieve extraordinary results.

John Miller

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Been busier than all the one-armed Bosnian and Beirut bricklayers put together rolling out the CrookBack Clinic training program - a musculo-skeletal health program designed to funnel people with crook backs, stiff necks, 'cold' shoulders, bung hips, game legs and dicky knees into fitness centres.

When a very high proportion of musculo-skeletal dysfunction is generated by low levels of strength and flexibility, I figure that getting yourself stronger and more flexible should be the first course of action in restoring poor function to good.

And the best place to do that is in a fitness centre under the supervision of a fitness practitioner.

Only rarely is a crook back likely to be due to a lack of heat, massage or the spinal tap, though therapy does speed up the rehab process.

Fitness problems are best solved with fitness solutions.

On the track
Went for that 30 minute brisk walk with Frank and Peter. That's all. But you have to take it easy some days. How many aerabytes is that? A miserable 30. Weighed 86.6kg. Not good.

We live in hope for a better tomorrow.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, it doesn't take an extraordinary effort to achieve and extraordinary result.

John Miller

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Health Blogarithm for the 15th of December 2009

Primary health care should be the care and attention you give to yourself to keep fit and healthy. In an affluent and well-educated society this should not be a burden for the great majority of people.

Whether it be the metabolic, musculo-skeletal or psychological dysfunctions, small problems can often be solved easily by a good physical training regime.

You feel schidhouse, you start training. Pretty soon you'll experience the exercise-led recovery. You feel better. You sleep better. Your trousers fit better; you don't feel like they're ring-barking you.

Secondary health care is the advice you get from teachers and therapists of one sort or another that gets you back on track to restoring poor health to good.

The original meaning of the word 'doctor' was 'teacher'. It now means 'prescriber'. Based on their recent track record, you're going to get much better advice about how to keep yourself fit and healthy from a fitness practitioner, naturopath or life coach than you are from a doctor.

In fact people need to be encouraged to leave consultations with their GP to serious medical complaints, rather than flooding surgeries with things that GP's are notoriously bad at fixing, and at best resort to patching over.

The qualifications to dispense some of this advice need not be very high. For a lot of it, a TAFE qualification would be sufficient. A nursing qualification is quite sufficient for many procedures. They've got the tools, let them get on with the job. A fitness practitioner with a couple of years under their belt knows vastly more about exercise than your average doctor and how to prescribe that exercise. A naturopath can tell you what you need to eat more of and what you need to eat less of. We're not talking rocket science here.

We over rate the level of advice people need to keep themselves in good shape and fix up niggling complaints. The medical profession certainly doesn't have a mortgage on the provision of that advice.

There a lot of experts in the health and fitness game that don't work in a surgery.

Tertiary health care is, of course the care you need from the medical profession when you've given the first two your best shot and haven't succeeded in restoring your body to good health. Most people don't know this. Their first port of call is the doctor. They get sucked into the pharmaceutical vortex. They end up like the man named Charlie who went for a ride on the Boston MTA and never returned!

'Well, did he ever return? No, he never returned and his fate is still unknown. He may ride forever 'neath the streets of Boston. He's the man who never returned.'

A 40 minute, 200 aerabyte workout on the stepper in the morning and a very good strength training session in the gym. Have found a new exercise to loosen up my left buttock and I'll get it drawn up in a few days. I think my tight left bottuck is the cause of my sore right Achilles tendon. Someone said I may need an orthotic. I'll report back.

Weight: 86.2 kg - I'm heading in the right direction.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and look after your Self.

John Miller

Labels: primary health care, fix back pain, strength training diary, aerabyte, aerobic fitness diary

Monday, December 14, 2009


I quite like swimming and was reasonably good at it as a kid - though it took me 50 years to realize that I was at the top of those who were hopeless and the bottom of those that were any good.

But years later getting back into it always felt like too much hard work. It's was always a bit cold for the first few seconds and by the end of a lap, 25m or 50m, I'd be stuffed and it felt like my arms were about to fall off.

Someone said, kick harder. I kicked harder and the arms still felt like they were going to fall off.

Christine and I were up at Coffs Harbour last Christmas sitting by the pool each day reading books when a couple of women wearing flippers would get in the pool and start reeling off laps.

We looked for a while and then thought, 'flippers'. Could this be the secret?

Anyway, to cut a long story short we each bought a pair of the smalled Zoggs flippers a couple of weeks ago, and yes, it makes it easier. I now know what Ian Thorpe felt like. My size 8's were never going to give me much propulsion. Thorpes shoe size, 17! There are not many people who could break world records when their age was less than their shoe size.

For years I'd thought that wearing flippers was cheating. Not any more. The last couple of swims have been much more enjoyable. Can still put in the effort over 20 minutes without the feeling of abject failure at the end of every lap.

So, I'd recommend a pair of Zoggs - the smaller flippers. Oh, and you've got to get goggles.

A good day at the office
40 minutes of the stepper, that's 200 aerabytes, then a walk with Frank and Peter for another 30 minutes. I'm yet to see the real value of walking. My heart rate won't get over 100 BPM. Still I'll give myself a point for each minute and continuing to walk as part of a program to rehabilitate a painful right Achilles tendon.

(The bleeding Heart Foundation reckons you can get fit if you amble around the block for ten minutes, three times a day. That's bunkum. I never knew anyone who got fit on that sort of a training regime. I don't know why they feed people this nonsense. Do these people know nothing about exercise, what good shape is, or what it takes to get into good shape?)

In the evening we went swimming for 20 minutes. I'll give myself 3 points for every minute. So all up the the day that's 290 aerabytes.

If you want to know more about the aerabyte aerobic fitness training system go to

Weight, still hovering around 86.8.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and get yourself a pair of Zoggs.

John Miller

Sunday, December 13, 2009


When I set up the Health Blogarithm I promised myself I'd do a blog a day. Christine and I saw the film Julie and Julia a couple of months ago. A bit slow to start with, but what a wonderful ending. A blog a day and you become rich and famous!

So this is Sunday 13th of December's blog, thought about on Sunday but written up on Monday 14th.

I spent 40 minutes on the stepper. Kept putting it off until nearly lunch time when it was a bit too hot. Never underestimate the predictability of stupidity!

I've got this system involving aerabytes where the intensity of your aerobic exercise routine is measured according to heart rate and time.

I use the Johnson stepper and the aim is to keep my heart rate over 140 beats per minute (BPM) for however long I exercise. Yesterday it was over 140 BPM for 40 minutes. I collected 200 aerabytes for my efforts, did 660 steps and burned off 510 calories.

After a shower and a towelling off I weighed in at 86.6Kg, in the buff. Too heavy.

I found a small tin (a Murray's Erinmore Flake tobacco tin from Belfast to be precise) the other day in a cardboard box in my wardrobe in which I've kept print-outs from the jockey scale in Rundle Mall in Adelaide. In June 1966 around the time of my 21st birthday I weighted 68Kg. We'll see how we go.

You can read more about the aerabyte concept at

You can record your fitness training scores on a post at the Health Blogarithm.

You'll shortly be able to purchase a copy of the Fitness Tracka ebook that incorporates the Aerabyte system.

Whenever I see the words 'preventive' and health' one after the other in the same sentence, I have a sudden urge to put my fingers down my throat. It's just a dreadful term to describe the promotion of good health. You don't prevent health you promote it.

It's not good enough to presume we know what 'preventive health' means. We need to use our language more precisely than that. 'Preventive health' is definitely not the same as 'promoting health'. It's a negative way of saying some thing that should be expressed in positive terms.

And you don't talk about promoting health without also putting the word 'fitness' into the mix as well. What next, 'preventive fitness'? That's as absurd as 'preventive health'.

If there's one thing we should be doing it's getting people to focus on 'fitness' and not just on 'health'.

As soon as most people think 'health' they think of the pharmaceutical industry and their gatekeepers in surgeries. They want a pill to make them appear unsick (sic) - usually at someone else's expense. As a concept it's a nonsense. It's junk medicine. No-one ever got healthier by pouring junk medicine down their throat or sticking it up their backside.

And why is it a nonsense? Because it's a big ask in our culture expecting to stay healthy without keeping yourself fit. In fact it's virtually impossible.

People are lining up in surgeries hacking all over each other instead of going to the gym, or the pool, or the track.

If you want to get fit, mix with fit people.

You won't get the fitness prescription in a surgery or a chemist shop.

Because the medical industry has done such a dreadful job at promoting fitness (and health) we now have the Australian Government setting up a National Preventative Health Agency to encourage doctors to do the job they should have been doing all along. Duh? Sounds like something invented by the medical industry doesn't it?

It's a pointless exercise giving money to doctors to dole out the prescriptions people need to keep themselves fitter and healthier. Their training doesn't extend that far. They're not interested. They don't run seminars about it at the Hyatt. Their track record speaks for itself.

For most doctors, the only track they direct their customers to is the track between the surgery and the chemists shop. And a well worn track it is.

You could count on the non-opposable digits of one hand the percentage of doctors who have a clue about how to prescribe aerobic activity, let alone strength and flexibility.

On the other hand there are people who know how to do that, who are well trained, who'll give you the time of day and supervise your workouts. They work in fitness centres. They're called fitness practioners. Put yourself in the hands of an expert. Take out a gym membership.

The Government has set aside $872m dollars to 'prevent health'. Compare that with the $80B the governments of Australia are churning down the medical/pharmaceutical black hole each year and you can see that not many people are going to become fitter and healthier. It's a spit in the bucket.

The Government is protecting the wrong industry.

I read a quote from the Australian Minister for Health recently where she talked about the new agency preventing 300,000 deaths a year.

'We already know that we could prevent the early deaths of more than 300,000 Australians by cutting smoking rates.'

Maybe the correct term is 'preventive death'.

I'll use that. From now on it will be known as the National Preventative Death Agency.

I could understand the term 'preventive medicine' - as in getting people to be so fit and healthy that you prevent them going to the doctor, but 'preventive health', it's bunkum.

Dr Andrew Weil said, 'Don't go to doctors for things doctors can't fix.' Well there's a lot of things they can't fix because the problems people have are generated by a lack of fitness, and not by a lack of Lipitor, or Avpro, or Celebrex, or Zoloft, or Mylantin, or Anusol! You can't solve a fitness problem, or a diet problem for that matter with a drug.

A women in one of my seminars on Thursday Island last year said she had a good doctor.

I said, 'Tell me about him.'

She said, 'He helped me lose 11Kg in 5 months.'

I said, 'How did he do that?'

She said, 'He runs fitness classes three morning a week on the town oval.'

Wow, that's good doctoring.

That's 'preventive medicine' if ever there was. Instead of seeing people in the surgery he sees them on the oval, and he sees them getting fitter and slimmer before his very eyes. He knows who's fair dinkum.

I take my hat off to him.

I take my hat off to her too, for getting up at 6am three mornings a week and putting in the hard yards. She could have just done what every one else up there seems to do and gone and bought a bigger skirt.

In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, the occasions where reward comes before effort are few and far between.

John Miller


Went to the gym with Christine on Saturday morning, as we usually do. Did a good hard strength training session. If you want to look at my strength training program go to Then went for our usual Saturday morning breakfast where I nearly choked on my scrambled eggs when I read about the medical industry's latest free kick.

I couldn't believe it. I'm reading the Saturday edition of the The Canberra Times and there's an advert for 'The ACT Health GP Development (slush*) Fund.'

According to the advert the GP development fund is a four year bi-annual grants pool totalling $4 milling for general practices that commit to supporting the attraction, and development of the general practice workforce, through providing

- practice infrastructure grants to support and maintain the general practice workforce;

- support for teaching and learning at all levels in general practice; and

- support for ideas to attract and retain the general practice workforce.

Hello! What more do these people want?

Based on what my doctor charges me, (he's a good bloke, I don't begrudge him a fair wage and I do my best to go as infrequently as I can) doctors in the ACT are earning anywhere between $5,000 and $10,000 a week. (If you're a specialist you can earn that in a day for chrissakes.) OK so there's a few expenses to be taken care of, but it's not bad dough. You'd reckon that in itself would be sufficient to entice someone to come down to Canberra and hang out the shingle.

The ACT Government even subsidizes a medical degree course at the Australian National University and still can't get enough graduates to stay around their home town.

This is just another stunt put up by the ACT Division of General Practice (that also receives a million or more from the ACT Government to dream up schemes like this). The Division claims its members are overworked and that we need more of them. No wonder when those same members continue to give out the sort of advice that doesn't restore poor function to good and has their customers getting unfitter and fatter by the week - and coming back for more of the same advice.

I keep telling the ACT Minister for Health, Katy Gallagher that she's protecting the wrong industry. If she could subsidize the fitness industry and get everybody working their ringers out in the gym three or four times a week, doctors would be sitting around filing their nails, playing golf on Wednesdays and knocking off early on Fridays.

'support for teaching and learning.' What a joke. The Division of General Practice already gets money from the ACT Government for professional development, but based on the ever increasing level of junk medicine being practiced in the ACT it's obviously not hitting the mark.

(For those unfamiliar with the meaning of 'junk medicine', it's the medical practice that prescribes drugs to mask symptoms, not restore poor function to good.' When you think 'junk medicine' think of all the drugs to lower cholesterol, blood pressure ...)

It's a known fact that most doctors won't go to a professional development program unless it's a silver service nosh up at the Hyatt, that involves quaffing flagons of Grange Hermitage and is sponsored by the likes of Smirk, Fizzer and Roach - the suppliers of the junk medications. (Very cosy eh!)

'practice infrastructure grants to support and maintain the general practice workforce.' What the hell does that mean if it's not a doctor's slush fund.

Minister Gallagher should be moving heaven and earth to wind down the medical industry not make it bigger. On a national scale the medical industry sucks 10% of GDP into its vortex, and climbing. $100B a year - and they want more. They're either greedy or dreaming.

Her goal should not be to have more doctors employed in the ACT but to have the fittest and healthiest population in the world.

No one ever got fitter or healthier in a surgery.

The health of Australians continues to get worse. Protecting the medical industry will only make it worser (sic).

John Miller

* that was my idea!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009



John Miller here and this is the first of many blogs.

The name comes from the log book we used to use in high school. It was titled 'Frank Castle's Logarithms and Other Tables for Schools.'

Invariably it was bowdlerized into something like Blogarithms, or Slogarithms and Other Mother's Fables for Fools.

So there you have it.

Stay tuned, highly tuned and remember, you can't solve a fitness problem with a medical solution.


John Miller