Jazz guru Péan on Conseil's board
Montreal Gazette16 Jan 2023
Haitian-québécois author and jazz guru Stanley Péan has been appointed to the board of directors of the Conseil des arts de Montréal.
Péan has hosted the radio show Quand le jazz est là (Monday to Friday from 10 p.m. to midnight) for more than 13 years on Radio-canada's Ici Musique. He has written eight novels and seven short-story collections, including Black and Blue: Jazz Stories (the English version of De préférence la nuit, translated by David Homel), a collection of tales spanning the history of jazz, published last year by Véhicule Press. He has also written several thrillers, including Zombi Blues in 1996.
“One of the great things about doing Black and Blue: Jazz Stories was working with Stanley and enjoying his deep knowledge of jazz and other music,” said Véhicule Press co-publisher Simon Dardick.
Born in Port-au-prince in 1966, Péan grew up in Jonquière. A man of many passions and talents, he is the founder of the Quebec comedy troupe Le Groupe sanguin. He studied literature in university, has written for La Presse and Le Devoir, and is editor-in-chief of the literary journal Le Libraire.
Ericka Alneus, city of Montreal executive committee member responsible for culture and heritage, said in a statement that Péan's “vision and his experience in the world of arts and culture will be invaluable in guiding the work of the Conseil des arts.”
Péan replaces writer Katia Grubisic at the Conseil des arts, whose other board members include fellow Haitian Quebecer and author Dany Laferrière, Mohawk artist and Concordia associate professor Hannah Claus, filmmaker Nadine Gomez and Thinkwell Studio president Hugues Sweeney.
Conseil des arts president Ben Marc Diendéré called it a privilege to welcome Péan to the board.
“A prolific writer, radio host and promoter of jazz, he is an engaged player in our artistic life,” Diendéré said. “With his rich experience and knowledge of various disciplines, I'm convinced he will be a great ally to the board, in particular to the milieu of literature which he will be representing.”
Experts weigh in: Heavy lifting is one key to slowing the loss of muscle mass as you age
Montreal Gazette 16 Jan 2023
A recent British study concludes if you want to build up muscle to counter the effects of aging, lifting weights is the best way to help the process.
When it comes to the health benefits of exercise, aerobic workouts get most of the credit. Yet a recent study reported that people who work out in the weight room are less likely to die than those who don't, even if they accumulate the recommended 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise per week.
“Muscle strengthening activities were associated with a 10 to 17 per cent lower risk of cardiovascular disease, total cancer, diabetes, lung cancer and allcause mortality independent of aerobic activities among adults,” said the study published in the July 2022 edition of the British Journal of Sports Medicine.
What can strength training do that running, walking, swimming and cycling can't? Resistance exercise stalls the gradual loss of muscle mass that starts in your 30s. Studies estimate losses at about 1.0-1.4 per cent a year starting at about age 35 and accelerating to three per cent a year at the age of 60. Put more precisely, by 70 years of age, a 12 per cent loss of muscle mass is not uncommon.
For most, the slow deterioration of muscle mass goes largely unnoticed. For others the first sign will likely be a loss of speed that shows up on the tennis court, at the finish line of your local 10k fun run and during an extended hill climb on your bike. But it's not just athletic performance that suffers due to a decline in strength and power.
Left unchecked, muscle loss makes the chores of everyday life more challenging and contributes to slower movements, less balance and more fatigue — especially as we age.
Lost muscle mass is replaced with fat and fibrous tissue, which leaves muscles looking more like a marbled steak than a filet mignon. So even if you weigh the same as you did a decade or so earlier, without a proper strength training program it's likely that your muscle-to-fat ratio has changed — and not in a good way. Hence the importance of adding strength training to your weekly exercise routine.
Canada's 24-Hour Movement Guidelines state adults 18 years and older should perform “muscle strengthening activities using major muscle groups at least twice a week.” Yet unlike the recommendation for aerobic activities (150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic physical activities per week) there's no information regarding the suggested intensity or duration for strength training. That's a problem. The ability to design and execute an efficient, effective and well-balanced strength training routine is far more complicated than going for a run, walk or bike ride — so the absence of pertinent information is a lost opportunity. It's not surprising then that only 25 per cent of Canadians work out with weights twice a week.
According to the British Journal of Sports Medicine article, 30-60 minutes of strength training a week is enough to lower the risk of all-cause mortality. After 60 minutes the benefits plateau. After two hours, they start to decrease. Armed with this info, hitting the weights a couple times a week for 30 minutes is a good place to start if you want to get those muscles back in shape.
If you have no experience in the weight room, you're going to need expert help. Most gyms have personal trainers who can provide an individualized program that not only builds strength but also considers any existing injuries or physical challenges that may require modifying or the switching of one exercise for another.
Or you can find a group exercise class led by a qualified instructor that focuses on strength training. Either option is an investment that will pay off not just in results but will also increase the chances of staying free of injury, as well as maximizing your efforts if time is short.
For anyone familiar with weight training who just needs to get back into it, aim for two to three sets of two to three exercises for the lower body, upper body and core, making sure you lift enough weight to fatigue the muscles by the last rep of each set.
Just to be clear, a comprehensive strength training program requires the use of strength training machines or hand-held weights. Exercises that use body weight to provide resistance are fine to start, but all effective weight training programs are based on the principle of overload, which means the muscles need to be adequately challenged in order to gain strength. In short, the same workout repeated over and over again over the course of months, or years, will have limited benefits. All strength training workouts should increase the load, volume or intensity of effort on a regular basis to ensure continued improvement or maintenance.
Also worth noting is that group exercise classes that don't include a specific strength training component won't retain or gain muscle to the extent necessary to reduce the loss of muscle mass associated with aging. Yoga, Pilates and your favourite cardio workouts have plenty to offer when it comes to health and can build a small measure of muscular strength and endurance, but don't provide the kind of overload necessary to optimize muscle mass.
In short, if you want to build enough muscle to counter the effects of aging, you need to lift weights.