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8 – Week Workout Plan to Reduce Body Fat – HealthyLifeBoxx

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Reasons You’re Not Burning Fat (& How To Lose Weight The Right Way)

https://is.gd/yaY08q “Several months ago, I filled you in on “The 2 Best Ways To Burn Fat Fast (Without Destroying Your Hormones”

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Why exercise is the key to younger-looking skin

https://is.gd/07loPa It may be possible to work out and wake up with younger-looking skin. What better reason to renew your gym membership?

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Coronavirus: London is only two or three days behind COVID-19 hotspots, modelling suggests

Coronavirus: London is only two or three days behind COVID-19 hotspots, modelling suggests

A source close to the London mayor says “we can’t afford more delay” to imposing new restrictions.

 

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Effective Interval Training Workout and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on Effective Interval Training Workout, Using Mental Imagery, High Intensity Interval Training and Loss of a specific enzyme boosts fat metabolism and exercise endurance in mice. Hope you enjoy them…

Effective Interval Training Workout

Interval training workout can be done in a variety of different ways. Here’s a wickedly-effective type of interval training workout: it requires no machines or fancy equipment, you can do it outside in the sunshine and fresh air, it develops killer conditioning, carves out legs like a sprinter, and burns calories at an accelerated rate… […]

Interval training workout can be done in a variety of different ways. Here’s a wickedly-effective type of interval training workout: it requires no machines or fancy equipment, you can do it outside in the sunshine and fresh air, it develops killer conditioning, carves out legs like a sprinter, and burns calories at an accelerated rate…

In other articles about running/aerobics and high intensity interval training, as well as in my Fat loss books, I’ve written about how you can integrate both traditional steady state cardio as well as high intensity interval training into your training program for optimal body composition improvement, health and increased fitness – you don’t have to choose one form of cardio or the other. In fact, settling into dogmatic views about cardio will only limit you.

Traditional steady state cardio is pretty much self-explanatory and intuitive. But

interval training workout

many people are still confused about the best way to do interval training workout.

An Insanely Effective Way To Do an interval training workout

I’m not sure if there is a single best way to do intervals because there are so many choices and everyone is different in their goals, interests and personal preferences, so “best” is a relative thing. But let me give you one of my personal favorites that is breathtakingly effective:

Stair sprinting!

Your typical interval training workout in the gym might be on a stationary cycle, treadmill or stairclimber with short 30-60 second bursts of high speed and/or resistance, followed by a 60-120 second period of low intensity recovery. That’s usually a 1:1 or 1:2 work to recovery interval. You then rinse and repeat for the desired number of intervals, usually between 6 and 12.

I sometimes have access to a great set of university stadium steps with a straight shot right up – 52 steps.

Sprinting it takes about 10 seconds or so, walking down about 30 seconds. Those are short intervals with a 1:3 work to recovery interval ratio. That wasn’t by design, it just happens to be how long it takes to run up and walk down that particular flight of stairs, but co-incidentally, that fits within common recommendations for short sprint-style intervals.

I make sure I’m warmed up first, I usually start with a couple flights up at a slow jog then a run, before sprinting, usually 10-12 rounds.

Even if you jog/run instead of sprint, (or pause briefly at the bottom of the stairs), when you do the math, you can figure that this usually doesn’t take more than 10-12 minutes.

Why do I like stadium step sprinting for interval training workout?

  1. Stair sprinting is a time saver. Like other forms of interval training workout, it’s entirely possible to get as much if not more cardiovascular conditioning in 10-15 minutes than you’d get from a much longer session of slower cardio (depending on the intensity and effort levels).
  2. Stair sprinting is engaging. Many people get bored doing long slow to medium intensity cardio sessions. This is a great way to break up the monotony of traditional cardio workouts. Even though it’s tough, it’s actually kind of fun.
  3. Stair sprinting is incredible for leg development. As a bodybuilder, I like to look at all types of training not only in terms of conditioning, fat loss and health, but also whether they will add or detract from the physique. I find that brief but intense stair workouts are amazing for leg development – quads, hamstrings, glutes and even your calves. In fact, I started training on the stairs more than 20 years ago, and I always considered it as much if not more of a leg workout than anything else.
  4. Stair sprinting can be done outside. If you have access to stadium steps, as opposed to just a stairwell, you can enjoy the sun and fresh air.

How to integrate stair running into your interval training workout

If you’re an overachiever type, you might be tempted to do these sprint workouts in addition to your current strength training and cardio workload for a great interval training workout.

However, keep in mind that intensity and duration are inversely proportional. When you do high intensity cardio or all out sprints, you are condensing more work into less time. That means the best part is, you can do a brief but intense stair workout instead of one of your long cardio sessions rather than in addition to them. This is one of the reasons that a interval training workout is so effective.

Recommendation: Start with one session per week, then progress to two if you choose. You can do traditional cardio the other days of the week if you want or need additional calorie-burning. Lower intensity cardio in between training and interval training workout can also serve as active recovery.

Not everyone has access to a full flight of stadium steps, as you might find at a local University. Running flights of stairs in a high rise is another effective and no-cost way to train on stairs. Although you can’t truly sprint with twists and turns on each floor, you can jog/run.

No stairs? Hills will get the job done too and they may provide you with more flexibility in the length/duration of your interval training workout. I’ve found some big hills at just the right grade of incline that I can do 30-45 second runs up, with about 90-120 seconds walk down. Grassy hills are nice, when available, as they spare you some of the impact from running on the concrete.

Running Stairs is Tough but Effective Exercise

Sprinting up stairs is not for everyone doing an interval training workout. If you have a history of health problems or orthopedic issues, check with your doctor before doing any kind of high intensity training and of course, don’t train through the pain of injury. If you are significantly over, it may be a challenge just to walk up stairs, let alone run up, not to mention it might create undue stress on your joints. But as you get lighter and fitter, it’s a challenge you might slowly work toward.

Be sure to build up gradually and adjust the workout based on your current health and fitness level. You could start with as few as 4-6 rounds and build up from there. You can also start with jogging up the stairs, then progress to running, then move to sprints. Be sure you are fully prepared and warmed up before attempting all out sprints as sprinting when unprepared is a notorious source of hamstring pulls.

Stair Training Is Easier on your Body

Some coaches believe that running uphill is safer than sprinting flat surfaces. Writing for Staley Training.com, Coach Steven Morris says, “Another great reason to hill sprint: even an athlete with horrendous running form will be safe running hills. This is simply because the hill does NOT allow the athlete to over-stride nor does it allow them to reach top speed, both major factors in hamstring injuries.”

Stair sprinting is a perfect complement to the cardio portion in my Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle program. If you’re healthy and already fit, try this advanced interval training workout and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results!

Train hard and expect success!

Tom Venuto, author of
Burn The Fat Feed The Muscle

Founder & CEO of
Burn The Fat Inner Circle

About the Author:

Tom Venuto is the author of the #1 best seller, Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle: Fat Burning Secrets of the World’s Best Bodybuilders and Fitness Models. Tom is a lifetime natural bodybuilder and fat loss expert who achieved an astonishing 3.7% body fat level without drugs or supplements and he totally supports a interval training workout.



Effective Interval Training Workout was originally published at LINK


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Using Mental Imagery

Tom Venuto, the famous bodybuilder who wrote a fantastic ebook on loss and muscle gain gave me this article on using mental imagery to post on the blog. I hope you enjoy it and visit his site to learn more. The word “visualization” or using mental imagery sometimes conjures up images of new age gurus […]

Tom Venuto, the famous bodybuilder who wrote a fantastic ebook on loss and muscle gain gave me this article on using mental imagery to post on the blog. I hope you enjoy it and visit his site to learn more.

The word “visualization” or using mental imagery sometimes conjures up images of new age gurus teaching esoteric techniques for personal enlightenment and “attracting” what you want into your life.

This causes many evidence-based types to scoff. However, piles of research has shown that using mental imagery (aka “visualization”) can improve performance. The latest study suggests that a certain type of mental imagery can also increase your strength

How to Use Mental Imagery

ability motivation atttitudeOlympic champions and professional athletes have used visualization and mental rehearsal techniques for decades. Not only is visualization one of the most widely accepted techniques in sports psychology, it’s supported by scientific research.

Nevertheless, many people remain skeptical of using mental imagery

Some people agree that mental rehearsal might enhance specific skills, like a golf swing or a basketball throw, but they question whether it could make you stronger, increase muscle growth or help you lose weight.

Study on Using Mental Imagery

A new study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research suggests that indeed, mental imagery can make you stronger. This study also begins to explain how mental imagery works on a neurological level…

Twenty two sports students, with a mean age of about 20, participated in the 6-week long experiment. Prior to the study, none had done mental imagery before. The students were divided into a control group and a mental rehearsal group. The goal was to see if mental imagery could increase bench press and leg press strength.

Each participant was given very specific instructions on how to perform the mental imagery. During the rest period between sets, they were to vividly imagine the exercise movement and the muscle contractions generated from each rep.

After 12 workout sessions, the mental imagery group had significantly increased their strength more than the control group, especially in the lower body (leg press).

The researchers concluded:

“The results provided evidence that mental imagery did contribute to improve strength of the leg muscles without any macroscopic structural change”

What they were saying is that the duration of the study wasn’t long enough that there was any major muscle size increase, so they credited the strength increase to non morphological adaptations.

Why Does Using Mental Imagery Work?

It’s well known in exercise science that gains in strength occur from changes not just in the muscle fibers and surrounding tissues, but in the nervous system.

That gives us clues about how mental imagery works.

Put simply, mental training techniques, (since they’re working with your brain/nervous system – as the name implies), can trigger some of the same neurological adaptations that occur from physical training.

Apparently, mental imagery can increase synchronization of motor units in muscles, having large corresponding cortical areas in the primary mortor cortex.

There are also psychological benefits, such as increased motivation, improved focus during the set, technique improvements, more confidence and less apprehension or anxiety. But clearly, there’s more to this than just “psyching up.”

How to Use Mental Imagery Now

Here’s something else interesting. The researchers even suggested that mental imagery could decrease strength loss when athletes are inactive due to injury.

This recent study is a practical one because it gives us one specific technique that you can apply to your next workout: vividly imagine a successful lift for the upcoming set using mental imagery while you’re resting between sets.

NOTE: it’s important to mentally see (visualize) the exercise and mentally “FEEL” the muscle contraction. This is multi-sensory – both visual and kinesthetic.

In some of Toms  previous articles, he talked about density training and superset training as excellent techniques for busy people because these methods reduce rest intervals, making the workout time efficient.

But the rest time between heavy sets doesn’t have to be wasted – now you know what to do with that time…

Instead of chatting with your gym buddies, or scoping out the attractive bods in the gym, you can be mentally rehearsing your next set, using mental imagery… and enjoying the strength increase that follows.

Most fat loss programs only focus on diet or physical training. If you want to learn more about how you can add “mental training” techniques to increase fat loss, muscle growth and muscular strength, then be sure to check out chapter one in Toms ebook, Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle.

Using Visual Imagery is important to your workouts and other parts of your life and I use them a lot, I hope you will now as well.



Using Mental Imagery was originally published at LINK


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High Intensity Interval Training

One of the greatest ways to exercise is to use a very quick and heavy workout with weights. This method is called High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT and is one of the greatest ways to have a weight workout. The main advantages to doing this type of workout is that you keep your concentration […]

One of the greatest ways to exercise is to use a very quick and heavy workout with weights. This method is called High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT and is one of the greatest ways to have a weight workout.

The main advantages to doing this type of workout is that you keep your concentration for a very short amount of time. You get to have a very punishing workout in 20 minutes. And finally, you get to burn a lot of calories and raise your metabolism.

If you have tried interval training before it is really great and exhausting. If you would like to be like a top athlete and do this style of interval training here are a few tips.

bench press

How To Do High Intensity Interval Training

1. Use machines instead of free weights. You do not want to waste any time putting weights on bars as your break between exercises should only be 20 -30 seconds.

2. Use slightly lighter weights as your muscles will tire very quickly. And you are going to be gulping for breath really really soon.

3. Don’t rush through the exercises, rush between the exercises. Remember you are trying to push yourself during your sets and not rest between so the best method is to really push the weights hard on each set and then move to the next muscle group for the next set.

4. Try to not hit the same muscle group in consecutive sets. For example if you do bench press it will tax your pecs as well as triceps and shoulders so your next set should work your biceps or some part of your legs.

Compound exercises (the ones that hit more than one muscle group) are going to be tough to do in a High Intensity Interval Training session but if you can strategically work it our ahead of time your workout will be much tougher and better for you.

There are many people including me that believe that higher intensity workouts are much better for you than long low intensity workouts.

Give this method a try occasionally or even more often than that and the change up will really help to push your gains (or losses) much quicker than just regular workouts will.

Why Do High Intensity Interval Training?

High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a great way to both improve performance and to also lose quickly. HIIT is a different way of doing cardio with just a couple of rules to remember:

  • First, your running session should only be 15-30 minutes.
  • Secondly, sessions should have a 2:1 ratio in terms of time. so a session may be something as 60 seconds jog, 30 seconds sprint alternating

An example of a HIIT session may be as follows: Begin with a five minute warm up jog at about a medium intensity followed by a couple of minutes of stretching. Then start with a jog at about medium intensity for 60 seconds and then sprint hard for 30 to 60  seconds. Keep alternating this for 20 minutes or so and then at the end you can do some lower level jogging for 5 minutes as a cooldown.

This kind of workout is very difficult, especially the first few times that you try it and so it would be a good idea to only do it every second day and gauge how you are recovering from the workouts.

There have been a lot of studies on the high intensity interval training over the last few years and they seem to show that this is a very effective method for improving fitness as well as a nice change from regular running and workouts. One of the most important reasons that High intensity interval training works is because when you stress your body at the highest level you will burn a lot more fat then when running at a lower level jog.

Some proponents of HIIT say that to drop weight faster you would want to do this training on an empty stomach and I would have to agree with that. The idea is that since your body has no available calories to burn that it would replace muscle glycogen by burning fat. I would love to see more studies on this since it seems to make sense but there is not much evidence of it except for people saying that it seems to work.

Recently it has been shown that two weeks of HIIT can substantially improve insulin action in young healthy men. HIIT may therefore represent a viable method for prevention of type-2 diabetes.

The other side effect of this high intensity interval training method is that it will give you a much shorter workout.



High Intensity Interval Training was originally published at LINK


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Loss of a specific enzyme boosts fat metabolism and exercise endurance in mice

Sugars and fats are the primary fuels that power every cell, tissue and organ. For most cells, sugar is the energy source of choice, but when nutrients are scarce, such as during starvation or extreme exertion, cells will switch to breaking down fats instead. The mechanisms for how cells rewire their metabolism in response to […]

Sugars and fats are the primary fuels that power every cell, tissue and organ. For most cells, sugar is the energy source of choice, but when nutrients are scarce, such as during starvation or extreme exertion, cells will switch to breaking down fats instead.

The mechanisms for how cells rewire their metabolism in response to changes in resource availability are not yet fully understood, but new research reveals a surprising consequence when one such mechanism is turned off: an increased capacity for endurance exercise.

In a study published in the Aug. 4 issue of Cell Metabolism, Harvard Medical School researchers identified a critical role of the enzyme, prolyl hydroxylase 3 (PHD3), in sensing nutrient availability and regulating the ability of muscle cells to break down fats. When nutrients are abundant, PHD3 acts as a brake that inhibits unnecessary fat metabolism. This brake is released when fuel is low and more energy is needed, such as during exercise.

Remarkably, blocking PHD3 production in mice leads to dramatic improvements in certain measures of fitness, the research showed. Compared with their normal littermates, mice lacking the PHD3 enzyme ran 40 percent longer and 50 percent farther on treadmills and had higher VO2 max, a marker of aerobic endurance that measures the maximum oxygen uptake during exercise.

The findings shed light on a key mechanism for how cells metabolize fuels and offer clues toward a better understanding of muscle function and fitness, the authors said.

“Our results suggest that PHD3 inhibition in whole body or skeletal muscle is beneficial for fitness in terms of endurance exercise capacity, running time and running distance,” said senior study author Marcia Haigis, professor of cell biology in the Blavatnik Institute at HMS. “Understanding this pathway and how our cells metabolize energy and fuels potentially has broad applications in biology, ranging from cancer control to exercise physiology.”

However, further studies are needed to elucidate whether this pathway can be manipulated in humans to improve muscle function in disease settings, the authors said.

Haigis and colleagues set out to investigate the function of PHD3, an enzyme that they had found to play a role regulating fat metabolism in certain cancers in previous studies. Their work showed that, under normal conditions, PHD3 chemically modifies another enzyme, ACC2, which in turn prevents fatty acids from entering mitochondria to be broken down into energy.

In the current study, the researchers’ experiments revealed that PHD3 and another enzyme called AMPK simultaneously control the activity of ACC2 to regulate fat metabolism, depending on energy availability.

In isolated mouse cells grown in sugar-rich conditions, the team found that PHD3 chemically modifies ACC2 to inhibit fat metabolism. Under low-sugar conditions, however, AMPK activates and places a different, opposing chemical modification on ACC2, which represses PHD3 activity and allows fatty acids to enter the mitochondria to be broken down for energy.

These observations were confirmed in live mice that were fasted to induce energy-deficient conditions. In fasted mice, the PHD3-dependent chemical modification to ACC2 was significantly reduced in skeletal and heart muscle, compared to fed mice. By contrast, the AMPK-dependent modification to ACC2 increased.

Longer and further

Next, the researchers explored the consequences when PHD3 activity was inhibited, using genetically modified mice that do not express PHD3. Because PHD3 is most highly expressed in skeletal muscle cells and AMPK has previously been shown to increase energy expenditure and exercise tolerance, the team carried out a series of endurance exercise experiments.

“The question we asked was if we knock out PHD3,” Haigis said, “would that increase fat burning capacity and energy production and have a beneficial effect in skeletal muscle, which relies on energy for muscle function and exercise capacity?”

To investigate, the team trained young, PHD3-deficient mice to run on an inclined treadmill. They found that these mice ran significantly longer and further before reaching the point of exhaustion, compared to mice with normal PHD3. These PHD3-deficient mice also had higher oxygen consumption rates, as reflected by increased VO2 and VO2 max.

After the endurance exercise, the muscles of PHD3-deficient mice had increased rates of fat metabolism and an altered fatty acid composition and metabolic profile. The PHD3-dependent modification to ACC2 was nearly undetectable, but the AMPK-dependent modification increased, suggesting that changes to fat metabolism play a role in improving exercise capacity.

These observations held true in mice genetically modified to specifically prevent PHD3 production in skeletal muscle, demonstrating that PHD3 loss in muscle tissues is sufficient to boost exercise capacity, according to the authors.

“It was exciting to see this big, dramatic effect on exercise capacity, which could be recapitulated with a muscle-specific PHD3 knockout,” Haigis said. “The effect of PHD3 loss was very robust and reproducible.”

The research team also performed a series of molecular analyses to detail the precise molecular interactions that allow PHD3 to modify ACC2, as well as how its activity is repressed by AMPK.

The study results suggest a new potential approach for enhancing exercise performance by inhibiting PHD3. While the findings are intriguing, the authors note that further studies are needed to better understand precisely how blocking PHD3 causes a beneficial effect on exercise capacity.

In addition, Haigis and colleagues found in previous studies that in certain cancers, such as some forms of leukemia, mutated cells express significantly lower levels of PHD3 and consume fats to fuel aberrant growth and proliferation. Efforts to control this pathway as a potential strategy for treating such cancers may help inform research in other areas, such as muscle disorders.

It remains unclear whether there are any negative effects of PHD3 loss. To know whether PHD3 can be manipulated in humans — for performance enhancement in athletic activities or as a treatment for certain diseases — will require additional studies in a variety of contexts, the authors said.

It also remains unclear if PHD3 loss triggers other changes, such as weight loss, blood sugar and other metabolic markers, which are now being explored by the team.

“A better understanding of these processes and the mechanisms underlying PHD3 function could someday help unlock new applications in humans, such as novel strategies for treating muscle disorders,” Haigis said.

Additional authors on the study include Haejin Yoon, Jessica Spinelli, Elma Zaganjor, Samantha Wong, Natalie German, Elizabeth Randall, Afsah Dean, Allen Clermont, Joao Paulo, Daniel Garcia, Hao Li, Olivia Rombold, Nathalie Agar, Laurie Goodyear, Reuben Shaw, Steven Gygi and Johan Auwerx.

The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health (grants R01CA213062, P30DK036836, R25 CA-89017 and P41 EB015898), Ludwig Center at Harvard Medical School, Glenn Foundation for Medical Research, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne and the Fondation Suisse de Recherche sur les Maladies Musculaires.



Loss of a specific enzyme boosts fat metabolism and exercise endurance in mice was originally published at LINK


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Depressed or anxious teens risk heart attacks in middle age and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on Depressed or anxious teens risk heart attacks in middle age, System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training, Mild Oxygen Hyperbaric Therapy at the Stevenson’s & what does it do? and Why you gotta bounce. Hope you enjoy them…

Depressed or anxious teens risk heart attacks in middle age

Depression or anxiety in adolescence is linked with a 20% greater likelihood of having a heart attack mid-life, according to research released today at ESC Congress 2020.1 In a warning to parents, study author Dr. Cecilia Bergh of Örebro University in Sweden, said: “Be vigilant and look for signs of stress, depression or anxiety that […]

Depression or anxiety in adolescence is linked with a 20% greater likelihood of having a heart attack mid-life, according to research released today at ESC Congress 2020.1

In a warning to parents, study author Dr. Cecilia Bergh of Örebro University in Sweden, said: “Be vigilant and look for signs of stress, depression or anxiety that is beyond the normal teenage angst: seek help if there seems to be a persistent problem (telephone helplines may be particularly helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic). If a healthy lifestyle is encouraged as early as possible in childhood and adolescence it is more likely to persist into adulthood and improve long-term health.”

There are indications that mental well-being is declining in young people. This study investigated whether conditions like depression in adolescence (age 18 or 19) are associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. The researchers also examined the possible role of stress resilience (ability to cope with stress in everyday life) in helping to explain any associations.

The study included 238,013 men born between 1952 and 1956 who underwent extensive examinations in late adolescence (as part of their assessment for compulsory military service) and were then followed into middle age (up to the age of 58 years). The assessments at the age of 18 or 19 years included medical, psychiatric, and physical examinations by physicians and psychologists.

Stress resilience was measured by an interview with a psychologist and a questionnaire, and based on familial, medical, social, behavioural and personality characteristics.

A total of 34,503 men were diagnosed with a non-psychotic mental disorder (such as depression or anxiety) at conscription. Follow-up for cardiovascular disease was through hospital medical records.

The study found that a mental disorder in adolescence was associated with the risk of having a myocardial infarction (heart attack) by middle age. Compared to men without a mental illness in adolescence, the risk of myocardial infarction was 20% higher among men with a diagnosis — even after taking into account other characteristics in adolescence such as blood pressure, body mass index, general health, and parental socioeconomic status.

The association between mental illness and heart attack was partly — but not completely — explained by poorer stress resilience and lower physical ?tness in teenagers with a mental illness. “We already knew that men who were physically fit in adolescence seem less likely to maintain fitness in later years if they have low stress resilience,” said Dr. Bergh. “Our previous research has also shown that low stress resilience is also coupled with a greater tendency towards addictive behaviour, signalled by higher risks of smoking, alcohol consumption and other drug use.”

Dr. Bergh said: “Better fitness in adolescence is likely to help protect against later heart disease, particularly if people stay fit as they age. Physical activity may also alleviate some of the negative consequences of stress. This is relevant to all adolescents, but those with poorer wellbeing could benefit from additional support to encourage exercise and to develop strategies to deal with stress.”

Story Source:

Materials provided by European Society of Cardiology. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.



Depressed or anxious teens risk heart attacks in middle age was originally published at LINK


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System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training

Check out this track from System Athletica which offers an uncommon training technology referred to as dynamic isometrics. This style of movement stimulates the brain through co-ordination, agility, timing, footwork (the dynamic principles) and works the physiology through progressive overload (isometrics) not to mention the overabundance of the squat and lunge primal patterns which are […]

Check out this track from System Athletica which offers an uncommon training technology referred to as dynamic isometrics. This style of movement stimulates the brain through co-ordination, agility, timing, footwork (the dynamic principles) and works the physiology through progressive overload (isometrics) not to mention the overabundance of the squat and lunge primal patterns which are done without spinal compression. As we get older we get slower, our footwork ability decreases, our coordination diminishes and our ability to “fire” certain muscle groups “at will” heads south as well. If you are serious about your movement future forget the vanity style training and do yourself a favour, add these tracks to your routine and notice the benefits. Things like stair climbing, getting out of bed easier, decreased lower back issues from compression, increased neurological adaptation to coordinating your feet under your body are all common feedback we have received over the 10+ tears we have been sharing this style with participants. Oh and by the way, if you do this stuff at a good level, you will see great muscular benefits as well, so the vanity muscles become part of the natural process. Have fun!

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System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training was originally published at LINK


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Mild Oxygen Hyperbaric Therapy at the Stevenson’s & what does it do?

In our quest to maintain great health for ourselves and our trainees, we invested in a Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy chamber (MHBOT). I first saw one of these at a fitness convention in 2004 and wanted one there and then, but when I tried to finance it I was knocked back because I was a […]

chamber1.png

In our quest to maintain great health for ourselves and our trainees, we invested in a Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy chamber (MHBOT). I first saw one of these at a fitness convention in 2004 and wanted one there and then, but when I tried to finance it I was knocked back because I was a broke personal trainer in a new city. Fast forward to today and I am “livin la vida loca” with my HBOT.

Basically when you sit in a pressured environment with an increased (pure) oxygen supply, your body reorganizes itself on a cellular activity by up-regulating anti-inflammatory genes and down-regulating inflammatory genes. The pressure acts as a gas and because our body is made up of gasses on a microscopic scale, every cell must contract giving a “workout” response on a cellular level. As we know from the training cycle, the body runs on oxygen, so when we saturate the body with oxygen, we are ultimately giving our cells a nice mild workout with excellent hydration.

Some of the results from using MHBOT are amazing and seem to be full of it (B.S) – but who am I to disregard another persons tangible result if they are living proof of the process working? I will only ever share what I have seen with my eyes and the results I have felt are the following – which I CANNOT say are placebo or not – however I do not care, I just know they happened since using the chamber.

  • Better sleep – more restful. Ease of getting TO sleep is arguable, I think I go down heavier but there is a touch of increased mental activity before sleep kicks in but I have been getting up less during the night – again I am not sure if this is the chamber but I can say with confidence my sleep has been effected positively.

  • Faster recovery from training, this this is a text book response due to the anti inflammatory nature of the therapy but It is only subtle. I notice it because I have done 100’s of thousands of hours of training so yes it works.

  • Old joint pains started lessening. I have knee issues from poor athletic form in my teens and early 20’s and have persistently tried to “fix” them non-surgically for the past 15 years. I can say with confidence that my knees have been getting progressively better. Deep squatting was a trip down knee burn lane but since using the chamber I have slowly gained confidence and can hit rock bottom again with half the burn I used to feel – and it is getting better as the weeks go by. Please note this was progressive. I did feel a marked improvement after my first session though.

  • Strength increase – weight lifting capacity went up. Plain and simple I got a 5% strength increase in a few weeks. Did I actually get “stronger” or was it because my body feels better so my trust in it to operate at high levels increased? I don’t know but it happened, and if you know me you will know I am very careful with weight lifting so a 5% increase is huge.

  • Mental clarity – this is a big one, I take in tremendous amounts of info every day from multiple sources and I often found myself stuttering and sometimes stumbling mid sentence like my words couldn’t catch up with my thought and since using the chamber this has changed big time. I feel mentally sharper is the best way to explain it.

  • Energy and fatigue cycles are more noticeable. Another strange one, they all spout about the energy high you get but no-one says anything about the fatigue. I find myself getting very tired when sleep time rolls around. Training felt different in the beginning too, I felt myself fatiguing faster because my output went up which was not expected. Felt like not being fit which was humbling and interesting at the same time.

  • Increased sense of well-being. I see this word combination (“well being”) around a lot and often wonder what the heck it actually means to the point it seems like a BS euphemism, but I will use it here in this context because I cannot explain this effect any other way. I am sometimes a grumpy bugger who can be somewhat asocial, this is something I work on constantly so to feel “nicer” without having to remember to be was something that stuck out. I have noticed a marked improvement to my overall sense of feeling “good”. This is not to say that feeling “bad” does not happen anymore – of course it does – but you really notice it when it does. To me this is a good thing.

So these are the biggest things that have happened to me with regular usage. I try to use it every day for about 70 minutes and find with each session the benefits I have just mentioned subtly amplify and last. I am not sure how long random session effects last – an interesting side-note is when people are asked about whether it “works” or not is they often do not initially notice the differences. It is the husband/wife/kids/etc that notice the changers more than the individual which I always find fascinating. If we do not notice changes but our loved ones do, what else are we missing?

If you want more science in Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy check out the internet but be warned, most if not all of the medical case studies refer to HARD Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy which is completely different to mild. Most of the info on mild has been copied and pasted from a few major sites on HARD therapy so this obviously taints the info which is why I chose giving my personal opinion instead of a whole bunch of well conceived and placed words which are actually falsely misleading when they are using HARD therapies medical doctrine to promotes MILD’s benefits.

I wish I could point you in the right direction for medial research data on MILD’s benefits but I cannot. All I can say is that it works for me, thousands of professional athletes like Lebron James, professional cyclists sleep in them, home doctors have “cured” loved ones, tens maybe hundreds of thousands of regular folk swear by the benefits and I am becoming one of those.

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Mild Oxygen Hyperbaric Therapy at the Stevenson’s & what does it do? was originally published at LINK


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Why you gotta bounce

When we bounce on the trampoline we are working calisthenics (using our own bodyweight) and against the constant force of gravity, which runs resistance through all 50 trillion cells of our body. As you are reading this, also consider that “weight”, by definition, is mass X acceleration.  Rebounding offers 2 extra forces related to velocity […]

When we bounce on the trampoline we are working calisthenics (using our own bodyweight) and against the constant force of gravity, which runs resistance through all 50 trillion cells of our body. As you are reading this, also consider that “weight”, by definition, is mass X acceleration. 

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Rebounding offers 2 extra forces related to velocity or change of velocity and the forces are called acceleration and deceleration. (Uses car driving analogy accelerator and braking to decelerate) Generally these forces run along straight, linear pathways, in rebounding we manipulate them to travel vertically or straight up. This, along with the other forces of gravity and velocity variables introduces the physiology to a whole new environment it must adapt to.

Traditionally, working vertically can be eventually problematic as the only other modalities are basically running and sports which require many years of technique and are often difficult to reach high exertion levels due to the potential damage these activities are known for (i.e. knee, back & foot issues). Rebounding takes all that away due to the mat & spring system, allowing the user to reach high levels of output/exertion without the compounding damage of a hard surface.

An important part rebounding plays is working relatively unknown part of our physiology called the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a system of tubes that start in the toes and fingertips and work up throughout the entire body. It is filled with one way valves which makes it so the lymph fluid only flows in one direction. The lymphatic system is sometimes known as the internal vacuum cleaner of the body. It has the capability of sucking up toxins, poisons, trash and metabolic waste making it possible for the oxygen and nutrients to get in and bathe the cells. The way to turn on the lymphatic system is by activating the one way valves , and the way you activate those valves is by an “up and down” activity or vigorous movement. Rebounding is one of the most efficient ways of achieving this.

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Because of the elevated lymphatic system activity, rebounding acts as a “cleansing” exercise which in our opinion places this style in a class of its own. The next key benefit of rebounding is the aerobic work, or the ability to breathe deeply and take in greater quantities of oxygen which has many profound and far reaching crossovers too many to list here. Next we come to the resistance, which comes in the form of gravity. Because gravity is an invisible force which passes through all 50 trillion cells of the body, each one of these must contract in order “keep the body together” so to speak (If a cluster of these cells were NOT to contract, they would float away in space and time!).

Training the body on a cellular level creates elevates effects such as the connective tissues and muscles become stronger and work as a compete unit, the vital organs get conditioned allowing them to function more efficiently due to the increased lymph fluid activity. We also get to stimulate  the balancing mechanisms of the body; the vestibular system, the anti-gravity muscles and the proprioceptors of the joints, so that you develop a greater sense of balance, coordination, rhythm, timing dexterity, and kinaesthetic awareness. Because of all these benefits, we have found that the entire body will function much easier.

Point of the story, if you have a history of eating “garbage” food, your “garbage collectors” are regulated by the lymphatic system. The easiest way to stimulate this system into action is rebounding. What are you waiting for? Get bouncing!

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Why you gotta bounce was originally published at LINK


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Categories
Health & Fitness

059: Managing our stress response, reducing inflammation, and tips for longevity with Dr. Jannine Krause and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on 059: Managing our stress response, reducing inflammation, and tips for longevity with Dr. Jannine Krause, Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup, Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism and Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors. Hope you enjoy them…

059: Managing our stress response, reducing inflammation, and tips for longevity with Dr. Jannine Krause

Audio is not supported in your browser Hi everyone! Thank you so much for your kind words about Bella. I’ve spent the week just taking time to sit in the sadness and heal a bit, and your kind words have helped to carry me through this difficult time. I’ve got a new episode of the […]



059: Managing our stress response, reducing inflammation, and tips for longevity with Dr. Jannine Krause was originally published at LINK


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Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup

My biggest weakness is lack of flexibility. I just can’t get myself to take the time to stretch. In fact, I hate stretching. About 3 months ago, Dan Go contacted me about a way to increase flexibility, improve posture, and increase exercise performance…by doing a simple 6 minute warm-up. He saw a HUGE gap in […]

My biggest weakness is lack of flexibility. I just can’t get myself to take the time to stretch. In fact, I hate stretching.

About 3 months ago, Dan Go contacted me about a way to increase flexibility, improve posture, and increase exercise performance…by doing a simple 6 minute warm-up. He saw a HUGE gap in the fitness industry and has come up with a methodology that gets results fast, even for stubborn non-stretchers like myself.

Dan runs a gym in Toronto, Canada and has perfected a way for all of his gym members to increase flexibility each and every workout…while prepping their muscles to lift heavier weights…all while reducing the chance of injury.

Dan Sent Me a Blue Lacrosse Ball in the Mail

A few months back Dan emailed me and told me to expect a small package (insert “that’s what she said” joke) in the mail. It was a blue lacrosse ball and a short note with a handwritten URL scribbled on it.

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I went to my computer and typed in the URL and it led me to a video of Dan explaining the need for a better method to quickly increase flexibility without traditional stretching.

He explained and demonstrated this method in the video and I followed along with the lacrosse ball. After just one session I noticed a dramatic difference in both posture, range of motion, and how smoothly my joints felt when lifting weights. Instead of trying to explain it second hand, I’d rather have you get this info directly from the source.

The Perfect Warmup for Peak Performance
-by Dan Go

Today I’m going to talk to you about a perfect pre workout booster that MUST become a staple in your workouts.

BUT before I do that…I have one question to ask you:

Would you trade 6 MINUTES of your time to reverse the effects of aging and increase every marker (strength, speed, power, endurance and energy) of your body’s performance…

…while healing old injuries and making your body completely impervious to new ones?

If you just nodded “YES” then please keep reading.

Our society is very strange. In their quest to “look great naked” people will often go to great lengths and do whatever it takes to achieve their goal of having an awesome looking body.

But what they don’t realize is that while they are taking one step forward in looking great…they are usually doing things that keep them two steps BACK in terms of feeling great.

It’s like driving around for years in a souped up Lamborghini Gallardo, yet never ever taking the time to give it an oil change.


Eventually, that fantastic beast of a car will break down.

And this is EXACTLY what is happening with people in the gym today.

While they are driving around in their body’s they are usually held back by some sort of dysfunction that is keeping them in some sort of pain and hindering the results they could get from their workouts.

The TRUTH is that there is very a high chance that you are probably walking around with some sort of dysfunction in your body be it in your shoulder, knees or lower back.

And quite honestly…it’s NOT your fault.

Because while the mainstream fitness media teaches us how to look great they don’t do such a great job at teaching us how to PERFORM great.

That is why we are here today.

Today I’m going to show you an exact pre-workout sequence you can do right before your workouts that will enhance your strength, speed, power, flexibility, endurance and energy while healing your old injuries and protecting you from new ones.

This pre-workout sequence also has one very IMPORTANT function as well: To reverse your age related movement problems and have you operating at your physical best no matter what your age…

…all in under 6 minutes flat.

It’s called the Peak Performance Formula.

It’s an exact, science proven formula that will ultimately allow your body to work at it’s fullest potential every single day regardless if it is doing something menial like picking up a box or doing something intense like one of Rusty’s Visual Impact workouts at the gym.

It is the key to unlocking that potential reservoir of athleticism that you so richly deserve and the best part about it is: It only takes 6 minutes to complete.

“The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence” – Confucius

So take out your notebook and a pen of paper because no matter where you are starting from, we are about show you how to reach your bodies ultimate physical potential in the time it takes to brush your teeth in the morning.

Peak Performance Formula Step 1 – Get Your Self Myofascial Release On!

The is the first step of the Peak Performance Formula and one of the most important steps to do before your workouts.

In fact, many of the clients in my Transformation Center have called this a life changer.

What you don’t know right now is that a lot of those nagging pains in your body and the overall feeling of being “old” has NOTHING to do with age at all.

What it all comes down to is the quality of your Fascial Tissue.

What is Your Fascia?

Fascia (Pronounced as Fah-Sha) is an embryologic tissue which re-organizes long the lines of tension imposed on your body, adding support to any misalignment and contracting to protect you from further trauma (real or imagined).

To get a better idea of Fascia picture in your mind a sword.

Fascia is the sheath that goes OVER the sword (your muscle) to act as a protectant.
Fascia is your sheath protecting and covering EVERY single muscle on your body.

It has been estimated by researchers that if every structure of the body EXCEPT the fascia was removed, the body would STILL retain its shape.

Knowing this kinda gives you a better idea of how important its function is. Fascia covers the muscles, bones, nerves, organs and vessels right down to the cellular level.

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One study has found that pain felt in specific areas of the body can be frequently related back to having actual adhesions in the fascial tissue. (Schleip R et al. ligament subfailure injuries lead to muscle control dysfunction” (M. Panjabi). European Spine Journal 2007; 16: 1733-1735)

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You fascial tissue gets negatively affected by long periods of sitting (hello 9-5 job) and bad posture. Your fascial tissue gets even worse when you decide to do intense workouts ON TOP of your already dysfunctional muscle tissue.

Strains in your fascial tissue caused by the problems stated above will slowly tighten your body causing it to lose it’s overall physical capacity to perform under any stress and its one of the main causes of age related pain and dysfunction.

Why Do Self Myofascial Release?

The most effective way of improving the quality of your fascial tissue is through massage aka. Self Myofascial release (SMR)

Most people think that the only way to get a massage is by paying $75/session to your local massage therapist but what we recommend something a lot cheaper and 10x more effective.

SMR is the most potent way of locating your fascial restrictions, changing your posture and effectively improving the way your bodies biomechanical movement.

By implementing the SMR routine prescribed in this program you will not only enhance your bodies ability to move, but you’ll also increase it’s own propriorception or it’s awareness of itself.

Think of Self Myofascial Release as putting a BRAND NEW engine in your body’s chassis.

Or if you’re like me, think of the effect of doing Self Myofascial Release is like going from a driving a Toyota Corolla to tearing down the roads in that brand new Lamborghini.

Self Myofascial Release helps remove the “vice grip-like” pressure caused by restrictive fascia, eliminating symptoms such as stiffness, pain and spasms.

After several weeks of practicing SMR your body will learn new and incredibly improved freedom of movement that you haven’t experienced since you were a teenager.

While SMR is usually performed with a foam roller I’ve found something much more effective and chances you are probably have it lying around somewhere in your house.

Check out the video on how to apply an effective system of SMR into your workouts to reverse your age and replace that old body with a brand NEW athletic engine.

Peak Performance Principle #2 – Turn ON Your Body with Neuromuscular Activators

When warming up our bodies we use a little known but very effective method called Neuromuscular Activation.

What’s a Neuromuscular Activator aka. NMA’s?

NMA’s are exercises that only require your own bodyweight and they are used to wake up your entire nervous system.

Most secondhand warm up routines involve cardio machines such as the treadmill, stair stepper or stationary bicycle. These only address one part of the body, which is usually the lower body.

Neuromuscular activators are full body exercises that simultaneously warm you up while waking up your nervous system for the workout ahead.

Think of this approach like taking a shot of espresso but for your body.

Neuromuscular Activators Also Improve the Elasticity of Your Muscles

When you do an NMA you are essentially releasing synovial fluid into your joints.

Courtesy of Wikipedia: Synovial fluid is a viscous fluid found in the cavities of synovial joints. With its yolk-like consistency, the principle role of synovial fluid is to reduce friction between the articular cartilage of synovial joints during movement.

In short: Synovial fluid is like putting oil in your joints to help them move better for any type of physical activity and they also have a great effect on detoxifying your body.

All of these benefits lead to giving an entire jolt to your nervous system and priming your body for the physical activity that lies ahead.

The combination increased heart rate, full body movement, transport of various fluids and mental preparedness all contribute to that “espresso” like quality of waking up your body.

Peak Performance Principle #3 – Activate and Get Your Full Range of Motion with Dynamic Mobility Exercises

Dynamic Mobility Exercises are a form of stretching utilizing momentum from form, static-active stretching strength and the momentum from static-active stretching strength, in an effort to propel the muscle into an extended range of motion not exceeding one’s static-passive stretching ability.

In other words: Dynamic Mobility Exercises replace boring useless static stretches and utilizes short burst stretches to increase your muscles range of motion and activate your body’s true athletic potential.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises exercises are known as the “Anti-Aging” workout.

Now, this is not to say that doing them will make you look younger.

By anti-aging I mean that by doing them you’ll reverse the aging process of movement.

Years of corporate and family life will slowly inhibit your ability to move freely by creating poor posture.

The effect of movement aging is that soreness you feel after waking up or the pain in your shoulders when you work out. It’s that fear of injuring your lower back when bending down to pick up a heavy box

Dynamic Mobility Exercises reverses your aging process by effectively bringing your body back into balance with itself essentially giving it the exercises needed to heal itself and bring it back to its full physical potential.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises also do one other very important thing:

They make you become a supremely BETTER athlete.

Don’t believe me?

A study done by the US ARMY was performed 30 cadets in the US military who did 3 consecutive days of either mobility, static stretching, or no warm up and their effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) on their performance.

Tests were done on the shuttle run, underhand med ball throw and 5 step long jump.

Out of each of the modes of warming up with the dynamic mobility exercises helped the subjects perform BETTER on every test.

There were no increases from either the no warm up group or static stretching group.

The test proved CONCLUSIVELY that mobility drills before exercising enhanced every aspect of their athletic performance.

Another study conducted by the University of Wyoming and published in the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research” June 2008 strongly supports the use of dynamic mobility exercises exercises before a workout.

They wanted to see whether introducing a dynamic mobility into a four week training program of 24 high level college athletes would have a positive impact on the following performance factors;

  • Power
  • Speed
  • Agility
  • Flexibility
  • Endurance
  • Strength

The athletes were divided into two groups. One group used static stretching and the other group used mobility exercises before daily practice sessions. The groups were tested for four weeks and measures were taken before and after the training session.

So what did they find in both groups? The research showed that the static group found NO improvements and some decreases in the performance factors stated above.

Whilst the dynamic group showed some significant results to help performance.

This group showed improvements in Enhanced Muscular Strength, including increases of;

  • Leg strength by 11%
  • Throws by 4%
  • Push ups by 3%
  • Sit-ups by 11%
  • Endurance – time to complete a 700m run was faster by 2.4%
  • Agility – jump time increased by 4%
  • Anaerobic capacity – time for 300 shuttle test was faster by 2%

Just by employing one month of mobility exercises to their workout programs these subjects increased their strength by up to 11% and increased their speed by up to 2.4% !!

After only one month of applying mobility exercises to their bodies every marker of athletic performance improved.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises Just Make You Feel Really Good

There isn’t scientific evidence to support this fact but just trust me on this one.

There’s a specific feeling in knowing and feeling the freedom that comes with ability to just move better.

Your body just feels awesome 24/7 because you are operating your full potential of movement. You are also reversing the posture related effects of living the corporate life.

You are able to get up without pain, throw without pain, lift without pain and just live life at a higher level.

Once you apply the Dynamic Mobility Exercises exercises to your body you will start to feel a freedom of movement that you have not felt since high school.

As you can see, it’s ALL strategy and every single piece of the puzzle makes a huge difference and it takes ONLY 6 minutes to complete or just about the time you take to brush your teeth in the morning.

In a couple days we’ll be releasing a COMPLETE program designed to hack your body and turn it into a high performance machine in ONLY 6 minutes regardless of your age or experience level.

The program is called 6 Minute Superhuman and it is scientifically proven to increase your strength, speed, flexibility, vertical jump power, endurance and energy while bulletproofing your body from injuries forever.

Are you ready to experience just how fast your body can be enhanced when you unlock the power of the peak performance formula right before your workouts?



Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup was originally published at LINK


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Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism

If you want to build muscle effectively, simply eating protein won’t cut it. You need to know if your protein food contains the vital amino acids and especially leucine. Protein has a big part in packing on muscle mass, but sometimes it happens that people forget that they need leucine in their protein, which plays […]

If you want to build muscle effectively, simply eating protein won’t cut it. You need to know if your protein food contains the vital amino acids and especially leucine. Protein has a big part in packing on muscle mass, but sometimes it happens that people forget that they need leucine in their protein, which plays an important role in muscle building.

The more leucine you have in your bloodstream, the faster your muscles will be able to synthesize and repair the micro-tears after a resistance workout. Of course, consuming just leucine would be useless since you require all of the amino acids to repair the damaged muscles, but eating foods that have high leucine content in them will definitely help you on your way to building a muscular physique.

 

Leucine Can Turn on Your Anabolic Switch!

Protein is made up of amino acids, which can be divided into essential and non-essential. There are twenty different amino acids that the human body utilizes during its normal processes, and nine of those are essential. The difference between essential and non-essential amino acids is that the non-essentials can be created inside of your body, while the others can only be brought in through food.

Leucine is different than all of the other essential amino acids because of its ability to trigger the creation of muscle protein. In its foundation, this means that it acts as a starter for your anabolic period – if you get enough leucine in your body, it will automatically determine that it is ready for work and will begin building more and more muscle protein, repairing your damaged muscle tissue and building new tissue as well.

Note that you will need to go through a lot of resistance training for any of this to take place, but when you’re training with protein that has a lot of leucine in it, your body will be much more efficient at building muscle.

How Much Leucine Should You Eat?

Muscle protein synthesis is an anabolic response that occurs in response to protein feeding and resistance training. On the protein front, it specifically relates to leucine intake. To maximize the muscle protein synthesis response, around 3g of leucine is required. This is known as the “leucine threshold”.

However, this isn’t fixed – everyone requires a different amount of leucine, depending on their weight, age, etc. Average humans need 25 to 35 grams of protein per meal, out of which three grams should be leucine.

Here are four foods that you can use to eat more leucine:

1. Whey Protein. It has three grams of leucine for every 25 grams of protein, meaning it has more leucine than any other food which is high in protein. If you put a scoop of whey powder in your post-workout shake, your body will be packed into capacity with all the leucine it requires.

2. Bottom Round Cut of Beef. A four ounce serving of bottom round cut beef will have approximately 1.8 grams of leucine, but it will also be cheaper. I would suggest simmering it in liquid slowly, or marinade it. This will help you make it softer since it tends to be a bit tough, but it’s also very delicious!

3. Ricotta Cheese. Half a cup of it has about a gram and a half of leucine which can often be more than enough. If you google how ricotta is made, you will see that it’s made from liquid whey that didn’t get used in the process of creating cheese. Logically, this means that it has a lot of whey in it, and therefore a lot of leucine. However, you don’t have to make lasagna every time you need some – put it in dips, pancake batter and smoothies! Put it in a sandwich with some smoked fish and spices! Put it on a cracker, even! Everything you can imagine can come true with ricotta cheese.

4. Soy Nuts. With less than a gram of leucine per ounce (902mg to be more precise), this one ranks lowest on our list but it’s still decent! Also, soy nuts are delicious and you can grab them for a snack for any occasion. You can even put them in your yogurt, alongside more leucine!

Reference: Nutrition & Metabolism – The impact of protein quality on the promotion of resistance exercise-induced changes in muscle mass.



Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism was originally published at LINK


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Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors

[embedded content] “We experience so much tension every day and we make it worse by pushing it down but if we set aside just 5 minutes for a breathwork or meditation practice, we would all feel so much better. We would all be so much more tolerant, more flexible, and more loving.” – Dr. Belisa […]

“We experience so much tension every day and we make it worse by pushing it down but if we set aside just 5 minutes for a breathwork or meditation practice, we would all feel so much better. We would all be so much more tolerant, more flexible, and more loving.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Wellness Force Radio Episode 358

Discover the power in breathwork awareness as we explore its strong connection to our emotions, stress, and everyday wellbeing.

‘We experience so much tension every day and we keep pushing it down but we’d all feel so much better if we took 5 minutes for breathwork or meditation. We’d all be more tolerant, flexible, and loving.’ – @DrBelisaClick To Tweet


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Listen To Episode 358 As Dr. Belisa Vranich Uncovers:

[1:30] What Is A Modern Warrior?

[16:00] Are You A Vertical Or Horizontal Breather?

  • 290 Dan Brulé
  • 249 Niraj Naik
  • 292 Pavel Stuchlik
  • How we’ve gotten to this point of breathing incorrectly and how she’s providing practical information to help people execute better breathing patterns.
  • Why fixing our breathing is a lot like fixing the bad posture that we have developed over time.
  • Breaking down what physical movements we shouldn’t be doing when we take a deep breath including moving the shoulders up and down.
  • Our body’s incredible anatomy when it comes to the lungs and especially the diaphragm.
  • The importance of breathing through our belly and using our diaphragm rather than from the pecks with forwarding flexion and rounded backs.
  • How rolling forward including our head’s posture will greatly affect our ability to inhale and expand then exhale and squeeze.
  • Unpacking the root causes for our inability to inhale and expand which from either muscular corsets or emotional corsets.

[26:00] The Power In Breathwork Awareness

  • The emotional connection to bracing and guarding our abs all day long as we suck in our stomachs.
  • How bracing your middle all day also negatively impacts your digestion and lower back as you can’t take a deep breath.
  • Breaking down Fight, Flight, or Freeze and why so many of us are in the freeze position all too often that we think it’s normal when it’s really not.
  • Bruce Lipton
  • The biology of emotions as they get trapped inside of our tissues causing us to brace and panic when there’s no actual threat.
  • How people can get clear on why they no longer have to be in a Fight, Flight, or Freeze zone when there’s no actual threat that will harm them.
  • The trance breath-led meditation that she teaches people that was developed decades ago by breathwork pioneers.
  • Stan Grof
  • The proper way to go about breath-led meditation with outside intention, help, and support that is often used in therapy.

[36:00] Letting Go Of Stress With Breath & Motion

  • What happens on both a biological and psychosomatic level during cathartic breathwork sessions.
  • The emotional release and wave of calmness, gratitude, and relief that people often feel after a breathwork session; very similar to a massage.
  • Why it’s not only okay but also important to take the time for yourself to do some self-care practices like breathwork to let go of everything that is happening around you.
  • Wim Hof
  • 086 Mark Divine 
  • Why it’s okay but also 100% necessary for everyone to get in touch with their emotions including crying along their wellness journey of life.
  • How breathwork can specifically benefit people who have extremely stressful jobs.
  • What positive impact repetitive motion like jumping on a trampoline can do to help us release stress.

[45:30] ‘If I Can Breathe, I Can Choose’

  • The severe anxiety that Josh has been through even during the launch of the Wellness Force podcast.
  • What breathwork has done for Dr. Belisa emotionally, physically, and even spiritually.
  • How the breath gives us the ability to choose and take control of our lives.
  • The transformational wellness journey people go on when they realize that they cannot breathe.
  • Unpacking the incredible health transformations she has witnessed in people from healing digestion problems to lower back pain once they began to breathe properly again. 
  • Dr. Belisa on Cesar 911
  • Exploring cognitive fatigue and how it happens if we’re not breathing well and have poor posture.
  • Vince Lombardi inspirational quotes
  • Breaking down how we can become so fatigued and brain tired even just sitting throughout the day at our desks because we don’t have strong breathing muscles.
  • The Fighter’s Mind: Inside the Mental Game by Sam Sheridan
  • Fully understanding the incredible anatomy of our strong breathing muscles and how to help strengthen them even further.

[58:00] Movements To Strengthen Your Breathing Muscles

  • Robert Yang
  • Breaking down why the diaphragm is so important for not just the mind but our digestion as well.
  • How your diaphragm impacts your stomach positively or negatively if you are a horizontal or vertical breather.
  • Specific stretches you can do to work your breathing muscles from the inside out after an inhale.
  • Jill Miller
  • Exploring how the breath can allow us to love more during our lifetime.
  • How the breath helps the entire body connect and in sync from the head to the heart to the gut.

Power Quotes From The Show

‘Letting yourself focus on deep inhales, really expand, and exhale well with each breath means you’re going to be able to connect better, let go, and forgive.’ – @DrBelisa Click To Tweet

How Poor Breathing Impacts Digestion, The Lower Back And Stress

“Our inability to inhale and expand comes from either muscular corsets or emotional corsets. If you’re bracing your mid-area because you’re stressed or think it’s good for your body or you’re guarding because you’re ashamed of your physical appearance, that’s actually going to negatively impact your digestion, lower back, plus you can’t even take a deep breath. I understand that inhaling and letting yourself expand can feel weird and vulnerable; however, once you exhale you’ll realize just how much muscle is there and how much stronger your core is and much better you feel when you actually inhale, expand, and exhale to contract and narrow your body.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Combating Physical and Mental Fatigue With Breathwork

“If you’ve been sitting at a computer and find yourself so exhausted at the end of the day but you don’t know why, that’s being brain tired because you haven’t been moving. You’ve been sitting for hours and probably not in a good posture and most likely not breathing well. You get energy from your breath because oxygen is self fuel and if you’re not breathing well while sitting, you’re going to get tired. Another kind of tired comes from your breathing muscles not being strong enough. You might have good cardio and be active but if your breathing muscles aren’t strong, just like any muscle in the body, you’re going to get fatigued faster.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Connecting, Letting Go And Forgiving With The Breath

“Letting yourself focus on deep inhales and expand with each breath means you’re going to be able to connect better. Being able to exhale and really do it well means you’re going to be able to let go of things and forgive. We all need to be more intuitive, more creative, more flexible, and more forgiving and the breath can give you that.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Links From Today’s Show 

About Dr. Belisa Vranich

Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For WarriorsA clinical psychologist and a leading expert in mental health and fitness, Dr. Belisa Vranich is the author of Breathe: The Simple, Revolutionary 14-Day Program to Improve your Mental and Physical Health (St. Martin’s Press/Hay House). She is the founder of www.thebreathingclass.com.

Dr. Belisa is a regular guest on national television; e.g., CNN, Fox News, the Today Show, Good Morning America, and Inside Edition, and has been interviewed by Anderson Cooper, Matt Lauer, Meredith Vieira, Bill O’Reilly, and Nancy Grace. Dr. Oz has recognized her as one of the top US doctors in her field. She has appeared as a guest on Cesar Millan’s show, Cesar 911, and has been a guest on podcasts with hosts Robb Wolfe, Ben Greenfield, Joey Diaz, and Dr. Mercola. In addition, Dr. Belisa has been interviewed as an expert in numerous publications, including Crain’s magazine, GQ, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Time Magazine, and Cosmopolitan.

Dr. Belisa has extensive experience working with first responders: firefighters, military and law enforcement for topics related to endurance, stress reduction, precision, pain reduction, and PTSD. A firm believer in the importance of giving back, she volunteers and supports numerous organizations related to veterans and animal rescue organizations in New York City and Los Angeles. Dr. Belisa is an outspoken advocate of organ donation and dedicated her first book to Liamslife.org

Dr. Belisa’s Career

Dr. Belisa was the former Director of Breathing Science at The Ash Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York City, and has served as an advisor for the Fitness Institute for Gold’s Gym. She was previously the Health and Sex Editor at Men’s Fitness Magazine, an expert for Men’s Health, and Shape magazine, an advice columnist for the New York Daily News, and Foxnews.com. She was the Director of Public Education at the Mental Health Association of NYC; taught at New York University, was a consultant at the National Mental Health Association in Washington, DC; director of an outpatient clinic at Jacobi Hospital Center, Bronx, NY; a school psychologist in the South Bronx; and part of the Brooklyn Aids Task Force supporting parolees and their families.

How to breathe | Belisa Vranich | TEDxManhattanBeach

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Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors was originally published at LINK


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Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup, Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism, Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors and How to Build a Bulking Diet. Hope you enjoy them…

Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup

My biggest weakness is lack of flexibility. I just can’t get myself to take the time to stretch. In fact, I hate stretching. About 3 months ago, Dan Go contacted me about a way to increase flexibility, improve posture, and increase exercise performance…by doing a simple 6 minute warm-up. He saw a HUGE gap in […]

My biggest weakness is lack of flexibility. I just can’t get myself to take the time to stretch. In fact, I hate stretching.

About 3 months ago, Dan Go contacted me about a way to increase flexibility, improve posture, and increase exercise performance…by doing a simple 6 minute warm-up. He saw a HUGE gap in the fitness industry and has come up with a methodology that gets results fast, even for stubborn non-stretchers like myself.

Dan runs a gym in Toronto, Canada and has perfected a way for all of his gym members to increase flexibility each and every workout…while prepping their muscles to lift heavier weights…all while reducing the chance of injury.

Dan Sent Me a Blue Lacrosse Ball in the Mail

A few months back Dan emailed me and told me to expect a small package (insert “that’s what she said” joke) in the mail. It was a blue lacrosse ball and a short note with a handwritten URL scribbled on it.

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I went to my computer and typed in the URL and it led me to a video of Dan explaining the need for a better method to quickly increase flexibility without traditional stretching.

He explained and demonstrated this method in the video and I followed along with the lacrosse ball. After just one session I noticed a dramatic difference in both posture, range of motion, and how smoothly my joints felt when lifting weights. Instead of trying to explain it second hand, I’d rather have you get this info directly from the source.

The Perfect Warmup for Peak Performance
-by Dan Go

Today I’m going to talk to you about a perfect pre workout booster that MUST become a staple in your workouts.

BUT before I do that…I have one question to ask you:

Would you trade 6 MINUTES of your time to reverse the effects of aging and increase every marker (strength, speed, power, endurance and energy) of your body’s performance…

…while healing old injuries and making your body completely impervious to new ones?

If you just nodded “YES” then please keep reading.

Our society is very strange. In their quest to “look great naked” people will often go to great lengths and do whatever it takes to achieve their goal of having an awesome looking body.

But what they don’t realize is that while they are taking one step forward in looking great…they are usually doing things that keep them two steps BACK in terms of feeling great.

It’s like driving around for years in a souped up Lamborghini Gallardo, yet never ever taking the time to give it an oil change.


Eventually, that fantastic beast of a car will break down.

And this is EXACTLY what is happening with people in the gym today.

While they are driving around in their body’s they are usually held back by some sort of dysfunction that is keeping them in some sort of pain and hindering the results they could get from their workouts.

The TRUTH is that there is very a high chance that you are probably walking around with some sort of dysfunction in your body be it in your shoulder, knees or lower back.

And quite honestly…it’s NOT your fault.

Because while the mainstream fitness media teaches us how to look great they don’t do such a great job at teaching us how to PERFORM great.

That is why we are here today.

Today I’m going to show you an exact pre-workout sequence you can do right before your workouts that will enhance your strength, speed, power, flexibility, endurance and energy while healing your old injuries and protecting you from new ones.

This pre-workout sequence also has one very IMPORTANT function as well: To reverse your age related movement problems and have you operating at your physical best no matter what your age…

…all in under 6 minutes flat.

It’s called the Peak Performance Formula.

It’s an exact, science proven formula that will ultimately allow your body to work at it’s fullest potential every single day regardless if it is doing something menial like picking up a box or doing something intense like one of Rusty’s Visual Impact workouts at the gym.

It is the key to unlocking that potential reservoir of athleticism that you so richly deserve and the best part about it is: It only takes 6 minutes to complete.

“The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence” – Confucius

So take out your notebook and a pen of paper because no matter where you are starting from, we are about show you how to reach your bodies ultimate physical potential in the time it takes to brush your teeth in the morning.

Peak Performance Formula Step 1 – Get Your Self Myofascial Release On!

The is the first step of the Peak Performance Formula and one of the most important steps to do before your workouts.

In fact, many of the clients in my Transformation Center have called this a life changer.

What you don’t know right now is that a lot of those nagging pains in your body and the overall feeling of being “old” has NOTHING to do with age at all.

What it all comes down to is the quality of your Fascial Tissue.

What is Your Fascia?

Fascia (Pronounced as Fah-Sha) is an embryologic tissue which re-organizes long the lines of tension imposed on your body, adding support to any misalignment and contracting to protect you from further trauma (real or imagined).

To get a better idea of Fascia picture in your mind a sword.

Fascia is the sheath that goes OVER the sword (your muscle) to act as a protectant.
Fascia is your sheath protecting and covering EVERY single muscle on your body.

It has been estimated by researchers that if every structure of the body EXCEPT the fascia was removed, the body would STILL retain its shape.

Knowing this kinda gives you a better idea of how important its function is. Fascia covers the muscles, bones, nerves, organs and vessels right down to the cellular level.

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One study has found that pain felt in specific areas of the body can be frequently related back to having actual adhesions in the fascial tissue. (Schleip R et al. ligament subfailure injuries lead to muscle control dysfunction” (M. Panjabi). European Spine Journal 2007; 16: 1733-1735)

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You fascial tissue gets negatively affected by long periods of sitting (hello 9-5 job) and bad posture. Your fascial tissue gets even worse when you decide to do intense workouts ON TOP of your already dysfunctional muscle tissue.

Strains in your fascial tissue caused by the problems stated above will slowly tighten your body causing it to lose it’s overall physical capacity to perform under any stress and its one of the main causes of age related pain and dysfunction.

Why Do Self Myofascial Release?

The most effective way of improving the quality of your fascial tissue is through massage aka. Self Myofascial release (SMR)

Most people think that the only way to get a massage is by paying $75/session to your local massage therapist but what we recommend something a lot cheaper and 10x more effective.

SMR is the most potent way of locating your fascial restrictions, changing your posture and effectively improving the way your bodies biomechanical movement.

By implementing the SMR routine prescribed in this program you will not only enhance your bodies ability to move, but you’ll also increase it’s own propriorception or it’s awareness of itself.

Think of Self Myofascial Release as putting a BRAND NEW engine in your body’s chassis.

Or if you’re like me, think of the effect of doing Self Myofascial Release is like going from a driving a Toyota Corolla to tearing down the roads in that brand new Lamborghini.

Self Myofascial Release helps remove the “vice grip-like” pressure caused by restrictive fascia, eliminating symptoms such as stiffness, pain and spasms.

After several weeks of practicing SMR your body will learn new and incredibly improved freedom of movement that you haven’t experienced since you were a teenager.

While SMR is usually performed with a foam roller I’ve found something much more effective and chances you are probably have it lying around somewhere in your house.

Check out the video on how to apply an effective system of SMR into your workouts to reverse your age and replace that old body with a brand NEW athletic engine.

Peak Performance Principle #2 – Turn ON Your Body with Neuromuscular Activators

When warming up our bodies we use a little known but very effective method called Neuromuscular Activation.

What’s a Neuromuscular Activator aka. NMA’s?

NMA’s are exercises that only require your own bodyweight and they are used to wake up your entire nervous system.

Most secondhand warm up routines involve cardio machines such as the treadmill, stair stepper or stationary bicycle. These only address one part of the body, which is usually the lower body.

Neuromuscular activators are full body exercises that simultaneously warm you up while waking up your nervous system for the workout ahead.

Think of this approach like taking a shot of espresso but for your body.

Neuromuscular Activators Also Improve the Elasticity of Your Muscles

When you do an NMA you are essentially releasing synovial fluid into your joints.

Courtesy of Wikipedia: Synovial fluid is a viscous fluid found in the cavities of synovial joints. With its yolk-like consistency, the principle role of synovial fluid is to reduce friction between the articular cartilage of synovial joints during movement.

In short: Synovial fluid is like putting oil in your joints to help them move better for any type of physical activity and they also have a great effect on detoxifying your body.

All of these benefits lead to giving an entire jolt to your nervous system and priming your body for the physical activity that lies ahead.

The combination increased heart rate, full body movement, transport of various fluids and mental preparedness all contribute to that “espresso” like quality of waking up your body.

Peak Performance Principle #3 – Activate and Get Your Full Range of Motion with Dynamic Mobility Exercises

Dynamic Mobility Exercises are a form of stretching utilizing momentum from form, static-active stretching strength and the momentum from static-active stretching strength, in an effort to propel the muscle into an extended range of motion not exceeding one’s static-passive stretching ability.

In other words: Dynamic Mobility Exercises replace boring useless static stretches and utilizes short burst stretches to increase your muscles range of motion and activate your body’s true athletic potential.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises exercises are known as the “Anti-Aging” workout.

Now, this is not to say that doing them will make you look younger.

By anti-aging I mean that by doing them you’ll reverse the aging process of movement.

Years of corporate and family life will slowly inhibit your ability to move freely by creating poor posture.

The effect of movement aging is that soreness you feel after waking up or the pain in your shoulders when you work out. It’s that fear of injuring your lower back when bending down to pick up a heavy box

Dynamic Mobility Exercises reverses your aging process by effectively bringing your body back into balance with itself essentially giving it the exercises needed to heal itself and bring it back to its full physical potential.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises also do one other very important thing:

They make you become a supremely BETTER athlete.

Don’t believe me?

A study done by the US ARMY was performed 30 cadets in the US military who did 3 consecutive days of either mobility, static stretching, or no warm up and their effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) on their performance.

Tests were done on the shuttle run, underhand med ball throw and 5 step long jump.

Out of each of the modes of warming up with the dynamic mobility exercises helped the subjects perform BETTER on every test.

There were no increases from either the no warm up group or static stretching group.

The test proved CONCLUSIVELY that mobility drills before exercising enhanced every aspect of their athletic performance.

Another study conducted by the University of Wyoming and published in the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research” June 2008 strongly supports the use of dynamic mobility exercises exercises before a workout.

They wanted to see whether introducing a dynamic mobility into a four week training program of 24 high level college athletes would have a positive impact on the following performance factors;

  • Power
  • Speed
  • Agility
  • Flexibility
  • Endurance
  • Strength

The athletes were divided into two groups. One group used static stretching and the other group used mobility exercises before daily practice sessions. The groups were tested for four weeks and measures were taken before and after the training session.

So what did they find in both groups? The research showed that the static group found NO improvements and some decreases in the performance factors stated above.

Whilst the dynamic group showed some significant results to help performance.

This group showed improvements in Enhanced Muscular Strength, including increases of;

  • Leg strength by 11%
  • Throws by 4%
  • Push ups by 3%
  • Sit-ups by 11%
  • Endurance – time to complete a 700m run was faster by 2.4%
  • Agility – jump time increased by 4%
  • Anaerobic capacity – time for 300 shuttle test was faster by 2%

Just by employing one month of mobility exercises to their workout programs these subjects increased their strength by up to 11% and increased their speed by up to 2.4% !!

After only one month of applying mobility exercises to their bodies every marker of athletic performance improved.

Dynamic Mobility Exercises Just Make You Feel Really Good

There isn’t scientific evidence to support this fact but just trust me on this one.

There’s a specific feeling in knowing and feeling the freedom that comes with ability to just move better.

Your body just feels awesome 24/7 because you are operating your full potential of movement. You are also reversing the posture related effects of living the corporate life.

You are able to get up without pain, throw without pain, lift without pain and just live life at a higher level.

Once you apply the Dynamic Mobility Exercises exercises to your body you will start to feel a freedom of movement that you have not felt since high school.

As you can see, it’s ALL strategy and every single piece of the puzzle makes a huge difference and it takes ONLY 6 minutes to complete or just about the time you take to brush your teeth in the morning.

In a couple days we’ll be releasing a COMPLETE program designed to hack your body and turn it into a high performance machine in ONLY 6 minutes regardless of your age or experience level.

The program is called 6 Minute Superhuman and it is scientifically proven to increase your strength, speed, flexibility, vertical jump power, endurance and energy while bulletproofing your body from injuries forever.

Are you ready to experience just how fast your body can be enhanced when you unlock the power of the peak performance formula right before your workouts?



Dramatically Increase Flexibility and Mobility With This 6 Minute Warmup was originally published at LINK


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Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism

If you want to build muscle effectively, simply eating protein won’t cut it. You need to know if your protein food contains the vital amino acids and especially leucine. Protein has a big part in packing on muscle mass, but sometimes it happens that people forget that they need leucine in their protein, which plays […]

If you want to build muscle effectively, simply eating protein won’t cut it. You need to know if your protein food contains the vital amino acids and especially leucine. Protein has a big part in packing on muscle mass, but sometimes it happens that people forget that they need leucine in their protein, which plays an important role in muscle building.

The more leucine you have in your bloodstream, the faster your muscles will be able to synthesize and repair the micro-tears after a resistance workout. Of course, consuming just leucine would be useless since you require all of the amino acids to repair the damaged muscles, but eating foods that have high leucine content in them will definitely help you on your way to building a muscular physique.

 

Leucine Can Turn on Your Anabolic Switch!

Protein is made up of amino acids, which can be divided into essential and non-essential. There are twenty different amino acids that the human body utilizes during its normal processes, and nine of those are essential. The difference between essential and non-essential amino acids is that the non-essentials can be created inside of your body, while the others can only be brought in through food.

Leucine is different than all of the other essential amino acids because of its ability to trigger the creation of muscle protein. In its foundation, this means that it acts as a starter for your anabolic period – if you get enough leucine in your body, it will automatically determine that it is ready for work and will begin building more and more muscle protein, repairing your damaged muscle tissue and building new tissue as well.

Note that you will need to go through a lot of resistance training for any of this to take place, but when you’re training with protein that has a lot of leucine in it, your body will be much more efficient at building muscle.

How Much Leucine Should You Eat?

Muscle protein synthesis is an anabolic response that occurs in response to protein feeding and resistance training. On the protein front, it specifically relates to leucine intake. To maximize the muscle protein synthesis response, around 3g of leucine is required. This is known as the “leucine threshold”.

However, this isn’t fixed – everyone requires a different amount of leucine, depending on their weight, age, etc. Average humans need 25 to 35 grams of protein per meal, out of which three grams should be leucine.

Here are four foods that you can use to eat more leucine:

1. Whey Protein. It has three grams of leucine for every 25 grams of protein, meaning it has more leucine than any other food which is high in protein. If you put a scoop of whey powder in your post-workout shake, your body will be packed into capacity with all the leucine it requires.

2. Bottom Round Cut of Beef. A four ounce serving of bottom round cut beef will have approximately 1.8 grams of leucine, but it will also be cheaper. I would suggest simmering it in liquid slowly, or marinade it. This will help you make it softer since it tends to be a bit tough, but it’s also very delicious!

3. Ricotta Cheese. Half a cup of it has about a gram and a half of leucine which can often be more than enough. If you google how ricotta is made, you will see that it’s made from liquid whey that didn’t get used in the process of creating cheese. Logically, this means that it has a lot of whey in it, and therefore a lot of leucine. However, you don’t have to make lasagna every time you need some – put it in dips, pancake batter and smoothies! Put it in a sandwich with some smoked fish and spices! Put it on a cracker, even! Everything you can imagine can come true with ricotta cheese.

4. Soy Nuts. With less than a gram of leucine per ounce (902mg to be more precise), this one ranks lowest on our list but it’s still decent! Also, soy nuts are delicious and you can grab them for a snack for any occasion. You can even put them in your yogurt, alongside more leucine!

Reference: Nutrition & Metabolism – The impact of protein quality on the promotion of resistance exercise-induced changes in muscle mass.



Leucine: a nutrient ‘trigger’ for muscle anabolism was originally published at LINK


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Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors

[embedded content] “We experience so much tension every day and we make it worse by pushing it down but if we set aside just 5 minutes for a breathwork or meditation practice, we would all feel so much better. We would all be so much more tolerant, more flexible, and more loving.” – Dr. Belisa […]

“We experience so much tension every day and we make it worse by pushing it down but if we set aside just 5 minutes for a breathwork or meditation practice, we would all feel so much better. We would all be so much more tolerant, more flexible, and more loving.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Wellness Force Radio Episode 358

Discover the power in breathwork awareness as we explore its strong connection to our emotions, stress, and everyday wellbeing.

‘We experience so much tension every day and we keep pushing it down but we’d all feel so much better if we took 5 minutes for breathwork or meditation. We’d all be more tolerant, flexible, and loving.’ – @DrBelisaClick To Tweet


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Listen To Episode 358 As Dr. Belisa Vranich Uncovers:

[1:30] What Is A Modern Warrior?

[16:00] Are You A Vertical Or Horizontal Breather?

  • 290 Dan Brulé
  • 249 Niraj Naik
  • 292 Pavel Stuchlik
  • How we’ve gotten to this point of breathing incorrectly and how she’s providing practical information to help people execute better breathing patterns.
  • Why fixing our breathing is a lot like fixing the bad posture that we have developed over time.
  • Breaking down what physical movements we shouldn’t be doing when we take a deep breath including moving the shoulders up and down.
  • Our body’s incredible anatomy when it comes to the lungs and especially the diaphragm.
  • The importance of breathing through our belly and using our diaphragm rather than from the pecks with forwarding flexion and rounded backs.
  • How rolling forward including our head’s posture will greatly affect our ability to inhale and expand then exhale and squeeze.
  • Unpacking the root causes for our inability to inhale and expand which from either muscular corsets or emotional corsets.

[26:00] The Power In Breathwork Awareness

  • The emotional connection to bracing and guarding our abs all day long as we suck in our stomachs.
  • How bracing your middle all day also negatively impacts your digestion and lower back as you can’t take a deep breath.
  • Breaking down Fight, Flight, or Freeze and why so many of us are in the freeze position all too often that we think it’s normal when it’s really not.
  • Bruce Lipton
  • The biology of emotions as they get trapped inside of our tissues causing us to brace and panic when there’s no actual threat.
  • How people can get clear on why they no longer have to be in a Fight, Flight, or Freeze zone when there’s no actual threat that will harm them.
  • The trance breath-led meditation that she teaches people that was developed decades ago by breathwork pioneers.
  • Stan Grof
  • The proper way to go about breath-led meditation with outside intention, help, and support that is often used in therapy.

[36:00] Letting Go Of Stress With Breath & Motion

  • What happens on both a biological and psychosomatic level during cathartic breathwork sessions.
  • The emotional release and wave of calmness, gratitude, and relief that people often feel after a breathwork session; very similar to a massage.
  • Why it’s not only okay but also important to take the time for yourself to do some self-care practices like breathwork to let go of everything that is happening around you.
  • Wim Hof
  • 086 Mark Divine 
  • Why it’s okay but also 100% necessary for everyone to get in touch with their emotions including crying along their wellness journey of life.
  • How breathwork can specifically benefit people who have extremely stressful jobs.
  • What positive impact repetitive motion like jumping on a trampoline can do to help us release stress.

[45:30] ‘If I Can Breathe, I Can Choose’

  • The severe anxiety that Josh has been through even during the launch of the Wellness Force podcast.
  • What breathwork has done for Dr. Belisa emotionally, physically, and even spiritually.
  • How the breath gives us the ability to choose and take control of our lives.
  • The transformational wellness journey people go on when they realize that they cannot breathe.
  • Unpacking the incredible health transformations she has witnessed in people from healing digestion problems to lower back pain once they began to breathe properly again. 
  • Dr. Belisa on Cesar 911
  • Exploring cognitive fatigue and how it happens if we’re not breathing well and have poor posture.
  • Vince Lombardi inspirational quotes
  • Breaking down how we can become so fatigued and brain tired even just sitting throughout the day at our desks because we don’t have strong breathing muscles.
  • The Fighter’s Mind: Inside the Mental Game by Sam Sheridan
  • Fully understanding the incredible anatomy of our strong breathing muscles and how to help strengthen them even further.

[58:00] Movements To Strengthen Your Breathing Muscles

  • Robert Yang
  • Breaking down why the diaphragm is so important for not just the mind but our digestion as well.
  • How your diaphragm impacts your stomach positively or negatively if you are a horizontal or vertical breather.
  • Specific stretches you can do to work your breathing muscles from the inside out after an inhale.
  • Jill Miller
  • Exploring how the breath can allow us to love more during our lifetime.
  • How the breath helps the entire body connect and in sync from the head to the heart to the gut.

Power Quotes From The Show

‘Letting yourself focus on deep inhales, really expand, and exhale well with each breath means you’re going to be able to connect better, let go, and forgive.’ – @DrBelisa Click To Tweet

How Poor Breathing Impacts Digestion, The Lower Back And Stress

“Our inability to inhale and expand comes from either muscular corsets or emotional corsets. If you’re bracing your mid-area because you’re stressed or think it’s good for your body or you’re guarding because you’re ashamed of your physical appearance, that’s actually going to negatively impact your digestion, lower back, plus you can’t even take a deep breath. I understand that inhaling and letting yourself expand can feel weird and vulnerable; however, once you exhale you’ll realize just how much muscle is there and how much stronger your core is and much better you feel when you actually inhale, expand, and exhale to contract and narrow your body.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Combating Physical and Mental Fatigue With Breathwork

“If you’ve been sitting at a computer and find yourself so exhausted at the end of the day but you don’t know why, that’s being brain tired because you haven’t been moving. You’ve been sitting for hours and probably not in a good posture and most likely not breathing well. You get energy from your breath because oxygen is self fuel and if you’re not breathing well while sitting, you’re going to get tired. Another kind of tired comes from your breathing muscles not being strong enough. You might have good cardio and be active but if your breathing muscles aren’t strong, just like any muscle in the body, you’re going to get fatigued faster.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Connecting, Letting Go And Forgiving With The Breath

“Letting yourself focus on deep inhales and expand with each breath means you’re going to be able to connect better. Being able to exhale and really do it well means you’re going to be able to let go of things and forgive. We all need to be more intuitive, more creative, more flexible, and more forgiving and the breath can give you that.” – Dr. Belisa Vranich

Links From Today’s Show 

About Dr. Belisa Vranich

Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For WarriorsA clinical psychologist and a leading expert in mental health and fitness, Dr. Belisa Vranich is the author of Breathe: The Simple, Revolutionary 14-Day Program to Improve your Mental and Physical Health (St. Martin’s Press/Hay House). She is the founder of www.thebreathingclass.com.

Dr. Belisa is a regular guest on national television; e.g., CNN, Fox News, the Today Show, Good Morning America, and Inside Edition, and has been interviewed by Anderson Cooper, Matt Lauer, Meredith Vieira, Bill O’Reilly, and Nancy Grace. Dr. Oz has recognized her as one of the top US doctors in her field. She has appeared as a guest on Cesar Millan’s show, Cesar 911, and has been a guest on podcasts with hosts Robb Wolfe, Ben Greenfield, Joey Diaz, and Dr. Mercola. In addition, Dr. Belisa has been interviewed as an expert in numerous publications, including Crain’s magazine, GQ, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Time Magazine, and Cosmopolitan.

Dr. Belisa has extensive experience working with first responders: firefighters, military and law enforcement for topics related to endurance, stress reduction, precision, pain reduction, and PTSD. A firm believer in the importance of giving back, she volunteers and supports numerous organizations related to veterans and animal rescue organizations in New York City and Los Angeles. Dr. Belisa is an outspoken advocate of organ donation and dedicated her first book to Liamslife.org

Dr. Belisa’s Career

Dr. Belisa was the former Director of Breathing Science at The Ash Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York City, and has served as an advisor for the Fitness Institute for Gold’s Gym. She was previously the Health and Sex Editor at Men’s Fitness Magazine, an expert for Men’s Health, and Shape magazine, an advice columnist for the New York Daily News, and Foxnews.com. She was the Director of Public Education at the Mental Health Association of NYC; taught at New York University, was a consultant at the National Mental Health Association in Washington, DC; director of an outpatient clinic at Jacobi Hospital Center, Bronx, NY; a school psychologist in the South Bronx; and part of the Brooklyn Aids Task Force supporting parolees and their families.

How to breathe | Belisa Vranich | TEDxManhattanBeach

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Dr. Belisa Vranich: Breathing For Warriors was originally published at LINK


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How to Build a Bulking Diet

If you are wondering if you should bulk, then you should definitely be bulking. A lot of people make fun of the perma-bulkers but if you put your body through a period of intense muscle development, your gains will become stunningly better than they are currently. This is a technique that has been in use […]

If you are wondering if you should bulk, then you should definitely be bulking. A lot of people make fun of the perma-bulkers but if you put your body through a period of intense muscle development, your gains will become stunningly better than they are currently.

This is a technique that has been in use for a long, long time and you can see it everywhere around you. Just look at the movies – Ryan Reynolds in “Blade Trinity”, Jason Momoa in “Conan” and Chris Hemsworth in “Thor” all bulked before they shot the movies. There is a lot of information on the internet about how to bulk, but in the end you can summarize it in these five points. Here’s how to bulk like a pro.

STEP 1: Find Out How Many Calories You Need to Maintain Your Body Weight

This is your caloric maintenance number, the number of calories that your body needs to keep itself where it is right now. If you want to put on more muscle, you have to tell your body to grow more by sending it growth signals.

You bulk using two main signals to your body – eating and working out. The first and foremost thing you should do before you start planning is get your calories in check. If you don’t do this, don’t even bother starting in the first place. If you want to put on weight, your body will need a high number of calories which are more than what it needs to maintain itself. It’s really simple – consume more than your body will burn!

So, let’s get to it. First, you need to determine your maintenance calories. This is where you break even with consumed and burned calories without gaining or losing any weight. Here’s how to do it:

  • Use a calorie calculator. These are based on years of research and data and they will let your figure out your daily calorie needs.
  • Eat the exact amount of calories that the calculator designated as your daily calorie need, for one week. Don’t change your routine or anything else, but check your weight before and after that week.
  • If your weight hasn’t changed in that one week, do it for another week just to be sure. If your weight has increased, eat 250 fewer calories and do it for another week. If it has increased, eat 250 more calories per day and try it another week. You should be doing this until you find two consecutive weeks where your weight has not changed.

This means that you might need a month or maybe even two to prepare for your bulking period, but when you do prepare, you will have mastered the calorie numbers and you will be able to control what happens with the calories in your body.

STEP 2: Map Out Your Surplus

Now that you know how many maintenance calories you should eat, you can move on to the next phase – creating your bulking diet. You need to find the sweet spot that will let you get the best gains possible, because if you overeat, you will be putting on fat mass, but if you under-eat you will not be making as good a progress as you could be.

The sweet spot you’re looking for is between 5% and 20% extra calories per day. If you eat with a 20% surplus, you will start getting fat and eating with a 5% surplus is the bare minimum for any muscle mass boost. If you eat somewhere between 5% and 10% surplus, you will optimize the lean muscle to fat tissue ratio, and if you eat at 10% surplus calories you will have the adequate amount of food to grow sustainably. Also, as it turns out, if you eat a 20% caloric surplus a day, you don’t get more lean muscle. Instead, you just get fatter.

STEP 3: Know What You Need to Eat!

Now that you’ve figured out how many calories you need to eat and determined your 5% to 10% caloric surplus, you need to know how you will actually ingest those calories into your system. You need protein, carbs and fats. Here’s how to divide them.

  • PROTEIN. If you look it up, you will see that there is so much literature regarding protein intake that you could start reading right now and never finish even a percentage of it while you live. More or less, all of the studies come down to this – you need a gram of protein for every pound of bodyweight per day if you want to grow. Eat 1.5 grams of protein instead if you need to, but the norm is around 1 gram for every pound in the beginning.
  • CARBOHYDRATES. Carbs have been well documented as well. The studies say that you should eat 2 grams of carbs for every pound of bodyweight per day, which should be somewhere between 45% and 55% of your daily caloric needs. If you work out for 2-3 hours daily, feel free to boost your carbs to 3 grams for every pound of bodyweight daily, which would be between 55% and 65% of your total caloric needs.
  • FATS. You need fats as well, but they aren’t just energy – they are more of a utility macronutrient, which will let you bulk more easily. It’s easier to ingest the necessary amount, and to figure out what that is, just take your protein and carbs numbers together, subtract them from your daily calories and you will have the number of calories you need to consume in fats.

STEP 4: Know What Supplements You Need

If you want to start a bulking diet, chances are you think it’s gonna be all supplements and no fun. You couldn’t be more wrong. A bulking diet is based on the right food, with supplements added in to maximize the effect. Here are the supplements you will need for a good bulk.

  • WHEY PROTEIN. When you get tired of eating steak, chicken breasts and fish, you will need to get some whey in your body. Also, whey shakes can help you ingest liquid calories which you might need urgently after training. There is no bulking period without whey protein.
  • CREATINE. If you have a larger training volume, you will have better muscle mass gains. It’s that simple. Creatine has been proven to boost your training capacity and will boost the volume of your training as well. If you’re trying to increase your training volume and build muscle mass without taking creatine, you are definitely missing out.
  • CAFFEINE. You will need caffeine for one simple reason – it works! It will help you train harder, so consider drinking a cup before working out.

 

STEP 5: Set Your Sleep Schedule

Even though this is not technically a part of the diet, sleep is an integral part of the muscle growth process and your body will not grow if you don’t sleep. Your body receives the signals that it needs to grow while training, but it only grows when it’s recuperating while you sleep. 7 hours is fine, but 8-9 is better because when you sleep there are a number of recovery and hormonal reactions in your body that grow your muscles.



How to Build a Bulking Diet was originally published at LINK


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Categories
Health & Fitness

How Many Carbs Per Day to Lose Body Fat? It Depends… and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on How Many Carbs Per Day to Lose Body Fat? It Depends…, Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 2], Finally! How to Tell if a Supplement is Worth Taking. and System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training. Hope you enjoy them…

How Many Carbs Per Day to Lose Body Fat? It Depends…

If I was to hire someone to create a diet plan customized for my goals and activity levels, Nate Miyaki would be that person. Nate spends his days teaching advanced nutrition mastery workshops in the Silicone Valley area. He has recently decided to branch out to the Internet to teach people all over the globe. Bottom […]

If I was to hire someone to create a diet plan customized for my goals and activity levels, Nate Miyaki would be that person. Nate spends his days teaching advanced nutrition mastery workshops in the Silicone Valley area.

He has recently decided to branch out to the Internet to teach people all over the globe. Bottom line…he is a full-fledged expert when it comes to diet and body composition. He just created a video and guest post for Fitness Black Book.

My guess is that you will learn more in this 10 minute video about carbs and fat loss, than scouring the internet for 3+ hours.

[He’s a laid back surfer type, but get him in front of a white board and prepare for a serious knowledge drop.]

CLEARING UP CARB CONFUSION…FOREVER
-by Nate Miyaki


If you’ve been involved in fitness for any length of time — as a coach, athlete, or general enthusiast — you’ve probably noticed two themes:

1. The relatively high percentage of d*cks within our industry that bash any approach that is not their own. 

I don’t know what it is man — lack of confidence or maybe lack of a life outside the gym?

2. The seemingly never-ending debate about low-carb, higher fat vs. high carb, lower fat diets.

First off, I’m a laid-back dude like Rusty.  Maybe that’s why he invited me here to hang out with you?

I really just want to help you sift through the bullsh*t that’s out there, get you on an efficient path towards achieving your goals, and then go hang out at da beach surrounded by beautiful bikini babes, not in the forums with angry bro-scientists.

And about that Ol’ Carb Debate — it’s a real doozy huh?  There’s religious-like passion and cult-like followings on both sides of the fence. The pendulum of popularity seems to swing back and forth between the two.

steakandpotatoes

The worst part is that you — the person that just wants a simple plan to improve your physique, not getting caught up in debates between a bunch of science geeks or meatheads — end up confused as all hell and getting nowhere.

You want the unbiased truth my friends?

Both sides can be right.  Both approaches can work.  Research and anecdotal evidence can support both.  Unnecessary confusion stems from coaches trying to slot everyone into one Universal system and proclaiming it the best for everyone, everywhere.

It doesn’t work that way.  That’s like saying there is only one way you should train despite your performance or physique goals, or only one sexual position you can use despite your flexibility or mood or number of partners or blood alcohol content.

The diet industry has lost the principle of Specificity.  There is no “Perfect Diet” that can claim a throne.  There are multiple effective diets based on different situations and goals.

fork in the road

THE CALORIE EQUALIZER

We need to take a step back before we move forward, kind of like a good Salsa Dance.

Attaining a negative energy balance is the most important, but often most overlooked, fat loss step.  If you are in a calorie deficit, a variety of macronutrient percentages and distribution of energy nutrients can be used to get the job done.

I do believe that different breakdowns are more efficient, and more enjoyable and sustainable, for different demographics.

But that doesn’t change the fact that calories are the most important “number” to get right in the 6-pack game.  The only way to force your body to burn off stored fat is to take in fewer calories then you expend, on average, over some time frame.

Once you account for calories, you set optimum protein levels for the growth or maintenance of lean muscle mass, and essential fatty acids for normal functioning.  Anything beyond that is just an energy nutrient.

left hook

THE LOW-CARB LEFT HOOK

In determining energy nutrient intake, you should first assess how many carbohydrates you need, and for what reasons.  A sedentary person is not exercising and burning through MUSCLE glycogen stores (300-600g depending on body size), so they do not need to worry about replenishing them on a daily basis.

High carbohydrate diets (300g or more) are more appropriate for athletes and regular exercisers that undergo the cyclical depletion and repletion of muscle glycogen stores.

Sedentary populations really only need to worry about providing adequate carbohydrates to support LIVER glycogen stores, which regulate normal blood sugar levels and fuel the brain and central nervous system at rest.

This assumes a non-ketogenic diet.  Although ketosis may be beneficial for certain disease states, it is NOT necessary for an optimal fat loss plan.

Research shows that ketogenic diets are no more effective than non-ketogenic, low carbohydrate diets for fat loss.  Yet, they have a ton of metabolic and hormonal drawbacks.

Thus in most cases, I advocate a low-carbohydrate BUT non-ketogenic diet for sedentary populations.

This can be accomplished with roughly 100g of carbs a day (this does not vary much with weight and gender, as the liver is roughly the same size regardless of those two variables), unless perhaps you’re hanging with Frank the Tank.

The chronic bombarding of a sedentary body with highly processed carbs can indeed lead to full glycogen stores, sugar backing up into the bloodstream, and a host of negative health conditions, the most serious of course being MBMT — Man Boob & Muffin Top Syndrome.

That’s why research shows that lower carb, Caveman-style diets may be the best approach for improving body composition and biomarkers of health for obese, insulin resistant, and sedentary populations.

Get in a calorie deficit, eat adequate protein, get roughly 100g of carbs from unlimited vegetables and a few pieces of fruit, make up the rest of your calories from healthy fats, and walk daily.  You’ll have yourself one hell of a plan.

If you are a low-carb guru and want to snuggle with me now, I accept.  But be forewarned, I’m about to piss you off.

ll

DON’T CALL IT A CARBOHYDRATE COMEBACK

ANAEROBIC exercise completely changes the name of the game.  It creates a unique metabolic environment, an altered physiological state, and changes the way your body processes nutrients for up to 48 hours after completion of a training session.

If you exercise intensely 3 or more days a week, than your body is virtually in a recovery mode 100% of the time, thus its nutritional needs are completely different than sedentary populations.

If the training program is different, the diet should be different.  Beyond dietary dogmatic creeds, that’s just common sense. I think high and mighty, low carb cult leaders, whose only form of exercise is jogging, should take a class in exercise physiology before making Universal proclamations, and dismissing thoroughly researched Sports Nutrition principles.

While those diet plans work great for certain demographics, they are a complete mismatch for others.

I don’t want to bore the sh*t out of you with too much technical stuff, so lets narrow this down to some bigger picture bullets.

PHYSIOLOGY BULLETS

  • The anaerobic energy production pathway (what we use while strength training, sprinting, cross training, competing in intermittent team sports, or basically performing any high-intensity activity) runs on glucose/carbs.  It can’t use lipids or ketones.  While the body can use fatty acids as fuel at rest, and even those who train only in the aerobic zone can become “fat adapted”, high intensity muscular contractions require glucose.
  • Therefore, chronic carb depletion combined with anaerobic training can eventually lead to muscle loss.  The body will break down amino acids as a reserve fuel to provide the necessary glucose to fuel high intensity activity.  You know how they say fats are more “muscle sparing” than carbs?  Not when you factor in anaerobic training baby.
  • Intense anaerobic training is actually a highly catabolic activity.  You need to offset that with an anabolic recovery period, including carbs and insulin, to restore balance and ensure that training stimulus triggers muscle growth.  No hormone your body naturally makes is inherently good or bad.  Insulin can be very beneficial at times for physique enhancement.
  • Hard training can cause a temporary impairment of the immune system and increase susceptibility to illness. With consistent high-intensity exercise, adequate carb intake lessens the potentially negative changes in immunity brought about by training.
  • In other words, are you training all of the time like a madman, yet are still flabby or Skinny-Fat, with no shape?  Are you getting sick all of the time, or seem to catch every cold or flu going around?

METABOLIC & HORMONAL BULLETS

  • Sufficient carbohydrate intake supports an optimum free testosterone:cortisol ratio IN RESPONSE to high intensity activity.  Our industry focuses on how important dietary fat is for supporting natural testosterone levels in all populations, which it is, but carbohydrates also play a role specifically for athletes.
  • If you’re hitting the juice or TRT to compensate, it doesn’t matter so much. But if you’re doing it naturally, you need a more informed approach.  What good is a 6-pack if you have a lifeless noodle hanging between your legs (or whatever the female equivalent would be), and would rather play video games than hang out with bikini babes.
  • Low carb diets coupled with intense training protocols can impair thyroid production and sabotage normal metabolic rate.  More specifically, it can impair the conversion of t4 thyroid hormone to its more active T3 form. Feel like your metabolism is shot, still flabby despite high amounts of training and ultra-low calorie levels?
  • A carb-depleted state can effect natural production of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which affect mood states and the ability to induce sleep. Suffering from insomnia?  Are you grumpy, depressed, and just generally a d*ck to everyone around you?

Just frickin’ trust me man, there is no one Universal diet that works for everyone.  While a sedentary person overdosing on carbs can have drastic negative health and body composition effects, chronic carb depletion combined with consistent anaerobic training can be just as disastrous.

I know athletes can suffer through miserable diet plans to look great for the stage or photo shoots, but that’s not a sustainable lifestyle plan for most of us. What are you going to do after 8 weeks of hell and 1 day of glory?  Just get fat again? Who wants to live like that?

I’d rather find a plan that I can integrate into a functional lifestyle, and allows me to look good at da beach year round.

dazed-and-confused

STILL DAZED, LOW-CARB, & CONFUSED

Sorry about the above rant.  Sometimes you have to get more technical in order to simplify. Let me see if I can give you an analogy for clarification.

It’s like gas in your car.  If your Shagging Station Wagon just sits in the garage collecting dust, it doesn’t need gas.  Loading up on starchy carbs is like trying to fill up a full tank.  It just spills over the side.  In the human body, overspill equates to body fat storage, and a host of other negative effects — like elevated triglycerides, cholesterol, and insulin resistance.

However, if you drive a Bad A$$ Ferrari around town every day, sometimes for long mileage, you have to fill up the tank often.  If you don’t, you will run out of gas.  An empty tank in the human body equates with becoming depressed, lethargic, irritable, impairs performance; leads to muscle loss, stubborn fat, non-functioning wieners, frustrated that despite dieting your body is not changing, etc.

Make sense?

For those who fear the carb during fat slashing phases, just remember that total calories are still the most important step.

If you strength train while maintaining a relative calorie deficit, you can still include some starchy carbs in the diet while losing significant amounts of body fat.  The best part is you get better support of that anaerobic training, better energy, better muscle retention, don’t screw up your metabolism, don’t set yourself up for huge post-dieting rebounds, and maintain natural hormone production.

Why am I so passionate about this fight?  I suffered a lot of the drawbacks of combining low-carb diets with high intensity training myself.  I hope to help people avoid the same mistakes and struggles I went through.

CARBONOMICS

“Carbs” tend to get a bad name because of the ones most people emphasize in the typical Y2K American Diet.

Concentrated sources of fructose (sugar, high fructose corn syrup) are metabolically disastrous in the body and can lead to insulin resistance, diabetes, and rapid fat accumulation.

Many are allergic or sensitive to gluten (wheat, rye, barley).  This can lead to gastrointestinal distress, fatigue, body fat, bloating, and water retention.

Paleo nutritionists refer to a group of compounds collectively as “anti-nutrients” (lectins and phytates found in most grains, cereals, legumes).  These can lead to gastrointestinal distress, and impair protein and mineral absorption.

The key is adding back in the right “types” of carbs to an anaerobic athlete’s diet.

japanese diet

That’s why I use what I call the Traditional Japanese Village Diet Template.  It is just as cheesy as the Caveman theme, but also just as easy to remember, thus making it a great educational tool.  It is really just a Paleo Diet with the addition of rice and root vegetables as your primary starchy carb sources to support anaerobic training.

TAPPING OUT

By now, you’ve either learned something useful or are sick of me rambling. Either way, I got to take a piss.  So lets say Aloha, and call it a day

Keep in mind, most of the above is “da why”.  The “what to do” is simple.

If your goal is fat loss, get in a calorie deficit and eat adequate protein to support your lean muscle mass.

If you’re sedentary or only perform low-intensity/aerobic exercise, lean more towards the lower-carb, Paleo Diet template.

If you perform high-intensity anaerobic activity on a consistent basis, lean more towards The Japanese Village template.

– – – – – – – – – – – – –  End of Article – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Nate-Miyaki I highly recommend you check out Nate’s full blown diet plan, called Half Day Diet.

He takes all the guesswork out of macronutrient ratios and gives a phenomenal approach to staying lean year-round.

Thanks for the article Nate!



How Many Carbs Per Day to Lose Body Fat? It Depends… was originally published at LINK


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Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 2]

In part 1 I introduced the idea that leptin resistance is a key reason why people seem to have a problem with their metabolism. Increasing leptin is easy and can be accomplished in the short term with things like cheat days. Unfortunately it takes quite a bit longer to fix the problem of leptin resistance. […]

In part 1 I introduced the idea that leptin resistance is a key reason why people seem to have a problem with their metabolism.

Increasing leptin is easy and can be accomplished in the short term with things like cheat days. Unfortunately it takes quite a bit longer to fix the problem of leptin resistance.

I’m convinced that most overweight people are just a few consistent habits away from being slim.]

Stuck at Current Weight On a Low Calorie Diet?

Being unable to lose weight while eating 1,200-1,800 calories per day is a rough spot to be in.

Where do you go from there, especially if you are already exercising? This is a common problem for people who go into a diet and exercise program when they are leptin resistant, insulin resistant, and have a chronically slow metabolism.

Life Isn’t as Colorful With a Slow Metabolism

Here’s are some of the potential issues.

  • Lower testosterone levels / lower sex drive.
  • Slowed digestion causing problems like gas and bloating.
  • More likely to store body fat when eating in excess.
  • Lower body temperature.
  • Lower energy levels.
  • Moodiness and or depression.

Prepping the Body to be Able to Lose Fat Easily

My advice to anyone who gets stuck losing those final 10-15 pounds of fat before summer is to spend the next two months repairing your metabolism.

With a raging metabolism it is possible to create a strong calorie deficit while eating many more calories than you have in the past. Wouldn’t it be cool to drop body fat eating 2,500 calories per day instead of 1,500?

[“You’re coming in too low Cougar! You’re too low!” – Top Gun]

Measuring Your Metabolism With a $10 Tool

The way to test your metabolism is to measure your body temperature first thing upon waking in the morning. It supposedly is most accurate with an armpit thermometer.

  • Warm the thermometer in your hand for 30-60 seconds.
  • Stick the thermometer in your armpit for 30 seconds, then turn on.
  • Take a couple readings in each armpit.
  • The highest reading will be your basal temperature for the morning.

The ideal range is between 97.8 and 98.2 degrees when measuring temperature first thing upon waking.

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The 2 Month Gameplan to Get Your Metabolism Raging

  • Eat 3 Meals Per Day: I’m a big fan of intermittent fasting, but I recommend taking a break for 2-3 months. When you reintroduce it, it will work like gangbusters. Eat 3 meals per day. Eat as soon as you wake up, eat at lunch time, and eat at dinner time. If you are someone who is accustomed to eating small breakfasts and lunches, you should make those meals larger than normal.
  • Eat Plenty of Carbs With Every Meal: Eat yams, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, rice, corn, etc. This isn’t the time to follow a paleo diet. When your metabolism is boosted and your morning temperature is consistently in the ideal range, you can cut back on carbs at that point.
  • Eat Until You Are Full and Avoid Hunger: Let your body know that there will always be a constant supply of food, so it will eventually store less and less of this food as fat. Your body will burn at a faster rate (increased metabolism) to meet the increased calories coming in.
  • Limit Caffeine and Alcohol: Try to reduce coffee and alcohol intake for these 2 months. This will speed up the time it takes to get your metabolism burning more calories per day.
  • Lift Weights With Minimal Cardio: You want to minimize cortisol if your metabolism is below optimum levels. Ditch the cardio until your metabolism is back to a normal level.

“Won’t I Get Fat By Increasing Calories?”

You most likely will gain a bit of fat at first when increasing your intake of calories. You are taking a step back to make it easier to lose weight when you do finally reduce the calories a bit.

I’m not a fan of bodybuilder style “bulking and cutting”. I do like how their bulking period resets their metabolism, but believe the same positive benefits can happen without adding tons of excess fat.

 Chronic Low Calorie Diets Can Age People

The problem with staying lean by consuming 1,000-1,500 calories per day is that you simply lack nutrients to keep your body working properly. Problems occur like dry skin, thinning hair,  lack of sex drive, brain fog, cold hands and feet, etc.

Wouldn’t it be better to be able to maintain your ideal body weight at 2,500 calories instead of 1,500? With a healthy metabolism this is possible.

Eat Like Your Grandparents Did for the Next 2 Months

  • Protein, Carbs, and Fat with every meal.
  • 3 meals per day.
  • Limit omega 6 fat sources like vegetable oils and peanut butter.
  • Cook with coconut oil, butter, or olive oil.
  • Limit sugar and high fructose corn syrup.
  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.

[Omega 6 rich vegetable oils are a food you are going to want to limit as much as possible. I’m trying to ween myself off of chips and fries, since they are cooked in vegetable oil.]

2 Foods to Avoid To Correct a Damaged Metabolism

The main two foods to avoid during these two months are vegetable oils and high fructose corn syrup. You also want to limit foods containing these ingredients.

The problem with both of these foods is that contribute to inflammation which contributes to leptin resistance, insulin resistance, etc. Olive oil, butter, or coconut oil are your best choices for cooking.

For Those Who Want a More Detailed Explanation

Matt Stone is the go-to-guy when it comes to increasing your metabolism through diet. His 170 page $19.95 ebook, 180 Degree Metabolism, explains all of this in much greater detail than I can in a blog post. That being said, the game plan I outlined above will work well.

Note: In part 3, I will cover how to ease you way into a calorie deficit to lose fat without messing up your metabolism. I still believe in short term low calorie diets to lose the last 5-10 pounds, but nothing over 1-2 months long.

Click Here for Part 3…



Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 2] was originally published at LINK


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Finally! How to Tell if a Supplement is Worth Taking.

For the past six months I’ve been researching supplements extensively. You see, I am in the process of starting a supplement company. My goal is to only offer supplements that are proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, to provide immense benefits for the customers who purchase them. During my research, I stumbled across a […]

For the past six months I’ve been researching supplements extensively. You see, I am in the process of starting a supplement company.

My goal is to only offer supplements that are proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, to provide immense benefits for the customers who purchase them. During my research, I stumbled across a guy named Sol Orwell. He has created the first non-biased guide on the subject of supplements. I’m actually using all of the findings in his guide to decide what supplements I want to offer through my company.

Sol took the time to do an interview where I picked his brain about supplements and the supplement industry.

Preview: He isn’t a fan of multi-vitamins, fat burning supplements, glutamine, and many other high-selling popular products. At the end, he even reveals what he takes and has his parents take as part of their supplement program.

Question 1: The first thing I did when I read your guide was look up two mega-selling supplements recommended by Dr. Oz. Your research found them to be a waste of money. Why do you think he recommends this stuff?

I recently posted on Facebook that people should stick to their domain of knowledge – the area they live and breathe. For Dr. Oz, that means cardiothoracic work.

The problem is that nutrition and supplementation has nothing to do with his domain of knowledge. Couple that with the media’s drive for sensationalism (the more attention the better), and you get Dr. Oz’s whacky recommendations.

It’s in his interest to always have something shiny and new to recommend, regardless of any solid evidence.

I’ll use an example to show how removed from science he is: Dr. Oz has a page on how artificial sweeteners cause cancer. That page links to one study as proof. But if you click on that study and read the actual conclusion:

“In conclusion, therefore, this study provides no evidence that saccharin or other sweeteners (mainly aspartame) increase the risk of cancer at several common sites in humans.”

Yeah. If he can’t even read the studies he cites as his proof, it’s simply not worth bothering with him.

Question 2: I’m taking a stack of Amino acids at night and an hour before working out. It is suppose to boost HGH. I haven’t noticed a difference and consequently, your research proves that these supplements have negligible effects. How can supplement companies get away with exaggerating the effectiveness of a product?

Because concise language (as used in scientific research) does not equate to our every day usage.

An example makes this clear: If I make $100.00 per hour, and I get a raise of 10 cents/hour, I have indeed, technically, gotten a raise. But is the raise actually useful? Nope.

And that’s what’s going on here. Do these products boost HGH levels? Sure. Do they actually boost them in a meaningful way? Nope!

So technically they aren’t lying to you, but they aren’t giving you the full story either.

The other way supplement companies can make such egregious claims is by not telling you what the actual study was. For example, glutamine is a highly recommended muscle builder. In petri-dishes, the more glutamine you can pack into a muscle cell, the more it grows! Sound awesome right? In the real world (aka our bodies), the small intestines and liver horde the glutamine for themselves, and very little actually gets to the muscle cells.

So the marketing talks about how the more glutamine your muscle cells the more they grow, without ever actually mentioning that unless you are injecting it directly, that will never happen!

Question 3: What is a little known supplement that you have found to be effective for fat loss? For building muscle?

Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but just like our previous HGH example, you can find a ton of supplements that make a small difference, but no supplement that legitimately burns fat loss.

For building muscle, creatine is the one proven supplement – it’s safe, it’s cheap, and it works. I even make my own mom take it!

Otherwise, honestly, a good workout program, nutrition, and sleep are critical. It’s amazing how people will go out, get drunk, get 4 hours of crappy sleep, and then come to us asking for a supplement to help them. Get those three things in place first!

Question 4: You have an interesting opinion about multivitamins. Do you mind sharing that?

Multivitamins have two major problems:

1. They tend to underdose stuff you actually need, and they overdose on stuff you are getting enough of already. This is marketing – it sounds impressive to have 10000% of the daily RDA of vitamin C. Does it matter? Nope! Is vitamin C hard to get? Nope!

2. There is also physical constraints. A pill can only be so large, and it can only hold so much of a supplement. Think about it this way – you can buy vitamins A B C D etc as separate pills. And now they are compressing all of those individual pills into one? No way you can do that without underdosing.

We do believe that supplements work, but for specific health goals. For example, if you are diabetic, berberine is amazing – it helps lower blood sugar without ever making you hypoglycemic.

Peppermint oil can help with IBS. Bacopa can help with your memory. Dozens of supplements have notable effects in specific situations.

Supplementation should be targeted, not done with a one-size-fits-all approach. That is the way to optimal supplementation (and also not wasting your money!)

Question 5: What supplements do you see a lot of people wasting money on?

Alas, the most popular ones it seems.

Tribulus terrestris – the #1 testosterone booster.

Here’s the thing – when your testosterone goes up, your libido tends to go up. Unfortunately, the inverse is not true – you can have an increase in libido without an increase in testosterone.

And that’s what trib is. It’s actually a virility agent – it helps boost your libido. But it has been repeatedly found to have no effect on testosterone levels.

Glutamine – the most popular amino acid.

As I covered before, glutamine, if you can get it into your muscle cells, helps your muscles grow. But if you consume it does it actually get to those muscle cells? Nope – your small intestines end up hoarding it for itself.

The only time glutamine really helps is if you have severe burns. So severe that you’re in the hospital. Otherwise, don’t bother.

Glucosamine – the most popular joint-pain reliever.

Every time someone says their joints ache, someone will say that glucosamine works.

There is literally no evidence that glucosamine works. Even more damning is that only the sulfate version ever seems to “work,” which leads to the hypothesis that people without enough sulfur in their diet may be getting joint-related pain.

CLA – a fat that is supposed to help burn fat.

While I mentioned how glutamine is a great example on the differences between petri-dish studies and actual human studies, CLA is a great example on the differences between mice and humans – it works potently in rats and mice, but it fails in humans (in fact in a few studies it caused people to gain fat!)

Our approach to supplementation is simple – figure out what health goals you have, and then see which supplements help (and which don’t). The one-size-fits-all approach is not the way to go.

Question 6: Last question. What supplements do you take?

I take (and make my parents and my significant other take):
– Vitamin D (we live in Toronto, which means a lot of rain/snow, and not a lot of direct sun exposure)
– Vitamin K (vitamin K in high doses has been proven to help with artery and bone health)
– Creatine (makes you stronger, and even has neurological benefits)

Those three are cheap, safe, and proven to work.

I personally do not take fish oil because I love to eat smoked salmon. My mom doesn’t, so I have her take fish oil.

When I’m stressed, I do take rhodiola rosea (it’s an adaptogen, so it helps de-stress). This is an example of the targeted supplementation I was talking earlier.

That’s it for me. I also make my parents take berberine and spirulina, as both are excellent general health agents for people who are middle-aged (again, targeted supplementation).

331This is not a typical ebook!

Every day, at 5am EST, their internal systems extract data from the complete Examine.com database (which features over 20,000 scientific studies) to obtain the relevant human data and re-create The Supplement-Goals Reference Guide.

This Guide is now my go-to source of supplement information. There really is no need to look further…it has the most up-to-date information and is created by a team of non-biased researchers. I can’t recommend it highly enough if you take supplements.

Get it Here —> The Supplement Goals Reference Guide



Finally! How to Tell if a Supplement is Worth Taking. was originally published at LINK


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System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training

Check out this track from System Athletica which offers an uncommon training technology referred to as dynamic isometrics. This style of movement stimulates the brain through co-ordination, agility, timing, footwork (the dynamic principles) and works the physiology through progressive overload (isometrics) not to mention the overabundance of the squat and lunge primal patterns which are […]

Check out this track from System Athletica which offers an uncommon training technology referred to as dynamic isometrics. This style of movement stimulates the brain through co-ordination, agility, timing, footwork (the dynamic principles) and works the physiology through progressive overload (isometrics) not to mention the overabundance of the squat and lunge primal patterns which are done without spinal compression. As we get older we get slower, our footwork ability decreases, our coordination diminishes and our ability to “fire” certain muscle groups “at will” heads south as well. If you are serious about your movement future forget the vanity style training and do yourself a favour, add these tracks to your routine and notice the benefits. Things like stair climbing, getting out of bed easier, decreased lower back issues from compression, increased neurological adaptation to coordinating your feet under your body are all common feedback we have received over the 10+ tears we have been sharing this style with participants. Oh and by the way, if you do this stuff at a good level, you will see great muscular benefits as well, so the vanity muscles become part of the natural process. Have fun!

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System Athletica and Dynamic Isometric training was originally published at LINK


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Categories
Health & Fitness

Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 3] and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 3], Become a Better Butter Burner – Women’s Running, Arnold Schwarzenegger: Do You Train Too Hard? – Fitness and Power and Maxx Charles Shows Photos For Final New York Pro Prep, Proving He Should Have Placed Higher. Hope you enjoy them…

Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 3]

If you read Part 2 of this series you will have a solid action plan to get your metabolism back to normal levels. In the process, you may add a touch of body fat, but will be in a much stronger position to get lean for summer. This post will outline how to keep your […]

If you read Part 2 of this series you will have a solid action plan to get your metabolism back to normal levels. In the process, you may add a touch of body fat, but will be in a much stronger position to get lean for summer.

This post will outline how to keep your metabolism healthy while systematically getting in shape for summer.

By the time summer hits, the ideal situation is to be lean without destroying your body’s ability to burn calories. In other words, lean with a high metabolism.

Long-Term Low Calorie Diets Suck the Life Out of You

A lot of people can look their best after a short term aggressive diet. I’m not against short term low calorie diets. I believe they are fine for 1-3 months. The problem happens when they are extended past that point.

It is pretty easy to miss out on vital nutrients when calories are drastically cut back…and here are some of the negatives.

  • Dry skin.
  • Dry and brittle hair.
  • Digestive problems.
  • Lack of color to your skin.
  • Lack of sex drive.
  • Low testosterone.
  • Muscle loss.
  • Rebound fat gain.

 Note: The older you are, the more of these issues you will experience with long term calorie restriction.

The 6 Month Outline

Months 1-2: Follow the guidelines I outlined in Part 2.
Months 2-4: Increase activity levels to lose fat without drastically cutting back in calories.
Month 5: Cut back calories a bit and increase activity levels. Fine to go low carb and use various strategic diet strategies.
Month 6: One month of being super active and tighten up your diet further. Can go really aggressive during this time if you still have a decent amount of fat to lose.

[The absolute best scenario would be to keep the low calorie period of time as short as possible leading up to summer.]

Months 2-4

You can’t expect to eat as much as Michael Phelps training for the Olympics, but my advice is to add in more activity, instead of cutting back calories during this time.

In the first 2 months your body will increase the ability to burn calories even when you are at rest (increased metabolism). In months 2-4 we want to turn your body into a calorie burning machine.

Eat plenty of good food, limit omega 6 oils, limit sugar, and train at least 4 times per week.

Month 5

The main difference here will be to limit food consumption a bit. I know this advice sounds old school, but try and make your dinner meal a bit lighter than normal during this month.

Cut back in the carbs a bit during the week and try and workout 5 times per week, if time permits. It is fine to add in a higher calorie day, but not an all-you-can-eat type of cheat day.

Month 6

This would be the time to do a short term aggressive fat loss diet if needed. A better solution here would be to increase activity levels and just clean up the diet a little. Do your best to eat nothing but clean organic whole foods during this time.

[Pro soccer players are so active they would probably have a tough time eating enough to put a substantial amount of fat on their body.]

…but “You Can’t Out-Exercise a Bad Diet?”

Right, but this is not a bad diet. What we are doing here is almost a “metabolism detox”.

The idea is to get your body into calorie burning mode, by giving it plenty of whole foods and nutrients. Then we cut back in calories just a bit to create a calorie deficit, while eating more than what it used to take to get into a calorie deficit.

Finally…we keep the body in fat burning mode, while dropping the calories down low for the final month before summer.

Flood Your Body With Activity & Nutrients for 6 Months

The biggest causes of health issues in our society are from not getting enough exercise and lack of proper nutrition.

I honestly believe that anyone who increases their activity levels along with increasing good nutrients, will look younger and more vibrant within a few months.

What are the Best Workouts?

Obviously I’m biased when it comes to workouts for men and women, but I’m not closed-minded.

There are countless effective workout routines: CrossFit, body weight circuits, bodybuilding splits, Zumba, etc. Same with diets: Paleo, carb back-loading, vegan, raw food, etc. I am simply suggesting you use the principles laid out in this 3 part series to fit your circumstances.

[Strategic cardio routines work well any time after the first two months.]

What About Supplements?

I’m going to list supplements that I have found to make a difference. You can take all, some, or none of these and get good results.

  • Omega 3 Fish Oil – This goes to the top of the list, when it comes to repairing a damaged metabolism. Think of this as counteracting the small amount of omega 6 vegetable oils that you will inevitably wind up eating. It is hard to avoid these omega 6 oils completely.
  • Leptin Sensitivity Supplement: This supplement was created to make sure your metabolism doesn’t slow down while dieting. It makes your body more sensitive to leptin (which is our goal here). This isn’t cheap, but they do have a “buy 4 get 2 free” promo if you want to take all 6 months. If money is an issue, add this in once you reduce the calories a bit.
  • Pre-Workout Caffeine Fat Loss Combo: I like caffeine supplements that are created with natural ingredients to take right before exercising, to maximize fat release during intense training or cardio. This is something you would begin taking 60-90 days before summer. A cup of black coffee works as well, but this is a bit more effective.
  • Creatine: This is something to take 1-2 months before summer…if you want to add size to your muscles. I recommend you use this as a quick muscle boost while dieting or right after dieting (when the muscles look a little flat).

Note: Give this game plan a go, especially if you are over 30 and have a bit of flab you haven’t been able to shake.

This is also a great game plan for anybody who is “skinny fat”…more nutrients and more activity is just what the doctor ordered!



Eating to Increase Your Metabolism [Pt 3] was originally published at LINK


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Become a Better Butter Burner – Women’s Running

Most modern day athletes spend the day burning bagels. It wasn’t always so for runners. In the 60s, legendary New Zealand coach Arthur Lydiard’s runners did their long runs fasted, as this was the norm for the day. They took only water during the hilly 22-mile Waiatarua Route and worked up an appetite that was […]

Most modern day athletes spend the day burning bagels. It wasn’t always so for runners.

In the 60s, legendary New Zealand coach Arthur Lydiard’s runners did their long runs fasted, as this was the norm for the day. They took only water during the hilly 22-mile Waiatarua Route and worked up an appetite that was quenched at local breakfast buffets. The end result was fat adaptation and recruitment of fast-twitch oxidative fibers in a glycogen-depleted state.

Lydiard runners on Waiaturua Route
“Arthur’s Boys” training on the 22-mile Waiaturua Route / Photo courtesy Garth Gilmour Collection

In the 1970s, Dr. Phil Maffetone focused on aerobic training in relation to fat burning. Maffetone had a more proactive nutritional approach. Never having bought into the high-simple-carb and low-fat mantra of the day, he encouraged healthy fats, little to no grains, and removing processed “junk” food. This was not absolutely “low carb” for the elite but a healthy 40/30/30 (40% carb/30% fat/30% protein).

For Lydiard and Maffetone athletes, high mileage weeks with long, slow distance training was the norm. Only after the base was built was intensity added. The base built mitochondria, capillaries, enzyme processes to oxidize fat, tissue adaptations, and countless other physiological changes aligning with health and fitness. Modern methods which attempt to hack this slow but necessary process—emphasizing intensity over quantity—have become the trend in training.

Higher speed, intense intervals and constant “hard cardio” necessitate an immediate need for carbohydrates. An entire sports-nutrition industry of high glycemic bars and goos has been born to supply this need.

What Is Metabolic Efficiency?

Why care about the ability to use more fat for energy while using less carbohydrate? At best a trained runner can carry only 1,500–2,000 calories of carbohydrates (less for the many insulin-resistant or pre-diabetic/diabetic athletes) but at least 50,000 calories of fat—even the leanest runners. It does not make sense that carbs are our preferred fuel.

If you’ve driven a hybrid car, you’ve watched the subtle shifts between gas and electric on the dashboard. Your body is a similar, two-energy-source hybrid. Your engines (muscles) run on a mixture of gas (sugars) and electric (fats). Utilizing gas or electric power depends on the effort.

Imagine you are starting the race with ten gallons in the gas tank—assuming you have eaten a nice meal the night before with a light breakfast top off. If you race in all gas mode, your engines will run about 1.5 hours at a strong pace…then you are out of gas. If your effort is mostly electric you can run for hours, but not as swiftly.

Running utilizes about 1 kcal/kg/km. So for a lean marathoner of 80 kg (175 lbs) you need about 3360 kcal (80 kg x 42 km) to make it to a marathon finish line. Even fully carbo-loaded, your stored liver glycogen (300–500 kcal), muscle glycogen (1000–1500 kcal), and blood glucose (less than 20 kcal) don’t add up to enough. Glucose is easy to access for ready energy, but your stores add up to less than 2000 kcal.

The fat-utilizing pathway is the electric. In marathons you must be in hybrid mode to make it. Hybrid mode is where your energy is coming from both fuel sources. Conserving the gas and using electric early in the race is critical.

Many runners are in great “10K shape” (an all-gas event). They train in all-gas mode, start their marathon in the all-gas mode…and crash. Glycogen-sparing strategies need not apply in races of less than an hour as long as you had a good pre-event meal to fill the tank. In marathons and ultras, however, top-end anaerobic fitness matters little and can only be applied very near the finish.

If you’re going long, you must tap into the fat-burning tank. Enter an old concept called the “Crossover Point”—the point where the effort rises to the level where we’re burning more carbs than fat.

Line graph showing crossover point of energy from fat and carbs with vo2max
From naturalrunningcenter.com

Below this point, easy efforts can be almost all electric (fat-burning) for a healthy athlete. Below the aerobic threshold (AeT) the body is primarily using fat as fuel. As the intensity of exercise increases, your body prefers to use more carbohydrate for fuel and you will exceed your AeT. Like a switch, the body shifts from fat to sugar—but your brain may not be aware. The best signal for the AeT is an increase in ventilation: You need to start breathing harder and faster.

This threshold is lower than the aerobic threshold (AT). Most of us know this as the “red line” above which acidosis occurs and fatigue sets in quickly. This is also called “lactate threshold” or “tempo” training pace. By the time you reach the intensity of the AT most runners have passed the crossover point and are burning more carbohydrates than fat.

How Do You Teach Your Body to Be a Better Butter Burner?

What are the nutrition and training principles needed to move the crossover point to the right, where you burn more fat and less carbs at a given effort and speed? The key is tailoring your macronutrients (carbohydrates, fats, and proteins) along with adjusting aerobic exercise pace to increased fat utilization.

The nutrition component has a largest effect on your fat-burning capacity and you must make changes to your diet to see results. Bob Seebohar, exercise physiologist and sports dietician, says that your nutrition and diet account for 75% of your metabolic efficiency, with exercise only 25%.

Junk food, sweetened beverages, and simple sugars/starches are off the table. The problem with these is that they spike your blood sugar levels higher than your muscles can burn, which, when you are at rest, causes the body to release excess insulin, whose role is to store those extra carbs. Insulin also shuts off fat burning, which is not needed in the presence of excess carbs.

Some athletes will even experience hypoglycemia with an insulin spike, especially those with highly active muscles and fit athletes with insulin sensitivity. The blood sugar goes up fast, the pancreas releases insulin, but the exercising body over-compensates and the sugar now drops quickly, leaving the athlete feeling depleted.  Without insulin the sugar does not drop.

low carb foods
Photo: Shutterstock

Instead of sugars, eat “slow carbs” of natural sources, tailored to the training volumes and the individual’s carb tolerance. You don’t need a calorie-deficient diet. Healthy fat is the foundation along with healthy amounts of real-food protein. Athletes require good amounts of protein—about 1 gram/pound of body weight is not excessive.

You can eat healthy and safe carbohydrates on this plan. Lots of above ground and colorful veggies, even some legumes—just get rid of the grains. Be cautious with sweet fruit and cut starchy veggies.

By keeping insulin low, fat burning rules the day and night, whether you are exercising or sleeping. Fiber from quality fruits and vegetables can stabilize blood sugar and add what some refer to as “fertilizer” for the healthy bacteria in your intestines (the microbiome). Focus on nutrient density and learn to cook for joy and variety. You can find an abundance of low carb cooking sites and books.

Build an Aerobic Base

To change your metabolism, you must, however, adjust diet and exercise together. Eat more healthy fat, eat few to no refined carbs—and slow the heck down!

When you have a large aerobic base your body can use fats AND carbohydrates more efficiently. Depending on the fuel available and the effort, an aerobically developed athlete can have metabolic flexibility.

How do you build this flexible-energy aerobic base? The work of renowned sports scientist Dr. Stephen Seiler has shown that the best athletes across endurance sports have mostly applied the “80/20” rule, meaning at least 80% is easy aerobic with less than 20% intense work.

In a 2009 SportsScience article, Seiler summarizes: “Research on the impact of interval and continuous training with untrained to moderately trained subjects does not support the current interval craze, but the evidence does suggest that short intense training bouts and longer continuous exercise sessions should both be a part of effective endurance training.”  He adds: “The available evidence suggests that combining large volumes of low-intensity training with careful use of high-intensity interval training throughout the annual training cycle is the best-practice model for development of endurance performance.”

Easy morning miles
The author and colleagues putting in easy miles. Photo: 101 Degrees West

A good simple rule of thumb is to keep 80 percent of your running below the AeT or ventilatory threshold. Practically speaking, this is the pace where you can carry a comfortable conversation. If you’re able to breathe through your nose then you’re hybrid. If you’re breathing faster, and are reduced to short, gasping sentences, you’re using mostly glucose as fuel.

Higher-intensity work demands carbohydrates as easy access fuel; this produces more carbon dioxide which needs to be expired—that is the reason you breathe faster at higher paces.  Slow efforts have a lower respiratory exchange ratio, which means your tapping fat and expiring fewer carbohydrates. Therefore you can talk at these slower paces.

Many runners minimize the importance of aerobic foundation because we don’t see the immediate results as we often do in speed training. Hard efforts produce some great positive adaptations, but compared with the aerobic work, don’t improve fat burning. Build the aerobic first then add on the intensity. Or, as Lydiard put it, intensity is “the icing on the cake.”

If you reduce carbs and go long, you might feel a bit sluggish on these early no-gas runs (relying on the “electric” fat-burning), but you will soon be making your own internal fuel from your fat. If you’re not overloading your system with fast-acting carbs, and insulin is low, the body can generate glucose from non-carbohydrate substrates—which is a good thing if you want consistent sustainable energy. You do not need to eat glucose to maintain blood glucose, your body will make it, if you train it to.

How long does fat adaptation take? Dr. Stephen Phinney showed with fit athletes it can happen in four weeks.  With older, more insulin-resistant athletes it often takes longer. Everyone adapts differently to training stimuli.

Months and even years of this healthy, sustainable training increases mitochondrial density, mitochondrial enzymes, and capillaries to deliver oxygen, and lymphatics to “take out the garbage.” By avoiding “fast carbs” and keeping insulin response low, we are able to exercise longer and make it through the day and night with fewer calories, reducing the need to consume sugars and increasing utilization of our internal body fat.


For runners who have a medical issue such as Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, the ability to use fat as fuel is critical for health not just performance.  For more on this topic see Mark Cucuzzella’s recent post on the use of continuous glucose monitors for self assessment.

Mark Cucuzzella is the author of Run For Your Life: How to Run, Walk, and Move Without Pain or Injury and Achieve a Sense of Well-Being and Joy.



Become a Better Butter Burner – Women’s Running was originally published at LINK


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Arnold Schwarzenegger: Do You Train Too Hard? – Fitness and Power

Even after all of the lengthy discussions based on scientific results, overtraining is still one of the hottest issues in bodybuilding. Is it real, or is it just another myth? Should we see it as an extreme medical condition or simply toss it away altogether? It’s true that some people feel like they’ve over-trained when […]

Even after all of the lengthy discussions based on scientific results, overtraining is still one of the hottest issues in bodybuilding. Is it real, or is it just another myth? Should we see it as an extreme medical condition or simply toss it away altogether? It’s true that some people feel like they’ve over-trained when they have only severely fatigued their muscles, which is kind of the point of a heavy workout, but what about the muscle loss caused by long periods of heavy training sessions with little time for recovery in between? In the hopes of demystifying this phenomenon, we looked for guidance from one of the ultimate legends of this sport as we know it – Arnold Schwarzenegger. What does the Austrian Oak have to say about it? Read to find out.

You mean undertraining, right?

Schwarzenegger’s view on modern bodybuilding training routines is that they’re a bit of a joke, compared to the level of bodybuilding effort that was typical during his glory days.

In other words, even if someone has a great training program, if their execution is lousy and unmotivated, they will leave the gym with a lot less than optimal results and their progress will be undoubtedly slow. We’re talking about having poorly organized workouts that fail to target the muscles whose growth is supposed to be emphasized, taking way too long breaks and ending the session before reaching a decent amount of fatigue. In Schwarzenegger’s opinion, in today’s gyms, cases of undertraining are far more common than cases of overtraining.

Still, overtraining does exist

Back in the day, bodybuilders weren’t really familiar with the concept of overtraining – when Schwarzenegger and his training buddies felt especially run-down after a period of hard training, they would simply take few days off the gym to allow their bodies to fully recover. They didn’t waste a single thought on the supposed complexity of such a condition and usually came back even stronger.

This is because real overtraining is not a very common thing – in fact, it’s very difficult to overtrain. The guys who have a potential to overtrain are usually those who engage in long, strenuous sessions seven days per week or are preparing for a competition with a combination of rigorous dieting and extra heavy training routines. In such cases, overtraining can really happen and lead to serious damages in terms of mass and strength. But for all others, it’s almost impossible, and modern bodybuilders should focus on training harder instead of worrying about their potential for overtraining.

How to recover

If you notice that your muscles are constantly sore and fatigued, and you don’t seem able to make any real progress in your training, there is a decent chance that you’ve overtrained.

However, there’s no need to make a big deal out of it. Simply take a longer break off the gym, make some adjustments in your program and then perhaps try taking a “deload” week during which you should handle lighter weights than usual. Even if you haven’t overtrained, Schwarzenegger suggests having one week of lighter training (or being completely off the gym) every six weeks. This will allow your body to recover properly, prevent possible overtraining and let you come back revitalized and motivated. And that’s pretty much it.

Now go pump some iron – and don’t be afraid to push your limits. According to the Austrian Oak, it’s better to be sore for a week than chronically underdeveloped.



Arnold Schwarzenegger: Do You Train Too Hard? – Fitness and Power was originally published at LINK


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Maxx Charles Shows Photos For Final New York Pro Prep, Proving He Should Have Placed Higher

Many fans felt that Maxx Charles should have been the one to walk away from the 2020 New York Pro victorious. Shortly after the contest his coach, the legendary Milos Sarcev, released some photos of his final days of prep, that further add to his case. This year’s New York Pro was a unique one, […]

Many fans felt that Maxx Charles should have been the one to walk away from the 2020 New York Pro victorious. Shortly after the contest his coach, the legendary Milos Sarcev, released some photos of his final days of prep, that further add to his case.

This year’s New York Pro was a unique one, that ultimately ended in controversy. Instead of taking place in New York, the contest actually went down in Tampa, Florida. Several big names in the sport showed up, but in the end it would be Iain Valliere that would walk away with the victory, which came as a big surprise to many fans who felt that there was a lot lacking in his physique. Following the show, he has been getting a ton of negative comments of those who felt like his calves, chest, and triceps left a lot to be desired, and someone else should have won. 

One of the biggest names that fans felt got slighted by the judges, is longtime bodybuilding veteran Maxx Charles. Most people felt that he was by far the most conditioned athlete there, and even if you did not think he should have won, he absolutely deserved better than the fifth place score he received. In the days following the event his coach, Milos Sarcev, posted to Instagram, giving a glimpse into the final days of prep before the show, and it does a great job to illustrate how jacked his physique was, heading into the contest, while explaining the difficulties he had in preparing for this show.

“@maxx_charles day before (last 3 pictures were from 2 days before) New York Pro. People that don’t know Max would not ever believe that Max did not train in the Gym from March, when Corona Lockdown started in New York. First time he went to Gym is when Big Steve opened his @bevsgym – so many days ago. It is actually mind boggling that Max could get in this kind of shape pretty much training in the room with few dumbbells, bench, barbell and a leg-press machine…He is absolute genetic freak and destined for bodybuilding greatness. This year so far didn’t go too much in his favor – but I am sure he made millions of true bodybuilding fans around the world as he is epitome of ‘bodybuilders bodybuilder’.”

There is no denying that Charles was in the best shape out of those who were there. On the other hand, Iain was easily the most muscular athlete on stage. Nevertheless one can make the case for Maxx having a better midsection than 3rd place winner Jon Delarosa, and the best conditioning of anyone else competing, which makes his fifth place position all the more baffling.

One of the biggest complaints fans will always have about bodybuilding is how unfortunately subjective it is. Where the judges saw and appreciated the physique of Iain Valliere, the fans were more intrigued by the package Maxx Charles delivered. In the end, while Maxx likely should have scored higher, it is hard to say that Iain was not the rightful winner.

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Maxx Charles Shows Photos For Final New York Pro Prep, Proving He Should Have Placed Higher was originally published at LINK


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