Posts Tagged ‘Health’

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1. Cardio Is Still Important


I’ve said many times in the past it’s possible to reduce your body fat and improve your body composition with little cardio. I’m not anti-cardio, so don’t take things out of context. There is a caveat.

If you’re a part of population that works the typical 9-5 shift sitting at a desk, your energy expenditure is going to be relatively low compared to the person who works in…let’s say, construction or delivery. Guess who needs cardio? In order to facilitate lipolysis (breakdown of fat) you have to increase your energy expenditure. So yes, that means you’re going to need to add in some form of cardiovascular/aerobic work in conjunction with strength training. Whether it’s high-intensity interval training or steady-state cardio, that’s entirely up to you. There’s no right or wrong. They both work.

2. Your Diet Is Whack


It’s no question folks looking to lose weight are more prone to fads and gimmicks — and because of that they engage in many dietary practices. Just because something makes you lose weight doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthy for you (i.e. juice cleanses, detox). What you ideally want in a diet is sustainability, nourishment, enjoyment, and… does it actually promote a healthy lifestyle? Put another way, if your diet sucks no amount of exercise is going to overcome that.

Don’t mistake simple for ineffective. Rather than resort to extreme methods, you’ll find that all the magic can be found in getting quality sleep, adequate hydration, eating your fruits and vegetables, and minimizing junk food.

3. Fat Loss Is Not Linear


My primary goal has never been fat loss. It’s always been about getting strong and building lean muscle. That having been said,  what we need to appreciate more is that progress is never linear.  From a coaching standpoint, it’s really hard to pick the best course of action for individuals who keep second guessing if what they’re doing is right. If you expect to see results after having only done two weeks worth of training, you’re delusional.

It’s not a sexy answer, but you have to be patient. Just because the scale didn’t drop in one week doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not heading in a positive direction.

Take home message: the body transforms in a wave-like approach.

4. You Go “Screw It Mode”


I applaud discipline and consistency, but to deprive yourself of a certain food group results in unwarranted mood swings and self-sabotage. If you continuously tell yourself you can’t have something, all you’re going to do is fixate on that. On some level avoiding it entirely does help, but believe me when I say: the longer you restrict yourself, the bigger the binge.  One bite or serving of indulgence then all hell breaks loose and you have now entered, “screw it mode.” This phenomenon repeatedly happens — and unfortunately, it makes it more and more difficult for you to lose fat.


More pressingly, food avoidance in an effort to lose fat only works in the short-term. In fact, I’ve found that not everyone can adhere to a protocol like that. True, it will create a calorie deficit which is essential for fat loss, but you’re missing the big picture. Rather than avoiding completely, practice portion control and mindful eating. You can still eat the foods you want and still make reasonable progress, but you can’t eat as much of it as you want. We want to develop good habits, and a rigid diet tends to lead us in the opposite direction.

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Well… It’s that time of the year again. With 2016 coming to a close, building muscle and concurrent fat loss is on just about everyone’s mind.



I’m not a dietician or nutrition expert nor do I market myself as one, but I do want to highlight why most people fall short in their attempt to get results.

Eat More Protein


A constant observation I’ve made in my work as a trainer and a coach is that most people do not get enough protein in their diet, particularly females as they tend not to be huge meat eaters. It’s an ongoing debate as to how much protein you should actually consume.

But, nevertheless, the undisputed way to get lean and improve your body composition is, protein.

It’s painfully obvious, but believe me when I tell you this — rarely are the simple things employed. I’ve had so many consultations in the past where folks claim they’re doing everything they can to get in shape, but the elephant in the room always seems to be a lack of sufficient protein in their diet.

Increase your portion size, make a protein smoothie, add more whole eggs or egg whites, have some greek yogurt — it’s absolutely essential that you get enough daily protein in order to build appreciable size, strength, and muscle.


Moreover, you have to understand that a protein-rich diet does an amazing job at increasing your metabolism and limiting hunger. Couple that with an intense strength training program, and you’re in for a sweet ride.

Wrap- Up


So, by taking this into account, the general recommendation is to consume approximately one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight — watch what happens.

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As human beings, we have a natural inclination to think in the context of right and wrong, yes and no, black and white.  As a result, we overlook this huge gray area that really hasn’t quite established its mark. This blunder is largely due to misinformation that has saturated the fitness industry since the internet came along.

The plethora of misinformation has created so much confusion that it made it really difficult for us to understand what the best approach is.  In short, we became victims of paralysis by analysis.

In this article, I’m going to enlighten you by debunking a number of pervasive nutrition myths, so you can get the ball rolling in the right direction.


Myth 1: Eating smaller meals throughout the day increases metabolism


Perhaps the most obvious of the bunch. For as long as I could remember, we have been led to believe that eating smaller and more frequently would stoke our metabolism. Albeit well-intended and logical, there’s very little evidence that supports that claim. Fortunately, research has shown that there’s no difference between eating six smaller meals, four moderate sized meals, or three big meals.  At the end of the day, if the total caloric intake is the same, your body is still going to induce the same response.

I don’t know about you, but eating smaller meals throughout the day is too much of a hassle and does not fit my schedule. Plus, being hungry all the time is a pain. If it works for you, great. The point is… choose a frequency that fits your lifestyle.

Myth 2: Brown rice is better than white rice


This was another tidbit that I had the misfortune of adopting because it was the norm. Brown rice is more nutrient dense, so it was a no-brainer.  It’s simple logic — you eat the foods that are going to give you the biggest return in your investment. Not so fast! It is slightly more nutrient dense. Just slightly. Here’s the thing: the phytic acid content that brown rice has inhibits proper digestion, so to be blunt, you’re really not absorbing them. All in all though, if you like it, eat it. No right or wrong here. Just putting things into perspective.

But seriously though, white rice for the win ;).

Myth 3: Eggs yolks are bad for you


For decades, we’ve been brainwashed into thinking that cholesterol is the enemy —associating it with cardiovascular disease. There was always this contention that just because egg yolks were high in cholesterol, consuming them was frowned upon.  Let me put it this way, most people would cringe if they saw how many whole eggs I eat in a week.


I know what you’re thinking: this guy is a typical gym douche who can eat whatever he wants and can get away with it. Before you close the curtains on me, eggs are actually healthy for you. Not only is it the most bioavailable source of protein, it’s packed with tons of vitamins and minerals.

Have a couple whole eggs here and there. Nothing to worry about.

Myth 4: Salt causes high blood pressure


Just like eggs yolks, salt has been demonized due to the claim that it causes high blood pressure. The vast majority of medical professionals will be quick to tell you to cut back on salt if that is the case.  What drives me nuts is that they fail to look at your overall lifestyle — it’s less work to prescribe medication and tell you to cut back on sodium than it is to actually ohh I don’t know…educate.

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Contrary to popular belief, optimal sodium intake is essential for optimal health.  It increases blood volume, which then helps deliver nutrients to the body and helps remove waste. More often than not, you’re eating too much processed foods and you’re not getting enough exercise. Simply, moving more proves to be more beneficial than the alternative (as is the case with virtually everything). Remember: it’s much easier to add in, than it is take out. Additionally, reducing your sodium intake poses potential health risks down the road such as: low blood volume, electrolyte imbalance, and chronic fatigue.

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