Nutrition: Two simple steps to improve your fitness program.

If you visit here often, then you should know how I feel about the importance of strength training. However, if you want to lose fat, nutrition is certainly something in addition to strength training to work on.

I’ve got personal experience in this area. Along with my multiple Strength and Conditioning certifications, I am also a certified sports nutritionist. Over the years I’ve designed, implemented and updated hundreds of fully customized eating programs for a broad array of fitness participants from elite athletes to average Joe’s. It’s beyond the scope of this article to get too in depth into the specific details of creating custom Personal Eating Plans, but I do want to mention a couple of very useful principles for nutrition if someone wants to get leaner and lose fat.

1. Cut out the sugar: Limiting simple carbs is the best place to start for almost everyone when creating a new Personal Eating Plan (P.E.P.). For many, just getting rid of all the sources of simple and or processed carbs in their P.E.P. will quickly see them dropping unwanted pounds.

2. Total calories do matter: Despite what many “Clean eating” diet guides recommend or suggest, total calories do matter. It is absolutely possible to over-eat on healthy food choices. If after eliminating the sugar from your P.E.P. you are still not losing body fat, (or not losing as much as you would like) then it’s time to actually pay attention to the total calories you are consuming. Keep in mind that as we age, total caloric needs often decline.

Where should you start? In my experience I’ve found that for those requiring reduced calorie intake the following guidelines were extremely helpful:

Nutrition Guidelines*

Moderate Calorie: 1500-1800 men; 1200-1500 women

High Protein: 1.5 grams protein x 50% ideal body weight

High Water: 1 oz. x 50% ideal body weight

High Vegetables: unlimited servings (within daily calorie guidelines)

Moderate Fruit: Limited servings (within daily calorie guidelines)

Example based on the above guidelines:

Female with ideal target weight of 130 pounds.

Protein = 100 grams minimum daily (1.5 grams x 65*)

Water = 65 oz. minimum daily (1 oz. x 65)

Begin with meeting protein intake requirements. Then add Fruit & Vegetable and friendly fat while remaining within daily calorie guidelines.

PAU for NOW

TAKU

For those interested in fully customized Personal Eating Plans contact TAKU at: strengthonline@yahoo.com Put NUTRITION in the subject line.

*rounded up for convenience.

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PROTEIN PANCAKES:

It’s been a while since I added any recipes for your P.E.P.’s, so here is one I came up with just the other day.

HIGH PROTEIN PANCAKES: 

Ingredients:

4 large Eggs (I use organic).
1-Cup Cottage Cheese (I use organic).
1/4 cup Steel-Cut oats (I use organic).
1/4 Cup Raw Almonds (I use organic).
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I use organic).

Directions:

Grind up Oat’s and Almonds until they are fine (I use a coffee grinder but a food processor or even a blender will work).
Combine all ingredients and mix until smooth (I use a blender for this).

Cooking:

Heat a good pan to medium / high heat.
Add some oil to pan (I use extra virgin, Organic Coconut oil).
Drop Tbsp dollops of batter into pan for silver dollar pancakes (you can make them as big as you like).
Cook until you see bubbles coming through the entire pancake, then flip them over.
Brown other side (another 1-2 minutes or so)
Plate and enjoy.

If you’re feeling decadent add some Fresh Fruit, Maple Syrup, and even some fresh butter (I use Organic).

Enjoy!!

PAU for NOW

TAKU

Tips for the Personal Trainer

By Jim Bryan 

When you have been in the fitness business as long as I have you have seen just about everything (good & bad). When I first started in the field, personal training was a very rare thing. Now, 25 years later, Personal Fitness Training is big business. More and more people are becoming trainers every day, many with little to no experience other than their two year subscription to Men’s Health, and a weekend certification course.

Many new trainers get lost in the minutia of exercise selection and trying to look cool by using the latest “sexy” exercise trend as well tossing around the newest pseudo-scientific jargon in an attempt to razzle-dazzle the perspective client into spending their hard earned money.

Something that often get’s lost these days is that Personal Training is supposed to be well… personal. Below are some tips from my friend Jim Bryan that will help the aspiring trainer to deliver a world class experience for their clients, every time.

1. Pay attention to your Clients.


2. Hang up the cell phone during your sessions.


3. Track Clients progress regularly.


4. Stop looking at yourself in the mirror.


5. Think safety. “First do no harm.”


6. Don’t try to use “complex movements” you don’t know how to do.


7. A weekend “seminar” in the Olympic or Quick Lifts, does not qualify you as an Olympic Lifting coach.


8. Olympic Lifts were not meant to be done for high reps, with poor form, to the point of fatigue.


9. Tire flipping isn’t beneficial for all clients. Learn to discern.


10. Tried and true exercises, and methods should be your first choice.


11. Machines or free weights? Why not either or both? Each has advantages and disadvantages. Learn them.


12. Don’t put clients on a diet unless you are a Registered Dietitian.


13. Learn to spot fads and gimmicks and pass on them.


14. Dress in a professional manner, and conduct yourself that way also.

TAKU’s NOTE: Thanks to my good friend Jim Bryan for sharing some valuable tips for personal trainers.

ON VACATION!!

Hey everyone, I am taking a little break. This will be the first time in 5 years that I have not updated my blog at least once a week or so. For new visitors, I have five years worth of stuff on here so there is tons of great information to keep you busy. For any regulars (if I actually have some) don’t worry, I’ll be back soon, and fired up to get things going again. Till then, take care, be well, and enjoy the rest of your summer.

PAU for NOW

TAKU

3 phases to strength development:

There are 3 phases to an athletes’ strength development:

Phase # 1– This is the stimulation phase. It is necessary for the athlete to perform exercises that are challenging. We recommend training to voltional fatigue (sometimes referred to as momentary muscular failure) in order to trigger the strength and growth mechanism. Once strength and growth are triggered through proper stimulation, it cannot be triggered anymore for that training session.

Phase # 2– This is the Recovery phase. Recovery is necessary after stimulation has occurred. Recovery should be as short as possible. In order to keep the recovery short, the athlete must train with the least amount of sets possible preferably one set per exercise after the athlete learns to train intensely and is at the appropriate level. This will make the program more efficient.

Phase # 3– This is the growth phase. This phase will begin after the recovery phase is complete. Growth and strength will occur at the same time. On a proper set / rep scheme, a larger muscle is a stronger muscle. It is important to keep the growth phase as long as possible. In order to do this an athlete should train each body part less often. Strength and growth will follow recovery if during the training session you progressed in strength, either by performing more reps in an exercise than the previous workout or by lifting more weight in an exercise than the previous time you performed a set of that particular exercise.

Hybrid Fitness maintains that an athlete should have more days off than training days. This will ensure a longer growth phase. If an athlete trains again before the recovery phase ends, it will put them back into recovery again and if this repeats many times, the strength and growth phase will never occur and the athlete will be in an over-trained state that could take time to get out of.

Productive training means doing enough to get all 3 phases working properly. Efficient training will occur by spending less time training. Coaches need to take all these phases into account for each athlete. Each athlete will eventually be on his or her own individual program. This takes work but is well worth it.

PAU for NOW

TAKU

Product Spotlight: Maximize Your Training

Maximize Your Training is a collective effort of more than thirty leading experts in the strength and fitness field. These respected professionals share their insights on a variety of topics and issues related to training and exercise, including:

  • The history of strength training
  • Program design
  • High intensity training (HIT)
  • Motivation
  • Strength training for specific populations (including women, older adults, and prepubescents)
  • Bodybuilding
  • Powerlifting
  • Flexibility
  • Nutrition
  • Steroids

Maximize Your Training is for fitness enthusiasts who want to gain the knowledge, understanding, and insight necessary to achieve a competitive edge. This book is an important tool for anyone who takes bodybuilding, sports performance, and athletic training seriously.

This awesome book is edited by Matt Brzycki, who is the coodinator of health fitness, strength and conditioning at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey. He has authored more than 175 articles that have been featured in 33 different publications and has written three books—A Practical Approach to Strength Training, Your Strength and Conditioning, and Cross Training for Fitness—and coauthored Conditioning for Basketball with Shaun Brown, the strength and conditioning coach of the Boston Celtics.
Matt Brzycki
TAKU’s NOTE: I own several books by Matt Brzycki, and they are excellent. Maxmize your training should be on every Strength and Conditioning coaches top-10 book list. It is loaded with valuable information on evidence based exercise programs, and will assist those interested in how to design, implement, and update comprehensive strength programs for any goal. Although this book has been around for some time, I highly recommend that you get yourself a copy today.

Truth Not Trends: NUTRITION / WEIGHT CONTROL

 

1. The bottom line: if the total number of calories consumed is less than the number used to support basal metabolism, thermo-genesis and activity energy demands, weight LOSS will occur. Likewise, weight GAIN will occur if calories consumed exceeds energy demands.

2. Due to their various functions within the body, the time-proven breakdown of the daily recommended percentages of the three macronutrients – carbohydrates (40-55%), proteins (20-30%) and fats (25-30%) – is still reasonable advice.

3. You can’t go wrong if these are on your grocery list: fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, high-fiber foods, skinless chicken and fish, lean red meat and anything low in saturated fat, high fructose corn syrup, white flour and sodium. Attempt to emphasize complex carbohydrates over simple sugars and go for lean, unsaturated proteins over high-fat proteins.

4. Nothing beats plain old water. 70% of your body is water. Drink periodically to stay hydrated. It’s literally free, for Pete’s sake.

5. Eat breakfast! If you skip it, then eat lunch at noon, you will have gone 12 -16 hours without food from the previous day! Skipping breakfast slows your metabolism, lowers your energy level, hinders muscle weight gain for those attempting to build muscle and encourages binge-eating later in the day.

6. Excessive alcohol consumption = dehydration, increased fat storage, lower strength levels and a greater risk of a D.U.I. None of those options are attractive.

7. Pre- and post-exercise feeding: pre-exercise = complex carbs + low in fat. Post-exercise = simple carbs + protein.

8. If you are attempting to lose body fat, a) strength train regularly (to keep metabolically expensive muscle), b) eat fewer calories spread out over 5 to 6 feedings each day (speeds metabolism and creates a calorie deficit) and c) be disciplined not to eat if feeling hungry between feedings (indicates your tapping fat storage sites).

9. 5 minutes of bad eating can negate 30 minutes of traditional exercise. 6 x chocolate chip cookies = 300 calories. 150 lb. man jogging at 10 miles/hour pace for 30 minutes = approximately 300 calories burned above BMR. Message: if you spend time “working out,” be disciplined in your eating.

10. More bang for the buck: try circuit strength training. Rather than plod away at a low-level for 30, 45 or 60 minutes on a treadmill, elliptical machine or running track, a more time-efficient 20-30 minute strength training circuit will not only use more calories per unit of time, it will also increase calorie consumption post-exercise due to a greater recovery demand placed on the body. Physically demanding circuit strength training is the total package: more muscle contractions = more energy expended, more muscle fibers overloaded = better muscle tone / strength, and the higher the intensity of work = the greater the demand placed on the cardio-vascular system.

TAKU’s NOTE: This weeks article courteousy of my friend Tom Kelso.

PAU for NOW

TAKU