Friday, October 27, 2006

Working-Out and Fat Loss

Ever wonder why some people can exercise religiously for months and not lose any weight?

Every now and again I run into this type of woman at the gym. She is on the elliptical everyday at 5:30 AM, and when I'm leaving the gym at 6:30 AM, she's still on the elliptical.

When I'm back in the gym around 7 PM, she's there again too, running through all the weight machines.

The problem is, no matter how hard she pushes herself she's still not losing weight. The answer to her weight loss goals is in her nutrition plan.

To get the best results out of any program you must not only have a great exercise plan, but a great nutrition plan as well.

And a new study has shown us just how important nutrition is for fat loss.

In this study, women exercised on a treadmill until they burned a set number of calories. The women were then asked to guess how many calories they burned during the workout.

The subjects were also told to eat at a buffet and try to eat the same amount of calories that they had just burned during the workout. Think you could do that?

Shockingly, the researchers found that the women over-guessed how many calories they burned by 300 to 400%! And, they ate double to triple the amount of calories that they had actually burned during the exercise!

Are you undoing all the benefits of your workout by eating too much?

Are you giving yourself "free reign" nutritionally just because you worked out?

It's a common myth in the fitness industry that you can eat anything you want after your workout and it won't become fat. It is also a myth that you need large amounts of calories in order to "recover" from your workout (a very small amount will do).

When left to eat as you please, your mind and body will try and convince you to overcompensate and eat more than you normally would.

So don't shoot yourself in the foot and waste all that hard exercise by eating too many calories, especially in your "post workout meal".

Always remember that the best approach to getting the body you want and the performance you desire is by combining a solid exercise program with a sound nutrition plan.


Fasting Diet, Circuit Training

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Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The Two Types of Food

In the last couple of weeks I've been writing about the benefits of interval training for weight loss and athletic conditioning over at grrlathlete.

So now it’s only fitting that I move on to what I consider the most important piece of the puzzle that you need to get in shape, lose weight and improve your fitness - Nutrition.

Nutrition is discussed by just about every magazine writer, talk show host, fitness expert and guru in the industry. Just about everyone and their dog can quote some type of scientific research, touting the benefit of eating one certain type of diet or another, or ramble on about the scientific reasons why some foods are better for you than others.

In my opinion, all of these scientific intellectual ramblings may actually be part of the reason why people still don't eat well.

Let's face it, when it comes to understanding what's good for us and what's not, "science" is confusing the heck out of us!

Because the science of nutrition seems to involve flip-flopping your opinions every other day, the best approach to eating healthy is to look at nutrition with the most simplified technique possible. In your mind think about what your current goals are, whether it is sports performance, weight loss, weight gain or overall health, identify your goals.

Once you have your goals firmly in your head, think of a food, any food.

Now ask yourself "Will this food move me closer to my goals or farther away from my goals?". If you believe it will help you move closer to your goal, then eat it.

If you believe it will actually move you away from your goals, then don't eat it, or at least eat it moderately and in very small portions.

The key to this technique is that you have to believe that there are no "neutral" foods. It is either good or bad.

The trouble with eating healthy is that nobody wants to think about it because nutrition is perceived to be a very complex and confusing topic.

But when we don't think about it, we eat what is put in front of us, and when we eat what is put in front of us, chances are we over eat, and eat the wrong foods.

However, when you simplify the problem down to "good food, bad food" it becomes very easy to "think nutrition". It is not complex or confusing. It simply returns to very fundamental wisdom that your grandmother probably told you when you were a child. Gravitate towards fruits and vegetables and lean protein, and be weary of anything processed (generally foods that you buy in a bag or in a box).

So forget all the debates and all the fads. It doesn't matter whether or not aspartame is good for you. Look at that diet cola and ask yourself if it will move you closer to your goals. If the answer is no, then go get a sparkling water, or green tea or any other drink that you think will move you towards your goals.

By following this principle it makes it easier to "think" nutrition. Every time you put some food in front of you ask the simple question "good or bad" and then act accordingly.

You will find that by simplifying nutrition down to this simple equation you can make dramatic improvements in the way you eat, and avoid a lot of the confusion that is out there.

Nutrition really is the missing piece of the puzzle for any fitness program, and from our experience, when you combine interval training and really good success measurements (like the ones we outlined last week) with a solid nutrition program, amazing things can happen in very little time.


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