Diet and Training Coach Extraordinaire
Reasons why icing may not improve healing!
It’s an almost universally accepted fact that any injury requires ice to reduce swelling, but is this the best approach to accelerate healing? Let’s take a look at it objectively.
At first glance, it would seem that a large, purple, swollen mass of tissue around an injury is a bad thing. Albeit a bizarre sight, the swelling can be critical to the healing process. After an acute injury such as a sprained ankle, the body attempts to repair, and replace, all of the damaged tissue. This generates a considerable amount of waste. The lymphatic system, responsible for removal of wastes throughout the body, can get backlogged with such a large amount of waste in a short period of time; hence, the swelling. To remove the waste, the lymphatic system requires the nearby muscles to send repair signals. If the muscle is too cold, the signals cannot be sent at an appropriate rate; thus, limiting the healing process.
A recent fitness trend is taking hold in the industry in the form of whole body cryo-chamber therapies. In these sessions, your entire body is immersed in temperatures as low as -110°C (-166°F). These chambers are meant to reduce inflammation in the body, but can it be beneficial to speed up the recovery process and help stimulate growth in the body?
The short answer is, probably not. These chambers are meant to help correct chronic inflammation throughout the body, which can be a great thing if you are a tri-athlete or marathon runner. These sports can be very damaging to the entire body. Comparatively, sports like bodybuilding or powerlifting tend to cause muscular inflammation only. To signal muscular growth and adaptation, the body needs a stimulus sent from the damaged muscle (look at that, I brought it full circle!). As we mentioned before, the muscle sends repair signals out to the rest of the body, and the repair process is what helps the muscle to grow and get stronger. If you are inhibiting this signaling process, you can greatly impede your ability to progress in your respective sport!
So, should we completely eliminate the cooling techniques? Not necessarily. If you find that your training has reached a concrete wall and no amount of stimulus will improve your goals, then a few sessions in a cryotherapy chamber might just do the trick; however, if you’re still making progress, you might just want to endure the discomfort and soreness. They made handrails next to toilets for a reason, use them!
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Diet and Training Coach Extraordinaire
Six Signs You Need to De-Stress
Trouble sleeping? All day anxiety getting the best of you? Feeling like you can't get ahead?
These could all be indicators that you suffer from stress caused by the hormone cortisol. Cortisol can be a great tool when utilized properly (a-la fitness training), but chronic levels of stress can doom your fitness goals from the start. Not only that, but stress can interfere with your general state of happiness. It can ruin friendships, impede career growth, and in general just make your life miserable.
High levels can breakdown muscle tissue, increase plaque in your arteries, and even cause you to gain belly fat at an increased rate.
Below are 6 signs that you need to get your cortisol levels under control, along with a few helpful hints on how to make that happen.
Sign 1: Trouble Losing Fat
Chronically high levels of stress can have a huge impact on your weight loss journey. Firstly, cortisol increases the hunger hormone ghrelin. This can make it difficult to stick to your diet, no matter how much willpower you have.
Secondly, when high levels of cortisol coincide with insulin, the body converts over to a fat storage machine. Not only does your body store more fat, but it also blocks its own ability to utilize fat as an energy source.
To combat this mechanic, be sure to eat wholesome food. Try to avoid processed and refined foods like sugar, breads, and other man-made foods.
Sign 2: You Have Trouble Sleeping
Elevated stress in the evening can make it impossible to sleep properly. Missing out on a full cycle of REM sleep interferes with the bodies ability to optimally heal and repair itself; likewise, a poor sleep cycle will keep cortisol levels elevated day after day. Breaking this cycle can be difficult, and require a good deal of patience.
The easiest, albeit most tedious, method to reduce stress before sleep is to learn to meditate. Shutoff all electronics, put your phone on airplane mode, and sit quietly. Clear your mind and think peacefully. If you feel your mind straying to problems from earlier in the day, identify that you have strayed and clear your mind again.
Sign 3: Extra belly fat
Correlations have been drawn between elevated cortisol levels and higher abdominal fat. Since belly fat is an easier source of energy compared to other fat stores, this is thought to be a survival mechanism for humans. Since belly fat is easier to utilize, the body will store energy there during periods of stress.
This is where activity can become a powerful tool. Utilizing a high-intensity interval training program can help burn belly fat by improving levels of the enzymes responsible for the fat burning process.
Sign 4: Your anxiety is always high
Feeling stressed from time to time is perfectly normal, and in fact, a requirement for healthy body function; however, feeling stressed the majority of your day is a sure fire sign that your health is in danger.
Feeling like there is no peace in your life leads to improper use of your hypothalamus and pituitary glands. This can halt fat burning, decrease sleep quality, and lower your overall happiness in life.
Among the previous solutions discussed here, supplementation can be a powerful tool. Try supplementing with magnesium, Vitamin C, and taurine. All of these work, through various pathways in the body, to reduce your stress, and help you feel calm.
Sign 5: Poor Digestion
Digestion can take a huge hit when cortisol is elevated constantly. This is because stress causes your body to release histamine, a chemical that activates the immune system. Extra histamine in the body increases gastric acid to be released, which can interfere with the guts ability to process and absorb nutrients.
Resolution here comes in the form of fiber and probiotics. Foods high in probiotics have an anti-inflammatory effect, helping to heal the intestinal lining. Fiber helps to feed this healthy bacteria and improves movement through the intestinal tract, ensuring you are clean and ready for optimum nutrient absorption.
Sign 6: Cravings, lots of them
Carbohydrate cravings are essentially your bodies way of fueling more cortisol production. The carbohydrates you consume provide the raw material required for this hormone production, so it can be a vicious cycle.
To break the cycle, be sure to eat a diet high in protein to help keep your cravings in check. Be sure to check out the Uprise Nutrition line of WHEY PROTEINS to help you combat these cravings, and get back on the right track!
5 Mistakes Everyone Makes During Summer Grillin'
By: Steve Powers
Today, we’ll go over some tips on how to grill your food into moist deliciousness, without sacrificing your diet or overall health.
Marinating your meat is a great way to add flavor, but also has a lot of hidden calories when not done properly! Many marinades call for using oils, which is the most calorie dense food you can consume. It is very easy to exceed your allotted daily calories, so use oils VERY sparingly if you do not plan on counting those calories. Some marinades that do not break the “bank”, as it were, include any form of:
- Lemon/lime juice
- Red pepper flakes
- Cayenne pepper
- Any green herb you may have lying around
Simply dress your meats in the morning, then cook ‘em up later in the evening to ensure the flavor has infused properly into the meat!
#4 Beware of cheap meat!
We’ve all seen the family pack of ground meat at the store, but steer clear of these deals! These packages tend to be 80/20 (80% protein, 20% fat), which is a very low quality type of meat. Burgers made with this meat will shrink into hockey pucks once the fat is rendered out by the cooking process, meaning you will need to oversize the original uncooked burger. Less bang for your buck than you had hoped, right?
Another reason this meat is poor for your health, is the type of fat it contains. This meat was probably raised on corn, and other fattening grains, that cows would not naturally consume in large portions in the wild. This skews their fats to be almost entirely Omega 6/9 fats. The average Western diet consists of approximately 16:1 omega 6:3 fats. A very poor ratio for humans! To skew back towards the recommended 4:1 ratio, purchase grass-fed meats when possible. Although a bit costlier, it will greatly improve your overall health in the long run (70% decreased mortality rate to be exact!). Better to spend the money now and be healthy than spend it on a hospital in the future!
#3 Cook to temperature!
Playing the guessing game with your meat’s “doneness” is a dangerous game. Uncooked meat can make you and your family violently, and potentially fatally, ill. Salmonella is a big risk with chicken, and even ground up meat. Invest in a quality digital meat thermometer, and be aware of the recommended cooking temperatures outlined by the FDA.
A thermometer will also help you achieve that perfect steak. No more using the pad of your hand to determine the perfect medium rare!
#2 Beware of burning!
This tip has two approaches. The first is to ensure that your meat does not burn and blacken. Research has shown that burnt meat breaks down into carcinogens, and can be very harmful to your body.
A not so obvious approach is to properly clean your grill after every use. Food residue can linger during the “cool down”, and can also be burnt even more during your next “warm up” cycle of the grill. Invest in proper scraping tools, and regularly clean with a household solvent to ensure only the cleanest food reaches your family!
Like any good skill, becoming adept takes practice, and lots of it. Practicing with your grill is just as important as preparing the meat itself. You’ll learn where the hot/cold spots are, how much fuel (charcoal/propane) you need to keep the grill at temperature, how long it needs to pre-heat, etc.
Be patient, follow these steps, and you’ll have great meat every time!
#Bonus: Size matters!
Trying to cook a thick chicken breast is a futile attempt at creating a perfect meal. Thick pieces of chicken will not reach the proper interior temperature before the exterior burns and turns into a dried leather hide. Take the time to butterfly larger chicken breasts in half to ensure a quick, but thorough cooking!
Steaks can be left thick if you are looking for a rare to medium cook, but the temperature must be lower than normal to ensure you do not burn the exterior.
If you liked this article and could use help with getting set for summer with the right nutrition, check out our goal based programs here.
Beach Body Hottie, or Nottie?
Diet and Training Coach Extraordinaire
Beach season is upon us, and by now you may have already started your dieting. Chances are you’re running into that 1-month road block where your progress has stalled out and you begin thinking silly things like “Maybe I need a cheat day!”. Well, I’m here to shed light on common dieting pitfalls that will hinder your progress more than you would initially think.
1) Not tracking your food intake.
Paramount to obtaining a proper beach body is learning to track your food. Using your hunger as an indicator of how much food you need can be tricky. After dieting for a period of time, your body will naturally release hormones meant to increase your hunger, regardless of how much food you have consumed! Learning to track your food intake with smartphone applications like MyFitnessPal or Nutritionist is vital to your success. These programs take out all the calorie “guessing” and let you hold yourself accountable for all that snacking you might do!
- Consuming too little food.
On the flip side of this coin, is the fact that many people start a diet with too few calories. Although you will see weight loss for the first few weeks of a “crash diet”, your body will transition into a very harsh survival mode. You will burn less calories from fat, and more from muscle. Since muscle burns twice the number of calories that fat does (yes, fat burns calories!), your body will start to consume the energy from muscle tissue to conserve its energy stores, which is a double-edged sword. Fat cells contain much more energy than muscle, which is a protein based energy source. So not only are you receiving less energy from your bodies energy stores, you are losing the ability to perform at your maximum potential. Reduced output during your workouts means reduced calorie burning!
Starting at a proper calorie deficit is not as complicated as many “gurus” claim it to be. For basically anyone except a bodybuilding competitor, it’s as simple as finding a basil metabolic rate calculator (BMR) online, and adding ~300 calories. From this point, you can setup your healthy meals and judge your body composition week to week. If your body is making compositional improvements (looks leaner, feels strong), you can maintain this caloric level. If you are no longer seeing improvements, try reducing by ~250 calories for a week and judge from there.
Although this method is not viable for long term (> 2 months) weight loss, it is a very useful tool for someone looking to shed that winter weight!
- Burning out on steady state cardio
To much of the population, losing weight means spending hours on a treadmill doing steady state cardio. Like our previous pitfall, this is also a double-edged sword!
The first issue with this weight loss strategy is the fact that jogging on treadmills, or biking casually, can be a tedious, boring activity. It quickly becomes a chore, and on days when you are feeling tired or sluggish, there is very little incentive to make the effort to get out and be active.
The second issue comes from the inherent inefficiency of steady state cardio. This workout provides no real stimulus for your body to change. Body composition improvement comes from a stress, or stimulus, placed on the body. When stressed, your body can make unbelievable adaptations. For our goals, a stressful workout will cause your body to get stronger, and burn more calories throughout the day. Because steady state cardio does not provide this stimulus, you are merely burning a handful of calories during your workout, and ONLY during the workout.
Dieting is much like investing in the stock market. The idea is to make your money work FOR you. So how can we take this concept and sculpt it for our fat loss goals?
Simple, implement high intensity interval training (HIIT)! This type of cardio includes very short, intense bursts of activity followed by a short rest that will cause your body to burn much more energy during your workout, and even more AFTER your workout. In fact, a proper HIIT session can continue burning calories up to 72 hours afterward (for beginners, 24-48 for experienced athletes).
Adhering to a food schedule can be difficult, especially if your day job doesn’t allot you much time for food consumption (nursing, trucking, wait staff, etc.). Today, the market is flooded with premade protein bars, energy drinks, and microwaveable “healthy” TV dinners.
Unless you are a seasoned ingredients label reader, it is easy to miss out on all the added sugars, unhealthy fats, and processed chemicals required for these products to have a palatable taste.
Inflammation from these types of ingredients can wreak havoc on your digestive system. As your body becomes inflamed, it loses the ability to properly process nutrients. Without a proper intake of nutrients, both macro and micro, your body cannot operate to its full potential. This can lead to stalled weight loss, or that soft, watery look! This condition will cause you to retain water, and in general look “softer” than you had looked just a week prior. Reviewing progress photos, the average person is liable to go into full on panic mode and slash their calories dramatically!
Never fear, though. If you feel your body has suddenly regressed and is looking worse, take a few days to reduce your inflammation. Reduce your processed food intake, drink a few glasses of lemon water each day, and take in a few extra servings of vegetables and/or berries. You’ll be good as new in no time!
- Not working hard enough
This is always a tough pill to swallow. No one enjoys being referred to as not a hard worker, especially when they’re at the gym 5 times a week, but, sometimes, you need someone standing behind you telling you to push it further.
As we’ve discussed before, your body excels at adaptations. In the long run, your body will increase its ability to handle training, whether it be cardio or weight training. As such, your mind will often fall into the trap of “I’m adding 20 pounds to my squat, so I’m clearly increasing my output”. The truth is, your body may be capable of adding 50 pounds, AND 5 more repetitions! If you want change, you must change your workouts. And that change usually means adding intensity! This doesn’t mean try to set a personal record every time you step foot in the gym. It simply means you need to push yourself outside of your comfort zone.
Embrace the discomfort for the 1 hour you’re in the gym, so that you can enjoy the summer with a healthy, lean beach body!
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In today’s saturated Instagram fitness world, it is very easy to develop a sense of cynicism towards athletes who are always able to post photos of beautiful six pack abs, or a masterly crafted, curvy back side. It is easy to justify their excellence in the sport by blaming it on extra-curricular substances, or more likely you will make the claim, “Well, they have it easy because of their genetics”.
Although the “easy genetics” claim is somewhat true, it most certainly will never account for the time and preparation that professional athletes put into their craft. All the genetics in the world will not give you a set of six pack abs, or a well-muscled body. Maintaining a lean, muscled body takes time, effort, and preparation.
Two Is Always Better Than One | Couple's Full Body Circuit
By Stephen Powers
Valentine’s Day has came and passed, and that means one thing, time to reinvest some time on being a better couple! What better way than to start a training routine that requires your partner? Each of the below exercises have been chosen specifically to target at least one main area of the body, namely your chest, back, legs, arms, and shoulders. Studies have shown that to get the maximum fat burning effect from your workouts, you need to involve the larger muscles groups, and work intensely enough that you feel the “burn”! Average Joe will tell you that you need to be at the gym cycling for hours on end, but the below circuit should help prove him wrong. Give it a try and let us know what you think!
Using a strong bath towel, stand opposite your partner and take a firm grip with both hands. Next brace yourself, and mimic sawing a log in half. Our goal here is to target your back, biceps, and even your legs. Remind your partner that the goal is not to simply pull the other person off their feet, but to provide enough resistance that allows them to work hard!
This exercise is simple, but very effective. We will target not only your abdomen, but your hip flexors, shoulders, and triceps as well. Perform as detailed in the photograph. As simple as 1,2,3!
Squat Jump Races
As with the sit-up and pass exercise, the Squat Jump is another simple, but effective exercise. Starting from a squat position, launch yourself as high as you can vertically. Challenge one another to a contest, and see who can do the most! This one is sure to light up every muscle in your legs!
Push-Up Reach and Touch
By now, you’re probably screaming for oxygen, but we’re nearly there! Assume a comfortable push-up position, facing your partner, about half an arm’s length away. Complete one push-up, then reach out to high-five your partner. Alternate arms between push-ups. This is guaranteed to put the burn into your chest, triceps, and shoulders!
Last, and most intimidating, is the dreaded burpee! This is your finisher and a total body workout. Our previous exercises have been working up to this monstrous invention, and now it’s time to “bring it home!”. Instead of a normal burpee routine where one person calls out “hit it!”, we’re going to put a twist in. You and your partner, while participating at the same time, take turns calling out when to perform the burpee. Keep in mind that this is not a cool-down exercise, it’s supposed to tax every little bit of energy out of you! Be the motivation that your partner needs, and push them to be better, faster, stronger.
Repeat this circuit 4-5 times a session, approximately 2-3 times per week. You may increase the frequency (more circuits per session, or more sessions per week, or both!) as your fitness improves. Don’t be afraid of being tired! You won’t be the only one gasping for that sweet, sweet oxygen….
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How to create New Year's goals that get done!
We're just over three weeks into 2017, and all the gyms are now chock-full of "resolutioners" trying to meet their new year goals. The question is, how well prepared are you to accomplish yours?
Year after year, you may find that you start off strong. You adhere to your diet, increase the number of times you tread the revolving walkway, and get to bed on time for plenty of sleep; however, once February rolls around, some of these priorities start to slide down the list. It's understandable that family sometimes takes precedence, or you have a deadline at work to meet, or maybe you're tired. Slowly, you begin to skip more days. Or maybe just that one cookie won't hurt?
Before you know it, it's mid-February and you're back to the same monotonous routine of drinking your morning cup of sugar from Starbucks (don't kid yourself, that creamy beverage has more sugar than a can of pop), and going to work and eating lunch at Wendy's. By the time you get home, you're back to collapsing on the couch and eating a big bowl of pasta while binge watching the newest release on Netflix.
So, where does it all fall apart? The problem begins with the entire new year's resolution concept. You're expected to set a long-term goal that requires daily attention and dedication, but the reward for reaching the goal doesn't come until much later. The human mind/body is built around short-term gratification, so without seeing the daily rewards, your ability to adhere to those long-term goals is impaired!
Below are some of my best ideas to battle this pitfall, and how to create New Year's goals that get done:
1. Set a long-term goal. Not just an "I won't eat out more than once a week" goal. No, this goal needs to be lifted to the stratosphere. Aim for something you almost can't even envision. For example, obtaining that washboard set of abs you see on all those social media models.
2. Break down this goal into smaller goals. Using the six-pack abs goal as an example, estimate how much weight you think you need to lose, then divide that into equal pieces for each month. Simple enough, now the goal is starting to seem more tangible.
3. Like #2, breakdown these smaller goals into mini-goals. Set a target weight for each week.
4. List out the habits you need to change to achieve your goal. Habits like eating more vegetables, attending more fitness classes, lifting weight a certain number of times per week, eating out less, sleeping more, etc. These mini-goals, over time, will add up to your final objective.
5. Quantize your goals. Meaning, don't just say "I'm going to start eating more vegetables & protein". Give your goal some numbers, and a deadline like "On Monday, Jan 23, I will begin eating a minimum of 4 servings of fresh, green vegetables every day". Set these goals, and write them down. It is vital to write them down! Over time, you will begin to lose track of these mini-goals, and have no way to keep yourself accountable.
6. Grab that Goal by the shirt collar, bring it real close, and whisper menacingly "Not this time. It's going to happen, and there is nothing you can do stop it." You must COMMAND your goals to obey your wishes. Envision yourself succeeding, have an all-encompassing passion for it. You set the goal because it is clearly very important to you. And if it's important, you will MAKE time for it.
Battling the Arctic Temperatures – How to strengthen your immune system
The polar vortex is making its annual migration south, and that means runny noses, chest colds, and a myriad of other immune system hardships! So how do we fight this battle without visiting the doctor every time we feel a tingle in our throats?
Today, we explore an assortment of vitamins that are crucial for a strong, healthy immune system.
First up, one of the most crucial, yet overlooked, vitamins is Vitamin A. This nutrient is particularly vital to your gut health. Since your digestive tract sees the majority of bacterial invasions (food, liquids, etc.), it will make the majority of the “immune-response” decisions in your body. To give you an idea on the number of decisions it makes, consider the following: In one day, your digestive tract will interact with, and filter out, more pathogens than the rest of your entire body will in your entire lifetime. It is almost unfathomable, but true!
Next in line is Vitamin D. Unlike Vitamin A, your body can produce this vitamin on its own; however, it requires sunlight. It’s like we’re a miniature version of Superman! Vitamin D is responsible for enabling your body to create hundreds of antimicrobial bodies for your immune system. During the winter months, we obviously see less sun than normal. This is one of the contributing factors to larger occurrences with the cold and flu, so it is imperative to supplement with this nutrient.
Vitamin C, perhaps the most well-known immune system boosting vitamin, is actually the most mysterious vitamin. To date, medical professionals are still not entirely sure what processes occur between Vitamin C and the immune system that make it such a potent nutrient. It can be argued that Vitamin C is a very potent anti-oxidant, which reduces inflammation and allows cells in your body to metabolize nutrients properly. Specifically, your intestinal tract. Remember, a healthy digestive tract can absorb nutrients much more efficiently: more nutrients means a healthier body! Although the human body does produce this nutrient on its own, it does not produce it in large enough quantities to account for modern life obstacles (stress, processed foods, intense workouts, etc.). Thus, it is highly recommended to supplement with this nutrient as well!
Last but not least, is Vitamin B12. Although it does not directly react with the immune system, it deserves to be on this list for its overall health benefits. Because Vitamin B12 is directly responsible for assisting in red blood cell production, individuals with a deficiency in this mineral will experience anemia. This condition is marked by weakness, tiredness, or light-headedness. Unlike Vitamin C, this nutrient is not produced by the human body, so it must be obtained through proper diet and supplementation.
Looking at all of these, it can be overwhelming thinking about keeping track of these vitamins daily. The key to proper supplementation is simplicity! Luckily, Uprise Nutrition has a supplement that serves this exact purpose! Their Vitality spray actually contains all of these minerals, and in a convenient spray can! Simply carry it with you to work, and take after each meal throughout the day!
If you liked this blog and wanted to learn a little more about what products we recommend for immunity - See Below:
Don’t take another scoop of protein until you read this…
In the crowded space we call the fitness industry, it’s not easy to decipher what protein brand you should be taking. There are some great marketing engines out there, and some of the top brands have done very well with getting their products within arm’s reach of any major town – but does that mean they offer a better product?
We have taken the time to make you a checklist for things to look for when buying protein supplements.
Not all protein is created equal – many protein companies do everything they can to increase profit margins, even at the expense of your health or their product quality. Protein powders can contain fillers and synthetic additives that take away from the quality of your protein and should make you think twice about what you’re putting into your body.
2. Protein-to-Scoop Ratio
There is no universal serving size so when they advertise “per serving” – What does that really mean? If you’re total scoop size is larger than 34g, then you know they are overcompensating for something. Your protein-to-scoop ratio should be 75% or higher, meaning your grams of protein should represent over 75% of what’s in that total scoop. (Example 25 Grams Protein per serving with a scoop size of 32 Grams – 25g / 32g = 78% EXCELLENT)
The fewer the ingredients, the better. For instance - for a WHEY protein product, you would want it to show 100% WHEY rather than a blend of any extra “stuff” added. Glutamine, taurine, and other fillers are often added as fillers to increase overall batch sizes, which take away from the products intended use. Also, you want to see a healthy dose of naturally occurring aminos acids and BCAA’s (5G or more).
One of the most important, and deciphering, checklist items are certifications. BE PICKY!
You should look for something that is done in an FDA Registered Facility that has certification in both GMP & NSF. GMP means that they have taken the time to be audited by the FDA and certified as operating under the Good Manufacturing Practices system. NSF, at a high level, means that they have been inspected for formulation trueness in respect to its advertised label and vice versa.
5. Bang for Your Buck
This category is as pure as it gets. This is for the analytical math whiz types. How many grams of protein am I getting in a bottle, and how much per gram?
Omitting all the math, a great deal is approximately 7 cents per gram of protein.
If you are spending less on a bottle than another, but the same on per gram of protein - that means you are ingesting more useless garbage that can be harmful or will impede the absorption of the protein you spent your hard-earned money on in the first place.
Just remember – Quality over Quantity!
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Just like any other for-profit industry, it is inevitable that information and gimmicks are sold for financial gain.
In this series, we will be investigating some common health & fitness myths. We will discover how they came to be, what truths are held within (if any), and expose the outright falsehood of some.
Myth #1- “Toning a Muscle” – See our Nutritional Program Series Shape & Tone Here
For our first myth, we will be discussing the validity of “toning a muscle”.
To be fair, the term shape and tone is a common term used in the industry. It’s more of a descriptor for how a muscle would/should look. It would appear to be tighter and leaner with a defined shape that is ideal for summer vacation. Thus, “toning a muscle” has been deemed as slang for the description above.
So, to begin the toning process, you sign up for a Zumba class, Pilates, or pay the local corporate gym trainers to help you lift weights in the hopes that you can tone your muscles. You start to attend your classes, become regularly active, increase your strength and stamina, but still do not have that glorious beach-body by time your vacation rolls around – why?
What’s the issue? You were under the impression all of this time & money would result in a body of well-toned muscles. Shouldn’t all that hard work have given you exactly what you wanted? In short, not quite.
There are 2 factors in reaching the effects of this common term, “toning”.
- Proper training & exercise –either to improve strength, stamina, or size.
- Correct energy balance and caloric intake with the right nutrient timing.
This is sometimes a hard pill to swallow, but the main reason you do not have a toned body, is simply because of excess body fat. To see true separation and hardness of your muscles, you must have a relatively low body fat percentage. [Men 12% or lower, and Women 18% or lower]
The American Council on Exercise considers the average man to have 25-31%, and women to have 20-24%, body fat. These numbers make it apparent as to why most people don’t see the body they wish to have (Body Fat Percentage, 2011).
As a comparison, professional fitness models during a photo shoot will be around 5-8% for men, and 10-12% for women. Achieving a photo shoot ready body is unrealistic for the general population (not to mention that it is not recommended for health reasons!)
With that out of the way, let’s re-inquire as to the possibility that exercising will “tone” your muscles. Does it? The honest answer is, it depends on your Nutrition Program! The key to looking tone is having the proper training program coupled with the right weight loss regimen for you – See our Sexy & Lean Guide
Remember this common phrase:
“Abs aren’t made in the gym; they’re made in the kitchen!”
If you liked this article and want more explanation including some helpful steps to take on toning a muscle or quality sustainable weight loss, we have an extended tutorial to this article available below:
Sometimes the scariest thing this Halloween isn’t the haunted houses, killer-clowns, or even this year’s election – it’s the weight gain!
Even the strictest of diets can cause yo-yo dieting and that extra pounds can come back to haunt!
Sometimes the scariest thing this Halloween isn’t the haunted houses, killer-clowns, or even this year’s election – it’s the weight gain
Even the strictest of diets can cause yo-yo dieting and that extra pounds can come back to haunt!
In case you missed it - We have our October Specials Here
We suggest a 3 step program to transform from frightening to fit! Remember, happiness starts between the ears. Repeat after me – We do this because we love ourselves first and foremost and want to become the best “us” we can be. You are not “fat” you just may have body fat.
Remove these 4 scary items to avoid in your diet this Halloween and chase the holiday ghouls off your midsection and hips.
See custom nutrition plans HERE.
Added sugars are a form of a simple carbohydrate that for most intents and purposes is not a necessity for the human body. Some studies have indicated that our body was never originally designed to metabolize the levels of sugar that a common first world human ingests each day. Sugars will cause a secretion of insulin from the pancreas that will ultimately kick start fat cell storage and well that’s a nightmare on insulin peak. =)
Avoid: Candy, chocolate, BBQ sauce, ketchup, fruit juice, apple cider, sugary drinks, sweets, & soda.
Starchy carbohydrates can also cause the same hormonal dance resulting in the storage of unused energy resulting in stowing away of fat cells.
Avoid: Breads, pasta, French fries, baked potatoes, cookies, and cakes.
High sodium intake can cause high blood pressure and is linked to many things including heart disease. Less serious side effects, is the retention of water-weight. Yes, your body will contain a higher level of water that can spook the scale into thinking you are heavier than you actually are.
Avoid: Smoked, cured, canned, or processed foods, chili, frozen dinners, and diet sodas.
Alcohol is about as bad as it gets when throwing a monkey wrench into your diet. First off your adding tremendous empty calories from the consumption alone, but you are also forcing your Liver to prioritize by processing the alcohol first before it can get back to one its main functions and that’s metabolism and the breakdown of fat cells into useable energy.
Avoid: Brown liquors, beer, and rum.
So before attending those Halloween and Fall parties make sure you know which table items to avoid cause it can be a long holiday season and you want to start it off right!
If you have successfully completed this first step, we would be happy to write you a personalized version of our Step 2 of 3 process to successful sustainable weight loss.
Contact us today for help!
Make any outing a fun and positive healthy adventure - create memories with friends and family. Working out doesn't have to feel like a chore. Think of it as a way to improve and to connect with others in a positive social outlet.
If all of your friends activities including eating fried foods and standing round drinking - get new friends! Ditch the night scene and wake up earlier for fuller more productive days!
Live in a sleepy town? No problem! Start by making a list of 20 things you can do that is fun, mobile, and social. Connect with others by creating social and meetup groups - lead by example. Leverage the technology to connect, not to constrict.
Major leading studies have suggested living a more active health conscious lifestyle will lead to longer happier lives.
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Remember - We all RISE Together,
~ Team Uprise
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People's opinions can differ widely on this subject. Many people mistakenly think that it is better to do cardio prior to their resistance training session because they feel that it is a good warmup. Well, those people may be missing out on gains! While this may sound like a good idea, it's actually not the optimal way of structuring your training. In fact, there are two times of the day that are preferred for doing your cardio:
- First thing in the morning, upon waking up, in a fasted state (a.k.a. fasted cardio).
- AFTER your weight training (resistance training) session.
If your schedule limits you from doing your cardio first thing in the morning, opt for doing it after your resistance training session. This way, you will have used your glycogen levels to fuel your training session. If you do your cardio session before resistance training, you will not be able to maximize lifting with a progressive overload, and you will fatigue much quicker, leading to diminished performance with the weights. However, if you switch the order and train with weights first, you will deplete your glycogen levels and place your body in a prime position to breakdown fat to fuel your cardio session.
Remember, if you have the time, we prefer that you split up your cardio and resistance training sessions, performing cardio first thing in the morning and your resistance training in the evening. This is a balanced approach to optimizing your body composition and provides two different opportunities to stimulate your body and maximize each session for its intended purpose.
Remember - We all RISE Together,
~ Team Uprise
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Welcome to the Uprise Nutrition blog!
Our blog's goals are to share fun, informative, and engaging content that will help this industry grow and evolve. Every blog will be focused on the needs and wants of our loyal supporters. We plan to leverage our Nutrition Panel with 30+ years of industry experience to be our subject matter experts. We also will feature guest bloggers and Uprise athlete spotlights to gain many perspectives on all things health, fitness, and wellness.
We offer targeted goal based nutrition programs & training guides along with a full line of supplements and nutrition sprays to the active health conscious individuals who are looking for help living a healthier happier lifestyle or to simply reach specific fitness goals.
So, why Uprise Nutrition?
Our founders and nutrition panel have a passion for health, fitness, & mental wellness. We want to share our experience and knowledge to help people to live a healthier lifestyle.
Read our About Us page for more.
We wanted to create programs and products that we know work! We are committed to an on going effort to be a knowledge leader in the industry.
We believe in empowering the consumer with the knowledge and the right to know what, where, and how their foods and supplements are being manufactured.
All of our products are made in a FDA Registered Facility using FDA outlined "Good Manufacturing Practices", and we are proud it!
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