What Time Of the Day Should I Train?

When Should I Train??

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Unless you’re in an organized sport where your training time is predicated upon the sports coach, you have to decide what time you are going to get yourself up to go to the gym. Should it be first thing in the morning or before I go to sleep? Should it be during my lunch break? These may be questions that you ask yourself. But after considering your job, your perceived free time, or your spouse’s schedule, your training goal can be the key that helps you make your final decision. How your body reacts to training times can greatly increase the training effect of your workout program. With this increased knowledge you’ll be equipped to get the most from your training program.

Gaining Muscle

In order for you to gain muscle, you will need compound exercises at a high volume. In order for you to perform this work, you will need to be in a slight calorie surplus to give the body the nutrients necessary to build new muscle tissue while keeping fat at bay.  The time you train can further enhance this effect by supporting your training with the fuel it needs to do more work in the weight room. By choosing to train mid-day or late afternoon, you can assure that you have eaten enough meals to properly fuel the body to train while blunting the spillover effect of training too early. If you train at a high level early in the day then begin to eat, the exercise post oxygen consumption (known as EPOC) will go into effect. This just means that you will have an elevated heart rate all day to the body’s response to repair itself. This could mean that with a higher metabolism you could be spinning your wheels by burning more calories than you are taking in, which would put you in a caloric deficit. Simply put you could be actually losing fat when your goal is to be in a muscle building phase.

Take heed that you want the body to use all of the calories for the surplus that it needs to build muscle. One may not see a problem from training in the morning but take remember that by just continuing to eat more can cause your body to start gaining fat at an accelerated rate, fat that you would then spend months to get off again which could also sacrifice the muscle that you worked so hard to get

Losing Fat

Contrary to gaining muscle, you want to preserve the muscle that you already have while trying to lose as much fat as possible. This is where early morning or even fasted training could be most useful. When you sleep your body is in a fasted state and this is where fat is most vulnerable. When the body senses hunger it releases enzymes that tell you to fuel yourself. If the neural response to eating is not met by actual food from the outside environment, then the body will use its own stores (fat) to keep the body from going into starvation.

When you awaken in the morning on an empty stomach your body is in full gear burning fat. So by training first thing in the morning you can aid in the reduction of fat by making sure the calories you burn from your training session are used to burn fat, not help in the digestion of food from all day. Since caloric intake is the main basis of fat loss, all calories burned should be dedicated to fat loss. Of course, you would use a leucine-rich supplement such as SciVation ‘Quake’ to protect your muscle while training fasted, The EPOC effect will also help by burning more calories, granted you take care of your end of the deal by eating to your specified caloric deficit.

As long as you’re in a surplus to gain muscle, a deficit to burn fat, and you train hard the time of the that you train is not the most important factor. But this advice could be the icing on your cake of achieving your specific training goal.

 

3 Reasons Your Diet Isn’t Working

If you are thinking of beginning a new diet, or you are doing everything right but you are feeling terrible, learn the top three reasons that your diet may not be working.

“Gosh my head is hurting!” This is what my mom called and told me a few days ago. Using a new diet from a well-known company, my mother is hell-bent on being lean and trim for the summer time. The diet she is using has helped her to drop a few pounds, but what she did not know were the health implications that would  come if she did not adjust her approach to nutrition. So what is the problem? Most “diets” that become popular today rely on fads and skimp nutritional information in order to sell a hot new product. What these diets are not intended to do however is make you healthy. If you are thinking of beginning a new diet, or you are doing everything right but you are feeling terrible, learn the top three reasons that your diet may not be working.

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  1. Your Diet is Missing a Macronutrient

Macronutrients are composed of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. In the 1980’s Charles Atkins, the creator of the Atkins diet, made the claim that carbohydrates are the cause of severe weight gain in this country. The ripple effect of that action can be seen today with a milieu of famous diets. Each diet claims that one key macronutrient is the cause of weight gain. If that were the case then you could just drop one macronutrient and be truly healthy right? The truth of the matter is that macros are not the problem. When you severely restrict one type of macronutrient, you lose the benefits of that particular macronutrient. Carbohydrates are your body’s main energy source. So if you are starting to workout to lose weight, why would you stop the body’s main source of energy? A diet with very low carbs can be extremely detrimental and can even lead to death, which was the fate of Charles Atkins himself.

What you should have  is a healthy balance of each macronutrient. Below is a breakdown of each macronutrient and what they are used to do.

  • Fats- promote healthy hormone function and serve as energy
  • Proteins- converted into amino acids when in the body and aid in recovery
  • Carbohydrates- primarily used as energy for the body

When there is a healthy balance between each nutrient, you can ensure that your body is adequately supplied with the nutrients it needs to function properly. Once your body is properly fueled, you will actually be able to recover from the work that you put in when you are in the gym. A simple guide for people who want to lose fat is that

  • Protein should consist of 40-50% of your calories
  • Fats should consist of no more than 25% of your diet
  • Carbohydrates should make up the rest

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2. Your Diet is Extremely Low Calorie

How many times have you heard “I’m on the new 2 peas and a slice of air diet and I have lost 20 pounds in 20 minutes!” I know this is an exaggeration, but is it really? From average joe diets to the diet practices of physique competitors, extreme low-calorie diets are counterproductive and even dangerous. Let’s explain the diet cycle for a second:

  • You are excited to diet
  • You get some crazy low-calorie diet claiming to help you lose a ton of weight
  • You begin the low-calorie diet
  • You feel that you are going to die
  • You binge…. HARD

Does this sound familiar? What is actually happening is your body’s response to stay alive. Your body has what is called a resting metabolic rate. This is simply the amount of calories that you burn at rest. When you consume calories well BELOW this number, your body goes straight into survival mode. Thinking that you are dying, your body sends signals that are recognized as cramping, headache, lethargy, and hunger. These impulses are one of the main factors as to why people binge so hard after an extreme diet. The aftermath is not great either with people gaining upwards of 30 pounds in some cases due to the “rebound effect” (Thats another blog entirely lol)

Do yourself a favor and follow these rules for calories. If you are looking to lose weight, take your current body weight and multiply that number x10. So if you are a 200 pound male then your base set of calories will be 2000kcal (calories). Next you will need to multiply your base calories by your activity level (shown below). THIS number, regardless of what the GURU’s say, should be where you start your diet.

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3. Your Diet is Really a DETOX

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The south beach, lemonade, FIT TEA, etc… all of these “diets” are really detoxes and should be used with extreme caution. These products are extremely profitable and people are sucked in because people do lose weight quickly. I said weight, however I did not say the TYPE of weight. What detoxes are designed to do is expel your body of water and waste that carry toxins. Since most people carry 15-20 pounds of waste in their body at any given time, then it can be proposed that these products do work-but as a detox. If you are using this as a diet then you are on a road to disaster. Prolonged detoxing strips your gut of heathy bacteria needed for digestion. Coupled with the fact that you most likely will return to bad eating habits once those “20 pounds” are off, you will replace your gut with bad bacteria which comes from processed foods. These bad bacteria actually make it HARDER for you to lose weight! Do not be fooled by paid social media models promoting some of these products. Proper nutrition practiced consistently over time is the only proven way to truly see results.

Question: Have you ever been tripped up by these diet blunders? Comment below and let us know!

Escape the Holiday Trap Trap: 3 Tips to Stick to Your Nutrition

 

The holidays are a joyous time in which people get to see family members and eat lots of good food which is latent with sugar, grease, and many other fatty sources that can get you into trouble if you don’t know how to mitigate through this holiday season. We chose to speak out this subject today to start your new week off right with three quick tips to get back on your nutrition regimen. Before we start it is imperative to know that the number on the scale (yes we know you have checked) isn’t  necessarily correct in that with sudden spikes in calories comes water retention, so no need to panic. So put down those left overs and get back on track!

Tip 1: Clear Your Refrigerator

Listen, the thanksgiving holidays are a time when you cook certain foods about once a year, and lets face the facts: these foods are DELICIOUS. With this great food leftover plates are common but this practice could be to your detriment. With those leftovers your thanksgiving cheat meal could turn into a cheat WEEK! What you should do is completely clear your fridge of most of those foods with just enough to make about 20% of your diet. Buy fresh foods that you were already eating on your diet and start fresh. With the leftovers you do keep, use applications such as myfitnesspal to estimate the calories of these foods to make sure they can fit into your macronutrient regimen.

Tip 2. : Intermittent Fast to Start Your Week

Intermittent fasting is a technique that can be used to “reset” your metabolism by reprogramming metabolic and stress resistant pathways within the body. The sharp spikes that one can experience with a huge thanksgiving meal could cause rapid fat gain, especially if a person has already been on restricted calories. By using a short bout of intermittent fasting, you can offset the effects of that meal and give your body a clean slate so to speak.

How to perform

For example, if you want to start your week off right, the night before stop all eating by 8pm and resume eating the next day at noon. The 16 hour period is enough time for your body to return to previous metabolic levels and short enough time to avoid any adverse effects. During your fast you can have water, coffee and tea, but be strong to avoid any foods.

 

Tip 3: Add Some HIIT into Your Life

High intensity interval cardio (HIIT) is just a fancy word for interval training and has been around for ages but has just found new popularity in fitness circles. HIIT training is so effective because of its exercise post oxygen consumption (EPOC) benefits. HIIT training also helps you to preserve muscle at a rate far exceeding long duration steady state cardio. The week following the holidays incorporate 3 20 minute HIIT sessions into your training regimen to ensure that you start the process to shed the holiday fluff.

Types of HIIT Cardio

HIIT can be performed on any type of cardio equipment but we are athletes so we will stick to battle ropes, the treadmill and air dyne wind bike. Try each of these workouts and make sure not to throw up in the process, haha.

Air Dyne

5 min warm up at moderate speed

10 rounds of

20 seconds fast (110rpm or higher)

40 seconds complete rest

 

Battle Ropes

10 Rounds

30 seconds all out intensity

30 seconds rest

 

Treadmill

5 min jog at 5.0

Set treadmill to a 5.0 incline and 10.0 speed

then

10 Rounds 30 second sprint

30 seconds rest

 

Always enjoy the holidays but make sure you you have a game plan. When Christmas rolls around in four weeks you’ll know what to do!!

 

~ Swxller