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fat loss

Drinking Coffee Before A Workout: One Of The Best Pre Workout Drinks

Coffee is by far one of the most consumed beverages in the entire world. Coffee shops are springing up everywhere in America and I am loving every bit of it. I have been drinking coffee for almost 8 years now and have got to experience some pretty delectable cups of “awesomeness.” I guess I would consider myself a self-proclaimed coffee enthusiast. Although I have been drinking it for many years, it has only been about a year since I discovered that coffee was one of the best pre workout drinks. Especially for fat loss.

CoffeeMorning Drinking Coffee Before A Workout: One Of The Best Pre Workout Drinks

(So far my favorite coffee is “Costa Rican Tarrazu” from Mazzaro’s in St. Petersburg, FL. Coming in at second place is “Guatemala” from Stauf”s in Columbus, OH)

Utilizing The Natural Caffeine Prior To Exercise Boosts Fat Loss

I have frequently stated how beneficial it is to work out on an empty stomach. Exercising in a fasted state does wonders for burning stubborn body fat. Well, did you know that 1-2 cups of coffee prior to exercise can increase your metabolism by 15-20%? It first gives you a calorie free surge of energy to initiate your workout. This is especially helpful for those who exercise early in the morning. It also triggers the body to increase the flow of free fatty acids from fat stores. So your body will use both the caffeine and stubborn fat as energy as opposed to “food energy.”

Caffeine Can Help Increase Muscle Tone But Not Size

We know that persistent, hard, muscle contractions, is what causes true muscle tone. We also know that muscle density has more to do with the nervous system than actually lifting weights. Since caffeine stimulates the nervous system, drinking coffee before a workout will increase the “positive” signals to the muscles. This will help you make harder contractions when lifting heavier weights, thus creating more dense and defined muscles. If you want to gain mass and not density, caffeine may inhibit those gains. The reasoning is that too much caffeine in the system has been known to reduce glucose uptake. This can be a problem if you are looking for post workout nutrition to begin the muscle repairing/building process. So if you want to gain a lot of mass, you may want to skip out on caffeine.

The Quality Of Coffee Is Of Utmost Importance

When most people think of drinking coffee it is typically combined with added milk, creamer, sugar, or flavored syrups. So when I speak of drinking coffee before a workout or just in general, it should be understood that I am talking about whole, fresh, organic, and pesticide-free coffee. This is very important because most commercial grade coffee beans are one of the most pesticide contaminated crops available. The packed and ground beans that you typically get from the store have rancid oils and are usually a degraded bean. Caffeine that comes from a “whole food” source is a lot healthier than that of a synthetic source. Synthetic caffeine doesn’t provide the healthy antioxidants that are needed for the body to utilize the effects properly.

How To Know If You Have A Good Bean

A good coffee bean whether it is roasted or freshly ground should have a pleasant smell and taste. If the coffee tastes stale or with a strong bite and doesn’t have a pleasing aroma, you more than likely have coffee that is rancid. Coffee in this state is completely useless and lacks the natural flavanoid antioxidants and proper nutrients. This is why buying organic, pesticide-free, whole beans are the best. It is a night and day difference in taste.

0 Drinking Coffee Before A Workout: One Of The Best Pre Workout Drinks 

(My name is Andy…your name is liar because you’re telling lies! ahahah)


There Are Some Con’s To Caffeine Consumption

1)      Since some people tend to take things to extremes, I wanted to make sure that 1-2 cups of coffee before a workout is plenty and 2-3 cups of coffee on non workout days is fine. You don’t want to be drinking a whole pot a day. I fell in that trap during college.

2)      Pregnant women should avoid caffeine of all sorts. Consuming only 2 cups of coffee can cause complications during pregnancy. This also goes for people with adrenal problems.

3)      Once again, synthetic caffeine can be harmful. It can actually have addictive properties. This is why a lot of people have a hard time giving up soda. The strong combination of sugar and caffeine wreaks havoc on the body. But caffeine is very beneficial when it comes from real, “whole food.”

coffee beans Drinking Coffee Before A Workout: One Of The Best Pre Workout Drinks

(Your body can handle the caffeine if it is whole, fresh, organic coffee, because it doesn’t hit your system the way synthetic caffeine does.)

Some Final Thoughts

Remember, drinking coffee before a workout is only helpful when it is consumed black. Adding milk and/or sugar defeats the whole purpose. If fat loss is your goal try to make sure you begin exercising on an empty stomach. That means you will want to make sure you haven’t consumed anything 4-5 hours prior. You want your body to use fat as fuel and not food. This is why I think coffee is one of the best pre workout drinks. It contains natural caffeine to give you a burst of energy, antioxidants, and a primed nervous system all without the calories.

Note: If you have had some exceptionally good coffee please let me know where you got it and what kind. I love checking out local coffee shops. Maybe later I will make a list of the top places by state. Let the comments roll!

Want A More Attractive Face? Lose The Extra Body Fat

Did you know that you naturally have a more attractive face hidden under that stubborn layer of fat? When you are overweight or obese, you lose a lot of the features that makes your face unique and strong. Take a moment and evaluate some of the prettiest and handsome celebrities, models, athletes, and you will notice that they all have relatively low body fat. Staying lean enhances their face. So if your overall body fat levels are too high, your face will reveal it but in a negative way. A chubby neck seems to blend in with the face while your jaw line and cheekbones are hidden under the extra fat. Not a good thing!

lars burmeister male model 09202010 33 820x1097 224x300 Want A More Attractive Face? Lose The Extra Body Fat

( I will show you what happens to a face when body fat levels are too high within this post)

I Don’t Need Life Insurance…I Need Lean Insurance

I know a lot of people will be able to identify with this because I see it everywhere. I don’t know of anyone that likes it, but so many people carry it. So what is it??? Aaahhh the “double chin.” Having a pudgy face is one thing, but adding the double chin is dreadful. So do you want to make sure you never get that awful face accessory? This is what I call having “lean insurance.” Work to stay lean and fit for the rest of your life will “insure” you from developing a double chin.

Gravity Can Turn That Double Chin Into A Turkey Gobbler

If you continue to allow extra body fat take hold of your body, gravity will eventually have its way with you. Over time the extra fat on your face, neck, arms, belly, legs, etc will sag at an even faster rate. Don’t give it that extra foot hold. Staying fit all year round will help you keep your youthful appearance for a much longer period of time. Think about your high school days! I don’t often mention the college days because that is about the time where most people “blimp out.”

att0034111 Want A More Attractive Face? Lose The Extra Body Fat

(Can you see how Val Kilmer’s cheeks and jaw line are hidden since he gained weight)

What Women Consider Handsome

Women really like a sharp and angular face. This is created when someone has a strong jaw line, chin, and cheekbones. This square jawed look is very masculine and can be found on those who have low body fat. Even though some people’s features stand out more than others, the principle is still the same. Think about some of the “handsome” celebrities. They indeed have these characteristics. Getting lean will make your face more kissable and not used at the expense of others to pinch your pudgy cheeks.

What Men Consider Pretty Or Beautiful

Women’s faces can also be enhanced when they are at a lower body fat. Models understand this when preparing for a photoshoot. Men like a slim face with dominant features but only to a certain extent. I don’t like it when women enter or train for fitness competitions. It’s impressive in the fact that it is difficult to do and requires a lot of dedication. But let’s be honest, it looks terrible and their face take on a very masculine shape. This is not good for the ladies.  If a woman has a more defined six pack than me, I am officially grossed out. End of story! Aim for more suitable levels like Jessica Biel. She is a really fit woman but still has soft and feminine features. Trust me, guys like it.

Attractive Face Want A More Attractive Face? Lose The Extra Body Fat

(Charlize Theron looked terrible after having to gain a lot of weight for “Monster”)

You Can’t Fool Me With That Face

I don’t know too many people that understand this, but did you know that your face and abs are almost in direct correlation? Looking at someone’s face is a dead giveaway to the state of their abs. If someone has a pudgy face with a blurred or almost absent jawline, I can guarantee you they don’t have a toned six pack. It is nearly impossible to have a chubby face and be in phenomenal shape. This is why I can instantly look at someone’s face and be able to determine if they have low body fat.

Style And Fashion Is Sacrificed With Excess Weight

Whether you have 30-50+ pounds to lose or just 10 pounds, you have a much more attractive face under that fat. Think about some great things to motivate you to lose it. Let’s take style and fashion as an example. When someone is lean they have a certain “hipness” to them in regards to style. They are able to wear and “rock” certain clothes that heavier people can’t pull off. This also goes for hairstyles. Lean men and women can go crazy with their hair and can somehow pull it off. If an overweight person does the same, it just doesn’t look right. For example let’s point out bald guys. For those who shave their heads, a chubby face can make you look like the Potato Head man. Meanwhile, a slim guy with a shaved head can still have a certain “GQ” look to them.

russel Want A More Attractive Face? Lose The Extra Body Fat

(Once again, see how a pudgy face takes away from his former masculine one)

Note: I don’t know how many people know this but I recently shaved my head. That is why I brought it up ahaha. I’m still trying to get used to it but I just can’t believe how cold I am all the time! I think I will have to update my “About” picture.

The Sprinters Body:Sprinting Workouts For A Toned Butt And Thighs

Did you know that sprinting workouts shape a much better lower body than traditional butt and thigh exercises? Have you noticed that the sprinters body almost always has a toned butt and thighs? Lunges, dead lifts, squats, leg extensions, kickbacks, and other rear exercises are typically the norm when wanting to shape the lower body. I am not a big fan of these types of exercises because the lower body has more growth potential than its upper counterpart.  Therefore the inclination to add bulk to the hips, thighs, and butt are more likely than building density. This is why I am a firm believer in directing your efforts into some kind of sprinting workout routine over direct leg work.

 Running The Sprinters Body:Sprinting Workouts For A Toned Butt And Thighs

Understanding the Gluteal Fold And Why It Pertains To Sprinting

The transition where the butt meets the hamstring is known as the gluteal fold. A person that has a well developed derriere has a very smooth and clean “glute to hamstring” area. What I mean by “clean” is that the butt should not hang over the hamstrings. When the butt is not developed properly or is carrying too much fat, it tends to sag. You can actually perform a little test to see if your backside needs some work. If you can hold a pencil between the hamstring and butt muscles, then you know your backside is under developed.  To describe the ideal butt while staying within the cleanliness of the site, your backside should be round and full but with a natural lift….not saggy. Sprinting does a fantastic job of lifting the butt without adding size which is crucial for a smooth gluteal fold.

Why I like Sprinting Workouts Over Resistance Training For The Lower Body

I talk a lot about lifting heavy weights for low reps for true muscle tone and density. You won’t gain size as long as you are stopping short of failure and allowing enough time between sets. This goes for both men and women.  Although this principle is true, you can still add mass to the lower body when lifting in this manner. This is due to the higher growth potential in the legs.  Even with lighter weight, squats and dead lifts engage the butt and thighs to a high degree. These two exercises revolved around “time under tension” and this is where muscle mass can develop. This is why I truly believe that sprinting will sculpt and define a much better lower body than resistance training. Sprinting lifts the butt and tightens the thighs without adding bulk.

Cardio Training: Jogging Doesn’t Cut It

Your glutes and legs contract very hard during quick and explosive movements. Jogging doesn’t come close enough to provide the same results. Jogging doesn’t seem to work the butt very well, but sprints do!  Sprinting in an intense manner for short durations provide a lot of quick and hard contractions in the glutes and hamstrings.  Short and quick contractions are key to firming the rear and thighs without gaining mass.

Sprinting Increases HGH

High intensity exercises like sprinting burns major calories after your workout due to the release of human growth hormone (HGH). The metabolic changes in the body are at its greatest under intense exercise and provide the necessary release of the powerful fat burning hormone. This is not the case in less intense activities. Activities like jogging, walking, or normal weight training don’t provide the same benefits. Because of this, you will burn less calories and fat if you don’t include intense exercises along with your current workout routines.

Sprinters Body 300x216 The Sprinters Body:Sprinting Workouts For A Toned Butt And Thighs

HIIT Sprinting Workout Routine On A Treadmill

1) Take a brisk walk on a treadmill for 3-5 minutes to warm up (depending on different treadmills: level 3.0-4.0) 

2) Eventually speed up the treadmill for a good jog for about 1-2 minutes (level: 7.0 – 9.0)  

3) After 1-2 minutes of jogging speed up the treadmill to a light but still tough sprint. You will run in this manner for 30 seconds.

4) Decrease the speed back down to a light jog (level: 7.0-9.0) for 1-2 minutes. If the jog is still a little difficult then decrease the speed even more to catch your breath.

5) After the 1-2 minutes of jogging, keep increasing the speed until you are all out sprinting for as close to 30 seconds as you can. Note: It is natural to gradually decrease in speed when sprinting for this length of time.

6) Alternate every 1-2 minutes between jogging and sprinting for 20-30 minutes. It is important that you keep the same “light jog” level each time after your sprints. You want to make sure you have ample time to catch your breath and regain enough energy to go as hard as you can for the sprints.

0 The Sprinters Body:Sprinting Workouts For A Toned Butt And Thighs

(Simply amazing. It was awesome to watch him on tv during the Olympics.)

HIIT Sprinting Workout Routine Outdoors

If you have the luxury of running outdoors or on a track then this is ideal. I find it much more enjoyable to be able to breathe in some fresh air than to be stuck inside. If you don’t have a track then do your best to find some smooth pavement that is around two football fields in length. This is a range of 200-250 yards (220-275 meters). The sprinting intervals will be very close to the treadmill but with some minor tweaks.

1) Warm up with a light jog or brisk walk for 3-5 minutes

2) After your warm up, increase your speed to a faster jog for 1-2 minutes. This is done to “prime” the legs. You can extend the time until you feel comfortable to begin sprinting.

3) The running start: You will transition your jog into a 100 yard sprint for about 10-20 seconds. Note: Gradually jogging into an all out sprint will help reduce the chance of pulling a muscle in the beginning of your workout.

4) Decrease your speed back down to a light jog for 1-2 minutes.

5) Sprint as hard as you can for 30 seconds. Note: Before your sprints, try to aim for a 5-7 second “faster jog” to allow for a smooth transition (the running start).

6) You will alternate sprinting and jogging for 15-20 minutes.

Note: Sprinting intervals are tough. It is natural for you to be out of breath after the first 10 seconds of sprinting. You will also begin to decrease in speed very quickly. Just keep working at it and you will eventually be able to sprint for much longer durations.

Steady State Cardio For Additional Fat Loss

The only time I recommend steady state cardio is when it is supplemented after some form of high intensity intervals. The moment your sprinting workout routine is complete, jogging for 10-20 minutes for a light to moderate pace will really help burn off that last bit of stubborn body fat.

Some Final Thoughts

Sprinting workouts like this should be done 3-4 times a week. Implementing intense cardio will transform your body in more ways than you can imagine. It boosts whole body fat loss while giving you a toned butt and thighs. This is why a sprinters body has the complete package.

Note: I highly recommend going into each workout on an empty stomach and waiting at least 1 hour afterwards to eat. This will maximize HGH release.

Stress And Weight Gain: How Money And Fat Loss Are Connected As The Top Cause Of Excess Stress

Every day life can be very stressful.  Stress can come from so many variables that it can be tough to handle it all.  If stress is not handled properly, it can lead to weight gain, disease, depression, and all out emotional break downs.  Unresolved stress can also be damaging because it has a building block effect. One or two problems can lay a foundation for other minor issues to build upon.  The next thing you know, you have built an entire city of stress from just two bricks.  I have found that the two most powerful and negative bricks that lay the groundwork for stress and weight gain is money and… ironically, excess body fat.

Money And Fat Loss Stress And Weight Gain: How Money And Fat Loss Are Connected As The Top Cause Of Excess Stress(Beautiful New York City skyline)

The Evil Combination Of “Less And More”

Food and money may seem like two separate entities in life, but you would be surprised how involved they really are.  It is almost like a trap that you can’t seem to escape from.  This trap comes in the form of a simple concept. It takes money to buy food!  Wow, someone better call “Ripley’s.”  Food is a necessity just like shelter, but the trap comes in the form of something a little different.  We stress over not having enough money and complain about having too much body fat.  Having less money with more fat….when is it going to end?

Poor But Obese

In America you are given options and tools to try and eat healthier, but health foods almost always cost more.  People have no problem spending extra money on healthy items, but never consider eating less.  We spend huge amounts of money in the fitness industries through weight loss programs, diet books, trainers, health clubs, with the intentions of losing fat. They have all adopted “healthy” eating plans that are either very detailed or extremely complex…but we still can’t seem to eat less. It’s a circular trap, and we wonder where all our money went!  I hope you can see how the bricks are forming through the stress of money and fat.

We Hate Excess Fat But Are Paying Hefty Premiums To Keep It

Excess body fat is nothing more than a result of overconsumption and emotional eating.  It doesn’t matter if it is all from “health” foods or not.  Too much body fat is indicative of overspending and overeating on food. Remember, somebody is profiting from this vicious cycle.  The food industry is a multibillion dollar industry, and they are profiting from your stressful eating habits. If you have too much fat, you are paying too much money…which causes more stress and weight gain.

What Would You Do With A Few Thousand Dollars

Let’s take a moment and evaluate an average Americans work week in regards to food.  When lunch time rolls around, it is not uncommon for people to go out and spend 10-12 dollars for their meal.  To take it a bit further, it is also not uncommon for people to do this every day for every lunch.  If you take 10-12 dollars and multiply that by 5 days a week for a whole year….that is 2,600-3,120 dollars spent on just lunch. If you skipped lunch even once or twice a week, you would save quite a bit of money and even prevent more body fat.  Saving thousands of dollars over the years that are not spent on something that will contribute to more and more fat can be a very liberating feeling.

Eliminate The Stress Of Money And Fat With A Two-Edged Sword

You would be amazed how quickly you can reverse the equation by taking the issues head on.  Let’s first start by understanding the amazing financial advantage by learning how to eat less.  If you are not spending your money on the very thing that is contributing to your weight gain, money increases.  While more and more money is added to your pockets, losing weight comes along with it.  Now the equation has flipped in your favor.  Excess stress and weight gain is minimized so therefore the worries of money has been alleviated while your waistline is getting slimmer.  This can cause more self confidence and motivation to stick with it and not look back.  You no longer live to eat, but eat to live.  Now you are in a much better position to address the minor stresses in your life since the “The Big 2” have been slain.

I Don’t Eat That Much But I’m Still Fat

Now that the holidays are over, the new year is usually started with some kind of diet and exercise resolution.  All the unwanted pounds have added up and you are sick of it.  The first solution I always turn to when losing weight is by eating less.  Wow!….what a concept.  It is such an easy solution but it can be the most extremely difficult path to follow.  The vast majority of people will dash to the closest gym and workout like dogs but still find it difficult to shed those winter pounds.  Some sneaky little problems people tend to ignore or might not even realize that can become a hindrance to dropping the weight is the fact that they are underestimating how many hidden calories consumed.

3779112 f520 I Don’t Eat That Much But I’m Still Fat

(Oh coffee…how I love you!)

The Average Diet

I am in great shape and only eat 2-3 meals a day with water or coffee to drink. I also fast about two times a week so that I am constantly creating a caloric deficit.  Even though I love food, my fasting days make me feel energized and more alert.  Now, the average person eats roughly 3-4 meals a day with snacks and drinks scattered throughout.  When a person thinks of the word “meal,” the first thing that comes to mind is breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  The term “snacks” is usually anything that is consumed outside of breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  Drinks for the average American consist of either 2-3 sodas a day, sports drink, Kool-Aid, iced tea, or some kind of other fruity type beverage.  Some may only consume 1-2 types of drinks, but it is not uncommon for someone to consume all of them listed within a given day. So how does this all add up.

You Only Eat 3 Meals A Day…But It Might Actually Be 6-8

If you are having a hard time losing weight, it’s more than likely due to a hidden factor that is causing excessive calorie consumption.  Well I am going to uncover that “hidden” problem so that you will be able to identify it when trying to lose some pounds. One of the “hidden” problems is with the term “meal.”  Most people wouldn’t consider a cookie, muffin, soda, chips, etc as a meal.  Those items are often viewed as snacks.  Well a meal is actually considered to be anything that has the caloric value comparable to an apple.  Now an average meal should be around 300-600 calories.  If you have 3 average meals a day, you are looking at a range of around 1,200-2,000 calories.  Most people would do very well sticking within that range, but it’s the additional snacks and drinks that demolish the diet.  This is why I consistently hear people say “well I don’t eat that much but I still gain weight.” They aren’t counting additional foods or drinks consumed.

Snacks And Sodas Are Usually The Culprits

Like I mentioned before, most people would never consider a cookie, muffin, soda, etc as a meal even though it could easily have 300-500 calories. Remember, everything that is consumed matters when trying to lose weight.  All the snacking that is done outside your regular 3 meals a day, can easily rack you up an additional days worth of calories.  This is the biggest reason people fail to lose weight.  Something to keep in mind…you will almost always “under-calculate” how many calories you actually consume.

Areas To Evaluate Overeating Or Improper Mindsets

1)Small snacks can be very high in calories–  A common mishap is snacking on food and high sugar drinks that are small but pack a huge punch in calories.  Even healthy items like nuts can sometimes be a problem. Yes, they are good for your body but can damage fat loss efforts due to their high caloric content in just a small handful.  The difference is not sitting down with a bag of nuts while watching tv. It is not uncommon to eat over a half a days worth of calories in one sitting. Other small items to look out for are cookies, muffins, cake, chocolate candies, Little Debbie treats, chips, etc.  A lot of people can snack on these and not even leave a dent in their stomach.  This is why snacking on these kinds of treats can easily damage your fat loss efforts.

2)Large meal portions– Obviously Americans are “Kings” when it comes to portion sizes.  If we don’t have a plate full of food the size of a station wagon…then we aren’t satisfied.  This may be one of the hardest areas for people to show some discipline.  It can be very hard not to go for seconds when the meal tastes amazing.

3)Extra Workouts– Another little rule that will save you a lot of energy, time, and work.  “You can’t outwork a bad diet.”  It doesn’t matter how hard and often you workout, you can still get fat.  People still think that working out allows them to overeat.  Could this mindset be the reason why we see so many “slightly chubby” trainers as well as other daily gym goers?  If you are still consuming more calories than what you burn, you won’t lose weight.  It is way more difficult to burn 1,000 calories exercising than it is to eat 1,000 calories.  I see this problem and mindset all the time.

0 I Don’t Eat That Much But I’m Still Fat

 0 I Don’t Eat That Much But I’m Still Fat

4)Health Foods– This is another important factor to consider. It doesn’t matter how healthy a certain food is…if you are eating too much you will have difficulty losing weight.  It doesn’t matter if it is a “special healthy shake” or an organic whatever, you won’t lose weight if you keep taking in more calories than what you burn.

 0 I Don’t Eat That Much But I’m Still Fat

*It is a lot harder to over indulge on fruits and vegetables because they do contain fiber and a lot of water which will keep you full.

You Don’t Have To Deprive Yourself: Flexibility Is The Key

I can’t stress this enough.  When fat loss is your goal, you MUST count everything that goes into your mouth.  I don’t mean to literally count the calories you eat.  Just be aware that everything that is eaten matters.  In order to have a successful weight loss plan, there needs to be flexibility that allows you to enjoy your food without being deprived.  For example you might eat pizza for dinner every Saturday because your family all come together for this particular meal.  We know that most pizzas are very high in calories.  So how do you make it work in your fat loss goals? Fast the day before or try and eat very little.  You can also pig out on your favorite desserts at a party.  Just make some adjustments the next day.  Eat only 1-2 meals for the next few days.  It doesn’t even have to be that extreme.  Once again, fasting 1-2 times a week can take care of those issues. These are all little ways to keep your calories in a deficit.

Why A Pre Workout Snack Isn’t The Best Idea To Cut Body Fat

This is a shorter post, but this topic really needs to be addressed right away. One of the biggest mistakes people make in the gym is NOT preparing their body to cut body fat.  I would say that a large majority of people are using a pre workout snack as “fuel” to get them going. This fuel may come from the calories in shakes, sports drinks, energy drinks, or other types of food. So why are pre workout food/drink calories a bad idea?

3041566199 5da48067d41 Why A Pre Workout Snack Isn’t The Best Idea To Cut Body Fat

 What The Body Stores As Energy

I’m sure you have heard this a lot, but the body stores fat as an energy reserve. So what is so important about that statement? Well it means “everything” if you want to make sure you are optimizing fat burning potential!  So this means that your body will not burn fat if it still utilizing “food energy” stored in the muscles.  So, the body will only burn body fat once “food energy” has been used up.  Don’t forget this! Food energy will always be used up first.

Carbohydrates=The Main Fuel For Energy

Carbohydrates give you energy. It is one of the main fuel and energy sources that the body uses.  This food energy is stored in the muscles as a sugar called glycogen. Any time you workout the body will burn the stored food energy.  Well, what happens when there is no more food energy to be burned?? 

Body Fat Will Be Used For Energy

 When your body has no more food energy, its only source left is to burn the fat reserves. If your body is consistently filled up with “food energy”, you will find it very difficult to cut body fat. Don’t make this mistake. So how do you go into a workout in the best fat burning condition?

Workout  On An Empty Stomach

If you want your body to burn fat and not food calories, then I suggest to NOT consume any calories 4-5 hours before your workout.  I see this mistake all the time.  Begin your training on an empty stomach. Consuming a protein shake, carbs, or a sports drink right as a small pre workout meal is the worst thing you can do.

Note: Your metabolism isn’t going to slow down and you won’t lose muscle. This theory might be one of the biggest lies in the fitness industry. Skipping meals or even fasting will not hurt you, but will actually benefit your tremendously. This is the whole idea about intermittent fasting that I consistently point to on this site.

Now The Body Is Prepped

Now that the body is prepped to maximize fat burning, you can now begin your workouts knowing that excess fat reserves will be used for fuel. The type of workout you choose really doesn’t matter at this point. You just want to make sure you are preparing each workout the same, which is in a slightly fasted state.  Ever since I ditched my pre workout snack, it has helped me to stay lean all year round. A simple change of working out in a fasted state has made such a big impact for me in regards to losing stubborn body fat.

Note: If your workout is specifically dealing with strength training or just fat loss, then wait at least an hour post-workout to consume any calories.  If you are mass building, then you will want to consume post-workout calories right after training. (that still isn’t set in stone)

High Intensity Interval Training Workouts And The HGH Flush

In a previous post I introduced my readers to a simple form of high intensity interval training workouts (HIIT) for fat loss and since then I have had many questions about it and how it works. I’m going to dive right in and clarify HIIT with an added bonus.

stiller High Intensity Interval Training Workouts And The HGH Flush(Some people haven’t experienced the HGH flush since they played dodgeball in junior high! By the way…Ben Stiller is my favorite actor)

Want A Cardio Program That Makes Your Body Burn Fat?

When intense aerobic exercise is performed in a specific manner, your body will release Human Growth Hormone (HGH). This is your own natural fat burning hormone.  This is the very concept of what High Intensity Interval Training does for your body. I’m sure you have seen a lot of media press about athletes and high profile rappers using HGH substances but this is not what I am talking about.  You don’t need to mess with that stuff because HGH is naturally produced in your body.  I will show you how it can be utilized.

Increase HGH-Burn More Fat

Research has shown that increasing HGH will indeed obliterate fat.  There have also been a lot of studies in regards to HGH slowing down the aging process but I will have to leave that issue for a future post. I want to stick to my main point of how an aerobic workout program like HIIT will have your HGH levels skyrocket! Let’s first get to the program.

A Typical Standard For High Intensity Interval Training Workouts

1) Walk on a treadmill for 5 minutes at a moderate pace (between 3.5 and 4.0 on most treadmills)

2) After 5 minutes, speed up the treadmill to a jogging pace for one minute (start at 7.0 or 8.0)

3) After one minute of jogging, slow back down to your set moderate pace (somewhere between 3.5 to 4.0 as discussed before)

4) After one minute of moderate, speed up the treadmill to your previous jogging pace, but this time add .5 to the speed (so if you first did 7.0…now you are   going to set it at 7.5)

5) After one minute of jogging, return to the same set moderate pace for one minute.

6) Alternate every minute between jogging and walking for 20-30 minutes…making sure that you use the same walking speed each time, but increase to jogging speed by .5 until you can’t jog any faster for one minute.

To take more advantage of the natural fat burning state your body is in, continue with 10-20 minutes of steady state cardio.  This will burn off the last pesky and stubborn bits of body fat.

*This is the only time I would recommend steady state cardio. Remember specifics!

*If you are doing HIIT after strength training, aim for only 10-15 minutes. 30 sec sprint, 90 second walk/jog

-You will notice early on that the intervals at the beginning won’t be so hard.  As time goes on it will become a lot tougher. Once you work your way up and are in better shape….. sprinting on the treadmill will be the way to go.  Sprinting will take care of that last bit of body fat. I truly believe that every single person will burn fat if they stick with this type of aerobic program.

The HGH Flush

Your body will naturally release HGH when you are working out above your aerobic threshold. This is what happens when working out in a HIIT fashion.  To further increase the release of HGH, make sure you are training on an empty stomach.  Studies have shown that if you don’t consume any calories 3-4 hours before training and one hour after training, will indeed maximize the effects.  I’m not sure who coined the term “HGH Flush,” but it fits accordingly.  I have only heard a few people discuss this, but it is a good indicator of HGH release.  A good way to know if you have experience the HGH flush is to observe your skin.  When you are short of breath and your skin is red and hot to the touch…you have achieved the HGH flush.  This is what you are trying to experience every time you work out in this fashion.

Note: This program is the basic of the basic of HIIT.  There are “MANY” different types of high intensity interval training workouts that don’t use a treadmill.  I wanted to introduce HIIT  because many people have never experienced this type of routine. I will provide more HIIT routines and options in later posts.

I’m Addicted To Food And Why Can’t I Stop Eating:Why Friends Can Negatively Influence Fat Loss

Think for a moment when you have been in a position where you are dining with  friends and this scenario arises.  You are sitting in a restaurant and have already made a conscious decision in choosing a meal that won’t rack up a whole days worth of calories in one sitting.  You open the menu and find yourself salivating over the picture of a triple-decker cheeseburger with endless garlic fries and soda.  The battle of the mind begins.

i cant stop eating Im Addicted To Food And Why Cant I Stop Eating:Why Friends Can Negatively Influence Fat Loss

You have been doing a great job with intermittent fasting,  strength training, HIIT cardio,  and have all been kicking your butt.  You have been seeing amazing results from week to week and want to continue into the next week on a positive note…..so you decide eating a meal on the lighter side.  In your mind it’s a done deal and you feel good about it.  But before you open your mouth, all your friends have blurted out their orders of an appetizer the size of a spare tire, a triple-decker cheeseburger, and the two foot brownie sundae for dessert.  While handing the menus to the waiter they turn in your direction, anxiously awaiting a decision.  Without even thinking about it, your initial decision turns to “I’ll have what they are having,” followed with a little bit of remorse of “why can’t I stop eating.”

Is There A Reason Why I’m Addicted To Food? Why Pals Shape One Another’s Health Behaviors

Do you remember junior high lectures about how strong peer pressure can be?  Of course most of the topics were in directed towards more serious things like sex outside of marriage, alcoholism, drugs, tobacco, etc.  If your friends are dabbling or diving into these acts of behaviors, typically your behaviors will model it. Research has found that areas like these are considered socially contagious behaviors(it is thought that food addicts grab hold of these habits). So contagious that evens a small group of friends that decide to get a flu shot(despite how harmful and ineffective they are) make big impacts on others deciding to get one even though they never planned to in the first place.

So What Does This Have To Do With Diet?

As you can see, your friends’ health decisions have a weird way of influencing us.  Sometimes without even knowing it!  I like to call it “The (Sundae) Ripple Effect.”  Having a close friend who’s packing on the pounds left and right can make you almost 60% more likely to do the same.  Research shows that how much you weigh directly correlates on who you hang out with.  James Fowler,Ph.D and Nicholas Christakis,M.D. both studied social networks for about ten years and have found that “consciously or unconsciously, people look to others when deciding what and how much to eat, and how much weight is too much.” What they mean by this is best described in the previous scenario in the restaurant.  You had your mind made up about what you were NOT going to order and had no desire to even glance at the dessert menu.  That all changed when everyone else ordered the colossal dinner package.

We May Seek Relationships That Influence to Indulge

I am going to come out and say it….women are the worst culprits when it comes to this.  Some of you ladies may be laughing because you know it’s true.  Not every day do you hear about a guy calling up a buddy asking him to come over so they can eat out of the same carton of ice cream because he had a crummy day at work.  Women are notorious for this.  Many women have “junk food and I can’t stop eating friends” that they call up on any given time of the day to say “I had a terrible day, do you want to come over and fry up some cheese sticks and polish off a package of Oreo’s.  That would make me feel a lot better.” 

Being A Copycat Is Not Always A Bad Thing

On the reverse side of the issue, research has also shown that you can pick up “good” habits from friends.  If your group happens to be eating just an appetizer as their meal, do you want to be the one who strolls in and orders a six course feast?  Most people will want to behave appropriately to leave a good impression on those around them.  This is also the case when friends start eating right, eating less, stop eating junk food, and weight train consistently, can rub off on you and positively impact you to do the same. Of course women typically will take this idea to the next level.  If there is competition between two women, whether it is over a man, school, work, fitness, etc-they use “under eating” as a weapon.  When women compete to gain an edge, they will most likely choose a smaller or lighter meal than their rival.  It is a weird way of showing the other person that they are winning.  Researchers have also found that even  if a women hasn’t ate anything after a couple days, will still eat as much or even less than their competitor.

Friends Can Also Try To Sabotage Each Other

Let’s say you have been away from the gym for years and your diet has fallen by the wayside.  You decide to take positive action by getting your butt in gear by working out and getting your diet in control.  Friends might come along and pressure you into skipping your workouts or influencing you to order the cheese fries over your original decision of a salad. The reason for this…….they don’t want to be reminded of their own struggles with weight by watching a healthy eater make careful choices” says Susan Bowerman of UCLA’s Center for Human Nutrition. “We want them to join our ‘Im addicted to food’ club.”

I Am Not Saying Your Friends Are Evil

I wanted to make a clear point that I am not here to tell you to go and find different friends.  The whole point of this article is to make you aware of your surroundings and how friends can influence your fat loss goals.  You can still be in charge of your fat loss despite what your friends are doing and saying. Being able to recognize the negative influence can give you the leg-up on how to handle these obstacles head on and turn them into something positive.  This will help you battle against the “why cant I stop eating” syndrome.Like I said before, your friends may not even know they are doing it.  That is the point.  You never know, your good habits may end up being the positive influence on your friends to get fit.

Starvation Mode Doesn’t Exist

iStock 000011280484XSmall Starvation Mode Doesn’t ExistThe theory of Starvation Mode is something that fuels Obsessive Compulsive Eating in North America and throughout the world.

To use a very basic definition, Starvation mode is when your metabolism supposedly slows down when you don’t eat enough calories. More often than not this definition is used to support very complex diet programs.

How Do These Popular Diet Plans Come Up With These Ideas??

These diets will tell you that not eating enough food will cause you to store more fat. Right after delivering this pseudo-science message of fear they then tell you the only solution is to keep eating, and here is the catch, you must eat the special foods they recommend.

This is just another example of fear mongering and confusion created by the food, diet and supplement industry that ultimately leads to obsessive compulsive eating.

They are actually trying to tell you that eating less food won’t help you lose weight, and in fact might actually cause you to gain weight – Fear mongering at its best.


So Much Contradicting Information Is Enough To Pull Your Hair Out!!

The truth is a large body of scientific research shows you can eat very low calories for extended periods of time with no change in your metabolism and, no decrease in muscle mass, as long as you do some form of resistance training.

This is one of the major reasons why so many people are afraid that eating too much food or too little food will have a negative effect on their metabolism.

In my opinion the scientific research is clear, you can eat very low calorie for an extended period of time. As long as you do some weight training the only thing that is going to happen is an impressive amount of fat loss.

And if the existing body of research wasn’t enough to convince you, here is more proof that you can lose significant amounts of weight without losing muscle mass or damaging your metabolism as long as you are using resistance training as part of your weight loss plan.

An Interesting Study To Take Note

In a study just published in the Journal of Obesity, researchers examined the effects of losing 25 pounds on 94 women who either

A) Followed a resistance training workout program

B) Followed an aerobic training program

C) Did not workout at all

These women were asked to follow a diet consisting of 800 Calories until they reduced their BMI down to less than 25 (The average 25 pounds of weight loss). The women continued this diet for as long as 5 months straight (not something I would personally recommend without being medically monitored).

The researchers found that the women who were following the resistance training workout program maintained their Fat Free Mass during the time they were on the diet. This means that even though they lost 25 pounds they were able to preserve their muscle mass. Therefore all 25 pounds that these women lost was fat!

No Metabolic “Slow Down” Here

They also found the group of women who were following the resistance training workout program preserved their metabolic rate. In other words they did not see any metabolic “slow down” as a result of losing 25 pounds, or from being on a 800 Calorie per day diet for 5 months!

Interestingly, the researchers found decreases in Fat Free Mass in the women who did not workout AND in the women who performed aerobic training.

More evidence that resistance training while following a weight reducing diet program can preserve lean mass and metabolic rate.

This is yet another example of why the combination of  intermittent fasting and resistance training can help you lose fat without losing muscle or lowering your metabolism.

How To Stop Emotional Eating:Compulsive Overeating Disorder Or Common Daily Occurence?

iStock 000006087827XSmall 210x300 How To Stop Emotional Eating:Compulsive Overeating Disorder Or Common Daily Occurence?I am the worst culprit when it comes to emotional eating.  I used to eat when I was bored, sad, happy, you name it.  Other times I would eat  because I was simply in close proximity to the refrigerator even though I just opened it 20 seconds ago! I know a lot of people can relate with me on this one so I figured I would give some helpful tips on how to stop emotional eating.

As I Am Writing This… I Am Wondering What Is In The Refrigerator???

This kind of eating is often known as emotional eating and can be extremely hard to break when trying to lose fat.  Let’s be honest… life happens and we tend to turn to food as a source of comfort.  Although it may sound normal for people to do this, it can slowly catch up with you and develop into a bad case of compulsive overeating disorder.  People do NOT gain a lot of weight overnight.  One stressful year not handled correctly can cause someone to gain more than 50 lbs without them even realizing it.

Here’s How To Tell If Your Body Really Needs Food

Real Hunger: 1)It grows gradually  2) You’ll eat anything  3) Food can wait  4)You stop eating when you are full   5) You feel good after eating   6) You feel energized

Emotional Hunger: 1) Hits suddenly  2) You crave a specific food (usually high in fat or sugar)  3) Needs to be satisfied NOW!    4) No amount of food fills you   5) You feel guilty after stuffing your face    6) You feel heavy and bloated

I battle with emotional eating all the time.  I am not going to sit here and try and say that it never happens, but I do something proactive when it rears its ugly head.  Here is a few ways I keep myself on track.

You Have No One To Blame

1) Own up to the fact that, if left unchecked, emotional eating will lead to serious weight problems! There is no way around it! Simply put, emotional eating is the number one saboteur of weight management. Because everyone at one time or another has used food as a coping mechanism, it is important to understand that emotional eating is a very real problem. Whether you eat to avoid boredom and loneliness or to medicate stress and anxiety, here are the key steps to defeat emotional eating:

A) Connect your weight, self-image and eating patterns to the quality of your life

B) Commit to exercise, healthy eating    habits and change in perception

C) Choose not to wear you pain (e.g. unwanted pounds).

2) Find an appropriate outlet for your stress, instead of eating. This can include anything from taking a brisk walk (This is my holy grail) , journaling, running in place, squeezing a stress ball, or lifting weights. Depending on your lifestyle, you can choose the stress buster that works best for your needs. If you already keep a daily journal, it is important to focus on what you are thinking and feeling during moments of great stress. It is also very important to make observations about food cravings. These observations will identify your triggers as well as your drug of choice–the “comfort food” you typically desire.

3) Give a reason to keep your fat loss goals in mind that drives you to stay in the best shape of your life….. like looking good for a dream cruise/beach vacation,  high school class reunion, etc..

Note: There are plenty of “how to stop emotional eating” tips on the net but I have found these to work exceptionally well.  You are addressing the in’s and out’s of the root cause of unnecessary eating. If you still can’t crack the problem, there is more than likely a deep root to the cause of your eating habits. You may have considered yourself as a likely candidate to have a compulsive overeating disorder, but I found that there is more to the equation. I highly suggest reading a post I wrote called “The Phase One Diet: The Only Proven Antifungal Diet To Combat Both Disease And Weight Gain” as well as “Is There A Fungus Link To Weight Loss