Posts Tagged ‘nutrition’

Fitness Cutting Guide: how to build muscle while burning fat

Wednesday, September 28th, 2016

Simultaneously lose fat and gain muscle. Can it be done?

Cutting and BulkingGenerally speaking, bodybuilders and certain athletes find themselves going through two training and dieting phases each year: bulking and cutting. For bodybuilders, bulking is a joyous time of the year as they get to basically eat a selection of nice tasting foods, which whilst being healthy for the most part, still are made up of slightly unhealthier choices, with plenty of cheat meals thrown in for good measure.

When bulking, the idea is to build up a calorie surplus so that you basically consume more calories than you’re able to burn off.

This is primarily how muscle mass is grown. Whilst bulking however, it is important bodybuilders still keep an eye on their daily macros because if they consume too many calories, not only will they build muscle, they’ll also find themselves gaining a fair amount of fat in the process, and that is not ideal.

The second phase, they find themselves in, is one which is enjoyable, yet difficult and stressful at the same time – cutting, or fitness cutting as it is sometimes referred to as. At Project Swole we like to refer to this cutting phrase as a shred, as in Project Shred

The idea behind fitness cutting is that they attempt to lose as much fat as possible, whilst maintaining or building as much lean muscle mass as possible. When fitness cutting, a bodybuilder’s primary goal is to become as lean, defined, vascular, and shredded as possible. If these sound like your goals, take a look at our handy fitness cutting guide outlining everything you need to know. (more…)

The 4 Best Types of Whey Protein

Friday, July 22nd, 2016

The 4 Best Types of Whey Protein & Alternatives to Whey

Follow the wheyIt is pretty much widely accepted that to truly build a solid and lean physique, one must make sure they are receiving an adequate amount of protein in their diet. While a solid diet with meals rich in protein, fats, carbs and fiber is important many athletes and lifters choose to add a protein supplement following a workout, like one of these top 5 protein supplements here. For decades now, whey protein has been a mainstay choice of fitness professionals.

Whey is a by-product of cheese making, which is then dried and made into a powdered form. Typically being from cow’s milk, it contains 20% protein. By comparison human milk contains 40% protein. Whey is a huge source of branched chain amino acids, or BCAA’s, which stimulate protein synthesis in the body. It is for this reason that whey protein is so successful at building lean muscle mass.  

After intense training and our bodies have burned up all our fuel is when our muscles need protein the most. By supplementing with a liquid protein source, like whey protein, you are ensuring that you will feed those broken down muscles, rather than them start to feed on themselves. Being in liquid form allows for greater absorption. And whey protein specifically is synthesized over a longer period of time, allowing your muscles to be fed for hours. Whey protein can be taken in four different forms: concentrate, isolate, hydrolysate, & casein. While each has its own benefits, they are all none-the-less extremely beneficial to building the physique you desire.


Nutrition and Fitness Go Hand in Hand

Wednesday, June 15th, 2016

circuit trainingWhen Fitness is the #1 Goal

If you truly want to become fit, there is more to it than just jogging or doing a few sit up every day. As a matter of fact, the food you eat can also cause you not to be fit. The best way to do this is to hire a personal trainer than will help you get a handle on your diet and what you need to know about nutrition in order to become healthier and fit while losing weight or just toning your body.

A personal trainer will not only help you learn about nutrition, but will start you on a fitness program that will fit your own personal goals. Some people without specialized diet requirements may need to hire a personal nutritionist as well, but many trainers, as I personally did, also receive certifications in sports nutrition and other nutritional disciplines in order to offer the most effective diet advice possible and in some cases even write personalized nutrition plans.

In the majority of cases, you will need to start out slow both with diet and exercise, especially if you have not exercised or followed a health eating plan in a very long time. The good news is that you can choose a private, semi-private or group training session so you can train along with a friend and not feel so alone. On the other hand, if you want to work alone with a trainer that can also be accomplished.


Would you “bet” that you can lose weight?

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

An interesting fitness trend that I’ve seen popping up in since around 2010, is the idea of betting on yourself to lose weight. Say you want to lose 25 lbs in 6 months. You might bet $200 on the goal and when you accomplish it, you collect $400.

Diet bettingThat’s a win-win situation, and will help to hold you more accountable for attaining your goals. Who wouldn’t want to lose weight and gain money, at the same time?!

Don’t get the wrong idea, this is not an industry full of gamblers and junkies – in fact it’s just the opposite! These websites and applications offer a social point for each individual to share his or her progress, they offer camaraderie and inspiration that you may never have had nor felt before. Diet betting communities allow you to connect with like minded folks who are committed to succeeding at the same goals as yourself.

Before you gamble WITH your life, gamble FOR your life. Winners on average lose about ten pounds and double their initial investment. Over 40% of participants usually win something and always lose at least a little weight.

There are even incentives for participants to stay healthy. In some cases you become disqualified if you lose too much weight. Dangerous weight loss behavior is flagged for losing, for example, more than 12% of their body mass in 4 weeks.


10 Tips to Manage Cravings with Healthy Foods

Thursday, February 11th, 2016

You are a hardworking person who gets up early, works a full day, exercises, and takes care of the kids at night. Life sure is easy right? Riiiight…

Craving Junk FoodOK, maybe your story is a little different, but most likely you are living a busy life, full of stress, anxiety, and deadlines. While you sit at your desk or dive your car, your daydreams shift to thoughts of salty chips or a smooth, sweet chocolate bar. You most likely are not thinking about healthy foods.

Don’t fret, it’s perfectly normal to have food cravings. When you constantly give in to your cravings and overindulge, is when you pay the price. Go ahead and accept your cravings as part of life, but also be aware that you can take action to prevent going overboard.

Why We Have Cravings

There are a number of reasons that people develop cravings throughout the day. Women tend to develop more cravings more often due to their wide range of hormonal swings caused by female physiology, but men get cravings too… we just don’t talk about it as much. In fact, 91% of women interviewed in a 2007 Tufts University study reported craving certain foods from time to time.

How Much Water Should You Drink?

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

Dr. John BerardiSince the late 1990’s Dr. John Berardi has published 8 scientific abstracts; 15 scientific papers and textbook chapters; presented at nearly 50 scientific, exercise, and nutrition related conferences; and published countless articles online.

His first articles at Testosterone Magazine so many years ago, provided me with the basis for everything I know about nutrition today. Now I will turn some of that knowledge over to you in the form of Nutrition Tips written by Dr. Berardi himself.

Today’s Topic – How Much Water You Should Drink

Drink WaterWater is important for maintaining proper health.

I have always advocated drinking at least a gallon of water a day, but then some media outlets over-hype the fact that drinking too much water can make you sick, and people being to dismiss the importance of drinking water.

I think it all had to do with some radio contest to see who could drink the most water in the shortest amount of time. The fact is that you would have to drink many gallons of water in a short time frame to make yourself sick.

Water IS mandatory for proper bodily function.


How to Gain Lean Muscle Fast

Tuesday, September 24th, 2013

Are you in the market to gain muscle?
Lean Muscle Chick
Building some hardcore muscle—without gaining fat along with it—is easier than you might think.

Here are some tips to start building muscle today.

Pump Up With Protein

Because muscle fibers are made up of many different proteins, protein is the #1 necessary ingredient to build muscle.

One study found participants who ate 20 grams protein every 3 hours significantly increased muscle building potential, compared with those who ate 40 g every 6 hours. [1] So, eating good amounts of protein throughout the day feeds muscles and keeps them raring to go.

The ideal daily protein intake is about 1 g protein per pound body weight. [2] So, a 200-pound man should eat about 200 g protein a day. Of course, this differs depending on individual needs.

The best high protein foods to eat are chicken, turkey, fish, lean beef, eggs, beans, nuts, milk, and cheese. [2]

Many bodybuilders also use protein supplements, which provide a heavy dose of pure protein. Whey protein powder is generally the best choice because it has high protein content and lots of muscle-building branched chain amino acids. [3]

Be careful, though. Protein shouldn’t make up more than 30% of your caloric intake. Too much protein increases risk of kidney problems, dehydration, and other issues. [4]


B Vitamins Enhance Muscle Building

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

Take Your B’s to Build Huge Bis

Few people know the 8 B vitamins by name, but were you aware that they all contribute to the body’s ability to build muscle? They are often referred to as the vitamins that provide immune support and while this is helpful when training hard which can place a stress on the immune system, their role extends far beyond this.

Each plays a role in the metabolism, which is the processing of the foods we eat to ensure the release of energy needed to power muscle function, but also helps to support the nervous system to make co-ordinated movement possible. Here we take a look at each in turn, considering their importance and where they can be sourced from the diet, as well as how else you might be able to top up your intake of these essential nutrients.

Vitamin B1Vitamin B1

Also known as thiamine, this vitamin is needed for the production of ATP, the substance which the body uses for energy release to enable muscle contraction to occur during weight training. It’s therefore no surprise that tiredness can be a sign that you aren’t getting enough of this micronutrient, which can interfere with the effort you are able to put into training.

Thiamine also controls the movement of electrolytes across cell membranes, which is needed for the nerves and the muscles that they control to function. The richest sources of this B vitamin are meats, brewer’s yeast, whole grains or cereals that have been fortified with b vitamins; in many countries it is mandatory that refined flour and white rice have thiamine added to them, as the processing removes the majority of this vitamin.


The K.I.S.S. Approach

Friday, August 30th, 2013

I read a blog post about how Tori Spelling recently lost weight simply by eating a balanced diet. This kind of ticked me off. Not because she is successful using this method, but because a common sense approach like this is news.

I have written about the “evil” diets before, you know the ones that tell you to eat no carbs, or no fat, or all protein and fat… or better yet, only eat this food that we happen to sell. I am not a fan of these, largely because as soon as they are over, the weight comes back on.

The best approach to diet and exercise is the simple one. I love the K.I.S.S. theory of Keep It Super Simple. The bottom line is to always maintain balance. The very second that we lose our balance, we go crashing face first to the floor.


Fructose – Can it Make or Break Your Dream Body?

Thursday, August 29th, 2013


Hidden Flab Alert!

Fructose is the hidden flab and can derail your quest to be a lean mean muscle machine.

So what is fructose?

Fructose is one of the three foundation sugars that are found in our foods. Fructose combines with glucose and galactose to form the sugars that we see on the ingredient lists. When fructose is combined with glucose you get traditional sugar which means that sugar is 50% fructose.

Fructose is also known as the fruit sugar as it is what makes fruit taste sweet and helps to intensify the flavor of the fruit. However, the fructose in fruit varies depending on the fruit. The fruit with the most fructose is the common apple.