Sunday, November 28, 2010

Pre/Post Workout Diet for Body Transformation

"What's the best pre-workout meal?"  "What's the best post-workout meal?"

These are the two most common questions I get in programs I give in health clubs and gyms.

Of course, opinions differ but here's what I've learned from the best . . .

Before Workout

You can go with whole foods or with a protein shake.  Either way, you want to get .25 grams of protein and .25 grams of carbohydrate per pound of body weight in this first most important meal of the day.  So, you weigh 175 pounds, for example. you want to get 44 grams of protein and 44 grams of carbohydrate before going to the gym. 

Best whole food choices include egg whites, chicken and turkey breast for protein and whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, brown rice or a sweet potato for carbohydrates.

If you don't have time for whole food, go with a protein shake that includes a fast-digesting form of protein like whey or egg protein.  Either way, get the .25 grams of protein and .25 grams of carbohydrate in this first meal.  My first meal of almost everyday is hot oatmeal and Syntha-6 protein powder (by BSN).  Add a little flaxseed, a teaspoon of coconut oil, and some Stevia sweetener -- it's the best meal of my day! 

Before getting to the gym, I also take Arginine as a pre-workout supplement.  This boosts nitric-oxide levels and causes blood vessels to dilate, which allows them to deliver more nutrients for muscle-building during the workout.  I take it in the form of White Flood and start drinking it in a pre-workout drink about 30 minutes before arriving at the gym.  I take this along with 5 grams of Creatine (in the same workout drink) which helps drive fluids to your muscles providing a bigger pump and the ability to lift more weight longer. 

Post Workout

After your workout you want to get another .25 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight and .25 to .50 grams of fast-acting carbohydrate per pound of body weight.  Depending on whether I am bulking or cutting, I vary between .25 and .50 grams of carbohydrate per pound of bodyweight I am carrying at the time.  Again, lean chicken, turkey, egg whites are the best sources of protein.  Fast acting carbohydrates include fruit, fruit juice, even iced tea with sugar added.  I usually eat Ezekiel toast with jelly on it to add fast-acting carbs.

If you take a protein shake after your workout rather than whole food, I suggest using whey and adding a slow-digesting protein like casein to it.  This will help repair muscle tissue broken down in your workout.  Mix dextrose or fructose or some other form of sugar in the protein shake in order to get the fast-acting carbs.

After my workout, I take 5 or more grams of BCAA's (branch chain amino acids) in tablet form.  These also help in muscle recovery.  And, finally, I often take another 5 grams of creatine post-workout. 

That's it.  And it rarely varies day to day.

Train hard; diet harder!


Friday, November 12, 2010

Fitness: It Really Is A TEAM Effort

In response to my blog yesterday, my chiropractor and a critical member of my team, Dr. Jim Bourqe Starr, had this to say . . . I commend it to your review!

"Hi Jim, your chiropractic visit today had many great lessons not just for YOU and the athletes that train under your state of the art program but also for the health professionals that are part of the team of any these serious athletes. It is important to share some of these experiences that with your loyal followers of the Plus 50 Fitness as well as the medical staff who serve them all over the world.

"The chiropractor, trainer, nutritionist, physical therapist or M.D. who has the honor of sharing his/her skills with these athletes under your program must follow a different set of treatment criteria in order to be successful.

"First and foremost, the healer must put his EGO aside and understand he/she is PART of the team and not the HEAD of the team. These athletes like yourself are not just "weekend warriors" or "health club socialites." Your slogan, "Train hard, diet harder" says it all. You and your group are focused, dedicated and serious.

"Second,the health care professional (HCP) needs to understand that THERE IS NO TURNING BACK. The question of quitting or some form of mandatory rest doesn`t exist in the vocabulary of Plus 50 Fitness-type athletes. Therefore, the HCP needs to work within those parameters and seek to offer recommendations that will fit within those guidelines of treatment.

"Obviously, if there are questions of life and death, the HCP needs to lay all the cards on the table, or the athlete may find himself laying on the wrong type of table in a box! What we are dealing with is a measure of professional compromise in order to achieve maximum MEDICAL results but not at the expense of WORKOUT results.

"Finally, anyone over 50 years of age understands that the healing process takes just a tad bit longer than at 21 years of age. Patience and tolerance must be practiced by all members of the team. Working through the injury and/or the pain is a way of life with serious athletes. You and Kelly are serving as living proof of just plowing ahead everytime there is a setback. You both have experienced the truth that not only your training regimen must come in cycles of routines for maximum results but HEALING COMES IN CYCLES as well.

"Once athletes understand and accept this truth, any roadblock or physical setback is simply another lesson learned on this journey of body/mind training. You and Kelly should be commended for what you are offering to the world of athletes over 50. It is a way of life and a way to live healthier and happier.

"I am proud to part of your TEAM and I understand that it is not my job to tell you what to do or not to do but to offer professional advice so that WE may reach a conclusion that will serve the Plus 50 Fitness athlete at the highest level of not only health but of well-being. Looking forward to contributing to your growth."

- Dr.Jim
Dr. Jim Bourque Starr

(Note: Dr. Jim Bourque Starr literally saved my life. I went into his office more than 50 pounds overweight and suffering a terrible dizziness that was ruining my life. He adjusted me in more ways than one which alleviated the dizziness which gave me the energy and desire to get into shape. Without him, there would be no Plus50Fitness.)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Big Switcheroo

During the 6 weeks of FST-7, I put on 6 pounds -- up to 177.8

Between now and New Year's the goal is to see how much of that was muscle and how much was fat.

So, it's back to calorie-restriction for the next several weeks. 


But it has to be done.

The first 5 came off easy, as always.

Now at 172.4 -- on the way to 168. 

Will see how it all looks at that weight.  Hopefully, I won't have to be lighter to get sharp. 

Plan is to lean back down to less than 10% bodyfat (whatever that weight is) and then I'll know the rest was lean muscle added.

And, then what?

And then back to the cycle.

Back to bulking January 1 for 6 - 8 weeks, again on FST-7.  It's the most dramatic mass -gainer we've found.

Only issue now is injury.  Seems my lower back objected to FST-7 and, well, I don't care.

Had a great chiropractic adjustment today via Dr. Jim who said, "You need to lighten and be adjusted more often."

I replied, "I'll meet you half way.  I'll get adjusted more often but not only I am not going lighter, I'm going heavier."

That's the deal.  Sometimes success is just sucking it up.

Train hard; diet harder.