Long hours in the gym are most often times coupled with a few sessions of cardio. Your body and mind are all ready conditioned and strong. Workouts are fun and exciting. But every week you dread doing cardio. Sometimes you skip it all together.
Nutrition cannot be overlooked. It is a deciding factor in what your body will look like. Without the proper nutrition you cannot build muscle, gain any strength, nor burn fat. Your body needs the fuel for the fire. In order to have energy you have to feed the furnace with good sound nutrition. Building and repairing the muscle requires proper protein and carb intake.
Apples have always been touted as a great pre workout snack. Consuming an apple within 30 minutes prior to working out is a great way to get some low-glycemic or slow-digesting carbs in. Due to the fact that apples are high in fructose the liver must convert the apple to glucose aiding in the slowing of digestion. Another key factor in apples digestibility is the high fiber content.
Apples provide additional benefits along side carbs and fiber. Studies done by the Nippon Sport Science University and the University of Arts and Sciences discovered that ables provide benefits similar to green tea by increasing strength and endurance, and decreasing body fat.
The teams gave make rats apples or placebos for three weeks. During that time frame the researchers studied body fat, strength, and muscle fatigue. Reported earlier in 2007 in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, the rats given apples had 30% less body fat as opposed to the placebo group. The genes that spur fat-burning within the rats activity was increased due to the consumption of apples.
More than 70 obese male and female subjects were given an ample percentage of apples or a placebo as well for a 12 week period. LDL, total cholesterol, bodyweight, and abdominal fat were measurements taken to provide the data for the study. By the end of the study the subjects who consumed the apples had a significant loss on abdominal fat and bodyweight, as well as lower cholesterol and LDL levels.
Try supplementing your diet with apple polyphenols which come in capsule or pill form. Best taken with breakfast and dinner, as well as a large apple pre workout with your pre workout shake.
An apple a day keeps the fat away!
What’s All This About BMR and Calories
By figuring out how much fuel your body needs to maintain its current weight will tell you how to gauge how many calories you need to either loose or build. Building muscle and losing fat are quite simple. Once you know how much energy your body needs you can then judge how much you either need to cut by creating a deficit or how much you need to add by creating a surplus.
Calculating Your Basal Metabolic Rate
How exactly do you calculate your caloric intake? With a simple formula called the Harris-Benedict principle you can can assess your basal metabolic rate aka BMR.
BMR is the amount of energy your body needs to function. We use about 60% of the calories we consume each day for basic bodily functions such as breathing. Other factors that influence your BMR are height, weight, age and sex.
Step 1: Calculate your BMR with the following formula:
65 + (4.3 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) – (4.7 x age in years)
66 + (6.3 x weight in pounds) + (12.9 x height in inches) – (6.8 x age in years)
Please note that this formula applies only to adults.
Step 2: Incorporate activity into your daily caloric needs, with the following calculation:
Sedentary : BMR x 20 percent
Lightly active: BMR x 30 percent
Moderately active (You exercise most days a week.): BMR x 40 percent
Very active (exercise intensely on a daily basis or for prolonged periods.): BMR x 50 percent
Extra active (You do hard labor or are in athletic training.): BMR x 60 percent
Add this number to your BMR.
The result of this formula will be the number of calories you can eat every day and maintain your current weight.
Tailor Your Diet For Your Goals
By knowing how much fuel you need helps in a major way. Training at the gym with intensity and pushing yourself to the max requires a good bit of nutrition. Make sure you feed the furnace and stoke that fire! Keep a log of what your eating. If you haven’t read Setting The Building Blocks: An Overview Of Nutrition swing on by and take a look.
“Stay away from cardio, its gonna eat away at your muscles!” I think we have all heard that before.”
Is it really as scary as they say. Can it eat away at your hard earned muscle. Or can it benefit you in your training as well as other areas of your life.
Lets take a closer look at cardio.
Cardio Training and Fat Loss
There is as much confusion about cardio as there is about whether or not aliens really exist. Some say don’t some say do! Oy vey I say. Cardio training for fat loss is something I include in my arsenal of awesomeness.
What really makes cardio super beneficial is its effects on fat loss combined with a solid training regimen and a sound nutrition plan. Combining all these lovely little diddys together is what’s going to zap the fat and zip you down the road to building a super duper rocking hot body!
What just a second, there is a slight problem. With the frequency of cardio the body will eventually hit a brick wall and your fat burning progress may just stall. Totally not cool. Keep it interesting, jazz things up a bit.
Super Powered Cardio, High Interval Intensity Training aka HIIT
A great way to shake things up a bit is to partake in a little fun we here at Barbell Academy call High Intensity Interval Training or commonly known around fitness addicts and gym rats alike HIIT.
HIIT is a great way to put a little pep in your step when it comes to the fat burning process. Some benefits to HIIT training are a higher VO2 max which is good because with a higher VO2 max you can burn more fat. Your endurance will increase greatly which will enable you to train harder and longer. Also means you can make love to your lady like you did when you were in high school. Know what I mean cuz.
A combination of steady state cardio training and some high intensity training will help to increase the usage of fat fatty cells for energy thus nearly doubling your efforts. Sweet right.
Along with the immediate benefits of fat loss and increased cardiovascular capacity, implementing cardiovascular training into your life is a great way to increase its overall quality. Playing with the dog or outdoor activities with loved ones all becomes a lot easier.
Don’t be a sissy. Do your cardio and eat your fruits and veggies.