Can you believe that 2009 is almost over? This year has gone by so fast, it only feels like last week that we were enjoying the warmer weather, now winter has been and gone and the mercury is on the rise again. With the rise, it’s time to shed the layers and reveal the lean, tight physique that you have been working on all year…
Don’t tell me that you have either lost track of the time, or that your simply ‘not ready’ to reveal your hard work? No one wants to be carrying too much excess in the warmer months. That’s ok though for if this sounds like you, I have a sure fire solution that will help you rip up the mid section in record time!
The Challenge – Abs in 6 weeks!
Let’s face it; we need to get on top of things NOW. The longer we stall or just meander though, the less time we will have to showcase our hard work in the summer sun. So let’s get this underway NOW and devise a rapid plan of attack to achieve instant results!
The ultimate question in any athlete’s mind is how to properly balance his or her intake of nutrients. It’s actually a fairly complex problem, because there are conflicting ideas at work that can confuse even the most dedicated athlete.
For example, you want carbohydrate for energy, but too much carbohydrate can make you lethargic or make you crash. If you focus on a lot of protein, your body won’t have a readily available source of energy because it takes longer to break down protein than carbohydrate.
Athletes need a different type of diet than a weightlifter, because an athlete is interested more in speed and endurance than in bulk. However, most athletes do resistance training as well, and they use up muscle aerobic movement too, so how much protein do they need?
The answer to the question of what athletes should do is based on what is most healthy. Protein is what builds up muscle; fat is needed for your hormones, nervous system, and brain; and carbohydrate is the quickest way to provide energy for your daily activity and to maintain a constant supply of blood sugar to the brain. If you are missing any of these nutrients, or don’t have them in adequate quantities, you will suffer from ill health, or at least less health than you could enjoy.
Whether you are currently a weightlifter or you are hoping to be more active in the future, there are some fundamental differences between your ideal diet and an inactive person’s diet. This is simply a fact, and it’s based on what happens in your body when you exercise frequently compared to what happens in those who don’t.
When it comes to the proper diet for a bodybuilder or weightlifter, there are two factors at work: one is doing what is healthy and will allow you to sustain heavy lifting for an extended period of time, while the other is maximizing the effects of your workouts to have the biggest muscles you can. You probably know that you are going to have to have a unique diet to support your weight lifting routine, but what happens if you decide to stick with an average-calorie diet, as opposed to a higher-calorie diet?
Well, at best, you would be holding yourself back from experiencing all the benefits of frequent workouts. At worst, you would be actively damaging your body without fully repairing it, because you just don’t have enough calories or nutrients to keep up with your level of activity. In this case, you are also more prone to injury, because your body isn’t at its best when it isn’t getting what it needs.
Defining “Enough” Calories
There are a lot of terms tossed around when you are talking about weight loss and health. Thermogenesis is one of those terms that you should get familiar with if you want to have greater success in keeping a healthy weight and looking your very best. There are a few compelling reasons for this. But first, you’re probably wondering what thermogenesis actually means.
Every day, you eat a certain number of calories, and you also burn a certain number of calories. The number of calories burned is based on your metabolic rate and your activity level. Your resting metabolic rate (also called “basal metabolic rate”) is the amount of energy that you expend if you’re not doing any activity. In other words, if you slept all day and had not eaten for twelve hours, you would simply need enough energy to maintain the functioning of your vital organs and nothing more.
Most people do more than nothing (shocking, isn’t it?), but to truly succeed at weight loss and maintain a healthy weight, you have to understand the way calories and your metabolism are interconnected. Taking your resting metabolic rate and adding the kind of activity you do on a daily basis, you’ll determine the number of calories you need. Then, you exercise enough to burn more calories, forcing your body to tap into your fat stores for the remainder of the energy you require.
There is always something on the horizon that promises to be the “next big thing” in weight loss and health. New fad diets and exercise programs turn up constantly. Unfortunately, these rarely are as helpful as they try to make you believe, and the last thing you want is to spend your hard-earned money on books or DVDs that falsely claim to be some sort of breakthrough method for losing weight.
There are plenty of products out there that prey on people’s desire to get “instant results” without any effort. Hopefully, you already know that there is no such thing as a miracle cure. With that fact being understood, there is a way to jumpstart your metabolism and experience significant health benefits at the same time: green tea. You may have heard about the benefits of green tea already, or you may be entirely unfamiliar with them.
Weight loss is really all about how much energy you are using versus what you are consuming (best expressed with the popular “calories in versus calories out” expression). When you break it down this way, it sounds deceptively simple, but it really can be a challenge to lose weight. Green tea extract pills induce a higher metabolic rate in you; the official term for this is “thermogenesis.”
Thermogenesis and Antioxidants
Did you know that most food nutrients are actually absorbed into the blood stream through the small intestine? It’s the first step in getting nutrients and essential elements to the farthest corners of the body and into every cell. The bloodstream acts like a river and carries the nutrition and mineral molecules to the organs and throughout tissue where cells can use them to replicate and produce energy.
It’s a complex process that needs a lot of input in order to work properly. It must work efficiently and productively or else the body will run out of energy simply because the cells are not storing nutrient molecules. Most people know there are different types of nutrients known as protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals and each is transported by the bloodstream. But that’s where the similarity stops.
Different nutrients are broken down and absorbed in unique ways. For example, carbohydrates are first broken down by enzymes present in saliva whereas proteins are first broken down in the stomach and small intestine. Playing a vital role in all of this are elements such as essential amino acids and alpha lipoic acids.
General fatigue and lack of energy are problems every athlete and sports enthusiast must deal with frequently. It’s not much fun to have a short burst of energy and then be unable to endure through the competition or sports event due to exhaustion. But it happens all the time because some people mistake big muscles for a body that is efficiently producing and using energy.
Looking good is much different than feeling good. Just like lifting 150 pounds for a few seconds is much different than lifting strong through a two-hour competition or playing with plenty of energy for a whole game of soccer or tennis. You can tell when athletes get tired too, because they can’t pivot with any speed or respond quickly or even lift their sports equipment with full strength.
So what exactly is fatigue? Why do you get tired and lose energy? Medical researchers have a good understanding now of how the body obtains, stores, and uses energy. It is a complex process that involves oxygen and use of multiple nutrients and elements.
Breaking It Down
Taking nutritional supplements is one of the best ways to enhance a current fitness program or athletic performance, because it takes more than movement and food to get as fit as possible. Supplements such as minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and botanicals made from 100 percent natural products are needed to provide the athlete or sports enthusiast with the elements the body requires for ultimate performance.
For example, Green Bulge manufactured by Controlled Labs is a natural supplement that can be taken regularly to promote creatine production. This enables the athlete to endure intense short bursts of activity without getting fatigued. It is also used by bodybuilders to bulk up muscles. Your body produces creatine but not in enough quantity to satisfy the body’s needs when it’s pushed to physical limits.
There are lots of other products on the market promising the same results, but it’s essential that athletes be very careful about the supplement products used. Green Bulge promotes creatine but it does so by supplying glycocyamine and betaine anhydrous which are natural ingredients for the body. This means the product is safe, natural, easily absorbed by the body, and promotes healthy organs.
Starting With Safety First
In the exercise world, a lot of terms are used by professionals and amateur exercisers. The headlines in the instant weight loss ads scream that you can “burn fat” with little or no effort. The aerobics instructor in the exercise class will try to motivate you by saying “let’s burn those calories by working harder”.
So which is right? Can you burn fat with no effort or does it take a lot of effort or is the truth somewhere in between? The truth is the body gets some of its energy by accessing the energy which has been stored and the storage units include fat cells.
When you consume food, the nutrients include carbohydrates, fats and proteins. Your digestive system breaks down the food into a form that enables the body to store what it needs for survival. There is a complex process involved of course which includes the need for enzymes called lipases. That is why people with digestive problems often add enzyme supplements to their dietary plans.
Though the body will often rely on carbohydrates for energy, the goal of athletes and exercisers is to efficiently use fat stored in the body in addition to the carbs which power the central nervous system. Once the fat has been stored in what are called adipose cells, the body has a method it uses to access the broken down nutrients.
You can find thousands of articles discussing muscle breakdown and how to slow down the process during an intense workout or how to recover quickly after a prolonged session. It all comes down to natural processes whereby muscles obtain the energy and protein needed to work efficiently and maintain mass. In the muscle the two are intricately entwined – energy and protein.
During a workout when you are stressing the muscles, cortisol is produced. The cortisol leads to muscle protein breaking down into amino acids which enter the bloodstream. The amino acids then synthesise glucose in the liver for energy. Naturally, if cortisol levels are too high there will be an excess of muscle breakdown.
A Matter of Preservation
The muscle breakdown process is complex, but it is clear that controlling the cortisol production is one of the best ways to prevent muscle breakdown. Fortunately that is easy to do by taking specific supplements which directly combat the breakdown process. In fact, there are a variety of supplements which can limit cortisol production and provide a number of other health benefits.