Today you will often see in any gym around the world people mixing and drinking protein shakes. Consumed by athletes, bodybuilders and many gym goers. The question is, do you need to seek out extra protein from protein powders to get that healthy lean look? Or is it all a marketing scam to get us to spend extra money on something we may not need?
Pros of protein shakes: Protein is likely to satiate you for a long period of time and may make you consume less. It may – (in combination with regular resistance exercise) result in leaner muscle mass. Convenience, a protein shake takes less time to prepare and can be consumed on the go. Easy to add to and mix in with a smoothie.
Cons: Most protein powders are highly processed, potentially causing health issues to the liver and digestive system if consumed too regularly. Protein shakes do not give your body everything it needs. Most people will likely already exceed their protein requirements and will easily meet their increased protein requirements with exercise using whole foods such as red meat, poultry, eggs, dairy, beans, tofu and nuts Tips when investing in Protein powders: Always check the ingredients. Stay away from: sunflower oil, corn syrup, sucralose, and anything you cannot pronounce! For example, whey protein should just contain whey, and nothing else. Do not attempt to replace real food with any processed product, regardless of how good it is! Have a reason and be clear why you are using any supplement. If you are thinking you are doing it because everyone else is doing it…then this isn’t a good enough reason. You are unlikely to tone and develop your muscles if you don’t put in the hard work of regularly exercising and strength training in a smart way. Whey Protein Alternatives: If you're looking to build muscle on a plant-based diet, a vegan protein supplement could come in useful. Hemp, Pea, and Rice proteins are good alternatives for vegans, lactose intolerant and gluten free.
Conclusion: Protein is essential to the body, and most people are, or should be aware that it is best one gets this from whole foods. If health is your goal, then I am suggesting you to not solely rely on them as a replacement for whole foods. I personally don’t think we need protein shakes to achieve a healthy-looking body and to feel our best, but they could benefit some in today’s busy fast paced world. Whichever your choice, like anything, everything in moderation!
When it comes to food which criteria do you use when it comes to shopping? Convenience? Price? Quality?
Most people will eat food based on the taste and the price. The emotional feeling that one gets out of eating is likely put above everything else, rather than how much value or energy a food will add to the person’s health in the short and long term.
Many people live a fast-paced life short on time where their job takes priority over their health. Adding to this long hours spent sat at the desk plus many hours between eating, therefore don’t live in the moment and experience what they fuel themselves with. The crucial point here is we should look at our relationship with food and base our choices around the benefits it gives us.
If we want healthy and disease free lives a starting point is to look at valuing the health benefits and consequences of our choices. The only way we can perform to our best in absolutely everything we do is to make better choices in how we fuel and move our bodies, at least most of the time. The clear majority of people who train in the gym will try and outrun their poor diet to at least some degree, hence the reason many people lose interest in the gym, due to little or no results. Another way to look at this is to think about how many times we eat a week in comparison to how many times we partake in physical activity.
During life, our bodies take a lot of physical stress, due to being inactive or over active. Performing the wrong exercises in the gym is common place in society due to sedentary lifestyles and jobs, causing our muscles to be out of balance. Poor posture through hours of sitting causes the lower lumbar region to flatten over time and per research done in 1995 by a Dr. Norbert Boos 76% of people without back pain have a disc bulge in the Lumbar region. The significance here is that when we spend our days seated, often rounding the lower back in a slumped position, the discs then get pushed posteriorly towards the spinal cord. Over a period, if we continue to spend most days seated this accumulates to the micro-trauma on the discs. Additionally, a sedentary lifestyle will only weaken the muscles of the lower back further. Similar problems for the upper back such as forward head posture is seen everywhere, whether we are sat staring at a computer screen or looking down at our phone. If you suffer from forward posture like most people then your body must work much harder as shown in the example below, energy levels will be lower due to less efficient breathing and more effort will be needed to keep you upright
When it comes to exercising, there should always be a reason for performing any given set of exercises. What’s your goal? If it is to look, move and feel better and prolong your body’s health then we must train smart. We must also eat smart; the body is made up of the foods and drinks we consume. Simply put, you cannot create a strong healthy body from a poor-quality diet. If you have always eaten foods that have NOT been grown organically, then your body must detoxify the toxins that make your muscles, tendons, ligaments and spinal discs with lower levels of nutrients from the food. Water is vital. All processes in the human body require good quality water. The minimum to stay hydrated is 0.033 litres per kilogram of body weight, so if you weigh 50KG you will need at least 1.67 litres and quite possibly more in warmer conditions. In summary, if you optimize your spinal stability, muscle balance, and strengthen your body to survive the day to day demands of your lifestyle, eat high quality foods, get adequate rest, then your spine will be healthier for a long time!
When I watched these two documentary's recently they both raised my awareness further. If you haven't seen them I urge you to watch them. Climate change is speeding up and unless we start to act then we will feel the real force of mother nature and our children will too. As a world we need to think about the environment and not just about ourselves. We can buy less, drive less, eat less meat, use less energy, use less plastic, and recycle. The following link is really useful: http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/before-the-flood/articles/14-easy-ways-to-reduce-your-own-carbon-footprint/
In my experience as a trainer I have come to realize that the body and mind need more than a quick fix when it comes to meeting goals. Today’s fast paced lives mixed with a distinct lack of physical movement for long periods highlights how the body cannot cope with stress, whether that be physical, emotional, electromagnetic, nutritional, or chemical stress.
Four key areas of focus
Quiet: Adequate time devoted to relaxation, introspection, rest, and recovery. When we suppress Quiet it’s easy to perceive we can achieve what we want through material means and objects, whether this is with a new car, clothes, money, drugs. This is obvious when we see celebrities who appear to have it all yet are still not happy. If we don’t look within, we go without!
Diet: A reminder that we become what we eat. So, if you think negatively, you judge people, you don’t like what you see in the mirror then this can be largely down to what we eat. Every single second our cells are being renewed with what we fuel ourselves with, quite amazing if you think about it. Millions of people put their bodies health secondary to cheap crap food that doesn’t bear any resemblance to what the body is designed to eat. Failure to eat the right foods leads our bodies to dysfunction and disease.
Movement: Either too much or too little movement is detrimental to our whole health, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Some people move too much, some people not enough. Modern day living and its conveniences have made it much easier not to move. The TV and a desk job spring to mind when thinking of times the body can go hours without any movement. Excessive exercise on the other hand, when coupled with various forms of stress can lead to injury. Strike a balance!
Happiness: I don’t see many people smiling, ever! So already that tells a story of how a society we feel. Most people aren’t happy. Work out what you love and have a goal, having this will likely make you value life more and therefore be happier and more successful in whatever you undertake. Good Health! Louis
Living in a society of convenience, almosteverything is so easily accessible in the 21st century, most of the time we simply just click a button. With a heavy demand on the health service, I fear people aren't working as hard on taking responsibility for their health as much as they may on material things in life. If you log onto any news website there is a high chance that there will be a report/article about the health service, being unable to cope and desperately needing more funds. My personal feeling is we have the wrong idea on nutrition and opt for convenience when and where possible, mixed with endless hours of being sat down and less moving of the body a pattern of poor health begins, not only in the body but also the mind. The mind becomes unhealthy and lazy, energy levels deplete and it becomes a viscous cycle leading onto the break down of the immune system. Examples of convenience aren't hard to spot: We drive 300 yards to the shop Hundreds of millions of people rely on a pill for the answer, to fix aching joints, headaches, indigestion. The problem in society is we are too heavily reliant on the system and less reliant on looking after our health. Treats the cause not the symptom!
What is it you really want to achieve when you come to the gym. What is your purpose!?There should be a concrete purpose to the 'why' in order to stay fit and healthy. Simply gaining losing a few kilos or gaining some muscle aren't enough if you want a healthy lifestyle. What if you reach the goal of losing weight but aren't sleeping, or you're stressed, or you cannot move or balance properly. Is there a point in losing a few kilos, going away on holiday, only to find the weight is back on when you get back?. On the face of it people just think about losing weight for the short term goal, it doesn't matter how, and this usually consists of cutting 'calories'. The Fit-SickTrainer/Gym Goer relies on calorie counting as it is the common consensus that this is just right, however this is also dangerous, much like the low fat craze which, again the common public adhere to. If you starve the body of calories and you work out, the body will only decline into a tired mess over time and lead to burnout, creating a Yo-Yo effect in losing and then gaining weight, but the Fit-Sick Trainer/Gym Goer doesn't care about this, as long as they fit into their speedos for their upcoming holiday they don't care.
In the age of social media I believe too many people in the gym/fitness realm are misinformed about health and are driven by Ego. I don't claim to know everything but I know my parents, and their parents never cut calories, they just ate real food and moved their bodies. Is that really too difficult to do these days? The body knows nothing of numbers, it just needs nutrition. So never take advise from a Fit-Sick Trainer/Gym goer, look inside and listen to yourself first.
Pictured here are a few of the superfoods I like to use on a daily basis. The need for a strong immune system is important to me, and the fight against free radicals and the ageing process is also something that determines my reasons for using them. I believe the items pictured help greatly. Astaxanthin is one of the most potent vitamins available, it also helps with post muscle workout soreness. Apothe tart cherry juice is what I add to my water in the early evening, and cherries are one of the most nutrient dense foods, I would also recommend it for people who sleep poorly. MAP Master Amino Acid Pattern is a vegetarian protein which I take pre and post workout. MAP helps keep my body firm and also assists in the recovery of tired muscles. Also pictured is 'Me' drinking one of my daily green shakes. They are usually made up of Kale, Avocado, Coconut Oil, Spinach, and either Chlorella, Wheatgrass, or Spirulina (I highly recommend a book called 'The Green Foods Bible' by David Sandoval, if you want to study more on the power of green foods) If you are interested in any of the above or have an interest of where the above is sourced from check out the link http://platinumeurope.azurewebsites.net/ldhealth Always invest in pure and premium based products and always do your homework before buying, invest in the quality. There are many cheap imitations readily available out there! Stay healthy;-)
When people are searching for the answer to a slim, toned, and an optimally working body, the first two things that are often thought of are physical training and nutrition. It is true that the training aspect is important and nutrition maybe even more so. However there are four more that are usually overlooked even by experienced trainers.
THOUGHTS - Think Positive! BREATHING - Breathe through the diaphragm HYDRATION - Drink cean filtered water regularly NUTRITION - Eat right for your metabolic type SLEEP - Get to sleep at the latest by 10.30pm MOVEMENT - Train the body to work well in all planes of movement
Whether you are looking for the perfect body or just want to look, feel, and move better, then just work on the 6 principles. Often the obvious is overlooked!
When your car brakes down it's highly likely you take it to the mechanic to get fixed, no questions asked. During my time as a trainer I have experienced the same doesn't necessarily apply when someone comes to get their body fixed and improved. Sometimes you can make a good suggestion and the reply comes back ''I have tried that, it doesn't work'' Once I hear this type of reply over and over, I almost know my job is going to be much harder. The great man Bruce Lee once put it like this:
Very often people would come to him and ask him… “Could you tell us master, how we could be a great Martial artist like you?”
Then he would take them into a little gym and he would go through some of his moves.
What he was doing was to assess and find out where they are…
Because he believed that most people had the wrong information about martial arts. Much like people can with exercise, lifestyle etc, even if their intentions are good.
Just like many people have the wrong information about this word ‘success’…
After he took them through a little exam, he would sit down at one side of a table and he would put them on the other end… And put a glass of Coke in front of them and a glass of clear water in front of him.
Then he would say… “I want you to let this glass of coke represent your knowledge. This is what you know to be the truth.”
“And I want you to know that this clear water represents what is the truth, which is something I know and you want to learn from me.”
“However I can’t give you my knowledge because you have too much of yours…” “Only if you are prepared to let go of yours and make room for mine, then we can work together… but as long as you hold on to your coke, I can’t give you the truth…
The amount of people I have encountered in the gym that want to reduce excess fat around the waist is probably into the Hundreds. I am often asked what the best exercise is to get the flat stomach look. Usually my reply is 'you can do all the exercises in the world to try and get a visible 6 pack the important thing is what is done outside of the gym'. I have offered my advise to many people, for most the info I offer goes in one ear and out of the other. So I am putting it writing to anyone that wants to take it. If it still doesn't compute then it is here to re-read.
If you want to heal the body, lose weight from around the stomach, then sleep right. Go to sleep at the right time if you have an injury, suffer from fatigue, want to improve body composition, increase energy, and want to be stronger.
Once a healthy sleep pattern is consistent and in place the body is less likely to crave sugar, and therefore the body takes in a lower level of sugar meaning inflammation is reduced.
Tips Reduce or block ambient blue lights from Phone, Laptop, TV in the evenings. Try and get 8 hours sleep each night. Got to sleep before 11pm each night Sleep in total darkness - Any light will reduce the release of Melatonin, the sleep hormone.
What if you go to the gym consistently 3 times a week and have been for the last year or two yet predominantly sit for hours throughout the week in your day job due to the environment you are in. If you have a desk job and find yourself sitting for at least 15-20 hours a week, just in work, then the 3 hours of gym time must be used productively.
Tips Don't sit on Machines in the gym, they all have a seat and isolating one muscle group isn't going to shift any excess fat, or improve your health.
Move the body in the gym and work on compound moves that target more than one muscle group at any one time.
If you have no choice to sit at work, try standing as often as possible and limit high GI fruits that need to be used as energy straight away, such as grapes.
Always get a balance of fats, carbs, and protein when snacking.
Make stretching a daily occurrence. When sat for long periods it doesn't take long before the hamstrings, hipflexors start feeling tight, and over time will become about as flexible as bark from a tree. Stretch each night before bed.
Speak to your HR department about getting a retractable desk.
Having recently completed the CHEK Golf Performance Series I am now qualified to train golfers in areas that will improve their game. Focusing on assessing each individual and working on improving: Flexibility Stability Strength Power Most Golfers lack in at least one of these areas and instead of correcting themselves tend to invest in expensive clubs when really it is their body that needs enhancing.
Having had no idea what this event involved before the start I thought I would give it a go. 10KM and 40 obstacles later i finished 17th out of 650+ people, with a time of 1hr.01min. This was a pretty good result considering I very rarely involve jogging outside or the treadmill in my training. Upper body strength did come in handy in this event (with all the fences involved), and this is something I do work on in the gym but only about once a week. Performing exercises such as deadlifts, pull ups, and body weight exercises in the gym on a weekly basis has had its benefits, plus spin classes a couple of times a week which worked out in total to be 3 sessions of training a week. The things I would say out of anything that helped me perform on the day was my clean eating diet and never over training or training for anymore than an hour at one time. Top 10 next year!
Squats, lunges, and lateral lunges are natural movements to the human body and good for training the core, everyday we squat when sitting down onto a chair or getting into the car. These exercises will improve strength and balance.
Target areas: Quads Hamstrings Hip Flexors Abdominals Calves
Keep a neutral spine throughout this movement, pushing your chest out will help you achieve this
Try and keep the top part of your body upright and bend at the knees rather than the hips.
Point the feet and knees straight ahead and go as low as you comfortably can
Chest out and shoulders back
You can place hands on hips or out in front
Be sure to get the knee of the trailing leg to hover just above the ground. If performing stationary lunges push back off the front foot back to standing and alternate legs, if performing walking lunges then push up forward off the front foot and over to the other leg.
Step side ways at a comfortable distance
Keep both feet facing forwards and arms out in front
Squat with one leg, bending the knee as far as you comfortably can or until it is parallel to the ground whilst the other leg is straight with the foot grounded.
My advice, stay away from the resistance machines in the gym unless you are doing serious body building. Try these moves out instead, they will have far greater carry over for outside of the gym than sitting on a machine doing leg crunches, plus they will add a little more spring to your step!