You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Three of the top nutritional minds in the game combine to answer your toughest questions regarding how to fuel your body for optimal health, wellness, and performance. Submit your questions below and we’ll have you covered in future installments of Ask The Experts.
Get To Know The Experts
Brad Deiter is a man of many interest. He is a Strength and Conditioning coach, a sports nutritionist, an aspiring weightlifter, a PhD trained exercise physiologist and molecular biologist, and a biostatistician… he is clearly a confused yet passionate person. He currently is doing a postdoctoral fellowship in biomedical research trying to cure diseases, when he isn’t nerding out in the lab or training to get stronger and faster, he runs a gym and still maintains a large client base for his nutritional consulting. You can find his gym at AsgardStrength.Weebly.Com and contact him for more in depth nutrition advice at firstname.lastname@example.org
Alix Turoff is currently working on her Master’s in Clinical Nutrition at New York University and is days away from being a Registered Dietitian. She is an indoor cycling instructor, long distance runner, healthy foodie and lover of all things fitness and nutrition. Alix resides in New York City with her boyfriend and can usually be found perusing the Union Square Farmer’s Market, sweating at SoulCycle or Equinox, running along the East River or sipping Sauvignon Blanc on the lower east side. Follow her on instagram @alixturoff for healthy recipes, food porn and obnoxious pictures of her and her boyfriend. For nutrition advice, feel free to e-mail her at email@example.com!
Doron Vaday, our resident meat head expert, received his BS in Nutrition from Long Island University and is currently in charge of all operations at EatRiteNutrition.com. He combines a strong academic background with over ten years of in the trenches experience working hands on with clients to help them reach their training and nutrition goals. He finds particular interest in working with physique competitors during contest prep. Competitively, he walks the walk and gets on stage looking shredded, placing third in his most recent NPC bodybuilding show. Get in touch with him at EatRiteNutrition.com.
On To The Questions!
Experts, the 4th Of July is coming fast and I just got invited out on my dream girls boat. I NEED to look ripped and impress. Help a chubby dude out.
If you have about 6-8 weeks left I would structure your workouts as follows
3-4 sets of a heavy compound movement (i.e. squats/deads)
3-4 exercises of moderate weight, moderate rep multi-joint movements (i.e. rows, presses, etc)
5-10 sets of intervals with a 1:2 work to rest ratio (i.e. rowing, sprinting, etc.)
On the eating front, don’t do anything crazy. Just start shifting your macros to be a bit higher in protein, have your carbohydrates around workout time, and round out the rest of your calories with high quality fat…. And use a macronutrient calculator to get an idea of roughly how many calories this should all add up to.
AND REMEMBER THIS…. WHO YOU ARE IS MORE THAN YOUR BEACH BODY….. Woo this girl with your personality and your brain. Trust me, its more important in the long run than the one day on a boat.
I need some info first. Just how chubby are you? Are we talking Jared before he tried Subway chubby? Or are we talking Jonah Hill after his major weight loss chubby? Either way, how are you eating and exercising now? Do you eat a homewrecker burrito from Moe’s at lunch everyday and consider changing the channel exercise? Whatever you’re doing, kick it up a little.
If we’re talking quick fat loss, you’ll need to eat in a deficit and burn some calories. If you haven’t ever lifted a weight, getting RIPPED in 3-4 weeks isn’t a realistic goal. Let’s start with setting a realistic goal. If you’re a big dude, a 2-pound weight loss per week is appropriate and healthy. We’ll need to get an idea of how many calories you’re eating now. Whatever that is, subtract 500-700 calories per day to and add 45-60 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity 4-5 days a week. When you’re working with a smaller calorie allowance per day, you’ll realize that the foods you choose are going to have to be more natural/”healthier” so that you can get more bang for your buck.
What do I mean? Let’s say you have 1500 calories per day:
If you go to Moe’s for lunch and get a burrito with Chicken, Black Beans, Rice, Shredded Cheese, Salsa, Sour Cream, Guacamole and grilled peppers and onions,you’re looking at 1,075 calories right there. Add a side of chips and you’re already at 1,435 calories per day and you haven’t had anything for breakfast, dinner or dessert, let alone anything to drink! Obviously, you’re going to have to make some changes.
A better option would be to order a salad with chicken or beef, grilled peppers and onions, pico de gallo, black beans and guacamole and use their fresh salsa as dressing. Now you’re looking at 435 calories total. Skip the chips, you don’t need them. Now you have room for a nice breakfast of 2 eggs with 2 slices of whole wheat toast and a slice of low fat cheese (400 calories), a filling dinner (5 ounces of chicken, fish or beef with a small sweet potato and sautéed broccoli (400 calories) and you’ll even have room for a snack and a dessert!
Add in some exercise and you’ll be on your way to your goal. Just don’t expect to get ripped in 3 weeks, that takes time and it takes a lot of learning. Everyone has to start somewhere!
Well, the first piece of advice is BE CONFIDENT. Most women want a man who can display confidence. That is the single most important thing you will need.
Aside from confidence the next thing you will need is a solid workout and meal plan. Given the short amount of time you have I will give you three recommendations regarding your dietary habits that will help you drop your bodyfat pretty fast.
1. Eliminate added sugar and processed food. Cut out the soda, the chips, the cake and any other sweets you can think of. We generally consume a diet way too high in refined sugars and it will definitely put a damper on your progress. That’s not to say sugar is bad for you, but we eat too much of it. Try to limit your sugar intake to what you get from fruits. What nature gives us enough of, man gives us too much of.
2. Drink plenty of water. All energy substrates are metabolized within a water based medium. If you are even slightly dehydrated, you will drastically slow your metabolism.
3. Consume protein with every meal. Protein is what builds muscle. The more muscle you have the more energy you body will require to maintain that muscle and therefore your body will burn more calories each day.
Eat real food; things that grew, ran, flew, or swam. Eliminate anything processed. Drink a gallon of water per day. Eliminate any calorie containing beverages. Eat protein with every meal. Chicken, fish, beef, eggs, and pork are great options. Eat carbohydrates only near your workouts. Sweet potatoes, jasmine rice, and oatmeal will do the trick. Do three full body strength training workouts per week focusing on multi-joint movements. 3-5 sets of 6-8 reps using variations of squats, deadlifts, lunges, presses, chin-ups, pushups, and rows will do it. Use interval training for cardio three days a week. An interval session can look something like 30 second sprint/30 second recovery for 10-15 minutes. Choose your favorite cardio method and go HARD. Kettlebell swings, Prowler pushes, Battle Ropes, Airdyne bike, Rower, VersaClimber, and swimming are all solid options. Be confident. Be yourself. Have fun. Don’t act like a boner. And have a burger and some beers on the boat.
Experts, I can NEVER fall asleep. I lay in bed staring at the ceiling for hours. Are there any supplements out there that are safe and will help me get a better nights sleep?
10 sets of heavy squats, an hour of conditioning, followed by a twelve hour work day, plus coaching at night is a great way to be dead tired. But in all seriousness, there are some things that help some people but may not work for others. Here are a few things I have found to work quite well.
1) Supplement with Natural Calm. Put a teaspoon in some hot water about 15 minutes before bed.
2) Eat a snack with some carbohydrates and fat about 30 minutes before bed.
3) Chamomile tea can be used either in combination with or in place of Natural Calm a few minutes before bed.
I’m very lucky in that I can fall asleep within seconds of my head hitting the pillow and I really believe that has a lot to do with how busy I am during the day. On any given day I’ll wake up early, go to the gym, go to work, hang out with friends or my boyfriend, get school work done, watch bad reality tv, run around the city, etc. By the time I get home I can’t way to get to sleep. For people who are not so lucky, there are a few things to try without turning to modern medicine.
I know it sounds silly but the idea of counting sheep isn’t so crazy! A big reason why people have trouble sleeping is because they’re constantly thinking about their day, what they have to do tomorrow, the weekend, etc. Being able to clear your mind of all that is a great way to promote relaxation and subsequently, restful sleep. If you have trouble doing that by yourself, taking a few introductory meditation classes can really provide some great tools for freeing your mind.
If that hippy dippy stuff isn’t for you, many people swear by Melatonin. Melatonin is a hormone that is made naturally by the pineal gland in the brain, which is activated around 9 PM (around the time where you’re starting to think about going to bed). Melatonin can be purchased over the counter as a supplement but remember that like any supplement, it is not regulated by the FDA and the research regarding it’s safety isn’t totally clear. In some studies, Melatonin seemed to provide no better sleep outcomes than did a placebo but some studies suggest that it can be helpful especially for jet lag and shift work. If you’re considering taking it, let your doctor know and he can suggest an appropriate dose.
Most importantly, I know I sound like a mother but really do try to unplug from your electronics before bed. Set aside at least 30 minutes before you want to go to bed and just get rid of your laptop, cell phone, TV, etc. Try reading a book (boring books are really good for putting you to sleep!). I often times fall asleep with a book across my chest.
This is a tough one. It’s hard to make recommendations when you don’t know the root of the issue. I would recommend you speak with your doctor and maybe get some blood work drawn before taking any supplement as a sleep aide. However, I will provide you with a list of supplements that are generally considered safe and effective:
1. Melatonin- this is a hormone that your body produces to help you relax at night before bed. The problem is there is too much stimulus preventing us from producing it (ie. Sleeping with the lights and or tv on).
2. 5-HTP this is a pre-converted form of the amino acid tryptophan. It’s that ingredient that knocks you out after thanksgiving dinner although it’s pre-converted so it’s more bioavailable.
3. Magnesium- This supplement probably won’t help you fall asleep, but it will help you stay asleep. Magnesium helps regulate your sleep wake cycles and due to over farming in our country today the soil is depleted and we probably don’t get enough of it(Editors Note: This is the key ingredient in Natural Calm, mentioned above).
Train hard during the day. Limit caffeine after three in the afternoon. Learn and practice mindful meditation regularly. Stop worrying about shit you cannot control. Get a notebook and plan tomorrow. Write down what needs to be done. Then, close the book and simultaneously close your mind. Those things will be addressed tomorrow. It is now time to get that REM. Eliminate all electronics from the bedroom and leave them alone thirty minutes prior to bedtime. Blackout your room, no natural or artificial lights allowed. Get a legit mattress, high quality sheets, and an awesome pillow. Experiment with Natural Calm, 5htp, melatonin, chamomile tea, and a small snack of protein, carbohydrates, and fats as needed.
Quick Hitter: High Carb Or Low Carb?
Neither, dogma is silly and often wrong. Pick which one fits your goals.
Medium Carb? Is that an option? Unless you’re on a ketogenic diet (and you actually know what that means), try for at least 130 grams of carbs per day.
Depends on the person.
Match carbohydrate intake to current fitness level, future goals, and daily activity levels.
Quick Hitter: High Fat Or Low Fat?
Neither, dogma is silly and often wrong. Pick which one fits your goals.
It depends what your goals are. Regardless, low fat diets kind of suck. Eat a moderate amount of fat from good sources (olive oil, nuts and seeds, fatty fish, avocados, grass fed meats, etc). Aim to get 25-35% of your calories from fat.
Depends on the person.
Stick with olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, fish, and avocado’s. ~ 70 grams/day for a 140 lb female and ~100 grams/day for a 200lb male is a good starting point that is neither high or low.
Great questions, solid answers. That’s it until next time. Submit your questions below or send them in to firstname.lastname@example.org.