Nutrition

3 Options To Help you lose that last 20 lbs

You are well on your way to hitting the 30 lb weight loss goal you set for yourself on January 1st 2019. You are 1 month and 15 days into your training and nutrition regimen, and you are 10 lbs down (that breaks down to about 1 lb -1.5 lb per week).

Here are the Atlas Pro Training’s top 3 options to help you lose that last 20 lb over the next 12 weeks so you can be ready for the summer by early May 2019!

1) Intermittent Fasting -

This is a basic form of calorie restriction. Although there are several different versions of intermittent fasting, they all have the same fundamental rule; No Food or drink with a caloric value are to be consumed during the fast.

One of the most popular versions is the 16/8 method where you fast for the first 16 hours of the day, then you eat during the last 8 hours of the day consuming 1-2 meals.

PROS:

  • Reduces insulin resistance - which is key in helping manage certain metabolic issues

  • Reduces inflammation

  • May improve Heart health

  • May improve brain function and health

CONS:

  • May interfere with Mood (for the first few days or weeks)

  • May interfere with social eating

  • Digestive issues - Constipation due to limited fluid consumption

  • This is a true trial and error and behavioral modification method




2) Increase Workload/Intensity -

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This is tried and true way to increasing your energy expenditure to 525-625cal of energy per day. This could possibly help you hit that 1 lb- 1.5 lb fat loss per week. However, the 1# rule to remember is that you can not train yourself out of a bad or inconsistent nutrition/diet routine. The key in any exercise plan is have some variety and different variations of physical activity that match your goals and your personality. For example, some people like to lift weights and hate cardio (that’s me :-)) and vice versa. For example, you could increase your workload, ie., distance of running, increasing the weight that you lift, increasing the amount of reps, etc. You can also add or increase a different type of physical activity to your training program, ie., add more running/ walking/ sprinting to your training program, reduce your rest times between sets to less than 30 sec. (This adds a “cardio” element to your weight lifting session , which can help you increase your energy expenditure leading to more fat loss). You can incorporate a weightlifting circuit in your daily training program. Doing so will improve strength level and allows you to gain more lean muscle. This action will increase your metabolic rate and your increased energy expenditure will lead to fat loss.

PROS:

  • This method increases your physical activity

  • Adds variety to your training routine

  • Can help create balance within your training program

Cons:

  • Adds time to your training session

  • This training method works best when it is combined with a diet and or nutrition plan

  • Requires additional effort to track results




3) Track & Count Macros along with Body composition Testing analysis

This is a more holistic way of planning out your weightloss program, and in my opinion, this should be the first method you should try to lose unwanted fat.

Tracking and counting your macronutrients (i.e. Fats(9 calories per gram), Protein(4 calories per gram), Carbohydrates(4 calories per gram), can take the guesswork out of planning your meals in regards to calculating an accurate caloric balance that fits your lifestyle and or training program.

Body Composition testing and analysis - This is an essential element to reach your fat loss goals. When combined with tracking your macros, these tools can help you create a nutrition program that fits your lifestyle, health, and fitness goals. Body Composition testing gives you hard, accurate numbers that will allow the necessary adjustments to your health and fitness plan. This helps you see your total fat loss not just your weight loss

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PROS:

  • This method is accurate

  • With the assistance of a Professional you can help hold you accountable to your goals

  • This method can be applied to everyone

CONS:

  • This a labor intensive method and requires your full attention

  • You have to obtain access to credible body composition testing equipment

  • Counting Calories - Need I say more

Nurturing Wellness | Habits for a Healthy Body and Mind

Nurturing Wellness | Habits for a Healthy Body and Mind

When it comes to practicing daily health habits, pretty much the easiest thing to turn into a routine is the basics. Of course, life is not always cooperative, but ask yourself how consistent you are with self-care. Do you shower daily? Are you staying hydrated throughout the day? How much walking do you do weekly? Being healthy doesn't have to take up a lot of time. Instead, look what you can do to make adjustments to your lifestyle. Add fruit and veggies to your diet. Make a conscious effort to head to bed earlier. Switch off from tech in the evening. Reduce your caffeine intake. Avoid sitting for long periods. These may seem like small things, but they are not trivial to your well-being. Over time, they build up to have a meaningful impact on your health, from head-to-toe.

Stay Ahead of the Game and Away from Pain

Stay Ahead of the Game and Away from Pain

You jump in Feet first with out hesitation doing Burpees, Jumping Jacks, Sprints, and dozens of other movements to get you moving towards your goal. Then 10 days into the process all of sudden your start to get this pain in you lower back, your knees start to hurt around you kneecaps, along with several other painful issues that you may have experienced before. So you decide to fight you way through the pain and discomfort only to have the pain intensify until one morning you can’t even walk because of the pain in your joints. So you decide to rest your body for a week, then that week turns into two -three four weeks. Then life happens you get out of rhythm and you don’t return wasting your time money(which some gym count on) and then you are back to square one

Dying a death of 1000 Breaths

Dying a death of 1000 Breaths

There are several techniques that can be used to train your lungs and diaphragm to work more effectively, by increasing the lungs capacity which will help increase the amount of oxygen that is drawn into the lungs and strengthen the diaphragm. As an athlete, I would do a self-audit once a year always trying to see what I could do to improve my performance from year to year. I realized that my breathing was the one thing that was an issue and seemed to not improve as I played until later in the season and my endurance was below average. So I thought about what sport was dependent on developing endurance, so I started researching distance runners and I found that there was breathing exercise that some of the top runners would do to improve their lung capacity.

Are you Ceasar?

Are you Ceasar?

As I write this post I continue to ask myself are you, Caesar? And to be honest I would like to think that I am and I see myself in that way (most of the time) but sometimes my impatience leads me in the opposite direction; not all of the time but enough for me to see it. I truly love helping people and seeing them reach their goals and go beyond any perceived limitations. I truly care about the well-being of everyone because I feel showing someone that they matter and that they are acknowledged and their opinions and points of view are valued leads to them passing those valuable traits onto someone else and leading them to hopefully develop other leaders.

Body Composition: Good weight loss vs. Bad Weight loss

Body Composition: Good weight loss vs. Bad Weight loss

Regardless of what method you chose to use for your body composition measurement, it is best to use one testing and analysis method to insure accurate and consistent results to limit conflict and false information. Take a few minutes to research and find the best method for you and measure your progress beyond the scale.  No matter what your health and fitness goals body composition testing and analysis will be a game changer for you and give you the information you need to truly transform your body.    

Energy System Development Series: How to Increase Muscular Strength and Size

As I discussed before in the previous blogs in this series about Energy System Development (EDS) training you can create a training program that is specific to your training goals by training specific energy systems. In this final series, I am going to talk about training within the ATP-CP and glycolytic energy systems with resistance exercises that are programmed using a couple of different training methods.   

Lifting heavy weights to become stronger is one of the most popular reasons to lift weights. But the combination of using various weightlifting principles and program variations to improve muscular Hypertrophy (increase in muscular tone and size) is even more effective and fun. Lifting to increase muscular size helps individuals improve not only their physical appearance but also their physical performance. One of the factors that are important is the use of set and rep manipulation. Which means programming different sequences sets and reps to increase the stress applied to the muscles that are being trained and. In theory, the number of sets should be about 2-4 sets and the reps should be 8-12 reps using 65%-85% of the maximum weight you can lift for 1 rep for that exercise to achieve hypertrophy. One other important factor is limiting your rest in between sets to less than 1 minute. This limit in the recovery time will increase the stress on your muscles which increases the growth response your muscles have during the recovery process. THE MAGIC HAPPENS IN THE RECOVERY!   

For example, John 1 rep maximum for the Squat is 305 lb, for John to lift for muscular Hypertrophy his squat workout could be programmed in a linear progression either in a progressive overload fashion or in a regressive load fashion or a Drop set.

Linear Progressive Overload

1st set - 65% 198 lbs for 10-12 reps

rest 30-45 sec 

2nd set - 70% 214 lb for 10-12 reps 

rest 30-45 sec

3rd set - 75% 229 lb for 10 - 8 reps 

rest 30-45 sec

4th set - 80% 244 for an AMRAP or 10-8 reps 

Linear Regressive Loading (Drop Sets)

1st set - 80% 244 for 10-8 reps

rest 30-45 sec

2nd set - 75% 229 lb for 10 - 8 reps 

rest 30-45 sec

3rd set - 70% 214 lb  for 10+ reps 

rest 30-45 sec

4th set -  65% 198 lbs for AMRAP

These are just a couple of examples of the type of set/rep manipulation that can be applied to your training program, but there other ways that are used to achieve the same result depending on your training schedule and or training goals. I primarily use the Tier system and a combination of Undulating Periodization for the majority of my clients.    

There are numerous ways to create a training program the fits your training schedule and access to training equipments the fits your specific training needs. But the most important ingredient is CONSISTENCY. Over the last several years as a health and performance coach I have been apart of some amazing transformations and some disappointing results, and the common tread that all of my successful clients have in common was consistent effort and discipline with their nutrition and rest habits. The common thread in the disappointments and misses was inconsistency, excuses, and looking for a magical drink or pill that would get them out of the working hard and changing their behavior in order to get the results they want to achieve. Everything costs and your time is the most important commodity you have to give, there are no shortcuts that will help you sustain the results your want long term, it will just lead to disappointment in the long term.  

Six Proven ways to Boost Your Metabolism

Six Proven ways to Boost Your Metabolism

These are just a few suggestions on how to increase your bodies ability to burn calories more efficiently, and help you maintain your healthy body weight.

Energy System Development Series

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ESD/Energy Systems Development Training

By Coach E. Allen Founder Atlas Pro Training LLC 

This Blog series is an expansion of an article of mine that was published in the November 2016 edition of the Nonahood News. All reputable trainer try to tap into one of more of these energy systems to help their clients reach their specific training goals. Educate yourself and make sure you know the fundamentals of your training program. Enjoy the process and -TRAIN WITH A PURPOSE-

Whether you are high school athlete looking to gain an edge on the competition in your offseason/preseason training program or a weekend warrior training in your spare time for an obstacle race, marathon, or an adult athletic league, or trying to lose that last 10-15 lbs of holiday weight, the old way of improving your physical performance and condition has changed. Enter the phrase Energy System development (ESD) training. ESD training should be the foundation of any training plan to improve your performance; it could be the difference between competing at a high level, or coming up short in a game. In order for muscles to contract and produce movement ATP (adenosine triphosphate) must be present. The body’s energy system is responsible for converting ATP to usable form of energy called ADP (adenosine diphosphate). ADP can be produced using three energy system:

·        ATP-CP Phosphagen energy System- used during short term, high intensity activities Ex. Throwing a Shot Put, Sprinting, Olympic lifts of 2-4 reps: Last 1-30 sec   

·        Anaerobic Glycolytic energy System- used during medium/high intensity activities, Ex. Strength/endurance: lasts 30sec-3mins

·        Aerobic energy System- used during long durations of exercise lasting longer than 30 min to 1 hour.

So let’s look at the ATP-CP Phosphagen energy System which is used to produce energy for high intensity, quick powerful bursts of movement. This energy system does not require oxygen to produce ADP from ATP.  Creatine phosphate (which is stored in the skeletal muscles) is used to produce form ADP from ATP. This process is instant and the energy created is used and depleted almost just as fast, causing the athlete to fatigue faster. The goal when training this energy system is to use short bouts of exercise at a minimum volume (number of repetitions) to insure full recovery. As the athlete progresses through the training program the training load is increased not the volume (number of repetitions). This form of training (called Plyometric and or ballistic training) is used to increase the explosiveness of athlete, which increases the force that is produced during movement. Example of these forms of training are Box jumps, Medicine ball throws, and in Olympic lifting. This stress is beneficial to an athlete’s performance because by increasing the force that is produced during movement the athlete can run faster (by producing more force against the ground i.e. Box Jumps), which is referred to as improving the ground force reaction of the foot against the surface, which is essential to improving athletic performance. This energy system should be stressed in a conservative manor because the recovery time is longer than the duration of the energy systems use, and should be performed on a firm yet energy absorbent surface like rubber flooring.  The quality of the explosive movement is more important than quantity of repetitions of the movement.

The second energy system we are going to look at is the Anaerobic Glycolytic energy System, which uses glycogen stores from the muscle and blood glucose to produce energy. This is considered by many trainers (including myself) as the predominate energy system, which is used to produce energy to sustain movements that last 30 sec to 3 minutes. It does not require oxygen but produces lactate acid which causes muscles to fatigue and shut down. The goal when training this energy system is to improve the lactate threshold (which is the time that it take for the muscle to experience limitations due to the accumulation of lactic acid) the athlete. This is an important aspect of improving the muscular endurance of the athlete, which is the goal to decrease the chance of injury and increase their work capacity during competition. Strength training with a focus on limiting the recovery times 30sec to 1min between sets and exercises; also tempo runs (running at 70-80% effort for short distances less than a mile for repetition).

The third energy system we are going to look at is the Aerobic energy system, which uses oxygen to produce APD from body stored fat and skeletal muscle, making it the most complex of the three and the most labor intensive energy system. The Aerobic energy system is used during activities that last for relatively long durations, like 30 min to 1-2+hours. The goal of training this energy system is to improve the cardiovascular efficiency of the athlete. This form of training improves the work capacity of the athlete allowing them to train for longer periods reducing debilitating cardiovascular fatigue. This could be considered the foundation of improving the performance of the athlete. Steady state cardiovascular training such as distance runs between 1-3 miles (depending on the sport the athlete is training) can be used to train this energy system, and some forms of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) with recovery times that are limited to less than 1 minute between exercises.  

The goal of any training program should be to develop these energy systems and “train” them to produce the energy in an efficient manor during practice and competition so that energy is readily available to the muscles during physical activity.   All of three energy systems are interdependent of each other, but in most sports one energy system or a combination of two of the three are required to make things happen. This goes into the concept of sport specific training and how to create training programs that are designed specifically to produce the improvements in muscular endurance, cardiovascular fitness, and improvements in speed and power of the athlete. As your youth athlete enters the offseason training program’s make sure that EDS training is the foundation of their training program. 

Over the next few blog post I will be exploring how a training specific energy system can:                  

  • Improve Performance
  • Increase Weight Loss
  • Increase Muscular size and Strength

Your Comments are welcomed below!