Fitness FAQs

The FAQs of fitness

Cardiovascular

A.   Scientific data does indicate that a small amount of energy is burned during recovery. However, this amount is dependent upon the intensity and duration of the aerobic workout. In general, your metabolic rate can remain elevated for as long as 24 hours after an intense bout. But even then, your metabolic rate will increase relatively small compared to your baseline. On average, 15 extra calories are burned during recovery for every 100 calories you burned during your workout.
A.   Cardiovascular fitness is an important aspect to health for every human being and is regarded as the most important by many physicians. Every process within the body (especially your muscles) is dependent upon the delivery of oxygen and the removal of wastes. Thus, by strengthening the heart to lung complex and adapting them for efficiency, anyone can achieve relatively good health as compared to strength training alone.
A.   Increasing your level of available energy is the direct result of eating right, exercising daily, and sleeping well. In specific to aerobics, diet and sleep can in general be directly related. Aerobic fitness increases not only your desire to eat correctly but it also aids in the production of the necessary hormones that you need for sleep. At minimal, exposing your body to aerobic exercise will increase the years to your life while adding life to your years! Research has showed that for every hour we spend in aerobic exercise, we extend our lives by two hours. For anyone, that is well worth the investment.
A.   Periods of high stress, anxiety, and sleep insomnia can build up hormones and other chemicals in the body that can lead to depression. Aerobic exercise dissolves this tension and triggers substantial emotional and physical relaxation. Research has shown that people who engage in exercise at least 15 to 30 minutes every two days generally experienced vast improvement in their condition. Research has also found that people who exercise regularly go to sleep quicker, sleep more soundly, and are more recovered than people who do not workout.
A.   Studies have shown that aerobic exercisers increased oxygen delivery to their brains significantly more than those who do not engage in exercise. Individuals who were aerobically fit experienced better memory, faster reaction times, and had an improved ability to concentrate. With all this in mind, one must be invested in a structured program that is in tune with their specific needs. Being aerobically fit is the result of consistent aerobic stress and not from bi-weekly bouts. The best advice we can give is to change your mind set about being physically fit; make it apart of your personality. We have found that those who excel in fitness are more so than not eager to learn and change the way they think.

Weight Reduction

A.   Spot training does create more muscle tone in the targeted area, but it will not burn fat from the muscles being activated. Fat is stored throughout all regions of the body and it is also metabolized in the same manner. Contrary to what many believe, spot training does not make fat disappear from a specific region of your body.
A.   Muscle and fat are two unique tissues, they cannot transform between each other. When a muscle is neglected for an extended period of time it will literally waste away (atrophy). If you don’t use it, you will lose it eventually. When the body senses that carrying heavy muscle tissue is no longer needed, it will adapt to lighten the load and caloric demand by eating it away. A structured exercise plan is critical to sustaining the correct level of muscle usage without losing gains or overtraining.
A.   Data has shown that majority of men and women dieting to lose weight struggle more with keeping it off than simply reaching their goal. Results have indicated that 75% to 90% of these dieters regain all of the weight they lost within 1 to 3 years. Weight cycling can be very hazardous to your health and is linked to an increased risk for heart and gallbladder disease. The best recommendation we can make is to change your mindset and lifestyle towards health immediately, get on the correct nutrition and workout plan, and ask for help from those who have done it! We believe that change happens first in the mind, therefore, make a real decision on living with better health.
A.   Some have been successful at effectively controlling their weight through aerobic exercise alone. However, according to the data available it strongly indicates that combining an aerobic exercise program with a calorically restricted diet does very little in preserving lean body mass. Keep in mind that with a lower body mass, your baseline metabolic rate (caloric demand for vital body functions at rest) will also be lower. Because of this, it will be more likely that you will regain few or more lost pounds. In contrast, by subjecting your body to a well-rounded program of aerobic and anaerobic exercise, your likelihood of keeping your weight at a desired level with be greatly enhanced. This will allow you to consume a reasonably large number of calories while increasing your level of lean body mass.
A.   Our bodies are dependent upon sweat to cool and control our internal body temperature (core temperature). Without this process of evaporating sweat, which removes heat from the body like radiator from an engine by acting as a heat exchanger between the skin surface and the outside air, our bodies would over heat and cause injury (known as heat injury). That is the core purpose of sweating. It is not related to how much fat tissue has been burned away but rather to the excess temperature of our body while under certain stressful conditions. Most of what is expelled through sweat is lost pounds from water mass and not from fat tissue. As soon as you begin replenishing fluids and foodstuffs, those lost pounds will return as fast as they left. The amount of sweat that is perspired is more dependent upon humidity, external temperature, genetics, body mass composition, and insufficient conditioning to the exposed activity.

Muscle Increase

A.   When training a specific origin of muscle, most users are led to believe that half reps carry out the same benefits as full reps. In fact, research has shown that one who engages in weight lifting in a small range significantly hinders performance by limiting the strength of the full range of the joint complex. Training only a small part of the full range of motion (ROM) will create weak points (contraction stick points) in other parts. On the contrary, by training a specific range in combination with full ranges, an individual can increase the biomechanical function of the joint while elevating their strength output.
A.   Genetics determine the shape of your muscles. Our part is to maximize our genetic potential by making our muscles strong. It is, however, possible to control the shape of one’s body by exposing various muscle groups to a desired environment by which will result in the development of that body type. For example, endurance athletes are more slender than sprint athletes. Controlling this body type will only last as long it exposed to the environment. Once a desired physique is obtained, your muscle tissue is in no way able to remain in that form unless continually trained in the same manner that caused the adaptation to occur.
A.   The lower abdominal control the rotation and tilt of the hips as they work in relation to the upper abdominal to controlling the arch of the spine. When performing leg lifts from the ground position, you are limited to amount of pelvic tilt that allows for full engagement of the abdominal muscle resulting in very little improvement. That is not to say leg lifts are ineffective; hanging leg lifts is the most effective position for engaging your lower abdominal muscle while performing this motion. Crunches are best performed on a stability ball in order to maximize range and increase potential gains from the proper rotation of the spine.
A.   On average, high reputations (15 or more) are ideal for muscular endurance. Majority of the lighter weight can be placed into motion with only your slow-twitch Type I muscle fibers (endurance fibers). Therefore, activation of Type IIB fibers (explosive fibers) will be limited. Type IIB fibers when activated by heavier weight (10 repetitions) release a greater amount of anabolic hormones causing muscle hypertrophy, resulting in a greater muscle mass increase. In simple terms, heavier weight is necessary to recruit Type IIB fibers which are most responsible for gaining large muscle mass. Whereas lighter weight recruits Type I muscle fibers responsible for greater muscular endurance. In general, gaining muscle definition is resultant of many other factors besides rep count i.e. nutrition, cardiovascular exercise, fat percentage, and body type. All must be incorporated into your workout program for maximum effectiveness at reaching your goals.
A.   Machines offer the assistance of stability and direction. In general, use the machine that best suits your objectives. When considering however the greatest advantage to your exercise program, experienced exercise scientists and practitioners alike conclude that when it comes to weight training technology, the instability of the dumbbell and barbell stand dominant. In comparison to any other process of weight training, dumbbells are unmatched. Dumbbells activate the synergistic and stabilizer muscles much more prominently than machines are capable of doing. While barbells are connected between your hands, they do not offer the same advantage of instability that dumbbells offer. Giving the “lowly” dumbbell the supreme choice for executing most of your weight lifting exercises.

Sport Specific Routines

A.   If the program you are on is not producing results on a monthly basis, a reevaluation must be made. The SAID Principle (specific adaptations to imposed demands) warrants that your body must be under enough exercise stress in order to sufficiently adapt to the demands. By sticking to the same routine, you will get the same results. If that means you are not seeing any, then your body has maximized its adaptations assuming little to no further gains if you continue. A reassessment of your training protocol must be made in order to alter the exercise environment your body is being subjected to. This will stimulate a new growth of alterations which will add to your desired goals.
A.   Not True. By participating in only your dedicated sport for aerobic fitness, you will not sustain a high enough level of metabolism to stimulate a significant physiological response for aerobic fitness. Your sport alone as physical as it may be will not sustain your competitive needs. Given that one must be physically fit in order to engage in sports, they are not fit enough for competition day demands.
A.   Not true. Most top athletes simply have put in the work necessary to adapt their bodies to where they are today. Hereditary factors do have a say in how elite one can get, but they are in no way the boundary of human performance. In general, you get out of sports training by what you subject your body to. The higher up you progress in rankings the harder you will have to train to sustain that level of superiority and professionalism. The best mindset is to know that if your biggest competitor was to “stop” all increases of performance and was in a “maintenance” state, give it enough time with your training and eventually you will surpass them. Not because you are better but because you have “caught up” to where they are on the adaptation cycle.
A.   It is true, most athletes need years of training to get to where they need to be, however, it all comes down to genetic differences that mimic body type formation to the exposed athletic demand. Depending on how far off your body type is to meet your specific sport demands, genetics can either help you or make your job more difficult. Studies have shown that DNA can in fact mutate and your muscles build up memory, therefore the longer you have exposed your body to a desired environment the more it will “lock” in those adaptations in order to protect itself from another encounter (this is seen all throughout nature). The amount of training an individual needs to meet their demands will vary, but hiring a trainer who knows the most effective methods of adaptation can make all the difference.
A.   Not true. The way you improve your game is by changing what you are doing currently, because if you are not succeeding in your goals, then what you are doing is not working. Without a structured program that is producing consistent gains and is constantly changing in a positive manner, an athlete can stagnate their potential. This will open the door for other competitors to leap ahead. That is why finding the right trainers at the beginning of your career WILL make your desired future substantially more attainable. That is the concept of training smarter NOT harder. If harder were the answer, then more top athletes would be burnt out and some are. The ones that are, generally, are subjected to methods of overtraining (training too hard), and because they believed this was the only way to be the best, they slowly became unmotivated not able to meet the demands, making the only action for them left to do is quit and try something else. Don’t get caught in this belief because it is NOT true!

Competition Preparation

A.   It has been said that some have, but most have been caught. The increases in technological breakthroughs have greatly enhanced the ability to diagnose banned substances within an athlete’s body. Therefore, given enough time the amount of abuse of steroids and other banned substances will decline in all sports. It is also NOT worth ruining your career or future career and a lifetime of hard work for a temporary gain that can otherwise be done through many other legal training modalities.
A.   To most minds educated by media and sports commercials, determination is by far not enough to seize the win. It may work a few times in the lower divisions, but willing yourself to win does not in any way make your muscles, cardiovascular system, and neurological system take on sustained superhuman characteristics at a moment’s notice. Developing these systems in advance to meet race day demands is the key to winning. How much and in what way is the job of the trainer. When competition day comes and you are well prepared, your mind will naturally become dominant to seizing the moment. It cannot be a forced action, because if it is you can be sure that you have not prepared enough and you are bluffing yourself. That is not to say determination is important and useful, but using it as a replacement for preparation will not help you execute a perfect race.
A.   Research has showed that static and ballistic stretching compromises an athlete’s power and strength while performed prior to exercise. Pre-competition stretching is only useful in the form of active stretching which gently elongates muscle tissue, decreases the risk of injury, and increases blood flow. In comparison, stretching after competition will improve recovery, aid in the removal of lactic acid, and relax any tension left over from adrenaline release.
A.   True. If your competitors seem to have something that you don’t it is because they do! Training specific areas of your body creates adaptations unique to the way you are training. If your competitors seem to have something that you do not, when it comes to a fitness issue and not an equipment issue, it is because they are training differently than you are. Their adaptations will be different and their performances will reflect that. Genetics are also a factor, but when it comes to sports performance, much can be altered or added to your regimen in order to accommodate genetic differences. For everyone, it all comes down to how smart you are training and preparing.
A.   Your diet MUST be altered on race day. Most athletes neglect to realize that their energy is derived from food and that can be very different on a race day vs. a training day. For example, depending upon climate conditions and the type of event you will be competing in, fat-protein-carb ratios must be modified to suit the demands. Heart rate levels in addition to duration determine the amounts and types of food necessary to charge your body for exercise stress; e.g. endurance athletes deriving more energy from fat than sprint athletes or strength athletes. Once a theoretical diet plan is created for race day, you MUST test it out in simulation before actually using it when it matters. It also goes without saying; nothing new should be tested on race day unless it is critical to do so.

Nutrition

A.   The body is very particular about caloric intake and the timing of meals. It not only takes 5 or 6 meals a day, but each meal coming from an array of food groups with the proper balance of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates for maximum growth. This combined with a structured exercise training program is how you will reach your full potential.
A.   Contrary to what many people believe fats, sodium, and sugar play vital roles in our bodies for energy production and even aid in weight loss! Sodium is a naturally occurring substance in many foods and is also very important. The amount you are consuming is the key; too much is bad and too little is bad. However, if you are diabetic, hypertensive, or water retentive seek medical advice.
A.   Not true! Restricting carbohydrate intake starves the body of available energy, especially the brain and central nervous system which derives majority of its fuel from glucose. This can as well sap athletic performance. You need carbohydrates to fuel your brain, heart, and other vital systems throughout the body.

If this source of fuel is deprived for several days the body conserves essential protein by creating an alternative fuel known as ketones. As ketones continue to build up in the blood stream, your body will transition into a state called ketosis. Any initial weight loss is water NOT fat, due to the kidneys attempting to expel excess ketones from the body. This can also cause an upset in the bodies’ chemical balance creating many unwanted side effects like fatigue, nausea, bad breath, dizziness, and headaches.

Krebs cycle oxidation is the only way to metabolize fat. Due to a low carbohydrate diet, Krebs cycle intermediates are diminished while also resulting in a lower production of ATP. Individuals who are on carbohydrate restricted diets tend to have less energy and fatigue sooner, which causes their workouts to be shorter and lower in intensity. It may be true that the body will place more demand on fatty acids for energy, however, the body will also rely more heavily on amino acids from the breakdown of lean muscle tissue. Any lost weight is the development of depleted glycogen stores within the liver and muscles, resulting in more muscle breakdown and water loss than fat being metabolized.

A.   The minimum meal count anyone should eat is 5 times a day. Anything less is not enough to sustain your body. The goal is to eat more frequently while moderating caloric intake from a perfect balance of fat, protein, and carbohydrates. By depriving your body of infrequent meals, it will recognize a lack of food available in its environment and will go into a “famine” state by storing fat and decreasing energy levels. However, when the body has adequate and consistent amounts of fat, protein, and carbohydrates being supplied all throughout the day, fat will instead be used as an energy source rather than being stored away in preparation for a state of starvation.
A.   Food is comprised of macronutrients (fats, proteins, and carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, and trace elements). Each has a profound impact on our hormonal responses and the bodies’ daily metabolic activities. They have potent “drug like” actions on our bodies that are responsible for growth and optimal performance. It is important to realize that without proper macro and micronutrient intake levels, the adaptation outcome from your training protocol will be greatly decreased. In general, by having a deficiency in any one of these you will sap your workout success rate.

 

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